Saturday, April 28, 2012

Robie Creek Half Marathon Recap

My awesome sticker from the race.

The week leading up to Robie I was excited but also nervous. My left shin had been hurting more than usual so I took the week off to make sure I could run the race. It was feeling better closer to the race, so I hoped it would feel ok to run on and if not I figured I could just walk, which I knew there would be a lot of for the first part of the race anyway.

Since the race didn't start till 12pm I went to watch the first part of my son's baseball game. I had had one of my usual pre race breakfasts, a bagel and peanut butter, but took a clif bar cause I knew I would need to eat something before the race started. I also was drinking lots of water cause the temps kept increasing. As I drove to pick up my brother I tried to eat some of the clif bar but only managed a few bites cause I wasn't very hungry.

Since the start and finish for the race were in different locations we had to go to one of two bus drop off points. Once we parked I was re-applying some more body glide when another racer approached us and asked if we new about the bus situation. My brother and I, as well as him, were under the impression that a bus picked us up there and dropped us off at the start. That wasn't the case! The bus only dropped us off there after it was over so we were supposed to car pool to the start. Luckily this guy offered to take us and we would meet at the end of the race, ride the bus back to my car and drive him back to his car (it didn't end up working out this way but more on that later). I was really glad my brother was with me cause I wouldn't have just got in a car with a random guy, all though he was very very nice, you just never know.

We finally reached the starting area and the sun was already blazing! We waited in line for the porta potties and decided it was a perfect time to take some pictures.

I decided to wear my black tank after all.
We were matching but not necessarily planned. He was already planning on wearing the red shorts and I offered him one of my unisex race tech-t's that I hadn't worn and knew would match his shorts.
Sun was too bright!
Side note: About that time I got a text from Gene saying my son's baseball team won and had beat one of the best teams in the league that had been beating all their opponents by a lot, we ended up beating them 6-0!!! Go Cardinals!!

We ended up seeing one of my friends from high school and chatted with him for a while. He had ran Robie last year in 1:44! He was hoping to beat his time this year. He is super speedy! I should have asked him how fast he runs a flat half marathon in. I told him we would see him about an after after he finished :)

Once we headed over to the start there live band playing which was added to the excitement. We grabbed a couple of cups of water and before we knew it it was time to start!

Band in the semi to the right, drummers in the center at the starting area.
Going under the dragon! Just under that is the starting mats.
The first mile flew by pretty quick. We started towards the middle of the pack so it was pretty tight and I weaved a bit to get try and get a stride going.
I saw a silver sparkle skirt up ahead and new it was a local blogger so I said a quick hi! Then a little bit up ahead a saw a patient from my work who I knew was also running and said hi to her. She was wearing a crab hat so she wasn't hard to miss :) There was a nursing home off to the right so there was a lot of the residence sitting outside waving and giving us high-5's.
After that we were going thru a neighborhood and there was lots of people standing outside their homes also giving us high-5's. I saw a few of them out there cheering us on while holding a cold beer, taunting us haha.

After a little bit we finally reached the dirt road and canyon area that really made the dry heat beat down on us.  At the water stops I was taking 2 cups of water cause the last thing I wanted was to get dehydrated. I had let my brother use my hand held but I was actually ok with just drinking from the water stops. In fact I actually stopped taking as much water and would only take sips cause my stomach started feeling full. I decided to take my gels based on hours instead of miles like usual. So at about an hour in I took my first gel. I gave my brother some sports beans and he took those every few miles too. I figured those would settle with him better than gels since he had never tried those.
Did I mention this was his first half? And that he didn't train for it? That's right he decided last minute to buy a bib off his friend. He is CRAZY. He is in very good shape and works out about 6 days a week though, but he just isn't a runner. He had only ran 4 miles the Wednesday before the race. See told he's crazy, maybe a little crazier than me! :)

I don't quite remember how often they had water stops but it felt like there was a lot of them and I was thankful. Some of them had misters thru them which felt great. We did lots of walking and running when we could. It actually felt good to walk, not necessarily because of the incline but more because it gave my body a chance to cool down. Every once in a while we would feel just a small breeze but it didn't last long. We were running near a creek for a few miles and it made me want to just walk thru it and get my feet wet just to cool down, I resisted though.

Up, up, up we go!

