The best part about running has nothing to do with running. When I was getting started I didn't expect to find new friends or a community. I just needed a way to fill my free time and shut my destructive inner monologue off. It took me an entire year to muster the courage to stop worrying about being too slow and run with someone else. I was terrified I wouldn't be able to keep up or that I'd be left behind if I ran with someone else. That, of course, never happen and I regret not running with other runners sooner.
I was on Facebook on Friday and one of my friends posted about an impromptu 5K with Kevin Hart on Saturday in Prospect Park. I love Kevin Hart. One time I was at an ex-boyfriends house watching a re-run of one of his stand up specials and my ex made the comment that Kevin's comedy was "tired" and "annoying." (I was like RED FLAG and we broke up shortly after because come on dude...annoying? I question all of your opinions.) Kevin Hart did the exact same thing in Boston and I was so jealous I wasn't in Boston so when I heard he was coming to my backyard, I was all in.
Brooklyn TURNED OUT for Kevin Hart. Everywhere you looked there were runners of all different ages, sizes, genders and ethnicities. Everyone was beyond excited to be there. Then Kevin came out and explained why he was doing a spontaneous 5k and I think it's safe to say everyone's hearts grew about 30 sizes bigger after hearing what Kevin had to say.
"What we are doing right now is so amazing because there is no award at the end of this tunnel. There is no gold medal at the end of this race. All it is is self gratitude. We did it together we did it as a unit. Rule #1 of any 5K run that I do, nobody gets left behind. We all start, we all finish. My second rule, if you see someone and they fall behind, it makes you a better person to stop with them and make sure they start their run again. It's all motivation we are out here simply to make one another better. We run as a group."
I am 100% behind what Nike and Kevin are trying to do. Whether you're looking for a way to get in shape, stay healthy, find a place where you belong or push your limits, running is for you. It doesn't matter if you are doing 15 minute miles or 5 minute miles, we all showed up to put our best foot forward, be apart of something bigger than ourselves and most importantly HAVE FUN! All you have to do is push to be a tiny bit better than the person you were yesterday. That's all you have to do.
And with that we all took off. My friend who went with me Tian is one of those effortless super fast speed racers so I knew he would want to be in the front. We started running and and right as I made the comment, "I guess this is more of a run with the idea of Kevin Hart 5k" Kevin goes shooting past us.
Let me get one thing clear, Kevin Hart came to RUN. It was probably 80 degrees and this guy was running sub 8 minute miles IN A HOODIE!
I've never been to a Nike run before but they did a phenomenal job.
There was a water station, tons of helpful pacers (who were checking in, giving high fives and encouraging runners the entire way) and we had a ball!
I HATE running fast and we had to run real hard to keep up with Kevin. HE WAS FLYING. But the energy was so infectious that I couldn't help myself. (I did make Tian pump the brakes the last mile because I'm a selfish monster.)
But we had so much fun. When we got back, the park was empty and there was a DJ spinning so I was like HELLO DANCE PARTY TIME! We grabbed a post run Popsicle and got our groove on because why not dance party? I was supposed to run 15 miles but by the time we finished, it was already in the mid 80's and there was no way I was going to run for 2 more hours in the heat.
I asked Tian if he wanted to run 7 more with me, he of course agreed, and we took off for Manhattan. I decided to make up for the 5 miles I ditched with a 60 minute spin class at FlyWheel because one of my favorite FlyWheel instructors Josh Arden teaches a 60 minute class on Saturday's in Tribeca and he kicks my ass. Needless to say, Saturday was a big day.
I wish I could tell you all what I'm training for!!! IT'S KILLING ME THAT I CAN'T ANNOUNCE IT YET! But hopefully in the next week or two I will finally be able to tell you what's going on. I can say that I am no longer running the San Francisco Marathon. I have to drop down to the half marathon so I can continue training for this new event. (I will admit that I had a moment when I found out I trained for a marathon I can't run. More on that later though.)
Here's a little video I threw together from Saturday's impromptu 5K. I think it's pretty incredible what Kevin's trying to do. I think it's safe to say that he's coming to a city near you so if he does, show up. You won't regret it.
Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.