Monday, July 11, 2016

Run Happy to Rio (Part II)

by Meghann on July 11, 2016

Okay, where did I leave off?

Oh, yeah. After being up for nearly 24 hours, I had my first baby-free night of sleep for the first time in 9 months. You’d think I’d take advantage of this glorious moment and sleep for 12+ hours. That did not happen. Instead I was wide awake at 5:30 am, missing my baby.  Derek was great and sent adorable photos and videos throughout the weekend. And I had the chance to Facetime while they ate breakfast back home.

Annalynn Breakfast

And, of course, Annalynn slept like a dream the whole time I was gone. She slept through the night, slept late, and took long naps. It’s as if she knew the boobs were away so there wasn’t any point waking for them – ha!

I needed coffee (and food!) so I took off early with a couple of the other east-coasters in search of both. It was the one chance we had to explore the gorgeous University of Oregon campus and enjoy the cool morning air. We returned just in time to take part in the group run Brooks hosts every morning during the Olympic trials.

Brooks Frat House

It’s a tradition that dates back to the last Olympic Trials. Brooks invites everyone from the local community to a daily 9:00am shakeout run during the trials. The paces and distances vary and there are fun Brooks prizes and post-race smoothies for everyone.

Brooks Group Run

If I’m being honest, the run was a little humbling. While I’m proud of myself for getting out the door for evening runs a few nights a week, I haven’t exactly been breaking any speed records. I was hopeful I could keep up with the “casual pace” of the group, but couldn’t even make it half a mile with them. Emily was kind enough to stay back with me and – while I was hunched over trying to catch my breath – she let me know the group was going at an 8:30 min/mi pace. Once upon a time that might have been my half marathon pace (in 2012 <- ha!), it’s just not where I am anymore. We continued at a 10:00 min/mi pace, which was a little more doable. One day I’ll figure out how to get back to that speed, but for now just getting out the door and running is a big win in my book. Baby steps.

Speed Queens

Emily and I ended up taking our time in the rear and I enjoyed our time together immensely. I love running with friends. It’s really the best time to decompress and just catch-up on life.

Meghann and Emily

I wish I had more time to run the trails in Eugene. There was a connection of trails right behind the University that were begging to be explored. Next time!

Run Happy to Rio

We grabbed a quick shower back at the house, then headed to the Run Signature trailer to have our running gaits analyzed.

Brooks Run Signature

I’ll write another in-depth post regarding my results, but I will say it was definitely not what I was expecting. I’m going to try the recommended shoe next month, so we’ll see what happens.

Day 2 of the Olympic Trials opened with the women’s 10,000m finals.

USATF Olympic Trials Day 2

The sun was out and it was HOT. The women were superstars for giving it their all in the heat. Molly Huddle led the race pretty much from the start and fought for the first place finish, punching her ticket to Rio.

Women's 10000m Finals

While the 10,000m zoomed by, we had a great view of the men’s pole vaulting qualifiers. Their ability to defy gravity never ceases to amaze me.

Pole Vaulting Olympic Trials

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I went on a hunt for coffee and returned in time to see the women’s 100m preliminaries (but somehow missed getting a photo?). So much power. So much speed. I can only dream what it must feel like to go that fast.

Brooks Run Happy Blog Ambassadors

We left for lunch (in style, I might add…)

moms gone wild

And met Brooks Beasts Garrett Heath and Riley Masters, who were both competing in the 5000m at the trials.

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Talk about two seriously amazing guys. If I was just a couple of days away from competing for my chance at making the Olympic team, I would be going stir crazy, but they were humble, kind, and even ordered burgers for their meals! Their passion for the sport of running oozed from every word they spoke and their dedication to their training was admirable. They had just returned from training at altitude, where they prepped for the heat. They were both cool as cucumbers and didn’t show a bit of tapering madness.

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I ended up watching the 5000m preliminaries the day I returned home and was whooping and hollering as they both ran a great race. Riley and Garrett both ended up making it to the finals with their qualifying times, but didn’t end up making the final cut. They trained and worked hard to make it that far and I know we couldn’t be prouder of them.

We spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing around the house and reliving our lazy college days.

Brooks frat house

For dinner that night we headed to the Oregon countryside for an amazing meal at King Estate Winery.

Brooks Run Happy Ambassador Crew

It was the perfect way to end the weekend – with great food and great company. I’m honored to call all of these amazing ladies friends and look forward to many more adventures together.

Thank you, Brooks Running, for giving me the chance of a life time. I can now check off the Olympic Trials from my bucket list. 🙂

 

 

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