Just thinking about the next five days is making me tired.
But for ALL good reasons.
I mean yes there is the little thing of The actual Boston Marathon taking place on Monday, but there is SOOOO much more happening before then.
Let’s see what’s on the ‘ol docket:
After finishing the work week at 12:15, I will be heading home, getting a good reliable backpack and heading to the Boston Marathon Expo at the Hynes Convention Center. The expo kicks off at 2pm and I think my friend Sarah and I will be there pretty much at the start.
Why you may ask?
Well, I am REALLY hoping I can snag a pair of the exclusive New Balance Boston Marathon sneakers, which are only sold at the Expo. So trying to get there as early as possible will help my chances. *Fingers Crossed*
Aren’t they amazing???
(I missed out on the exclusive Run Disney sneakers because we got there too late)
Additionally, I am picking up my bib for the BAA 5k AND the Boston Marathon so lots to get done.
Plus, I have a ton of booths I want to hit up … the high priority? Meeting the ladies behind the amazing Sparkly Soul headbands.
I had the honor of being invited to a special Runner’s World Shakeout Run with Bart Yasso, which takes place Saturday morning at 7:30am. I am wicked excited to be meeting up with so many of my fellow bloggers and some of my running idols.
Around lunchtime, I will me joining some of my local Twitter/Facebook friends for lunch before they head into the Expo (and maybe I go back ). I will definitely be seeing Sam from Running and Cupcakes and Colleen from The Fit Bee and hopefully some others!!
As if that wasn’t an exciting day already, the wife & I have the Tedy’s Team Pasta Dinner that night 6-9 at the Lenox Hotel. If we are still functioning, we will end the night with the Runner’s World party, which is located close by. I want to take advantage of as many chances as possible to meet some of my running and blogging idols.
And on the day before the Marathon, I decided to sign up for the BAA 5k (8am) with my best friend Sarah. Sarah is turning the Big 3-0 on Monday and since I will be busy running I told her we could run the 5k together the day before as a shakeout run for me.
The biggest hurdle? Holding myself back from race pace.
Thankfully I will have Sarah there to reel me in and keep me in check. Since the BIG SHOW is on Monday!
The rest of the day will be spent relaxing at home and making sure everything I need for Monday is laid out in advance.
The Big Show!
Nerves will be setting in. Nervousness will be in full effect. Excitement will be seeping from all parts of my body.
I need to be at the Boston Commons by 7am to take the bus to the Start Line.
Once there, we have a place where all Tedy’s Team members can hang out – out of the elements – before the Start.
My wave is set to start around 10:40am.
Then it’s GAME TIME baby!
After finishing (assuming I do ), I will meet my family and the rest of the team at the after spot at a nearby hotel.
I can’t wait to see everyone after they Finish, especially my family.
My treat day!
Hey, I deserve a day off from work after the Marathon so I took one.
I am meeting my friend Abby for mani-pedis around 11am then followed by lunch/drinks in Davis Square.
I will then putter around until a 90-minute (yup I went there!) massage at Massage Therapy Works.
Once the wife gets out of work, I hope to meet up with her for dinner and possibly getting my 6th tattoo.
I am looking to get the phrase “One Step At A Time” with “13.1″ and “26.2″ on either side. I need to check with Painted Bird Tattoo parlor to see if they have time.
Now doesn’t that sound like one exhausting, amazing and life-changing weekend???
I am smiling, crying and feeling tired all at the same time.
But, I feel blessed and can’t wait to share all the memories with you all.
Will I see any of you over the next 5 days? Maybe grabbing a beer to celebrate?
If there was ONE piece of advice I could give to fellow runners, it would simply be: volunteer at a road race!
It gives a runner a new perspective on what goes in to putting a race on and may change some people’s unappreciative attitudes.
Last Sunday (January 27), I met up with the Racemenu and RACE crews to help stuff bibs … which I had never done before.
I liked getting into the rhythm of putting the chip, safety pins and twists ties (for the chips) in the envelopes. Plus, they supplied free pizza … and I can never say no to free pizza.
