Monday, 4 June 2012

Met Con Blue Race Day Recap

After our crazy, muddy, rainy weekend up in Collingwood - we have returned tired, but happy.

I had a great time at Met Con Blue! And getting do this race with some of my favourite people was a great way to celebrate FINALLY being 12 weeks post-op and moving on to BIGGER and BETTER things.

The race itself was tough!

The loop up and around the mountain was not the 5 km they advertised. Approximately half way through someone running nearby revealed that the loop was actually 6.5 km to fit in all 13 obstacles. And the first 2.5 km were the absolute WORST in my books.It was all straight uphill! Straight up a ski hill to be exact.
The evil hill!
Hill running is NOT my strong suit. So despite advocating Hill Training during my Met Con Blue Guest Post, I am not much of a hill runner myself. My defective little ticker struggles to remain calm when tackling that level of exertion. My heart rate is naturally pretty high when I run (165-180 bpm), and when you add a hill into the mix, it spikes. So I struggle to keep a happy medium between maintaining some kind of pace and keeping my heart rate below 200 bpm (aka the danger zone for my cyborg heart).

I can run hills, but I need some sort of reprieve to be able to stabilize my heart rate. And for this hill - there was NO REPRIEVE! It was just incline all the way to the top.

To be perfectly honest; I walked the majority of the hill, and I was feeling pretty down while doing it. My cardio training and endurance have not returned to my ideal level yet. Thus, making it that much more difficult to manage my heart rate. So I was feeling discouraged while struggling up that damn mountain.

I felt slow and out of shape. And despite my best attempts to have no expectations - I wanted to be able to do better. Jamie had to give me a hug and remind me to smile and have fun part way through - which tells me my dismay must have been written all over my face. 

Once we got to the top, things started to turn around, and I ended up having a lot of fun. Jamie, Allie, and I settled in as a little trio and we ran the whole race together. We were laughing, cracking jokes, slipping in the mud, trying to scale walls, and navigate the crazy trails. Allie would scream "I am Katniss Everdean" whenever an obstacle intimated her, and I immediately erupted into fits of giggles. We just ended up having a silly, muddy, good time.

The obstacles were tough, but definitely added some excitement into the mix
(a regular 5 km will never be the same again after this)

I expected to struggle with a lot of the climbing features, since those are somewhat "chest" heavy exercises. And admittedly it was hard on the boobies. I think I only made it to the second rung of the monkey bars before I plunged in the pit of freezing cold water. And the Ta-tas are looking a little bruised an battered today. But all in all it was okay. I was able to do all of the obstacles. Some not very well - like the monkey bars. And some with a few necessary boosts from Jamie - like the Wall and Lifeline. But it felt good to cross the finish line and say that I did it. 

Our little trio crossed the finish line at 1 hour, 14 min, and a few second for good measure. Which well exceeded my expectations. Allie and I said part way through that we would aim for an 1:30, so when we turned the final corner at 1:13 we were so excited. We ran towards to giant slip and slide, dove under the barb wire, and crossed the finish line!

Done and still laughing my little Katniss

It was AMAZING! 

Part of Team INSANE PAIN!

And our team of 9 - "Insane Pain" - ended up placing 4th in the team division! Which I would love to say I could take some credit for, but it was really the guys on our team that blasted ahead with record pace that helped lower our time average to 64 minutes. But I was super excited with our results none the less.

As hard as this race was. And as difficult as it was to battle those obstacles with my recovering body. This past year was 1000x harder. I feel like I have been battling my body for so long, that I almost can't imagine what it is going to be like to be healthy again. It has been a dark year - full of lots of ups and downs, stress, and tears.

Showered and Celebrating
So when Jamie and I were crawling through those pits of mud together, and scaling those walls, I felt like we were finishing our final battle. All that mud and sweat felt cleansing. I felt like we were leaving all the darkness, all the sadness, all of this year's fight on the mountain.

Crossing the finish line together at Met Con Blue was really special, and it nothing to do with finishing the race. It meant that we made it! We survived the last year. We survived BRCA. We survived toasting the ta-tas. We made it through the last 12 weeks of recovery. That battle is over, and we did this together!

So much has happened in the last 16 months, it is almost hard to believe that I am standing here and out the other side. BRCA has spent the last year and half rocking my world, but I am pretty sure I just finished kicking it's ass!

It is time to move on to BIGGER and BETTER things.
So genetics, remember what happened to your friend BRCA, and be warned!

Because I am back! 
And I am about to spend the next year making your life hell!

Marathon Glory I am coming for you.
Let's do this!

Love Your Favourite Darwinian Fail,