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So it’s no secret I’m a Disney fan. Seven years ago one of the biggest motivators in my even considering a half marathon was a newspaper ad announcing the Inaugural Disneyland Half Marathon. The medal was so shiny:
I was way too scared/lazy/out of shape to even make an attempt at that first event. In fact it was five years before I crossed the finish line and earned a medal. I have a blog of my experience HERE.
But Disney races are like Doritos, you can never be happy with just one. And this year? Disney announced a new challenge:
Dumbo consists of a 10K (6.2 miles) on Saturday followed by a half marathon (13.1 miles) on Sunday. So you get a medal for each race and a bonus medal for finishing both the same weekend. Three medals in two days. Woohoo!
Today Disney released the Jeff Galloway Dumbo training plan. I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet but it’s linked HERE.
If you are interested in other Disney training plans click HERE.
I have a countdown on the top right of this blog. Dumbo is Labor Day. I always said I’d enjoy running right around the time elephants could fly. I never figured Disney into that equation. LOL!
I’m so excited I can barely stand it.
Tonight, I start bootcamp. I’ll bitch about that tomorrow.
Today, I officially registered for the Little Rock Half Marathon. This will be my second half. And I’m excited. Here’s a couple of pics of me and my crew when we did the half a few years ago. (The very same half marathon that prompted the start of this blog…) I figure if I did it once, I can do it again…
I also (finally) ordered me a new pair of running shoes. LONG over due, that was.
It has begun. The apocalypse is nigh. MELF is on the loose with a goal…look out world. Hide your kids! Hide your wives…
Yesterday after over a month of phone tag, HZ and I managed to actually have a conversation. For the first time in over a year.
Okay it was more like a year and a half.
And do you know what a year and a half means? Well in our case it started out with “how have you been?” and ended with me agreeing to fly to Little Rock for Little Rock Marathon Weekend in 2013. That’s right, Little Rock registration isn’t even open yet (August 1st) but by golly I’ve agreed!
HZ is running the half and I am so excited to join Team Melf in her hometown! So the question is this. Do I run a half marathon with one of my favorite people? Or do I commit to the full enchilada and run the Little Rock Marathon. Remember Little Rock? The one with the crazy medal? Last year’s medal was glittery purple and HUGE. This thing would turn heads in Vegas. So of course I want one.
Decisions, decisions. Run with the half or run the full? What do y’all think?
I know, I know I should have hung this on the wall before I took the picture. Sadly, I have to paint first and that isn’t getting done until March at the earliest and I already felt like enough of a blog slacker. This is my running medal collection from Feb 2009 (Surf City Half Marathon my first ever race) to January 8, 2011. I actually finished another race yesterday but I ran out of room so that will go on medal hanger #2.
The hanger is from Allied Medal Displays.
As for the hanger I know you’re going to ask so I will beat you to it.
289.2 race miles
19 – half marathons (13.1 miles)
1 – 10K (6.2 miles)
11 – 5Ks (3.1 miles)
Not bad for the fat chick who thought a half marathon was insane.
And yes I have shamelessly searched for the races with medals. I am always amazed that not all races have half marathon medals much less 5K medals so you have to look for the races that have them (it tends to be bigger races).
Anyway, if you have any other questions bring it on.
Good news: I came in second in my age group today for my half marathon
Bad news: They missed the second digit on my age and put me in as age 3
Really bad news: I can’t even come in first in the 1-8 age division.
Introducing the 35th anniversary Marine Corps Marathon medal along with the front of the race shirt. Best race shirt EVER by the way, I’ll take better pictures of it later because it really deserves to be cataloged. I have to say there are very few things in this world more extraordinary then starting a race course surrounded by members of the military and running past the gravestones of all the soldiers who laid down their lives in defense of our nation at Arlington National Cemetery. It’s truly humbling.
That being said there is something you should know. That’s not my medal.
Really, it’s not my medal. You see I started the Marine Corps Marathon but I didn’t finish it.
And let me tell you it is really temping to end this blog entry there. I tried and I failed right? We can add MCM to a long list of diets, piano lessons and high school calculus.
I’m sure if I asked some key people I could add to that list pretty quickly but you get the picture.
I know some of you are disappointed. Really truly disappointed. Maybe you’re disappointed for me. Maybe you’re disappointed in me. Maybe you’re doing the crazy fat girl mind meld and thinking “hell if she can’t do it and she’s done all these other races I’ll never do it.”
Stop that! Seriously.
I have failed all over the place in my life. Hell look at this blog. When we started this we promised to blog daily. Um…yeah big fat failure there too. Heck, if you think about it Failure is just about the scariest F word out there. But I did fail. I failed at 14.6 of 26.2 and had to get on a school bus because my foot was so beat up I needed a ride to the finish line (or preferably to my hotel but I had to settle for the finish line).
