Archive for the 'Blue Crab Running Club' Category

Walt Disney Marathon Weekend 2010

Thursday, January 15th, 2009

I am suffering from what others might call Medal Envy.  I watched everyone walking around the parks with their medals on and I decided I wanted something more.  Wednesday morning before leaving for the airport I signed up for the Goofy Race and a Half challenge in 2010!  This happens to be the 5th anniversary of the race, so they plan to do something special for the race.

So that means I am now registered for Full Marathon number 2.  If you recall Full Marathon number 1 it wasn’t the best experience.  So I am looking into a Full Marathon to complete before the Goofy.  Top of my list right now is the Marine Corps Marathon.  I am still contemplating it because the MCM requires you to maintain a 14 min/mile pace through mile 19.  I know I am capable but I need me trainign between now and October 25th to go perfectly.  We shall see what I decide.  Luckily there are many folks and a Blue Crab Running Club member planning on MCM for 2009.

Baltimore Running Festival 2008

Monday, October 13th, 2008

This weekend I made my return to the race location that started it all for me – the Baltimore Running Festival. My first visit to this race site was for my first 5K, my second for my first half-marathon, and my third for the 5K once again. I decided to create a pattern and do the half-marathon this year.

The race weekend came to a shakey start on Thursday with a bad cold. As the morning progressed I felt worse and worse. I ended up escaping work and seeking refuge in my egyptian cotton sheets. I have a few hours before I needed to head to the airport to pick up Andi and I didn’t want to be sick. I set my alarm and snuggle up into my sheets with my dog hoping for the best.

I woke up to Stash on 98 Rock. It only took a minute or two to determine that my situation was MUCH improved. I brushed my hair and my teeth and hopped into Dad’s car for the trip to the airport. I checked Andi’s flight status and it was running a little late. We ended up getting there really early. Fate then joined our side and her plain ended up landing earlier than expected. From there the weekend kept going really well.

From the airport we headed to the club level of M&T Bank Stadium for the race expo. The expo was set up the same way as it has been the past several years, which had made for tight quarters. However, this year they opened the expo early and it seemed to make a world of difference for us. We headed to the left to pick up our race packets then hit the race merchandise. I picked up a pin for my shadow box before we headed to pick up our race numbers. This year Baltimore used the D-tag system, which I had never had experience with before. After a quick lesson from the kids handing out the bibs I headed over to the Geico pacing team station to catch back up with Andi.

We then headed to the other end of the expo to get our Under Armour Shirts. From there we did a little shopping and even spent some time telling others about After a quick stop for some pizza hut we headed home to relax around the house.

The next morning I made us some whole wheat pancakes before taking Andi to the Holarbird Sports warehouse. Andi had ordered from them in the past, but this was her first trip to the warehouse. I up a shirt, sports bra, water bottle and a new pair of shoes. Then we headed to Target where I managed to find my favorite tank tops for only $2.48 a piece. I stocked up!

We met Dad later for Carrabas as our carb up meal. After our meal we headed back to the house to prep our clothes and supplies for the next morning. We showered and went to bed early because we knew the next day was going to be a long one.

The alarm went off at 5:00, but I am pretty sure Andi was already up. It seemed like time flew as we both dressed in our running skirts, sprayed on our sunblock, and ate our peanut butter, bananas and whole wheat bread. We both grabbed a few mini cluf bars and bottles of water before hopping in the car and heading over Dad’s. There we met up with several of his friends that were running the 5K with him before heading downtown.

We climbed into the Element and were on our way. The traffic was heavier than we expected, but it didn’t interfere with our ability to get downtown. We went parked at Dad’s building near the stadium and were able to use the facilities before heading over to the start line.

After a brisk walk we were approaching the start line in the shadows of the new Hilton hotel. There was still much going on set-up wise but the crowds were growing. Our small DisneyRunning family quickly grew. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to find a way across to the place we had planned on meeting so it took a moment or two for us to collect Colleen. Luckily we had exchanged phone numbers so a few phone calls allowed me to wave her down and find a way to get her over to our group. The hour flew by and before we knew it Andi and Phyllis were heading to find their pace time for the full. We lined up and cheered Andi on as she ran past, but she was in deep conversation with another member of her pace team.

About 30 minutes after seeing Andi off it was Dad’s turn. He went to line up and I headed back to the side lines where I thought he would line up pace wise to cheer him on. I never saw him go by. Defeated I headed over to the rest of the DisneyRunning team so we could find our way to baggage check and on to our start line. Luckily baggage check was right next to the finish line. After a breif potty break in some really nasty porta potties I triedd to catch Dad going in for his finish. Just before giving up and rejoining the group for the trip to the start line I spotted Dad running by and got everyone to cheer him on to a strong finish.

