Tag Archives: PR

Texas 1/2 Marathon, Kingwood 2013

This year I decided to do the 1/2 marathon again on New Year’s Day. What a great way to start the new year! Unfortunately, this year it was a bit rainy. However, it did make for almost optimal running with the cooler temps and no glaring sun!

Last year was the year of the pig. This year was the year of the rat. Nice, right?! They did have a cute inflatable rat in a trap though. It looks all shimmery but that’s just because it was raining.

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My running coach, Liz, was there to cheer us on this year! I also met Sandra and Ruth (Sandra in middle) who will be part of our 4 man Marathon relay in March! That was a pleasant surprise.

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We all gathered around the starting line trying to stay warm as we waiting for the sun to rise. The park is closed from dusk to dawn, so we had to wait for the dawn to move in!

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At 8 AM, it was officially start time for the Marathon. I had originally signed Mike and I up for the 1/2 Marathon, but Mike decided he was going to run the full. Yep…not training…just jump in with both feet! Doesn’t he look excited?!

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They counted down the seconds then the Marathon group took off. We 1/2 Marathoners were left to wait 15 minutes to give the first group a chance to spread out some.

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This year I had completed all of my training and came through without any injuries, so I was feeling pretty good! When 8:15 AM hit, I was off like lightening! So fast, I’m nothing but a blur!

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Ok, so I wasn’t that fast but I was going faster than I should have been that early in the race. My adrenaline always gets the best of me. I tried to slow it down a bit but I was already starting to get some shin splints. Thankfully they were gone by mile 3. Normally they have signs posted on the trees with everyone’s name, but since it was raining they didn’t have them this time. However, it was still a nice run.

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The loop goes along the greenbelt trails behind and among houses then wraps around Lake Houston. This is one of my favorite parts because you can always see ducks and other birds hanging around.

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There’s a man-made lake that we also run around after the turn around and on our way back to the start. That’s a nice little loop as well. For the 1/2 marathon we get to go around it twice! This is where Liz was waiting to cheer us on. More cowbell please! This photo was after the first loop. I was a bit more fresh that time than the second.

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I passed Mike several times, as I did many other runners. Since the Marathon people go around the loop 4 times you’ll see them going and coming! I was passed by the two lead Marathoners before I finished my first loop. They were hauling. I believe first place finished in 3:10:00.

When I made the first turnaround, I decided I was going to run until I just HAD to walk. It was too hard to do intervals with all the stopping and starting. Once I stopped running it was very hard to get going again. So, I ended up running (albeit slowly) the last 10 miles of the race! I was hurting toward the end. Mike passed me the last time and made the comment that he was hurting at that point too. Unfortunately, he was just heading out for his last loop while I was about a mile and a half from the finish!

I crossed the finish line with an official time of 3:14:43 which put me at a sub 15 pace (14:52) and was a PR (205 out of 259)!! I was about 9 minutes faster than the year before. I was hurt last year though, so it makes me wonder a bit if I hadn’t been hurt what I could have done. *shrug*

The race photos were kinda funny this year. I looked way too happy (first loop…again!):

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Tammy Texas Marathon

 

And Mike looked just flat out bored!

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Liz, Sandra, and Ruth were at the finish line. It was nice to have people cheering me on at the finish line! I grabbed a slice of pizza, a couple of chocolate chip cookies (Hey, I earned it!), and some water while Liz and I waited for Mike to finish. He had a goal of finishing in 4 hours or less. His official time was 4:02:43 (9:16/M; 51 out of 248). That is outstanding for someone who didn’t run any further than 10 miles leading up to this! You could tell he was hurting though as he crossed over.

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I was, and am, very proud of him. We grabbed our medals and headed home. He was so cold afterward he was shaking and just couldn’t get warm. We had the heat up full blast in the car and when we got home I bundled him up in flannel pants, a blanket, and my space heater! This is one reason why we train people!! You have to get your body used to the distances. Mike swore he’d never do another marathon but a few days later he was already calculating how to beat this year’s time!

