“How in the world did you get me to sign up for this?”, Brandon asked me all through training for his first running race. He is a swimmer and hated all things running. He was always my number 1 fan for runs. He was there holding my bags, driving me to early morning starts all over the DelMarVa area. He was at home sick one day and my friend
sent me a link to the Independence Blue Cross Broad Street Run.
Being a Philly fan, I have been wanting to do this run forever. I had always heard about how fun it was so, I sent hubby the link and told him that his only job that day was to get me into this race. Then I jokingly told him to sign up too. I don’t know if it was his fever or if he was just sick of being my bag boy, but he got us both into the race.
It sold out very quickly and we were lucky to make it in. Over the next 11 weeks we trained together, complained together, supported each other and shared a lot of great conversations on our long runs. Some days we were really tired and wanted to give up but some days we came back feeling fantastic and excited for the run. We did the run me home 10K to prepare Brandon for the “race feeling”.
|Bibs and race gear all set out the night before.|
|5:15 a.m – Brandon is ready for his first long race|
Our day had finally arrived! My parents drove us to Philly at 6am and dropped us off on the side of the road so we could walk to the start line. As we were getting out of the car my mom thought it would be cool to yell “Good luck, break a leg” (not the best words to yell for a run but at least we didn’t break a leg!).
First stop- 15 minute wait for a pre-race bathroom break. This was the most port-a-pots I have ever seen at a race and we were very thankful.
|Pre-Race photo from Pink Corral|
Next stop- heading to our corral. Because we had never run together, we told them it would take us about 2 hours so we were in the last corral-pink. There were 38,000 people running this race so we stood in our corral for over 45 minutes waiting to start. This was okay but it really got our nerves going and I got pretty hungry standing around. People were laughing, joking and having a great time. It was cool to see how excited every one was and I didn’t hear any complaining. It was one of the most well run races I have ever seen. Corrals were spaced out well, timing of each wave was great, timing markers at each mile, well marked miles, Gatorade and water stops all over and so many volunteers.
Finally we started moving and Brandon and I took off on a good pace. The first 3 miles Brandon said he had trouble getting into a zone and experienced a little bit of pain in his leg but by mile 4 he was on a great pace and zoned in for the long stretch ahead. I was the opposite- I was shocked when we hit mile 4 because I zoned out right away. At mile 4 and mile 8 I got side cramps and had a little trouble zoning out but I kept running and we maintained a steady pace throughout the entire run. Starting from the corrals all the way to the finish, there were people lining the streets cheering, yelling and supporting runners. It was such a friendly race and I couldn’t believe how many people were standing out to see the runners. My favorite mile was mile 5. This was right in center city around city hall, the buildings were tall and the sound didn’t carry as well. There were still tons of fans but it was very quiet and all of a sudden the bells started chiming- it was the most peaceful mile I have ever had on a run. It made the entire 10 miles worth it!
|Brandon and I at Mile 6- www.Philly.com photo|
Brandon and I chatted and took in all of the sights: costumes, spectators, and the beautiful sights of Philadelphia. We finally came up on the stadiums and at that point we were both pretty sore and ready to complete the final stretch, we quit talking and just started booking it toward the finish line. My parents came to support us and I knew they parked at the stadiums so I mainly focused on trying to find them but I didn’t see them.
We took our last turn into the Navy Yard and still no parents. We came up to the finish line and as we were about to cross Brandon grabbed my hand and we finished together. As we were crossing I heard “Kimberly..it’s me mommy..Hey, Brandon, I made it to the front.. Look Hey”. I looked up and saw my dad about a head taller than everyone else in the crowd and then I looked down and saw my mom up against the fence. It was so fun to have them there supporting us. Nothing like finishing a race and hearing your names being called. Brandon and I hugged, laughed and then made our way straight to our medals and more importantly our Philly Pretzels. (Yes I ate non-paleo for the rest of the day!)
This was a great race and so organized. We didn’t have any complaints, everything went so smoothly for the amount of people in attendance. Great job to the people in charge of this race.
My goal was to finish in 2 hours.
Brandon’s goal was to run the entire race.
Our goal was to be there for each other and complete the race side by side.
We Smashed our goals- Not only did Brandon keep running, he never slowed down and he kept a steady 10min pace for all 10 miles. We beat my 2 hour goal and completed in 1 hour 46 min and 6 seconds (WHOA!) and we finished together, hand in hand with smiles on our faces.
|My dad got a picture of us crossing- 1:46:06|
|Cheering for my parents being up front!|
|Post-race photo with medals!|
While Brandon was very sore and tired afterwards, we really enjoyed the run and look forward to signing up again next year (Hopefully together). I am so proud of Brandon for his hard work, he kept me going. I am so thankful to my parents who came out and supported us and got some great pictures. Running helps me remember that even though I am not the fastest runner, even though I may never be first place, running is about mind over matter.