And, yes, I do know that I look a little crazy, too. There's a whole story behind the outfit. I'll get to that in a minute.
So, Running with the Cows was the last half marathon in the Heartland 39.3 series. Thus, after finishing, we not only walked away with a cow medal, but also a 39.3 medal. Glorious. Two medals! You know how much I love my race bling. I was in heaven.
Here's the list again:
I can't believe I'm that far through the list, now. When I first wrote it out, it looked kind of intimidating (and crazy, but well, you all already know that about me). I ended up finishing the series with a total time of 5:50:48, which put me in 43rd place for women (out of 282 total women finishers). They don't give extra medals for 43rd place (I know, rude right?), but I'm still happy. I had tons of fun and didn't hurt myself. Really, I couldn't have asked for any better results.
I had actually been looking forward to Running with the Cows since February, right after we finished our Disney Princess Run. While in Florida, we saw lots of people dressed up in costume. With princesses and mice and fairies surrounding us, the 13.1 miles felt like we were in a parade . I kinda-sorta dressed up, but nothing anywhere close to the other costumes we saw. When Kelli, Anne and I saw a girl dressed up as Jessie from Toy Story, complete with cow print running capris, we immediately thought of our upcoming Running with the Cows race. How amazing would that be?!?
Being the wordsmith that I am, I thought that we needed a clever saying on our shirts to go with our cow print bottom halves. In the Orlando airport, in the delirium of sleep-deprivation and vacation-exhaustion, I came up with the brilliant saying, "Moms on the Moove." Yes, I'm telling you. It's brilliant. And clever.
We had a good three months to work on our costumes, in between running three other halfs, of course. We looked into the cow print capris, but Kelli has a friend who could make skirts for us out of cow-print fabric she found online. Score. (Did you know cow print spandex existed? Yeah, me neither. The things you can find on the internet, wow.) She even had enough fabric to make us cow-print headbands, because the skirts were not awesome enough on their own.
Then, I convinced Cory (in yet another brilliant move) that his website, www.recteamstats.com, should sponsor our shirts. Score, again. Of course, then we had to actually devote part of his web site to running. We came up with participant-reviewed races. I wrote some, and Kelli and Anne are supposedly working on theirs (ahem). You, too, can review any race you've run. It's fun and helps out fellow runners know what to expect and what races they should do. (Katie H., I'm looking at you!)
So, here are our outfits, in all their glory:
And, of course, the sponsorship:
In addition to being the "girls in the cow print skirts," we actually did run the race. And, yes, people did talk about us. The race itself was really fun. Because it was out in the middle of nowhere, and because you had to park a mile away from the starting line, there was a bit of a backup before the race started. Cars were stuck on the highway trying to make it onto the off-ramp at 7:30 when the race was supposed to start. The organizers delayed the start by 15 minutes in hopes they could get everyone there. I would've been so upset had it been us sitting on the highway, so I didn't mind waiting at all.
We started out with the 2:00 pacers again. I cannot say too many good things about our pacers, Danny and Ann. They were awesome. And, I highly recommend running with pacers if your race has them. The course was an out-and-back, which I thought I wouldn't like. But, I ended up really enjoying it. We turned around at exactly the halfway mark, so once we turned around, I knew I was headed home. The course was completely paved, but it just went by lots of fields and the occasional house. We did see a couple cows, so the race name was not a lie. Though, in truth, those cows weren't running with us. They just looked at the giant parade of running humans as if we were all insane.
I stayed with the pacers until mile 10 or so. Then, I was feeling great, and it was a beautiful morning with no humidity, so I took off. I ended up with a negative split for the race, which I was very happy with. I crossed the finish line in 1:57:32, and immediately got my first medal, then my second medal. Ah, race bling.
|After the finish with my two cheering calves.|
Oh, did I mention that my dad ran the race, too? Yup, he did.
|Ringing our cowbells to cheer for Papa.|
|Me and my dad after the race.|
So, the race lived up to its hype. The course was good, the food was good, our costumes were awesome, if I do say so myself. (We even scored free t-shirts because we had on cow print.) And, I walked away with two, count 'em, two medals.
And, really, one of the best things about the race? The awesomely hilarious picture opportunities it presented for the girls. Enjoy:
|This picture just makes me laugh every time I see it.|
|Holding up the mile markers.|
|Molly and Charlotte making their own race.|
|Emerson, Molly, Charlotte and Connor playing.|
|Lots and lots of open space for kids to run while waiting for mommies to finish.|