It Is Done

Happy Wednesday! It is done. The races are over!

Have you missed me this past week? Lol!

Did you have a wild weekend? Tell us all about it!

It’s was a wild one here!

Okay, this past week was a wild week, if you want to know the truth. Last week was race week! Saturday and Sunday were race days! Yes, it is finally done and over!

Now it is time to put my focus on YTT and finishing that. I need to get back on schedule with Jeff. It seems like I haven’t worked out with him in forever! He got sick and we had to cancel our last session at the last-minute.

I wasn’t terribly anxious about it last week, leading up to race time, surprisingly. Now that’s not saying the taper/race crazies didn’t set in. That is a story for another day! If you’ve ever raced or done any type of event that caused a taper, you know how that can go! To top it off I woke up Friday morning snuffling with fall allergies (I thought). Now I know I should have been taking something all week, but no….not me….now I am still snuffling.

Thursday night we loaded up the bus and went to packet pickup for the Baltimore half marathon (which was Saturdays race). Noah and Miss Quinn ran in the “kids fun run” and went to pick up their packets too!

Picking up their first ever race packets

How cute are they?

Friday we loaded up the bus and went to D.C. to pick up my packet for the Marine Corps Marathon-MCM which was Sunday. All of us, my daughter, me, and all four littles 😳. It was a long day. The kiddos did pretty good. Caterina aka Baby Sunshine started melting down on the way home. She was unhappy for the last 30-45 minutes, but we made it.

We got home, ate pizza (carb loading you know) and went to bed early. The kids fun run didn’t start until 9:20 and the half marathon started at 9:45 (that’s too late) but we needed to get downtown early to park. Beth, my Daughter in Law, her sister Jackie, and friend Jessica were running the 5K which started at 7:30 (I wish that had been the half) and we wanted to be there for that!

We all ran to honor Sgt Eric Houck (25), U.S. Army who was K.I.A. on June 10, 2017. Eric’s sister in law is my daughters friend and co-worker.

Part of our group

This was just part of our group that participated. Chelsea, my oldest sons girl friend had not arrived yet. While we were waiting we also met Eric’s aunt who ran the 5K and as they were starting we saw another runner wearing the shirt, dedicating her miles to Eric, my friend Sid Busch also ran for Eric as well as two other Maryland sailors who were lost earlier this summer.

crossing the start line

There were a couple of other runners in the half too that ran for Eric. They passed me by mile three…From the runners we know that ran in Eric’s honor we tallied 124.4 miles ran this past weekend dedicated to Eric.

Saturday was a hot one. The temperature was unseasonably warm and the humidity was kicking. I walked much more than I normally would have if I had planning on running for time. I lost time on a potty stop, because I didn’t hit the port a let one last time before the start. Then I walked over a mile with my friend Sid from 3 to almost 5. He was having some tummy issues and had to stop off. I was hoping Amanda and Chelsea would pick him up as they came through but they didn’t. After I left Sid I ran my intervals until around mile 11, altering them to a shorter run time at some point. After that I kicked a pebble up in my shoe and had to stop to get it out. That almost did me in. I tightened up and couldn’t get my rhythm back so I walked those last couple of miles. I tried a couple of times to pick it up, but I just couldn’t get it working. I waited until the end and when I turned the corner to the finish I mustered up and ran it in to the finish!

heading for the finish

Although I finished much slower than I normally would have, I was ahead of the time for my first ever race. Even though I wasn’t going for time since I had the marathon the next day, I was glad of that.

After my finish, while waiting for Chelsea and Amanda to finish a man who was 91 years old crossed the finish line! He ran the half marathon! He was with two other men who helped him along, but bless him! I have been scouring the race website for a photo, but haven’t seen one yet. I want to be like him when I grow up!

Waiting to start
getting it done
getting her medal
getting his medal
Two little finishers!

Noah and Miss Quinn enjoyed the kids fun run. Noah said, he wants to do the 5K next year (at least that’s what he says now). We will see. We missed seeing them run and finish, because they started the kid late and the older kids ran first.

After the race we came home, showered, went to get some dinner, and came home to sleep and get ready for Sunday’s MCM. We had to be up at 3am to hit the road by 4:00. It was definitely a long weekend.

Heading to the start.

Day two

All of the “official photos” aren’t sorted yet, so I haven’t bought them, yet, to get a “clear” image. I wasn’t thinking clearly enough, that early, to have “The Man” take pictures. I was flustered after we finally found where to drop Amanda off for the Circle of Remembrance and the Blue Mile, then finally made it back to our parking garage.

Sunday was also hot and humid too. I had hoped that the earlier start time would help beat it (we started at 7:55 vs Saturday at 9:45) but it was humid early and heated up quickly.

The start line.

The start line of MCM

“The Man” did take a few photos at the MCM start, but they aren’t all uploading right. These are the ones I could get to load.

