Wednesday, March 25, 2009

OK finally a (short) race report and TONS of pics!

Sorry it took me so long to get back here to post about the HM. I am still in the process of taking an online nutrition class, and we had part of a project due today, so that took up a lot of my spare time. But I got it done and can now get back to blogging. Heck, I've only managed a pair of elliptical workouts during the past 10 days now and absolutely no running, although I hope to fix that this weekend. *sigh*

Anyway, the Shamrock'n Half Marathon in Sacramento, CA was totally freakin' awesome! Of course, I had to take the obligatory shot of my running duds the night before. The lovely new pink tech shirt had to be covered the entire race by an old long-sleeved tech shirt, because it was just too chilly to not have real sleeves! The orange thing on my bib (notice my name? I was TOTALLY geeking out over that!) is the disposable timing chip, which I have yet to dispose of and probably won't, LOL:

My dad drove me to Raley Field, home of the Rivercats baseball team (not sure what they are -- AAA, AA? Who knows?). The sign was all lit up at 7 a.m.:

I had never been to Raley Field before. The inside was bigger than I imagined (this was before the masses arrived):

Before long, the stadium was filled up with runners, walkers and their supporters. I was glad my dad stayed with me because I seriously hate being a lone wolf at these things. :-(

Anyway, the start was divided into three waves. The fastest runners took off at 8 a.m., followed by those who expected to run at a 9- to 11-minute/mile pace. The last group was made up of the slow people (those who predicted they'd be slower than 11 minutes per mile -- totally me, but whatever). I didn't really understand that, because they gave you 3 1/2 hours from the start of the final wave before they started reopening roads and whatnot. So basically the fasties (my new term for fast runners) got an extra 20 minutes to finish that the slower runners could have used, but I digress.

Here are the fasties taking off at 8 a.m.:

The rest of us waited in our corrals until it was time to approach the starting line. Finally, before 8:20, we were herded down to where the magic was to begin:

After a few minutes of nervous fidgeting, the countdown started and we were off!! Of course, in a race this big, being "off" means you're just walking at the beginning. My dad took this pic of me, being silly:

Soon enough I was running and enjoying the scenery. Some of the landmarks included:

The historic Tower Bridge, which we ran over twice (yes, I ran the race with my camera in my pocket, and sometimes in my hand):

The state capitol:

Old Town Sacramento:

The Sacramento River:

So I was feeling really freakin' awesome until mile 8. That's when the lack of training started kicking in. This is me at mile 7, right before the fire in my shoes began:

So yeah, around mile 8 was when I noticed my feet, especially my right foot, felt like there was a damn flame under them. And the flame got more and more intense the longer I ran. It was pretty stinkin' awful. I now know that I really need to stick to my long runs on the weekends while training for a HM. It's not that I didn't want to, but I had been battling illnesses and injury and the long runs just weren't happening. So my feet paid a price during the HM.

But I trudged on, basically running from fuel station to fuel station near the end. Eventually, an awesome thing happened: I could see the finish line, located on Raley Field, which was totally cool:

Here's the pic my dad took as I crossed the finish line. See the big screen in the outfield? They showed everyone who finished on it! And they called out every finisher's name on the PA! Good times!

And check out this totally rockin' medal that I got. It's definitely the best one I own (and it's really heavy)!

So that's about it. :-)

I think I've talked my dad into running this one with me next year. It has a HM relay, where the distance is split into two halves and one person runs each half. I think that would be fun, don't you?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

OMG, I really suck

So my sister-in-law reminded me that I haven't yet posted a HM race report or pics, and now it's been a week since the race. Unfortunately, I can't do it at this very second, but I will *try* to do it tonight. I have a bunch of other stuff to do first (homework for my nutrition class, freakin' taxes, housework, etc.) and the blog is kinda the last priority.

Stay tuned......

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Second HM in the books!

