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Yep…you know when you see that title what that REALLY means…a race! This past Sunday, I ran in the Gasparilla Distance Classic in Tampa, FL.  

  For those of you who many not know (or live in the area), this is THE race in Tampa Bay!  Since I started running about 10-11 years ago, I’ve run this race every year for the past 5-6 years.  I always did the 5k, up until last year, when I decided to do the 15k. Yeah…well, that didn’t happen THIS year! I opted to try the 8k instead (4.97 miles).  I’ve learned a few things over these past few years with running:

  1. I really like the 5k and 10k distance.
  2. Just because I do like these distances, doesn’t mean I’m not a real runner. In the past (and most recently), I thought if you were a marathoner or a half marathoner, that meant you were a real runner. And if you didn’t do/like those distances, you weren’t! #wrong
  3. Now…I really like the 8k distance. “Am I real runner,now??” ๐Ÿ˜‰

This was a first in a few ways…the distance, running on a Sunday, AND going to the race all.by.myself!!  No one drove with me, no one raced with me, and no one went to the pre-race Expo with me. So, go ME!! And I found a UA sign that was the inspiration and theme for this weekend… 

 …. I WILL do this on my own! 

I wasn’t sure what parking was going to be since the half marathon started about 3 hours before the 8k.  I left home fairly early 

 …only to find AMPLE parking! #ofcourse.   So, I took a snooze once I was settled and paid for parking.  

About 7:30, got my self together and walks over to the Convention Center to use the facilities (I hate Port-o-Potties!!), get my gear checked in and stretch.  

 …and I wait because line up in the corral didn’t start until 8:30!  But once I did, I got to see the half marathoners finishing!  Sorry I missed you,  Cupcake and Miles!!  One of these days, we are gonna meet!!๐Ÿ˜‰

The race went well for me.  The 5k distance is familiar and a comfort zone, so I was fine. I’m still not as fast as if like to be/used to be, but I’m enjoying the process of getting back. Mile 4 was ok, no biggie, but between that and mile “5” (or .97), was a little bit of a struggle.  I wasn’t physically tired but more mentally tired. And as you know, most of this stuff is mental!  I haven’t returned to that place where I can block out the “pain”, the “thoughts”, the “doubts”, but I will!  

 I’m trying not to be hard on myself, but that struggle is real too!!  I’m proud of myself for doing the race and leaving the shadow of “I have to do it with someone” in order for ME to participate.   I’m a big girl, now!! ๐Ÿ˜‚

All and all, I enjoyed this race and next year, I have a SCORE to settle with you, 8k!!!

Oh…SN- I’m walking to my car after the race and see… 

 ….apparently I didn’t as far or as fast as this person, because they ran out of their DRAWERS!! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚
Have you run Gasparilla before? What distance? Would you do it again? And…can we plan bloggers “meet and greet”???

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    Aarrrrgh!

    This weekend…..I had the honor of saying that “I ran a 15k” after running in the Gasparilla Distance Classic in Tampa, FL.

    IMG_5451The best thing about the race series…you can pick from any distance. This series had a 5k, 8k, 15k, and Half Marathon. I’ve done the 5k before and was really looking at doing another 10k, but joke was on me…because they discontinued that distance. So, 15k it was….

    The race started at O’Dark Thirty (ie 6:45am) and it was COLD (by Florida standards…40 DEGREES!!!๐Ÿ˜).

    IMG_5432Downtown Tampa…

    My friend, Sam, raced with me! It’s perfect because we are both competitive (with ourselves) and we race well together!!

    IMG_5431She’s still my friend!!!

    Anyone that doesn’t know, the race follows the pirate themed festival/parade celebrating the invasion of Jose Gaspar and his band of pirates. Living in this area for the last 13 years, I haven’t been brave enough to go to the parade. But I DO love doing the race!! I’ve always done the 5k, but CHALLENGE!!!….I did the 15k.
    There are all types of people racing in their pirate gear….

    IMG_5437AArrrghhh! Like THIS stuff!!!

    I enjoyed this distance, I have to say. The first 5k….no biggie!
    The second 5k….I’m good!
    The last 5k….
    Mile 7-good
    Mile 8- I’m getting TIGHT, my quads and IT band (ITB)
    Mile 9 – ITB is on FIRE and my pace seems like a slow crawl! #nothappy

    In my mind..I figured finishing 1:30-1:45. I wasn’t sure but I was basing it on my 5k and 10k times.

    IMG_5448We DID it!!!

    IMG_5434Our “we’re so HAPPY we didn’t DIE” faces!

    IMG_5436Is this thing REAL??
    I’m glad that I did it and honestly….I would TOTALLY do it again.

    As I sit here typing this post, I am now able to move like a normal human and NOT like a drunk John Wayne. #sore
    I’ll be back in the saddle tomorrow with a light run (hopefully with one of my running buddies๐Ÿ˜‰) and planing my next challenge!

    PS…if you are curious…guess how many calories you can potentially burn running a 15k???

    IMG_5441

    Please….NOT again!!

