Panama City Beach Half Marathon Recap and a Giveaway!!!

Back in the day…I had run the 5k when this race was called Run for the Red Fish.  This would be my second year running the Half under the new name and the Hubs’ first.

I picked up our race packets during lunch on Friday, now selfie bib photo with the Hubs for this one…it’s all me!!

snapseed-22

There was a staggered start for the three races and we were set to start at 730a.  We arrived about 45 minutes prior to start time for the Half Fanatics photo at Margaritaville that was coordinated by our region ambassador, but she was nowhere to be found so we snapped a few beach pictures before watching the start of the Marathon.

We spotted our friends Christy and W headed out for 26.2 miles, gave them a shout and a wave for good luck!!  We found out Tennessee Fun Runner Friends – Dorothy (dot032) Josie (joheady), and Tammie (tlove1967)…we selfied and chatted our way to the start line.

Once lined up we ended up beside Holly (HoHoRuns) and Karen (karenrunsva), I ran into them at this event last year!!

Can I just say that even though I trained all summer in the Florida heat and humidity, it does not prepare you for 13.1 miles in the mid 70s with sunny skies in December without course hydration!!  Yep, little to no hydration on course!!

We headed out of Pier Park to the left down Front Beach Road.  The water stops were set up every 1-2 miles, however the first three miles had no water for runners.  Coming up on mile 4 we crossed over the get water from a table set up for the runners heading back.  At mile 6 the volunteers were standing with their arms crossed watching runners pass by.  I asked for water, but was told that there wasn’t any and I’m pretty sure I cussed at that point!!

We made it to the turn around and this was the first picture we took along the course.

snapseed-23

 

I was pretty loud about no water on the course when we passed the table at mile 6 on the return and they STILL HAD NO WATER, one of the two cyclist riding the course looking for a friend offered us a drink from his water bottle and we did partake…THANK YOU random cyclist!! Also, they were kind enough to ride back and tell us that there was limited water at mile 8, they had 2 one gallon jugs dropped off!!  Ummmm, there were over 1000 runners signed up for today’s events and that’s just not right!!

Yes, I had water at mile 8, for as thirsty as I was I only took one cup.  I knew there were runners behind me that needed the hydration as well.

I made it just past mile 9 and had to start my run/walk intervals.  I could tell I was starting to dehydrate, my head was starting to thump and my energy was starting to fade, luckily I was still sweating.  There was no water at mile 10, we were told that they had some at mile 11…SCORE! At mile 11, we were swiggin’ from gallon jugs of water with other runners, why…NO CUPS!!  We passed a runner down in the road with paramedics and heard sirens in the distance.

Somewhere between mile 11 and 12 we stopped for this view.

img_3335-1

My walk intervals were increasing and the run intervals were decreasing…not how I wanted my first post surgery race to go.  But we’re going with it!!  Only ONE mile to go!!

Turning back into Pier Park, I was excited to see the finish line ahead.  Also, Holly was able to get a few great shots of us running it in.  Also, Josie caught me waving or is that my S.O.S to come get me??!!

 

And with all that I managed a 2:24:55!!  I was actually quicker than I thought, I wasn’t watching my watch at all.

 

I downed two bottles of water before heading over the tap glasses with our Tennessee Fun Runner Friends!!

img_9809

We didn’t hang out too long.  I was hungry, had a raging headache, and wanted a nap.  In fact, it took two days for that headache to completely go away!!

img_3405

AND…Check out my latest Instagram post for a Tifosi Optics Giveaway!!  Everyone needs some cool shades for the holidays!!

 

Let me know…

Do you have a race that maybe didn’t go as planned??  Was it something minor or major??  How did you handle it??  

Advertisements

Battleship 12k – Race Recap

 

Other than participating in the Old Glory Relay the past two years, this has to have been the most patriotic race/run I have done.

We started the weekend off with a run and breakfast (posted here) on Saturday before heading to Spanish Fort, AL to pick up our race packets for the Battleship 12k.  We usually take a picture with our bibs and today would be no different, other than I wouldn’t behave and the Hubs had to take like 20 pictures to get one that was ‘postable’!!

