Oyster The Race

The Oyster… Yes.

OysterHome

I have been waiting for this all my life.

Ok, I might be exaggerating a little bit, but when Laura from Girls Gone Sporty asked me if I wanted to throw together a team for the Oyster race I about jumped out of my seat.

Those of you who are from Denver, where The Oyster started, may already know about this amazing event (it really is a spectacle…) but for those of you who aren’t from around here, you should probably watch this:

Ok. How cool is that? And even better, Girls Gone Sporty is one of the sponsors this year!

My team is The Bacon and Legs and we are Myself, B (my hubby), and P (my friend). Biking, running, and who knows what else-ing!

(Here’s our shirt…)

Oyster is an Urban Adventure Race, meaning:

Urban – in the city, downtown, no streets blocked off.
Adventure – top secret course, clues to find destinations, multiple disciplines (running, biking, & perhaps paddling, climbing etc.)
Race – it’s competitive! Courses range from 10-30 miles so you better bring your endurance.

The Denver Oyster is on August 24th and there is still time to enter- you can do a half oyster, or grow a pair and do the full! Also, the Denver Oyster is raising money for Make a Wish. (That’s a link to our team page)

TheSan Francisco Oyster is on September 28th.

If you are up for a challenge and want to try something new- you need to check this out.

And who wouldn’t want to get a super sweet cowbell for finishing?!

The Art of Coming Undone

I’ve been spending a lot of time lately on self reflection, goal planning, and pathway checking. I know where I want to be and what that looks like for me, but as I step back and pay more attention to the actions I’m taking towards that end game (my level 50?) I realize that I am walking in the wrong direction.

We all have a path and I think what I’ve come to realize is that in my desperate codependency I have been mimicking, instead of living.

I don’t know what took me so long to pull my head out of my ass. Seriously.

My dad died 5 years ago today (August 8th), and in that time I’ve come really far in saving myself from ending up just like him. But my motivations lately have been all wrong. The things I keep desperately trying to fit into my mold are all wrong. I’ve had difficulty finding my passion over the last few months. Nothing is motivating me except avoiding the disappointment of others. What a horrible way to go.

I need to be truthful with Robin, and not care about anyone or anything else. If I let someone down because I didn’t meet their expectations of me, that’s information about them- not me.

True facts about Robin:

-I like to run. Short distances. Like 3-10 miles or less. Beyond that I hate life and its not fun for me anymore.

-I don’t want to look like a runner. Most runners who are elite are skinny fat. I want to be strong.

-I hate being told what to eat. I’m stubborn and need to make my own choices, but not out of fear. And I’m picky. I like what I like. I like mostly Paleo. I like the occasional gluten free item without a steaming hot plate of guilt.

 

Only I know what works for me– that’s it. No one else can possibly know what is in my brain, and therefore they cannot possibly know what I need.

 

So… below is a rewrite, revamp, overhaul of my goals for the current 6 week challenge on Nerd Fitness….

#sorrynotsorry

 

Hammi’s Main Quest: Be Real Honest

(July 29- Sept 8)
Missions:

1. Read. I checked out the New Rules of Lifting for Women from the library. This goal is pass or fail. Reading the book by September 8th is a pass

 

Reward: (+2 STA +2 CON)

2. Relax. As I stated in my rant above, I like to run short distances. My goal for the rest of this challenge is to fun run. If it’s not fun, I stop. I’d like to do this once a week.

4 weeks= A

3 weeks= B

2 weeks= C

Reward: (+2 CHA +2 WIS)

 

3. Track. Ok. Being totally honest with myself, when I stay accountable for what goes in, I am more likely to be honest. I like tracking my food. Plain and simple. Not obsessing. Just calling it what it is. This goal remains unchanged.

36-42 days = A

29-35 days = B

22-28 days = C

15-21 days = D

0-14 days = F

Reward: (+2 DEX, +1 WIS)
Life Quest:

4. Research. For my life goal I want to start making progress on a dream that Pixie and I have had for a while now. We want to figure out some way to either become a non-profit that raises money for a cause or figure out how to partner with one that does. I am passionate about mental health research and abolition of the stigma surrounding mental health issues, as I have loved ones who struggle with bipolar, depression, and anxiety. I want to spend the next 6 weeks researching nonprofits and how to get our toes in the water without looking like fools.

6 study sessions= A

5 study sessions= B

4 study sessions= C

3 study sessions= D

0-2 study sessions= F

Reward: (+2 WIS, +2 CON)

GET Drenched! Giveaway!

Hey everyone!

It is freaking HOT out there- at least it is here in Denver! I don’t know if it is like that where you are, but running in the heat is like slow roasting yourself! Lately all of my runs have involved copious amounts of hydration and multiple showers (I might be exaggerating, but not by much. Really.) There is nothing in me that wants to get up at 5am, just to try to not melt while I run.

All that to say, I’m super excited to be able to help with the problem…

I have 2 entries to giveaway to a new fun run- the Drenched 5k!

Here is some super great info about the race- check it out:

Drenched 5K

Run. Water Fight. Summer Party!

Water Fight!

The Drenched 5K is all about bringing back those memories of summer fun.  Participants will run or walk from dry to drenched through “hot zones” and drenched zones which may include mist tunnels, foam zones, sprinklers, spectator “sniper” zones, bubbles, fire hoses, and a 100 foot slip n slide.

Runners and walkers are encourage to form teams, don crazy costumes, and bring out their biggest water guns for a little camaraderie and competition against other teams.

Run!!!

For those not interested in building up a sweat but who want to get in on the fun, Drenched has a free spectator zone where they get to drench the runners any way possible!

We are all about families getting active and so kids 5 and under run FREE and kids 12 and under receive discounted entries!

And at the finish?  We stage the best summer party in town!  The world’s biggest water balloon fight, music, drinks and dancing.

 Water!

Drenched will be in 10 cities in summer of 2013:  Denver, DFW, LA, DC, Jacksonville, Columbus, Atlanta, Kansas City, Philly and Huntsville, AL.

Drenched 5K benefits local Children’s Hospitals and fundraisers for local fire fighters.

Register on a team of 4 or more and save $5 each!

 Find your city and sign up for an additional $10 off with the code: DRENCHED2013 HERE

….or……

You can enter my raffle below! Good luck!

(Please take a look at the cities and dates to make sure there is one near you that would work with your schedule before you enter!)

Try to win one of my two FREE entries here!!!

I hope you’ll join me!

Let’s get DRENCHED!!!!

Bacon Raffle

The Importance of All Women Events

Today I ran in the Esprit de She 10k down at Cherry Creek in Denver. I had planned on putting together a race report for everyone- I even went around taking extra pictures of all the great vendor tents and other fun activates at the starting line. I was going to share my experience with the world!

But, as the race began and I got out onto the course, my music-less mind wandered to another topic.

As I was pushing through the first mile in the scorching “mile closer to the sun” of Denver I started thinking about the race that I was taking a part of.

The 10k was run by 136 women- and the 5k was run by 279 women. All women- awesome women. Mothers, daughters, sisters, friends, and ladies who just needed to get out there and DO something.

I started to think of the value of events like this, where only women are invited to participate. There are so many good things that races of this nature display, I could talk about them all day. Today I’ll just scratch the surface.

While men are also awesome, women are just wired different. While most men are designed with X+Y=Z mentality, our races are run with emotion and heart. We are mind, body, and soul- and we leave it all out there on the course, for everyone to see.

I think that women are involved with events like The Esprit de She, we play off each other in a way that is unique. When we see another woman succeed at her goal and have a victory, we glean hope and encouragement, that maybe we can do it, too! We see them accomplish things that are in our reach, because they have been where we are, and maybe we just needed to see another person just like us reach their dream.