The bibs were being personalized with each runner’s name so we didn’t actually have to stuff the bibs themselves that day.
The experience was great and it was cool to get to know the people running the race better.
On Saturday (February 2), I had free time after my 16-mile training run with Tedy’s Team for The Boston Marathon so I signed up to help with bib pick-up from 12-4 at the New Balance Store on Boylston St.
It was cool to be the one handing out the bibs, chips and t-shirts to the runners and wishing them a good race. Plus, everyone loves finding out that with their bib they would get 15% off at the New Balance store all weekend long.
Keeping a smile on my face was easy during the 4-hour shift as I LOVE seeing other runners excited to race. Some were nervous about the impending snow and cold weather, but most were ready to get after it. Plus, there was free beer at the Finish … how could that not get you pumped for a 5k or 5-mile run to kick off Superbowl Sunday??
I missed setting up the station, but made sure to stick around and help break down the bib pick-up location. The four of us worked quickly to make sure we got out of the store on time.
Plus, I ended up using my own bib to get 15% off the one New Balance shirt I had my eye on since seeing them at The Falmouth Road Race in August.
Isn’t it great?
Then yesterday was Race Day (February 3)! I signed up to both volunteer and run the race … why not, right?
I was told to be at the race by 8am to get my location. I met Kim at 8 and was assigned to set up baggage claim.
I was intrigued by this spot since I rarely use bag check myself and wanted to make sure I set it up the best way I could since there were over 1,500 runners signed up.
Thankfully we had a large space so we were able to set up 8 different rows designated by an orange cone where each row could hold 200 #s/bags if needed (1-200, 201-400, etc). Within each row, there was a second cone denoting the second 100 #s (100, 300, etc) to make the area as organized as possible.
Yes my math mind loved this activity.
By about 9:30, Kim said she needed more help at Registration as those volunteers needed to head to the course itself. So I happily headed to registration to help hand out bibs and t-shirts. It was sprinting back and forth between bib table and t-shirt table so it was a perfect warm-up for the race itself. Plus, I was able to see a couple people I knew pre-race.
Finally at about 10:15am, I headed to do my personal prep for the race itself (which started at 10:30am). The port-o-potty lines moved quickly, but thankfully the race director had to tow some cars on the course so the Start was slightly delayed giving me plenty of time to get in position.
I had NO idea what to expect from the run since I had done 16.2 the day before, but as soon as the gun went off I booked it … and felt great.
I somehow had a sub 8 minute/mile pace the entire run, which I didn’t expect, but happily accepted.
It was snowing while we ran through Cambridge, which set a lovely scene.
I caught up with my friend George just before Mile Four and helped push him along the final hump/hill.
I just reminded him that “we had 1.08 miles til beer” and that “we eat 1 mile runs for breakfast.”
Hey! Those things keep me moving too.
I ended up clocking in at 38:34, which was a 7:43 min/mile pace … WOW!! I really don’t know how I did that.
As soon as I finished the run, I headed to the beer tent to grab a celebratory drink (of course!) then headed to find Kim to see where I could help.
I ended up going back to bag check to help with the masses, who just wanted to get home and out of the cold. I tried to move as quickly as my tired legs would take me because I knew how cold the runners were. We ended up having about 6 of us on hand to knock out the long line of people waiting.
Once the bag check was under control, I actually was able to meet up with Tyler from Popchips, who has helped me with some giveaways here on the blog and at my 30th Birthday Charity 5k. It was great to finally put a face with the name.
After catching up with Tyler, I realized it was already Noon and time for me to hit the beer tent and pour beers. I have NEVER helped at post-race beer distribution before, but I wanted to make sure to be on my A-game since I DO know how important beer is to runners.
Samuel Adams, Long Trail Brewing, Mayflower Brewing Company and Shipyard Brewing Company donated bottles of beer, while Bantam Cider provided kegs. I was put on bottles so thankfully a co-volunteer let me borrow his iPhone that had a bottle opener attached to it – yes I need one of those too!
