Things started getting real when I loaded up the new face on my Garmin.
I drove down to the Expo (at the very cool National Building Museum) with my friend Sandy. We spent some time finding our names on the poster with all the runners' names printed as small as possible.
Then we headed to the Expo HQ and did some volunteering. We labelled lightsabers, taped boxes, bagged shirts, lugged things and generally helped out. I love doing behind the scenes work like this, especially on events that mean a lot to me.
As a thank you for the social media work I did this year (I was focused on fundraising) I received a new pair of UA Hover shoes. I'm looking forward to trying these out…when I'm recovered from the race.
My volunteering in the months leading up to the race was focused on fundraising for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. Since I've started fundraising, I have raised over $8000. Very soon I will have raised over $10,000 and I'm incredibly proud to support this organization.
Race morning was chilly but clear and sunny. I ran without my phone so I don't have any race day photos (sad face) but I did run a great time with a great effort. I felt wonderful the whole way, satisfied with both my pace and effort. I was able to enjoy myself as we crossed the river, the monuments glowing in the sun, the blossoms blooming overheard, the spectators cheering us on. It was a magical morning. It doesn't hurt I got a little faster each mile as the race went on!! That just shows how great I felt.
After the race, Sandy and I celebrated at Cuba Libre. One of those mojitos is mine, and we definitely deserved them!!
It's been 8 years since I started running the Cherry Blossom. I'm looking forward to running next year and I'm so grateful for the chance to be out there every year!