Thursday, August 4, 2011

Montana, Missoula Marathon, and Our Next Race

    So our first stop in Montana was one of my best friend's Pap's house. He lives about an hour out of Missoula at Seely Lake. We pulled up and deer were sitting in his yard, not phased that we pulled up.  They were however frightened by his 15 pound dog ha.

He has a stream running through his back yard and I have to say it has to be wonderful to wake up to that in the morning.  We ate lunch and chit chatted with him before we went on our way to Missoula.  We had a few hours to spare before we met up with the team so we stopped at a winery..duh!

 Afterward we met up with the team for a few drinks and then we went back to our hotel room and settled in for the night.  The next day we got up and decided we would go for a drive to a ghost town.  Now it seemed pretty close but what we didn't know is that when we got to the turn off we had an 11 mile drive up a steep, narrow, dirt road.   These guys got in the way for a bit too. And yes I totally had to pee which was awesome ha.  

We finally got to the ghost town (sidenote: I am not a fan of going to the bathroom where you can feel a breeze) and took a short hike down to the town.

It was a mining town that was semi destroyed by fire.  Overall it was effing creepy! All the old newspaper or wallpaper peeling off the walls, random old shoes and stuff. I just got bad vibes or something it just really freaked me out.  So we left there and Dan went to work at the marathon expo booth. I was left to fend for myself shopping the mean streets of Missoula.  I found some discontinued Fiestaware pieces that made me squeal, got some huckleberry froyo, and some yarn for my gay husbands. I got my bffs some presents from Jim Beam earlier in the trip because thats just the kinda girls we are ha.  The next day was race day!

   This was totally one of my favorite courses (do I say that about every race? I dont know lol) the scenery for the first 3 miles of the half was amazing, the weather was near perfect, and the course was relatively flat. People that ran the marathon said the scenery was amazing until mile 16. They had TONS of water stations and it was very well organized.  The only thing some people may not like is that it is a point to point race rather than out and back.  We did have to take a shuttle to the starting line but it was was very well organized and we did not have to wait.  The only thing I didn't like about the race was that I couldnt seem to find regular water after the race..they just had vitamin water.  It was an OK race for Dan and I.  I had an awful heartburn flare up around mile 8 so I pretty much couldn't breathe but I felt like my legs had so much more to give! They were barely sore the next day so I was pretty upset with myself.  Dan said his legs did not feel like moving that day but he was pumped on the inside.  Womp Womp..not every race is perfect! The medal is one of our nicest medals to date!

National Guard Team members- they are hard to miss!
The Guard Team did pretty well.  Dan came in 36th with a 1:24:34 and the girl from PA won the women's half marathon with a 1:21:27 and she set a new course record! Emily was nice enough to share her victory bottle of wine she won with us :)  A few of the other guys on the team got age group awards too! The Missoula race was SO supportive of The Team and gave some great shout outs.

   After the race I figured I was already sweaty and there was this big white"M" beckoning me on the side of the mountain for the last few days so Dan, Emily and I decided to climb it. Very slowly.  I'm glad they didn't make fun of me for having to make stops.  I am nowhere near as athletic as them ha.

us and part of someone's finger sitting on the M

a view of part of the city

Go Griz!

 Anyway, I hope we are able to come back to Montana next year and hopefully we both will be able to redeem ourselves.  It really is a perfect course for a PR.

I am excited but nervous for our next race.  After my heartburn flare up I am worried it will happen again and I have been told that our next race's weather will be far from perfect.  But I am pretty sure none of that will matter because we will be in HAWAII!!!!!!!!!!!  Thats right!  The Team got enough funding this year that pretty much everyone on the team is going to be able to do the Kauai Marathon.  I will be doing the half, of course, and Dan will be doing the full.  They say the course is hilly and it is normally pretty hot so to add 15 minutes to a half an hour on your regular time.  I am totally not running for a PR here, just running to enjoy the sights!  So Labor day weekend, watch out for us Kauai!!!

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