It was about a 1/2 mile walk over to the Inner Harbor for the half-marathon start. I was able to grab some water on the way. We stood for a few minutes watching the crowd before crossing over the full marathon course to get into our waves. We headed back to the tail end of the second wave where I was able to catch up with the other 2/3 of Blue Crab Running: Tawanda and Jeff. Once the group was all collected we left the few members of DisneyRunning that were in wave 2 and headed back to a decent position in Wave 3.

We watched the full marathon runners go past our start line as we waited for our wave to be started. I thought I saw the 5:15 pace group go by and I didn’t see Andi, so I started fearing that she had lost her pace group. Our wave was released to walk to the start line and before we made it the confetti started flying signifying our start. We waited to arriving at the line before starting our shuffle and eventually full stride. I quickly spotted Dad and his friends and waved to them as we started off down the street. I started out with Tawanda, Jeff and Erica by my side and slowly lost each one of them. First it was Tawanda, who I knew had speedy goals outside my reach. I lost Jeff on I think the second of many hills. Erica and I stuck together until she needed a potty break. She said she would catch up later.

I found myself running down the hills and up as much as I could before needing to start walk breaks. I finished a walk break and started running again when I heard someone cheering from behind. I turned to see Erica in her bright orange DisneyRunning shirt coming up behind me. It wasn’t long before she passed me too. Tight hips were taking over and as I progressed on the race course I found myself walking more and running less.

Most of the race route I had run before, except this year the construction was complete at Lake Montebello and we were able to run around it. I think it was my favorite part of the course. There was a live band and lots of cheering fands as we circled the body of water. At this point I had been passed by the 4:30, 4:45 and 5:00 pace groups so I was sure Andi’s group would catch up with me before I finished.

Soon following the Lake was Guilford Rd with all of the cheering fans and famous gummy bear stop. They all provided great energy for us to keep moving along the course. Before I knew it we were making our way towards the stadium and the finish line. I had called Dad and he told me that I was making my way towards the finish and he told me where to look out for him. About 1/4 mile from the entrance to Camden Yards I could see him standing on the side cheering people on. I waved as I approached and with my new shot of adrenaline made my way through the stadium and on towards the finish line. There were tons of photographers here so I was showing my pearly whites and throwing thumbs up at every turn. I kept glancing behind me hoping to catch a glimpse of Andi coming up behind me.

As I approached the finish line I saw a girl laying on the other side of the finish line with paramedics trying to lift her into a wheel chair. I tried to steer to her one side and stay out of their way but all the while I was hoping they would get a good shot of me crossing the finish. I started my walk through the runner’s village. There was one last photographer who I threw a teethy grim and thumbs up before searching for my medal and grabbing another mylar for my basement wall-of-motivation.

I grabbed a water, half a bagel and a banana before heading out into the village. My phone rang and my father said Andi crossed the finish not even a minute behind me and should be right behind me. I turned around and she was walking right up to me. I almost screamed and gave her a big hug. We hopped in line for our finisher’s photos and I caught a glimpse of an orange hat on someone I didn’t see that morning. It was Angie and she was running late that morning and couldn’t meet the rest of the crew.

I spotted Dad making his way towards us and he had found Tawanda. We got to run over so that Andi and Tawanda could meet before we headed made our way towards the car to head home. I had Dad take us right to the house so we could shower and rest before dinner. We were taking Andi out for some real Maryland Style Crab cakes. After the crab cakes we headed to my brother’s art show.

The art show was fun and provided us a nice stretch as wandered around looking at the paintings. On the way home from the art show we stopped for some ice cream, which was a nice ending to an exciting day. Neither of us had trouble sleeping that night.

Sunday turned into a lazy day. I think both of our legs needed the rest. We spent the morning relaxing and watching some TV before walking over to Dad’s to watch the Ravens. The game became hard to watch so I flipped us over to the Scrabble Championship on ESPN while we ate lunch and then played Dad in a couple rounds of Dominos before heading back to my house where we watched a movie and relaxed.

I headed to bed at 10 assuming I would wake up when Andi did to see her off. Her flight was at 7 AM so she needed to leave the house by 5:00. I heard her wake up and layed with my eyes closed thinking I would get up and say goodbye right before she left, but quickly fell back to sleep. The next thing I knew I heard the door close and Tillie was crying. I looked out and they had already pulled away. There is nothing to fret though…I will see Andi again in less than two weeks for the Tower of Terror 13K.

In the end I had the slowest time yet for a 1/2 marathon 3:15:17. I can’t complain though because my cold was still in full effect. On the other hand everyone else did great! Congratulations to Andi, Phyllis, Erica, Mustapha, Jenn, Sean, Jeff and Tawanda and great races!

Blue Crab Inaugural Race: Survivor Harbor 7 2008

Monday, June 9th, 2008

Yesterday I ran my 3rd Survivor Harbor 7 race in downtown Baltimore. This event also marked the inaugural race for the Blue Crab Running Club.

