Tuesday, April 26, 2011

easter sun run 10k. the triple threat.

I am racking up the races this month, and the great race stories mind you. Saturday was the Easter Sun Run 10K and 2 Miler (i participated in both). I ran the 10k with AP and Shelley for fun. There was supposed to be a showdown between AP and I, but we decided to run as a group instead. That was a great choice.

The Easter Sun Run is a pretty big race around here, all the fasties come out because there is prize money! It is held in the Sedgwick County Zoo Park, a place where I have probably logged hundreds of miles running. It borders our city's incredible zoo (seriously, wichita may not be an impressive city but our zoo rivals any) so the race runs through the parks various wooded and scenic paths. If you run in the Zoo park on the right day you can not only smell the zoo, but hear the animals. It's a double edged issue. Saturday we experienced neither.

*before the race, this is us pointing out that we are the braintrust. we solve problems on the run.*

The 10K proved quite eventful, it was the triple threat for more reasons than one. There were three of us who ran it together. And together, we are a triple threat, plain and simple. But also, one of our to-remain-nameless-buddies (coughahem) had to stop and throw up during the race... annnnd then twice after. Now that's impressive, almost as impressive as the poo-ta-potty I navigated last week. In the vomiter's defense, the race directors might not wanna fire up the grill when runners are still running by. GUH. It was a bit much to run through thick beefy grill smoke at mile 5.5. GROSS. 

*there may have been vomiting, but there was also leaping, and laughing, and smiles*

 *just keeping it nerdy at the finish line, shelley was less than thrilled...*

One of my favorite things in the race, besides the vomit, was the dude who stayed behind the three of us most of the race and around the 9k mark and he was all "ya'll have far too much energy." Yeah we did, because we were just plain having fun! Which is why we did the race. We of course took that as a compliment. I'm not exactly sure that's how he meant it.

So here you go. How adorable is THIS I ask you? Our race results. Bam, bam and bam, MATCHSIES:

279 AARON ----------  32 M WICHITA KS 43/67 53:03 8:33
280 SHELLEY --------  32 F WICHITA KS ??/90 53:03 8:33
281 REBEKAH ROBINSON 32 F WICHITA KS 16/90 53:03 8:33

After the 10K I stuck around, talked to some people I knew including one 2 Slow 4 Boston who was our own personal race photog! Thanks 2 Slow! He took some great pics, and the pics in this post are pilfered from him (by permission natch). I should also mention he destroyed the 2-miler. After chatting with people I lined up to run the 2 miler with my sister and dad. It was a great morning. It just plain made me happy. I love that my sister lives in my city again and is picking up the running bug and going to races with me.

My dad and I ended up running the 2 miler together, my sister took off all speedy! So I talked his ear off as we watched all the kiddos around us do a run/walk/sprint/full stop sequence in a gaggle of limbs and mess. I asked my dad how in the world he managed running with FOUR kids during our annual River Run 2 miler. His response was that it was a disaster. I can imagine. Then he reminded me of the time one of my sisters ran right smack into a parking meter during one of the races. Awesome. It made me feel only slightly better about the fact I once ran into a pole during my own two mile race, except I was 28, not 8. But still, it just means it runs in the family? My dad is a saint. I'm sure we all make him proud.... right.

Friday, April 22, 2011

the oz half. pictures and the breakdown.

Okay, not a literal breakdown, more like the breakdown of my race, splits, so on. I am fully recovered from the Oz half, inside and out. I actually wasn't hurting much at all after the race. My quads were a bit sore but I think that was more from shivering for an hour straight rather than running. I've decided to view Oz as a training run and am looking forward to my next half next Sunday.

Basically I wanted to post pictures, tell stories and offer my mileage splits (all for me to remember later on). Other than the fact that the weather was awful, this was a nice, quiet, tame race. If you're into tons of spectators and a flashy course, this isn't a race for you. I love both flashy and low key races, and enjoy going back and forth between the two. I can enjoy aspects of both. There were a few cool spots on the course, but it was mostly running through open streets, including around a Hospital and a Mall. So the scenery wasn't anything outstanding.

*kodi and i pre-race, chilly! she was running marathon no. 4. and then there was some random chick doing karate kicks...*

The draw and beauty of this race is that it is the Oz Marathon, in the land of Oz! The logos are adorable, the medals fantastic and the shirts were cute. Being born and raised in the land of Oz, I couldn't help but get schmoopy over doing this race. So while I wasn't that impressed with the course, I am really happy I did it.

