Monday, January 10, 2011

Disney World Marathon (Race #2 of the Goofy Race and a Half Challenge)

Sunday's 3 am alarm was too early!!  After having no nap the day before and a very busy day, we were shot! We packed up, loaded the car and headed to meet our friends Paul and Karlis at the buses.  I tried to nap on the way to the staging area, but it didn't happen.  It wasn't nerves, it was noise.  I somehow managed to stop getting pre-race jitters.  I know I can complete the distance, and I don't worry about how fast.  We get to the staging area, weaving through people to find the area to exit to the corrals, again we didn't check bags and moved quickly to our corral.  I spot Endorphin Dude ahead of me and knowing he is a fellow Half Fanatic and a Marathon Maniac I yell out to him.  He and Dave (another HF/MM) are always confused for each other.  I told him I had read Dave had just been called Endorphin Dude at Ragnar and he got a good laugh and we cemented a friendship that has been awesome so far!  We got some pics with Tony (Endorphin Dude) doing Dave's classic pose and goofed off until it was time for our wave to start.

We found our friend Suezette and the 6 of us hung out while we approached the start line.  Tony ran into one of the tutu girls and Paul and Karlis started their intervals and we kept with Suezette until our intervals to walk started.  It was cold and we didn't lose the mylar right away.  We ran into our other friend Monica around Mile 2 and stayed with her 1/2 a mile.  We started going back and forth with Paul and Karlis around this point too.  We would see them and Tony quite a bit during the race.  We were doing easy intervals of 3/2s to make sure we didn't end up injured considering we have our final marathon in our quest to qualify for Marathon Maniacs 3 weeks post Goofy.  We stopped and had a blast taking are a few.

Here we are with Paul and Karlis.

As you can see we really goofed off and just enjoyed the race!  Disney puts on a race to rival others.  I will say the marathon is MUCH better than the half marathon.  We didn't take any pictures with the princesses, but we are going back to run the Princess race!  We did stop at mile 23 to take a pic with our friend Dani who ran the half the day before.

We finished smiling...and airborn LOL

After the race we got our finisher pictures and waited on Tony, Paul, Karlis and Heidi to come in...while we waited, we saw Santa!!

We met back up with Tony (Endorphin Dude) next...we were there to witness his utmost joy at finishing the Goofy Challenge.

We truly enjoyed the Goofy challenge...yes we would do it again given the chance!!

Now...for the weekend bling!

DisneyWorld 1/2 Marathon (Race #1 of the Goofy Race and a Half Challenge)

Saturday morning came early, we didn't check into the hotel until later than planned as we had been meeting up with other runner friends almost immediately after arriving in Orlando.  The alarm at 3 am was not welcome!  We had to be up and at em and on the buses to the race staging area no later than 4 am.  We were texting and updating Facebook on the way to Epcot.  We had already formed our race strategies for running the half and full back to back.  We had no nerves about the half, only the full.  We knew without a doubt we could do both, it was more could we do them back to back.  The mile long trek from staging to the corrals was very slow going.  I felt like a cow being herded with the rest to slaughter.  We joked about this analogy and slowly padded along.  We get to our corral and noticed the jumbo-tron wasn't working, we were going to miss all the action up front.  Oh well!  We waited for our corral to move forward to start our wave.  The first 2 miles went fast, this was where we found Piglet and Pooh, we waited in line for 10 minutes!!! 

Shame on us, we got our pic and headed on!  The miles were mostly a blur, we saw a lot of characters and a lot of lines.  We decided no more pics until the marathon, but we did stop for a split second to drool over the Pirates of the Carribean guys...their Jack Sparrow looked like Johnny Depp!!  We made another couple of minute stop for Sueann to take a potty break around mile 8.  The rest of the miles flew by, we were concerned about time and honestly, we shouldn't have been!  We had 30 minutes until the cut off by the time we came in!  We really took it easy to make sure the marathon went smoothly and pain free!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Space Coast Marathon (Marathon #1 in quest for Marathon Maniac status)

Saturday we headed to the expo and met up with Brad and his daughter Tara who was running the half with him, Kathy and her daughter, Mary and her hubby Mark, and Barry.

