2011 was a big racing year for me. I kind of caught the racing bug at the end of 2010 with the Eugene Women's Half Marathon (my 1st half), followed up by the EWEB half. Those two races led me to sign up for the 2011 Eugene Marathon and a whole slew of other races this year. Let's start at the beginning...
My first official (I did do a virtual 5K in January) race of 2011 was a 20 miler in February, The Fall Creek Run Around.
|age group medal at Fall Creek Run Around|
In April, my parent's sponsored me in the Pear Blossom 10 mile run. I first ran the 5K with them as a sort of warm up (and to get in a few extra miles). This was another new racing distance for me, therefore an automatic PR. My main goal for it was to treat it as a progression run and for the most part it went according to plan. I started out in the low 8's and finished off at 7:30 pace. My finish time was 1:15:11. It was a lot of fun to be with my parents and cheer them on for their races and then have them surprise me by being at the halfway turn around for mine.
|halfway at the Pear Blossom|
|finishing the Eugene Marathon|
|finishing the Ridgeline Ramble|
|In complete shock with my championship trophy and age group medal from the Ridgeline Ramble.|
|Our team, "Blister Sisters" at the finish. I'm 3rd from the right in the back row.|
The week after Hood to Coast I had the Eugene Women's Half. I was not at all looking forward to that race and didn't really have any great expectations for it. I was still really tired from Hood to Coast, that was a lot of running with very little sleep and I was whining a lot. The night before the race though, I told myself to stop whining and suck it up. Race day morning, I looked up the splits for a 1:39 finish and decided I was going to go for a decent PR. My best blogging buddy, Kim, was also running the race and picked me up for a nice, hassle and kid free race start. We ended up having a nice little 8 minute delay, about a mile into the race while waiting for a train (seriously... it was pretty funny). As soon as it passed we were off and it was really a great race from then on out. I finished with a 1:37:39 (a 5 minute PR) and ended up 22nd overall. Part of the greatness of this race came from wearing the Traveling Sparkle Skirt from Team Sparkle, which really did have some magic in it!
|Coming into a happy finish at the EWH in my sparkle skirt.|
In October, I ran the Columbia River Power Marathon with my friend Heather. It was my 3rd marathon and my 3rd on the year. I had some ITB issues while training for it but managed to get them mostly worked out before race day. I also discovered that I was pregnant the day before our last long training run and although I was fighting a bit with nausea I managed to feel pretty good (and energized) for the race. Heather and I sported tutus from Glam Runner which was a lot of fun. We had lots of extra crowd support because of them and it made for some pretty cool pictures. I didn't really expect to PR as it was a fairly difficult course and I was coming off an injury but still managed to pull off a 3:49:23 finish, which was a 3 minute PR and 3rd overall woman... I'll take it.
|Powering up the last big hill at mile 24ish of the Columbia River Power Marathon.|
|Happily finishing 31 miles at the Frozen Trail Run Fest|
I know that with a baby coming in May next year's racing will be pretty sparse but hopefully I'll get a chance to work a bit on my speed and get a few 5Ks in. I'd love to do the Eugene Women's Half again but I'm not sure how ready I'll be 3 months postpartum... we'll have to see. Hope your year of racing was as enjoyable as mine. Best of luck to all your new year running adventures. Run happy & run strong!