Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Running: Diva Dash

So quick announcement before I tell you about the Diva Dash:  I got selected for the Nike Women's Half Marathon!  I'll be in San Francisco on Oct 16 running 13.1!  Yay!!!!!

So, after my running posts you might think I'm athletic.  Ha.

In 1999, I saw a poster for USA Fit.  It said, "Run a marathon.  Change your life."  And I thought, "Okay."  So I signed up for the training, and 6 months later, ran a marathon.  It turns out that if you run a whole bunch really far, running a marathon is not that hard.  Just very time consuming.

Every Saturday after my long run, I would call my mom and introduce myself:  "This is your daughter, the athlete."  And then we would laugh.  I actually managed to graduate from high school having not taken any physical education classes due to the fact that I left high school early to go to college (we'll talk about that some other time.)  In college, I took a semester of step aerobics and that was it.  I always swam and in college, I ran and lifted weights to stay in shape, but athlete--that's not me.

So a marathon and probably 10 triathlons later, I still wouldn't classify myself as an athlete.  I'm a very very slow runner.  I can run forever, but very slowly.   My marathon group called ourselves the calendar group because we were so slow we should be timed by a calendar and not by a clock.  I like training for races and events because I work out harder when I have a goal that isn't just "lose weight", so I keep doing them to keep myself motivated.  I have actually been last in a race (it was a 12 mile race, but I was still last.)

So when I got an email about the Diva Dash, a 5K with 6 surprise obstacles, I was hesitant.  Then one of my friends posted on Facebook that she was going to do it.  Since the Dash was scheduled two weeks after the Capitol 10k, I knew I would be in shape for it, but can my klutzy self REALLY do a 5K with obstacles?

I signed up.  And in the days before the event, I really wondered what the hell I was thinking.  There was 0 information about what the obstacles would be.  It was also at the site of the majority of the triathlons I did, a course which I've puked on at least once, if not twice, so that was already a bad sign.

So, kids and Husband in tow, off I went on the appointed morning and started running.  My start time was 10am, which was already pretty hot.  Not sure what was expected on the race, and having watched many episodes of Wipeout, I took off without water, my iPhone, or even sunglasses.  Huge mistake, as it was freaking hot with no shade on the course--oh, and no water until the race was almost complete.  (It's Texas!  It was 80 degrees!  What were they thinking?!)

First obstacle:  a tight-rope bridge.  I managed to walk over it without falling off.  Yay me!

Second obstacle:  a maze.  A maze you had to duck under to go through that wasn't very hard, plus you could stand up and see where to go.  This obstacle was back near the spectator area, so I got to see Husband and the kids.  The little one was asleep and missed the whole race, including the finish.

Third obstacle:  Huh.  I honestly don't remember.  Clearly not very exciting.

Fourth obstacle:  This rope thing that I crawled through.  Later, watching a news video, I realized we were supposed to go over the obstacle and not through.

Fifth obstacle:  Tires to run through like they do in football drills, except they were giant inner tubes.  I walked from one to another, trying not to sprain an ankle.

Final obstacle:  7 water trampolines tied together to make a bridge on the lake.  I saw several women jump from one to another standing and almost fall into the lake.  Other women tried to crawl from one to another and the trampolines separated.  I opted to belly flop from one to another, which had the added benefit of keeping me cool as the water trampolines were surprisingly wet.  Wipeout would have been proud.

And off to the finish gate I went, completing all obstacles and not injuring myself!  My daughter decided to join me for the finish line, after she made me stop and pick a flower: