Best Damn Race – Jax – 2019

How was this race for me?

It was challenging… I haven’t been running much and I feel like I am taking running a little bit for granted. I haven’t been training and yet I challenged myself into running half marathons without training just because in my mind, I CAN. It can be both a good thing and a bad thing depending on what side of my head you are on.

It’s a good thing, because I know what my body is capable of and a good thing because I am always able to finish any race, no matter what distance, I sign up for. Good for me!

& Yet, I feel, as though, I disrespected the race because I know there are people who took their time to train and get ready for these kind of races. Please forgive me. I admire you and all your hard work and I promise I will train and do better on my next races. So BDR, is the last Half Marathon I signed up for, for now, at least for the beginning of this year. No worries, I have a lot more other races lined up for the year but I just wanted to take it easy and reboot myself back into training and getting my running and strength training going.

Best Damn Race did not disappoint. I enjoyed every single moment of it. I was super excited when I got my running packet, with my Bib, my shirt & a pair of SOCKS! It was a bit of a surprise for me to be able to grab a pair of socks in there (HAHA moment). Yes the little things in these races can be very unique and uplifting.

On the day of the race, January 12, 2019:

I woke up at 4:30 A.M. (just thought I’d put that out there because that made me so proud of myself.)

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Books I Skimmed Through Before The Race.
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 An Episode of FRIENDS that I Watched While Getting Ready.

When I got to the Landing, where it started, I got a sense of excitement from the people around me. Running events always have that type of vibes anyways. Everyone is so friendly, commenting on my roll of tissue paper, “I should have brought one, I need that.” Of course, I offered. Just a background on that, I have been listening to Coach B on the Nike App and in one of his training sessions, he talked about practicing gratitude for everything during race day; the people that helped organized it, the volunteers, everyone and everything! One of the things he does to show gratitude is by bringing a roll of toilet paper so that there will always be some just in case the race runs out of toilet paper, which happens. So yeah, I brought a roll of toilet paper and left it in the bathroom. It felt amazing to take part on that pass the toilet roll paper goodness. (See the small things always does make a difference.)

Before the race started, as we line up, my friends and I realized that “Whoa, there’s not that many people here today.” My first thought was “OH MY! I’m going to be last.” It’s such a pressure building moment, when it truly doesn’t matter what place you’ll be in the race because all the matters is that you have fun and that the race makes you feel like your time and efforts were all worthwhile. So, I calmed my silly self down and remembered to just enjoy the race!

As the race started, I can feel the adrenaline rushing thru me. I ran with the Jax Galloway crew, which consist of amazing people, by the way. We do the run and walk method that I love. We started the method after the 1 mile mark. Although, I did stop to enjoy the Sunrise! It was rising right over the Hart Bridge, the Green Monster, which is my favorite bridge and it truly made me feel so blessed to be able to take part on this race. I stuck with the group I was with until Mile 9 or so, after that, I couldn’t keep up anymore and fell a bit behind. It’s ok, the race is full of supportive and motivated individuals that kept me motivated and determined.

This is my first time doing a BDR race and I must say that the route was one of my faves. You might hear different things from different people but I think it was one of the best I participated in (but don’t listen to me, I like most of the racing routes I participate in, anyways). As I approached the part of the route that I normally run on a regular basis, I felt at home, “This is 1 mile away from my destination.” I do somewhat have that last part of the route memorized by feel because it was my normal route when I run on my lunch breaks or in the mornings. It felt good and it felt like I could finish strong……. (I walked a lot, lol) As I go through the elevated part of the race and the down inclines, it felt nice and amazing but I still walked a little bit after that and ran a little bit more when I was closer to the finish line.

& Just like in any other races, seeing that finish line, is an amazing feeling. I grabbed my medal and grabbed my water and see my friends who were waiting for me. “Wait you didn’t take a picture here yet.”, one of my friends remembered. Ha! & that is why I love participating in races, it is full of dedicated, motivated, loving, wonderful people who are always there to encourage you to keep going! The end.

As always, thank you for reading my thoughts. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Love always.

