Big Nasty Mud Run

As I shared with you guys yesterday, Chris and I did the Big Nasty Mud Run on Saturday in Bloomingdale, Georgia.  The Big Nasty is put on by FCA Endurance and this was the 5th time they have done it.  I love running races hosted by FCA Endurance because proceeds always go to a really good cause and their events are well planned and executed.  The Big Nasty was no exception.  Chris and I were in the 8:20 military wave and we got out to the site at around 7:45AM.

 

Upon arrival I knew that they had everything under control.  There were plenty of port potties available and duct taping stations for your shoes.  Duct tapping your shoes is critical for this particular race so having some available to runners was awesome.  Packet pickup was incredibly smooth and the whole thing took us only a few minutes.  The added bonus about the Big Nasty Mud Run is that if you have children who are over 3 they have child care for free on site!  WIN.  Before I knew it, it was time to head to the start so Chris and I grabbed one quick picture before gearing up.

 

Big Nasty Before

 

 

I have to admit I was a little nervous as we were waiting to go.  I wasn’t sure what to expect or if I was in good enough shape to not hold Chris back TOO much.  Since we were on a team we had to stick together.  Knowing I had him along with me gave me the boost of confidence that I needed.

 

The very first thing you did was run over a hill of dirt and dive into a hug mud pit.  We saw people losing shoes left and right before our wave so I was glad to have my tightly taped to my feet.  The mud was like thick soup.  You wouldn’t walk through it, you pretty much had to swim.  Fun times.

 

Big Nasty Mud Run

 

 

From there it was pretty much alternating obstacles and running.  The obstacles were all pretty manageable for me and I only opted out of doing one of them which was fine because only one member of the team had to do it.  It basically involved shimmying upside down on a PVC pipe.  Once I saw how much Chris struggled I was glad I opted out … last thing I needed before going back to school would be an injury 😉

 

Some of the other obstacles included swimming and going over barrels, jumping over walls, climbing ladders and cargo nets, wading through a muddy creek (that never seemed to end), and so much more.  This tire carry happened near the end of the race and I was SMOKED.

 

Big Nasty Mud Run During 2

 

 

There were times where there was not a dry spot on my body.  I had mud EVERYWHERE and it took a couple of showers to finally get all of it out of my ears ha.  The best part of this race was doing it with Chris.  Once of my favorite things about our marriage is that we push each other to try new things and stay active.  We have ran 2 half marathons together, several smaller races, and now this mud run.  I also love that he is as much of a cheese-ball as I am :)

 

Big Nasty Mud Run During

 

This is really embarrassing but somehow we didn’t see a photographer at the finish and we didn’t get a picture in our muddy glory.  This is sad because the last obstacle involved swimming through almost a football field size thing of mud.  Oh well … I know better for next time!  Total the race consisted of ~5 miles and 30 obstacles.  We finished around 1:14 which was right in middle of the overall pack.

 

I had a lot of fun doing the mud run and totally plan on signing up when they do it again in September!  If you’re local you should come get muddy too :)

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Get Your Rear in Gear 5K

Hey they friends!  I hope you had a great weekend and a great start to the week.  I spent most of my weekend preparing for a test I had yesterday but managed to sneak in my first post-baby 5K!  My PA school cohort got together to run the Get Your Rear in Gear 5K in Savannah on Saturday.

 

The Get Your Rear in Gear 5K is a race where the proceeds go towards colon cancer research and prevention.  My grandmother is currently battling colon cancer so this cause was extra special to me.  Colon cancer is often preventable or highly treatable when individuals undergo regular screening.  This race helps to raise awareness to that fact.  Chris and I loaded up the girls bright and early Saturday morning and headed down to the race start.

 

Team SUPA

 

There we met up with other members of my class to get ready to race.  Fleet Feet Savannah helped put on the race and you could tell because it was so well organized and ran smoothly.  We did start a bit later than the 8AM start but that was ok.  The course itself was through the neighborhood.  There were police escorts at the major intersection and a water station about half-way through.  I ran with various classmates throughout the race and had a blast!