Even though I said I wasn’t going to, that this 1/2 was going to be my last long run, I signed Mike and I up for the FULL Marathon next year! Afterall, what better year to do my marathon than the Year of the Elephant!

 

 

Run Thru the Woods, 5 Miles

Mike and I got to the Run Thru the Woods starting line early. They were setting up the awards stand (sorry to the guy whose bum I caught in this photo) and getting ready for the festivities!

They had all sorts of food, including cookies, brownies, bananas, mixed fruit, coffee and hot chocolate. I got a cup of mixed fruit and enjoyed a little extra breakfast.

They had this huge monster truck called the Whambulance. It was strictly for publicity…of course! It’s so big you can’t hardly see the guy standing by the back tire looking underneath it. It’s a bit dark because it was just breaking dawn (no, not with vampires). I met up with Liz and some of the other people in my running group and we did a warm up before the race. I think we did a little over a mile.

Once I finished with the warm up I found Mike again and we lined up for the start. There were a lot of people there! I was a little surprised because it was Thanksgiving morning, but I was also happy to see the turnout!

They have a Pine Cone Award if you run three specific races in three days (Thursday, Friday, and Saturday). To promote that, they had this little guy walking around!

The horn blasted and we were off. It’s really hard to see in this picture but about a half mile in to the race we had to go over an overpass. It was really quite cool to see all of the people running up and over the overpass. If you click on the picture you may be able to see the enlarged version.

I looked at my watch as I was approaching the overpass and it said my pace was 12:30. That was wayyy too fast for me, so I slowed it down. Why? So I would be able to run the race without fading out and so I wouldn’t get shin splints! However, it was very hard to slow down too much. I had people going around my right side where there was only an inch or two of running room. Really? Go around the other side people!

I was passed by an older woman toward the beginning that chose as my target. I always pick one woman to try and beat so I keep pushing myself to go. As I got up and over the over pass and 80 year old woman passed me. I felt very small at that point in time! Onward and upward!! About mile 1.5 I passed the red shirt lady (she put up quite a fight because she didn’t want me passing) and was ahead of her for a good 1 1/2-2 miles. She went past me as we entered a neighborhood. That was ok though because I was still going to beat her in the end. She was using up her energy, I was conserving until the end. I also picked out a guy in a red t-shirt that was in front of me too. Apparently, I was the bull being attracted to red!

I wanted to reach the 4 mile mark before I saw Mike again. He always comes back to finish races with me, but I want to be as close to done as I can be before he shows up! One of these days I’ll finish before he comes back…maybe! He ran with me back up the overpass, which stinks at the end of a race, and almost to the finish line. As I was going over the overpass I passed the woman in red again because she had gassed out. So, I set my sights on the man and kept plugging away. Mike took my phone and ran ahead so he could get a picture of me crossing the finish line when we had about  1/4 mile left to go. That’s when I decided to really push it.

I turned on the boosters and gave it all I had. I passed the guy and his wife and was feeling pretty good until I rounded the corner and realized I may have turned it on a little too quick! However, I dug deep and made it across the finish line well ahead of the couple. Mike was no where to be found. When I did find him, he told me he wasn’t able to get a picture of me because he couldn’t figure out how to take the photo and apparently I came to the finish line too quickly because he wasn’t ready! All in all, that’s a win in my book! My official time was 1:10:41 which is a 14:08 pace!! Yeah buddy! I was 2126th out of 2150 participants. Mike finished in 35:57 with a pace of 7:11. I know, right? Men….

Pure determination! These are proof photos from the raceshots people…

 

CrossFit Total

This was the first time in quite a while that I felt so defeated after CrossFit. We did CrossFit Total to get a gauge of where we are with the heavy lifting. I PR’d on one lift and only by 5#s…pa.the.tic.