That being said I have to tell you a secret: even as a big fat failure the Marine Corps Marathon is AWESOME. If you get a chance click HERE for the course map. (Beware it’s an Adobe PDF document and it might take some time). Any course that runs past The Pentagon, Arlington National Cemetary, along the Potomac River, past the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial, and along the entire loop of the Mall in DC past the Capital Building and back towards the Pentagon to end at the Marine Corps Memorial (the Iwo Jima Statue) is pretty amazing. I’m more upset about missing the chance to run the rest of the race course then I am about missing the medal (and we all know how much I love medals).
At the same time I don’t want to mislead you. I’m not feeling jolly and Tigger-like about not finishing. It sucks. I knew a couple dozen people on the course from my various running experiences and not finishing in front of them stunk. Returning home to California without a medal also stunk. The Marine Corps Marathon was celebrating it’s 35th Anniversary and I missed the ANNIVERSARY medal. But you want to know the biggest stink bomb of all?
The DATE of the Marine Corps Marathon? October 31st? It was the 2500th Anniversary to the day of the running of the first marathon in Greece.
And really when you fail in the attempt to celebrate 2500 years of history you’ve pretty much hit rock bottom.
Or so I thought.
A week after I royally failed MCM Edison Pena one of the miners trapped underground in Chile for 69 days finished the New York City Marathon.
Isn’t that horrible? Don’t you feel sorry for me? I mean from all appearances I have every reason to plop my ass back on the couch and pretend this running thing was a bad dream right?
I’ve learned a lot in the past year but my most important realization is that in life there are only two kinds of people: people who show up, and people who don’t. Whatever else happened, even if I’d had a cramp and quit the course before the first mile, I still showed up.
At 4:30am on October 31, 2010 I took the D.C. Metro to the Pentagon station. I was nervous, I was excited and I was determined. On that day my determination didn’t carry me across the finish line. It did, however, carry me 14.6 mile.
Next time I will go the distance.
Want to know where I was Sunday, May 30th?
Lets try this word association-style.
Why YES! I was in Brentwood, California whose residents have spent the last 16 years rolling in wealth and trying to live down their notorious former neighbor. (It has been 16 years how scary is that?)
For those too young to remember, or anyone who was too busy playing professional beer pong during that time period click HERE and read the lengthy “legal history” to mend that gap in your cultural literacy.
Anyway, OJ was chased by the cops whereas I got to run past them.
So the good news was I got to run the city streets for 3.1 miles. The bad news is that it was my first race where I actually RAN since the beginning of March. And that kind of break is never pretty.
Let me just stop complaining and give it to you in pictures right?
Okay I have to share this one because it freaks me out. This is the ground at the VA where I parked. What the heck are those holes? Are they snake holes? Are they gofer holes? Am I about to score a free game of whac-a-mole? Yes, these are the things I think about 20 minutes before a race. I’m not really much for profound thoughts at 6:30 on a Sunday morning.
Anyway, I finally tore myself away from these freaky mysterious holes and took off for the starting line.
And this is the first thing I saw when I got to the race:
Now any true runner will tell you this is a fabulous and welcome sight. Note there is NO LINE. That means you if you have a nervous bladder you don’t have to worry about getting in lines three times.
Anyway, I like to call this area the Olympic Village. I like telling running buddies “hey I’m heading to the Olympic village, I’ll catch you at the start.” It sounds so much classier then “I gotta pee. Again.” The truth is I only suffer from nervous bladder when I see exponentially long lines at the pre-race porta potties. Seeing no line made me realize I was guaranteed not to have to pee and that makes me feel like a winner right there.
So instead of lingering I went straight to the check in and picked up my treats.
With the exception of the shirt and the $10 off Dick’s Sporting Goods (Best swag ever!), all the other items were from the race expo. It was an excellent expo for a 5K.
I ran my treats back to the car and headed for the starting line.
It was quite a nice patriotic touch for Memorial Day weekend.
Then came the race
See all those runners? They’re trying not to make eye contact with the guy in the cop car on the right.
Anyway, these are all the people that smoked past me. Including the short kids in the middle. But that’s okay because I have:
And therefore I’m happy.
Not all 5Ks give out medals. Actually most 5Ks don’t give out medals which is a stinking shame because a little bling at the end of a sweaty distance never hurt anyone.
All in all it was actually a lovely race experience and I plan to do it again next year (provided they have a medal of course).
Today I spent an hour and some change watching the Lakers play the Celtics at the gym. I’d gone there with the intention of doing four miles (maybe six) and walked in during the 3rd quarter of the game. Now, the fact that I didn’t know the Lakers were playing tonight should probably tell you something. The fact that I was the only person in the gym who (silently) cheered when the Celtics won should tell you something too. But it was a nice distraction considering my fabulous running watch had a dead battery and I forgot my ipod.
An hour and five minutes later I got off the treadmill knowing tomorrow morning Kobe Bryant will be crying in his Wheaties. Heh.
And you know what I also realized?
