Balloon Lady in Training

For those who know what a Balloon Lady is, beware! For those who don’t, she is a sweet lady..who sweeps you if she’s about to pass you at runDisney races. Wait, what?! Let me break it down for you: if you ever find yourself at a Disney race and see groups of women holding balloons, you better hustle your butt to the finish otherwise, they’ll transport you in a vehicle towards the finish line. And, no, you will not get your finisher’s medal. It’s true and unfortunate but “once they sweep, you start to weep.”

Still having that nagging injury from Rock ‘n Roll Los Angeles Halloween 2013 and knowing very well I would be pacing the Malibu Marathon 2013 two weekends later, I could not participate at Run Hard Rock Cafe 2013. I, literally, walked the entire course since it was not an option to not be present (remember, I have this cringing feeling of having DNF, DQ, or DNR next to my name). Luckily, it was just a 5K (and I say that with grace because I’ve been running marathons) so I decided to have some fun with it.

Since I’m intrigued of becoming a Balloon Lady one day, I trained myself to be one at this race. I didn’t do a very good job as I passed up several walkers at a fast-walking pace. Oops! Side note: I just had to represent my cupcakes on those balloons. 😉

This was an out-and-back race, which I am not a fan of but to be able to run, er, walk down Hollywood Blvd. without traffic/cars/crazy people made it so much fun! Time to turn around!

I took some serious thought into whether I should sprint or jump for joy to the finish. I made the smart (and healthy) choice and crossed with so much joy. 😀

I met up with some Instagram friends afterwards. What a fun bunch!

This was Run Hard Rock Cafe’s inaugural event and I must say, unbiasedly, I and everyone else had a ton of fun! It was well-organized, fully stocked with on-course and post race munchies and liquids, and the medal was bangin’! When registration opens later this year, I highly recommend signing up yourself and your friends. It’s a good time to be had by all!

Until the next post..

keep on running!


Only 13 miles to go!

While training for Nike Women’s Marathon SF 2013, I encountered an unfortunate injury but did every thing possible to make sure I’d run to the best of my ability come race day. I came, I conquered, and I succeeded..and then my nagging injury gave a big F-U a few days post race. I had another race the weekend after (a half marathon, to be exact) so I took it easy and made strength training my focus until then. Knowing I hadn’t ran since the race but not realizing I wouldn’t feel the effects of hitting the pavement until race morning, I naively didn’t wear my knee brace. W-T-F. I know – I kept thinking the same thing while on course and believe me when I say I substantially suffered the consequences during those 13 miles.

It was Halloween themed (being that it was on October 27, 2013 and put on by Rock ‘n Roll Los Angeles of Competitor Group) so several runners came dressed as Spiderman, a Power Ranger, and, in my case, my high school Cross Country self..just to name a few. 😉

As I was warming up in my corral, I couldn’t help but pray for an almost painless and stress free run. I was lucky to be surrounded by people I didn’t know because I wanted to be in my own thoughts in that moment in time. I was (and it’s still scary to say to this day) nervous for my legs and sanity. I was good for the first .1 miles until I was completely and dramatically over it. My knee kicked me where it hurt the most and I had 13 miles to go. Holy pitfall.

The above face shows how I looked for, pretty much, a majority of the run. I know I ran with a limp. Sigh. I really didn’t prefer the out-and-back run, and it really messes with my mind when I see runners on the other side knowing they’re much closer to the finish line than I am. “Where’s the turnaround?!” was what I kept asking myself. Looking at the runners cheer behind me in the picture above, it looks as if it was taken shortly after the turnaround, which was when I got my second (or first?) wind and ready to blow the run out of the water!

This was taken as I was nearing the finish. I wanted to capture the “I probably shouldn’t have ran but I hate the thought of getting a DNF (Did Not Finish), DQ (Disqualified), or DNR (Did Not Run) next to my name” photo. Also, I wanted to show the face of “I did it! I survived! Now somebody carry me, please!”

I ran into my high school buddy, Jobert after the race! What a coincidence that we met when I was running Cross Country and I happened to be dressed in my high school’s uniform. 🙂

It’s always a good time when my New Year’s Race Crew and I run the same races and meet-up afterwards. They’re my running family for life!

Since I was in uniform, I thought it would be fitting to recreate my high school Cross Country picture. I’d say I’ve definitely improved the attire, shoes, …oh man, this comparison makes me laugh every time!

The moral of the story is this: when life hands you lemons, try to squeeze as much juice as you can out of it. It’s so much sweeter on the other side. 🙂

Until the next post..

keep on running!

Inspiration: For the Weekend

Click on the picture below. Get ready to be inspired.

Until the next post..

keep on running!

Inspiration: For the Weekend

Kathrine Switzer – it would be awesome to meet her one day.

Until the next post..

keep on running!

Set a personal record or bust!

