Rev3 Williamsburg

A couple of weekends ago I took some leave and drove up that weekend to spend some time with some friends from college and also figured I’d squeeze in a triathlon while I was visiting. I spent Friday night at her house, after some car trouble along the way, and the Saturday we dropped my bike off in Williamsburg before heading to Richmond to meet up with our other friend. Her house was about the same distance to Williamsburg as Richmond so either way I was going to have a little bit of a drive.

They ran a sprint and some kids races on Saturday so we drove over afterwards. I was so impressed by what a big race this was and how well organized it was, too. Triathlon was completely novel to my friend so it was sort of fun showing her around and explaining to her the different things.

Also, Rev3 has really nice packet bags. I got a reusable shopping bag with a nice t-shirt, a visor, and several samples of different snacks. I wish I had taken a picture of it all, but I didn’t even think of it until just now.

In hindsight, I maybe should have just gotten a separate hotel for that night because it would have been easier to get my mind into the game. I had trouble sleeping and I had a lot of doubts swirling around in my head because it was my first olympic-distance triathlon. I told myself I’d feel better in the morning and if I didn’t, I could reassess then.

I felt way better that morning and got up with enough time to head out and stop and get something easy to digest for breakfast. I like to have an hour to set up my area so I can eat, use the bathroom, and not be stressed. Rev3 was running a half iron distance about thirty minutes before the olympic distance so by the time I got to the park, things were very busy. I had to make several trips back and forth from my car to the transition area because I kept forgetting things. Finally I had time to eat my food and then decided to go watch the swim waves start. It’s a good thing I did, too because they decided to move everything up half an hour. I wandered over just as the folks in silver swim caps (I had a silver swim cap) were entering the water and waiting for the start. I rushed in, threw on my cap and goggles with ten seconds to spare.

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IMG_2536The swim was in the Chickahominy River and mostly pleasant, aside from the one guy who kept trying to swim on my feet and legs. I got kind of annoyed by that after the fifth time it happened so I spent some time splashing a lot to get him to sight and go away. My doubts came back and I started wondering if this was just a bad idea and if I should just scratch. I just felt really, really tired and another two events seemed insurmountingly hard. I switched to a two-stroke breathing pattern and that made me feel a little better and then told myself I’d finish the swim and then reassess. The last 100 meters or so the river shallowed a lot. I went to tread for a minute and the bottom was right there. Some of the taller people were hitting it with their arms with every stroke. As a result, all that river silt got kicked up and thoroughly coated me in a fine layer of dirt that later dried. Lovely.

I took some extra time in the transition area, ate a Stinger gu, drank some water, and felt a lot better so I headed out for the bike. I learned that I am a very slow cyclist, especially when I compare my average pace to the others in my category. I am slow. But I really enjoyed the course. It was mostly shaded (thank goodness because it was hot that day in Virginia) and only some gentle rolling hills and lots of pretty country houses and farms to look at. I felt really positive during the bike, even as it seemed like everyone and their mother was passing me.

Finally I hit the transition and headed out on the run. Again, the run was mostly shaded and the only big challenge was running over the huge bridge over the Chickahominy just after the start and right before the finish. I was concerned about overheating so I walked at every aid station and drank water and they also had Coke, Powerade, and these amazing ice cold sponges that I stuffed down the back of my sports bra and felt amazing. I also threw the ice from my water down the front of my sports bra and although it made me sound like a soda while running, it felt great. I was so happy to see that Chickahominy bridge the second time because I knew I was almost done. I tried to smile for the finish but it sort of looked like a grimace. I was good and tired by the end of it and so was also overjoyed when they gave me a sports towel that had been soaking in ice water to drape over my shoulders. I used some of it to clean off the dried dirt on my chest, arms, and neck.

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Rev3 put on such an amazing event. They had booths from different vendors and also a barbecue for the finishers. I wasn’t very hungry but I ate some baked beans and an oatmeal cookie and got a ten minute session in some Normatec boots that really helped ease my tired legs.

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I was in the mood for a caffeine pick-me-up before I tried to drive home that night (spoiler: didn’t make it, spent the night just inside the 250 mile radius of work) so we went to American Brew, the coffee/whiskey bar owned by one of my heroes, Ashley Horner.

