I moved to NJ. After moving to NJ, I took some time off of running and just relaxed and looked jobs for a while.
I haven’t (honestly) done a lot of note worthy things this December. It’s been just assimilating into NJ and looking for jobs. I hope I have something to report by the end of the year. I guess I’ll work on that.
I took photos in the snow. It counts as productive.
Although 2013 was anything but calm I truly enjoyed the year. It seemed like it flew by and that I was happier then I have been, especially in the later half of the year. It seems like I should have been more stressed being jobless and the 4000 miles I drove in 2 months but I wasn’t. It was a really good year. I have found the more stressed “I should be” is when I become less stressed. Little stressors that shouldn’t stress me out often are the worst for me.
After a week of being on the road, it is certainly nice to just sit and relax for a few days and not worry about driving. As I said on the way to Texas, a driving recap is like a race recap. You go for a certain amount of time, stop to eat, drink and use the restroom and keep on going. So I’ll recap it like a training log except I have plenty of photos. The drive actually wasn’t bad because we stopped a lot along the way, made new friends, saw old friends and saw plenty of different sites. In total we covered about 1850 miles and saw 9 different states (totaling 17 states this year).
A lot of these photos appeared on my instagram but I thought I would share anyways because I like to caption photos longer than my instagram hashtags.
In unproper blogging technique I had dinner at California Pizza kitchen last week with Stephanie and didn’t take any photos. It was a lot of fun and I’m glad I could see her before we left.
Leaving San Antonio there were huge floods and so much rain.
In you follow me on instagram, you know I chronicle my adventures with my 23 year old bear Bloomie. (nicknamed Bloomz). So much rain.
Stopping for a run in Houston. This was one of the most mentally challenging runs I’ve had in a while. It was pouring rain, windy and cold. My legs were stiff and sore but I made it through and felt a lot better…afterwords.
Raw oysters in Pensacola. Perfect.
I like to pose with statues…because well who doesn’t? “It’s for the blog…don’t worry about it”.
Pit stop in Florida!
Had to take a photo of Bloomz in Florida too.
Running in Florida was gorgeous.
I had to stop and use the rest room and they made me buy something to use the restroom. It was fine since I like dr. pepper anyways. The thing was this gas station didn’t sell any coffee but did sell hookah. WTF. It was at the point we knew we should get out of there.
Of course seeing Laura in Atlanta was a lot of fun!
The best egg and smoked salmon sandwich ever. It was just so big I didn’t even know how to eat it. I just stuffed it in my mouth like a proper and polite date would.
Touring the coke museum
Yes I need to take photos with all the coke people…it’s for the blog. I need to look like I exist outside of running.
If you know me then you know Which Which is my favorite sandwhich shop ever. I will miss it on the East coast!
Stopping at a Japanese restaurant was especially tasty (and pretty).
My first real cold weather run. I haven’t run in 40 degrees in over 8 months.
I also ran with deer for about a mile. The family of four was running parallel to me. They eventually stopped and peeled off.
And that is all I really have for real life adventures from traveling. Though this is a lot of photos. I had a great time full of good runs, eating and adventures. (much like what vacation should be like). I would say I’m happy to settle down into a routine but in reality I don’t have a routine until I officially move to New Jersey (sometime in Mid November).
This race was exactly what I thought it would be. After two months of not doing low 6 minute paced runs or races (my last was the 8k that I broke my arm) and also driving 1200 miles, I was not expecting a PR. What I was expecting was a nice shock to my body and that is exactly what I got. I had toyed with the idea of doing a half marathon instead on Sunday, but decided that was a terrible idea since my body might not recover before the marathon. Plus, I wanted to start getting some faster miles in as my body goes into taper mode. It was actually difficult to know there was a half marathon in the area and I wasn’t doing it.
So the race itself:
I was happy to stay with a good friend of mine Laura and we got to the race in enough time to warm up together, grab our race numbers and get ready to go. It was a “low key” Atlanta race which meant there were only 200 or so people. Not my definition of low key but I was happy for lots of people. It was roughly 100 old people and 100 high schoolers. Look us oldies out of high school go.
Laura and I prerace
The first mile started in an open field and we funneled down onto the course. I felt like I was really moving and didn’t feel as stiff as I thought I would. I realized rather quickly that I was pretty far in the back of the pack. I was discouraged but just mentally told myself, this is how you run and it will be like this in New York City. (5:57)
The second mile I started to pass people and felt a little but more motivated. My arm warmers had fallen over my watch so had no idea what my pace was. I just went with how I was feeling (which really isn’t anything different, I just couldn’t stare at my watch). I passed roughly 5 females during mile 2, the only time I passed females (6:09).
The third mile, I felt exactly the same. I just kept plugging away at the miles. I passed a few males and I didn’t feel like I was dying. I don’t remember anything significant about this mile just that I was running…when I plugged it into my computer I realized I ran another 6:09 mile. So it was consistent.
I saw the finish line and just powered through. I had seen three other females the entire race but had no speed or power to catch them. When I saw the clock hit over 19 minutes I was honestly a little bit upset. It was a reality check that I hadn’t been doing speed work. I finished the race in 19:15.
