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I'm BAAAAACK!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

For the last 3 days, since the Seattle Half Marathon, I have been taking it easy, resting, and generally being good, and bored out of my mind! So today, cold as it was, I got on my running gear and went for a run! Just a short one, DH kept cautioning me not to try too much. (still have bruises and scrapes from my fall during the Half)

I had been feeling kind of bummed out because of what I saw as my crumby finish time, and because I hadn't run since the half. I felt like what I needed was a good hard run!

So I ran for 2 miles, and it felt GREAT! Not the it felt great when you are all stretched, and showered and dressed again great, but GREAT! while I was running! I could have pushed the speed a bit more, but I still did a sub 12 min. pace, which is about my 10K pace. It felt just wonderful! It was cold, and there was no one else out there, just me and my tunes! I didn't want to quit! Nothing hurt! Not my knees, or my calves or my hamstrings or even the bottoms of my feet! And I discovered how much I had missed running, just those few days. I would never have thought I would miss it that much.

So I am BACK, feeling GREAT, and ready to kick some booty!

Keep on Sparkin!


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOYYAK 7/16/2011 10:20PM

    Looks like life has taken you other directions as it did me. I am glad to be back and hope to see you on soon!! Here is is summer 2011 and where did that time go?

Hope this finds you well!

-Joyce

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LIGHTHEART09 12/6/2009 9:47PM

    Great job...running is sooo addicting...I found out my nephew that did the marathon...finished 4th...
AWESOME!
much love,
bbbbbbrrrrrrrr
Nana


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JOYYAK 12/3/2009 9:57PM

    Good for you!!

Glad to hear you are back in form.

Joyce
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FINDINGMEIN2012 12/3/2009 9:47PM

    Glad to hear it - great job!!! I'm hoping to run tomorrow for the first time since Sunday...

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ONEKIDSMOM 12/3/2009 8:28PM

    Methinks you have become addicted to running? True?

I can think of a lot worse things to be addicted to. emoticon

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ETHEL_MERMAID 12/3/2009 7:25PM

    Glad you're back and doing well, Shirley! Wow!

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JOJOBU 12/3/2009 7:14PM

    Great post, thanks for the positive attitude!

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LOLEMA 12/3/2009 7:14PM

  Way to go!

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Half Marathon Adventures and Misadventures of SmartieBee

Monday, November 30, 2009

Saturday night I was so excited about my upcoming Half Marathon on Sunday that I thought I would not be able to sleep at all. Instead, I was asleep nearly as soon as my head hit the pillow! I did wake up briefly a couple of time, looked at the clock and said "Nope - not time to get up yet!" and went back to sleep. Woke up again at 4:15 and decided I might as well get up and start getting ready.

I got dressed, made coffee, and got DH up, then had my "Running Breakfast" of a protein shake and banana. We left home about 5:30 to go pick up our son, and got to Seattle just after 6:30. It was still dark!

Oh my, the craziness! There were so MANY people, and it was SO LOUD! i was so excited, I think my heart rate was already nearly at Max, even before the start!

The race finally started at 7:30 and I think my pace group was about 5 minutes back from the start line. Hubby was filming at the start, filmed for 5 minutes and never did see me cross the line. But, we were off! Down 5th Ave. and on to I-90. I was feeling so good about my pace at that point, had even passed the runner with the pace marker. It was perfect weather for running. Cool, but not wet.

Somewhere near mile 3, just before the express tunnel, I decided it was time for a GU gel. Took my eyes off the road to unzip my pouch, and BAM! Found myself on the pavement! There was a large collective "OOHHH" from behind me, and then about a dozen hands picking me up! If any of my fellow Sparkers were among those who helped me up - Many thanks! I had split my chin, and it was bleeding, and my top lip was swelling up, but at that point I didn't really feel all the other spots that had made contact with the ground! I wiped off my chin, said "I'm OK" and took off running again. Behind me I heard "OMG- She's running again!"

Thanks also to the sweet young woman who decided to run along side of me for awhile, making sure I really WAS OK!

At this point, I was still feeling really good about my pace, even caught up with the pace runner again, and passed her again. I did get some funny looks from people as I was running, wasn't sure what that was about. (keep in mind, at this point I had not seen a mirror!) I was really loving the experience. DD had kept telling me "Just have fun, and be sure to remember the experience!"

At about mile 8, I saw my family, and ran over to give them a hug and kiss before continuing on. I was still feeling pretty darned good.