My hands were frozen, but it was necessary to be on the other side of the beer. Many runners can get testy when waiting for free beer – seeing/experiencing what the volunteers go through (frozen hands, delays in beer delivery, running out of cups, etc) makes you appreciate and understand the wait a little more. I am not a person that ever got “bitchy” at a post-race party, but I definitely wouldn’t in the future after trying to open beer bottles with frozen hands.
Once we ran out of bottles of beer, I headed back to the post-race party tent to find Kim. They needed help breaking down the Finish Line so I headed that way. I wasn’t very strong, but helped out however I could.
I did learn how to properly fold the American flag in the triangle pattern.
Following Finish Line breakdown, I headed back to the post-race party tent to help clean up the tables and empty cups that were strewn around as people danced to Bearfight.
As the party started to wind down, I headed out around 1:30 as the wife arrived to give me a lift home.
Overall it was one AMAZING experience.
I don’t think many runners are aware of what truly goes in to putting a road race on.
To get a truly well-rounded understanding, I recommend that EVERY runner volunteers at a local road race at least once in their life.
And please remember to always thank every volunteer and police officer along the course … they give a lot to be help secure your safety and that you have a kick ass race/party!
Waking up Sunday, January 13, was bittersweet.
On the one hand, I was excited that it was 7am rather than 2am, but on the other hand I was wicked jealous of all the people out running the Walt Disney Full Marathon that day.
First, we headed back to Magic Kingdom to ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, which we had missed on Day Two because of lengthy wait times.
The wife really wanted to ride the monorail so we actually took the monorail from Magic Kingdom to Epcot. The monorail is such an easy ride. I think if we go back – sorry when we go back for Goofy Challenge 2015 – we will stay at a Disney hotel on the monorail.
What I forgot is the WDW Marathon ended in the parking lot of Epcot so as we headed to the gate there were TONS of runners who had already finished and spectators trying to enter the park to catch their loved ones finishing the race. So security was a bit of a cluster, but thankfully the guards did a good job moving people along as quickly as they could.
Once we entered the Park, we were off to grab a fast pass for Test Track before going on Mission: SPACE. Now let me tell you Mission: SPACE was NOT my cup of tea as I am a claustrophobic type person. So choosing the orange option (intense training) over the green option (mild training) was not smart, but it was what the wife wanted so I went along with it.
(Note: I did proceed to get sick after this ride. Yay me and my weak stomach! )
To give my stomach time to settle, we walked around Innoventions, where the wife tested out The Sum Of All Thrills (which went all sorts of directions as you built your own virtual roller coaster). Yup, I sat my butt on the bench while that happened.
The Seas With Nemo & Friends was a must-see. It was a great combination of Nemo characters and actual aquarium life.
We then headed over to use our fast pass at Test Track, which wasn’t as exciting as I had remembered … but still enjoyable.
I do have to commend Disney on their job of shuttling fans and spectators through the park without interrupting the runners since the marathon was still going on while we were taking in the sights.
After crossing the marathon path, we claimed our fast pass for Soarin’ before grabbing lunch at The Electric Umbrella (mmm chicken tenders)!
Following lunch we went to Spaceship Earth, which was delightful. They took your picture at the beginning of the ride then used it in a little computer game at the end of the ride (determining what your future will look like).
Before Soarin’, we managed to squeeze in Journey Into Imagination With Figment (and we were the only people in our entire car), Captain EO (featuring Michael Jackson) and The Circle Of Life.
Soarin’ was definitely cool, but being in the bottom row meant some of my view of the large screen showing the scenes of California were blocked by the people in the row above me’s feet. Gross! But still a cool ride/experience overall.
Since we had made our way through most of Future World, it was time to head over to the World Showcase and meet up with some friends. My dad met up with us outside Soarin’ and headed to Germany to have a beer/brat with us.
In Germany, we were meeting up with Twitter Friends Eric and Krissy … I LOVE meeting social media friends in person!! They had both ROCKED the WDW Marathon that morning so I couldn’t wait to share a celebratory beer with them!
YAY!! It was so great seeing them!
