|Caught by the paparazzi!|
Sometimes I catch myself wondering why I continue to run the races somewhere between the middle and end of the race, but at Rock & Roll I did not. I love running in downtown St, Petersburg, FL. Remember when you were a child and your parent(s) would get crazy if you went out in the road. Now, I get to run in the roads and my Mom, family, and friends even cheer me on! Once my potty issues were resolved I made my way to the start line with some amazing Suncoast Strider athletes, many with a PR (personal record) in mind. The St Pete Rock & Roll half had no hairpin turns, had a few corners, and only a couple bumps in the road. We ran a PR style course.
With 4000+ runners and walkers there were enough corrals to reach the Gulf of Mexico, but I started in #2 with a few of my closest Strider friends. We all chit chatted about our aspirations for the course, mine being that if I felt good then I would try for a sub-1:50 (a PR). Part of me wanted to try and stick with my buddies, like any other running day, but this was not what happened out on those streets.
My decision to make sure I warmed up and to run a moderate paced race was exactly what my body needed last Sunday. It took about a mile to warm up my right hammy, which seemed to not want to be active at all. I was able to motivate others along the course, which in turns motivates me. Do you think about something while you run, bike, or exercise? I do not and never have been able to focus on anything long enough to justify it as thinking. Every once in a while I have a passing thought of something or someone - mostly someone, but for the majority of the time I am out there breathing heavily, throwing one foot in front of the other, my mind is quiet - listening for that still, small voice. This is how I spent about 1:40 of my race, completely enjoying the scenery and music.
Music is a language of the soul, which is something my Dad always reminded me. Every stage played music I knew, taking me back to different points in my life. I went through the rolodex of memories of my Mom raising nine children on her own, my Dad guiding me through difficult life events, my only sister not knowing she was as beautiful as she always has been, a few of my brothers battling for the position of patriarch and other brothers being playful siblings, my own children unconditionally loving me, and my husband and his sometimes overbearing work ethic. Don't you love how music can bring about appreciation for our past?
|My brother & I after his finish!|
I know some people would think that the free Sean Kingston concert could be the highlight of the morning, but for me it was not as important as being there for my family and friends on the streets of St Pete. After the running, cheering, and dancing I NEVER wonder why I get myself into all of this.
|Christina, Me, and Kim..the three amigas!!|
"Remember the feeling you get from a good run is far better than the feeling you get from sitting around wishing you were running."
Thank you to my family and Strider friends for making life more enjoyable!!