Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Going strong!

Hey - guess what? I ran again this weekend! Mr. Awesome sat out this week because he had some bursitis in his hip and needed a week off. But he still got up bright and early with me last Sunday so that I could participate in the Bill Cross 5K for BackSnack.

BackSnack is a great program: "In the Northland, more than 3,900 children are at risk of going hungry over the weekends. Northland Childhood Hunger Initiative Fund & Harvesters have partnered to provide BackSnack, a backpack filled with nutritious, child-friendly food for these children to take home at the end of the week."

By the way - I really like participating in these 5K events because it's fun to combine exercise, personal accomplishment and great causes.

Before I go into details about the race, we did some other great stuff this weekend, like...

We bought season passes to Worlds of Fun for next year, and as part of the deal, we got to go to the park once this year. So on Friday, we went with our friends The Andersons, who are WoF veterans, after having season passes this year. The park puts on The Haunt in October, and we had a great time. It wasn't as scary as when Mr. Awesome and I went last year, but this year, the thrills came from rides. Last year, we stayed off of them. This year, we rode the Mamba and Patriot roller coasters and the Detonator, all for the first time. I was terrified, but loved them all the same. The Patriot was our last ride and it made all of us dizzy, so we headed home after that.

Saturday found us sleeping in, running errands, and eating dinner at Stroud's. Carb load, y'all.

The race was held at Zona Rosa on Sunday morning. After getting some coffee, we headed to the race site and got prepared. I was number 300!

The race started at 8am. The other runners and I headed off. The race ran through the shopping district, and while I was chilly at first, I warmed up quickly. My asthma was a little touchy at first, but I practiced breathing through my nose and that really helped.

To keep my mind busy, I sang Monty Python's The Galaxy Song over and over:
Whenever life gets you down, Mrs.Brown
And things seem hard or tough
And people are stupid, obnoxious or daft
And you feel that you've had quite enough

Just remember that you're standing on a planet that's evolving
And revolving at nine hundred miles an hour
That's orbiting at nineteen miles a second, so it's reckoned
A sun that is the source of all our power

The sun and you and me and all the stars that we can see
Are moving at a million miles a day
In an outer spiral arm, at forty thousand miles an hour
Of the galaxy we call the 'milky way'

Our galaxy itself contains a hundred billion stars
It's a hundred thousand light years side to side
It bulges in the middle, sixteen thousand light years thick
But out by us, it's just three thousand light years wide

We're thirty thousand light years from galactic central point
We go 'round every two hundred million years
And our galaxy is only one of millions of billions
In this amazing and expanding universe

The universe itself keeps on expanding and expanding
In all of the directions it can whizz
As fast as it can go, the speed of light, you know
Twelve million miles a minute and that's the fastest speed there is

So remember, when you're feeling very small and insecure
How amazingly unlikely is your birth
And pray that there's intelligent life somewhere up in space
'Cause there's bugger all down here on Earth

Fun facts - here's an analysis of this song, as it relates to the actual facts, and here's a new version of the song based on biology that Eric Idle wrote for the recent BBC series, The Wonder of Life.

During the race, one particular lady was ahead of me most of the time. She ran for the first part, but eventually started walking. I run pretty slow, so it takes me a bit to catch up with some of the faster walkers. As I would get close to her, she would run just long enough to keep me from catching up for a bit, then start walking again. As we neared the end of the race, I got closer and closer to her as her bursts of running became shorter and slower. There was no way I was going to let this woman finish before I did - I ran the whole race, dagnabit! Rounding the last turns, I kicked it into gear and sped past her, then sped up even more when I saw the finish line - and my finishing time.

So how did I do?

Three weeks ago, I finished my first 5K in 42.03 minutes.

Two weeks ago, I finished my second 5K in 41.44 minutes.

This week, I finished my third 5K in... wait for it... 38.52 minutes!!

Behind me is the walk/run woman I crushed in the final stretch of the race. Let's just ignore that she is ten years older than me, okay?

After the run, Mr. Awesome and I ate breakfast at The Big Biscuit. It was really good! Afterwards, we ran some errands and headed home to clean and rearrange our garage.

It was a full and productive weekend.

This coming weekend is the Waddell and Reed Kansas City Marathon. As part of that, there is also a half-marathon and 5K race, and Mr. Awesome and I are participating in the 5K. It's going to be really, really crowded, and we are so excited! I hope to improve, or maintain my time, but that depends on the temperature, the terrain and the crowds. Whatever the outcome, I think we are going to have a blast!

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