We had 100% attendance with everyone of us sporting our brand new running club shirts with an adorable logo courtesy of Jeff’s aunt. Checking out the picture it is hard to believe that between the three of us we have lost over 300 lbs isn’t it?

The race started in its usual fashion with the crowd of runners parting like the red sea to make room for a bagpipe band to walk up our ranks. It really is a moving experience and gets to more excited to run than you would think.

We started out running up a slight grade before making a left hand turn and heading into Fort McHenry. I usually end up having a slow mile as we run this loop because it is such a fascinating place to run through. So much history…

After exiting Fort McHenry I spotted my father and Tawanda’s husband, Allan, standing on the side of the road. They had gotten stopped by a cop as the race ran by. This made me nervous that they wouldn’t make it to the finish line before we did.

Shortly after exiting the Fort I lose Tawanda going up the only hill in the race. I knew I was slowing her down and that she would have a better pace if I wasn’t pulling her down. She definitely proved me right by finishing over 10 minutes before I did. Jeff had parted ways with us just after entering the Fort for a pit stop and I knew traveling at the pace that I was he would catch up with me soon.

Soon after passing Dad and Allan I heard Jeff coming up behind me. We stuck together doing a run/walk routine making our way into the Inner Harbor. While passing by the Maryland Science Center Jeff took a quick snapshot of me as I tried to ham it up. I rather like the way it turned out. 🙂

We made our way across the promenade. I think this is my favorite part because this is the only race in Baltimore that is permitted to run on the promenade. Despite the cobblestone entrance it is a fun place to run. We made our way towards the Legg Mason building where we had the pro photographers get a snap shot of us as we ran past the building. We made our way out of the Harbor and towards Little Italy. Shortly after we made a left hand turn right into the sun. At this point the heat really hit me hard and Jeff went ahead without me. I looked down and my fingers were swelling up – a sure sign that I was dehydrated.

I started drafting a few girls shortly after mile 5 and they asked me about the Blue Crab Running t-shirts. I explained the story of our little group and we talked about races that we all have ran and recommended to others. At about mile 6 the one girl said we needed to run the last mile. I took her upon the challenge only taking two short breaks as we passed the water stop at 6 1/4 miles and as we went up a hill before the first of two lefts heading into the finish line. The last water stop actually passes right by the finish line and I was able to see my father who pointed out Jeff out in front of me and as I was leaving the area I heard Tawanda yell my name as I ran on by. That gave me a pretty good boost to push through to the finish. I felt like I finished strong and even though I ended up with a 13:02 per mile pace I felt like I did well considering the circumstances.

I am very thankful to Tawanda and her husband who handed me a cold sparkling water at the finish line. I held it to my forehead before opening it and drinking it down. I found food, but never did find any water at the finish line. We didn’t spend too much time hanging around. We all piled into my mom’s Element and Dad drove us back to where Jeff and Tawanda had parked. I didn’t really notice it until I got up and sat in the front seat. I turned an apologized to Dad as I noticed the smell of sweaty bodies that had permeated the car, lol. I imagine he is probably used to it since he drives me back and fort to just about all of my races.

Despite the heat I think I will continue to do this race. You can’t beat the scenery and the people are all fantastic! Especially when you are running with great friends like those of the Blue Crab Running club.

Inaugural Run

Saturday, April 26th, 2008

Home from the inaugural run of the Blue Crab running club.  It was a great success.  Tawanda and I headed out for 8 miles.  The weather was great and the trail was beautiful.  It was actually pretty crowded and points, but we kept moving forward.  Time seemed to fly by with non-stop conversation.  We will definitely be doing this again.  We came in at 1:43:02 for the full 8 miles, but I think I might have lost the satellite somewhere because we ran out to just past the 4 mile marker on the trail then turned around and came back and ended up .10 mile short.  We ran till the GPS said we were at a full 8.  I am thinking maybe when I upload my run to MotionBased it might give me a more accurate mileage.  Fingers Crossed.

Blue Crab Running Club

Saturday, April 26th, 2008

This morning is the inaugural run of what I am referring to as the Blue Crab Running Club.  I should probably google that in ensure that one doesn’t already exist.  Actually I will blackle it!  Everyone should start using blackle instead of google because it uses less energy.  Seriously!

Oh yeah, back to the running club.  I am kind of considering it an East Coast branch of the Tumbleweed Running Club.  Right now it consists of me and Tawanda.  I am hoping to get Jeff out running with us some time too.  Considering we all have races on May 4th (Me the Minnie, Tawanda and Jeff both in Frederick) and we are all running the Survivor Harbor 7 I thought it made for good timing recovery and mileage wise.  I am afraid I might slow the groip down though.  :/  I figure even if we only get to meet once a month it is something we will all have to look forward to.  🙂