Saturday, April 9, 2016

Race Recap: runDisney's Glass Slipper Challenge

Way back in July 2015, I signed up to run the Glass Slipper Challenge.  I was in the first few weeks of marathon training, so I had my plan in place.  I was going to continue the Team in Training fall schedule for the rest of the winter, but use the half plans starting two weeks after the race. 

Training this time around was okay.  I didn't have a terrible winter, so I could run outside a lot.  The bigger problem was getting a run in before dark during the week.  I had been staying at school later to make sure everything was ready for the next day.  By the time I made it home, it was dark. 

The magical day came.  I spent my morning at school and took a mid-afternoon flight from Indy to Orlando.  My mom was supposed to meet me at the resort, but her flight kept getting delayed.  I made it to the resort first.  By the time my mom finally got there, the race expo was closing.  We went te next day after our breakfast reservations.

The Expo was much better than I had experienced at my last Princess experience.  It took over all of HP Pavilion and the Josten's Center at the Wide World of Sports complex.  I was slightly disappointed at the lack of Princess Half Merchandise they had available the next day.  I ended up with a travel coffee mug, a magnet, and an "I did it" shirt.  I also bought another cute running shirt.  I really wanted the Tervis water bottle, but they didn't have any by the time I got there.

The races were great!  I managed to be right upfront for the 10K.  I really tried to keep the pace slower for the first leg of the race.  I loved running through Boardwalk and the Yacht and Beach Clubs.  It was a solid run with a 10:02 min/mile average pace.  The half was also pretty good.  The course was very similar to the first time I ran it, three years ago.  I had an average pace of 10:29 min/mile.  I didn't stop for any character pictures until the end of the race, where I met two of my favorites!  

Friday, April 8, 2016

I'm a ambassodor

I was recently selected to be a RunningSkirts Ambassador! I am so excited to be part of this group!  I love their products--I don't really wear much else for bottoms. If you plan on shopping for some cute running clothes, check out my link here

They are giving away a skirt a day through April and May!  Check it out at their Facebook page for more information!

I Really Need to Get Better at Writing More Freqently

It's been almost a year since my last post.  A year.  A lot can happen in a year, and a lot did happen. So, it's time for a long over due update. 

Last May, I was up for several interviews in the school district I worked in.  I was hoping to move up from an Instructional Assistant to a teacher.  I interviewed and never heard back.  It was disappointing, but I moved on and continued applying to other schools.  I had also convinced my coworker and friend, E, to run a half marathon with me in September.  We had started training and running after school once a week.

June came, and I had a few more interviews for teaching positions.  I kept running with my teammates from Team in Training to keep up for my second attempt at the marathon. 

July was a busy, crazy month.  I had roughly 15 teaching interviews in two weeks.  I thought I had nailed one, but I got a phone call saying I'm on their short list for the next opening.  I also signed up for the Glass Slipper Challenge.  It was a great distraction from the craziness of interviewing.  I was still doing my weekday runs with my teammates and weekend runs either alone or with the team and our coach.  I kept getting calls for interviews, and the school that put me on their short list called me back for another opening.  I collaborated with a colleague to get the information I needed to land the position.  After the interview was a blur.  I drove home and waited.  an hour later, the school called and offered me to job! I was elated! I started the next day.

August brought new challenges as I adjusted to working more and attempting to keep up with my training. It was difficult, but I still managed one weeknight run with my group.  I'm still working on the work-life balance, to be honest.

My in-laws were supposed to come out in September, but fate changed that plan.  My father-in-law's leukemia got increasing worse.  This started our long journey.  He began chemotherapy in order to have a transplant.  So, when he came home for a two week break between rounds, we drove out to visit.  He was still optimistic.

I also ran my first black-flagged race in September.  It was the half marathon I had convinced E to run with me.  Due to lightning, the race was cancelled before we got to mile 3.  I was so disappointed, not only for myself, but for my friend as well.  It was going to be her first half, and Mother Nature had to ruin it for everyone.

October brought my 30th birthday.  I have graduated to a new age group.  I celebrated by running 8 miles at group training and a five mile race at a winery.  I have decided that it is worth it to sign up for races with wine. 

Marathon attempt 2 was in early November.  I was doing pretty good until I hit the IMA grounds near the statue of the crawling guy, near mile 18.  Something clicked when I saw him, and I sent a text to my coach that I was in serious need of help.  Unfortunately, he (or any of the other coaches) were at mile 23 and still catching the half marathon racers.  By mile 22, I had been passed by the 4:30 and the 4:45 pace groups.  I was in need of help or support or something.  My quads kept cramping and my stomach felt yucky.  When I finally saw my coach, my response was "Everything hurts, and I'm dying."  I was ready to be done.  He pushed me to go faster, and then we hit the finishers chute.  Coach wanted me to sprint.  I almost threw up.  I crossed with a new PR, and was immediately escorted to the Medical Tent (because they saw me dry heaving in the chute).  I had to sit there until I finally asked If I could get food.

Later in November, we bought a house--sort-of.  We actually bought land and a construction site.  Our future home is now just weeks away from being ours.

We traveled home for a different Thanksgiving.  We had two days with my family.  Then we spent two days with my husband's mom.  His dad had the transplant, and wasn't able to leave the hospital yet.  The Christmas holiday was similar, but we made it to Cleveland to visit his dad.  They were staying at a place near the hospital, so they could get there easily for monitoring appointments.

We later got the news that the first transplant didn't take.  The doctors said that a second one should take and that his blood cell numbers would go up.  They did the transplant right away, but his number never went up.  I got back from the Glass Slipper Challenge (I'll talk about that in a different post), to be greeted with the news that they were moving forward with hospice care.  We drove out that Saturday, and I wrote up lesson plans for another Monday out.  We made it early Saturday afternoon, and left late Monday morning.  An hour after we got home, we found out my father-in-law was gone and free from pain. 

It's been an eventful year, and I will be glad to put this school year behind me.  There are 34 more student days to go and three professional days.  I have almost survived my first year of teaching, running, building, and finding balance in this crazy thing we call life.