Sunday, January 17, 2010

First official post!

Although I haven't posted in QUITE a while, I have actually been training, I swear!

So as I started my very well planned out run around Raynham, MA, where my uncle and aunt live, I was actually thinking, I should really start blogging again, but just haven't really had anything good to write about. Little did I know that the gods were with my blog (not sure if they were actually with me)!

It started the night before this run, when I realized that somehow, although I remembered to bring every possible required piece of running attire for any weather I faced, that I completely forgot to bring a sports bra AND socks!!! Thank goodness for Marshall's down the street. After that late night shopping trip, I was officially committed to my 11 or 12 miler (still wasn't decided).

So this morning, I planned my run on MapMyRun, very methodically wrote down the directions, ate my piece of toast with peanut butter, and headed out. It was all going quite well. . . until I veered from the streets that I normally drive around to get to and from the house. That was when it all started to become slightly questionable.

I headed down what I knew to be a long stretch of this run, about 4 to 5 miles (btw, the Garmin GPS watch was low on batteries, so I left it at home). I came to a split in the road, and chose to go right, what seemed to be the sensible decision based on my plan. Let me stress "SEEMED TO BE."

As I ran, and ran, and ran, and ran a little further good ole' Pine Street, I began to second guess my decision. Before I knew it, Pine had turned into Beech, Beech in to Plymouth, and all of the street signs were suddenly red. Apparently, North Middleboro makes their signs red to set them apart. You may ask yourself, I thought Erin was running in Raynham, where is North Middleboro? Yeah, I thought so too!

So finally, after running much to far on a road which led to nowhere near my planned route, I decided to ask some friendly neighbors for a little assistance. FYI, for those non-runners reading this, when someone on foot, sweating, holding a bottle of water, asks you for directions, DON'T LEAD THEM TO A MAJOR HIGHWAY!!!!! I know it may be the fastest way home, but not necessarily the safest, or even legal way!

As I head down the recommended route, down the highway, running on the bumpy side of the highway that is intended to wake up sleepy truckers, not really knowing for sure if I'm supposed to be going East or West, I come to the point at which I begin to hope that a cop drives by to pick me up and drive me home, start to consider "thumbing it," and also consider just sitting on the side of the road waiting to think of a better plan. However, the insanity of the runner takes over and I decide, I'll just keep running.

And just about when I get to the point at which I am about to burst into tears, I see the key on the horizon. What is that key? FRIENDLY'S!!

So I walk into the restaurant, if it actually counts as that, and begin to tell my story. When I tell the hostess where I am headed, she seriously looks at me and says, "Oh, just jump back on 44, it's probably about 10 minutes that way!" However, when I point out that I am on foot (once again, apparently the sweat, running tights, and incredibly stylish sagging pony tail didn't do that job), she handed me the telephone with a smile.

Still not sure if Friendly's actually knew I was making long distance calls to California to my mother to get her to call my uncle to hopefully pick me up, however, about 10 minutes later, I was rescued! As it turns out 12.5 miles later :)

Sorry for the longest post ever, but I just had to share this story, play by play. I figure it's just making up for the past few months that I haven't posted :)

Oh, and I am officially moving on the fundraising. I am hoping to be at 1000 by the end of January! Check out my site if you haven't yet! http://www.firstgiving.com/erindaly

More to come!
EVD





Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Best Day of My LIFE!

Ok, so some of you may think, running 26.2 miles couldn't possibly make the best day of anyone's life, however, I am here to fight you on that one.

The day started at 5:30, with my bowl of oatmeal and last minute nerves, sure that I had forgotten something, but knowing that as long as I had my number and timing chip, I could get along without the rest! We got to the bus at about 6:30, where my teammates and I enjoyed a lot of joking and laughing, helping to relax each other as we headed toward the start line.

After a couple of group pictures, and a tour around athlete's village, we all headed down toward the finish line. I have to say, that being able to walk toward that line with all of the people that I have trained with for the last 5 months was truly an emotional experience. We really are a true TEAM, and to find that in such an individual sport is really amazing.

At ~10:30, the crowd started to move, and before you knew it, we were crossing that line. I was lucky enough to be able to run with a few of my teammates for a bit in the beginning, but as we all had different comfort levels and paces, we soon started to disperse amongst the crowd.

That is not to say that we were in any way alone, however, as the amazing fans for 26 straight miles, screaming our names (which were on the front of our team shirts) , handing out everything from cups of water, to oranges, to twizzlers, and even wet spongess (great idea to whoever came up with that one!), were with us every step of the way.

As I had a few teammates pass me, getting a chance to wish them good luck and to have fun, and them doing the same to me, I again had a wave of emotion, realizing the accomplishment that we were all about to achieve. Oh, and when I say about, I mean within 4 or 5 hours.

At mile 19, I met what I call "the make or break point" where I knew that if my family was coming, they would be there. When I saw my uncle, aunt, and two little cousins, the last 19 miles disappeared and I was ready to start a short little 7 mile run. The support of friends and family, oh, and the crazy BC and Wellsley students, is what really got me through this.