I was happy just to be drinking a latte there when Ashley herself actually came. I was too starstruck to say anything to her, but she say my race tattoos still on my arms and asked what race I did. We had a chat about triathlons and swimming and I told her I was a huge fan and asked for a picture. I’m always nervous meeting new people, especially when it’s someone I admire because not only am I a little worried I will act or say something stupid, but I also don’t want to be disappointed by them. I’m so happy to say that Ashley was as unbelievably kind and warm as she comes across in her posts and videos. I was so thrilled to meet her in person and between finishing my first olympic distance tri and meeting her and also getting to see two of my best friends, it was a really incredible weekend.

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Tri the Parks Blalock Lakes, Take Two

Blalock Lakes was my very first tri (typing that makes it sound like I’ve done sooo many, ha!) so I  knew I really wanted to do it again, plus I wanted to try signing up for an entire series. I missed the first race of the series because it was back in April, but I was so excited to do Blalock Lakes again, especially now that I’ve actually been doing some training.

I planned to drive to Newnan after work so I packed everything in my car so I could leave from there. It’s a good thing I did because my shift ran long and I just made the packet pickup with a few minutes to spare.

I’d also planned on camping but it turned out that the park had actual gates and closed them between 10 pm and 7 am, which was a problem because I wanted to be at the start at 7. So instead I ended up driving back to Newnan and getting a hotel room for the night. Again, I lucked out because the hotel sold out a short while later.

I set my alarm for the next morning but I woke up before it and only a little after my weekday alarm usually goes off so I laid on bed for a bit reading Facebook before deciding to get up. I wanted to get some Starbucks but forgot my wallet in the hotel room so I had to turn around to get it and decided just to go to the start because I was getting antsy that I was getting close to when I wanted to be at the start.

At the start, I realized my number wasn’t actually 89, like I’d thought, but 68. My number was on my helmet upside down. And I’d put all my stuff on the wrong rack.  Whoops. I met 89 and she was super nice about it. I moved my stuff to the correct rack and it was more crowded because two women had huge tri bags right next to their bikes. As a result, all my bike photos from the race were filed under number 89 and not 68. I thought about using a market to draw a line under the bottom of my number, but I didn’t think it would actually do much good, and anyway, I didn’t have a marker.

I signed up as an age grouper because there wasn’t an option for novice online. I was pretty nervous about the wave start so I got in the water and swam a bit to warm up. The water was murky and I forgot to breathe out while swimming.

We watched the guys go and I put myself in the second rank of women. There was some panicking on my part as people swam way too close to me so I pulled off and swam slowly until they’d gotten more spaced out ahead of me. As a result, my swim time was a bit higher than it could have been since I sat there and treaded water until I felt like I had enough space. I didn’t really get a good rhythm down after panicking so I defaulted to two strokes and breathing only on my left side because that’s apparently my favorite side to breathe on. Again the swim seemed like it took forever but it was only about 15 minutes. I know I need some more work on OWS and some more courage to deal with the thrashing water.

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I make the best ugly faces coming out of the swim

I rushed into transition and found my bike and then rushed back out. I felt pretty good on the bike. The course was all right turns and reasonably hilly. I got passed a lot in the first half of the course and I really started to wonder what was wrong with me and how was I such a weakling until I started passing the people who’d passed me. I guess they got more tired as the course was on. I’m still figuring out all my gears and what gear is best for the given situation and that day I discovered all the other gears on my bike, which made a HUGE difference in speed! I really loved the course, it was very quiet and Blalock Lakes is gorgeous.

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Finally I was back and hurried to my rack and changed my shoes. I got a huge blister from no socks last time so I made sure I packed them this time. It was kind of annoying to put them on and I think my left sock was higher than my right sock, but it beat getting another blister for sure. The run was pretty hilly and I was getting tired so I tried to think of all the positive things I could. One of my coworkers had joked I was like The Little Engine That Could so I repeated that to myself for a while. I took water at mile 1 but by mile 2 I wasn’t feeling so great and a little while later I started getting the heaves and had to walk until I could calm my roiling stomach. I never figured out what caused that but I decided it was maybe the Java Monster I’d had for breakfast since I didn’t get my normal Starbucks, or maybe just because it was 80 degrees with 80% humidity.

