I don’t know why I do the crazy things I do, but when my friend Aimee asked me on Thursday if I wanted her bib to run in LadiesFest 8km on Saturday I said yes. Never mind that I haven’t worked out or gone on a run in a month, I was just gonna bust out an 8k!

My little brother Ben woke up at 6:30 am to come out and watch me race! Which was so sweet. When the race started he was very loudly cheering “Tynan Power! Tynan Power!” And then when he saw me in a crowd he started yelling “Go Rachel! That’s my sister! That’s my sister!” It was so sweet. A lot of the ladies were laughing and I heard one say “I wish my brother would come cheer for me.” It made me feel really good.  He also snapped this picture:

Me starting the 8k!

The first km and a half was down into the coulees and I was shocked how many women weren’t tackling the hill properly. I didn’t do so hot in high school cross-country but I do remember the coaches saying to always let your body go and gravity pull you down hills. So I was flying down this hill and I knew that once I hit flat ground and started my regular pace that women would pass me and probably laugh at me in their heads. Which is what happened. I had to walk right before the 2km mark. I picked up a second wind at the 2.5 mark that only made it to the 3km before I had to walk again. The inner athlete in me just cringed, why do I struggle so much with distance running??

The turn around was at 4.5 km and for a while runners had to run past each other. I was about at 3.5km and  this girl in a sports bra (who was at about 5km in) and a body to die for came FLYING by me!

As she flew by, others were close behind her including some older ladies I wouldn’t expect to be that quick (I’m talking 50s-60s!).   I watched these athletes fly by me andas  I walked/plodded along it made me sad that I am not a crazy elite athlete.  I have no one to blame but myself because these ladies aren’t naturally that quick, they have obviously trained hard to be. I need to step it up.

That gave me the motivation I need and I started jogging again at the 4.5 mark. My third wind kicked in and I was cruising. I was so excited as I passed the 6km mark which, prior to this race, was the farthest I have ever run in my life.

But, as I have said in previous posts, Runners Soul are sadists and love to end their races on big, long hills. So at 6.5km I hit the hill and had to walk the km up it very slowly. When I hit the top of the hill I jogged the last little bit to the finish line. I didn’t kick into an all out sprint until I saw two ladies just a few metres ahead of me, so I kicked it hard and rushed past them over the finish line.

My final time? Exactly one hour. Ha ha ha! Not exactly brag worthy! Oh well, I did it and that’s what matters. I figure if I keep doing these races eventually I’ll get my act together and start training for them.

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