Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Jingle Bell Run 5K: The Aftermath

I apologize for the delay of this post.  Regardless, on Saturday, I ran the Jingle Bell Run 5K in Roanoke, VA.  The weather was absolutely perfect for running in my opinion.  The race was scheduled to start at 9 AM and it was just a bit chilly.  There were SO MANY PARTICIPANTS.  I could not believe the crowd!  Of all the races I have run locally, this seemed like the largest crowd I have ever seen.  That is wonderful, considering this race benefited the Arthritis Foundation.  The run was kind of disorganized, though.  I was very disappointed in that.  The start time as I mentioned above was 9 AM.  However, it didn't start until 9:15.  Then, at the first turn of the course, I freaked out.  I saw the hill.  The exact hill from a previous 5K.  It is a terrible, horrible, no good hill that is EVIL.  After I got to the top of the hill, I knew a downhill was coming so I relaxed.  BUT WAIT.  At the other 5K that took that course, we turned after the hill to a flat segment.  Not for this race.  For this race, we kept going straight.  Straight into another hill.  Identical to the one before it.  Then I tackled that hill, and ran around the block, only to meet these same two hills yet again.  It was a loop.  Of course.  So in total, I ran 4 terrible, awful, no good hills.  Blech.  Anyway, I finished in an acceptable 33:39.  Considering I have not been running regularly, and the four hills of doom tried to kill me, I feel like I did pretty well.  Sorry my picture is a blur, but I was running too fast.  Haaaah.  Also, Mr. Marathon and I took our first run together for the month, and we ended up running a little over 2 miles in a little over 21 minutes.  Not too shabby!  Hopefully, we have some more training runs coming up.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Jingle Bell 5K

So, I decided that I wanted to do the 5K that is this weekend.  Kinda last minute, I know.  But anyway, this race benefits the Arthritis Foundation.  I have never run a race for a charity like this, but it's really cool how the fundraising page works!  I have never gotten to raise funds for a race before.... How it works is I have my own little profile, and anybody can just click GIVE NOW and make a donation.  Simple!  Also, you can leave little comments on my personal page through Facebook!  Totally awesome.  So anyway, if you would like to stop by my profile, HERE is the link!

So please please please check it out, and leave a comment for me while you're at it!  Maybe give a little if you're feeling generous. ;)

Until next time,
Mrs. Marathon

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Cold Weather + Short Days = Boo

Well, it's that time of year again.  Holiday madness begins, the weather turns colder, sunlight is more and more scarce..... All of these things have one thing in common: they are NO GOOD for runners (well maybe not all runners... but Mr. Marathon and I don't like it).  Our training is taking a hiatus of sorts as we recover from all of our running in the past few months, and as we now regroup and rethink our training schedules for our upcoming goals.  The fact that Mr. Marathon has been getting out of work so late recently and that I have been working so hard finishing up my semester have also put a kink in our running.  By the time we both get home and ready to run, it's dark.  And not only is it dark, but it's cold.  Yuck.  Now, we're not trying to make excuses.  But we definitely need a new plan of attack for the holiday season.  I will be finishing with all my school stuff which will leave me with plenty of free time (until I find a job, anyway!) which in return will leave me with plenty of running time!  YAY!  But Mr. Marathon is still in a bind.  Any daylight he sees, he's either heading in to work or stepping outside on a quick break.  But hopefully he will be able to take advantage of some valuable running time in the next couple of months before his races start back up.

Oh, and we almost forgot.  Not really; we were trying to avoid it on purpose.  Anyway, there's no avoiding it any longer.... let's take a peak at last month's mileage numbers.  Yikes.  Fortunately we didn't set any goals....
Mrs. Marathon: 27.27 miles
Mr. Marathon 54.5 miles

Shameful, we know.  But no excuses.  We slacked off and took our little break, but seeing as my half-marathon is quickly approaching (81 days!) I need to kick it into gear.  I have two 5K's coming up that I would like to do, so maybe that'll give me the kick in the rear that I need.  And Mr. Marathon has the Martinsville Half Marathon (but so does Mrs. Marathon.... maybe....) in March that he has high expectations set for (1:29:59 or faster... he can do it!).  And he also has his fourth annual Blue Ridge Marathon (America's Toughest Road Marathon!) in April 2013 (goal: 3:59:59 or faster).