Thoughts of the race:
I am happy with the time after driving and no speed work but at the same time it’s hard to look at times above 19 minutes after 2 races this summer being in the 18s. I’m also disappointed with a fourth place finish but you cannot control who comes to races and these girls were faster. I fully enjoyed the race and cross country races are my absolute favorite (I just wish there were more!). I honestly felt like I could have kept a pretty similar pace for a couple more miles but I couldn’t run faster for 3. To sum it up, it’s nice to get some faster miles on my legs. I’m happy but not ecstatic with the time and I had a great time in Atlanta.
Questions for you:
1. What is your favorite type of race? Road, cross country, trail, trail?
2. Is it cold near you? I just went from 80 degrees for the last 6 months to 40 degrees. It was a shock to my body to say the least.
This week I’ve been hosting friends at the house and by friends I mean Tim’s family. They are in town for his graduation (he gets his wings tonight!) so it means I have actual things to do in the day time. Ha I kid, but it’s nice to be social in the daytime versus doing mindless errands.
Speaking of a life update I don’t really have much to tell you right now because it seems like everything I update with something life related my plans all get changed. So with that I’ve given up (at least for now).
It still looks like I’ll be driving from Texas to VA around October 15. My timeline looks something like this (though it’s not set in stone by any means). If you are on the route of Texas to VA Beach, please don’t hesiste to let me know if you want to get coffee, go for a run, ect. I don’t like driving and I like to meet people in real life.
Here is my route but in reverse…reverse…
October 15: Leave Texas
October 18: Arrive in Atlanta, Georgia
October 19th: Race a Cross Country 5k
October 20st: Run the Athens half marathon at goal marathon pace
You might be asking why do both races?
First, I know that racing a 5k will keep me in check for a half marathon. Though a half marathon Pr would be nice I need to keep my legs fresh. Cross country races are my absolute favorite so running the 5k was never a question. In fact, I would run the 5k before the half.
Then October 20-21st drive from Atlanta Georgia to VA Beach.
So that is my plan as of now. It will probably change multiple times but I’m always interested in meeting people along the way.
I can honestly say the last few days have been one of the biggest adventures of my life. I can easily write an entire 1700 (somehow dad and I made it 1780) mile driving recap filled with dad and I’s musings. I think it could be considered a race recap. I went a certain distance, had plenty of stops for food and water and it was filled with highs and lows…
Day 1: 180 miles
Dad and I left around 4pm on Wednesday night. We wanted to be able to put a few miles in the night before. Driving is not one of my strong points. Most people would easily be able to drive the entire journey in 3 days. I am not most people and we ended up taking 5 and stopping along the way.
After getting coffee for the last time at Wawa for a while we actually left.
Our first stop came in Emporia at a Cracker Barrel for dinner. I asked a line of elderly about 4 times if they were in line to be seated. They didn’t hear me and finally the hostess realized dad and I were not part of their party and sat us.
I will give a shoutout that Cracker Barrel pancakes are one of the few restaurants that I love their cakes. (Mostly because they will put lots of whip cream on them).
Then we just kept driving and located a Hampton Inn off the highway. Dad was instaimpressed by their stash of cookies.
We then proceeded to just relax and hang out in the hotel and go to bed early like the 90 year old people we are.
Day 2: 450 miles Durham to Auburn, Alabama
After getting a good nights rest, dad and I woke up and ran around Durham. We somehow made it downtown and to Duke University. It was one of the hilliest runs I have ever done. It was hillier then Atlanta, Oswego and wherever else. I was struggling holding 9:30 min miles. (How the hell am I going to run a half in three days…I don’t know).
I like staying in Hampton Inn’s because we can run in the am and breakfast is already being served when we get back. They also always have a giant tray of eggs which since I can’t make eggs without making them burnt and crusty, any eggs are amazing. These eggs in Durham were just plain scrambled eggs (important later).
Then we drove and drove and drove. We stopped in multiple gas stations that had more beer then coffee.
I saw a giant peach watertower.
We had planned to meet Laura in Atlanta so I was using that to excite me throughout the drive. It was working somewhat.
When we did get to Atlanta I went straight into a parking garage. Only to realize that like a derp dad couldn’t go in there because the uhaul topped out at the roof.
I also literally walked right into Laura in the parking garage.
After a nice grandma dinner at 4:30, we got back on the road and made it into Louisiana.
But not after hitting far too much traffic.
From around 6-8 we just kept driving. We finally made it out of Georgia and into Alabama and found a hotel.
I ended up getting hungry after getting to the hotel around 8 so we went down to the Wendys. Out of all the fast food places I choose, this one was extremely slow. We felt bad for the cashier because it looked like she was dealing with a bunch of goobers behind the counter. It took us roughly 20 minutes for our food…20 minutes that was worth it.
Then we went to bed at 8pm central time and 9 Eastern time…because we wanted to up our old people status more.
It’s hard to believe this summer has come and gone. After moving in with my parents in May, I got two temporary jobs for the summer. I spent most of the summer running and wishing that it was time to start packing and to move. Then when it did come time to start getting ready to pack I got a small fracture in my elbow and didn’t want to pack. So that’s that. You can never be happy with everything I guess.
