St. Jude Marathon 2018

 

On December 1, 2018, I ran in my second marathon race. It was a doozy! Tough, Hell,  and disappointed are just a few words to describe it. Let me explain.

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I started training for the marathon in July just as I did last year. My main goal this year was to beat my 2017 marathon time which was 4:59. Quickly into my marathon training I knew I was going to beat my pervious time. In 2017, my average pace was between 11-13 minutes per mile. This year my average pace is about 9-11 minutes. I was significantly faster. With my new pace, I was predicting to finish this year’s marathon around 4:30. I continued to keep this pace and even get faster throughout my marathon training. I was confident that I would PR (set a personal record) this year.

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Race day arrived. I felt good. Even though I trained and prepared the best I could, December 1st turned out to be an unexpected and unpredictable day. First, the race was delayed 1 hour due to stormy weather. We were now starting the marathon at 9am. Also at 9am the temperature was already 64 degrees and expected to continue to get warmer. Plus due to the morning storms and warm weather, humidity was also added to the mix. I was thankful though to have Kayla and my sister at the start of the race. Even though Kayla was running the half this year, I am glad we were able to start the race off together.

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I started the race with a good pace. I was averaging around a 9:30 pace. It was exactly where I wanted to be. I kept this pace all the way up to the half, 13 miles. Then at mile 14, it started to go down hill. Around mile 14 my legs started hurting really bad. I had never felt this pain before. It was really bad. I remember thinking to myself that my legs can’t hurt this bad already, I still have around a half to go. Shortly after this realization, is when I had my first panic attack attempt. I felt myself getting really overwhelmed. I started breathing really heavy and then it became difficult to breath. I had to start walking, calm down, and slow my breathing. Because of the pain, my pace was drastically getting slower. The 4:00 pacer had already passed me awhile back but I was still ahead of the 4:30 pacer. I knew I was slowing down but I was still on track to achieve my goal time. Around mile 15 the 4:30 pacer passed me. I kept up wit the pacer for about a mile then had to slow down due to the excruciating pain in my legs. This is when my second panic attack attempt hit. I got so overwhelmed because I knew I was not going to be able to make my 4:30 goal time. I was eventually able to calm down and keep running.

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Miles 18 – 24 were a blur of pain and exhaustion. I remember being in a lot of pain and anticipating every single water stop because I was so thirsty and hot. I wanted to keep pushing myself. I knew the 5:00 pacer had not passed me yet. So if I just kept pushing, I would beat last years time even if that meant by 1 minute. Then I saw a lot of runners getting hurt. I saw runners passed out on the ground and taken away in ambulances. This told me that I had to ease up. I was worried that if I kept pushing myself so hard when I was already in a lot of pain, that I would eventually hurt myself. From then on I did a lot more walking. I had to stop several times as well to stretch. The pain was really intense. Kayla started texting me around mile 21. She gave me some much needed motivation. She let me know I was doing great and I was a badass. Around mile 22 or 23 is when the 4:50 pacer passed me. I was disappointed but I at this point I just wanted to be done.

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Mile 24 came and I knew I was almost done. I knew if I could just keep slowly going that I would finish soon, plus I still had not seen the 5:00 pacer. It was a bit windy during the race but right around mile 24 is when the wind decided to get intense. I remember being so exhausted and giving it everything I could just to run up the hills near the end. I remember a strong head wind blowing against me right as I was trying to run up a hill. I said “f*ck it,” gave up and walked up the hill instead. It was insane. Near the end of the race wind gusts were up to 25 mph. Plus the temperature was around 75 degrees.

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Mile 25, “one more mile” was my mantra. I knew I was almost there. I had only one more mile left, I could do this! I round the corner and see the finish line. I see and hear Kayla cheering me on. I make the last turn then cross the finish line. That was it, I did it! I was beyond exhausted and in so much pain. My sister met me right as I crossed the finish line. As soon as I saw her I collapsed in her arms and started crying. I remember telling her, “that was really hard.” lol Of course the photographer comes around right in the middle of me bawling my eyes out. I am really glad though that he was able to capture that special moment between my sister and I.

I was still unsure of the exact time I finished. I didn’t think I beat my time but I never saw the 5:00 pacer pass me. I changed into new clothes, grab some pizza, then went to the booth to print my official finish time.  I got the print out and saw that I finished at 5:03. I met up with Kayla, and as soon as I saw her I started bawling crying in her arms too. I was a mess. I was so disappointed that I didn’t beat my time and that I was only off by 4 minutes!

