Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Wordless Wed - Kiwi

This has nothing to do with training. Just posting a picture of Kiwi since I am crazy cat person :)

I also hope you guys were smarter than me and ran in the morning. I am excited to run in the heat after work. Bring on the heat training!

Happy Wed All :)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Weekend Recap

Why do three day weekend always go so fast?!?!? I need another day off work, please!
Friday night Jason and I drove down to Fredericksburg leaving at 9pm to avoid any and all traffic and we did just that! We made it down in record time of just a little over an hour. As soon as we got to my cousins we jumped in bed as the alarm was set for 5am for a 60 mile ride.
The morning came fast, but I was ready to ride in the lake anna area. I was suppose to ride 80 miles for the day but didn't have time to fit in my whole ride due to most of my family arriving at 10:30. I never get to see them, so I didn't mind cutting my workout short. Anyhow, we thought we could follow the route for the metric century we did about a month ago but the cue sheet was so long that there was no way I could fit all the directions on my leg. So yeah we were just winging it. This may not have been the smartest idea as the ride went slow as every road we took lead us back to route 208. WTF. I also forgot my normal bike sunglasses and I had to wear my aviators and look like a major tool. 

Finally I somehow recognized where I was at and realized we were on the Kinetic course. So we did one loop and headed down to the lake, them headed back to the High School were we had parked. Overall, it was a cranky ride and my legs hated me. We yelled at each other a couple times and yeah, it just wasn't a good ride. After 3 hours and 15 minutes, it was hot when we made it back to the car. I changed into my running shoes and did a short 20 minute brick.
We made it back to my cousin's just in time as the rest of family was arriving. However no one wanted to hug me because I was soaking wet with sweat! nasty.
The rest of the day was spent with my family sharing lots of stories and laughs. The day wasn't long enough and before I knew we were headed to our hotel.
I woke up early on Sunday despite not having to workout. Oh well, what are you going to do. I spent some more time with my family and left to go home around 11. The visit was short and I wished it was longer. On a side note I was lucky to get out of there without getting sick since I had family members dropping like flies with the flu.  
When I got home, I changed into my running clothes to head out for my 2 hour run. However I sat down for 5 minutes which as my first mistake of the day. I felt like I had a head ache. I figured I'd eat something really quick and let it settle then go run. Hmm... an hour passed. I felt super tired. A nap couldn't hurt before my run right? I woke up to find I slept way to long and the pool was only opened for another hour. I rushed to get ready and went for a 45 minute swim. I came home and was hungry again. I thought, I'll eat dinner and then go run at 7:30. But 7:30 came and went and I just sat on my couch. I have never put off a run so much in my life!!!
My plans for Monday included an easy fun ride up Beach Drive with my friends. I didn't want to miss out on this and I didn't want to miss my run either. So I got up super early and started my run at 5:15am on Monday. The run went ok and it probably went better than it would have in the dead of heat on Sunday. I was happy I finally made myself get my long run in. A little over 13 miles later I made it back to my house, just in time to change into my bike clothes, eat a hard boiled egg and jump on my bike.
Jason and I were headed up to Beach Drive to meet up with Victoria and Rachel. Just about 10 minutes into the ride I was tempted to text them and tell them I was bailing because I felt like crap. But nah, I didn't. I just kept riding and I'm glad I did. It was such a fun chatting ride and it was nice to remember why we do what we do.... because it's fun! I ended up getting in 37 miles for the day while the other two rode longer. 

And I have no clue what Jason is doing here? Counting how many times he would have gotten us lost...

The rest of what was left of the weekend, Jason worked me like a dog making me do yard work and laundy. #mean.  These are two things I hate!!! 

I hope everyone else had a great weekend :)

Friday, May 25, 2012

3 Day Weekend - Woot!

Last Memorial Day weekend I spent the weekend in Dewey Beach.... and my poor water bottle was really shocked when beer spent more time in it than water....

This year will be different, but good. I will be waking up at an ungodly hour tomorrow morning to fit my 5 hour ride in before my family arrives.

After that it's family time. I have family coming in from Ohio and Florida and I can not wait to see everyone for the weekend. I love and miss my family so much.

Happy Friday All and I hope everyone has a great Holiday Weekend!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Easy... Maybe Not...

