Monday, April 25, 2011

The Good, The Bad and the Awesome!!

As many of you know, Friday was race day and I headed out for my first 10 mile race. I have not run anything over 10k ever so this was a really big deal. Here are the highlights:

The Good
The Company: My friend Britt ran the race with me. We had only run together once before this, so it was really great of her to sign up for this and share in my misery. She used the race as a tune up for her Half coming up in three weeks. So much fun running with a friend.

Sorry for the quality but I had to show proof. I'm the short one, Britt is the leggy one.

The Course: It was a loop course, 5 miles each. So you knew what you were in for the second time around. It had some rolling hills, but nothing crazy. It was a combination of main roads and side streets and passed by two cemeteries, which was an ominous sign.

The People: This was a small race put on by a running club. The volunteers were really friendly and encouraging, even as we brought up the rear and the pylons were being removed. There weren't many spectators, but those that were out were enthusiastic. At one point a little girl walked up real close to us and flashed us a quick 'thumbs up' at the very last second...sooo cute! There was also a guy on a pogo stick dressed as a bunny and he was still hopping when we passed him again the second time. I yelled out "You've been doing that this whole time?" to which he answered "So have you" True that!

The Bad
The Weather: I know Ma Nature hasn't been on our side all winter and spring is no different. It was cold and it was windy. It was hard to figure out what to wear. In the end I was comfortable in a long sleeve + zippered jacket. At the last minute I grabbed Dee's pink sparkly gloves and I'm glad I did, it was pretty cold at the start.

The Roadkill: Halfway on the first loop Britt yelled out "Ew, ew, ew" I thought something smelled funny, but then I saw what she had almost stepped on...a dead, slightly squished squirrel. It made me laugh because I had a dream a week ago about having a raccoon tail stuck to my shoe while running the race...dreams do come true...sadly.

The Course: As I mentioned it was a loop, and although there are good things about it, there are also bad things. Like seeing everyone pass you!! The first place runner finished the race before we finished the first lap. It was cool to see those 'elites' run by though, they make it seem so easy! And...the were mile markers and not km markers...I didn't train in miles. I found it difficult to figure out my pace and mark my splits. I was guessing the whole time. Which may have been a good thing in the end.
And...there was only one water station on the route at about 4miles in and no port-o-potties anywhere!!

The Awesome
PR Baby!!: Well, technically this was my first race at this distance so I was good for a PR no matter what, but I finished with a 1:45.07...that's right baby!!  I was thrilled with my finish. I knew that I could do a 1:45 if I could keep my pace throughout the race and I did, many thanks to Britt and my bladder. Seriously, I felt great the whole way, no stomach cramps, no side stitches, no bathroom break. I was a little nauseous after 5 miles, but then I eased up on the sugar and it calmed down. I was a little sore in the hips and ankles near the end.

The Outfit: I was comfortable the entire race and glad I doubled up on top. I wore capris and my running skirt. I saw two other skirts at the race. At one point a speedy skirt passed us and said "Way to go Skirt!". It caught me a bit off guard that I didn't say anything back, but I loved it.  I think I even blushed a bit. I felt like I belonged to a secret club...we just need a handshake now.

That's about it. I'm sure I've left something out. I wanted to post pictures, but I didn't take any (surprise, surprise). Britt remembered her camera and right when we were ready to leave, we thought to ask a guy raking his garden if he'd take our picture. He did! I just have to get my copy.

Three days later and I'm still on a high. I have to remember this feeling when I'm in the middle of the next training cycle. It's sooooo worth it!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

T-minus three days...

Well, I've done all the work, I have to believe that I've done enough. I have three days until my 'big' race and now I must..'Trust the Training' (that's my motto and mantra now). While everyone else is enjoying sleeping in on a day off, I will be off and running 10 Miles!

I have to say that I owe a lot to Coach Kelly, who has designed a program just for me. Enough to get me going, push my limits, but understanding enough to know that sometimes adding a fourth run/week just wasn't going to happen when the kids and husband are already starting to forget my name!!

