The Illuminite Run NYC
There have been so many fun run’s happening lately and I just love them ALL! So when my girlfriend Yonnie let me know that she was signing up for The Illuminite Run, I was down! (Partly because of the fact that I have never run a race at night before and partly because of the after party
but really because of the after party!)
I had a lot of anxiety about this race because I knew i’d be super tired. When I signed up for this race, I hadn’t yet started Jamie Eason. Usually when I go to run a 5k I like to give myself a few days of rest so that I can go out and give it my all for the run. Since this week’s program required 5 days of strength training and I had to teach Zumba on Saturday, I honestly wasn’t sure how much more I had left for this race. I figured, I’d run as much as I could and I’d walk the rest of the way. The only “running goal” I had with this race was finishing (in one piece!).
It was THE most perfect weather ever. A beautiful breeze, low to no humidity and high seventies. Even though I taught in the morning, I was hoping to get a nap in but I ended up grocery shopping and doing my Sunday cooking on Saturday (while caught up in that Scandal marathon on BET!). So before you knew it, I was putting on another set of workout clothes for the evening.
I strapped on my SpiBelt that I won from Carli’s blog (which is so much better than my old method of stuffing all of my items into my bra…I am a bra stuffer professional!), my girls came to get me and we were off!
When we got there I picked up my packed which was full of glow sticks and my bib for the evening. We waited around for about an hour, there was beer and other refreshments for purchase but we went without and waited for the race to begin. We took some fun pictures, like this one (we are passing batons :)):
This race was much smaller than The Color Run which was great because we started within 5 minutes as opposed to waiting for 45 minutes in the blazing sun. The course was extremely flat which I was happy about, but since it was still a very crowded race, I ended up running around a lot of people who just wanted to cruise. Since I am not a regular runner, this drove me nuts because all I want to do is keep going and it helps when I am on a straight path.
I had no big goals for this race but before you know it, it turned serious! I started running and I felt good. I never feel good! Considering that I hadn’t run since the Portland 5k I was expecting to feel quite awful. I felt the exact opposite! I felt strong. When I was running I set little goals like making it to the next light, or making it to the next volunteer, this helped me to cut the race up into small pieces. When I was still going strong after making the turn to come back, I knew I had a chance to not only beat my personal record but run without stopping which is always a win to me considering I had only done that one time ever.
The last half a mile was definitely the toughest. I wanted to stop over and over, but I kept taking deep breaths and telling myself that my body was actually much stronger than I thought, and I could do it. I repeated to myself over and over “you are strong”, I may have been running slowly but I was running–not walking. That is a victory in my book.
When I saw the finish line I was overjoyed and I got a kick of energy (funny how that happens!). I crossed the finish line and stopped my Polar. I was so happy with the result. It was not near my personal record, BUT I ran my second 5k without stopping and I am SO proud of my body and my will to keep going. I do believe that my recent increase in strength training may have something to do with why I felt so good during the run, so now I wan’t to complete the program more than ever!
Running in the Dark
Running 3.2 miles in the dark was very interesting. There was lights along certain parts of the route but it wasn’t the most scenic route. I was thankful that I had my 80s reggae blaring through my Beats By Dre to keep me going. It was never pitch black out there but it got pretty close. The actual route was clear though so there was no chance of someone getting lost. I like it though because of the lack of sun, and the nighttime breeze was lovely.
I would totally do this run again (pending fabulous weather) because running without the sun makes a huge difference. Also, I have gained a bit of confidence in my running abilities after this race. Feeling stronger in my body helps, so I am so open to new running possibilities!
The after party for the Illuminite Run was fun, lots of nice techno pop music to move your body. Lots of lights and dancing people high off endorphins…my favorite kind of party! We had a blast, we didn’t stay the whole time, we left around 10pm, but for the 30 minutes or so it was soo much fun.
I would absolutely do another evening run, apparently this is very popular and I can see why!