    I managed to squeeze some runs in this week, and planning one today,too! I noticed my shins are a little tight but I think it’s because I pushed a little harder on my last run. AND…I need new inserts because I’m such a horrible PRONATOR! ๐Ÿ˜

    IMG_5331

    IMG_5327The thumbs down was the day the shins felt a little off. Oh well…

    I found that running with my “oh so attractive” compression socks help and I plan on using them today. The run went ok….
    My shins are DEFINITELY sore but not to the point to claim them shin splints, THANK GOD!

    IMG_5340Kinda how I felt after the run today. #vodkaPLEASE

    I cut it about 1/2 mile shorter today for fear of the shins. I also need to invest in a foam roller, to break that s**t up! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    The Gasparilla 15k is in two weeks and I’m thinking of taking it light next week. Maybe have one or two runs, I haven’t decided yet. The week of the run…I’m going to rest. I’ve not run this distance before and I’m not sure HOW my shins will hold up, so I’m not going in with sore shins. ๐Ÿ˜

    Anyone else have some shin remedies???

    You signed up for WHAT……??????

    Not to rip off one of my favorite blogs but that’s exactly what I was thinking when I decided to sign up for another race. Not just any race…I slipped and bumped my head and signed up for a 15k!! WHAT????

    Here’s the story….Gasparilla is a race in Tampa Bay that I look forward to every year.

    2015/01/img_5248.jpg
    I did race last year because of my shin injury, so not surprisingly, I’d sign up this year. Since I fancy myself a 10k’er now (yeah…right!), I wanted to sign up for another one. I’ve usually done the 5k, but I didn’t want to revisit the distance for a few reasons:

    1. I want to keep pushing myself. And if I continue to “just do” 5ks, I’ll never be challenged to do anything else, but that distance. I’m not knocking times out the park, or anything. And I am/was quite comfy in 5k land, but my running shorts weren’t! You get it??? (In case you didn’t….I was in a stand still with the weight! ). So…I continue to challenge myself!

    2. At minimum there are usually about 9 BAZILLION 9000 (or more) people that run the 5k in Gasparilla every year. This is NOT a race for people, like me, who want to improve SOME time. There are just too many people. It’s fun…and its a workout…but I think I’m looking for more.
    Just an idea…LOOK at this! This is a good depiction of the what the 5k looks like…๐Ÿ˜

    2015/01/img_5249.jpg

    This leads me to the registration page. I’m looking…I’m scrolling…I don’t see it. I see 5k, 8k, 15k, and Half Marathon. WTF happened to the 10k?? Where did it go?? Well, I missed a year and I FORGOT the race GODS replaced the 10k with an 8k. What’s a girl to do???. Well, I figured that doing the 8k would make me FEEL like I was going backwards. This in reality isn’t true because I only have ONE 10k under my belt…..

    I guess I was feeling “all proud” of myself because I pulled the trigger…and signed up for the 15k. ๐Ÿ˜
    What I am I thinking?? I have no experience…I don’t think I have time to train…I don’t think I can DO IT!
    That’s the doubtful part of my brain. The other part thinks about the experience…how GREAT it would be to have added a distance to my running resume….how I would be 4 miles from a HALF MARATHON!! It all makes me feel INVINCIBLE!

    So…I WILL do the 15k. I WILL fit in some training (to the best of my ability and schedule). I WILL feel like I can do it!

    Ever signed up for something that we were SCARED to do?

    No Plan Ang…..

    20140221-102404.jpg

    ….that’s my NEW name!!

    For the past 5 years or so, I have run the Gasparilla 5k in Tampa, Florida. I’ve been excited about this run but this year waited to late to register. Not that I can’t register online or in person, but waited to late in that I have a scheduling conflict that day! BOO!! ๐Ÿ‘Ž๐Ÿ‘Ž๐Ÿ‘Ž

    My own fault…No one to blame on this one but me!! I’m kinda bummed. This run takes you along a beautiful part of Tampa bay and there are literally a GAZILLION folks that do the 5k. Last year, if I remember, over 9,000 participants just in the 5k. This isn’t exactly a race that I do to better my time, but it’s so fun being out there and ALL the people you see and hear cheering you on! I don’t usually have a partner to run with, so it’s nice to feel like someone is cheering for and with me!!

    The race series also hosts a half marathon, a 15k, and a 8k. I had aspirations for the 8k, but again, piss poor planning on my part! It’s kinda my thing to do that, you know….NOT planning ahead!! Working on THAT this year!!!!

    My poor planning gets me down. (It can’t be THAT hard, Angie!). When I get down because of something like this, I start searching for and “planning” a new race. Sounds stupid considering I don’t plan that way normally, but something about finding a new race gives me the charge that I need and gets my ASS in gear. If I was normal, I wouldn’t be on this ride at all.

    My plan for today….run before picking up J and A. Then tomorrow morning to compensate for NOT doing a race this weekend, go for a longer run. Longer meaning a smudge over 4 miles. (I’m no rock star when it comes to running, folks!!)
    AND….get my ass back on my bike! I need to get a Tri on the calendar! I’m shooting for April!!!

    Have a great weekend!!!

    Questions
    What’s your activities this weekend??
    Are you a planner or do you just “wing it” when it comes to races?

    ยฉ2014 Angie