Thursday, January 29, 2015

Flannigan's Rock'n Rib 10K- October 26, 2014

It has been so long since I have written. I am sitting at the computer, preparing to write, feeling overwhelmed by the laundry list of races that I still want to recap for my blog, and wondering where I will ever find the time (let alone the energy). Because of this, and in an effort to catch up a bit, this post will be somewhat short and (hopefully) sweet.

I hadn't originally planned to run the Flannigan's Rock'n Rib 10k, but my dear friend Vikki convinced me that she wanted to run a 10k the day immediately following her first half marathon (the Halloween Half Marathon in Miami Beach). She insisted that she wanted to do it, and I thought it would be nice to log some extra mileage... I certainly wouldn't be racing a 10k the day immediately following one of my first half marathons after the great foot fiasco of 2013- 2014, but going out there and enjoying a nice run with a friend would be nice.

But then Vikki realized that she didn't really want to run a 10k the day after her first half. I was sad at first, but then I invited my good friend Seth to join me. This race was only about 20 minutes from my house and had a later start time than I am used to, so that meant that I was able to sleep in a little while waiting for Seth to pick me up at my house.

One thing that you should know is that prior to this race, I had only once ran a 10k. While I really enjoy the half marathon distance, 10ks and I have a love hate relationship that is mostly just hate-filled. I hate 10k races almost as much as I hate 5k races, and the reasoning behind it might surprise some. I can only explain it like this: the 5k and the 10k feel much longer than half marathons.

Logically, I know that this isn't the case, but they just feel like they last forever. Whereas with a half marathon, I can really zone out and turn in toward my own thoughts and mental processing, in a 5k or a 10k, I feel like I always have to be focused, and because of that, I feel each and every step... and the race feels like it drags on forever.

So knowing that about this race, I didn't really have high expectations. It was an out and back course starting at a local park. You ran 5k north on main city roads, then turned around and ran the 5k back. The race started later than I would have liked, so it was already fairly warm in the hot Florida sun by the time I was even 2 miles into the course. I had really pushed it the day before at the disaster of Miami Beach Halloween Half (which I had to walk the majority of because I was so under-trained from Foot-mageddon), so I didn't have high hopes. But I wanted to go out there and give it my all.

I started slow, and found myself quickly limbering up and increasing pace as I ran each run intervals with the Galloway style 30seconds run/30seconds walk plan. It was tedious, and I was bored, but it was a 10k, I was expecting that.

Around Around mile 4, I realized I was leap frogging with another girl. Our intervals were not matching up, but she was also doing 30/30 intervals and we kept passing one another. We did this for about 2 miles until we returned back into the park for the final stretch. She was looking like she was gassed, and I offhandedly goaded her on, suggesting that she was going to let me beat her. We both giggled, and continued along. I was in front of her, and I could see the finishline.

I had about 20 yards left before the final timing mat, and I was entering the chute when I saw Seth standing there, cheering me on. I smiled ear to ear, happy to be finishing. Then out of nowhere, the girl I had been leapfrogging with, sprinted by me on the left hand side, daring me to beat her.

I gave chase, pulling out all the stops. I was definitely exhausted, but I took her challenge. Both of us sprinted full-bore to the finish line as the crowds let up whoops and hollers. The crowd was so excited watching us barreling toward the finishline (two overweight back of the packers giving a wild competition), for a moment there, I felt like we were fighting for first place in a marathon!

I wish I could say that I beat her, but I didn't. I was a split second behind her, but that didn't matter... I was still a winner.

I would definitely run this race again, although by the time I finished the beer and the ribs were gone. I'm a vegetarian so not having ribs there for me at the finish wasn't a big deal, but I was sad about no beer.

Gun  1:37:20
Chip  1:33:44
Pace  15:35
Div  80/87
OA  886/930

Monday, January 5, 2015

Wrapping up 2014, ringing in 2015

Happy 2015! As I sit here thinking about all of my accomplishments of 2014 and planning my goals for 2015, I am reminded about how far behind I am with my blogging and my race recaps from the previous year. If you will allow me, I'd like to skip ahead to my yearly wrap up and goal setti
ng for 2015, then return to finish blogging about the last few months of 2014. It will be a little disjointed, but to me, it seems to make sense.

The number one goal that I had in terms of running this year was to have completed 520 miles. For some more experienced runners, this might have seemed like a really lame goal, but it was just slightly higher than the goal of the year prior, and considering that I spent the last half of 2013 injured, setting this nominal goal for 2014 seemed doable. At the end of the day though, I hadn't counted on being sidelined with foot complications, and this goal was just not attainable.

After calculating and recalculating my tally for the year, I finished having traveled 323.11 miles.

In some respects, I am happy that I was able to do this much, and in other respects, I am saddened that I set a goal and wasn't able to meet it. I hate not finishing what I started, and it feels like I have let myself down. Husbeast keeps telling me to open my eyes and see all that I did manage to accomplish this year instead of what I wasn't able to accomplish... so here goes.

This year, (although I haven't finished blogging about all of them), I completed

  • 15 half marathons
  • 2 10K races
  • 1 6K race
  • 2 5K races
  • 1 4K race
  • 1 race that billed itself as a 5K OCR but came up lacking

and the most important distance race of my life...

  • My dissertation was completed and successfully defended, earning me the title of "Doctor."

I also was able to check off another 6 states in my quest for running a half marathon in each state of the United States (KY, TN, MS, AR, LA, UT).

As I think toward next year, I have one goal... and that is to finish what I started last year and reach that number of 520. This year, I will do it.