From left to right: Barry, Me, Kathy, Mary, Sueann, Brad

We headed to dinner after and met up with Tia and her husband Johnny who were getting to Cocoa later than originally planned, Mary and Mark, Barry, Brad and Tara. We had a nice night despite mediocre food, the company more than made up for it!

From left to right: Johnny, MR BQ!! is standing, Tia, Mary, Mark, Barry, me, Sueann, Brad and Tara.

We headed home after dinner and getting to bed proved to be a chore! I laid down at 10, way later than planned with the alarm set for 3:30 so we could be gone by 4. I get to Sueann's house and thank God she was carrying her bib, I had forgot mine!!!! We went back and grabbed it and headed out. We heard from Kathy that she was at the race site. We got there, got parked, ran into some other half fanatics on the way to bag check, got some pics then Barry called, we went over to see everyone including Suezette who was running the half before heading over to take a group pic with the fanatics and maniacs, what an awesome group of people!!!!

We lined up, found Kathy and after the countdown and lift off, we were off. We were doing 3/2 intervals so we could make the jump in mileage from 18.6 to 26.2 without as much issue. We took it easy and steady for the first half, we were starting to speed up in the 2nd half, I caught us several times in the 10 minute range and I don't mean upper 10, lower 10. We saw Mary leaving and whooped and cheered for her. We were starting to pick people off left and right! We were doing awesome until the last 5K split, I was really struggling, my feet were really hurting and I was ready to be done. We ran when we could and somehow mustered a sprint at the end with Barry and Suezette cheering us in! We went to wait for Kathy to come in and then Tia and Johnny found us. Johnny BQed, we are super happy for him, he was smiling every time we saw him during the race!! Here we are after we finished.

After we were done, Barry, Suezette, Sueann and I headed to Chili's for a bite before heading home

What a great day, everyone PRed! It was a nice day for a run!!! I'm super proud of each and every one of them!!!!

Previous PR - Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon: 6:04:27

New PR - Space Coast Marathon: 5:43:31

In 1 week I have PRed a half marathon and a marathon, I think I've found my mojo again!

Peace, Love and 26.2!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

St. Pete's Women's Half Marathon

Saturday Sueann and I packed up and headed to Clearwater to Mary 's house. We met Stephanie, her daughter, then headed out to the expo to pick up our packets, goody bags and meet up with our other runner friends. We got there and when we walked in we saw a girl who looked like Tia but we headed on in to take care of packets. On the way back by, I texted her and sure enough, it was her! She is soooo full of energy and such a fun, positive person!!! We picked up our shirts, then headed to the band shell to meet everyone at 3, I don't know if people knew where it was, no one was there. We left at 10 after 3, we texted Suezette, she was there at the expo so we headed back in, found Suezette, got some pics. Sueann and I bought new running skirts and got free shirts with them. We also got chains for our medallions. After the expo, we headed to this fantastic little Italian restaurant. Yummm!!! Sueann and I had fettucini with mushrooms, Mary had manicotti. After dinner we headed back to Mary's house and hung out and watched TV until we crashed out.

Sunday came early, 4:15 we get up and get dressed and ready for the race. We head to the race site, get parked and make our way to the port-a-potties and then to our corral. Mary, Sueann and I lined up together and when the gun went off said our good byes to Mary. We were off and the first couple of miles were tough, Sueann and I both had tight calves. After that cleared up we were cruising. We hit 5 miles under an hour, I knew if we kept up the pace we'd PR. Well, I didn't count on mile 10-13 being soo hot. I started feeling sick, but the rest of me felt good. The run was gorgeous and I was hoping I'd be able to hold it together. Getting to Tropicana Field we had to weave around on black asphalt and I started getting sick. However, when we got into the building, I got goosebumps. How cool is running on a MLB baseball field?!?!?!? Coming out I was doing everything I could so I didn't get sick. We got into the last mile and into some shade and I was able to run longer again. We did one more short walk before we picked up the pace for the finish, I somehow had the energy to kick it at the end, realizing I was really close to my PR time. Garmin read 13.21, chip time 2:36:16. My previous PR was dented...not 25 seconds. 2:36:41 is no longer my time to beat! Had we not had the stretch breaks for Sueann's calves and hamstring and my extra walk breaks in the last 3 miles we could have had a serious PR! I know had the weather been cooler we could have broke 2:30. I do know I'm not built to run in the heat...I get way over heated! All in all, this is a race I would repeat! Beautiful course, really well marked, no mistakes like we saw in Miami, great goody bags, cute medals and a decent expo. I just wish the expo had better prices.

