Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Charlotte Rockin' Relay Marathon 3/22/2015

Having fun with some super cool relay ladies!
This will be a short post with a couple cool pictures. Rockin' Relay Marathon, Charlotte.
I was a glutton this weekend. A glutton in the sense, I did more intense physical activity than I was ready for, and I loved if, not every bit, then most of it.

Saturday, trainer Andrea I worked together doing a challenging workout doing suspension training. This is one of the few sessions we do that I feel like shouting “help” near the end of the last set. Saturday was a full-body workout, yet a concentration on the glutes.
This photo was taken in a little over a year ago while doing "suspension training"
That afternoon, I enjoyed the mid-60’s sunshine and ran 11 miles around town, seeking out vacant lots and briar fields looking for daffodils to “poach” , I mean pick(I don’t really poach- I have learned that old home places, now very overgrown with bush and brambles and apparently untended produce very early season daffodils). I did return to one location that afternoon and plucked several flowers and earned bruised and scratched legs. Totally worth it. I have coined a new word: "daffodiling". 
Daffodiling results on display on our dining room table.
Sunday, I left home at 5:55am to Reedy Creek Park, just several miles north of Charlotte, NC. I have run in that location many years ago, when Jeff McConnell directed “Are We Having Fun Yet 50k?” on the more technical single-track trails of the park and neighboring reserves.

Rockin’ Relay was not technical or single track. It was all dirt and gravel and had a good share of ups and downs during it’s 1.3 mile loop. Easy for the first few miles and for me, becoming more fierce on tired legs as I continued to concluded 20 loops to complete the marathon.

Mentally I was in a better place than last week. I had fun! It was fun to see the dynamics of other teams, watch folks fishing and especially be introduced to the disc golf culture that was prolific that day at the park. I also really enjoyed a group of 12 fun African American women who divided their group into 3 teams of four. All teams were dressed alike with differences being the color of their top hats and bowties to announce their team. All wore tutu’s grand smiles. My day was made as a couple team members agreed to have a photo with me after I finished.

A second highlight of the day was during laps 8-10 when 31-year old  (at least I think that’s the age he shared-forgive me Rick if I am wrong) Richard, one of the owners of Trivium Racing, graciously shared a few loops with me. He is a life-filled person, a runner and triathete who shared some personal experiences and who has tons of passion for endurance sports. He is a great listener and a joy to be a trail partner. (Also, I must say, although we solo runners were in the minority, all the Trivium team went out of their way to be sure we all had what we needed). Thank you soo much.
Richard ("Rick) taking a break from his busy day to have a photo with me after finishing.
This was a more challenging course than last week’s Northern Trails Marathon.I finished almost 5 minutes later in 4:09:31
I wore my Soleus for both and came up with this similar data for 2 different courses.  (I know GPS units are not all that accurate in certain settings, thus, I am not trying to look too deeply at all this, yet it will be interesting to compare to this coming weekend...)

Northern Trails
Rockin’ Relay
Moving time
Pace per mile
Measured mileage
Chip time

Yesterday I learned I am off the wait list  and on the “Who’s Coming?”for the Virginia Creeper Marathon this coming Sunday. This is one of my favorite local runs, just about as low-key as they get. Our weather calls for light snow Saturday night and Sunday morning, I plan to attend if I can safely drive there leaving at 5:30am Sunday morning...

I am running more, yet not what I call TRAINING, (yet). It's awesome to run stress-free, yet I must admit, I am kinda getting the hankering to work hard again. I don't want running to turn back into a responsibility, yet I do love the physical and mental (and emotional) limit seeking of personal improvement and reaching goals. 

As we all are, I am a "work in progress" and as I move back towards ultras, want more than anything to find a balance between running, work and family that is way more balanced that it was before I was injured. I am willing to move slowly as I have gladly digested, that I am more than my running. Three years ago, I couldn't separate other parts of myself and life from running. I am doing better in that way now (Yay!) yet, I think it's getting to be time to trust myself and my experiences and see how ultrarunning can once again be a PART of a healthy and good life...

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