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2015 Gasparilla Distance Classic

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Way overdue but what's new!
In years past, I did the 5K and the Half Marathon. This year i changed it up and did the Michelob Ultra Cactus Lime Challenge, a 15K on Saturday then an 8K on Sunday! More importantly, we got to see ONEKIDSMOM & SLENDERELLA61!

Friday, D took off work and we had fun day and packet pickup at the Health & Fitness EXPO! We were reunited with our bestie and SparkFriend, ONEKIDSMOM!

We also ran into my Outspokin Multisport Team Manager, Swim Coach, and Mentor Leo!

We then assaulted the EXPO & shopped with extreme prejudice! We scored new running shirts, "The Stick" travel size, several pairs of Vionic sandals, (super heel support, and lots of free swag! Before we left, D & I had to stop by "The Gasparilla Wall!"

and find our names!

Mission accomplished and race weekend had started! The next day, I came back to Tampa to do the 15K! On my way into town, I pulled over...

Never miss a Sunrise or Sunset in Paradise!

I got into Downtown Tampa, finding there were also a few others doing the 15K as well!

The 15K Corrals were huge. I decided to kickback and enjoy the day. After Mile 6, I started to feel my IT Band act up so I went into an interval pace. That got me home!

With a half mile left, Coach Leo saw me coming and took my photo! I still showed positive waves!

I collected my bling and headed home to ice my knee down.

Sunday was a new day, and D was joining me in the 8K field!

We ran into SLENDERELLA61 who was on the other side of the finish for the Half, waiting for her niece to finish the Half and start the 8K! Impressive.

I started out strong with a great first mile! The rest of the race I went back to an interval pace. My IT Band was screaming! Once again, I passed by Coach Leo. He could tell I was hurting but still got a photo! Harsh, Man, Harsh!

I gave him thumbs up so he wouldn't get the crash cart out. Everyone loved this shot with our Team banner above me!

Made it to the Finish Line and scored the 8K & Challenge bling!

After cooling down, rehydrating and trying to stretch. I went back to the finish line to catch D crossing the finish line! I got to talk to SLENDERELLA61 a bit more while we were waiting for D & her niece to cross the Finish Line. I'm upset as I should have had a photo of us taken! emoticon

Funny story, D met this woman while on the course and they decided to finish the 8K together. They started talking, G mentioned my name, and "Michelle" said she did open water swim training with me! They had a great time from then on talking smack about me.
Now, Michelle is known as "Eight Mile Michelle" in our Triathlon Community due to a little fact she swam an EIGHT MILE distance along Courtney Campbell Causeway connecting Pinellas County to Tampa! She's a 100% Iron Girl in my book!

After the race, D & I hooked back up with ONEKIDSMOM and her friends. Unfortunately, SLENDERELLA61 couldn't join us as she was with her party. I said in keeping with the theme, we need to go to Gaspar's Grotto in Ybor City for Cuban Sandwiches and Deviled Crab! When we got to the outside patio there, other runners had the same idea. EVERYONE was sporting their bling!

We had the best time and it was definitely the highlight of the weekend for us. ONEKIDSMOM had done a PR as she had run the Half Marathon which started earlier. Her niece, and our new BFF, Rachel, had completed her first half! It was time to take one last runners shot before we sadly said goodbye!

No question, this was our best Gasparilla to date!

As always, thanks for taking time to hear me ramble on about these special times!
Much love...
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Oh what fun!! I always enjoy meeting fellow sparkpeople! You are an animal! And my inspiration!
    1496 days ago
  • PDQ1203
    1500 days ago
    emoticon What a Fun time and to meet up with other Sparker's.. emoticon
    Great Pictures too!

    Thanks for Sharing! Always love reading your blogs!

    Sharon emoticon
    1501 days ago
    1501 days ago
  • GABY1948
    Absolutely great pictures and a great time! SO happy for you! Those times sure look to be emoticon

    emoticon for sharing!
    1501 days ago
    What a FUN time. I love seeing sparkfriends as it makes the fun even more so! Congrats on finishing, especially since that IT band was screaming. Take it easy and hang in there! I hope your running remains "happy."
    1501 days ago
    It was a great weekend down there in Florida... although temps here have by now caught up and surpassed... that's Nebraska for you. Straight from Winter to Summer temps!

    You live in a beautiful state and have a wonderful community of healthy and fit living supporters! emoticon
    1501 days ago
    Nice blog! I plan on doing the HM next year, but may get crazy and do one of the challenges. I need a skull and crossbones medal in my collection. I love seeing all of the races that you do. I add them to my list of ones to be done as the Tampa area is close enough to manage.

    Hope you've conquered the IT band issues! Happy Trails!

    1501 days ago
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