Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Like any night before a race, I hardly slept. I'd drift off for a bit and then wake with a start thinking I had missed my alarm. When it finally did go off at oh dark early, I crawled out of bed, pushed start on the coffee maker and hopped in the shower.
A cup of coffee and a peanut butter sandwich later, the first of our little entourage arrived. Since Jax was going nuts thinking I was taking him out for a run, we decided to wait outside for the rest of the group. When I stepped outside, I realized it was pretty warm and humid (yuck!). I started rethinking my race plan.
Agent J and Dark Rye managed to find my house without getting lost in the dark. We got loaded up and headed into Dallas. After figuring out the parking and deciding what we were going to wear and carry with us, we headed into the convention center to wait... And wait... And wait...
Finally about 0730 we headed out to the start corrals. Since it was so warm out, I wasn't worried about getting chilled before the race ;)
While we were waiting, we bumped into some friends of friends who had also done Capitol to Coast. We chatted with them for a bit and heard another amazing transformation story about how diet and exercise made all the difference in her quality of life.
Right before the start...
Announcements finally started, National Anthem was song and the race was on. Except we still had a few minutes before we crossed the start line.
Just a few people in front of us lol!
It took us about 5 minutes to cross the start (The elites were already about a mile into the race by the time I crossed the line.). There were cannons blowing confetti in the air and as I got closer, I saw that it was shaped like TX. It felt good to be running in my hometown =)
Trying to keep a conservative pace, I wove my way through the crowd passing people and admiring their costumes. Especially this one...
Or was it a costume?
Around mile 7, the race went past Texas Scottish Rite Hospital. There Agent J's beautiful wife and equally as lovely daughters were cheering on the runners. She snapped this picture of us...
Agent J hamming it up and me, well, I have yet to take a flattering race photo ;)
Quick bathroom break and we were off running again. It was about this point that we started hitting some rolling hills. After a bit *steeper* one Agent J told me to go on. He was having problems with his IT band and didn't want me to wait for him. So I started pushing for the 4:15 group- I could see the balloons in front of me.
I caught up to them, was feeling comfortable and continued to run my pace. Shortly after the halfway point, I got a text from my dad. It was just the bit of encouragement I needed at that point.
By the time I hit White Rock Lake, it felt like the humidity was starting to break. It was still overcast (thankfully!) and there was a decent breeze off the lake. It made for a comfortable run.
Around mile 15, the 4:15 group caught up to me (I had been walking through the water stops, haven't perfected drinking and running yet ;)). I stayed with them for the next few miles, but the pace leader was way to chipper for me.
At the Cliff Shot stop, I took a bit longer to down some Gu, water and oranges. It was here that I lost the 4:15 group. I was still feeling pretty good through the Dolly Parton hills... Although I didn't really feel like they were hills. Hmm. Maybe I'm stronger on a hilly course than a flat course.
Around mile 22, the outside of my right shin started tingling and shortly went numb. My foot felt like it was flopping up, which was a really odd feeling, so I walked to see if that helped. While it got the feeling back in my foot, it got to me mentally. I spent the next 3 miles convincing myself that I could in fact keep running and I didn't need to walk more than the through the water stops. A few more walking breaks than I wanted and a metal struggle to keep going...
Soon I saw the sign for mile 25 and I was determined to finish the race running, err, shuffling, or whatever it was that I was doing at that point. So I started and kept chanting one more step, one more step.
Somewhere in there my phone died and I lost the audio cues from my Runkeeper. By the time I turned the second to last corner, it didn't really matter. The energy from the crowd was amazing. The cheers, the clapping... It pulled me along and soon I was turning into the finish shoot. I looked up and saw 4:26 and change on the clock. I was happy. The *marathon curse* had been broken. I did not add 30 minutes onto my time. I had taken time off from my last marathon =)
I collected my medal, a reflective blanket and continued to weave my way through the finish area. Once back inside the convention center, I headed to the finisher area and grabbed my bag, my shirt and some food.
Into the family reunion area to use the complimentary phones and chargers to call Sarge and my dad to let them know I was done. A quick change into dry clothes and then sitting down to wait for the rest of the entourage to finish.
Once everyone had finished, we headed back to the parking lot and realized the cold front had moved in. It was actually colder after the race than it was before. I would have liked the cooler weather to start, but was glad we didn't have the wind =)
Those are some big balls...
So, the results...