Eric is a fellow Weight Watchers Leader in NJ
After Krissy and Eric headed out to meet other friends and my dad went back to the hotel to see my mom, the wife & went ahead to finish up our tour of the World Showcase.
Including have a Sam Adams in The American Adventure…
We visited all of the countries before calling it a day to head back to the hotel bar to have some drinks, eat pizza and watch the Patriots playoff game, which was happening at 4:30pm.
How amazing were the skies (no filters) we had as a backdrop for the AWESOME Patriots win, which sent them to the AFC Championship game!
Can you tell I was a little excited? It helped that if they won we would be GOING to the AFC Championship game!!
My parents met us for the game and we headed to the Boardwalk Resort to go to Big River Grille & Brewing Works to celebrate! The food was delicious and the area near the Boardwalk Resort was lovely.
We headed back to the hotel room after this to get some rest before our final day in Disney: Animal Kingdom!
Time freakin’ flies my friends. I cannot even believe we already had the fourth of the five-race “Let’s Run, Have Some Fun And Be Fit” Summer Series…
The Twist & Shout On The Charles River 5k was Thursday night!
My dad and I did this same race series together back in 2005 when I started running, but due to injuries he hasn’t been able to run in ages, but for this race he decided to volunteer. Why not, time to see some old running buddies of his … and we got a free ride out of it.
Well since we actually had to park the car and there is limited limited parking at these races – we cut it CLOSE to getting to the Start Line in time for the run.
Additionally, this is an old school race without timing chips/etc so once the clock starts your time is based off that – no matter what time you actually cross the Start Line.
So I usually try to get as close to the front as I feel comfortable going, but since we got there so late – I was much farther back than usual.
Which led to a TON of bobbing, weaving and running on the grass for the first 1/2 a mile or so. It was also a task running on the grass and avoiding the large divots, dodging the tree branches and not tripping on the tree roots. It was like a mini trail run at the beginning.
But I really didn’t mind since I love these races – great fun atmosphere!
As I got myself back up to where I would normally be running and actually seeing many of the familiar faces, I remembered one of the bridges was out – finally after years and years it was deemed unsafe – so we had a slight detour, which actually didn’t alter the flow of the run at all.
On my Runkeeper, I was averaging a 7:13 or so pace, which is what I normally shoot for in the Summer Run series so I was excited. I knew it would be altered at the Finish because of the timing they use, but I was happy with how the run was going.
Especially since on Wednesday morning I had to cut a 5 mile run to a 5k, I was glad to be running painfree!
After that the race was pretty much the same as the others.
I tried to really dig deep and push it when I got within 1/2 a mile of the Finish.
I knew the race would be longer than 3.1 miles because of the detour, but I have run the course so many times I still knew when it was time to kick it up a notch.
According to the official results – I finished in 23:23 (7:33 min/mile) – I would probably take off at least 30 seconds for the time it took me to get to the Start Line, but either way I am happy … I came in 164th out of 917 overall and 32nd out of 515 females.
Either way I was stoked to be done It was wicked humid.
I got my Harpoon IPA and went to the usual meeting spot to wait for the rest of my crew!
My dad (one in red) was actually helping with the beer distribution and “overseeing” the keg issues:
Well, the final run of the series is just 3 days before my birthday and I think my dad will be volunteering again! YAY!!
I am human! I know folks it is a shocking revelation, but I am not always the perfect Weight Watchers member and I tend to think that is why you all can relate. We are human. Life happens. Then I realize “I Am Still Learning”!!
So a week ago today I stepped back on the scale for the first time in three weeks. We had been traveling each Friday to either Chicago for the Half Marathon or Maine for relaxation (not that I am complaining at all).
But I got on the scale on August 2 and was up 4 lbs since my last home weigh-in
July 13 – 155.2
August 2 – 159.3
(Note: I NEVER thought I would be upset/mad to see a 159 on a scale! Oh how times change…)
Well that was expected with vacation and taking advantage of stopping at all our favorite spots in Chicago. But it was time to get refocused.
