Friday, September 24, 2010

My 13.319 Mile Run Down Cedar Canyon

You know, there are some wonderful and terrible things about blogging. One of those things is the brag factor. I mean, I wouldn't regularly go up to someone and start going off about how incredibly awesome I least not seriously. But with blogging, it's almost like your blog is there to justify bragging. Like you can't go around tooting your own horn cause that's just impolite...but if you blog about your stunning qualities, it's okay cause all you are doing is trying to keep your fellow readers informed about your life...and I mean, you can't really help it if you just so happen to be doing some pretty cool stuff.

And with that introduction I would like to tell you about the half marathon I ran last weekend.

Actually, the story isn't that great. With most races I have a really awesome story to tell at the end. And while I could go off about the various breeds and species of roadkill I encountered, I won't. I'll just give you a run down of the race (ha ha...that was kind of pun-ny! run...get it? Okay, sorry).

In order to inform and educate I will tell you that a regular half marathon is 13.1 miles. But in Cedar City they like to make everything just a little bit better. So they threw on an extra .219 mile on at the end just to show you you could do it. Cause, I mean, I doubted.

And the race was basically completely downhill. That was one of the reasons it was so appealing to me. Downhill? Easy easy. FALSE. My calves were killing me by mile three. I still had 10+ miles to go! At mile 8 I walked. At mile 10 I actually stopped completely in order to stretch my calves that felt like they were falling off. I walked again at the start of mile 11. And again around mile 11.5. When I stopped that time this guy ran past me and said, "Keep going! You've only got a mile left!" Which, when I write it via blogging, it sounds like he was really upbeat and motivational. But he wasn't. If I had had enough energy in me, I would have kicked him in the shins! After I had tripped him, of course. He didn't know how my calves felt!

Overall, I walked a handful of times. Which doesn't make much sense because I beat my time from my last half marathon (which I didn't walk at all during). But I'm not going to complain (except for when my mom told me that they probably didn't time it right. Yeah, she thinks I'm fat).

The end of the race was pretty sweet, though. Like they actually called my name when I came running to the finish line. Plus they had these athletic trainers there who basically yanked and pulled my body for my own good. They called it "stretching." Plus they had RunnerCards, which are these awesome little cards that have your time, place, and pace on it (okay, I'm pretty sure only runners think they are way completely awesome. No one else really cares).

Shortly after the race I had the opportunity to sit in a car for 3 hours while my muscles stiffened. Which meant that the following day I had the opportunity of being told that I "walk like a woman who's pregnant,"(my pregnant cousin agreed...and she knows!) I look like I "just had hip replacement surgery," and I was reminiscent of "an old woman." Yes, I love to run.

The incredibly lame thing is that the camera guys drove past me while I was running and snapped at least 5 pictures...but the ones they decided to put on the web were not of me. I guess I am an ugly runner. Oh, well. So these are pictures of the race that aren't necessarily of me, but at least they give you a feel for the race.

This was the starting line. I know, the energy inside it is palpable.
I think this is when we were waiting for the kid with the cut foot to be towed down the mountain. We were all hypothesizing that the guy just decided he couldn't do the race so he grabbed a smashed beer bottle and...
P.S. You can actually see me in this one if you have ninja skills.
Instructions for seeing me: look at the left-most part of the picture. There's a dude with yellow shorts right on the edge of the pic. Then you see the guy with white shirt and blue shorts then you see the guy with an orange shirt and gray shorts.
Look between them.
You can see these insanely awesome calves that belong to me.
I'm wearing yellow shorts and a white shirt.
I mean, if the calves didn't give me away.
If this picture had been taken like 100 feet back, I would have been in the pic. I was right behind these people for the first half(ish) of the race.

So. All in all, it was a pretty great race. I finished in 1:35:10 (which means I maintained a 7:15 pace throughout the race). I was 5th overall for the women and 2nd in my age group (20-24). Yeah. So that is my bragging. And I was outrageously sore for like 4 days afterward, but I'm probably going to do it again. Cause I love running. Seriously. There's nothing like running down this gorgeous canyon appreciating the beauty of the earth as well as appreciating the fact that I can run.

Good story this guy told me at the beginning of the race:
The winner of some marathon finished the race in 2 hours and 20 minutes (marathons are 26.2 this guy was freaking hauling). This other guy finished in 5 hours. The slow dude went to the winner and said, "I think it is so amazing that you can run that far in such a short amount of time. It's incredible!" The winner then said to the slow guy, "I'm amazed that you can actually run for 5 hours straight!"

Regardless of my time or how I place I'm just glad that I can run.
Otherwise, I would have missed out on beautiful scenes like this.


Friday, September 10, 2010

Some Mucho Bueno Music For You!

At the beginning of this week my roomies told me about this concert that was coming up on Thursday (as in, yesterday). They told me about how they had gone last year and about how it was SOOOO good. I told them I'd come along with them...cause, you know, I am pretty pro at procrastinating my homework these days. However, yesterday I realized that the concert was FIVE DOLLARS. I mean, seriously: I am a college student. I am poor. I can't afford FIVE DOLLAR concerts to bands I have never heard of! Really! But as I contemplated my various options, I realized that going to a concert and procrastinating would be far more entertaining than being good and studious. So I went. And I will tell you what, it was AMAZING. Seriously-so so good. The first dude who played was kind of nasally, so I was skeptical, but the second and third bands got up there and I was blown away with their delicious tunes. I am such a kind soul that I have decided to share their deliciousness with you guys. You don't even have to pay me back.

