YMCA Mardi Gras 5K/1K-Port Arthur

PA levee
Port Arthur Seawall

This race is an out and back starting and finishing at the Carl Parker Multipurpose Center where participants run a mile and a half down along the seawall to the turnaround and back to the finish.

This was my second race of the year, just a week after finishing my first ultra marathon…whaaa!!! I hadn’t planned on doing another race until I run Gusher on February 27th but this race was an unexpected one as I was sponsored!


The race location is about 15 minutes from home and scheduled to start at 8:45am was the Kids 1K followed by the 5K at 9:05am. As always when I arrive, I scope out the premises for my running friends. We mingled and share some race stories and how our training is going , as well as making a strategy for the race while we waited for the race to start. My good friends David Jones and Javier Ojeda were the first ones I saw. David runs for a cause just as I do. He runs for Indy and Corbin and the Cure Starts Now Foundation . He’s an inspiring runner and one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. I was able to chat with several friends and take a few pictures before as well.

Richard, Javier and I before the start

Kids 1K

The last 5K race that I did had a Kids 1K as well and I was excited to see one offered with this race. The kids started at 8:45am, although there weren’t many kids they were all excited and ready to run. All the 5K participants stood along the start cheering them on from start to finish. Such an exciting and emotional thing to witness.

Photo Credit: Karen Gilman – Kids 1K Start

5K Race

The Canjun timing director lined us up at the start around 8:55am announcing we would start at 9am (five minutes sooner than planned), just enough time to snap a start line selfie with friends. We geared up and had a few last laughs before we were off and running.

Photo Credit: Pam Guidry – Me, Pam, Christina and Katie

I started out with David at my side for the first quarter mile then decided quickly that trying to keep his 7:30 pace was going to kill me by the end so I slowed my pace to a comfortable pace. I haven’t run a race for time since last year (November) at Pleasure Island due to focusing all my training on my upcoming ultra marathons. I eased into a pace that was comfortable and ran. The weather was nice and sunny but humid to say the least for running. I saw all my Strutter peeps as they rounded the turnaround coming back cheering them on as they passed by me to the finish. As I made it to the turnaround, I got my quick cup of water and made my way back to the finish line. At mile two I started feeling rather fatigue but kept going and shortly after that I passed my friend Katherine yelling to her, “you’ve got this, you’re doing great, keep it up!” This was her first 5K since 2014 and she was killing it!

5-K 096a
Photo Credit: Spruell Snapshots Photography – David, Richard and I at the start

As I got half a mile from the finish, I kicked it in high gear and just gave it my all. I trucked it to the finish line. As I neared the finish line, I saw my friends David and Brian who was cheering me on to a strong finish.

5-K 152a
Photo Credit: Spruell Snapshots Photography

Post Race 

After crossing the finish line, I went to find friends, something to drink and enjoy the food they had waiting for us while we waited for all the other participants to finish the race. Valero had a food truck there with Boudin and Sausage links as well as a drink cart was provided with cold water and Gatorade.

Valero had us some yummy food!

After eating and rehydrating, it was mission find everyone for some pictures! You can’t have a race with friends and not take pictures!

Javier and I post race waiting for results
David & I run for a purpose! David runs for Indy & Corbin & for the Cure Starts Now Foundation. I run for Xander (my son) & The Organization for Autism Research


I finished with a time of 30:14 placing 3rd in my AG (30-39), 13th Overall Female and 45th Overall. It certainly was not my best time for a 5K but I’m certainly proud of the accomplishment.

3rd Place AG & 13th Overall Female

The GTStrutters represented in Port Arthur


GTStrutters & MCRC Represented

It was a fun filled morning running with friends. Congrats to everyone! Next race up is the Gusher Marathon, Half Marathon & 5K. Will I see you there?


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