After spending a week recovering from the Blue Ridge Relay with absolutely no running , I started running again – every other day, and very, very slowly. I had three weeks between the relay and the Asheville half marathon and I used every day as a rehab day for my quad muscle with daily stretching, single leg strength work, yoga, and during that whole period doing no long bike rides of more than 30 miles, mostly just riding on my daily commute to work.
Well all of this helped because although I ran a very slow half marathon (20 minutes off my PR,) I ran the whole thing without pain and limited soreness the next day! Additionally I followed up the half marathon with a 60+ mile bike ride the next day with two local women who are training for the Beach to Battleship Ironman! I ended up doing the last 20-25 miles of the bike ride with my right, uninjured leg doing 60% or more of the work, especially on some rolling hills, but I didn’t feel completely destroyed afterwards, just tired and hungry after a long weekend!
My favorite part of the Asheville half marathon was that it was in conjunction with the first Asheville City full marathon. This meant that once I finished the half, ate some food and drank some kombucha and talked with some relay teammates who were cheering people on at the finish line, I rode my bike along the last 8-10 miles of the full marathon course cheering runners on! (Yes, I biked to the start of a half marathon, I only live a few miles from the start/finish!) It was so much fun to cheer for runners from my bike, plus my bike gave me a little more access to the course where cars were blocked from.
Two of my friends who were Solemates raising money for Girls on the Run (which there will be a post about later) were running their first marathons and they totally dominated because I was trying to catch them on my bike but both of them were way ahead of their projected times! So major congrats to Jennifer and Robin!
This weekend was full of great late summer/early fall weather, lots of being outdoors in the sunshine, and on a completely different note, pun intended, fantastic music! I got to go to the CD release show of a local funk/rock band called Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band on Friday night (although I admittedly didn’t stay for the whole show considering the race had a 6am start time Saturday morning!) On Saturday night, after a nap, I went to see one of my favorite bands- Sigur Ros! I got to see them earlier this year in March, before my trip to the band’s native Iceland, and they never cease to amaze me with their beautiful music. I went to both of these shows with a diverse array of friends and got to share those experiences with them.
Great weekends like this filled with friends, physical activity, music, and really enjoying life, remind me to take advantage of these weekends and to remember them. I don’t mean to turn this into a sad post, but I found out that a college friend of mine died in a freak accident this weekend. He was my age, only 24 years old. His death reaffirmed that life is a journey that can end at any moment, but because I know he was really out there living the life that he wanted to live, I can take some comfort in that.
Take advantage of incredible weekends, remember them, share them with friends, and enjoy every second of your journey.