Wednesday, July 8, 2009

I call myself a runner.

Remember I mentioned I had a half marathon coming up?

It was last Saturday on the 4th of Julie. I mean July.

This is the second one I've run this year, actually. I ran a half marathon with my two goody friends Rachel and Donna on May 3rd. We had such a rockin' time training together because we spent hours running roads chatting non-stop, stashing water bottles in bushes, countless emails and fun 3-way calling phone talks. Then the over-nighter of actual race day was hilariously fun.

Here we are on my porch after a nice long run.

Here we are in Eugene after the race and back at our hotel.

Those of you who train for something that requires endurance, persistence, dedication and physical exertion know that having an accountability group makes it sooooo much easier and actually DO-ABLE! Way to go girls, we did it!

However, I was not satisfied with my end time results. I ended up running very poorly and came in at a surprisingly slow pace. I had trained much better than I raced which is backwards! Most people are shocked at how the energy and excitement of race day can make your legs fly down the course and make you feel like you're Speedy Gonzales! And having run many runs (some big some small) I've always done better on actual race day. But with my friends that day, something came over me and I couldn't get my legs to go.

I wasn't sure I was ever going to run another marathon or half marathon but I didn't want to end my running "career" on a slow note. So I set off to run another one 2 months later to beat my time and come in at a more respectable time. Hence, my 4th of July run.

I told Dad about it and he wanted to run it with me! And the awesome thing is that he decided to run it to help me make my goal! He did also want to get off his duff because this multi-marathoner hadn't run in 3 years. So it was a great way for him to get back in to running and help me meet my goal.

He is a great running partner, always positive, constantly telling me stories to keep my mind off my aching body. Distraction is key!

He would meet me at my house at 7am, we'd go for an 8 mile run and then he'd drive straight to work for the next 10 hours. Wow. And we were running at a GREAT pace. Far better than my Eugene pace and an impressive pace for me. I was excited and geared up for the race on the 4th.

However, come race day, try as he might to get me to run faster, I was just dragging. The sun was out early, the heat was setting in, and I just couldn't find my groove. Dad tried all his tricks... jokes, work stories, work gossip, funny stories, pace/goal reminders... at one point he even ran ahead of me with his arm stretched back making me catch up to him. He was a fantastic coach. My body was not cooperating with me.

In the end, I beat my time by 2 only minutes. I wanted to beat it by 5 minutes. Because I know I COULD HAVE. I've run that fast plenty of times before and all through this training. But it didn't happen.

Oh well. I'm not going to let it get me down. Nor do I think I want to run another one this year. I don't think. :)

Dad is planning on running the Portland Marathon this year! Wow.

And look what my cute family did for us! Isn't this sign Absolutely Fabulous!?


SuperDave said...

I only accomplish these goals, because my daughter believes in me.

Kismet said...

Test anxiety.

Study, study, study, yeah, I've got this!

Test day.......*****blank*****

You ARE a runner. You did it and didn't back away from it.

I am proud of you.


Dad is a great coach/encourager :)

Blessed Mama of 4 said...

your running impresses me beyond words, I can't imagine myself ever running 8 miles. The fact that you run at all amazes me, and the bonds you get to build with your girlfriends and dad through the experience are SO awesome.

I LOVE the sign... what a special family!

Amy Cate said...

I agree, you ARE a runner. What else do you call someone running on the roads and TRAINING for a half marathon?? You did great Julie. I aspire to be as good as you!
All the greats go through a funk-time and ups and downs. This is just something to work through (although sure take the rest of the year off! whatever you decide; I'm just trying to encourage you).

Maybe one day it'll be clear to you what was going on those days. But the fact is that you didn't let disappointment or slower race times stop you. You have such a strong character that you trained and did it again, AND you IMPROVED two minutes at least! Sure goals are always ahead. We don't always get them. But YOU tried and made improvement and took steps towards it. It got you another wonderful training time with your dad and another running story and notch in your belt, and more strength mentally and physically for what you've gone through.

Plus, I'm a firm believer that what happens in private counts too, and whether someone saw your fastest time or not, it is truth that you have run that fast. =)

love you my running inspiration!

Jenny said...

SWEET sign! What's it made out of?

The Everett Family said...

Great Job! Just running 8 miles is an accomplishment! I ran 2 miles the other day and I was sore for 5 days afterwards :)

Molly W. said...

Way to go Julie! Running is hard work! And yes, that sign is absolutely fabulous!

Anonymous said...

This is awesome Julie!!! I haven't read your blog in ages and I just so enjoy it!!! I Lu-huv to jog so count me in on your next running venture! Or even a morning run? You can push my double jogging stroller if you want :-) Then, the next time you run by yourself you WILL feel like Speedy Gonzales! Or even the Tazmanian Devil! So proud of you. Hugs,