Saturday, October 27, 2007

RFE TR #42

Total Miles Trained For Elijah: 348.1

Oh thank the Lord -- my 22-miler is DONE! Now it's just a downhill sleigh ride to Memphis!

But seriously, folks, it was BRUTAL out there today. I won't sugar-coat it -- it was rough on me. I decided that, even though I did this course faster in January, it is the hilliest course I could have possibly picked, and I am proud to just have finished. I will not apologize for slow times going through five towns and two counties!!! (towns: Benton, Haskell, Glen Rose, Perla, Malvern) Check out my course: (clearly I am insane)

I am super lucky; Annette and Kelly planned to run miles 10-22 with me today. We were going to meet at 8 AM at the Moose Lodge along Hwy. 67 because it is exactly 10 miles from my home. And it has a large parking lot. My entire course would be alongside Hwy. 67.

The first ten miles were decent... even though I admit I wasn't "feeling it" even from the start. My ankle was OK... it was more of a mental thing. FYI, I WILL be feeling it on marathon day! And I was super excited to get to Annette and Kelly. I just knew that those two would make the last 12 miles fly by.

The hills started to kick in by mile 3. Hills are my friend. I like hills. They challenge me. Supposedly I am good at hills. But obviously today would be the challenge of a lifetime! (OK, for the second time -- see January comment.)

By the time I got to the Moose Lodge, I was sincerely hoping they were running late so I could take a major break, even though I knew continuing to run would be the best thing for me to do. Drat! They were on time! Ha. We started out and we were going pretty fast. I informed them that my goal pace was around 12:30, and Annette told me that today was all about me. They were there only to support me, so we could run however I wanted. How nice!

We tried to make a pit stop early on (in Glen Rose) but there was no public restroom at the gas station we went to. UGH! I hate that. So we took our chances and visited the high school. Even though the ACT exam was being administered, we were allowed to go in and use the facilities. Yay!

Glen Rose goes on FOREVER. I asked Annette to start telling us her Chicago Marathon story. It actually took us a while to get to that because we were busy talking about everything under the sun, including people we didn't know that we had in common (including one boy-turned-girl). This is a very small world.

Annette and Kelly made their opinion known about the hills! And Annette let me know that she did not like the idea of me being out there in the middle of nowhere alongside the highway. In my defense, this is a once-per-training-plan run, and I was not alone. Ha! She was a concerned friend.

We did a lot of hill walking, as my splits will show. We took some... but I knew we had a LONG way to go and energy must be conserved for the finish.

Chasen drove by (in my car!) at about mile 17. That man is to be commended; he has suffered from probable food poisoning since Thursday. He joked that it was far easier to drive to Malvern that to hire a divorce lawyer due to making me and the girls walk from Malvern to Benton (or the Moose Lodge). Ha ha ha! Seeing him picked up my pace a bit. And he gave me a new Powerade.

Those girls really, really helped to get me through it all. I told them that when we finally reached Perla (and if we blinked, we'd miss it) that would be a very good moment. When we finally did get there, we stopped for a photograph with Annette's cel phone. Fun! At that point I told them that I had a surprise for them a few miles up.

Yesterday Coach Terry told me that IF I had anything left in me near the end of the run, I should try to be like Pre (Steve Prefontaine, for anyone who has been living under a rock) and leave it all on the course, i.e. give it all I had until the bloody end! So as we approached our surprise (a historic home that my office, but not me, is restoring) I yelled out "Let's 'Pre' it!!!" And we FLEW to that house (my quickest pace being 10:03 -- sorry, Pre!) and Chasen was waiting on us. We walked all around it. My boss said to do that when I told him yesterday that I was going to repeat my crazy run to Malvern. Now I can tell him that I did - with others!

It was mile 19.50 and man-oh-man did I want to get done. We zoomed by what I thought would be the ending point, the Walgreen's, where Chasen was parked (in my freshly washed car - thank you, darling!) but I had more to go. Next on our left was a monument company. There was a life-size one of someone on display out front. In my 21+ mile fog I asked Kelly if that was a saint or the Lord. Can you believe that? As we got closer it was clear that it was the Lord so we paid our respects as we ran by; I asked for Pre-like speed. From there we tried to 'Pre it' again to the very end. This time it felt like I was crawling, yet my Pre-speed was 7:47. YOWSA! Presto-chango, we were DONE.

