Jingle All the Way 15k: Just keep swimming

“When life gets you down you know what you’ve got to do? Just keep swimming.” -Dory

I went into today’s Jingle All the Way 15k with a bit of trepidation. The temperatures were in the danger zone for my lungs, but I knew as long as I kept my mouth covered I ‘should’ be ok.  Little did I know it wasn’t going to be my lungs giving me the hard time, but rather my glutes and hamstrings.

A few weeks ago when GardeningGirl decided to register for the Asheville Half Marathon I told her about this race.  I thought it might be a good incentive to keep training for the half marathon.  She agreed it would be.  So she came up on Saturday and we got a couple of hours of bonding time before bed.  I’m always thrilled to spend time with her.  This time she brought her 12 year old sheltie, Buddy.  Charlotte was instantaneously infatuated with him.  “Will you be my friend??? Please, oh please, oh please be my friend.”  She was intrigued by this new dog who didn’t want to be her friend.  The more aloof he was, the more she tried to be submissive to him and bait him into interacting with her.  When he finally gave in, just a little, she was only encouraged that they would be best friends forever.  Oh Charlotte, you’re so stinking cute sometimes.

fullsizeoutput_e74We got up early, ate breakfast and headed into DC.  I knew that mentally this course was going to be a bit of a challenge since it looped back on itself a couple of times.  Ugh, loops. However, I had tunes so all would be well in the land.  I was also trying running in an InkNBurn skirt for the first time.  This summer I tried Eastern Mountain Sports skorts for hiking and really fell in love with them, so I wanted to see how these would do running.  I know most folks won’t try new things on race day, but I wasn’t there to race, I was there as moral support for GardeningGirl. I even lent her my green “Grinch” tutu for the day.

As we stood waiting for the go, everyone was shivering.  Many of us had even cracked into the mylar warming blankets early as they started us 10 minutes behind schedule.  Crossing the start line I knew it was going to take me a couple of miles to warm up.  It always does.  By the time I hit mile 2,  though, my glutes and hamstrings were a little pissy. I thought it was just from being cold.  By the time I hit mile 4 I realized, oh shit, this isn’t getting better it’s getting worse.  Around mile 5 I tried to stretch them out a little to see if I could make them better.  Nope.  Fail.  Actually made them worse.  Well f&%*#$*!!!

It got so bad around mile 7 that I had to resort to run/walking.  I was using the walking as an opportunity to take really big strides (well what felt like it, but in reality they were probably just normal strides) in an effort to stretch out my glutes.  Perhaps doing CrossFit on Friday and Saturday wasn’t the best idea in the world…..Oops.

img_1496I crossed the finish line 10 minutes slower than I was hoping to finish.  Oh well.  Life happens.  On the plus side there was not a single asthma attack, so I call this a win! While yes wearing something over my face makes me look like a dork, when you’re asthmatic you do what you need to to keep from having your lungs completely seize up.  GardeningGirl crossed not too terribly long after me.  She was elated with her performance.  Just goes to show you how different a single race can be,

The only other upside (you know other than walking away breathing)  I can say about this race is that it demonstrated to me that I really do love running in skorts. I’m going to have to get way more of these.  This particular skirt (last year’s Christmas fullsizeoutput_e73design) didn’t ride up, didn’t bunch up….which means I didn’t spend the whole race fighting with it.  Now granted, I just need to remember to start sizing up my long sleeve shirts (since I wear my Techwick under them).  Now to just get my glutes and hamstrings to stop being angry at me….

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