Likewise, when we see another woman fall short, we feel for them. Our hearts break when a sister is hurting. It drives us to keep going. It reminds us that we are human and are in a constant state of change. We look at that woman, and we feel the need to look at our own journey and push harder. We all have the potential to fall. I’ve seen it so many times- our friend, who we don’t even know, needs help and we run to her aid and cheer her on. Because if she lifts her head up- we do, too.

Looking around today I saw moms running with their daughters, friends running with other friends, women running solo- no music, watch, or anything (I call it Zen running. I envy them). All of us were putting in the same miles. We were fighting the same fight and toppling the same challenges.

I hope that all of those women out there today look back and realize that while women can be fierce competitors, we do not have to be in competition with each other. We can love and support each other in an environment that is positive and encouraging. I hope everyone today looks back at what they did and remembers that they are a part of a long line of women who are strong and have immeasurable value.

Today we all showed that we can bring a picture of grace and grit to a sport that pushes our minds as much as our bodies.

Today, as a sisterhood, we conquered the world. Together.

Race Bucket List

I totally stole this idea from Lindy over at Runderella. What a great idea! Like most things, I have this hodge podge list rumbling around in my head and what better than to get it all down “on paper” in one place!

Currently these are in no particular order, and I’m sure I will be adding to this list as times go on…

1. Chicago Marathon

I would love to run this race. I’m from the outskirts of Chicago, and I was most definitely NOT a runner while I lived there, so to be able to “go home” and have all of my friends and family see all the life change that has happened with me would be priceless. Also- train high, run low 🙂

2. Tinkerbell Half Marathon

C WeRunDisney.com

This race falls right around the time of my anniversary. My hubby and I are both runners, but we only run one race a year together (the Bolder Boulder). It would be great to head out to Cali (I’ve only been once) and check out all the sites and run this one as a married couple. And how adorable is Tink?

3.  Maui Marathon

Not to have another wedding related race, but we took our honeymoon in Maui and fell in love with it (who wouldn’t?) We ran the Maui Oceanfront 10k while we were there, and we would both LOVE to go back and run again. To do a full there would be amazing…

4. Outer Banks Marathon

Ok this may sound silly, but my main reason for wanting to do this one is cause there’s a pirate flag on the main page. All the pictures are gorgeous and I’ve never been to the Carolinas before!Arrrrrrg!

5. Safari Park Half Marathon

I’ve heard some really great things about the San Diego Zoo and to run a half marathon there would be really cool!!! I don’t really need another reason…

6. Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon

The bacon lover in me would be amiss if I failed to mention this race. I don’t love Ohio, but I think that this race would be sooooo much fun! When pigs fly, yo!

7. Divas Half Marathon

Ladies. There are a ton of us, getting out there, getting fit. We seriously are built for this. I want to run this race feeling like a queen- the queen of my castle and of my body! AND you get a crown and roses. Hello.

8. Great Wall China Marathon

My husband sent this one to me today- it look like a wild time. And I’ve not been to China- so there’s that!

So that’s what I have for now! I think some Rock n Roll would be cool, maybe have a stab one day at getting fast and qualifying for Boston, and anything with a beautiful destination would all be great places to throw my money and pound some pavement!

Post Marathon Absence

I am now two weeks out from having run my very first marathon and I’ll be honest, I’m in a lull.

Something I realized towards the end of training for the race was that I was no longer running for fun- it all felt like work. The miles had to get done. The nutrition had to be dialed in. The plans had to be followed.

Or else.

The burning question should’ve been “Or else what, Robin?”

I’m smarter now…

I started running 3 years ago (ok walking, but it slowly and safely morphed itself into a bit of a jog…) and when I started it was fun. I loved getting out there and letting my mind go. My safe place was outside on the trail- I could check out, muse on the day, think about whatever I wanted, and I would finish relaxed and refreshed. This  was why I was out here.