 

Rear in Gear 5K

 

Photo courtesy of a classmate.

 

Overall I felt pretty good during the race.  My goal for this race was to hold a 9-minute mile.  My 5K PR is 25:30 and I knew I wasn’t ready for that yet but wanted to feel strong.  I started off easily at 9 minute miles and then started dipping down into the 8s.  I definitely started to hurt near the end but pushed it in to the finish.  My time?  27:07 for an average of 8:45/mile.

Timer

 

I am SUPER happy with my time.  Bryn turned 3 months old on Friday and I am thrilled with where I am in my running only 3 months after having her.  I am even happier with it since the last 2 weeks have had minimal exercising due to a crazy schedule.  I would LOVE to PR my 5K this year and this race boosted my confidence.  One of the highlights?  Running into Victoria at the start and finish!!

 

Crazy Emmie

 

The Get Your Rear in Gear is a national event so you should definitely check to see if you have one in your area.  I am already looking forward to participating again next year :)

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Augusta Half Marathon 2013

**Congratulations Amy Adelsberger!  You are the winner of my Dasani bike and drops giveaway!  Please email me at foodfitnessandfamily (at) gmail . com to claim your prize.  

 

Happy Monday folks!  We had a great weekend in Augusta, GA for the Augusta Half Marathon.  Chris, Em, and I headed up there on Friday night and stayed with one of my college roommates, Erynn, for the weekend.  The weather on Friday and Saturday was pretty miserable but lucky for us race day turned out to be beautiful.

 

I went into this half marathon with a plan.  I trained using training paces from McMillian running.  I topped off at 11 miles during my training and tapered the week before.  I even took 2 complete rest days before the race.  I knew going into the race that there were going to be some killer hills.  Since Savannah is pretty darn flat this had me nervous.  I mean check out the elevation map:

 

Augusta Half Marathon Elevation Chart

 

The night before the race Chris and I sat down and I talked through my plan.  I knew my “goal” would be to average 10:00 minutes/mile.  To get that I knew I was going to have to race smart.  I wrote out on my hand goal times for 5K, 10K, and 10 miles so I wouldn’t have to think paces.  I also wrote down what miles were uphill and which were downhill.  After Presley and I decided to stick together for the half we knew we wanted to start easy, keep steady on the hills, and take advantage of the downhills.  I was ready.

 

The morning of the race my alarm went off at 6AM which is pretty good for race day!  Not too early …. just the way I like it 😉  I ate a whole wheat English muffin with PB and chia seeds and a banana and washed it down with coffee.  Erynn lives just a few minutes from the starting line so we didn’t even leave the house until 7:05AM.

 

Once we got down to the start line Erynn and I hopped in line for the porta potties.  The line was short and moved fast which is awesome.  The Augusta Half Marathon is a relatively small race and they definitely had enough potties for everyone.  This was Erynn’s first half marathon so I was pretty excited for her!

 

Augusta Half Marathon - Before

 

We met up with Presley and a couple of her friends and before we knew it it was time to line up for the 8:02AM start.  The Augusta Half Marathon also had a wheelchair division and a 10K option.  When the gun went off Erynn was off (she’s SPEEDY) and Presley and I started chugging along.

 

Mile 1: 9:42

Mile 2: 9:32

Mile 3: 9:37

 

Around mile 3.5 is where the first small incline started.  After that came the monster hill.  This hill was the hill of death and sadness.  I am not going to lie … it was terrible.  Like holy cow.  My legs hated me.  And it went on …. and on … and on.  For over a mile to be exact.   This picture can’t capture the horror that we experienced:

 

Augusta Half Marathon - Mile 4

 

Mile 4: 9:53

Mile 5: 10:50 (<–hill of death)

 

The only thing that got me up that hill was that Presley was suffering with me and also the mantra that “what goes up, must come down”.  Once we got to the top we were rewarded with some serious downhill action.

