Wednesday, May 13, 2015

wine country half marathon (and a diva win)

this could be a really short post.

i did it!

but you know there are pictures and thoughts and stories that happened.

but i did it!

this was the ymca training shirt and the race bib, something cool and different.

here we are waiting for the bus at 6:00 am. i've been running with some of these people for four years now. and some just joined the group but we are all supportive and encouraging friends.

here's the group photo. do you see me? no? that's cause i was waiting in line to use the bathroom one more time before heading to the starting line.

the electricity that surrounds a starting line for a race is incredible. the energy carries you for the first mile.

nothing much to say about the first few miles of the race. they were difficult and not very fast. i felt like i was keeping a good pace but wasn't sure i could sustain it for the entire course.  i did think about my 13.1 things throughout the race. trying to remember what i had for each mile helped keep my mind off how many miles i had to go.

i listened to pandora on my iPhone and it only went out on me a few times. during those moments i got to listen to my breathing, my feet hitting the pavement or i focused on just moving.

mile 6 is where you head into los olivos. it's the transition spot for those running the relay, it's where you can get a sip of wine or water, it's where you're family is there to cheer you on and take photos, and it's where you prepare yourself for the corkscrew.

i took just a few photos along the way and it's really hard to tell in this photo but the trail zig zags along this hill.  my success was running the entire way up - at a snail's pace but i wanted to commit to running this hill without stopping and i did...

because i knew that the downhill was waiting for me on the other side. each time i passed the mile marker i would say "i love you" to whoever or whatever i had dedicated that mile to.

the weather was just right. cool but not cold.  and the buffalo were out to greet us. we also saw llamas, horses and sheep.

that 12th mile is a killer. it's the only time i walked. it's a long, steady uphill. at mile 12 it's a tough one to conquer. i knew i wasn't going to have a personal record this time around so i let myself walk for a bit.

as soon as it leveled off i started running again. that's when i saw the people cheering and reminding us that it's almost over.  that's when i saw my parents. that's when i saw the training group yelling my name. that's when i saw the finish and knew it was over. (yes, that's when i cried.)

i crossed feeling really good.  last year when i crossed the finish line i was in a lot of pain. but this year i was ok.  i needed water and i was starving but i felt pretty good.

i met up with the group and my family for some post race photos and i immediately took my shoes off and got into flip flops - that's a great feeling.  it was a good run for me. not my fastest but my goal was to finish and enjoy the run along the way. standing still after running for two and a half hours is when the muscles start to cramp and the pain sets in. my feet starting hurting and i could feel discomfort that i hadn't felt or ignored for 13 miles. it was time to rest.

the medal is outrageous. corkscrew, wine stopper and bottle opener, what more do i need?  add this to the collection.

after showering, calling bobby and dealing with foot cramps, we met up at the rv park for brunch.  everyone walked around grunting and groaning and we got to share our stories of how the race went for each of us. of course, we talked about the next race.

my parents and i left soon after eating to make it back to the valley to see sofia play softball.

they had a playoff game on friday, the day she came back from camp.  and they won!! so they made it to the championship game on saturday. when i heard that i knew i had to make it back in time to see the game.

and in a great game the daring divas pulled it off and won the championship!!  i was so glad i got to be there to see it, limping and all.

sofia played against one of her best friends and they were so happy for each other. in the end they didn't care who won or lost, but that they got to play softball together.

what a day! what a race! what a game! hooray for all of it.

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