Tuesday, October 14, 2014

2014 Mohawk Hudson Half Marathon wrap up

As I expected, I didn't PR at Sunday's half-marathon. But that's okay, because sometimes races are about more than just the numbers.

We got to the race around 8 and had some trouble parking so by the time I got the bathrooms the line was huge for both the inside park bathrooms and the portapotties. I had gone to the bathroom 5 or 6 times before I left the house so I thought I'd be okay. No. I'm going to have to get there earlier next year.

Me, Tracy & Kathleen before the race

I met up with a few friends running the half and we started out together but I was determined not to try to keep up with anybody this year. I was going to just run and be happy doing it. It was somewhat difficult at first to think of Fallon and run happy. If I thought about the details too much, the exact opposite would occur and well, running and crying are not a good mix. So I switched gears and thought about how strong she was and how much good she has done. I ran most of the race "alone" but ran into (no pun intended) a couple of fellow Strong Running Mamas who very nicely took pictures.

I'm not the guy in purple.

The entire time I was running I was peeing. I was prepared for it but it was somewhat distracting. I think next year instead of using the hydration vest I will run with a catheter and a pee-bag. 

When I hit mile 11 my toes hurt, my arms kind of hurt, my legs didn't really want to move anymore. I really wanted to just be done but I had so much further to go. Even further than I thought because my beloved Bia added a half-mile for me. I don't think I could have really added a half-mile from zigzagging, so I don't know what was up with that. I wasn't sure how I was going to finish. And then I thought about how hard Fallon fought for her 11 days and surely couldn't I fight for a couple more miles? I was determined not to let her down. I had to finish so I could donate to her cause. She came through for me and pushed me on. 

Pushing on
When I got into the home stretch I could see my family waiting. I will be honest, I had a hard time not crying. But I was determined to run happy, so run happy was what I did. 

High fives!
When I saw the finish line I let it all go and ran as fast as I could and finished really really strong. My official final time was 2:23:11, 8 minutes slower than last year. I was actually pretty pleased I came in before 2:30. Last year I ran hard with friends and did 2:15. This year I ran "easy" by myself and was only 8 minutes behind. Most of the time I ran with a smile on my face, thanking volunteers and laughing at signs ("Run faster, we all just farted."). When I wanted to quit, I didn't. Sure, it would have been great if my easy running led to a 2:00 finish, but that wasn't going to happen. I had a good run and on top of it all, I was able to make a nice donation to Fallon's fund.

I'm taking this week off from running so that I can try to catch up with all the things I've neglected. I don't want to take much longer off though. I know how a week turns into 4. I want to take advantage of stroller running weather for as long as I can, so I'm going to have to get back out there. Part of me wants to just take a nice break but a larger part of me wants to do a reverse taper and get back up to 10 miles in a couple of weeks and stay there. I'm not sure if the winter will cooperate with me, but I'd like to get as many miles in this winter as I can. I need to get these legs nice and ready for when I do PR at next year's half marathon. 

Friday, October 10, 2014

A special half marathon goal

On Sunday I will run my second half-marathon (or thirteener as some like to say). I've been training for it for 16 weeks now and I think I'm ready. I've been thinking a lot about my goals and time and running and what's important. Last year I did it in 2:15:02 which was exactly my A goal. It would be great if I can do it faster this year, it would be good if I can make it close to that. But honestly, I only have one goal in mind.

I'm going to run each mile with little Fallon Jade Rilling on my mind and in my heart. A year ago today she was born and I remember talking about her as I was running last year's race. Worrying because she wasn't doing well. I had no way of knowing she would live such a short life. Just 11 days. She was born with a very rare--but rare doesn't mean impossible--disorder called Alveolar Capillary Dysplasia. There was nothing they could do, no way to prevent it (that we know of), no way to cure. More research is needed to help parents from having to experience this horror. The Rillings have raised an amazing amount of money on their own but until there's a cure, it's not enough. 

If you'd like to donate to her birthday fund: http://www.gofundme.com/Fallon-Jade-Rilling . If you'd rather donate directly, you can do so here: http://www.acd-association.com .

I've already donated to her birthday fund but I feel like I have to do more. If I had my butt in gear earlier I would have set up some kind of fundraising thing, but my butt is rarely in gear these days. So, whatever my average pace is for this half-marathon, I will multiply it by 13.1 and donate that as well.

If you can't spare any extra money right now, please honor Fallon by being grateful and satisfied with your lives. If I could pack up some peace and joy and send it to the Rillings I would. If you're the praying sort, perhaps you could send some their way?

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

September's stats

September is always so crazy with back to school and soccer and crap. I ran more this month than last month but not quite as much as I did in July (or September of last year). Considering how insane our soccer schedule has been and how incapable of getting up before 8:00 I am, I'm okay with September's miles. 


Mileage: 69.8
Runs: 12
Crosstraining: Laundry?

Yes. 69.8! Had I known while I was on the treadmill yesterday that I was so close to 70 I would have added .2, but alas I had set out to run 40 minutes and that is what I did. I briefly considered hopping back on but I had just run intervals and I was done with it. 

I am in week 13 of my training plan. For some reason I decided to do 4 runs a week instead of the 3 I did last year… or I should say I decided to plan 4 runs a week. Unless I get up before the sun I can't do 4 a week. Particularly if I wind up doing my long run on Friday because of weekend insanity. I am greatly looking forward to our weekends calming down. Although basketball will start up in December it's only one kid and Vader won't have to mow the lawn, so our weekends should be somewhat easier. 

I am in taper mode and only have to run 6 this weekend… but we'll have two soccer games, two soccer picture times (in a different location) and other stuff to do. My preschool playdates start up this week as well, so I've got plenty to keep me busy.