Last week I surpassed the $2500 mark for my fundraising for the Nike Women’s Half Marathon with Team in Training. Because we met the goal before April 12th, I had to make good on my promise to run the Monument Avenue 10K dressed as a block of tofu. Thanks to everyone who donated and spread the word, I heard cheers of “go tofu!” and “run tofu, run!” all along the 6.2 mile course on Saturday morning. Here are the photos!
It was a beautiful day for a race, and definitely the warmest weather I have run in while training for the half marathon. I had the pleasure of hosting (and doing completely unnecessary carbo-loading with) my friend Sarah from The Smart Kitchen over the weekend, as she completed her very first race!
I stuck with my friend Jess for the whole race, which was also her first. One of the most exciting moments of the day was watching the winner of the race come into the final stretch, as we were making our way to the start. That’s right, several people completed the race before we even began. We were in a jogger wave that started one hour after the first wave, and as we were making our way over the the start line area, we just happened to be on Franklin Street, in the last few blocks of the course, at the precise moment that the number one and two runners came flying through. I have never seen someone winning a race in person, so it was pretty exciting! I can’t imagine what it feels like to come in first place in a road race (and will likely never know).
The race course itself was pretty entertaining, with live bands, enthusiastic cheering groups, and a lot of costumed runners. It was a terrible training run because of the erratic pacing due to overcrowding on the course, so I just seized the opportunity to work the costume and have fun with it. I felt more like I was just hanging out with friends than I was exercising. We even stopped twice to socialize with friends and family in the median on Monument Ave, adding at least 10-15 minutes to our official time, because we really were not going for speed (as usual). The goal was to have fun and I think we accomplished that.
Unfortunately I have been having some swelling and pain around my right Achilles tendon over the last two weeks, and it flared up near the end of the race. I think this stems from a series of hard workouts during which I pushed myself harder than I probably should have, and the sudden addition of hills to my routine a few weeks ago. I dialed my running activity way down over the last week in an effort to heal what is acting quite a bit like a tendon injury. Of course this caused me to spend more hours in the office, and consequently have a major meltdown while making dinner one night this week, due to the absence of a good outlet for my overwhelming work stress. Not my finest moment. Oh, my poor husband.
After ice, anti-inflammatories, and rest for several days, I felt great at the start line of the 10K. However, around mile 4, I felt the now familiar tendon soreness that indicated I was still not fully recovered. Based on the swelling and pain I have experienced in the 24 hours since the race, I think it is safe to say that I am off it for at least another week. I want to heal as much as possible before the big race in two weeks, so I can have an enjoyable experience for my first half marathon. If that means my “taper” is more like a hard stop, then so be it. I want to be rested, recovered, and ready to run with TNT on April 28th!
There is still time to donate to LLS, so if you missed the opportunity to give before last weekend, please visit my Team in Training page to make a donation in any amount. If you are in Richmond area, please join me at Legend Brewing Company this Thursday for happy hour. Legend will donate $1 for every beer purchased between 4:30 and 7:00 PM on April 18th. Hope to see you there!