Thursday, October 22, 2009

Hello? Hello? YES! I'm alive!!

I’ve been absent – I know. It’s not that I don’t THINK about writing, I just really haven’t felt the urge to sit down and type. I think that not writing was part of my end of summer burn out. So…here’s an update about what’s going on…

**I continued to train for the Milwaukee Marathon, although, I’ll be honest, I slacked. I felt tired and burnt out on the process. I did every single one of my long runs (without too much complaining I may add) but chose staying in bed over cross training more often than not.
I would not have survived my long runs without Ann. First, she totally rules as a running partner, we have a good pace and even though she’s training for life, not a marathon currently (she’s super bad ass though and did one in March, does Tri’s and duathlons…) she’ll stick it out for at least 8 miles with me. That cut out a HUGE chunk of what I had to do on my own. Second, she’s just plain fun to talk to for that long. It’s fun to catch up on what’s going on in our lives and distress and vent and laugh.

This time around, I experienced the scariest thing EVER in my running career – you know, all of 2 whole years. I set out to do a 17 mile run with Krista (who is bad ass marathoner too!!) and it was a huge FAIL. It was a VERY stormy day and super humid. The run sucked hard for me and on the walk back BOTH of my calves cramped up. But not the kind of cramp that you can just walk off, I’m talking full on locked up legs. My calves contracted and pushed me up on to my toes and I couldn’t walk. Now, I know you’re all thinking that I just toughed it out and bit my tongue and kept moving – thank you, but, you’re wrong. I let out a huge scream, in fact I think it was “OH MY GOD KRISTA, HELP ME!” where in turn, my running partner for the day looked at me with fear in her eyes that I was both crazy and going to die (which I am and felt like I was).

Here I was lying on the street corner in Middleton, screaming (although I didn’t have any tears, that was good!) – right across the street from a fire station and NO hot fire guys came to assist, I think I’m going to write a letter. Krista and I worked out my cramps (she earns MAJOR friend points for this as I was sweaty and gross) and I went right to Endurance House, bought compression socks, and sulked in my bed for the rest of the day. Worst. Run. Ever.

**September 6th I turned 29. Yep. The BIG 2-9. I am excited about entering my last year as a 20 something. I think it’s going to be fun…the first month and a half certainly have been!
My birthday was over Labor Day weekend (You’re welcome. You get a day off because my mother was in labor with me! Ha?)…I had a blast, did some karaoke singing with Kendra, my sister threw me a BBQ and we went to a Snapper Game, and I had like 5 cakes over the course of a couple of weeks! Awesome? Yes.

**September 19th I celebrated officially with an amazing group of friends in Milwaukee. We ate at The Rock Bottom and went to a couple of bars. We got our drink on and our dance on and had a wonderful time! And, although my shoes were amazing (you know that shoes are my signature accessory), they were not stellar for walking in though and I walked all the way back to the hotel barefoot. Who knows why we didn’t take a cab!

**On October 4, 2009 I ran the Lakefront Marathon in Milwaukee. And even though I was totally burnt out and slacked during training, I was hell bent on running a 4:30 race. It was a freezing, windy day and thankfully the High School in Grafton (where we started) was open for us to warm up in. I ran in to or saw everyone I knew that was running, which was awesome and I was psyched at the start.

I ran with the 4:30 pacer for the first 21 miles. Yep. 21. Then, my body said, “screw you Jen” and I ended the race with a 4:38. Ok, ok, it’s only 8 min off my goal time you say, but 8 min in running is a LOT of time to make up. The most embarrassing thing of it is that both of my calves cramped right in front of the finish line – I had to walk it off before I could run across the line. That hasn’t happened before. The other two marathons I have been able to run in. So of course, I had a couple tears – not for my time really but for my bruised ego.

Oh well, spring will be here before you know it and I’ll try again.

I am of course, as always, so thankful that my family was there to cheer me on! I saw them at a few different points in the race – it’s so nice to see a familiar face! My good friends Rachel and her boyfriend Brian were also between mile 21 and 22 and Buddy was hanging out between 23 and 24. I cannot begin to thank them enough for being on the course, especially after mile 20!! I am also sad that I missed Charmian and Heather and her boys at the end, lots of chaos coupled with a crabby runner don’t bode well for trying to find people in a crowd. It takes a lot of effort for people to come out to a marathon, never knowing where the runner is really going to be and putting up with an insane, pretty poorly laid out finish line, I do appreciate them coming out and know that Charmian stayed to cheer on other runners which is so appreciated too!

Even though the marathon didn’t go as I had planned, I finished and didn’t die and really, deep down, it was fun. And, the best way to recover from a marathon? Head to Vegas, of course!!

**October 10th, Mary, Angie, Stephanie and I headed to Vegas to celebrate Mary’s 30th birthday – and boy did we celebrate! Without giving away too many details, because you know, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, I will say that we never got in before 4 am (two of the days it was 5!), I had a husband for about an hour, got a phone number and a room number of which only the phone number was used (don’t worry!) and had an incredible time – did a ton of dancing, drinking, and hanging out! Angie even won a $250 gift certificate to a spa where the 4 of us all got ½ hour massages!

**I have a busy week ahead next week – I promise to recount all of my activity – (ok, minus the boring stuff!). Monday night I’m throwing a “Martinis and Makeover” party and catching up with some old friends for dinner a couple of the nights. I’m also toasting Andy’s 30th birthday/new house on the 30th and celebrating Pat’s 60th birthday on the 31st (both in costume of course!!).