So for the month of December I have a few goals set.  Like I mentioned, I have two 5K's that I would like to try and run, and I also want to try to take a couple of good, long runs (10+ miles) to help me prepare to go the distance at Disney.  These goals are all weather-permitting, however.  So we'll see how it goes.  Hopefully we'll work out a better training plan, as well.  And hopefully we'll remember to post how things are going!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Anthem Richmond Marathon and HCA VA 8K

This past weekend, Mr. Marathon and I ventured all the way to the big city of Richmond, VA, from our little rinky-dink town of Bassett for AMERICA'S FRIENDLIEST MARATHON (or so they say...).  The journey was about 4 hours, and once we got there, there was an extremely impressive packet pick-up/expo with tons of vendors. There were more people in that convention center than we have total in Bassett, I'm pretty sure.  Despite the large crowds, we enjoyed the hustle and bustle and the hype that surrounded this massive event.  We were both thrilled to run our respective races (Mr. Marathon was running the full marathon, and I was running the 8K).

We headed on to our hotel to rest up for the next day's racing festivities, which for me, would begin at 7 AM (meaning, we had to get up at 5:30.  omg.)  We made it out the door and then to downtown Richmond in good time on Saturday morning.  We found our way slowly but surely to the designated starting areas.  The corrals and waves for each race were very impressively organized.  Almost TOO organized...  Regardless, I found my way to my corral for the 8K just as the race was beginning.  The 8K took off first thing, when it was only 35 degrees!!  Perfect for me!  Except for the fact that I still had my little cold.  But I'm over that now.  

Anyway, Mr. Marathon watched me depart, and then he stuck around to watch the half-marathon begin at 7:30, while waiting for his race to start.  After attempting to stretch (he managed to touch his toes once or twice while shivering), he was ready to get this marathon on the road!  Get it?  It was a road race.  HAH.  Moving on..... Mr. Marathon got going, despite feeling a little disconnected from the whole race experience.  He managed to get a nice starting pace going at the beginning.  After a few miles, he felt that his shoes were tied a little too tightly.  But there was no stopping him by that point.  No way, no how!  He kept on trucking through his discomfort and maintained a good pace until mile 18.  That's when the shoes finally cut off circulation from his head to his toes (maybe he's being a little bit dramatic in his recollection....).  But he kept going, although he was slowing down.  He continued to feel more and more disconnected from the race.  He did not feel as though he was a part of it, even though in reality, he was definitely running it.  All 26.2 miles of it!  He did the best that he could, but in the end, the Richmond Marathon beat Mr. Marathon.  And the moral of this race for him is that you can't over-train for a race.  He felt like he did not train nearly enough for this race, but in his mind, like it always has been and is always going to be, he can take any challenge, any time, any day (even the cold ones).  He knew he could finish it no matter what, but at his time of 3:43:54, he feels like he could have done much better with proper training and preparation.  And that's what he plans to show on his next marathon post.  So stay tuned and wish him luck!!

The Richmond races were our last scheduled races for the month of November, but we will keep you posted on all of our upcoming training and any races we might decide to do (there are 2 in December we are considering!).  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Another Milestone.... Well, a 9.3-milestone!

Mrs. Marathon here.  Yesterday, I conquered my farthest distance so far, with the help of Mr. Marathon.  Now, I hate making excuses, which is why I refused to do so yesterday.  I had heard about the Race the Bar 15K like a month ago and I was determined to do it.  I had to!  It's great training for my half marathon and plus, I needed a new challenge!  I signed up for it earlier this week, then of course, I had to get sick.  Mr. Marathon and I are good at getting sick right before a big race, aren't we?