Thanks everyone for the good luck vibes!! I finished the Shamrock'n Half Marathon in Sacramento this morning, and I set a new PR!! That was despite not having the best luck with training and not having "true" long runs on the weekends. My legs are feeling it now, but that's OK. The medal I got rocks! :-)

I am ready to lie down and take a nap, but I will leave you with the official stats. Pics and a report will come soon!

Shamrock'n Half Marathon official stats:

Time: 2:39:27 (old PR was 2:45:24 set last May)
Overall finish: 2968 out of 3603
Division finish: 304 out of 380

So here I am.... 4:30 a.m., too nervous and excited to sleep. I have to leave at 5:30 to get to the half marathon course by 6:30. The organizers said to be there extra early because of the heavy traffic (which caused hundreds of runners to miss the start of the race last year).

I've actually been awake since 3:30 a.m. My sinuses were getting stuffy and then my nose started running. Hate when that happens. So I took a shower, took a pic of my running gear and will be having breakfast soon. My dad will be taking me to the race, and will be sticking around to watch me take off and finish.

I don't really know what else to say right now. I'll likely be functioning on adrenaline for a while. I'm sure I'll probably crash hard when I get home. I think today will be a nap day! :-)

I'll post a race report and pics later. Bye, all!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

....and this is why we can't have "nice" things

Because whatever things we do have, it seems there is always a "little person" who comes along and breaks it.

Today was no different. The kids and I were outside. They were playing; I was mowing the lawn. Kara had put some rocks on the grass a long time ago, so I asked her to pick them up and place them in the nearby flower bed so I could mow that area. I turned my back, and heard a crash. Turned back around, and Kara has her hands in her mouth (her signal for "I've done something really bad"). I look at the house, and there's now a softball-size hole in her bedroom window. So instead of listening to me and gently placing the rock in the flower bed, she chucked the rock at the house and broke her own window. Pure genius.

The only saving grace is that the rock only broke the outside plate of glass. We now know our old windows are, indeed, double-paned.


Anyway, we're leaving for Auburn tomorrow. Race is on Sunday!!! Can't wait!! I'm taking my camera along on the run. Should be fun! :-)

Forgot to mention I did run on Wednesday. Just a short track run. Better than nothing!

Wednesday's stats:
Distance: 2 miles

Sunday, March 8, 2009

One week away!

One week left until the Shamrock'n Half Marathon!!! I am getting excited now, despite the issues with my knee. I didn't run at all this week to let it rest. I did go to the track and bust out a quick two-miler today, which felt good. I should probably run on the track a lot more than I do, as the surface is much kinder to my joints. Kara went with me and had a blast running, too. She managed about 3/4 of a mile, which is pretty darn good for a five-year-old! We played on the swings afterward. :-)

So I've resigned to the idea that this HM will be of a just for fun event rather than an event to PR in. The course is supposedly flat and fast, but I think if I PR it will be a freakin' miracle. But I'm OK with that. It should be tons of fun!! There are bands planned to play at every mile (kinda like a Rock 'n Roll HM) and the field is full (4,000 people have registered). Every finisher gets these awesome shamrock-shaped medals. It will be very cool. I'm actually considering leaving Garmin at home for this one, but we'll see how it goes. I will definitely be taking my camera so I can snap some shots as I make my way down the course.

Today's stats:
Distance: two miles
Time: 20:56
Pace: 10:28 minute/mile

Monday, March 2, 2009

I think the marathon will have to wait

I am bummed about this, but I don't think I will be physically able to do a full marathon this spring. My IT band issues are not being resolved as quickly as I hoped, and this has put a major damper on the HM training. I am still doing the HM in less than two weeks, but I have put my hopes for a PR on the backburner because I am so scared my knee won't let me run the way I want to. My goal now is to just finish.

Plus, things are stressful right now with life in general. The future of Tim's company is a little uncertain due to some things that have happened, so my heart's not really into training right now. I've been looking for a job, just in case. Funny how when things are going well, they seem to go really well. And when they go bad, well, they just blow up in your face and go to hell.

Thursday's stats:
Distance: three miles

Sunday's stats:
Distance: four miles (was supposed to be nine -- ny knee wouldn't take it)