24 June 2012

PR with a side of fries

So I do my "long run" on Saturdays in my training schedule for the half in Sept. I'm a recovering headphones addict and have been doing all of my runs sans ear buds. However, when my usual running partner called to tell me she couldn't join me for the 6 miles we had scheduled yesterday, I freaked (internally). Not because she couldn't be there, but because I knew that listening to myself breathe and my feet striking the ground for 6 miles was a mental challenge I wasn't up to. See, I get superbly exhausted listening to my lungs and feet! Truly, its a mental thing, my body really isn't tired, but mentally I'm ... eh... not half-marathon material yet.

So yep, I wore the buds, left at 7:15am, and headed out alone. I felt sort of liberated. Mostly because I was kid-free for an hour, but also because it was early, I was out with the stragglers in the deer herd that live near the trail, and it was cool and breezy. With an empty food catcher and only about 1 cup of water drank I took off.

53 minutes later I heard Lance Armstrong pierce through the buds to tell me I'd reached my goal and run my fastest 6 miles yet. Lance and I are like this (crossing fingers). No we aren't, I'm lying. I like to pretend though!

The side of fries? At about mile 5.5, I see a adolescent beaver next to the trail (a crushed McD's bag nearby) and he has a french fry hanging out of his mouth...just staring at me. I felt like we needed to talk, but I was making good time and didn't have any spare seconds for a lecture or a picture...although both would've been epic.

04 June 2012

Dam to Dam, Jr.

Over this past weekend I ran in the Dam to Dam race with my good friend. OK, I ran Dam to Dam, Jr. In other words, I ran a 5k that the race officials made up for those of us that can't quite crank out 12 miles yet. In any case...super day!

So I tell my friend, who by the way is slim, taller than me, a natural runner, and an amazing, independent, and beautiful woman whom I greatly admire, to come meet me at 7:30. Race doesn't start until 9:15, why not get more sleep, right? Dumb. We got downtown, drove (or creeped) for over an hour, before choosing to illegally steal a spot in St. John's parking lot. We figured hey...its a church...there's a Salvation Army sign...so let's chalk this up to a charitable act on their part in letting us get out of the never ending traffic lines, find the porta potties (or gag chambers as I call them), and get in line before the race started without us!

Anywhooo, I had a goal time but I hadn't been to a race this size before. There was NO WAY I was going to speed through thousands of people, up a long (and tortuous) hill that only got steeper after turning the corner, and still make a 24 minute goal. Seriously, my thinking was again, dumb.

P.S. by the time I got to the top of that stinking hill, which was about the first 1.75 miles of the race, my quads were going numb and I felt like there were pins and needles flying in and out of my lungs with each breath. I thought...no prob, its all downhill (literally) from here, so I will just sprint the last mile and make up for my pathetic crawl up the hill. Have I said DUMB lately?

Without allowing my lungs any time to recover, I take off down the hill. Oddly enough, it sort of felt good...the pain. Like...man, I'm in so much pain, this is awesome! OK then I snapped out of it and when the downhill leveled out, realized I was on the edge of passing out. Screeeeeeech! I slowed down...way way down...i was probably still running about a 9 min/mile, but felt like I was running in place compared to what I'd been doing. Long story short...well maybe too late for that...I crossed the finish line, immediately threw my hands on top of my head, and tried to keep walking although every fiber of me wanted to die. Somehow my loverly friend looked amazing and didn't even seem winded.....dang it.

The best part? Walking straight into a powerade table...then straight into a shredded pork sandwhich table...then straight into a fruit table....a soda table...a chocolate milk table....and back to the charity lot to see if we'd been towed. Heavenly choirs...the car was still there! God smiled on our race day...so did the sun, friendship, and food vendors. Good times.