Saturday, November 15, 2008


Full Texas moon
Originally uploaded by wellingtonrabbit
An all-nighter from Nashville with lots of ground fog brought us well into Texas in time for breakfast. Following our Garmin on a coffee trail proved fruitless but landed us in Italy at a small town diner. The waitress told us that Dale Evans grew up here and gave us diner t-shirts. Texas is a friendly state.

Moving on, we arrived in San Antonio in the early afternoon, unloaded the car into our great apartment in the King William district (which we have learned is the favorite location with old restored homes, comfy restaurants and shops), showered and immediately crashed.

Friday morning much refreshed we had breakfast around the corner at the Mad Hatters and it is true Tex-Mex here is completely different from any other.

We took the trolley into town and got our packets from the Alamodome. After cruising the expo we took our bus tour of the course. The bus was freezing and we felt like we had been in a marathon by finish, prepping us for the freezing weather predicted for Sunday morning no doubt!

We walked home popping into a cool coffee shop for coffee and dessert and then a charming art shop with an awesome Day of the Dead alter arrangement in the upstairs gallery.

Upon request our course tour guide suggested Rosario's for dinner and we were excited to discover this wildly popular and economical spot located a mere two blocks from our Texas home.

I had a legendary Margarita even with a race two days away.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Visiting Benjamin on the Way to San Antonio

Mr B
Originally uploaded by wellingtonrabbit
On our way to San Antonio we stopped to check in on Benjamin. And we found him just getting up from his morning nap and ready to visit. He demonstrated his soccer kick exercises and showed off his baby talking. Andrew said it is really hard to catch him smiling with a digital camera and so I felt happy to get this start to a smile. Mr B worked on his laugh playing a flying fingers game with me. I think we wore him out because he was not fussy but definitely ready for a nap when it was time for us to get back on the road.

I was so involved in getting past the OBX Marathon that I did not think to get up with Sarah to see if she could bring Edward over. We had talked to Andrew on his birthday and that was as far as I got making family contacts prior to the race.

Donald will attest to this as he chided me with a chuckle about giving him relatively no head's up about stopping for dinner with them. Even at that he had delicious cookies ready for the balance of our road trip and we did have a nice dinner with Lorrie Bradley joining in.

Then it was back on the road to Texas for us.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

OBX Marathon 2008

Here it is the LAST 2008 OBX full marathon medal (until they make more for the true stragglers) and I got it race day. That was fun although less time on the course would have been even better.

I did something funky to my back Tuesday afternoon of race week and I truly thought I would not even be able to walk the course much less run. Donny & I worked on it relentlessly over the next days and by Friday I could see hope. And I really could only roll out of bed with great pain, do no body twisting at all or get out of the car with any ease for days!

Still Sunday needed to be the perfect weather day it was for me to take on the challenge because any less and I would have been struggling too much. I did get to run the first 13 miles with minor walk breaks. I was on my usual pace which I was pleased and surprised about because my back still hurt.

I passed a lot of people in the woods and last year at that point I was already doing too much walking. This year around mile 15 the back said enough and I found myself power walking instead of running taking the biggest strides I could. I felt fine, the back was just the issue and then the pain moved to the front on both sides somewhere along mile 17. Last year I sadly noted that the entrance to the woods is slightly uphill and it defeated me. I never notice these things when we are on shorter runs.

This year I was ready for the woods and zipped through. This year it was the causeway with its gradual uphill climb I have never noticed that got me. It actually is not much of an uphill at all including the bridge except when you are fatigued from pain.

I did run the entire downhill side even through the pain, I cannot waste a good downhill. If I had been able to stay on pace I would have gotten back under 6 hours but it was not to be this time.

I always am but for this race in particular, I am ever grateful for good friends along the way that perked me up at key moments. It really does make a difference! Nancy Atkinson in her adorable fat lady ballerina costume ran me through mile 7 shouting, "Here is our own rock star, Sandy Ball."

I came upon Laurie Donlan and family cheering midway through the woods and she ran with me for a bit telling me a funny story about a guy that passed them and snatched up a bloody Mary thinking it was power drink. She thinks he probably did not finish the race.

Gail Hutchison made me feel humble as I passed her at about mile 17.5 marshaling with a cast on her leg.

Robert Trivette my lawyer friend cracked me up in his prison garb at mile 18.

It is always good to see Rick Gray at mile 25.5+ because it is Rick and it is mile 25.5+.

Bobbie Murray was a beacon at mile 26 and ran with me until the finish was in sight.

I did do my power sprint the last 100 meters and there was Donny, Amy, Robyn, Millie, John, Merry & Bob (who posted a fun picture of D & me on Facebook) all waiting for the last runners, me included. One fun thing about finishing after the pack, you definitely get a star finish because it's just you!

Finish time = 6:34. Surprisingly the back is better now, so perhaps it was anxiety or a cold. Anyway we'll see how this Sunday works out in San Antonio.