Anyway, yesterday got off to a stressful start anyway, then I made it worse by assuming where the race was.  I knew it was in Winston-Salem, NC, which is a little over an hour away.  I finally looked it up about an hour and half before race time to find out that it was going to be an hour and 20 minutes away.  Ohmygosh.  I began rushing around freaking out, we finally hit the road and made it with five minutes to spare.  We pulled up to the location and slowly realized that we were in the wrong place.  OHMYGOSHH.  I looked it up, and there were two addresses listed for the brewery where it said it would be held... obviously the race was being held at the other location.  We hurried back to the car, left the parking meter that we had just paid for and made our way to the correct (we hoped so, anyway) location.  Roads were already blocked off, it was 10 minutes after the beginning of the race, a friendly cop lets us through since we had already registered and we parked and ran for the packet pickup (that was our warm up).  We saw that people were still lined up at the start... there is still hope, we thought to ourselves!

Turns out, the 5K had not yet started so the start line was still assembled.  It was chip timing so we could still start!  After freaking out and boohoo crying for 20 minutes, I pulled it together to run my first 15K and my longest distance to date: 9.3 miles.  Oh. My. Gosh.   I was so proud when I finished at 1:54:01.  We were the last ones to finish since we had started late, but turns out there were people who finished "after" us technically according to chip time.  So we weren't the slowest!  Mr. Marathon was so sweet and he ran with me the entire time, even though he could have finished in like an hour quicker without me.  I needed the support yesterday.  Everything was working against me.  Either way, we both placed first in our age groups because we were the only ones.  I am just proud I finished, but I definitely hope to do better in the future.

Here are a couple of pictures taken during awards yesterday.  They were totally candid, sorry.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Who is Mr. Marathon?

Hello!  Mr. Marathon here.  Since it's the 1st of November, I figured I'd go ahead and give you an introduction of who I truly am.  First of all, my name is Alfredo.  And sorry I'm not Italian, nor do I come in a jar or a packet or on top of pasta.  I was born March 26, 1990, which means I am 22 years old currently for those of you (like Mrs. Marathon) who are bad at math.  I am a Mexican-American (born in Mexico, raised in America).  I am fluent in Spanish, as well as English.  I graduated from Bassett High School with an Advanced Diploma in 2009, which means I'm a little smart.... maybe.  While in high school, I was active in many extracurricular activities due to my JROTC experience.  It made me open my eyes and realize that if I have an opportunity in something, I have to take it, whether that meant extra classes, sports, clubs, or just going the extra mile in whatever I do (see what I did there?  mile?  running? hah.).  I was in JROTC for all four years of high school and my senior year, I achieved the highest rank and honors: Cadet Colonel, as the Bassett High School JROTC Battalion Commader.  One of my biggest goals is to join the United States Air Force, but until then, I am currently a full-time employee at Packaging Products, Incorporated, in Bassett, VA.  I also play soccer religiously (because I play every Sunday morning... another pun!), but I do attend church when I can at First United Methodist Church in Martinsville.  I try to be very involved in church with a pre-youth group, as well as our monthly Food Bank, and any other activities going on at the church.

In addition to all this other stuff, I like to run occasionally too.  Hence, this blog.  Running is my main hobby, and I have achieved some of my greatest accomplishments in this sport.  I ran cross-country, indoor track, and track while in high school (but I did do practically all other sports as well, including football, wrestling, swimming, soccer, JROTC drill team, JROTC rifle team, and JROTC Raiders).  But none of these sports would be possible without the help of a JROTC instructor, Lieutenant Colonel Guy Mellow.  He not only showed me how to control my breathing while running, but he also helped me with my running technique, which I still use every single time I run (training as well as racing).  Currently I have run three marathons, two half marathons, one ultra-marathon, and many other 5Ks and 10Ks.

As I have mentioned in previous posts, my current running goal is to qualify for the Boston Marathon.  If for some reason I cannot qualify this year, I will definitely keep trying.  I will plan ahead of time to sign up for more qualifiers.  All I can say is that if I am not running with my wife to support her, I am giving it my all.  I try to race against myself at every race.  That way, I can strive for a personal best each time I run.  My running motto is "Give it your all, because the race doesn't last forever."  So no matter what I'm doing, running or anything else, this is my mind-set.

I hope this gives you a little insight about the real Mr. Marathon.  Til next time, guys.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Tomorrow is November???