My PR for Back Squat was 175#. I only managed to get 165# this time. I know my legs and arms were sore from yesterday’s workout, but still…. The Strict Press was the only one I moved up on. My previous PR was 75# and I was able to get to 80# today. However, it took me a few tries. I think I was psyching myself out a bit on it. The weight didn’t feel that heavy on my shoulders but as soon as I tried to start pressing it felt like it weighed a ton!

 

Ahhh…the Deadlifts. My PR on Deadlift is 235#. Today…I was only able to get to 215#. WTH? 20# less? Shoot, just a couple of weeks ago I did 215# for 3 reps…I should have easily been able to go up from there. Alas…I couldn’t even budge 235# off the ground. I had all sorts of emotions running at that point. I was embarrassed because I was expecting a good lift, Shane was expecting a good lift. I was pissed because I couldn’t do it and it had been months since my last PR. There was no reason I shouldn’t have done better. Shane kept saying “It’s ok…I bet if you come back in two days you’d be able to do it no problem. You’ve been doing a lot of running lately.” Which is true but it still bothers me.

 

My foot was hurting a bit after all of the lifts too. I’m supposed to get 12 miles in this weekend but I think I’m going to drop that down to 6 and do my 12 miles the next week (just flip the distances around). That should allow my foot a little bit of a rest.

 

On our way home Mike was hungry so we stopped at Subway to pick up a sandwich. That’s when I saw this:

 Oh my goodness….did those smell great! The state I was in, I was more than happy to do some emotional eating and take a few dozen of those off their hands. Thankfully, I thought better of it and passed on the cookies. Let’s hope Saturday’s run goes better.

Mixed Reaction

It’s Thursday!! WOOT! One more day until the weekend…can’t wait. Michelle and I were the only ones at the gym today for our WOD. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a class that small.

We did Deadlifts for our strength exercise instead of Box Jumps. My legs were still sore from the front squats, but I didn’t feel them once we got going. We did 8 rounds (2 x 6, 2 x 4, 2 x 2, 2 x 1) similar to how we did the front squats but instead of going up by 5# increments, I tried to go up as quickly as possible. The last time I maxed out at 155# but thought I could have probably done 165#. Well, today I reached a new PR of 200#!! That’s almost my body weight! My grip was tiring out. I need to do something to improve my grip. It would help greatly with the pull ups as well. I also got my first callous tear, courtesy of the diamond etching on the bar.

I have some of the black from the floor mats embedded in it at the moment. I washed it the best I could.

The WOD was a killer today. Of course, part of that could be because it was hot and muggy. I was dripping sweat through the whole thing. We had an AMRAP of 10 Push Presses (45#), 10 Burpees, and 10 Ring Push Ups. The push presses were ok on the first two rounds but I was struggling with that weight on the last 3. I guess I need to really jump it up better than I was. The burpees…yeah…those were just pitiful. I hate burpees, and while I can do more now than when I started I still can’t do very many without getting worn out. I had to do the step back and up instead of jumping, but they got done. Last was the ring push ups….OMG. Talk about hard. My stabilizing muscles must be incredibly weak because I couldn’t do them very well. My knees weren’t far enough back and I didn’t get far enough down. But, that’s what we’re working on. Eventually, they’ll get easier and in return I’ll be able to steady myself better for ring dips or anything else dealing with the rings.

All in all I did 4 complete rounds and up to 7 burpees on my 5th round. Not good…at all. I stopped too many times. I was completely wasted and didn’t know if I could keep going, but I did my best to push through. My obvious weakness is stopping too often to try to catch my breath. The goal is to keep moving and don’t stop. So…that’s what I will try my best to do from here on out.

This was my first week doing 3 days of CrossFit. I think it went pretty well, even if I got my ass handed to me 25 ways to Sunday. There is no doubt I’ll start seeing more improvement with the added day. My upper body is much weaker than the other girls, so it’s time to play catchup!