Monday, October 10, 2011

I am completely stunned! Denver RnR 1/2


1:52:09


I still get a little bit of a chill just thinking about it!

I'm really, really tired and still need to make some lunches for my kids - you know, 'cause 16-year old's left to their own devices will pack garbage for lunch - so I'll keep this pretty short (hahaha, right!).

My time, my effort: I truly am shocked, I had no idea I had it in me.  Be it the incredibly cool weather for the race (38 at start time, 48 at the end); the high mileage I have been logging the past 5 weeks; the huge cut-back week I had prior to the race; the fact that I love road racing and it's been about a year and a half since I last ran one and was just so excited to be there; or maybe I just don't know my own speed yet, but when I crossed the finish line, I was absolutely shocked.

Whatever it is, I've been patient; God is finally saying yes.

I had no expectations, no goals, no anything swimming in my head other than I had hoped I could run around 2-hours.  I even debated lining up with the 2-hour pace group but they were a couple corrals back (it helps to lie and submit some sort of "in my wildest dreams" predicted time to land you in a higher wave) and this race is so big I just didn't want to start so far back and have to claw my way forward.  So I popped in my corral, which happened to be near the 1:40 pacer (yeah, hahah, in another life, but not this one.  Yet) and thought I'd just bide my time until the 2-hour group came up on me and pray like mad I could hang with them.

I ran Garmin-less.  My Garmin is on the disabled list - the battery is toast and it holds a charge for about 10 minutes.  I've spent countless hours with Garmin on the phone about this and thought it was a software problem but apparently it's not and I haven't invested in the $79 replacement charge (plus shipping) yet.  Non-Garmin racing is my pretty standard protocol, I really don't like to race with the thing; the race tends to become one where I am constantly obsessing about my pace and I look at the thing 4000x in a mile.  Still, since I have no idea of my pace right now, I wanted to wear it so I didn't kill myself at the start, like I notoriously do.  But I had no choice so I wore my old, reliable Nike watch and I just took splits at each mile marker (and I have to admit, the races I have not worn my Garmin are the races I have run my best).

The course isn't very difficult, at least if you're done a little hill work - which I haven't.  Or done some speedwork - which I haven't.  But the hills tend to come at the end of the race (though I'm swearing the hill at mile 3 is grossly misrepresented in this profile chart!!) so it is probably a good idea to conserve a little at the start.  At least for me - which I didn't.
Off I go.  I missed the first mile marker so when I hit the 2nd marker in 18 minutes, I thought I was doing fine....but really, that first mile was one big cluster mob and it had to be around  a 10 min/mile, so really, mile 2 was pretty quick.   I march on.  When I got to mile 5, I was steadily hitting an 8:30ish pace and I honestly couldn't believe I wasn't dying.  I didn't feel fantastic, but I also didn't feel bad and all I kept thinking was: this is a race, it is suppose to be tough.  Miles 7-9 were the most mentally challenging, it's along this section that you can actually see other runners, in front and behind you, and I just got a little overwhelmed at how fast I was running this thing.  I just told myself that this was really a test race to see where my fitness level was and when I hit the wall, at least it'd give me an indication of where my weaknesses are and where I need to focus the training.

But the wall never happened!!!   Not really.  I felt I slowed from mile 9-10, I was tired here and it was a gradual uphill, but my watch said this was my fastest split at a 8:01.  HUH?  Mile 10.5 you enter Cheeseman Park and it's one big hill and then levels out a bit and then one final climb in the race to mile 11.5.  I felt incredibly strong here for some reason and when I exited the park, I knew the uphills were behind me and I thought to myself that I only had a little over a mile left, this would be tough, but tough is what I love.  My heel was doing great.  My hamstring was doing great.  The biggest problem I had was that my left forefoot (my "good" foot), I am developing one big callous from my new foot striking position (I presume) and that callous was really bugging me (anyone know how to get this thing removed?).  I just couldn't get over the fact that I was consistently hitting paces in the 8s!  I mean, I haven't run anything under a 9:30 for the most part in my training and honestly did not believe it was in me.

Up until mile 12, I really was not paying attention to where I was with my over-all time.  I would concentrate on being strong, listen to my music, watch those around me, and when the mile marker came up, I would glace at my watch, hit the lap button, then look at my split, and onward I'd go.  So when mile 12's pace clock showed a 1:43 and I knew I just had 1.1 miles left, I think I got the biggest smile on my face - I knew I could get a sub 1:55.

I can't even express - honestly - how stunned I was when I crossed the finish and stopped my watch and saw a 1:52:09.  Yes, in a past life this time probably would have had me jumping off a cliff, but not in this post-injury-from-hell life.

There aren't enough exclamation marks to use here how good I felt!!!

