Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Childless in Seattle.....

I am not going to write 12 posts on Hood to Coast but I am also not going to do just 1 huge one. 

Before I start..

I got to say that I think it is pretty sad that the women (me included) who were a part of HTC-NUUN 2012 feel like they have to "apologize" for writing about their experience..some are loosing followers because they write "too much" about it.  Really...?  As a follower of MANY blogs I can say that I don't enjoy every single post people write...but I don't un-follow them because they put a picture of a PB & J sandwich with carrots on the side for the 1245 times this month...I just skip and come back the next day and I don't put in the comment that I am tired of their food pictures because at the end of the day nobody is forcing me to look at them and read what goes with them. 

This will probably not make me popular...I am OK with that.  I am just tired of the nastiness..is that even an English word...let's check spell check....yep looks like it is!  I am tired of websites -I will not name here because I don't want to give them free publicity- that offer forums to put people down  ...the jealousy..the "let's be mean just because I can and I am hiding in front of a computer" attitude.   Life is way too short so I am asking you, nice folks who read my little blog, don't be mean to the 30 bloggers who ran HTC with NUUN...just skip the posts if you have had enough.   Last year I read all the Hood to Coast posts that the people I follow wrote.  I could not get enough.  The reason is because I had an interest in that event.  I wanted to do it one day.   I had an interest in how they did and if they had a good time.  The gals I follow who were on the team last year made me believe that I could do this.  I hope that by writing about my own personal experience at Hood to Coast I can do that for at least one of you who will read my words.  Yes there's many of us who are writing about the same race this week but in the end only a maximum of 3 bloggers ran each of the 36 legs and I can tell you that I am pretty sure it went down differently for all 3.

OK are you still here....well I thank you...merci beaucoup!
So Childless in Seattle....that was me the first couple of days.
This adventure was huge for me in many ways.  One of them being that it was the FIRST time I had ever left my kids.......that is 8 years people!  It was so strange at first.  Let me take a moment here to thank the person who invented SKYPE.

I arrived in beautiful Seattle Wednesday morning at 9 am.  I got up at 4 am and Sandy who blogs at Boston Bound Brunette and could not be nicer, came to pick me up to take me to the airport.  I owe her big time!


So I got to Seattle and Casey from NUUN was there to pick me up.  What a nice guy he is!  We went to get 5 other girls who arrived the night before and we staying at a hotel near the airport.  I met Jocelyn, Stephanie, Lauren, Laura and Susan, all super nice young gals.  I am not just saying that in case they come and read this.  THEY ARE.  Not once did they make me feel like the "old married with kids lady". They decided to go for a run before the baseball game but I was good and followed PT order and I walked.  It was hard to resist the temptation watching them taking off BUT in the end the best decision because I am 100% convinced that taking 2 days of running rest is what led to almost NO groin pain during HTC runs.


 I love Seattle.  I could move there today.  I can take rain over heat any day.  That city reminded me of my hometown a lot.  One big difference was the number of homeless people...I was surprised to see so many in the city.  Really sad situation.

I walked to the Pike Place Market and met the girls there as they were headed back.
I saw the very first Starbucks.  Lots of people were standing in line to get in..I did not get it..really you get the same coffee you would get at any other Starbucks and trust me in Seattle those are not hard to find.  They are EVERYWHERE!





