It’s soo nice to be able to run a local race. I wish we had more of them. I love being able to run with my friends and feel like I belong. I’ve spent a lot of time running this year and I’ve come to appreciate the local runs a lot more because of the community feeling. Nothing will ever be able to replace that feeling of running with your friends and partying after!
Yesterday, Willie completed his second half marathon and I completed my 11th half marathon. The run was a 2-miler, 10K and half marathon over the Pleasure Island bridge. The view from the bridge was GREAT! Everything was perfect for this race. The weather was beautiful and not too cold and our spirits were high, plus it was a hometown race. But this wasn’t my race. The training plan called for a light week of running but I knew I was running this half so I changed it up a bit. My long run this week was supposed to be 8 miles because the following week is the BIG 20 miler. This was Willie’s race and I really wanted to run it with him. I want to guide him to his PR!
Willie was ready and I wanted to run with him. He ran the first couple of miles with me (too fast I might add) but I let him go. I didn’t want to irritate my IT Band so I wasn’t pushing any bridge running. I’m too close to the marathon to risk anything right now. We the ran the first two miles at 9:45 and 9:59 which I knew was too fast for Willie but he kept pushing. The only thing that matter to me was that he kept is steady the whole race, but he really didn’t want me to run with him. He says I talk too much but I wasn’t interested in talking. I just wanted to finish the race with him. Around mile 7 I saw that he was starting to get irritated with me so I kind of left him but stayed close.
When he told me to bug off, I ran and I took some pictures. The view and race course were so pretty. This really made me stop and think about the beauty of the place where we live!
This was definitely my favorite part of the race. I loved running so close to the water and watching all the people fishing, even though they were probably upset we were taking up the one way road out there. Everyone was really nice and friendly though and they cheered us on as we passed by. The scenic view made the miles go by very quickly. Last year when I ran this race I remember suffering through it, maybe because it was raining, but this year it was different. Maybe because I wasn’t really trying to race this race or I was just so proud of my husband, but I loved every minute of it.
I even got to encourage people along the way. At the end there was a woman who had kind of lost her steam, but I wasn’t going to let her give up. I ran with her and kept encouraging her through the last mile. It was a fun moment for it and I KNOW she appreciated it! We finished together and I was just slightly ahead of Willie. If he wasn’t going to let me run the race with him, I wanted to be there to see him finish so I stayed close to him.
Willie finished the race in 2:31:48 which is 25 minutes off of his previous race. I AM SO PROUD of him for doing a great job! This was also my second marathon last year and I’m proud to say he beat my 2nd half marathon time!
And it’s always great to run with your friends! I had so much fun at the race because I was just so light hearted and went with the flow. My competitive spirit sometimes takes over and I’m really hard on myself, but yesterday was about Willie! Everyone always talks about me doing these things, but he’s truly amazing himself. He said he wouldn’t ever run anything more than a 5K and now he’s doing half marathons. He’s already done two this year and we have one next weekend and of course, our big race in Memphis! I am proud to stand with him as he pushes past the walls that once stood before him. When he was 492, I know he never thought he could run 13.1 miles and now he’s doing it…and loving it. He inspires me every day to be the best version of myself and I hope I do the same for him.
The best part of the weekend though was probably seeing Iram! Yes, he’s done some amazing things but the root of it all he’s just a really great person. He was someone we just met one day and now he’s our FRIEND. We loved just being able to spend some time with him and just talk to him. AND we did a lot of talking and making plans for the future.
And there was chocolate milk that I had to get after the race!