Skydivers before the start. I’ll stick to running!

The Marines getting ready to present the colors.

The wall of flags we ran past after crossing the start.

There is one from every state.

Below is me around mile 11. I tried to look excited and happy for the camera. I might even “almost” have both feet off the ground, (runners always hope for that in a picture), lol!

This is how I really looked and/or felt, lol!

Can we just be done now?

Below is the start of the “Blue Mile”. This is the mile dedicated to the fallen soldiers. If you can go through here and not get emotional, there is something wrong with you. I walked this entire stretch. I could not run it. Most of these young men and women were under 30 years old. Just babies.

The Blue Mile

Eric’s picture was next to the last, before we went through the flags. This mile is presented by volunteers from the Wear Blue Run to Remember group. There was a flag for each soldier. My daughter, Amanda, held Eric’s.

Eric’s photo on the mile and then the flags of remembrance.

I was never so happy to see a mile post sign! It was almost done! It was still an uphill climb to the finish, though!

Almost there!

The marines line that stretch encouraging you along the way. Running uphill was not happening for me, at that point.

But.

I mustered up a smile and once I made that turn, I ran for and across the finish line!

I see the finish line

Finished! Done! It is over! I did it!

Done!

I may have cried just a bit when that cute marine put that medal around my neck. Okay, I cried many times throughout both days. It was a very emotional weekend. I am even weepy writing this now. Maybe I need to do a kids fun run…..

Below are a few more photos from the day.

Crossing the first bridge before mile three.

I wanted to take pictures everywhere, but I couldn’t stop. I knew I was running against the clock and couldn’t take too much time to “lally gag”.

I was lucky as it was. Because of the heat, they closed part of the course to allow everyone to finish that stood a chance.  I would have finished one way or another but I was going slow. There were several runners that were picked up by the “straggler” bus. I passed many people who were struggling and hurting. Some I know started out too fast as they had passed me early on.

I still have all my toenails (often times you lose them), but I did get this gnarly blister! TMI? (Sorry, I had to share) it actually looked worse the next day.

My blister

There was a man who is 60+ years old that finished just behind me that runs races barefooted! I can only imagine what his feet look like!

Post race meal. Jersey Mikes Sub! My standby, giant #6 Mikes Way plus mayo!  Can I just say it was delish!?! I only ate half and brought the rest home, but I think I could have finished it all right there.

Jersey Mike’s sub! Mmm Mmm good

Thank you for coming along on my runs! I hope you may have gotten a little chuckle out of parts of my story. But most importantly, even though I tried to be funny, these runs were undertaken to remember those who gave it all for the freedoms we enjoy every day. Please take a moment today or any day to thank a solider when you see them. Not just a soldier, but the police that put their lives on the line for us each day. These men and women leave home every day never knowing for sure they will return.

The news this past week has been fettered with something that the supposed “leader” (I use that term loosely) of this great country said “they knew what they signed up for” in reference to a fallen soldier. Yes, they did. AND THEY did it any way. They have given the ultimate sacrifice. That’s more than some have done (especially the one that said this)!!!! No, I’m not going to go political here. But I just had to get a bit of my feelings on that out.

If you are enjoying the blog and haven’t already; please take a moment to sign up for the blog email. Click on the subscribe button at the top right side of the page or on the “pop-up”. I will not share your email with anyone else (that would be mean) you will just be the first to know when there is a new post. You can also follow me on social media through the pop-up or by clicking the following links: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Bloglovin.  If you would like to share the blog with your Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest friends, please do. You can click the share buttons at the bottom of the post. You can also “Pin” the blog or any photos to Pinterest! Feel free to “pin away”! Your likes, comments, and shares are what helps get the blog out to more folks, which helps it grow, and I appreciate it more than you know. It really does help!

Until the next time

Janet

 

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You Can Do Hard Things

A rainbow, a sign

A Sign!

A rainbow. It has long been considered a sign, as far back as biblical days.

Last night when I left the gym, after yoga practice, I saw this rainbow in the sky. It was in close proximity to my house. Since I live less than a mile from the gym, I was able to make it home to snap a picture of it.

Why is this a sign? 

I’ve mentioned that I’ve been wrestling with a decision. Well, I made that decision, and last night set the wheels in motion to begin a new adventure.

I registered for Yoga Teacher Training!

Why was this a hard decision?

Well for starters it is far from inexpensive. So that was big factor. I am someone who thinks long and hard about spending major money on some thing, and this isn’t just pocket change. At least not for people I know.

