Monday, February 22, 2010

~Go Hard or Go Home~

It's been a busy past couple weeks- I feel like I've been going, going and going, and haven't really had a moment to sit down and catch my breath. Weird thing is though, I really enjoy my life better that way. I may complain from time to time, but I do better when I'm extremely busy. I hate having idle time (ok, I wouldn't mind it for an hour a day so I could have some time to get my life organized, but that won't happen). The weekend before last, Ellen and I had yet another wonderful roadtrip- as mentioned earlier, we were headed to Daytona for some fun, relaxation, and of course, some Nascar. After quite the adventurous drive on the way down, including some unusual Southern snow up until we got to Georgia, we finally made it, and went straight to YaYa's ( the local bar we go to there - filled with all sorts of unusual people and karaoke every night). It was a great time as always. We went to bed fairly late, but I was proud for dragging myself out of bed for an oceanside jog the following morning. I could do that every single morning for the rest of my life. The sand was firm, the ocean was calm and beautiful, and hardly anyone was on the beach. My Ipod seemed to know where I was and put on the perfect soundtrack of Black Crowes and Susan Tedeschi. I was disappointed when my run was over but it was time to get our credentials and head to the track for some racing. We picked up our hot passes and then headed over to the track with Shawn. We wandered around for a little while- spotted Bruce Jennar, got to see Danica, ate some great food that Nascar prepares for it's employees, and then after about 50 laps were ready to head back. We went back to the beach house, took a nice nap, and prepared for another night out on the town. This one was a bit more wild than the previous night, and we finally shut it down around 4 or 5 AM. Amazingly, I pulled myself out of bed at 8 AM and was able to get in another nice 8 mile run along the ocean. The view provides some good motivation to get up! We then headed to the track again for the Sprint Cup race. It couldn't have gone more smoothly. Shawn was nice enough to give us his employee parking pass, so we didn't have to walk far and avoided the $60 parking. We didn't sit in any traffic and got right into the track. We had a great time, but unfortunately, due to some pop up potholes on the track, there was about a 2 hour delay during the race. It worked out well though because that allowed us to get some great driver sightings; we were back in the pits and that was where all the drivers hung out during the red flag, so I got to see all my favorite drivers! Aside from running along the ocean, that was probably the highlight of the trip. Around 5 pm they started the race back up, but after being there for 5 hours, the lack of sleep from the night before started to catch up with us and we decided to head back to the beach house. It worked out perfectly- 2 very nice, handsome guys in a golf cart offered to give us a ride to our cars, and with how exhausted we were and how badly our feet hurt, it was the perfect ending to a pretty perfect day! Not gonna lie, we felt pretty important zooming by on the golf cart past everyone walking. :) The guys ended up being from Fishers, Indiana and were down there for work- small world. We attempted to go out that evening but were pretty boring- we are definitely no longer in our college years, and after a long walk on the beach the next day, headed back to NC. All and all it was a great weekend- and I even left out some parts, such as the forest fire we had to drive through, the fight we were almost in at the bar, and a few other stories :) Thanks again for everything, SR!

My favorite driver- Kyle Busch!

Getting to the track!

Moving on, this past weekend I had my first race of the many I have signed up for this spring and summer. This was the HardCORE trail series, for the "serious trail runner". Love the motto on the shirt we got: "Go hard or go home". That's my life mantra! It was held at the US Whitewater Center and was an 8k. Christa and SR did it with me and it was so much fun. Five miles goes by a lot faster when you are climbing 1/2 mile hills, running in shrubs to try and get around people, slipping around in mud and hurdling giant roots. It was over before you knew it. The race was very well put on, aside from the start. We were kind of hanging around the back, not knowing the race was going to start, and without any warning, they started it. Now, I'm not this super amazing runner or anything, but my pace was quicker than the 100 or so people that were in front of us, so that made things interesting. SR probably could have won the race if we had started farther up. It is VERY difficult to pass people when the trails are only a few feet wide. My legs are pretty cut up from running off the trail to try and get past people for the first mile or so, but I loved every second of it. The cross country runner in me started to come out , and before I knew it, I was doing the instinctual harmless "elbowing" to try and get around people. Probably bad sportsmanship, but it was nothing aggressive, just little taps to try and get around people :). It really made me miss the days of XC. I ended up 21st out of 200, 4th female, and 1st in age group, and I believe my time was around 40:25. Not very fast, but I wasn't expecting much since it was more about not falling and spraining an ankle, and less about fast times. Might have been able to place higher if the start was a little more organized, but oh well! More than anything, it was just a fun Saturday workout around others who enjoy the same type of thing. SR had a great race and ended up 2nd. Christa, SR and I had a yummy post-race breakfast at Mimi's afterwords. It was a beautiful 60 degree day and all and all was just a lovely weekend. I didn't have to work either which made it even better. I had to work Sunday, but not until 3, so I took my road bike out for 28 miles to enjoy the weather. It was my first time on my bike since October! I know they say you never forget how to ride a bike, but I spent the whole ride getting the "feel" for my bike again, and made some dumb mistakes. The first time I needed to unclip I almost forgot how to do it! After a while, I felt my body start to mold to my bike again and it started to come back to me. I can't think of a better way to enjoy a sunny afternoon than to overlook the country in Davidson, listen to some awesome music, and push my body. It was great! Didn't do much socially this past weekend, but I needed some recovery "me" time after Daytona anyways. I live for weekends like this past one and that is exactly why I moved to North Carolina!

And lastly, I am happy to announce I am the proud owner of a Mac! After a lot of research and a lot of saving, I finally made my decision and went to the Apple store with my friend Jenny to make the purchase. I just have to say, the people in the Apple store are amazing! I had my heart set on spending about $500 more than I actually did; they actually discouraged me from all the upgrades I wanted as they were unnecessary for what I would be using the computer for. That NEVER happens! And, we were going to use Jenny's student discount to save me about $200. To do this, we were going to have to lie and say she was buying it for me, but those of you who know me best know I absolutely CANNOT lie or break the rules, and immediately started acting weird when we got in there. The girl who put together my order was very cool and said "You are just trying to use her discount, right? I don't care, that's fine!", and after catching me in my lie, put it in for me anyways. It was the most stress-free, easiest purchase I have ever made, and although I am still figuring my way around the world of Mac, I am in love with it and do not miss my PC at all. I HIGHLY recommend them. And go to the store- don't buy it online. They are very helpful and will answer all your questions. So now that I am once again in tune with the world of technology, hopefully I can update my blog more often to avoid novels like this one. Oh, and I finally have my Itunes back, so I feel whole again. Life was just not the same without my music!Thanks for stopping by and happy Monday!

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