For the 2 days leading up to Hood to Coast, NUUN had planned activities to allow the team members to meet and get to know each other before being put in a stinky van for hours.  That was such a great plan I think.  The NUUN group made us feel welcomed and took great care of all of us.  Look,  I could be a lot smarter here and say that it was horrible and the NUUN team was rude and not friendly and invent all kinds of lies..because well less people would apply next year right....  Right...but the thing is I hate liars so I am a truth teller like my Team Night van 1 teammate Robyn would say, and those people were the best.  I cannot say thank you enough for all that they did for us.   On the schedule was a Mariners baseball game, dinners, a visit to the Oiselle office, an "Amazing Race in Seattle a la NUUN", visit to NUUN office of course, Van decorations and hanging out with everyone on  the team.   That gave us the chance to get to know everyone not just the 5 others  who would be in the van with us.  I loved meeting everyone in person and having time to say more than just "Hi".  Many were just like I imagined them to be (in a good way of course).    It is a bit surreal to meet people for the first time that you kind of already know...I know you know what I mean.  Now do that 30 times in the same day!!  I could tell that we were all happy and grateful to be there.  I know I was.  I don't know how many times I told myself or others "We are so lucky".  We were all different..single, married, moms, superstar runners, average runners, really young, not so young anymore (hmm Hello over here), first time at Hood to Coast, 6th times at HTC, some have been running all their lives, some like me had just a couple of years of experience.   We all love to run.


Tricia, Tonia, Jess, Marjorie and me.
Breakfast at Starbucks at beautiful Green Lake Park: Katie, Kelsey, Megan, Tonia and me.

 
This was where the Oiselle offices are and we got to visit and Sally explained to us how she started this company.  Thank you Oiselle for the T-shirt! I love it!!!

After that we headed back to the hotel for some Jamba Juice time! 

"Finally a picture with running friends where I don't look like a giant"
That's what we said: Robyn, Sarah and me.

Next up...the NUUN Office!  My kind of place!  I would work there.  (NUUN if you need a translator..let me know!) The vibe is good.  Laid back.  Huge open space.  No doors.  Everyone sees everyone.  They even have an office dog!

It is there that we got the "swag".  OK I am like most of you, I do like to receive free gifts, of course I do.  For me, not even a small part of this whole thing was about getting free things.  It was all about getting down Mt Hood, having a good time, sharing this with others who also love running. 

We were spoiled.  I will mention the items through out my posts.
Thursday afternoon was the "Amazing Race in Seattle a la NUUN".  We were put in teams that were different than our HTC team and were given a list of stuff we needed to find in the city.  It was a great way for people to see the town and get to know each other.  It was a lot of walking though and I got worried.  My leg started to hurt pretty bad, all I could think of was "Tomorrow I am runner 1, I have a VERY HARD leg to run, I am going to die"
 

Team 1 (a very creative bunch with a name like that):
Sarah, Katie, Tricia, Robyn, me and Amanda
 
Famous Gum Wall: So So GROSS
 
We came back for dinner pretty tired and I was so grateful that in the swag bag we had a TIGER TAIL.  It saved me.  I love this thing.  It is so much better than the foam roll and the stick I think.  Easy to use and to carry and it gets the job done.  I rolled and rolled so much that I ended with bruises!!!
 
We had one last thing to do before trying to sleep before heading to Portland for the main event: Decorate our van!!!!!  My van was TEAM NIGHT Van 1.
 
 
Robyn, Vanessa, me, Lauren and Susan (missing was Shanna)
 



To be continued...
I hope you will come back..for the running part of this adventure...all in one post...

I thank you for reading
Thank you for the comments on my first post on this ...
What? you missed one HTC post...how could you....
(it is still here.)


19 comments:

Erica Elia said...

Let me start by saying I loved the first part of your post. I am the same way that I might not be interested in every single thing someone post but that doesnt mean I am not going to follow them. I just hate to hear that anything like that is going on but Ill be reading away. I think this had to be the coolest experience. So great!!! Your post was fun to read and I cant wait to hear more! Erica

a runner said...

You were so fun to room with and I am so glad we got to meet. And you are not a giant at all...at least not in my opinion! I was a little worried after all that walking, too...I'm glad we were both okay in the end. And I didn't know you had almost NO PAIN! That is outstanding!!!!

Ed said...

Way to get out and enjoy Seattle! Such a great place huh...looks like a great time and I am glad you had fun...

Darlene said...

I love reading about HTC.

Kate said...

