Friday, August 31, 2012
☼This marathon training has really bumped my mileage up for the month of August. It's my highest yet at 175 3/4. I should just go run a quarter mile around the block to bump that up to 176 but I'm tired. We'll see what September brings with my very first marathon just 3 weeks away. So far I'm not feeling any anxiety or nervousness about it but just excited to finally get to say I'm a marathoner. BIG COTTONWOOD CANYON MARATHON-SEPTEMBER 22ND, It' coming!!
☼Tomorrow on the schedule is my longest run of 20 miles. I'll be running the Bear Lake Half Marathon in the hills and so will be planning a 7 mile run before the race starts. Having races to run has definitely helped me feel like my long runs aren't so challenging to get done.
☼I guess I'm serious about continuing this running journey. I've already signed up for 2 races in 2013. I'm sure there will be more to follow. I foresee some ultra's down the road as well. They are pretty fun. (Did I just really say that?)
Posted by susette at 9:20 AM
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
What a fun and crazy race this turned out to be for me. I had my adrenaline pumping high before I even got to the bus pick up. My marathon schedule has me doing 18 miles for today and since I knew I didn't want to run an additional 5 miles after the race I got up at 4:00 am to get them done before. But I'll back up to the start of this little vacation.
Me, Mark and Cooper headed up to Logan and stayed at the Super 8 Friday night. We enjoyed a light dinner in the car on our drive up and got to Providence where the packet pick up was taking place. We made it with just a little bit of time to spare and then headed to the motel. We drove by a Maverik and I knew I needed some frozen yogurt. I was very careful about my food intake this time because I learned my lesson after eating too big of meals the day before running the Bryce Canyon Half Marathon.
After getting my yogurt we went to Walmart for something to do and to get Cooper some healthy snacks. That cute boy of mine has been working out so hard to P90X and eating so good. He's lost about 20 pounds now and is feeling so great. I'm secretly hoping he will run a half marathon with me someday. That would just be the greatest thing ever!
We called it a night and headed back to the motel. I set the alarm for 4 a.m. and got maybe 5 hours of sleep if I was lucky. After a few pre-race rituals I headed out to run up and down the main street of Logan. I was amazed at how many cars were already out and about at 4:30 in the morning. Some friends of mine from Runner's Anonymous knew I would be out there and offered me a ride the day before but I had to turn them down because I would be running to the bus pick-up area to get my mileage in. Well, they saw me and honked at me as they drove by. One girl said she recognized my bright orange shoes! I do love my shoes:) At this point I had completed about 3 and 1/2 miles. The bus pick up was 1.2 miles away and so I headed back to the motel for a final pit stop and to make sure I had everything. I kissed Mark good-bye and headed off again to get at least 4 1/2 miles in before the race. I was almost there and all of a sudden panic hit! I had forgotten my race bib back at the motel. I knew I couldn't get on the bus without it and I knew I didn't have time to run the 1.2 miles back and then get back to the bus in time. Plus my timing chip was attached to it and I just plainly NEEDED it. The race people said the last bus was leaving at 5:45 am and at this point it was about 5:35 am. AHHHHH.........I didn't know what to do. I didn't have my cell phone and there just wasn't time for anything. It takes me longer than 10 minutes to run a mile and even if I did run back and have Mark drive me I would miss the bus. I thought about sticking my thumb out and seeing if somebody would drive me back. Then all of a sudden I see three angels walking toward the bus pick up. I ran up to them and told them my dilemma and asked for a ride back to my motel.
Shannon to leave me a comment so I can follow her blog. Melanie said she doesn't blog but she has a grandson named Porter. Oh yeah, of course we are friends now! It's so much fun meeting new bloggy friends. These gals just totally made my morning!
I wandered around looking for my Runner's Anonymous Facebook friends but there were so many people I couldn't locate them. That made me a little sad because we had talked about finding each other up there and starting the race together.
Another friend from Runner's Anonymous whom I've never met I recognized from our Facebook group. She had posted a picture of what she would be wearing and I remembered her bright flashy skirt. When I saw it I hollered to her "Hey you are Lori from Runner's Anonymous". We ran together for a little bit and liked the fact that we both were wearing bright orange shoes.
