Running in the Mitten & Beyond!

michigandergirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 28, 2013
Awesome report and yes it really was a great race weekend.
It really was an awesome family trip and race weekend. I'm really hoping I can swing Marathon Weekend.

You guys got great family pics on the trip!
We really did. My persistence and bribery paid off!! :rotfl:

Sounds like you guys had great time and congrats on your races!
We did have a great time. We were only just a little bit sick of each other by day eight. :laughing:
 
  • evre13

    Hi, I'm new here.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    I loved reading your experience of the races - it's so great to see someone else's perspective. Y'all looked like you had the best time.
     

    michigandergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 28, 2013
    Training & Life Updates

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    I just have to whine and complain for a bit. Since we've been back from Disney, life has gotten crazy. I've been super busy at work, running kids around, volunteering for Girls on the Run, planning a birthday party, trying to get ready for a garage sale with my sister, travel baseball...you know, just exhausted, busy every day. When I get overwhelmed, certain things go by the wayside, starting with laundry & housecleaning. Then I start missing yoga sessions, and then I start skipping runs. I hate it when I miss runs! I've missed at least one run a week this month and have cut a few runs short as well.

    The other thing I've been battling is tired legs. My legs are dead tired this month. I'm guessing this is probably how they are supposed to feel at this point in the plan, cumulative fatigue and all, right coach @DopeyBadger? It's really hard to find motivation to run at 4:30am when my legs don't want to move. I was very thankful for EA pace this morning because my legs felt like cinder blocks. I only have 11 days until my spring "A" race - the River Bank Run 25K - so I'm trying to focus on my goals for that race and then I can take a breather for a couple of weeks.

    And since I'm being whiny, I'll spare you the Gazelle Girl half marathon recap because that was a big downer of a race. Absolutely the worst weather conditions I have ever run in - 35 degrees with sleet pelting me and 20-30mph sustained winds in my face no matter what direction I was running. I tried to run fast just to be done with it, but tired legs said NOPE. No half PR for me this time.

    So enough with all that woe-is-me crap, let's talk about something fun, like the trail race I did on Saturday.

    Hurt the Dirt 1/4 Marathon Recap

    So I've been venturing into trail running for the last 6 months to prepare for a trail half marathon in August. This was my 4th trail race and by far my favorite. The venue is Luton Park, which is less than a 10 minute drive from my house. Parking is limited, so we had to park at a church and then we were bussed to the start/finish area. The race was very well organized. Bag check was a breeze and they even had pre-race snacks.

    My friend & I started towards the back of the pack and settled into a comfortable pace with a group of 4 other ladies. Some amazing person designed this park to have short uphills and long downhills, which then propel you half way up the uphills - pure genius!! I don't think I walked up any of the hills. It was a bit technical though in that it was a very narrow single track with lots of rocks and roots. People were falling everywhere, and yes, I had my first trail running fall! They had these really funny signs posted along the course and I took my eyes of the trail to read them and down I went. I sort of did a "tuck&roll" move that I'd like to think looked pretty awesome (not), and then I was up & running again, no harm done. The ladies in front of me proclaimed that I was a true trail runner now that I've had my first fall. :D

    It was a lovely run in the woods on a 40 degree sunny morning and I really enjoyed it. The only odd thing was that my Garmin was super wonky in the woods. I had noticed about half way through that it was way off from mile markers and I really had no idea of pace, so I tried to just run easy & relaxed. When I crossed the finish, my Garmin said I only ran 5.8 miles when I actually did 6.5, so it must've been the combo of maybe the switchbacks of that course and the trees that messed things up. Anyways, official time was 1:12:29 with an average pace of 11:04.

    Here's a pic of me trying to show the dirt & debris on my pants from my fall.
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    No finisher medal for this race, but we did get a nice shirt and a camp-style pint cup.
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    And the post-race food was amazing!!
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    I will definitely do this race again next year and I also plan to due most of my trail training runs here this summer.

    Well, time to get back at my laundry. Thanks for reading if you made it through my whining! :-)
     

    DopeyBadger

    Imagathoner
    Joined
    Oct 15, 2015
    Whine away!