After finishing Kinetic I had a great outlook about Louisville. I kept thinking it was going to be easy. Ok well not easy, but that it wasn't going to be so bad. That it was doable. That the training was fun and I loved every minute of it.
Then my run took place yesterday morning. It wasn't overly hot, but it was humid out! I was suppose to do a mile warm up with a 4 mile tempo and then a mile cool down. Mile 1 went ok, then it was a struggle after that. I know not every run goes as planned, but I don't know. With every step I took doubt started to creep up in my head that the marathon is going to be complete and udder hell in the summer Kentucky heat. The thoughts of "oh 26.2 miles isn't going to be so bad after swimming and biking" were gone. If I didn't plan my run to finish at the front door of my office I would have let myself walk. I started off with 8 something on my watch and ended in the high 9s. Ugh. I hated every minute of my run yesterday and the worst part is now I am playing mind games with myself.
And to top yesterday off, I got a whopping 150 yards in at the pool. Yes, that's not a typo, I was only in the water long enough to get wet before the pool kicked us out for lighting. Now, I had just came from outside and it wasn't lighting or thundering. Whatever. I know they want to be safe, but so silly. I would have loved to go back later in the evening but didn't have the time to do so :( So, that leaves me with the whole half hour window tonight to swim. I'll take the mile I can get in over nothing I suppose.
Other than that, despite my confidence crushing run, I am trying to keep a positive attitude towards my training and a positive outlook on Ironman as a whole. Up to this point I have enjoyed training for the most part and look forward to specific IM training starting the week of June 7th. What does that mean? It just means lots of long rides and long runs will fill up my weekends. I just hope the summer heat doesn't continue to scare me...
Happy Thursday All :)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Pics from the Historic Half

Here are some of our official race photos from the recent Historic Half marathon. I might be tempted to buy some of these....

Happy Wed All :)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Marine Corp Historic Half Marathon Race Report

Ahhhh Race morning.... the best feeling in the world even if I was only using the Marine Corp Historic Half as a way to get my long run in for the day.

Anyhow, we stayed at my cousin's again on Saturday night so we only had a short 20 minute drive to Fredericksburg Va's Central Park, where the race started at. We were on the road by 5:45am giving ourselves plenty of time to park, walk, and use the bathrooms before the 7am race start.

It was nice that the stores let us park in there parking lots, so parking wasn't an issue and we only had a short half a mile walk to the start line. We lined ourselves up by the 2:00 hr start coral.

 Before we knew it, we were walking up to the start line and pressing start on our garmin's.

Miles 1-3: 9:10, 9:17, 9:13
* Me: The start of the race was fun and I loved seeing all the people lined up along the road cheering for us. They also had some people playing live music which was fun. Once we made it out of Central Park the crowds thinned out and I realized it was hot out! I had wished I wore my visor instead of my sparkly head band, but oh well, what are you going to do?

* Jason:  I didn't really get to stretch as much as I wanted so I was a little panicked.

I also forgot my compression socks so I was a little irate about that. People started running at the start of the race, but I decided why the extra effort I'll just start running at the start line. I think I ran faster out of the gate because people were around me and I didn't want to get passed by everyone. The first 3 miles were pleasant enough especially with all the people cheering and the line of classic muscle cars  on display.

Miles 4-7: 9:31, 9:35, 9:38, 9:37
* Me: The course actually was filled with rolling hills and Jason wanted to run slow on the down hills and fast on the up hills. This is not really my style so I had a hard time slowing down on the down hills. Anyhow, some girl wiped out as she turned around to talk to her friend and tripped over a big orange cone. I felt bad for her, but at the same time watch were your going. I think mile 7 was my favorite mile as we ran through historic down town Fredericksburg. There was lots of crowd support for this mile and more music. Music always seems to give me an extra pep in my step when I hear it, especially because I never train with any music. They were also giving out sport beans and it looked like the Easter bunny had came because there was jelly beans all over the road. I laughed and smile when I saw them.

* Jason: I just let gravity pull my Clydesdale self down the hill and then my legs powered me back up the hill kind of like I do on the bike. Around mile 7 my back started to tense up so I was in a little pain but just ran through it. The scenery was nice through this part of the course and I liked all the crowd support in town. There were a couple bands playing and people singing so it made you almost forget you were running a half marathon.

