Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

I'll be honest-my running has been...let's use my husbands term "Manic" lately.  Either I'm all in or I'm not running.  Finding balance has been super hard right now.  Coupled with my recent trips to the PT, I just have been, well-frustrated with my beloved sport.  Here's the thing, I like to run long, but I don't have time to train right.  So-I don't run much at all.

In the meantime, I have been diligently trying to support other Mother Runners (and runners in general).  I started a Mom's Run This Town Chapter for the Eastside/Kirkland, WA.  So far I haven't connected with other mothers in my neighborhood, but I have helped other mothers meet one another!  Bonus!  As a Chapter Leader, it is my job to just keep the ladies informed etc.  In general it is just a place to share running info.

One of the lovely ladies lives close-but our life schedules hadn't yet jived for a run together-posted that she had a bib for the Mother's Day Kirkland Half Marathon and was wondering if anyone wanted it.  I messaged her and  asked How Much? and She replied that it was free.  She was having some medical issues that were preventing her from running.  After a few conversations it became clear that distance running is not going to be something happening in her future-at least not easily.  I don't know all the full details of her diagnosis and I don't feel I should share what little I do know here as that is her story to tell and not mine.  I will tell you this part of our conversation though (kind of the Cliff Notes)

Me: I haven't trained at all, are you ok with someone running with your bib that may not finish fast?
Her:  I just want someone to run with it.  I have so many races I won't ever be able to run that I wanted to run-a full, more half's (etc) that I just say you do it.

That was it.  It was all the encouragement I needed.  I had been putting off my running for all kinds of reasons for far too long!  I embraced the challenge and decided I would run a half marathon for my Mother's Day gift to myself and to my lovely new running friend (or maybe walking friend)

So in the words of another mother runner "Training?  What's that?  I'm sure I can run that far right?"

I also kind of wanted to run this race for all the other lovely ladies out there who can't run for either Medical or physical reasons.  Or maybe they were just taken from this earth before they had a chance to run.
So here is my list of ladies I ran for:
mile 1: Kami
mile 2: Erin (BW)
mile 3: Erin (MRTT)
mile 4: Kristi- a mother who has passed leaving behind a son and husband
mile 5: Susan
mile 6: Elspeth
mile 7: Bonnie-was killed by a drunk driver while training for her first full marathon
mile 8: my Grandma Germaine who until recently walked a mile every day.  I fancy she could have been a runner if she wasn't so busy raising 13 kids (plus a few more that she would take in here and there)
mile 9: This one was for all the ladies in my life who are Mother's in their own way.  You don't have to birth children to be a Mother.  Women nurture in many ways.  Some are blessed with other ways of nurturing without having kids in their home day in and day out!
mile 10: Denise-a young mother who has rheumatoid arthritis who is willing to suffer the pain of running just a few miles (2-3 max) just because she loves the sport so much.  She plans on the pain-can you imagine?  I can't!
mile 11: Elisabeth-she was "almost" my sister in law and I still think of her as a sister even though our paths never cross anymore.
mile 12: Diana-My Mom.  I pray everyday her pain goes away so she could walk down the street with me.
mile 13: Gladys-My Grandma who was taken WAY too soon from this Earth.  I know in my heart how proud she would be of me.  I knew I would need her help bringing it home.
mile .1:  Well that last little bit was all for me.  I am proud of my body for putting up with my demands

Now the race right:

At 7:08 I left my house (for a 7:30 start) and walked/jogged for my warm up down to the starting line.  How perfect is that!!
I arrived just in time to line up-no time to nervous pee!!  I have to say it was kind of nice.
The field was small and I lined up very near the back-or so I thought.  My pace started off easy around 10:30-11mm nice.
Hills?  Check-right off the bat, of course, of course.  Then between mile 1 and mile 2 the race went Right.  By. My. House.  Seriously it was a close as you can get when you live on a dead end street!.  The plan was for the kids and the hubby to cheer me on right there as rain was in the forecast and believe it or not my PacNW kids don't like rain either!!  I got to the rendezvous point and wouldn't you know it-no kids or hubby in sight!  So off the course I ran scaring the life out of the volunteer-got to my front door and there was hubby frantically trying to corral a 4 &3 yo out the door (not even kind of easy-I get it!) I thought what the heck-while I'm here I'll pee, so a quick stop in the house and back out the door I went!

I ran back onto the course and was feeling pretty good about things. This continued until about mile 7.  Right abut this time you go  through an industrial area and you guessed it no spectators and lots of hills.  I changed up my music, stopped, retied my shoe, stretched and just kept running.

Somewhere around here I caught back up with people I had passed in the beginning and I was feeling pretty proud of myself around that time for passing them yet again!

I just kept slogging on-not feeling great but not feeling bad.  Around mile 9 things were getting a little harder.  On yet another hill (I overheard someone say there were 13 of them-figures) I overheard a man say to his wife "You're doing it-this is further than you have ran non-stop yet!" I had slowed to a walk to take a GU and just happened to fall behind them for a few minutes.  The wife was struggling-BAD.  The most beautiful thing though-her husband was holding her hand helping her to slowly keep momentum running up the hill.  I tried to stay behind and get their pic, but I couldn't get the phone out in time.
Here they are just after letting go of hands.
I ran by them kind of energized from that show of love-but I'll be honest, I was really struggling.
We ran through downtown and I was kind of in a zone thinking about my body and keeping everything in check.  I knew I wanted to run smart which meant I had to pay very close attention to my form and how I felt.  If I went out all crazy I knew an injury was immanent.

Just as I was about to hit mile 11 it was bad.  Not bad enough to quit-but bad.  It's hard to describe.  I knew I would finish, but still I was wondering where I was going to get the last push from.

Then my white knight in a black 4-Runner showed up with two awesome kids strapped into car seats.  Yup-hubby found me on the course.  I ran to the truck in a pile of tears.  "I needed you so bad right now and here you are" is all I could say.  I kissed my man and waved at my babes.  I started running and there was no traffic so Mike and the kids drove along side of me until almost mile 12.  That's all it took!  Game Back On!!

One mile to go and I knew Gladys was with me.  Me feet were light, my heart was overflowing with happiness.  All was perfect in my world.

Hammer down-Korn jamming in my headphones I kicked it up for the final push.  I looked at the Garmin at one point and I was running 9:30mm-and I felt GREAT!

Just as I was rounding the corner to the finish-Mike and the kids were there!!  I was so torn-I wanted to finish in under 2:30 but I wanted to hug my kids and hubby too.  Kids and hubby won, and I am ok with that.

My bib, list, Garmin, and Medal at home after the race.

PR for slowest 13.1 to date-good way of thinking!

Selfie with my Medal and my Pooh Bear checking me out!
I finished super happy with what I had accomplished and proved to myself that running doesn't have to be all or nothing and not every run needs to be a training run for some other run.

I will however say I will be running a few more miles before the Seattle Rock N Roll.  Even though I finished, this was by far the hardest 13.1 I have run to date!


  1. Sarah, way to go... especially with no training! Your Friend, Paul

    1. Thanks Paul! I know you have been working hard for the CellCom next week-I know you will rock it!! I can't wait to hear how you did!!

  2. Nice job Sarah, well done with potty & kiss/hug breaks included :) I like how you dedicated miles to moms.