Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
1. I wanted to draw more attention to the great virtual races I am doing on October 10th.
Running Diva Mom is having a virtual 10k race with lots of great prizes, including one for the most creative race bib. Check it out here:
Marcia over at Running off at the Mouth is once again raising more money for Lupus by holding her own 10/10/10 race, which can be a 10K, or any other use of the number 10 (10 miles, 2x5k, etc) She has been a superstar at fundraising this year, and she is also gathering some great prizes:
Finally, Laura over at My Reason to Run was the first to organize a 10/10/10 race, Jog for Joubert Syndrome. Cost is $10 to get in, but the funds do so much to help research to find a cure for this rare and relatively unknown disease. Plus, there are prizes, including one for most referrals, so tell her that runninglawyer sent you!
2. My mangled body is coming back together after the half, although I am still facing some pain in my big toe. Many people have said I will likely lose it, but I have some faith, and am taking the wait and see approach. Still no plans for another half in sight, but I am starting to focus on my fall/winter races, trying to get money together to register for them.
3. My mom has been hospitalized for the past couple of days. They found a large growth in her abdomen that will be removed via surgery in the next couple of days, and then biopsied. Needless to say, I am concerned, more like a nervous, depressed wreck. As a result, I will be stepping away from this blog for a while, until I can get things on track with my life. I will keep you updated when I can, and hope that it turns out to be just a quick surgery and recovery time, but the biopsy and possibility of the big "C" word scares the hell out of me. Thanks for understanding.
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Due to some scheduling conflicts between this race and another major national race which happened to be scheduled on the same day, same route, our path got changed. As a result, we faced a LOT more hills than first expected. One around 15-16k was rumoured to be a killer, but I decided to not study up on the course in advance. I just didn't want to know what I was getting myself into.
So, after carb loading Saturday evening, I got to bed at a relatively early (for me at least) 11pm. Slept well, but woke up to my left knee being in pain. Bad news bears. I quickly tried to deal with it by putting a brace/tensor on and taking some ibuprofen. Seemed to get better, so I felt ok. I grabbed a quick breakfast of a bagel and PB, and focused on getting my race kit on. Going with the theme of having fun with my friend (who was supposed to wear her "Bride to be" sash), I decided to put together a cute sign for people to read/laugh at/smile about on the road, that said:
1st Half Marathon + 1st Wedding Anniversary = Best Husband Ever & Post-Run Cake!!!
I definitely got a few congratulations and one person ask me "Where is he then??" (he managed to say hi around 16-17k, and then saw me run in to the finish line. Lovely man.)
So my hubby and I managed to get downtown at a decent time, and I went to the set meeting point to meet up with my friend. Unfortunately, she was no where to be found, and I ended up moving to the corrals with two other acquaintances. At the VERY last minute, I found my running partner, and we got settled in. Suddenly, the largest BOOM I have ever heard in my life sounded, and I realized that the cannon signalling the start of the race had just been fired. Time to go!
The first 4k was great. Nice course, people were moving well despite there being major crowds everywhere. At around 5k, I realized that my running partner, who was supposed to be just aiming for under 2:30, was going way too fast. Looking down at my 2:25 pace band on my wrist, I realized we were ahead of it by at least a minute so early in. I knew I couldn't keep that kind of pace up for much longer, and by about 7k, I backed off and lost my friend in the crowd. I was a bit disappointed I no longer had anyone to run with, but I knew it was for the best for me.
Through until about 10-11k, I felt good. I remember looking down at my Garmin around 9k and being under an hour. GREAT. I took my first gel and kept going. Doing this in under 2:30 should be a piece of cake, right? Wrong. Somewhere in the wide open space between 11k and 14k, I lost my mental strength. My body tired and my stride shortened. I felt the need to fuel, get Gatorade, anything to keep me going. My mental wall was hit, I wasn't doing too well getting out of the funk. With no one beside me to urge me on, I felt like, what was the use? I looked down at my Garmin and saw my goals running away.
