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I did it, it's over and I feel fine!

Sunday was an amazing day that I will always remember! The week leading up to race was a rainy mess. We had threats of a hurricane hitting the coast and we were preparing for the worst. My biggest fear was that weather was going to cause the race to be canceled. The show went on and we had no rain on race day. The temps were cool and the sky was overcast as we pulled up to the race. The Blues Cruise 50K Trail Run accepts 400 runners, the event had nearly reached its capacity as the runners were gathering around the Day Use Pavilion at Blue Marsh anxiously awaiting the 8:30 AM start. I felt great. I was confident in my training but still a little nervous about running my longest distance to date. My goal for the day was to finish.

My desired time for the race changed a number of times from when I first signed up for the event. My unrealistic expectation were dismissed while training when I realized how slow my pace got the further I was running on the trails. I was so grateful to arrive at the starting line. I felt so much gratitude as we were waiting for the Go! Once the race got started we were running at the pace of whoever was in front of us. It was very strange to be running in the woods with so many people. I am used to being in the woods with one or two other runners and then encountering only several other runners over the 4+ hours of being out on a trail. I'm sure it was good to have so many people around so I didn't feel tempted to go out to fast. I knew I had to keep my pace under control if I wanted to go the distance.

This race was so amazing. The course was beautiful. The volunteers were so friendly and helpful. The 7 aid station were stocked with amazing fuel that matched the needs of many different runners. I was in love with the potatoes and salt what a perfect fuel for an event of this length. I tend to stay away from things that could mess with my gut. My go to source of sugar while running is oranges and of course I was happy to see them at each aid station as well. I would have to say my favorite aid station of all was Fugawi. They were located at about mile 23. They had bean warps and warm apple cider and this vegetarian was in heaven! The warm apple cider seemed to be the most amazing thing I had ever tasted! Thank you.

I really felt great during the entire event. My body felt strong my head was clear and I had my running buddy to share the run with. Unfortunately Kelly was not feeling as good as I was and shortly after Fugawi he waved me on and told me to go on without him. We still had some ground to cover and I was afraid to slow down because I wasn't sure how much longer I would be feeling as well as I was. I kept on running and I am grateful to report that my strength kept on until the very end of the race. The last few miles were tough mentally because I knew how close to the end I was but I could never see the finish until I was right on it which now looking back was probably a blessing. I came across the finish line after 6 hours and 18 minutes. I was more then happy with my time for my first 50K. I kept a good pace throughout the event and walked the hills to save my energy. When I got closer to the finish I started to run more hills because I could tell how much  I had left in me.

I almost cried when I crossed the finish line and finally seen my husband there. He made it in time to see me cross the finish line but I did not see him until I was done. It felt great to have him there to share that moment with me. I am so thankful to everyone who helped me cross that finish line. I had so much support from friends and family who watched my kids during my countless hours of training or by just telling me how amazing it was that I was trying to finish a race of that distance. Big thanks to Danielle (Kelly's wife) for making sure we got to the race on time and in one piece. I will rock this awesome finisher zip up with pride!


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