Read my story of dropping from the marathon to the half marathon mid-race...Read More
No. Sleep. Til. Brooklyn!!! What? You really didn't think I would pass up using that as my opener? C'mon now. :P
I was REALLY looking forward to this little trip to NY last weekend (October 11-13) as I have a lot of great Weight Watchers/blogging friends that I was going to meet up with as well.
After leading my final Weight Watchers meeting of the week on Friday (October 11), I hustled home to change, pick up my bags, and head out to the train station. I was annoyed by all the security/waiting when I flew to NY in June that I went with Amtrak this time around.
I got to South Station with plenty of time to spare, bought my second Dunkin Iced Coffee of the day (hey! I was up at 5am! Don't judge) and settled in to wait for the train.
I knew I'd be on the train for a good 4-ish hours so I made sure to get in as many steps as possible before boarding. My train departed at 11am and I was over 6500 steps by then. Yay!
I settled in to a nice window seat. Hello plugs to charge my phone. And got comfy. I did try to get up and walk at least once every hour while on the train, which was easy for me since I drink so much water. :P
It took me awhile to realize that we were in fact behind schedule. Ahh! I was going to be cutting it close enough to packet pick-up. I was landing in Penn Station at 3:15pm and packet pick-up ended at 5pm in Brooklyn. I didn't need a delay to kick this off.
Thankfully I was tweeting with RnR while on the train letting them know about my hold up. I just kept trying to put good juju out into the world that it would all work out.
After arriving 30 min late (curse you Amtrak), my friend Kitty was on hand to meet me and help shuttle me through the public transit system to get to Brooklyn in tact. ;)
WE MADE IT!!
Yes! We made it with time to spare. Phew!
Ummm Corral 1, how did that happen??
After picking up my bib, we needed to celebrate with a beer of course. Kitty and I met her brother's roommate for dinner and to unload my bag so I could save time storing it in the morning before the race.
I met up with my girl Sheryl (aka Bitchcakes) for a nightcap and to crash on her couch. I am so thankful that Sheryl opened up her apartment to me. I was able to crash on her couch and use a car service to head to the race the next morning. Sheryl lives in Brooklyn so I thought she would be close to the start. Yeah Brooklyn is bigger than I thought.
Thankfully it all worked out and the $22 car ride was totally worth it in the morning to make it to the race safely and on time.
I met up with my Team Refuel teammates - Anthony and Lisa - to chat before the race.
I love racing and meeting all these amazing teammates from around the country!! Plus the VIP tent was crucial, private bag check and private port-o-potties. Thanks Got Chocolate Milk for the hook up.
As we were chatting, I realized we had just 40 or so minutes until Game Time AND I hadn't eaten. Dammit! So I got my KIND Bar out and scarfed it down.
I headed over to the Start Line and set myself up in Corral 1. Feeling out of place is an understatement. I had no idea how I ended up there, but I enjoyed the experience of being so close to the elite athletes.
My stomach was feeling off. Gah! Not a good sign. I shook it off to nerves. No matter the distance I ALWAYS get nervous before a race.
After the National Anthem, the horn sounded and we were off.
Enter more intense stomach cramps. Dammit! I knew it. I ate too close to the race. I try to NEVER eat closer than one hour to Start time and I failed at that. I was hoping I would still be okay, but apparently not.
From the onset, I felt like I was going to throw up. Yup, this was going to be a looong 6.2 miles. Thank goodness it wasn't a Half or a Full.
I just tried to focus on seeing friends and enjoying the scenery than the pain.
But as the race went on the pain got more intense. It was fun to run through Prospect Park in Brooklyn. The bands and fans helped take my mind off the pain until I crossed the 5k mark. I thought to myself how am I going to make it through the last half of this race.
I looked down and my pace was getting slower and slower. Ugh! Well clearly I wasn't PRing that race so the best I could do was focus on finishing.
The race was pretty flat as we can along the outside of the Park. Shortly after the 5k check point, we took a right and headed back into the Park.
As we approached Mile 4, we started going up an incline. Oh that was that hill that Sheryl told me about. The pain increased. It got so bad that at Mile 5, I stopped and tried to make myself throw up. I thought it would help. Well it didn't work so I just started running again and just get to the Finish.
The race ended on a downhill, which was nice so I just tried to pick it up and Finish strong.
I even managed one of the best action shots ever during a race.
I look like I know what I'm doing. :0)
I crossed the Finish Line and almost kissed the ground. I was so happy to be done, but proud of myself for pushing through and finishing. I actually felt zero pain in the rest of my body besides my stomach which I took as a good sign since I had been battling a foot pain the couple weeks prior.
I was pretty impressed with finishing on such a precise time and overall I did well compared to when I started racing. But, in the moment I was upset. I had the right to be. I accepted my thoughts and moved on. Plus, I had chocolate milk to drink!!
AND I even got to take a pic with a celebrity!
Hello Nesquick Bunny! :P
I waited in the very long line to get my medal engraved. It's worth the $20 to me to get it done onsite because if they mess up they have a box of medals right there to fix it. Wouldn't be the case if I got it done at home.
