Six days after a PR in NYC, it’s totally normal to get up and keep racing…especially a downhill course, right? Exactly. Totally normal. I knew you would understand. I was all signed up for REVEL Canyon City. I was originally planning on running the marathon distance, like I did last year. But after crushing my legs and joints on the streets of New York just a few days earlier and the impact of the travel on my body, I thought it would be best to drop to the half marathon distance. This was a great decision by the way. I had been in contact with a few friends throughout the course of the week. I honestly didn’t know how my body would perform. I would of really enjoyed a sub 2 half to secure a new proof of time for Disney races…if you run Disney you understand why this is important. But if that didn’t happen my goal was to enjoy and finish.
Of course it is an early wake up call because you have to get bussed to the top of the mountain. I was at the half start village around 5 am and it was COLD up there. Good thing REVEL provides everyone with throw away gloves and a mylar blanket. We all looked like baked potatoes. It should be noted that I also left my phone in the car. Because of the way the canyon is set up, we wouldn’t get cell reception until mile 10.5 (or in the marathons case mile 23) so why waste good battery life? I met up with my girls Ivie, Connie, Kat, and Sarah and we caught up, laughed, and tried to stay warm. Sarah and I had talked about running the race together…because clearly we enjoy one another’s company. Remember that time we ran in Huntington Beach and it was like a bazillion and three degrees outside? Clearly we enjoy such shenanigans.
Before we knew it the race started. No really…we didn’t hear the countdown. I was still in my throw away clothes and Sarah had to hold items as we were being shuffled through the start line. That’s how I knew this race was gonna be awesome. We agreed we wanted to be as close to 2:00 as we could. So we ran, we walked, we gossiped, we discussed dinner plans. We just had a good time. Sarah and I always have fun and it’s so awesome that we only met one another in May at Rock N Roll San Diego! Friends matter. Sometimes we don’t think we can make it or hold a pace and sometimes all you need is love and encouragement from a friend. We have been that encouragement for each other! This mama is great!
In case you didn’t know, REVEL prides themselves on their MASSIVE and very heavy bling. I was in instant love with the medal we picked up! I was really stoked to also find out I had placed 16th in my age group. That’s top 20! Quite the accomplishment in my eyes! Proof that my hard work and training is paying off. It’s not top 10, but it is top 20. And that is something to me.
Now the race wasn’t over. All of #WeRunSocial that was there running the half finished up and made their way to mile 26 to cheer on our girl Carlee! She was attempting to qualify for Boston and none of us wanted to miss it. If anyone deserves it, it is Carlee. As we tracked and cheered and timed we slowly realized that this race wasn’t going to be the BQ race. But we were all determined to watch her finish and to celebrate her. I kept moving closer with Sarah and Ivie. You couldn’t miss Carlee, she was in all neon haha! I saw her walking and she started running when she saw us. I saw a familiar look in her face…it was the “Son of a B****” face that usually happens when your body has had enough. Having done that marathon before, I knew what was up. I handed off my medal and ran toward Carlee and gave her a big hug…then ran with her. I asked if she was ok and if she needed anything. I pointed out all of the people there cheering her on and let her know the finish was two right turns away. She needed that encouragement because she saw the crew and TOOK OFF! She PR’d her marathon by one minute…with a 3:45 marathon. THREE FOURTY FIVE!
Why am I telling you this? Because, this is what a running family and community is all about. I may not of been able to do much, but a smile a hug and honest encouraging words go a long way. I dig Carlee a lot, if you’ve met her and hung out with you know why. I know that anyone of these folks would of done the same thing for me. You never run alone when you have running pals with you. That is why #WeRunSocial matters. It’s a crew all about positivity and love. This race was all about the love for me. It was about sharing experiences and just being out and about. I didn’t need to race on Saturday. In fact, many people thought I was crazy. I felt strong and my body responded in kind. I don’t regret a thing. Show someone some love next time you’re on the course headed toward the finish line. Encourage that person that needs a kind word when they aren’t feeling their best. It really will make them smile…maybe not in the moment but they won’t forget it. I promise.