I had stopped to use the honey buckets, which I knew was probably just my body giving me a pseudo excuse to stop moving. While standing in line, one of the two acquaintances I saw at the beginning of the race ran by, looking concerned at seeing me. I had one of two options: give in to myself mentally and stay put, or catch up to her and try to use her as my personal pace bunny and race supporter.
That girl saved my race. She urged me on when I felt like I couldn't go any further, up the massive hill where I watched a young man lying unconscious, waiting for an ambulance. She told me I was doing great when I felt like I was barely moving. She set distances to go before walking. And we kept going. I felt like I was holding her back, but at the same time I was desperately trying to keep up with her pace. At around 18k, I looked down at my watch and saw it was almost 2:30. Mentally I knew I wasn't going to give up, but my B goal was gone. Time to readjust my mindset. I reset to 2:45, and said it had to be upright and smiling. I knew I could finish, and I pushed.
Those last 3 kilometers were SO LONG. There was a marching band playing some music, but between that and the final 100m or so, there were few supporters watching. I struggled and fell back from my friend, but always kept within 20m or so of her. Finally, she said we could see the finish line. Due to a curve in the road, I didn't see it until we were very close, and I decided to turn on the afterburners and give it all that I had. I sprinted across the finish line, and even managed to put my hands up in the air for a good photo finish (here's hoping!). I crossed the line with a time of 2:47:51, chip time 2:43:34. I placed 471/515 in my age/sex category, and 2279/2642 for the women.
Am I proud? Of my time, no. I refuse to find excuses for my time, like my knee was hurting, the course was so hilly, my feet felt like they were going to fall off. I have done better in training, and I am coming to realize that mentally, I don't seem to do well in races. I find that having so many people around me with faster paces is discouraging, and I don't find I have any boost from the elusive "race adrenaline" that everyone talks about. My brain just keeps telling me to stop. BUT I did finish, and I am very proud of that. My race buddy kept making comments like "you can make it" and I kept telling her I would cross the line no matter what. It was never a question of making it; I could never give up on the race that easily. I just wish I could find someone with similar goals to run with to get over the mental roadblock I face.
Post race injury inventory: Three blisters on my feet, despite wearing proper socks and body glide, one raw patch on the underside of one of the "ladies" and one very tender toenail, which may or may not decide to fall off in the future. I wear my war wounds proudly.
Would I do it again? I don't know. I don't think I would do it in a race without a running partner again. For now, I plan on focusing on 5 and 10k races (like my virtual 10k on 10/10/10!) and working on speed with those distances, before reconsidering the half marathon. But, I will never say never.
Sorry for the lack of photos, but I hope that this race report is good enough to hold you all over until the photos come in. My next scheduled run of any sort will be this Saturday, when I get up with my original running partner for this race (who ended up finishing with a PB of 2:22:10) for a 5k race before donning a bridesmaid dress and seeing her get married! Lots of excitement these days.
Will be back to post photos of running gear, race photos, and our disastrous cake later!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
War wound recap: Blisters on both of my feet, despite the fact I put body glide on them AND was wearing "blister-proof" socks with a one year guarantee (guess who's returning them to Running room?). Worried that one of my big toenails might disappear in the next couple of weeks, as it is feeling painful when pressure is applied to it. Hoping it is just swelling and that tomorrow it will be fine.
Cake is a bit of a bust, icing didn't fare well in the freezing, but the cake is still moist and nice.
Will have full recap, WITH photos, soon. For now, just looking forward to a quiet night with my hubby and a good night's sleep.
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Mmmm..... Spaghetti!!!! Just finished a huge plate of it, and am good to go for tomorrow!
Friday I went to pick up our race kit at City Hall. This is the first time that I picked up my kit in the same location as the race starts/ends, and to be honest, it scared the CR@P outta me. So many people, so much preparation made me feel weak and insignificant. But one I got into the tent to get my race timing chip, it kind of felt nice to see that my name was on the half marathon board with only about 6000 others, in comparison to the 5k, which has over 12000 participants. We got our chips tested, and went off to get our shirts, which are very nice long sleeve technical shirts that are black in the front with camo pattern on the sleeves and back (will get a photo soon!). I came THIS close to buying a headband that said "If found on ground, drag to the finish line" but couldn't justify the cost.
