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Do I Know Storm?

We did two half marathons one weekend after another. Man, it didn’t seem like that bad of an idea back in October when we signed up for the Heartland 39.3 Series. Of course in 2016 we did the Goofy and then we did the training for Superhero weekend in Disneyland. So we were still in better shape in 2017. This year we haven’t done any Disney races or any “official” training programs. We can definitely tell the difference.

I mean I still do a base level type thing that Galloway does for the Disney races. I run from forty to forty-five minutes two days a week and then one long run on the weekend. Although my weekend long runs haven’t been that long. That is probably my problem.

I was really, really dreading running another half marathon. It wasn’t the miles it was the . . . weather! It looked cold and rainy for Saturday which to me was worse than snow. I can handle rain as long as it is warm. I’m not big fan of the cold even if it is dry. I prayed about the weekend. I even asked for assistance from any mutant friends I may or may not know on Facebook. I just wanted the rain to stay away long enough to do the race.

My kids made out again at the expo for Garmin Half Marathon. They loved the Oz cutouts. We got some pictures with them. The kids also decorated some trucker hats from State Farm. While we were there I just kept looking outside at how beautiful it was wishing it could be that way race day.

 

My in-laws stayed that night again. We had pizza for dinner and I thought maybe it wasn’t a good idea. We were hungry and tired, and it was quick, easy and tasty. Hubby had to work a little late. He was so tired when he got home. It seemed to be the theme for the evening. Everybody was so tired. We just ate the pizza and called it good.

This race is even earlier than Rock The Parkway. They moved the route back to the Garmin headquarters. I believe it was the same route I did in 2014. It was cloudy but not as cold as we thought it would be that morning. I was so thankful for that.

I thought that finishing under three hours would be a miracle. The fact that I did worse than Rock The Parkway was still jarring though, but I’m jumping ahead. There were a lot of cute costumes. They were all Oz themed of course. I didn’t see any dragons or anything like that this year. It stayed cloudy, but it did not rain! There were some big drops that sprinkled on us around mile six, but it never let loose. Some people untied rain jackets from around their waist to put on or put up hoods and such, but it never really did anything.

I can’t think of anything exciting during the race. I thought I might have a good run during the first half of it. Hubby wasn’t doing well. Then I kept feeling like I needed to go to the bathroom, but only when I ran (Yup, I went there). When I walked I felt fine. I’ve never used the porta potty while running. So I just sucked it up and ran on anyway. I think if I had stopped and tried to use the bathroom, I might have felt better and had a better run. Hubby ended up staying ahead of me the whole time.

Near Arrowhead Park I saw some marks on the street that hashers make, but I did not see any hashers. I saw a true trail arrow, a beer near or BN, and On On. I thought there might be a beer check there, but I was bummed when I didn’t see any hashers. For a second I thought the hashers were doing and aid station like Little Rock and some other hashers do during marathons.

My time ended up being 2:42 and Hubby was 2:39. It was still cold. We grabbed a blanket that was prepackaged in a tiny Ziploc, but we didn’t put it around our shoulders. We grabbed a Chuy margarita. It was good. They had a band under the parking garage. We parked in the garage as well. So after drinking our drink we headed toward the car. We got some water and chocolate milk too. We changed our clothes and moved the car closer to the after party.

Before we went to the car we saw some people with yummy smelling burgers all wrapped up in foil. I really wanted one. I tried to get Hubby to get one before going to the car, but he really wanted to change clothes. Then when we got back he wanted, “something to drink while standing in line.” By the time we got in line to get the burger they had the meat patty but no buns or anything else. Now I know people who eat burgers with no bun and I just find that really, really weird. I can’t stand ground beef by itself no matter how well seasoned it is. I must have bun, cheese, pickles, mustard, mayo, tomato, and lettuce. I mean just about everything but ketchup. I know they don’t always offer that so I usually settle for cheese and at least one condiment like mustard. So when I heard there were no buns I gave my husband “the stare.” You know the one that says, “I knew we should have come here earlier.”

He tried to fix it by asking them for a hot dog bun, but they were frozen. They had them grilling on the grill to get them thawed. We started to walk away, but then they handed me one thawed. I broke my patty in two and tried to eat it on a hot dog bun with mustard and no cheese. It was not satisfying at all. My husband was shocked that they would run out of stuff like that so soon. He was concerned about the slower people who ran the full marathon. He was right. It takes me about six hours to do a full marathon. If I had chosen to run this one there would be nothing left for me when I got to the finish. Actually that is what happened on my first full marathon. They basically had everything packed up and ready to leave.

When I got home I had to joke around on Facebook. I mean I asked any mutant friends to keep the rain away until the race was finished and there was no rain. I had to joke around that maybe I did know a mutant that could control the weather like Storm. I had some friends think it was silly. Oh well, I thought it was funny.

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April Be Cray Cray

So I don’t read a lot of running blogs. Honestly, I don’t read a lot of blogs at all anymore. I used to have quite a few that I read when the kids were little. Now I mostly read children’s books to the kids (which I LOVE to do by the way). Anyway when I have read some running blogs I get a little bored when they go on and on about the weather. So I will try to do just one short paragraph and leave it at that.

