I’m not exactly sure how my running partner and I settled on Athens for our spring race – but we did and had a quite the time. We drove down to Athens on Saturday, had dinner with some fellow runners (and I managed to get food poisoning…luckily the rest of my group was spared). After a restless night, it was race morning!
The weather had been looking rough all week leading into the race and it was about 65 and raining during the whole race. The few moments it wasn’t raining, it was humid as all get out. The race is an out and back along a bike path on the Hocking River. It was beautiful to run there. My running partner was able to stay at pace at the turn around but I started to slow back and ended up with a 2:44:23, which means my pace was about 30 seconds off what I had been training towards. We’re signed up for Columbus in the fall, we’ll see how that goes. There’s a lot going on in our house besides running, work and toddler minding, but it’s possible I’m going to sign up for another half soon to try to get that elusive 2:39.
This weekend was such a doozy and I want to remember it (especially since M thinks my Project Life stuff is too pricy to keep up all the time). I was gone for work Thursday/Friday and we managed to kick of December with a bang!
We started off with a family friendly 5k in our town – we walked to the start line! M pushed C in the stroller and we had such a blast. So many of my runner mama friends were there as well and it’s always a great time to catch up with them. After walking home, we had a bunch of boring house stuff to attend to during nap time.
After C woke up, we headed to the Columbus Zoo for WildLights. It was so much fun and C loved watching the light show on the lake. We also hung out with the water monitor (not pictured below, there were too many other kids in my water monitor pictures for me to feel comfortable sharing) for many actual minutes. I love our zoo membership!
On Sunday morning, I had another 5k, the Run Santa Run with one of my running partners. We didn’t PR but it was such a blast and there was a free beer at Bar Louie afterwards 🙂 We closed out the day with C ‘signing’ some of our holiday cards and catching up on our advent calendar (yes, we were already behind).
Gah! My first big road race in many years. I had not started this running season in April thinking a half marathon was in the cards for me this year. I had considered myself still ‘newly postpartum’ (which, now is no longer true!). A good friend hooked me up with the Columbus chapter of Moms Run This Town and I was soon back up to running three or four times a week. Through those early morning runs, I found two running partners with whom I started regularly running long with on the weekends. They completely talked me into running the Columbus Half with them. I had a BLAST.
Packet pick up at the convention center was crowded and a bit overwhelming (which really surprised me, since I used to work the Chicago convention for years). But we made a day of it downtown and it was energizing for the race. On race day we got dropped off early and had plenty of time to find our way around. The corrals were marshaled by volunteers from the Charity Newsies and I felt all the logistics where very well done. Crowd support was really great for the whole half but I do think it would have been hard to do the full at Columbus since you have to pass the finish line when you are just at 13 miles.
This is the marquee race for Columbus and I can see why. My running club does volunteer as well; so I expect to be back next year, either running or volunteering at the split.
I ran this race with one of my running partners and I had originally signed up for this to be my longest race of the year.
The course was on a public running path and the field was really limited – it only felt crowded at the beginning of the race. Due to the heat, they changed the course so that the 20 milers doubled back on the 10 mile loop we were running. It made for a cheerful atmosphere and let us runners cheer each other on more.
I was very happy with how this race went – we only slowed down from goal 15 seconds a mile due to the heat. It was very well organized and I would absolutely run another Columbus Running Company race.
I signed up for this 10k at Roots and Rocks in Alum Creek State Park back when I was first getting back into running again and thought maybe M would want to do it with me but, life with a little dude makes trail running *together* essentially impossible. So I ended up running it alone, with my two dudes cheering me on at the start and finish.
I thought the course was pretty well marked but M was surprised to hear there were no pin flags, especially at intersections. I did have to point out a few twists and turns to other runners – I guess M’s natural navigator awareness has rubbed off on me more than I would have thought! Packet pick up was a total joke and I will never make the drive to Fleet Feet before one of their races again if it isn’t required.
That said, I would totally run another race at Roots and Rocks again.
I ran along several parts of the trail with other MRTT-ers (Mom’s Run This Town) and even though we had never met before this race, they were super friendly and welcoming. I think they could smell the ‘new to trail racing’ fear on me and were extra helpful.
I hit 8 miles the previous weekend so knew I could handle the distance and have hiked much more technical things with M so knew I could handle the terrain; it was simply putting them together that was a bit tougher on my legs than expected. We’re two days out and my quads are still pretty dang sore! All in all, I would highly recommend this race if you’re in the greater Columbus area.
There is the field, getting ready to step off! It’s a where Waldo but with my honey instead.
While they were off and running, I drove back into the park and went for a super short hike. There is a surprising number of conifers at Mohican State Park – I cannot describe how incredibly good the woods smelled as the sun came up. We will most definitely be back.
The view from the outlook. I then moved to the Fire Tower to wait for M at the 5 mile aid station. He was looking and feeling great (this was before the 1/4 mile of single track in the stream). I went back to the start/finish line to study while he finished.
Looking and feeling great at the finish! M has such a blast at this race – this will be on our calendar for next year! I’ve got to step up my trail training so I’m ready for those mountains too 🙂
I came to running through brute force. I was working for a non profit that paired high school students to run a half or a full marathon. I started off as a mentor in the 15 min / mile pace group as it was always a struggle to find mentors who were willing to run that slow. Let’s just ignore that was probably my actual pace. I really enjoyed running with those girls (the boys would injure themselves just to not be in the ‘slow’ group) – and we crossed the finish line together. My parents came all the way out to Chicago to cheer us on.
I thought ‘the mile’ was a torture device inflicted on each student to pass out of each year’s gym class. I churned my little legs until my chest felt like it’s explode because I was constantly sprinting, fatiguing, walking and sprinting again. My face turned its favorite color of crimson and I willingly played defense so I could run less. Running was punishment, like the wind sprints you earned if you talked out of turn at basketball practice.
About a week ago, I had transient running experience and it sort of hit my why I keep doing this thing. I was on a short run (after M and I did a 9) and my legs felt like they were moving thru applesauce. I still turned in an 11:30 and then passed a home day care house with five or six kids playing outside. One little girl looks at me and goes ‘why is she running?!’ For some reason they gave chase and I told them if they wanted to run, they better keep up. They made it to the corner before turning around.
Once you cross a finish line – or hell, even just cheer at one – you know you’re doing it again. There is such a high that just finishing brings, you sign up for another race before it fades and suddenly you’re a runner.
and now, there’s this:
I’m in Keystone for work but I managed to squeeze in a run this morning. Look at this prettiness. Just so amazing.
|and there they go!
M’s coffee shop supported the volunteers at the Aid Station at Mile 8 for the Chicago Marathon. I, of course, walked down there from our place because I wanted to be well caffeinated. Right.
I got there at 7:50 for the elites to get there at 8:05. There were all these official vehicles. Then came the wheel chair division. Then more official vehicles. Then the police motorcade. Then the official pace car. Then ten crazy men from all around the world. Including Ryan Hall. THE Ryan Hall. It was a brush with greatness. (Although I think if I ever ran a 4:30 mile MUCH LESS 26 OF THEM I would fall over of exhaustion.)