Too Much Cowbell

Instead of running the Seattle Rock ‘n Roll this year, I decided to help hydrate runners with Nuun and cheer with some blog & Twitter friends. I’ve never cheered or volunteered at a race this big and it was so much fun. Can I please do it again this weekend?

Anyway, to recap the day: I woke up bright and early at 5:45 (insert Grumpy Cat face here). I made it over to the International District pretty fast, despite the fact that many roads and exits were closed. I decided to wear some capris and my long sleeve Marine Corps Marathon shirt, thinking it would be chilly most of the morning. After all, it’s June in Seattle. After standing around for 15 minutes, I realized how warm it was getting and I felt bad for the runners, especially the marathoners. It was so cool being able to see the elite runners pass by and I even got to give some of them Nuun. Boy were they flying. Once the elite runners passed, the Nuun station was slammed. It was hectic but also a ton of fun. I saw Stacie at the Nuun tent and gave her a quick hug (Stacie, you looked great in your Nuun singlet).

After we wrapped up at the Nuun tent, we headed over to mile 10 to cheer on the runners. Lauren kept cracking me up with her “you look like a mermaid” and “you really like running” cheers. Here’s a photo of us, courtesy of Sarah:


We were able to see Lauren and Stacie go by but I never saw Robyn, unfortunately. I also saw the man below, who was running the half marathon on prosthetic legs. Amazing! You can read the full story about him here.

Man running on prosthetic legs

I kept shaking my cowbell and didn’t want to stop cheering, despite the fact that it was killing my fingers. I probably should’ve stopped when I noticed blisters forming and after I noticed blood on my fingers. This is the first cowbell injury that I’ve sustained but at least I had fun doing it.

Is anyone racing this weekend? If so, I want to come cheer for you but maybe this time, I’ll wear protective gloves or something.

Worst Race Photo EVER

Because of my work schedule and crazy travel schedule for the early part of 2013, I wasn’t able to run any of the races that I had signed up for. May finally rolls around and my coach asks me to sign up for a 5k as kind of a fitness test so that she could give more accurate pacing guidance on future runs. My instructions were to go all out and if I didn’t feel like death when the race was over, I did it wrong. I’m not a fast runner by any means but I’m in much better shape now than I was when I set my previous 5k PR at 28:56.

I searched the Internet for last-minute 5ks in my area and decided to sign up for the Kirkland Half Marathon 5k, well-known in this area for its hills. Hills, shmills. I wasn’t going to let some hills keep me from setting a shiny PR. The race started and the first half mile was flat and I was flying and I felt great. I looked down at my Garmin and saw my average pace was 7:15 and I was like (*&(@*#)(%)*&%#. I didn’t realize I was going that fast and I knew that I couldn’t keep it up for very long. During training runs, I’ve sustained an 8:15 ish pace over a 3 mile distance but not any faster than that. By the time I realized how much I effed up, it was time to tackle the first big hill. I don’t know what the total elevation for the course was (need to go look it up again) but I do know the hills felt giant and never-ending, especially when I went out of the gate at a pace that I knew I couldn’t sustain. Despite the fact that I felt like dying only 1 mile into the race, I kept running, albeit much more slowly than my start pace. Continue reading