Alexa: SRLA Made Me a Better Person

Alexa is a Two Time Los Angeles Marathon Finisher from Harbor Teacher Prep Academy. She shared her story as part of our “Back to SRLA” blog contest.

I don’t exactly have the proper words to express how grateful I am to be part of Students Run L.A.  My life has changed for the better. I trained with SRLA during my 8th and 9th grade years of school. I am now in 10th and a proud two-time L.A.Marathon Finisher; who is ecstatic for another year of pain, soreness, and endorphins.

 My experience in SRLA has been full of happiness and accomplishment. SRLA gave me the courage to believe that I could do something that seemed impossible. Less than 1% of people even try to finish a marathon. Luckily for me, I had my father to guide me and give me advice when I most needed it. 

To sum up my first Marathon in 2018, I had finished by myself because I believed that that was an intelligent decision. In retrospect, I probably should’ve stayed with my father and sister who were also running. I had finished in a time that was not around the goal I wanted, but that only fueled my fire to be better prepared and stronger the following year. I felt like I needed to improve, these self imposed expectations drove me to train harder and with a growth mindset I was able to able to finish my first marathon. 

My first marathon with my sister and I.

My first marathon with my sister and I.

My second L.A. Marathon was in March 2019, this running experience was way better than I could have ever envisioned. I knew the route, what to expect, and this time I had my dad “attached to my hip.” He guided me and helped me when the pain was unbearable. He helped me get through “the wall.”  We finished the marathon together.. 

In the beginning of the year. I convinced two of my closest friends to join SRLA. They stayed with the program and completed their first marathon.  I’m very excited for them and for achieving my personal goal of shaving off over forty minutes from my first marathon.

Although running the marathon was painful, I knew that pain was only temporary and I would overcome the hurdle. Thanks to my leader, Dr. Serna I learned many new stretches and techniques to help with soreness that overtook my entire body. 

My dad and I at my 2nd marathon right after we crossed the finish line. I PR’d!

My dad and I at my 2nd marathon right after we crossed the finish line. I PR’d!

This season my goal is to encourage even more students to join our SRLA program. SRLA made me a better person and I know it will have the same positive impact on my peers.

During the training, I learned how to make short and long term goals and how to follow through with them. One of my short term goals was to complete the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation 5K, and my long term goal was the L.A. Marathon.  I’m very grateful for the opportunity to run and finish two L.A. Marathons. I’m looking forward to the challenges, the highs and lows of training and running another marathon.

Alexa is a student at Harbor Teacher Prep Academy. This year she will be training for and running her third Los Angeles Marathon. You can support Alexa and her teammate here: