Tuesday, April 14, 2015

April Fools Race Weekend in Atlantic City

My birthday is April Fools Day. I found out that Meridith at Scootadoot shared the same birthday. She informed me of the April Fools half marathon that she runs and how much fun it is. I, of course, HAD to run this race. Not only would it be so fun to hang out with Meridith and the other chicks, but I am an April Fool so it seemed to be my destiny.

Birthday twins and April Fools!
I decided to sign up the kids for the one mile race and asked my husband if he wanted to run a race as well. There was a 7k and 11k option. He was agreeable and chose the 11k. And that was that. We were signed up as a family for a race weekend. All it would take was a 6 hour drive to Atlantic City.

As race weekend drew near I was excited to learn that not only was I going to see Meridith but I was also going to see Vic (who lives only 90 minutes away and I had yet to meet), Cam, and Jenn.

We made it to the first day of packet pickup with a half hour to spare before it was closing for the day. I was happy that we didn't have to go early in the morning before the races. The 11k was first. We stayed at the Courtyard Marriott which was just down the street from Resorts where the start/finish line was. So my husband made his way over to the race and we stayed and had breakfast before walking over to wait at the finish line. It was really fun cheering for my husband since he is usually the one spectating. He enjoyed himself and did awesome.

My hubs almost to the finish of the 11k.
The kids race was 2 hours after he finished so we had time to go back to the hotel for the kids to wind down a little and for my husband to shower. Again, this was a perk of staying so close to the start. We headed back and my son was excited but my daughter was nervous. There were lots of characters around, which she doesn't like, and she was nervous they were going to be on the course and at the finish. Thankfully they weren't and we talked her into running.

I let my son run by himself. I was nervous about this at first. But I put him in a bright shirt so I could spot him and we picked a place to meet if I didn't get to him right away. Turns out I had nothing to worry about. He ran so fast! He finished in 7:15 which was 10th place overall. He is only 8. I was such a proud Mama. I was able to get him right at the finish with no problems at all.

My super speedy son!
We went back to our spot to wait for my daughter. She came running to the finish at 13:05. She is only 5 so I was super proud of her for running the whole way. We were worried she would want to be carried. It was a great Saturday for our racing family.

So proud of my little girl!
Finally Sunday came and it was my turn. I headed down early to see the Scootadoot chicks. They were entering the costume contest. Let me tell you, they had the best costumes I have ever seen at a race. They were the Rockford Peaches from the movie A League of their Own. Such amazing costumes and they rightfully won the group contest.

Seriously, such amazing costumes and ladies!
I was so excited to spend time with them before the race. They are great gals. Since Vic was a bit injured and wasn't sure how she would hold up, she decided to take it easy and run with me (she is super fast normally!). We ran together for the first 5 miles. I was hoping to PR again. I had PRed previously at the Cuse Half on a really hilly course. This was flat as a pancake so I thought it would be doable again.

It was nice to chat with Vic and get to know her a bit more. She is so nice and kept checking on me to make sure I was ok and encouraging me. She even told me about some of the sights on the boardwalk. By the way, running on the boardwalk was really cool. It is a lot less forgiving on the knees than pavement. When we turned off the boardwalk, I groaned. But thankfully it was out and back.

Around mile 5, I started tiring. I definitely did not feel as strong as I did at the Cuse half. I was tired from a long business trip I had the day before this trip. And I didn't get running or cross training in consequently. So I started falling behing and told Vic, who was feeling good, to go ahead.

I kept a good pace for me for those first 5 miles so I had a good cushion for the second half of the race. I need to work on negative splits. I kept up a decent pace for the rest of the race. It was good enough to PR by a full minute exactly!

PR, baby! Love the medal too.
I found Vic at the finish and found that she did awesome. She was nice enough to snap pictures of me and my family.
Loved running with Vic!
We hung out waiting for the costume contest to be announced and found Meridith and Jenn, who had finished her first half. It was so awesome sharing this birthday race with Meridith!
The kids were getting restless and we had to hit the road so unfortunately, I missed out on seeing Cam.

Overall, I really enjoyed the race. Running by the ocean and on the boardwalk was really cool and a nice change of scenery for me. The race was well run for the most part. My only complaint was runner tracking wasn't working. The 11k runner tracking was pointless as there was no split time given. And I didn't even receive the text my husband started until a half hour later. My husband only received the 5k split text and that was late too. There was a 7 mile mat so he should have gotten that. He is still waiting for the text that I finished. I just ended up texting when I was close and so did he so we knew to look for each other.

The best part was the theme of the race for me being an April Fool and of course, getting to spend time with my friends. Thanks to Mer for recommending the race to me!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Why I Can't #runalltheraces

Yesterday was Avengers half marathon weekend registration day. I did not register. But I will say I came thisclose. My friends and I talked about it a while ago and I decided it just wouldn't be feasible. I had told the kids that I wouldn't go back to Disneyland without them. The flight to California is expensive. And I was already going to Marathon weekend in January.

But along came registration day. Suzanne had already registered through charity. I knew Patty was registering. And then Tania registered too. So many friends going. It would be so fun to hang out. Another coast to coast. Avengers theme is cool. Surely this race will sell out quickly and it won't matter. Right?!

But no. The Infinity Gauntlet Challenge still had a few spots left this morning. And the half marathon has not even sold out! More than 24 hours later. Crazy! Unheard of for runDisney as of late.

So of course I spent yesterday afternoon looking at flights. It's the Diamond Celebration! But it's a $600 flight. So no. I am proud of myself for not giving in to the craziness. It's so easy to get swept up in race registration day excitement.

It seems there are many out there who somehow #runalltheraces. Believe me, I would love to. There are so many races out there I want to run. So many places I want to visit. There's all the Disney races, Big Cottonwood in Utah. There's a race in Savannah that looks gorgeous. I want to run a Rock n Roll and a Ragnar. But it's just not realistic for me.

I have a family. I enjoy my race weekends away. My husband is amazing and doesn't complain at all about me having fun while he is taking care of the kids alone. But I don't want to leave them so often. I miss them when I am gone. And they miss me. Even if I did want to go, I have a job and I only get three weeks of vacation a year. I like to use most of that to take vacations as a family. Don't get me wrong, I use a few days for girls trips. Let's say I had all the time off in the world, there's still that whole thing called money. Haha. These trips get expensive. Even if you register with a charity, there's still a flight to the race. And if it's at Disney I will want to have park time. $$$ it all adds up.

So in summary, I'm not running all the races. But I have a bucket list of races. And I am marking them off little by little. And boy, am I having fun doing that.

What about you? Do you #runalltheraces? What race should I add to my bucket list?