Prior to the race I was concerned about the hills I would encounter. Had had several training days when I chose a course that had hills to be sure I could handle them. That was a good thing, because there WERE HILLS! But they really didn't seem all that bad- a challenge, yeah, but not awful.

Then somewhere around mile 10 the ITB in my left knee made itself known! OH Darn! So I slowed down a bit, then I walked a bit, Then I ran some more and when it hurt again, I walked some more. By the latter part of mile 12 I was just walking, and not fast either! Every so often I would try to run, and the pain was just too much. I REALLY didn't want to WALK across the finish line, so I decided at that point, discretion was the better part of valor, and just walked up to the Stadium, and then sort of ran/hobbled across the line! My time was a "blazing" (tongue in cheek!) 3hrs, 11 min and 11 seconds! Not nearly what I had hoped for, but at that point very grateful for it to be over!

I collected my finish medal, my space blanket hugged my family, and hobbled into the Medical Tent. I was hoping for some ice, for my knee. The Doc (she said she was a physician - not a medical student!) took one look at me and said "here, you sit right here and lets clean up that chin!" (still no mirror!) Then she wanted to put stitches in it! Ultimately, she didn't, but only because their stitch material was too big, and would make too big of a scar! So she got that cleaned up, and bandaged, and cleaned out the gravel from my hands, bandaged them, and then turned to my knee. (FINALLY!) Apparently it was bleeding too, so it got bandaged. She gave me a bag of ice, saying "This is for your FACE, but you can change off with your knee if you want to!"

So, if any of you were there, I was the one in the Hot Pink jacket, with the bloody chin and fat lip!

I did eventually get to see a mirror, and even worse, the pictures DH had taken! Good Grief! At least people didn't run screaming the other way!

Well, Darling Daughter, I am pretty sure I will REMEMBER this one! Still, except for the falling down part, the bloody chin part, and the pain in the knee part, it was really fun. I DID love it, and I will do it again!

PS, In spite of the really slow time, I STILL finished 8th of 11 in my age div.! Like I always say, if you can't outrun the competition, just outlive them!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FINDINGMEIN2012 12/1/2009 2:58PM

    Way to go, Shirley!! I'm glad you are OK and looking forward to hearing about the PR you will set in your next half!!

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LIGHTHEART09 12/1/2009 8:24AM

    Wow Shirley!!!! What a trooper, a tumble and off you go! I hope your chin and knee are getting better...I fell on my knee last year at school and it still pains me! Wow I am so shocked you kept going...you are made of true grit!
Way to go running warrior! emoticon emoticon emoticon
by the way I just found out at the breakfast with my son and dil that I am going to be a Gramma come June!!!!
yup you can call me Nana G G...Grateful Gramma...lol
Much love,
Nan
when are we going to meet again??? Soon, Where?

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ETHEL_MERMAID 11/30/2009 11:25PM

    What a tale THIS was, Shirley! I'm glad you're okay, relatively speaking...I can see why people were so astonished you were still running after your accident. And you placed very nicely, too! I have a feeling you'll be logging lots of miles when you become a centenarian :) emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 11/30/2009 9:07PM

    Adventures, indeed! Congratulations, you are one gutsy lady, and I am in total awe of your accomplishment!

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JOYYAK 11/30/2009 7:54PM

    Oh, my. What can I say except that I am glad you were successful in meeting your goal of running that and CONGRATULATIONS! You have real strength to push through that way. I'm grateful that your injuries were not worse and hope that all of them heal up without problems.

Again, congratulations on a job well done and on enlightening us on how the event went. I was just waiting to see this blog!!

Joyce
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Weird Thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

This Thanksgiving is going to be a little odd for us. Instead of having the whole family, including all 4 grandkids and at least 2 dogs all together, we will instead be just 4. Dear MIL is not feeling very strong this year, and so Hubby and I, along with DS will be having dinner with her at the retirement facility where she lives. Dear Daughter and her family will be having dinner with her Hubby's Grandma and will join us later for dessert. So it is going to be very quiet this year. None of the excitement and noise that we ususally have when we are all together. It makes me feel sad on a couple of different levels. First, because this may well be MIL's last Thanksgiving with us. She will be 96 in about a week and a half, and has been failing steadily the last year. It is so hard to see that happen. Second, Dear SIL is being recalled to active duty by the Marines in Feb, and will deploy to Afghanistan in May, meaning he will be away from us for the Holidays again next year. (He has had 3 tours in Iraq - hopefully this one will be his last deployment, as he should be eligible to retire when he gets home!) It just makes every moment so much more precious.