I also owe a lot to the support I recieved through this blog and on Facebook. My 'imaginary' friends have been encouraging and motivating and even inspiring...thanks!

I also owe a big shout out to a couple new running friends who agreed to do the long run with me on more than one occassion. You helped my at my most difficult time, getting me through the toughest weeks.  I only hope that the friendly runs continue in the nicer weather.

So after almost three months of training, I have:

Worn through 2 pairs of Saucony's
Burned over 180 donuts (best stat on Dailymile)
Spent $20 on itunes revamping the playlist
Developed my running obession to whole a new level
Learned that skittles are important to the running diet
Discovered the joy of winter running
Enjoyed sharing TMI on the long run
Not lost any weight :(
Run 325kms!!!

 With just a few days left the only thing I am really worried about now race outfit. I've learned through the bloggy world that it's okay to want to look nice on race day. It's like any other special day. Even if I don't run fast at least I can look good running slow!

The weather is supposed to be cold (a high of 9) partly cloudy day. It shouldn't rain, so that's a plus, but it will be cold in the morning. So I'm thinking of my long sleeve top with my black polkadot running skirt with capris under and probably a long sleeve zippy (I bought at Walmart of all places).  It's HOT bright pink and I'm impressed with the quality considering I paid $17 for it.

There are also other stresses like, parking, shuttle bus, finding bathrooms know...normal stuff.

So, any last words of wisdom before my race???

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Big Dreams

Just sitting here thinking about all the people that are going to be toeing the line tomorrow morning in Boston. I'm sure they all had the big dream of being there one day...and if it is their first or 31st day has arrived.

Congratulations to those running in the big of luck and know that shmucks like me are plodding along, dreaming the dream too.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Music Monday

I actually carved out some time to play with itunes this weekend. I was in desperate need of some new music for running. When I spend more time hitting 'next' than actually listening to any songs, we gotta a problem.

I try to run pod-less for at least half of my long run, so I can reward myself with great motivation when I really need it.  My songs were getting bland and had very little motivating effect at all. Considering I hit 37kms last week (record high) I managed to get by alright. But I'm not tapering yet, so I need all the help I can get.

I find downloading music kinda tedious. Not only do I have to remember the song title, or band name of that kick ass song I hear on the radio everyday, but I have to deal with my kids wanting to play on the computer, finding that connector cable and figuring out technical glitches (turns out I haven't updated itunes in a while).

So after about an hour of getting things figured out I got a few new songs to add to my new '10 mile' race list. I thought I would share with you a couple of my new favourites.

Adele: Rolling in the Deep

This woman rocks. Her voice has that sultry rasp and the beat is just heavy. Love the part where the water starts to vibrate. I've had this song on repeat for the past three days. I know I'm obsessed with a song when Dee and Kay are singing the tune as Barbie's entry in the talent show. 

Foster the People: Pumped Up Kicks

I kept hearing this song on the radio but had never heard the band name before. I like to think this is a discovery, but I'm sure someone else has discovered them by now. I love the groovy bass guitar and the general 'coolness' of the song. Also, there's whistling, who doesn't love whistling in a song?

Metric: Gold Guns Girls

This one isn't new to my ipod rotation, but I wanted to share it anyway. I love this band. If you haven't heard them yet, take a listen then go Google them for more. They are a rockn' Canadian band that oozes awesome.
I realized that I was running a faster pace when I could keep up with this song. It's a great running song and the video proves it. I love their warm up at the beginning. Now if I could only look that great running in a heels and tight pants.

Young the Giant: My Body

This is just a great tune. I have to listen to it reeaaallly loud. You know a song is good when it makes you stop cleaning the toilet, crank the volume and jump up and down. You're kids clamp their hands over their ears and yell at you to turn it down, but you don't care, 'cause you can't really hear them...that's a good song. 
I also feel it's running related when he sings "My body tells me no, but I won't quit cause I want more"'s like he can read my mind!

Hope you enjoy these diddys. What are your current faves that have you hitting repeat?