Monday, November 7, 2011

Marathon Relay - Recap

Last weekend, I got the privilege to run in the Atlanta Marathon Relay for Team Trees Atlanta.  I had never run in a marathon relay, and really had a good time.  I liked the "team" aspect of the race.  I was not in charge of the team, so I just got to sit back and see how it was all going to pan out.  That Staruday, I actually walked a 5k for Making Strides against Breast Cancer.  One of my bunko/tennis friends formed a team, and we walked the 5k together.  Because it was not competitive at all, I was able to bring my jogging stroller and both kiddos (yep, hubby had the entire morning to himself).  The kids were awesome that morning.  We even ended the morning with a nice little breakfast at one of my favorite places - The Flying Biscuit.  I had the scrambled tofu (so yummy). 

Ok, back to the marathon relay, it was going to be cold so I was trying to figure out what I was going to wear.  All I knew was that I was going to get a Trees Atlanta shirt, but I was pretty sure it was going to be short sleeved.  On Friday I was told I would be doing the first leg (5.1 miles with a lot of uphills).  Well by Saturday afternoon, it had changed.  Now I was going to do the longest leg (8.4 miles with some hills).  The captain was going to run the first leg and then run with me on the 2nd leg (he wanted to get a real workout in).  Fun!  Someone to run with!

Sunday morning, I was up at 4:15am with the little guy, and no, that was not the first time he was up either.  So by the time my ride (the captain and my brother-in-law) picked me up at 5:30am, I was wide awake and very talkative.  We rode down to the race and got the lay out.  We met up with our teammates and then I was off to get on the bus to take me to the 1st exchange.  I got on the last bus and he even got lost, but that was fine with me because it was a lot warmer in the bus than waiting around outside.  I had decided not to use the porta potty at the start, but to wait until I got to the exchange.  Yeah, there was a line.  It took me forever to get through it but I didn't have anything else to do. 

The race had started.  They were giving us updates as to when the first person got to each mile.  Then as more runners came on, the race volunteers started shouting the numbers as they approached.  It wasn't too long before I heard 137.  Holy moly!  That's my team.  I got ready and saw Eric (captain + brother-in-law + awesome runner).  He passed the arm band to me and then we were off.  He was telling me about the course he had just run (he didn't think it was too bad at all), and that first 1.5 miles went back super fast.  I couldn't believe how well we were doing.  I told him I wanted to do a 8:20 minute/mile pace, or at least that was my goal.  The men on my team are pretty fast so I didn't want to slow them down too much.  We chatted and he coached me through some crazy hills, we had some gu, drank some water, and then between miles 9 and 10 of the marathon was our cheering section.  Trees Atlanta volunteers were out screaming and cheering for us.  They were so excited to see us and I got really pumped after seeing them.  Eric talked me through the rest of my leg, and we finished my leg averaging 8:31 pace.  Not too bad.  I passed the band to the next teammate and looked for my family.  Found them.  Unfortunately, they missed us coming in so, no running pics of me. 

Just after we finished.  Go Team Trees Atlanta.

My personal cheerleader with my medal and some chocolate milk.

And of course, my brother-in-laws cheerleader, who is not a morning person (aka my baby sister).
Our team finished our relay in just over 3:36.  Pretty awesome if you ask me.  It was a fun race, and I would definitely do it again. 

And just because I missed a good Halloween post, here are the kiddos all dressed up.

(Ariel/mermaid and a peapod)