Skip ahead 7 miles, to the finish, where I decided to enjoy the last 1/2 mile for all that it was worth. As I threw my hands in the air, waving them around like a crazy woman and screaming, on the verge of tears, I knew that I had done it, and that although I may be strong enough to do it alone, I don't ever want to try, because it is soooo awesome to have so many people supporting you, there's no reason to.

I have a couple of picutes, and a video, with many more to come. Thank you for reading my blog and following along with this journey, and yes, stay tuned for next year for an encore :)

As I ran, I just thought, there are so many people that I am so grateful to, and that includes anyone has donated, has called to check in and see how things went, those complete strangers out on the course, and particularly my teammates.


video


My teammates, Svea and George, and ME at post-race lunch/dinner.

More pics to come, I promise :)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

What I learned today :)

I know, it has been forever since I updated this blog. Sorry! I don't have any new pictures, and I keep waiting to get some so that my blog is more interesting, but then I realized, I am interesting sans photos (right?!)!

So, going with the theme that inspired this title, I will tell you all of the things that I learned today (most of which were self-taught on my run). First:

1. I can run 20 miles. . . all at once! Have you ever driven on the freeway, and seen signs for how long it is until your exit. Normally that's what, 4 or 5 miles at once. I can run 5 times that much!

2. Moderately attractive boy + cute puppy = hot boy! I may have known this before, but boys are automatically cuter when they have a dog in tow. Especially if its a little puppy. They were all over the place this morning!

3. Did you know that Vitamin Water is almost exactly like Gatorade, particularly in the fruit punch flavor. Not quite as sweet, and totally delicious. Much recommended. The fruit punch flavor is called "Revive," which I needed, and would definitely encourage others to try.

4. On the same note, many people claim that chocolate milk is the best recovery drink (due to a good balance of sugar, protein, fat, etc). I would like to support the idea of red wine as a recovery drink (good for the heart, tastes delicious, full of antioxidants). Maybe not immediately post run, but at least when you are hanging on the couch writing your blog later in the evening :)

5. I thought about taking a picture to go with this next one, but decided against it, for the sake of my readers. I now have a HUGE bruise on my inner calf, just below my knee. Now, I wish that I had a really good story to go with this hideous black and blue blemish. Some of these stories could include, a small child ran into me on his/her little bicycle, which met directly with my inner calf, OR, I had a run in with a patient and her bowl of oatmeal as it was launched across the room (accidental of course, but almost happened this week.) But no, the culprit in this situation is the "non-slip" mat in my aunt and uncle's guest shower. Now, this little mat promises to keep you safe, inspiring confidence in it's little suction cups of security, however, IT LIES! Me, side of tub, fall, not graceful, definitely painful!

6. Even the littlest act of kindness can be so inspiring. A random man on Beacon Street, amidst all of the foot traffic of people going in and out of stores, put his hand out to me for a High-5 as I was running up a little hill. I have to say, at mile 18, when I was thinking of walking a bit, that simple act made me keep going. I guess it's nice to know that people notice hard work, and are supportive, even to strangers :)

Those are the lessons of today. BTW, not to ask for them or anything, but I love it when people comment (that way I know people read this thing and I am not just writing for myself :)

Happy St. Patty's Day. Celebratory 5k tomorrow, more info, and hopefully pictures to follow.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Pub Crawl Craziness!

Saturday morning started out with a fabulous 15 mile running tour of Boston, from Southie to the North End and back, with 4 of my fabulous teammates (and one cool dude from the Lazarus House team), organized by Sully. Our coach even had the sense to stop us to record our teamwork with a pic:
From R to L, Mike (from LH), Sully, Yours truly, Svea, and Yee May
Why I'm not looking at the camera, we don't really know. I think I thought it was over :)

After a strong finish around Castle Island, we headed home, some of us to go take care of children (not me!) or others of us to rest up for the pending night time event- My 80s themed Fundraising Pub Crawl! How do you raise money on a pub crawl, you may ask. You bring along a ton of neon colored sweat headbands, a couple of flyers to prove we are legit, and some really outgoing, good looking friends :) R to L again, Danny, Julie, Mwa, and Jenn
This is just a taste of the crazy MGH speech path team spirit.


We started at 3 oclock at a sports bar, and then headed out on the town. Some may call us crazy, I call it commitment! Within the first hour, we had already sold half of our headbands, most of which pulled in $20 donations. At our second/dinner stop, we had a fabulous visit by the head of our team, Susan (no picture sadly).

By our third stop, we were even more outgoing, and found the best target audience, a bunch of men that LOOOOVE orange head bands. I kid you not, I went to the restroom for about 5 minutes, and when I walked out, this is what I awaited me:


Note, Allison, the other girl in this pic, is the only person that I knew prior to walking into this bar. The rest were all attracted solely by head bands and the opportunity to donate to charity. . . riiiiiiight!


By the time we got to our first karaoke bar, we had actually run out of headbands, and I started having to take them from friends to get more donations! Unfortunately, our camera died after the first 3 bars, but another teammate, Svea, and her bf and friend also came to join in the fun!

