2012 Black Girls RUN! Race to End Hunger 5K & 10K presented by Coca-Cola recap

September so far has been spent on the road! I was first in Las Vegas for a bachelorette weekend. Fourteen girls descended upon Sin City to have a little fun. And believe me, we did.

This past weekend I rolled into Atlanta for the inaugural Black Girls RUN! Race to End Hunger 5K & 10K presented by Coca-Cola.The entire weekend was so much fun and very motivational. There were activities planned on each day to keep participants busy. The race expo opened Friday evening. The line for Black Girls RUN! gear started early.

Later that evening, there was a mixer held at the host hotel where ladies from all over the country connected. The Run, Learn, Live Series conference seminars took place on Saturday. The nerd in me loved the learning portion of this weekend. Topics were running related and ranged from nutrition to running psychology. There were too many for me to attend them all!

The first seminar I checked out was yoga with Michelle Johnson. Besides a few post run downward facing dogs, I haven't done a full yoga workout in months. It felt great stretching my body and relaxing my mind. Next, I got an unexpected workout during the Strength Training for Runners sesssion.

Our instructor, Jasmine Graham, explained the principles of Tabata and HIIT workouts. We did a series of squats, lunges, planks, sit-ups, leg lifts, and high-knee intervals for an all-over body workout. I was drenched in sweat afterwards. After a much needed shower, I attended a seminar on nutrition called Foods that Love You Back, with Koya Webb. I have a few new recipes I'm anxious to try out. Lastly, I checked out Tackling Your First TRIathlon. I've already completed my first tri, so obviously I cannot get enough of learning about this sport.
Bethany Rutledge of the the Atlanta Triathlon Club covered all the bases of what to expect during a triathlon race. She had her all her gear on hand and answered the many questions the group had.

Later that evening was the Black Girls RUN! Honors Dinner, where the keynote speaker was Ernestine Shepherd.

I've only recently became aware of Ms. Ernestine. Let me tell you, she is truly a joy! She explained how and why she got started her bodybuilding journey at the age of 71! She wasn't afraid to show off her skills with a few push ups. Just a few.

Black Girls RUN! co-founders Toni Carey and Ashley Hicks also recognized the efforts of all the ambassadors and group members. The ambassadors were given a few tokens of appreciation during the weekend. I've been acting as an ambassador in Chicago since the running groups were created by Toni and Ashley and this is my first BGR! gear! Shame on me, right?

On Sunday was the 5K & 10K race. I originally registered for the 10K but was so exhausted between recovering from Vegas, flights, and seminars, I decided to run the 5K route. I'm glad I did, because the hills on the course were killer. I've become very spoiled running Chicagoland's flat terrain.

Everyone's energy was so positive. It was a very inspirational weekend. Women (especially Black women) are often accused of not supporting each other and instead tearing down each other. There was none of that this weekend. We were all excited to participate in the festivities. I can imagine next year's race being at least twice the size. I had better start hill training now.

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