I wandered around to find the sweat-bag check; I was absolutely freezing from being so soaked with sweat, water, Cytomax and the chill of the 48 degrees (according to one volunteer).  After I got my bag, I found my friend and client, Dave (who did an amazing PR of 1:46 - yay, Dave) and then ventured to the beer garden where I met my friends and ran into the one and only Nora!!
She ran an awesome race, too, and we shivered together as we talked for awhile.  She's such an incredible person!  She was waiting for her husband to finish running the full marathon (on a very bad ankle - yikes) so we chatted awhile until my friends wanted to leave to get some real food (thanks, Nora!! :)).
What a perfect way to end the day: with friends, having a beer, eating good food, and celebrating the race, a race which in my wildest dreams, never thought was in me!!!

So the race is done and I move forward soaking in all that I learned from it.  If I am able to walk today (that's a big IF), I will enter week 7 of my marathon training program, feeling a little energized from today's race (duh!) and excited that this guy is going to help me hone in on my nutrition so I can get my weight back down to ideal racing weight and start feeding my body with the proper foods to fuel my running more efficiently.

I'm pretty pumped to see where this journey is going to take me.  I can't wait!

Lunches are calling....

Run strong, my friends!


And THANK YOU, to all, for your awesome support and encouragement this past year and a half, I can't tell you how many times I thought about the blog when I was running; it's been one extremely long and difficult test of patience, I couldn't wait to finally share some news with y'all.

89 comments:

Heather @ The World Through My Eyes said...

Yay, congrats!! Great job!!!!

Teamarcia said...

This made my week! I thought of you all day yesterday but didn't wanna bug you with a text. YOU'RE BACK JILL! And I'll bet the best is yet to come. Congrats! It's SO GOOD to see you do so well You've earned it!

C2Iowa said...

Yes!! I am glad for you. Very good run you had; regardless of the overall situation.

You still need me to pace? Does not seem to be in the cards if you keep on truck'n like this.

BabyWeightMyFatAss said...

How wonderfully awesome!!! I'm so happy for you!

Rachel Wasserman said...

outstanding! sounds like a perfect day!

ShutUpandRun said...

Wahoo!! She's back. The corner has officially been turned. So excited for you and for what the future has in store. Sorry to have not seen you yesterday...I know you were nearby somewhere in the throngs of people!

Anne said...

Big congrats Jill!!! I am SO happy for you...this is fantastic news! You are definitely back and I have a feeling you are going to rock that marathon too :) Woohoo!!

onelittletrigirl said...

Sheeeeeee's baaaaaaaaack!

Julie said...

I am so INCREDIBLY happy and proud and excited for you!! What an amazing comeback it was! Good grief, girl...you're on fire!...what's next?

Adrienne said...

Of course this is no surprise coming from me...yay for running sans Garmin! Congrats on such a performance at this stage enjoy the afterglow.

ps that's some nice schwag too!

Kate said...

What a fantastic day! I know you must still be glowing. I feel like *I* am glowing for you. I'm so happy for you. :) Yes...all the patience and searching for an answer has finally paid off in a big way. Awesome race, girl!!

misszippy said...

AWESOME! So, so happy for you! Weren't you just lamenting how long it is taking you to get speed back? ; )

I love watching you progress and head towards the marathon, which will be your big day to say $%^&# it to the stupid heel!

Kandi said...

Congrats, Jill! That is an awesome time. Sounds like the perfect temp for running. I'm so excited for you!!

Shellyrm ~ just a country runner said...

How great that your body secretly had all that potential still wanting in there for you! Your body didn't forget all those years of running and racing while you were recoverying. And see how wonderfully it came back for you?! Simply amazing Jill!! So so very proud of you! What a great day!

Tara said...

Congrats sweetie, you SO deserve to have an awesome race like you did! You have been VERY patient and I am happy for you!

I think a good pedicure would totally take care of that callous. Hehe. You deserve one of those too. :)

Ok, my amazing friend, I'm going to get to work, but I just wanted to pop over to tell you how excited I am for you! You're going to kill Carlsbad.

Christi said...

Great job Jill! You are doing such great things and I am very proud of you. I can't wait to run with you maybe your speediness will wear off on me.

CautiouslyAudacious said...

Awesome finish time for current or past life :-) I'm def. jealous! Good job! I had two other friends there too. I like the swag for this one..

Nitmos said...

Awesome race, congratulations! There will be many more to come but enjoy this one for now.

Happy Runner Girl said...

Nice Race! Great running weather! I also ran it!!

Tina @GottaRunNow said...

It's so fun when you run faster than you thought you could. Congrats!

Jason said...

I am so happy for you. Amazing what a great race can do for your psyche isn't it?

You are going to rock your next mary for sure.

Jamoosh said...

That is downright awesome! See, you are already faster than me!

Jen said...

Great job. I will be thinking about this when I attempt my Half this Saturday.

Johann said...

