Minneapolis Halloween 5K

Monday, October 29, 2018

The run on Thursday bummed me out and I was worried that this 5K would suck too. Last year I had an amazing run on this course. I wasn’t sure if this year would be a repeat or not. I started out fast and ran as long as I could before I took a walk break after a half mile. For the entire run I focused on the mile I was running. My goal was to run each mile under 12 minutes, something I haven’t done in like 2 or 3 years. Since I’ve switch to longer distance running my mile times have suffered. I train slower so I can run longer which has hurt my short race times.

The first mile was great, mostly flat and I had to weave around people but it came in at 11:56. Yay! I wasn’t sure I could keep this up. The beginning of mile 2 is up the Plymouth Ave. Bridge…I hate this bridge. I tried to run as much of the hill as I could but I was just shot from mile 1 that I couldn’t do it fast. I got to the top of the bridge and my mile 2 pace was almost 13. I thought for sure I blew my goal for the race. I kept doing a run/walk interval but I made my running faster and longer and my walking faster and shorter. I managed to get the mile 2 time to about 12:15 with about a quarter mile to go. I was in striking distance to get it under 12 but I wasn’t very optimistic. I pushed myself to a flat out sprint (well for me a sprint) and I got mile 2 done in 11:53. Wait, what? It was faster than mile 1?  How could that be? I still don’t know how I did that.

Mile 3 started and I was very winded from sprinting the last of mile 2 to get my desired time. Like in Mankato, I thought great, I’m going to have to walk it in. But I decided that wasn’t acceptable, so I continued my sprint, walk, sprint, walk and by the time I got to the Stone Arch Bridge and near the finish I had my pace right at 12 minutes. Again, I sprinted to the 3 mile marker and got a 11:55 mile. I did it! I got all three miles under 12 minutes. I was in shock. I was also very tired. I took a quick breathe, looked at my watch and realized I could get a under 37 minute 5K if I just sprint to the finish. I really don’t think I’ve ever ran as fast as I did to get to the finish line. I felt completely out of control and I’m surprised I didn’t slip on the wet surface and fall flat on my face. I got to the finish line at 36:58! I did it (my official time was 37:01…I’m not going by that!)

It was a great race couple of races for me. I’m nervous about the next race, Madison Half Marathon, in 13 days. Hopefully this fast running won’t cause me to go out too fast and then have to do a 6 mile death march to the finish…I need to slow down if I want to make to the finish in an upright position!

Mankato 10K

It was cold. Way colder than we have ever experienced at Mankato. I had three layers on to start the race, I quick warmed up and wish I only started with 2 but that is par for the course. Ha!

The first mile was a bit slow because I had to stop and tie my shoe twice. I haven’t had to stop to tie my shoe during a race in like 3 years and the fact I had to do it twice in the first mile is crazy. I thought maybe with the cold and untied shoes, today wasn’t my day. I was wrong.

I have always loved this course. Mostly flat in the first 3 miles. A big down hill during mile 4 and then 2 flat miles to the finish. My goal this year was to have a sub 12 minute mile.  I thought for sure that would come during mile 4 but I started my sprint down the hill too late and ended up with a 12:04 miles. DAMMIT! I was pissed, I even cursed myself as I’m flying down the long down hill. I made a point that I was going to get the next one under 12 if it required all my energy. Somehow I managed an 11:55 for mile 5. It took everything I had, but I got it. It also meant that mile 6 I was dead. I took about a minute walk to figure out what I was going to do. I started running and got a 13 minute mile. Not bad considering I thought I was going to have to walk it in. LOL! Overall it was a great race for me. I was over a minute faster than last year so that made me happy. Sadly, this course is very short for a 10K (6.08).

I really had a high coming off that race. But I took a couple days off from running. My next run during the week was a 4 miler on Run Streak Wednesday. That run wasn’t horrible. I ran negative splits but my times were slower than I would like. I went out running Thursday too but that lasted about a quarter mile and walked around the long block so at least it was a mile. That was not a confidence booster!

Mankato 5K

Under the Sea Corn Maze

Saturday, October 20, 2018

I love the them this year!  It is very cute. Sadly, this is the last year of the corn maze by our house. They are moving. :(

Sever's Corn Maze is moving in 2019!

Nebraska Half Marathon

Monday, October 15, 2018

Cold, Wet, Miserable
Those are the best three words to describe the Nebraska Half Marathon.

The race started out in our favorite running spot in Omaha, Turner Park at the Midtown Crossing. We have run three Turkey Trots there, so we know the place well. Bonnie was a huge sport and drove us to the race and even brought her skeletons to cheer us on. Being this is a new race, it was very small. The start was cold at 37 degrees and misty.

The first couple miles went well for me. I kept close to my predicted pace and didn’t have any problems. There was a nice downhill and a short up hill. The windy wasn’t as noticeable when ran around downtown Omaha. Mile 4 had a nasty uphill that slowed me down and the corresponding downhill didn’t help.

During mile 5 we ran by the TD Ameritrade Park where the College World Series is played. It looked like a nice place. This meant we were around a lot of empty parking lost so the wind was really pounding us. And the rain started to get hard too. I’m so glad I wore my hat. I almost gave it Bonnie before I started.

Miles 6-9 were in the Lewis & Clark Landing and Heartland of America Park along the Missouri River. It was an out and back section which I love so much (just kidding). The highlight of this section was running around my nephew, Michael’s apartment building. Bonnie was out with her skeletons cheering us on. She said that some runners stopped to take pictures of them. Haha! The best part of out and back sections is realizing there are still people behind you. Yay for not being last! Also during this stretch we ran past the finish line twice. Such a mean trick they play!

Mile 9 is when the sleeting started. Oh how much fun that was. Sleet/ice pellets and 20+ mph north wind, doesn’t that sound pleasant? I had to deal with this crap the rest of the race. Mile 10 was a water stop and I spilled the cup all over my gloves. I was already freezing as the temperature kept dropping and now this. I spend the entire walk (because at this point I was too frozen to run) across the Missouri River (which will now be referred to as the “Misery River”) Pedestrian bridge to Iowa whether or not to take the gloves off. My hands were frozen and I’m not sure if the gloves helped but if I took them off there was no way I could get them back on. After so much struggle I left them on.

The Iowa portion of the race was the most miserable. I was slow because I think I was fighting hypothermia and the nonstop ice pellets were hurting my face. We got to the turnaround point for the half and I pitied anybody running the marathon. It had to be awful! I prayed to God, Jesus, Mary, anybody who would listen at this point help me finish this thing. You know it was bad if I resorted to praying for 2 miles! 

The last 2 miles were the worst. By this time it was at the freezing mark and I was running straight into the ice pellets. I would have been dead if where not for my visor/hat. I put my head down into my chest and let the ice just bounce off of me. I got back across the “Misery River” bridge and shortly was at the finish. I don’t remember much about the finish other than I tried to run in even though I couldn’t feel my feet, or legs or really any part of me. I got my medal, a couple brownies and bottle of water and high tailed it to the warm car. I shivered all the way back to Bonnie’s house even though I had three jackets on.  I think I took at 30 minutes HOT shower and put on several layers and eventually I was warm again.

I learned from this race I need a running rain jacket. If I had been able to stay dry during the 7 miles of rain, I wouldn’t have been so cold when the temperature drop. This is a first for me. I actually got colder as the race went on, not warmer. Very odd for me.  The starting temp was 39, 3 hours later it was 32. I think it dropped 7 degrees in the last hour of the race.

Blake's First Birthday Party

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