As we were heading out the RD asked if we had found our names on the back of the shirt??  What??  You know us??  You put OUR names on the back of the race shirt??  So of course we stopped in the lobby to see what he was talking about.  Each runners name was listed on the back of the shirt in a flag formation…AND we found our names!!

img_8932

It was early to bed and early to rise, we had a 45 minute drive to the start line.

We arrived in our (mine, really) hour before start time manner, parked, stayed in the car with the heater on for a few minutes before heading up the hill for a Team RWB photo (which I cannot find!).  Once we were near the start we were approached by Wear Blue to Remember asking if we would participate in the Circle of Remembrance…ummmm, we’re not going to say no!!

She handed us each a strip of paper with a name on it.  As she handed me my strip of paper, she said ‘this is a very dear friend of mine.’  As everyone drew into a circle, she stated that we were reading the names of the 67 men that were KIA during the second battle of Fallujah. Each name was read aloud, it was soon my turn and I could not read the name with out crying… 2nd Lieutenant James P. “JP” Blecksmith ❤️🇺🇸💙  and the Hubs read…Sergeant Adrian E. Hike ❤️🇺🇸💙.  The lady in charge made her way to me, gave me a hug and told me thank you.  I tucked the names in my belt to carry with me to the finish.

With a few minutes before the start we found our friends, selfie’d, hugged and headed to line up with plans to see each other at the finish.

The race was a point to point run with shuttles that would bring us back to the parking area at the start.  the weather was a little on the chilly side with a slight drizzle and some FAWG (I’m typing this with Katie’s southern accent!).  My plan was to run my 4:1 run/walk intervals.  The Hubs was going to do his thing while carrying the flag.

img_3297
USAF Retired – Veteran – Patriot – Warrior

We were off and I stuck to my intervals.  I stopped at miles 4 and 6 for photos and sent them to the Hubs so he would know that I was on my way, hopefully just not too far behind him…RIGHT!!!  I need work on the selfie game at mile 4, what happened to the 4??  I used to be good at this??!!  And can you see the Battleship in the background at mile 6??  It looks soooo far away!!

The last 1.5 miles made this run worth it!!  At mile 6 you can see the USS Alabama across the bay as you approach the bridge, as you make your way to the top of the bridge you can see the flag lined entrance to the Battleship Memorial Park, you make your way around the park you find yourself alongside the battleship for a picturesque finish!!  The Hubs was there to greet me and handed me the flag to carry across the finish line.

 

We got to visit with Jenny and Eric, Katie, Heather, Kari, Dan-el and Holly!!  Everyone got their medal shot with the battleship in the background and we headed for the shuttle line…can you say LAST bus, but the fun bus!!!

I stuck to my planned interval and managed what I thought was a decent time 5 weeks post op.

img_3296

And the boys deserved a finisher’s photo…

img_8998

2017 was the third running of the Battleship 12k and the medal represented the Navy.  They plan to recognize the rest of the services and first responders in the next few years, with the Air Force being the medal in 2018.

**Race Date:  12 November 2017**

Post Hysterectomy – Weeks 4 and 5

Week 4 Check Points

Encouraging words for the week – It may be hard to believe, but you are in the home stretch of recovery! Weeks of preparing and recovery are behind you, and the future holds healthy days ahead.

I left a lot of the info in for the HysterSister checkpoints this week just so you could see what information is passed.

SPOTTING AND ODOR
Any vaginal bleeding that you experienced in the first couple weeks should be slowing down or perhaps completely gone by now, though you may still notice some spotting. You may also notice some unpleasant vaginal odor, but remember that douching is not allowed, regardless of the discharge and smell.

An increase in spotting or bleeding can be a sign that you are doing too much too soon. Also, an odor that lasts for more than a couple days, or that is accompanied by fever and/or colored discharge, could indicate an infection.

MINI PERIODS

If you had a partial hysterectomy and kept at least one ovary, bleeding at this point could indicate you are having a mini period. If you have concerns, you can check with your surgeon about the possibility of continued periods post-hysterectomy.

INTIMACY

You and your partner may have a lot questions about resuming intimacy after your hysterectomy. “Is my vagina shorter?” “How do I deal with a hesitant husband?” These are normal concerns, and your surgeon and HysterSisters can help you with these questions.

PREPARING FOR YOUR POST-OP APPOINTMENT

If you keep a notebook and pen close by, you can write down any questions or concerns you want to discuss with your surgeon at your upcoming post-op appointment. You might ask about returning to work, starting hormone replacement therapy (HRT), resuming bathing, and handling menopause symptoms.

GETTING FIT

Right now, you may also be thinking about how to make better choices for better health in the future. You can begin by slowly lengthening the distance and speed you are walking, learning Kegel exercises, and learning to eat well. You may also want to consider adding vitamins and supplements as recommended by your doctor.

STAYING OPTIMISTIC

If you find yourself crying and even throwing a few temper tantrums, don’t be discouraged. You have been through a lot and your body simply needs time to heal and adjust to all the changes. When you check in with your HysterSisters on your Progress Recovery thread, you’ll likely find they have shed some tears and stomped their feet a time or two as well!


Luckily, I really haven’t had any issues during recovery!!  I have started HRT and have been prescribed a compounded cream that I apply to my forearms or inner thighs every night before bed.  I’m pretty sure that I have the Getting Fit down!!   Next week, Week 5, I am scheduled for my post op exam…fingers crossed everything is as it should be!!!


Monday –  2.4 miles

WALK only this evening!! Those Run/Walk intervals (7.45 miles) on Sunday had my legs all sore and stuff!!

Today was my first day back to work in a month, all my stuff was where I left it!!

I have been trying to remember to use the Charity Miles app this month for Team RWB, how is that working out…not so much!! I have to remember to turn it on!!!

img_3087

•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••
📸 taken during Leg 12/Day 54 of the #oldgloryrelay on @teamtyndall ❤️🇺🇸💙

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

 

Tuesday – 5.03 run miles / .38 walk miles

It’s all about balance…LIFE!!  The Hubs worked from Panama City today which meant were were able to put in a little road work together this evening!!

img_2937

Friday – 3.10 run/walk miles

Last night was the Hubs’ birthday so I traveled to Pensacola for dinner and the weekend!!  On Friday morning his company hosted a Veteran’s Day 5k in which the proceeds went to the USO of Northwest Florida… so of course we participated!!

img_8871

 

Saturday – 5.38 run miles / .42 walk miles

We ran the streets before breakfast at Polonza Bistro in Downtown Pensacola this morning.  Of course we had cawfee, macchiatos to be exact and I enjoyed the Toad in the Hole!  My plate consisted of two fried eggs in homemade sourdough toast topped with arugula, bacon, parmesan, and red wine vinaigrette… I added avocado!!  Delicious if I must say!!

 

 

After Breakfast we headed to Spanish Fort, Alabama for packet pickup for the Battleship 12k.  I have wanted to run this race the last 2 years and it’s finally happening, mind you this is only the third year for it and we are forgoing the Pensacola Half Marathon to do so.  I wanted to run a NO KIDDING military related race for Veteran’s Day this year.  The Pensacola Half Marathon does recognize current and retired military members by placing a service badge on your bib, but it is NO WHERE NEAR as patriotic as the Battleship 12k.

 

 

Sunday – 7.45  run/walk interval miles

There is so much to say about this race that it will have its own post up next!!

We participated in the Circle of Remembrance with Wear Blue to Remember, met up with some runner buds, some old, some new and we posed at the finish line.

 

Week 5 Check Points

You should be on your way to feeling well again! Here are some things that may be good to add to your to-do list as your energy starts to return.

SHOWING THANKS

WALKING

RETURNING TO WORK

GETTING BACK INTO YOUR CLOTHES

BABY STEPS – Continue to be patient with yourself and your recovery. Take each day one at a time and don’t expect too much too soon.


I cannot begin to say how THANKFUL I am for everyone that has checked in on me, texted, called, sent a card and commented on my posts.  I say THANK YOU to all of you!!

You know that I have been walking and somewhat running and that it has been going well.  I also have been back at work for a week now and everyone has been wonderful.  I have been living in stretchy pants and dresses, unless I’m walking, for the most part at home!!  I has been nice to actually get dressed and go to work, I’ll admit that I didn’t wash my hair much the month that I was off!!!