So, I don't have to do any cooking, but I really enjoy that part, with family all around........

On a happier note, I have done my last short run prior to the Seattle Half on Nov. 29! I am just so excited about this race! A little nervous - I just keep hoping the knees and calf will hold up for the 13 miles! I had a great conversation with my chiropractor today - the one that is a marathoner and triathlete. He will be doing the Full Marathon that day. He is always such a source of encouragement! Whenever I go in we end up talking about running! And What a pep talk I get! I think both of my kids, at least 1 grand kid, as well as DH will be there to cheer me on. Plus, I will be looking for Lynnes521 there, and any other Sparkies I can find! I just can hardly stand still, I am so excited!

I wish a wonderful Thanksgiving to all of you, My Spark Friends! I will check back in after the race and let you all know how it went!

Keep the Spark!

Shirley




  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOYYAK 11/30/2010 10:41PM

    Oh, I know just what you mean! My kids surprised me with a phone call 2 weeks before T'gvg - all came home with their boyfriends/girlfriends. After my initial panic of having to ready everything with my 3 days notice I relaxed and enjoyed my family! And then for the 5 day Thanksgiving holiday I had my daughter and her boyfriend and my son here...we had such fun (as per my blog!).

It just feels "right" to me to have them all home and to be cooking up a big dinner.

Good luck on your run!!

Joyce emoticon

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LIGHTHEART09 11/27/2009 2:18AM

    Shirley, how was the Thanksgiving after all? I went to my sister's Janet, her son Spencer is running in the 26 mile Marathon, the one you will be in...He runs a 6ish min mile...he is fast..Good luck on your journey...
I will be routing for you in my spirit...
Love ya,
Nan

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ETHEL_MERMAID 11/26/2009 1:12PM

    Shirley, I'm sorry to hear this Thanksgiving is a bit of a bittersweet one for you. I wish your MIL all the best, and my, your SIL has certainly seen a great deal of time in Iraq. I wish him safety and a brief stay there this time! Isn't it neat that your chiropractor is an athlete himself, especially with your big race only a couple days away now - how exciting!! I predict you're going to do great. Happy Thanksgiving! emoticon

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BRIGHTSPARK7 11/25/2009 7:00PM

    Shirley, You have reminded me to make the most of the time we have with ourselves and our loved ones. Wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving! xo Usha.

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PAG2809 11/25/2009 6:42PM

    Shirley, I'll be out there on Sunday, too! I'm walking the half. These transitions are tough, but we get through them. I hope that you're all able to enjoy however long you have left with your MIL and that you're SIL stays safe.

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Now I am Committed!

Monday, November 02, 2009

Well, I have really done it now, I am committed for sure! Yesterday I had DH drive by our local Road Runner Sports store and I dropped off my entry for the Seattle Half Marathon on Nov. 29. So now, I am committed to running it.

So, what does that mean, exactly?

It means several things .....

That I have to start running hills in my training run. Seattle has HILLS!

That I have to seriously work on building my speed. (I know - I'm an old person - I don't have to be fast! But I would like to be a bit faster!)

That I just CAN'T get sick, or injured - no time now to allow for healing or getting over a bug!

That I have to work on increasing my distance. So far I have run 11.17 miles and my energy and stamina really tanks the last mile or so. So I have to work on better "refueling" and rehydrating along the way to keep the energy up.

That I can't wimp out and run on the treadmill just because it might be raining out. This race often (usually?) is run in the rain. The year my daughter did it, it just POURED! So I need to run in the rain to be sure my gear will keep me warm if not totally dry!

So basically, I need to take care of myself, do lots of running, and let all my family and friends know how really grateful I am for their unflagging support in this endeavor! And that includes my Sparkie friends - Thanks Sparkie Peeps!


Spark ON

Shirley

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOYYAK 11/18/2009 12:58PM

    And the countdown is close! I know you will do great!

Joyce
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LINDA25427 11/3/2009 7:48AM

    Wow you are committed, great for you . I wish you the best . You can do it . I did a 5 k this past April. What a boost that was .. Did 13.5 miles on a stationary bike . It really lifted my spirits to just achieve it . You will do just fine and your heart will leap with joy . God bless. emoticon

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LIGHTHEART09 11/3/2009 7:35AM

    Yeah hills are a bitch...I have only done 10 k but there were HILLS...
It is on a Sunday? Not 100% sure I can make it. I am a prayer partner at CFC....

