MY First Race Coming Up & ‘Bella Burgers

Posted: April 13, 2011 at 8:20 am

Thank you all for the wonderful comments and support on my Month 3 Progress post! I always feel a bit awkward publishing these posts, but I believe in the importance of sharing the real deal in accomplishing body goals in a healthy manner. Don’t forget to let me know in the comments of any questions you may have about how I do things for an upcoming Q + A post. I’m an open book, so ask anything. 🙂

Yesterday afternoon, I realized something that needed a quick remedy.


I also craved a burger. Thus, this beauty was born.

bella burger 2

I marinated two portabella mushroom caps in a mixture of olive oil, Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, and sodium-free steak seasoning. Then, Peter plopped them on the grill to cook for about 5 minutes per side with some additional basting action for optimal flavor.

bellas on grill

I topped my ‘bella burger with a thick smear of goat cheese, spinach, tomato, pickles, and red onion. Only one vegetable could stand up to this fabulous dinner. None other than my all-time favorite roasted Brussels sprouts.

bella burger 1

After that meal, sister night ensued. We can entertain each other all too easily with our random senses of humor. For example, we have a tradition that we must eat ice cream while watching The Biggest Loser. Why? Simply because the irony of it amuses us so. Plus, its tasty.

I now need to back up a bit. Before the fun of my evening began, I went out for a run. I headed to an area I could easily get around for a little over 3 miles. I wanted to do a quick run to push my pace and see what I could accomplish. 

4 12 run

I managed to keep my pace where I wanted (average 8:27), but I really struggled. It felt like everything was against me. I ate too close to my run. I dressed too warmly. The wind was blowing. The evil hill wanted to kill me.

run path
For the record…it keeps going after that curve. A lot.  

It kind of stunk. But was awesome at the same time to know I pushed through. Perhaps this will make my 5K seem easier since it’s supposed to be a flat course and I learned a few things to help prepare myself better.

Did you know? My 5K is THIS Saturday! I can hardly believe my race is on Saturday! I have so much anticipation and I feel so excited for it. I also have all these thoughts swarming my mind on whether or not I will be prepared for the race. Not so much prepared physically, since I do feel ready in that aspect, but prepared with all the little race-day things I know nothing about. Here is what I have in mind for this weekend:

1. Pick up my race packet at early pick-up Friday afternoon.
2. Charge my music, Garmin, etc the day before.
3. Lay out all of my clothing, race bib, technology, etc the night before.
4. Wake up early to eat one of my tried and true pre-run meal combos.
5. Leave early to have time to get there on time and find my way around.

I have no clue from there. I hope I don’t walk around looking like a deer in headlights at the venue because I don’t know what to do. I am thankful that it now looks like Peter will manage accompanying me, which before he wasn’t sure about. That will help knowing I have someone to watch my stuff, get some pictures, and cheer me on! I also feel SO thankful that Lee will be there with me. I know she will help me feel at ease and show me what to do. Until then, I will gladly take any advice you have!

  • What pre-race and race day tips can you share?
  • Do you like Brussels sprouts?

Tags: , ,

85 Comments to “MY First Race Coming Up & ‘Bella Burgers”
  1. lindsay says:

    I can’t believe its so soon!! All I have to say is enjoy it! Don’t overthink the process, but just go with what your body knows best, especially for food.

  2. Kelly says:

    NO DAIRY pre-race unless you have a stomach of steel!

  3. That mushroom burger looks incredible. I am so jealous!

  4. I LOVE brussels sprouts and portobello mushrooms! That is the perfect meal!

  5. Give yourself more time than you think you need to arrive to the site so you don’t feel rushed. I think the most stressful part of racing is thinking you’ll be late and not finding parking.

    You are MORE than ready for this! In fact, I think you are going to fly by everyone with your speedy time 🙂

  6. I’m still a newbie to racing but one thing I’ve learned so far is to trust yourself! I am a huge self doubter and having confidence at the starting line has helped me tremendously. Good luck! I’m sure you will do awesome! 🙂

  7. Lee says:

    When we first started dating, Jason and I had a tradition of drinking wine while watching Intervention. Ha.