 

Monday –  Post Op Exam Appointment

That’s a big ‘ol thumbs up… 5 weeks post-op and the doctor just cleared me for ALL the things!!! I am so excited that I can finally do all the twisty stretches, add back all the miles, and lift the heavy things!!

img_3069

Tuesday – 2.01 run miles / .50 walk miles

Is reverse negative splits a thing?? Would that make them positive splits if read backwards or are they still negative, just in reverse??!! I managed 2 miles straight, no intervals at 10:21 then a 10:48…what, whoa🐎?! Added a .5 mile walk for a total of 2.5 miles.

 

 

Thursday – Turkey Trot 5k  (3.06 miles)

I trotted for my turkey!!! Turkey Trot 5k this afternoon was a little short, but I ran those 3.06 miles straight!! This race was put on by the Tyndall AFB Fitness Center, no medals but when you cross the finish line they give you a number, if they draw your number you get a turkey!!

img_3094

Saturday – 27th Annual Draggin’ Tail 18 Mile Challenge

Draggin’ Tail bay-be!! Let’s get this straight…I am NOT running 18 miles!! I am going for 5-6 run miles, kissing the Hubs off for his remaining 12 miles, and turning around for 5-6 run/walk intervals back to the start where I will sit and wait for Ricky G!!

 

In the end… I walked away with 12.22 miles in 2:22 and the Hubs pulled off 3d in AG for the 18 miler in 3:22.

Let me know…

Have you heard or do you use this invite-only blogger Tailwind group??  It is being used by bloggers to boost Pinterest and Blog traffic??  Does anyone still use Pinterest??  I did not know Pinterest could be used to boost blog traffic??  I’m still unsure!!

 

Old Glory Relay

For the second year in a row the Hubs and I were able to participate in the Old Glory Relay with our local chapter for Team RWB.  We have over 40 years of military service between us and are proud to support the mission behind Team RWB –  enriching lives of America’s veterans by connecting them to people in their community through physical and social activity.

img_2917-1

 

Per the website – The Old Glory Relay began it’s trek on September 11, starting in the beautiful Pacific Northwest in iconic Seattle and will pass through the shadows of majestic Mount Rainier and Mount Hood as it traverses the forests and then the high deserts of Oregon. Old Glory will then cross through the big tree forests of Northern California before heading into the Bay Area and Silicon Valley. Next, we cross through the second largest city in the United States. . . Los Angeles. Team RWB Eagles will connect our two largest West Coast chapters as they run along the Pacific Ocean passing through Camp Pendleton and into San Diego. With one last glimpse of the Pacific Ocean, Old Glory will head east into Arizona, through areas around Yuma, Phoenix, and Tucson; rich with wild west and southwestern history. Next up Old Glory will pass into Texas at El Paso and make the long journey across the full width of the Lone Star State with stops at the Alamo in San Antonio, and Houston, among others. With the Gulf of Mexico to the south, the course will cross the “Mighty Mississippi” River at Baton Rouge and then drop into the Crescent City before mirroring the Mississippi and Alabama Gulf Coast, notably passing by the famed World War II battleship, the USS Alabama. Crossing into Florida, Old Glory will follow the Emerald Coast and the “prettiest beaches in the world,” before passing through the Big Bend region and turning south for the last time. Finally, Old Glory will make her way into the hometown of the Team RWB National Firebase, Tampa on November 11, Veteran’s Day.

Our chapter was responsible for Day 54 of 62 and a total of 50 miles.  Below is the opening ceremony of our day.

The Hubs ran Legs 1-3

Picked me up at Leg 4, which was the only WALK leg for the day

The Hubs was back out for Legs 6 and 7

img_2918

Then Leg 11 bringing Old Glory over the bridge to Tyndall AFB

I opted in for Leg 12.  I wanted to carry Old Glory across the base in which I started and finished my Air Force career.  I wasn’t supposed to run, but we kept it slow!!

flag

img_2921

And this is where the day ended for us, the halfway point.  Last year we were able to add more miles to our day and make it to the party at the end of the day, it just didn’t work out for us this time.

Overall…Old Glory traveled 4600 miles, 10 states, 4 regions with the help of over 62 teams and 10,000 hands touching the flag in 62 days.

Forever may she wave…

 

Post Hysterectomy – Week 3

 

Moving it along to Week 3!!  I want to catch everything up before I attempt the Panama City Beach Half Marathon on 2 December.