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I knew how hard I worked and trained for the marathon. There should have been no reason why I didn’t beat my time. I feel the main reason was because it was so hot. Now usually if I don’t reach my goal, I just try again. Its not that easy when the goal is PRing a marathon. I couldn’t just run a marathon the next day. So I will have to wait.

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I will definitely be running the St. Jude Marathon again in 2019 where I hope to beat my original time of 4:59. Until then I will continue to keep running, making new goals, and achieving those goals. Looking back, I may be still disappointed but I know I did the best I could. I still ran 26.2 miles! Not a lot of people can say that. Plus I survived through miles of excruciating pain but yet no injuries. I may be hard on myself but I still know that I am a badass unicorn and I will continue to fight and achieve my goals!

-Sarah

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Inconsistent as F*ck

We’re baaaaackk! Actually we never went anywhere we were just inconsistent as f*ck! To be honest, I haven’t ran in 3 weeks!! Today I set my alarm to wake up early and run but I slept straight through my alarm!! Yea that’s how its been!

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So what happened? LIFE happened. Jobs, traveling, and lack of motivation are all to blame. The badass unicorns have continued to run since our first marathon in December 2017 but it hasn’t been consistent. We still remained active by keeping our goal of running at least 1 race every month and just recently joined a kick boxing gym! We love kickboxing!

36908142_10103627155533420_4934227720075739136_nThe look Kayla gives when people try to f*ck with her vibe! #fuckbadvibes Wraps from www.girlgangwraps.com.

Even though our running has been inconsistent and training has been nonexistent, we have still accomplished many goals. I ran one of my fastest half marathons and the badass unicorns ran 2 official races reppin’ #sportsbrasquad which is pretty big for us.

34344317_1933078320317740_4097067714240053248_oFirst race reppin’ the #SportsBraSquad for the Great American River Run! #Run901

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I have also registered to run the St. Jude marathon again this year with the goal of at least 4:30 which is 31 minutes faster than last year. Again this year I need your support in helping to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research hospital. http://heros.stjude.org/Sarah_Burns is the link to donate. The countdown has begun! 27 weeks till my second marathon! I will start my training with running 5 miles 4 times a week, kickboxing, and hopefully some speed training. Most marathon training plans are usually 20-22 weeks long so I am using theses few weeks to get back consistent with my running.

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I am excited to continue on this running journey by setting new goals and pushing myself harder than before. The badass unicorns love you all so much and appreciate all your love and support. We hope that you all will continue to follow and support us!! Please feel free to message us at anytime to share your story or to ask us any questions.

Email: badassunicornssk@gmail.com

Instagram: @run_onemoremile

Facebook: @runonemoremile

Blog: http://www.runonemoremile.com

 

Let’s do this!

-Sarah Burns

To another year

I absolutely love the end of the year. Reflecting on the past and projecting positivity towards the future.

2017 has been an amazing year for the badass unicorns. Running has been at the core. Throughout 2017, running has been apart of some of our greatest defeats and our biggest triumphs. A lot has happened, and yet we kept running.

blog coverWe started our blog in May. I am so thankful for everyone’s support. I absolutely love our blog. I am excited to continue with our blog and to see where else it will take us!!

10 NMThe 10 Nautical Mile race was a huge race for us this year. This was our first major race of the year. We were a bit rusty and struggled through it but we had a good time. We love supporting our military. Plus we got an awesome medal!!

sports bra squad dayJune 24th was Sports Bra Squad Day!

sports bra3 Throughout the hot summers, Kayla and I both ran in our sports bras, shedding insecurities, building confidence in ourselves, and encouraging other women to have confidence in themselves. Also because it was f*cking HOT!

run for texasIn August, Hurricane Harvey hit Texas really hard. Kayla and I really wanted to do something to help. Well we decided on what we do best which is run! This great cause was able to raise $49,000 for the American Red Cross and Texas Diaper Bank!

beach runIn September, Kayla and I went to the beach to celebrate my 30th birthday! And of course a run on the shore was a must! We had an amazing time! It was my best birthday yet!

turkey trotIn November, Kayla and I ran in the annual Turkey Trot race. This is our second year running in it together. I’m sure this will become an annual tradition for us. We are bound and determined to win a free turkey! lol

green fridayThis year instead of shopping on Black Friday we ran. First, we had an awesome, yummy, Thanksgiving together. Then we enjoyed Green Friday, which is where you go and enjoy outside, instead of being stuck in long lines at stores with crazy people! This will definitely become a new tradition for me!

marathon4Grand Finale! Kayla and I completed our first marathon on December 2, 2017! This was by far my greatest accomplishment this year!