Ahhh, post away! It makes me feel better about my multi-part AR reports. And yes, I've lost followers bc of it, but while I LOVE connecting with other bloggers, my blog is first and foremost for me. I'm sorry that people are being unkind. I totally get being so excited about the experience, and while I'm a little envious, no one forced me to not apply. :)

I know what you mean about being without kids. Such a weird feeling to only be responsible for yourself! Sounds like an absolutely wonderful experience!!

Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner said...

Oh, I love reading your recaps Caroline! Makes me feel like I am back there all over again. Love the picture of our team in front of the van - that's a cute one where we all looking like we're having so much FUN!

Linda W. said...

I love reading all your posts and can't wait to hear all about your first H2C experience. Please share away!!! I hope to have my H2C posts up by the end of the week.

kristen said...

I hadn't even thought about the fact that not only were you excited to run but that it would be the first time you were away from your kids. What a fun event to leave them for :)

Boston Bound Brunette said...

I enjoy reading HTC posts since I would like to do it one day myself! I am also glad to hear that you had minimal pain on your runs! That is great! Looks like you had a lot of fun and I look forward to reading more.

Sarah OUaL said...

More than having another fellow "giant" around, I so enjoyed our chats during the amazing race and when we'd bump into you guys at exchanges. Hopefully I'll see you out around SoCal sometime - a big race maybe??? ;)

Carrie Skoll said...

Can't wait to read more. I personally don't seek out HTC recaps, but for the few of you ladies that I read regularly, I'm so excited to read about your experience and I was cheering for you all weekend. It looks like it was a wonderful time. Can't wait to read about the running part.

Jocelyn said...

WAIT WHAT!?! How did you not tell us that you had never been away from your kids before!!!? I'm not even a mom and I probably would have been anxious for you. So maybe it is best that I didn't know...don't need to add anymore anxiety to the table.

Also thank you for saying I am nice! I know it is 100% because I am Canadian. Not sure about the other girls...they must have got lucky or something :)

So so happy to have met you! Can't wait to read more of your recaps! And we must meet up again soon. Cali or NYC or somewhere in between.

Coy Martinez said...

Well done on clearing the air up top!! I'm a big fan of Nuun and I'm glad you got all the swag! I will openly admit that I'm ten shades of jealous! It looks like you had a great time. The wall of gum is gross BUT somehow I find it to be intriguing! :)

Big Daddy Diesel said...

First, I applaud you for the first part of this post

Second, this is a once in a life time event you had the chance to do!!! I would talk about it too!! Congrats again

Nelly said...

I'm glad that you had a great time at HTC! And yea, the first part of your post is great. People should post what they want, and people should read what they want. People can find another blog if they really don't like it. I guess it's also like facebook - if people really don't like my posts, they can unfriend me or unfollow me - no problem. I've probably posted too often about the Olympics (14 posts lol), but it is the best trip I've ever been on, and every day I was thrilled to share it with people. If that is too many posts, tough.

It sounded like a great experience - and cool that you got to meet Jess, Marjorie, etc. I've never done a relay before, but hopefully I can do one sometime. The last time I got a chance to do one I was injured unfortunately.

Lindsay said...

The internet negativity was really bumming me out. Curiousity killed the cat and then broke my spirit. People are so mean! :(

You, however, are amazing and wonderful. I'm glad I decided to get coffee so I could get a chance to talk with you. I hope it was a great vacation! :)

Steph said...

So, so happy to have met you Caroline! You are the sweetest lady and it was so nice to be able to spend a good amount of time with you.

Great post, I can't wait to read the rest of them!

dreambigrunner.com said...

What an once in a lifetime experience! Nuun took really good care of you guys. So happy for you!!!

Corey said...

Caroline, this is a great post! I love reading about the experience through your eyes! It is so obvious how grateful and appreciate you are :) I also really appreciate your comments about apologizing for too many HTC posts. I am one of the bloggers that has been doing that, but you are right. I will stop apologizing a write what I want to write! Thank you for the reminder!