With that being said once I pick up the uhaul with dad, we are going to load it and begin a new chapter in my life. It’s not a secret that I am beyond nervous to move to Texas. I am officially getting out of my comfort zone and moving down to Texas. Incase you are interested in our route…
That being said I am just as nervous for this long 1700 mile drive. If you know me well you know I hate anything and everything related to driving. I didn’t like to sit still on the 700 miles to Upstate, NY and this is about 2.5 times as long. After researching various options including towing Lorraine (my car), illegally putting inside a bigger uhaul and actually putting it on a freight, we decided this was the best option. Well dad decided that because the other three options sounded better to me.
Dad and I don’t have a lot of plans except to stop in Atlanta to see one of my good and longest friends Laura. A brief shoutout to Laura. She has been there for me through thick, thin and everything in between so I’m pretty excited.
Though I’ve been out of college for a year working, I can say that I truly feel like I’m starting my out of college “adult” life.
When the orthopedist told me on Friday there was no reason not to run the Rock and Roll half, I immediately got excited. Even though my arm was cleared to run, my legs felt stiff from never really getting the lactic acid out from my 8k the previous weekend. It had had a week to sit there and fester so although my arm was okay my calves were sore. By sore I mean running a 9 minute mile the day before felt the way a 6:30 mile should.
It’s no secret my two awesome friends Laura and Heather came down to race Rock and Roll as well. We all piled into the car at 5:00 along with dad headed to the race start. We quickly found parking and made it to the start an hour early.
While lining up in carrol 1 I was a bit more cautious since I didn’t want to bump into anyone. The doctor had said due to the location of the fracture the only way I could shatter or hurt the bone more was fall on the exact same spot with the exact same force. I still did not want to bump into anyone just because I’m overly cautious (and have pretty bad luck). My GPS didn’t synch correctly so I don’t have mile splits but I’m 100% okay with that.
The first few miles I ran with Mike a local that I often run races with. It’s always nice to be able to find someone to run and be about the same pace. The 5kers actually started at the exact same time as we did which was somewhat weird with a 15,000 person race. The first three miles were a pretty big blur and we were all packed in like little sardines.
At the 2.5 mile mark I noticed the 5k shoot began, I couldn’t help but think to myself that having a 5k shoot of .6 long was a touch too much.
After we clicked off three miles I had already sweat through my top. I’m not the biggest sweater and by the time I got water (which was incredibly difficult when you can’t grab things with your right hand) my tank was soaken through. I knew my body had already begun to overheat. At that point I decided it was wise to grab Gatorade and water at every stop.
Miles 4-6 were pretty uneventful. Although I didn’t feel great I did begin to pass people. This part of the course was straight, flat and on a main road of the area. It made sense because it’s such a big field of people but it was pretty hard on the legs and boring on the mind. My most memorable moment of this point was saying go “Team Hoyt” and one of the ladies said…Hey I read your blog! Team Hoyt never ceases to amaze me. (They push disabled children in strollers while running a lot of races.) Each and every person that is apart of this is truly amazing.
Around mile 6 we turned and went into a nice side street. It had shade. I actually made some small talk with a few of the racers around me. The relay hand offs were around mile 7 which was a bit motivating because there were more people cheering. I was actually running (unknowingly) with the first relay team and he did his hand off and left). When we turned into the base around mile 8 it was instaheatbox again.
I hate you straight flat pavement. Just kidding lets wave to Ally again.
It made a huge u shape around the base so you were able to see people about a mile in front of you wishing you were a mile closer to the finish. My only thought during mile 9 was oh my stars I need more water.
I felt a sudden burst of excitement around mile 10 because I realized I only had a 5k to the finish. I attempted to pick up the pace but that was not happening because it was so hot and I was tired.
Mile 11 we went back over the only hill on course (ie: a bridge). My legs were shot and I was just dying and saying I think I can I think I can. The humidity was getting the worst of me and honestly I was pretty miserable. I want to use proper blogging and running technique about how I negative split this race but I didn’t. It was completely dying and the last 3 miles were some of the hardest I’ve run in a while.
All aboard the pain train and down the bridge.
When we u turned onto the boardwalk I could see the finish line. The finish line that was still .75 away. I thought it might never come and I think those five minutes or so are contenders for the longest 5 minutes of my life. I wanted to try and kick to the end…but didn’t have the energy. So I just ran cursing every four letting word under my breath and hoping it killed time.
I finally crossed the finish line in 1:28.49 which I was very happy with.
Afterwords we relaxed on the beach and also ran into Kristy who had a great race herself.
Overall thoughts of the race:
I had absolutely no idea where this race would go. I know I say that a lot but after my previous week of training my calves were still sore. A lot of people said the rest would do me well, which of course my body was recovering but the lactic acid was still festering in my legs from the previous week. The heat and humidity (around 75-80 and 94% humidity) was certainly a huge factor of this race as well. In fact, they had 13 people taken to the hospital and one death.
All of that negativity aside I did have a great race. Was it a PR? No. Did I have a great time with great friends before I move tomorrow? Yes.