May 28, 2013

2013 Memorial Day 8K race report

The night before last, I was cleaning up my Inbox, and found an e-mail about a Memorial Day 5K/8K race about 30 minutes from my house. I'd done the race a couple of years ago, and it was miserably hot. I had such a bad memory of that race, that I didn't even consider it last year. But Jerry and I were trying to come up with something to do with the boys on Memorial Day, and since there was a 1 mile Fun Run, I thought maybe we could take them to do their first 1 mile race.

I mentioned it to the boys. Eli loved the idea, and begged to do the 5K; Noah didn't want to do it at all, because he was really worried about being in last place. I told Eli that he'd have to train for a 5K, but I'd let him do the 1 mile if he wanted. He was really upset about it, so I just figured we'd forget the whole idea.

I didn't want to bring it up again, so when the boys woke up yesterday morning at around 6:45, I asked what they wanted to do today. Eli mentioned the race again, and I didn't want to tell him no, so we decided to go (I told him he had to do the 1 mile, not the 5K). We all threw on our running clothes and ran out the door.

We got to Grosse Ile and drove around for a bit, because I couldn't really remember how to get to the high school, but my memory came back pretty quickly. I had been planning to do a 5 mile run sometime during the day, and since we were at the race, I decided to just sign up for the 8K (4.97 miles). The weather wasn't bad (55 degrees), so I hoped it would be a better experience than last time.

The kids' race started at 9:00, and they said they wanted to do it without Jerry or me. Noah was super nervous, but Eli was excited. I kept stressing to them that they need to run at their own pace--not to start too fast, even if it seems like all the other kids are passing them.

I saw Renee, who was there with her family (husband and three boys). They made the last minute decision to go to the race as well. Her boys were lined up for the 1 mile, and I should have told Eli to make sure he didn't try to keep up with Ben (Renee's youngest; he's Eli's age). Renee's family is SUPER fast.

After the countdown, the kids were off. I was so nervous I could hardly stand it! The kids went 3/4 of the way around the track, then cut across a small patch of grass to a sidewalk and took it out a ways, then turned around to come back. Noah and Eli seemed to be doing pretty good, but I could tell they were really pushing themselves. I think they started out too fast ;)

I expected to see them both walking on the way back, but they were still running along, at what seemed to be a good pace. Noah was just slightly ahead of Eli the whole way. Renee's oldest boys zoomed by and one first and second place, and her youngest was probably eighth. When Noah and Eli were almost to the finish line, I ran out onto the track to be there when they crossed. Noah crossed first, with a time of 9:05!

Followed closely by Eli:

I gave them both a huge hug and kept saying how proud I was of them for finishing, even though it was hard. Noah said he felt like he was going to throw up. ;)  The kids were given ribbons and they could choose a piece of candy from a bowl (very cool prize for a kid!). Both of the boys were SO proud of themselves, and they said they were really glad that they did it.

After that, it was time to head over to the starting line for the 8K. I chatted with Renee for a minute before lining up, and she asked what pace I was going to run. I told her about 8:45, since it was just for fun. She gave me this look that said, "You can do better than that!" I hadn't been planning to "race" it, but made the last minute decision that I would do my best. We lined up and got ready to start.

(If I'd been prepared, I would have come up with a cute red/white/blue outfit). The horn sounded, and off we went. I started out too fast--about 7:15 pace for the first half-mile, and it was rough. I naturally slowed down, because there was no way I could keep up that pace, and then I just hoped to keep my pace under 8:15. It was hard! I have no idea how I managed a 7:57 pace for my recent 10K.

There is a small section that goes through the woods on a trail. This was a little frustrating because it was narrow and we had to run single-file. I wanted to pass the man in front of me, because it felt like we were going kind of slow, but after we got out of the woods, I saw that we'd been running 8:15, so it wasn't bad.

They had quite a few water stops for an 8K--probably 4?--but I didn't stop for any of them. When I got to this one stretch of road in the final mile, I remembered how much I hated that part a couple of years ago, because the sun was beating down on me. This time, I did fine with it, and managed a sub-8:00 pace for the last mile.

The last hundred yards or so is on a track. I started looking for Jerry and the boys, and saw them just before the finish line. I finished in 40:31, which wasn't bad for a last-minute race (although my pace wasn't as good as my 10K a couple of months ago).

I checked out the food, but didn't take anything (bagels from Panera, lots of baked goods--cookies, brownies, etc.--bananas, watermelon, and yogurt). Then we headed back to the car. I saw Renee in the parking lot, and she'd finished in 37:37! We said our good-byes, and she told me that she'd pick up my medal for me if I'd won anything (hahaha! I laughed at that).

On the way home, I got a text from Renee that read: "1st in your age group!!!!" I scanned the QR code on my bib, to check the results, and sure enough--first place in my age group.

I was stunned. Granted, it was a fairly small race, but it was still exciting. Renee picked up my award (she'd won third in her age group, her husband took first, and I already mentioned her boys were first and second in the kids' race... I told you they were a fast family). They dropped off my medal for me on the way home, and we got a quick picture.