I'm home now, the only thing that is remotely bothering me is my PF in my left foot. I will be in bed shortly, I'm exhausted but it was a great day and despite my passing nausea, I enjoyed the race.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Beach Palooza and Paul DeBruyn 30K

Sometimes I wonder why I am so all or nothing in certain things. I jump in head first without really thinking things through. I'm compulsive, spontaneous and reckless. I know this, yet, I can't do anything to change it. I don't see it until I step back to look at the big picture. My issue, my rock, Sueann is just as crazy as I am. I broke Sunday. I gave up and considered dropping out of a race. I let myself focus on the aches and pains. I was focusing on them instead of the positives of what we were doing. I don't know why Sunday got to me. It was just a training run, with an entry fee and a medal waiting for me at the end.

We tell ourselves all these races are training runs for Goofy. Sunday was no different. We'd had fun the day before, we did a 2 mile obstacle course in 21 minutes. Gotten filthy dirty and pushed ourselves to confront fears...heights, jumping flames, and most of all for me, running in my brand new Vibrams on the uneven beach when I had forgotten to tape my knee. I got through it, I enjoyed it, wished they'd thrown more at us at the end. The next day I'd hate the sand, I'd hate the monotony, I'd hate running. Maybe I'm burnt out, but how can I be? I have 3 marathons between next weekend and the end of January. I have 3 half marathons left also, but these don't concern me. It's the monster runs, the marathons. I don't want to do them anymore. What changed in me since April when I finished my first and LOVED the experience so much I was ready to sign right up for another? I was injured and running was painful during that marathon, yet I did it, loved every painful step. Was it the fact I was running my first marathon while my 5 year old son completed his first Kid's marathon? Was it the fact my children would be there with my family to witness me crossing the finish line of a race my dad said I'd never be able to finish? Was it the fact for the first time ever my brother said he was proud of me? I can't answer it anymore.

So let's talk about Sunday, I did good until about mile 15 (well minus the 4 minute bathroom break where my CWX tights and sweat covered legs didn't want to cooperate!!!) We picked off 7 runners, but later one would pick me off (he is a master walker...we are talking BIG TIME...10 moons in HalfFanatics and 10 suns in Marathon Maniacs.) Around mile 16.5 I let Sueann go. My hips were on fire, my foot was on fire and my heart was not in it. I ran on and off, but not for more than a minute at a time, it was all I could handle. I was in a mood, I just wanted it to be over. I pondered quitting then got mad at myself. I'm not a quitter. I wanted to be, but I'm not. My boys love playing with my medals and I knew I'd disappoint them if I didn't come home with one, that and a DNF when it wasn't truly warranted would haunt me forever. The race was lonely, it was SMALL, last year it was 57 people. This year's results haven't been posted yet, but I know it was 100 or less. NO crowd support, only the volunteers. Dr. Welch was volunteering and cheered me on at the 2 stops she was at and came up and talked when the race was over, she's so happy and positive, standing there with her big black boot, dreams of Boston on hold but supporting all her fellow runners without a hint of depression. I have the hint of depression and I can still run. I need to snap out of it.

Sueann and I did decide, no more marathons, we'll run the 3 we are signed up for and when we get into NYC, it will be the 5th and final marathon we run. I'm done with the long distances, the half is perfect for me. I also have more time with my kids when we aren't training for a marathon. So I will finish out marathons #2-5 and that will be all. I will then work to break the 2 hour mark on the half, I don't care if it is 1:59:59!

It was also official yesterday, I'm Half Fanatic #640! I may only have 1 moon now, but my goal is to get up to 4 or 5!

Next up - Marathon Maniac!

So yes, I'm nuts, yes I tend to bite off more than I can chew, but hey, it helps me test limits at the same time...