As the trail got steeper everyone was walking. I saw so many people walking with their backs hunched it was making my back hurt and I just wanted to tell them to straighten up. My brother on the other hand is such a joker and wanted to slap people on their butts and tell them good job when we passed them, he didn't though but we laughed thinking about how people would react to that haha. There was a water stop right before the summit where they were offering hot cheetos, whipped cream shots and sushi. All I could think about was gross warm raw fish. Yuck!

Finally about At about 8.5 miles and 2:02 hours into it, we finally reached the summit! I took another gel and a quick picture.

We made it to the top!
Besides the heat I was feeling really good and ready to run! The first mile down hill felt really really good. There was some shade and a breeze. I had to hold back a little so I didn't go to fast and risk tripping over rocks and falling. 
The shade and breeze were short lived and the dry heat was there once again. At about 11 miles in my brother was starting to feel the effects of long distance running. His legs were starting to cramp up and he was getting a side ache. We ran when he could and walked when he needed too. I was just so proud of him for doing so awesome and I stuck by his side the whole way. I was grateful for the company! I finally saw the 13 mile marker and started running ahead told him come on lets finish it strong so he sped up and we crossed the finish line together!

Garmin time: 2:49:28
Chip Time: 2:49:43
Gun Time: 2:52:55
129/181 in my age group
(Brother was 160/190 in his AG)
1740 and 1741 out of 2466 runners

The overall winner ran it in 1:21:34!!

Here's our splits and the elevation map:

After we crossed the finish line we got our "trinket" which was a bottle opener.

We also got our finishers shirt.

I wish they were tech-t instead of cotton
We then walked over to get our food, baked potato, rice and a cookie and then got in line to wait for our post race beverage!

I ate half of the baked potato and only a few bites of the rice cause I didn't really like it.
I did enjoy a few sips of my beer...

After about 30 minutes of hanging out we decided to go wait in line for the bus ride back to the car. At that point the line was extremely long! We ran into my friend from earlier who ended up running the race in 1:49. Still fast to me! We ended up waiting in line for about 45 minutes before we finally got to get on the bus. Only to have to get off 15 minutes later at the first stop and have to transfer buses for another 20 minute ride to where my car was parked.

We felt like we were back in school riding the bus again :)

My friend Juan who ran the half in 1:49 and his wife Jessica who was my best friend all thru high school and jr high
While on the bus I got a text from the person we road to the start with. We didn't have any service at the finish line which I had forgot and we had already agreed earlier if one of us finished early we would just ride the bus and he could would find someone to take him to his car which is what he ended up doing.

I think waiting for the bus ride was probably the only part of the race I didn't like. And it also added to me getting sun burned. I thought I was ok when I got home that day and it was just a tan starting but the next morning I woke up to my neck hurting where my shirt was rubbing. I ended up getting really burned on my right side where the sun was beating down as we waited for the buses.

Yea the really red area up by my neck really hurt. Now I just have a really really bad tan line!
Overall I was super happy I ran this race and even happier I got to share this experience with my brother! I definitely want to run it again next year but I really want to train for it and better my time now that I know what to expect. And cooler temps would also be nicer :)

(If you got to the end thanks for sticking thru the long recap!)

Click HERE for a quick video of us finishing. We are about 1:45 to 1:49 in. Someone is standing in the way of the camera though so you only see us just after we cross the finish line.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Robie Creek here I come!

So tomorrow I'm running Race to Robie Creek

My awesome personalized race bib.

Call me crazy but I'm pretty excited. I know it's going to be rough. I've accepted it and I'm ready to just have a good time.
The race is 8.5 miles up hill with some steep climbing! Gaining about 2,000 feet of elevation. Then it's 4 miles of "bone-jarring" downhill (you can find the race description here). Sounds fun right?

I'm actually not to worried about the climb. There will be lots of walking I know that. But it is going to be pretty warm out there. You see this race doesn't start till noon!
Check out the hourly the forecast...

I guess the bright side is it's not in the 90's or higher. They have been sending out email updates and announcing on the news that this will be the hottest temps they've had in a few years. Usually there's snow up at the summit but not this year. They are also offering Gatorade at the water stops this year which I guess they never have in the previous years of the race. I've been hydrating all week to prepare.