Today has been filled with last minute preparations and getting things together. I decided what I will be wearing, put my bib on my shirt and chip on my shoe, got a "post race kit" together that can address any of my possible complaints after finishing (hungry, thirsty, cold) just in case, taped my pace band to my wrist, and finally got my Garmin working the way it should be. Hopefully it decides to keep functioning through the race.
Now I get to sit anxiously for the rest of the night, trying not to panic and thinking about the morning. I may try to put together a homemade bib, primarily because I am an attention whore who wants people to know a) it's my first half marathon and b) I am doing it on my first wedding anniversary, but we'll see if that happens.
So, with nothing else to say, I'll sign off for the night, and try to get a race report back asap. It might consist of "ran good, finished upright, eating cake, update later" at first, and if so, forgive me. Thanks for all the support, and keep your fingers crossed for me tomorrow!
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Now, 4 days from my half marathon, I have confidence I never imagined I would have. I KNOW I can finish a half marathon, and I KNOW that no matter what, I will have a PB. It might not be the lofty 2:00-2:15 goal that I wanted originally, but I have decided that having fun is more important than bringing myself down over pace and speed. I will be running with my friend M whose goal is slower than mine, but I think we will nicely meet in the middle for a decent first half marathon time. So without trying to jinx anything, here are my A, B, and C goals:
A) I'd love to go sub-2:20.
B) I know I can sub 2:30
C) If all else fails, finish in a good mood (no smiles promised, but absolutely no grumbles allowed)
I know A is lofty. I think I will realistically be around 2:25. Fingers crossed.
The other thing that has changed in my life over the past three months has been my job, my outlook on job hunting, and my strength to persevere. Three months of rejections is HARD. Three months of searching for a position that just isn't there, or is so limited that here are so many candidates to fight with is also tough. But, thanks to some love from my friends and family, I kept going. I am happy to finally say that I have taken a job at a law firm!
I don't know yet if it meets the criteria of being "a firm that I love" but I will definitely learn about it over time. That being said, it brings new challenges of balancing life as a lawyer, 2 hours of commuting a day, spending time with my family and maintaining my running. So hopefully, that drama will keep all my followers interested... ;)
Today, I will go out and complete my last decent run before the half. Am debating whether I will do the 10K that is scheduled according to my running room chart, or a shorter distance closer to 6k, just to keep my legs fresh. I don't want to push it too much. Then tonight, picking up my new-newer-old car (new to me, 2009, but used), Friday race kit pickup, Saturday pasta dinner and Sunday race!!!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
So to keep you all amused, here are some great giveaways I have found in bloggyland. Enjoy entering!
http://teamarcia-runningmouth.blogspot.com/2010/09/headband-review-and-giveaway.html?showComment=1283873609568_AIe9_BHaCYcR4WjU-WPV-w8sb1fK9Y0FjIoNRcE2E0xmk6n_pS6OxHVhNG1YKbJQch9ggYNJ5yK5Fp0zx_UZ0SUJAwINhT6F2M6NE_a37iHcioNk4BwlWwj2BfzrGzsEKW5yAO2eRtZ8FomEwbBgN1ab3NjcKAGVWgV-b7L7zJLfb2__ZApfOQWiGJV2Qg7II9YRJ__A3YhiOL1OCUJmRjl2s67lNG-cSv_zwtgtSsse4XH0FfumlDIuZ2eqWI7fMy5Niv8EvcrMw_NzPuS-6t7bEgFZezcnYdk5vLbo8a4fn0zuJrYub1VkgweMMasmI-w1xnZwcMCdXSPzAmRB85ZNFW6hjS3Hv2oOGAXJiaVViqUD2O55LJwmNmHHDBT_yhJcHnGObaOd_jfwar8bOJqsGMF3YTGfD3OW5BobwO89q-2AwkIYG5Q#c3426595898673423276 - girl in motion headband
http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2010/09/september-garmin-forerunner-310xt.html - Garmin!!!
http://misszippy1.blogspot.com/2010/09/need-some-race-and-recovery-tights-look.html - Sugoi Compression tights
http://mommaof3ontherun.blogspot.com/2010/09/for-labor-day-my-spibelt-review-and.html - SpiBelt
http://runningdivamom.blogspot.com/2010/09/fuelbelt-product-review-giveaway.html - fuelbelt!
