Friday, August 11, 2017

Running: It's a Family Affair


Got family? How about running shoes? Ever combine the two?

I don't have a lot of experiences running with my family, per se, but I do have some pretty great memories none the less. Even if they're not always by my side at the start line, they've been a significant part of my support system....and there have been a few races in the mix as well.

Care to hear about my favorites?

***First, there's my sister, Lisa. We are very close in age (like 15 months apart). Although we resemble each other, we are very different in terms of likes, dislikes, and preferences when it comes to fitness. She has laced up and run with me on occasion, though.

In October of 2015, I persuaded her to register for the Principal Financial Road Race 5K (as part of the IMT Des Moines Marathon weekend). My friend, Barb, was also there.  Although Lisa had run before, and had trained for this event, it was her first time ever toeing a start line. Although we offered to run with her and keep her company, she wanted to run the race on her own. And that she did! She was able to run the entire race without needing any walk breaks. That was a proud moment, for both of us.

Myself, Barb, and Lisa...with our event swag (the fun hats and medals)

***The 2013 Quad Cities Marathon was my first marathon, and will always be one of my most favorite memories as a runner. My husband and youngest daughter were there with me. Just after passing the 20-mile marker, I spotted them in the crowd, and then again during the last mile.
Getting a little mojo for the final stretch to the finish line
Upon crossing the finish line, I found them a short while later. There's nothing like hugging a loved one moments after such an epic experience. And I do mean NOTHING.


***A year later, I ran the 2014 IMT Des Moines Marathon (recap HERE). Although the course was a bit hillier than Quad Cities, I managed to squeak in a 7-second PR. As I was approaching the 26th mile marker, I spotted the husband and he jumped out on the street and ran briefly with me. Then I spotted our son alongside the road to my left. A few seconds later, I spotted the youngest daughter, camera poised, capturing me as I was about to round the corner and run the final ".2" to the finish line. Another epic moment (I don't know how I was not a blubbering mess)!

One of my most favorite pics ever
***In September of 2016, I recruited three of my cousins to run the Quad Cities Marathon as a relay team.  Our team, Gunhus Gals, was not only a tribute to our late maternal grandmother, but also a rally in support our aunt Linda (teammate Jessica's mother), who had spent several recent months undergoing cancer treatment (spoiler alert: she's a survivor!). Since the relay teams are supposed to have five runners, and we weren't able to persuade any other family members to run with us, we made Linda our honorary fifth team member.


We gave the extra team shirt and medal to Linda
Not  only was it a fun (though quite hot and humid) day for the four of us running, we also had some of our families there along the course.
(L-R) myself (and hubby), Rhonda (and hubby and two sons), Kelly, Jessica
***The No Man's Trench Run was an OCR (obstacle course race) in August of 2016 (recap HERE). The hubby is a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the Air National Guard, and his former unit sponsored this race at Camp Dodge in Johnston, IA. Oh was it fun, but oh was it challenging! Neither of us had ever done an OCR before. and this had a lot of military-inspired obstacles and challenges throughout the seven miles of the course.




There were sand bags to carry, and there were numerous smoke bombs
But we had a fun time doing the event together.

Just for fun, I'll share a bonus epic memory with you. My first long-distance event was a 20K in May of 2008. A few months later, I ran my first half marathon...the IMT Des Moines Half Marathon. I was able to run the entire race with no walk breaks (other than a few water station walk-throughs).
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Approaching the finish line...
Although they would have much rather stayed in the comfy hotel room, the husband coerced our three kids to join him near the finish line. I know...don't they look thrilled for having witnessed their mom's first 13.1?
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Can't you feel the love???
So, there they are...a few of my epic family memories in my running shoes.

Do you have family that supports your (crazy) habit? Ever done a race with your spouse? Or a sibling? Or other family members?

I'm linking this with Meranda and Lacey and Rachel for the Friday Five 2.0. Please join us!!




23 comments:

  1. My family has abandoned me when it comes to races...so now I have my running family! It's nice that you have so many great memories with your family.

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    1. I have a wonderful running family, too ;-) They're awesome!

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  2. While my husband supports me at my halfs, otherwise I'm on my own. I inspired my sister (the athlete) to start running, but she did it stupidly, injured herself, and vowed never to run again.

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    1. My husband doesn't go to all of my races (and I wouldn't ask him to), but it is fun to have him along ;-)

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  3. Those are such great memories! I can relate to having the family there especially at the end of 26.2. Back in the day when I was fast the Caveman and kiddos trekked with me to races and I was lucky enough to have them there for all of my BQs.

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    1. Awwwww ;-) That would have been awesome to have the family for that celebration!

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  4. My hubs and kids have done a few 5k's with me over the years and waited at the finish line of a few tri races. It's not really their thing but it always makes it more special when they are there too. You have lots of fun memories

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    1. The hubby has done some races with me, but none of the kids have (yet). Stay tuned ;-)

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  5. Awwe I love that photo of when your husband jumped in the race - that is awesome to have that level of support from a spouse!

    I've done tons of races with my mom but we rarely run together because we're at different paces. We did run the RnR Las Vegas 5K together last year and let's just say it was an experience lol

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    1. The pic of him photobombing me is a favorite ;-) I've posted it many times ;-)

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  6. Great photos! That's awesome that your family has run with you in the past and is so supportive! I've done a couple 5ks with my dad and my husband doesn't run but is always super supportive!

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    1. Well, the hubby has run with me the most...I'm still working on the kids LOL

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  7. I started running after being around my parents and their friends. When I did my first half marathon, we made it a family weekend. My mom did the 5k, and my dad also did the half. A couple years later, we did another race weekend with my God family, and I did another half marathon with my best friend from high school. Even though we're all different paces, those weekends are so much fun.

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    1. That's fun! The relay with my cousins was a blast!

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  8. So fun! My dad and I used to race together before his hip replacement. Now Beer Geek and I race "together". He's so much faster that I just use him to get good finish line photos LOL.

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    1. I bet that was fun running/racing with your dad ;-)

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  9. One of my favorite running memories is running with my mom for her first 5k and 10k. I've been trying to convince the fiance to do more races with me, too!

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    1. I wish my parents would have run with me in their younger years...what memories!

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  10. What a great group of people! Friends are family who are supportive of running are awesome!

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    1. Absolutely...running family doesn't necessarily involve genetics or blood ;-)

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  11. This is great! I'd love to do a relay with my family. I've done many races with my mom and dad and sister and they are always fun! Thanks for linking up!

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  12. Great memories! I've been lucky enough to run a couple of races each with my husband, son and brother. They've also been very supportive along the course - makes such a difference doesn't it?!

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  13. I LOVE this post!!!! You have an amazing family and such wonderful memories! <3 <3 <3

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