Sunday, February 7, 2010

First 10K..ever

Well, I am not sure what made me sick. It could have been the ride I did in the rain on Thursday (likely) or one of my patients at work (also likely). Either way, I woke up Friday morning with a familiar feeling in my nose - congestion. I have all the prophylactics available (sinus rinse, nasal spray, decongestant), but they never seem to work. If I get a sniffle, it turns into a sinus infection, even if the sniffle was merely from the common cold.

I saw an ENT for this once, and after looking at my CT scan, he said he wasn't sure if surgery would help me. Then I read Marit's post yesterday and decided to email my PCP and get a referral to see a different ENT. I am so tired of getting sinus infections, it is not even funny. I got a sniffle at the beginning of December and decided to try and fight it off. I failed, miserably. By the middle of the month I had resorted to taking my first Vicodin ever for my sinus pressure and ended up on 2 weeks worse of Augmentin (which did other bad things to me - but at least I could breathe!).

I probably should have skipped my swim yesterday, as this tends to anger the nasal passages, but I hate missing work outs. So I swam anyway. The rest of the day was spent sneezing and just hating my nose in general, even though the rest of me felt fine.

I knew today's run wouldn't be an issue as running releases so many endorphins, it is a natural way to clear your sinuses, until the run is over, in which case all the pain and stuffiness comes back.

Anyway, suffice to say, I was quite stuffy today for my run. But I didn't care, I was going to run.
David was coming along for today's trip, so we both got up at 6am and after making some coffee and eating some oatmeal, we were on the road by 6:40am.

It was a gorgeous day in Santa Cruz. The sun was shining (?), there was a slight breeze, and it was just beautiful. Parking wasn't an issue and we were checked in at least an hour before our race. We saw Molly and her family right away and I picked her brain about what was going to go on in this race, being that it was my first running race. Swim meets I understand, running - not so much.

For one thing, I ended up dressing too warm. I had on my new warm leggings, my under armor long sleeved top, and a light rain/windbreaker. After my warm up, I took off the under armor and just ran in my sports bra and windbreaker. Honestly though, I could have worn shorts. I would have been fine through the run, but cold at the end. Maybe next time.

David and me - pre-race.

After watching the 3K run go off, I decided we should start near the back. There was no way I was going to fight with all those people, and I wanted to find my own pace, not having to worry about anyone else.

At 8:30 we were all in the street, and they sent us off! David and I did stay near the rear, and still there were many people who passed me through out the race. I did have my Garmin on, but I only set it for distance and I didn't glance down at it once. They had volunteers at every mile marker telling you the running time anyway, so I was able to figure out my pace from them. My goal was to do 10 min miles, and finish as close to an hour as possible. This was a goal I made for myself, I just was really curious to see if I could actually hold this pace, and wondered what it would feel like. Oh and as Coach said - GO HARD.

The course was beautiful, winding out to the ocean and running along the cliffs. It was a little more "hilly" than I had thought it would be. I decided I would try and hold a steady pace to the turn around and see if I could pick it up a bit on the way back. I don't believe I was able to negative split, but I did hold a really steady pace and heart rate, so I was happy. I was also able to run the entire time, no walking whatsoever, so that was a huge accomplishment for me as well.

The finish line looked SOOOOOO far away on the final stretch home. I did try my best to sprint the last 50 Meters or so, which hurt and brought me very close to puking. But throughout the run, my legs felt good, my knees and ankle didn't bother me (they are unhappy now...), and I felt like this was something I could do again.

Here is a picture of us, after the race:

At the finish, we met up with friends, took pictures, and watched the award ceremony (Molly won our AG =>).

Here is one of me and Molly, aka "the Champion of our age-group" It was pretty funny when I asked her how she did and she responded "I won our age group?" Very proud, must be all that hot chocolate =):

Once we got home, I convinced David it would be a good idea to get into our pool at least up to our thighs. Our pool is currently 40 degrees. This is as close to an ice bath as you will see me get.

I got in slowly, just dipping my ankles in first:

David just walked straight in, which caused this face:

I then moved over to the steps, getting my legs in slowly, and all the way past my knees. I took the pictures as proof that I did indeed get in my unheated pool, in February.

