That final sprint to the finish line= so much lactic acid filling up every inch of your body.

The morning started at 3:30 a.m. when my alarm clock went off.  I slept horribly but that is to be expected on race night, right?  I ate 1.5 bagels on the way to the start but made a big mistake and didn’t bring a water bottle.  I brought my hydroflask in the car but forgot a disposable water bottle to take in the bus and for the start.  I started the race thirsty and had some cramping because of it.  I tried to take in as much water/gatorade at each aid station and I’m so lucky it wasn’t hot because that could have really ended poorly!

The starting line is at a reservoir.  It could not have been more gorgeous.

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Utah hit a bit of a cold front at the perfect time and there was even some lightning and light rain as I was driving to the buses.   We were all shivering at the start and for the first few miles my feet were so frozen that they really hurt with each step. I knew that they would warm up and at about mile three I never thought about them again because they felt great again.

The race gave space blankets in the gear bags which was so nice because they kept us warm.  We even kept them on during our .5 mile warm-up.

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The race started right at 6 and we were off.  I ran near my friends a bit but I ran alone for most of the race.  At mile 5 I threw away my gloves and hand warmers and felt really great.  I knew I was going to have a great day out there.

The majority of the race was a blur (that’s what happens when I am really focused… I don’t notice a lot of things going on) but the best part was seeing Andrew and the girls at mile 9 which is the hardest part of the course.  You get some rollers in there and after a lot of downhill in the first half your legs are trashed on those rollers.  My breathing felt great but my legs felt dead when I saw them.   At mile 10 I saw my running partner Jenn and that was a huge boost too.  Love seeing my people out there and needed to at these points because the final miles are rough on this course once your legs are shredded.

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Along the course there are so many incredibly encouraging signs from cancer patients (all proceeds go towards cancer research), survivors and families that have lost someone to cancer.  They make you so so thankful for the survivors and also for the opportunity we get to run each day.  The signs make this race so incredible and I’ll always be back to continue to support it.  The entire race has a completely different feel about it because of its cause and I know that is what draws so many people in Utah to come do it.

I saw Andrew and the girls again at the end and it was so nice.

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Another podium sweep for the Runner’s Corner women (only one of the guys on our team ran the race and he finished in 1:13 and was also on the podium).

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Final results.  My gps didn’t start working/connect until about 5 minutes into the race and it kept beeping way after everyone else at each mile but my fastest mile was 5:57 (super downhill mile) and my slowest mile was 6:43 (rollers) but I finished with a 6:07 mile (mile 12) which I’m happy about.

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Love having them here!

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Brooke wants to adopt Emilee’s dog!

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And we all enjoyed the post-run eats.

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Here is what I won which is crazy because the other day I was telling Andrew I wanted one of these backpacks and had no idea that it was going to be a prize.

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And now for a few random thoughts that are kind of all over the place:

*Kneader’s french toast needs to be at the finish of every race from here on out.

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*Races are my version of partying.  I’ve never been a late night person so it’s nice that running/racing is done in the very early hours of the day so I can get out with my friends and do my version of partying ha;)

*I try to go into each different race that I do with some sort of thought or mantra for the morning.  For this half-marathon I went into it thinking about how I know I am going to face pain in that 2nd half of the race and probably a lot of it.  I think once we acknowledge that it is going to hurt, we are able to better decide how we are going to face it.  Are we going to be afraid of it and let it slow us down?  Are we going to let it take over our thoughts and turn our thoughts about ourselves to negative ones?  Are we going to quit?  Or are we going to be brave?  Are we going to welcome the pain because we know that pain is part of the package deal of reaching new goals?  We can take the pain and let it fuel us to greater things.  We can talk our brains into holding the pace because the hard thing to do is often the right thing to do.

This is one of my favorite quotes ever.   I’ve thought about it a lot when it comes to real life problems/situations but it is a great one for running too.   I didn’t repeat the entire quote in my head during the race but from miles 10-12 I repeated often, ‘harder right’ because I want to do the hard things in life because I know they bring the best results.  I also thought about this quote during my marathon last October.

