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We did it! We finished our first 50K! We were excited about the race but we were even more excited about the finish line. Last weekend the Hubbo and I ran the Go Short, Go Long, Go Very Long 50K right here in Tulsa. I'm very proud of us for finishing considering our longest run for this training season was the weekend before and it was only 16 miles.  See below for my recap of the race.



Course - 5 Ginger Points. The course was really great for my first 50K. It was almost completely flat with only 1 hill. Unfortunately the 50K participants had to run 2 laps around the course so we saw that hill twice, but overall it was good. 

Entry Fee - 5 Ginger Points. The entry fee was minimal. For this race and all the extras that came with it, this was the perfect cost. We got a full meal at the Blue Rose Cafe after the race, 2 beers, a long sleeve tech shirt, and a finisher medal for around $50.

Participation - 3 Ginger Points. The 50K was limited to 50 entries. That made it for a lonely second lap after all the 25K racers were finished. But this is only the second year for the race so next year may be bigger.

Parking - 3 Ginger Points. There is a small parking lot at the start line which is great if you can get there early enough to find a spot, but if you don't you are left to find a spot in the residential area next to the river. We got there 45 minutes early and the parking lot was full. We had to park up a hill. Not fun to walk to after a 31 mile race.

Shirt - 4 Ginger Points. For the cost of the race we got a pretty nice shirt in our packet. It was a white long sleeve tech shirt. The only problem and reason for the point deduction is that it was a unisex men's tech shirt, so it runs a little big on the ladies.

Medal - 2 Ginger Points. Insert sad music here. For my first 50K, I was kind of sad when I saw the medal in person. It was much smaller than I was expecting. But for the price of the race I have to keep things in perspective. 

Expo - N/A 

Temperature - 4 Ginger Points. For January in Oklahoma, you never know what you are going to get. We got lucky. It started out around 40 degrees at the start of the race and warmed up to the mid 50's. The wind was light and we didn't get rained on. 

Overall Organization - 5 Ginger Points. The race was well put together. My only complaint was the bathroom situation. It was almost 9 miles into the race before the first bathroom was available. Then once you got to the bathroom there was a long line. Other than that I think the race was very well put together. I'd do it again, well maybe the 25K next time. 

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I wasn't kidding when I said I was excited to see the finish line. Here is a race volunteer giving us a high-five as we finished.

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We were lucky to have our very own support team come out to cheer us on. My Mother-in-Law, Father-in-Law, Brother-in-Law, his Wife, and their dog, Sherman, all came out to cheer us on. They even made some really funny signs! 
We even saw our good friends Beth and Tyler come out to cheer us on during the run. 

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My awesome Hubbo made a bib for me to wear on my back to remind me of my mantra for this race. All I had to do was Keep Going. I got a lot of compliments and kudos for this. Good job Hubbo! 

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Now we are recovering this week. The only thing I really need to do, is to decide if we are going to buy 50k stickers or Ultra stickers for our cars. Decisions. Decisions. 

 
 
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It's time. The 50K is this weekend. All week I've been getting myself mentally prepared and focused. Having picked up my race packet today makes it all seem more real for some reason. I'm as ready as I'm going to be. I've been chatting with friends, co-workers, twitter pals, just about anyone who will listen to me talk about this race.

Here is what I'm excited about:
  • The race is local so I'll know a TON of the runners
  • I know the course
  • The course is SUPER flat
  • I have an AWESOME Hubbo who will be racing with me
  • When I finish, I can apply for Marathon Maniacs
  • When I finish, I can put an Ultra sticker on my car
  • I will have pushed myself to new level

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As a side note or bonus blog, whatever you want to call it. My awesome Hubbo surprised me with this sweet gift yesterday. I posted this picture on my Blog Facebook page, but wanted to include something about it on my blog too. 


I wrote a blog a week or so ago called, I. Am. Terrified. where I talked about my fear of running a 50K and then selected a mantra for the race. All I have to do is Keep Going. Doesn't matter how fast or slow. I just want to finish the race. My Hubbo took my mantra and turned it into a race bib that I can wear on my back to encourage other runners! Either as they pass me or are behind me.  Well let's face it, most likely they will see it as they pass me! :)


I'm really excited to wear it. He is going to wear one on Saturday as well as another Ginger friend of mine, Amber. It will be fun to have a little group of us encouraging others to finish the race and to Keep Going.


Happy Running! My next blog post will hopefully be my Go Short, Go Long, Go Very Long 50K Race Recap!

 
 
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Well that was what I was thinking last night as I was really struggling at mile 2 of my 5 mile run. I didn't make it to 5 miles. My attitude got in the way and I'm kicking myself for it now.

On my Meet the Ginger page on my blog I said I would share my running adventures with you. I've decided I should share the good and the bad. Last night is one that I would characterize as bad. Really bad.

The Hubbo and I started out running at our favorite park. It has a 3 mile loop that makes it easy to get our weekday miles in. Between mile 1 and 2 I started coughing pretty bad. A couple of weeks ago I think I coughed my way into a bruised rib or bruised diaphragm because it hurt for several days and was tender to the touch. So I was afraid of that happening again last night.

By mile two I was so frustrated that I wasn't having a good run that I stopped and walked a mile back to the car.
That last mile took forever. A lot of thoughts were running through my head and stumbling their way out of my mouth as my Hubbo walked by my side supporting me every step of the way.

Here they are for your reading pleasure. 