Yours Truly Yours,

Piawia <3

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How I Prep for RACE DAY!

Write down your goals so when you get them you know you were brave enough to make them. – Alexi Pappas

Just to clarify, when I said average I did not mean “NOT COOL” I just meant not an “ELITE”. Just wanted to get that out there because I think I’m pretty cool! 🙂

This blog is about what I do the day/night before the race and race day before the race.

May it be 5k, 10k, 15K, 10 miles, Half Marathon or FULL MARATHON (coz I’m officially a marathoner, est 10.7.2018)

Full Disclosure: I have no certification whatsoever in sports but these are things I gathered from searching the internet, reading blogs, reading books about running, advice from runners and also from working at a running store for a couple of months. HA! Feel free to add to it, provide additional advice and if you just want to enjoy what I share then why not!!!

THE DAY BEFORE THE RACE!

  1. HYDRATE! HYDRATE! HYDRATE! If I’ve been slacking with drinking the amount of water I’m supposed to be drinking. I usually add a coconut juice in the mix to add some more electrolytes in my body and hydrate me more just to compensate for the lack thereof.
  2. CARB DIET! Eat carbs but not too much a day or two before the race. (I usually try to carb load a week before or so especially for long races) I usually go for sweet potatoes (or rice because I am asian and I can’t live without rice and also my body is used to rice)

THE NIGHT BEFORE THE RACE!

I make sure I get enough rest. In order to do that, I prepare everything early, as much as I can (because sometimes it is hard when you have a full time job and the race is on Saturday). I’m usually asleep by 10 o’clock p.m. when it is race day (& UP usually at 5am, depending on what time the race starts).

So here are the things I prepare the night before the race:

  1. My outfit and gears for the race. I pick out what shirt, short/pants, socks, shoes (because I am a runner and I have plenty to choose from) & even my underwear then I lay them all out on my chair where I can easily grab them. I set my running belt close by my clothes and I charge my running watch and my Bluetooth headset. They are all in a place close together so that I’m not panicking in the morning, just in case I wake up late or if I ever get held up doing something.
  2. I also like to prepare my post race bag where I put extra clothes (I bring a whole outfit even though I only change my shirt and shoes after, lol).
  3. After I do that I make sure my nails are cut and are ready to go for race day. I think this is an important part but it just depends on the person too. I make sure I file my nails down. (hope that is not a weird thing) 
  4. I also get my energy chews ready, cut into 4 and placed in a ziploc bag. I also make sure I have a snack, well that is more for long runs/races.
  5. Don’t forget to eat and hydrate.
  6. I also do some yoga poses and then I foam roll my legs and back before I go to bed, just in case I don’t get a chance to do them in the morning. Foam rolling is important to keep your muscles loose and ready for race day. While yoga poses help with stretching your body. 
  7. Set up my alarms! “DON’T forget that part.
  8. I Make sure I have my BIB READY, 4 PINS, remember that! (I forgot my BIB twice for RACE DAY and that made me super anxious and didn’t get to enjoy the full experience of the event since I had to go back home or I was anxiously waiting for my BIB to make it on time but I think some races will reprint a BIB for you, I haven’t tried to do that) 

I think that’s it for the night before, If you think I should add some more don’t hesitate to contact me or just leave a comment on here too.

MORNING OF THE RACE!

These are the things I do the morning of the RAC

  1. I usually try to wake up and hour before I have to leave. I think an hour gives me  enough time to get ready and still be relax before I leave. I avoid waking up late and ending up with anxiety before the race. Although, some races don’t require much preparation, it’s still nice to be out and about on a decent time. (PLUS, you got to worry about parking too and that could add unnecessary anxiety for you day.)
  2. I usually eat 2 toast and sometimes an egg or just jelly. It just depends on what’s available between the two. For short races I can go with just the jelly and a toast but for bigger races I eat 2 eggs and 2 toast and a banana.
  3. I do drink coffee for breakfast too, to wake me up and give me a little bit of energy. I try to avoid coffee a week or two before the race so that it can work better on my body. (sometimes that’s the hardest part of getting ready for a race, Ha!)
  4. I also make sure I get a chance to listen to some running mantras, usually on YouTube, it helps my mental game. I sometimes even read. (lol) Whatever will keep you focus on the positives! I would go for that. You can even listen to music too, whatever floats your boat, as long as it helps with your mental game, I say go for it! 
  5. & before I leave, (after I get dressed and ready) I foam roll and do stretches, if I have the time. If not, I know I did it the night before and I should be fine and usually when I get to the location of the race, I’ll either have the time to stretch or sometimes the event would do group stretching too. I also try to do some yoga poses on the morning of too. These are only if you have time to do so, ya know because I try to wake up early! (that is why it is very important to have enough sleep! 🙂

