Girls on the Run Spring 5K

Girls on the Run holds a special place in my heart, so after being away from them for a year and a half, I was so excited for the 5K this last weekend. I signed up as a running buddy (my mom did too again), but unfortunately the girls we were matched with didn’t show up! By the time we went back to the matching table to see if there was need at any other school, all the girls were out of the meeting corral and doing warmups so it would have been impossible to connect with any of them.

Either way, it was cool to be at the race and the energy was great. My mom and I jumped into the public 5K, which took off a few minutes before the girls’ race – each running our own race again.

Thinking I was going to be running with and encouraging a girl running her first 5K, I left my phone in the car, which meant running without music and my Nike app to tell me how I was doing! Ack! I felt good. I realized I breathe pretty heavily when running. The course around Kiwanis Park in Tempe was pretty cool – there are a lot of races there, but I’ve never done any.

I got GOTRed by two girls and their running buddies who started a little after me, and that is so awesome! I came into the finish line strong and my official time was 27:19…a one-second PR! Haha, I’ll take it!

I loved watching the rest of the runners come in the finish shoot. I got chills, I got a little verklempt. Some girls were finishing strong, some had given it their all the whole way through and were steady into the finish, a few were in tears, but they were still going. So, even though the day didn’t turn out like I expected, it was a really great experience.

Next time, though! Running buddy or bust!

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Girls on the Run 5K

I can’t believe the fall season of Girls on the Run is over already! We went from after-school practices in September when it was still over 100 degrees to race day on one of the coldest weekends of the year (in the high-30s at the start)! But everyone bundled up and we survived.

The Maricopa County program had 500 girls this season and the end of the year race was the Fiesta Bowl Half/5K in Scottsdale (in the spring they host their own, but in the fall, they participate in a community race). Before I joined GOTR and found out this was the end-of-the-season race, I had grand schemes of running the half distance this weekend, but I was so much happier to see my eight girls cross the finish line with big smiles on their faces!

I’m so proud of how they did and honestly a little surprised because they were not shy about letting us know throughout the season that the stretching and running wasn’t always their favorite thing…which is great!

The big idea about GOTR is that it isn’t really about the running anyway.  This season, we had some great conversations and I loved seeing the girls open up, consider new ideas and learn something about themselves every day.  I’ll get to see them once more tomorrow when we celebrate their accomplishments with a throwback (for me, anyway) banquet to Peter Piper Pizza!

Girls with Intention

At the first two practices of Girls on the Run, I hung back and watched my experienced head coach do her thing.  Yesterday, I was up! 

Now, I like kids (obviously), but most of my experience is with kindergarten-aged, preschoolers or younger.  Me and the tots?  We get along.  But, I don’t have friends or family close by with school-aged children and I’m not a teacher, so I really don’t spend much time talking to kids.  Well, didn’t until I signed up for this! 

It wasn’t too bad at all.  So what was my first lesson?  While prepping for it the night before, I contemplated changing course and going with something like:

 

And even though I don’t know that much about kids, I kinda figured that was a little heavy for eight-year-olds, so I decided to, you know, be responsible and go with what the curriculum laid out. 

We talked about living with intention, choosing to be a Girl on the Run, making conscious choices in attitudes and behaviors to respect themselves and others.  Kinda right up my alley and it made me think about why I chose to be a Girl on the Run this season.

I wanted to coach a group – club? team? I still can’t figure out what it is – because I love running and races and I want to share that with young girls. And because encouraging healthy attitudes in little ones is a cause near and dear to me (no, sorry, I wasn’t a fat kid, I’m just really concerned for future generations).

It’s not really about running anyway, although our girls are kicking some serious booty in the workouts already! It’s about helping these girls learn who they are and love who they are and send them into their teenage years with confidence. 

But, who am I kidding?  It’s not really even about the girls.  I love what I get out of volunteering! They’re amusing and insightful and entertaining.  I love that I get to spend two afternoons a week with them.  I even love that during the workout, one of them told me that 27 wasn’t that old.  Thanks, kid.

My milk expires in September.

I bought milk last night. I’m leaving town this weekend and probably didn’t need a whole gallon of milk, but me and milk? It’s a love thing. Please don’t try to get between us.

I rationalized by seeking out the latest expiration date in the display and found a September 1st, which led to a “how is September so close that milk can expire then?” moment.

September sounds very fall-like, but the reality in Arizona is that summer is hanging around for a few more months.  Heat or no, September is bringing some very exciting things:

  • My triathlon, of course!
  • The return of race season, which, when I’m not participating, is volunteering season.
  • My sister’s wedding shower…looks like someone’s going to the chapel.
  • Steelers games and football Sundays in general.
  • The beginning of Girls on the Run practices…I haven’t talked about this at all because it’s still up in the air, but I might be an assistant coach this season. Might because it’s the first season this particular school has had the program and the need for multiple coaches depends on the number of girls who sign up.  I attended coach training last weekend just in case and I’m so excited to be a part of it if it pans out (and if not, I’ll be a running buddy and sign up as a spring season coach)!
  • And finally, September brings close of escrow and keys and moving into my very first home!  Uh, yeah, I also haven’t talked about this because it’s in the delicate early stages, but I’m super excited about it, so there it is!