Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Race Day- Encouragement

This weekend was my school's Girls On The Run 5K.  Because I 've been trying to take it easy because of my foot pain, I didn't exactly train for this race but I knew that wasn't going to be a big deal since I was running as a Running Buddy and not trying to run for time.


I stalked the weather all week
and it said that we were going to have thunderstorms pretty much all day on Saturday. A few of the girls at school told me they weren't going to come to the race if it was raining. I encouraged them to still come and told them that running in the rain just adds to the fun! I would be running with two of my students who are sister and I knew they would be there rain or shine!

So on Saturday morning I was fully prepared to run in the rain but surprisingly it ended up being a beautiful morning and there was not a rain cloud in sight. The Start/Finish line arch was set up in the church/school parking lot. Since the arch said Start on one side and Finish on the other, I assumed that is were we would start. Turns out I was wrong.


Everyone's bib had the #1 on it. 
When it was time to start, we walked out of the church parking lot, down a road, and then up a huge hill.  We were all confused about what was going on. We walked so far that some of the girls asked if the race had already started. When we got to a plateau on the hill, we saw a ton of people in front of us and a ton still behind us. Then all of a sudden people just started to run so we assumed that was the start of the race. There was no official "start" and no timing mat.  This race is more about encouragement and not about time, so I understood that, but I thought the start could have been a little more organized.

As we started, the first mile was all uphill,  I thought this was an awful way to start out a race, especially since it was most of the girls' first race.  I was so proud of my girls though because even though it was tough, they ran up the hill the entire time.

After the first mile, we came to a water stop and that is where we lost one of the sister I was running with. She is one that needed a little less encouragement so I knew she would be okay running the rest of the race on her own if we didn't catch up with her. I stayed with the other sister and encouraged her to keep going and that she was doing great.

After the water stop, we decided to do a run/walk. We were running through some farm land, so I would say " okay, lets walk till we get to the cows, then we'll run again".  I had never done a race through farm land so it was funny to see people stopping for selfies with cows and sheep!

It was hot out and I could tell my buddy was getting tired so we continued the rest of the race with a run/walk (which it seemed everyone else was doing as well). When we turned back into the  parking lot, we ran the entire way and I told her we were going to run as fast as we could till we crossed the finish line, and that's what we did! It was so fun to see her run so fast like that cus I had never seen her run like that before! One of my co-workers had finished before us so she even got a cute video and this picture of us finishing.

The bummer was that there were no medals for the girls as they crossed the finish line. I had heard that morning that the medals did not come in on time and that we would have to distribute them to the girls at school in the following days. I don't think the girls knew that they would be getting a medal so none of them were disappointed. I was definitely bummed because getting a medal at the end should have been part of the whole experience and those girls didn't get to experience that.

In all, it was a great day and the weather couldn't have been more beautiful for a race! The course itself, was not ideal and I certainly would not have wanted to run it as part of any other race except for GOTR.  -M


Since today's word is Encouragement, I thought writing about the GOTR race would be perfect for Deb's word of the day!

33 comments:

  1. It sounds like the course was a poor choice for new runners, or maybe any runners for that matter. Starting on a hill for a 5k is never fun. Glad you were able to support GOTR, it's a fantastic organization.

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    1. Yea, we not only had to walk up a hill to start, but then once we started it was all up hill for the first mile!

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  2. That start sounds really confusing and would have totally messed with my head! But what a fun, uplifting event in spite of the tough course.

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  3. A better organized start would have been nice especially for the newbies. I've had other non chip timed races where someone yells go so we know when to start rather not than trample each other. Despite the course challenges, it's wonderful that you got to encourage these girls.

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    1. We actually had timing chips but there was only a mat at the Finish not the start.

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  4. It's too bad that the race wasn't better organized, but that's cool that the girls enjoyed it anyway!

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    1. The race itself has organized it was just the start part that was confusing.

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  5. I coached GOTR one year. I didn't have a running buddy but I was cheering my face off at the race! It is such an UPLIFTING experience for the girls!! But I will have to throw in that all the GOTR races around here are NOT nice courses. The one they just had was in the Hershey Park/Giant Center parking lot. Can you imagine? That's stupid. Sometimes they have them at business parks too. The start of your race sounds confusing... I bet they use that blow up thing for every race even if the start and finish aren't the same thing. For the amount of money they charge students to be in the program and for participants to run in the race, you'd think they could invest in another one! That is a bummer about the medals, I agree that it is an important part of the race experience.

