Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Only Half Crazy, Not Half Bad

The race Saturday was great.
I took the advice of a very wise friend who told me to "Run it because you LOVE it...lose the number.".

Though I tried to get to bed early on Friday night, I was woken up by an incredible storm around 11, and poor Emily had a rough night, up nearly every hour until I brought her to bed with me around 2. The alarm ringing at 3:45 wasn't the thrill it usually is on race day. But at least it wasn't raining when I woke up.

We had decided to try something new this time around-race day solo. Aaron is always so awesome about being there with me at races, but the poor guy rarely sleeps in, and I wanted to give him that chance (as much as is possible with a 3 month old), as well as being there to do breakfast with the kids.
So the plan was to feed Emily, pump, then head out with her sleeping soundly for most of the hours I'd be gone.  I'd be done by 9am, and home not too long after 9:30.  And Saturday continues happily ever after.
I love plans.

They didn't work.
After a rough night, once Emily finally conked out, she was OUT. I tried about every five minutes for nearly and hour to wake her before I left. Nothing. So I pumped as much as possible.

That rain that had stopped when I woke up? Downpour by the time I left.

Still-carry on!  It's race day!

As I drove out, the lightening started. Huge, unbelievable, light up the entire sky like the middle of the day bright, completely stunning lightening. It was seriously amazing. Not something I wanted to be out running in though.
Oh yeah, and that sleepy baby? I heard her start crying though my open bedroom window as I got in the car.  doh!
Thankfully I had left a bottle ready to go right next to her so Aaron didn't even have to get up, just roll over and snuggle with her while she ate, after which she promptly went back to sleep.

I got an incredible lightening show the entire drive to the race, and the rain let up a little.

The race was small, less than 200 people, which was well under half of what I expected.  I loved it!  While there are awesome things about big races, I really do love small ones.
There were only four busses needed to get everyone to the start, and since there was no shelter at the start we all got to sit on nice warm dry busses until it was closer to start time.
The rain stopped, the lightening stopped, and we were left with a perfectly cool overcast morning.
Running paradise.

I was so glad that I hadn't decided to bail due to the storm!

We started up Rose Canyon, an absolutely beautiful view.  Start was delayed about 15 minutes, but oh well.  It happens.

Gorgeous first three miles.  Awesome descent.  And some fun scenery, with a couple of small ranches that housed quite the assortment of animals-the standard horses, goats, sheep, pigs, and the not so standard llamas and emus.  And that one random house on the corner with one cow in the yard.  There were a few people who ventured out of their houses to watch, so it was fun to pass some friendly smiles.
Good news: apparently my running skirt is now too big.  Better news:  It didn't fall all the way off.
Not so great news: The sport beans and pieces of gum in the pockets were enough to pull it down and yanking it up every 30 seconds wasn't working for me, so everything went in my sports bra. (I had pumped sufficiently, there was room.  Moms understand.) Packages of sports beans plus car key in ziploc bag all stuffed in there equals little cuts and chafing.  Not so fun.  Lesson learned.

On the advice of that wise friend of mine I had decided to not worry about the Garmin.  I still wore it, but didn't look at it.  Worked out nicely.  Mostly.
Downhill plus race excitement equalled that fast start.  But I just ran by feel so maybe it wasn't too fast??  All I know is that in miles 7-9 I paid for it on the uphill.   I even walked that for a minute.  (but my ego remained in tact as it was a small enough race that no one passed me)

In the end?  I ran my heart out.  I hate the pace of those middle miles, but I did it.
I did beat that first half time but almost 8 minutes-and that was all downhill, so that's awesome.  I didn't hit that number I wanted to, which is not so awesome, but I'm ok with that.  Especially when I look at my later miles once I was up that very (VERY) long hill, and even more so when I look at what my splits were like running 13.1 last time I was three months out from delivering a baby.  Pace anywhere near 9min wasn't even on my radar then, so logging mileage in the 8:xx range, especially on mile 13 makes me happy.

Finish time: 2:02:07.
Yep, missed the sub 2 by two minutes and eight seconds.  Ouch.
It's conflicting to me to see that half of my race was run under 9min miles-including the last two-and know that I still didn't hit sub 2.  I know exactly where those two minutes went, and I played the "if I only would've kept running instead of walking!" game, and the "if I'd only pushed a little harder up that dang hill!" game, but in the end, I ran exactly how I needed to.  I ran by feel and I ran for fun.

I'd love to do this one again next year, I have a little stretch of hill I'm going to need to revisit....


XLMIC said...

Love it! Last year I did a 2:01 and a 2:03. Both included bathroom breaks...that were necessary :)

You are awesome. And a number is just a number :)

Anonymous said...

So encouraging to read!! I know you must have been soooo tired but you got up and you did it-even with the storm! I keep picturing my first marathon-October 28 in DC- and I'll be 3 1/2 months postpartum-in a hotel with all six kids the night before-getting up to pump and then running all day before I can nurse/pump again-all on very little sleep I'm sure! So to read about how it went for you gives me hope!!

Anonymous said...

'Mothers will understand' cracked me up. Three weeks ago I had a blocked duct and headed out to run after feeding the baby. I told my husband afterwards that that feeding really messed up the run since the bra I was wearing was no longer tight enough to stop the infected breast from hurting. Running with infants is never dull, that's for sure.