So on August 3, it was back to tracking. I was determined over the next 11 days to track everything (be a #trackstar), get 100oz of water each day, do a plankaday and hit all of my Good Health Guidelines.
At the same time I was starting full on Marathon Training…
so it was time!
Thanks to my ActiveLink I am wicked aware of my activity and motivated to top myself each day.
Well by Monday morning I was up to 60-something Activity Points, yet I got on the scale and nada.
Say whhaa?? Usually after a few days back on plan and that much activity, I woulda seen some movement but nope.
So it was time to bring in my reinforcements … my #wwmafia crew (which is a group of WW Leaders and Receptionists that are the bomb biggity – yup I just used bomb biggity).
I asked for their advice and soaked it all in.
Because I can use all my WW Leader info on myself, but sometimes you need to hear it from someone else to get it to sink in.
So I kept on doing what I was doing:
*Eating 26 DPT a day
*Eating/Drinking all 49 of my Weekly Points
*Not touching my Activity Points
*Drinking at least 100oz of water a day
*Kept up my plank a day streak
I checked in again on Wednesday…
(Note: I am broke my own rule this week by weighing myself more than 2 times a week and I was upset with myself for doing that, but I got swept up in my own crazy!)
… and nada!
I started to look through my tracker and share with my most trusted WW Leaders and Receptionists to get their thoughts.
Common theme: water retention. Yup, indicator to me? Not able to get any of my rings off my fingers.
But I stuck with it!
I could’ve just given up and said Screw it! I’m having Chinese food but no! I trust WW and know it works.
I tallied up 111 AP this week – thanks ActiveLink for pushing me to light those darn lights up!
So I got on the scale this morning and BAM. It worked.
Home Scale read 156.2.
And the official Weight Watchers Lifetime/Employee weigh-in read …. 156.4!
In range (153-157) and once again proving that WW works.
Now, for me … this summer has been a HUGE adjustment. Not only are we in a new place and I am in a new job, I have now had to adjust to attending BBQs and having a social life. Well going from working like 100 hours a week to not, I feel like a new member now (like I’ve written before). So now adjusting to social life and learning how to handle the delicate time of Lifetime/maintenance.
This whole summer has been a welcomed learning curve. I have learned to really keep my fitness up in the times of Happy Hours, BBQs and vacations.
Thankfully, I have a great support system that will not let me get too far off the deep end. They keep me in check and I would be LOST without them!!
So let’s as a group just make it through these last few weeks of summer and move on … to Birthday Season!
But moral of the story is: I Am Human … and I am Still Learning!
As we were driving up to the 5k Thursday night, we passed loads of people walking to the pre-race hangout area and I thought to myself how many of those people looked familiar. It is funny how you start recognizing people at races. It’s like you think you knows those people, but you really don’t. You just see them at all of the same races. It’s like when people have the gym take the same classes or have the same schedule as you.
Thankfully, I have started to chat with some of the usual runners and it is great to build/learn/meet new runners!!
*The Jerry Garcia Memorial River Run marked the 3rd of 5 races in the Let’s Run Summer Series*
I knew this 5k would not be one of my best efforts. I was still recovering from July 22′s Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon (Sunday) in Chicago when this race crept up on me on July 26 (Thursday). But, you need to complete all 5 of the races to get the free jacket in the end so nothing was holding me back from running.
PLUS, these races are wicked fun so I never want to miss one.
So Thursday is my busiest day at work since I lead 4 back-to-back-to-back-to-back Weight Watchers meetings from 12-5:45, but they are great groups and days are always easier when I have a 5k to look forward to.
Thankfully the race didn’t start til 7:30 so I had plenty of time to come home and chill before we headed out for the run.
The weather report said we would have heavy rain and thunderstorms, but thankfully we lucked out and there wasn’t any rain until we were heading out!!
We headed out over the bridge and over to the Start Line. We got there closer to the start than usual so we actually only had to wait about 15 minutes until the race started.
Before I knew it it was time to go. I felt sluggish, but I was still going to give my 100%.
It was WICKED humid, but thankfully I was used to that from Chicago.
