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Countdown to the Cherry Blossom 10-miler

So I’m in countdown mode until Sunday’s Cherry Blossom 10-mile race. Am I nervous? Yes! Am I gonna finish? Absolutely!

I’ve spent the last few weeks my trainer Sedric Otuya has been working on my core/glute strength and endurance, and Dr. Cheryl Lee-Pow has been working to make sure that the aches and injuries are addressed and I’m running with as healthy a body as possible. I’ve been eating properly, hydrating, resting, and most importantly — not doing anything stupid.

I think my biggest strength right now isn’t my physical capability (although I’m in much better shape than the 5 mile race I did in December 2010), but my mental preparedness. When I started having doubts about my ability to run  10 miles I put a post on Facebook for emotional support. Got lots of it. My friends, particularly those that are experience runners, gave me great advice.

Then, I started visualizing crossing the finish line. I crewed from my friend Melanie Spring at last year’s race and spent the entire time right at the finish line. I clearly remember many of the people I saw and the elation on their faces as they finished. So not only do I know what the finish line looks like, the best part of my visualization is that there were people there (which means I finished within the allotted time). I’m also the slowest runner in my group of friends, which means that they’ll finish first and I’ll have plenty of people to cheer for me when I get done!

I’ve come across several posts from runners who ran Cherry Blossom last year. I love that they shared pictures taken during the race. Being a Washingtonian I’m very familiar with the course. This race covers part of the course I ran for my first 10K last October. I really enjoyed that race and felt like I ran it at a good pace. Most importantly, I really enjoyed the scenery.

Even though there will be a lot of participants, I tend to get into my own head during a race. I enjoy my surroundings, think about life in general, focus on my breathing, and try not to trip (haha).

Whatever Sunday brings I know I’ll have a really great time. Plus I’ll be a 5k away from my half marathon goal. Once I do this I’ll have to find some new goals. Maybe a marathon? Maybe…Dr. Cheryl & Sedric said they’d make sure I’d could do one. Hmmm…maybe!

Sedric Otuya

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