Being an Ambassador, I’d been promoting Nike Women’s Marathon San Francisco for months so I wanted to make race weekend a memorable experience. Since I chose to run the full instead of 13.1 miles, I knew I had to work my butt off and hard to make it an even more memorable experience. Setting a PR was on my mind and running with joy was in my heart. No pressure though!


Such an empowering poster for women to see. 🙂

It was an Ambassador/Instagram meet-up! I was so glad to finally meet and hangout with the girls I’d been following for motivation and inspiration. You should follow them, too! Check out @soto_cindy, @beccafit4life, @sabby189, @superwomankw, @inanutchelle, and @noelene16. And, of course, me: @karolynhs. 🙂 Do you see what’s behind us? That’s Niketown and it’s always always hectic during NWM weekend.

It was a weekend FULL of hashtags (out loud, too. haha!)! Follow these gals for motivation and inspiration as well: @rhobouncer, @sarahmomohara, and @_sammers_.

I ran with 3 of the 4 girls pictured (excluding me, duh) at last year’s event. For the other gal, it was her very first time running a half marathon! It was a whirlwind of a weekend but I’m glad she enjoyed every moment of it.


*time to get ready for the run of our lives!*

How’s this for kicks? We ran Track & Field in high school and now we’re running half/full marathons! I thought it would be kinda cool to recreate our picture the morning of the race. Haha!

Now to go left or right? That is not the question! I trained so hard for 26.2 miles – it’s all or nothing!

Annnd we finished! There goes those Killer Guppies again! Keith and Dhruv killed it!

And Team KT has done it again! We’ve been running marathons together. It’s been great thus far. 🙂

And there you have it, folks: on October 20, 2013 I crushed 26.2 miles to my best PR to date! Determination, dedication, and passion always pays off. Having a fireman carry you at the end ain’t so bad either. 😉

Happy 10 Year Anniversary, Nike Women’s Marathon. Thank you for the more than memorable experience. 😀

Until the next post..

keep on running!

“I’ll pace ya.”

I knew my friends were running Long Beach Half Marathon but, for some strange reason, I forgot. This is what happens when you sign up for races like a good habit. 😉

As I was walking towards my corral while putting my ear buds in, I thought about how it was going to be my first time running a race alone..and I began feeling sad. It was a strange feeling, for sure, because I typically have friends who run the same races I do. We don’t necessarily run together but we’re usually at the same race.

“Karolynh. Karolynh!” said a slightly familiar voice.

It was Reanne! I’ve known this girl for, man, so many years and it was awesome to see her grow into the amazing woman she is today. Her parents didn’t raise no fool. Props! FYI: I look exhausted due to lack of sleep. Sigh, first world problems. Just kidding – that was a joke. 🙂

She let me know how nervous she was running her very first half marathon. I said she had it in the bag to run the entire 13.1 miles because 1) she’s been training, 2) she’s mentally prepared herself for it, and 3) not giving her best just isn’t in her bones. I offered to pace her but also let her know that it was a race to enjoy and not stress about because it was her first.

I believe this girl thoroughly enjoyed the race because she kept an eye out for the photographers! Haha! 😀

And look who I found on the course! I virtually met Michelle on Instagram (@inanutchelle) and she said she was going to make a sign for me. It was her first time spectating because she’s usually running on the course. Ain’t her signs the cutest? I’m so glad she didn’t turn out to be Instaweird. Haha! 😀

And just like that on October 13, 2013, Reanne set an amazing PR for it being her first time running a half marathon! She said she’s ready for more. I said she’s ready to run a full marathon. Hehe.

Until the next run..

keep on running!

Run for a Cause

Every time I’m on the path to registering for a run, I check if proceeds benefit a charitable cause. Luckily, my friend told me that our mutual friend has been running LA Prostate Cancer 5K for a number of years so what did I do? I signed myself up for the run, of course! 😀

Held on the grounds of beautiful University of Southern California AKA USC in Los Angeles, CA, we were ready to tackle the 5K in support of research for prostate cancer with all proceeds benefiting the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center.

As a feature and an incentive, the ‘Stache Dash would distribute medals to the first 250 finishers sporting a real or fake mustache! Of course, I went out and bought myself a pink ‘stache because mine couldn’t possibly grow in time. 😉 And, I was ready to PR this course so, ready or not, here I came!

I was on a hunt for that ‘stache, yo.

The homies posing in front of the ‘Stache Dash truck. Mine lost its adhesive. Haha!

I used this lazy mode of transportation to PR on September 15, 2013. Just kidding. Run, don’t ever roll, your way to greatness! 😀

“In 2013 more than 238,590 new cases of prostate cancer have been diagnosed, nearly 29,720 men have died, and over 2 million men are currently living with the disease.”

Consider signing up to run (or walk) for a cause. You’ll never regret you did.

Until the next run..

keep on running!