Kelly, FYI, had not run 12 miles in twenty years! So today was a big day for her, also. She is doing an upcoming half-marathon (a little ole one called ST. JUDE!!!)

Here we are - all done in Malvern: Kelly (in white), Annette, Susan.

Sweet Annette insisted on taking a photo of Chasen - our support staff - and I.

Next we went to Walgreen's. Chasen got waters for the girls. We chatted it up the entire way back to the Moose Lodge parking lot. The girls were amazed at the hills we had just conquered. They followed us home and we had a post-run feast. I again made the Runner's World potato salad. Annette brought zucchini muffins. Kelly brought tons of fruit AND some fabulous fruit dip. Annette even brought me a light for my running hat (since I run in the dark so often, she said!)

This is my "victory plate." Everything was delicious.

Crazy Annette (and possibly Crazy Kelly) had to leave shortly thereafter to go and run SOME MORE with some others. And tomorrow! Whoa baby.

Here are my splits (which were the pits - but hey, I finished):
Mile 1 - 11:20
Mile 2 - 11:42
Mile 3 - 11:57
Mile 4 - 13:26
Mile 5 - 11:41
Mile 6 - 13:43
Mile 7 - 13:06
Mile 8 - 13:34
Mile 9 - 13:04
Mile 10 - 12:20
Mile 11 - 11:26
Mile 12 - 12:26
Mile 13 - 12:18
Mile 14 - 13:53
Mile 15 - 12:50
Mile 16 - 15:14
Mile 17 - 15:28
Mile 18 - 15:35
Mile 19 - 14:24
Mile 20 - 14:41
Mile 21 - 13:27
Mile 22 - 11:19
Total - 4:49:03
Average - 13:08 per mile
Calories Burned - 3157

After a much-needed shower I put (OK, actually Chasen put) Biofreeze on both of my hamstrings. They felt good today, thankfully. Then he proceeded to ice down my ankle (which also felt pretty OK).

Now is this a photo or what? LOL

Next a two-hour nap ensued. Afterward I told Dawn (Elijah's mom AND my dear friend) that all five of my major events for this weekend had to do with cancer:
1) run 22 miles to prepare for St. Jude -- all proceeds to the hospital
2) bake 13 dozen cookies for a bake sale sponsored by my women's philanthropy group to benefit this fellow
3) create the Team Elijah scrapbook to present to Elijah when I see him in the hospital on Tuesday
4) send the final e-mail solicitation to everyone I know for donations to St. Jude - I am 3/4 done with training as of today, after all
5) send the final pre-marathon thank you/update e-mail to everyone who has donated - to update them both on my progress and Elijah's condition

Elijah is doing well. He checks in to Arkansas Children's Hospital on Monday for his stem cell transplant. His weight is good, and that is an excellent way to start the 6-week process. Chasen and I volunteered to take the Talley Family dinner every Tuesday night that they are in the hospital. So on Tuesday we're going to take them Elijah's new favorite: Corky's ribs. Soon, though, he will only get IV nutrition. So ribs it is for our little friend!

I am excited to read Annette's version of today's run!

Good luck to Marathon Chris in the Marine Corps Marathon tomorrow! We thought of you today!


Arland said...

Awesome job on conquering those hills Susan. You did it! By the way, I have a bag of corn that looks just like yours in the photo. Those work really well.

Maddy said...

Way to knock out those 22 miles! You did a great job and you handled those hills like the champ you are!

I must have missed the Runner's World Potato Salad recipe. Can you send it my way? It looks awesome!

Petraruns said...

what a run! You did so well! and look at that foot! And please publish the potato salad receipe - it sound lovely.

ShirleyPerly said...

Great job on those hills!! Glad you had company on the run. I agree with the others that the potato salad looks tasty -- actually everything on that plate. (Guess I must be hungry :-)

IrishBlue said...

Way to go girl! You're body is ready. It's all mental from here on out.

Today I meet with a ladies prayer group and lunch and we'll be praying for Elijah, his family, and you.

nylisa said...

Way to go!! That was inspiring. I totally needed that. When I reach Central Park on Sunday I'm going to reach deep and PRE it!! That was sounded like a great run Susan!

shadwell said...

Susan, you rock! 22 miles is awesome. Fantastic work.