October is (almost) officially over, and November is upon us.  Here are our totals for the month of October:
Mrs. Marathon: 60.309 miles, which means that I just barely met my 60 mile goal.
Mr. Marathon: 102.15 miles, which is TOTALLY AWESOME considering the many obstacles that led to him taking 14 rest days throughout the month for various reasons (cold weather, rain, darkness, sickness, sore knees, sore ankles, a Nascar race, cramps, etc.)

We are both very happy with our total mileage for the month, and for next month, we have decided that we are not going to set mileage goals.  Now that it is getting colder and the days are becoming shorter, we have to run whenever we can for however long we can.  We have some big races coming up so whatever training we can get is very important at this point.  In November, we are running our first 15K on the 3rd (this Saturday!!), and we are also traveling to Richmond, VA, on the 10th for Mr. Marathon's marathon and my 8K.  There are a couple of others that we might consider, weather permitting (Mr. Marathon doesn't like the cold!).

Also, we have recently made race bib holders to show off all of our bibs, instead of just shoving them in a folder or throwing them away.  This way, we can cherish our successes and stay motivated for our future successes!  Oh, and Happy Halloweeeeen!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Goblin Gallop 5K

Today Mr. Marathon and I participated in the Goblin Gallop 5K in Martinsville, VA, which we ran for the second time.  Last October, I ran in this race as my first 5K ever.  So today is kind of my run-iversary!

But before we get into that, there is one major triumph that I must share.  On Wednesday of this past week, I finally increased my mileage.  I had been running 6 miles as most of my long runs, and then last week, we did a 7-miler.  But this past week, I knew I had to up the distance.  Mr. Marathon and I decided on an 8-mile run.  But once we got to running, we passed the 4 mile marker, which was where we were going to turn around.  Then I bravely decided that we were going ALL THE WAY.  We ran to the 4.5 mile marker on the Dick and Willie trail (which is the end of the trail!) and then headed back.  So I ran 9 miles!!!!  It took me an hour and 44 minutes, but I did it!!!!!  I knew I had to try before I even consider a 15K (there's one next week.... eek!).  Either way, I am getting even closer to being able to run 13.1 miles.

And now, back to our regularly scheduled blogging.  Today was the Goblin Gallop.  We ran and finished in good time.  Mr. Marathon placed 3rd overall (1st in his age group obviously... also he was the only one in his age group) at around 19 minutes and 40ish seconds.  I finished at a time of 29:30 (which is a whole 10 minutes faster than my time last year!  I have improved!!!) and that put me at finishing 1st in my age group!  And I beat at least two other people! YAY!  Until next time...

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Apple Dumpling Festival 5K

Mr. Marathon and I had a bunch of fall fun yesterday!  We got to run in the Apple Dumpling Festival 5K in Stuart, VA.  It was a fun little race, with an awesome festival right after.  It was perfect weather for a run yesterday for me, so I loved every minute of it!  Mr. Marathon, on the other hand, was about to freeze.  I finished at an acceptable time of 30:21, which landed me at third place in the 20-29 age group.  And I actually beat three other people!  I am moving on up!  Mr. Marathon finished in 19:49, so he finished second overall!  To top it all off, the awards were (fake) apples (you see me modeling our prizes in the photo... the larger one is obviously Mr. Marathon's but he let me hold it).  We had a great time yesterday, and of course we ate some apple dumplings at the festival (which are like little apple pie kind of things... delicious!!!!!) and bought some jellies and then headed to the Go Outside Festival in Roanoke, VA, after driving through the Blue Ridge Parkway to see some scenic fall foliage.

And now, our monthly update:
Mrs. Marathon: 35.209 out of 60 miles
Mr. Marathon: 69.54 out of 150 miles

We have a lot of running to do in order to meet our goals for the month in the next 10 days!!!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

No More Mr. Marathon....

...because I am now Mr. ULTRAAAAAAAAAAAA MARATHON!  Yesterday I ran my very first ultra-marathon (50K).  We made a friend about a month ago at a 5K who had told me about this race, who was also going to run it.  Of course, I had to do it, too!  So, my chauffeur, Mrs. Marathon, drove me all the way to Fries, VA, which is two hours away, yesterday at 5:15 AM.  We arrived at the New River Trail State Park at about 7:15 AM before the sun even came up!  Luckily, I love the cold weather.  Not.  35 degrees is a little bit chilly for me... as in FREEZING.  Upon our arrival, this was the actual temperature.  I am NOT exaggerating.  Anyway, when we got there, I picked up my packet and prepared for the biggest challenge of my running career thus far.  I was well prepared for the weather conditions, though.  I stayed plenty warm and plenty comfortable, unlike some other runners wearing tank tops and shorts.  I was wearing a pull-over, running tights, and a beanie.  And everything I was wearing was thermal and intended to keep me warm!  Once the race had begun, it was a little difficult for me to set a pace so I had to start off slow.  I am not used to running on a trail, since all of my races and training occur on paved ground.  Once I found my trail-running groove, I ran at a good pace and I was feeling good.  Except for the fact that one of my ankles had started to hurt a little bit.  Regardless, I kept on running, and I ran all the way to the turnaround point (about 15 miles in), where I found my beautiful wifey  (A.K.A. my personal photographer) waiting there for me!  Then I got confused and kept running instead of turning around.  I got myself all turned around the right way to head back for the second half of the race.  I kept going strong until around the 20-mile marker.  Between cramps on my stomach and thighs, my right knee giving out, and both of my ankles and the tops of my feet hurting, I was struggling.  However, the course was beautiful, so I had plenty of scenery to admire, which was a nice (and welcome) distraction, despite my internal pain and suffering.  I was tired and hurting, but my body was still going.  Finally my feet were not allowing me to run anymore, but I was not going to stop.  I had to power-walk because I was not about to stop moving after all the hard work that I had just invested into this race.  Every second I felt like I could run, I would not hesitate to do so.  I finally got to the marathon split (at 3 hours and 45 minutes), and after that, my lower body was DONE.  I could not have asked for a better trail to run on because it was nice and flat, but it was still a trail, with loose rocks and gravel.  The rocks weren't big, but they sure were a big obstacle for my feet.  I had to continue to power-walk and run when I was able for the last stretch.  I absolutely hate walking because once I get a taste, I just want to keep on doing it.  Anyway, I eventually made it to the finish line in about 4 hours and 45 minutes.  I am very glad that I managed to finish the race and earn the title of ultra-marathoner!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Victory! Triumph! Chocolate Chip Bagels!

Yesterday was a day to remember for me.  I, Mrs. Marathon, had the most successful race to date.  I ran the Star City Women's 5K in Roanoke, Virginia.  Let me just say, this race was super friendly and super organized.  It was beautiful weather and a marvelous course to run on (it ended on a long, steady downhill!). A couple of weeks ago, I had run 3 miles in 28 minutes 59 seconds.  This 5K was my moment of truth:  Could I really do 3.1 miles in under 30 minutes in an actual race?  The answer: YES I CAN.  I finished in 29:14!!!!!!!  I was so stoked that I managed to finish in my goal time.  Not only did I meet my goal, but I also got a medal and a flower at the finish line (I broke the flower in all my excitement, but they gave me another one... see why I say they were super friendly?!?).  And that's not all!!  I also took second place in the 18-22 age group!  SO I GOT A TROPHY!  My first running trophy EVER!!!!!!!  YAY!!!  Oh, and to top it all off:  among the healthy post-race snacks like bananas, apples, peanut butter, and grapes, I saw some bagels.  I love bagels, but not the plain ones.  They are boring.  So I grabbed what I thought was a cinnamon raisin bagel.  I was so pleasantly surprised to discover that what I thought were raisins were actually CHUNKS OF CHOCOLATE.  I have a terrible sweet tooth, so needless to say, I was ecstatic.

As for my mileage for the month, I am currently at 10.1 miles for the month of October, so I have to keep it up to meet my 60 mile goal!  As for Mr. Marathon, he is preparing for his 50K this upcoming Saturday (10-13).  Wish him luck!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

See ya, September! Hello, October!