    The other thing I've been battling is tired legs. My legs are dead tired this month. I'm guessing this is probably how they are supposed to feel at this point in the plan, cumulative fatigue and all, right coach @DopeyBadger? It's really hard to find motivation to run at 4:30am when my legs don't want to move. I was very thankful for EA pace this morning because my legs felt like cinder blocks. I only have 11 days until my spring "A" race - the River Bank Run 25K - so I'm trying to focus on my goals for that race and then I can take a breather for a couple of weeks.
    Right. Physically/mentally you feel like you can't. But when you get out the door, you can. That's the key though. Because if you head out the door, and you do find the pacing super hard (or more importantly a big time fade), then that's the big red flag that we need to take a bit more time off before the race.
     

    michigandergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 28, 2013
    Whine away!



    Right. Physically/mentally you feel like you can't. But when you get out the door, you can. That's the key though. Because if you head out the door, and you do find the pacing super hard (or more importantly a big time fade), then that's the big red flag that we need to take a bit more time off before the race.
    Got it. I think I'm doing okay then. :thumbsup2
     
  • Dis5150

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 21, 2015
    I am amazed at all you do! I haven't been running and I don't have 1/10th of the things you have on your schedule! Great job getting out there and getting it done even when you are tired! :)
     

    michigandergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 28, 2013
    Random Ramblings...

    I'm still here. I promise I'm still running despite the busy schedule. We had a nice weather weekend and not much on the schedule, so it was very relaxing and I so needed that.

    We celebrated Allison's 12th birthday with a small party on Friday and then we went and saw End Game on Saturday. I can't believe my baby is 12!!! Even though she is 12, she looks more like most 8 or 9 year olds. Her growth has stalled out over the last year, so we've been seeing an endocrinologist since last September to try and figure that out. We are currently fighting with our insurance company about their initial refusal to cover genetic testing. We don't know how to proceed until we have all of the facts and rule out some syndromes. And because she's adopted, we don't know anything about her family history. It's been super frustrating and this has been a big source of my stress lately.

    On a lighter note, Saturday is my big spring race, the Amway River Bank Run 25K. Right now the weather looks good with the low around 39 and high of 61, no rain. I'm not getting my hopes up though, this race is notorious for bad weather. It's almost comical how bad the weather can be for May on this day every year, but this is Michigan, and you'd think we'd be used to it by now. My PR for this race is 2:34:36, so I'm shooting for anything under that and maybe, just maybe, I can get in under 2:30 if everything goes perfectly. There are two tricky things about this race for me: 1) There are hills between miles 8 & 12 that can sometimes suck the life out of me and 2) with it being the odd distance of 15.5 miles, my body sometimes revolts after 13.1 and doesn't want to go any further - which has to be a mental thing because, come on, I've run marathons, so I should be able to crush 15.5 miles (you would think), right?
     

    TheHamm

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 12, 2017
    Random Ramblings...

    Right now the weather looks good with the low around 39 and high of 61, no rain. I'm not getting my hopes up though, this race is notorious for bad weather. It's almost comical how bad the weather can be for May on this day every year, but this is Michigan, and you'd think we'd be used to it by now.
    Being used to it and knowing it is probable are different than hoping for the best, which sometimes pops up. Besides, at this point we need hope to get through the end of the grey.
     
  • Jules76126

    Practically Perfect in Every Way
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2006
    I hope the weather stays nice for your race. The weather has been terrible here. Rain, Rain, and more Rain. This is the first week where we have actually seen the sun for more than a few hours. I would like to say we are turning the corner, but the weather is showing more rain for the weekend.
     

    michigandergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 28, 2013
    Being used to it and knowing it is probable are different than hoping for the best, which sometimes pops up. Besides, at this point we need hope to get through the end of the grey.
    So true!!

    I hope the weather stays nice for your race. The weather has been terrible here. Rain, Rain, and more Rain. This is the first week where we have actually seen the sun for more than a few hours. I would like to say we are turning the corner, but the weather is showing more rain for the weekend.
    Thanks! We've had a lot of rain too with more coming over the next two days, but it looks like it's going to be dry for weekend...I hope.
     

    michigandergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 28, 2013
    Amway River Bank Run 25K

    Friday - Expo

    My friend Angie & I work in the same building, so on Friday we decided to take a long lunch and head over to the expo to get our bibs. It's a large expo, so we like to take time to wander around. Something new this year that we thought was super cool: they're giving away 2 entries to the NYC marathon! We had to visit 5 specific booths at the expo to get a card punched and then we dropped our cards in the drawing on the way out. It's probably unlikely that one of us would win, but it's still fun to dream about. We find out this week if we've won anything.

