Friday, August 1, 2014

Thirty-one, done!

It has taken me a while to get to posting this, but I did indeed run 31 miles on Saturday, July 28th as planned! YAY!!!

I don't know how many feet of elevation change we went through, except that there were a couple thousand just in the first half of the run. The whole thing took 5 hours and 52 minutes, which I think has me at an average pace of 11:21. Not bad for my first (and LAST) "Ultra" - seriously, never doing that again!

Happy Highlights:
  • My Derek is awesome and I would not have even attempted this without him. I am so grateful for his support and encouragement
  • We have a ton of awesome friends who came out in support; thanks to Derek, Maggie (who ran 13.1 miles with me!!), Sam, Clay, Ron, Lark, Lindsay, Michele, and Felix, I did not run a single step by myself
  • We also had a great gathering of family and friends at the house afterwards; I, of course, snuck off to go to bed before the party was over (cause dude, I ran 31 miles), but I hear things went great :)
  • Not a single blister on my feet (Derek brought me socks to swap out when mine got super sweaty)
Here are some photos from the day...

We started & finished at Kuykendall Campground

Getting ready to set the official time...

And we're off! Sam ran the first 4.5 miles (and some later miles) with me

Finishing the first 4.5 miles; about the leave the road for the trail

Next 6ish miles were on trails with Ron; we went to the top of Cedar Rock and back. Nothing like a little 3rd class rock climbing to keep things interesting!

Stretching after the Cedar Rock leg; 1/3 of the way done!

Trying to eat before the next leg; another 6ish miles (5.5?) going up and over Chestnut Mountain with Clay

"I'm Eeeeeaaating!"

Sweet note from new friends


Love from the CR Basecamp

CR Base Camp

Finish Line!

Finishing time - 5 hours 52 minutes

Attempting to smile; or at least not sob too openly

To Cathey's Creek to cool down

It was COLD!!

Good Friends :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Thirty-one, Here I Come!

Just wanted to check in briefly. My birthday run will be this Saturday in Pisgah National Forest. I am so ready! As you may have guessed from the title, my 30-miles-for-my-30th-birthday run has turned into 31 miles. One to grow on and all.

There have been a couple of training bumps along the way. I got a crazy stomach virus that knocked me off track for a couple of weeks. More recently, I discovered what "Runner's Diarrhea" is [shudder] when I completed my first ever marathon (WOOHOO Marathon!!). But for the most part I've been able to get in good long runs on my weekends and stay active enough during the week that I feel ready for Saturday.

Derek has been wonderfully supportive during this whole process. When I asked for his help, he came up with my original training plan, encouraged me to keep to it, and didn't get too annoyed with me when I ignored it and ate doughnuts instead :) He loves me. Derek is also taking care of all of the 'race day' logistics, so that I can just run and have fun. I definitely would not be able to do this without him.

That's all I have for now. I'm going to spend the week eating plenty of carbs, enjoying a lot of yoga and walking, and just chilling out. Will post again when the run is done! Hopefully there will be pictures :)

Friday, May 30, 2014

Trail Run Fun

So far the training for my upcoming 30 Mile 30th Birthday Run is going pretty well. Tomorrow, I will be halfway through my second training cycle with a 16 mile run to be completed. I'm excited because from this point forward, every 'long run' I do will be the greatest distance I've ever run. So even if I don't make my 30 mile goal in the end, I feel like I'm getting to do something cool just through the training.

I'm doing all of my long runs out on Cathey's Creek Road and the adjacent forest trails. I think trail running provides unique problems for the runner as well as bits of entertainment that you won't find anywhere else. With that in mind, here are some of my pointers for running in the woods...

  1. Even if you wear bright colors, you may get shot at by a drunk hunter. I recommend singing the Oscar Mayer Wiener song as loud as you can to announce both your presence and your insanity. 
  2. If you squat to pee, check for poison ivy. If you fail to do this, call me and we can commiserate.
  3. Snakes are everywhere. Get over it and jump over them. Or abruptly turn around and run back the other direction. That definitely works too.
  4. Not all deer are afraid of you. In fact, some deer may just give you crazy eyes and then charge you. Watch out for those psychos.
  5. After reviewing points #1, #3, & #4 - it's probably a good idea to be armed when you run.
  6. Those horseflies that try to bite you may seem like a nuisance when you are running like a maniac to escape them; however, when you discover that you cut down on your time considerably just because you were running from those little jerks, you may be grateful for there presence. But not really.