Tag Archives: football

Impromptu 25k Race Recap

Hello! Welcome to Monday…I’m not sure about you, but it definitely feels like a Monday to me. Starbucks debuted Valentine’s Day cups though, so that’s helping.

Dear world, if you slap holiday-themed decoration on everyday items, I will love it and I will purchase it.

I had a good ole sleep-in day today—7:15 am feels like heaven recently, and I find that quite humorous. I was zonked last night though, and some quality REM was necessary—especially after the long run I cranked out earlier. Despite feeling a bit sore and tired, though, this run was positively great, and I finished feeling very confident in my training.

Let me back track a bit though: I was scheduled to do 18 miles yesterday, which to me is when the real work begins. I’m confident up to about 16 or so miles, but after that it feels like unchartered territory. My first 18 miler last time I was training (which was the furthest I’d ever run at that point in time) was a doozy, and I can remember walking verryyy slowly for the rest of the day afterwards.

So, on Saturday as I was preparing to top off gorge on my fuel supply carbs and cookies, BF discovered that there was an ultra event being held tomorrow…10 minutes from our house…on the exact course I would be following for my own run. Oh, and it was free.

DUH. I was in.

The race was called the Fat Ass 50k (cue irony), and there was the option of doing a 25k, a 50k, or (for the bravest of the brave) a 75k. Obviously I signed up for the 25k (15.52 miles) and planned on just tacking on some miles at the end to reach my scheduled workout.

Now, this by no means was an “official” event. No bibs, no timing chips, no mile markers. There was, however, a fuel station at the halfway point, and plenty of chow and water at the finish, which in my opinion completely made this official. Any run where I receive free Gatorade and fig newtons is completely sanctioned in my mind. It also kind of added to the “ultra” feel of it all. Based on my research of these crazy-person events, they really work with the bare minimum in terms of race support. Runners normally supply their own fuel, there is hardly any finisher recognition, and close to no one even knows the events are even going on. That’s kind of how this race felt, and I loved it: People who just love to run, gathered together for some Sunday morning splendor.

So, 8 am rolls around, and about 75 or so runners are bouncing up and down for warmth, just gunning for the “Ready, Set, Go!” I was having too much fun people watching to focus on being cold. I always read about ultra runners, so it was quite a giddy feeling to be lined up at a start line with them. I would say it was pretty evenly split between those running the 50k and those running the 25k, which was comforting—although I was shocked at the ages of many of the 50k’ers. I was without a doubt the youngest by at least ten years, and there were a lot of 50k runners, clad in their “Marathon Maniacs” jerseys, who were definitely over 60. I was so impressed, inspired, and happy at the thought that running can be accessible to anyone who chooses to take it on.

This was the start line. The start of a spectacular day.

Off we went, and despite the fact that I insisted I would simply be running a casual run, the same as I would if I were alone, the race atmosphere had me all pumped up. My uber-competitiveness got the best of me, and pretty early on I got it in my head that I wanted to   compete. I held onto a 7th or so position for the first 8 miles or so, and I knew that I was the first female—which frankly felt pretty great. I also felt very strong; I was really hydrated and somehow all my fueling and stretching clicked together in symmetry. I was all by myself for the rest of the race, enjoying the weather (45 degrees and SUN) and smiling at everyone I saw. Although the “race course” was the same route I take all the time, somehow it felt and looked different when put in the context of competition.

I finished in 2:03 ish (according to my trusty Timex) which I was definitely happy with. I was the first female to finish…which I suppose means I won? Exciting!

wooo!

I logged my time with the Race Director (who, by the way, was wearing pajama pants with beer steins on them and yellow Crocs), and headed back out for 2.5 (slightly slower) miles to complete 18 for the day.

The whole run (the race part and the after part) was awesome, and I loved the impromptu randomness of it all. Racing made 18 miles go by much quicker (both literally and mentally) and it was really fun to run with some of Seattle’s distance fanatics. My kind of people.

BF finished 12.5 miles himself, and we reconvened after our respective long-runs for Sunday morning bagels and coffee. I would also like to note that BF paid for such bagels as he lost a bet Friday night in which a certain Los Angeles basketball team beat a certain Denver team at their home court. Yea, it happened.

