Saturday, January 28th I ran the 8th running of the Polar Bear 5k at Camp Sexton, the camp owned by my church. It's a place I have lots of fond memories from as a child. The same woods that I race through each year are the same woods that I went hiking and exploring as a child at church camp. The camp looks a lot different now and the summer camps are no longer taking place, but I will never forget the friends I made and the fun I had there as a child!
Now the camp is mainly used for ChOices Charter School, a school for students to attend who have been dismissed from their regular school and from the alternative school. It is run similar to a boot camp and is totally non-profit. The proceeds from this race go towards running the school and shaping the lives of these indviduals who ordinarily would have just been left on the streets and forgotten about. I am so thankful that these students, mainly boys, are getting another chance to learn and succeed.
I love this race for various reasons- i know exactly how my money is used, i get an awesome chilly lunch, my entire family does it together every year, my church organizes it so well, and the running community does such a wonderful job of supporting it!
I was a little nervous about this race, I am not going to lie. I don't run well on trails...never have and probably never will. It is just not my thang. Give me a flat paved road and I am a happy gal! I don't set out to get a PR on this course, thats for sure [thank you monstrous hill that starts at mile 2.2 and doesn't end for what seems like way too long.]
|thats me in the turq and white...what am I doing?! i promise that is not my pre-race warm-up! :)|
This year was no exception! I got to run and spend time with my parents, my sis, lots of wonderful church friends, and friends from the local running community! The chili lunch after the race is not too bad of a reward either!
|always daddy's girls|
We started the race with a false alarm. That is always fun. As we walked back to the start somehow lots of people and kids ended up in front of me. So when the gun went off for the second time I had to be patient. But, as always, I went out fast. Too fast for a trail race probably.
Mile 1- 7:00
I was feeling good, but not great. I was scared the stomach was gonna start acting up.
Towards the end of mile 1, we started hitting the rolling hills. It is a quick reminder of how hard this course is and that major hill at the end.
Mile 2- 7:22
I felt myself slow down. I knew I had to or I wouldn't make it up that hill. I kept a pretty steady 7:20-7:30 pace until I hit the hill. It slowed me down, I knew it would. I powered up it for the most part but I slowed towards the end.
Mile 3: 7:46
Darn, I was hoping to keep a 7:30 pace but I will take it.
I finished in 23:40! Whoop Whoop. average of 7:36 per mile pace.
|never can i take a running picture with my eyes open, EVER!|
It was good enough to get me first place in the 25-29 age group and I am pretty sure I was the second female overall to finish. I grabbed water and hung around to see my sister finish and then my parents! So awesome!!
It was overall a great race and a fun outing with my friends, family, and church family!
The sis and I headed out for 2 extra miles after we got home. What were we thinking?!?! It was a fun two miles though. A great way to spend a Saturday!!