Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Downhill and Farewell to Ma Blanche.

I have ran a few Hilly races and in all of them the hills were UPHILLS.
My next one is going to be hilly but DOWNHILL.
All of it.
It will be my 10th half marathon.
10! I cannot believe it.  I ran my first in January 2011 and I am at #10 already. 
OK back to the race.
This is a fast course obviously.  Some say it is cheating to run this one. 
I say it is still 13.1 miles.  
I expect to get a PR because other than being sick, I cannot think of an excuse not to PR on a course that has downhill and flat sections only.  Now I find going downhill to be a challenge.  I cannot "let go" and just "fly" down.  I tend to put on the breaks actually.  And my quads usually cry.  It hurts to go down.  Right?  I also struggle with form on downhill sections.  I land on my heels big time going down.

My other problem is going faster usually leads to stomach problems for me.  That is so frustrating and it limits my efforts.  The heat is back (depressing time of year for me).  This means I will have to drink earlier in the race and also more.  That will lead to the "washing machine" feeling in the belly.  That is no fun.  Makes me feel sick.

I want to do well at that race.  I don't want to get dehydrated and go in dry heaving mode.

How do you race downhill?  Do you put on the breaks to keep an OK pace or do you just let go and hope you can hang on for 13 miles?

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I am selling my Brooks Pure Flow size 11.
They have less than 10 miles on them.
One shoe has a scratch on the top.
I am done with those.  We got a divorce.  They need to move.
If you are interested email me. 


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I have been living away from my family for 12 yrs now.  When the phone rings I always wonder if it will be bad news.  I cannot help it.  Today it was.  My mom called to let me know one of her sisters passed away at 2 pm eastern time.  If you read my last post you know my mom is one of 16 kids; 9 boys and 7 girls.   My aunt Claire was my special one.  We had "a thing".  She had white hair since she was in her 40s.  She never colored her hair.  White in french is blanc or blanche.  I used to call her "Ma Blanche"  (My White) and she would call me "Ma Noire"  (My Black) it was a running joke in the family because I have blond hair.  So today I lost Ma Blanche.  She had a pulmonary embolism 3 weeks ago and her 87 yrs old body did not recover.   To me she was like a grand mother.   In times like this it is really hard to be living so far away.  I should be home with my mom right now.

Aurevoir Ma Blanche!
I will miss you.





32 comments:

(Just) Trying is for Little Girls said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. Hugs.

Kate said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. :( We're right there, having just buried my husband's grandma today. He has a lot of cousins in California who weren't able to be there, and I was really thankful that we were. I'm sorry you're so far away right now. I know that's hard. Thinking of you and your family. Hugs!

J. L. said...

So sorry for your loss. And I can only imagine how being far away makes it even harder.

Downhill races...I've run a few of those, and one is an annual event. It is hard to "let go." My trainer one time said too often we try and literally pull our bodies backwards to avoid going too fast, which isn't good. So, let your body go with the flow. But be prepared...my quads hurt more after a downhill half than any other time. Pick the handicapped bathroom stalls, you don't have to sit down quite so far and that helps afterwards. Good luck with the nutrition too!

And don't forget...downhill does count!

Canuck Mom said...

So sorry for your loss.:(

Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner said...

I'm so sorry Caroline! It's so hard to lose someone you have always looked up to. Sending good thoughts and feelings your way.

Kathy said...

So sad to hear your news. My g'ma has really slowed down this year and it's been hard to watch her mentally drift away from us. I know our time is limited.
Put all your energy into your half for Ma Blanche!

dreambigrunner.com said...

Soo sorry about your loss! I know how tough it is to live far away from home and family.

Terzah said...

I saw your photo on FB and wondered if she was your grandmother--turns out I wasn't far off. I'm so sorry for your loss, Caro--I know how it is. I'm thinking of you and your mom.

Neon Blonde Runner said...

I am sorry for your loss of your Ma Blanche. Thinking of you!

Jen said...

My deepest sympathy for your loss, Caroline.

Amanda@runninghood said...

So glad you had a special relationship..."a thing" with her. So sorry for your loss. :( This is never easy. Things like this always make me squeeze my family a little tighter. Life is short. Wish you could be closer to your family.

