It was an off weekend. Not terrible or anything along those lines. I did a lot of fun things, was productive, had time to relax, but somehow things were simply off.
1) Shopping — For her birthday, I got The Crow Old Navy (awesome) cargo pants to use in India. We decided to swap the color and get another pair for Couch Potato and me (because they were so awesome). I had difficulty explaining this to the person helping us search the rack, and he and I fell into this confusing conversation that involved pushing the bag with the already bought pants back and forth. It was pretty amusing. Couch Potato and I went up front and after 45 min. on hold while several different stores searched their racks, we came up with one pair (instead of three). Couch Potato got so bored she started to organize the gift card section, and I admit: I got into it too.
3) Push ups — Either I cheated on my initial test or was sore from climbing, but these first few days of training are hard. It’s going to take me longer than six weeks to get to a hundred, if at all! At least I’ll be in better shape than I am now.
4) Shamrock — Now this was downhill from the start (well, the real course was uphill…).
We failed to register the day before because the line to get to the parking lot alone was a mile long. Imagine what it was like inside with 20,000 participants! That meant for a very stressful pre-race morning.
Sunday morning, Portland weather was at it’s true best: low 40s, pouring rain, harsh wind. My packet turned out to not have a timing chip, which is mandatory to get your time, and also has to be returned or else you get charged. So I wait in the FIX IT line. For 30 minutes. At least Couch Potato, who was switching to the 8k, kept me company in the miserable weather. At the end of the FIX IT line was a rude woman who accused me of losing my chip. She was probably grumpy from the accumulation of fixin’ she had to do, but still, it wasn’t positive energy. Instead of my usual 20 min. warm up, I barely had enough time to, ahem, take care of business. I started out cold, thirsty, and rushed (thanks to Mr. Toed for letting me fling my extra layers on him).
I tried to begin with an easier pace, knowing that if I went out too fast I’d cramp. I never saw the first mile marker so I wasn’t sure of my pace. By the middle uphill section, my body felt better so I pushed it a little, trying to catch the next woman 50m ahead. Never did quite see her from up close 🙂 During the last two miles downhill, my stomach cramped badly and I couldn’t run hard anymore. My legs wanted to though! It was frustrating. In the final stretch, the Crow found me and inspired me to sprint to the finish, so I at least I had a good kick in the end.
Far from my goal, I ran a 35:35 (7:09 pace). My legs aren’t as sore as they should be. I almost want to go out and do it again, except it’s raining 🙂 But I didn’t hate every moment of the race, which I usually do. I know I could have been faster, but just had an off race; I’ll even do another one, though I may take stray from these big road races and their lines.
5) Weather — Seems like every time I was outside it rained on me (we came home from the Shamrock shivering cold and wet). But when I was inside, the sun would tease and lure me outside. And then it’d start to rain.
6) Water — Remember how not too long ago we had to shut off the water? Well, it looks like it’s a useful skill for us. Slow Boy took on his first plumbing project, and, wanting to isolate his experiment from the rest of the house, he cut off the pipe to the basement. But, the pipe had corroded and rusted so badly that it wouldn’t come off the junction (to be capped). We all tried twisting it with a wrench, squeezing all our might with our climber grips. With no luck, we shut off the water and took the family out to eat. Stay tuned.
And there you have it. My fun but imperfect weekend. At least one thing that went in my favor: at our friend’s Slideshow of 2008 party, my photo of the floating market in the Mekong Delta won the category “Most likely to be on the cover of National Geographic.” There were clearly other better photos but I went last, so people remembered (that’s the trick!). I got a great print for a prize, which I’ll post as soon as I get a digital copy. Can you guess what it is?