Monday, April 29, 2013

Spring, Celebrations, and Running ~ Monday Musings #8

Lots of things going on around here and once again, this blog has been neglected.  I hope to remedy that with a little bit of a brain dump today.

I'm LOVING spring.  This past winter was harsh and cold and it seemed like spring would never come.  But here it is.  I've got tulips and daffodils in bloom and beautiful blossoms like these to enjoy.

 My kids are outside more and we've started back into horseback riding lessons and the kids are loving it.
My husband and I celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary last Thursday.  We don't get many pictures taken of us together, but here's one from a recent event:
I have to say I'm glad I married this great guy.  He works hard for our family and adores our children.

Over Spring Break, DH had to work down in St. George for a day, so we went along to play.  We went hiking and swimming and dealt with the van breaking down three times.  Good times.

But you didn't come here to hear about that, right?  You want to hear me wax eloquent about running and racing and such, right?  

All right, I'll indulge you.  Last Saturday I ran the Thanksgiving Point Half Marathon.  It was great.  The weather was perfect, the tulips put on a show, and I was well-prepared.

I've enjoyed the training, particularly because I have a good friend who has been doing the long runs with me.  I've been getting faster this spring and stronger too.  On Tuesdays, I run my fastest for 3 or 4 miles and those have gone from 11:30ish down to 10:40 and even 10:20 in pace.  I realize these are still pretty slow times, but it's exciting for me to see the improvement, especially since my pace was about 12 or 12:30 when I first started.  Wednesday, I do a longer run of 60 minutes and then on Thursdays, I do hill repeats.  Then Saturdays, we've been doing the long runs.
Saturday, I was SO thankful for those hills I'd run because this course was full of them.  We ran up and down and up and down around the water tower, through the gardens and then through the golf course.  I felt strong and fast.  Most of my long runs have averaged about 12 minute mile pace, so I was hoping for anything less than a finish of 2:40.  There was a pacer there for the 2:30 finish and I thought maybe it was possible to finish with her.  I was ahead of her for the first 5 miles, leapfrogged her for the next 5, and then she passed me again at mile 11.  At that point, I had nothing left and had to let her go, though I wasn't too far behind that.  I finished strong with a new PR of 2:30:49, an average pace of 11:30 a mile.  Not bad for such a hilly course.  I'm excited to see what a few more months of training (and maybe some weight loss -- boy, that part is going slow!) will do for my time.

I've decided to work on speed and strength this year and save a full marathon for another year.  I'm planning on two more half marathons -- The Utah Valley Half in June and then the Hobble Creek Half in August -- plus the Wasatch Back Ragnar in June.  That should give me enough to keep me busy.


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