2017 · brenna gimler · bucket list · Falmouth Road Race · Finishers Medal · friends · Goal crushing · goals · happiness · Hills · Hitting your Goals · Running Environment · Running experience · Running Friends · summer running

Falmouth 2017

I ran Falmouth again this year.  This is the second time I’ve run this one.  I don’t run it for the medal because they don’t give medals usually as I learned the hard way last year.  Come to find out they give medals at this race every 5 years.  This year was the 45th running of this bucket list race so guess what I got!  Yep a medal!  It’s beautiful and so worth the 7 mile struggle over hills in the heat. 

@FalmouthRR is something you do for the experience not the race itself.  You know, I stood in a sea of people that you just don’t understand until you do it.  12,800 runners is almost indescribable.   and not one incident of violence… Imagine that!  Not one fight or argument.  Another several thousands of people that lined the ENTIRE 7 mile route.  So many people and we all had nothing but love and respect for each other.  We smiled, picked each other up, congratulated one another.  We were courteous and friendly.  We came from all parts of the country: Nigeria, USA, Kenya, Canada and many other places.  No one had any racist or supremacist attitudes.  No one marched with signs or jeered or drove cars into the crowd.  We all just had love and happiness in our hearts.  When you see someone get emotional because another runner went down, that’s love for your fellow humans!  That is how it should be.

ANYWAY…  Today was many things. It was definitely all about the bling and the experience.  As those of you who know me well understand, I love me a good medal!  The race itself is always a hot one which makes it harder than other races. IT took us 25 or so minutes to actually walk from where we hit the main drag TO the starting line because in this race they do a pulse start which just means we set of in groups of like 50 at a time then they wait a minute and send the next group.  It spaces us out and helps keep things moving.  Even this small detail is just one of the many things that make this my all time favorite race ever!  I wasn’t sure my race would be a good one because of the time of month it was.  I’m always slow just before the blessed event so I was expecting it to be hard, but went into it just wanting to have fun at the very least. That I did achieve with no problem whatsoever. I wanted to beat my 1:18:15 time from last year and amazingly I did!!! I finished unofficially at 1:15:51! I believe 100% that that accomplishment is directly attributed to all the core workouts I have been doing.  It definitely paid off because the hills were a bitch, especially the one at the very end that made 7.1 miles feel like 13.1.  Over the 7 .1 miles I was perpetually stuck in a large group of runners the entire way so it was nearly impossible to run swiftly when you’re crowded in.  I was grateful that that I couldn’t “take off” because it forced me to run a better more controlled race.  Probably why I finished two minutes faster than last year.  The feeling of struggling for 7 hilly hot miles seems to fade away as you give that last and final ounce of energy to push up that last horrible hill.  When you crest it you can see the gigantic American flag that is hoisted above the finish line by a crane just a hundred yards below.  You somehow find strength as people are cheering and shouting and you see the Jumbotron with the life finish line stream for those waiting for their loved ones to cross.  The air is electric with excitement and you run to that beautiful painted word on the street “FINISH” that sits under the banner just above that signals the end of your 7 mile journey marked by a stomp on the timing mat to seal your race time.  You can’t explain how it feels, you have to experience it yourself.

The Falmouth Road Race organizers, volunteers & medics are outstanding! They should get their own medal for the perfected work of making this race such a smooth well oiled event!  I’m not kidding you, it is so well organized, you don’t have to search for porto o potties because there are literally about a hundred in the waiting area.  Medics were visible with clearly marked signs at several points along the way ready to help those who needed it,.  The police rode bikes along the route to ensure things moved along nicely.  The people of Falmouth and friends / family of runners literally just line the streets cheering for you, soaking you with their hoses, giving you oranges and ice and 5 bands set up along the route and played music for us as we passed.  There weren’t just a few… there were people that in some places were several rows deep just watching us come through.  Some gave high fives (the little kids are my favorites to high five.  They are wonderful cheerers!)  Many blasted the radio, some had cow bells and others had horns. There were so many this year, more than last I thought. Any time I thought I might do some walking beyond just stopping for water I just couldn’t do it because the excitement of being there was compelling. I just cannot say enough good things about this wonderful race. 

