Sunday, March 23, 2014

Take The Long Way Home

    The weather this winter has certainly made every training run feel like "the long way home".  (All you 80's peeps cue the Supertramp soundtrack!).  I decided more than a year ago that I wouldn't let the weather be an excuse for not exercising (except lightning, safety first!).  I was very hard pressed this winter to keep my end of the bargain.  I had to maintain my "safety first" motto and dusted off the treadmill on days when the footing was just too dangerous to stand much less run or even walk!  As long as it was not too slick to risk injury, I still walked and ran outside when I could.  The winter weather has certainly made life interesting...for all of God's creatures!
     I signed up for the Crab Orchard "Fly with the Eagles" half marathon on Feb  8th, a month before the LBL 23K.  "It'll be good practice" a friend says (you know who you are, lol). The weather continued to be atrocious and the race was postponed a week due to road/trail conditions.  My mind began its little hamster wheel turning, "are these two long races too close together for me? Will I be able to adequately recover in between? I consider the LBL 23K the pinnacle of my race calendar.  I didn't want anything to affect me beating last year's time!  
     The morning of the new race date dawned cold as (*insert your favorite colloquialisms*) or to be honest, plain ole 15 degrees!!!!  Crab Orchard lake was frozen solid.  The noises coming from the ice were amazing!  Mother Nature's music at its most freaky!  I even saw 2 eagles flying overhead around mile 11!  I had a lot of leg cramps those last couple of miles, but still enjoyed this race! 
     Here is Mr. 21 himself, after the race.  Thanks for always encouraging us to be the best we can be!
     Here is my race photo, about mile 3. 
The red hoodie was our race shirt (coolest race shirt, ever!) and I was glad I decided to wear it because it never got above freezing that day.  One of my secrets for cold mornings is in the fuel belt you see me wearing in the pic; it's lemon ginger echinacea juice!  It's carb and sugar enough to give a boost of energy and the ginger seems to warm me up!  I'm glad I didn't back out due to the temperatures/weather and I'm glad I didn't quit due to the leg cramps.  I may not be fast but I have as much determination as the fastest! 

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