This morning I ran the 8K Race for Hope in Radford! I had some friends walking the race, and I thought there was a great turnout! Lots of people were there with their kids to watch the runners, and there was a really great atmosphere to the race.
Mathis didn't run because his ankle has been hurting him. He was there to support me, and he was also excited about watching some of the other runners. Three world class runners from Kenya were there today, and they were sooooooo fast!!! The fastest runner finished the 8K (approx. 5 miles) in 23 minutes and 23 seconds!!!!! Are you kidding me??!!! It was really fun running a race with such amazing runners. Although I only saw them as they were passing me at the turn around (they were crossing Mile 4 when I hadn't even hit Mile 2), it was a really neat experience. I couldn't resist asking for a picture with them after the race.
One of the runners (David Chromei) shared his testimony after the race, and it was amazing. I love the fact that he runs to glorify the Lord. He gave some tips for running faster, and he encouraged runners to push themselves to try harder.
I feel like I tried really hard this morning. Right before the race, another woman came up to me and asked if I had ran the 10 mile race a month ago. She introduced herself as Stephanie, and I remembered that in addition to Chris, she was the other woman I saw running on the course at the end. We were the last three to finish that race. :) I was happy to see Stephanie again, and encouraged to know I wouldn't be the only "slow" one out there again. Once the race started, the pack of runners really took off. It wasn't long until it was just me and Stephanie again. This time there were some other runners and walkers behind us, but the majority of runners were ahead of us. I ran right behind and next to Stephanie for most of the race. At times I felt like she was really keeping me going, and at other times I felt like I could have pushed on a little bit. It was nice running together although we didn't talk too much.
I was so pleased when I crossed Mile 1 at exactly 10 minutes!!! For the entire race I stayed under an 11 minute pace, and I sprinted the very last quarter of a mile at the end. I finished in 52 minutes (according to my Garmin), and I was really, really happy with that time!!!! I can really see myself improving, and that feels good.
I enjoyed today's race a lot -- it was a nice course, and I felt strong. The weather was gorgeous -- a little warm, but really not too bad. I loved the fact that it benefitted the Pregnancy Resource Center here in VA, and that I got to run alongside some world-class runners! :)
Miles: 8k (approx. 5 miles)
Time: 52 minutes!!
Miles this Week: 13
Miles this Month: 5