So here it goes….

These were my checkpoints for Week 3 on the HysterSister website:

BEING A PATIENT PATIENT

INCISION AND TUMMY CARE

VAGINAL CUFF AND INTIMACY

HEMATOMA

ACHY BACK

DRIVING

PAPERWORK

I won’t go into detail with the checkpoints, there are paragraphs for each one on the website.  My incisions are healing well (photos below) and hopefully will continue to do so. Luckily, I will get short term disability for my time off, so I did complete my paperwork that.  Hematomas, achy back, and driving haven’t been an issue.  The Hubs googled Vaginal Cuff and said he wish he wouldn’t have done that!!!

img_2750

And my training went as follows…

Monday – 2.30 miles

I was duped into thinking that it was still chilly in the FL…there was no need for the long sleeves and capris.  My current mantra…Stronger Everyday!!  Thank you Karin @runnergirl_1210 for the perfect @momentumjewelry wrap.

img_2711

Tuesday – 4.02 miles

Working my way up…4.02 miles this morning!!  I get to WALK a leg of the @teamrwb Old Glory Relay🇺🇸 this Friday, not nearly all the miles as last year but this patriot and veteran will contribute what I can.

 

 

October was quite EVENTFUL…Not being able to run the Chicago Marathon that I trained so hard for, major surgery, walking 2 5ks, and lots of love from my social media family!! Thank you for your support during this eventful month…Love and Hugs😊💕

Total October Miles – Picture is from last week’s Run to Margaritaville 5k, somewhere around Mile 1.

img_2717

Wednesday – 5 miles

I made it!!!  5 miles walking…done, just a small goal I set for myself.  I don’t care what anyone says, walking is HARD!!  Honestly…I ran about .25 miles at the end just to see what it felt like.  Shhhhhh, don’t tell anyone!!

 

Thursday – Rest Day

Friday –  6+ miles

I was well enough that I was able to participate in Team RWB’s Old Glory Relay!!  I completed 2 legs and my next post will have all the deets and pics from this event…Spoiler Alert!!  Can you pick me out in the photo below??

img_2917

Saturday – 7.15 Run/Walk Intervals and .30 mile Walk = 7.45 total miles

Prepping for next weekend to make sure I won’t get swept at the @battleship12k ❤️🇺🇸💙

 

img_2901

 

 

Let me know…

Have you ever had to wait it out for recovery after surgery??  How did it go??  Were you a patient patient???

 

Post Hysterectomy – Week 2

Well I made it to Week 5 post-op, but I’m backing it up a little to keep you in the know as to what I’ve been up to!!

I was told about the site HysterSisters and it’s been a great help.  I receive an email each week with checkpoints and links to other information if needed.

Topics covered for Week 2:  PERSISTENT CONSTIPATION (using stool softeners), BLADDER ISSUES (such as urinary tract infections and bladder spasms), CONTINUING INCISION CAREFIGHTING THE FRISKIES (not even outercourse is allowed!!  I never knew this word existed!!), INSOMNIA (nightmares are common after surgery), GOOD BODY MECHANICS, ASSISTANCE FROM FAMILY AND FRIENDS,  NURTURING YOUR SPIRIT, and KEEPING TRACK OF SYMPTOMS (to take to the doctor at your next appointment).

If you read my last post My Post Hysterectomy (non) Running Life… then you know that the doctor cleared me to walk…YAY!!!  And I wasn’t going to waste any time getting back on the road!!

Monday – 2.29 mile walk  So you ask…What is it you’re doing with all this down (recovery) time??? Well, I can tell you so far…

*I’ve added songs to my 5k walking playlist – the one above by Amy Stroup
*I’m not only contemplating changing the color of my hair, but also getting BANGS!!
*Wanting so sign up for ALL the races in 2018
*Thinking I need a RETURN to running gift, you know like a PUSH gift, but in line for a runner…say a Garmin 935
*Where to vacation after recovery, why not?? It’s not like I’m sitting on a beachor       drinking mimosas for breakfast

Tuesday – 1.50 mile walk  How cool is this Ink n Burn shirt!!

Wednesday – 3.10 mile walk  Sporting the shirt I trained my ‘GUTS’ out for on this one!! Counting this as my trial 5k for Sunday’s Run to Margaritaville 5k (walk).