When you use the word Chaos mostly you think of confusion and craziness that leaves a bad taste in your mouth.  The gathering spot after the race can only be described as chaos.  I’ve never seen or experienced organized chaos until I ran Falmouth.  So many people all in the same spot but it’s oddly and strangely organized.  From the pick up letters at the back of the field where families go to meet runners to the guys handing out the Yasso bars @eatyasso   by the way, is by far the best at the end of a hard race!  The band and the tent volunteers handing out post race goodies somehow swiftly corral all those people through with no waiting line.  The whole race was start to finish amazing and something that you should do if you want to see how a good race is run.  I can’t wait for next year!!

One of my favorite parts of my experience lies outside the race itself.  I run this race with my friend Barbara and we stay with our friends Gary and Gail who live in Falmouth.  Staying with friends who give you a ride to the busses and fight the crowd to pick you up from the finish line, who feed you and give you a place to lay your head for free absolutely makes the experience just that much better. Running this race with my friend, even though we don’t run together, is the BEST!  knowing that I’m sharing something amazing with her is special.  Taking selfies and pictures throughout our days there are memories that I cherish.  Having someone to share what will become a tall tale that I tell my grandchildren later in life is one of those things that money can’t buy!  I really love my running friend(s).  This part of the experience and not having to worry about crowded restaurants, overbooked hotels, driving to the start or finding parking or worrying about my belongings while I’m racing turns what could be a crazy stressful weekend into a wonderful weekend of memories instead!

HAPPY RUNNING!

 

2017 · Attitude · brenna gimler · Discipline · Rain Running · Running Environment · Running Friends · summer running

Sharing My Love For Rain Running

On Saturday I did my long run.  It was 8 miles for some undetermined reason that popped in my head.  I have a 7 mile race in two weeks so if I was truly “in training” mode I would have just run 5 but I wanted to keep my miles up for long runs above 7.  Maybe it’s random or maybe I’m stepping into a better, more experienced runner.  I’m going with the first answer because well, you’re always hardest on yourself.  So I invited my wingman to ride while I ran and he agreed.  I like it when he goes because he talks to me, encourages me, holds my water and keys and food should I need any or all of those things.  We run 4 and with every mile I feel better.

Mile 1 for me always feels like a challenge as I prime my joints and warm up into the pace I’ll hold onto most of the run.  At 4 we decided to hit the local convenience store for more fluids.  Wingman can drink all my hydration in an innocent gulp and we were a little low because of it.  So at four miles he told me to wait while he biked the less than quarter mile to get our replenishment.  I walked that way to keep moving and then we walked back to our stopping point.  We fueled and then set off but no sooner had we embarked on our return journey it began raining.  At first it was light rain then heavier and by the time we were a mile into the 4 mile return trip, it was down-pouring on us.  I am accustomed to running in the rain as I’ve done it many times and in many different types of rain from Forest Gump “big ol’ fat rain” to driving rain to torrential downpours.  I in fact like rain running because it makes me feel strong and tough and cool actually…cool like temperature cool but the other kind as well.  As we moved along my wingman started off complaining about being wet and his pants and underwear getting wet and water in his eyes.  Not long into the rain, which didn’t continue in the downpour way for long, he began to realize that it was kind of fun getting wet.  When did kids forget the fun in getting wet?  Remember jumping in puddles and standing with your face to the sky and your tongue hanging out catching rain drops?  I do.  Every time it rains and I get caught in it, it makes me smile.  James came round and was laughing and woo-hooing all the way home and it made me laugh inside to see him having a good time with his soggy pants and shoes.  He even took off his shirt that was weighing him down and said that we should do this more often…. Yes Buddy we should.  We all should!  There’s just something peaceful about being in the rain that if you can get your mind there, is calming and happy and joyous especially when shared with someone.