It ended up raining the whole rest of the day yesterday, so I was happy that we'd gone to the race. The kids had fun, and that was my main goal; getting an age group award was pretty cool, too!

By the way, congratulations to the winner of the yubuds--Sherry Rini! (Over 1,000 people entered!)

Enjoy them


  1. Your kids rock! (You too!)

  2. Just wanted to let you know that I have been receiving your email updates for awhile now. This is one of my top blogs--I love reading about your progress! You are an inspiration :)

  3. AnonymousMay 28, 2013


  4. AnonymousMay 29, 2013

    Congrats on your AG win! Those are some quick mile times for your boys too! My boyfriend just finished his first 5K this month and we are going to let this 6 year old do a 1 mile soon. He loves to run and is super fast so I'm anxious to see his time.

  5. I love that you just kind of randomly went to a race... and won your age division LOL. Such fun. Think back a couple years... could the "former you" even begin to imagine winning medals at races? So dang cool. Well done Katie!! And way to lead those boys by example. I love that they participated and enjoyed!

  6. I really hope to do things like this with my kids someday :D

  7. Aww great for the boys! You, too, of course!

  8. AnonymousMay 29, 2013

    I have been reading your blog since it was only on Spark people and then you started Runs for Cookies.

    I just wanted to write and repeat what a previous poster said: that is so cool that you as a family at the last minute decided to go run a race for Memorial Day! Like people jump in the car and head to the beach or to a park or to go hiking last minute. Your family hops in the car and heads to run in a race! And then you just jumped right into doing a 5k because you were planning to run that much anyhow? So cool.

    I enjoy very much reading your posts. When I first started reading your blogs (on Spark People) you were much heavier than I. I watched you get to my weight and then keep on losing. I have stayed the same. :/ Finally, I have come to the point that I am losing a little each week down to my goal.

    I could not figure out what to put in the URL line to enter this post with my name, so I am signing in as Anonymous. My name is Julie.

  9. Hi Katie! I have spent the past couple of weeks reading through your entire blog - you are such a great writer, and I just love hearing about your running, your maintenance, and your family! It's been interesting to see how much your writing "voice" has changed since you started this blog - for instance, you used to curse a lot more. :)

    I have set a goal for myself to run a marathon before I turn 30, and I am also using Weight Watchers to lose weight, so you have been a real inspiration to me. It's a little discouraging to see that your kids are running faster miles than me, though, haha!

  10. AnonymousMay 29, 2013

    I don't have kids thank goodness but I always love watching the kids runs at stinkin cute!

  11. Love it!! Good for the boys and good for you!! How exciting to win FIRST in your AG!! That's such a big deal - think about where you were a few years ago… Could you have ever imagined this awesomeness!?

  12. Congrats on your win! My daughters have been asking to do a race this summer, but I find myself getting nervous about them being out of my sight among loads of it's good for my over-protective mom-self to hear about your boys' adventures & that they were just fine & so thrilled after!

  13. Wow! What a nice surprise - first place in your age group! That had to feel great :) And, that's so cute that your boys are into it, too! My son is 7 and is getting interested in running faster for the mile run at school, but my 9 year old daughter would much rather ride her bike.

  14. I want to run a race so bad, I was doing a couch to 5k program but one of my knees started hurting. I am not sure if I was running wrong or if it's my weight (I am 5'6 and 215 pounds). My mom has issues with her knees so I figured I enherited that from her...any tips? I really liked how it felt and I was so excited :( do you think a kneepad would help? thanks

  15. Congratulations on your medal! That's so awesome!!

  16. Sounds like a great race. You look super skinny in that skin-tight running outfit--I bet you were back down in weight at weigh-in this morning! Unfortunately, I was NOT!

    Your nervousness about your boys running the race brought back a memory I had forgotten. My oldest son, who is 40 now, liked to run from the time he was quite young, and I used to sign him up for a lot of fun-runs. Later he ran both track and cross country in high school, and although he never won many races he loved it. He still runs to keep his weight down. But I remember the first race he ran, he was probably 6 or 7 or 8. I was so nervous--but he did great--just like your boys.

  17. Great job Noah and Eli. I cant' believe Noah was worried about finishing last, only to beat his brother who wanted to do the 5k! Haha. Hopefully that race gave a big boost to his confidence!

    Great job on 1st place in your AG and a great time! This post makes me want to go run a race right now!

  18. AnonymousMay 29, 2013

    How fun! Sounds like Noah and Eli had a great time out there, and congrats on your age group award!! Glad it was better weather than last time.

  19. my cousin and I just started training for a 5k in August. I ran two half-marathons last year but haven't run at all this year and my cousin hasn't run EVER. I am very proud of ourselves for pushing it! I hope when I have my own kids, we can also do runs as a family.

  20. Love that your kids ran. I'm working on mine but I have a way to go. Too bad I didn't start running when they were younger. I'm sure if I had they would all be runners.


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