Ending a Tough Year on a High Note – Polar Bear 5K

12-27-15 – Needless to say; it was a tough, tragic, challenging year! After suddenly losing my sister; my best friend, my running buddy in late October I wanted nothing more than to say goodbye/peace out to 2015′!

Running; more than anything has helped me to cope and find peace through this tragedy. My sister was a runner herself; however she did not like the idea of “racing”. For me; running also helps me to feel closer to my sister. In 2013′ after my hubby had a heart attack and after crossing the finish line minutes before the Boston Marathon bombings running helped me push through the toughest of days and it continues to do the same today.

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The end of 2015′ grew closer and I decided to squeeze in one last 5k to end the year! This would be my 17th race of the year and 75th race since I started this journey 6 years ago! I registered for a local 5k; The Polar Bear 5k which took place right along the beautiful shoreline!

 

It was another unseasonable, December Day so by no means was this a “polar bear” race. I arrived early in bright colors (as always πŸ™‚ ) grabbed my bib & race tee and I was determined to end this year on a high note! The beach is one of my favorite places to run/race! I love nothing more than the wind in my hair and the ocean breeze on my face!Β  I took my place on the boardwalk at the starting line and within minutes; we were off! The wind heading south on the boardwalk was fierce so I decided to pace myself so that the wind wouldn’t tire me out! We headed 1.6 miles out into the wind then looped around to head back. On the way back; the wind was at my back and I literally felt like I was flying! I continued to pace myself and somehow by this point a pace of 7:17/mile felt comfortable! I saw the finish line, I held strong and I flew through finishing strong (as always the first thing I did was check my watch)!

I found my hubby, he gave me the usual post race high five and kiss and we headed over to the convention center where the results were posted. I was very pleased with how I ran, but I wasn’t quite sure if I placed but secretly hoped to! I checked through all the names; found mine and my face immediately lit up with a huge smile! I placed 2nd in my age group!!! πŸ™‚ 12th female and 59th overall out of over 250 runners! I seriously couldn’t ask for a better way to end this tragic year! I was completely on a runners high and so thankful that I could do this in memory of my sister!

After the race all runners were invited to a local Pub; Kim Marie’s to warm up with some complimentary Tomato Bisque and Chili so Hubby and I accepted the invitation!

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We relaxed, chatted with other runners and warmed up a bit before headed out and doing some exploring as well as shaking out my legs a bit! πŸ™‚

I was so thankful I could end this tragic year on a high note! I hope that 2016′ brings better days my way! Follow my journey as I train for my 10th marathon; Yuengling Shamrock Marathon !

What was your favorite race of 2015? What motivates you to push that extra little bit?

 

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