Thursday, August 27, 2009

Well That Doesn't Happen Everyday

So I have a confession....I may have caused this:

It's a plane crash.

I didn't mean to crash an airplane.

Let me 'splain.

On Tuesday, Unagi (the doggy) and I left the house for a dreaded tempo run. When I told Unagi our plan, she was clearly not thrilled. I thought we would follow a new route I experimented with last week. I have been hesitant to run on the trail system by myself, and I don't care to run along busy roads, so I found a route through the neighborhood that passes through a section of the airport.

So Unagi and I started with a 20 minute warm up which took us to the North side of Lake Hood. We then started the tempo portion of the run. Our goal was 20 minutes at the maximum sustainable pace. Oy.

Twelve minutes into the torture, while gasping for breath and sweating profusely, I heard sirens. My first thought was that a good samaritan had called the emergency vehicles to assist me, as I looked (and sounded) like someone about to have a heart attack.

As we followed the road that winds through the airport, we were passed by police cars, fire trucks, an ambulance and airport emergency response trucks. My relief that they weren't coming for me was tempered by the fact that they were coming at all.

At the fifteen minute mark, as I turned East to head home, I was met by an airport-emergency-response-man. He informed me that the road was closed due to a plane crash.

I immediately felt VERY bad as I realized that my gasping for breath must have created a dramatic and unexpected cross wind, causing the plane to crash immediately after take-off.

I'm sorry.

I felt so bad, I didn't even tell the airport-emergency-response-man that I was in a bit of a pinch now. You see, I had no hydration or fuel with me, and the detour to get home added another 1.5 miles to my route. Ouch.

I opted to slow back to a normal pace, tough it out until the last half mile, then walk the cool down.

I'm sorry Mr. Pilot. Promise not to breathe so hard next time.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Belated Race Report

Okay my dear friends, supportive family, fellow bloggers, and occasional random stranger, time to suck it up as readers, because this post is a race report.

It is not clever. It is not witty. It is dry and meaningless to everyone but me. However, I ran 13.1 miles (painful), so I figure the least you can do is read my recap (slightly less painful).

{Pretty please.}

Unless, of course, you had to listen to my verbal recap already, in which case you may jump for joy now, skip to the end, and leave the comment, "Way to Go!"

If you have had to sit through my verbal recap more than once, OR, if you showed up at the finish line and were the recipient of a very sweaty hug, you may close your browser now. I won't be mad. Promise. Promise-serious. Promise-serious-Evan-pinky-swear.

The race was a mini TNT reunion and my plan was to run with H3.

My goal was to finish the race under 2:30. For my non-running friends: Amazing, huh?

For my running friends: Remember, this is chubby-bubby-turning-athlete-in-the-frigid-north. Last August, pathetically ran a 5k in 47 minutes. Passed by walkers. Thought I was going to die. Sucking air more dramatically than a fish out of water. I realize you are laughing too hard to do the math, so let me help you. That is a 15:16 mile. Yes, I know I could have walked faster.

Anyhoodle. I thought my goal of 2:30 was realistic, my training runs have been averaging under 11:00 minute miles and my last 10k was 1:06 (again, just under 11:00 average).

The race course for the Skinny Raven Half was a very different experience than the Mayor's Marathon. The Skinny Half course begins as an out-and-back along the Coastal Trail from downtown Anchorage to Lyn Ary park. On the return, the course heads East towards the mountains, taking runners to Tikishla park for a keyhole turn-around.
So Holly-Hell-Hills and I set off when the race started, feeling great and taking it easy. Felt great at the turn-around at Lyn Ary. I was excited because the out-and-back course allowed me to see my son clipping at a solid pace. This was his first 1/2 marathon and I couldn't help but be a little worried.

Then we headed East to Tikishla.


If only I had remembered that from Westchester to Tikishla is a slow climb. So slow it is hard to see that the trail is climbing. But I didn't remember, so four miles later I felt ready to cry. I was very confused and extremely dismayed that I felt so wiped by mile 7 (maybe 8). We were on the backside of the keyhole turnaround, and I had to do something. I told H3 I needed to regroup and she offered to stick it out with me.

Regroup Plan: walk the water station, hit the porta-potty, refill the hand held water bottle, GU 5 minutes early, remove undershirt, gradually resume running pace.

Ohhhh did that feel better. As we started back towards the finish line, it dawned on me that the struggle had been the uphill, because we were flying (okay, 9:30) and it felt great.

At mile 10, H3 started to struggle with a recent injury. We decided to stick it out together, so we started run/walk cycles to ease her back.

Mile 12 we moved to mostly walking.

In the end, we finished 2:39, and I am okay with the time. It was great to stay with a friend, enjoy the company, and finish together.

H-Bomb was there at the finish and presented me with my finisher's medal

He enjoyed a fabulous race, finishing 1:51. Not bad for a 14-year-old's first race.
This put him 5th in his age group (14-19) and 107 in the men's overall. I am so proud.

In the end, the race was a good lesson, my time was okay, my son had a great race, and (drum roll please).....another toenail down.

Made ya look.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

When I'm Not Running...

I have been trying to stay busy while Nick is gone by taking on a few projects around the house.

This project started innocently. A few cans of leftover paint from various projects around the house.

A few creative children with a playhouse painting plan.
Painting Plan: paint 3 walls solid colors, 1 wall for murals, then "splatter" the solid walls.
Did someone say splatter?

What is proper etiquette with regard to the laundry of children you invited over and participated in a full-on paint fight with? Tide? Replacement clothing? What if said children were provided paint smocks, however, said paint smocks failed?
Hosing them off seemed like the best option. Notice the clean child in the foreground. She opted out once the paint started flinging.
Smart girl. The others should have followed.
Hmmm, Tinkerbell looks like she has war paint on....rumor has it she actually started the paint fight. But that's just a rumor.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I'm Not That Kind of Girl

Dear Nick, Nickie-Poo-Poo, Nickles & Pickles, Hon, Man-O-My-Dreams,

I miss you so much my heart aches and I can't quite catch my breath and I feel kind of mopey and discombobulated.

I am just not normally that kind of girl.

Really. I don't believe in letting boys do this to me.

But I miss you. And I don't really want to tell you how much until after you get home because I don't want you to worry or be sad because I am so thrilled that you are chasing your dream right now.

I must be really out of sorts because I don't even feel like blogging or facebooking or tweeting or anything. I don't even want to type LOL.

And I feel like a schmuck for being such a sap because Debbie's husband is deployed and she isn't whining randomly on the Internet.

So I promise to stop whining. Promise-Serious. I want you to know that I am really proud of you. I believe in you!



P.S. I think the cure for feeling like I can't quite catch my breath is to run a half marathon next Sunday. Then I definitely won't be able to catch my breath.