Saturday, March 8, 2008

Snow in MARCH

We have actually had snow twice in March this past week! And it was our first and only snows of the winter, so crazy!

Tuesday morning it was beautiful coming down and just barely starting to cover the ground. Went and met my running group at 5:30 and we all had slow recovery runs after racing on Sunday. But it was so cool to run in the snow. Of course nothing was canceled because the roads were fine and it was business as usual.

Then Friday we got dumped on, at least dumped on for Arkansas. Everything was canceled and lot's of people missed work. The snow continued for the most of the day but roads were no more then a little on the slushy side. Colin and I ventured out to the gym around noon and after lifting we headed to Murray Park to run in the snow.

The trail was slushy and cold, wet snow was falling pretty heavily at that point. Off we went with the wind at our backs. Our feet quickly got wet in the slush with each step and after the turn around we had the wind in our faces! We were soaked, pants were wet, feet and socks were wet. My jacket had a thick layer of snow sticking to the front. My baseball hat didn't keep the snow out of my eyes like I had hoped. I had to squint the entire time because of the snow pelting me in the eyes. But it still beat a treadmill! Somehow we ran a negative split even with the head wind, probably because we wanted to get to the end!

Finished 4 miles with an 8:36 pace and felt a lot better then I had in my earlier runs this week. Rough recovery from the race last weekend. So for this run, the only factor was the wind and snow in our faces! As we were driving away, I could finally open my eyes and see how beautiful it was out with everything snow covered and a curtain of white steadily falling.

I love snow days! A break from work, we were the only ones at the gym and the only ones on the trail. :)

LR Half

First of all, I just looked at the countdown and I can't believe it's only 6 weeks till Boston----That really freaks me out!!! I'm starting mile repeats this week, I have to! Tomorrow is my second 20 miler and then I'll have one more 20 three weeks out. So close to race day...

Okay, back to the Little Rock Half which was last weekend! I have had a crazy week at work, no time to post or read anything.

Got to the start in shorts, a tank and long sleeves after much stress over parking, streets were already closed, we finally got there. I have so much race anxiety over getting to the start in time and finding my people. Colin is way more layed back and once we finally got downtown, stopped at a pre-race porta pottie, he stopped to talk to someone and I had to jet out of there! Found Rock and Brenda and some other cruisers and I was finally relieved. When I realized I was sweating before we even started, I shedded the long sleeve shirt and Tim kept it for me in his bag with Rock's stuff. (Thank you!)

At first I was really annoyed by the slow start on a narrow street but soon realized it kept me from going out too fast, which was a GOOD thing. Of course I have to say if you're going to WALK and push a STROLLER, please, line up at the end of the crowd, not up by the 3:00 and 3:30 pace groups!!!!

Started out okay, but I was feeling tired early in the race and I truly think it was the heat!!! Ran the first mile in 7:52 and the second in 7:28, the first mile was good the second was too fast. Loved crossing Broadway and running past the Gospel group in NLR and then the Guitar playin' Rocker just before Karrot--those people have no idea how much energy they give off! In the beginning I looked up and I was holding pace with all my friends who I train with through the week, and we hadn't even started together! Kristen, Lea, Whitney all right there. Rock and I started together and she was just ahead of me. But by mile 4, I was already feeling that Heat-Fatigue business and had to let them ALL go ahead. It's okay, you gotta' run the race you have on that day.

By miles 8-10 I slowed down considerably and it felt so hot to me out there. Passed Dave, who trains with a group I meet on Tuesday-Thursday mornings and he was slower then normal too, like me. We finished just together within one minute at Wynne last November in 1:43, and today we were on a slower pace. I carried my own water and started to think I was going to finish it all off before the finish! Stopped one time for gatorade at the aid station after running Capitol. Took two gu's and probably should have taken a third.

Well, by mile 11, adrenalin started kicking in, I knew we were almost to the end. I was disappointed to turn off early and not get to pass Central, but glad for the shortened route. A couple of people were blaring "Walk This Way" from their mini-van on that street and it just cracked me up! I knew it was the marathon 12 mile sign after that because we had turned off early and plus my garmin had the distance, so the two 12 mile signs didn't throw me off. At this point, I had known for a long time that this was no PR and at least 6-7 minutes slower then my goal finish time, but I just wanted to get to the end!

I caught up to Lea in the last mile where she was getting water and I cheered for her to come on and run it in, she picked it up with me. I love it when people help me like that and know that's what we need out there! She pointed out Rock to me just ahead, and I was surprised to see her. I thought she would have been finished by then but the heat got to her too. So I started picking it up to try to catch up to her. By the last mile I had some SERIOUS adrenalin and wouldn't you know that was my fastest mile all day? I ran it in 7:24 and was so glad to be finished!!!!! Disappointed in a hat for my efforts instead of a shirt, but still got a medal! This race was just motivation to get in gear and start doing speedwork before Boston gets here.

Loved seeing all my friends at the race and sharing our misery in the heat and the joy of finishing anyway.