After meeting up with Kitty, who kicked race butt, I headed back to the VIP tent for some post-race food and refreshments. Again, thank you Got Chocolate Milk for the hook up. This was definitely better than the free Michelob Ultra you usually get (which I always pass on).
Before heading out with Kitty, I was able to FINALLY meet up with a social media friend and inspiration to me, Amy (aka The Awesome Mom) and it was magical. :)
She was as pleasant and sparkly in person as I imagined.
Kitty and I headed out to grab my bag from her brother's place and meet with the rest of the crew for lunch. Now there was some train issues going on in NY due to construction or something. So our trek from Brooklyn to Melanie's hood seemed to take forever. Especially lugging my bags around. We ended up on 2 trains and a shuttle bus, but we finally made it safely to Melanie's.
We cleaned up a little and headed to brunch with other friends I had wanted to see while in town.
This group shed 330+ lbs through Weight Watchers!
I was glad that everyone got along since not everyone knew each other beforehand. :)
We then celebrated with a little pub crawl before turning in early. It had been one long day and I would be spending the next day traveling back to Boston on a not so comfy Bolt Bus.
Overall, it was a quick, but jampacked weekend in NY. It was great running a rare 10k. I wonder how long Rock 'n' Roll will keep this race around before changing it to a Half or Full. It seems inevitable in my opinion since the 10k is so rare these days.
I loved the down and back during the race since I was able to see Janine and her mom racing as well as Amy and my Got Chocolate Milk teammates.
And now I know - no eating less than 1 hour before Game Time. It will just end ugly!
*The More You Know*
Oh and RnR Brooklyn was my third of 4 RnR races on the year. I have RnR LA left on October 27.
Have you run Rock 'n' Roll Brooklyn? Do you love the 10k distance?
Annddddd the winner IS:
a Rafflecopter giveaway CONGRATS!!!! Thank you to everyone that participated and big thanks to our Sponsor!!!
I think we can all agree I enjoy the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon series races.
Thanks to Team Refuel I had the opportunity last week to give away a free entry to RnR Philly (Half), which I will be running on September 15.
But, now the lovely folks at the RnR Marathon Group have given me a free entry to RnR Providence (Half) to give away!
I love being able to give people free entries to races that I love ... and will be running as well. :)
The RnR Providence race will take place on Sunday, September 29 at 7am ET.
Now, I was lucky enough to do this race last year after prodding from my friends. Yup they got me with "well it is $13 off if you sign up today!"
Here's my full recap from last year.
I'll wait while you check it out.
You can see that I had been going for a PR, but did NOT expect so many darn hills. Apparently I forgot that Providence was a hilly city especially by Brown University (aka the Mile 4 region).
But despite lots of hills and some bands missing from the course it was a fun race last year.
My friend Colleen was trying to pace me to a PR, but it was nice to have someone to run with. I so often race/train by myself that I forget how fun it is to have someone with you every step of the way.
I may not have PRed but had a great time overall. Plus the finish (is on a hill), but you run towards the Capital building, which is definitely a scene.
Afterwards they even have a booth set up where you can pay $20 to have your medal engraved on the spot...
... which I do at every RnR race where it is available.
So you are so amped to possibly run this race you just want me to get to the giveaway part? Okay here goes:
The giveaway will run from Monday September 9 (9:30am ET) through Friday September 13 (9:30am ET)!
The winner will be selected and announced on Friday!
Wow! It seems like just yesterday I was walking into my first Weight Watchers meeting ... and now I lead 13 of them a week. What a difference three years makes, huh?
Here is my recap from the two year anniversary: check it out!
I reread that post and still carry a lot of those feeling with me today: Pride, Determination and most importantly Happiness.
Wow! How things can change!
But I cannot thank Weight Watchers and the online community (Twitter/Facebook/Blogging) enough for helping me get to the point where I am now.
Now comes the hardest part in my opinion: maintenance.
Many people think once you hit your weight goal that everything is rainbows and unicorns ... not the case ... at least for me!
With the career change, I now have much more time to be social with friends so in that regards I feel like a New Member learning to balance a more social life and my healthy lifestyle. Thankfully many of my friends are health conscious and many are Weight Watchers members themselves, which make it a lot easier.
But for me, I am still working on not reverting back to old habits when getting busy or stressed and continuing to work on the mental part of weight loss - nixing the negative.
Now that I am living a much more active lifestyle, I am also learning how to handle the hungry horrors that can come when putting in 100 miles of running a month, Spinning multiple times a week and starting weight training classes.
But I am happy to have these problems.
I am so thankful for the active lifestyle I now live. I can't imagine going back to the days when I would just sit around for hours on end for days on end. Activity and exercise are a big part of my life now.
In particular - running! I know you guys had no idea, right? :P
Well, what you may not know remember is that when I hit Goal with Weight Watchers to celebrate - instead of buying myself a cut pocketbook or something like that - I signed up for a marathon.
Yup, I was THAT person ... and proud of it!
So now, on the three year anniversary of joining Weight Watchers, I am boarding a plane and heading to Savannah to run that marathon I signed up for that joyous day in January 2012.
And I am scared and nervous, but most of all I am PSYCHED! I'm ready to once again prove to myself that I Am Stronger Than I Think I Am.