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Friday Favorites: My Favorite Races

February 25, 2011

…. so far!

During my journey to healthy I’ve picked up a few favorite things from fitness items I prefer, to foods I can’t get enough of, and random things I just- like! And, really, what better day to present my favorites to you but Friday (definitely my favorite weekday!)?

Over the course of the last 2 years I have completed nine 5k’s, one 10k, one half marathon, one 25k, a full marathon, and 2 Sprint Triathlons. I think that’s it 🙂 You can check them all out here for yourself.

I really love to train for and complete endurance events. Something about knowing you put your heart, soul, and effort into training for a race, and crossing that finish line is so thrilling. Just being at a race event is honoring; I love to be a member in the active community and surrounded by those that share in my ambitions, goals, and interests. 

It was really hard to choose but here are a handful of my favorite races I’ve completed:

Chevron Houston Marathon

You can read my recap about the Houston Marathon here. I’ll never forget the crowd support of the Houston Marathon. People from the city of Houston were lined up for miles and miles, there was not a mile without someone cheering you on. It was spectacular. The race itself, the expo, the email updates, and everything were so well organized. Hats off to the committee!

I cannot wait to do another Houston Marathon. If you’re a marathoner, or would like to be, I would absolutely recommend the Chevron Houston Marathon.

Rock Raccoon 25k Trail Run

This was my first and only trail race and it was such a neat experience. It was 15.5 miles of trails through the beautiful woods of Huntsville State Park. Trail races are so unique because the terrain is so different. I was climbing up hills, through rocks, and tree stumps and I’d never run in that kind of scenery before. It felt very intense because I just kept my body moving and my body wasn’t used to running anywhere but the flat road. The scenery was breathtaking, and it was the first run I’d ever done without an iPod. It was so peaceful to just soak in the views and the moment. Trail running is so fun to me because, for me, you’re doing it solely for the experience, not to PR, or win the race, or run your fastest. You’re there to just take a moment to enjoy nature while being active. A trail run would be a perfect race to enjoy with a friend!

The race was very well organized and the food was so fun. I’d always heard the food for trail races was different and that was true. At every rest stop they had Gatorade, water, m &m’s, oreos, bagels with peanut butter, bananas. It was the first race where I stopped to get something at every station 🙂

The company that set ups the race can be found here. They also have a 10k and 50k (I so hope to do the 50k one year!)

Ft. Worth Cowtown Half Marathon

Even though my sister and I were still sitting on a bus in the middle of a traffic jam while the race gun went off, and they were literally pulling down the start line to the half marathon as we were showing up, the Cowtown Half Marathon was still one of my favorites! It was an interesting way to start a race to say in the least, but it was pretty dern cool being the only person on the road for the first mile until I caught up with the back of the pack.

I completed my first 5k ever at the Cowtown the year before and it was such a great feeling to be coming back the next year and running 10 more miles than last. It made me feel like I had accomplished so much and really tested the limits of my body. I also really enjoyed getting to share in the experience with my Sister. We had both done the 5k the year before and were really excited to try our hand at the half. Running a race with a family member, or friend is such an amazing bonding experience.

I won’t lie; the Cowtown is a HUGE race. It’s definitely the most crowded race I’ve ever run. They have an Ultra Marathon, Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k, 5k, and kids run. Big races can be really enjoyable for the most part, but if you are looking to run the 5k competitively be prepared for large crowds and not enough space to run (I was pretty peeved my first 5k when I had to walk some of it because the crowd was too thick). However, since the race is so big you get a lot of goodies. After the marathon we got a big bag to fill with fruits, granola bars, ice cream, chips and guacamole, plus, a t-shirt, finisher shirt, and finisher medal. My sister and I sat on the curb and had ice cream and chips as soon as we were finished and you better believe we wore our medals for the rest of the day that day.

I look forward to going back to the Cowtown and running the marathon or maybe the ultra marathon some day!

Summer Time Blues Sprint Triathlon

I’d have to say that the Triathlon is actually my favorite event to do. Switching from sport to sport is so challenging and all around fun! The Summer Time Blues Sprint Triathlon was my first triathlon to ever do. I trained my butt off for that thing and it paid off. I ended up scoring 2nd place in my age group (only missed first place by 4 seconds!!) and it was the perfect experience.

This specific triathlon is in Freeport, TX. The swim is a 500m swim in a salt river basin (so fun swimming in salt water, let me tell you), 15 mile bike all the way day to the beach and over the huge intercoastal water way bridge (you don’t even want to know what came out of my mouth when I saw the size of that thing and knew I’d be biking over it) then, all that is followed by a 5k run through the town and around the beautiful river bend.

Everything about a triathlon from checking in your bike, to writing your race numbers all over your body, feeling those butterflies as your entering the water, and feeling that heavy feeling in your legs and your heart pounding as you finally hit the last leg- the run is so thrilling and gratifying . Until you experience it you just don’t know.

I can’t wait for my next triathlon; I think it will be sooner than later. My goal is to one day be at least a half ironman!

 

Fit Chick Britt Fitness Tip: Signing up for a race in the future is a great way to keep yourself motivated to work out and stay active. Go to www.active.com to search for running events and triathlons of all sorts in your area. Go on! Sign up for your first 5k, or if you’ve already run a 5k try a 10k or a half marathon. With a little training and dedication you can absolutely reach your goal and your destiny!

Happy Racing!

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. February 26, 2011 6:20 AM

    Ah! I love this post! I usually don’t check blogs before I go out to run on Saturdays, but for whatever reason I checked yours and I’m so glad I did – perfect way to get in the mood for a good run!! 🙂 Triathlon is definitely on my list of things to do this year – moreoso since I’ve read this post. We’ll have to talk bikes at some point… 🙂 Hope you have a great weekend!

  2. February 26, 2011 9:03 AM

    Oh I did the Rocky Raccoon a few years back. I enjoyed it, but you have to be ready for the hills & obstacles on the trail. Some of my friends ran it one year in the rain & it was a muddy mess! I really enjoyed the tri’s I did years ago, but I can’t find the time/space to fit biking into my life on a regular basis. All this talk about 5k & 10K ‘s have made me want to sign up for a few just to do some speed stuff instead of all my distance running.

  3. February 26, 2011 3:05 PM

    I love this blog post, it is such an inspiration! I actually just signed up for my first triathlon, it is this June 🙂

    Trail runs and/or races are a blast, they are so relaxing. I need to do a trail race sometime; I may just travel down to Texas to run that Rocky Raccoon, I have heard so many wonderful things about that race.

  4. fitandfortysomething permalink
    February 26, 2011 3:56 PM

    you are such an inspiration britt!
    love the race with the m and m’s and you look so good in your triathlon pic.
    hope you are having a great weekend!

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  2. Summertime and the Running is Easy « Fit Chick Britt

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