Bacon Hill Bonanza Recap

Every year, I plan to sign up for the 10k and then I chicken out.

10 K

I know that the hills would be good training but… the 5k is an out and back and mostly flat.

5k – not as flat as it looks

So I changed my mind again and registered for the 5k and then planned to run 7 hilly miles after.

I ran this race for the past four years and loved it. They had great food – the usual food but also chili and homemade muffins & cookies (including gluten free ones).

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And there was chocolate milk, fresh from the dairy.

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Plus, I won a homemade pie as first in my age group for the past four years. 28:56, 28:01, 27:54, 27:32. Yes, it seems that I am getting faster but not sure about this year??? Lately I don’t feel very fast.

The race started at 10 am which was good since it would be an hour drive from my house.

But I woke with a horrendous headache and an upset stomach.  I thought about an DNS for about a second.  Anyway it was only a 5k and I knew that running could make me feel better.

Again the weather was tricky. What to wear? I was brave the first two years and wore a skirt, a baseball cap and no gloves. It is April, right? Then the past two years, it was cold and I resorted to capris. This year, the race was scheduled at the end of April instead of the beginning. So you would think that it would be warm out already …NOT!!

This year I decided to  continue with the capris. Although it was chilly (30s) in the morning, I hoped that it would warm up by the time I raced (and after). But I did bring along gloves and a jacket.  (Spoiler alert: it did warm up but the wind made it feel cold.) The best part about today’s weather was the sunshine.  It had been days since we had had any.

I got to the race early and found a parking spot in a (muddy) field next to the church. The race started at the church in the town of Bacon Hill, a small farming town with awesome scenery. (It reminded me of Vermont.)

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these pics are from other years…everything still looked the same)

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It was chillier than I thought. It was in the 30s but windy… Brrrr!!  I quickly put on both of my jackets and got my shirt and bib. I also dropped off my free raffle ticket.  (They had some really great prizes.)

I wasn’t sure that I would know anyone at this race since the runners that I usually run this race with were not coming (Holly who was in the Turkey Trot training group and now the FRW training group said that she had to work this year. Another runner friend, Sue, whom I am running Brooklyn with was in Florida and my friend Judith just ran the Boston Marathon.) So I just stopped by the timing truck to say hello to my FTC coach who as usual asked me if I was going to PR.  I replied: “I doubt it but it’s all about the pie.”  You get a pie if you win your age group. And I wanted to keep my pie streak going.

Then I ran back to my car to keep warm until almost time for the race to start.

At the last minute, I decided to shed my jacket and tossed it under a tree.

Although I prefer to start most races near the front, there were sign with paces. I was embarrassed to stand with the 7 minute runners so I moved back to the 9 minute mile sign. That’s when someone tapped me on the shoulder. It was Maureen, a friend that I ran the Shape Half with last year.  She is in my age group and a lot faster.  Fortunately for me, she had decided to run the 10k.  We chatted until the race began.

The pastor read a prayer, the church bells rang and we were off.

The 5k was an out and back. The 10k veered to the right and supposedly had killer hills but breath taking views.

I decided to go out fast. I always have positive splits so why try not to. It isn’t as flat as the map shows. The hills are rolling throughout but not that bad. Even I could run up them.

Unlike last weekend, I really slacked off on my weekly runs.  In fact, I didn’t run Wed, Thurs, and Fri – yes three days in a row without running which is so unlike me. Part of it was weather-related but mostly I just didn’t feel like it.

I loved all the signs along the route. Many of them were riddles.  I wish I could remember them but they were a nice distraction.

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the cloudy sky pics are from last year

This one as my favorite:

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The wind was annoying. It was at times hard to keep moving forward. And my legs really protested my attempt for speed. I felt my short lay-off.

There were volunteers on the course calling out times.  I was shocked at how fast my first mile was because I was really struggling.

Eventually we turned around and headed back… It would seem natural that now the wind would be at our backs.  But no, it seemed to be blowing from the side.

There was a water stop but I wasn’t thirsty and just wanted to get to the finish and warm up. I realized quickly that I had gone out too fast.  I could not keep up that pace but may be just maybe I could finish fast enough to win that pie!!

the finish line is right next to the cemetery

As I approached the finish line, I realized that I may even PR!! Holy Cow!