    You will be perfectly fine on race day. I promise.

  8. Julie says:

    My best advice is just to have a great time. That’s really what it comes down to in the end. What’s the point of stressing out or worrying? It’s for FUN!!!! Enjoy yourself and don’t take yourself too seriously. The best times I’ve had during races have been about the people…not about a finishing time 🙂

    Plus, you’re going to kill it!!! Leave it all on the road, baby!

  9. Naomi says:

    5k this saturday! I want to wish you the BEST of luck, Tina!!! you will do so amazing!

    OH and I need goat cheese in my life like WOAH…well really I just need all cheese in my life right now 2.5 weeks out!

  10. I’m excited for you and this race! You’re gonna rock it!

    I like to just make sure I have everything laid out the night before so I don’t have to do much. I make sure to wake up early to have enough time to stretch, eat, drink water, etc. I also allow enough time to get to the race, usually with 45 minutes until the race. There’s nothing worse than running late!

  11. Lauren says:

    The biggest tip I can give is start in the middle of the pack vs front/back, so you don’t start too fast/slow. I’d also say try not to go out too fast because you can always pick up the pace in the last 2 miles. Good luck!

  12. Runeatrepeat says:

    Your blog is my new favorite everything!

  13. Stephany says:

    I can’t believe your first race is this Saturday! It feels like you first started the Couch to 5K program yesterday. Sheesh!

    My best advice? Arrive EARLY (I give myself at least 2 hours to get there and get settled) and remember to run YOUR race. And enjoy it! I have a feeling you’ll be running lots of races in the future. 🙂

  14. I go through goat cheese withdrawals if I don’t eat it every couple of days as well. It’s addicting!

    I’m so excited that you’re going to be running this Saturday! I haven’t participated in a real race since my high school cross country days, so I can’t offer any great advice other than to have FUN! Go out there and enjoy yourself; run for those who can’t run!

    Your portabella burgers look mouth-watering good. 🙂

  15. Michelle says:

    I just discovered brussel sprouts – and yum!

    As for race day — if there aren’t corrals or pace markers then try to get as close to the front as possible. Go out fast – but don’t go your fastest. It will be hard to hold back, but you won’t regret it at mile 2 and you still have one more go! I’m sure this has all been said in your comments!

    The hardest thing for ME to deal with when racing a 5k is the # of people. If you can avoid walkers/people going a slow pace (and they WILL line up in the front) — then all you have to do is run and enjoy!!

  16. Dorry says:

    You are going to rock your race this weekend! Have fun, take it all in, and run hard because it will be over before you know it. 🙂 I love Brussels sprouts.

  17. how exciting is that Tina?! and it’s allll gooood~although your run wasn’t the best, the best thing is that you pushed through without giving up. isn’t that feeling alone so empowering? 🙂

  18. Ang says:

    Your burger looks DELICIOUS! Great job on the run!

  19. Karolina says:

    oooh- that burger is really unique and looks delicious! I don’t have any great race day tips, because I’ve never done a race. I can only speak from my point of view when I work out, and that’s all about mental focus, drive, and self talk. If I focus on the negative, I tend to give up quickly…

  20. Sheila says:

    I love Brussels sprouts:))) I always get so excited right before a race.
    Repeat after me I can do this.

  21. My best advice is to just remember that you are running for yourself and no one at the race matters. Sometimes I get stressed when people pass me because then I feel like I should be running faster or that I’m going too slow…but everyone is out there for their own reasons and no one is judging! I hope you have an awesome race and I can’t wait to hear the recap! Good luck, Tina! 🙂

  22. Groff's Girl says:

    That burger looks so good! I am hoping we get to have a day of grilling tomorrow since we have chicken and beef that needs to be eaten before we fly out on Saturday! You are going to do awesome on your race!! It is going to be easier than your solo-running because you will have the excitement and the rush helping you through! I cannot wait to get to some more 5K races and then onto the 10K races in Germany!!

