Sunday, August 31, 2008

Weekend Adventures


This was another jam packed weekend... well at least Saturday was!

Clear Mountain 5K
This was my first ever race, Kim and I had only been running for about a week when she found this race and talked me into signing up. It was pretty scary at the time to go from just starting to run to running a 5K. My time that first race was 33:10. I remember that Kim and I talked through the entire race and I only had to take about a 30 second walk break. I was beyond thrilled with my time!!
Last year I finished in 28;25 and it was a a pretty big PR for me so again I was thrilled with my time.
This year not so much... 28:40
It was pretty hot and humid and we didn't get in as good a warm up as I would have liked, but ultimately I just seem to have lost speed lately! I also gave up mentally a little bit in the last part of the 2nd and beginning of the 3rd mile.
I did pick it up in the last 1/2 mile but it was too little too late... OH well it is still a very good time!!
I helped run a couple of friends in during the last bit of their races and that was a lot of fun!!
I also got an age group award and that is definately something to be proud of.
And there was a large group of Cruisers in attendance which is always fun!!!
We stuck around for the awards ceremony and lot's of Cruisers won awards.

Vicki had sent out an e-mail a couple of weeks ago asking everyone to participate in the Clear Mountain 5K to help celebrate her birthday and because the proceeds are going to help build a restroom on the River Trail near the Dog Park.. woo hoo!!! VERY worthy cause!
She also was planning a bike ride starting at the River Trail and ending in Mayflower where we would all gather up at Sonic and have lunch. At first we thought that translated into about a 36-38 mile ride but after g-mapping it we realized it was closer to a 50 mile ride. Brenda had e-mailed me on Friday that she didn't want to do the whole 50 so we decided we would just go out 20 and turn around find someplace to rest and wait for everyone else.
Once again I had to change into bike shorts after a sweaty run, but I am getting better at it!
We had a pretty large group for the bike, it is always fun to see so many bikers gathered! Of course they never stay in my sight for very long. Gabby and her Husband James were riding with us :) Gabby had a great 5K and also got an age group award.
There were ton's of people out on the River Trail but it was a good ride to Cooks landing, very pretty and a nice breeze.
After Cooks Landing we get on Maumelle Blvd. and this is where the "adventure" starts. It is a very, very busy road and we have to cross over an entrance and exit onto a major interstate. The lead group had circled up at one point and it was here when we realized that Bailey, Phil and Rock were not with the front of the pack. Arland started making some phone calls and the rest of use headed onward. One good thing about parts of Maumelle Blvd is we did have nice wide shoulders for a good section of it, and then we turned off on Carnahan this road leads to an industrial aread and cuts out a little bit of the traffic. Unfortunately it was here that Vicki got a flat tire, luckily she wasn't very far behind us and was able to get our attention... even luckier David Smith was close too and came back to help change the tire. While we were waiting on the tire change here comes our wayward bikers, Phil, Baily and Rock. The first thing Rock said when they pulled up was "IT WASN'T MY FAULT" Rock is famous for getting lost. It was Bailey this time, she thought Cook's landing was the parking area out on the trail that leads to I-430. They had gone over the Big Dam Bridge twice!!! and Phil was none to happy about it! LOL
I think it might have taken 15 minutes or less to change the tire and then we were on our way again. It was Me, Brenda, Vicki, Lisa Ford, David and Linda a friend of Vic's from Russellville. Brenda and I were riding together the whole time, we had gotten a little ahead of Vic and her group but it wasn't until we had turned onto hwy 365 that we really lost them. This highway was where the hills really began, oh sure we had some on Maumelle Blvd. and a couple were pretty good one's but they were baby hills compared to what we were about to face!
This road was also very rough with narrow shoulders and lot's of traffic. I was really proud of Brenda and I we just put our heads down and got up those hills.. I'm not saying there wasn't a little bit of foul language coming from our mouths, but hey sometimes you gotta let it out! I am very lucky to have Brenda we are so similiar in so many ways... she is a way better runner than I am but we are very close on the bike and just personality wise very close!!
We mostly had to ride single file on this road but we still tried to talk as much as possible. It was kind of scary when we were going through the section known as Palarm.. I guess it's a town, not sure but all I really know of it is it's the first place to buy liquor before you get to Little Rock coming from Conway. As we were riding by all the liquor stores I told Brenda I didn't think this was the best stretch of road for two girls to be by themselves!! But we didn't have any real problems. The worst part was when we got to the section of highway where the shoulder was really rough asphalt, you couldn't ride on it at all so we had to stay on the road, and the cars seemed pretty peeved at us and a lot of them would hardly move over so there were quite a few times when I could have just reached out my hand a little bit and touched a car going by. I know they were thinking why don't those bikes move over but we really couldn't!