The highlight of the race for me was starting out (with the best intentions) with the 1:50 pacer, my second favorite part was getting adjusted by a Chiro after the race. Wow, it was amazing getting adjusted, it felt incredible! As for being with a pace group, I got to talk to and meet new people the first three miles before I left the group to make a pit stop.

*the race start, i'm right next to the pacer, can't see us very well but we are toward the front of the pic*

This is where I had one of my most... interesting race experiences ever. I mistakenly ran into an empty porta potty that some dude with a broom was holding the door open to. Just for me obviously. Then I stepped inside and immediately realized why he had been holding the door open. With a broom in his hand. Two words people. Explosive. Diarrhea. I have never seen anything like this, and instead of being sanitary, hopping out and moving to the next porta potty? I sucked it up as to not lose another second of time.

This is where my mad skills come in. Because there was explosive poo EVERYWHERE. I am happy to announce I didn't touch one bit of it. SKILL. It was on the door handle, on the seat, on the SIDES of the wall... I moved on from being disgusted to downright impressed. Because how on earth this person managed that impressive display of feces flinging is beyond me. So while yes disgusting, all I could do was laugh, shake my head, do my bidness and get the heck out of that sucker!

It. Was. Awesome. In that sick, twisted, runner, poo story kind of way. The only other thing I can say about this race is in regard to my belly issues. I mentioned I never have belly issues, but this race I sure did. Thinking back I'm blaming it on cheap hotel coffee that my body is not accustomed too (yes, judge me all you want, i am a gigantic coffee snob. but hey at least my belly isn't upset every morning). Around mile 5 my stomach started sloshing, which in turn made my gag reflexes kick in every time I even thought about taking a drink or Cliff Shot. I didn't know what to do.

So I managed the best I could, I knew I needed the Cliff Shots and Gatorade. I would just take it slowly. It took me a good mile to eat each of my two Cliff Shots and I didn't even go through my entire bottle of Gatorade (which is very rare for me). The good news is, I'm taking this race and turning into yet another learning experience and as a very difficult training run for the Wichita Half. Because in the end, a PR is still a PR. And a PR I did secure.
And now, TO THE SPLITS! And more pictures.

The Split Breakdown:
Mile 1 - 9:00
Mile 2 - 8:40
Mile 3 - 8:26
Mile 4 - 7:54 (where i tried to catch up to the 1:50 pacer while running into a headwind)
Mile 5 - 8:16
*this is right around mile 5 where i started having belly issues and started taking my first cliff shot. i nursed that sucker for a good mile. this pic gives you an idea what the wind was like, that's my fluff ball at its finest. and i love the dude in front of me, he went totally savage!*

Mile 6 - 8:18
Mile 7 - 8:16
Mile 8 - 8:38
Mile 9 - 8:36 (this is clearly where I started to fall apart and decided to think of it as a really hard training run.)

*this was around mile 12, one of the prettiest spots on the course. *

Mile 10 - 8:47
Mile 11 - 8:33
Mile 12 - 8:19
Mile 13 (and.1) - 8:48 (the last mile of this race was brutal)

*the finish line!*

 *i may have felt miserable but darn it i was going to smile for that post-race photo op*

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

the oz half. i should change my name.

Based on history and races where I want to do really well, I should really change my name. To Crappy Weather Runner. Seriously. The weather was awful on Saturday morning. Before I ramble on, I will say I did PR at the Oz Half. But not by much, not by enough. I felt like I worked harder and trained for a faster race than what I pulled off on Saturday.

Official Time: 1:52:48
Garmin Time: 1:52:09 (i had to make a pit stop and forgot to take my watch off of auto pause before the race, but now i know how long it takes me to pee during a race... in a porta-potty covered in explosive diarrhea. not mine mind you.)
7/107 AG
34/516 F
132/836 OA

The thing is that I can make a lot of excuses, the 25 mph+ winds and 26 degree wind chill. Lack of sleep. Stress. Not enough long runs. What have you. But I'm not going to make excuses, as badly as I want to. The truth is, I thought I could do it and I couldn't. I just didn't have it in me on Saturday. I loved the temps Saturday morning, but the wind, while it's something I was prepared for, sucked the life out of me by mile 7. At mile 5 I started having stomach issues for the first time EVER while running. I never have stomach problems, but Saturday oh my. I did. It just wasn't my day. And that's okay, I had a feeling deep down that it wouldn't be my day. It happens. It's called racing. You can't always do what you planned.

