Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Medals Galore!

I've been meaning to do this post for awhile, especially after seeing this on the blogs of both Roadbunner and Aron.
What the heck do you do with your medals?

Most people know that I do races mostly for the medals. So you would think I would actually do something cool with them. Sadly, no. I don't exactly shove them in a shoebox, but I don't have them as part of my wall decor either. I don't know why.

For now, I have them haphazardly draped across a bulletin board on my desk.

I kind of like them there for now. They're displayed but in a subtle manner. I think at some point, I will pin them in a more organized fashion so that you can actually see all of them.

My #1 favorite medal: Disney Coast to Coast 2008

(Bonus medal for doing both the Walt Disney World marathon in Orlando in January and the Disneyland Half in Anaheim in August)

My #2 favorite medal: Walt Disney World marathon in 2008

It was an anniversary year so we got an extra special one :)

My #3 favorite medal: Cleveland Half Marathon in 2009

This was a toughie since I love all my Disney medals but this medal was one of the main reasons why I signed up for this race. I mean, it has a spinning guitar!!!

What are your favorite medals?

On a separate note... in case you don't already know, I have another blog, Pop Culture / Makeup Addict. It would be awesome if you could add it to your reader or subscriptions because it gets no love. :P That one is updated a bit more regularly. Thank you!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Hitting the Road!

Alright, readers, I finally had a breakthrough in my running this weekend. Not only did I extend my run to 6 miles, I did it on both Friday AND Sunday.

It would have been very difficult to do this on my own so I took my runs on the road and enlisted the help of friends.

I first dragged Roadbunner to help me on Friday with a run around Golden Gate park. I think she had 16 miles or something crazy like that on her plan so I was going to join her for the last 6 for her cooldown (and my sprint, lol). But I chickened out since I'm still doing my run/walk thing so I decided to do 2 on my own first and then meet up for the last 4. It worked out really well! Roadbunner was awesome at letting us run at my pace and I only requested one walk break at the halfway point. (You don't want to know how often I normally take walk breaks on my own.) I was extremely pleased with myself for finally having a 6 miler under my belt - first time since January!

It also helped a lot to have a change in scenery and Golden Gate park is awesome for people watching. Not to mention the critical point - weather! It was nice and cool in the 50s, something I rarely find in my 'hood.

Then on Sunday, I met up with a bunch of awesome gals for Maritza's going away run, organized by Aron. I was excited to join them even though I couldn't really run with any of them. They all had double digit runs planned and are much faster than me. It was nice just to have a reason to drag myself out of bed and have a productive Sunday morning.

I decided to go for another six. I was still planning on taking walk breaks but instead of just walking whenever I felt like it, I stuck to the plan of walking for 0.1 mile of every mile. It worked out really well despite the break being a bit shorter than what I usually do. It helped me to not lose too much momentum. I'm proud to say I stuck to my plan and ended up cutting a minute off my pace from my run on Friday.

We all ran an out-and-back path on the trail so it was fun that I got to pass by everyone at some point. I think that was another reason I did so well sticking to my plan - I didn't want to get caught walking by the girls, LOL!

Since everyone was finishing at different times, we all reconvened at Peet's, which apparently is THE hot spot for runners and bikers on a Sunday morning. It was fun to see everyone trickle back in and see how their runs went.

Here's the gang at Peet's - met two runners, Page and Layla!

Page, Tara, Kristin, Aron, Layla
Moi, Sandra, Maritza
Picture courtesy of Aron

Afterward, we headed to brunch where we were later joined by Julianne and her hubby, who were celebrating their 2nd anniversary :)

Picture courtesy of Aron

Very fun morning for this back-on-track runner!

I'm super pleased with myself... including my wimpy 3mi run from earlier in the week, I ended up with a 15mile week. That's pretty good for me, believe it or not. Now I just have to keep it up. Plan to hit 8 miles sometime this weekend. Perhaps that will include a little jaunt across the Golden Gate bridge.
Do you find it easier to run on your own or with friends?
By the way, I signed up to volunteer at the Nike Women's Marathon this year! I ran it for the last four years but I didn't get in the lottery this year. I think volunteering will be a very fun alternative. Let me know if you're going to be there!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Spectator Report: Skyline 50K

Great comments on my last "Real Runners Don't..." post! I think the highlight was hearing (reading?) Roadbunner use the term "douche". :P

I met up with Sandra and Alisa on Sunday to spectate the Skyline 50K. I really need to do this more often because I get a big kick out of ringing my cowbell. Plus I think it's always good to "return the favor" since I love when people come out and cheer for the races I'm in. (Especially when I feel like dying!)

Alisa and her hubby were in town from Portland for a major race weekend. Alisa had just completed her first half ironman the day before at Vineman and her hubby was doing the Skyline 50K. I don't understand these kind of crazy people ;)

Here's me with Sandra and Alisa :)

This was a super small race... just around 200 runners. I guess there aren't that many people dying to run over 30 miles across hilly dirt trails. (Yeah, I say "no thanks" myself but "rock on" to the people that do!)

We parked ourselves by the finish line. Sandra pointed out that this was actually a good race to spectate since there wasn't exactly a steady stream of runners coming in, so you didn't have to be constantly cheering and ringing the cowbell. And the cool thing is we could spot them coming down a hill ahead of time so it was easy to keep an eye out for Alisa'a hubby.

The first runner finished in well under 4 hours. What? The first pack of them didn't even seem fatigued when they finished. We liked the ones that were hunched over huffing and puffing because that's how we are when we finish a race! That's all we can relate to!

Eventually, Alisa and her family spot her hubby coming down the hill. Now I know what he looks like from Alisa's blog but mind you, he has no idea who I am. But regardless, I decide to run on up to cheer him on before he makes the last turn to the short stretch toward the finish line. Well apparently he is much faster than me (duh) because we pretty much hit that corner around the same time. So basically I turn onto the path, immediately see him so I just haphazardly cheer his name and ring my cowbell in his face (not literally)! I think I may have startled him a bit but hey he was approaching the finish so I don't think he cared. Meanwhile, I really cracked myself up.

We hung out for a bit longer to cheer on some additional runners. Suddenly, this dude approaches the finish with a big smile on his face. While I ring my cowbell, I realize he looks really familiar. Well, surprise surprise, it was my old roommate who I hadn't seen in at least a year! So that was fun to catch up with him for a bit since I had no idea he would be there.

All in all, it was a really fun morning! Got to spend it in gorgeous weather in a scenic park, catching up with lots of friends :)

Next thing on my list is to volunteer at a race - I've yet to do that and I think that would be a lot of fun as well.

Have you ever volunteered or spectated at a race? Which ones and what was it like?
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