Sunday, October 30, 2011

Gladiator Rock'n Run Race Results

Rather spur of the moment, yesterday Matt and I decided to do the Gladiator Rock'n Run - a mud run / obstacle course / race.  Although the race itself was just a 5K it would tough - along the way were 14 obstacles that were quite challenging. 

Driving out to Kent we started getting a bit leary of the race.  The temperature dropped to 33 at one point and we were almost ready to head back.  Upon arrival at the race course, the temperature was back up to a whopping 44 degrees and we were stoked - much better for a mud run.

Matt's parents flew in on Saturday morning and met us at the start of the race to watch the boys - the timing couldn't have been better.  Almost as soon as Don and Kathleen got there, we made our way over to the starting line where we were surrounded by a sea of 20 something dressed up racers.  The race started with a monster truck driving in front of us for a couple hundred yards to get things going.  Then we made our way up, down, up, down, up, down some bleachers.  After the bleachers we went over a set of spools, then down a mud chute, through some tubes filled with mud, over a pile of tires, through a pool of ice cold water, up a muddy hill with the help of some ropes, over a series of 6 foot muddy hills, over an 8 foot wall, over a junk yard truck, through a tire track, over a slick wall with ropes (I needed help on this one), over a cargo wall, and through fire.  Just typing it all I'm exhausted!

More than anything it was just fun doing a race with Matt.  The field really wasn't competitive - it was more about doing it and having fun.

At the finish line Cole and Wilson looked totally baffled as to our muddy faces and bodies.  Cole kept telling me to take a shower and he couldn't understand why we were so dirty.  Wilson was just silent trying to figure out what we had done.

P.S. Notice the sunglasses?  Those are my new Margaritaville "Traveler" sunglasses that I got to do a product test on.  I rocked them through the ENTIRE race (great way to break them in, eh?) and absolutely loved them. I got the rose colored lenses because I wanted a rosy hue on the dark gray winter here.  The glasses fit perfectly so I didn't lose them in the mud - phew - and really did help at the turns where the sun was right in my eyes.  Now it's gone back to gray in Seattle, but I can't wait to rock these again.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Race Report: Defiance 30K

Since I couldn't make the New York Marathon this year, I wanted to do something else big.  I had been thinking a 50K ... but I just don't think I'm ready for that yet.  SO, I decided to do a very hilly 30K (which was really a 20miler instead and was part of the Defiance 50K).  The race was awesome - I came in first female with a time of 2:57 (a pace of 8:38) and now have the course record (woohoo!).  I also enjoyed running with a co-worker who did her first 15K trail race. 

The day started around 6am when Asia came to pick me up and we hit the road for Tacoma.  The streets were amazingly empty, and it was still dark and super cold out.  When we made it into Tacoma we wound through some roads that felt more like country than city until we found the one coffee shop that was open.  The coffee shop was definitely a local joint but it was a little odd with coffee, food, books, and souvenirs. 

The course consisted of two loops each with an elevation gain / loss of 1,300 feet.  Each loop ended with a rope climb down a hill ... rad!
I managed to run a "bonus" half mile because the trail got a little confusing towards the top of the hill, but all in all it felt great.  The volunteers were some of the nicest I've come across, and the other runners were all outgoing.  During my first loop one runner was a little too outgoing - he kept hooting and hollering with every downhill and then he'd run up and want to talk.  I managed to kick it into high gear at these points.

The views along the course were amazing.  At one point in the race there was a view of a bridge that looked like a gray version of the Golden Gate bridge which made me quite nostalgic. 

The downhills well outweighed the up.  Achilles Hill was pretty brutal, though, and I wound up needing to walk the crest of it. 

My new favorite running tools:
  • Two advil before a race
  • Coconut water before and after running
  • Lemon Luna bars an hour before race time
  • Weak coffee before the race
  • A handheld water bottle
  • My boys (all three) at the finish line!
Looking forward to my next trail race already!

    Thursday, October 13, 2011

    Only in Seattle ... isms

    We've known Seattle was a little different ever since we moved here.  When we first moved here our corporate housing was between uber richy houses and the slums of downtown Seattle so we saw clubbers, druggies, and dashing dames and dudes every night.  At work the standard dress is flannel plaid and jeans, unless it's summer and then t-shirts trump the plaid.  Weekends?  A bit more dressy with knee high rain-boots over jeans and jackets.  If you "cruise" downtown Seattle by Pike place, you'll see people asking for money who are wearing trendier clothes than I can afford and inevitably touting some animal hat.

    Last week, a self-proclaimed superhero unmasked in downtown Seattle after a pepper spray incident. 
    Best part of this photo?  Our friend is the reporter in the background.

    Tuesday, October 11, 2011

    Cheater Cheater!

    This year I've started enjoying races and running just for the mere joy of running and racing.  Yes, I still beat myself up a bit if I don't hit my target time, or if I veer too far from my average times, but to me racing isn't all about place and time.  I get that some people to it professionally, but for those of us running for fun (and even for the professional runners), this kills me:

    British Marathon Runner Admits He Caught a Bus to Finish Third in Race

    Puddle time!

    We had an awesome weekend with my dad (roundup to come).  The boys got their first haircuts, and we had a handful of "field trips."  Today, though, the boys were just ... boys.

    In true Seattle fashion, it's been raining off and on.  The boys are taking full advantage.

    Wednesday, October 5, 2011

    Steve Jobs

    Steve Jobs was one of those truly inspirational people who lived his passion and made incredible things happen.  my heart goes out to Steve's family and friends today.  May he rest in peace.

    Steve Jobs - 1955 - 2011 - a man who inspired many and was the impetus for the digital / mobile world we're in today.

    Saturday, October 1, 2011


    I absolutely love my family.  It's not just because when I'm feeling a little backwards "I am" still in it.  Get it?  Family?  OK, that sounded much funnier before I typed it. 

    We just got back from dinner at my cousin Rebecca's house.  My aunts Elsa and Laura came up (Elsa from CA and Laura from OR) along with my cousin Matthew and his clan.  The house was packed with 5 kids and many exhausted adults ... and just relaxing.  On the way home Matt and I were talking about nature and nurture and how that can impact who you like/love.  I love my family not just because they're family - but because we're all a little quirky and we're cool with it.  Matt loves my family not just because he has to (it's my blood) but because they're like me.