Monday, April 13, 2015

Rock & Roll Raleigh Part Deux

Last year if you remember I went down to Raleigh to not only run the inaugural Rock n Roll Raleigh half marathon but to visit my friends Jerry & Shannon.  It was a great time and so I was looking forward to doing it again and this time Tom actually was coming too!

We hopped a flight down Friday morning, Jerry picked us up and we headed direct to the expo.  That way I could get in and out quickly.  I was right 10 mins tops.  After we went to eat and headed back to Jerry's house.  I was excited to see Loki and Penny <3

We also headed to a quick hike to a local lake and then to dinner.  The weather in NC was so awesome after such a shit show of a winter here in NY.

The next morning Tom, Jerry and I went to Hanging Rock State Park for a hike.  It was nice but way too crowded.  We didn't stay long because my ankle started really bothering me.  So after a bit we headed to Winston Salem for the absolute best chai latte I have ever had at a place called Krankies.

We had dinner after then and then headed back to the house to get my stuff and drop me at the hotel.  I got a funny text on my way to the was my friend Dave saying he was worried about me since I had not posted my race day outfit yet HAHAHA  So of course as soon as I got there I got everything ready for the next morning.  I knew I didn't have to get up way before the race since the start was literally right outside the front door of the hotel.

I was up at 6:15 and after I got ready I headed down stairs.  The start was 7am and I was in corral 19 so I went to the start and waited.  In retrospect this was not the best idea.  No walking around meant no warming up of the feet and legs.

For the first time in well over a year or so I was going into a race with a time goal.  You see I had received an email a few weeks ago saying that since I ran last year if I beat my time this year I would get a bonus prize.   It will be a tshirt that really isn't that cute but I NEED THAT SHIRT.  So I knew taking pictures along the way was not going to happen.  I needed to keep moving forward.  So the only course pics were at the start.  I was so happy I saw this guys with these AMAZING signs.

The first few miles even with the tight legs seemed to go by quite fast.  I was keeping to a 2:1 run/walk except I would walk up the hills and run down the hills.  I told myself to not look at my watch as then I would focus on how far - how long - how fast.  So I would only look at the pace when I hit mile markers.  I was pleased with what I was seeing.  I ha started right in front of the 2:45 pace group to give myself something to focus on if needed.  I thought I was well ahead of them after I ran for a good while down a longish hill around mile 3 but they not only caught up to me but passed me up the next hill.  I was so pissed.  I just kept moving forward but it was getting hot and I was getting tired pretty fast.  However I passed them again but I was not sure if I really was because they were stopped taking pictures so I was not sure if they were still pacing anyone or not.  I didn't ask.

About halfway the hills get bigger and steeper going up - at least that is what they felt like to me.  I just kept refusing to look at my watch but I was feeling pretty confident I was going to get that damn shirt.  My splits were looking pretty good (except for a one or two but there was nothing but uphills during those LOL) I starting wondering if I was going to break 2:50 or even 2:45....I had not run faster than 2:51 since my PR of 2:38 last May and before that other than 2:40 at Long Branch in April of 2014 I had not run faster than 2:45 since my second EVER half in March of 2013!!!!  I only had 3 in the 2:45-2:49 range too.....these were the thoughts I was using to keep me going as my legs were so tired, I was hot and the hills were killing not just one bur both my ankles.

I finally made that last turn and for the first time in a while I didn't have it in me to sprint to the finish but I just kept running.  I crossed, hit my watch and smiled. 2:44:01 

I grabbed my medal, my finisher photo, my snacks and headed right back to the hotel.  I told Tom and Jerry not to come until 1pm so I could relax after the race and not just rush through the shower and head right out.  

Betcha you can guess where the big uphills were LOL

Strava said I did good too

They came and got me and we headed to some sort of State Fair flea market for a good southern breakfast.  The pancakes were a bit large to say the least.  LMAO  After we went to this outdoor flea market we went to last year that I wanted to show Tom because it sold crazy stuff but this year was not as fun.  Then back to the house to relax for a bit and then head out to dinner.

We went to a great Mexican place for dinner.  I wish my house looked like this place.  The food was great, then walked to get ice cream I had to take a picture for my Penguins....they are alway looking out.

That reminded me of a different picture I took.  There was a carving on a bench that made me smile.  Do you recognize it?

