Saturday, May 9, 2015

Wolfpack Mother's Day Run

I love Wolfpack Events. The races are so close to home, small and inexpensive. The Mother's Day race is especially nice because they give all the mom's a gift. I received a cute mug and flower at the end of the race. 

This course is always difficult as about one mile in you hit fire road which starts as ground up pavement then turns into dirt trail heading up hill. Two years ago when I did this race I remember following a gentleman with a US Coast Guard shirt on. In the last mile of the race he ended up pulling away from me. We chatted post race and we both placed in our age groups. 

Fast forward to today and I see him at the start line! We chat for a couple of minutes and I have a feeling I won't be able to pace behind him for too long. I also met another SunRype Ambassador right before the start. The field was small for the 5k, only 66 runners. I probably took the first mile too fast, but I was trying to get in some good speed before I hit the fire road and the tedious uphill to the turn-around. 

Once the the lead 5k runners came back down the hill, I started counting. My fellow ambassador was the second place woman and my friend Paul was also doing well. As I hit the turn-around I realized I was the sixth place woman. I tried hard to hold onto a pace but I was getting more and more tired. I kept looking behind me to make sure I wasn't going to get passed. The only people passing me were the top three runners from the five mile course, man were they flying! I made the mistake of seeing a shed that I thought was the one close to the finish line, only to realize I was not that close to the finish line. This caused me to lose some steam. I pretty much wanted to die, but my Garmin assured me I was not going to die. 

Finally, the finish line was in site and several people cheered me in, which was super nice at such a small race. Glad to be done and to see that I had placed 2nd in my age group. Then I realized next year I will be considered a "master" runner at this race once I turn 40! This is a frightening thought, I don't feel that old!!!! 

Next up is the Catfish 1.2 mile swim.
Second place

My buddy Paul

Monday, May 4, 2015

Moraga Tri

Each year I have dropped a leg of this triathlon, which I have decided is awesome. The first year I did the entire tri myself, and hated almost every minute of it. Last year I did the swim and run and enjoyed it much more. This year I did the swim only and had the best time ever! You can't complain when your leg of the race is a 400 meter swim and your done in under 10 minutes.

Going into the race I wasn't feeling spectacular about my swim. I had been swimming but probably not as much as I could have and my swims didn't seem to be any faster than the previous year. Then on the Wednesday before the race I went to the pool to do an easy last swim. I decided to time my 400 yard warm-up to give me an idea of where I might be at. That means it wasn't really a warm up, I just went 400 all out. I nearly cheered out loud when I saw my time - 7:57. For all of my swimming friends this is slow, but for me, this was my fastest 400 EVER. My next best time had been 8:15 which I swam last year before the Moraga Tri, and never got anywhere close to that time again.

This really inspired me going into the race. Granted, I was swimming 400 meters long course not 400 yards short course, I knew that if I could hold a pace close to what I did that day, I would swim faster than the previous year.

Race morning came and we had two adults and one child racing. Which meant lots of coordinating and packing. It had rained most of the night and morning which presented some concerns for the bike course, but since I only had to swim I just focused on 400 meters in the water.

My game face
I had been seeded a little earlier than last year even though I used the same swim time to register. I handed my parka to the kids and gave them hugs and hopped in for my swim. I did my best to keep good form with long arms. The gentleman behind me passed me on lap two but I slowly started picking off people in front of me. It felt really good to pass five people as I traversed the eight 50 meter lanes. On my last lap I focused on kicking fast to try and get the blood flow moving back up through my body to ready myself to climb out of the pool and run across the timing mat  into transition. I had to wait for one gentleman to climb out of the pool ahead of me but I finished my swim in 9:06, and crossed the timing mat at 9:35. This earned me a :23 second PR from last year.

I sprinted into transition and placed the timing chip on Scott's ankle and sent him out on his 14 mile bike ride. At that point I basically tried to not throw up all over my children. I was able to get changed into warm clothes and back to transition to watch Scott hand off to our friend Eric before I had to get Kylie up the pool deck for her pre-race instructions. At this point I switched over from athlete to Tri Mom.

Scott with the fastest bike time of all the relay teams
Eric running a crazy fast 5k
Team Yox/Benson
Right as Kylie was lined up to start her swim, Eric, Scott and Sydney came down from the track. Eric had a really great run, but we didn't know his or our total time. Kylie raced like a champ. This little girl is so tough, I love it! She swam hard for 50 meters (her first time swimming long course!), biked hard through the hallways of the high school and proceeded to run like I have never seen her run before. She ran past one of the race director's who said "I love her smile!". That's my Smiley Kylie, having fun the entire time.
Smiley Kylie Swimming Happy

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Proud finisher

Kylie placed 3rd in her AG and was 10th OA. She immediately asked when she could do it again.

As it turns out our relay team placed third! Scott has the fastest bike of all the relay teams, so I'm super proud of him and our entire team!

Thanks to for outfitting the entire family on race day! This year I made sure Scott represented as well!

Next up is a fun Mother's Day 5k this weekend.