Monday, September 6, 2010
The last kilometer was killer, but overall, I am happy that I ran for longer intervals, was not overly winded, and most importantly, kept powering through!!!
I am supposed to name 10 things I like, and pass it onto 10 bloggers. Instead of trying to hand it off to ten people, since many of the people I follow/who follow me are tagged, consider this an open invitation to anyone reading; you're it!
Ten things I like (I decided to make it a list of the first ten things that come to mind that make me smile):
1. My family - my parents, my husband, my stepdaughter, and all those close to me.
2. Being employed!!
3. Blue skies and calm fall days
4. Mom's lasagna
5. My dog Daisy,because she's cute and crazy all at the same time:6. Fireplaces, pyjamas and s'mores
7. Sleeping in
8. Spending a morning in bed with someone you love, hugging, cuddling, reading
9. The thought that we soon might be able to move out of the ghetto and to a place with space to run and be free from the city
10. The fact that in thirteen days, I will have two things to celebrate: My first anniversary and my first half marathon!!!
Happy Labour Day everyone!
Saturday, September 4, 2010
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
This week I also had my first training session for my part time job (which I may have to ditch if I get one of the law jobs) and I finally went for an MRI on my knee, which I injured more than a year ago. Add on the planning of a bachelorette party, 40 degree heat and my futile attempts at getting out of my funk and into my runs, it's been pretty crazy.
But, here I am finally, back posting. And I came back to find, I am now an award winner! Honeybee over at mommy running through http://mommyrunningthrough.blogspot.com/ gave me this award:
and it has really helped me in getting out of my "taper tantrum" or peaking funk. So here are the rules for it:
1. Answer the question: If you had one chance to go back and change one thing in your life, would you and what would it be?
Aside from a bad relationship I would have cut off way sooner than I did in my teen years (don't we all have those) I think I would have found the motivation to slim down and get running at a younger age. Having a regular hobby just for me has been great. I have also got to meet so many great people through it!
2. Pick 6 people and give them this award. You then have to inform the person that they have been selected for the award.
1. Running off at the Mouth's Marcia! - because she is a cute smily mom who seems to face a lot of the same problems as me, almost at the same time! And she has rocking giveaways!
2. Laurie from the (Mis)Adventures of a Jogging Stroller Mom - because she is always commenting on my little blog, and is an inspiration, getting her runs in with 4! kids!!!
3. Meg from Worth a Tri - because she finally took a huge step in her progress from injury to success, and the post was super awesome and inspiring that everyone should see it!
4. Laura from My Reason to Run - because she is making a huge difference in the live of her own child, and the lives of other children affected by Joubert Syndrome. Everyone should donate to the cause, and sign up for her virtual race on 10/10/10 - say I sent you!!!
5.Leslie from Leslie's 30 day shred - Not a runner's blog, but Leslie is an inspiration, she is a great foodie and is dedicating herself to being honest to the virtual world about her efforts to lose weight and look great post baby. I wish I could admit the crap that I eat on a daily basis - I'm sure half of it wouldn't end up in my mouth that way!
6.Laura from live well, laugh often, run much - a fellow canadian who perserveres even when things get really tough. She is honest and realistic about the things going on in her life, and I like hearing it all.
3. You have to thank the person (people) who gave you the award.
Thanks again Honeybee - I think the award will help me out of my funk, and keep me accountable here. I mean, the next three weeks until my race will be epic and a whirlwind of craziness, so I have to make sure I write about it for your entertainment!