Well, September is pretty much over, and October starts tomorrow.  September has been quite a month for Mr. Marathon and me.  We ran in three races, met some goals, missed some goals, had to go to the doctor and the hospital, got sick, skipped some training days, overdid it on other training days, but ultimately, we are happy with our progress throughout the month.  Here are our final numbers for the month:

Mr. Marathon: 105.6 miles!!!!!!!!!!!!! He has met and surpassed his 100 mile goal for the month of September, despite his many, many setbacks.  WHOOO HOOOOOO!!!!!  And for the record, he is still sick.  But that ain't stoppin' him, no way, no how!
Mrs. Marathon: 57.75 miles!!  I have met and surpassed my goal of 48 miles for the month.  I didn't have quite as difficult of a month as Mr. Marathon luckily, so I am very pleased with my mileage.

Also, I have had a couple of other great successes just this past week.  I managed to run one mile in 8 minutes, 37 seconds, which is AWESOME.  I set a goal over the summer to run a mile in under 9 minutes which I finally achieved.  In that same run, I managed to complete 3 miles in 28 minutes and 59 seconds, which beats my goal that I had set a while back for running 3 miles in under 30 minutes to hopefully get my 5k time under 30 minutes.  It feels great to set and achieve goals, even if it is a bit delayed.

Mr. Marathon had a personal best on Monday when he ran 11 miles, which was the farthest he'd ever run on a training run.  Yes, it sounds silly because he is a marathon runner, but he believes that as long as he is consistent with his mileage, his endurance will keep improving.  Then yesterday, he had a new personal best when he tackled a 16 mile training run.  He is well on his way to rocking that ultra marathon that is in less than two weeks!

As for October, we have set new goals:  Mr. Marathon would like to run 150 miles, and I would like to run 60 miles.  Hopefully we can continue improving in our training!  Wish us luck!

(For your viewing pleasure, we have included the triumphant photo of me and Mr. Marathon from my first 10K.  We thought it encompassed all the feelings of victory that we have felt this month.  And yes, we are aware of how silly we look.  And don't worry, you will get used to it.)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Race The Bar 10K

Yesterday Mr. Marathon and I ran the Race the Bar 10K in Greensboro, NC. It was ridiculously and unexpectedly HOT HOT HOT! It has been low 70's for the past few weeks, so it was beautiful running weather.  However, yesterday, it was like 85 degrees! It didn't help that the race started at 3 pm either, so it was right around the heat of the day. Regardless, we did it! Mr. Marathon placed first in the 20-24 year old age group with a time of 46:26, despite him being sick for the past week. I am just glad that I finished the race. My time of 1:14:33 has given me a wakeup call that I need to do some serious speed training and hill training, although I HATE hills. Like, with a passion (see the post from the Patrick County 5K). However, according to the official results, I came in fourth out of six people in my age group!  YAY!  I am (almost) a threat to 20-24-year-old female runners everywhere!  WATCH OUT Y'ALL.

As for my mileage, I am doing exceptionally well at 38.05 miles for the month with only 9.95 to go (but I think I'll just round that to 10 miles even).   Mr. Marathon has completed 55.25 miles so he still has 44.75 miles left, but he can do that no problem.  He just has to run a little over 6 miles every day until the end of the month.  He is feeling better... no chest pain, and his cold is clearing up.  He's had it so rough for the past month, but he is sticking with it.  I am so proud that he has not just given up, and he has run all the races he has signed up to do, despite all the setbacks.  (Mr. Marathon apologizes for his "wimpy-ness" so far... he says he is not usually like this and he will impress you all soon!  or he hopes).  So, he should be able to smash his 100 mile goal to the ground!  We are trying to stay motivated for our upcoming races: I have three 5K races in October that I would like to run, and Mr. Marathon has his Ultra Marathon coming up in less than a month!  Stay tuned! :)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Harvest Moon 10K