Miles 8 -11: 9:27, 9:48, 9:48, 10:10
* Me: Jason was still in good spirts and was singing to me since he had music with him. It was cute. I was just having fun and enjoying myself running at an easy pace for me. Actually I have discovered I actually like running slower, it's so much easier. I might never want to try to run faster again. At mile 10 we ran by Mary Washington Hospital. My aunt had stayed at this hospital over x-mas and when I ran by it I got very emotional and started to think about her. Before I knew it I had tears running down my checks and I was sobbing while I was running. Jason put his arm around me as he knew why I was crying. I love my aunt so much and miss her every day now that she is gone. I didn't expect myself to start crying though when I saw the hospital. And of course right at the same time I start sobbing we hit Hospital Hill, which is suppose to be the big scary hard hill on the course. Everyone says this hill is so tough - as it is a mile long and pretty steep - but it didn't feel that way running up it. I guess all my Capital Hill repeats payed off because we were passing people left and right, but I guess our pace did slow down :(

*Jason: Once we hit mile 8, I knew we were more than halfway finished with the race so I was relieved. However, I still had a pit in my stomach because we were about to run up hospital hill. I looked over and saw Sarah crying so I put my arm around her to console her. We passed a race photographer and Sarah put a smile on to wave at the camera. Hospital hill came and went in short fashion, we were passing people left and right that had passed us before. I think all my biking helped me actually with some of the race. The pace did slow down a little due to the fact we were running up a very long continuous hill.

Miles 12 - 13.25 something: 9:55, 9:05, 1:47 (7:17 pace. Go Jason)
* Me: Since I am selfish and ran this race with Jason instead of playing cheer leader, I ran ahead of Jason so I could stop and get at least one action shot of him running :) Jason was still looking strong and we continued to pass people as we made our way to the finish line. I was happy to see Jason pick up the pace the last mile and I went with the flow. As we approached the finish line we decided to hold hands and well then Jason decided to sprint. It was great crossing the finish line together and I loved every minute of our run together :) Plus I am so proud of my M, he finished with an 11 minute PR!!!!

*Jason: I saw mile marker 12 show up and knew we were right around the Central park shopping center and that the race was almost over so I got excited. I started to run a little faster and had some good hip hop tunes on my mp3 player to help guide me along.

Once we had hit mile 13, I picked up the pace and started to sprint. I picked out a person in a Chicago white sox shirt that was running and decided to sprint past them to beat them. Sarah and I finished holding hands :) and proceeded to get our medals and hydration. I forgot to stop my watch so it was off by 40 seconds, but Sarah did so I was happy to see my new PR time. However Alice Sweeney beat us by 1:30 !

Final Time: 2:06 (9:30 pace)

Overall thoughts from Jason: It was a good race and I am happy to train for it. The crowd support was good and the scenery and music playing added to the atmosphere. I may run the race next year (as long as it is a different weekend then the Capitol Hill 10k).  With the remaining races on my schedule, I will start biking and swimming more eventually refocusing on running later in the summer when I will kick it in to high gear for the Marine Corps Marathon.

* Jason forgot to mention how excited he was for the beers at the end of the race! as he ran towards the beer tent :)

Anyhow, it was a great day for both of us !

Happy Tues All :) 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Weekend Recap - Fun in the Sun

I can't complain about how my weekend went. I got plenty of time in the sun and lots of good workouts in.
Saturday ~
My alarm went off bright and early - hello 5:30am - on Saturday morning. Although I still got plenty of sleep because being the exciting person I am, I went to bed at 9 o'clock on a Friday night. Anyhow, I was out the door by 6 and on my way to meet up with Louisville bound buddies Holli and Zach for a long bike ride up to Poolesville. And what is great about the Poolesville ride is that the elevation profile pretty much mimics the Louisville course, which makes it the perfect training ride.