Through out the year I also pushed myself to improve my pace. On December 28, 2016, I ran 5 miles at an 11:51 pace. On December 30th, 2017, I ran 5 miles at a 9:30 pace. Also in December of 2017, I’ve ran several miles under 9 minutes. Which is the fastest I’ve ever ran. I will continue to push myself in 2018. I plan on continuing to improve my pace.

I am very excited for 2018. I know it will be another amazing year. I plan to run a race every single month of the year. I will definitely run the St. Jude marathon in 2018. I would also like to run more marathons as well. Yes that is marathons, plural! I want to continue to improve my pace and run races with a new personal record best! I want to continue to inspire, motivate, and encourage others with running.  I am also excited to continue with the blog and to see what’s next for the badass unicorns.

2017 total milesSo, what all do you think you could accomplish in 126 hours out of a year? Well, in 2017  I accomplished running over 715 miles! I ran a marathon and I ran on the beach. I ran for a cause and to help others. I ran for fun. I ran to encourage and motivate others. I ran to build confidence in myself and to help others build confidence in themselves. I ran with my best friend and I ran to achieve new goals. I ran and surpassed my limitations. In 2017, I ran over 715 miles and with each step, I changed my life. I am so thankful for all the blessings of 2017 and I am so excited for what 2018 will bring!! Happy New Year!!

-Sarah

2017 was an interesting year for me. It’s hard for me to reflect back on it with happiness because now, it still causes me pain. But I am looking into 2018 with high hopes and determination. For the running aspect of my life, 2017 was a hit!

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The first race I ran, I did it solo for the Fort Pillow Trail Run in February. Thankfully, this year it was not freezing but the mountain you have to climb was still there. I love this race because it’s challenging to run on the trails but so worth it. It is also beautiful scenery.

In March, I was able to run with my best friend, Emmy, for her first three mile run ever! She was training for her first 5k which we were also able to do together. That is one of my favorite things about this running journey I have went on, inspiring others! I love when my friends or family tell me that they run now because of me. And that they continue to run because I work so hard which inspires them to keep working!

 

We decided to do the Wiked Wine Run for Emmy’s first 5k. It was in April and for some unknown reason, Nashville decided that it was going to be in the upper 80s for a day in April. And this race took place in the afternoon (cause they frown on drinking wine in the morning, I guess?!) so it was like the hottest part of the day. But Emmy still did it!! And we were rewarded with wine! So win! win! win!

Speaking of hot days, 2017 was the year I embraced my body and ran around in my sports bra! Cause when you’re hot, you’re hot. Take that anyway you please 😉

 

I was glad that Sarah finally joined me in the Sports Bra Squad movement! It really is freeing to ditch your tank and be able to breath a little better in the hot, hot days of summer. I challenge you to do it this year!!

Another favorite part about running, is all the cute animals I come across. Since I run in a rural part of Tennessee, I see a little more than Sarah gets to. So check all the cute animals below I saw in 2017. Not pictured: skunks, deer and raccoons!

 

Of course, the highlight of the year was completing the St. Jude Memphis Marathon! Which you can read more about here.

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Training for the marathon showed me that I really can do whatever I put my mind to. Which I plan on using that same determination in 2018 to move my life forward in my personal life and start my new life with strong will.

Running the marathon also inspired my aunt to start training for a 5k! Which I got to do a training run with her before the year ended!

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We ran and walked for 2 miles in a cold, rainy drizzle! I was so proud of her. I cannot wait to run her first 5k with her!

In 2017, I ran 770.5 miles, for 158 hours and burned 96,990 calories (roughly)! I had made a goal in 2016 to try and run 1,000 miles but I still beat my milage from last year so I am proud of that. We are planning on running a race every month this year so I am hoping with the constant training I can reach 1,000 miles for 2018. I am not a big New Year’s resolution person but I will say that one of my goals is to run faster this year. I have been toying with the idea of getting a running coach but I have some other priorities that need focused on first.

Another goal is to get back in my kickboxing routine. I went back to my kickboxing gym, CrossKick, a week after the marathon. It had been two months since I had went and oh boy! Talk about being out of that kind of shape. I am looking forward to getting back into my strength training and sticking to it!

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I am blessed to be able to run like I do and I am also blessed to be able to run across the country. I ran in Texas, California, Alabama, Washington, and Hawaii!! With my job, I am sure to add some more states this year.