I'll share a lot more about the race in my next post. For now I'll just say I finished out the race feeling numb, from my arms and hands to my insides. I was so cold and so out of it after I finished that I couldn't stop shivering for a good hour, and that was after putting on a dry shirt and some sweats. It was awful. I couldn't think straight, during or right after the race. In fact, I still feel cold! And I'm pretty sure I made an incoherent call to the Edder after to prove to myself I wouldn't die. WHAT? I am nothing less than dramatic, people.

So. It wasn't my day, the race didn't go as planned. But. Per usual, I'm going to scrape myself up off the ground (i'm feeling better already in fact), pick myself up and move on to plan B. The Wichita Half marathon. I haven't done it in years, and my fire has been fueled to go and give it a what's what in two weeks. But now I'm doubting my training, doubting my stamina and doubting my ability to run faster. Period. I won't lie, it's rough. I chose to do half marathons this spring thinking it would help me get faster when I return to do a full, and here it is five months after my last half mari PR and it didn't seem to work. Again, I thought I trained harder than what I pulled off. My training didn't work. At least this time. It's a bit depressing.

I'm going to give myself a few days to wallow and then it's back at it. Because if there is one thing I can't do, it's accept defeat in running. Clearly it's a problem with me. Maybe this is a sign I should just stop beating my head against the brick running wall? Nah. The Wichita Half it is my friends. Wish me luck.

Monday, April 11, 2011

less than a week to oz.

I've got nothing blahgesphere. Nothing. Still busy, still trying to catch my breath. I managed a semi-decent running week last week. Once I recovered my orthotics and shoes from my dad's truck (that we borrowed for the relay race) that is. I wasn't happy about shoving all of my runs for the week into four days. But the good news is that I ran four days in a row, with zero pain. And for me? That's saying something.

Of course last week left me doubting and worrying about Saturday's race. But I decided if all else fails, I am just adding to my half marathon medal collection and running a race I've never done before. Every race can't be a PR, every race can't work out perfectly. I realize this, which is why I always take a healthy dose of skepticism (and a healthy dose of hope and confidence) into any race.

I'm planning to take it fairly easy this week. A tempo run is in the mix, but a shorter/easier one than normal. Other than that, I'm working on posting on Brew to Brew and the Rock the Parkway Half. Hopefully they prove more entertaining than my last few lame attempts at writing. And am hoping I can make the rounds back to read all the blahgs I follow, I had 500 waiting for me when I opened up reader this morning for the first time in two weeks. So then that's a good time.

Clearly my blahgging skills are lacking. I'm just hoping once Oz is over, and I'm done teaching (for the REST OF 2011, booyah! i decided to take a big fat teaching break, sweet relief) I'll feel a little less frazzeled. I am ready to slow down for a few weeks...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

two weeks to oz. big week.

Whew, it's been a week. Or two. Busy. And when busy seeps in, blahggie land gets neglected. All I have for now is a lame and quick update about Oz training. It's going well, I hit my peak week last week. This included running two races in two days--more on that later--and my hardest set of speedwork to date.

The good news is training has been going well since I've gotten over the sickies. And that's about all I have to offer. Training = good. Getting nervous butterflies in my belly for the race already. Enough said.

Week 11 Training:

Monday - Killer Spin (i had a weak showing, still wasn't feeling great)

Tuesday - 4 Miles Easy (finally back to normal, sicky wise)

Wednesday - Yoga Thursday - 9 miles of speedwork: 1 mile warm up, 5 x 1 mile repeats at 7:30 with 800 recovery, 1 mile cool down. This was supposed to be 10 miles total, but i have a job and had to get going. I'm just thrilled i didn't throw up or get injured. SUCCESS!

Friday - Rest

Saturday - 13.1 Miles Easy, Rock the Parkway Half Marathon in KC, running with the buddies!

Sunday - Brew to Brew, 4.8 miles on hills and in 35 mph winds. So that was fun. No idea what my pace was (i was that genius who forgot her garmin for her weekend of races), I was just trying not to get knocked over.