Saturday, May 16, 2009

Run, Shaddy, Run

This morning I participated in the Beloit Wellness Biathlon. It was a cool, windy day with temperatures hovering around 53 degrees and 20 mph winds blowing from the northwest. Fortunately, the sun was shining.
I haven't figured out how to get these photos in chronological order when I add them to my post, consequently, there's no rhyme or reason to their positions up there. I'll describe what's going on the best way I can. The photo in the lower right is of me as I finished the first 2-mile run. In the lower left photo, I've donned my biking helmet and biking shoes and I'm heading with my bike from the parking lot to the road. The photo of me on my bike was taken as I'm braking at the finish of the 11-mile bike. Above that, I'm taking off my helmet and changing to my running shoes. In the photo of me from the back, I'm beginning the final leg of the biathlon, the second 2-mile run. The photo of me and the orange cones was taken as I made the turn off the road and into the chute that guided me across the finish line.
I felt good during the entire race except for the first half mile of running after getting off my bike. Biking into the wind was a challenge too, but I simply shifted to lower gears and pedaled as hard as I could. I've trained myself to think of my body as a machine. Instead of being appalled by my extra heavy breathing and my desire to stop, I remind myself that my body is automatically and effectively doing what it has to in order to get me from the start to the finish. Of course, I'm uncomfortable and it's all hard work but I have to pay that price if I want to succeed.
Each participant got a t-shirt. I really like the wording on both the front and the back; whoever designed it was quite clever.
Since I turned sixty in January, I moved up (or down, depending on how you want to look at it) to the next age group. Last year I was in the 50-59 age group. I'm in the final age group now, the 60+. It doesn't seem fair that when I compete in my seventies and eighties, I'll be competing against women 10 to 20 years younger. (How's that for positive thinking?)
My finish time was 1 hour 28 minutes 55 seconds. I'm happy. Last year, my time was 1:25:23. Considering the high winds today and the fact that I wasn't nearly as fired up for this year's race as I was last year's, I'm feeling good about the outcome.
The volunteers who stood at the intersections did a great job this year. They stopped traffic so we could make our turns safely, whereas, last year we had to pay close attention to the cars coming and going around us.
In July, I'm planning to do a mini-triathlon. That means I'll get to swim in addition to the biking and running. I thrive on challenges and perhaps I'm a bit crazy. The combination of both keeps me doing all the things that I do.
[I thank Lon for taking the photos and for being there for me, today.]


Walk said...

Congrats on 1st place.

I notice that you're smiling in all the photos, is that a smile of enjoyment or a smile that you're in pain?

Congrats again, I'm proud of you getting out and doing instead of me whom sits and thinks about it.

Annie said...

GO SHADDY GO!!! This is an awesome accomplishment!!!! I love your tenacity! I am SOOOOOOOO PROUD OF YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU ROCK! It is wonderful to love something so challenging, be able to run through it, and finish it with a smile! The next time I face adversity, I will be thinking of this post. And instead of giving in, I will run, no matter how slowly, through it and past it. Thank you for this inspiration! LOVE IT!

Shaddy said...

Thanks, Walk. The smiles are due to enjoyment that I'm still moving in spite of the pain. To tell the truth, I'm happy to say that I had no pain, only discomfort.

Sarah said...

HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was so happy to come home today and read about the race. I AM SO PROUD OF YOU MY SHADDY GIRL!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!! You're incredible. Just incredible. And amazing. And a major INSPIRATION! I'm so proud of my little roadrunner!


Anonymous said...

Great job in the race. Good for you! I hibernated in winter and just started running again. A biathlon seems like fun. Hard work but fun. Looks like you had a blast. Good luck in the tri.

~ Courtney

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your first place finish.
I'm glad you didn't have rain to deal with.

Your brother Tom

I am Alive said...

Hey.. Now I am really surprised to know that you are 60 . Wow.. Good job gal. Congratulation for the fantastic win... In India, 60+ woman do not participate any such things.. The only occasion where they step out of home is on someone's wedding, celebration or funerals... I think , a person should always feel young at heart... I am really proud of you Shaddy

Beth W. said...

You've got the formula -- be 60; look 38! :) Seriously, these kinds of images (people of any age running, jumping, being physically active and pro-active) are so positive and inspirational. Marvelous.

K.M. Weiland said...

Wow. Good for you! 20 mph winds... that's one of the reasons I stopped jogging and started jumping rope. Wind burn isn't all that fun!

Rob said...

Congratulations and job well-done! This inspires me in a big way! Proud of ya!

Anonymous said...

Auntie Babe and your Uncle have been real anxious to find out how you did and knew you did well, glad you finished in first place. We are very ,very proud on you., T he pictures are great Lon.