 

So that’s a wrap on 2017 and now the Badass Unicorns will keeping doing what we do and sharing that with all of you beautiful people! Thanks for supporting us through our endeavors. We look forward to running and inspiring you all during 2018.

 

Love,

Kayla

Running in Life Pushing to Progress

 

Kayla sent me this text.

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And this got me thinking. Same time last year we were training for our half marathon and we were running 11 minutes or less per mile. Right now we are running 12 minutes or more. What happened? Yes it’s been hot and we know the heat slows down our pace but we both were not satisfied with our time. 

Kayla’s text motivated me to push myself. (That’s what good running partners do) This week I was determined to improve my pace. As I pushed myself to this goal, it reminded me of how the process of running is the same as our journeys in life.

Running in Life Pushing to Progress

You have to push yourself to progress. You can’t run at the same pace and expect to get any better. Kayla and I got complacent with our pace. Yes we motivated ourselves to run every day but we weren’t really challenging or pushing ourselves.

Even when you have challenges and obstacles stacked against you, you have to continue to push yourself. Prepare yourself for the obstacles. One day it was really hot and I wanted to achieve a new goal of under 11 minutes per mile. I went to bed earlier the night before and drank plenty of water before and during my run. I made sure I was prepared.

It is okay if you stumble, fall, or fail. On my under 11 minute goal, I had one mile over 11 minutes but I also have 4 miles under 11 minutes. This didn’t deter me. My overall average was 10: 30 mpm. I was very proud of myself.

Keep going. Achieve one small goal then another, go one more mile, then another. Keep going and pushing yourself till your main goal is achieved. 

Sometimes in life and running you just have to take your shirt off  (#sportsbrasquad). Have confidence, be free, and don’t care what other people think. It’s your goal, push yourself to be better. In the end you will be more proud of yourself because you pushed yourself without relying on anybody else. One of your biggest motivators will be yourself and your past accomplishments. My greatest motivations are the goals I’ve already achieved. I know can do better because of all the things that I have already accomplished. I did it before, I can do it again. 

Throughout the week I continued to push myself. I was determined. I had to push myself with each step. When I could feel myself starting to run slower I would push myself to keep running at a faster pace. You have to listen to your body, your gut. When making decisions use both logic and intuition. I use logic to not push myself into an injury and I use my gut to push myself to accomplish my goal. 

You can take breaks. But know that even when you are taking a break you can’t completely quit working or pushing. I still walk in between my miles. But I know I can’t walk very slow nor very long or it would ruin my pace. 

On my 11 mpm (minutes per mile) goal, it got really tough on mile 4 and 5, and I really wanted to give up and just run at a slower pace, but I didn’t. You will face your biggest struggles and obstacles when you are close to accomplishing your goal. Keep pushing through till you cross that finish line. 

If you have a major goal or dream, then everything you do must contribute to that. I cannot eat unhealthy and drink a lot of alcohol the night before a big run because I know it will negatively impact my run. Same as your dreams or goals will suffer, I know my run will suffer because of the unhealthy decisions I made.  

Look at my progression over the past few weeks. I am so proud of my progress and all that I’ve accomplished just because I pushed and I was determined.

6 mile 12.558 mile 11.085 mile 10.356 mile 10.44

12 mile 10.12

August 25th: Today’s mantra was Step with Purpose. Push with every step. I just kept repeating that in my head. I kept pushing. I made sure every single step was purposeful. This was my best run yet! Not only did I run 12 miles, but every single mile was under 10:33 mpm. (Blows my mind just typing that) My overall average for all 12 miles was 10:12 mpm. Wow! This just proves to me that I can do anything I set my mind to.

It is hard. It is a struggle. But because of my struggle I grow stronger. Running has changed my life not because it’s easy, but because it’s hard. If it were easy, I would be the same person I was years ago. But because it is hard, I have grown into someone I am proud to be. I am strong. I am confident. I am a badass unicorn!

-Sarah

Why I Run?

I think it is very important to know why you started something. The reason you start something and continue to do it is usually very powerful. And when you are struggling or have lack of motivation, your Why will keep you going. So as Kayla and I are training for a full freaking marathon, I think it’s time we were reminded of our Why.

Why does Sarah run?

I run because it’s FREE.  When I first started running I didn’t have much money at all and I needed to get into shape.  Running is probably one of the cheapest and best full body exercise. Later I learned that it does cost a little bit. You have to pay for shoes, clothes, gear, supplements, etc. But not all of that is really needed. Shoes are a definite must though. Please spend some money and get you some good running shoes.