On Tuesday I got a text from my brother that he just did something crazy/maybe stupid.
He bought a bib to run this race. I'm pretty excited I get to run it with him! He can suffer with me haha. He came over tonight and Gene made us a pasta dinner which was yummy! I'm letting him borrow my hand held to use tomorrow, figure we can share it if we need to, I don't mind his germs :)

My sister Crystal and brother Jojo

I still can't decide on what to wear. Initially I was going to wear my red team sparkle with my blue run to remember shirt but I want to wear a tank top now and I don't have a run to remember tank yet. I was thinking about wearing my black tank top because it's the only one that I own that matches the red skirt. But not sure if it's a good idea to wear black when it will be warm out? The theme for the race is ninja theme: Samurai Sailtoad. I think black and red is totally ninja and I would be a sparkly ninja :)

Ok I'm rambling. I will think some more about what to wear. I need to go to bed soon cause my son has a baseball game in the morning. Check back for my recap to see if I survived Robie!

In the mean time go check out Running In Boise's blog. She has an awesome giveaway to the Boise See Jane Run Race. This was my big PR half marathon last year and I can't wait to run it again so I hope I win!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

I love your smile

I love it when I'm sitting in the stands at your baseball games and you look over at me and flash that contagious smile. It makes my heart melt each and every time.

Happy Birthday little man!
You make my life complete.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Finally, the run I've been in search for...

Yesterday I ran 16.1 miles.
I haven't ran that far in a long time.

I started at Municipal Park which is right off the greenbelt. I did a half mile out and back on the greenbelt so I could warm up. I dropped off my arm warmers in the car and grabbed my handheld and headed towards downtown Boise. I wanted to run towards Camels Back park where I knew there was some trail entrances. I have been back living in Boise for over a year now and haven't been out to the trails so I decided today was as good as any day.

My shin hurt about the first half mile only. At about a mile and half into the run I stopped and sat down to stretch and also to take off my left shoe so I could stretch out my ankle. It felt like it needed to be popped so I rotated my foot to try to get it to but it wouldn't. It didn't hurt it was more just uncomfortable so I put my shoe back on and kept on running. At one of the lights there was this big beautiful dog with his owner. The dog sat right next to me and was up to my waist and kept nudging me with his head to pet him so I did. I asked the owner what his name was and he said it was Bear. I realized I recognized the voice and looked at the man, he is the announcer on KBOI radio and announces all the BSU football games! I said goodbye and went on my way.

It was warm out, I started my run at about noon but there was also some wind that made it cold in the shady areas. I got to Camels Back at decided to stretch out some more and take some chomps before I got onto the trails. There was lots of people out enjoying the day. I saw these two boys that were about 12 on their bikes reading the trail maps posted and they had their camel backs on ready for a trail ride. I thought it was so cool thee were out there enjoying the day and it made me think of my son and how I wish he would do that too! I foresee some family trail rides in our future :)

I looked at the maps and new I wasn't going to memorize the trail numbers so I just took off and decided to just see where they led me and hope I didn't get lost!

Towards the start of one of the trails
Each trail head is marked with the names and numbers

Post on the left has arrows pointing to each trail and their corresponding names and trail number
There was lots of walkers, hikers and cyclists enjoying the trails too. I even saw a guy on a unicycle out there!
I decided to just stay on the trails that lead me up hill with some decent elevation change. Crazy yes but I wanted a good workout and since I haven't been able to prepare very well for Robie Creek race I wanted to give myself a challenge so I don't die this Saturday.

The dirt trail felt really good on my legs and feet and I didn't feel any shin pain which I was very happy about (I have been getting treated for it at my work so I'll make a post about that later).

The views were absolutely beautiful. I was so happy and grateful to have such a beautiful area to run in. The miles were just ticking by and I really felt like I could be out there all day. Even though my pace was slow and I had to walk during the up hills I was having a great time.

Cyclist riding up hill

Runner coming towards me in the distance
I had my ipod shuffle with me but never once thought about turning it on for the entire 16 miles which is rare for me. Usually I need music for long distances but that run was just so peaceful.
I thought a lot about our Soldiers and said a prayer for them and their families like I try to do on all my runs.

Wear Blue Run to Remember
As I was climbing one of the hills I jumped to the side to let some cyclist come down and one of the ladies said great job this is a tough run! That made me smile and I said thanks!

When I hit mile 8 I stopped to take a gel that had lovely little note on it from this lovely lady.

First time I had peanut butter Gu and I really liked the flavor!
View of downtown Boise in the distance

I new it was time to turn around and head and I was wishing that my miles had been on the trail. I really felt like I could run 10 miles out their everyday.

Heading back down the trail was much faster than going up it and it was fun going fast!

