Monday, October 6, 2014

Behold! The power of the internet!

For the last two months, my internet has been unreliable at best. It hampered my blogging abilities and frustrated me on countless occasions. But the problem has been remedied and now you can all read about the last 6 races that I've run! Hooray!

Half marathon number 46 was the Park City half. Having sworn an oath never to run the full marathon in Park City again (and there was lots of actual swearing, the curse word kind), the half seemed like a nice option. I should have known that it would be a hilly beast anyway. That's all Park City knows how to do. I still had a nice race, and the shirt and medal were much better this year than when I ran the full.

I was going to beat that guy, so help me.

Very pretty medal.

Then there was the Top of Utah half marathon, half number 47. I was worried about the weather for this race, as the rain had been coming down in buckets the night before. It was a chilly, damp morning up the canyon, but the rain held off while the temperature remained nice and cool. I always run better when it's cool outside. I finished feeling really strong. Most of my races lately have been better the second half than the first. This bodes well for my future ultra aspirations.

I never look like I'm moving all that fast, but I was moving right along.

Moose swag is the best swag.
Half number 48 was the Murdock Half, along the new-ish Murdock Canal trail. It was a very small race, so I knew that I would be one of the last people across the line. And I was,but not the very last. I managed to beat 2 other people. But all of us finished in under 3 hours and we were all quite pleased with ourselves.

The shirt is cozy. I like cozy.
Half number 49 followed on Labor Day, with just one day of rest between half 48 and 49, I wasn't expecting a fantastic performance. This race had less than 30 people. I was by far the heaviest person there, and the course was straight up a mountain and then back down. But you know what? I wasn't last in this race either. Again, I beat two other people. And I finished in a much better time than I thought I would. I pushed hard on the uphill and flew back down. It turned out to be a nicer race than I had expected.

I have yet to see this "monster" they speak of.

The ever important watch stopping picture.
All of this jam packed racing was leading up to my 50th half marathon, the Nebo Half. I plotted and planned to have this one be my 50th, because it had been my very first. It's one of my favorite races. The course is gorgeous, the medals are stunning, and it's always been perfect on race day. This race was no exception. I finished in a very good time, only 4 minutes off my all time best. I had a nice support group with friends and family both running and waiting at the finish line. We had a little tail gate party afterwards to celebrate. The day was everything that I had hoped for.

Whee! Happy with this day/race/everything!

My friend Melissa, smashed her previous best time by nearly an hour! 

Hanging out with our trainer after, basking in the glory.

I'm sad this picture didn't turn out better...
All of these glorious half marathons were leading up to my last big race of the year, the Big Cottonwood Marathon. And when it came to the week of the race, I plain just didn't want to do it. I kept threatening to drop down to the half. I don't know why I had such a bad attitude towards this race. I really liked it last year. My training was just fine. I hadn't bombed any of my long runs, I was feeling healthy and fine. I just didn't want to run that far.

My friend Jamie and her husband were both running this race, and she had threatened me with a stern face that I needed to suck it up and run the full marathon. I'm glad I did. It turned into my best marathon experience ever. Like of all time, ever. There were so many Marathon Maniacs there one in particular really helped me through the last 10 miles. Cody became my marathon friend and it made all the difference. I don't really get to run with people much, since our paces are all so different. But Cody and I had the same pace and the same philosophy towards the race.

Feeling fine on one of our agreed upon walk breaks.
The last 10 miles went so well, I ended up beating my previous best time by 13 minutes. That's huge. I had no idea I was capable of a finish like that while still being able to walk the next day. I felt so good for the entire day even. I guess all that training really is paying off.

Look at my watch! Look at it! The time is amazing!


PR baby. Yeah.
So there you have it. If I could have blogged more regularly, there would have been much more detail. But pictures are more fun than my rambling. I have all kinds of craziness coming up this month and I'll try to keep up on it all. Until then, happy running!