I crossed at 27:04 Gun Time.  I beat my 2014 5k PR time by 7 seconds!! I was in shock.

I glanced at my Garmin which would have been chip time and it said 27:01.  I ran to tell Patrick. He grinned that “I told you so grin.”

I grabbed my jacket, put up my hood and immediately made a bee line for the chocolate milk. Boy, was it good. I had 3 cups.

They had the same great food (chili, muffins, cookies, fruit) like last year but no vegetarian dish and no pizza. I had some cookies, chili and a corn muffin.

PR + chocolate milk makes a happy runner

I hung around the finish line though I was pretty cold (because of the wind). I did bump into another runner that I knew. She was waiting for her husband to finish the 10K so we waited together.

Here comes Maureen with a great finish time as well.

Finally they posted the results. Mine was listed as 27:04 and I was first in my age group. Maureen was first too. We were both glad that we had chosen different distances. That way we both won our age groups.

Two years ago, it was so cold that they let you just get your award and leave but this year, we had to wait and they announced them one by one.  Brrrr…

I waited with Maureen and her friends. And I won a pie again!

Check out those race times.  If I had not Pr’d, I would not have won this year.  I always say that it’s not your time but who shows up. (Everyone in this group is new to this age group.  I age up in a few years!!)

Race Splits:

mile 1- 8:44
mile 2 – 8:56
mile 3 – 8:56
.11 – 8:30
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27:01 (Garmin time)

fueled by sunshine!

All in all, I loved this race. I will definitely do it again…maybe even the 10K someday. I was thrilled with my time.  A course PR. A 5k PR. What could be better?  More importantly, I felt like I didn’t go all out and who knows maybe there is a sub 27 5k in my future???

I put the pie in my car and contemplated my planned 7 additional miles.  The scenery is beautiful here but with the wind, I decided to drive to some place where I would be more sheltered from the wind and where it would be flatter.

2016 pic

So I drove to the Zim Smith Trail. It is lined with trees, flat, gravel coated and there’s the incentive of a post run treat at Leah’s Cakery.

Scenes from my run:

It was tough.  My legs were tired and stiff so this was a walk/run at best.

10 miles done! Hooray!


I’m also linking this post with Susie and Rachel and Debbie and Lora for the Running Coaches’ Corner.

 Happy Running! Did you run or race this weekend? Do you have spring weather yet?

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Graduation

I have graduated …

6 months of doctors visits are over!!

Yesterday I told my ortho that I ran a 5K race (That may be influenced his decision.) But unless I have problems, I don’t have to see him AGAIN!

He cautioned me to stretch before running and ice after and NOT TO OVER DO!

He said that the mobility should improve and the swelling should go down over the next 6 months. 

Of course, I wanted to know if I will be the same as before and will I get all the movement back.  He said no…too serious an injury but most of it will come back with time.

I have also graduated from physical therapy.

4 months of torture are done (good torture)!!

I am a little nervous about that.   Will I work hard enough on my own??

So this morning, I celebrated with a run…my first morning run since Dec!  The hardest part was getting out of bed.

Happy Running!  Are you a morning runner?

Mind and Body

Running is mental, they say.

Thanks to the Happy Runner for posting this

Sometimes you feel you can’t do it, but you can. You just have to “think” you can.

Here I just willed myself to run 3.1 miles after 5 mos of no running.

But what if you think you can, but you can’t?  Isn’t that how runners get injured?

It was easy when I had a broken ankle.  My body said “no” and my mind was forced to agree.

It is pretty obvious that I cannot run.

The problem is that there is fine line between what the body can do (without risking injury) and what you make the brain thinks it can do (so you can achieve  the max.

So when do you push yourself?  When do you hold back?

Me myself, I seem to push myself in races.  Otherwise, not so much.

I may have had my last PT session yesterday. I am not fully healed.  My ankle is still stiff.  I cannot hop on it.  PT sessions push me.  PT guy J says I can run so I am done.  The healing will take at least 4 more months and that I can do it on my own.