Then there is the fact that I am running a marathon in October. That was actually my first concern. The classes start in September and are nine weekends long. When I first read that, the information made it sound as if it was nine weekends in a row. That would have been a problem for sure. Why? Well, you can’t miss a class unless it’s an emergency or pre arranged, and then you have to make it up. Since the classes are Friday night, and all day Saturday and Sunday it would have taken away my long run Sundays and that would have been when the milage was ramping up. There would have been no way to make that up.  When I was able to talk with my yoga instructor Kim, who is also the teacher for the school, I found out it was one weekend a month for nine months. That definitely put it back on the table. I can work two weeks of long runs around two weekends.

Then there is my powerlifting training, which hasn’t been as intense a training regime because of my marathon training. You cannot train hard for lifting while endurance training. My, trainer, Jeff has been completely on board with the Yoga Teacher Training (YTT) and said that it would not interfere with my lifting.

If running the marathon wasn’t enough, I came up with a brilliant idea on my way to the ocean last week. What was it? For my daughter and I, to run or walk the Baltimore Running Festival (BRF) Half Marathon on the Saturday 10/21, before the Marine Corp Marathon (MCM) on Sunday 10/22!!! Yes, really, I did! I haven’t even told Jeff this yet, I will do that tonight. We are back to our regular schedule.

Since I had been considering the Dopey Challenge in Disney for January and wasn’t able to get in, this is the same as the Goofy Challenge, that I thought about before getting in to the MCM. The main difference is the highest training milages will be in the summer and not the fall…..it will require running two days back to back to train, which will challenging; especially in the heat and humidity. I have figured out how to work my training runs around the YTT training and I think I have come up with a workable plan!

Why did I do this?

On Saturday 6/10 there were three soldiers killed in Afghanistan (you may have heard about it on the news). One of these young me was the brother in law of my daughters co-worker and is a local, hometown boy; Sgt. Eric Houck. I contacted my running friend Sid Busch (I’ve told you about him before), but you can read a bit about him here. This article is a couple of years old, from his 200th marathon. He ran that the day I ran my first! I asked him, if he had not already picked a soldier to run for in Baltimore, if he would consider running for Eric. He, of course, agreed. After I really got to thinking about it. Amanda and I (or maybe it was just me) decided we could add the half to our weekend and run with Sid. This race has a five hour time limit and we can walk the entire thing if we need to and still make it for the marathon. Sid gives his race medal, bib, shirt, etc to the family of the soldier he runs for. Eric had two little children, Noah and Quinn’s age, we decided by running with Sid we could give our medals to the children to have a remembrance. We will also be running MCM in his honor and have submitted his information to be added to the “blue mile” there.

It won’t be easy but…..my motto and the Plunder anthem for this year is:

Ironically when I gave Kim my application and registration fee last night I mentioned still be scared silly. Her words to me were: “It will be hard, but you can do hard things, you have done hard things, you run marathons, That is not easy, it is hard!”

Well when you look at it that way….and add the rainbow. I took it as a sign that I made the right decision.

She also told me it would challenge me to look and my light and dark side. To examine me. I knew this and I think this might scare me just a bit!

Well have I succeeded in making you think I’m ready for the “looney bin”? What are your thoughts about this news? Do you have any words of wisdom, advice, thoughts? Let me hear from you?

This Sunday I will run my first race of this year, the Baltimore Women’s Classic (BWC) 5K. This is one of the largest Women’s only races around and helps to support research for women’s cancers. This will kick off my “official” Half/Marathon training. The 5K isn’t as far a distance as I should run for this week, but I have adjusted my plan to quickly ramp up my milage (safely) over the next few weeks to get where I should be. Remember I tend to work training plans “MY WAY” anyhow…..

Thank you to everyone that has participated in my birthday month “Plunder Give Away”! I have had fun with it. I hope you have too. Remember there is still time for you to enter and win. Just comment on the blog posts to be entered in the drawing each Friday this month. There are still two more drawings for June!!

Last weeks winner for commenting is Amy Hughes! Amy, send me a private message or email at grandma2glamma@gmail.com and let me know where to send your Plunder.

I will be posting the winner of the June Posse on the blog tomorrow. I have to go through all the comments from the month for that one!

Have you signed up for the blog email, yet? If not you can sign up with the subscribe button at the top right side of the page or on the “pop-up”. I will not share your email with anyone else, you will just be the first to know when there is a new post. You can also follow me social media through the pop-up or by clicking the following links: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Bloglovin.  The Facebook page has now reached over 600 likes! Twitter and Instagram aren’t far behind! Thank you all for helping to get it there!

If you would like to share the blog on your Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest you can just click the share buttons at the bottom of the post. Your likes, comments, and shares are what helps get the blog out to more folks, and I appreciate it more than you know. That’s what helps it to grow! Remember you can also “Pin” the blog or just the photos to Pinterest. So feel free to pin away!

Don’t forget to leave a comment so that you can be entered in the Plunder drawing for this week. Of course your comments help more people to see the blog too and that’s what helps to get it out to more people. I really do appreciate it!

Until the next time

Janet

 

 

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