So I didn’t feel as strong as usual, but I was happy to run into my friend George just after Mile Two. It really wouldn’t be a 5k unless I ran into him!! He is one of those people that I kept seeing at races, we chatted on social media then we finally met up at one of the last runs!
I crossed the Finish Line at 23:00 (7:26 min/mile pace). About 33-34 seconds slower than my usual times at the Let’s Run Summer Series … but I was still A-okay with it! I mean hello, I still ran a 7:26 min/mile pace. Me!! So yes, I was happy with the results.
I finished 167 out of 995 overall and 29 out of 546 women.
I will take it!!
Afterwards, I enjoyed some music and brews with my Let’s Run ladies: Vickie, Kim and the wife (aka Tori)!!
I just wanted to note that this was the 16th of my 24 road races in 2012! CRAZY!!
So this was my first ever trail run. Let me tell you: I have GAINED a TON of respect for people that do trail running ALL the time. WOW! It is quite a workout…
I figured it was safe to kick off my first trailing running adventure with a race that was short – 2.35 miles seemed like nothing … PRIOR to running it.
I was HONORED to have the privilege of being asked to be the Captain of Team Slumbrew for the event and of course I jumped at the chance. Not only do I love their beer … but I also LOVE the people behind it. Drink local folks
They even hooked us up with these awesome tech shirts for the run…
Team Slumbrew had 12 awesome people on it. I only knew two of the people beforehand, but think we all clicked pretty well.
Racemenu did the timing and had awesome chips that went on the shoes.
The run was set into three separate waves since the paths were pretty tight. Our team was in Wave One.
Like usual I didn’t bother to look at the course beforehand so I had no idea where the start was or what to expect. Sometimes I kind of like the unknown of a race course since I practice on the same course all the time and know the ins and outs of it.
But anyway, we all lined up on the field across from the Stone Zoo and all of a sudden the gun went off and it was go time.
I was actually having some technical difficulties at the beginning of the race so I decided to forego listening to my music or my Runkeeper during this run. Also, I thought C’mon it’s only 2.35 miles – that isn’t that much.
2.35 miles on this trail run was MUCH different.
We started my running along the road before we headed into the woods and proceeded to run vertically for about 2 miles.
All I kept thinking was thank GOODNESS I Spin. I got myself down into more of a squat and run barreled up the hill as best as I could. But, it there were so many rocks/tree branches/other people to watch out for.
It was definitely more of a workout than I had expected, but it was a good burning for sure. It made me realize how strong my legs have actually gotten over time.
Thanks to Alain from Racemenu for yelling at me to “smile already” so I could get this great action shot!
I was definitely breathing heavily and cursing under my breath before and after this was taken. This was just after what I figured was the half way mark.
I finally looked down at my Runkeeper once I saw the long awaited downhill come into view. We were just shy of 2 miles and I was ready to be done. It was in the mid 90s and I was sweating up a storm.
I hit the downhill and just felt like a kid running free down a hill without any sort of brakes. Normally I can reel myself in on a downhill, but not this time. All I focused on doing was NOT falling down the hill and taking out the people in front of me.
Once we got to the bottom of the hill, we STILL weren’t done. C’mon people. We had to sprint around the field and then would be done.
Wow! This race honestly felt wwwaaayyy longer than 2.35 miles, but it proved once again how much stronger I am thank I give myself credit.
I crossed the line at 18:59 (8:05 min/mile pace) and was 111th out of 444 and the second finisher on Team Slumbrew.
What an accomplishment.
We rocked it!
I even won an award – cuhlearly, not for my speed or lack there of. But for being a social media nut – Facebook and Twitter – about the race and the VERT Race Series. I was so surprised and honored. I got a cool VERT mug with the Slumbrew logo on it.
It was great to hang out with some of my twitter buddies in person:
George and I have crossed paths on Twitter, Untappd, Foursquare and on the road at races, but it took til this race to finally chat!
The same with Lexi - lots of social media, but had yet to meet in person. I wanted to thank her and her husband for giving me this sweet Untappd t-shirt!!
So thank you all for making my first trail run a success.
