Frozen Bonsai Half Marathon

I’m sorry I’m so bad at this keeping-up-to-date-on-my-blog thing. Just your typical end-of-year holidays nonsense, plus the craziness that ensues at work come December with the additional fabulousness that comes with moving a friggin’ lab- all the fun of moving to a new house, but with the added benefit of super-sensitive, obscenely expensive robots and DNA sequencers!

Race recap time.

I skipped the Santa Sprint 5K fun run that I was supposed to do. (This is a bad trend, I know.) It was cold and rainy and X was going to be in the jogging stroller for this one. Nope. Used the time to go Christmas shopping instead. That was an easy recap.

I DID NOT SKIP the Frozen Bonsai Half Marathon, even though Jay and I wanted nothing more than to stay at home, drink a bottle (or 2) of wine, and watch a Firefly marathon instead. Hmm.. Now that I think about it, that would be a half marathon because there were only 14 episodes of that show. See? It would have been fine.

We got there with what we thought was plenty of time to spare before the 9am start since Jay was able to pick up our packets at Jack Rabbit Friday night on his way back from dropping off X at my in-laws’ in Brooklyn for the weekend. Buuut then we both had to pee. The line for the portapotties was a bazillion people long. It wrapped around the entire registration area. NYC Runs is pretty good at this whole race organization thing, though, so they had volunteers guiding people to the open potties and hustling everyone along. The line actually moved fairly quickly while the emcee was announcing that the race would start in just minutes.

We ran to the start line just in time for the gun to off.

Since my training had fallen to the wayside for a while, I had no idea what run/walk ratio to use for this run. Being kind of rushed, I ended up using the same ratio I had been using for my previous short run- 90 second run and 30 second walk. Unlike other some previous races, I started the intervals right away. I had gotten into the not-so-good habit of skipping the early walks and going out too fast, leaving me to start bonking by mile 6.
So run, walk, run, walk, run walk, holy crap I started sweating balls in the layers of clothes I was wearing.

Note to self: 39 degrees isn’t actually cold when you are running.

So run, walk, run, strip off jacket, run while holding jacket, tie jacket, run, walk, run….

Central Park is a gorgeous place to run. I’m always jealous of my city friends who can run there all the time. Horse-drawn carriages, interesting characters to people-watch, crazy-awesome architecture… It’s just so.. so… nice. (Except the horse poop. Mind the horse poop if you ever run this.) Being up in the rural end of the ‘burbs sucks for running. No sidewalks, no populated trails, just you, the bears, and the no one to hear you scream when the bear is eating you. But I digress.

I felt great for a very nice chunk of this run. I wasn’t tiring. I wasn’t hitting that point of “what the fuck am I doing here? Why did I decide to do this? Can this be over now.” I was sure that I could beat my Surftown time. That was all ruined about 1 mile after passing the 6.5 mile portapotty. Then the 12hr stomach bug that my son had on Thursday found a nice little spot in my intestines to set up camp. It is quite difficult to run when you are doing all you can to make sure that your pre-race fuel and in-race snacks don’t try to make an encore appearance in any way, shape, or form. <For the record: I am not a vomiter. I have vomited maybe 3 times in the last 8 years. You can probably now figure out which way my peanut butter and jelly on wheat was trying to escape.>

One would think that if I was willing to give up some time and run a little off course to find a potty, I could find one in the middle of one of the biggest tourist destinations in the world. One would be wrong. I couldn’t find a potty until after the 10 mile mark.  All the while I was losing steam and starting to feel the weakness and exhaustion that X had all day Thursday. Oh, and in the middle of this was the hill that my husband lovingly refers to as “Asshole Hill.” It isn’t all that steep, but it’s just a whole lot of up, flatten for a second, up some more, oh and then up again. I may or may not have walked for 2 or 3 run/walk cycles.

But even through this, my pace stayed below 11min/mile so I thought that, once I was relieved, I would pick the pace up and still maybe be able to muster the 2:30 time that I was looking for. Nope. After using a less than solidly positioned potty, the exhaustion stuck around for the whole rest of the day. I came in at 2:36:46.

Not my best time, but definitely not my worst. I actually see it as a pretty good time seeing as I was feeling like someone had replaced my innards with packing peanuts soaked in sriracha.

Extra good stuff: No knee, shin, or calf pain afterwards! I was even able to run a little extra with my son after the race. I may be getting better at this running thing.

Have you had a ‘code brown’ experience while running?

What do you think of those people who can pee/poop/whatever on the move? (If you are one of those people, I both admire and am disgusted by you. Sorry?)

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