Sunday, August 4, 2013

A Weekend of Ups and Downs!

What a fun and very full weekend!! I cannot believe how many ups and downs this weekend held for me!

Friday night was date night with my boyfriend. We kept it simple and went to our local Rib Fest. It is held in a fairy new park in Mankato, and it was the first time we had been to the Rib Fest since it moved to this location. It was fun to sample different Ribs from Pit Master from across the country. There was live music and lots of people watching (one of our favorite past times!).  I tried to watch what I ate, but I very rarely eat meat, and the ribs were so delicious that I ended up eating more than I have planned on! We ended our evening early, since I had to be up early to volunteer at the Hy-Vee Iron Kids Triathlon in the morning!

It was an early Saturday morning for me! I was headed to the Hy-Vee Iron Kids Triathlon to work at the finish line, and I was super excited! I heard about this event in early July and heard that they were in need of volunteers, it was a no brainer for me to volunteer! I just wanted to be on the "other-side" of a race, and get excited for the kids who were racing!

The whole event was a lot of fun to watch! Those kids are amazing, and looked totally professional! Even the youngest (and smallest) girl at 6 years old looked like a pro crossing the finish line!

I have to say that the event, however, was not the most organized in relationship to the volunteers! When I arrived, there was no one checking in volunteers, there was just a pile of volunteer t-shirts, and no one around! I found a shirt, threw it on and headed over to the finish line. At the finish area, there were about 20 volunteers looking confused. After some introductions, it was pretty clear that no one really was in-charge, and I took control (not really wanting to, but no one had ever been to a race or seen a finish line set up before!!), and we got the entire finish area set up. There was so many different food and drink options for the kids!!

I explained some of the different jobs that we needed, such as people to give out medals, others to take timing chips off the kids, and others to hand out food and water, and a couple to drop the finisher ribbon/banner for each child.

Finally, after we pretty much had everything ready to go, someone in-charge came over to us and pretty much went through the same info! Lol!

Soon the kids were off and we were anxiously waiting for the first finisher! My first job was to hand out medals! It was so much fun to watch the kids running to the finish with HUGE smiles on their faces! It really gave me so much joy to be watching a race -- for once!!

During the second and third wave, I got to drop the finisher banner! Iron Kids wants each child to feel special at the finish line, so we were asked to try to have every child "hit" the banner! It was great cheering on the little kids coming in! I teared up a couple of times, just because the kids were glowing with pride and joy as the crossed!! It was so inspiring!

At the end of the second wave the Minnesota Vikings' Cheerleaders showed up and took over "my job" for awhile. It was pretty funny watching the two cheerleaders try to figure out how to drop the banner, and quickly get it ready for the next child! They quickly got frustrated and turned the job back over to me and the other volunteer!

Cheerleaders taking over the finish line! Pompoms and all!

The last wave was the youngest kids, and it was so cute watching them run in! We had to hold the finisher banner so low!!

After the race finished, I helped set up the awards area, cleaned and helped take apart the bike racks in the transition area. It was a great morning! Truly inspiring and uplifting! My throat was sore from cheering and my heart was full of joy!

After a quick shower, Ryan and I decided to drive up to Minneapolis to try out an italian restaurant that we have been talking about for awhile. It was a nice way to spend the afternoon, and the food was AMAZING!! Probably the best italian I have had....ever!

The place is called Broders and has been featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives on the FoodNetwork. It is really worth a visit! After eating we went to my very favorite store: Anthropologie and I spent WAY too much money on some very cute clothes!! It was such a happy day, that I felt like I needed a little treat. :)

We also went to REI, so I could pick up my sister's birthday present: a Garmin Forerunner 10. She wanted the pink watch, and I just couldn't resist picking up the purple one for myself -- again a nice little treat!!

We called it an early day and headed home at about 5pm. Again, I had a very early wake-up call and wanted to get everything ready for my long run!

I wanted to be in bed by 9pm, since I was waking up to get ready for my 6am run at 5am (yes, it takes me about an hour to be fully prepared!) Well, things got busy and I didn't get to bed until almost midnight. Then I couldn't fall asleep, I had really worked myself up about my long run, and I think it was nerves. Well, once I got settled, the dogs started freak out.....ugh!!! They were restless and were determined to keep me up! I think I finally fell asleep after 2am.

Needless to say, when the alarm went off at 5am, I was exhausted!! I decided to postpone the run the run for an hour and try to sleep. I got up and ate a little -- my stomach does much better on a run, if I eat about an hour to 2 before I run -- and went back to bed.

An hour later, I was up and still not feeling it! Grrrr.

I made myself get up, get dressed and get out the door!! The first mile was hell! Both my mind and my body were fighting me to return to bed, but I kept going. I was really giving myself a hard time about the route I chose (super hilly!!), and the weather (HUMID!!). I struggled for about the first 2 miles and then settled into a good pace.

My body felt really great, all things considered, but my mind was just a mess, couldn't get the negative self-talk under control.

I just kept pushing and finished my 8.41 miles in 1 hour 50 minutes. I am not happy with that time, but I'll take it, I pretty much walked the entire 1st mile and probably the majority of the 2nd.

I need to give myself a break as far as time is concerned. Just like my last long run (7miles), I get so focused on hitting the right time that when I am slower I just beat myself up, which is stupid because it is just a training run!!! I need to stop comparing myself to everyone else and just be happy for myself that I got 8.41 miles in!! This is my goal for next week's long run: no negative self-talk!!

Today has been a pretty lazy day, just relaxing, icing my hip and shins and catching up on laundry!!

What did you do this weekend? Did you get your long run in?

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