LAL

In the afternoon, we took our homemade appetizers(a task we took very seriously) to a friend’s house for Superbowl  festivities. Neither of us were very partial to either team, however I admittedly love Tom Brady and was sad to see the Pats lose. No matter, I was more concentrated on eating as many various appetizer things as possible, and I definitely came out victorious in that endeavour.

A thing of beauty.

It was a lovely Sunday, and after completing that race/getting 18 miles under my belt, I’m feeling really geared up for my long runs to come.

Also, I changed my expected finish time for the Eugene Marathon, to 10 minutes lower than I originally signed up for. Assuming that it didn’t totally jinx me…I’m feeling good about the decision, and it’s helping motivate in a big way.

Hope your weekends were good, cheers!

Question: What do you care most about for the Superbowl? The game? The commercials? The food?

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Firsts

Today is a Sunday in all aspects of the word. It’s the final day of Thanksgiving “vacation,” it’s rainy and gloomy, and currently there is football on tv and bagels on the table. However, something special has ALREADY happened today.

BF finished his first half marathon this morning!!

He started at the Seattle Center in the dark and rainy morning, and he finished 1 hour and 56 minutes later!! Official finish was 1:56:40, WITH a negative split, and he averaged 8:54 miles. I am so incredibly proud of him, and he has definitely worked hard to get so far. He only started running a few months ago, and to run a half marathon, especially with such a fantastic time, is so impressive!

super star boyfriend!

I love seeing people finish their first significant races, and something tells me this will not be the end of BF’s racing career.

Standing at the end of any race is inspiring for a runner, and personally seeing everyone cross the finish line and receive their medals is the best kind of motivation to keep up training and sign up for another race! Right now, I’m trying to decide on my spring marathon, and at this point it is either going to be Vernonia Marathon on April 15 or the Eugene Marathon on April 29. I’m really keen on Eugene, however another race may conflict with its timing. Stay tuned. I will be signed up by Christmas for one either way, and I am pretty excited to start some serious training again.

Otherwise, BF and I are planning on running the 12ks of Christmas race on December 17th, and I’m planning on a half on January 8th after my holiday trip to Colorado.

Racing is fun. Check out some tips on racing here!

Anyway, to give a brief running/life update since I last wrote (too long ago!), these past few days have been filled with food, family, and relaxation. (I really wanted to find and appropriate “f” adjective there for alliteration’s sake. Oh well.)

My mom and her partner Kate came to our house for Thanksgiving, along with my sister and her boyfriend Grayson. I started the day with a fast 12 miler, and by the time I was done it was time to start cooking! It was our first time hosting Thanksgiving, which included our first experience making a turkey! I was a bit worried, especially when this was how the process started…

We alternated between being horrified by the turkey and finding it hilarious.

In the end, all the food turned out great, and pretty much everything was hot when we served it! Thanks Trader Joe’s for your hard-to-mess-up Thanksgiving dishes and to the internet for ensuring the success of our turkey endeavors. There were also three bottles of wine and two pies, neither of which exist anymore. I love Thanksgiving.

Not too much else to report, as the weekend was pretty much filled with leftovers, lounging, and staying dry. I’ll be making a trek outside at some point today for my Sunday long run, and I’m sure BF will relish basking in his post-race glory.

How was your first big race? What are your best tips for beginners?

Sunday Funday

I feel like yesterday’s post was a bit heavy in a Yoda of Running kind of way, so I thought I’d start today with some thoughts on a very important weekly event:

Sunday Funday.

Now, the term “Sunday Funday” was brought to my attention by BF, who would describe this holy day of the week (pun intended) as something like this:

Sweatpants, couch, football, eating, beer, football, beer, nap, football, repeat.

Snuggies are important for Sunday Funday. BF approves.

Maybe you’ve heard of it?

He and his friends have practiced a mean Sunday Funday through the past few years during football season, and while I can’t entirely understand it—I am big on once-a-week sanctioned events. I realized that I actually do have my own version of a Sunday Funday—but instead of the boy-version, mine involves running. Long running.