I run because of the feeling after I run. The runner’s high. Yes sometimes I’m exhausted but I feel amazing. I pushed myself, I accomplished my goal, I’m fit and strong. I also run because I feel like crap when I don’t run. Seriously. After you have been running for a while, it’s like your body craves it. Not only your body, but your mind too. I just feel better physically, mentally, and emotionally because of running.

I run because I love food! For the most part I eat healthy but because of running, I don’t feel as bad when I eat some not so healthy foods. I also love running because it keeps me strong and in shape. I have a hard time controlling, maintaining, and losing weight. I know I would be miserable and not happy with my body if I didn’t run. Running helps balance everything out or so I tell myself.

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I run to run away. Run away from life, stress, hurt, chaos and I run into my own world. A world full of nature, beauty, and music. When you run you see things from another perspective. You get to notice all the natural beauty around you. I also love music. So to be able to be outside and listen to my music for an hour or longer is just heaven to me. It is definitely a stress reliever. I get to spend time with myself and my thoughts.

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I run because others can’t. One of the main responses I get when I tell people I am a runner is, “That’s awesome! I wish I could run.” I run because I still have the ability to run. Some can’t run because of major impairments: missing limbs, paralyzed, or wheelchair bound. While others can’t run because of what could be seen as minor impairments to others but major impairments to themselves: weight, age, painful joints, feet, ankles, shins, hips, health reasons, etc. Whatever the reason, some people can not physically run. I run for them. I run because God has blessed me with the ability to run so I am going to keep running till I can no longer!

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I run because I love to challenge myself. I love to push myself to the limit and then surpass it. I never knew how strong I was till I started running. Now I know that I can do anything that I put my mind to. I can crush every obstacle in my way and accomplish any goal. My main goal in life is to inspire, motivate others, and to change lives. I run because I see how running can do all of that and more. I see how my running inspires others. I know running can change lives because it has changed mine. I have truly learned who I am because of running. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without it. Because of running I know that I am a badass unicorn and I am unstoppable. Watch out world!

–Sarah B.

So why does Kayla run?

Some of these may end up being the same as Sarah’s or similar, but maybe that will just make someone want to start running!

I run to be in control. I get told a lot that I am a controlling person. In all honesty, though, I feel like I don’t control that much in my life. I can control running. Only I can make the choice to actually put my shoes on and get on the road. I can control how far I am going to go. I can control my breathing. I can control which direction I go in. I get to choose everything when it comes to running. And it’s pure bliss.

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I run to be closer to Mother Nature. The photo above was taken by my aunt while I was running in Cocoa Beach. All I want to do is be outside. Running gives me a chance to reconnect with the world, even if it is a solo endeavor. I am able to get in touch with nature. I see a lot of neat things while running. Sunrises, raccoons, deer, puppies, armadillos, even snakes. I travel frequently for work and running has given me the ability to fearlessly explore these new places. There is a great sense of peace and serenity in running. It really is the best form of therapy.

I run for food. And beer. As any inner fat kid turned runner knows, after spending two hours on a long run the best thing about the end is the chance to eat. When I am struggling, I like to think of what I get to eat. And I don’t feel so guilty when I want another beer! It is all about balance though. It is easy for new runners to overeat and find themselves gaining weight. I don’t think losing weight needs to be the focus, you’ll most likely shed some pounds and can brag to your friends about how strong you are. As long as you find balance in your food choices. It’s about being healthy, not skinny.

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I run to inspire people. Now, I did not start running to inspire people. I started for weight loss. I did a 5k and was hooked! Along the way, I began sharing my journey through social media and with my family. All of sudden, I had people telling me that I was the reason they started running. They were asking me for advice and wanting to hear when I ran so they would to. When you have people looking up to you in that way, it actually inspires you to be better. I was able to encourage one of my best friends to run her first 5k (Emmy and me pictured below for the Wicked Wine Run 5k). I’m seeing a pattern, there was booze at the end! The community that comes with running has been such a welcoming experience. I always thought runners were stuck up…NOPE! Most runners want everyone to be great, at any pace.

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I run to challenge myself. So my last reason is the same as Sarah’s. I think everyone can benefit from doing something that isn’t easy. Running hasn’t become easier in the last two years. I have found ways to keep it challenging *cough*marathon*cough* I love how I feel when I get done with a really hard run, hell, any run for that matter. There has never been a run I’ve regretted. There have been runs that didn’t go my way but I still come out proud of myself. I haven’t given up on myself. Being able to fail and still conquer the challenge is satisfying. I never thought I would be a runner, but here I am. Being all badass working my way to a new goal.

With love,

K