That’s it. That’s pretty much what I do to get ready for RACE DAY! I hope you enjoyed this and also I hope that it helped you somehow.

Don’t forget to click subscribe or to simply leave me a comment!

Thank you so much for reading my thoughts, as always.

Yours truly Yours,

Piawia

Aftermath of my First Marathon

October 7, 2018

I did it, (I did something incredible) I finished one of the World Major Marathons, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon 2018. 

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My fave mantra: “Stay” – just enjoying each run moment by moment.

Honest to God, becoming a MARATHONER was one of the best feeling of my life, seeing that finish line was just pure amazing! I couldn’t believe I was able to reach my goal. I knew I was made for long distance running, even before, I just couldn’t fathom the fact of running for a long period of time. CRAZY SH*TS. 

My mindset about running (and life in general) changed so much. I’ve come a long way mentally and I am super proud of who I became. I became this person who believes in herself and someone who works really hard to love herself. {That’s a good thing, and you should be proud of yourself for striving for the best version of yourself} 

This marathon journey taught me so much about my strengths and weaknesses, what I love, things I want to be surrounded with, being alone & accepting other people’s helping hand without feeling like a failure. I learned to give thanks for everything that is around me and everything that is given to me, provided for me, I became the most Thankful and Grateful person I never thought I could be and that’s one of the things I love about myself! Ha. You’re probably like, who’s this girl who’s just talking about how much she loves herself? That’s totally fine! I just want to inspire people to start loving themselves too. To start accepting themselves for who, where and what they (we) are! 

The marathon was just a stepping stone for me. The morning of the race I woke up feeling prepared, excited, anxious and also very grateful for the journey. I learned that just being able to run is something to be grateful for already despite of results or anything else that could happen. The fact that I was given an opportunity to be where I was, was already something to be (SUPER) grateful for. My mind was really calm (well, until I realized I might be late, then I started panicking a little bit) but all together, there was no doubt in my mind that I could finish. It was already set in stone for me that I will finish. I was more worried about not making it on time, but I made it with 45 minutes to spare 🙂 How incredible is that? My time {for my first marathon} is 5:45:54 which is an incredible feeling. Before I took training seriously, I was running 15-16 minutes per mile {only because I lost touch with running for a while}. In those weeks, I was running my slowest, I even thought of quitting, but quitting was not an option. When I decided not to quit, it was more because I didn’t want to have to think about the marathon for another LONG YEAR! I’ve put some things on HOLD to be able to do this and I didn’t really want to do it again. After a while though, the reason for this run journey shifted to because I BELIEVE I CAN! {If you want to know how I did that just message me or I’ll write another blog about that shift, IDK, I’m playing this by ear and just writing away my thoughts about the marathon and what I had become after it} 

The shift in my mindset helped me through training and eliminated a whole lot of doubts (instead of doubting the whole journey, I only doubted a little bit, ha! It was a shift from 90% of doubt to 10%).  Now, after this Marathon journey, I believe in myself more. I know I can accomplish a lot of things I set my mind to. It taught me to focus on myself, to love myself and to believe in myself. It taught me that there are no set backs that can ever prevent you from reaching a GOAL you truly believe in. 