Today we tried to sleep in but as per usual when I can sleep in I can't and when I can't I have the hardest time waking up.  I just had a cup of tea on the deck with Loki and then we cuddled and watched TV before Shannon dropped us off at the airport.  I was so happy to be home to my cats but I really had a great time and can't wait until the next visit.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Hot Chocolate 15k Philadelphia

Just in case you never read the title of this blog.....I am a huge fan of candy.  Chocolate being one of the tops of the list.  So when I learned of the Hot Chocolate run I . WAS . IN .  !!  Bonus, there was a 15k, which is a distance I never ran before and BLING.

A bunch of my fellow BGRs from Long Island were headed down but not until race morning and there was no race day pick up so I offered to get everyones bibs.  There were a few of us going to the expo so I knew it wouldn't be an issue.  So Susan and I headed down on Friday and met Kim, Morgan, Eileen and Carol Ann at the expo.  The expo was TINY but the bib pickup was the best I have EVER experienced at a large race expo.  You went to line, they printed out a sticker with all the info and put it on a bib.  We then went to the next stop and got the already packed swag bags.

I am a bag lady sometimes..... 

Chocolate covered marshmallows.....yum!
Only so many bags can fit in a beetle LOL
Susan and I had lunch at Rangoon after the expo, hit up Reading Market and went to the hotel to check in.  After a light dinner and the usual packet and race outfit pictures we headed to bed.

Race morning we had to be up super early since we had to drive to the race and it was POURING. we kept an eye on the weather and it looked like it would clear up so we both just wore short sleeves and I left my arm warmers behind.

5:30am photos are not
We got to the race area, found parking pretty close to the race and headed to the BGR tent to drop off all the packets.  I loved meeting the BGRs in person and got a million hugs.  I missed the group picture when I went to pee - FAIL.  I also met up with Kim, Morgan, Eileen, Carol Ann and Suzie.  I was looking for Marla too.  It was clear but it was FREEEEEEZZZZIIINNNGG and windy.

Before the race even started Susan decided to hang back with me.  I planned on doing the 2:1 run/walk but still have fun.  The weather was perfect so we just kept running along but we took pictures and ate lots of candy along the way.  We lost Kim early on as her PF was acting up but Morgan stuck with us.  The sheer amount of BGRs along the course was amazing and one of the reasons I wanted to be part of them was in full force.  The support and cheers for the whole 15k was AMAZING!

I did finally find Marla for a second on the course but luckily again at the finish.  I grabbed my bonus BGR bling and we all got our hot chocolate mugs and took a couple of picks before headed back to the hotel to shower.

Once we showered Susan and I met up with Kim and Morgan at a place that I saw on TV years ago that serves a fried PB&J sandwich.  I have always wanted to get it.  What better way to celebrate a candy run?  LOL  Luckily it was only OK.  Glad I got it but we each got one and it would have been better to get good food and then share this......

After lunch we headed home and if I had not eaten enough crap already I had the pie from Reading Market for dinner......then a night cap before going to bed at 9:30 LOL

Sooooooo Siiiiiiick.....
All in all it was a great day.  Running with some of my favorite people, in my favorite city to run in and even if it made me sick...LOTS OF CANDY!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Marine Corps Marathon - Team Chris plus Virtual Run

I am honored to announce that I will be fundraising and running along with "Team Chris" at the Marine Corps Marathon again in 2015. Our tight knit group of family and friends have continued to honor Chris' life as well as support the Semper Fi Fund. Funds raised are used to sponsor service dogs for veterans and wounded warriors needing palliative care, companionship and stress reduction.

Donate Here

I am hoping you will support “Team Chris,” where our mission is simple, “honor the fallen and support our troops.” With our collective efforts the men and women who risk their lives to protect our freedom will know they are supported and those who gave the ultimate sacrifice will never be forgotten. We appreciate your help in not only keeping Christopher’s memory alive, but also supporting the men and women of the Marine Corps who are still defending our freedom. Please keep all the servicemen and women and their families in your thoughts and prayers.

Donate Here

For those who do not want to donate online, donation checks should be made payable to the: "Cpl Christopher G. Scherer Semper Fi Fund" or the "CCGS Semper Fi Fund" and mailed to Tim Scherer 12 Cpl Christopher G. Scherer Way/ Madsen Lane, East Northport, NY 11731. To learn more about Cpl Chris Scherer and his family visit Thank you.

