Thursday, April 28, 2011

10 miles - DONE!

Well, well, well....  Despite the little bit big bunch of nerves yesterday morning, we finished survived 10 miles yesterday.  What does 10 miles mean?  It means - double digits; 3.23 5Ks; 1.61 10Ks; and 3.1 miles from a half marathon.  This is that funny place where people that have run long distances definitely welcome you into the fold and say with the utmost encouragement "You've done 10, you can definitely do 13.1.  A half will be a breeze...."  I can't say I agree with the sentiment that "...A half will be a breeze...", but I am now confident that we can do it and we will do well. 

A few negative things about yesterday's run....  Sarah and I decided to run earlier in the day in hopes of beating some crap-tacular weather forecasted for the afternoon.  Since Sarah had a meeting early in the morning, we met at 10:30 a.m. to run.  I guess I didn't think about the hottest part of the day being between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. - yesterday was definitely one of those days.  We trudged on toward Shelley Lake despite the heat/humidity.  It was 80-something degrees and so humid that I actually thought for a moment that I could move to Minnesota in the winter and be happy (For anyone that knows me, you know this is crazy.... I hate cold weather, snow, and everything about winter.)  Poor Sarah and I were ultra-whiny and couldn't seem to find anything good to say about running.  Geez....

Due to the humidity, I found myself hoping begging for some rain around mile 6.  I didn't want to say anything aloud about wishing for rain, because I just wasn't sure Sarah would agree.  Finally, just before mile 7, I did it - I said aloud "I just wish it would rain for a minute or two...."  Guess what??!!??  Not one minute later, it started to sprinkle, then it started to pour.  We had a good rain for about 3 minutes and it was absolute heavenly bliss.  Those three minutes helped me survive the last three miles - I wasn't so sure I was going to make it before that.

The half is only 17 days away.  If we can do a training run in yesterday's conditions with just the two of us, I think we'll be fine for the half - earlier in the day, hopefully less humid, and with our two other running buddies.  YAY!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Nerves getting the best of me...

For some reason, my nerves are getting the best of me this morning.  I took today off so that I could get in a 10-mile training run with Sarah.  Sarah will be out of town this weekend and I'll be heading out on vacation in the middle of next week. 

When I woke up this morning, I was so nervous!  I have no clue why.  I have a feeling that the idea of running a half marathon is freaking me out.  Jason and I talked about how hard we've trained and how well we have done so far.  Running 10-miles today and running a half marathon in 18 days should be no problem.  I have worked hard to get to this point and it will be great to accomplish this goal - now I just have to get the nerves under wraps.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Back in the saddle

I have not exercised in any form since last Thursday morning, well that was until 5:45 this morning.  That's five days of nothing - no walking, no running, no Arc trainer, nothing, nada, zip, zilch.  Now that you get where I am going... not working out for 5 straight days was so foreign to me. 

Why didn't I work out?  Well, I ran with Alisha on Thursday morning and could tell that my breathing was off and my throat hurt a little.  By Friday morning, I had a bad cough and by Friday evening I had no voice.  Saturday morning, I was supposed to do 8 miles around Beaufort and could barely move.  I was sick - yuck!  I ended up staying home from work on Monday and slept the bulk of the day.  By the time I got through the workday on Tuesday, I was exhausted and decided to take one more day off and vowed to get back at it on Wednesday. 

This morning, I met up with my awesome running buddies (Sarah and Alisha).  I wanted to run, but I was worried that the five days off would cause me to be extremely slow.  Thank goodness for Sarah being an awesome pacer!  There were several times that I could feel my legs saying "Go faster, go faster...", but I did my best to stick with Sarah and Alisha, as I knew Sarah had my best interest in mind with the pace.  We finished 2.5 miles in 32 minutes (not too much slower than normal). 

I think it's easy to say that my body was glad to be back in the saddle.  While my body enjoyed the few days of rest, it was ready to get back to movin'.  The run was the perfect thing for the beginning of my day.  I know that I probably say this way too much, but I am amazed at how far I have come.  When I started running in July, I couldn't imagine saying that I missed doing any sort of physical activity.  Now, my body and soul thrive on that time.  I love the "therapy" session and the health benefits - so great!  Lovin' this new me!!

Our first half marathon is in 24 days!!!  I can't believe it!  I am so full of so many different emotions.  I can't wait for May 14th to get here!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Weekend in Review

The past few weeks have been quite busy at work. Other than work there hasn't really been much to talk about, until this weekend.  On Friday afternoon, J and I headed to Carteret County for an awesome weekend full of family and friends.

After arriving in Carteret County around 2:45 p.m. we decided to go by my Granny's for a little while.  We had a family celebration of my Granny's 85th birthday scheduled for Saturday afternoon, but figured we'd stop by and say "hi" since we were passing through on our way to Beaufort.