A spectator had brought a vuvuzela and was blowing it near the finish line. While annoying, it was great to hear it because I knew I was almost done. I finished, got my water bottle, and guzzled as much of it as I could stand while I ate most of an orange in slices. I checked the results posted but they only had me through T2 so I decided to run back to my hotel and shower and come back to see the final results.

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I don’t know why my right hand looks like a lobster claw

Swim: 15:23

T1: 01:18

Bike: 54:19

T2: 01:26

Run: 28:47

Total: 1:41

I had to look up my time from four years ago because I thought it was 1:41 and while I wasn’t going to be upset at getting almost the same time four years apart on the same course, I was going to be a little annoyed with myself. I know, it’s only been like two weeks of training but still. Good news though, my time four years ago was apparently 1:47, so I still beat my time even with walking and letting everyone on the swim pass me.

I registered as an age grouper so I didn’t place, but I would have taken first if I’d registered as a novice. However, novices aren’t eligible for end of series awards and I wanted to try for that. Plus, this was technically my third open water swim so I’m getting to a point where I don’t think I need to register as a novice anymore. I’m still debating on the rest of the season; there’s a few races where I think I need the novice tag for confidence but I’m going to work on getting used to swimming in a pack like a bunch of salmon.

Like always, I learned a lot and had a good time. Plus, it makes for a good excuse to have pizza for dinner!

Tall Pines Sprint Triathlon

I knew signing up for a tri two weeks after I moved to Georgia might be a bad choice, so I compromised and signed up for a sprint reasoning I could suffer through it if nothing else and told myself it would give me a good baseline for the rest of the season. Well, yes.

I consider myself a pretty good swimmer not really because of technique, which I don’t have much of, but just overall confidence. I wasn’t able to do any swim training in Alaska or traveling because of a lack of a pool and then when I showed up in Georgia, the pool was closed for renovations. Womp womp.

That’s okay, I told myself, I can still work on the bike and the run.

Have you ever moved from a cold, dry place to a hot, humid place? And then run outside? Because that’s what I did and let me tell you, it’s tough. Running still feels like the way it does in my dreams, a lot of effort and still going in slow motion. Sometimes I swear I can actually feel the air’s thickness around me like running through a pool.

Cycling has been about the only thing that’s been mostly okay for me or even improved since I got my bike fit. It really is so amazing at what a difference in comfort it’s made. I really thought lower back pain was just a sign of how weak I was and not, you know, a sign of my body being pushed into a weird alignment.

With all that, I have nice low goals going into the race.

Goal A: Finish

Goal B: Don’t injure anything

Goal C: Don’t die

Even with reasonable, achievable goals, I still felt those doubts creeping back in and worry that I wasn’t ready for this, that this was a bad idea, that I should just wait until I’m better trained. Well, yeah, I could definitely be fitter, but it’s my first tri in four years (does that mean I can still claim novice status? Because I really feel like I should be able to) and it’s always going to be scary doing something new.

With that, I made sure I set aside time for the packet pick up and the race briefing because nothing calms (or sometimes inflames) my fears like knowing what I’m getting into. Knowledge is power.

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I got up around 0530, let my dogs and cat outside, made some coffee and a bagel, let the dogs back in and had to chase the cat back in, fed them, and then I made sure I had everything. Last night I had a sudden fear I left my swim cap out somewhere, but I had it in my bag. I wanted to get there early since it was a first come first served transition area so I could get a good spot.

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I ended up not loving how the Oiselle bra with its two straps interfered with my swim stroke, or the fact that I didn’t pack any socks.

There were a pretty good number of people there and I admired the fast-looking bikes and some of the people who looked like they really knew what they were doing. I racked my bike and set up my area and that’s when I realized I left my goggles at home in my closet. Seriously. I could have asked to borrow a pair but I wasn’t sure how I’d be able to return them and also I was so annoyed with myself for forgetting them that I thought I should go without to really make sure I’ll never forget them again.

After I set up my area I went to the bathroom (which had flushing toilets and that was nice) and just walked around petting as many friendly dogs as I could until it was time for the start.

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All set up.