This past week was a doozy.  We were both thrown for a loop all last week.  I don't have much of an excuse, considering that nothing out of the ordinary really happened to me.  I was just really stressed and really busy and really worried about my hubbs.  Why was I so worried?  He was having sharp chest pains all day on Tuesday, so we headed to the urgent care center where they did a chest x-ray on him.  In his x-ray, the doctors found some potential concerns, so the doctor sent off the x-ray to a radiologist, who was concerned about a PNEUMOTHORAX (in plain English, a collapsed lung).  So, of course, they called him back in for another x-ray to verify that they saw what they think they saw.  They were still worried after the second x-ray, so on Friday, he had to go to the hospital for a C. T. scan.  After multiple visits to doctors and long hours spent in the waiting, we came to find out that his health is IN PERFECT CONDITION.  Not a thing wrong with him.  Ironic?  Yes. Annoying?  Absolutely.  A huge relief?  You bet.  So that same Friday night, we proceeded to run the 10K that we signed up for earlier that week- the DAY BEFORE all of this happened.

The Harvest Moon 10K was a night run on the Dick and Willie Passage in Martinsville, VA.  We run that trail a lot so we thought it would be a good run for us.  It was a beautiful night for the race, and there was a great turnout.  However, we both encountered some struggles along the way, considering we had not run all week!  Mr. Marathon got a side cramp around mile 1.  Seriously.  But he pushed through and finished strong at a time of 44:58, which put him at second place in his age group!  I did not meet my personal goal for this race, but I feel like I did the best that I could considering that I had not run 6 miles in like two months.  I had intended to take a couple 6 mile runs last week, but due to the unforeseen circumstances in the above paragraph, that obviously did not happen.  So, major changes will be occurring in the near future.  Stay tuned!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Weekly Update!

We did lots of running this past week.  After a few shorter runs, we both decided to run in the Patrick County Partnership for the Arts 5k in Stuart, Virginia.  It was only a 5k, but it was a beast of a course.  Well, not really.  But it was really hard.  The hills were a little intense, even for Mr. Marathon, who runs the marathon on the Blue Ridge Parkway!  Then again, he was sore from a 3.2 mile run yesterday.   His fault!  He finished today's 5k in 20 minutes and some change.  He came in 2nd overall!  That just goes to show how tough the course is, considering his time is usually well under 20 minutes.  I finished in 33 minutes and (about) 30 seconds (the official times have not been posted just yet!).  I was happy with this time, considering that I HATE HILLS.  HATE 'EM.  I would rather run in pouring down rain.  Or a tornado.  Or a heat wave.  But hills?  Ew.  Aside from the hilly course, the race was great.  Beautiful weather, nice course, friendly folks.

Now for the mileage update for this month: Mr. Marathon has completed 27.3 miles so far in the month of September.  Only 72.7 miles to go!  Mrs. Marathon: 12.6.  I have some serious running to do, since I have just now set a goal to run 48 miles this month.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Celebrating Labor Day!

Now we are back on track!  Today is Labor Day and we celebrated by not going to the pool, but going hiking instead.  We went to Hanging Rock State Park in North Carolina, which is only about an hour away.  There were plenty of trails to choose from, so we picked three trails that we wanted to hike: one trail that led to two waterfalls, another that led to a single waterfall, and the main trail that led to Hanging Rock Ridge.  The waterfalls were nice and the trails were very tiring but wonderful and despite the severe fog, we had a blast!  We were pretty worn out after 7 hours of hiking, picnicking, photo shoots, and driving.  Needless to say, we were very glad to get home.  After a brief intermission (aka a nap and grocery shopping), we ran out of sunlight, but Mr. Marathon desperately wanted to run.  Even if it only meant one mile.  And that it was.  It was dark and drizzly (we didn't want to take any chances after yesterday's run!), so we decided to do one mile... together... just in case.  That way, he can stay on track to meet his September mileage goal.  One mile is better than no miles, after all!

And now, after some additional calisthenics when we got back home, we are pooped.  I, Mrs. Marathon, start student-teaching tomorrow so I need my beauty sleep.  After all, I am a Disney Princess!  Or I will be soon, anyway.

Time to turn out the lights on Labor Day Weekend.  Til next time!