  • Running is stupid.
  • I don't want to run a 50K next week.
  • How am I going to run a 50K when I can't run 5 miles without wanting to die?
  • Running would be easier if I hadn't gained weight.
  • How did I gain 15lbs while training for a marathon? Who does that??
  • Because I've gained weight running has been more expensive and caused some injuries and pain.
  • Because I have PCOS my body will always fight me on my weight. It doesn't like carbs, but runners need carbs. How can I eat a low carb diet and fuel myself to run a marathon?
  • I don't like the fact that I had to move back a group in my marathon training.
  • I don't like the fact that I can't run a 10 minute mile to save my life at the moment.
  • I feel so guilty when running with the Hubbo because I know he can run a sub 10 minute mile and he's holding back for me.

The last 6 months of running have been difficult. I lost a toenail. Gross, I know. I had IT Band issues. I've spent a ton of money on Chiropractor visits, new inserts, new shoes, and new equipment to relieve pain and injuries. And I've gained weight. I can honestly say that in the last 6 months I feel like I've had 2 good runs where I didn't feel like absolutely passing out and dying in the middle.  That is a lot of miles to push yourself and be miserable. 

But I keep doing it. It has to get better right? I have all these goals I want to achieve and races I'm signed up for. 
I've decided that I need to change my attitude. I saw a graphic on Facebook today that helped me do that and kind of laugh at the same time. It said something like this "Running is 90% mental and the other half is physical." If you have read my blog post called Running Makes You Dumb, this graphic kind of makes sense. 

Attitude Changed.

I will run the 50K. I will finish the 50K. I will join Marathon Maniacs.
I will run Little Rock. I will finish Little Rock. I will figure out what to do with that huge medal. All I have to do is Keep Going.

Okay, Pity Party Over. Thanks for reading.

P.S. Tonight's run was tough, but wayyyy better than last night. 

 
 
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Photo from Little Rock Marathon's FB Page.
I like socks. I like monkeys. I really like sock monkeys. But I'm even more excited about this huge medal we will be racing for on March 3, 2013 at the Little Rock Marathon! The picture doesn't do the size of the medal justice. This thing is huge!
 
At the Route 66 Marathon expo, I had the opportunity to meet one of the CICs (Chicks in Charge) from the Little Rock Marathon and we talked about the medal for a bit. 

Fun facts about the Little Rock Marathon:
  • There is no time limit. They have the clock on for everyone.
  • Every finisher gets a medal. Even the 5K & 10K participants.
  • I hear they have an awesome after party later that night. 
  • The medal is bigger every year.
  • The Little Rock Half Marathon medal is bigger than the Boston Marathon Finisher Medal! 
Now if that doesn't make you add this race to your bucket list, I don't know what will!

There is not much that can beat having a huge medal for a race. Unless a race offers 2 medals! In December the Hubbo and I finished our second marathon, the Double Half Marathon aka the Half & Half Marathon here in Tulsa. A lot of times people ask why we run. Well let's be honest, medals are cool! We enjoy the running, and training for the races, we enjoy the races themselves, but we really like collecting something that we feel we really earned every step of the way. Today our second medal finally came in from the marathon we did in December. See the picture below. If you want to read more about how the race went click HERE

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The Hubbo has done a great job of finding cool ways to display our medals. This is what he did for our first marathon. 
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And here is what he did for our first three half marathons.
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What do you do with your medals after a race?
 
 
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I am afraid of a lot of things. Spiders give me the creeps. I'm afraid of the dark. Toddlers that stare at me with that blank awkward gaze totally freak me out. And I can't walk through a parking lot at night without thinking that everyone I see is going to try to steal my purse for the $4 in cash I have in it. Which is also why I usually carry my cell phone and car key in my pocket when I have to go to the store alone. Fact. 

A couple of days ago the Hubbo and I registered to run our first 50k. I had to Google to find out just how many miles that is. Google says a 50k is 31 miles. Just FYI. The race is right here in our own hometown of Tulsa. Bonus! No travel costs! It is called the Go Short, Go Long, Go Very Long. You can see the cute medal in the picture below. 

You may be wondering why we registered to run the race? Well, let's be honest. So am I. Here are some of the factors we considered when we decided to sign up.
  • The 25K was already on our schedule to run with our training group, so we would be spending the money anyway.
  • If and when we finish we will have met the Bronze criteria to apply to become a Marathon Maniac
  • We get a cool medal.
  • Who doesn't want to run 3 marathons in 90 days?
  • And last but not least, it would give me material to blog about. 


But really the deciding factor was the Maniacs thing. We are already Half Fanatics so we thought it would be fitting to join the Maniacs as well. 

And the truth of the matter is I really am terrified. This race is right in the middle of our training for our goal race; the Little Rock Full Marathon. So get this. We ran the Route 66 Marathon in November, took about a month off and then ran the Double Half Marathon in December. Started running again last week and now we have 3 weeks before our first 50K. Then we'll take one week off from the run to rest and then have about 7 weeks to continue our Little Rock training. It just seems crazy to me. It is totally taking me out of my element of my normal training routine. 

So I decided to come up with a race strategy and a mantra. My mantra is simple. Keep Going. That's it. That's all I have to do. Even if I have to walk some or a lot of it. I want to keep going. I want to finish. I want to join the crazies who call themselves Marathon Maniacs!

As for my race strategy, the jury is still out on that one. I'm thinking of either slowing my starting pace way down or doing intervals. I'm also currently taking suggestions. 

Be sure to come back in a few weeks to read my race recap of the Go Short, Go Long, Go Very Long 50K!

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