Official time was 4:21:6
age group: 206/710
Overall, I'm happy with how I did. I didn't feel like I had gotten the training in that I wanted, so to finish like I did felt good.
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Where do I even start with this? It was such an amazing experience!
Back in January, a friend sent me a link for the Capitol to Coast Relay. I was intrigued by it, so I put it out there (on Facebook, of course) asking if any of my crazy running friends were interested. In no time, there was enough interest to start pursuing a team.
Fast forward and by August we had out 12 runners (and some alternates!) and Team Texas Toast was born. Thanks to the talent of Wonder Bread's daughter, we had our own logo.
And it won the award for the most creative team logo!
Plans continued to roll forward. Runners started making plans to get to Austin. And finally, it was time for us to leave!
The kids were so excited to go on vacation. Little did they realize just how much time they would be spending in the van...
We arrived at our destination and got to work on decorating the vans.
Ahh, a reunion... I ran with Laura in high school, and Dave is my dad =)
And then a wonderful meal provided by Aunt Honey Bunz...
Since I was runner 9 and in Van 2, I didn't (okay, wasn't allowed) need to be at the start line. We met Van 1 at the first van exchange.
Here we have: Kim, Doug, Banana Bread, Cheezy Bread, Wonder Bread and me, aka Berger Bunz.
The first day was hot and humid. For fun the Texas countryside decided to throw in some hills. Oh, and we can't forget the headwind. Why, it's the four H's of the Apocalypse!
My first leg was just over 7 miles...
I survived... Just barely.
I had roughly 11 hours before I was due to run again, so I kicked back to relax and spend some time laughing with the other members in the van.
At the next van exchange, I met up with Sarge and the kids. We grabbed something to eat and then headed to the next van exchange with the silly idea that I might be able to get a couple hours of sleep before I had to run again. That was such a silly idea =)
The van exchange took place around oh dark early... er, I mean 0030. I had a couple hours before my turn to run, but still no sleep. Finally, about 0230, I was able to get on the road.
Running in the dark with a headlamp is such a surreal experience. All you really see is the small circle that the light illuminates, but you hear absolutely everything. I'm pretty sure there were chupacabra following me in the ditches...
This leg was about 5 miles long, and it rocked! I felt so relaxed and speedy. Course, the almost 30 degree drop in temperature might have had something to do with it =)
About 0400... Who needs sleep?
Around 5:30, I was finally able to doze off. Only to wake up to yells of "Fire Ants!!" "Ow!" "$(@^$$"
Seems our fearless driver had parked the van right by a fire ant hill on the last exchange. Wonder Bread stepped in the nest and then proceeded to drop his water belt in it. Cheezy Bread, thinking he was being helpful, proceeded to pick up the water belt and toss it into the van right next to Banana Bread.
Ah, Mayhem had invaded the van, just like the Allstate commercials.
Once we were finished with our legs, we drove around the middle of nowhere Texas looking for someplace to grab something to eat. We finally ended up at a Whataburger.
We went inside to order- almost everyone ordered the taquitos. Banana Bread made a comment about there being no cheese on hers. The rest of us checked, yup, we all had cheese. So, she went back inside to ask about it and was told that cheese was extra. The cashier started to ring it up for her...
Back in the van, we headed to the last van exchange. And sat and waited. Sarge was still following along at this point, so I headed over to our van to stretch out and try to get sleep with 4 kids climbing on top of me. I think I managed another hour.
Waiting around for Honey Bunz with Cheezy Bread, Dark Rye and Burnt Toast.
It was still hot and humid, oh, and windy, but thankfully we didn't have the hills we had the first day.
This leg ended up being just over 6 miles. It was a lot slower, but we were taking it slow to make sure everyone would be able to finish with no issues. Plenty of water, a wet towel around the neck and a couple miles with White Bread running with me and I finished my last leg.
Kicking back and enjoying the ride to the beach.
The last runner waiting...
And the last exchange!
All that was left to do was drive into Corpus Christi and wait for Wonder Bread so we could cross the finish line with him.
The USS Lexington
Finally! We finished! Our official time was 35 hours and 48 minutes with an average pace of 9:38. We were 14th out of 24 teams. And seventh in the open division.
What do you do after running a relay with some pretty amazing people?
You go out to dinner wearing your medals and celebrate =)
Since we ended up on the beach, we decided to take an extra day and enjoy the sand before we headed back.
And I finally had to retire my Vibrams. After almost 800 miles...
Tuesday, January 03, 2012
Going to start breaking down my yearly goals into monthly goals... And if I need the extra help, then weekly goals or daily goals as well =)
run 90 miles
500 push- ups
finish week 1- 4 of 100 push- up challenge
yoga once a week (4x's for the month)
I'm also going to try to be better about cross training this year, so I'm only planning on running 3 days a week and cross training 3 days (one day of complete rest).
Races for January:
New Year's Day Half Marathon: finished in 2:09:18 (the day after running a half in 2:04:22 =))
DRC Frigid 10k (plan on volunteering and running)
Pretty easy to hit a goal when the race happened on the first day of the month lol!
Monday, January 02, 2012
The start of another new year and the chance to once again put some goals down on paper =) No waxing philosophical today... Just straight to my 2012 goals =)
1) 100 push- up challenge (6 weeks long)
2) 5000 push- ups for the year
3) 1000 miles running
4) 12 races- running and volunteering
5) New Rules of Lifting for Women- I will get through all 7 stages!
6) weekly yoga/ stretching
1) 2 qts water/ day- more on days I run
2) minimal refined foods- need to take the time to make more things from scratch
3) eating out once per week if that
1) read through the Bible
2) daily time in the Word
3) daily prayer time with the family
1) pay off credit card debt
2) increase savings
3) decrease spending
There's a few other goals, but I think that's enough for now =)
Sunday, January 01, 2012
A couple months ago, I came across some information about a New Year's Eve and New Year's Day race. You had the choice of running any combination of a 5k, 1/2 marathon, 1/2 marathon relay and a full marathon on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Being the overachiever I am, I registered to run the half marathon both days.
No problem, I thought. I've got the training in the bag. Yeah right. My longest run was 2 weeks before the race and that was only 10 miles. Not once did I do any type of back to back long runs. I knew this was going to be a painful experience. But, I wasn't going to not run and I wasn't going to change what I had registered for.
New Year's Eve morning dawned bright and chilly. But as soon as the sun came up, it started warming up =)
The motley looking crew that ran that day...
Spark John and Agent J were dressed in their finest and Coach Nancy and I are just naturally that gorgeous- the tiaras just enhanced it =)
I'm not sure where Amygoes211 was at this point... Nancy and Amy ran the 1/2 marathon relay together. The rest of us tackled the half marathon.
The race started and I had to keep telling myself to slow day and take it easy. The course was a two loop course along biking/ hiking trails. It was actually pretty nice. Just one tunnel (went through 4 times) that messed with everyone's Garmins.
I was pretty happy with my time. It wasn't my fastest, but it wasn't my slowest either. And considering that I haven't run a half since right before I found out I was pregnant...
Results from New Year's Eve:
TT: 2:04:22 (my Garmin had me at 13.57 miles)
103 out of 411
59 out of 279 females
20 out of 85 age group
AP: 9:30 (9:09 my Garmin)
And what do you do after running a half marathon on New Year's Eve? Why, pop open a bottle of champagne and enjoy a toast with your crazy running peeps!
I had great plans of getting to bed early and getting enough sleep, but my kids all conspired against me. Sweet Pea didn't want to sleep because she was all snuffed up and couldn't breathe and the other 3 were so excited about being able to stay up that they kept blowing their horns. I think I finally managed to get a couple hours sleep before the alarm went off. Up and at it, I got moving- just a wee bit slower than the day before =)
Got to the race site and realized it was windier than the day before. It would have been nice to have a windbreaker... But, no matter. My running peeps were there ready to run again. Well, all except Agent J- he seemed to think that celebrating his anniversary was more important than running with us ;)
Knowing that I was a bit sore from the day before, I gave myself "permission" to take it easier. You know, run 10 minute miles instead of 9 =) But, I actually felt pretty good once I got going, so increased my average pace. Two loops seemed to go by pretty fast. Or maybe it was just the de je vue I was experiencing...
Results from New Year's Day 1/2 Marathon:
TT: 2:09:18 (my Garmin had me at 13.49 miles)
116 out of 354
53 out of 215 females
14 out of 69 age group
AP: 9:52 (9:34 my Garmin)
And the main reason for torturing myself like this:
Yup, it's all about the bling =) Three medals- one for each day and then the challenge plate to display them both.
And I also go two very nice tech shirts- one short sleeved and one long sleeved.
So, there you have it. A great way to close out 2011 and a great way to kick off 2012. If your in the Dallas area this time next year, this race should make your list. And who knows. you might just run into a bunch of crazy Sparkers =)
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