People would always say to me  “I wouldn’t run unless I was being chased.” Well, I was, figuratively. I was being chased by the fear that life was going to suck and that I would always be the sad excuse for a human that I had convinced myself I was. I was being chased by the overwhelming possibility that I would fail to find happiness and a reason to keep going.

So yeah. I ran like I was being chased. Over time that turned into running because I was chasing. Chasing the dream that I could feel alive, free, and happy.

I don’t want to say that marathon training changed that, but it sorta did.

I was starting to approach my training calendar begrudgingly. I was losing my joy. I was losing the whole reason that I started running to begin with and I was not happy about that. I was angry and resentful, mostly of myself, for committing to something that was making me feel unworthy and like a failure.

It was all lies- but I couldn’t see that.

I have a new resolve (like I said, I’m smarter now). You may notice that I referred to my marathon as my first- I plan on doing another, maybe quite a few. From now on, however, I will train better. I will take care of my emotions as much as I am taking care of my body. My training will be fun and work. Profit and reward. Now that I know these things about myself, I can be my own best friend, instead of my own worst enemy.

I’ve taken that last two weeks to reflect, recharge, and refocus. I am spending my time doing yoga, and strength training, and I am only running when I want to and only for fun. This month is my month of Me. At the end of the month I am running the Bolder Boulder with my hubby, like we do every year. I will take the kick-ass time that I earned in a previous 10k to get a nice early starting wave, and that race will be my fresh start to the season.

With love and happiness- I hope you come to the same conclusions,

Robin 🙂

Texas Marathon Race Recap

My first marathon is….. not technically in the bag. I skipped it and went straight to the “Ultra Marathon”

Confused? I can explain…

The race weekend started out great! We flew into Dallas and got to the packet pick up in no time (despite my apparent lack of attention to emails I’m sent… sorry Beth…)

As we pulled up the the Hyatt House, Pixie flew out of the building with an awesome glomp of joy!

There was no pomp or circumstance with the pick up- just a folding table where they checked me in, gave me my number and shirt, and a map of the race on an easel.

Race number

We collected our things and headed to McKinney to relax, have dinner, and walk around town. All these things were necessary as they are the best thing to do to get your mind off of what the following day will hold. I went through all of the stuff that I had brought with for energy and clothing and made decisions about what to put in my pack and what to wear.

There are so many options for fuel, and I brought most of them with me: carb boom, sport beans, Hydrate, chews etc.

Feeling like I had done all I could do, I set my alarm for 4:50 and headed to bed.

Sunday morning I was calm, like creepy calm. B made my oatmeal while I got dressed. Everything was already in order, so I was able to mindlessly get everything on. On the way down to Fair Park we swung by a Starbucks so I could get my mocha. I was thrilled as punch, as I had cut off caffeine for the 3 weeks leading up to my race and this would be my first jolt of coffee energy in a long while!

Arriving at Fair park we pulled in and made our way towards the festivities. They had rows of porto potties, and we must’ve been early enough that we didn’t have to wait very long to use them. Inside the hall they had vendors, maps, photos etc. I’ll be honest, it was really nice to have somewhere light and warm to wait for the race to start. It wasn’t very cold that morning, but knowing how hot it would be later, I was dressed rather lightly so the heat was appreciated.

photo (6)

As they began to announce that our start was 10 minutes away we made our way towards the starting line. The marathon portion of the series was rather small- only about 500 runners- so it was nothing like the mobs of Colfax or Bolder Boulder, and that was a good thing.

Pixie and I started getting our tracking devices ready and I was programming my watch to the target pace she and I had agreed upon: 11:45. While I was doing that I noticed that there weren’t waves, like I had originally thought, but rather PACE groups! I have never run with a pace group before (it had never even crossed my mind!) but while I had my phone out I opened the calculator. I told Pixie that the 5:00 pace group would be running roughly 11:27 per mile! We both instantly agreed that we would stick with them as long as we could.

The excitement culminated as the announcer said that it was time!

Excited!

