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Training -- Week 7!

Week 7 started in Pennsylvania on Labor Day. We had to have another character stop to visit the calf and pet the horse! It was lovely weather all weekend, and even though I had a lot of running and fundraising activity to do to, we still got in plenty of memories. We surprised her parents who didn’t know I was coming, we went to a crab feast with some of Dan’s friends, we ate at one of my favorite BBQ places that I’ve only ever had in Nashville (Mission BBQ), and we escaped from the island before the volcano’s ashes reached our shores! I do love a good escape room! And although Katie was also so incredibly helpful this weekend with a fundraising letter writing campaign, I still had so much to do this week.

It was also on this trip I learned about Eliza Fletcher’s abduction and murder on a morning run in Memphis. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about her on my solo runs this week. She was a Boston qualifier, a mom, a teacher getting her training in before work – and that meant before sunrise. I cried when I learned she was also a Run Disney runner, participating in this year’s Princess Half Marathon in February. My Run Disney blogs have tons of posts about her – photos of her during the race, memorial runs in her honor, matching outfits, and then discussions about what protection women carry with them. As if running wasn’t hard enough, it angers me that I have to consider planning my runs around what time the sun rises and sets. But it also doesn’t guarantee a safe run. Karina Vetrano (5 PM), Ally Brueger (230 PM), Vanessa Marcotte (afternoon), Mollie Tibbetts (730 PM), Wendy Martinez (8 PM), and Sydney Sutherland (3 PM) were also murdered on their runs. I’m not going to not run, but I am always aware of my surroundings and on guard. I haven’t run with music in at least the last 5 years. I screamed bloody murder to the Direct TV worker standing behind his truck this week. He was doing his job, and apologized profusely, but it startled me. I just couldn’t get Eliza and her family out of my mind this week. It’s a heartbreaking tragedy.

Saturday was our local Kennesaw 5K race. They host 6 each year, and I’ve been running since 2014, so I’m quite familiar with this course! I shaved 4:55 off my still-injured and running with my knee brace time in July! It certainly wasn’t my fastest ever, but it was nice to see that my hard work is paying off and I’m getting back to where I was pre-injury. My training plan had 8.5 miles on the schedule, so I ran the 5K, then came home to run another 5.4 miles around the neighborhood. Although the same route gets boring sometimes, I like having a built-in refueling stop in my mailbox! On long runs I alternate between water and Gatorade, and I'll eat a few sports beans every mile.

Sunday was the SagerStrong 3k inside Truist Park, held in honor of Craig Sager, a national sports broadcaster who passed away from Acute Myeloid Leukemia in 2016. Never have I ever kicked off a race before, but the Team in Training folks led the race at the start line. I was quickly passed by many other runners, but it felt good to be able to run the day after 8.5 miles. I was meeting two friends for breakfast after the race at the Battery, but they surprised me! Coming down the stairs for the last lap on the field, I heard my name. I was shocked to see Kristi and Shelley standing there to cheer me on! It was one of the best surprises! We snapped a few pictures before I continued to the field. I also got a picture with the 2021 World Series Champion Trophy! It was a great race, for a great cause, with great friends to support me.

Week 7: Run 23.27 miles + Walk 0 miles = 23.27 total miles

Cumulative: Run 120.51 miles + Walk 9.5 miles = 130.01 cumulative miles

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