The rest of the race was just fun. There were always so many people around. I heard constant chattering of people no matter where I was at. Eventually I needed some music and popped in the earbuds. My friend Jody was being paced by her friend and neighbor Jen. I tried my hardest to stay up with them and the 2:10 pacer group but just didn't have the zest and zip to do it. That whole adrenaline rush was gone and my energy may have been a little bit zapped. I ate oranges and bananas at the aid stations and made sure to drink plenty of Gatorade and water.
When I came down out of the canyon between mile 6 and 7 I remembered how fun it was last year to see my cute family cheering for me. I told them they could just see me at the finish line this year and not to worry about driving around to find me. The rest of the run was just a matter of staying focused and determined to get this finished and hopefully with a better time than last year.
As I got about a mile away from the finish I decided to pour on the speed a little more. I was worried I wouldn't beat my time. When I got closer I could see the clock and knew I had to hustle. I came in at 2:14:29 which is a minute and a half faster than last year. Whew! That was cutting it a bit close but I'll take it considering the extra 4 1/2 miles run at 4:30 a.m.
I found the after-race goodies which were a bit of a let down this year. More Gatorade, water, oranges and bananas, which I had already consumed during the race. The only other thing they had in addition to that was bread bites and mini fat boy ice creams. Yup, it was disappointing. Now that the race was over I still had 1/2 of a mile to run to complete my total 18 miles for the day. Me, Mark and Cooper started heading to the car and I told them to pick me up down the road by the Maverik. Well, by the time they found me I had completed a total of 18 1/2 miles and you can better believe I am counting all of it in my training book.
Posted by susette at 9:10 AM
Saturday, August 25, 2012
with my buddy Laurie.
My running friend Monnica who lives in my city and runs a lot of half marathons added me to a Facebook group called Runner's Anonymous. Well, they organized a run for Wednesday mornings and so I thought I would join them today since they were planning to do the exact amount of mileage I needed. I can say that waking up at 4:15 am is not something I plan to do very often. The run was nice and cool but challenging. We ran/power walked for 4 miles up a hill (Traverse Mountain Road) with an 8% grade and then at the top was a cute little park where we made a pit stop and caught our breath. Then we turned around and ran down the hill. You can bet that after this big adventure I came home and climbed right back in bed for a sweet little 2 hour nap.
I was feeling just a little off today (maybe it had something to do with waking up in the 4 am hour yesterday morning) and so I decided to just go to the gym and skip my scheduled 5 mile run. As the day wore on I was feeling a little guilty about skipping my run. There is a lot of power in a little piece of paper telling me what is required for my marathon training. So, I didn't give in and I decided to do an evening workout and headed to the hills in Draper for a 6 mile run. A new Facebook friend of mine, Angela, wants to run an ultra and wanted to run on the trails too so she went with me. It was fun to meet up in real life. Actually, we met briefly once before at my friend Josh's pink donut half marathon. We were cutting it just a little too close in getting back down the mountain before we were in total darkness. These Summer nights are definitely getter shorter.
with my buddy Laurie
Saturday August 25th-Ran Top Of Utah Half Marathon
and an additional 5.50 miles for a total of 18.50 miles. Race recap coming.
Sunday August 26th- Day of Rest!
Other: 70 Minutes stairstepper
Posted by susette at 6:48 PM
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
The bus driver stopped the bus and opened his window. I asked him if he was the last bus and he said there were two more buses coming in 5 minutes. Wow, that caused me a little bit of high anxiety. So I headed to my car and grabbed my necessary running items and meandered back to the bus loading area. A few more runners were gathered there as well and we continued to wait. A few of the race volunteers stopped by to tell us indeed there was another bus coming. Well, after waiting almost 20 minutes and watching the time getting closer to race start time at 7:00 am I just couldn't stand still any longer. I asked if anyone wanted to hop in the car with me because I was driving to the starting line. I knew my friends, Jody and Doran would take me back to get my car after the race. There were a total of six of us waiting for the last bus and I was able to take three of them. The other two drove themselves as well. That darn bus never showed up! I got to the starting line with a few minutes to spare and found my friends.
