So much happened in 2012, and it seems like it flew by. I guess that's good? Because I am a blogger that runs, I now must do the obligatory "Here is my Running Year in Review" post. And here we go, on with the show!
I started 2012 in the best way possible ... running through magical Walt Disney World! 3 races in 3 days ... hmm, sound familiar? I'm working on a deja vouz I think. Up first, Disney's Family Fiesta 5K. 5Ks shouldn't be allowed to be this much fun. Abby and I were donned in our new sombreros and ponchos, and ready to be obnoxious with maracas and cameras for all 3.1 miles. Loved it so much. Ole!
The next day it was the 15th anniversary of the Walt Disney World Half Marathon. Pineapple Express was born and quickly died before it could even become a thing. We were the very definition of dysfunctional, yet I still had a blast. It was the only time I've run in the wrong direction on purpose, therefore being passed by the pace people and risking getting swept. Good news is I didn't get swept, I found my team, and we all finished together with smiles on our faces!
To round out the WDW trifecta I was the 2nd leg of the WDW Marathon Relay. I'd say "first annual", but they didn't bring it back. Agony of d'Feet did pretty freaking awesome, which is easy to do when the first leg runner starts in corral A and finishes sub 1:45. That race taught me I am a lot tougher than I thought and gave me the realization that I could do a marathon. At that finish line I declared that in 2013 I would complete the Goofy Challenge!
To get 12 half marathons in 12 months, I quickly signed up for the Heartbreaker Half Marathon in Portland, Oregon. The hardest course (up until that point) I had done a half marathon on, and believe it or not I got a new PR that day! On hills, by golly! I learned then that Cilley Girl, Jeff Galloway (the man, not the method) and tater tots were my key to a great race!
Up next was my first attempt at racing a 10K in months. It was Run For the Shamrock in Eugene, Oregon. I sucked wind due to starting out too fast, but I got that PR! Nothing to brag about though, that came later in the year...
The next week I did the Shamrock 15K up Portland for my 2nd year in a row. I vowed to never do it again, but obviously I did (and I'm doing it again in 2013). Ridiculously hilly course, I focused, power walked up with big hills and then hauled ass on the flat and down .... giving myself a 10 minute PR over the prior year! Again - Cilley Girl and tater tots!
I continued my PR streak with a brand new 5K PR in Boston of all places! I hadn't raced a 5K in over a year, so I was bound and determined to give it my very best when I crossed the Boston Marathon's finish line during the B.A.A. 5K. Even taking it easy and enjoying every single step and moment of that experience I was able to get a new PR and finally get sub-30 for a 5K race. I was overjoyed!
In 2011 I notoriously puked my guts out on Hayward Field at the finish line of the Eugene Half Marathon. This time I have proof, courtesy of giraffy, that I did in fact cross the finish line and NOT get sick all over the place! And while I was busy not being gross I was also busy kicking my own ass and setting what is now my current half marathon PR, shaving 10 minutes off of the prior year's finish time! I clearly love running "with" Pre!
The Portland Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon was deceptively hard. They advertised a somewhat flat course, and instead gave us a monster. BUT I ran it and never once stopped forward motion (which isn't exactly normal for me)! The rain couldn't stop me, and I successfully finished with a smile and really proud of my time and effort. Plus the expo was a freaking BLAST!! Cilley Girl and I dominated that expo and I don't think anyone could even compete with our skills!
The next race on my schedule is one that I am the most proud of for all of 2012. It was the Seattle Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon. I was excited to reunite with and meet many new friends, all with the great setting of a fun race on a beautiful day! This was also my first race with Man Friend, his first race ever. Not only did we finish, but we got below my ultimate time goal and really pushed ourselves, all the while still having a great time and challenging ourselves on all of Seattle's hills. I really need to remember that day and use it to help me focus in the future when runs get hard. This course was not easy by any means, but I just really attacked it and I loved every minute of it!
As I prepared for the marathon I started doing some fun, shorter races. First up, the CATnip 5K. It was HOT. No joke, freaking HOT and started at 6pm. Advertised as flat, this was NOT flat. I didn't let it win. I had a person to beat, and that was myself. And so it was at this race that Kim yelled at me to push as I ran through the finish to my new, current 5K PR!
The Crawfish Crawl 5K was fun, flat, fast ... and one in which I believe I cried at the finish line in pure disappointment in myself. I could have beaten my prior time. I know it. I guess I just didn't navigate the crowded, narrow paths well enough. I let the crowd keep me back instead of pushing myself and getting out of the pack. But I still ran strong and can't complain I gave it my all that day!
And now the race I may always brag to myself about ... the Prefontaine Memorial 10K. This was my third time racing it, and this time I was on fire! I was focused. My hill and speed training was paying off and I could feel it. I was so excited the entire time because I knew good things were in store. I didn't expect to get a PR on this course since it was so hard, but not only did I get a new 10K PR, but I beat my prior time by 11 minutes! Such a rush. That race is why I keep running!!
At Disney's Happy Haunted 5K I was thrilled to get to navigate a trail race with two great friends, Abby and Jessica - or in this case Mr. Smee joined Wayne and Garth for 3.1 of the absolute sweatiest miles ever known to mankind.
The same night of the 5K Jessica and I became Sister Witches and together melted in the Tower of Terror 10 Miler. Ridiculous hot and humid. I've never felt so gross. I'd also never raced in a cape and/or hat. I loved it all! Night races are my new favorite!!
The fun, short races had to end eventually. And finally after hours and miles of training in the summer it was my biggest challenge ever. The Portland Marathon. I really loved it! I owned the first 18 miles of that race, until the injury hit. Even when I physically couldn't run anymore I still kept my spirits up and MF and I enjoyed new scenery and the whole experience in general. It still hasn't sunk in that I am a marathoner!!
After the marathon I stopped training. I was exhausted and hurt. So to prepare for 2013's big race weekend I scheduled a bunch of half marathons as preparation! The first was the Scappoose Half Marathon. Freezing cold. Rural. Basically a race where MF and I never saw a single soul unless we were at a water stop - except for that one unmanned stop. I saw a lot of cows though!
I redeemed myself a bit at the EWEB Run to Stay Warm. At these last four half marathons I was always the very back of the pack even though I was running pretty good .. for me. I kept to my Jeff Galloway intervals and smiled through the whole thing. It was a fun race, and we lucked out weather wise!
The race I still rave about, the Reindeer Run Half Marathon. Awesome volunteers! Great swag. Really fun experience. My body wasn't letting me run, but I didn't care. It was just such a fun time. I'll say it again ... if you get a chance, do it!
I finished out the year in Track Town USA with the inaugural Eugene Holiday Half Marathon. Rural. Cold. Clif Shot blocks galore! A final tenth of a mile in the mud. I was thrilled to see that even with flat out stopping to eat gingerbread men cookies and enjoy drinks and shot blocks, I still beat some people and stayed pretty steady. It was a nice way to end out the year ... minus that blood shoe I created. Oops!
So that's 2012. Did you actually read that? I'd probably just skim the pictures and call it good. What is in store for 2013? After Goofy weekend I think it will be half marathons whenever I feel like it, and then maybe more 5Ks and things like the Great Urban Race or Warrior Dash. Plus the Dumbo Double Down in Disneyland. Cannot wait!!! Marathons? Nah. Been there, and soon I will have done that Twice!
How about you? What are you most looking forward to in 2013 race wise?