Wednesday, July 4, 2012

What I learned in 1 hour, 6 minutes, and 38 seconds

I ran a 10K and I'm a mommy!  Today's run was a great personal accomplishment and I really enjoyed the experience.  I signed up on a whim, thinking it would be a good way to kick off the holiday, and only trained for about 3 weeks.  When I arrived at the race site this morning and saw all the "real runners" stretching and warming up and I started to get nervous, realizing that I didn't really know what warming up for a 10K would be.  I could tell this was a serious group because this was the first run I've been in where none of the participants wore their complementary shirts.  Wardrobe says a lot in these situations.

The "Real" Runners

I at least felt like I was wearing the right thing, having just purchased my first pair of Nike Tempo shorts.  I lined up near the back of the race, hoping I would find friends there. 
I ran 95% of the race, but had to stop briefly to get a couple of good pictures, and spit in the creek (unladylike I know!)  The track was half uphill and gravel, a very different environment than running on flat pavement.  One of the songs on my playlist was Sugarland's "Down in Mississippi" and the phrase "all you're going to see is a$$es and elbows," started making a lot more sense at about 4 kilometers in.

Corn on my right, beans on the left.
It was really a beautiful morning, clear and cool with a slight breeze.  The view was pretty incredible as well.  The time gave me a lot to reflect on, and I can say that in addition to finishing (and not finishing last,) I learned a lot about myself and the sport of running today.

1. Nike Tempo shorts are the greatest invention. Ever.  (I guess that's not about running or myself per say, but I learned that I need to buy more.)

2. I'm not very competitive, but I am the Miss Congeniality of the race.  When we reached the half way point and turned around I was the only one who was cheering on the people in the last half.  I started wondering if this is unspoken etiquette that you aren't supposed to talk to your fellow racers...

3. I don't know the rules or etiquette of running.  Which side are you supposed to pass on?  Is it appropriate to give someone the thumbs up when they pass you?  Is it okay to stop and take pictures?

4. I can't drink and run.  I must stop, sip, and then continue.

5. Litter bothers me more than I thought.  Come on people, this isn't the Summer Games, slow down enough to get your paper cup in the trash can.  Thank you.

6. Short strides uphill, long strides downhill.

7. My iPhone playlist is a little questionable.  Flo Rida, Nicky Minaj, Ke$ha, Kanye, Black Eyed Peas, and until I heard all the songs back to back, I hadn't realized I downloaded all my hip hop tunes with the explicit language, oops. 

8. A funnel cake may not be the best breakfast after running a 10K.

9. You MUST, repeat, MUST stop and stretch well after running. Not just touch your toes and push the stroller, but seriously stretch.  Otherwise you will wish you were dead rest of the day.

10. I really love running.  Who would have guessed?

Monday, July 2, 2012

Our Summer Home

I love vacations.  I mean really LOVE vacations, to the point of obsessing about what I’m going to pack months in advance.  I love to plan and daydream about what we will see, do, and eat.  I think this all stems from wonderful family vacations growing up and my parents making the experience really delightful, whether we were visiting Fort Robinson or Walt Disney World. 
I always had this secret dream that someday mom and dad would spring for a “summer home” or a timeshare somewhere fabulous.  Something that would guarantee we’d continue these trips for a long time.  I dreamed this would be a condo in Estes Park, a beachfront shack in San Diego, or a magical Disney timeshare.  Even though my parents never went for it (at least not yet) I still had high hopes that when I grew up and had my own family, this might become a reality.  Not in my wildest dreams did I believe this would happen in Virginia, NE.  Virginia Beach, yes!  But Virginia, NE, where in the world is that?

A couple of years ago Kevin and I had the opportunity to buy land that came with an acreage, and we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to take a step closer towards his dream.  With this acreage was a cute little place we refer to as our “summer home,” although right now we are blessed that his cousins are living there all year long.  To say I was reluctant at first would be a gross understatement, but after this weekend’s trip, it’s starting to grow on me.


My baby looked at the corn in awe, smiled widely while he “drove” the tractor, and chased his cousins around the yard all afternoon.  It’s certainly not Disney World, but I have a feeling my little guy will grow up believing this is the greatest place in the world. 

And while it may never become a reality, you better believe I’m still dreaming about that beach front property…