Donate Here

I will be hosting a Virtual run on Chris' birthday, June 29th to help in my fundraising efforts and to further honor Chris and his memory. You can run/walk/bike any distance you want. If you can't do it on his birthday anytime near his birthday is fine. If you live near by I will also try to get a group together to run on his favorite course in East Northport.

For info on the virtual run please join the Facebook Event HERE

Donate Here

For everyone who donates $25.00 towards my fundraising page you will receive a medal and sticker (design to be announced at a later date)

2014 Team Chris

2014 Marathon Runners

2014 10k Runners

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Sleepy Hollow Half Marathon Recap.

I don't even remember when or why I signed up for this.  I probably got a rando email about it and thought that

1. It's Sleepy Hollow and
2. So close I can drive up the day of and come home after.  No Bigs.

Kim and I have different favorite Ichabods LOL 

I was talking to my friend Chris about it and he said just wait for the hills, especially at mile 13.  Um, wait....what?  So I then looked at an elevation chart.  *facepalm*  Granted I am from Upstate NY near the Hudson River so I should have known better but it has been many years since I had been up there and I have never RUN there so it was never a thought.

Now I expected a nice day for this race being that it was in the spring but as you know especially if you live in the Northeast....apparently Spring is a thing of the past and doesn't exist anymore.  Long Island got 3-5 inches of snow the night before the race and it was snowing on my drive up.

George helped me pick put the right outfit for race day.
The race was starting at 9:30 and I had about an hour drive so I headed out at 7:30ish, stopped for a bagel and water for the drive up.  There was almost zero traffic and I was there in no time.  After a few texts with Kim and Susan I made my way to the parking lot and grabbed my stuff.  First disappointment of the day.  The has just a logo on it....WHAT?!?  This is Sleepy Hollow people.....know what you are famous for jezzy petes.

*Disclaimer 99% of the rest of the photos in this post will be "stolen" from Kim and Jeff.

Anywho, I met up with Alicia and Kim for some pre race pics and potty breaks before heading to the start.  I knew I wouldn't see Susan and Andrew again until after because they were getting some miles in BEFORE the race and my friend and fellow BGR Sharon was there somewhere up ahead.  Small race, no corrals so Kim and I went direct to the back of the pack.  I was pissed I didn't have my sunglasses because of course the snow was now stopping and the sun was coming out.

Race started and we were off, small incline then a nice looooong downhill.  We already planned to 2 min run , 1 min walk but walk up every hill and run down every hill.  Hey, it worked well for me in DC.....  Towards mile one I saw Sharon, she was hurting.  Her knee was hurting and I saw she was running "off" so we picked her up and told her we were run/walking and to stick with us.  Luckily we had to pass the parking lot with my car so I ran off and got my sunglasses.  We passed the start again so Jeff got a few pics of us.

I have to say even though it was crazy hilly and we couldn't go on the trails as planned (Thanks mother nature.....) the course was beautiful.  There were a lot of great volunteers but one thing missing....WATER STOPS!!  We did not hit the first one until just before mile 4, then the second one was at mile 7.5ish.  After that they were more often.  We just kept moving along having a nice day running and walking and chatting.  Sharon's knee was getting better but Kim's Planters was acting up but we just kept moving, I didn't take any pictures but they did of the funny signs along the way and the nice views of the Hudson River.  Finally we were making the turn to the mile 13 sign and we all stopped and said a few things along the lines of What the FUCK?!?!  Mile 13 had a killer hill, named the Punisher.....F U.  It hurt our already tired bodies..... We walked up and then ran through the finishline......

Happy it was almost over.....
It was great to see Susan, Andrew, Jeff, Alicia and Jon's faces!!  That was a tough one!!  We got our medals....with a LIGHTHOUSE?!?!  Really?  Seriously Sleepy Hollow......get on board with why we come to your town....why is there even a lighthouse in a RIVER anyway?

Took a bunch of photos (FYI no one planned all the red LOL) and headed to lunch with Jon, Kim and Sharon before heading home....I had a roller derby match to go to :)  

All the finishers :)

Alicia and I

Team Chris 

Lighthouse?  I just can't get on board with that!!

Better ideas for the shirt and are welcome.

Have you ever run a race and did not understand the shirt/medal design?