 

Mile 6: 9:13

 

After the downhill we had another climb ahead of us.  This one wasn’t too bad in comparison to the hill of death but was definitely tough to get through after running 6 miles.  I knew that Chris and Em would be at the end of the hill though to cheer us on and wanting to see their smiling faces got me up there.

 

Mile 7: 10:09

Mile 8: 10:07

 

Augusta Half Marathon - Mile 7

 

This is the first race that Chris has spectated and cheered me on.  He ran both the Go! St. Louis and Savannah Rock-N-Roll.  It was really neat having someone you care about on the sidelines cheering you on!  PLUS, holla for free race photos 😉  And Presley you got me good on this one haha.

 

Augusta Half Marathon - Mile 8

 

Somewhere around mile 9 we started running around a pretty lake.  This was the most scenic part of the race.  At this point though Presley and I were both starting to feel significantly uncomfortable but just kept chugging along.

 

Augusta Half Marathon - Mile 10

 

Mile 9: 9:36

Mile 10: 10:02

 

At mile 11 my right calf seized up and started cramping right where my calf hits my knee.  It was tight and painful.  Presley’s hip was hurting too so we decided to stop for a second and stretch.  The stretching temporarily offered some relief but my calf bothered me the rest of the way.  I think it was a combination of the uphills/downhills as well as the uneven road …. one foot was often more elevated than the other.

 

Mile 11: 11:04

 

Once we hit mile 11 at 1:49:45 I knew my allusive goal of a 2:10 finish was in sight.  I also knew that there were only 2.1 miles of flat or downhill course ahead of me.  I told Presley we got this and we took off.

 

Mile 12: 9:52

Mile 13: 9:04 (<– !!!!)

Mile 13.1: 7:47

 

Presley and I crossed the finish line together and I am so glad.  I definitely couldn’t have done as well as I did if I wasn’t running with her.  We both struggled with a very difficult course and having someone to commiserate with makes a big difference!  When I looked at my Garmin after crossing the finish line I realized I did it.

 

Augusta Half Marathon - Results

 

Official time: 2:09:33 … average pace of 9:53/mile.  OH HECK YES.  Not only was this a 6 minute and 27 second PR from Rock-N-Roll Savannah, I also met my first big running goal of a sub-2:10 half!!  Given that this course SUCKED I am so freaking proud of myself, my legs, and most all my heart.  I didn’t go into this race expecting a PR.  I came in it determined to run a smart race and I think I did that.  I followed my plan and it worked it my favor :)

 

Post-race food was pretty good.  There were muffins, oranges, bananas, and bagels.  There was also a waffle station!  Presley and I immediately found Chris and Em and Erynn soon after.  Erynn killed it with an official time of 1:51:02!!

 

Augusta Half Marathon - After

 

Overall I enjoyed the Augusta Half Marathon.  If you are looking to run it, find some hills and run them a lot.  In a row.     For now, I am going to sit back and enjoy my PR while thinking about what my next big race will be 😉  Suggestions??

 

Did you race this weekend?  How often do you curse when running hills?  I had a few choice words for the hill of death 😉

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Pooler Jingle Jog 5K

With the Christmas festivities I haven’t had a chance to post my recap of the Pooler Jingle Jog from last weekend so I am going to today because it’s a big one for me!  This was the first year the Pooler Jingle Jog was held with all proceeds went to the Empty Arms campaign to help Steve and Leigh White on their journey in adoption.  It was a pretty chilly night so tons of layers were needed.  We met my friend Cassie and her family.  Can you believe her son is only a few months old?!

