All posts by Courtenay

Apply To Be A 2017 CUCB Race Ambassador!

Do you love running?
Do you look forward to participating in the Runner’s Rite of Spring?
Is the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run one of your favorite races?
Are you passionate about supporting Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals?
Are you an active blogger, Facebook-er, Twitter-er, and/or Instagram-er?

If so, we would love for you to apply to be a 2017 CUCB Race Ambassador! 

>*> apply here <*<

cucblogoAs a 2017 CUCB Race Ambassador you will:

  • attend the CUCB kick-off party on Friday, November 18 at its exciting new location
  • write articles for the CUCB blog under your own byline
  • interact with CUCB and its followers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram
  • support CUCB fundraising for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals
  • run your best race on April 2, 2017!


As a 2017 CUCB Race Ambassador you will: cucblogo

  • enjoy a free race entry with upgrade options (technical shirt and medal)
  • receive awesome swag from generous CUCB sponsors
  • have access to the Potomac River Running CUCB training program
  • be invited to the pre-race VIP dinner and post-race VIP brunch
  • have access to the VIP tent on race day*
    (*weather permitting!)

The CUCB webpage has more details here.

Applications will be accepted until 500 applications are received or until it’s midnight at the Washington Monument grounds on October 20, 2016, whichever comes first. 

2016 Cherry Blossom Race Recap Party

Congratulations! You just ran the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run or 5K–and you didn’t get blown into the river off Hains Point! We hope you had a great race and want to hear all about it. If you wrote about your race experience on your blog, we would love for you to link it up below.
Race Recap Link Up

You can see your official race results here and your RunPix race results here–and don’t forget to check your email for your virtual goody bag!  If you already are looking forward to 2017–which will be the 45th running of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run–you can have a chance to win a free entry by taking this sustainability survey.

CUCB2016 Social Media Team

Your 2016 CUCB Social Media team hopes you had a great race!

How was your race?

Five Things You Need To Know Before Heading To The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

Ok, folks, this is getting REAL! We are only a few days away from The Runner’s Rite of Spring! Today we are sharing five things you need to know BEFORE heading to the Washington Monument grounds on Sunday morning.


  1. The most important thing that runners need to know before the race is that there is NO RACE DAY PACKET PICK UP. That means you need to get yourself to the expo on Friday or Saturday. The good news is that this is a great expo with tons of vendors and a full slate of clinic speakers on both days of the expo. For more information on the schedule and how to pick up a friend’s bib, check out the expo page here.
  2. The next most important thing that runners need to know is that parking around the race venue is very limited, so you should plan to walk, bike, carpool, or Metro on Sunday morning. The Metro system will be opening at 5:00 am. The Smithsonian Station is about 1/4 mile from the start–not even far enough for a warm-up. Click here for more information on getting to the starting line.  The 10 mile run lines up in front on the Washington Monument on 15th Street, parallel to 14th Street. The 5k lines up along the side of the Washington Monument, parallel to Independence Avenue.
  3. Runners also will want to remember is that there is a wave start for the 10 mile run. The elite women’s start is at 7:20 am, with the first wave of the main race starting at 7:30 am, and the next waves going off every 3-5 minutes. Runners will be assigned to waves based on previous race times, and the color of your bib will match the color of your wave. (Expect six waves with about 2,500 runners each.) Read more about the wave start here.
  4. If you run for bling, you will want to check your registration to confirm that you ordered a medal. If you did, you will be able to pick up your medal in the post-race staging area. If you didn’t but wish you did, watch your post-race emails and check the Cherry Blossom website to see if extra medals are for sale after the race–they usually are!
  5. On race day, the most important thing to keep in mind is to RUN YOUR OWN RACE. Whether you trained for a PR or plan to take it easy and enjoy the scenery, YOU GOT THIS. 

If you have more questions, the Cherry Blossom website is chock-full of information! You also can download the app and watch for last-minute updates on the Facebook page.

Don’t forget that we will be hosting a race recap link up party again. Check out last year’s recaps here and plan to share your 2016 race story!

