31092 

Yep…you know when you see that title what that REALLY means…a race! This past Sunday, I ran in the Gasparilla Distance Classic in Tampa, FL.  

  For those of you who many not know (or live in the area), this is THE race in Tampa Bay!  Since I started running about 10-11 years ago, I’ve run this race every year for the past 5-6 years.  I always did the 5k, up until last year, when I decided to do the 15k. Yeah…well, that didn’t happen THIS year! I opted to try the 8k instead (4.97 miles).  I’ve learned a few things over these past few years with running:

  1. I really like the 5k and 10k distance.
  2. Just because I do like these distances, doesn’t mean I’m not a real runner. In the past (and most recently), I thought if you were a marathoner or a half marathoner, that meant you were a real runner. And if you didn’t do/like those distances, you weren’t! #wrong
  3. Now…I really like the 8k distance. “Am I real runner,now??” 😉

This was a first in a few ways…the distance, running on a Sunday, AND going to the race all.by.myself!!  No one drove with me, no one raced with me, and no one went to the pre-race Expo with me. So, go ME!! And I found a UA sign that was the inspiration and theme for this weekend… 

 …. I WILL do this on my own! 

I wasn’t sure what parking was going to be since the half marathon started about 3 hours before the 8k.  I left home fairly early 

 …only to find AMPLE parking! #ofcourse.   So, I took a snooze once I was settled and paid for parking.  

About 7:30, got my self together and walks over to the Convention Center to use the facilities (I hate Port-o-Potties!!), get my gear checked in and stretch.  

 …and I wait because line up in the corral didn’t start until 8:30!  But once I did, I got to see the half marathoners finishing!  Sorry I missed you,  Cupcake and Miles!!  One of these days, we are gonna meet!!😉

The race went well for me.  The 5k distance is familiar and a comfort zone, so I was fine. I’m still not as fast as if like to be/used to be, but I’m enjoying the process of getting back. Mile 4 was ok, no biggie, but between that and mile “5” (or .97), was a little bit of a struggle.  I wasn’t physically tired but more mentally tired. And as you know, most of this stuff is mental!  I haven’t returned to that place where I can block out the “pain”, the “thoughts”, the “doubts”, but I will!  

 I’m trying not to be hard on myself, but that struggle is real too!!  I’m proud of myself for doing the race and leaving the shadow of “I have to do it with someone” in order for ME to participate.   I’m a big girl, now!! 😂

All and all, I enjoyed this race and next year, I have a SCORE to settle with you, 8k!!!

Oh…SN- I’m walking to my car after the race and see… 

 ….apparently I didn’t as far or as fast as this person, because they ran out of their DRAWERS!! 😂😂😂
Have you run Gasparilla before? What distance? Would you do it again? And…can we plan bloggers “meet and greet”???

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