Sunday, July 15, 2012


JD and I, feeling the nerves pre-race

As most of you already know, Mr. Light and I ran our first competitive race yesterday! It's known as the Eudora Horsethief 5K, and is held in my little hometown in Kansas. As this race has been around since I can remember, it was an easy choice for our first!


I found myself feeling a sense of nostalgia as I wound my way through the course, pounding the pavement on the paths I walked often as a kid. Like a train, people stopped as we made our way across intersections, and I couldn't help but wonder, "Maybe I know the people in those cars?" And there's a good chance I did. But then I also had to wonder, "Would those people even recognize me?" And there's a good chance they wouldn't, in that passing moment.


I kept my pace, focusing on my music and my thoughts, trying my hardest to forget about the gradual inclines that laid before me. (There were many of them.) I notice when I'm running uphill, I have a tendency to think about how tough it is and that maybe I should stop. I always have to remind myself that as soon as the path evens out, it's better; I can breathe easier, I have more drive, I can continue. I'm always thankful for continuing.
Me and my mom! Pre-race

Near the end at the bottom of the last hill, my beautiful and wonderful mom stood waiting for me. When I got close enough, she put down her camera and started to run alongside me. It was easy to see that she was beaming with pride. Man, I love my parents. I did so many things wrong, but they seem to only remember the things I did right. As we approached the top, I knew it was time to push it to the limit. I said goodbye, and started to sprint down the hill. I quickly realized I was pushing myself way past my limits, so I dialed back my pace for a few meters, but as soon as I turned the corner and faced the finish line, I sprinted again. I was determined to get in under 32:00.

Most awesome face EVER

31:51 was my official time, placing 5th in my age group (out of 8, let's not get ahead of ourselves here). Not bad! Not great, but considering I have only been a runner for a few months and have never been known for my speed, I feel great about it!

Overall, we had a great time, and are pumped for our next 5K on August 11: Small Town, Big Cause!

Have you ever run in a competitive race before? Would you consider it? Leave your experience/thoughts in the comments!

*All of the pictures you see here today were supplied by Ross from! He's a retired professor who enjoys running, but can't anymore because of an injury, so he goes around to different races in the area and takes pictures, which he then supplies to the contestants for free! What a great service, right? Thanks Ross!


  1. Great job! What are your thoughts on the Couch to 5K program for beginners? I'm wanting to get into running also. Any type of (affordable) running show you would recommend?

    1. Thank you! I think the Couch to 5K program is marvelous! We didn't use it ourselves, but I've heard a lot of great feedback about it from Plus, it's developed to help non-runners find their stride gradually. I think it's a great place to start! As far as affordable running shoes...that can be tricky. JD and I decided to spend a little more since we knew running would be a serious form of exercise for us. We also wanted to move into "minimalist" running (less of a lift in the shoe so that you find a more natural stride), and I ended up choosing the Brooks PureConnect and I LOVE them! Before that I wore the Nike Free 3.0, which I also loved. However, both pairs were about $90. I saw this Brooks style online for quite a bit cheaper, and the reviews seem to be pretty decent: If you don't feel comfortable ordering online and are local to Lawrence/KC, I recommend going into Gary Gribble's Running Sports and talking to them. Those guys are SO knowledgeable and accommodating!

  2. I do love that your first official 5K was the Horse Thief run! And I SO enjoyed introducing you to all my friends and many of your teachers! :-) I am proud of the woman you have become!

    1. Thank you Mommy! Needless to say, I had a wonderful role-model;)

  3. Congrats!

    one year I did 14 5ks! The good news is that I improved my overall time by 8 minutes! Bad news? 3.1 in 57 minutes was the best time.

    Have fun with your races!

    1. 14 5Ks...I can just imagine the dresser drawer full of shirts! That's an awesome achievement! Did you do anything in particular to improve your score, or was it just the doing it that helped you improve? I'd really love to shave it down >30:00 without feeling like I want to die by the end! Haha