Monday, November 8, 2010

Paint the Town 5K

This is Sueann and I's annual 5K, our first 5K we ever did. This time Stacy was joining us from Kansas.  We all met up at the race site and Brad (one of our training buddies) found us and we got to meet his lovely wife Kathy. We headed over to the start and the 4 of us started out together. I was feeling some pressure in my side (I had been in the ER several days earlier with a large ruptured ovarian cyst) so I held back some and let Stacy slip ahead while Sueann and I hung a little back. Brad joined us and for the first mile we were cruising, hitting the 1 mile mark at around 10:18. By this time, I was really feeling my right side, stabbing pains intermittent with dull pain. I told them go and I started to walk. As soon as the pain eased I was running again. I'd continue this routine until the end. I almost caught Brad and Sueann a couple of times but the pain would kick back in and I'd have to walk again. It was a nice cool morning and I'd have loved to seen what I could do had I not had the issue. I finished in 33:53 with walking quite a bit. Stacy was 30:30 a PR for her and a major PR for Sueann at 32:13. Kevin had actually shown up, so the boys were there and Bren got to run his first race and Cody got to run his 3rd. They had a blast!! We went to breakfast at this little diner that serves only local ingredients and local eggs from local farmers. It was yum, I had the veggie omelet with whole wheat toast. We headed home, changed, headed out to Wekiva Springs to go kayaking. We ended up getting a tandem, since I didn't know how good the twisting from kayaking would do with my side. I'd have been happier in a single, but well, health first! After kayaking we headed back dropped them off, went by and saw Cody at Riley's bday party. Then we headed back to pick them up for dinner. We went to That's Amore then Mango Tango for dessert. I was happy to call it an early night and went to bed early to sleep!

It's been a crazy week, catching up and what not. I am hoping to be 100% this weekend as I have a 9 mile run scheduled Saturday, Cody has his final game of the season at 8:30 so it will be an early run, then the end of season party. I'm hoping to get some rest as we have Beach Palooza and need to be there at 1. After, I'm going to have a beer and a lot of water and relax! Sunday, we have a 6 am 30K race that was a last minute decision. We were scheduled for an 18 miler and then I remembered, this 30K runs most of our route, so we couldnt run there. Decision was made that we'd just pay the $50 entry fee and get the shirt and medal for completion of our training run...we are bad, I know. It couldn't have fallen more perfectly though. Those 18 milers are tough with little motivation LOL. 

Next weekend we have our fall back week. However, we will be enjoying our Saturday run free, no soccer games (ok not enjoying this part) before heading over to St Pete to hang out with one of our favorite west coast (of FL) girls...Mary!!! We'll be running the St Pete Women's half with her and several other of our runner friends!!

The following weekend MARATHON #2!!!! It's a training run, but I hope we PR...shouldn't be hard unless something goes horribly wrong or I have another bout with my lady's around the time this one happened in my cycle. I have the ultrasound the week after and well, I'm nervous!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Miami Beach Halloween Half Marathon

What a crazy weekend. Race weekends should never go the way ours went. There were some great moments, but there were some bad moments. Those bad moments paved the way for some hard lessons learned and a PWR (personal worst) for me. However, the company I was with still made this a great weekend and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Let’s start with Friday. I got off work early, went home and changed, picked up Cody from school. He was shocked and happy to see me. I took him to the library to read some books and then we went to get his brother. I got them into their costumes and then we headed to Chick-Fila for the fundraiser for Cody’s school. We met up with Sueann and her boys there and then headed out to a fall festival. The boys played games, had cotton candy and caramel apples, went on a hay ride and did trunk or treat. We then headed to the enchanted forest. What a joke! The kids got to do the petting zoo, but the hay ride through the forest was taking almost an hour, so we left. Everyone was exhausted. We stopped at That’s Amore on the way home and got some pasta to go. It was 9:30 when we headed home. I got to bed around 11 and had to get up at 5:30 (mistake #1 not sleeping enough) the next morning for a training run with Sueann. I had set everything out for the boys and some of my stuff for Miami.