Poolesville Ride

IM Louisville Course

It was cold out when I left my house, but yet I didn't wear my arm warmers. I'm so smart and thought it was too warm out to wear them. Wrong. I pretty much bitched about this decision until oh I don't know when because I couldn't feel my fingers at all. It did warm up half into the ride though. The ride itself went well. I'm a little slower than the other two, but I was able to keep up with them for the most part. Once up in Poolesville we were greeted by the friendly locals. Not. Lets see we had a car beep loudly at us by the high-school and then right past the gas station we had a car yell out the window at us. Fun.
We only made two stops on the ride. One to try to fix Holli's x-wing as her wedge was dangling onto her back wheel. The other was for a potty break at the BP on Falls where we were able to talk to other DC Tri-ers for a bit. I also took this chance to eat my peanut butter and jelly sandwich that I had. OMG it tasted so good at this point.
We made our way back into the city and to Haines Point. I only did one small loop then headed home. The other two did a few more loops. I felt like a little bit of a wimp for not finishing up the ride with them, but I was happy when I got home and saw I had ridden 77 miles for the day. This is actually the longest I have ridden so far :) 
After getting home, I packed my bags and Jason and I headed down to Fredericksburg to pick up our packets for the Marine Corp Historic Half marathon.

Then we made our way to my cousin's house were we relaxed for the rest of the day.

Sunday ~
Beep beep beep - two days in a row the alarm went off at 5:30 in the morning. Sleeping in would be nice, but nah running in a race is more fun. I would only be using this race as a training run and a chance to do my long run for the day with lots and lots of people around me :) Jas on the other hand was trying to PR and I gladly was ready to help pace him to do so!  
I will not get into a lot of detail as I'll let Jason write up his race report for later in the week, but it was such a fun race. I think I had a smile on my face for most of the run and loved being able to run side by side with my M. We crossed the finish line holding hands and Jason finished with a 11 minute PR. I'm so proud of him!

After the race we headed back to the Hill and went straight to brunch. 2 margaritas after running meant someone was buzzed. haha. and not it was not me as I only had water :)

Overall, it was a great weekend and I wouldn't have changed anything.
I hope everyone had a great weekend too!
Happy Monday All :) 

Friday, May 18, 2012

The Trials and Tribulations of a Triathlete Spectator

Here is a wonderful Guest Post by my one and only M! He is there for me at every race and I don't know what I would do without him!!!


Everyone knows that the time and dedication when training for triathlons is legendary. However, equally as important is the time and energy spent spectating at these fun and exciting events. From the early morning wake up times to making sure that Sarah has her transition items to assisting with getting the car loaded in the morning and cheering, it is a full time job! 

On a typical day of the triathlon, we wake up at 5:00 – 5:30 (depending on driving distance). I help Sarah get the car packed with her transition bag and attaching her triathlon bike to the bike rack. Once we have made sure that she has everything, we grab our breakfast food and some water bottles for the car ride. 

After our drive where we discuss the course, Sarah gets her registration and gets checked in while I unload the car. As she proceeds through the different stages of preparing for the race (setting up her bike, unpacking her triathlon backpack, getting markered), I find the perfect vantage point to snap some pictures with our DSLR. 

After transition closes, we proceed down to the water for the start. As everyone organizes into the waves, I take a few more pictures. And then the fun starts, I switch to the long-range lens to snap some close up pics at a distance of my M swimming in the water.

As I track her, I switch lens on the camera to snap some more pictures before she comes into and runs over to transition. I sprint beside her, cheering her on and making sure I don’t run into anyone. Often times, I yell at her to hurry up in transition :) and take pictures of the bike out.

 Prior to the race, I study the bike map in order to see if there are multiple places where i can take a picture. During the Nations Triathlon, I must have run 3 or 4 miles to get multiple pictures of my m at different points during the race.

I give myself just enough time to get back over to transition in order to see Sarah run out and to snap some photos of the run leg of the triathlon all while encouraging her and telling her she is almost done.

At the end of the race, I setup at the finish line to take some photos of my m finishing and to take a picture of the new shiny medal she's earned. And I give her a big hug and congratulate her for finishing!

After the race is over, we drive home and end up crashing pretty hard. We usually take an epic nap followed by gorging ourselves on some food :) . Hey a spectator has to eat too!

