Surprise….surprise…

Since I’ve been on a blogging hiatus, I thought it was time to dip my toe back in the waters.

A recap of the last few months…

What I HAVEN’t been doing:
Blogging

What I HAVE been doing:
End of the school year stuff (yes the kids went to school until June 25th), working, traveling, vacationing, slowly ramping up my mileage, starting to race again.

The Slow Return:
Since the whole car vs. foot vs. trying to return to running sooner than I should have debacle, I’ve been slowly increasing mileage and checking in with my friends at Rausch PT.

The Highlights:
Renegade Race Series Summer Trail Race #1 back a few weeks ago.  I did a half mile warmup pre-race and thought I was going to die, so my plans for the race were to just finish.  I had visited the PT that morning and got final clearance to race and I was thrilled to find myself…err…actually running at a pretty good clip.  I snagged a shocking 3rd place overall for the women and finished the evening by securing a 1st place overall female finish in pounding celebratory Doritos post-race.

I literally don't have a single pic from the entire night except the one of my being a good PT patient post-race.

I literally don’t have a single pic from the entire night except the one of my being a good PT patient post-race.

In addition, we hit the road (more like not so friendly and thunderstorm laden skies) and headed for the midwest to experience squirrel sized mosquitos and actual humidity.  I found a little local 5k (Kade’s Klassic) that started 2 hours before a reunion we had to attend in Wisconsin, so 3 generations of us clowns opted to hit the race.  A great time was had by all and we all took some some super sweet times and memories.

Of note:

  • Strawberry won his age group and came in the top 10 finishers
  • I won the overall women despite a serious footrace and challenge from another woman the entire time
  • Vanilla and Chocolate ran the entire race together and said it was the best time “conversationing” they have had in a long time and “didn’t fight one single time”.  When asked what they discussed the entire time they said, “racing and life”.  I’m pretty sure that means gummy bears and tag rules in 7 year old speak.
  • Showing up to a reunion post-race where you haven’t seen people for 20 years is always a SUPER good idea
  • Grandma Honey (my mom) got to be run in by her 3 favorite runners
IMG_6971

Some pre-race photo fun including some seriously wonky hair on all of our parts.

Apparently I’ve magically discovered the way to triumphantly returning to running races and feel better about yourself – wear a watch reading out slower than you are actually running times while you train thus underestimating your current abilities, stick with smaller local-ish races, and ensure some of those are in a place where most people can only feasibly run about 5-7 months a year.  Oh, and be sure you’re a stubborn mule who realizes that running faster means you finish the race sooner.

I’m sure I’ll keep this little place called blogging home a little more updated in the near future.

What races have you done lately?

Are you enjoying summer?

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Race Review: Renegade Summer Trail Series 5 Mile

5 Miles
Summer Trail Strides

Since I am out of race shape and haven’t been running, I did the smartest thing you could do – go sign up for a 5 mile trail run (Renegade Race Summer Trail Series).  Actually, it was a last minute decision fueled by some canceled plan changes and the desire to try something new (plus Heather can be awfully convincing).

Getting Started

Reg

Registration & Checkin- This was prior to my pre-race snooze

I was told to get there early and actually listened, but it was unnecessary, the registration and check-in was so smooth and I was done in about 5 minutes.  With the extra time, I curled up with my bag and took a little rest/nap.  This is exactly how to prepare for a race #badadvice.

At check-in, you got the choice between a t-shirt and BBQ ticket. They had me at the B in BBQ.

The Loot
I initially ditched the goodie bag, but after the race I saw someone pull out a box of Starbucks Via Iced Coffee and I accosted one of the poor teen volunteers and held her against her will until she found me a bag. Nothing says I love you more than caffeinated beverages (all the extra loot was good too).

Oh So You Have to Run
Once I accepted the fact this wasn’t a $30 nap, I meandered over to the starting line sans warmup.  Fail.  The race started a few minutes early which was a surprise, but this chip-timed trail race got off without a hitch.

The Start that says Finish...

The Start that says Finish…

Let me reassure you, this was no walk in the park.  This course is 5 miles with almost 1,000 feet of incline on loose trail.  After about a mile of nice flat trail, you go up on a very hilly ridge for a few miles and then down and loop back nice and flat to the end.

As with trail races, course support is lean, but Kelli was out there handing out Icee’s (for great pics of the course check out Heather’s review – it’s mega awesome and comprehensive).

It was a tough course and I’m certain my splits were as consistent as Amanda Bynes’ behavior, but I finished with a 37:53 (7:35 splits) and a 7th place female finish.  I actually had a really nice finish which I justified as looking for an excuse to pee my pants (wish I were kidding).

Post-Race

BBQ & Bottle talk

BBQ & Bottle talk

The one downside is the lack of water…in a summer race, it was a bummer to have to search out water.  My one criticism/request would be to have water there right when you finish.  I suppose if it was THAT problematic I could have carried my handheld water bottle, but I was a complete and total lazybones.

After the race Heather, Julie and I parked it for some burgers, laughs and general complaining about how no one in our houses clean water bottles but us.  But if you have kids (and actually bring them to the event), it’s a great event with kids races, medals, and plenty of room for them to run around.

Overall – I loved the experience and had a blast torturing myself in the heat.  This race was part of a 3 part trail series.  I missed the first one in June, but am hoping to catch the August 1 race.  If you’re in town and looking to push yourself for 5 miles – you should check it out.

Do you ever run trail races?