We delivered birthday gifts and a housewarming gift.  I think Carly (my cousin Nicole's daughter) was jealous of the housewarming gift we gave Natalie and Chris.

Friday evening, J and I met up with Margaret and Jamie at Hannah's Haus.  Long story short, Hannah's Haus is a little tavern/bar in the back of the Gaskill's Hardware Store in town.  Hannah's is located in the part of Gaskill's where I used to regularly go with my Dad to pick up lawn mowers that had been repaired or to look at baby chicks.  It is so funny to see it as a bar, but it is a fun atmosphere. 

After hanging out at Hannah's for a while, we met up with Margaret's Dad and my parents for dinner at Clawson's.  As always, dinner was a blast - who couldn't have fun with the bunch!

I was supposed to get up early Saturday morning and run 8 (or so) miles.  When I woke up, I could barely get my breath because of being so congested.  I took some medicine and just relaxed until it was time to get ready to get moving for the day.

We went to my cousin, Jordan's, softball game.  She's playing Babe Ruth Softball for the first time this year.  When we got to Smyrna, her team was on the field and they were doing great.  The Down East Dolphins continued to do well and ended up winning the game!  Congrats to Jordan!

After Jordan's softball game, we headed over to my Granny's.  The whole family was there.  My Aunt Juanita and Uncle Harold live in Michigan and they don't get down to North Carolina as often as they would like.  My Uncle Elmer, Aunt Barbara, cousin Natalie and her boyfriend, Chris, live in northern Virginia.  They visit pretty regularly, but it is not often that we are able to coordinate getting the entire group together.  We grilled out and had birthday cake in honor of my Granny's 85th and cousin Nicole's 26th birthdays.  It was great!
Granny (center) with all her kids, grandkids, great-grandkids
(and spouses and significant others too!)
Granny with her kids - (left to right) Robert/my Daddy, Elmer,
Les (aka "Bo" or "Dee Bo"), Woody, and Juanita

Saturday evening, we went to see my Dad's church cantata.  I got to see a lot of people that watched me grow up.  They were all so nice and complimentary of my weight loss, etc.  It was a good feeling.  After the cantata, we went to No Name for dinner.  Unfortunately, dinner at the restaurant was cut short by the power going out.  We were fortunate that our pizzas were almost done and we ended up taking them home and eating there. 

I woke up still feeling pretty darn awful.  So, I missed my run once again.  Mama drugged me up with some Mucinex and Tylenol Cold.  After lunch, we decided to go ahead and hit the road back to Raleigh.

We were very grateful that the storms that ripped through North Carolina on Saturday didn't do a lot of damage in Beaufort or to our home in Raleigh.  While we were driving back, we were amazed by the damage in certain parts of our drive back.  There were several neighborhoods in Havelock that were completely flat.  We knew the storm did a lot of damage, but didn't realize how much until we got back home on Sunday evening and saw the news.  Our thoughts and prayers are with all the families that were affected by the storm! 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Girls weekend/Cooper River Bridge Run

Happy April!  I cannot believe it is April already!

This past weekend, the girls (Sarah, Alisa, and Jade) and I packed up and headed to Charleston for a much needed girls weekend and to run the 34th Annual Cooper River Bridge Run. 

We got to Charleston on Friday afternoon and headed to the Expo and pre-race spaghetti dinner.  In the back of my mind, I imagined huge pots of spaghetti sauce with women in hairnets dishing out sauce on top of our pasta.  The dinner was actually a "Taste of Charleston".  Some of the best restaurants, bakeries and the culinary school had various food items.  I think we all would agree that the macaroni 'n cheese from the culinary school was slammin'.  So good!

On Saturday morning, we got up at 5:30 and headed to Mount Pleasant.  This was after a night of my barely sleeping because I was so excited.  I think the only person that was more excited than me was Sarah.  The race organizers instituted a "wave start" this year.  While this is my first time participating in this race, I can imagine the absolute madness in the past without the wave start. 

Once the race got started, Sarah, Alisha, and I just trucked along at our normal pace.  When I saw the bridge on Friday evening, I though "Oh, well that's not so steep.  It'll be easy compared to the hills in Raleigh."  I was totally wrong.  Once you get past about mile 1.5, you start on the incline.  The incline goes until about mile 3.  That's about 1.5 miles of uphill, while dodging some of the other 40,000 participants. 

Despite dealing with the headwind and 40,000 other people, we finished in 1:21 - pretty dang good if you ask me. 

After the race, we walked around downtown Charleston and had lunch at Mellow Mushroom.  The veggie calzone that I had for lunch was the perfect finish to a great race. 

The weekend in Charleston was great!  I definitely think that the Cooper River Bridge Run will remain on my "must do" list for years to come.

By the way, our half marathon is 38 days away!!  I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I am about the half!  So, so pumped for the rest of the training and the actual race!