Posts Tagged With: sherpa

Time To Rock ‘N’ Roll!!

For eighteen weeks, my husband, Andy, has been training for his first marathon using the Hal Higdon intermediate training plan. I think training has gone very well for him, minus a little calf glitch in there a few weeks ago that seems to be fine now. I’ve been able to see training from the flipside, and it’s been fun for me. Not as in a “haha, it’s funny watching you sweat” kind of fun, it’s just been fun to see him do something that I truly love to do. He “gets” things more than he did before, like how tired you can be, how hungry you can be, what taper madness is, what pre-race nerves are like, all the aches and pains, chafing, carb loading, and wow, about a billion more things. He’s met running friends, he’s not slept in on a weekend (except for this past Sunday) for months, and I think he’s had a lot of fun. You’ll have to check HIS blog out that he started during this adventure, called Salt Life & Clemson. He talks about life, being a dad, husband to a crazy wife, a Clemson fan, a Red Sox fan, and of course, running. Check it out!

Savannah, here we come!

Savannah, here we come!

So on Thursday, we are going to pack up the Ford and head south. His race is Saturday and honestly, I’m nervous!!! I’ve never been a Sherpa for anyone, and because he is the BEST Sherpa in the continental US and probably the entire world, I don’t want to fail him.  I’ll have two mini-Sherpas with me, which always adds an element of, um, entertainment, but it is extremely important to us all that they see their dad cross that finish line. The hay is in the barn for hubby, so getting packed and carb loaded is all we can do now. Wish him luck!! All I can say is that I’m so proud of him for all the hard work he’s put into this!

As for me, I’ve had a roller coaster of a week. On Monday, I felt like I could conquer the world in a single bound. Today, I feel like I couldn’t finish a 5k if my life depended on it. What’s up with that?? Maybe it’s coming off a big race. Maybe it’s because I didn’t sleep much last night. I am worried that my shin splints have migrated into my calf, so at this point, I don’t even know if I will be able to train for my marathon in January. It’s all I’ve been thinking about since Boston, so it’s been emotional to try and think about an injury and the possibility I may have to pull the plug on my big race. I don’t understand what is going on, but after my run tomorrow, if my gait feels “off”, I’m going to make an appointment with a physical therapist who can assess my stride and see if there’s something firing wrong in there somewhere. I think I’m ok with whatever happens, there’s local marathons, but I already spent the money on a plane ticket to Houston and don’t want to go all that way to run a half marathon or not at all. How will this all play out? I’m guessing I’ll have some sort of answer by the end of next week. Can’t I just skip the pages and get there already???!!!!  Ahh, I remember now, it’s all about the journey! In the meantime, I’m going to have a BLAST with my family in Savannah and watch my husband finish his marathon.

What about YOU? Have you any Sherpa tips for me? Been to Savannah to run?


Categories: Boston Marathon, boston red sox, half iron distance, marathon, running, running buddies, running with friends, training for marathon, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Being a Sherpa – Er…Sort of

Yesterday was the first day in about five years that I went to a race and did not participate.  My good friend, Anthony, was running his 106th 1/2 marathon (click here to read more about Anthony!) at Ocean Isle Beach and wanted someone to run with, so a few months ago, I volunteered my husband to run with him.  Husband ran some here and there when he could, because, unfortunately for him, MY running always comes before his.  Sorry dear but really, it is the truth.  The difference between my husband and I is that if I don’t get my training in, I could break out into hives and repeatedly thump myself on the forehead while saying, “AHHHH, I SHOULD HAVE RUN TODAY!” and then live in regret-hood for another few days before finally getting over it. He takes the healthier and more laid back approach and just does what he wants when he wants to without really worrying about his finish time.  I used to be like that, and there’s many times I wish I could go back to not counting and comparing and worrying about times and all that competitive stuff. Sometimes.

So yesterday, I tried my hand at being a Sherpa, although there was really nothing that I needed to do or carry or give them along the race route except a smile and orders to look at the camera so I could take a picture.  My husband Andy has supported me through so many races, it was time to at least be there for his race.

The ocean is there... at least I think so!

The ocean is there… at least I think so!

It was extremely foggy when we got there and when the race started. It went up and over a really high bridge, twice, and the only thing the runners could see was the fog.  It was weird.  Then the course took them along the ocean for the remainder of the race.  It’s strange to be able to hear the ocean, but not be able to actually see it.  I felt like it could have been a scene from the book, “The Mist” by Stephen King, the one that was read to me when I was far too young to be able to handle Stephen King’s freakiness, so I imagined creatures coming out of the mist while I stood there, just waiting to be devoured.  Note: Don’t read Stephen King books to your kids.  Ever. I am still wary of semi trucks because I was also an audience to the short story, “Trucks”.  I’ve never trusted a semi since.

Wendy, a friend of ours and a fellow member of our running group, was with us and ran the 5k.  I was able to see her at mile 2, and to her surprise, she placed in her age group.  Way to go, Wendy!!!!

Wendy with her trophy, lovingly named "Sheila"

Wendy with her trophy, lovingly named “Sheila”

I then saw the guys emerge from the mist at mile two and got my picture….

Emerging from Stephen King's mist....alive!

Emerging from Stephen King’s mist….alive!

Coach Kristen was along to support Anthony, and she had 9-10 miles to run for training, so she took off to get her run in.  I found Wendy after her 5k was done and handed over the keys that Anthony had made us promise to 1) not put in our butts running shorts and 2) not lose because how would we get back to Wilmington? We took our job seriously. No dangling keys over those storm drains!!! It was tempting, but we successfully fought off the temptation to do so.

I needed to run 5 miles so I started the Map My Run app because my stupid Garmin lied when it said it was fully charged and promptly died as soon as it found the satellites, turned on my music, and took off. Suddenly it dawned on me that I told the guys I would see them at Mile 8.  Oh crap. Great job, Sherpa!  Not.  The course was an “up and back” then a “down and back”.  I ran up the race course and had so many people ask me if I wanted water or Gatorade, even after I told them I was just running to find my actual runners, so that was pretty cool.  I found them at mile 5-ish, took a picture, and then ran back down the course so I could meet them again. Kristen and I saw them close to mile 8, which is where the up route met the down route, and it immediately started to pour very cold rain, so we hid under a small building a few minutes until it slowed down.  We then caught back up to the boys when it started raining again, so we figured that running next to them was just causing cold and bronchitis-inducing rain, so we headed to the finish line area.

Most of the route was like this.

Most of the route was like this.

It was really strange that the weather was all over the place. Foggy, rainy, cloudy, hot, sunny…. we had it all yesterday.  At least the storms held off and it wasn’t a torrential downpour like originally predicted.  Kristen and Wendy and I had a good time talking with each other and other runners after the race while we waited for Andy and Anthony to finish. For the first time in a long time, I watched the end of a 1/2 marathon and got to see such a variety of people finishing.  I saw an 11 year old finish his first 1/2 with his mom (WOW, that was COOL!), older people finishing, middle-age people finishing, well, people of all ages, sizes, and everything. It was fun.  And for once, I wasn’t upset at the fact that I wasn’t racing. I didn’t even look at the winning times to see if I would have placed in my age group either, which is pretty big for Ms. Competitive.

Andy at the finish.

Andy at the finish.

Pretty soon, I saw husband Andy coming along to finish the race.  It totally, royally, and completely sucked that there were no medals at the finish line. Yes, this was a race for charity; it’s not a big race, but really, for a 1/2 marathon, you should ALWAYS get medals.  Even if they’re the penny ones from the dollar store “buy in bulk” section, you deserve SOMETHING when you cross the finish line.  Even though he doesn’t care, I’m bummed that he doesn’t have a medal to show for his efforts.  But I was so very proud that he 1) let me bulldoze him into doing the 1/2 when I don’t think he really wanted to AT FIRST 2) ran the race, and 3) now wants to do a 1/2 marathon every few months (music to my ears!). Some people train for months to complete a 1/2 and he did some running here and some running there and was able to do one without any major issues.  Husband rocks!

Anthony finishing his 106th 1/2 marathon!

Anthony finishing his 106th 1/2 marathon!

A little bit later, Anthony finished his 106th 1/2 marathon.  It just HAS to be old hat for him running these things.  Just another “Anthony” weekend I guess!

We were all hungry so headed to a place right by the parking lot, and twelve hours thirty minutes and two spilled chicken wraps later, we got to eat our lunch, had some laughs, and then headed back to Wilmington.

Andy, Me, Wendy, Anthony, and Kristen

Andy, Me, Wendy, Anthony, and Kristen

It was a really nice, fun day spent with people I enjoy, so it’s always good to be around people you like doing things you like to do.  I’ve become quite a social tard now that I’m alone a lot, so I don’t tend to say too much when around people for fear of being a big dork.  But even today, I stepped out of the norm and ran my long run with a group of ladies I don’t know too well.  I didn’t say much this time, again, because I just don’t know them that well, but I enjoy the company and am drawn to continue the trend.  Friends rock.  Running groups rock.  And I can say that being a part of a race without actually participating rocks too.

Categories: Boston Marathon, marathon, running, training for marathon, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at