Will I? Can I push myself? But not too much so I get injured.

Time will tell.

Happy Running!  Ever experience the mind and body tug-a-war?

 

 

Hopping and Racing


I found out at PT why I am having trouble running.  I cannot hop!

Of course, I can hop on my good foot but I can’t on the other.  As a result, I can only push off on one foot and I am sorta dragging the other … so my running is slow, painful and awkward.

I was told to keep trying to hop.

I know it will come because there was a time when I couldn’t stand and couldn’t walk and couldn’t run.

So when I can hop, I think I will be able to race.

Speaking of racing, tomorrow is one of my favorite races.

Hopefully, it will not rain as predicted.   The SRMs are planning a group photo.  Many of the recent SRM marathoners will be cheering.

SRMs in 2011

Obviously, I cannot race it but I am doing it anyway.

Goals:

  • Walk fast and finish in under an hour
  • Run some and finish under 45 minutes
  • Have fun

Happy Running!  Are you racing this weekend?

Boating and Running

Two of my favorite things!!

the gang toasts the 1st boating weekend of the season

my hubby enjoying the view

enjoying a Memorial Day lunch on the island

a visitor to my chair

I am still working on running.  I didn’t leave my Garmin behind as suggested. I dodged the storm yesterday and ran ONE MILE on the dirt path of Washington Park (with some walking) at an amazing pace of 12:33!!

As soon as I got in my car, the rain came and boy did it rain!!!

Today is a PT day and tomorrow, I hope to try some more running. 

I have an Un-Race on Saturday and then a trip to NYC on Sunday.

Happy Running!

More Injury Advice from SUAR

SUAR’s the best so I’ve stole advice that I need right now and maybe you do or will too.

7 tips to not let injury defeat you:

  1. You are not alone. Remember that many, many people are feeling exactly how you are feeling right now. It is incredibly frustrating and sad to not be able to do what you love to do and that feeling is universal. Just knowing others feel like you do helps. Yes.
  2. Feel athletic. Find something, anything that you can do that make you feel athletic. It will not be running, but it will be something. Try to not compare it to running, but just see it as the thing that will help you get back to running eventually. Be in the moment. When you are on the elliptical, don’t judge the fact that you are not running out on the open road. Just be on the elliptical, get your heart rate up, sweat and feel your body. Know that running is there for you when your body is ready. Look forward to that day. Biking and walking has been this for me.
  3. Have hope. Know that this temporary. Stop reading stuff online, that is usually worst case scenarios and will not help you mentally. When I had my hip stress fracture, I looked at online forums and found all sorts of awful scenarios -people who never could run again, those who had to have surgery, you name it. Chances are very good these scenarios will not be you. So true.
  4. Get perspective. You are a strong and capable runner. You have a an injury. Injuries heal (unless there is some extenuating circumstances). I had to remind myself that cracks in the bone heal if I give it time and if I rest. It did heal. It took four months, then I was running the Boston Marathon with no pain. It’s been 5 months today and I am healing…so slowly.
  5. Ignore those people who don’t understand. Confide in other runners, even if this means on line friends like me. Read chapters of books that talk about injury like Zen and the Art of Running, Running with the Mind of Meditation and Brain Training for Runners. Most running books have a section devoted to injury because most runners get injured at some point. I have.
  6. Get help. If you are really down and depressed consider seeing a sport’s psychologist even just one time. I had a friend/fellow bloggerwho did this last year when she was injured and very down about it. She just went once, but it really put her in the mind space to be able to see beyond the injury and to move out of that dark place. I think I can get through this myself …I hope I can.
  7. Focus on the gifts in your life outside of running. They are still there. Friends…family…work…

You are a runner even if you can’t run right now. This is the best line in her advice.

I decided that after running on the treadmill at PT yesterday, I am going to venture outdoors – either walk/running on a track or a dirt path.  I can’t wait!!

Happy Running!

It’s All About the Ankle

Yes, I had a great time eating, drinking, socializing, laughing, shopping, tanning… and just plain relaxing.

But…

Doesn’t this look like a nice place to run??

and

isn’t this even more inviting??

I just wanted to be running!!!! 5 months of NO RUNNING!!

