Skinny Turkey Half Marathon (November 27, 2014)

IMG_20141127_103936_514I am thankful that I have so many people in my family who are willing to get up early on a holiday morning and venture out into the cold to run a race.

The Turkey Trot is a family tradition. In the past, we’ve always done 5 or 8Ks. This was our first time kicking off the day with a half marathon.

I was excited. It was my fourteenth half marathon, but the only one I’ve run so far this year. I need to run more races!

Kurt and I stopped on our way down to my parent’s house on Wednesday night to pick up everybody’s packets. Jen and her friend Erin were running the half marathon with us and my dad was doing the 5K.

I liked the shirts, but the women’s ones were TINY! Jen, Erin and I had all ordered mediums, which were way too small.

IMG_20141126_163736_384It rained all day on Wednesday, but according to the weather forecast, it was supposed to clear up by morning.

When we woke up on Thanksgiving it was still humid and overcast. It started raining again as we drove to the race.

The Race:

After the National Anthem, the high school dance team performed for us. It was different and kind of cool.

I had decided not to look at my Garmin during the race. I lined up just behind the 2 hour pace group. My plan was to run easy for the first half, then try to catch (and hopefully pass) the 2 hour pace group over the second half of the race. My goal was to run negative splits, but I also wanted to finish under two hours.

A few weeks back, my right hamstring had started bothering me. I thought the knee brace I’d been wearing was probably digging into my hamstring and causing the irritation, so I had started doing some of my shorter runs without the brace.

The race was going to be the furthest I had run without the brace, so I was a little concerned about how my knee would hold up. It ended up doing fine, but I definitely felt my hamstring. It wasn’t too bad, though.

Actually, other than my hamstring,  I was feeling quite good. The drizzle changed to rain a few times, but even that wasn’t bothering me.

There weren’t any major elevation changes, but the rolling hills just kept coming.

skinny turkey map and profileI (mostly) liked the hills. They kept me focused.

Between miles 5 and 6, we saw the 5K runners. I gave my dad a high-five as we passed each other.

When I got to the halfway point, I was still a couple hundred yards behind the 2 hour pace group. I still hadn’t looked at my Garmin, but I felt as though I should be gaining on them.

Leading up to the turn-around at mile 9, I got to see my sister (another high-five!), her friend Erin, and Kurt, who were all ahead of me.

Kurt later told me that he was worried about me because I was behind the 2 hour pace group. He figured I must be hurting. It’s a little strange to think he was worrying about me because I was so far back when I was actually feeling strong and happy.

I tried to grab a Gu from a volunteer just before the turn-around, but it slipped out of my gloved hand, and I ran on without it. When I came back by, the volunteer ran across the road to give me the Gu. So nice!. It made me happy.

At mile 11, I started to pick up the pace. It always feels good when you have enough energy to pick it up in the final miles. I passed a lot of people, but I still hadn’t caught up with the 2 hour pacer. He had lost his group and was running by himself at this point.

It definitely felt like the pacer was speeding up, too. As I closed in on him, I noticed that he kept looking at his watch. It seemed like he was worried about finishing in time. With only about a mile to go, I finally passed him. As I ran by, I asked if we were going to make it in under two hours. He said “oh yeah, easily!” which made me wonder why he kept looking at his watch and speeding up if he knew he was going to easily finish in under 2 hours.

I crossed the finish line in 1:55:56. It’s not even close to the time I need in order to set a new PR, but even so, I was very happy with my time and the way I’d run the race.

Everybody was freezing from standing out in the rain waiting for me to finish.

Sorry guys, I’ll try to run faster next time!

2014112795092700This is a fast crew! I was by FAR the slowest of the bunch, and I’m not THAT slow. I placed 6th out of 50 in my age group.

IMG_20141127_094148_791IMG_20141127_094849_204This turkey is not skinny enough to wear the race shirt.

IMG_20141128_172203_196~2_2I’m sucking in my post-Thanksgiving gut just as hard as I can.

Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving!

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Above all, let’s be sexy

how to look sexy outdoors

Wow. Where to begin?

There are so many to choose from, but I think my favorite piece of advice from this article is: “Heels are very feminine, and a small one goes a long way to make you look sexy even outdoors.”

I guess I’ve been worrying about the wrong things when purchasing outdoor footwear. I’ve been thinking about comfort and support and avoiding blisters and injury. Silly me. Now I know the only question I need to ask is, “do these shoes make me look sexy?”

The author also suggests ditching technical fabrics in favor of cotton, which is sexier. I guess it is important to look sexy while we’re dying of hypothermia.

This was written as a joke, right?

 

I’m inspired

harrisburg winnerIt’s not too late! I still have plenty of time to win my first marathon.

 

I’m not a hater, I just don’t wear skirts

no skirtI was a little distracted by the typos in this article, but looking beyond that, I found it interesting.

I don’t wear running skirts, but it’s mostly because they’ve never felt comfortable to me. I’ve tried a few on and the shorts underneath always feel like they’d ride up, or just be too hot. I’ve secretly been on the lookout for a skirt with just briefs underneath, though. I now know that such a skirt exists. Recently, I read 30 Something Mother Runner‘s blog post review of a skirt with briefs instead of shorts. So, I may one day become a member of the Skirt-Wearing Women Runner Club after all. I’m not going out of my way to join, though.

For the record, I’ve never felt shunned by other women runners because I don’t wear a skirt. I know a lot of women wear them, but I never realized it was a thing. Now that I think about it, maybe that is the reason nobody talked to me when I showed up for that early morning track workout. I’ve been trying to figure out what it was that I did wrong…