The swim was a mass start so I hung back until it cleared up. The water was so warm so it wasn’t bad at all. I think the last time I swam may have been four years ago at my last tri. I tried not to think about that. I was really uncomfortable with no goggles and I felt like the swim took forever so I was surprised to see it was over in less than twenty minutes.

I sort of jogged/stumbled back to the transition area where I got all my cycling gear on and headed out on the road. The course was nice with not too many hills at all and wove throughout the park and the turnaround was a gas station just on the outside of the park. I like cycling so this was probably my favorite bit, especially after the turnaround.

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The run felt so slow but I managed to keep my pace about 9:30 which I was happy with. It took me a while to settle in and not walk but I just did my best to zone out. Towards the end I developed a blister on the back of my heel which then popped and was really uncomfortable and I just tried not to think about it since I was almost to the end.

In all, I took second place in the novice category (YAY!), met some new people, and pet some cute dogs. I will probably never forget my goggles again, and had a pretty decent time. I love being able to race locally so I can come right back home afterwards.

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Swim: 18:19

T1: 1:50

Bike: 42:15

T2: 1:08 (surprised this was shorter since I also stopped to spray myself with sunscreen before heading out, but in T1 I fiddled with my headband to get it to lay flat so I guess that took some time)

Run: 28:17

There are definitely a few things I’ll adjust before my next race from this one. The best part is I actually improved over 10 minutes from my last/first triathlon four years ago. I can’t wait to see how much I’ll improve these times over the course of the summer and how much lake water I’ll get to drink as well. For now, I’ve got my Panaway  nearby and ready for the next week of training.

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Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend Recap

So this is almost a month overdue – sorry!

I’ve wanted to run the Disneyland Half Marathon for several years, but it just hasn’t worked out for my schedule until this year.

I was originally only going to sign up for the Dumbo Double Dare (10K and half marathon) but then they announced the 5K was Country Bears themed and I love the Country Bears because I think the show is hilarious. Funnily enough, it doesn’t exist at Disneyland anymore, only at WDW.

I stayed at Grand Legacy at the Park, which I found to be very convenient. It was just across the street from the park entrances. Due to the new security checks in the parks though, it can be kind of a pain to get to Downtown Disney as you have to go through the security line just to get to the other side. They also had a 17% military discount, which made the price a little more affordable.

I spent almost a week at DL this time, which I think was probably too much as I felt pretty burned out on Disney by the end. I went to the Expo when it opened on Thursday and checked out all the merchandise. I liked some of the shirts they had, but I’m always on the fence about buying more shirts when they’re provided with the race. I did pick up some glitter sunscreen, however. It was also scented and I felt like I died and went to preteen heaven.

I had no issues getting to the race the following morning, and I squeezed in a stop at Starbucks on the way. The 5K was well run and had lots of characters out. Since it was Country Bears, they had lots of bears – Liver Lips and Al from Country Bears, Baloo, Kenai from Brother Bear, Winnie the Pooh, and Lotso. It was also probably one of the best days for the race photographers because there weren’t tons of people on the course.

 

For the 10K I was still in Corral A. The course was still mainly in the parks but also cut a little bit backstage which I kind of enjoyed (and wished I had taken pictures of). I didn’t care for the medal myself, but I know a lot of people liked it. The overall theme of the weekend was “Best Friends” so the 5K was Country Bears and the 10K was Aladdin and Genie and the Half was Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

 

I had a meetup with a couple of other Oiselle birds for dinner that night at Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney and I had a great time talking about running and Disney with the other birds. The food was also outstanding and much better than expected, which is likely why it’s so hard to get a reservation there.

 

The Half had me scooted back to Corral B, which was fine with me! I was definitely feeling more tired that day for sure and my pace showed it.. The course was pretty good, it went through the parks first thing (probably so they could open on time) and there were a lot more people so I figured my pictures wouldn’t be much good that day. From there it wove into the streets of Anaheim, took us down to a trail (which I think I would’ve liked more if it was earlier in the morning) and then through the Anaheim Angels stadium and then back to Downtown Disney and the finish. It was a warm day and I felt myself fading around mile 9/10 but there was lots of course support which helped. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed running around the stadium and right around Mile 10 a woman was handing out magic feathers, which I happily took and ran with the rest of the way.

