it's August 16 after 8am and my birthday
challenge is over 26 hours after it began! Man am I hurting!
It all started yesterday, August 15, at 6am. 3
of my teammates showed up to begin my challenge with me with a 26
minute erg. I couldn't believe I was about to do all of this! We
paused for a quick "about to begin" picture (I'm on the far
right), then off to erg! That's me in the background...it's kind of
dark in that pic. We didn't push it too hard, knowing that we had a
26k run ahead. The erg went well, and one of my other teammates even
showed up for the last 6 minutes. Per one of my rock star teammates
request, we did sprint the last minute at a 26 rating.
After the erg, we took
about a 10 minute rest, then began my 26k run. Luckily I had a good
pacer, and we started off light at a 10 minute mile pace.
| We stopped
for water for about 30 seconds every 2 1/2 miles or so to keep
After about 3 miles our pace went up to an 8 1/2
minute pace, then settled at a 9. The first 12 miles were pretty
easy, but we definitely started to feel it at that point. My old
knees (previous gymnastics injuries) started speaking up, but we
kept on going!
We were down to 3 with 4 miles left, and were chasing
a distance record for all of us. With about 1/2 mile left, I got a
fierce side cramp that slowed me down a little, but I kept running
and we finished...2 hours and 27 minutes after we began.
boyfriend was waiting for us for a charming "26k run
later" picture. Being that this would be the hardest part of my
challenge, it felt wonderful to be done! We stood smiling as we
sucked on some Clif shots.
Break time! Now it was
off to breakfast to replace some of those calories. My boyfriend
Alex took me for blueberry banana pancakes that couldn't have been
more tasty! We paused for a picture (above) as I pigged out, freezing from
the still dripping sweat from the run. I'm sure the people next to
us appreciated the smell!
adventure was at 6pm for the 26k row. We met up at our boathouse at 5:30
to prep the boats and determine line ups. 15 people showed up, and I had
to send one home!!! We had an 8 boat and a 4 boat of people with a
coxswaing for each.
Pausing for a take off shot, we all smiled with
excitement for what was to come (that's me in the middle with the
sunglasses). I had a last minute revelation about how I hadn't been in a
boat all summer, and my calluses had gone away, and I might end up with
some nasty blisters. I couldn't have been more right...we all did!
Luckily, the weather was beautiful, and what is usually 100+ degree
weather this time of year in Austin was in the low 80s. It was beautiful.
The gang sang Happy Birthday on the water, and we had a good time,
sprinting out the last few 100 meters for a strong finish. This took us
approximately 2 hours and 10 minutes!
| Just as we pulled into the docks,
the famous Austin bats flew out in the thousands from the Congress St.
bridge in front of a beautiful pink sunset. Wow! This was great! These
guys were awesome for joining me, and everyone was excited to be back on
the water with practice starting back up in 2 weeks!
with only body circuits and weights left to do in the morning before 8am
(my 26 hour mark). The time to meet was 6:30am, and I was off to bed.
After getting absolutely no sleep (well, 3 hours), it was back up to the
boathouse. 6 others showed to help me finish it off, and we began our
circuits at 6:45am.
26 minutes, which is 26 stations (including box jumps,
pull ups for those whose hands weren't too torn up from the row, box
steps, push ups, squat jumps, superman lift, and crunches). We managed to
catch a picture of me in mid box jump with 2 minutes left to go. Man am I
tired, and my knees hurt!!!
Weights were next, and I was anxious to get it
over with. I upped it to 26,000 pounds, and you could feel the excitement
in the room (sarcasm of course). I did it all with leg press despite the
fact that my legs were pretty dead. 96 reps of 270 lbs, and 4 of the
others did their variation of the same. I knocked it out in about 20
minutes, and was DONE!!!!!
This was an awesome experience and I was very
lucky to have so many people willing to participate to support me in
my birthday challenge. There were whispers of future birthday
challenges from some that participated, and I hope I can be a part of
it! We'll see what next year at 27 will bring!