Happy Friday All :) Have a great weekend

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Three Things Thurs

1. My legs weren't too happy with me after Kinetic. On Sunday I felt like a little old lady hobbling around. I wanted to go for a recovery swim, but enjoyed my laziness and did nothing all day besides visit my mother-in-law for mother's day. It was glorious. The laziness continued onto Monday. I really wanted to swim again, but going at 8:30 at night just didn't seem worth it and I allowed myself another day with no workouts. But, by Tues I was ready to get back at it and have hit all my workouts since then.
2. While running yesterday along the SW waterfront trail I saw multiple Mulberry Trees! OMG I can't even explain how excited I was and still am!!!! I love mulberries, they are so tasty and well I can never find them in the stores anywhere. I had a tree in my back yard growing up and used to eat them all the time. So, when I saw the berries laying on the trail, I knew to look up. Right away, I started picking them off the tree and eating them :) Jason as annoyed because he just wanted to finish the run, but I told him I would catch back up to him. People kind of looked at me funny because I don't think a lot of people know that these are not poison-ness berries. Anyhow, I was so happy. I wish I wasn't so busy because I want to go back with a zip lock bag and actually pick them.... hopefully they are not too ripe in a couple of days.
3. We are headed back down to Fredericksburg VA again this weekend. Jason will be racing in the Marine Corp Marathon Historic Half. I can't wait to cheer him on and run with him for some of the race.
Happy Thurs All :)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Self Coaching

This is something I have been questioning since I started my journey to do a half ironman and a full ironman.

I looked into coaches back in January, but decided that for this first go around I would try it on my own for various reasons. I am a motivated person and knew that doing a program on my own would not be an issue, but I wasn't sure if the training I would be doing was right for me? My main goal for both of these distances  was just to cross the finish line with a smile on my face and injury free. But, would I be over training, would I not be training enough, speed work, heart rate training, etc, etc, etc.

I looked at several different training plans online and found this 20 week half ironman training program that I liked. It was a time based training program as many of them were that I found. I wasn't really a fan of the time based plans as I didn't know if I would be getting in the mileage that I needed to.

I pretty much followed this training plan to the tee with a couple little blips here and there due to life getting in the way. And once I started, the whole time based thing didn't bother me. I'm about a right in the middle of the pack athlete and figured most of these generic plans were made for average speed people.

I never used a heart rate monitor throughout my half training due to the fact it bothers me when I wear it. Zone 2 what? Yes, I have no idea what any of my zones are and have basically made up paces in my head as to what my zones are. #goodidea.

After I decided to race Kinetic instead of Mooseman, my 20 week timeline was thrown off a bit. I had started the program with the target date of June 3rd. This meant I cheated the training plan by three weeks and made some minor adjustments to make sure I tapered in the week leading up to my new 70.3. This made me worried, but I knew I would still be able to finish my first 70.3 despite those 3 weeks I missed.

As you guys know, I'm pretty excited about how Kinetic went and I'm not sure if I would have changed much on race day. With that said, I would totally recommend this training plan to someone looking to do their first 70.3. Of course, I'm no expert and you would have to look it over and make sure training without a coach is for you. And if this training plan is for you. My goal was just to finish, so picking a plan with more speed work, etc might be better for others.

And now that I am done with my 70.3 I will switch my focus to Louisville, which is my big goal for the year. Like my half I will be self coaching myself to the full ironman. I will be using a 24 week training program from this book and pick up the training from week #10.

At times I still question myself if self coaching is the smart thing to do. I can only hope that the new training program I am transferring over to works just as well for me. I guess for me to key to this whole thing is to listen to my body and understand that's it ok to modify a workout sometimes or to take a rest day as long as I get in my key workouts. I think I will always wonder if I had a coach though if I could have finished faster or stronger. I guess that is a question I will never know...

Having a coach/self coaching - what do you do?

Happy Tues All :)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Kinetic Half Race Report

Kinetic Half... oh where to begin....

I had a great first 70.3 for me

We drove down the night before and stayed with my cousin who lives off courthouse road just 16 miles from Lake Anna State Park. I was in bed by 9:45 and got an ok nights sleep and didn't have any crazy tri nightmares. My alarm was set for 5am and we were out the door by 5:30am. I ate two hard boiled eggs and a yummy muffin on the car ride there.

We arrived at the Park at about 5 till 6. I thought this would give me plenty of time to get everything ready as transition was suppose to close at 6:45. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Set Up Events had only two people checking in athletes. I waited in line for 20 minutes and panic started to set in. To save time I sent Jason back down to the car to get my bag and my bike, just to find out he took my ID and USAT card with him. So, he had run back up the hill and get these back to me just as I was picking up my packet.

Once I got my packet I ran back to the car, got my stuff and headed to transition. I had about 15-20 minutes before it closed, but I was already feeling like a chicken with their head cut off and couldn't calm down.