As we were getting close to the 20 mile mark I was starting to worry about us going back by ourselves... mostly worried about getting lost. When we got to 19 miles I told Brenda our mileage and it turns out she was thinking the same thing I was. We decided we would just go ahead and go on to Sonic, it was a long way back to Maumele Blvd. and we hadn't seen any decent gas stations or anyplace really that we would feel comfortable stopping in. Of course right after we made that decision what do we see in the distance... a HUGE hill!! oh and to make it worse we hit 20 right at the base of the hill so if we had been turning around we could have avoided that hill and all the others that followed!!
Finally we made it to Sonic!! A large group was already there including Jackie and the Clinton children. It was nice to get off the bike but hard to walk at first..LOL
I ordered a cheese burger and a powerade slushy. I am not a big fan of powerade but I felt the need for an electrolyte replacement drink and it was a slushy and it turns out it was pretty good!
We all had a good time talking and eating, but as more and more time passed we started to get worried about Vic and her group. Finally David tells us that Vicki has had another flat tire and they are back on Maumelle Blvd. headed to Riders Ready. We were all pretty bummed, this was supposed to be Vicki's birthday lunch and she wasn't even there!
After about 20 minutes it was time to head back... by the way the service at the Sonic in Mayflower was very fast!!
We were refueled but knew what we had facing us and we were not looking forward to it.. at all!!!
As usual it didn't take long at all for Brenda and I to be left behind. Now we had not only the hills but a pretty strong head wind.
By the time we got back to Maumelle my shoulder was killing me from the hills, and the ball of my right foot was starting to go numb. The whole time we were on 365 I kept thinking I can't wait to get back to Maumelle to the nice big wide shoulders... but then when we got there, no wide shoulders :( and now even more traffic. We had to stop at lot's of red lights, and several of the nicest down hills we didn't get to enjoy because we had to brake for the lights. Bailey had kind of hung back and rode part of the way back with Brenda and I, although usually she was a pretty good ways ahead of us.
Once again we saw the lead group was circled up waiting for us... they had chosen a nice shady spot and there was also a nice breeze. Turns out that Brenda and I were not the last riders, Gabby's husband James who doesn't really bike very often had fallen behind. It wasn't too long and we see him coming and of course we didn't want to just take off as soon as he caught up so we let him catch his breath and have a chance to get off the bike for a second. Once again crossing over the entrance to I-430 was the scariest part but once we got past that we knew were were almost at the River Trail and home free!!
Once we got back on the Trail is was such a great feeling.. we could breathe easier and we could actually talk again.
I don't remember exactly where we were on the Trail when we saw Vicki coming towards us but I was so happy to see her on her bike!! Even with all her problems she still ended up with 40 miles. We all rode back together and when we got back to the parking lot, Joan and several other bikers had all waited for us. Of course none of them or Vicki and her group had eaten anything so they all wanted to walk over the Junction Bridge to the River Market to get something to eat.
Bailey and Rock really needed to get home so they went on, and I told Arland to just drive over because he said no way could he walk at that point.
I was actually glad to walk, I was feeling stiff and although it was kind of rough at first, we knew the walk was good for us and at least we weren't carrying our bikes this time!! Brenda and I also decided to be rebels and take the elevator up.. we could hear the others laughing at us as we were waiting for the elevator and of course it took forever! The rest of the group was halfway across the bridge by the time we even made it up, and of course they LOVED that and made fun of us for quite a while!!
Brenda and I just had coffee since we had lunch at Sonic.. while ordering my anti-frappucino Arland called and said he didn't really want to park the truck with the bikes on it, so he just went on and I got a ride home with Brenda and Vicki.
It was almost 3:00 by the time we got home!!! I was so tired and so hot and sticky that I just stripped off my shirt and jumped in the pool in my sports bra and shorts. I swam a few laps and stretched a little bit before going back in to take a shower. So I kind of did a reverse Triathalon, run bike, swim not that you could really call what i was doing swimming! LOL

After the swim and shower Arland and I headed out to buy some beer and head over to Bailey's for her birthday BBQ.
August was a busy month for birthdays...
Cheryl, Tracy, Bailey, Vicki and Heather Happy Birthday ladies.
The plan was to spend an hour or so there and then head to Magness Creek for Jeff's birthday BBQ but unfortunately we were so wiped out from our day that we never made it to Jeff's house.
We were home by 8:30 and I was in bed by 9:30... had to get some rest for my Sunday long run!

Totals for Saturday
Run - 4.5 this includes the warm up and running in other runners
Bike- 47 miles

2 comments:

gabsatrucker said...

Great weekend! I'm so proud of James, this was his longest ride ever. He went back for Bailey's water bottle when she said she'd left it because he didn't realize that she had 2. He was worried about her not having any water with it being so hot, it really took all the energy out of him going full blast back to Sonic and then riding hard to catch back up with her and that also gave him more than the 47+ miles the rest of us had. I went ahead and pushed on hard to get back to our pickup because I was going to drive back for him after that but when I called him to find out where he was, he said no, he was going to finish it out. HE IS SO AWESOME!!!

gabsatrucker said...

ooops, was mistaken about where Bailey lost her bottle, James corrected me during our disc golf game this morning. When he said he went back Sat. I thought he meant all the way back to the Sonic.