 

Friday – 3.11 mile walk  I almost ran today…but I just froze and raised my hand hoping someone would stop to help.  I was charged by a large momma dog and her pup on the route I ran in the mornings during summer training and had never once encountered a loose animal. Luckily, the owner pulled up, called them and they jumped right in the truck. Come to find out, I pass their house on my way out and back, never knew there were dogs there!! But that didn’t stop my walk…got it done!!

Sunday – Run to Margaritaville 5k!!  Walked the Run to Margaritaville 5k with 1beachteacher in 51:38 while the Hubs ran the Half in 1:57!! Ummmm, it was just a tad bit chilly this morning on the beach, we’re wearing gloves!!  This race was a disappointment after last year.  They had a full on breakfast post race last year, this year there was coffee and bananas, however after waiting for a 1:57 half marathoner… 1 banana left!!  Not right!!  There were still others out on the course, sure they could have a beer but I bet they were hungry!

 

Let me know…

What are your upcoming running/racing plans??  What is your Bucket List Race??  Do you have a pre-race routine, at the house and the start line??  

See you soon with Week 3…you’d think I would have had this done with all that time off from work??!!

My Post Hysterectomy (non) Running Life…

It has been 10 days since my last post and 2 weeks post-op…

In being transparent with my condition, I  am posting the pictures provided by my doctor of the cysts that were causing such an uproar to my system and the findings, so brace yourself.

There, that’s out of the way!!  The upper two pictures are of my 10.1 cm cyst on the right ovary, the bottom left are a few polyp/fibroids, and the lower right is my ruptured chocolate (blood filled) cyst on my right ovary.  You can read all the stuff on the report that was going on in there…just so crazy.

I assume I had been asking the wrong doctor about my weight gain that started back in November 2016, I talked to my Endocrinologist then, in May 2017 and again at my appointment on August 8, 2017.  I thought it could be connected to my thyroid condition or even hormone related (he specializes in thyroid and hormone care per the commercial!) due to my age.  I was told to move more, keep a food diary and at my last appointment he prescribed Metafomin, helps with blood sugar and aids in weight loss, thank goodness I never took that…I had no symptoms of high blood sugar??!!

By the time the bleeding that started August 9 – and lasted through September 25 got out of hand and I called for an appointment with my PCM on September 12, there were no appointments available for 3 weeks!!  And there was no provider in the women’s clinic!!  On September 19 I was able to get an acute clinic appointment and that PA ordered an ultrasound…Thank you PA Morris!!  He is no longer at the clinic, his contract expired.

Due to the findings on the ultrasound I was able to receive care at an off-base provider that worked me in after a pelvic episode on September 27, I am so thankful for that!  It was upon seeing him that he enlightened me of my condition.  I served over 20 yrs in the military, had all my yearly appointments and my exit (retirement) exam and never, ever, never was I told that I had endometriosis or anything of the kind…how, just how??!!

Apologies for the rehashing, but on a brighter note…the poison is gone and I am improving everyday!!  I have gone from 162 lbs to 149 lbs since surgery and hope to eventually get back to my fighting weight!!

I return to the doctor November 13 and will be crossing my fingers that I will have the all clear for returning to running!!

img_2454

Oh, I also got BANGS!!!  Not during surgery, but during a hair appointment!!

The doctor cleared me to walk at my 1 week post-op appointment on October 18 and I have been working my way up to a 5k!!

Friday, October 20 –  1.3 miles

And this week…

Monday – 2.29 miles

Tuesday – 1.5 miles

Wednesday – 3.10 miles!!!

And yes, I’m sporting my Chicago Marathon shirt since I trained my insides out for that race and was unable to run it!!  I put in all the training miles and I’m wearing it!!

Thursday – Rest Day

Not sure what the rest of the week holds, but I am cleared to walk the Run to Margaritaville 5k on Sunday!!

Let me know…

What’s on your Christmas wishlist??   Sporty and non-sporty!!  Is there something that you ask for year after year??  What’s that one, totally off-the-wall thing you would ask for if you thought there was that one chance that it would be left under the tree??

I know, it’s still October, but I have had a lot of down time and still have more to go!!