Monday, October 10, 2011

Space City 10 Miler Relay Recap

Remember Friday I said that I was meeting a blogger in Galveston on Saturday? Well, I'm glad she read my blog! There was a misunderstanding. We're meeting next Saturday! Oops.

So Saturday I didn't do much. I wanted to rest before the Sunday race. I did go drive the course to get an idea of how long it was. Why do the miles seem so much more intimidating from a car?

Have you ever driven 3.1 miles and watched the odometer? There is no way I want to know what 13.1 miles looks like. Running is a mental game as well as physical. I don't need to be intimidated at this point!
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Sunday. Space City 10 Miler. Renee and I are signed up for the relay which means we'll each be running 5 miles. Not a problem. Just last week we ran 6 so what's five miles, right?

Saturday night I get my gear together and realize I don't have a hat that matches my outfit properly! I start texting Shelley for outfit advise. She suggests adding a color to make it pop! Hot pink is decided then I'm worried about the orange in my shoes but she assures me it is a minor color and will not distract. These things are important!

So off I go to Academy to get a hat. Meh. Was not impressed with their hats. Then off to Sports Authority. Wow! So many cool things in that store! Found a black hat with hot pink. Perfect.

I present to you my running ensemble. (Thanks for the help, Shelley!)
And believe it or not I had no trouble sleeping that night! And 5am came very early Sunday morning. I throw on all my gear but did forget Bodyglide. Eat half of a low carb bagel and drink some Rock Star. Pick up Renee and head out. There's lightning in the sky followed by low rumbles of thunder. There will be rain.

We arrive and it's still so dark. There are no port-o-pottie lines. This is about 30 minutes or so before the race begins. So maybe 6:30am. Using one of these things in the dark is an experience. I will not go into detail.
 The start line looks so ominous! Like the start of some scary march of doom. Lightning is flashing. Thunder is rumbling. The wind is blowing. It's sprinkling a little. Scary!
 Renee and I walk around to warm up our legs and to check out the different booths being set up.
 One running club with an obvious sense of humor brought their own potties. Nice.
 Ten minutes before the 7am start time and there are major lines starting to form.
 I hadn't been feeling too nervous up to this point. Then they announce that the runners need to line up. Faster runners at the front and slower people in the back. One other thing I noticed about this race: not a lot of "fluffy" girls like me. You know, ones that need to lose a couple of pounds. That was a little intimidating! So now my nerves are in full force freak out mode.
 A parting shot right before the race begins.
 They had a moment of silence and then sang the national anthem then it was go time. The horn blew and everyone just stands there! We eventually start walking towards the start line and then running as we cross the timing pad. A very weird and surreal start. No one seemed to be in a big hurry to start this race.
 I'm looking around wondering why we aren't moving forward! The horn already blew!

No more nervousness once the race is under way. I set my 5:1 run/walk intervals and all is going well. I brought a hand water bottle by Nathan with my electrolytes in it. You know, I think they really do help. I felt great! Was having fun with the comments I'd get about my shirt. Especially at the water stations. Hey, if they don't have rum I'm not interested. Runners are a lot of fun.

Here's a pic of the steady stream of runners.
 Chuck was our relay driver. He dropped Renee off at the 5 mile mark then drove back to park on a median and cheer for me with a cowbell. Never underestimate the power of a cowbell. I saw him standing there and heard that bell clanging and got a little boost of energy. I started chicking (passing people, as in "hey, that girl just chicked you! Better catch up!") people left and right. But at the same time I was in such a good mood and talked to so many people. Cops on bikes, people walking, people trying to run.
 That fifth mile felt really good!! People who had not paced themselves were slowing down and I was able to pass a few. Then I was at the relay point and tagged Renee. Off she goes!
 I felt so good!!! The adrenaline. The race atmosphere. And the fact that I was actually able to run it! I was pretty darn happy. Maybe even annoyingly happy.
 I ran across the street (why yes, I still had energy to run! Felt amazing!) to the van and Chuck drove while I hung out the window and waved the cowbell at people I had met while running. I wish there was a way I could apologize to the one woman I scared to death though. She didn't hear me coming and I'm hanging out the window and start yelling "Way to go!!! Woohoo!!" while wagging that cowbell. Her eyes were HUGE when she looked over her shoulder at what crazy person was driving up behind her like that. Sorry, lady!

