Monday, December 20, 2010

Running a Turkey Race with Mom

Mom and I, post-race, we didn't plan to match! :)

Thanksgiving Day 2010 marked my Mom's first time to ever run 5 miles, and she chose a race to meet the distance goal! I decided to skip out on a local 10K race here at home in Rochester, NY, which I've run the previous two years since moving here, and went home a day early so I could race with my Mom.

Turkey Day morning we awoke to chilly temps and steady rain! But of course that didn't stop us from putting on our running clothes and running shoes to head out the door to the race. Along the 20 minute drive from my parent's house to the start line, we were laughing at ourselves for what we were about to experience!

We parked and ran from the car to packet pick-up, which was a small tent where other runners were huddled picking up racing numbers. Race bibs and goody bags in tow, we ran back to the car to wait a few more minutes, hoping the rain would lessen. Up until now we were relatively dry since we had rain jackets on, but I had to shed mine down to racing clothes in order to go and stand in the porta line before the race started. Standing in line, I got SOAKED! Oh well, what are you gonna' do??

Finally it was time to line up at the start, and we did! The race director led a pre-race prayer, which I thought was awesome. This race benefitted a shelter that helped homeless women and children called Hope Alive. It was humbling to think of others with no shelter from the cold and rain that we were experiencing at that very moment.

The gun went off and everyone was running! A half mile in we met our first big hill! I just pushed up to the top and started praying for my Mom to be able to run strong on that hill when she got there. This race was all through country roads and turned out to be full of big rolling hills! What a great course for your first 5 miles! (Insert sarcasm.) However, the rain actually stopped completely by the end of my first mile and it was suddenly great running weather! The only thing cold on me were my hands and after two miles they warmed up and were fine for the whole race.

I finished and then ran back out along the course to meet up with my Mom and run her in. I came to her after about .75 miles, turned around and ran in with her. She was doing amazing! Her pace was steady and strong, she had done fine on all of the hills we'd encountered, and was able to easily have a conversation with me. There we were, running it in, and talking. I'm so proud of her! She ran her first 5 miles ever, and she just turned 60 in August. But what else would you expect from a Mother of 5 and a High School English teacher? She also has always had major bicep muscles even though she's never lifted weights until recent years. (She always used to say "From carrying groceries and babies..." while flexing her cool muscles at our insistent requests--usually at the dinner table.)

I finished in 39:27, which was 33 seconds slower than I finished a flat 5 mile race last April, but I'm happy with it. Mom finished her first ever 5 miles in 56:21, hills, rain, cold, and all! At the end we posed for a picture with a runner who ran the entire race in a full-on turkey costume, too funny! By the way, this race was called the "Wattle Waddle: Thanksgiving Day 5 Mile Race," get it??? The turkey has a "wattle" and we all were going to "waddle" to the finish line? Cute, huh?

Gobble, Gobble!!!

Congrats Mom! I have big plans for her, next up a 10K, and one day a half marathon, and I'll leave my other goals for her unwritten... :)

I did run the Dallas White Rock Marathon on Dec. 5 and totally loved the course, though I had a painful race due to my IT bands. I'll run it again one year and will blog about it soon, marathon #19 was a success!


Jen said...

AWESOME race report. Would love to run a race with you all... and better yet, to get Linz and Janet and my mom in on it too!

Wendy said...

How awesome to be able to do that w/your mom!

caroldawngoodpaster said...

You should be a sportscaster or write a blog book. You make race running sound enticing--at least it works for me! I've loved our shared experiences and definitely want to do more. Body and mind training are acquired tastes I am developing.

Kate said...

wow kristen, your mom is awesome!! way to go mama!!
i love races with great causes. your time was awesome!!
and i cannot wait to hear about your 19th marathon at white rock! running with it pain is NO fun but so happy for you to have got it done and call it a success nonetheless!
happy new year to you!