Sunday, May 11, 2014

Two kids, two races, one weekend, part 1 - I Heart Momma Recap

So I don't know how y'all are celebrating your mother's days, but it occurred to me that the way my trail pass intersected with another local race, I could run my race and run my daughter's first 5K with her. Win! But when Muddy Monk sent out the race email that there would be a stroller friendly course, it dawned on me - I could run a race with each kiddo for my mother's day weekend. As soon as I realized that, it felt perfect.

So today was part one - the I Heart Momma Trail Race 5K with Muddy Monk. My husband volunteered at the race while I ran with Miles in the BOB. So we got there early to hang out while he helped with packet pick up (he was greeted as "Mr. Heather" which cracked me up); I got my bib and shirt (and like the Punk the Monk, this is totally another shirt going into my every day wear!) and we hung out til go time.

We're ready to go!

The course was cool - for the hard core trail runners (or those of us without strollers) there was a muddy single track option, and for those of us pushing kiddos or who didn't want the mud, there was a paved option.  We started out the same after an intro from the RD explaining the course (where to go if you were going off the paved trail). We went down a grassy hill from the start line towards the paved trail; it's the most congested I've ever seen one of their races - a few of us had to walk at the start. A few people complained a bit but it was a gorgeous day and there were a lot of strollers out - I knew it would thin out!

At the start line! Photo courtesy of Muddy Monk.

It did as soon as the trail masters split off for the single track and suddenly it was perfect. Settling into my groove, despite it being rolling hills and then uphill, I began passing people. For whatever reason I was paying particular attention to all the other stroller runners I was passing; after a while there would be only one stroller ahead of me - but she was in a double and quite a bit ahead for most of the first mile.

To my surprise we hit the first water station at .8 according to my garmin, but it was bright and sunny so I was glad to grab a quick drink and then go back to slogging uphill, chasing the mom with the double stroller. Mile 1 hit at 11:10ish (I felt great, but uphill!) and shortly thereafter we started seeing people coming back from the turnaround. I started to wonder if the course was short - I didn't think people had been -that- far ahead! - but got distacted by the uphills. It was nice though, people coming from the turnaround would smile at Miles (though he was looooong asleep by this point!) and saying things like "Go Mama!" which was really nice. It was definitely tough pushing the stroller uphill so much but the course was just absolutely gorgeous, and in true Muddy Monk fashion I still managed to splash mud on my legs as we ran through puddles on the path. Periodically, the trail master course would interweave with the stroller-roller course so we'd see them - and they were definitely much muddier than I was.

Heading towards the turn around! Photo courtesy of Muddy Monk.

The turnabout hit at 1.36 on my garmin, reminding me of my earlier speculation that the course might be short. I was right behind the double jogger by this point though, having made headway as we went, and the course marshal gave me a laugh when he told me we - the other stroller mom and I - were crazy. I told him I'd take that as a compliment as I high tailed it after her - he shouted after me it was meant as one but he "still worried about" us. Haha! Sometimes, the stroller is the only way to get a run in!

I was now cruising despite the sun beating down, and it wasn't long before I passed the other stroller mom. (In her defense, she had to pause as one of her kiddos needed her.) Mile 2 clipped by and came in at 9:53 - downhills are fun! Trail masters continued to interweave and I was pretty sure now the course would be short, but I wondered if that was because I was on the paved path; the trail master path may have been the full 5K.

In the last stretch shade was much more sporadic though, and we were back to rolling hills and my brain was just going, "" I found myself taking walk breaks here and there but for whatever reason, I was determined to be the first stroller across the finish line. Apparently, I was feeling competitive!

It wasn't long before the end of the paved path came up and oh my gosh - I have to admit - the last stretch felt bumpy when it was the start and going downhill but going uphill in the grass it brutal! The hill was so steep and the terrain so rough for the stroller that I had to go straight-armed shoving it up the hill. I could hear my husband and daughter cheering as I neared the finish line but I was too busy gutting it out to wave.

Finally though the finish line was there and the woman recording finish time congratulated me by name before asking my bib number, which was really nice. I collected my finisher gift, which instead of a pint glass was an awesome metal water bottle, and that was that.

Crossing the finish line! Photo courtesy of Muddy Monk.

And - most importantly - my husband said that as far as he saw I was the first stroller-roller across the finish line! I'm calling that a win. 1st in umm...strolling? Or something.

Hamming it up at the finish line!

The course was definitely short though, my garmin came up as 2.7, but other than that I really can't complain; gorgeous day, gorgeous run, and the best finisher gift to date! (Although, I am looking forward to August with their half-marathon...I like medals, what can I say?)

And then there were 5! Sort of.


  1. I love that water bottle! Too cute!

    1. It is really awesome! I will definitely be using it. Shiny!

  2. This is so awesome Heather! I love it!!

    I didn’t realize the first time I looked at the pic of you crossing the finish line that Lily and Mr Heather were in it too!! That’s great!!

    You ARE one tough momma!!

    1. I didn't either until I was looking at it again on FB hahahahaha! I love that it is a family pic!

      Thank you <3