I’m still alive.

You would think that I’ve run out of fodder, given my absence from the blogging world. And no, it’s not even because I’m that busy.

Since I’ve last written, I’ve firmly crossed the threshold into middle-age (yep, AARP came knockin’ and I answered); I’ve gone on a sewing kick, ran a half marathon, and thoroughly enjoying our backyard deck. Oh yeah, and I’m tending to an early onset case of PF, which has derailed my running for a bit.

First things first. I celebrated a milestone birthday.  My birthday is always mixed in with the hullabaloo of the 4th, which bothered me as a kid, but less so now. We had some friends over for a backyard bbq.

Soon after, a friend and I loaded up our girls to head off to Maine to drop them off at camp. Coincidentally, there was the Old Port Half Marathon and 5K that same weekend. I had a 10 mile training run on my docket, so I dropped into the half, while my friend entered the 5k.

I’ve run this half twice before. It’s always kicked my butt (atypically hot and steamy and the horrid, horrid and tedious 3+ mile loop around the back cove), so I really had no time goals in mind.  I figured since it was a 10 mile training run, my main goal was to run a consistent pace for 10 miles without any walk breaks. My second goal was to get around the back cove (miles 7.5-11) without cursing it out. My third goal, since there are two good hills (and a few smaller ones) was to run all the hills in preparation for my hilly fall 50k.

No spoilers here–all three goals reached! First, although the entire week in NJ had been hot and humid, Maine was not. In fact, race day was high 50s and rain. Downright chilly. The first half of the race was good–I started out at an LSR pace, and just kept going. I ran up the hill to the Western Promenade, no problem. When the skies opened up and mile 6, I almost considered DNF’ing (I couldn’t feel my hands at this point), but for some reason, I just kept going. I climbed the killer Munjoy Hill. I made it to the back cove and mentally steeled myself for the tedium of that darn 3+ mile cinder loop that twice before has been my downfall.  I’m not sure why this loop kills me–I think it’s because from every angle, it looks like you’ve covered exactly zero ground. And then there were two miles to the finish, and after a brief stop to stretch my aching right hammie, I kicked it in the the finish and collected my medal. My time–not a PR, but not a PW, either.

I have a love/hate relationship with this race. I know I could do better, but I never quite get there. However, the organizers offer some great perks. Free race photos. And this year? A race video!  No, not just a video of the race in general–a video featuring EACH RUNNER. Boy, that’s humbling to watch. (note to self: work on form).

After the race (and finally getting my fleece from the bag check), I stood in line for some PT work on my right hammie. Which doesn’t explain at all why my left arch/heel is now acting up. But it is, so I’m taking it easy, even though it’s killing me to take time off at the beginning of this training cycle.  The lack of running, though, has led to more sewing productivity, and I promise some pics, as soon as my photographer returns from camp.

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