Sunday, December 07, 2008

A Great Weekend

Aaah, another busy week is in the books! After my treadmill 5K on Wednesday, I took Thursday off. On Friday I had probably the most productive workday I've had in ages... which was good because my "reward" was getting to see and play hostess to Liberty and Lance, friends from Prairie Grove, Arkansas. As you'll recall, Lance came to run the Little Rock Half Marathon last spring (click here to go down memory lane). I have the honor of being the one to inspire Lance to run his first race (that half marathon) after stopping by their house after running the Tulsa Route 66 Half Marathon last fall (click here). He had just taken up running and was up to about 5 miles.

Lance aspires to run the 2009 Little Rock Marathon - the full. So he intended to run the half at St. Jude this weekend (I ran the full not very successfully last year). Well get this... As of about 3 weeks ago Lance was up to 14 miles. He went online to register for the St. Jude Half and it was full... so he registered for the FULL MARATHON! Aye aye aye! I advised him to get in a run somewhere around 20 miles and just adjust his time goal, i.e. just run it as "practice" for Little Rock and aim to finish. Period. Well... to prove to himself that he could really do it, the next weekend he went out and ran 26.2 miles. Holy cow!

So yesterday we had the pleasure of providing course support for Lance. He aimed to run with the 4:00 pace group. We easily caught him at about mile 3. From there, due to traffic and road closures, we had a heck of a time catching him. I bet we didn't see him again well past the halfway point. But each time he was precisely with the 4:00 group. Wow.

We caught him again at about mile 18 and then again at mile 21. He just looked fantastic and didn't budge an inch from the pacers. I was in complete awe!

Lance runs strong at mile 21.

Considering our traffic troubles, we went straight to AutoZone Park to perch at the finish line. We were NOT going to miss his big finish. No way! On the way there I called Lisa. She had run the half. We found her and she waited with us until Lance came into the stadium. She looked terrific, in spite of her saying that it just wasn't her race. Read here.

Here is my best running buddy in Olive Branch. She'll kill me for posting this... but I think she looks beautiful!

The 4:00 guys came in... and no Lance. Uh-oh. He jokingly had said that he hoped he wouldn't blow anything out or need an IV drip. As a marathoner, I imagined all of the possible conditions he could be enduring to make him a bit off schedule. But before long he FLEW into the stadium. I mean he came in like a KENYAN! It was a sight to see. We cheered our heads off!

We saw him hobbling up towards the bleachers with his medal and blanket on. I could only imagine how sore he must have been to finish just over 4:00. If I ever ran 4:00, I'd probably need a stretcher!

The champ slowly makes him way UP the stairs to the concourse.

After all that we drove home and Lance got cleaned up and we had a victory meal at Huey's. He and Liberty hit the road and I took a nap. You'd think I had run a marathon I was so pooped!

I spent this Sunday afternoon tieing up loose ends on a project that I'll be traveling to Little Rock Monday-Wednesday for. After a while I was just stressed with it. You know how you get when you've just had enough yet there is more to go? So I took the opportunity to de-stress on the treadmill. I walked for 60 minutes, had dinner (which Chasen grilled!) and am now finalizing the project and my travel preparations. No rest for the weary!


Arland said...

Hey Susan, looks like I probably just missed you on the course and at the finish line. We were at Popular and Main just after the start and I was at the finish line when the 4:00 group was coming in. Guess I was too busy trying to see our runners to notice the people in the crowd. Sounds like Lance will have a great marathon in Little Rock at the rate he is going.

lizzie lee said...

What a great post and support to your friend Lance. A very good story!!!

peter said...

Lance done good alright. The bug has bitten deeply, obviously. I saw a game at AutoZone a few years back. Wonderful stadium but I remember it was depressed with a short hillside just beyond the outfield. Not a place I'd want to walk out of after a marathon! But how fun to finish i there. Good luck on your trip.

Newly and Forever, Tamantha said...

Thanks for the tip on Breakaway...they were at the Expo with the insoles, so i bought a pair and I think they may help! I know you're not supposed to do something new on race day, but i wore them and I actually felt better than if I had worn my other insoles! It was knowingly hurt vs. Maybe hurt? I still had some "adjustment discomfort" but all in all, I was glad I wore them. We just did the half and I'm glad! Man it was cold!

wowo said...

Hi, Susan, I ran the half Saturday and had a great time! The course was hillier than I was expecting, but running by the river and down Beale Street was a great experience!

ShirleyPerly said...

Wow, congrats to Lance!!

Indeed, those steps in the stadium to get to the food are TOUGH after you've run 26.2 miles. Lisa looks pretty relaxed and happy, though. Will check out her race report.

Tammy said...

Lance did a great job how wondeful, and that picture of Lisa looks great!!! I hope I look that good after running a full marathon. Must have been exciting to be there.

Bev said...

Glad you are doing so well and able to stay busy. Have a good trip to Little Rock. Continue to take care of yourself.