I looked for my timing chip and it wasn't in the bag they gave us. Here you had to pick it up at a separate tent by the beach and have your race number with you, which meant I would have to run down there and back into transition to drop my bib back off. I ran into Beth and Allison at this point, but I was in too much of panic to really talk. Sorry guys. Luckily there was fog over the water and they pushed back the start time of the race which gave people more time in transition.

With all my stuff ready to go I was feeling better, but was worried this if how the rest of my day was going to go. I made one last stop at the port-a-potties and met up with Rachel as we made our way down to the water. The water was actually warmer (70 degrees) than it was outside and it felt good to have your feet in it.

Swim:  1.2 miles - 36:45

Before I knew it, our wave was in the water and the horn went off. It was a running start into the water and people were just diving in. I followed suit, but the water was still so shallow that I was actually scrapping my hands on the bottom. I was thinking WTF and thought I cut up my hand.

The start of my swim was not pretty. I was panicking with everyone around me and my heart rate was out of control. The thought actually crossed my mind to just give up and swim back to shore and scrap the whole race. I obviously did not do this and just kept swimming. I did calm down about 200 meters into the swim and got into a little grove. I probably could have swam faster, but I was content with taking it easy.  After the first yellow buoy we turned directly into the sun! I couldn't see a thing. I had no idea where the orange buoys were at and had no clue if I was swimming on course. I stopped to breast stroke a couple of times because I didn't see anyone else around me and thought I was completely swimming the wrong direction. I eventually caught back up to people and was happy to make the final tun back to the shore line. Yes. I made it out in one piece and only got punched in the face once in the final 100 meters. Now the real fun was about the begin...

T1: 3:05
Nothing to exciting here. I struggled to take off my wetsuit and apparently blocked this guy in the picture from getting out of our row. Sorry. I fumbled around and I thought I was in there for 6 minutes or so. Jason was along the fence line yelling at me to get my ass out of there. But I took my sweet old time and wanted to find and put on my capstick before I left. If you have ever had sun burned lips, you would understand.

Bike: 56 miles - 2:59:35 - 18.7 mph
Boomer was excited to get off the bike rack and wondered why it took me so long to swim. Whatever Boomer. And per usual, I suck at mounting my bike and I'm extra slow at clipping in. At least I don't look like I'm the only one.

Once all clipped in I gave Jason a smile and wave as I knew I would not see him again for at least 3 hours.

There is one word and one word only for this bike course: LOVE! Yes I loved the bike course. It was a two loop course that had nice rolling hills and sections of shade which made it interesting.

I started off pretty slow with my first 5 mile split at 18:07 or an average of 16.6mph. I guess I was just peddling easy and getting my heart rate back down after the swim. I'm not sure why it took me so long to do this though? I picked up the pace for the next 10 miles and kept my average around 20. I had my nutrition plan in my head and wanted to take in calories every half hour for a total of around 200 an hour. I started off with my honey stinger chews and they went down great. It was also easy to remember to drink my Gu Brew mix in my aero bottle because well the straw was sticking right in my face. When it was time to eat again, I tried a Honey Stinger waffle, but my stomach was rejecting it and I thought oh just how lovely. I only ate half of it and decided to give my belly a rest and not eat for an hour.

The second part of the loop or right around mile 20 was a little harder than the beginning. It was basically a bunch of false flats, so I put boomer in a lower gear and just kept my cadence up. I was also too scared to grab a water bottle at the hand off and just drank my 46 oz that I had on my bike with me. I guess this could explain why I didn't have to pee at all while riding.

I was also getting passed -  a lot! But mostly by men with money wheels and ok just a few women. I let my ego go and knew I was still going fast for me and didn't want to over push it and have dead legs for my fun fun half marathon. At the 2 hour mark I started to do some math in my head, which can be pretty dangerous, and thought I could get a sub 3 hour bike. I was getting excited and became obsessed with my Garmin and kept looking at it from that point on, oh about every 5 minutes. As we were getting closer to bike finish a couple of the guys I was riding around asked if everyone was ready for the real fun to begin. I responded that I have been thinking about the 13.1 miles since I got on the bike and was ready for it :)

As I coasted back into the park, I knew the sub 3 hour bike could be mine, but yet I didn't hammer it because I wanted to save my legs. Looking back, I actually should have pedaled harder those last few miles, but whatever I suppose. My edge had my at 2:58:28. I turned it off at the dismount line. My official bike time was 2:59:35, so I guess I was a slow poke running to the timing mat. But score, I got my sub 3 hours even if it was only by 30 seconds!