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I was happy with my finish and ready for a smoothie, but then remembered I had chosen to leave my card and all money in my hotel. I also didn’t bring any cash so I couldn’t take part in the post-race massage being offered at $1 a minute, maximum of 20 minutes. Take note: Always bring cash to the race! So I just walked back to my hotel to shower and change.

Aside from the race, I had a good time at Disneyland and was glad I got to see the 60th anniversary decorations before they came down, and their anniversary fireworks shows. I liked Paint the Night, loved their Disneyland Forever fireworks show, and really didn’t care much for the Celebrate show in Disney California Adventure.

 

I also tried the tea at Steakhouse 55 and while it was good, I liked the one at the Grand Floridian better, and I liked their original version better than the new one they changed to that has less options and costs more.  Food wise, I also  tried the Monte Cristo at Cafe Orleans and agree with its reputation as delicious.

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All this could be yours, for the low price of $55

Lastly, I rode the Hollywood Tower of Terror one more time for myself before it goes away to become something else.

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It was a good trip and a fun race, but I think it will be my last Disney race for a while because of the cost, the time off, and the cost of everything else at Disney. My trip to Japan and China reminded me of how much I enjoy seeing new places and I want to do more international travel and not just the World Showcase at Epcot (though it was really funny to walk around China and say funny things about how it was so much bigger than the one in Epcot). That being said, I have a friend who is dying to do one of Disney’s new Star Wars races so I may end up back at Disney sooner than I expect.

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Please excuse potato camera, but how cute are these seagulls all together?

Double Header: Run of the Valkyries 8K and Run for the Refuge 10K

I was originally going to head down to Anchorage this weekend for the Her Tern Half Marathon, but the transmission on our other car went out and then the hubs was designated as the guy who does the twice-daily reports so I ended up staying home and doing a double header instead.

I ran the Run of the Valkyries a couple of years ago and enjoyed it. It runs along the river and is very pretty and benefits our local opera, they even have an opera singer to sing us off and then welcome us back with a few notes.

I was excited to bust out my Volée singlet for the first time, as well.

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I also wore my Oiselle Stride shorts and liked them a lot. They rode up a bit, but everything I own rides up because I have legs.

Nothing too special about the run. I foolishly didn’t grab one of my good sports bra and used an old one that had no support. Not only did I get some chafing, but it left me feeling sore for the rest of the day from the bouncing.

Today I ran the Run for the Refuge 10K. It’s a trail race and was raining out so I debated not going, but decided I should because otherwise I’d just be at home hanging around as the hubs tries to sort out what’s going on with our kitchen sink.

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Since it was a little chilly out with the rain, I wore my Oiselle Juno tights, my singlet, a decent bra, my Nike Vapor jacket, and a hat because I hate rain in my eyes.

I don’t usually check the course but it was a small field so I looked it over. I’ve run part of it when I ran the Equinox Marathon a couple of years ago, and part of it is right by my favorite lake to fish in so I had a very general idea of the route.

It rained the whole time but the woods were very pretty. I felt pretty good overall but although I’ve been at over 5,000 feet for a year, I realized very quickly that although I’ve been running at altitude, I haven’t done any hills like these. The uphill was punishing for me.

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Blurry running picture

At about two miles a volunteer told me I was the third woman and then I passed a woman and her dog about a half a mile later. I figured I was second then and determined to hang onto that place. I could hear her dog’s tags jangling behind me so I really let it out on the downhills and used my arms as much as I could on the uphill.

At about mile four I was on the heels of another woman and decided to hang on until a little later. Unfortunately, we had a ton of uphill between mile five and the finish and she was much better at hills than I was and I lost my opportunity.

I cruised in at about an hour, which I was happy with since I’m so out of shape with running and hills.

They had some refreshments so I snacked on some bananas and waited around for the prizes to see if I’d won anything.

Turned out there was another woman ahead of the one I’d almost passed, so I finished third female overall. Good thing I passed that woman and her dog! I won a packable stool, a DVD about caribou, and a gift card to a hardware/clothing store in town.

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Race winnings. Recognize the carpet? 

Overall a very fun race and a great weekend for the debut of my Volée singlet. I’m sure the half would have been fun, but it was nice to stay home and do local races. It’s hard to beat being able to be home less than 10 minutes after a race.

