I’ve been waiting for you (half marathon recap)


Dear everyone – please find below a series of very unflattering photos, which ruin what was otherwise an AWESOME race So awesome, in fact, that you get a full recap. Which very rarely happens. Unless I run a marathon.

*There’s less sharting in this story.*

 

The SMC Road Race Half Marathon

Half marathon number 2 happened. And it really didn’t go anything like the plan.

Donna and I waiting to run (the race was dedicated to Boston)

Donna and I waiting to run (the race was dedicated to Boston)

After last weekend’s mediocre effort (note to self – cake and tempure prawn do not a good pre-race day meal make), I still felt pretty wrecked, so the plan for Sunday’s SMC half marathon was simply to run, go with the flow, and enjoy a pleasant long run.

For once, I ran naked – no garmin, no heart-rate monitor, no watch, no phone. Just me. It’s not that I’ve never run without gadgets before, but I’ve never been in a timed race without them. I figured I had nothing to lose if I just worked off how I felt.

It turns out I feel a hell of a lot better than my watch thinks I do.

I picked a man in front of me – green guy, and kept pace behind him for awhile. He was met 3km in by a girl in a pink belt, who I think might have been his daughter. I’m fairly sure she beat him, which is pretty great, given his surprise when she caught him -

What are you doing up here?!

Green man and pink belt became my targets in the first 10km. I estimated that we’d finish the first 10km loop in about 55 mins.

Can you spot pink belt?

Can you spot pink belt?

Taking a step back, my PR for a 10km is 50:20. For a half marathon, I’d only ever run Canberra, which took me about 1:57:xx.

I was feeling pretty good when I passed green man coming down a hill after 8km, but I’m sure you can imagine my shock when I rounded the final corner and saw the clock at the 10km mark – 50:26.

Shit.

I’d just busted out one of my fastest 10km ever, and I still had a lap to go.

Say what?

Say what?

At that point, I hit race mode.

Which was unfortunate, because it was at that moment that Green Man bloked me. 

In the most non-creepy way I could manage, I called out:

I’ve been waiting for you

To his credit, he laughed, and told me he had to save some fuel for the hill ahead.

Fair point. I hadn’t thought of that. Turns out that hills are even more brutal the second time around.

No drama. I realised I probably wasn’t going to get a negative split, but was still feeling good. At this point, I was thinking that if I could just keep moving, I might be able to come in under 1:55.

Then the cruellest thing of all happened. At this race, the course in 5km long, meaning that once a half marathoner hits 20km, they reach the finish line, only to have to turn around and go back 500m to make up the final km. It felt like the world’s looooooongest kilometre.

Are you serious? Again?

Are you serious? Again?

In the self-satisfied way that only a runner would understand, I finally, finally turned that last corner to the finish line, cheering myself because everyone else was busy eating sausages.

I crossed the line at 1:48:46.

All over.

All over.

I think I have a new favourite distance.

 

Your Turn!

What is your favourite distance to run? 
What’s the next BIG race you have on your calendar? 
Have you ever run a race ‘naked’?

 

 

Caught Rake-Handed


The best thing ever happened the other day.

Mr The Rake is Mr The Rake for a reason, right? He really values his privacy (and, as you can imagine, loves it when I post ridiculous and compromising photos of him).

Rake

My relationship is…special

 

The other day, he answered his phone at work, and used his full name. The caller, who was a complete stranger, immediately said

oh, it’s the famous Mr Rake

Guess who sent a panicky text message and asked me to go and review some of my blog posts?

Hilarity.

I hope everyone he works with now reads this. If you are from Mr The Rake’s work, you can check out his greatest hits here, including YOLO, Why you will Die Alone or other favourites in the Top Posts section.

Cool. Enough plugging Mr The Rake. I know you want more, but he’ll come back, I promise. Actually, he came down to Canberra with me last weekend. As spectators go, he tries, but when I arrived at the finish line, he was nowhere to be seen. I wasn’t surprised given that he’d arrived home at 3am and woke me up by continuing to pick up and drop his coins all over our friend’s kitchen sink (don’t worry, I got his sorry, hungover bum back by waking up at 5am and turning on all the lights).

Point is, when I got to the finish line, he wasn’t there.

Canberra Half 2

Wow. Gotta love a good finish line face.
Mr The Rake didn’t miss a thing – it was caught on camera!

He did, however, turn up just as Superwoman crossed the finish line. He was holding a washing basket full of bedding. 

That’s a whole story in itself.