I am so happy for you Jill! Congratulations! God is definitely saying yes! Awesome! You deserve this. That is a speedy run. I can only dream of a time like that nowadays. Happy, happy, happy my friend!

Jenn said...

Well Jill! No disrespect, but I am completely stunned too!!! This was such a fantastic race for you and SO timely. Thinking ahead here, I think it's a VERY real possibility our paths will cross in the city of Samuel Adams and Baked Beans in 2013. So very proud of you and just SO happy for you!! Oh-this next year is going to be SO fun to watch Jill. Just so fun....

Rose @ Eat, Drink, and Be Meiri said...

GREAT JOB!!!!!!

What an awesome time!

HappyTrails said...

We are SO HAPPY for you! I know the ecstasy of FINALLY having it come together - YAY!!! Are you going to keep us updated on your new nutrition journey? Awesome, awesome, awesome on an all-around fantastic day for you! And of course you knew you had 'it' in you-you just had to have the opportunity to get re-acquainted with 'it'. :-)

Karen said...

Congrats! That time is fantastic!! :)

Ana-Maria RunTriLive said...

This IS Jill's comeback! SO thrilled for you, Jill! Not sure if Boston 2013 is something of interest to you, but I am sure you can get in if you decide so. So excited for you! Congrats!

racing dawn said...

Yay Jill!!!! So exciting! What marathon is next??? Congrats on being back and feeling good!

Tom said...

Yay!! Congrats Jill!!

Abby's Road said...

Congrats! And what really nice swag to make a comeback for!

Velma said...

YES!! Inspiration for me

Whitney said...

This is so awesome! Congratulations on a great run!

Terzah said...

Put me on the list of people who are NOT surprised. I knew you'd do awesome, I just knew it. Can't wait to hear how the rest of the training goes for Carlsbad! You're the best!

Julie said...

So I was all excited yesterday morning when I found a tracker on the race site...It sounded like it would give spits so I added all the folks I knew were doing it and sat and waited for something....well it showed 4 of the 6 starting. Yea!!! And then nothing..why do the make these promises to me and then let me down? Finally I went for my little 4 mile run and came back and it showed finishing times for some. Woohoo!!! I was so thrilled when I saw your time. I just knew there was no way you could be dissapointed with that! And if you were as I said in my text I was going to kick your a$$! You my friend ROCKED IT!

GZ said...

Here are some: !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Well deserved and stoked for you. Well run Jill!

bangle44 said...

Wooo!! I feel your excitement! Congrats on a fine race!

April said...

Congrats on a fantastic race!!!

Sarah Mann Willcox said...

Let me add one more "Congratulations!" to the mix!! Well done!

Marlene said...

SHE'S STILL GOT IT!!! What a fantastic race. I am beaming as I sit here and read. SO happy for you!!!!!!!

Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel said...

So great, Jill!! If that's not a comeback race, I don't know what is.

Anne said...

We all knew you had it in you and wow, what a boost. Congratulations!

Raina said...

well I see I am not the first commenter here!

Fantastic Race Jill. I am NOT surprised by this AT ALL. The hill work you say you are missing? How about all that dang mountain climbing and pike's peak ascent stuff?? :) Let's face it, you are ready to rock a great marathon soon!

I'm almost tempted to race without my pace baby sitter now too.

Laura said...

CONGRATS, CONGRATS, CONGRATS! So happy for you.

Amanda@runninghood said...

Again Jill, Amazing!! So inspired by this. Really happy for you in getting back out there!

DRog said...

suuuuuuuuuper happy for you

:-)

so great
WTG Jill!

good news and more to come

D

bobbi said...

(this is where reading blogs on my damn phone gets me in trouble - I THINK I commented, but didn't..)

You are awesome!! CONGRATULATIONS! This made me so so happy to read this morning - outstanding!

Mike said...

Wow, congrats on a great time! You should still be smiling about that race.

Alma said...

Right on, Jill! I'm SO VERY HAPPY for you! It's such an incredible feeling to surpass your own expectations. Your journey and current outcome definitely give me hope!
Keep on runnin'!

Char said...

Congratulations Jill. That's a run that you truly deserved. Go ahead and bask in the afterglow.

Black Knight said...

Congrats for this great performance. Now you are more confident and everything will be easier. I knew that you could do it.
Brava Jill.

Liz said...

Wow, wow, wow! I woud KILL for that time! Congratulations, well done and go you!

Brian said...

Awesome race, Jill! Great time!

funderson said...

Hooray, Jill!!!! Way to go!
You are an amazing fast-pants, lady!

Glenn Jones said...