Almost immediately it starts raining. We stop at various points to cheer for Renee and the other runners. I love, love, love to encourage people during the races. It's so much fun! And to see them smile just makes my day. :) 

Poor Renee. It starts pouring. Almost her entire leg is done in the rain. Hey, at least it keeps you cool, right?
 Did I mention that I had a bit of energy left? I did! So right before the mile 9 marker I decide to finish the race with Renee in the rain. It's pouring!! And her foot was hurting pretty bad. I just wanted to be able to do something to encourage her the rest of the way in. Plus running in the rain is kind of cool.

What was really amazing were the runners who had already completed the race and came back on the course in the rain to cheer the rest of us in. Such great people!

One lady was encouraging us and said, "You're almost to your medal!" What?! Wait, medal? I didn't know we got a medal. Let's finish this thing!!!

As we got close to the finish line I bailed off the road (don't want to mess with the timing chip I was wearing on my bib) and Renee finished up. Great job, girl!
 We get our awesome medals and meet up with coach Sherry from our running club. We're all smiles now. We're finished!!! Such a great feeling. And we're soaking wet.
 We get Diet Cokes, Muscle Milk, pizza and breakfast burritos then stand under a tent to eat because of the rain.

Loving my new bling. :)
I was feeling wired after the race. So happy and bubbly. LOL Like I said, maybe a little annoyingly happy.

I'd like to thank Chuck for driving us around. It meant he had to get up at 5am too and play taxi driver to us in the rain. He even held an umbrella for Renee and I as we walked around and took pictures for us and carried our stuff. It was appreciated. Your pit crew is a very important part of the race! The guy even gave me a pedicure the night before the race so my toes would be nice. (Side note: getting my first black toe. Gotta keep those nails trimmed short!)

We get home and I get cleaned up. Chuck passes out but I'm still bouncing off the walls. So I have a shot of tequila and toast a successful race. Usually toasts are with someone else but oh well. Chuck wakes up and then takes a couple of shots with me (To life! To running! To Kelly getting a grip and calming down!)

I pretty much bounced around all day and then it was time to get ready for opening night of the Aeros hockey game! I scored some outrageously perfect seats!

We even each got a puck! Apparently little things are exciting for me lately. "OMG! A puck!!!! I'm so happy!"

The kids even had a great time. It's fun to cheer and yell at the game. This morning I'm hoarse from all the yelling. Totally had a blast!
 Speaking of cheering, the cheerleaders are so tiny. I've eaten steaks bigger than them!

The crowd was having a great time. When the Aeros scored the crowd would yell, "He shoots! He scores! Hey goalie, you suck!" It sounds rude, I know, but it's just something they do at the games.

Went to a fight and a hockey game broke out. Aeros ended up winning 4-1.
After the game we went to Buffalo Wild Wings and watched the Packers game for a while.

It was just a great day!! Thank you for letting me share it with you. :)

11 comments:

  1. What a fun race, although I'm still perplexed by people NOT running when it started - how strange! Glad you had so much fun, and your outfit came out great! Very cool that you got a medal, too - you really need a medal hanger! :)

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  2. Hi Kelly, looks like a great race!!! Congratulations. (love the rum shirt!) Have a great Monday.

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  3. Looks like a medal hanger is in your future.

    Watching you run Sunday was a lot of fun. I got tired just by being there!

    Good job. Keep it up.
    LOVE

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  4. I am so proud of you Kelly! Sounds like you had lots of fun, too! You can do a total recap Saturday! See you then!!

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  5. What a great and fun race, I loved reading the recap. You write with so much enthousiasm, I love it!

    Congrats you were awesome!

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  6. I am cracking up reading about how HAPPY you were at the end. I am the same. Complete bundle of nerves prior to the race and usually come across a finish line laughing! I truly think it has to do with getting a runner's high. So much better than the people I've seen coming across and they are sobbing. So much better!

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  7. This whole post is making me so stoked for the Gorilla Run! I can't wait to have a fun race recap on my blog!! You continually inspire me!

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  8. Kelly, what a wonderful day you had! I'd be bouncing off the walls too - although I'd just be sipping my white wine - tequila? You are hard core! :D

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  9. Congratulations Kelly! Lots of great pics...can't believe it feels good to run in the rain. I will have to take your word for it. ;)

    Chuck rocks!

    Hockey, pucks, and wings...now that is a trifecta!!!

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  10. Kelly, I really love hearing about your race adventures and just your everyday activities. You lead a very interesting and inspiring life. I'm glad you share so much on your blog. I got a lift just reading this today.

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  11. Great job! It sounds like you had a total runner's high there at the end, too :D

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