Canberra Half 3

Superwoman and I – finally at that freakin’ finish, 21.1km later.

Mr The Rake will not, however, be attending my half marathon tomorrow.

Yeah. I’m super smart and decided to go again when the opportunity arose. Having never raced a half marathon, I’m doing two on back-to-back weekends. Should be fun.

Fun is a strong word.

Wish me luck?

 

Today’s Moment

Superwoman, superman, Va and I headed out to the Fitness Expo today. It was like being 3 years old and going to the show again. Except more full of protein, fake tan and large chested, chicken legged men with small, dumb eyes.

My great yogurt love! Chobani,

My great yogurt love! Chobani,

 

Your Turn!

Ever been to a fitness expo?
When was your last half marathon?
Has your blog ever compromised your private life?

A post that’s not really about Boston. Much.


What happened at Boston was awful.

There’s half of me desperately sad and horrified abut what happened, and another half reserved for those people who worked so, so hard to get there (and let’s out this into context for the non-runners – you don’t just sign up for Boston, you have to have raced and achieved a qualifying time, been accepted into the race, and then trained to run the race of your life) but who never saw the finish line. Nothing makes sense.


The runners who never saw the end.
Source

Always one to step back a bit, as one of my friends pointed out, this wasn’t the only explosion the world was dealing with, yet it took up the whole of Australia’s news. Iraq was on fire, but we’re so used to it, it didn’t raise an eyebrow. All of it is sickening. But for this runner, it’s all about Boston, and I know I’m not the only one.

Much love also to Lisa, who has been featured on Run with Kate before, and who ran and finished Boston just before the explosions - her blog is here if you’d like to send her some love. The same for our Neon Blonde Runner, Kat, and Phaedra, of Blisters and Black Toenails. I’m sure I’ve left out people, so comment below if that’s you!

However, this is not a post about Boston, or any other attack. So many of my friends have eloquently expressed what happened, and how the running community feels.  If you’d like to read about Boston in the running community, here are a couple of the posts that I’ve loved:

Hollie wrote about Boston from a different perspective, likening the marathon to a graduation ceremony.

Our Marathon Mom wasn’t there this year, but she did write a short and sweet post after the event. 

If you just want to read about Boston today, that’s ok, head over the links above. I’m going to start writing more selfishly now, and that’s my problem!

 

It’s about speed

As I was running the Canberra Half Marathon on Sunday (oh yeah, sorry, I’ve seriously been MIA, I ran my first half marathon on the weekend), it struck me that I might not actually want to run another marathon just yet.

Superwoman and I after the race.

Superwoman and I after the race.

I mean, I do.

But I don’t.

The Melbourne Marathon was incredible, and it hurt me, big time. So naturally I want to tackle the beast for round 2. I was all set to run Blackmores (Sydney), and then, cruising along on Sunday, it hit me that maybe this year wasn’t the year.

I realise that all of us have self-doubt when we run. On Sunday, I felt particularly crappy – I had major stomach cramps, I wasn’t well-fueled, I hadn’t prepared all that well, my garmin died, I couldn’t take on any fuel mid-race thanks to Monsieur le Stomach, and for the last 8km, I didn’t even drink water (far too risky!). I cruised most of the way, and ended up with a respectable time for me -

SC20130415-092037 (2)

On the flip-side, I got the chance to catch up with Jarrod mid-race, which was amazing, and definitely made it a nicer run. I never saw Jenelle, but she ran a 3:33 for the full marathon – so much respect!

For me, it’s this simple – I want to be faster. Much faster.

Kate

Boo yah!

I can’t work on speed and still train for a marathon and do it well. I haven’t been posting, which is something I love – if I don’t have the time to post, how the hell can I give the time to do a marathon properly?

So here’s my new plan.

Speed. 

That is all. I am deferring my marathon plans for at least a year. In the mean-time, I’m working on getting stronger, fitter, and faster.

 

That’s it.

I’ll leave you with Mr The Rake’s loving hello from last night. I asked him if he was ok when he came home and sat down.

Having a nice, quiet sit, and no-one’s talking about Aldi.

Don’t talk about Aldi. I’ll cut you. 

Poor guy. He’d been in court all day.

 

Your Turn!

Thoughts about Boston? 
Speed vs marathoning – go!
What have I missed in bog land?

Superfood Me

 

Dear everyone, I am looking forward to being back in the thick of all things blog-related over the next week. So much news! Next weekend I am running a half marathon, and meeting some bloggers to boot.