It is Wednesday and my ankles still hurt – so I know I need to keep practicing to get used to it. But, I will definitely do it again!!
Have you participated in a trail run/race before?
It may be sad how giddy I get thinking about a night 5k. I mean Thursdays are my busiest days at work so having the fun 5k along the Charles River with my wife and Kim pushed me through that day. Plus, having it an hour later than the last one (Blues Run 5k) gave me time to wind down from work before we headed over to the run.
The Summer Run series is a group of five races (one per month) on a Thursday night on the Charles River. The races are usually 4.something miles, but due to construction this year they were shortened to a 5k.
Some people thought the Blues run was shorter than 5k, which I thought might be possible since my time was so much faster than my other PRs. I finished in 22:23 where my other lowest PR is 23:10. But this race started a tad farther back than the previous race, which made me think it would be closer to the 3.1 mile distance.
For me though, these races are about the atmosphere and the post race party. Plus, if you complete all 5 you get a snazzy jacket … Ooohh!! I am a sucker for race schwag!
I was annoyed at the beginning of the race because the group of runners in front of me spent the entire time complaining about the race and it’s organization or in their opinion lack thereof. I just wanted to tap them on the shoulder and say “If you don’t like the race, no one is forcing you to run it.” I was just so irked by their comments, also because I like the race and it’s local feel.
Anyway, it was finally time to start and I thankfully blew past the nay-sayers and got myself into a groove.
I have run the course a thousand times so it is easy to know the ins and outs of the turns and how much farther you really have to run.
There was a group of tourists standing along the River and you could tell they were completely confused as to why a thousand people were bursting towards them with numbers on. It was funny.
As I took the turn that goes in to the last mile of the run, I locked in on some targets and told myself to get down and pass ‘em. In the last half mile, I managed to pass three different runners – all female. I felt so accomplished. It made me feel like I did a good job of keeping a little in the tank so I could really let myself free in the final stretch.
I was feeling good until some guy came barreling past me in the last few feet before the Finish Line. Kind of a lame move in my opinion, but I tried to just let it go. It just isn’t something I would do – runners courtesy.
But, I grabbed my water and headed to the post race party … and forgot about the guy that pulled a jerk move.
My official time came in at 22:26 (7:15 min/mile) and just three seconds slower than the Blues Run 5k. I was 138th out of 1,122 overall and 27th out of 648 females! Wow!
I am still amazed that times like this are coming out of my body.
I definitely think the added length at the start got the race closer to 3.1 miles.
Anyone else run the Raggae Ramble 5k?
I’d been looking forward to this race on May 20 for awhile … who doesn’t love a race that allows you to wear costumes and ends at the Harpoon Brewery?
The 5-mile race is so popular – there is a lottery to get in to it. You can enter as an individual or a “6-pack” … we entered as a “6-pack” and were selected … Go “Team Big Man”! Woo!
Next big decision – what costume to wear? Hey, there is a contest, we had to enter.
Lots of e-mails back and forth between the group before we picked a nice and timely option.
Yes indeed we were the Josh Beckett “situations”: Beckett and Lester with the Popeye’s chicken and beer … Beckett and Buchholz out for an off day of golf.
Thankfully the wife came along to act as official “Team Big Man” photographer and to enjoy the post-race party!
The Starting Line opened up to the masses at 9:45 to prepare for the 10am kickoff.
The crowd was huge and pumped for the run. It took us 3 minutes to make it to the Start Line.
We ran the first half mile together as a group then headed out at our own paces…
I do want to state for the record that each of us ran all 5 miles WITH our props! Yes, I ran 5 miles with a golf club and golf ball. Let me tell you that it gets heavier as the course went along.
It was HOT and HUMID. I also am not used to running in a cotton t-shirt so I felt out of my element.
But, I gave it my all. I couldn’t believe that I was posting sub 8 min/miles after 3 miles – I hadn’t done that before.
There were a couple slight hills, but the real opponent was the weather. Thankfully there was some extra shade during the homestretch.