 

5K for Friday

I ran the Georgia Publix Half Marathon shadow run this morning, except we could either do the 5K or the 10K. Running anything longer involves shutting down traffic out here and that’s kind of hard to do.

I strained something in my upper back earlier this week that’s made it hard to walk upright so I’ve had to back off everything this week and try to do some remedial yoga. I felt pretty good but figured I should probably opt for the shorter distance in case I had trouble.

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LOVE my new Oiselle Lori shorts

I met my running buddy and we walked over together and got our bibs and shirts and then went over to the USO for coffee. Since we were so early, we had enough time to walk back to our rooms to drop off our shirts and make it back in time for the national anthem.

The course was the same as last week’s. I felt like I went out too slow last week so this week I pushed myself more in the initial surge and then tried to keep it up. It mostly worked. My watch didn’t get enough signal until about 0.4 miles in so my self-timing was off, but I at least still had splits.

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Mile 1: 7:40

Mile 2: 7:37

Mile 3 and change: 7:53

My goal was to keep my pace just under 8:00 and I felt pretty strong until the last half mile. There wasn’t a lot of people around and it was running up a slight incline so I felt a little gassed and I could see my pace was creeping up. I pretty much just tried to hang on and focus on my breathing and stride and pumping my arms.

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Finish line carnage

Overall it was very fun. Since my t-shirt says half marathon I will do another 10 miles to make up the extra distance.

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I went back to my room and did some post-running yoga while listening to Beyoncé’s new album, Lemonade (love it, by the way). My back is still nagging me so I will probably have to go see the physical therapist this week. I took a few days off from any physical activity, but I don’t think waiting it out is going to work though I am very glad it doesn’t seem to be bother by my running. So far cat/cow and a modified child’s pose seem to work the best at stretching that stiffness out, but I’m open to anything else that may help out.

 

Boston Marathon Shadow Run!

Many people know there are two ways to get into the Boston Marathon. Way number one is to run a qualifying time (and then some under) to register for the Boston Marathon. The second way is to run for a charity organization (which requires a minimum of $5,000 raised, not including transportation, lodging, or food during the stay). There’s also a few bibs that Boston Athletic Association (BAA) hands out to towns along the course, and military. I got to use one of those third bibs to run the Boston Marathon as a shadow run here in Afghanistan.

I was so excited to be able to “run” Boston out here, and I joked that it was more exclusive because of the chance of taking indirect fire and with our elevation, approximately 5,000 feet above sea level, it was a Heartbreak Hill the whole way.

I was also pretty nervous about running a marathon with minimal support and on a repetitive course, and also that IDF or threats might cancel it before or ruin my race experience.

We had a packet pickup which was like every other packet pickup, except there were no other vendors, and no race merchandise around. We got our bibs, a BAA lapel pin, a special edition Boston Marathon Afghanistan t-shirt (cotton) in the Boston Marathon colors of yellow and blue, and a print out of the map of the course and the schedule.

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I made a special effort to go to bed super early because I had my alarm set for 0200. I woke up to pee around 0100 and was too excited to really fall back asleep, which was fine. I got up, put my hair up, applied tons of BodyGlide and went to the office to make myself a cup of coffee.

I met up with some coworkers and we walked down to the start line where everyone else was gathered. We did a quick safety brief; this was the first race I’ve done where there was instructions for what to do if we had an attack while on the course, and then the anthem and then we lined up. We self-seeded so I put myself towards the back of the pack.

Our route was two loops, which sounds worse than it actually was. I was going to do intervals of 10 minutes of running with five minutes of walking, but 20 minutes in decided to go for broke and ran for an hour and walked for five to seven minutes. I think my longest walk break was almost 10 minutes though, a little more than halfway through.

 

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It’s actually a lot prettier in person

There was tons of support along the course with water, Gatorade, granola bars, and GU. I only saw one mile marker early on and didn’t see it on my second lap, which was fine with me. Not really knowing how far I was and just focusing on the time helped a lot.

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I’m happy because I have only a faint idea of how much I have left.

