Saturday, May 26, 2012

Spring Lake Five

Let me start by saying that it was beautiful and breezy when we left the house. I wore my running skirt and a tank, and we took the train to avoid traffic. It was a half mile walk to the start, and the closer we got, the hotter it got. What?!?! It was at the beach!
10,000 Runners. 10K. CRAZY! I waited on line for the potty before the start just in case. The line was loooooong.

Over to the start with the masses, it was just NUTS!

Note the water bottle. I listened to the announcer saying to stay hydrated and carried that thing for the whole hour. I refilled it at every stop! I also took a mini bottle from some very sweet spectator. It was so nice and cold!
The weather, however, was not. 78* in the shade, and there wasn't much of that! It was very very hot and I was very very sweaty! I dumped water on my neck more than once, and stopped to walk a few times as well, mostly during mile 2. The course was beautiful! Spring Lake is gorgeous, and the victorian houses are so well kept! we ran around Lake Como and Spring Lake, and thankfully, there were 3 fire engines spraying water! The last mile was the worst, but the spectators were amazing, yelling that we were almost there and that we could do it!
Last half mile. An ambulance was coming to pick up someone who passed out. A couple running alongside me: guy telling girl she can do it. Girl saying that she can't. Guy saying she can. They sprint off ahead of me. As I crossed the finish, just shy of one hour, she was puking. There was a lot of puke. It smelled pretty bad!
I think this was harder than the Half, but I got my bling, and it was well worth it! It felt amazing to finish, upright and puke free. AND I beat a friend who beats me every time! WOOT!
SO glad I brought my daughter, because my finish line luck held fast (I have horrible luck with finish photos). Once again, there is a 2 minute window with no pics, and I crossed at that time!

OHHH, and of the over 10,000 registered, only 8,241 crossed the finish line!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Beach to Bay 5K

Okay, let me start this by saying that I *know* I am supposed to take a couple weeks off after running a Half Marathon. I had every intention of walking this race. Truly. I did. As.If.
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It was a beautiful day at the beach, 65* and sunny, and I had 2 friends also running. My daughter came with me and we brought my pup since the race benefits an Animal Shelter.

The race was your basic out and back, but the roads didn't get closed off, and it is a highway at the Jersey Shore. This, to me, is a deal breaker and may prevent me from doing this race again next year. People were going by pretty fast and it made me very uncomfortable!
The first mile was okay, but my shin started to hurt and stretching it made me nauseous so I started to run/walk the second mile. This, of course, made me mad, so I ran the third mile. My hip was sore afterwards, remnant of the Half, but my shin stopped hurting right away.
My time, you ask? 34:25 which is three minutes slower than my best time, but three minutes faster than my average time last Fall. Yay me!
My finish line pic, courtesy of my daughter, was UNflattering, but she did take this cutie beforehand, so we will leave it with that!

Oh, and my two friends totally beat me, as did my friend's 60+ Mom! Next week's race WILL go better! Another beach town run, but I am pretty sure the roads get closed for this one!

Oh, and after next week's ease back in to running, training sort of begins for the Philadelphia Rock'n'Roll Half in September. I will be running, but not as hard, and will really pick it up in July after vacation ends. This will  be followed by training for the Disney Marathon in January 2013. I also signed up for next year's Long Branch Half, and will do the NY/NJ Challenge if they run it again, which means a Half in Queens in March 2013. Crazy crazy me!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

NJ Marathon

OMG what a day!
My friend Julie came and picked me up at about 5 a.m. She was driving to the start with me, and my husband was picking me up at the finish line. It was great having her there until the start, a huge stress reliever! She went to her corral, one ahead of mine, and I went to my corral. It was SO exciting! Our wave finally started and we were off!
The race started at the Monmouth Racetrack, and wound through Long Branch to the beach. The first mile was a little crazy, people jockeying for position. There were a LOT of people there! Over 17000 between the Half, the Full, and the 2 relays. The first 5 miles were AWESOME, I was running 10:30ish miles, and really feeling amazing. There were lots of spectators cheering, plenty of water stops. Mile 7 I started feeling tired, and mile 8 was when the aches started. Left heel. Right Arch. One toe on my right foot. And the emotions. I am still tearing up.
Mile 11 was where my hubby was supposed to be. SUPPOSED to be. But he wasn't. I really really needed him to be there, where was he? Stuck in traffic? Did he miss me, and get there too late? Somewhere around mile 11.5 there he was, taking pictures!

I was so thrilled! He ran the last 1.5 miles alongside, taking pics the whole way.

By now I am at the beach, running along the boardwalk, the ocean to my right. Beautiful, gorgeous, just-right weather!

The last mile was pure hell, I won't lie. It felt so very long, and I was getting emotional, which made me gasp for air, which meant I needed my inhaler. But then all of a sudden, there it was: the finish line.
The most beautiful sight I have ever ever seen! I crossed it and my time was around 2:35:15 which is almost 2 minutes faster than my goal!

I am so glad I took the leap and decided to challenge myself, what an amazing feeling! I got to see my fundraising team mates at the finish as well, which was just the icing on the cake! Go Team Cancern Concern Center!