Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Adventures in Racing

Mom commented that it's been a while since I've blogged and that's because I've been too busy racing!  Instead of training for a marathon (it's just too unfair to leave Jackson in the jogger for 3 hour long runs), I decided (well, said 'yes' to friends) to race in a few things that were completely out of my comfort zone.

The first one was a stand up paddle board (SUP) race in VA Beach called Battle for the Booty. This pirate-themed race involved three laps around the diamond-shaped course mixed in with two sprints on the beach to retrieve a pirate object.  Blair convinced Hannah and me to do this even though it was my 4th time on a board, ever!  We had a great time 'racing' and got to enjoy some time at the bay with all the kiddos!
Hannah, Blair and me
The next race was the Rock N Roll half marathon. Due to the ever-rising fees for this race (outrageous!!!), I decided to help with a Team Hoyt VB fundraiser. We collected $10 for hard-to-beat parking and all the money went to the team. Then, we joined Blair's husband at mile 8 for the rest of the course. He and Bean were dressed up as members of KISS, but Mike's costume only lasted 100 meters or so because of the brual humidity!  I am so proud to run for an organization that empowers children with special needs and allows their families to cheer them on (or run with them) in races! 
"Team Bean", with Bean, Mike and Blair Fine
Finally, the toughest of them all, the "world's toughest event", the Tough Mudder, Mid-Atlantic.  The day I signed up for this race our pastor happened to tell a little story that went something like this: "So, one of my good buddies came into town and he was telling me about this race he just did. He said, 'I dove into a dumpster filled with ice water and then had to find my way out. But, there were boards over my head and I was literally trapped in the water with no visible way out. I didn't know if I could hold my breath much longer. I thought I was not going to make it' ".  Jack knows exactly how to get me to squirm in my pew :)  

I had the chance to do this race with three other people from Norfolk and Richmond.  It was incredible. I dove into the dumpster of ICE water (it feels like your heart stops), climbed over 9 foot walls, jumped off a 15+ foot wall into a muddy lake, army crawled through gravel and water-filled tunnels and tubes, scaled muddy mountains and bales of hay stacked 5 tall, squirmed through mud under barbed wire and electricity, ran up a quarter-pipe and ran through an "electric curtain". WOW. I have cuts over my whole body but our whole team made it out in one piece. I could not have done it without the support of the team and other 'mudders' on the course.  Some proceeds from the race go to benefit Wounded Warrior Project, which is another motivating force behind doing this race.  How incredible to run in honor of men and women who have given their limbs to serve this country and can now complete these races with prosthetics. 
Members of my team. Now recruiting (more women please!!) for TM VA Beach, June 2013
After the race! I earned my orange headband
I never buy anything for Jackson. I just had to get him this

Whew! Many thanks to both sets of grandparents for taking care of Jackson and allowing me to satisfy my racing urge. 

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