Monday, July 4, 2011

Running Trifecta

Ad-Honorem Coach, Tony Seabolt, scheduled for The Sole Sisters several “triple” runs to mimic Ragnar Relay Race. The triples should be run in less than 24 hours. As I couldn’t join the team for any of the triples, I scheduled my only one, with, of course, races. The Fourth of July would be the perfect weekend for it.  On Sunday 3th, in the morning, Pioneer Race 10K in Olympia; at midnight the Firecracker 5000 in Seattle; and Yankee Doodle 10K in Everett on the morning of the 4th. The distance of these 3 races simulated pretty much the distances of my Ragnar legs (5.8, 3.2 & 6.4).

On Friday 1st I decided to bail out from the Pioneer run. Reason, to drive a total of 160 miles for a short run didn’t seem worth the effort. Let alone when I found out that I was mistaken and the race was a 5K instead of a 10K. Now, for sure, the driving was not worth the race.

The Firecracker 5000 became then my first “leg” and it was a total prelude for Ragnar. Not only because it was part of a triple run in 24 hours, but also because I would be running with three of the Sole Sisters. The fabulous run started at 11:55 pm on the 3rd. To mention that we had a blast would be simply short of words. We ran together the red, white and blue race, and had a fantastic time. Kristen was our camera-woman taking pictures while running. Jess made sure that all of us were always in sight. When I slowed down during mile 2, she was constantly looking back to make sure that I was close. I felt really humble seeing that somebody cared so much. During mile 3 I felt strong and picked up the pace and Marie ran all the time by my side; if I pushed she pushed; if I receded she receded as well. She never went ahead but stayed by me. Great lessons from friends that know what “together” means. I ran my second personal best 27:13 (or my best, as my current PR of 26:43 has been in doubt – Run For Tina, a course that seemed short). I got 5th place out of 55.

Now, I had only 5 hours of sleep to get ready to double the distance in the Yankee Doodle Dash. I woke up kinda dead at 6:00 am and after a warm shower and in another red, white and blue outfit I took off for my second “leg”. The day was sunny and in the low 50’s. Perfect for a short run. I went with a heart rate strategy. At mile 2 I felt really tired, and at mile 3 when I wanted to increase my heart rate, I simply couldn’t. My aerobic system was ready to be turned up, but my legs didn’t have the strength. Then at mile 4, I heard somebody from a balcony making a lot of noise and calling me. My friend Melinda was there with her hubby and a cowbell, cheering on me. I turned my head back, told her “I love you” and took off. It was the boost I needed. My heart rate raised to where I wanted, and I felt so good, that I could put the speed I wanted. I finished in 56:57 and in third place. This was my second best (best 56:22). During the awards a lady told me: "We were head to head until mile 4, when your friends called you and then, you disappeared. I never saw you again."

I felt great and victorious. Boy, two races in less than 8 hours and I had clocked my second best in each. But the day is not over. I had another run to complete my triple. This time won’t be a race but a run by the neighborhood. After a nice breakfast, a movie, and a 3-hour nap, I hit the road for 3.5 miles. Between the smell of the firecrackers and the barbeque of most neighbors, I completed my run at a 10 min/mile pace. I was definitely tired, but I made it. 

This triple wasn’t a real trifecta (where a bettor predicts 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in a horse race), but I decided to call it like that. It was not a race with three finishers; it was one finisher in three runs, with a couple of good placings. That was my Running Trifecta.

Sole Sisters
With Juan and Raphil, son Diego's schoolmates
With Shauna and Glen from my running club Chuckit
At Yankee Doodle Dash
At Yankee Doodle Dash
3rd place at Yankee Doodle Dash

1 comment:

Christina said...

I saw all your races and now it makes sense how you did 2 on the 4th of July.

Thanks for the baking soda comment. I'll have to try that. Each run has it's own plastic bags so I don't reopen them till I get home and they are "ripe". I'll look for the green bags and get some baking soda to try that out next Ragnar.