I am so excited that you have committed to this. What a personal journey...Something to be very proud of. Yeah Shirley way to go girl!!!!

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ONEKIDSMOM 11/2/2009 7:00PM

    I am so proud of you and I look forward to the whole leading up to and day of the race updates. You can do it and it can never be taken away once you've done it!

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ETHEL_MERMAID 11/2/2009 6:40PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon Shirley!!!

I've always felt you were very seriously dedicated to running, but now we've got a concrete sense of your real commitment to it! You are literally IN THE RUNNING, and I'm getting as excited for your upcoming half marathon there in Seattle! The hills are a certainty; the rain's a possibility, and you're well aware of the challenges involved. If I were a Seattle Times sports reporter, you'd definitely be my story du jour that day! Keep us posted... your daughter probably has some sound advice re running in the rain, too! SO EXCITING!!! - Susan

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FINDINGMEIN2012 11/2/2009 6:16PM

    Yippee!! You are so ready for this! If you can do an 11.17 mile training run, you can definitely do a 13.1 mile race!

I hope it doesn't rain, though. Last year the weather was perfect (no rain, just fog at the start) and I am hoping for more of the same this year!!

Lynne


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JOYYAK 11/2/2009 5:21PM

    Ooh, a race in the rain. Now that sounds like fun! You are one tough cookie --- better than me. And I really respect you for going for it!

You can do it!! And with 27 more days to train (ok, 26- take off T'gvg!) you will, I am sure, be in tip top shape! You have done SO well despite the setbacks.

I'm proud of you and happy for you!

Joyce
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Sunshine and Golden Leaves

Saturday, October 31, 2009

I didn't get out on my run as early as I wanted to, and that turned out to be OK, even though it meant I finished later. The sun came out, at least for awhile, and it was just Glorious with all the golden leaves on the trail!

Even though it was a really long run (for me, that is! All you "elite" runners out there will probably think it was nothing - but even ultra distance runners had to start somewhere!) So I went 11.17 miles, on a spectacular day, on a beautiful trail, and it just felt wonderful! There were just bunches of people running out there this morning. Must have been some running clubs getting together or something - I bet I saw almost 2 doz. people. Some alone, and some in groups, the most I have ever seen out there. Especially on that part of the trail, where it is usually pretty quiet.

The best part of all, for me, was that nothing cramped up on this run! I was pretty tired, and not very fast by the last half mile or so, but it all felt pretty darned good!

One thing of note, you never know just how many places you have chafed until you get in the shower and that hot water hits you! Whoowee, does that sting!

I keep thinking, that on these long runs, I should be learning something really profound. And I guess the most profound thing is to just not ever give up. I was so close to giving up when I started have trouble with the cramping in my calf, but thanks to some really supportive people, Sparkies and others, I stuck to it. I learned that I really do have to warm up well before I head out, and to stretch really good. I have to hydrate well, and to be sure to re-fuel along the way. And not be afraid to walk a little to loosen up if I have to. And DON'T QUIT! I have 29 days til the Seattle Half, and 2 more long runs and then to taper the last week. I know now I CAN DO IT! Maybe that is profound enough!

Keep the Spark!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOYYAK 11/2/2009 5:16PM

    Thank you. You just gave me a really good reason not to run 11+ miles! I don't want to know about those chaffing spots!! That doesn't sound fun!! emoticon

Joyce
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LIGHTHEART09 11/1/2009 7:29PM

    Susan said it all...don't ch just love that gal....

I am so thrilled you got in such a great run with no injuries or cramping! Sounds like you hit the ZONE!!! Isn't life glorious when you hit that zone...

I remember hitting that place, it is when time stands still and the world seems so wonderful in that moment.

I appauld you for keeping on keeping on and not giving up...You must be so proud of yourself! When and where is the race? I will see if I can be there to cheer you on...

You are in my prayers for a strong body through all of this..

Much love my strong sparkie pal,
Love Nan emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 11/1/2009 10:36AM

    You're doing great, Shirley! "Never give up" is indeed a profound lesson. emoticon

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ETHEL_MERMAID 11/1/2009 9:55AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon I am so inspired by your progress, Shirley - excited, too, about your running the Seattle Half-Marathon - wow!!!! I think one of the many reasons why you've become such a success story is because you bring wisdom to your running, modifying where necessary to avoid cramping, etc. You just keep making it possible, then probable for yourself - amazing! "DON'T QUIT!" and "I CAN DO IT!" I need to bring that kind of positivity to my own Sparking! Keep up the good work - Susan

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