Sunday November 6th, 2011
Dallas White Rock Lake
This race has been on my calendar FOREVER! I just wish Iíd remembered to register a little sooner, it would have been cheaper! Oh well, I needed the timed event so I paid the fee, at the encouragement of my wife to get out there and do it!
As usual, I didnít sleep well the night before, prolly didnít help that it was time change weekend as well, sigh. I was up and down all night!
Iíll add that my training hasnít been GREAT by any means lately. Iíve been dealing with piriformis/sciatic issues in my right butt cheek. Oh dear does that ever hurt sometimes, well, most of the time actually. Hurts to sit, stand, walk, you name it, itís a royal pain in the rear! Iím able to push through most of the time though, I just canít run really long miles like I need!
So I get up early and head over toward White Rock Lake since parking was going to be a huge mess, I planned to be really early so I didnít have to mess with shuttle busses. My plan worked out, I got to park in the lot I wanted and walk to the race site, WOOT! As usual, I have to find a potty, what can I say, I was getting my hydration on! LOL
I found my favorite Spark Coach Nancy, well, her husband anyway, eventually she strolls into the picture. I LOVE every time I get to see Nancy. She cares about people and I learn from her every time we get to visit! Thanks Nancy for being so awesome, you are amazing and inspire me daily!! We spent about an hour talking before the race as usually, and then here comes Mimi! She and Kevin had just finished a 9 mile run and they gave us the race course report. Loads of hills and humidity, two things we didnít want to hear!! Oh well, it is what it is, right. Amy was also there and itís always good to see her as well! I love seeing Spark buddies at these events! This was a big race and the starting line was in a spot that Iíve never seen it before so we started moving closer to the start line.
This is Nancy's friend Linda, Amy, Nancy and me
As we moved about in the crowd around the starting line, I lost Nancy and Amy, oh well, I knew where to find them, at the finish line!! This was the first race Iíve ever ran where they played the National Anthem and it was beautiful!! I love hearing that song as it makes me think of my Momma, she was the most patriotic person Iíve ever known. I had to get my music going and my walk meter set so it would post to FB every mile. I enjoy hearing the comments back to me when I do races, itís very encouraging! Soon we were off, slowly at first due to the crowd, it was HUGE! Clearly from the picture below it was a slow start and really for the first several miles.
Miles 1-3 were 9:06, 8:55 and 8:49 respectively. Outside of the onramp we had to climb to get onto the route, the first three miles were fairly flat. It was more about jockeying for position that it anything else.
Miles 4-6 were 9:13, 8:43, 8:58. This is when were started hitting the hills. Iíve never run this portion of the lake, well, it was actually the neighborhood by the lake before. The hills were killer. I always hear people say ENJOY, when you tell them you are running a race. SO, I try to enjoy them. I took in all the really cool old and beautiful homes along the course. There were people out cheering most of the route which was totally awesome to experience! There was lots of chatter, mainly me, talking to other runners on the hills, LOL! I shared with them how I hated this or that hill or how I welcomed the one really long downhill! HA
Miles 7-9 were 8:58, 9:01 and 8:56. This section was still in the hills; however most of it was down, so it wasnít bad. As we crossed the half way marker it was in front of some people watching the race. I started cheering for the marker saying how I loved that sign. The folks there cheered saying, ďYou can do itĒ it was awesome to hear I say! I as I rounded the corner right there I was right behind the 2 hour pace team, I mean like two paces behind them. :-) I said out loud, I feel a PR coming today, as long as I donít fall apart. Well, about mile 9 my piriformis stated cramping up big time. DANG IT!! I started my chant to myself, no pain, no pain, no pain. It worked! Sort ofÖugh!
Miles 10-12 were 8:56, 9:00 and 8:54. This is where my butt really started to be a pain! Couple strong cramps about put me on the ground, but I kept going, kept chanting, kept pushing. Somewhere in here I started losing the feeling in my right knee due to the sciatic pain. Maybe itís that it hurt so bad I just forgot about it, I dunno, I just know it hurt! I was doing the miles/distance/pace math and knew I could make it under two hours if I kept pushing. Press on Jerome, press on!
Miles 13 and beyond were 8:50 and 8:00. Thankfully the last 4 miles or so were basically flat, not entirely, but not like the first 7 miles were by any means. I was able to push myself and press to the end. There is something about finishing a race with people on either side of the street cheering for you, I LOVE THATÖwhat a rush, thatís all it is, total rush!! Seeing my friend Mimi step out near the finish line and cheer was awesome, NO CLUE what she was yelling, but she was yelling all the same. I was in a sprint to the finish when the guy next to me realized I was coming, he turned it on as well. It was exhilarating to finish a race of this magnitude like this, at least in my opinion. :-) I didnít stop my garmin right away because I didnít want a picture of me doing THAT! HA. I stopped it at 1:59:00ÖWOO HOOÖLess than two hours!!! I hobbled over to get my medal and a bottle of water, then to have my picture taken, thatís one Iíll buy Iím sure. :-) Then, it was off to find some muscle milk, I love that after a race, itís the only time I drink it.
Obviously me finishing and that's Mimi in the purple yelling at me. Thanks Mimi!
I was starting to be my legs back now so I waddled over to find Mimi, Kevin and Sean. We watched for Nancy to finish. She amazes me; she took a nice easy long run and was running very strong when she crossed the finish line!! Then came Amy and Nancyís 67 year old friend Linda a little later, I can only hope to run at that age! Ofcourse we stood around talking forever, taking pictures and enjoying the day! Eventually I went over to one of the village area and had one of the chiropractorsí to stretch me out a little bit and work on my pain in the tush! That helped, but I see a chiro weekly anyway, so no luck getting me to come to THEIR officeÖhehe.
All in all this was a GREAT race day for me. I got a PR for in my 4th half marathon of 1:58:56, my old record was 2:02:29(my first half ever). I didnít expect to run this well with all the piriformis issues Iíve had so it feels absolutely fantastic to have done it!
Link to my Garmin Stats:
The next milestone on my calendar is my first ever marathon on Dec 4th. Iíll be running this with my Bro. Nicholas!
The Three Sparkateers