Sunday, March 20, 2011

Double race weekend


This weekend was busy for Nik & I -- on Saturday we ran the St. Pat's 5K in Providence, and on Sunday was the New Bedford Half Marathon.

The St. Pat's 5K was the last race in the Tour de Patrick series. We both approached the series pretty casually -- just as a bunch of fun runs. Even so, we both did pretty well. The scenery was great, the crowd support was fantastic, we met up with friends, and we felt awesome afterward. Check out our race reports on Daily Mile for more details (Nik and Dan).

How did Nik do so well on the race? Turns out she's only 5 inches tall.

A nice, and unexpected, perk of the St. Pat's 5K was that we got medals. Medals! For a 5K! Stand back and be jealous!

The next day, we went to New Bedford for the half marathon. I had signed up for the race ages ago but I didn't run it. Getting the flu for about 3 weeks in January, then recovering from the flu for a few weeks after that, then getting hit with 7 feet of snow all winter -- all of that put the kibosh on my winter training. So I haven't run very long lately, and rather than suffer through 13 miles when I was unprepared, I figured I'd be a happier person standing on the side and cheering for other people.

Nik, on the other hand, approached the race like a casual long run -- she hadn't run 13 miles since January. She wasn't entirely into running it, but she has a good base and figured she'd see what happened.

There were 1,700 runners -- pretty typical for the NB half. Great weather for a race, too. Crisp.

I spent my time being Nik's purse, drinking coffee, taking pictures, and finding open WiFi networks around downtown New Bedford. 

The fella who won the half marathon was fast as hell, unsurprisingly. After taking this picture, he stood over to the side, bent over like he was going to throw up and stayed that way for about half a minute, then got up and was interviewed.

The first female finisher did great, too. I managed to snap a picture right as she broke the tape, which I'm pretty proud of.

Nik did wonderfully on the race: 2:03:31, which is not far behind her course PR. New Bedford is a tough half -- hilly in the beginning, flat to downhill in the middle, windy and uphill at the end. Considering she hasn't been running much lately and isn't particularly bothered by that, she did amazing.

Another piece of bling to add to her collection. She's got, what? Five of these? Something like that. Not bad!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Run Photo of the Day 3.18.11: Nipping out for a 1-miler


I took Stanley out for a short run, just a 1-miler to keep my running streak alive.

I've noticed a lot of nip bottles littering the grass near a church near our house. What's disturbing is that the joint hosts AA meetings. Someone's not taking it seriously enough. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

run Photo of the Day 3.17.11 : Happy Birthday Myrna!


Myrna turns a big 6 years old today, so to celebrate we ran a 6 mile run and later there will be frosty paws.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Celtic 5K


Nik and I traveled to Worcester for the second in the three-race Tour de Patrick 5K series, the Guinness Celtic 5K. That's pronounced "Wuhsta" to out-of-staters. Although for some reason people kept pronouncing "Celtic" with a soft C, like the basketball team, instead of a hard C like the actual Celts.

The weather was freezing. Apparently the spring thaw hasn't entirely reached Worcester yet. A pond in Elm Park was still mostly frozen.

It also meant there was hard-packed filthy snow on the ground here and there. 

There's a bridge across the pond in Elm Park that's a lot steeper than it looks at first. Once you start walking up, you realize you're about to fall on your ass and tumble back down. Tricky.

I tried to get a job with these people -- I don't know what they do, but I'm unemployed right now and I'm not Irish. No word about an interview yet.

The race was bigger than last week's 5K race in Pawtucket, and a bit more scenic. About 2,000 runners, if you believe the lady on the microphone. Not that I don't trust her necessarily, but you never know. Next week is the Providence St. Pat's 5K, which should have about 3,000 runners.

Both of us did great, by the way. Nik got a totally unexpected PR of 24:48, and I got close at 31:43 -- not bad considering we both treated it as a fun run, and we haven't been running very much at all. Check out Nik's race report here and mine here.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Run Photo of the Day 3.12.11: Water tank


Ran by a water storage tank in the neighborhood. Beautiful scenery.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Run Photo of the Day 3.5.11: Irish 5K


Nik & I ran the first in a three-race series of 5Ks, the Irish 5K in Pawtucket, R.I.

The race started in downtown Pawtucket, right next to the historic Slater Mill, which as any idiot knows off the top of his head without consulting Wikipedia at all is the first water-powered cotton spinning mill in North America to utilize the Arkwright system of cotton spinning as developed by Richard Arkwright. 

We had a bit of a snafu before the race started -- we had picked up our bibs a few days beforehand, but then forgot to bring them on the day of the race. The bibs also contained our timing chips. So there was a few moments of panicking in the car about whether to give up, go home & try to drive back in time, or bandit the race. Instead we threw ourselves on the mercy of the race directors. They were kind enough to give us replacements for free. So thumbs-up to them. They're good people.

There were about 1,000 people running, and this is only the Irish 5K's first year. That's good, because Pawtucket could use all the civic pride it can get. For those of you not from our area, Pawtucket has a reputation as a shithole -- a well-deserved reputation. Apart from the quaint area where the race started, the rest of the route followed some of the dingiest, most broken-down industrial scenery we've seen in quite some time. Pawtucket also has a reputation as being a haven for cat-hoarders. We didn't see any cats on the route (probably because they were all being hoarded inside somewhere).

Still, the race itself was a lot of fun. Afterward, Nik auditioned for the new hit TV drama "CSI: Pawtucket." YEAAAAAAAAAAH!

To find out how we did, check out Nik's race report on Daily Mile.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Run Photo of the Day 3.1.11 : Meshanticut Lake

We took a little trip to Meshanticut State Park in Cranston, RI for a fun run...

...where Stanley spent most of the time pointing at nothing...

...which Myrna found very boring.
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