Countdown To Race Day

Congratulations, everyone! You’ve made it to race week! In just a few days you will be running the flat, fast course of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run or 5K.

lincoln memorial runners

Last week you should have gotten an email from “” with TONS of information about race weekend–from packet pick-up, to expo events, to race day logistics, and more. If you didn’t get it, check your spam folder. If you still can’t find it, you can find all the information on the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run website hereContinue reading Countdown To Race Day

How To Make Race Day Your Lucky Day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! To celebrate, we are sharing our tricks for making race day your lucky day. Even if you aren’t superstitious, you can’t go wrong with these race day rituals.

Make Race Day Your Lucky Day

Lauren:  I lay all all out my race clothes, shoes, and outfit the night before and double-check that I have everything I need. I always have some nut butter and toast and/or a banana as my pre-race meal. I never wear my race shirt until after the race. I always start chewing a piece of gum before the race starts.

Continue reading How To Make Race Day Your Lucky Day

Our Valentine To Running

Happy Valentine’s Weekend! 

Runners can be pretty passionate about running, and why shouldn’t we be? There are so many thing to love about running. We’ve tried to explain our love for running in the essays below. Why do you love running? Tell us in the comments!
Valentine To Running

Why Do You Love Running?

LaurenI love running because, while there’s a million things you can buy for running, all you really need is a good pair of running shoes. I love running because every run is different. Sometimes it’s therapeutic, sometimes it’s fun, and sometimes it’s really challenging. It never gets dull. I love running because, while I like running races, the sport is really all about me. Me pushing myself to do my best, to work hard, and get stronger.  Continue reading Our Valentine To Running

Counting Down To The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

Welcome to the blog for the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run! Between now and race day, we will be sharing our advice and insights with the aim of motivating you and getting you excited for “The Runner’s Rite of Spring”®


This year you we are excited to have Kim, Lauren, and Richard as our Race Ambassadors and Courtney and Janelle as our Social Runners. You also will hear from Elizabeth, our Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Fundraising Team Captain, Molly, our Social Media Team Coordinator, and me, editor for the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Blog.

Continue reading Counting Down To The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

Support Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals On Giving Tuesday

The lottery for the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run is now open! As you sign up, please consider supporting Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals–it’s a great way to observe Giving Tuesday. Click Here To Donate!


The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run is the signature event of Credit Union Miracle Day, which is a nonprofit collaboration of credit union organizations engaged in fundraising activities to benefit Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals (CMN Hospitals).

If you live in the D.C. area, you probably are familiar with Children’s National Medical Center, which is the local CMN Hospital affiliate. There are 136 children’s hospitals affiliated with the CMNH in the United States, and they treat over 10 million children annually across the U.S., providing state-of-the-art care‚ cutting edge research and preventative health education. If you, a family member or friend has been cared for at a CMN Hospital, you know first hand the quality of care they provide.


Credit Unions For Kids is the umbrella brand through which credit unions and affiliated organizations support the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. One hundred percent of every dollar donated by members of the credit union movement goes back to a community CMN Hospital. Each year, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals:

  • Provide $2.5 billion in charity care
  • Support cutting edge, life-saving research
  • Develop new, innovative technology which eases pain and lengthens lives
  • Treat 98% of all children needing heart or lung transplants
  • Treat 88% of all children with cancer
  • Treat 76% of all children with cystic fibrosis
  • Treat 72% of all children with pediatric AIDS

As you prepare to celebrate this holiday season, and shower gifts on the children in your life, please remember children with serious health conditions who need the cutting-edge care provided by CMN Hospitals, and join us in celebrating Giving Tuesday by donating to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals here.

Have you entered the lottery for the 2016 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run?

Do you know anyone who was cared for at a Children’s Miracle Network Hospital?

Cherry Blossom Race Recap Party

For the past few months, we’ve been doing our best to motivate, encourage and inspire you to run your best race for The Runners’ Rite of Spring®. Now it’s your turn to share your race weekend experiences with us!

Race Recap Link UpIf you ran with us this weekend–or volunteered, or spectated–we want to hear about your experience. Whether it was your first time or your fifth, whether you ran 5k or 9.??, link up your blog post below or share your story in the comments.

CUCB 2015 Hains Point

It was the first time since 2007 that the blossoms were peaking on race weekend!

We’ll be keeping the link up open through April 30, so go ahead, take your Epsom salt bath or ice bath, get a massage, and bask in the glory of a race well run–and then come back and tell us all about it.