T2: 2 minutes even
I couldn't get my bike back on the race as my wheel kept hitting someone's big blue cooler that they had sitting there. Once again I fumbled around and couldn't decide if I wanted to kept my sun glasses on our off. Off was the final decision and I grabbed my race belt, Garmin, and capstick and went off running.

Run: 13.1 miles - 2:01:47
Jason had just finished running his 10 miles for the day and almost missed me running out of T2. I guess my bike split surprised everyone. We did a small loop and then headed back up by the transition area where Jason was waiting for me. I ran towards the port-a-potties as Jason yelled, "no your going to the wrong direction, run this way." Don't worry, I'm not that bad with directions, I just wanted to use the bathroom while I saw one. I'm not sure how long this took me, maybe a minute? My first mile split was at 9:15 so not so bad considering I made a stop :)

The run course I would like to describe as a 3 hellish hilly loops ... aka fun right?

Each loop was a little over 4 miles long and you got to run by the finish line every time. Loop number 1 wasn't so bad and my legs felt good and my stomach didn't feel too bad either. I wanted to try to keep around a 9 minute mile and tried my best to do so. After the first loop I saw Jon and Allison cheering for me as I ran up the big ass hill. I asked them how many loops we had to do because I was convince that 2 loops would make up 13.1 miles and if I did a third loop then I would end up with 16 miles or something. See, I told you doing math can be dangerous. Unfortunately they confirmed it was indeed three loops I had to run. Bummer.

I saw Jason shortly afterwards and he tried to give me a kiss, but missed and kissed my shoulder instead. I was laughing.

As I was running I came up with a little saying: "The only thing you can control is your attitude."  You can't control the weather, how your body feels, or what goes on around you, but you can control how you think. I kept a positive attitude through-out the run and just kept repeating this to myself. I also thought about how much I actually love running and just to have as much fun as possible. The second loop seemed long though. The points between the aid stations seemed to take longer and longer to get too. At the bottom of one of the hills there was music playing which was pretty uplifting. I made friends with an older guy and we talked to rest of the run and helped push each other. I saw some of my friends on the out and backs as well and we cheered for each other. It was nice.

I ran through the trail in the woods and came out by the finish about to make my final loop. I kept looking at my total time and knew I could finish in under 6 hours and was happy. I saw Jason, again, and I was smiling and told him about how I ate a fly at mile 51 on the bike and that the extra protein would help me finish my run.

Although the last loop was the hardest. I started walking the aid stations. I had been drinking water and had been taking Gatorade at each station along with pouring a water over my head. It was out hot, maybe 80, but the water on the head trick seemed to help. My stomach had been playing nice to me most of the run, but it was on the verge of taking a turn for the worse. I had not eaten anything on the run as I usually can't, but ate three chews at mile 10. They seemed to make me feel better for a bit, but then my death mile came!!! I was keeping somewhat even splits throughout the run until mile 12. I don't know what I was doing here? Going for a Sunday walk? I guess so: Mr. 10:45 mile, you suck sir!

I got mad that I let myself slow down so much and I really wanted a 2 hour half, but it just wasn't in the cards. I pushed myself the last mile and felt like I sprinting with a 8:41 mile. But I saw the finish line and I saw Jason, I was pumped!

After what I never imaged myself able to do, I was crossing the finish line at my first half ironman :)

Final Time: 5:43:10
Which got my 39th place out of the women. I'm not sure what my AG placing is, as setup events does not have those results up yet.

Number one thought: I did it! and I stayed positive throughout the entire race. I couldn't be happier.

Take that 70.3 - I can't wait to do my next one and Louisville I'm coming for you !!

Also, I mentioned before coming into this race, I didn't care about my times. Honestly I really didn't. I am pretty proud of myself though. I hit all my time goals on the faster side of what I had set up for myself. I guess my day really couldn't have gone much better. But while laying in bed, all I could think about is how I could have pushed myself more on the run and finished the half in under 2 hours. I don't know why I do this to myself?

Anyhow, it was a such a fun race and it was nice seeing my friends through out the course. Plus well it was a great confidence booster for Louisville! Good Job to Rachel as well! She did so awesome.

Hope everyone had a great weekend :)