5. 4. 3. 2. 1!!!!!!

We were off!

It was so hard to not go off like a rocket, but having the pace crew in front of us, I felt confident and happy! We followed them through twists and turns and in a bit my garmin (and everyone else’s) beeped with 1 mile. There were no course markers, but I didn’t think anything of it. When my garmin went off with another beep alerting me to 2 miles, and I could see a one mile marker off in the distance I knew something wasn’t right. I tried to not pay attention to it- we were having a great time with the 5 hour pace crew, and I was really enjoying the run.

There were a lot of hills, but nothing that my training had missed, so it wasn’t too bad. We stopped at the first water stop for a Pixie potty break and got moving again to try to catch the crew. We stayed near by them, but never quite caught back up to them.

The Whiterock Lake Park was beautiful, and I was super grateful that it was overcast and cooler outside. I felt like we were going along at a good clip, and around 8 miles (by my garmin) we slowed to take some fuel. I decided to use my Carb Boom first, and I have to say the kiwi strawberry was pretty tasty. I have had GU in the past, and it never set well on my palate, but this product was delicious. I had Herbalife Hydrate in my pack and used that to wash down the goo.

We started back up again with the jogging, and while we were slower than the 5 hour crew, I was still happy with our pace of about 11:50/12:10.

The water crew people were great- they said they were competing to win a prize, but I have yet to see where I would vote on that? Oh well!

At the top of the lake we left the park and went into a neighborhood to the north. We wove in and out of the neighborhood, and the trees and shade was great, as the sun was starting to come out and slowly roast me…

My half marathon split time was 2:34:51 and this is a MAJOR PR for me! (Prior half PR was 2:43:15ish) I was making great time!!!

As we left the neighborhood and began to make our way around the other side of Whiterock Lake, the sun was really starting to get to me. I could feel my body temp rising and no water stop had water that was cold enough to bring me back down.

Also, the mental battle of knowing that we would be running over a mile longer than we had planned was starting to become very real to me. I didn’t want to run that far. I felt cheated and lied to with every mile marker that we passed.

Around mile 16 we saw my hubby and Beth. I felt a little silly because we had slowed to a walk and we talking, so in the picture we look like we are just going for a leisurely stroll around the lake. I promise, we weren’t!

Finally around mile 19 I decided it was my turn to use the potty. I was glad that I did! It was nice to sit down, but I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get back up, so I didn’t stay in there long!

I quickly caught up with Pixie and I noticed that we were both starting to feel a little defeated. At mile 20 there was a wicked hill that we walked up, and I was so tired that I used the fuel given to me at the water stop at 20, instead of trying to get into my bag for my own stuff.

At mile 21 I hit the wall. It was bound to happen, given the extreme heat and sun as well as the negative emotions regarding the mistake that was made somewhere on the course that was forcing us to run longer that we wanted.

At mile 23, right after another potty break, my garmin died, a little over 5 hours into the run.

Note to self, run my race in less than 5 hours next time!!!

I came out of the bathroom and didn’t see Pixie anywhere. I started to jog, back at my 11:45 pace, even though I didn’t really have it in me, because I needed to catch her wherever she was!

At the 24 water stop I finally caught up to her, as she was coming out of the potty- she thought I was next to her and was far off before she realized I was gone!

We spent the last few miles lamenting about our energy/heat/emotional level.

We cheered to ourselves as we crossed 26.2 miles, according to her Runtastic app, and then struggled to continue going.

I was getting so tired of people leaving the park telling us that we were “almost there”. Ok, folks. The worst thing you can say to someone finishing a marathon is that. You and I have very different definitions of what “almost” means and 1.25 miles is not almost. Sorry.

At 27 miles we saw our friends and they were cheering for us, waiting to feed us BBQ!!!

NF Team

At long last we saw the finish line.

We joined hands and raced through, together!

Medal

27.35 miles in 6:16:03!!!!!

A final picture that sums up everything……..

Psalm 26.2