I thought I might do two races in one post because I accidentally scheduled two races in one weekend. Hubby and I signed up for the Heartland 39.3 Series back in October. Then there was the Mother’s Day 5K. I thought it sounded like fun and my daughter is old enough now. So I signed us up. Little did I know that it was Sunday after our Running With The Cows Half Marathon. The last half marathon of our Heartland 39.3 Series. Then I thought that might be a really long post. So I figure it was better to be fair to the experience to each race and to any readers I may have.
Packet pick-up was quite the adventure. I asked my husband if he thought we should all go as a family since it was at Scheel’s. We could use our Ferris Wheel tokens and eat at the Old Chicago that was really close to the store. Well by the time Hubby called to say he was headed to the store to meet me, the cat had an accident and I had a hard time corralling the kids out the door. We got there about twenty minutes past the pick-up time for that day. Hubby saw some of the ladies with Running With The Cows stuff and asked if they were leaving. That is when I noticed the time. They were super nice and one of them said she would go back up and let us get our stuff. I mean she really didn’t have to, but she was so nice to let us do that! We really appreciated it.
We got our stuff and bought the kids two mugs. One was pink for Baby Girl. They didn’t have any colorful ones out for Little Man so he took a black/gray one. We rode the Ferris Wheel in the store. Yes! They have a Ferris Wheel inside the store. The kids played in the play area. Yes! They have a play area too. Then we had to drag them out to eat. It was getting late and we needed to get them fed and in bed.
This was Thursday and the race was Saturday. So we had just a regular family dinner that night. I planned on going to the library and then picking up my race packet for the Mother’s Day run the next day. The library and Dick’s Sporting Good store were really close. So we lucked out on that too. I’ll put that all in the other post.
Let’s skip ahead to Friday night before the race. Boy was it stressful. My in-laws stayed the night as usual. They rented Ferdinand and invited my niece over to watch it with our kids. I planned on making spaghetti, but we had a lot of different leftovers as well. Hubby wasn’t home yet, but said he would be soon. My niece and our kids were getting hungry. So my father-in-law and niece ate leftover chicken enchiladas. My daughter ate leftover mac and cheese from Old Chicago. My mother-in-law, son, and husband ate spaghetti that I cooked fresh that night. I ate chicken rotini. Hubby was later than I thought and didn’t get a chance to eat with everybody else. Actually we all ate in shifts. He was the last. I do not like cooking. It is not relaxing or enjoyable at all to me. I like watching cooking shows but I do not understand the love of cooking. It is tiring and messy. I was pretty proud of the fact that I feed everybody and they were full and happy. I was also exhausted.
My in-laws took the kids to bed. My niece stayed the night. Hubby and I seemed to be having a good night, but then we got into a fight. I was so hurt that I just left in the middle of it. He stayed downstairs a bit while I went to bed. I have been taking this marriage/wife course which is really expensive. I tried really hard to apply what I’ve learned. It was just so hard with how hurt I was. We even argued on the way to the race the next morning. I had just had enough that as soon as we got there, I put my race number on and told him I would meet him at the end.
When I walked up to the start I saw the 2:30 pacers. I lined up with them and lo and behold my favorite pacer was one of them, Cristal. I was very quite while she talked to a lot of other racers. They all seemed upbeat and happy to be there. I was just hurt and felt very alone. I tried to keep up with her group. She is always so much fun. I smiled a few times at some of her jokes and stories. She also had everybody say Moo instead of Woooo at each mile. I was very sad to lose them at mile four or five. Running with them kind of cheered me up a bit. I mean I’ve never been around so many people and felt so alone. I really couldn’t think of anything else for the rest of the race but how hurt I was and how much I just wanted the race to be done.
I mostly walked after mile six. I saw some dark clouds and lightning in the distance. I prayed that they would not cancel the race so I could finish. I had joked around on my Facebook page that I wanted rain on Saturday and not Sunday. That way I could keep cool during my thirteen mile race and it would be nice and sunny with my Baby Girl for our Mother’s Day race. So far so good. It sprinkled a little bit. Actually the weather was quite perfect in my opinion.
I saw Hubby at the turnaround point. He must have lined up in front of me because I did not recall seeing him pass me. Here he was though, ahead of me. I wouldn’t even look at him. I wanted to cry but I just couldn’t. I’m not sure if it was my fear of crying in front of people or something to do with hydration. My time ended up being 2:50 and Hubby’s was 2:41. He was waiting on me. We walked inside together and ate together. We kind of seemed normal, but I still wanted to cry.
The food at this race is crazy. There is so much of it, but we just weren’t really that hungry. We ended up with chocolate milk, pizza, humus, cucumbers, and apple cider. It didn’t seem as crowded as last year. When we left the sun was out and our car was super dusty.
I finally got my cry a bit on the way home. I guess you could say we made up in the car before we went inside our house. We relaxed a bit with the kids after my in-laws and niece left. They were watching Paddington Bear 2 when we got home.
I have such mixed feelings about this race. I like the Heartland 39.3 Series, but the Running With the Cows course is sooo brutal. I think the thing I hate the most is seeing for miles and miles how far I have to run. It is one thing knowing it, but it is a completely different thing seeing it. I love the band and the kid with the drums and the aid stations. Of course the after race food is amazing if you aren’t too tired to eat. Like I said, mixed feelings.