 

Pooler Jingle Jog 2012

 

The race was an out-and-back from the Savannah First Seventh-day Adventist Church.  The course went through the neighborhood for full visibility of the Christmas lights.  At mile 2 there was a water station with super friendly volunteers which I thought was nice.  I didn’t go into this race with any real expectations.  One of the ladies from Moms Run This Town had registered and couldn’t do it.  A 5K race was on my training plan so I took her spot happily.  I figured if I could PR over my last 5K I would be sitting pretty.  My legs felt strong and I made it my motivation to not lose sight of Cassie (she was a collegiate sprinter).  I ran hard the entire race but crossed the finish line knowing I had more to give.  I was shocked when I saw my Garmin:

 

Jingle Jog 5K Results

 

25:30?!?!  My official time was 25:32.  I shaved 2 minutes off my PR from last month.  Um what?!  I couldn’t believe it.  I was more shocked when they announced my name as the 3rd place finisher in the 25-29 age group.  This was a small race for sure but I have never placed before.  They gave out Santa’s hats and certificates and I love it!

 

3rd place 25-29F Pooler Jingle Jog

 

I was so excited and I kept saying to Chris, “I ran in the 25’s!”.  This gave me so much more confidence as a runner but also reminded me why I love short runs 😉  Em was a trooper and the end of race festivities were awesome with hot chocolate, bananas and PB, and more Christmas lights.  I look forward to doing it again next year if they do!

Family Photo Pooler Jingle Jog

 

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Matthew Freeman 5K Recap

Yesterday morning Chris and I ran the Matthew Freeman 5K Run for Peace in Richmond Hill.  This was the 3rd time the race was held in J.F. Gregory by the Matthew Freeman Project.  CPT Matthew Freeman was a native of Richmond Hill and a Marine.  In 2009 he was killed in action in Afghanistan.  His parents started the foundation to help bring school supplies to the Afghanis based on one of the last things Matthew asked of his parents, to gather some supplies for the kids because all they wanted was pens and paper.

 

Chris and I signed up with his battalion to run this year.  Our sister company is currently deployed to Afghanistan.  They did a “shadow run” for the 5K in honor of their own fallen Warriors.  One of them won his age group last year and was KIA in February.  Those of us here in Georgia went to do the race in support of them.

 

549th Shadow Run Banner

 

After a brief opening ceremony and the national anthem, we walked to the start of the trail.  Chris and I brought Bailey with us so we started near the back of the pack which was our biggest mistake.  As soon as we crossed the timing plates we were barely moving.  We ended up having a hard time weaving for the first 1/2 mile to get around everyone.  It’s a pretty narrow trail so fitting a couple hundred people on it at once is problematic until everyone settles into their pace.
At about 1 mile in we settled into our rhythm.  I didn’t go into this race with any goal in mind.  Chris has a PT test today so he was taking it easy so his plan was just to run with me.  I decided I wanted to keep sub-9 minute miles and just go with it.  Along the course the JROTC from the local high school were out as support.  There were 2 water stations on the route but we skipped both of them.  I felt great until about mile 2.5 when I started having some pretty bad cramps.

 

As we rounded into the last straightaway to the finish I told Chris I wasn’t going to be able to go any faster.  He said oh yes you are.  I’m pretty sure my response was “fine, I hate you” and we sped off.

 

Strong Finish

DONE

 

My Garmin said we crossed the finish at exactly 27:00.  Official results aren’t up yet but that’s a shiny new PR!  I shaved just about 30 seconds off my last 5K time!!  After the race there were bagels, bananas, and water available.  We found Emmie (who had hung out with Heather) and cooled down.

 

Chris and Bailey

Bailey was the first dog to cross the finish line so we told her she won her division.  She was pretty stoked.  I wore my new “I Run This Body Shirt” from Dorothy at Mile Posts.  I freaking love it.  Dorothy has inspired me to DREAM BIG. My current “dream” is to run a sub-25 minute 5K at some point.  Here’s to making it happen :)

I Run This Body T-Shirt

Overall I really enjoyed participating in the Matthew Freeman 5K Run for Peace and definitely plan on doing it again next year.  While I was not a fan of the bottleneck-start of the race, the cause and the enthusiasm makes it worth it.

Did you race this weekend?  How did it go?

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