After 10 minutes or so, I got out and put my happy pink compression socks on. I didn't want to take a shower right away and mess up all that icing! So I just got off my legs.

Later on, we went to a family friend's house for the Superbowl. We used to go their house as kids for great Superbowl parties, and they wanted to restart the tradition this year. It had been at least 20 years since I spent a Superbowl with this family and I think we all enjoyed ourselves. I am sure I did not eat the appropriate "post-race" food. But oh well, it was yummy. We had a great time, even if David spent the majority of the time on the couch with ice on his knee.

So now this week's goals have to do with getting some antibiotics as soon as possible, rolling out my legs and maybe another dip in the cold pool. All in all, I was pretty happy with my race today - and it was fun to be competitive again, even if I was just racing the clock. I was happy to keep my pace somewhat consistent, so that I can begin to learn what that feels like.

My next 10k is in a little over a month, and I am looking forward to racing it even faster, and sinus infection-free.

Here's to a great week!!!


  1. Congratulations. On the racing, the icing (brrr) and the running all through the 10k. You are way ahead of me.
    The pics are pretty funny. First you dwarfed by David and then you dwarfing Molly.

    Good luck on the ENT Sinus thing. I don't have this problem, luckily. But I still need to get to my ENT for other reasons. I hate that.

    Get well soon. PS: What do you think of the win of the Saints? It's fun to me, good story.

  2. Hey, well done on a great race. When I did my first running race it was 10 km. My husband made me do it and I was terrified I would finish last. And of course I didn't but that race was what hook me on to race and train more. Welcome!

  3. Great job out there today!!! You'll totally beat this one by the next race, you're improving so much already! And hope your sinuses feel better!

  4. Woo Hoo!!! Congrats on the race - that is AWESOME! 10ks are really really TOUGH! Like - there is no way to "fake" your way through the distance... a 5k that is a little bit possible - just because its shorter. The 10k is just long. And hard. I LOVE love love the cold pool photos - I've done the same things myself :) Your legs WILL thank you!

    Okay - for the sinus stuff... Honestly I was in the same boat. One internal specialist (who ordered the November CT scan) said that they looked "fine" - but after 3 sinus infections in 11 months - each with 2 weeks of new PCP put me into see the ENT. And even though I'm nervous about the surgery - I'm really happy that I'm getting it done. I mean - EVERY time I would get a cold, it always turned into a sinus infection. Ugh! And even if its just to widen the passages and make the (can't think of the technical terms here - sorry) general flow of mucus easier - GOOD!

    Okay - that was really long! Sorry! Hope you guys are having a great Monday! Cheers!!

  5. @Marit...I just got prescribed Augmentin from my PCP a few minutes ago. It's just so weird how you're stuffed up for like one day and BAM! Sinus headache, pressure and generalized crappiness! This is my third infection since August...she just put through the referral. I am looking forward to following your surgery on your blog =)

    The 10k was good, and I am seriously contemplating going out and soaking my legs again today....

  6. Congrats on the 10k! Nice job! Sounds like it was a fabulous day for it.

    Re: the sinuses....I was in the same boat about 4 years ago. Every cold would turn into a sinus infection. Had the sinus surgery to make bigger openings and better drainage. Now...I've probably had one or two infections since the surgery. Much improved! Hang in there and hopefully the new ENT will work out!

  7. you did a great job, Jenn! Congrats. I did not know you had a sinus infection...OR else there would have been no 10k. :) You sneaky little thing. lol

    FEEL better!

  8. Nice job, you two! On the ice bath imean. Hahaa!
    10ks hurt so that is great you could really dig deep even tho you were not 100%. As for the ice bath i really like the ice->heat ( warm shower) to get that blood flowing back to the sore spots. It makes a huge difference plus up here i am butt freezing so i have to warm up!
    TAke care and hope the MEds work!

  9. Snyggt jobbat, Jennifer! (well done in Swedish...) useful comment in your next meeting with Douglas Murray. Erika says: "Next time, go all the way into the pool, please!".

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