Saturday, March 22, 2014

#ShamrockOn bird invasion

Last weekend was big. BIG. It was a crazy whirlwind of everything Oiselle and everything running. My favorites!

Friday: Awesome road trip with my NC running besties Allie, Ellen, and Carolyn! Seriously, these ladies are hilarious and fabulous! We hit up the expo and met up with Nicole, who was brave enough to participate in our photo shenanigans (see Ellen's pic stitch here). Later we ate a delicious meal at Baladi--some of the best vegetarian food I've had in a long time!

Saturday: As most running vacations, our alarms went off real early.  Time to catch a beautiful sunrise and cheer on all the 8k racers! The women's 8k field was super deep, and a bunch of Oiselle fasties kicked butt! The rest of us dashed around the course as much as possible to cheer and snap photos with our fab team manager, Kristin.

Our group dinner that night was SUPER fun (Thank you Mollie for organizing!)! I tried to soak up pro tips from Heidi, Aubrey, and Kelsey, who are all crazy fast and inspiring. It was also great to see one of my original running buddies, Phyllis! Post-dinner gelato with Danielle, Amelia, my NC crew, and KMet was the perfect way to end the day.

8k cheering squad! Thank you Ashley for the awesome photo!
The whole crew! Photo credit: someone at dinner...
 Sunday: RACE DAY! Ellen and I *barely* made it to the start in time...meaning we both peed behind bushes during the national anthem after a frantic bag-drop. Hellooooo pre-race panic! But we made it to the start in time to find Lisa, Stephanie and Hollie, phew! I was SO thankful to have Lisa out there to run with for the first 5 miles--seriously a huge help! The course was quite lovely, and I tried to enjoy the forested area as we cruised along.

Splits 1-5:

After 5 miles, she pulled ahead and I ran solo for the rest of the race. At mile 5.5, the unpleasant reality of headwind re-entered the picture, and also when we ran through the military base. The various bugle calls broadcast over the load speaker, like this one and this one, definitely helped keep my mind off the fact that the wind was pretty strong. I took my Vanilla Gu and started to feel more perky despite the headwind.

Splits 6-10:
6:54 (distracted by a water stop, missed the actual split)

By mile 10, I knew it was time to get uncomfortable and drop some serious negative splits because....well because that's always my race strategy. Luckily there were a decent number of people around me and ahead of me to 'roadkill', which made it easier to maintain a faster pace. AND, there was a big ole' Oiselle cheering squad with a half mile to go that pushed me through to the end despite some wheezy/moaning sounds I was beginning to make!

Splits 11-13:

Overall time: 1:26:00--PR!

If you read my last post, then you know this was a big surprise. But I HARD rested the week leading up to the race in an effort to revive my legs. Ice bath, massage, very little running, a ton of foam rolling/stick torture, and some good old fashioned race visualization/planning. That plus a hearty dose of adrenaline got me through race day feeling good! Success!

Mile 12.5 ish Photo credit: Andrew
Mile form. Somone help me. photo credit: Drew
Post race with Hollie and Lisa    

Smiles all around from these NC gals! Photo credit: KMet
What a great weekend!

Overall I would highly recommend this race--it was well organized, pancake flat, great post-race entertainment/food/drinks, and even some good swag including a beach towel!

Since I'm on the brink of breaking 1:26...I'm already plotting a fall half marathon. Any fast, flat suggestions?!

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