Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Happy New Year!

Well, it's about time, huh?

Sorry for being away so long. I took a big break over the holidays and then got swamped catching up on a bunch of things that needed to get done when I got back.

So what have I been up to?

For one thing, traveling. Dave and I went back to Hawaii and laid down more rubber along the Kona Ironman bike course (Dave's goal was to ride 7000 miles this year). Here we are in Hawi, the turnaround point, on Christmas Day. Though we started only 20 miles away, it felt like double that with the hills and ferocious wind. Who's bright idea was this anyway?

Our Xmas presents: a new meaning for the word tough and improved bike handling skills.


We also met up with Dave's brother and his family who were visiting the island for the first time. Being from Alaska and outdoor types, they camped out with some other friends of theirs rather than stay in any hotels or condos. They had a great spot right near a beach and cooked us a tasty Mexican dinner. (Photo below L to R: friend Laurie, Dave's brother Chuck and his wife, Sarah)



The kids were all incredibly well-behaved. After dinner, they all went into a tent where they were so quiet that I thought they'd fallen asleep. Little did I know that they had their headlights on and were entertaining themselves with books and games. No TV or game stations? No problem!



We were offered extra camp gear to stay the night but politely declined. Dave's idea of camping is staying in a 2-star hotel.

We also did a little running, snorkeling, swimming and some condo upgrades but for the most part, didn't do much of anything but relax.

The only bad part was coming back home. Nasty weather in Chicago caused all sorts of flight delays and turned our trip into a 20+ hour ordeal. By the time I got home, the arch in my right foot was complaining (we did a LOT of walking/standing around in various airport customer service lines, me with a 20# backpack on). Uh-oh ...


The first race of the year was last Sunday, January 6, the DeLeon Springs Half Marathon, a flat, out-and-back course. Thinking the arch-thing was probably dreaded PF (plantar fasciitis), I seriously considered not doing the race but found the pain to disappear after a good couple miles of warming up so I went ahead with it. I met up with some friends who were also at the race (photo below left, pre-race: me and fellow blogger Maddy; photo right, post-race: Jim, a friend who works with me at Track Shack, and moi). Lucky me, I got race number 666. But not being superstitious, I wore it and just told everyone else to look out ;-)



The first half I ran conservatively with Jim and we gabbed to the turnaround in 58:04 (8:15 pace). The second half, I ran a little stronger on my own and finished in 1:47:09 (8:11 pace), far from a PB but good enough for third place in my age group and I was sure I did not overdo anything. There were also a lot of raffle prizes given out at this small race. Maddy won a gift card from a local running store and, yes, lucky 666 won a big canister of Accelerade sports drink. Not a bad way to start the new year!!

19 comments:

Wendy said...

Great job on the half, Shirley!

And it sounds like you had a tremendous holiday season.

Cliff said...

666? Muhahha that's a great number to race with.

Glad u enjoy the heat, hills and the wind on the Kona IM bike course.

What a great place to spend your holidays at.

jen said...

Happy New Year and Welcome back!! Sounds like a wonderful holiday in a beautiful place with family and friends- can't beat that.

Congrats on a strong race! How is your foot feeling?

ShirleyPerly said...

Thanks everyone! My foot feels neither worse or better after running the race so that's good. I was hoping to do more running early this year, even enter a few 5K/10Ks for a change, but until it gets noticeably better, I'm not going to push it. The calf and ball-of-foot annoyances I had after Vegas disappeared over the holidays with added rest. I hope the same will be true with this arch-thing.

BreeWee said...

666 that is so funny! Glad with a number like that your pain still went away and you had a SUPER race! Happy you enjoyed the island too and got to spend A LOT of time on the good old Queen K!
Hope to see you in February... until then... looks like your 2008 is off to a super start!

ShirleyPerly said...

Yeah, we don't even give out #666 at our Track Shack races (not sure about #13). OTOH, I might have run as well with another number. I think 666 forced me to run a smart race :-)

Susan said...

Excellent, Shirley! And I'm glad to have you back.

I see Chicago ruffled you just like me!

akshaye said...

Great race.. and nice prize!

Hawaii sounded wonderful. I specially like the picture of the tent and no need for a tv..that is so great!

P.O.M. said...

Happy New Year. Looks like a great time. I am heading to Kona in Feb. Half for work and half for fun. Any recomendations? Restaurants, Hikes, etc?

Annette said...

Good to have you back!! Sounds like you had a very nice break and great job on the 1/2 marathon!!

Rural Girl said...

good to hear from you again. nice race. maybe 666 is really good luck?

MarathonChris said...

Welcome back!! Glad you had a good race last weekend! Hope the foot recovers well.

Duane said...

Hi Shirley! Happy New Year! Good job!

Maddy said...

It was great to see you on Sunday! I noticed your race number, but I didn't want to point it out - because, it's just a race number. :-) And you ran the race so well! Congratulations on taking 3rd in your age group and the Accelerade! Nice!

peter said...

If you didn't like 666, you could have gone with 999. A big race assigned me # 100 once (b/c I was the first to register with my own chip) and I was so embarrased, everyone around me thought I was going to rocket out of there!

Fe-lady said...

Happy New Year (I'm a trifle late!) Glad you had fun in Hawaii...and that you got to ride part of the IM Kona course. How was traffic?
Super run...I would LOVE a 1:47 half mary! Congrats! You both look great!

ShirleyPerly said...

Someone did suggest that, but I just decided to determine my own fate ...

I once got an elite number (F15, I think it was) and starting position when I was invited to run the Disney Marathon in 2006. That was actually a much more uncomfortable feeling. NO WAY do I look or run like an elite marathoner!

Ellie Hamilton said...

Wow, what a great trip, what a great race, what a great prize!! I'd actually wear the 666 if it would get me a can of Accelerade!

Runner's Anonymous said...

So you ran the first half with your friend Jim eh? That's no friend, that's my uncle! Seriously!

Anyway, my Uncle Jim(Ugh to us) told me to check out your site since I also have a running site on blogspot. My site is at http://runnersanon.blogspot.com.

Those are some great goals for 2008. I hope you smash them all to smithereens!