As I sit here with a crooked neck and sore back from the monsoon of snow we experienced over the last few days, I felt that it was imperative to reflect upon the fact that this year is almost over! I am not a fan of those people who produce a “Year In Review” type of blog entry or even, ugh, if I say, a Facebook status dedicated to it but I thought I would share one thing that I accomplished this year, running. I never participate in making a New Years Resolution because I don’t believe in changing yourself because the year ends in a different number. If you want to lose weight, then start tomorrow. Need to quit smoking? Do it before it’s too late. It shouldn’t take January 1, for you to say “OK, I’m ready” and then fall back into your normal routine by March. So instead of a resolution, I set a new goal. I wanted to RUN more! I was never much of a runner growing up as I preferred to play more physical types of sports like soccer and basketball but as I got older, those opportunities to play became slim. The competitive nature inside of me needed something to entertain itself and I fell into running, not for the high but that feeling of competition with myself.
To keep on top of my game, I decided I would TRY to do at least one race a month and improve on my time. Of course, life got in the way and I was not able to do as much as I wanted but I definitely felt that I accomplished a good amount over the last year. So if you don’t want to see my cheesy but somewhat entertaining and REAL “Race Recap: Year In Review,” I suggest you run away unless you are waiting until after New Years to do so!
James Joyce Ramble: There’s nothing like running through your hometown on what felt like one of the hottest days in April and trying to think of any shortcuts to get the heck out of there! (Kidding!) The annual James Joyce Ramble is a 10K that goes through the town of Dedham, MA (a suburb of Boston). This race was held only a few weeks after the Boston Marathon so there was a lot of Boston pride on the course that kept runners motivated. I saw a shirt with the four victims on the back of the runner in front of me and I felt that I had to keep going no matter what. The race was great for the first 3.5 miles until we hit mile 4 and were introduced to the wonderful world of hills and speed bumps at a private school campus. With the heat and the inclines, it started to really set in that the last few miles were going to be tough. I finished with a decent time but my shoulders and sports bra were fried!
Lt. Timothy Steel Memorial 5K: There is nothing I love more than participating in races for a cause. This event is part of a full day of recognition that celebrates the life and service of Lt. Timothy Steele who was killed in action on August 23, 2011 while serving our Nation in Afghanistan. The race was held in Duxbury, MA and the route was set up along the beach and a quiet neighborhoods. Honestly I could not even tell you what the beach looked like because I think I blacked out, which I believe I tend to do during races. Aside from the view it was great to run with friends and give cheer everyone on as they crossed the finish line. This day was definitely filled with support, pride, and I PR’d in my overall time. Too bad I am listed on CoolRunnings with a different last name. Live and learn and clean up your damn handwriting!
FinishAtThe50: This race was sponsored by Harvard Pilgrim and was set at Gillette Stadium where the New England Patriots play. What really drew me to this race was that the finish line was on the 50 yard line! I even went over different scenarios in my head as to what “cool” pose I would like to do when they snap my photo at the finish (loser alert!) Anyway, race day was on July 3 and started around 5:00 pm. Saying it was “disgustingly” hot would be a severe understatement. I opted to do the 5K instead of the 10K because I felt that the heat would get to me pretty quickly. Although this race was unique, the killer was the dreaded ramps leading up to the top of the stadium. They went ON AND ON AND ON and so did the incline. Most people took the opportunity to slow down at this point due to the fact that it was the first time we encountered shade on the course. When we finally reached the top, I figured it was a good time to take out my phone and snap some photos from inside the stadium. This became all too difficult as I had the bright idea of putting my phone down my pants during the entire race! (Note to self: NEVER AGAIN!) The finish was fun and we got to hang out on the field at the end.
For some reason I thought it would be a fabulous idea to run two races in one weekend on little sleep and my mile times were what suffered the most. Although I wasn’t thrilled about that aspect of the weekend, I was very happy to participate in both races. Mema’s Run was held in Milton, MA where proceeds were donated to Beth Israel Hospital in support of high quality patient care, new technology, and the future of health care services, in the memory of Mary Gardiner. This 3.5 mile race was in the shade for most of the route which I truly enjoyed. The end gave us all a little grief was a long hill and a finish line that extended beyond the start line but overall I felt really good throughout the course.
Susan G. Komen is a race that I have done for the past three years and the cause is very close to my heart. With family members and friends experiencing or have had experience with breast cancer, I know the true strength and coverage it takes to overcome it. That is always in the back of my mind in these races and motivates me to finish. This was another race where I had friends participate and it was really nice to see them on the looped course. This is held annually in South Boston and there are many different options for those who want to participate either by running, walking, or volunteering.
You can read that sensational recap by clicking the link above.
As you can see, there aren’t any marathons listed on my list of 2013 races but they are definitely on my mind and a challenge I hope to conquer. I won’t need January 1 as motivation though, just the simple thought of what I’ve done and where I am ready to go.
Cheers to New Years Goals, Not Resolutions! (Those are a buzz kill!)