I’ve had enough!  Anyway, enough said…

  • I rode a bike every morning  between 8:30 and 10:30 am. 
  • There was a gym with an elliptical, bike and treadmill but the weather was too nice to be indoors.  I kept waiting for rain but it never happened.

  • I hit the tennis ball one day between lessons and it felt fine so I hit with the instructor for 45 minutes on another day!! Of course, he didn’t make me run for the ball.
  • I found  2 paths with crushed stones and then one with clay (hard tru) and I ran out and back on them everyday…not sure how far (maybe 1/2 mi?). My gait is still awkward since my ankle is not fully bendable but I RAN!!!!
  • I walked a lot…in town…on the beach.

  • I wore sandals…yay!

Yesterday I went to PT for the first time in 2 weeks.

They said they saw a big improvement…I ran on the treadmill for 20 minutes as usual but I was able to run for 3 min and 4 minutes at a time without walking!!!! 

They said:  “You are no longer sounding like a Clydesdale!!”

Of course, I replied, “When can I run outside?”

The answer: “We’ll watch your ankle on the treadmill next Wed and maybe you can run on a track!”

It’s all about the (still stiff) ankle!!  Arghhh!

Happy Running!

Yay, It’s May!

April has ended…still no tennis or racing but things are improving.

I met ALL my Goals! (See below.)

April Goals:

  • Continue PT 1-2x per week. Check. 2x/week
  • Do exercises on my own, as well 1-2x per day. Check. 2x/day
  • Use exercise bike and/or treadmill at work everyday. Check.
  • Go biking outdoors 1-2x per week. Check.
  • Lose that limp. Check. Well, almost. I can still feel it but not evident to others.
  • Run (on the treadmill) at least a few steps. Check.  I can do a 2 min run, 1 min walk for 20 min.

my new BFF

As you know, May is my favorite month.  I have a lot of fun things planned even if they do not include racing.  I even have some new goals.

May Goals:

  • Continue PT 1-2x per week.
  • Do exercises on my own, as well 1-2x per day.
  • Use exercise bike and/or treadmill at work on days with no PT.
  • Go biking outdoors 1-2x per week.
  • Go for walks outside.
  • Run outside (at least a few steps or maybe on a track.)
  • Hit a few tennis balls (maybe practice serving or volleying)
  • STAY POSITIVE!!

    Welcome, May!

 

Happy Running!  Any exciting goals for May?

Running on the Treadmill

I have never enjoyed running on the treadmill.  I have never been good at it.  It’s not just the boredom but I find it difficult

I run at a slower pace.  If I speed up, I feel like I will fall off.  

I kinda run like this.

I have a shorter stride on the treadmill.  Otherwise, I feel like I will go off the front. 

I do NOT look like this!

I get tired faster

I feel like this!

And they seem to run at different speeds.  The same speed on the treadmill at work feels SO MUCH FASTER than the one at PT.  Is that possible???

I could go on and on about my treadmill difficulties. 

In the past, I have only used the treadmill when I could not run outside (rain, snow, etc.) Well, now  it’s the only place I can run. 

Things will have to change!!!!

PT guy J remarked that on Monday, my stride was too short and my gait was choppy. “You must be nervous because of your ankle. We’ll have to work on that.”

Only part of  my problem was related to  the injury. How can I explain that I suck as a treadmill runner!

Happy Running!  Anyone else have treadmill issues?

Two for Tuesday Injury Update

1. Yesterday I went for what I thought was my last visit to the ortho.  It was not.  I have to go back again in 2 MONTHS.

 He cautioned me about keeping the swelling down so it will heal —compression socks, ice, elevation.  He said I could walk & run on the treadmill, use the elliptical and bike –BUT NO RUNNING OUTSIDE YET!!

He said I am ahead of his healing schedule but of course, not my schedule…it’s a long road to recovery…BE PATIENT.

I left the office depressed and headed to PT.

2.  There I ran for 2 MINUTES straight on the treadmill (with 1 minute walking in between for a total of 20 minutes)!!

No real pain, just the usual stiffness which results in a lack of rhythm and a feeling of awkwardness.

Happy Running!