Friday night, I ventured down to Tuscaloosa with the kiddos to spend the night with my brother in law, Jay, before my race Saturday morning. I ended up ordering that Lululemon I was coveting, and had it priority shipped out, and after much drama surrounding it’s arrival, it came. I was hoping it would be here around lunchtime. I had it shipped to my in laws, because I figured FedEx would show up there, than before my house. I wanted to leave by 2:50ish, as soon as I picked Addy up from school. At 2:40, I got the confirmation that it had been delivered, so I swung by to pick it up on my way to scoop up Addy. Whew!
The drive down was nothing short of awful with the cries of “I’m hungry!”, “I’m thirsty!”, “I have to pee!”, “I hate Michael Jackson! Play a girl song!”. I was contemplating jumping out of my moving vehicle. We stopped by to do the packet pick up, and it was outside and WINDY, y’all. I knew the wind would be a deciding factor in this race.
Since my runs have been less than stellar since Mercedes, I was just hoping to finish with a decent time. I would love to PR, but with my mental state, I wasn’t sure I had it in me. I decided I would run what felt good and see what happened. I was hoping for a best case scenario of 2:05.
I settled into bed at a reasonable 11:15. (not reasonable at ALL!)
I decided the next morning that I would run by Panera for a bagel and coffee. I was worried about eating so late, but I decided that since it was a tailgating tradition, I needed to step up my domination. John gave me some last minute encouragement in the form of, “If you don’t change your attitude, you aren’t going to PR. You are in Tuscaloosa. Step it up.”
I mean, besides, Nick Saban was watching anyway.
Mary came to run it and it was chilly and windy at the start. I opted to not mess with gloves, and my hands were freezing. Note to self: over sized sweat shirts are NOT your friend.
The start line…
The course started in downtown Tuscaloosa and wound back into the tornado destruction areas. I ended up spotting two fellow girls in lululemon who were running about the same pace and drafted them for a couple of miles. They had signs along the course that had facts about the tornado damage. And especially in Forest Lakes, there hasn’t been a ton of rebuilding. Running through that area, and knowing what it looked like before, was something that I don’t think I can describe. Tuscaloosa is my second home, and seeing these homeowners outside in their pajamas holding up signs and cheering us on only brought that emotion to the surface. I almost lost it when I was coming up a climb, and looked over at nothing but empty lots, with one freshly built house, and the homeowners were standing outside. As we made the turn, I got a whiff of fresh lumber and saw dust and could hear the pep band up in the distance playing the fight song… it was quite an experience. One that will definitely stay with me.
While this course wasn’t as tough as Mercedes, it wasn’t joke either. It had some climbs and the wind was a factor, for sure. There is nothing like pounding your way up a hill is 35 degree weather, only to be hit in the face with a head wind as you near the top. The wind was so cutting at times (This is a possible TMI), my boobs would get a tingly feeling like when I was breastfeeding and my milk would let down. (Gross. I know. And I just shared it with the Internet. I should be ashamed.)
The course looped back on itself through Alberta City and I could see the leaders coming through. I figured Mary would be towards the front, and she didn’t disappoint. She was with the first smaller group of speedsters and went all, “Whoo! girl” on me.
Around mile 8, I caught sight of a flash of red in my peripheral, and low and behold, it belonged to me. Jay had brought the girls out to see me along the course! I ran over and gave Addy a quick kiss, and I figured Claire would cry that she didn’t get one, but as they passed me in the car, Claire was blowing everyone kisses and doing her beauty queen wave.
Once we hit Jack Warner, we only had about a 5K left and I came up on a girl and started chatting with her. She was trying to sub 2 and she figured we were close, so I just hung with her and chatted. The last mile and half to 2 miles were on paved trails and let me tell you… that SUCKED. Combined with the mile markers being off… and I wasn’t a happy camper towards the end.
But seeing my watch lifted my spirits…
And I had this waiting for me in the parking lot… can’t complain with that!
All in all, this was an excellent run and I am so glad I did it. It was another PR for me and Mary, as well!
2:02:58 was my official time, 21st in my Age Group, and 346 overall. I am proud to say I was in the in the upper 1/4 of finishers. It feels good, y’all.
Sub 2, here I come!!
I don’t have much to say today that is of any consequence, so I thought I do a word vomit post. You can thank me later.
1. Parenting is STUPID hard. Trying to turn little demons into respectable, well mannered beings is crazy hard. I’m much rather run half marathons. Those are way easier.
2. I am running the Tuscaloosa Half Marathon on Saturday.. yes. I am crazy pants. And I really want some new Lululemon to wear…
Clearly, I have been deprived of spending money on clothes for too long, because I am in BUY ALL THE THINGS mode. Side note: I realized last night that my running wardrobe is FAR more expensive than my everyday clothing. I will straight up spend some money on running clothes.
3. I’ve been running in these Saucony Virrata’s this week. I love their color. They are crazy light weight. But I have been having some ankle problems (since Mercedes. Old injury.) So, I switched back to my Brooks last night since I will be racing in those on Saturday anyway. I don’t want to speak out of turn, but I really dig these shoes.
Aren’t they pretty?!
What randomness do you have going on today?