The World Cup is coming!
The World Cup is coming!
Check the schedule HERE
Understand I know nothing, heck I know LESS then nothing about soccer. But I love it. LOVE THE SPORT!
You know what I mean?
NOW do you know what I mean?
Meet Cristiano Ronaldo, he is a baby, and a manwhore, and he’s Portuguese which frustrates me because that is a language I can’t even pretend to understand.
But he looks really nice shirtless.
Really REALLY nice.
As do so many of the futballers.
So I’ll be watching World Cup on the treadmill, and preparing for the America’s Finest City Half Marathon. AFC is San Diego, CA. On August 15th. I’m going to burn like a poptart and melt like a ball of wax but I’m hoping to outsmart the Endless Summer and cross the finish line before the heat gets to me.
Here is a picture of their bling from 2007
I borrowed that picture from THIS Flickr site. That dude runs his races exponentially faster then I do so he’ll probably be on his sixth beer by the time I get my medal.
So I’m in training for this and the Marine Corps Marathon.
But if any of those World Cup guys decide to pull a Brandi Chastain and yank off their shirts before, during or after their games I would be okay with that.
I promised awhile ago that I would post my training calendar. It’s basically Hal Higdon’s Novice Supreme Marathon Training Schedule. I had to modify it slightly (mostly I shortened it) to fit my schedule.
You can find mine HERE. Please note it’s an Excel spreadsheet that downloads. This way you can grab it and tailor it to you if you want. Or if you REALLY want to see an image but don’t want to download just post a comment and I’ll link you to a picture snapshot.
Basically it’s organized like this:
I set it up so the white background is what I’m supposed to be doing every day. The yellow background is what I actually manage to do. This is a clean copy of the original version I just added the two races from this past weekend in so you can see an example.
The trick is to keep track of how many miles you are supposed to complete in a week and stick with it. If I can’t do today’s mileage I’ll try to switch it around with another day so I staying consistent. Do yourself a favor though and don’t just add up your mileage and try to kill yourself.
What do I mean?
This week I’m supposed to run 12 miles and walk 30 minutes. I did a half marathon on Monday which is 13.1 so technically I’m good for the week but I’m still going to go out and move a bit each day so I get used to putting in the regular miles. I’ve now completed six half marathons so I kind of know the drill.
But what if I hadn’t?
If you’re new and this is your first shot at the ball don’t add up your mileage on Saturday, realize you’ve done nothing all week and try to pull off a 12 miler. You will be sore and miserable and you will be conscious of every ounce you have ever gained through treats and frosty cold adult beverages. And you’ll hate yourself. Then you’ll quit. Not worth it!
If you were to ask me right now I’d tell you hell no I can’t do a marathon. Marathons are for crazy people! Notice where I am in my training. My big mileage this weekend would be five miles, not too a big deal for someone who has completed six half marathons. But I’m still starting small like everyone else because building the miles is so important for building confidence and staying healthy. That’s right, healthy!
If I find myself needing to make up miles I listen to my body. If I feel like I can do six miles that’s what I do. Sometimes I push a little more and sometimes I ease off. A major injury is going to derail your plans far more quickly then missing a couple miles during the week.
And that’s all I have to say about that.
P.S. Feel free to ask me any questions you have about running, walking, competing, regular workouts, gear, weight, etc. I really don’t mind sharing.
I missed the LA Marathon. Okay that’s not true, I was into the LA Marathon for over a hundred bucks, bought a plane ticket from NC but things got…shaky. Somehow I got recruited to work in Washington D.C. for the entire month of March. Well, that and between Jan 27th and March 19th (Marathon day) I think I’d completed about 18 official running miles. TOTAL.
So there I was inhaling food eating at Art Smith’s Art and Soul restaurant at The Liaison hotel on Capital Hill lamenting my lost training and lost bling collecting opportunity when a thought struck me. A year ago the thought of a marathon was ludicrous. A year ago I had no idea who Art Smith was because my sister had not yet dragged me into the Top Chef universe. Here I was eating Southern food at Oprah’s chef’s restaurant disappointed that I missed the LA Marathon. Not only did I miss LA I missed the 25th Anniversary medal and THAT was a double bummer.
So I will never have one of these:
(I know it’s not the clearest picture, sorry) But I’m still disappointed that I don’t have one.
Then I saw one of these:
Hello shiny! 2009 was the 34th year which makes 2010 the 35th year. That’s an anniversary I can get behind.
What you don’t see is the hundreds of uniformed Marines lining the course and offering support. A solider even hands you your medal.
Oprah ran it in 1994 and finished in 4:29:15.
I figure I have serious doubts about my ability to finish a marathon but this way I can keep chanting to myself Oprah finished this… Oprah finished this… Oprah finished this.
Now don’t get me wrong I admire Oprah. But girlfriend isn’t exactly a hardcore runner.
So bring on the soldiers! miles! I’ll post my race training calendar soon.