    Saturday - Race day

    I woke up feeling good and relaxed. I took my time having my coffee & breakfast and made sure I had everything I needed. I left early knowing parking can be a nightmare, but I've had good luck parking in the same area for the past few years and this year was no exception. I have to say my parallel parking skills are pretty stellar because I squeezed into a tiny spot on the first attempt.

    It was about a half mile walk to the start area. I found Angie and a few other running friends. We hit the potties then headed into the corrals. We positioned ourselves between the 9:30 and 10:00 pacers. We weren't sure if we could keep up with the 9:30 pacers, but we knew we really wanted to stay ahead of the 10:00 pacers.


    The weather was perfect for running - temps about 40 degrees at the start and warming to the low 50's toward the end, very little wind and mostly cloudy skies. I was pumped up. The energy for this race is awesome - the largest 25K in the country and such a great tradition here in Grand Rapids. This was my fourth time running the 25K, but I have participated in the 5K & 10K many times over the last 15 years.

    Miles 1 to 4
    The course was crowded that first mile, but that's okay, it keeps me from going out too fast. Angie & I settled into a steady rhythm. I was feeling good.

    Miles 5 to 8
    I lost Angie around mile 6. She slowed down for a minute to chat with someone she knows and I figured she would catch back up again, but she also said she didn't think she could keep up with me today, so I just kept going. I was still feeling good.

    Miles 9 to 12 (the hills ):crazy2:
    In past years, I always fade a bit during this section. Those hills just kind of zap some energy. But this year, even before the majority of the hills I hit a WALL. I've never experienced anything like this, not even in a marathon. I went from feeling good to legs feeling like cement. The hills didn't help this feeling at all. I didn't do anything different fueling-wise than I normally do. The only thing I can think of that might have had some effect is maybe there was too much time between when I had breakfast and the start of the race. I normally would have eaten something else right before the start, but I failed to do that this time. The 10:00 pacers passed me during mile 12 and I knew all hopes of PR'ing were gone. You can see from my splits that mile 9 was where the wheels came off this train.

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    Miles 13 - 15.5
    By this time the wind picked up to add insult to injury. I decided to make the most of it and just enjoy the race and the crowd. Miles 13 & 14 are in a residential area and the crowd support was great, even better than previous years, so I enjoyed that and hoped I could maybe stay ahead of the 10:30 pacers. I found some beer during mile 14 from some fun ladies and it tasted soooo good! Right after I chugged the beer and started running again, I looked next to me and there was Angie again. She was struggling too, even worse than me, so I tried to give her a pep talk and even tried to get her to go back for beer, but she said she couldn't stop, she wanted to keep moving forward. Somehow I felt a bit better after the beer - that must have been what I needed to push me to the finish.

    Official time is 2:39:17 - no PR, but not my slowest 25K either, so I'll take it.

    We got our medal and some snacks and then slowly hobbled over to the finish fest area to find the tent to pick up our bonus bling. We got bonus bling for doing the Gazelle Girl Half (last month) and the RBR 25K.
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    Even though it wasn't the race I wanted to run, it is still another 25K finish for the books.:-)
     

    AntimonyER

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 4, 2016
    Congrats on the finish, even if it wasn't what you hoped! I will be a fellow Michigan runner next week, I have a conference in Detroit on the riverfront, and the weather looks great, hopefully get more than a few miles in during my off times.
     

    Jules76126

    Practically Perfect in Every Way
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2006
    Congrats on finishing. Sorry it wasn't the race you hoped for, but still sounds like you enjoyed yourself.
     

    michigandergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 28, 2013
    Congrats on the finish, even if it wasn't what you hoped! I will be a fellow Michigan runner next week, I have a conference in Detroit on the riverfront, and the weather looks great, hopefully get more than a few miles in during my off times.
    Thank you! The weather is finally starting to get nice here. Enjoy!

    Congrats on finishing. Sorry it wasn't the race you hoped for, but still sounds like you enjoyed yourself.
    Thanks! I was initially mad when I had that big slowdown, but I'm not one to dwell on it. I just shifted my priorities to finding the beer. :D:drinking1
     


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