One way to say “thank you” for a great race is to make a donation to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. You can donate through the  Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run Social Runners Team donations page here.

If you missed it, you can check out last year’s recap party here.

[inlinkz_linkup id=515032 mode=1]

Run Your Best Race

The Cherry Blossom Festival is under way, and in just a few days we will be lining up at the Washington Monument getting ready to enjoy The Runner’s Rite of Spring®! Whether this is your first race, your first time doing the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run, or your first race of 2015, we’d like to share our tips to help you run your best race.

Run Your Best Race

Now. Download the CUCB app from the iTunes App Store or Google Play (search for CUCB or Credit Union Cherry Blossom). The app will help you get the most out of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom experience, with a schedule and maps for all weekend events, live results, real-time tracking, bib-look-up, and Run Pix results.

If you haven’t already, set your goals for the race. It’s great to have three different goals: a time/pace goal (like finishing under 90:00), an achievement goal (like running the whole way) and an ego goal (like finally take a great finish line photo).

Consider making a donation to support Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. You can donate through my donations page here or look up the donation page for another runner here.

children's miracle network hospitals
Give a miracle!

Thursday. Elite runners have been watching their diets for weeks, but the rest of us can at least try to make healthy choices in the days leading up to the race. Make sure you are drinking enough water every day so you are fully hydrated come Sunday.

Friday. Visit the expo, which is open from 3:00 – 7:45 pm on Friday. Get your bib, your official race t-shirt, shop for more official Credit Union Cherry Blossom apparel, browse the other vendor booths and attend motivational and informational clinics. Take time to listen to the guest speakers, ask questions and get autographs. The energy of the event will get you excited for race day!

Saturday. If you didn’t go Friday, make sure you get to the expo, which is open from 9:00 am – 4:45 pm on Saturday. (There is no packet pick-up on Sunday.)

If you are from out of town, you probably will want to do some sightseeing, but don’t overdo it! You don’t want your legs to be too tired on Sunday.

Review the course maps with your spectators and decide where they should be. There are usually big crowds along Independence Avenue, but Hains Point can get pretty lonely. Make sure they know what you will be wearing so they can spot you easily to cheer you on.

Plan an early dinner. This is probably not the best time to try that new ethnic place you’ve been hearing about, but Elizabeth swears by steak with blueberry sauce from Aqua Al 2 in Eastern Market, while Natalie suggests dinner at the Georgetown waterfront.

Lay out all of your clothes and gear, from your hat and sunglasses to your socks and shoes. Make sure your GPS watch is charged, your water bottle is ready to go, and you’ve picked out any fuel you plan to carry. Remember, you don’t want to be trying anything new on race day. Even your underwear should be tried and true. Many runners go commando, but if you are more comfortable in underwear, you don’t want to find out the hard way which pair will give you a wedgie from mile 2 to mile 10. 😉

Get to bed early and make sure your alarm(s) are set correctly!


Sunday. Get up early enough to leave plenty of time to get ready and get to the race venue. Have breakfast or bring something to eat before the race.

At the race venue, take advantage of the pre-race warm-up, and scout out the finish area to plan where you will meet your family and friends. Check your bag early – it will be less stressful and give you time to relax before the race starts.

If you feel lost or confused, ask a volunteer for help! They will help point you in the right direction and ease your pre-race jitters.

Line up with your corral, and soak up the experience. There is something so moving about listening to the National Anthem at the base of the Washington Monument with 15,000 other runners.

Once the race starts, try to stay in the moment and enjoy the mile you are in! This is such a beautiful course–don’t be so focused on your pace that you forget to look around and enjoy it. It looks like the cherry blossoms could be in peak bloom this weekend, which would be spectacular!

As you approach the finish line, make sure you are smiling–no matter how hard you are pushing yourself! Pain is temporary, put race photos are forever. 😀

… and keep moving through the finish area, grab a water bottle and post for a post-race picture. If you ordered a medal, don’t forget to pick it up!

Celebrate your finish! You deserve it!

After The Race. We will be hosting a Race Recap Link-Up, so if you write about your race experience on your blog, be sure to come back here and link up your post!

~ The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Social Media Team
(Coco, Elizabeth, Kim, Malinda, Molly, Natalie)