Saturday: We ran, stopped to talk to a Team in Training group about how it all worked as this is our backup to guarantee entry into NYC. We ran back to the car as I was worried about time. Cody had a soccer game in another town 45 minutes away. We ended up 10 minutes late because we couldn’t find the fields. They weren’t marked. Well, it turns out the game hadn’t started yet; no one could find the field. One of the girls on the team showed up 30 minutes into the game and it had taken them 40 minutes to find the field!!! The team they played was horrible. They were shoving our kids around and this is supposed to be a team of 5 and 6 year olds and one of these kids, the meanest of them was my height!!! I call BS on him being 5 or 6! The game should have been a tie, but they scored illegally and their ref called it good. All of our team’s parents are complaining to our Y about the sportsmanship of the other Y. One coach was telling the big kids to be mean and aggressive. Not things to teach kids. So we leave the game. I’m upset because the game was very unfair. Cody’s team has lost before, and I have had no issue, but this was playing that in my day would have had the coach in trouble. We get home, I get Cody changed, get the boys packed and ready for a weekend at Nana’s and send them off with Kevin while I finally get the shower I have wanted since finishing the run. I pack and wait on Sueann so we can head out to Miami. We got out an hour later than planned. We had to stop for gas on the way and a potty break. We called Suezette at 3 when we realized we'd be pulling into Miami right when packet pick up ended. We texted her photos of our licenses and she picked up the packets for us. We met her at the hotel at 5:15. This is where things start to get crazy. We go in, Suezette asks if the reservation can be changed from a king to a double, no go. We find out there is NO parking, we have pay for parking. $40!!! We then have to tote all our bags back the 2 blocks to the hotel and we get up to our room…can we saw ACK! We get somewhat settled when Sueann realized she had forgotten her sports bra. I had wanted a new racer back tank since the one I brought had been riding up on me. We found everything then stopped for dinner. Mistake #2, I had pizza. This didn’t seem to be an issue for the other 2, it was for me. I have NO gall bladder and I’m lactose intolerant, but pizza normally doesn’t affect me, but I normally don’t eat it the night before a 1/2 . I did drink a lot of water Saturday, we are talking 100+ ounces. Mistake #3, in Miami drink 200+!!!!! We got back later than I had wanted to the hotel, but we were having such a good time people watching, and let me tell you there were some freaks out that night!!! Tried to sleep, really, we did, none of us slept well. I think I got maybe an hour at most of sleep. I fell asleep right off, but woke up within 5 minutes. I also fell asleep somewhere between 2:10 and 4:30 when all of our alarms went off. Despite the fact there were 3 of us in 1 king size bed, no one disrupted the others, we all thought the others were asleep, and all of us wished we were them, but none of us were actually asleep! This was mistake #4, not enough sleep!!!

Sunday: Mistake #5 was not having breakfast. Suezette provided power bars since we realized there was no breakfast at the hotel unless we wanted to pay $12! Sharon picked us up at 5:20. We made our way to the finish area and then took the shuttles to the start area. We checked out the other costumes, Sueann and I dressed up, Sharon wore orange and black and Suezette in pink and black. We saw some interesting things…men running in underwear only, we’re talking underoo type, Batman, Superman, etc. One was even in an American flag thong, he had his number strapped on to him. I still wonder if his butt cheeks chafed! We had a quick rain shower and it ended before we started. We said good luck and see you later to Sharon who was lining up in the front, then we lined up and started. The first half of the race was the easy part. One causeway over to Miami Beach, nothing on the grade compared to the NSB causeway we run. We were tired but our legs were moving easily after the first 5K, it rained in the first 3 miles and with the cloud cover it felt good. However, we’d be praying for rain in a little bit. Mile 8 is where things started really falling apart for me. I was feeling really sick. We had new sports drink on the course and had been drinking a lot of water, but I felt BAD!!! We were set to PR, but looking back I think we went too hard too fast for the weather. It was hot and humid. At mile 9, before I told Sueann to go on her own and finish it, it rained again. This time it was brief. This time about killed me. The humidity from the wet, was oppressive. I was doing everything to keep from throwing up. I finally set Sueann off on her own and I walked most of the rest of it. I came in 10 minutes slower than my slowest ½ time. The bling is awesome, being there to see Sharon PR her ½ time with a 13.6 mile run (she got screwed by Miami PD and had to do a ½ mile loop) and getting 3rd overall female was amazing!!! She was so happy!!! We all headed back to the hotel, Sharon dropped us, then the 3 of us got showered, changed and headed out for home. Sueann and I were sick!!! We stopped in Hollywood on the way home and got a sandwich and a large unsweet tea and started feeling a little better. It took a lot of fluids to finally normalize and for the massive swelling in my hands to go down. It was a good weekend despite feeling so sick and I know I could have PRed had it not been the mistakes leading up, and well, I’ve learned and add that to my knowledge and look forward to St. Pete where I get to try again!!