This journey changed my views in life and I want to be able to share that with people because it’s an amazing feeling. I hope that this inspires you and your friends, your family and anyone who ever doubted themselves. I was a self doubter, a self downer, someone who waited for people to believe in herself. Someone who cared about why people doubted her and someone who didn’t think she could accomplish big things and yet here I am 26.2 MILES STRONGER than any of those doubts. Don’t ever ever lose hope and faith in yourself because no one else can believe in yourself as strong as YOU CAN BELIEVE in yourself. 

So, that is the aftermath of my marathon journey, this running journey has taught me so much about my strength and how I reached a goal I never thought I could. KEEP BELIEVING and as the first time Marathoner OLYMPIAN, Alexi Pappas said: “Replace Can’t with Maybe” and you will reach goals you never thought you could! Always Be Brave, BRAVEY! 🙂 

Thank you for taking your time in reading this fantastic & amazing journey of mine. 

Follow my SELF LOVE Journey on IG @piawiaventures. 🙂

PEACE, LOVE & GRATITUDE. 

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Thankful for my legs & feet, my whole body, always.

With LOVE Always, 

Pia, 

the Marathoner

(my running name is MARIA, by the way)

Wearing my medal in the Atlanta Airport
Coz I can. #MedalMonday

Personal Marathon Training Goals!

My goals for this marathon training…..


Ahh. I’m excited to go through this goals. I can see myself becoming a totally different person! Pia 2.0! BUT don’t get me wrong, I love who I am, who I am becoming now even without the marathon, that has been the ultimate goal of mine for the last year is to find different ways to unconditionally love myself and this marathon is just to practice everything I’ve learned about loving and believing in myself….. So here are my goals for this journey… Bare with me because I might add some more as I go along…….. {this are more personalized goals} 


And so here are my goals for this Marathon:

  1. Discipline: I would like to accomplish this one. I believe that I don’t have a strong discipline in pulling through things I want to accomplish. I always run away, half ass things or just plain not do anything and make up excuses for why things aren’t done. I want to follow through the training program, learn to cook, sleep more, keep my room clean, finish books I’ve started and just being accountable for the goals that I set for myself. Discipline is hard for people who have been slacking all their lives {AHEM ~ I’m talking about me!} so accomplishing these things will help me gain more confidence in myself and in my journey.







  2. Respect: Ahh of course this comes with anything that you do. BUT I want to learn to establish respect for myself. Meaning I want to learn to respect myself and my journey. I’ve always second guessed myself {Can you tell? I’ve been so insecure all my life. Ha}. But part of that is not believing in my own capabilities. Part of this goal is learning to believe in myself despite what others would say, do or see. I’m slowly learning that people are meant to say, think, and do what they are meant to. Nothing about the things they do is about you and you have to learn to let things go and like I said before BELIEVE in yourself, because when things are really tough, NO ONE ELSE WILL. So learning to be respectful towards myself by believing in my capabilities despite the opinions of others {& my own self doubt} will show growth for me. 😀







  3. Strength: Gaining some strength in this journey is probably one of the funnest things for me to imagine {FUN not FUNNY}. Thinking I am capable of running a marathon at the end of this journey is such an incredible thought. It’s an amazing feeling to think “I’m a {future} marathoner!” Learning different exercises, routines etc to reach these goals will be exciting. I love learning so much and part of this journey for me is learning to be bold, asking random people questions about a work out! Just being brave and really going out there because this journey is about growing and not sheltering myself to safety! This will not only strengthen my body as a whole but also strengthen me mentally. {I’m hearing you say, “For sure!”} 






  4. Vulnerability: Huh? Why is this out here for marathon training? Well, I want to be vulnerable and {slowly but surely} invite people to watch my journey {friends, family & random strangers}. How fun would it be to see my progress into this journey? I will cry at the end of this journey and see how far I’ve grown and improved…. But I’m still working on this for now, I haven’t been posting much, even though I’ve started training little by little. Which is okay! I will get there. I believe part of growth is vulnerability… Letting people in your life and not worrying so much so how they will interpret your journey….. JUST LEARNING TO BE YOURSELF and loving yourself through your triumphs and failures. THAT I believe is the ULTIMATE GOAL for all of this.

Continue reading Personal Marathon Training Goals!