PS this is a quote I talk about with my kids a lot too so when I think about it for myself it makes me really want to follow it because of how bad I want my kids to use this in life:

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*Something else I thought about when I was so tired and wanted to slow down was that at least I wasn’t running 50 miles:). <— that race ate me alive so now that I finished that, I can always think about it to help me to avoid quitting different races.

*I was 20 seconds off from my PR in 2015 from a similar course.  I didn’t look at my watch much or really know when I was going to finish (I thought I was at about a 1:23:30 finish) but after I finished I started wishing that I would have known how close and pushed it a bit more.  But then again, I was really pushing it and it was nice to race more off of feel than what my Garmin was telling me to do.  You can always look back on an effort and wish you did something different or you can congratulate yourself for how awesome you did.  Let’s choose to congratulate.

PS I am sure that if I ran a flat course I would be much closer to a 1:25 fitness wise but most of Utah races give you downhill miles in the beginning of a race to make up for the altitude. I’m always very happy if I can make it to the podium based off of my effort though!  We trained through this race without a taper so I’m excited to see what a tapered half will look like!

*Love the hat and shirt that you get with this race!

IMG 9064*Super excited to start running with Merri too!

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*Walking yesterday was rough.  My legs were very sore yesterday so hopefully they are better today.

*Andrew told me my race face makes him nervous ha… I get so in the zone I look really angry!

*I think I might be switching fuel for a little while.  I took a Huma before the race but then used this gel at mile 6.  It’s a lot thicker which I don’t love but the flavor is great and I felt that caffeine boost big time.

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PS does anyone else wish they could brush their teeth right after they eat a gel ha… they feel stuck to my teeth when I eat them.

*I ran without my phone!  This was my first half ever that I raced without a phone/music and I loved it.  It was so nice to only carry a gel and to really focus on running.  Next up—> racing a marathon without a phone/music.  I think it really helps me to concentrate on the task at hand personally and I’m loving it.

*I meant to do a 2-3 mile cool-down but kept getting lost on the way back and I didn’t have my phone which resulted in a 4.7 mile cool-down.  I need to make sure to take my phone for all of my runs outside of a race.

*I finished the race and my lips went blue asap.  This happens every race for me along with a case of runner’s cough.  Whenever I go at a hard effort, I start coughing like crazy when I stop.

*The race gives out your drop bags with an awesome tag on them too which makes things so easy.  You don’t have to write your name/number with a sharpie and afterwards it took them about 20 seconds to find my bag.

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*Very very grateful to do this life with Andrew!  He didn’t have work on Saturday!  I’m so thankful for all that he does to encourage me with my passion.

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Who is your biggest cheerleader for your running?  

When is your next race?

What percentages of the time do you run with your phone?

What time do most races start where you are at?

-In Utah we start EARLY… usually in the 6 o’clock hour!

*Good morning!  I hope your weekend has been great so far.  I’ll have a full race recap up tomorrow.  I finished 3rd overall for the women with a time of 1:22:13!  I am very happy with how it went.  Training with this team is really going well! *The weather needs to be talked about really … Continue Reading

Time to go race! Planned on 2 but did 3 instead yesterday morning. Andrew had crepes ready for us for breakfast. When Skye brings me a book= stop, drop and read. Skye said my nieces name for the first time and it made her so happy. Over to the expo—> free snow cones! I’ll see … Continue Reading

Just in case you were wondering, Skye is still strutting her stuff in her new running shoes. Just leading her little gang into Target. No running selfie from yesterday.  I got up when Andrew left to go to work to get in 4 miles on the treadmill and climbed right back into bed for a … Continue Reading

6.3 miles @ 8:21 with a few short strides at the end with Emilee for my Wednesday run… normally we do a hill day on the trails after our speed workouts but we want to freshen up our legs for Saturday instead. We decided it was time for Skye to get her first pair or … Continue Reading

We did our workout on Tuesday instead of Wednesday this week so we can have an extra day of recovery before our race on Saturday. Things started early with half a Costco blueberry muffin before leaving.  My grandma brought these to our house on Sunday and I decided they would make excellent pre-run fuel.  Fun … Continue Reading

Never ever judge your running/fitness/endurance/strength off of the first mile.   I met up with two of my running friends for my morning run yesterday and during the first mile we all looked at each other and laughed because of how terrible we felt.  All three of us are running the half marathon this weekend … Continue Reading