Running The Lines – Double Race Weekend Craziness

Weekend Race READY! Let's gooo!

It’s no secret that I’m a little crazy.  No secret.  For me to sign up for back to back races is no big deal. I get a lot of crazy looks, and some sarcastic comments, but I’m used to that by now so I don’t react or respond. That’s their opinion, and what they think has nothing to do with me …

It is crazy, but like I said, I am crazy but in a good way.  I’ve already discussed obsessed vs. addicted, and have decided that I am neither.  I am enthusiastic and dedicated to my fitness … I am committed.  I’ve been fortunate also to have been blessed with free and discounted entry fees into some really cool races. I can’t complain … I’ve run some really cool races this year and have been having a lot of FUN!  This weekend was no different.

I love My Noah! =)
Noah was awesome to run with his crazy Mama!

Saturday you would’ve found my clan and I in Lathrop at the first annual Survivor Mud Run NorCal.  I was able to score two entries via Schwaggle for Chris and I!  We were “IN.”  However, at the last minute, Chris was unable to get Friday night off, so my boy, Noah, stepped in and took his Dad’s place.  It was cool though, as my friend, Alexis, was running with her boys, and one of her son’s, Connor, is friends with Noah. It was an awesome morning of fun!  We were in the second wave and we had a lot of fun!  3.5 miles with 16 obstacles!  Yeah!  Too much fun!

Stopping to pose at the water stop!
Towards the finish - feeling strong.

I found the course to be fairly easy.  After the uphill start, then the downhill led us straight to the first obstable … mud crawl!  There were several mud pits, a cargo net climb, plank walk, tires, heavy net, monkey bars, pipe crawl, stair runs, rope web … It was all fun and crazy.  The only thing was was that I ran alone because my friend, Alexis was running with Lisa, and my Noah was running with Connor and another friend, Matthew.  I am okay running alone, ’cause really, I’m not ever really “alone.”  I met some really nice people along the way as I ran an encouraged those that I passed.  Also, I forget that people recognize my crazy self, and my friends working the water station recognized me immediately!  I really had a great time.  One of the most memorable moments was running by some women, saying a few words of encouragement, only for them to tell me, “Your shirt is awesome! And your ass rocks, too!” That fueled me for the rest of the run and I just had a lot of fun! A lot of people were surprised that I had enough energy to encourage people.  Heehee … don’t they know that I’m usually just talking to myself?!

DONE!!! Dirty Girl! =)
Chillin' after an ice bath & foot scrub by FF Stockton!

My stats were pretty good for the run.  I felt that it could’ve been so much better had people actually moved over and along for the obstacles ’cause I zipped thru all the obstacles, but a lot of my time was wasted waiting for others whining and worrying how they were gonna get thru!  Really? Ah, well … It was all for fun, yes, but I’m a little competitive. I was happy to have my brother, Patrick, and my sister-in-law, Camille there.  This was their first race, and they had a great time!  My brother was pretty excited.

Crazy, Fun Mother & Son!
With my son and my brother, Patrick!

For an inaugural/first event in Lathrop, it was well organized.  I’m sure it’s because of the fact that the event was held at Dell Oso Farms which has holds a yearly Corn Maze every Halloween that attracts thousands upon thousands of people from all over NorCal.  Packet pickup was organized, as was parking.  I enjoyed the post-race expo and the food court.  I love that my local Fleet Feet (Fleet Feet Stockton) was there and that I got an ice bath for my feet that was awesome!

Race Ready in Calistoga!
With Chris - Grace 4 A Cause! =)

Thanks to my friends at On Your Mark Events, Chris and I were fortunate enough to gain entry into the Inaugural Napa Valley Silverado Half Marathon on Sunday.  We were planning to run San Louis Obispo, but for one reason or another, it just didn’t workout.  This half in Calistoga was perfect.  The size was right, too!

0400 came quickly!  Chris and I left pretty early because we were unsure of the traffic.  Fortunately the drive was uneventful, and again, this event was well organized for an inaugural!  We were able to stop for our customary Starbucks breakfast and rest for a minute before the race started.  There were enough porta potties to accomodate everyone.  Same day race registration seemed to go easily for those who decided to run at the last minute.

Start!

The race started on the track of the high school.  We wrapped around the track once and headed out onto the road which would eventually lead us to Silverado Road – the main road for this half which was an out and back.  It was an awesome run – all rolling hills, beautiful scenery, water/aid stations every 1.5 – 2 miles that were well stocked and had happy volunteers!  I enjoyed looking at all the beautiful houses, the rows upon rows of grape vineyards, and counted the seemingly endless spas.  I talked to other runners, and encouraged them as we ran together.  Can’t forget that there were a good amount of Calistoga Police and CHP officers there – and they did a great job of directing traffic and keeping us safe on the road.

Signature running pose - Running Code 3 - Shaka!

For the most part, I ran this race “alone” … Silverado Road was closed to the public, so I was able to run the entire race down the middle, following the yellow double lines that separated the lanes.  I really enjoyed running the lines – following it the entire way, although it probably was not the smartest thing as the road was slightly crooked.  Another thing I enjoyed was seeing my shadow as I ran – crazy bouncing pony tail, but steady, and strong body.  I ran behind a really nice girl for the majority of the race from about mile 3 to close to the end. I would learn at around mile 10 that her name was Becky, and I thanked her for letting me run beside and behind her.  She was equally grateful to have run behind me “following my wings” from mile 7 until mile 10 then we ran together until the end with another runner named Jason.  It was fun running behind Becky as her gait is more like a “prance.”  She runs on her tip toes.  She was very sweet, and I had a nice time running with her and Jason.  As the race was an out and back, we ran together on the track towards the finish line and high-fived each other at the end.

Chris at the turnaround!

I was happy to see Chris after I hit the turn around of “the big tree.” He looked like he was doing okay, trucking away, and he laughed as he passed me saying, “I feel as if I’m running the wrong way.”  Neither one of us is fond of out and back runs, but it was still a really nice run.  The playlist that I had made for this run was absolutely perfect.  I really enjoyed be-boppin’ and singin’ along to what I had on my iPod.

The only complaint that I had about this half, and there was NOTHING that any race director or anyone could do about it – was that it was tooooooo HOT!  Seriously when we started it was already 60s.  I was sweating and huffin’ and puffin’ before we hit mile 1.  I dumped water down the back of my head and down my back at every water stop.  I have learned that I’m very comfortable in 40 – 50 degree weather.  60s and above not so much if I’m running long distances.  I’ve gotten really good at gauging the temps and knowing what to wear.  It’s funny because I can tell you that I have worn capris for only 2 races this year … I have worn shorts, a tank top, and arm sleeves or a running bolero for every other race I have run.  The weather has just been good to me this year in regards to running.  That and, like I said, I’ve gotten really good at figuring out what I’m comfortable in.

Stick a fork in us ... We're DONE!

The post race hydration and nutrition tent was well stocked.  I drank cups of cold water, and ate some really good snacks.  I sat in the shade for awhile, waiting for Chris, and got to know other runners who also sat beside me.  When I saw Chris, I got up and took his picture, and he asked me to run to the finish with him which I thought was really sweet.  So I ran beside him around the track as he made his way around to the finish line.  It was a nice, fun gesture, and I truly enjoyed running beside him.

Weekend SUCCESS!!!

Can’t complain.  I had a really great time at both runs! I’d do them both again!  I had an awesome weekend! Next up for me is the San Francisco Divas Run.  My racing schedule can be found here.  It’s going to be a fun, fun summer!  You ready?  Let’s gooooo ….

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