Hey! Where did you go?

Oh yes, I have a blog.  I forget about that sometimes.

Remember in an earlier post when I said I was having trouble riding because I felt sick?  Well, it didn’t really get better, so I went back to the doctor where they discovered that I had walking pneumonia(!)

That explains why I had so much trouble breathing while I rode.

So, there was much rest and recovery.  After that, it was time for my last two races of the year – one very hilly half marathon, and one 15k.

The word undertrained would be an understatement here.

But, I managed to finish the half marathon, then after a little more rest, I did quite well at the 15k.

The half marathon was the inaugural year for the Natchez Half.  I love Natchez, and ride there quite frequently.  This would be the first time I ran there, but I pretty much knew what to expect: hills, and more hills.  I was not diasppointed.  I met a lovely lady who ran my pace, and we talked and ran throughout the half.  The conversation helped me keep my mind off of the run, and we hit 10 miles before I realized it.  We had a blast, and ran through some beautiful areas.

The day before, I had gone to the Natchez Brewery, and visited with the owners/brewers there.  They also ran the half, so it was fun to see them race morning.  I sampled some of their beers and was very impressed, so I picked up a few to take home.

Running and beer is almost as good as cycling and beer

Next up was the St. Louis Hot Chocolate 15k.  This was my first 15k, and I found out that love the distance.  I enjoy half marathons, but around mile 9 I’m really ready to be done.  With a 15k, at the 9 mile point, you ARE done!  Perfect!

I have many coworkers in St. Louis, so we had a lunch gathering, and it was much fun!  St. Louis has really good food and beer, and I ate (and drank) well!

The Arch is awesome

Race day dawned cold and windy.  Being from Louisiana, I’m not exactly used to sub-freezing temps, so I brought ALL the layers and used every single one.  Also, I had some daydream that STL was flat.  Man, I was really disappointed to find out that wasn’t the case.  Thankfully I ran Natchez first.  Nothing is as hilly as Natchez.

Cold weather for me = good running times.  I finished the race much faster than I had at the Natchez race two weeks before.  Also, the Hot Chocolate races are FUN.  They served candy at all the aid stations (I didn’t partake, but it was a fun idea).  Also at the end, they give you a neat selection of treats, as well as a cup of hot chocolate.  I was so cold at the race finish that the hot chocolate tasted amazing.  Unfortunately, by the time I found a place to sit, my dipping chocolate was frozen hard.

Best medal ever.

And now that I am all healthy again and have finished my yearly race calendar, it’s back to the bike!