As I was reaching the bottom of the trail I remembered that I ran that extra mile on the greenbelt so I decided to take another trail for a half mile out and back so I could finish at Camels Back and head towards my car with only 3 miles left. I had another gel at about mile 12 cause I was started to get hungry. When I got to park I refilled my hand held and used the restroom before I took off on towards Municipal park. I could definitely tell I was on pavement now. My legs felt heavy all of a sudden and the feeling I had in my ankle that it needed to be popped came back again. I tried to increase my pace but my legs were tired and didn't want to go any faster.  The last two miles were tough and I was gladly stopping at the lights.

I stopped to take a few pictures of the capitol building.

I finally got to the park where my car was and was happy to be done.

It took me 3 hours but I also had 1,196ft of elevation gain!

 I realized this was one of the best runs I've had in a long time. I really needed this run to remind me why I love to run and especially why I love to run long distances. It was one of those runs that I couldn't stop thinking about and had a smile on my face the entire drive home. And once I got home I talked Gene's ear off about it during dinner. 

Today I feel pretty good overall but my quads and hips are a little tight. I was also able to finally pop my ankle a few hours after the run. Today I had my chiro look at it and try to adjust my foot, it wouldn't and he said it felt a little locked up. It's a tiny bit swollen so I iced it but it doesn't hurt so that's good I think. I'll stay off it for a few days just in case but I really just can't wait to get back out there for another run, especially on the trails!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Caballo Blanco

An absolutely amazing article by Christopher McDougal that describes the search for Micah True aka Caballo Blanco.

I'm such a cry baby this article made me tear up. Tear up for his friends, his girlfriend and his doggie, Guadajuko, who he often posted pictures of on his Facebook page.
I followed Micah True on Facebook and the out pouring of love on his page has been amazing. So many people found him an inspiration. I know I did since the time I read Born to Run.
He came to Idaho last year to promote the book and even held a run. I wanted to attend but never did. Mostly out of intimidation. I mean it's Caballo Blanco after all, I can't run and keep up with him lol. Now I wish I had.

On January 13, 2012 he posted this as his Facebook Status

"Caballo Blanco is no hero. Not a great anything. Just a Horse of a little different color dancing to the beat of a peaceful drum and wanting to help make a little difference in some lives. If i were to be remembered for anything at all, I would want that to be that I am/was authentic. No Mas. Run Free!"

You will be remembered as being authentic. Run Free Caballo Blanco.

kuira Ba: We are one
He wrote that saying on a picture of Guadajuko

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Pictures I left off the recap!

Here's a few more pictures I just got from Tiffany that I forgot to include on the recap, Enjoy :)

I must have been thinking... close your eyes till the finish line is near then it won't seem so far away...

Finish line is near! Look at our blue sparkle skirts fly in the wind...

My favorite picture!!!!

I must have forgotten how to recap a race cause I totally left out the best part.. pics of our post race dessert!

After we all took a shower and got ready we decided to have dinner at a pub who also happens to serve sushi! Weird, maybe. But the owner of the pub also owns the sushi restaurant that is attached to the pub so he offers both menus. Score for us! (No pics of the sushi, I always forget to take pictures of food)

After sushi walked a few blocks over to Aspen Leaf Frozen Yogurt.
They were sooo sooo yummy. They had about 20 different flavors to choose from. The flavors were so yummy I couldn't make up my mind! I ended up choosing chocolate covered banana flavor and a chocolate with coconut flavor (can't remember the exact name). Once it came to the toppings there were once again too many to choose from. I ended up with mango's, coconut shavings, Reese's, and some other candy topping I can't recall right now. But let me just say it was delicious!!!

I had so much fun with this girl :)

I can't wait to see you in 2 months for Seattle Rock n Roll!!!

High Speed Pursuit Half Marathon Recap

This past Saturday was the Boise High Speed Pursuit Half Marathon.
The race didn't start till 10am so I woke up at about 7am but laid in bed till about 7:30 after not being able to sleep very well the night before. Not sure why, maybe it was jitters for my first half marathon of this year, but both Tiffany and I didn't have any goal time in mind we just wanted to run together. Tiffany has also been sick for the past week and this was also the longest run I've done in a few weeks so wasn't sure how my shin would hold up so we didn't want to go all out. We just wanted to enjoy the run.

