Yeah. You're happy you read that aren't you?
Aaaaaanyways, Thanksgiving morning I went alone (lazy family) to the local 5K Turkey Trot. I ended up meeting my buddy Dani there, which was nice. Then I didn't feel like such a lonely loser while we waited around for the start.
We're smiling because we're thinking of all the horrible eating we are going to do later, using the 5K as a rationalization for our horrible decisions.
For some reason I had a bug up my butt about wanting to finally make a sub-30 minute 5K. Which I know, to "real" runners (whatever the hell that means) is still really freakin' slow. But not to me. July 4th was the last one I'd done, in 32:something. Which I was ecstatic about. But I just knew I had it in me to get below 30 minutes. Why? I have no idea. Since we started regularly Crossfitting over a month ago I've only been going on true (2-6 mile) runs every other week really.
But off I went...and guess what? 28:43, Motherf*&%#$rs!!! That's what I'm talking about!
Oh, but wait! There's more! Saturday was Pangea's Turkey Burn Adventure Race.
In beautiful Hatbill Park outside of Mims, in the heart of OMFG-I-hear-banjos-paddle-faster Country
The Sport Class was a four hour race, instead of the usual three. Not quite as big of a field as some other races, but very few new teams. Just the competition alone had me thinking this was not going to be a race where we ended up real high on the leaderboard. And then we got to the race site, saw the maps and I said, "I really don't think we're clearing this one today."
Now I don't mean to sound defeatist, because despite all that I was still raring to go. I'm sure I've said it before, but I'll say it again, one of the most important benefits to me from Crossfit is instilling the philosophy of pushing yourself as hard as you can. Not to go faster, harder, longer than the others around you...but to go faster, harder, longer than you did the last time. So we did.
All while rocking my A-dorable Christmas socks.
Dave drew the marble this time and we ended up Biking first. The bike was a really nice mix of grass and road. I will say that I think it was one of the most physically demanding trails we've done that wasn't sandy. That thick grass can be a bitch, too folks. But it had a nice interlude of hard packed dirt road which was nice. Dave was spot-on with his navigation. I was so proud, especially when I saw several other teams having a hard time with a couple of the CPs.
One of the most entertaining aspects of Adventure Racing to me, is the interaction mid-race with other teams. Everyone is super-friendly before and after. But during the race, the demeanors kind of vary by team. And mine? Mine totally depends on the vibe I get from the other team. Don't get me wrong I yell, "Good job!" You got it!" to everyone. But in those moments when you know where a CP is and the other teams doesn't? Than it's all about karma baby!
There was another couple who had been very smiley (yes, it is too a word) and pleasant-seeming as we crossed paths with them once or twice in the beginning of the race. When I was coming out of grabbing one of the more hidden CPs, I could tell they were having a bit of a hard time. So when she saw me, I confirmed that it was right back where I had come from.
On the other hand, twice we passed teams who had overshot CPs we had just found. But they barely looked up as we passed. Didn't smile, or say hi. Did I let them know where they were going wrong?
About halfway through the foot portion, we caught up with our AR friends Beth & Brian of Adventure Training of Vero. Ever have those kind of friends that you only see in certain venues and absolutely love but never seem to get to hang out with outside of those certain venues? Yeah, that's Beth & Brian to us. They are da bomb. And awesome trainers too! Check them out if you are in Vero. But I digress.
All four of us got super frustrated trying to find one of the CPs and eventually gave up. Turns out it mayhavepossiblynotbeenmarkedquiteright on the map. But who are we to judge. Brian did end up spotting it a little further down the road and called it out to us as we gave up a few seconds after they did and were behind them. Had he not pointed it out, I do not know if we would have spotted it or not. Maybe, maybe not. But I said to Dave, "Meh, consider it our karmic gift for confirming that bike CP to the other couple."
The rest of the race was a hoot. An exhuasting hoot, but a hoot nonetheless. We kept chasing Beth & Brian and occasionally they chased us. It was the most good-natured, fun competition I've ever had. We all talked about it later and said how we all pushed ourselves harder because of it. Which is just awesome.
A little more about that instant karma; while on the canoe portion Beth and Brian got in front of us but somehow blew right past one of the CPs. I couldn't let them screw up such a great race this far in, so I yelled to them and pointed it out. (as well as to the Team chasing us, but it's all good) This made me feel a lot better about them pointing out the other CP to us. It's not that Dave and I are really such angels, but we really truly prize fairness in competition and would hate to ever feel like we had an unfair advantage. So the scale was balanced and my neurotic little brain was at peace.
Even with that little hiccup, the Wonder Twins STILL out-paddled our asses and got in a minute or two before us. When we checked in I thought we were in 4th place, which was amazing and also a small relief. It's been an on-going joke between Dave and I and some of the Pangea staff that as soon as we Top Three we'll try an Elite Race, but not before. In so far as, at one tanked race earlier in the year, I was (jokingly) accused of sandbagging.
So I was ecstatic with such a high placing but oddly relieved that we still hadn't top three'ed. And then during the awards they realized the team they thought had come in 3rd had not cleared the course. Then, as it appeared to us anyways, Greg realized we were third and announces that the prizes for the Top Three in the Sport Class will be discounts on a registration for an Elite. CRaaaaaaaaaaaP!
I say this in jest, of course. We couldn't be more excited or proud of ourselves that we finally cracked the top three. I know that we both often-times still feel a little "one of these things is not like the others" at the races. It's hard to shed the old body image. But we're getting better, and wins like this certainly help. It's hard to call yourself a fatty, or slow, or weak when we think about what we've been accomplishing lately. So at least we've got that going for us.
Not sure when exactly we're going to do the Elite. I told Beth and Brian that we need to do the same one, so we need to put schedules together. But it has to be one of the ones this winter, for sure. So stay tuned for our Elite premiere...hopefully we will survive it.
Oh and you didn't think we'd leave out this race's Team Photo did you?
You don't find it odd that I happened to already have coal at home, do you?