I made it almost all 5 miles without dropping my golf ball then BAM! right before the Finish Line I dropped it and thankfully the guy running next to me scooped it right up.
As soon as we crossed the Finish Line, we got a Harpoon 5-Miler Pint glass full of water … that would later be used for beer!
I officially finished in a PR of 38:23 (7:41 min/mile) … I finished 98th out of 999 in my division and 706th out of 3,555 overall.
Wow! I still couldn’t believe those numbers came from me.
The entire “Team Big Man” finished strong and everyone had a sub 9:20 min/mile pace. Hot damn we were working it.
We enjoyed our post-race refreshments and food before the costume contest began and …
… we were jipped!! We lost to a group from the movie “Cool Running” and a set of American Gladiators. We shoulda won! We were timely and part of the costume was based on beer! Hello! But, that is okay – we will win next year!!
I even ran into my friend – and Spin Instructor – Jess, who I didn’t know was running until after we finished.
Overall, the day was a BLAST … and I cannot wait to run it again next year!
After coming off the “bathroom incident” from the Newburyport Spring Fever 5k on May 6, I was hoping for a really good run at the M.O.M.’s Run 5k in Somerville on Mother’s Day (May 13).
I had missed a PR in the previous week’s 5k by 10 seconds – OUCH! Damn my small bladder!
But, I digress.
I also need to point out since my wife reminds me ALL. THE. TIME. I know I do not NEED to nor WILL I PR every race … BUT, I was just looking for one at this race since I know how close I had come the week before.
Plus, I am competitive. I KNOW! None of you could tell that one bit in reading this blog that I have that tendency. Since no one picked up on it I thought I would let you in to the secret. I want to be better than I was the time before. Yes, I am
slightly wicked competitive with other people, but I am 20 times more competitive with myself.
So in summation – yes logistically I know I will not and do not have to PR every time, but it is a little extra umph that pushes me throughout the race.
Well, that and the damn lady on my Runkeeper that chirps in every 5 minutes with the distance I’ve run and my pace. Does she have a name? If not, I need to name her. Ruth? She sounds like a Ruth and sometimes she can be RUTH-less. Get it? Oh gosh, I am so on today.
Anyway, back to the run.
So I was excited to finally wear my cool Racemenu singlet and I, of course, rocked the Superman socks again.
The wife and I met up with Liz and Lauren before the race, drooled over the pre-race carb-loaded snacks, hit the port-o-potties (YES!) then headed to the Start Line.
The race was small, which meant we were actually up towards the official Start Line – made of duct tape (YES!).
The gun sounded and we were off.
Well folks, no one reminded me how hilly my hometown is. My goodness this race was the complete opposite of flat. Yes, the uphills seems to go on for days, while the downhills seemed like a millisecond long.
But, I was pushing myself.
There were great cheerers along the way and I got some more awesome shout outs for my kick ass socks (Thanks hun!)
I found a few runners in front of me and just tried to keep them in my line of sight the entire run. I tried to catch up to them, but knew that wasn’t happening so I just tried to make sure I could see them at all times during the run.
Focusing on a person just ahead of me is a great motivator I use during races. I always love being pushed by people that are faster than me and this is a way for strangers to help me without even knowing it.
As I rounded the corner and saw the Mile Three marker ahead, I could also see the clock. I just kicked it in to another gear.
I came towards the finish it was still in the land of 23 minutes, but as I crossed the line I could hear the people at the Finish saying 24:06.
What? 24:06? 7:46 min/mile pace? Me? Wow! I was able to knock 27 seconds off my PR in one of the hilliest courses I’ve ever run … I wonder what could’ve happened had the course actually been flat?
I ended up finishing 65th out of 303 overall and 5th out of 36 in my division.
I was beyond thrilled with how the race went and couldn’t wait to hit up the post-race spread.
Let me tell you. This race had some of the best donations I’ve ever witnessed at an organized run – from the Harpoon beer to the Redbones‘ BBQ. I enjoyed myself. I knew this day would be off my Weight Watchers plan and I was totally okay with it.
I had a great time with friends and picked up a shiny PR to boot.