Thursday, April 09, 2009

Zooma Austin (Bastrop) 1/2 Marathon

Most of the 15 people staying in the B&B headed to Bastrop on Friday morning and arrived just in time for lunch. After unloading the cars and checking out the B&B, we headed out for the 2-block walk to Main St for some lunch. Maxine’s was pretty good, but the service left much to be desired. I won’t go into details, but lets just say they weren’t ready for a party of our size and made it quite known that we should have called ahead.

Once our tummies were full, we headed over to the Lost Pines Resort. We decided to make it a lazy day and just hung out around the pool, trying to get in some relaxation before the race. We also decided to drive the route just to see how hilly it really was. We accidentally took a wrong turn that lead us down a gravel road with some interesting trailers all around us. I could hear the theme to deliverance playing in my head and we all thought, “Surely we’re not running this way!!”. Once we figured out where we made our wrong turn, we headed back to the house. We had an early dinner and turned in early. Well, sort of…our room turned into the giggly, slumber party room and several of us stayed up much too late telling ghost stories…not such a good idea when you’re staying in a creaky house that was built in 1903!

The alarm clocks started going off at 5 am and we were off. We ate our favorite energy food (PB&J for me) and headed to the parking lot where we would take the shuttle to the resort. The whole race is a “girls weekend” theme, so it made complete sense that there would be pink porta-potties and hand washing stations!

The race was pretty small, so lining up at the start was a non-issue and before we knew it the anthem had been sung and we were off. It seemed like the hills began the minute we made it across the start line….and they never stopped. Some were bigger, steeper hills and a lot were just those llllllooooooonnnnnnggggg, ssslllloooowwww innnncccclines that never seemed to end.
I started out extremely slow. There were 4 things I was thinking about going into this race:

1. I had not been running as much as before…kinda hard to do when you have to split your time between biking and swimming. I run 2x a week, swim 2x a week and bike/spin 2x each week – gotta have one day for rest, right?

2. No amount of training at Flintridge could prepare us for these hills! It was an out and back course and the out hills were a doozy, so I wanted to conserve a little for the return trip!

3. I wanted to baby the Achilles. No point in pushing hard in the 1st ½ only to aggrevate the Achilles and not be able to finish.

4. And finally, “Damn, it’s HOT!” and “What happened to temps in the 50s???”

Luckily, the miles did tick by pretty quickly - even at my slow pace. The only drawbacks were that everyone was restricted to one lane of a two lane country road…and that one lane had cones in the middle. Those heading out were supposed to stay on one side of the cones and those on the way back were supposed to stay on the other. This made it almost impossible to pass anyone for a majority of the race. The other drawback was that only a couple of the aid stations had Powerade and even then it was really watered down…yuck!

This was the 1st race where I was behind most of the peeps in my group. Fortunately, after the turn around I ended up running with some of them….thank God because the hills were brutal. It was nice to have others to not only commiserate with, but to also keep each other moving forward. Before we knew it we were back at the hills that we had run at the beginning at the race. This, of course, was when the sun started coming out from behind the clouds and making it even hotter. I was losing my steam and walked a lot of the uphill sections. At one point Katie said I cracked her up when I saw the next hill and said in my best ghetto girl voice, “HELL no, I ain’t runnin’ up that SHIT!”. LOL, I am pretty sure those were my exact words but I hardly remember it at all – darn runner’s brain.

All I know is that I was very happy to reach the resort again. I could see the 13 mile marker in the distance and was sooo ready to be done. Normally when I make it to the finish line, I am picking up the speed and getting ready for my photo crossing the finish line. This time, I don’t think I did either. I was pooped.

As we crossed the finish line, we received our “finisher’s necklaces”. I didn’t take it out until later, and was surprised to find my little pouch empty! I managed to get another pouch that actually had a necklace in it. In all honestly, this was the worst part of the race…the after party and finishers necklace. The necklace looked like something that you could get out of a gumball machine. The “catered brunch” was a soggy, cold egg and cheese breakfast burrito (could ya slap some bacon on there please???) and coffee (juice maybe?). The upside was that we enjoyed a band and each other’s company at an awesome resort with awesome weather! Plus, the champagne and wine didn’t hurt either.

After we had a chance to recover, we headed back to the B&B on the shuttle, changed clothes and then went back to the resort to enjoy the pool a little more. We hung out by the pool, enjoyed a few frosty adult beverages, floated on the lazy river and even went down the waterslide a few times…yeah, I could get used to that life!

We ended the day with dinner at a different Bastrop eatery and had another slumber party in our room until midnight. Overall, it was a great girls weekend! I told the hubby that it was very relaxing and he cracked up saying, “You ran a freaking ½ marathon! How relaxing could it be?” Just more proof that running is my therapy. And when you combine that with a girl’s weekend, life's good!

1 comment:

Tiggs said...

sounds like that race won't make it onto my calendar! way to tough it out on the hills. boo to the lame necklace!