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Winter Park Road Race 10K.

March 26, 2012 by Carolina

This weekend I did something I haven’t done before: I ran a race without looking at my Garmin, pace, or time goal in mind & just ran for fun. Coming into the Winter Park Road Race 10K I knew I was under trained. I had originally planned to run the 2 miler + 10K but knowing I haven’t been following my training plan I opted out of the 2 miler.

When it comes to racing I’m a firm believer of training accordingly, it’s one of the best ways to run injury free. I reminded myself of this the morning of the race, keeping in mind I have the Iron Girl Half Marathon coming up I didn’t want to risk injury so I decided to take it easy. Real easy. I told myself I would run when I felt like it, walk if I wanted to, enjoy the scenery. I have a tendency to zone out when I run, I get lost in my thoughts & sometimes don’t soak in what’s going on around me. This happens because I either have a particular time goal in mind, want to make sure I’m keeping on pace, breathing correctly, hydrating, etc…all that changes when you run without any goal in mind.

About a mile in I ran into a friend I haven’t seen in years (Hi Brit!) — it was so good to catch up! She was running/walking the race, her very first, so I walked a big chunk of it with her taking advantage of our time to share what we’re each up to. We ran/walked for about 3 miles before I decided to run a little so I said my goodbyes & started to run. Eminem’s “Till I Collapse” came on my iPhone & there’s something about that song that really pumps me up. I ran the next mile or so before I ran into another friend (Hi Cindy!). We talked, we walked, we laughed our way all the way to mile 5ish. At that point she wanted to walk & I wanted to run so I kept going, ran the rest of the race. I finished the race feeling energetic, like I could go run another 3 or 4 miles, & I loved that. This was, hands down, the most fun I’ve had in a race.

After the race I met up with more friends (Hi Erin & Caroline!) & had a delicious breakfast at The Briarpatch. After taking a nap (naps after races are the BEST aren’t they?!) I watched The Hunger Games — loved it! Any Hunger Games fans out there? What did you think of the movie? But I digress…

This year’s Winter Park Road Race taught me that sometimes a girl just needs to have fun. Sure, running to break PRs & personal goals is great, but so is running just to run. I loved meeting friends along the way & running together (I typically run alone), it’s so refreshing to have someone to talk to while you run. Track Shack put on a great race through beautiful Winter Park, gave us awesome medals at the end, commerative glasses (it was the 35th anniversary of this race), all in a perfect Saturday morning. Major win!

Have you ran a race just to run it, with no goal in mind? Tell me about it, would love to hear your experience!


Carolina is a marketing professional living in Orlando, Florida. Originally from Colombia, Carolina loves experimenting with different spices in the kitchen. When she's not cooking she loves to run, practice yoga and spend time with her dog Rocco. Carolina is passionate about travel and always has her suitcase packed and ready to go!

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