While most of my weekly runs would qualify as “longer,” it is specifically Sunday where I like to test my endurance with a steady high mileage run. I suppose I really started this when I was marathon training, as that’s how my program was set. However, I’ve sort of continued this routine post marathon—and I’ve found that there are innumerable benefits to taking a long run on a Sunday. Below, I’ve listed a top ten list of why it’s the best day of the week to strap on your shoes and hit the pavement:

1) Starting the week off right.

I feel like I tend to forget that Sunday is actually the first day of the week, technically. If I treat Sunday like a jumping off point instead of a slog-around fest where I avoid the inevitable reality of Monday, then I’m much less prone to resenting Monday. If I can jump into the work week feeling like I’ve already accomplished something big, then I’m all the more ready to take on whatever’s next.

2) Evaporating weekend indulgences.

I am a master of eating great throughout the week and then once the weekend hits, all bets are off. I don’t necessarily think this is a bad thing—reward systems can go a long way—however when my system that is used to fruits and veggies is filled with beer and cheese, I can go a little out of whack. I also have Ulcertive Colitis, which really tends to hate these sudden dietary switches. Sunday is a great day to sweat out the treats of the weekend and clear both your conscience and arteries of that extra brownie, or four.

Yes, that was me Saturday night. I have no shame—worth it.

3) Time.

There is really never another day of the week where you have the amount of leisurely time available to test yourself and see what your legs are made of. I’m personally used to scheduling my workouts between set time frames, and sometimes it’s very freeing to know that I have as much time as necessary to do one simple thing.

4) Saturday carbo load.

As if you needed an excuse.

5) Be with the people!

Tons of people, whether they’re training for a race or not, run/walk/meander around on Sundays, and it’s nice to feel like you’re out enjoying the day with them. If ever I want some entertainment on my runs, people watching and dog watching are among my favorite activities.

6) Be with the runners!

Kind of similar as before, but by seeing other runners out there, you are sure to be encouraged and inspired to be part of such a cool group of people. And I’m not being cocky or exclusive or anything like that, but the fact of the matter is that runners love other runners. Runners love to talk about running, give advice, listen to others, and generally they have a great energy and enthusiasm about them. Perhaps this is why non runners scoff at runners sometimes, but I know that there is really nothing quite like the classic runner-to-runner head nod exchange to keep my spirits high.

7) Be outside!

It’s so easy to stay couch-logged on the weekends; we’re overworked, tired, and just want to relax a lot of the time. But sometimes getting outside is just what we need to clear our heads of all work and stress related burdens. Running offers an opportunity to be outside and get exercise—both integral to regaining our sanity.

8) Good sleep before the week.

If you’ve garnered some extra energy over the weekend, sometimes Sunday night you’re prone to go to bed later, sleep restlessly, and then our Mondays are groggy and slow, which no one likes. If you can burn off some energy on Sunday, you are so much more likely to settle into a restful sleep that night and start the week off right!

9) Enough time for stretching, hydrating, and relaxing.

I cannot tell you how many times I promise myself to stretch more after my runs, or roll out on my foam roller, or do any of the standard post-run necessities. Problem is, once I’ve squeezed in all the minutes I can into my run and get back home, I need to shower and get to work asap…leaving no time for these easy but important things. With the flexible time on Sunday (for the most part), you not only get to take your time on a run, but you can also take ample time afterward to properly stretch all your big running muscles, take an ice bath (if necessary), and prepare a good recovery meal.

10) Football

In honor of BF, I will include football watching as the final reason for a Sunday long run. Once you’ve logged some solid, quality miles—you truly have earned the right to sit on your butt cheering for your favorite team.

There you have it! If you find yourself restless and antsy at the end of your weekend, I really recommend trying out switching your long run to Sundays. While I was in school, Sunday was by far my least favorite day of the week, but now that I am free of homework and able to orchestrate my Sundays more loosely, it might just be one of my new favorites 🙂

16 miles down, and ready for the week with a delicious bowl of chili. Makeup was very unnecessary today, clearly.

When do you do your long runs? Do you change it up every week, depending on other circumstances? What is your idea of a Sunday Funday?