KRC 2018: A Year of Firsts
Part III is about the growth. It’s about the first time you came out nervous to run three miles to completing your first half marathon. It’s even about the first time you went to cheer for friends and strangers at six in the morning. 2018 was a year of firsts. So many of us, myself included, made LA our first marathon. A few months later, a group of our girls ran their first marathon in Chicago. We made sure to cheer everyone along the way.
LA RNR HALF MARATHON: OCTOBER
A Year of Cheer. In 2018 we learned that cheering is just as important as racing. Over the months, we not only registered more and more runners into their first races but also had those not running wanting to come out and support. The Bravo Zone was born. If you ever stayed out and partied until closing time, The Bravo Zone is like the opposite of that. It starts at the beginning for the morning though both probably end at a Waffle House or some sort of diner.
People say we’re the most diverse and inclusive run club they’ve come across. I feel like a big part of that has to do with us starting KRC having never run before. We didn’t know run clubs existed and we definitely didn’t ever run for fun. We were just as new to it all and scared as the next person. As we continue to grow, we continue to graduate and hit those PRs and milestones just as our rookies will complete their first half and full marathons.
CHICAGO MARATHON: OCTOBER
So when when Nike sent our girls over to Chicago to run their first marathon, we had to bring the Bravo Zone to the Windy City and keep the tradition going. We all piled in a single hotel room with other KRC alumni from Detroit and Indianapolis flying in to partake in the festivities.
I remember seeing these girls cheer for me at mile 23 back in LA and hearing some of them say how they could never run that distance. Seeing them go through their training and racing Chicago was a true inspiration not just for me but also for all the people back at home following their journey.
Once the the marathon was over, we had one job left to do in Chicago. Get that thing started at the Three Run Two Post-Marathon Party.
LA MARATHON: MARCH
But way before Chicago, let’s go back to Los Angeles for the LA Marathon. Coming off of Haiti, LAM 18 was Mike’s and my first Marathon along a number of others that trained with us. I googled some training plan and we all full-heartedly followed the loose plan mostly involving simply increasing mileage every week until race day.
Either way, our patented All-Heart No-Legs plan worked and finishing the race showed both the runners and cheer squad what a running marathon could truly do. Miles or Mimosas was the motto for the morning. Funny enough, it seems like the runners inspired the cheer squad to run their first marathon in 2019 as well as the cheer squad inspiring the runners to take part and cheer in hands down the best city block in the marathon.
2019’s LA Marathon training has already begun through the KRC's affiliate Karachi Research Center. Bravo Zone applications are now open seeking positive individuals with the ability to yell loudly or hold up signs. Please inquire within.
Unfortunately the most memorable moments don’t always come with a good time. Kathleen’s passing along with the life she led is something that we’ll never forget. Those fortunate enough to have shared a run or drink or meal with her know why we speak of her so highly. For those that have only heard her name mentioned here and there, just know that she exemplified the hard work, determination and an all embracing attitude that we try to live everyday in this community. She’d be the first to say hello to a new runner and the last to finish a run if you needed some help making it to the end. Kathleen is the reason why KRC is synonymous with family.
It'll be a year in February since she died. The truth on how she passed may forever be shrouded in mystery save for a select few, but what she left us will forever be remembered.
Words by Duy Nguyen
Photos by Edwin Cruz, Duy Nguyen, David Oh Jaewon and Paddy Moynahan