The outfit:

We decided on blue Nike tops, blue Team Sparkle skirts and race legs and I also wore my blue sparkle headband.
I really loved our outfits and we got a couple of complements, even though my purple Kinvaras didn't really match but it's ok :)
It was really cold outside so I ran over to Target before Tiffany got to my house to get some white socks to make into arm warmers (pictured above) but we didn't end up wearing them. It was just to cold out with the wind and we both decided to wear our jackets. (I saved the socks tho for throw away arm warmers for a future race)

Freezing at the start!
The race starts out at the Idaho State Correctional Institute aka the prison. It's about 20 or so minutes away from my house but once we got there we scored a nice parking spot in the front near the porta potties and the starting line.

Being silly waiting for the race to start
We walked over to the starting area once we heard the National Anthem being sung and then a few minutes after that we heard some police sirens. It was the high speed pursuit that kicked off the race. There was a girl speeding away from the police. I told Tiffany I wanted to be the girl in the car. When else can you speed away from a police officer without consequences? 
After that it was time to start! All the distances, 5k, 10k (which Will ran, no pics of him tho :( and half marathon started together. The prison siren went off and we ran next to the CERT team (Correctional Emergency Response Team) standing on the side of the road in full gear.

After a little bit the 5k split off from us and we were running mostly on gravel/dirt road. Last year I didn't remember this bothering me but I was so hyper aware of my shin at the race I was carefully watching where I stepped. After a few miles I didn't feel any pain on my shin. I think I need to work on a better stride cause usually when I go faster is when my stride is better and my shin doesn't hurt.

At about mile 2 or so Tiffany and I turned on our music. She told me ahead of time she might not be much for conversation so she could try and control her breathing and not cough to much out there. She did really well for having acute bronchitis, which she didn't know at the race and only found this out yesterday when she went the docs :(  

Miles 1-9 were pretty uneventful. The incline started after mile 6 and there was a hill just after mile 8 but nothing to unbearable. Or maybe it just felt like that cause the worst part of the race was yet to come.

We were stopping at pretty much every rest stop and checking in with each other seeing how my shin was her how her lungs were. Took some pictures and kept on running. We were both feeling pretty good till after mile 9
I forgot to start my garmin right as we started so my splits are probably different than Tiffany's but here's mile 1-9
mile 1- 9:21
 mile 2- 9:07
mile 3- 10:11 (water stop)
mile 4- 9:39
mile 5- 9:24
mile 6- 10:49 (water stop and took a gel)
mile 7- 9:26
mile 8- 10:28 (water stop)
mile 9- 10:49

From here is when the race was NOT so fun. At about mile 9.5 we hit what felt like a wind tunnel. The wind just hit you right in the face and it was like trying to push a wall that would barely move. We felt like we were barely moving and wondered if speed walking would help so we tried that but it was about the same. Tiffany ran behind me for a little while then she took lead and I ran behind her but it really didn't help much.

We played leap frog with a few people. There was an older man who had some blue tights with white starts and red strips who would cheer us on when we passed him but then he would pass us and it went on like that for a little while with him and another girl in a gray shirt.

We walked more than I think we both ever have in a half marathon but it was just so hard to breath with that wind hitting your right in the face. Tiffany's hat blew off once and so did her skirt, ok maybe her skirt didn't but it sure looked like it did in this picture we took :)

Splits for miles 10-13 were:
Mile 10- 10:00
Mile 11- 11:50
Mile 12- 12:07
Mile 13- 11:09

I actually had to walk a few times the last mile which I don't think I've ever done in a half marathon before. That wind would just not let up and I just wanted to be done already. Tiffany spotted the gray shirt girl behind us so we took off running once again. Just as we reached the finish line Tiffany grabbed my hand and we crossed the finish line together.
I don't know if I've ever been so happy to be done with a race. I think Tiffany and I both agree we much rather prefer running in the rain instead of the wind.

Official results
Time- 2:15:13
Place overall 54/90
Age Group (20-29) - 4/5
Gender- 24/45

Compared to last year when I ran this race there weren't as many people that ran it overall or even in my age group. Last year I ran it in 1:56 and placed 7th out of 27 and 40/166 overall. But last year it was held in October instead of April when it was warmer and no crazy wind.

We stuck around after the race to get some bagels and a breakfast burrito and take some cute pictures of course :)

Those tents had some huge self serve breakfast burritos

My friend Tim who took 1st place in the 5k

We also got a cotton t-shirt (I use last years as a sleep shirt so this one will probably become that too) but I was disappointed we got the same medals as last year.

I want to know....

Would you rather run in the rain or against the wind?
After running the Portland marathon in the rain for the entire 26.2 miles and running this half marathon with headwind for the last 3.5 miles, I take the rain.

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