Sunday, September 2

So, we really wanted to post yesterday about all of our adventures but by the time we actually got home and dried off, we hit the hay!  Here's what happened:  we enjoyed a nice, leisurely Sunday.  You know, church, lunch, being lazy.  Then we decided to go kayaking at Philpott Lake, which was wonderful, yet tiring.  While kayaking, we also got to see a black bear swimming laps.  Just kidding, he just swam across the lake and ran into the woods.  Which is still impressive because he was just a little tiny cub!  That was the first bear either of us had seen in the wild ever!

And now, back to the running part of this blog.  After our relaxing Sunday, we had a little encounter with Leslie.  Tropical Storm Leslie, that is.  We both really wanted to run so when we got home from kayaking we changed into our running attire and headed outside to stretch.  We looked up at the sky and saw big, ominous, gray, scary, terrifying, threatening clouds.  Did that stop us?  Nah.  Should it have stopped us?  Abso-freaking-lutely.  Anyway, we took off our separate ways, and we were both enjoying the nice breezy weather.  Then it happened.  I, Mrs. Marathon, decided to turn around, cutting my route short, and right behind me was Leslie.  There was rain pouring down.  Literally right behind me.  Right where I needed to run to get home.  I had no choice, so I took off and kept running.  Right into the storm (yes, there was plenty of thunder and lightning too).  I knew that Mr. Marathon was aiming for his usual 6-mile loop, so I knew that I was closer to home.  I had no other option but to keep on running.  The roads and sidewalk quickly became flooded as I heard thunder rumbling despite wearing headphones playing music.  I saw huge flashes of lightning all around me as I tried to push all the way back home.  I finally made it (after 2.7 miles) and then grabbed my keys to venture out into the storm to find Mr. Marathon.  I drove his usual route, looking carefully the whole way along both sides of the road.  Finally, I found him waiting at about mile 2.9 under a small overhang that covered the porch of a building.  Turns out, the wind, rain, thunder, and lightning caught him, as well, right before he could reach his turn-around point.  Fortunately, I was able to find him and we both made it home safely.  Will we listen to the weather forecast better in the future?  Probably not.  Should we?  Probably so.  Maybe we will take a 50% chance of thunderstorms a little more seriously.  Or maybe not.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

September 1 Kick Off Run!

After a fun day at the water park and a visit to the mall, we got home a little late so it was dark and rainy.  Yet Mr. Marathon was determined to start off the month of September with a few miles towards his 100-mile goal.  4 down, 96 to go!  Despite a rolled ankle, he still feels good about his run.  After all, he was asking for it, running at night in the rain!

Mr. and Mrs. Marathon

So first of all, allow me, Mrs. Marathon, emphasize that I am NOT running a marathon (yet!).  My current goal is a HALF MARATHON.  It just sounds super catchy.  And I might want to run a marathon... eventually (no promises though!).  But Mr. Marathon is currently training for the Richmond Marathon in Virginia.  He is running this marathon because his goal is to qualify for the Boston Marathon!  Hence the "From Bassett to Boston" part of the blog title.  This means that he must complete the Richmond Marathon in 3:05:00 or faster in order to qualify.  He has made a goal to run 100 miles in the month of September and 150 miles in the month of October in order to be prepared come November, when the Richmond Marathon is held.  He feels as though he might have a chance with the proper training!

I, on the other hand, am training for a half marathon as I mentioned above.  But this is not any ordinary half marathon.  This is the DISNEY'S PRINCESS HALF MARATHON.  Hence the "From Southern Belle to Disney's Belle" part of the blog title.  Even though I don't know if I am going to dress up like Belle yet.  I have been told I resemble Cinderella.  And Sleeping Beauty.  But I like Jasmine.  I don't know.... tough decisions!  Anyway, I began running last August and have been running 5Ks and 10Ks with some intense training and lots of motivation and inspiration from my marathoning hubby!  I feel like I will be ready to tackle 13.1 miles come February when we get to make the big trip from our little town of Bassett, Virginia, to Orlando, Florida!

We started this blog together to keep us motivated and keep track of our progress towards our current goals.  We will record our runs and experiences here, so we can reflect on our progress and remain encouraged throughout our training.