April be cray cray. I mean it has snowed two weekends in a row with a high of 83 degrees in the middle of the two. I mean I think I would have been less bummed the morning we did Rock The Parkway if it had been cold and crappy all week. I would have thought, “Huh, okay. It just is what it is and it’s been that way all week.” But Nooooooo! It was beautiful and up to 83 degrees two days in a row before the race day. Seriously, Mother Nature? Oh and since we signed up for the Heartland Challenge, we have the Garmin Half next weekend. I looked ahead at the weather forecast and it is going to be a smidge warmer with rain instead of snow. UGH!

So let me rewind a bit to one of the pretty days. I picked up our race packets with the kids. They always make out with candy or some other trinkets at one of the other expo stands. Little Man didn’t want to go in with me at first, but he was skipping and happy when we left. Both kids got a little plant, some suckers, and a light up wrist band. I picked both our Rock The Parkway packets and our Heartland shirts.

My in-laws stayed the night like they normally do. About this time last year my in-laws were upset with our cat for making noise all night while they tried to sleep. Little did they know it was a momma fox outside. She had pups under our deck. Well at least one fox is back this year. It didn’t make much noise because we turned the light on and peeked our heads out the window. It saw us and ran away. It was a beautiful fox. I mean it was big and picturesque. It didn’t look like the mom or dad from last year. Maybe it was one the pups all grown. Long story short, we know what the fox says.

Hubby was stressed about taxes and I was worried he was going to stay up all night, but thankfully he went to bed even if it was past midnight. We got up and got out without too much trouble or fighting. He was slightly worried that we were under dressed. That is unusual for Hubby. Usually I over dress so he follows suit. It was so miserably cold (oops, sorry, keeping the weather contained to one paragraph maybe be harder than I thought).

We lined up and of course the body heat kept us warm. Our training has been crap so I thought we would be lucky to finish at all much less in the 2:30 group, but that is who we lined up with at the beginning. One of the 2:30 pacers was my favorite, Cristal. We were a little ahead of her. I thought I would stick with her and enjoy her stories during the run. No such luck. She passed me at mile three and I never saw her again.

I was a bit dizzy two times at mile two and a little after mile three. I felt a little better after about two Dixie cups of Gatorade. I took my gloves off and pushed up my sleeves and thought things might be alright. Then I got passed by a guy not only dressed as a cowboy but wearing cowboy BOOTS! How on Earth does he run and not get blisters? I should have asked. He had a flask in his back pocket while carrying a huge flask in his hands. He also had on a cowboy hat. I wanted to take a picture, but I don’t think I could get to my phone. I did tell him he reminded me of a hasher friend of mine. He likes to dress in cowboy attire, but he also likes to show off his legs by wearing Daisy Dukes. This guy actually did not know what Daisy Dukes were.

Hubby was waiting at the beer stop. He was wondering how he was faster than me since I run more than him. The only thing I can think of is the fact that the cold we all got seemed to hang on to be a lot longer than the rest of the family. I think mine turned into a sinus infection eventually. All my training runs were crap. I would have a big wad of tissues on my treadmill to throw away later. He’s been cycling so it isn’t like he doesn’t do anything.

I didn’t see hubby again until about mile eight when I started to hit my first big wall. The longest training run I’ve done since Eureka Springs (St. Patrick’s Day) and my cold is eight miles. So I was feeling it here. Then it started to mist. It was getting really cold. I noticed my arms were really red where my shirt sleeves were pushed up to my elbows. I pushed them back down and realized I couldn’t feel them. I was worried. I could feel my fingers, but my arms were numb. I put my gloves back on my hands just in case. Then Hubby passed me again after he was done at the porta potty.

I picked things back up again at mile nine. I think this is where it sleeted on us a bit. I was worried it was going to do that on us the rest of the way, but it cleared up before mile eleven where I hit another wall. That was also about where I lost the icicle that was on my hat. I hoped that it would be there until the end so I could take a picture, but it broke off at some point. There was a lot of walking from mile eleven on to the finish.

I don’t normally get the mylar blankets, but I sure did grab one this year. I was so sore. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to get my foot up on the bucket for them to cut the timing chip off my shoe. I decided this was the second worst race I’ve done behind Pike’s Peak Half. Of course Pike’s Peak Half is a great story.

I called Hubby and he finished first this year. My time was 2:38 and his was 2:36. It is hard to believe I’ve finished the race in 2:20 in the past. I think it might have been the year I had just done the Goofy Challenge. So I guess that makes sense since I trained for a half and a full marathon back to back just a few months before Rock The Parkway.

Hubby was waiting at the beer truck. All the good beer was gone. They had some horrible fruit beer. Hubby and I are not against fruit beer if it is good and this was not. We got chocolate milk and a few small pieces of soft pretzel. I just wanted to get the heck out of there. We did our usual picture in front of their backdrop though and headed home.

We asked my in-laws to take the kids to their Taekwondo lesson while we ran. They were still in their uniforms and playing when we got home. Hubby took a shower first because he doesn’t like it that hot and doesn’t take a long shower. I knew I would probably use all the hot water. It was the only way I could feel somewhat like normal again.

Sorry I didn’t contain the weather to my one paragraph, but it was just MISERABLE! I’m so crossing my fingers for better conditions next weekend. I’m going to take it easy this week. I’m still going to do my regular runs, but I don’t think I’m going to push it.┬áNow to be fair, this is a great race. My experience has more to do with the weather and my training than anything that the race officials or anybody else could control. We will probably do this one again. We usually do.

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