I promised in my first blog post that I wouldn’t just talk about running but this weekend there was a pretty exciting race- the Quad City Times BIX 7 and it was also the US 7 Mile Championships. If you have never been to the QC, I highly recommend it! Iowans are the nicest people you will ever meet and the food/coffee in Davenport is amazing (I will get to that towards the end of the blog). At church yesterday, the message revolved around relationships and how we were created to love one another and create relationships here on earth. You are probably asking why I am bringing this up but looking back at the weekend, there were multiple instances where relationships in my life-both new and old-played a major role in making BIX weekend a success (and a ton of fun)!
On Friday I went to the race expo with an old teammate and friend, Charlie Paul. I signed up late (3 days before the race) so I missed elite entries; I figured that I would attempt to find the elite coordinator at the expo to try to get moved up to the elite corral. This is where I realized how important networking and making relationships is in the running world-when I was waiting to talk to the elite coordinator, the man he was talking to turned around and it was Phil Stewart from Road Racing Management, who I met last weekend at RunPro Camp! Long story short, he was able to get me moved up so that I could start in the elite corral but if I would not have met Phil last weekend, it could have been difficult to get moved up .
A double shot of espresso from Starbucks is how I start off my morning when races are before 9 am. Not going to lie, taking a shot of straight espresso is not the best tasting thing in the world but since I’m not a morning person, I need the caffeine. My race plan was to go out very conservative since it’s a difficult course and then after the turn around point, I would start picking it up. I carried out my plan to a T! Starting conservative gave me the opportunity to relax and take in the fun atmosphere that the fans in Davenport created. Being patient most definitely paid off because at mile 3 I was in 16th and then finished 11th. I was only 1 place out of prize money but I exceeded my own goals/expecations. I was honored to be on the starting line with some of the most elite American distance runners; especially since they have all been my role models and inspirations for many years. Molly Huddle (the American Record Holder in the 5k) killed it and ran one of the best races in BIX history. It was the 40th Anniversary of the BIX so there were 40 bands throughout the course, fans were lining the streets and of course there was a great post-race party (Whitey’s rootbeer popsicles were by far my favorite). Even though the race was tough, I loved every second of it and the atmosphere reminded me why I am so passionate about the sport.
The best part of the weekend was that I got the chance to spend 3 ½ days with my college roomie, Miss Carly Johnson. The amount of hugs and tears we have shared over the past two years (mainly last year) are too high to count but she is truly a blessing in my life. Since she is from Davenport, I had the ultimate tourguide and to make this short, here are 3 ways to my heart if I’m ever in the QC.
1. Crepe Man: This guy makes 2 crepes a week at Dunn Bros Coffee and they are AMAZING! BLT and Bourbon Apple were the crepes of the week!! I could’ve eaten one of each especially since it was post-long run Sunday morning.
2. Coffee Hound: S’mores coffee- this is genious considering I love S’mores and coffee.
3. Whitey’s Ice Cream: Grahm Central Station or an Oreo Birthday Cake shake-no need say more
In the end, I am sad that it is Sunday evening because it was a great weekend however I am excited for another week of training! This weekend I learned patience in racing when courses are tough, I learned that I CAN run with some really accomplished women and I was reminded of how lucky I am to have great friends in my life who love me so much.