HAPPY RUNNING!

2017 · Attitude · brenna gimler · fitness schedule · running problems · summer running

Captain Of The Runch Bunch!

Some days it’s just a Runch kind of day.  It’s 41 this morning which is ok with me because I like a little chill in the air when I run in the morning.  What is not ok with me however, is that my intestines are not cooperating so that I can appropriately get ready to run.  I hate that and I was totally prepared to risk it but at the drop of a hat I just thought about how around lunch time it will be 73 and sunny and warmer and most likely I will be intestinally set to go for a run. You have to love Summer running! Sometimes it just doesn’t take much to convince me to switch up my plan.  I would actually go after work but I have an obligation that interferes with that so RUNCH it is!  It’s good to switch it up so you run new routes, new times and new places, after all life is not a spectator sport.  Go be adventurous and switch it up.  You just have to be open to it.

What things do you do to switch up the sameness of your routine?

HAPPY RUNNING!

summer running

HOT Running

366 butterflyI don’t usually run 5K’s because well honestly it’s a waste of money for such a short race.  I just can’t bring myself to spend money on them.  I ran one yesterday however.  It was the Butterfly 5K in a neighboring town to support the Julia Cekala Foundation.  Julia lost her battle about 10 years ago and her parents, friends and family have championed for her to help others fighting the same issue.  My company volunteered for the event and I decided to run it because it was an entry that we got for sponsoring and working the event.  No one else wanted it and it was my way to do something that mattered because Julia no longer can.  I woke up and it was 78 degrees at 6 am.  UUGGHHH that’s not a good sign.  At race start it hovered around 90 with humidity at some rediculous number that pretty much took the fresh out of fresh air.  It was like there was a blanket covering the trees preventing easy breathing standing still let alone moving at a trot.  It was so hot that there was a girl puking not even a mile in, two that needed an ambulance and 500 or so runners that did plenty of walking including high school teams that are in much better shape than I am.  It was horrible out.  I felt sorry for my work family who had to stand still in the blazing sun baking like a tater tot.  I was at least running and had a self instituted breeze which didn’t seem to make it any better.  It was so hot my legs were swelling and it felt like I was moving them through mud because they were tired and heavy.  Everyone was having issues especially when we ran over the newly laid black tar that radiated more heat like we didn’t have enough to deal with already.  Yes thank you I was feeling a bit chilly just there …. NOT!  I trudged on without pausing through 2.74 of 3 miles before I had to stop.  It was an uphill section just before the finish and I just had to catch my breath for a moment or two.  I pushed myself to start running again to the finish and was so happy to cross and stop and get some much needed water and sit down in the shade.  Everyone was sitting down trying to recover, drinking water and eating supplied bananas and apples which tasted pretty darn good.  It was so bad out that I forgot to collect my cute little butterfly medal at the finish.  I had to go back like a little kid who felt they got gypped cookies in my school lunch or something.  I didn’t sit around long since I went alone to the race.  No one to hang with where I was so I didn’t wait around.  I am pretty sure I didn’t win any of the awards since I”m not fast enough but I don’t run for the prizes, I run just to do it.  The smaller races don’t have the fan fare and expos and yummy food that some of the big ones do and since it was so hot the call from my truck’s AC was more enticing than hanging around in the heat.  So I went home feeling happy to have finished, happy that I didn’t slow down but the one time and happy to have run for a nice cause.  I now need to find a race for Butterfly Children that doesn’t require a passport or a 4+ hour plane ride.  Now those kids are tough!  I did give up my scheduled 6 mile run for a 3 but 3 felt like 10 so it’s ok.  I am running The Falmouth Road Race on Sunday with a friend and we are going to make it fun and memorable because 12,000 runners doesn’t really allow for fast and that’s ok with me!  It’s all about the experience!

HAPPY RUNNING!