|The race started about 5 minutes late but it was alright with me. I was still trying to calm down from my high anxiety moments of missing the bus and driving a little faster than I probably should have to get to the race start. Jody and I started together and ran the first couple miles side by side. I love down hills and when they would come I would zoom down them and then she would catch up to me on the flats. That only lasted another mile or so and then she was gone. I just couldn't keep up with her. |
As I ran people would turn and give me a sweet look and a thumbs up at the sign on my back. Although they didn't say anything to me, the look on their face was tender and understanding and I appreciated that. One man said Porter was also his son's name and I told him it was a great name and he agreed. Around mile 4 I decided to listen to my ipod and by complete coincidence the first song that came on was Homeward Bound. It was sung at Porter's funeral and it always makes me cry when I hear it. I hit repeat on it and listened to it about 4 times. I also listened to some of Porter's favorite bands: Keane, and Coldplay. I was enjoying these reflective moments of Porter and just felt his love throughout the entire race. The course turned out to be absolutely beautiful with mountain views all around. It was so fun to see the Draper Hills in the distance where I had just run my first 50K the previous Saturday. I reflected on that experience as well as I ran and remembered what an awesome experience that was and my heart ached to be up there again.
The after-race treats were fabulous with bagels, cookies, lots of fruit, cinnamon raisin toast, muffins, bubblegum, oatmeal, and Dr. Pepper.
I finished this race with a final time of 2:14:39 and feel very pleased with that outcome. It's not my slowest or my fastest but it's a good time for me and my slow self. We stayed and watched the awards ceremony and by the time they got to the prize giveaways a lot of people had already left. Each of us ended up getting some nice things that they just started handing out to everybody that was left there. I got a super cool jacket and a pen. Doran and Jody got a jacket each too and a few other goodies.
|Jody and Doran took me back to my car (thanks so much guys) and I immediately put my photo of Porter right in front of me so I could continue to look at it and think about him all the way home.|
Posted by susette at 4:44 AM
Monday, August 20, 2012
A few days ago a friend of mine asked me, "Do you ever wonder what life was like before running?" I was stumped for a few moments......Then as I continued to think about this question and still keep thinking about it I decided to write some feelings down.
I have always been one to exercise. I think it was instilled into me as a very small girl when I used to watch my mom do exercises with Jack La Lane on black and white T.V. Yes, I'm old enough to vaguely remember black and white television. Then I also remember her going outside to jog up and down our street. We lived on a small street in Henderson, Nevada that only had four houses on it. She would go up and down that street about 20 times and then come back in. I would sit at the window and watch her go back and forth in the mornings before school started. When I got older my favorite classes were PE and drill team and aerobics. Yep, I had 3 exercise classes at one time in my senior year of high school. When I got married and started having children I would go on power walks with my mama. I would put the kids in the stroller and off we would go. She was hard to keep up with but I loved being out there getting it done. After the kids got a little older I started teaching aerobics at the church for a few ladies, and did so for almost 10 years. We had a great friendship and all shared the same desire to just be healthy. We danced and worked out to many country songs and a few pop/rock songs. Now today I can't hardly stomach country music. I'll hear a song on the radio and immediately remember the routine we danced to and quickly have to change the station. Yes, country music is not much listened to anymore right now. But those were some great days and fond memories for me.
Most recently, (well at least for the last ? years, could be 8, 9, 10?) I have had the most stalwart friend and confidant to walk with. My good buddy, Laurie. Sometimes we walk twice a week, other times we are out there 5 times a weeks. She has been the greatest companion to support me in my crazy adventures and to listen to all my highs and lows of life. These are years I will always treasure and hope to continue to experience many years down the road.