At one point on my second lap several buses full of local workers passed by us and the workers whipped their heads around to stare at me as they drove pass. I commented to the man running next to me that they’d sure have something to talk about to their families tonight. He was really amused at how every person on the bus (all men) had stared so blatantly at me and asked if I’d noticed that. Yup. Definitely noticed that and no, I’m never going to get used to that. He joked they’d all have to go see a chiropractor with how hard they’d all suddenly turned.

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This filter is called “Sweat.”

 

I mostly felt pretty good. My hamstrings were still tight from my two hard back-to-back Sweet Cakes workouts earlier in the week, and the tendon along my left fibula felt like it was burning and was swollen and painful to touch by the time I finished.

The weather stayed nice the whole way and the sun didn’t come out until about my last hour. Also, we had no rocket attacks which I really appreciated as well, though about mile 22 I was sort of hoping for any reason to end my pain.

Finally, I was in the home stretch. I was running next to two guys and we’d been leap-frogging each other for half the race. One of them asked us where we thought the finish line was because it was hard to see. I told him that “I think it’s by the ambulance…I’m running towards the ambulance” and we all had a chuckle at that.

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I used up all my willpower trying to move my protesting legs faster at the end and I could feel how heavy and tired they were, but I finished! I didn’t check the time, but I came in before another coworker who came in at 4:40, which is a MUCH better time than I’d planned on.

I collected my medal and went to get something to drink and eat. They had set up a little buffet for us inside, which was unexpectedly nice. Seriously, they did such a good job of organizing this entire event.

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I meant to do some yoga but while I was trying to get my slow network to pull up a video, I got a sudden case of the tireds (I’d been up since 0200, remember) so I opted to skip most of the yoga and go straight to the nap at the end. I’m sure I will be sore tomorrow and I’m planning on taking the day easy and just doing some light yoga and resting. I still can’t quite believe that I ran a MARATHON today!

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I rather like the “equipment green” and hot pink color scheme of this year’s jackets

 

October Extravaganza Bonanza

I follow a few running forums and one on Reddit offers a monthly virtual race just for fun. I decided to sign up for this past month in two events -the 1 Mile and the 5K. I’m still training for Dopey (though at this point I’m a combination of Sleepy/Grumpy) and needed something to motivate me a little more.

It was enough to motivate me to “win” 1st place in my age group in the mile and 2nd place in the 5K. For my mile run I used the two Magic Mile runs I had already scheduled and I used another training run for the 5K.

I also got a cool t-shirt for my efforts.

So glad they went with the technical fabric instead of the cotton!

My motivation has been at (what seems like) an all-time low recently. I even took a walk break today during my run, and my other ones have been super slow, too even if I knock the incline down to zero. So even if it’s little things like a goofy virtual race that can pump me up, I will definitely take it.

5-1 5K 06 June 2015

In what will likely be my last race of the year, my husband and I decided to run the 5-1 5K today on post.

We picked up the packets yesterday. It was put on by a unit so it was pretty small. Actually, events up here seem to be pretty small in general.

We showed up around 0930 to say hi to some people, watch the kids’ 1K run and then we lined up for the 5K start. I put myself towards the front because I thought I was going to go fairly fast despite not having run anything over a mile in at least a month. P hung back because he’s still recovering and knew would be a little slower.

The course was around the airfield which was kind of nice because it was perfectly flat, but you could also see the whole course, the sun came out and it got a little hot and it wasn’t terribly interesting to look at.

I went out way too fast and at one point realized I was carrying a 6:40 pace. Don’t worry, that didn’t last. My first mile was 7:24 which was good, but I felt hot in my tights and ran an 8:22 second mile. I felt like I was fading so I focused on keeping it under that and did 8:17 for the third mile. I finished a little over 25 minutes. I’m still not completely in tune with my new Garmin Tactix and I know I started it a little ahead of the start and a little behind the finish.

I am definitely out of 5K shape, or any kind of running shape it seems, but it was fun to get out and run on a Saturday morning because I have all the rest of the weekend still. And we got these cool shirts which Zane is graciously modeling for us, kinda.

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At the finish they had water and bananas and cookies for the kids. They also had a table set up selling some things so I bought three boxes of Girl Scout cookies because I was starved.

Good things:

– T-shirt. I like races that have either a shirt or a medal (or both). When it’s neither I feel like I’ve been robbed for a training run.

– I didn’t feel bad on the run, just slug like and out of shape.