Jan 14, 2007

Recap of the past three days...

FRIDAY - 1/12/07
I had to wake up at 3:00AM EST (which was 1:00AM MT) in order to make it to the airport for my flight out to AZ. Arrived without incident, which was a welcome change!

The flight was looooooong, but I slept a li'l, and then finished up the movie Calendar Girls on my iPod, and then watched HP PoA on the Portable DVD player. Lurve that movie.

Landed, got the car, and headed to my hotel in Tempe. Uuuummm... the hotel is sweet. I am right outside the pool and jacuzzi, but I also have a jacuzzi in my room! I also have a full kitchen (ceramic stove-top, oven, full fridge, etc.)! Yeah I love this place - and for $79 a night, who can complain!

After checking in to my hotel, I drove to Chandler for lunch and a visit to one of my suppliers. Left there to return to the hotel, then drove into dowtown Phoenix to meet up with some fellow RBFers - Denise, Pat and his wife. Unfortunately a few did not make it there (Angie, etc.) but regardless, it was a great time meeting fellow runners and hearing their stories of why they do it, how they started, and their future plans.

This was a great way to get remotivated!

After dinner, I went back to my hotel and crashed. It was 9:30PM, and I had been up since 1AM - you do the math.

SATURDAY - 1/13/07
Woke up in the AM, grabbed some fuel at the resturant outside my room (I know - I am lucky!), then drove back in to Phoenix to pick up Denise and do the expo. Sweet! I found out that we get free flip-flops at the finish line! That really excites me! I picked up my shirts, my number, and bought a few packs to attach to my marathon-belt. After a man massaged our calves with this amazing product (wintercrest) Denise and I both bought a small size to bring with us to the race. My muscles feel amazing! We even put a little on our gums, and it woke me right up! We will see how this does tomorrow during the race. (hint - it saves my calves at mile 2!)

We then toured Grand Canyon University (GCU), where Denise will be graduating from in 2008. Since she is a corresondant student, she wanted to actually see the campus before graduation! It is really nice, actually. Plenty of orange trees and well manicured palm trees!
After GCU, I went to Papago Park. Oh my. Wow. Amazing scenery. It reminded me a little of red rock canyon... except for it was Papago... and not a canyon. I then headed over to the Botanical Gardens for a walk and to check out the flora of Arizona. Pretty impressive! You can tell I had a good day - look how many pics I posted up on my page! I also managed to walk about 5 miles yesterday. So much for a rest day!

I went to dinner for a li'l carbo loading (only had a 1/2 C pasta, the rest was chicken), and then headed off to bed after assuring everything was laid out and accounted for. Oh yeah - sleepytime! Oh but wait - what is that noise that sounds a lot like my room's smoke alarm? Oh it is! After an hour of waiting on the desk guy to come and change batteries, he decided to just give me an additional room. Sweet - the executive suite! Bad side - I went to bed well after midnight. Damn you!

SUNDAY 1/14/07

A moment of silence for my feet please.


OK, thank you. ;)

Woke up, got ready, hit the shuttle, and arrived at the Marathon start to watch the Marathon festivities prior to getting ready for my own.

To sum up the half start- it started late, and it took about 24 minutes to get to the start due to wave starting. I took a salt packet at the start and that really helped me. I had no real issues - except for muscle cramping du eto lack of use prior to the race! I did OK run/walking to mile 7 when I made the decision to walk the rest of the way. My feet had thawed out by then, and I saw massive blisters. Yeah - that was my downfall! My stubbornness!

My feet got so cold at the start (my shoes are wonderful for summer - horrible for winter!) that they started to blister and I did not realize this until mile 7. Great times lay ahead!

Now I need to throw in a disclaimer here - I really have only ran twice since the Freep - and those were two 5ks. *blushes* DO NOT YELL AT ME! I was injured and wrapping up school - however I made Mike a promise that if I felt uneasy I would drop out of the race, I at least needed to start it. I was in no way prepared for the race physically. I fully expected to walk about half the race - and I made it a little further than that until I finally decided to just walk the rest of the way.

Once I made up my mind to completely walk the last 6.1 miles, I started to really enjoy the company of the people around me! My informal "happiness" goal was to finish in less than 3:40 - a full hour over my running goal. And I think that I did it! I finished in a gun time of 3:58 and change - remove the 24 or so minutes it took for me to reach the start (my chip time) and you have roughly 2:34 and change!

This was by far my worst half in terms of time, but one of the best in terms of enjoyment! I only regret not being better physically ready - but at the end of the day I still finished! And that is all that matters to me.

Remember - this is about the journey, not the finish time! Hey - I run for wine, not time! lol

Well, I am very happy with this trip. Will I do this one again? Ummmmmm... probably not. Well at least not until I have met my 25 in 25 goal!

Up next - the Flying Pig (possibly), Chicago Half, and Freep.

Keep on running!


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