The first (good/delicious) band was J.Wride. I know, what kind of name is that? But they rock. They've got a guy on the bass, a guy on the drums and a singer dude on the piano. The drummer was insane good. Like, I personally think that most drummers in most bands are just there because they are full of angst and drumming is a healthy way to release such angsty feelings. But this guy was incredible. I didn't know you could be so passionate about playing the drums, but he was. It was beautiful in a hard core way, you know (I don't know if rock bands use words like "beautiful"). Then there was the bassist. Ugh. This guy was super good too. I've never really thought about it, but I think that playing the bass would be outrageously difficult. It's so big. And long. And the strings are spread apart. But the guy last night made it look so easy peasy. And the singer/pianist. Oh my goodness, his fingers were working lightning speed. And when he opened his mouth, I fell in love. His voice was and controlled (trust me, I sing and I know). Anyway. I could only find one really good video on the YouTube but it is a really good one, so I will share it with you. Plus it's short, which is always a bonus. (Sorry it is being cut off by my formatting...I am not skilled enough to know how to fix it.)

The next band that played was John Allred. Okay, so it's this guy who sings and plays the guitar and then I guess about year ago he thought it would be cool to find himself a band for a few of his songs. The band was super good (minus the guitarist who always stood with his back facing us as if he thought we all wanted to take a look at his not attractive rear end). But when John Allred played acoustic by himself without the band, that was where the magic was. He is so talented. It was super awesome. So he's got lots of original stuff but he did a couple of covers for us too and the one that you HAVE GOT TO see is his cover of U2's "With or Without You." It was insane. He does all the instrumentals himself by recording a bunch of stuff and in this movie you can see him do all of it. I know it is 5 minutes long, but it is worth it-really it is so awesome. If you are crunched for time, though, skip to 3:15 (ish) cause that is where he yells into his guitar and it is freaking rad. Trust me, totally worth it.

So that is the story of how I spent five dollars on something that was totally worth it. And you can all thank me later for sharing such beautiful talent with you.

You're very welcome.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

24 Hours

Dear Thailand,

You have been graced by the presence of my lovely sister for 15 months now. Prior to visiting you, she spent another 3 months at the Missionary Training Camp in Provo. That means that I have not seen my best friend for 18 months now. THAT is a long time.

I'm sure you are pretty much in love with her because, honestly, she is just pretty darn fantastic (and then some). But you have to remember that she has a family back here who loves her. She has a sister who has been missing her for TOO long.

And she also stole my tweezers when she left and I have been missing those too.

Anyway, the point is that I am ready for her to come back. I have been extremely patient, but now it's time. So if you could kindly ensure that Heather returns home safely, I would be greatly appreciative.

Many thanks and best wishes,

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Ode to the Wisdom That Hath Befallen Me

Last Saturday just so happened to be my birthday. Exciting? Yes. Disgusting? More so. "Why?" do you ask? It is because I am now officially an adult. I've passed successfully through my teenage years never to see them again. I've lived one fifth of a century. I've made my way through all good songs with reference to age. I will never again be able to sing along to "Dancing Queen" by ABBA. I know that it's "seventeen-" but, honestly, it is just so easy to substitute 18 and 19 too. But you can't go around belting "young and sweet only...twenty!" That sounds so dumb. Also, my body is definitely feeling the toll. They say your metabolism doesn't slow down until you're 35 or something. But I'm pretty sure that my body is not the same as it was when I was 18...of course, I was on cross country/track during that get the picture.

Yes, life is changing. However, those people -the one's who said the thing about metabolism-I think they also said that with age come wisdom. And, obviously, this is true. I mean, how in the crap could I have come up with such an eloquent title if I was still 19? Yeah-that's right.

Okay. So, now I have to make this post have a point. And I have a good story to accentuate my gained knowledge. Here it is:

As you all know, I moved back to Cedar about a week and a half ago. It is pretty intense, I must say. Anywho...the single's ward that I am now in is pretty freaking rad. Really. It rocks. At our first FHE I was getting to know a couple new people-all of whom were quite awesome. There was this certain boy who I had met at church a day earlier. He's super cute and funny and fun to talk to. What's a girl suppose to do beside flirt? So we were busying ourselves flirting when he decided to ask the dreaded question.

"So, how old are you?" He asked. As this was before my birthday, I told him I was 19.

He seemed to contemplate this for a moment. "When's your birthday?" He continued. I told him that it is August, 28th, "so, I'm almost twenty," in case he couldn't do the math (I know, I'm so helpful).

"Oh," he said.

"How old are you?" I was just returning the favor.

He stammered around a bit before he answered, "I'm seventeen."

Yeah, and I later found out that his birthday is like July or something-so he's NEWLY seventeen.

Anyway, this experience has given me gobs of wisdom, obviously. Like how I shouldn't go and flirt with every cute boy who turns the corner.

But at least he is still able to sing that wonderful ABBA song.