Woot! Amazing finish Jill! It seems like just yesterday you were hobbled, now you're sub 2:00 again. Outstanding!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

I am soooo happy for you

lindsay said...

congrats!! you deserved a great race - that's for sure :) while we are "in the trenches" it seems like things are taking forever/never gonna get better, but we just have to look up and beyond and realize this is small potatoes. this is a speck in time compared to all the future good times! i'm glad you kept a mostly-positive 'tude about yourself and especially that you are reaping the rewards of good health and good running now. hopefully i won't be too far behind :)

ajh said...

What a great report. Your happiness and thrill is so evident and deserved! Woot Woot!

Molly said...

well look at you!!!!!!!! I can't tell you how excited and happy I am for you! I can only imagine what you'll pull off in your marathon : ) Congrats!

Gillie said...

Yay! I made into Jill's blog! Congrats on your race Jill. That is an amazing time for all you've been through and the fact that you aren't doing any speed work. Does this mean I don't need speed work???

Scott Keeps Running said...

Awesome! Congrats!

Amanda - RunToTheFinish said...

YEAHHHH!!!! You so motivate me to get my butt up and push through. I know I need to allow my body time to come back, but you definitely show me it will come back if I keep going

TX Runner Mom said...

WAY TO GO! Great job, you definitely kicked some butt!

Stacey (aka UltraPrincess) said...

Great report and congrats on a super race!!!!!!

Bubble Boy said...

You are Amazing Jilly Beans! OSOM Run! Hey, could ya slap a lunch together for me while you are at it? Long may you run!

Jennifer said...

I know I sent you messages on FB but oh lord woman! I am so proud of you. You kicked ass and won the battle. I want to b just like you when I grow up! XOXOXOXOX

See.Kate.Run said...

What a great race Jill!! How cool is that time?!?! I am so happy for you. :D :D

Katie @ Will Race for Carbs said...

What an amazing time! I ran the Denver RnR too but I was slower than you! That hill in Cheesman Park just about killed me because I was so tired! Congrats on such a great race!

elaine said...

Comment #70 and I think you're going to read it??? Well, if you do, YOU LOOK GREAT. Good job on the half.

Meg said...

Congrats little one, you rocked it!!! I see big things for you at Carlsbad, so happy!!!

Suzy said...

Jill - You rocked the race!!! Congrats on doing so much more than you even hoped for.

slow ernie said...

:)

Which Garmin do you use? Here's a thread on using an I-Pod Mini battery in the Garmin 305. http://www.runnersworld.com/community/forums/shoes-stuff/gear-electronics/garmin-305-battery-replaced-5-ipod-mini-battery

Beth said...

Wow Jill, awesome job, so happy for you. I was there volunteering at the first aid station, what a gigantic race. I hope to get better and break two hours on a half sometime next year, you will be my inspiration. Happy running!!!

Johann said...

Hi Jill!
There are many runners here in SA that have run more races than I have...many more. Way over 3000. My one friend ran his 700th half marathon last week. I've done 385 half marathons. That record is far, far away.:)

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

What a stellar time Jill!!!! I feel like you are a completely different runner than when I started reading! The RNR is no joke with that elevation climb!

Fair Weather Runner said...

that's amazing. HUGE congrats!!

Joanna said...

Oh my goodness, this is awesome!! Officially, welcome back!

The Green Girl said...

Oh, Jill, I finally got around to reading your race report. ::huge huge hugs:: I am so proud of you. And so freakin' happy for you.

Love the shirt and medal - awesome colors.

Congratulations!

Caratunk Girl said...

STOKED for you!! That is SO FREAKING awesome.

The shirt and medal ROCK. Seriously ROCK ROCK ROCK. I am jealous.

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

Fabulous! It's super news to have Jill back at the races and running so well. Happy Days ahead!

Please blog about your nutrition journey too.

John and Becca said...

Oh that is so awesome! I bet you are still on cloud 9!! I bet your family is super happy too. Congrats to you. It's like you can breathe again.... Running is so sacred.

Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel said...

No new posts to comment on, so I thought I'd leave a note to say it was great to meet you, too! I'm sorry for all the logistical back-and-forth, but really glad we got the chance to connect. Now you just have to make it out to Philly :)

XLMIC said...

My narcissistic self-absorption (or something like that) made me miss this report! So totally excited for you, Jill! You are just a superstud! Way to do it, woman :)

Christy @ My Dirt Road Anthem: A Runner's Blog said...

Congrats on an amazing run! LOVED reading this. I am so happy for you!!!

Running Librarian said...

Great race! Don't you just love it when race day comes and you have a great day! Way to go! :)

2 Slow 4 Boston said...

Loved the race report. I had a pretty good marathon the last time my Garmin wasn't working. Go figure.

While your foot was doing it's bad thing, it's nice to know your muscles didn't forget how to rock a race. Congrats on exceeding your expectations!

Irene said...

I thought I had posted here, but I guess I didn't! Yay for you! I'm so happy for you. Persistence and patience does pay off. You've still got it, baby!

Mamarunsbarefoot said...

Hey that's me!!!