A couple years ago my sweet daughter asked me to run a half marathon with her and I was shocked, and surprised and speechless for a few moments. Then my wheels started turning and I decided to start running. I blame this new addiction on Kali. It really has become an addiction. I look for new races all the time and can't wait for the next race to come up. I have loved making new running friends and reading running blogs, which provide a lot of inspiration, and have really loved discovering the joy and peace in running in the hills and on the trails in this beautiful state of Utah.
So, yes there was life before running. I am still a wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, teacher, aunt, niece, sister, cousin, friend etc. and there are many roles associated with each of those titles. Finding the balance in each of those is tricky, but definitely running has helped me be happier and more excited about my life and in tune with my health and energy. I still miss Porter like CRAZY and ache to see him and hold him again. When I have had dreams of seeing him and hugging him there is no description of those feelings. It's like the ultimate feelings of joy and happiness. Waking up from those dreams are no fun. Running has given me the opportunity to just be out there with my thoughts of him and imagine him being by my side as I turn my legs over and pound the pavement. I imagine him gliding effortlessly next to me. Someday me and Porter will get to run a real race together. I'm sure he will win but we will be there together!
Posted by susette at 9:30 AM
Saturday, August 18, 2012
Wednesday August 15th-Ran 9 Trail Miles
I stayed closer to home for these trail miles and got up early to meet with a friend. Still feeling a little tired. Definitely will be napping today.
with my buddy Laurie.
Saturday August 18th-Ran Porter's Half Marathon 17 Miles
I had 17 miles on the agenda today and so I went early to the race and ran 4 miles before the start and then the 13. It was a great race and I will recap it soon.
Sunday August 19th- Day of Rest!
Posted by susette at 4:03 PM
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
This recap may just be all over the place. I don't feel like I can even describe the emotions and feelings I've had about this whole experience but I will try to put it into words. But just trust me that talking about it and experiencing it are two completely different things, as is with anything experienced in life. You've got to experience it to understand it: the joy, pain, excitement, nervousness, love of the outdoors, etc. I will try to expound.
Race day came and I was up early at 4:15 am to take care of all the pre-race things a runner does. The night before I had set everything out and had them in drop bags for Mark to bring to the aid stations he would be visiting at mile 19.6, mile 22.8, and mile 24.8. Mark is so supportive and patient with me and my crazy running endeavors. He will go to my races and hang out for any amount of time to see me run in. Or he will sit at aid stations for hours on end waiting for me to get there. He also doesn't mind the out of town trips because then we get a little vacation together.
I really over-packed and actually ended up not needing a single thing. I even unloaded a bunch of stuff that I was carrying and left it with him. That just shows how great of a race this was. It was so well supported and stocked at all the aid stations. Without having run an ultra before I didn't know what to expect and I was just super impressed with the volunteers, the food, the drinks, the ice, who knew that ice could feel like manna from heaven? and the great enthusiasm that everyone had. But, I'm jumping ahead a little bit.
I got myself out the door a little before 5:00 am and got to the starting line to check in and get my packet. Oh boy! Did I ever have pre-race jitters!! I got my bib on and made a pit stop and then just walked around the parking lot trying to take nice, slow, steady breaths. Cory was here and talking to other runners. He seemed as cool and relaxed as an early morning Summer breeze. I didn't feel like I could visit the small crowd gathered and so I just continued to try to calm my nerves and relax by walking and walking. A few minutes before time to start they had us gather to share information about the course and to talk about Johnny Runner. He was the reason we were all here to run. He has cancer and this race was put on by his trail running buddies to benefit his family. There were some tears shed as he spoke to us but yet a strength in his voice that he was going to fight this and win! I sure hope he does! What an incredibly genuine, nice man.
The race started right on time at 6:00 am and we were off, with it still being a little bit dark, all 26 of us for the 50K. There would be 60 people running the 25K which started an hour later.
|I think Cory was on a little runner's high as well.|
After visiting with a number of people hanging out at the finish line I thanked Cory for his help today. I just kept wondering how I would have handled doing this all alone? It would have been boring, lonely and even a little scary. Even though we didn't do a ton of talking out there on the course it was just nice to know there was somebody there in case anything did happen. For that I will be forever grateful.
Posted by susette at 1:01 AM