Right now though, I am swimming in superfoods.

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Life’s good ;-)

Cheap Superfoods were kind enough to send some spirulina and goji berries my way. For all you Aussies who are into the slightly too healthy for your shirt thing, Cheap Superfoods is all about getting the high quality stuff to you as cheaply as possible. It’s all online, and there are no frills. Honestly, I’m glad they contacted me. I know I’ll be ordering from them again.

This time around, I received (free) a packet of Goji Berries, and packet of Spirulina.

Say what?! As in, what the hell is spirulina? I’ve been intrigued for ages, so I jumped at the chance to review it.

So what’s the big deal?

Amino acids. Also B12. Also, an awfully large amount of protein for such a small quantity. For those non-carnivores among us, it’s apparently an excellent source of protein and nutrients – it’s a complete protein, which I understand is quite rare for a non-dead animal delicacy.

Spirulina

This stuff is crazy. I have to admit that I was initially scared of it. I kept opening up the packet, being overwhelmed by the earthy smell,and closing it again.

Finally, I braved it, and threw a teaspoon into my morning pancake.

And you know what? It was good. Green. But good.

SAMSUNG

I also received Goji Berries. I was a little suss on these too (such a cynical person Kate!). I was worried that they would be bitter.

 

Turns out, when you throw them into your salad, they have an incredible texture. I’ll be continuing to add these babies to my lunch. Apparently they decrease inflammation (though sadly no-one has indicated it can improve swollen knees or shin splints) and have a truck-load of vitamins.

Organic Goji Berries

From site

 

The verdict? Love it!

Wheat grass, cacao and chia are next on my list

 

Your Turn!

Have you ever tried a superfood? 
Do you have a favourite? 
What’s the strangest thing you’ve cooked with?

Chocolate, clocks, and kanagroos

 

Easter is a time to eat a truck-load of chocolate. Repent later.

Also – Game of Thrones is back! It may be the only thing Mr The Rake and I have in common. Otherwise it’s running, too many jobs and healthy food v beer, pizza and video games. Also law. And insults.

MY eggs

MY eggs

It’s also a time to STOP for this crazy lady, and get some sleep. And it’s been bliss. However, it’s also nice to be back into the blog world, and there’s a lot to catch up on!

 

The Running

First and foremost, right?!

kangaroo

Can you spot the kangaroo? She bounced away when she realised that I wasn’t going to back away.

I bloody well earned my chocolate. Or at least half of it.

Yesterday’s 18km trail was a wonderful way to start the count-down to the Canberra half marathon. I’m not taking it all that seriously, but I am looking forward to racing the distance (and for me it marks the point at which the marathon becomes very real). More exciting is that I’ll get to cheer on Jenelle, who is running the full thing.

And on the way into the mountains, I found a kindred spirit in Va. I can now say I’ve met a woman who took a clock to bed in the middle of the night, only to wake up at 4am, and be struck by the realisation that a large wall clock will only tell her the time – not wake her up. She got up to get her daughter out of bed to put the clock back on the wall, and plugged her normal alarm clock back in.

Va and I - still smiling post-race and pre-breakfast.

Va and I – still smiling post-race and pre-breakfast.

 

The Blog

Apparently I was nominated for a best Australian blog competition. I’m fairly sure I don’t have a snowflake’s chance in hell, but if you can spare a moment to click on me, please do!

 

The Goal

#goalgetter2013 hasn’t been on my radar enough this month. The two week break didn’t help!

My goal for March was to spend more time running outside – and to get in a great tempo. Sadly, this was totally derailed. Between knee problems and no running, this was a mostly cross-training month.

Anyone want to share their goal this month? In April, I want to get in three weights sessions a week, with the exception of the Canberra half weekend.

I think this will help me build some strength before I hit marathon training for real. Maybe I’ll even start to like it!


The Goal Getter Challenge: At the start of each month, choose a goal to aim for. On the last day of the month, post a photo with your progress to instagram or twitter using the #goalgetter2013 tag. See you there!

 

Mental Monday

I can think of no better way than this to get ready for the new week ahead.

Mental Monday

 

My negative: there is so much I haven’t looked at all weekend, it’s going to be  mess to sort out!

My positive: I am rested, happy, and back in my runners -the world can work around me.

 

Your Turn!

What blog posts have you loved this week? (Give me things to read!)
What do you do to celebrate Easter?
Your Mental Monday Moment?
Are you into the chocolate thing, or do like Easter for other reasons?