4.12.2010

AHCHM Race Recap: Suck It Up, Cupcake!

The moment of truth had finally arrived. After having a loose-y goose-y interpretation of what proper training involves these last several weeks, it was time for my feet to do their thing.
This was my second time to run Angie's Half Crazy, and I'm happy to report they got that pesky mileage problem fixed. She and her crew put on a stellar event (they always do) with lots of fun details and great support. This year's event had a military theme and portions of the proceeds from the race were to benefit not only a cancer charity but also military families.
I knew I was going to have fun when I saw the tag line to this year's race:Last year, members of my running group participated in a relay across Texas Independence Trail, which is basically like half of Texas. It was a two-day thing where they ran night and day in shifts. No, I didn't do it, but wish I did. Maybe. Anyway, whenever someone would whine or moan along the course Angie's husband, Frank, would run by and tell them to, "Suck it up, cupcake!" Which, to me, is perfectly hilarious and so useful in many situations. I love that. It was also printed on the bottom of the socks that came in the race goodie bag (along with a cool tech finisher shirt and coffee mug).

After waiting in what was possibly the longest port-o-potty line ever, and mooching some toilet paper from the highly prepared lady behind me just in case (she spared a square), I made my way over to the corrals. Where I killed time while waiting for our start (I was in the second to the last corral, basically the turtles) by snapping some pictures.

Obviously I was somewhat undecided between smiling or saying something and ended up with this. Nice. Let me also take this moment to sing the praises of my new Wonder Girl tank from Skirt Sports. LOVE it! It has a racerback style, yet it's not too low cut or hoochie in the front, the bottom half is a mesh material for air flow (sweat flow?) and there is a hidden pocket for a Gu or cash or whatever. I know they are a bit pricey (not too much more than Nike though), but very well made and comfy. I got mine (along with a hot pink one) on super sale when they were discontinuing certain colors, I think it was almost half off.
I also wore one of my trusty running skirts. Seriously, they will change your life. Even when you are sweating like an overweight construction worker in the middle of July, you will still feel cool, feminine and twirly. They are magical.
Here's Angie atop a fire truck's cherry picker (she and her hubs are also volunteer firefighters) signaling the start of the race. Sweet.
The morning started out cool, which was wonderful. I realize now I got caught up in the race and started out a little too fast (for me) which, while fun, came back to bite me on the back of my running skirt a few miles down the road.
I kept up with my intervals pretty well and stayed consistent for the first, oh, maybe 6 miles. Between miles 7 and 8 my body and mind started having, um, discussions. By this time, even though it was morning, the sun was out and the temps were rising. It was HOT, my feet were starting to protest their commitment to this whole thing, it was HOT, my run:walk intervals began to reverse themselves, and did I mention it was HOT?
I was so not sucking up the cupcake.
Between miles 10 and 11 I really just wanted to go lie down with these guys:
Those are Longhorn cattle who, for some unknown reason, reside on NASA property as part of their agricultural division (???). They looked so peaceful relaxing in the grass, if I wasn't afraid they'd impale me with their horns--and if I didn't have that stupid race to finish--I might have joined them.
But I journeyed on.
From mile 10.5 on I resigned myself to the fact that you really can't train for three or four weeks (after not running consistently for a year), take the next three weeks before the race off and consume large quantities of sugar and expect to run your best race.
Pity.
I also decided to forget about my run:walk intervals (because I wasn't really fooling anyone anyway), finish the race walking, enjoy the pretty day, the songs on my iPod and work on my tan.
I still got my medal, it just took me a little longer.
While not my best performance, and I'm still bitter about the heat, this race served as a spark to get me back into running. To remind me that I do in fact love running (even though I whine sometimes), that training can not be skipped, and that I am capable of doing hard things. It also reminds me to be thankful for the ability to run and the fact that my body still shows up and participates even when I don't always take the best care of it.

Like, for instance, devouring the post-race hot dog, plain Lays potato chips and Circle K cola like it was the best food ever. At that particular moment, it was.

9 comments:

  1. Good for you for showing up and finishing anyway. I think I miss running. I guess we'll find out how much I miss it when I'm given the all clear for exercise post-baby.

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  2. yay for you!

    i *wish* i loved running.

    i love running skirts. does that count?

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  3. You inspire me, girl! Great job!

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  4. Nicely done! Totally worth it for the post race junk food! I think we should run a race together at some point. Perhaps we should wait until the fall though...

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  5. Wow, kudos to you for finishing! I seriously cannot imagine making it through such a long race without proper training going into it.

    I love your running ensemble, you're stylin!

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  6. Good for you enduring to the end! I'm sure I would have hopped the fence and gone to nap with the longhorns!

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  7. Congrats for enduring and pressing on and finishing!

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  8. You truly rock. I seriously suck right now. I need me some mojo back.

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  9. Even runners who train longer than 4 weeks (!) want to quit and join the cows, esp. in the heat! Congrats on finishing the half marathon!

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