  23. Geraldine says:

    That burger look delicious. I have this weird food texture issue thats makes me not like the whole mushrooms on bread combo, but you’ve made me want to try this 🙂
    Good luck in your 5k! My tip is to have a snack immediately after the race. (Leave it with your hubby :-)) After I crossed the finishing line of my first 5k my legs were shaking, my heart was pumping, my adrenaline was going and I immediately started feeling ravenous as i’d only had a small pre-run meal.

  24. Heather says:

    Wow – you’re going to do great!!! Get plenty of sleep the night before and don’t do anything different the morning of the race. Eat what you normally eat and dress how you normally dress. Be confident – the training is there so relax and let your body do the work. 🙂

  25. Allie says:

    Portabella mushrooms are the bomb!!! Love em! And brussel (or brussels sprouts haha) are one of my very favorite veggies!
    I am so so excited to hear about your race!!!!

  26. Nicole N. says:

    Good luck this weekend! I’m currently working up to my first race this summer. Your posts keep me motivated to run and constantly remind me of how fun it is to see your progress, instead of being a constant reminded of how difficult it can be some days. I can’t wait to hear how it goes, and what tips you have for the rest of us.

  27. Anne Marie says:

    Good luck on your first race!! All the advice here is good–you’ll be great 🙂

    That burger looks delicious. Hubby and I are dying to make portobellos on our new grill!!

  28. Nathan says:

    First of all, what a delicious post!
    Second, I was wondering how you do the Tweet post like that? Thanks!

    • Tina says:

      I do a print screen shot (Ctrl + PrtSc) and then crop/save as the image in Paint. It takes a couple steps, but it works.

Leave a Reply to Naomi




Catch Up With Recent Posts

Announcement Time

Posted: November 23, 2011 at 7:47 am

Well, I have had a whirlwind of a few weeks over here. I missed all of you so much! I can’t express enough gratitude for your patience while I got some important things sorted out. Some scary things. Are you ready for the announcement? Here goes! I will no longer be blogging at Faith Fitness […]

88 CommentsRead more →

Self-Love Reflection: The Road Not Taken

Posted: November 20, 2011 at 11:47 am

Hello FFF readers! Nice to meet ya! My name is Carissa and my husband and I blog at Fit2Flex.  Well, I blog…he consults! We are both certified personal trainers with a passion for healthy, active living and clean eating.  I am also studying to become a registered dietitian, a race announcer, and a runner.  Stop […]

24 CommentsRead more →

Healthier Eating For Kids

Posted: November 19, 2011 at 10:56 am

Thanks to Plum Organics for sponsoring my post about tips for baby feeding magic. What if you let baby choose what’s for dinner? Check out their cute "Quest for Yum!" video and see what happens! As parents, we want the best for our children. We help them to feel loved. We strive to teach them […]

14 CommentsRead more →


Posted: November 17, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Hey, everyone! I wanted to pop in and say I am working on some new and exciting changes.  As a result,I may not be posting as much during the coming week.  Please stay tuned for the big announcement! Love you all! And still feel free to find me on Twitter and Facebook for the time […]

21 CommentsRead more →

Where The Change Happens

Posted: November 16, 2011 at 7:54 am

It’s kind of funny. I become a certified personal trainer and the first workouts I turn to this week come from someone else. The book came in for me at the library last week and, after flipping through it, I couldn’t wait to give the circuits a go. Making The Cut includes a lot of […]

79 CommentsRead more →

From Beginning To End

Posted: November 15, 2011 at 11:53 am

Good morning! First off, thanks for the many congrats yesterday. Love you all bunches for the tons of support you have given me in so many things this year. I hope I can return a little bit of that love through this here blog as well. So yesterday I had my first parent-teacher “conference” for […]

55 CommentsRead more →