So, want to hear the grand total. . . wait, I have more pictures!I think it's pretty clear that Julie (front and center) was a child of the 80's, love that hair! With my head band pimps (Allison and Josh on the R)

Thought you should get a better idea of how ridiculous my outfit was! Oh, didn't know these guys either, but they donated, so they got a pic!
Teammates on the Town


Sully's Friends, me and Allison
Josh is a lucky man, if I do say so myself!

Ok, now it's time to share our total fundraising efforts! Drum roll please. . . . . . .

TWO HUNDRED, NINETY TWO DOLLARS, and TWENTY CENTS!

I am so thankful to my friends, teammates, and the random strangers who are so incredibly generous, and are making such a difference in the lives of kids! It makes the training so much easier and more worthwhile :)

If this has inspired anyone else to join in the fundraising fun, feel free to go to my website:
www.firstgiving.com/erindaly


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Treadmill Hell

Thank you, Northeast storms, for making my training that much more difficult! I never was really serious when I called myself ADD, however, after tonights attempt at a long-ish treadmill run, it is official. Family Guy, Cash Cab, Ipod, and people watching (many of these at the same time) could not hold my attention this evening. Not to mention, the amazing aroma of all of the gross sweating guys running their 1 mile (post weight lifting session), which overwhelmed me and eventually made me so nauseous, I could no longer go on. I did hit a new personal best for 6 miles, as I COULD NOT WAIT to get off of the hamster wheel for humans!

Unfortunately, at this point, I can't risk going out in the snow, and more importantly, the ice, as the risk of falling is waaaay to high for a clutz like me.

On a more positive note (sorry for the rant), I am really looking forward to my 80's themed charity pub crawl this Saturday. This may sounds strange, but a bunch of my friends, friends of friends, and teammates are getting together in 80's attire, and jumping from pub to pub on Saturday afternoon, into the night. There will be neon head bands, karaoke, and hopefully lots of fundraising going on. Plenty of pictures, and updated fundraising status to come!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

2 Heartbreaks in 3 days



Hill* that is. . . This is worse than my dating life ;) On Thursday, I joined a group of runners that does the last 9 miles of the marathon to a car called Crossroads. As I ran along the course, suddenly I saw it, my eyes met the peak, and I instantly dreaded the next 5 minutes or so. I have to say, as much as I dreaded our meeting, it wasn't as bad as I thought (also somewhat like a few dates I've been on recently). I made it to the top, and out for the rest of the run, with the promise of a nice cold adult beverage at the end of the run :)

For those of you that have no idea what I am talking about, Heartbreak Hill is an intimidating
incline that falls at mile 20 along the marathon course :/




I am sure that I look JUST like this on the hill!



That 9 miles was just small beans though. Today, I set out for a long run with a bunch of other charity runners. We started at 1 Beacon St (for you Bostonians) and headed out to Newton, where, once again, I hit Heartbreak Hill. It was pretty rough this time (falling at mile 10). Initially, the plan was to go for 16 miles, with the options to cut it short at 13. I forgot to count the mile I ran to the gym, and the mile on the way home though, so before you know it, I ran 18 MILES! Needless to say, I'm a bit tired, but feeling great. Advil and water are my friends, as are my fluffy bed and a few movies :) Looking forward to tomorrow, when I do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! Stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Week In Review

Theme of the Week: What was I THINKING!?

Monday: 8 mile run in ~10 degree weather (that's not including wind chill!) I have to say, it is amazing how many random, crazy thoughts go through your head during a long run, in the freezing cold, by yourself. When I got home, I just jotted down a few of those thoughts, so here they are:
1. I didn't know that rivers freeze, but apparently the Charles is there to refute that thought.
2. So there are large pieces of snow, they kind look like giant snow balls, on top of the ice on the river. How do they get there? Where do they come from?
3. On this run, I counted a total of 11 other runners. This is where I first started my theme of the week!
4. Of these 11 people, there were only 2 men. This led me to think, are men just wussy, or are they smarter? By the end of my run, I decided they are just wusses :) No offense boys!
There were many more, but I won't bore you.

Tuesday: Little cross training spin class.

Wednesday: Some much needed rest!

Thursday: Got to meet my marathon team for the first time! It was sooo much fun. It was held at the GoKids gym on UMass Boston campus. This gym is basically the coolest place a kid could ever hang out! It is basically the coolest arcade meets Bally's. More details to come :)

Friday: Yet another rest day. . . it was a long week!

Saturday: Nothing better to prep for a beerfest than a hill run on the treadmill. It was quick, but quality!

Sunday: Rest!

Holiday Monday: No holiday for me. I for some reason decided it would be a good idea to go out for a 15 mile run (longest run ever!) For some reason I thought that the sidewalks around the river would be plowed, but nay, this was not the case. At one point, I knew that I wasn't thinking straight when I got passed by a CROSS COUNTRY SKIER! It basically became snow shoeing without the appropriate footwear. I literally ran for 3 whole hours (much longer than it would normally take me to run this distance). Once again I say . . . What was I thinking!