    As you can see, I have a bad taste in my mouth about GOTR. I was not impressed at ALL by the curriculum when I was a coach. I was also insulted that the coaches had to pay to run the 5k even as a running buddy. (That is not the case anymore, but that was the case up until this year.) I was like, seriously, we are volunteering hours and hours of our time to coach and the organization couldn't even give us an entry into the race to be a running buddy? That was ridiculous.

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    1. I agree that the price for each girl to participate was rather high.

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  6. First - LOVE LOVE LOVE that picture of you & your buddy. Your leggings are ADORABLE! I see you are getting more colorful like you wanted :)
    A hill in the first mile? Wow - nothing like throwing some challenges right at these girls.
    Bummer about the medals. I bet that would have made their race so much more fun.
    I love when the weather surprises you with sunshine when rain is expected. I give it credit to the running angels :)
    I so want to do Girls on the Run but there is none anywhere near me #countryliving I'd have to drive 45 minutes one way to get to the closest one. I've often thought of trying to start one up my direction.

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    1. I did get some compliments on my pants! Some lady behind us said she was keeping an eye on me because of my pants so she could keep up with us!

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  7. hehe, I'm with you on stalking the weather, only in my case, it's because I really want to go hiking up a mountain but there are projected thunderstorms (noooo!).

    The start sounded like it was pretty confusing, but I'm glad the weather turned out well!

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    1. I figured that even if it rained it would be okay since it was such a short distance. Thankfully it didn't though!

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  8. That's great that you ended up with nice weather instead of the predicted rain. And it sounds like fun having the farm animals along the way :) But the start sounds really confusing. I hope the girls still had a good experience and want to keep with running in spite of that.

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    1. I had several girls tell me they would definitely do it again, which is a good sign!

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  9. So glad the weather was nice for the race. Sorry about the crazy start, course, and lack of medals for the girls but I know your little buddy had a great time and I know your running with her made a difference! I so wish we had a GOTR here!

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    1. Thanks Karen. She said she wanted to do it again which made me smile!

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  10. So sad that none of the girls got their medals at the end of the race, but it sounds like they were in good spirits. GOTR is such an awesome group! I need to get involved with our local chapter. Glad you had a good time even though they definitely could improve the runner experience.

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  11. Definitely a shame that it wasn't better organized, especially for something that they had all worked so hard on. But luckily for them, they had some pretty great support from you and the other running buddies and coaches!

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  12. wow, too bad about the disorganization. That was probably discouraging not being able to find the start line and then to have a hill! If it was the first race for most of these girls, though, at least they wouldn't have anything to compare it to...and they got to run their first race! The medal at the finish line would have been ideal, but getting it a few days later will be a great surprise.

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  13. Oh wow, this had the makings for a great race an really just some simple planning ahead could have resolved all of this! I am so very glad you volunteer your time and effort to this and I know the girls appreciate it not to mention the way it makes you feel helping others. I hate the race had it's hiccups but still turned out alright!

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  14. Sounds like you all had some planning glitches for your race I guess it happens. Our race was Sunday too and it went beautifully. Love to be involved with GOTR

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  15. I have been wanted to get involved in GOTR for a long time but there is not a local chapter near me....I have heard many of the races are in parking lots, etc...maybe we could all ban together and get on the planning board! I am glad you had a fun race despite the start and the medals!

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  16. I have been wanted to get involved in GOTR for a long time but there is not a local chapter near me....I have heard many of the races are in parking lots, etc...maybe we could all ban together and get on the planning board! I am glad you had a fun race despite the start and the medals!

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  17. Glad you had good weather.
    But thats too bad about the poor planning. A lot comes down to experience and a lot of people think throwing a fun run together is easy as pie. But truth is it takes a little skill to organize. If they do it again maybe they will make some corrections :)
    As long as the kids had fun thats really all that matters. Heck kids can have a blast even in disorganized things. I know I am weird but I'd say its a no biggie on the medals, kids don't need them. A job well done having fun doing it will mean and teach them far more than a medal will.
    I do love you ran it with them to encourage. That's awesome! !! Kids need more role models these days and your a great one!

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  18. That does sound really confusing and not great for new runners.

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  19. GOTR embodies encouragement! It's great that you are volunteering to encourage those girls.

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  20. That is great you got the girls out there having fun! I do wish they would have received a medal, it is so fun to have a memento.

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  21. GOTR is such an amazing cause! So cool that you did the race. I've done it before with running buddies and it's a blast.

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  22. How amazing. I wish my school had a Girls on the Run Club!

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  23. I'm glad the weather turned out nice! GOTR is such a great program. It's a shame the course was designed that way, though, and a shame the finisher's medals didn't come in on time.

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  24. I was a buddy runner once for GOTR and loved it. You're right, it's the perfect place for giving encouragement. :-)

    Thanks for linking up!

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.