Gracie said...

I'm sorry. I love that you had sweet pet names for each other. That's a speccial relationship not many people have. Cherish the memories!

Boston Bound Brunette said...

Sorry for your loss and I know it must be very hard for you to be so far away from your family at times like this. I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

Yo Momma Runs said...

So sorry about your aunt. She is beautiful in her pictures!

For the race, I would let it fly on the downhill. For some reason my feet hurt worse than my quads on downhill (guess I'm striking hard), but it's worth the speed that I gain.

Jill said...

I'm so very sorry about your aunt. She sounded like an awesome woman! I know it's so hard, big hugs to you.

Oh how I wish I were a size 11...those are my favorite shoes.

Good luck with the half, I hope you nail that PR!!

Michael said...

So sorry for your loss. It is so much more difficult when you are so far away.

I hope your downhill race goes well. Depending on the grade a downhill can really be a workout on the quads. I wouldn't go all out, but keep a steady pace. Good luck!!

abbi said...

Sorry about your aunt. I'm also terrible at running downhill, I definitely put on the breaks!

On the Right Track said...

What a beautiful way to memorialize someone so dear to you...I am so sorry for your loss! I am very close to a few of my aunts as well, especially after losing my mom some time ago. I too live very far away from home, and it is SO HARD when you can't be near!! My thoughts are with you...what a great "thing" you has with her...it shows in your post!

good luck in your race...enjoy the downhill ;)

Corey said...

So sorry to hear about your loss. I live away from my family too and it is my biggest fear that something will happen I won't be there.

Curious why you are selling your Pure Flows after 10 miles? You didn't like them?

L.B. said...

I'm sorry for your loss. Thoughts are with you.

With the downhill race, I am running it too. It will be fun. I ran it last year and had a good time running it and I was undertrained. This year I am going to go in with a much stronger base so I will try for a good time. I wrote some stuff on it last year if you wanted to check it out. Here's a post I did with some info that might help you out: http://muddyrunner.blogspot.com/2011/06/fontana-days-leftovers.html

The one thing I said there and I'll say here is this: yes, the course is downhill but no, it's not cheating. You wouldn't put an asterisk next to a hilly course and say "Well my time would have been different had I run a flat course." And Boston doesn't omit runners who qualified from marathon courses that have a large elevation loss either. It's a downhill course, yes, but at the end of the day, it's 13.1 miles that you are running.

Elizabeth said...

so sorry for your loss!! i too had to divorce my brooks pure flows. and i also tore up the toes with a pretty bad fall.

Linda W. said...

My condolences on the loss of your aunt.

XLMIC said...

That is so hard. I am so very sorry, Caro.

Elle said...

Ah, sincere condolences, Caroline. Your 'Ma Blanche' looks like a sweet and jolly woman. Love the beautiful white hair.

I am glad you have happy memories, and you will be home soon...

Kayla said...

Oh, so sorry about your aunt. She looks very dear.

I too am curious why you don't like the Brooks Pure Flow. I seriously considered them the last time I bought running shoes (but went with the Brooks Launch instead). Tell!

lindsay said...

i'm sorry to hear about your aunt! i can imagine how hard it is to be away from family at a time like this. hopefully you can get back to see them soon though. hugs! (and glad the postcard made it :)

Shannon said...

I'm sorry to hear about your loss! Sending cyber hugs your way!

Good luck on the half AND the downhills! Waiting to hear your PR!

Shannon
http://www.irunreadteach.wordpress.com

Emz said...

I am so sorry. My deepest, warmest sympathies to you & your family. Ma blanche

Emz said...

.... Sorry it booted me out.....
Ma Blanche sounds like an amazing person.
I'm thinking of you my friend.
Praying for you.
Hoping you find comfort.

Black Knight said...

I am very sorry for your loss. Ciao "Mamma Bianca".

Sam said...

I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. Ma Blanche looks like she gave good cuddles. <3

Carrie FamilyFitnessFood said...

I'm so far behind on blog reading, but I wanted to make sure that I was able to offer my condolences. I'm so sorry for your loss. May her memories be a blessing.