Thursday, February 3, 2011

Warrior Dash Recap and an Unbelievable Announcement

O.K., I know I'm, like, days overdue for a recap of last weekend's Warrior Dash. I promise I've tried to sit down at the computer everyday this week, but it just wasn't happening, y'all.

Better late than never and all that, so here it is...

We headed down to Florida on Friday morning, arriving at my sister-in-law's house around dinner time. She had graciously agreed to watch Baby Munchkin so Daddy-o and I could both race. After a sleep filled with dreams of leaping fire and scaling walls, we got ourselves together and headed to Lake Wales to meet up with the other warrior hopefuls.

My little sis and I donned our costumes (custom made just for the occasion), while Daddy-o and my sister's friend Jess were sporting plain ol' athletic shorts and shirts (BORING! Although they did unintentionally match. Hee hee). My dad, step-mom, and my oldest munchkin tagged along to cheer us on.

As we arrived on the scene, we were greeted with LOTS of, ahem, "colorful" costumes. As we watched those who had already finished the race, we knew we were in for a good (albeit dirty!) time. We found a place to set up camp, watched a few folks go through the 2 obstacles we could see from the viewing area, and then it was our turn to line up. Here we go...

We started off slow, everyone trying to stay within sight of each other at least. We were there to have fun, not race for time. Daddy-o and I don't get to run together very often at all, so I wanted to stay with him. I run a lot more than he does, so my pace is a bit quicker. We ran at his pace as we moved along toward the first obstacle, a watery mud pit about shin to knee deep. As we hit the water, Daddy-o zoomed past me! Apparently he has mad skills when it comes to muddy water running! Who knew??? I had to step up the pace to keep up with him! Someone find us a race completely run in mud, and he will be a contender!

To summarize the rest of the course... We climbed over cars and ran through monster tires, jumped over 4 foot (ish?) walls and crawled under fences, walked across narrow beams, climbed cargo nets, waded through a pool of water while a massive fan blew in our faces, climbed over hay bales, crawled through thick, black mud in a dark pup tent, scaled a 15 foot (ish - I'm not always great with the height estimations) wall, jumped over fire (twice), and crawled under barbed wire in waist-high muddy water before we crossed the finish line. (I'm sure I'm forgetting some stuff, but you get the gist.) It was such a blast! I really thought it was over too soon!

It was a 5k course, and, like I said earlier, we were there to have fun, so we all hung relatively close together. When we finished and saw our times, I realized that, even with the obstacles and the waiting around we did on the course, and with all of us trying to stay together instead of running our "best" race, we finished in a time very close to the time it took me to run my very first 5k! Our time was 45:04, and I completed my first (very flat) race in somewhere around 43 minutes, with Daddy-o a couple of minutes behind me. Unbelievable how far we have both come since that race last May.

If there's a Warrior Dash in your area, sign up and give it a whirl! It's so much fun, there's a great party after (well, all day really), and you really do feel like a warrior in the end!

Oh, what's that you say? You want to know about this unbelievable announcement? I'm getting to that...

Let me just first tell you something I'm sure you've heard many, many times before -- NEVER SAY NEVER! Wanna know some things that I said I'd NEVER do?
  • "I'll never be a runner."
  • "I'll never run a mile in less than 9 minutes."
  • "I could never exercise early in the morning."
  • "I could never run a 5k."
  • "I would never run more than a 10k."
  • "I'll sign up for the half marathon, but I'll never be able to run it all. I'll just train to run-walk, I guess."
Guess what? I've now done every single one of those things I said I'd never do. And those are just the fitness-related ones. Don't even get me started on the things I said I'd never do as a mom! We'd be here all day.

There's one more NEVER I have said over and over again since I started this journey:
  • "I'll never run a full marathon."
Well, I am now officially registered for the 2011 Chicago Marathon!

Unbelievable. Most of all to me! I can't believe that I'm going to do this. Here's the thing, though. I know I can, and I know I will! I'll be training and travelling with a group of 15+ from my boot camp and running group. 15 of the most supportive, most inspirational, most fun, craziest people you will ever meet.

I can't wait.

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