Sunday, June 24, 2012

Jonathan's Race aka My Husband is a Stud

I need to take a minute (or a blog post) to brag on my husband. There are many aspects about him that I could brag about, but today's post is about his most recent accomplishment.  After he finished his MBA last winter he decided to focus his attention on fitness. He heard about a race called the Warrior Dash which is pretty much a 5K trail run with 13 obstacles through the race. (You can click on the link if you'd like to see the types of crazy obstacles.) He was intrigued but in the past had never been into running. He decided it would be a good goal since there was a Warrior Dash race in Kentucky this year and some of our friends decided to sign up too. (They hold the races all over the country.) In January he started P90x (which he blogged about - and is still updating his fitness info). Once he finished the 90 days of that program he decided to start running 3 days a week and then use the other 3 days to do strength training.

Back before I had Adalyn, I was the runner in our family and J has never been interested in running. So now that he's started in on running I have to say I've been a bit jealous that he's training and I can't right now. But I'm proud of how awesome of a runner he has become. Even if he doesn't love doing it, he has put some serious miles in and his pace is super fast. I really want him to sign up for a regular street race to see how well he'd do.

This past weekend was the Warrior Dash in Lebanon, Kentucky. First of all, let's talk about the Lebanon. When J first signed up for the race, it was supposed to be in Elizabethtown, which is a sweet little town and I was excited to go check it out.  But a few months later he got an email that the venue was changed to Lebanon. There is absolutely nothing in Lebanon.  I'm honestly not sure why people live there. Neither of us have ever been there and I never want to go back. There was one hotel in the town (which thankfully J was on top of it and reserved a room before they were booked up) and it was nice enough. There were only a couple restaurants in town so our dinner Friday night was a bit interesting. It was sloooow service with the greasiest pizza I have ever tasted. Everyone in the place knew each other. We just looked at each other and laughed. It was like we were these city outsiders. Oh, and the entire town had zero 4g connection and only about one bar of EDGE so we felt like we were outside of civilization.

Adalyn did great sleeping in the hotel room. I, on the other hand, did not. But what can you expect when you're 8 months pregnant? I was just hoping I wouldn't wake J up.

Jonathan, Billie and Tim signed up to run the 9am heat for the race. They thought that the earlier would be better for the heat factor and also for the race course to not get all torn up. There were heats every 30 minutes from 9am to 3pm. The race was sold out (6,500 participants but only 5,169 ended up racing).  This venue is different than most of the Warrior Dash races in that they didn't have parking at the venue. We had to park at the fairgrounds (for $20!!) and then they shuttled us into the venue by a school bus. Thankfully we only had to wait for one bus since we were there early. (Our trip back to our car took 45 minutes on the bus!) When we came back there were hundreds of people who have since posted on the webpage that wait time was 3 and 4 hours for the buses in direct sunlight!!  

When we got to our destination they dropped us off in the middle of nowhere. Army guys checked our bags and then we were off, or should I say up. There was a very steep uphill climb on a gravel path. We had no clue how far we were walking because it just kept winding through a very wooded area. I was huffing and puffing. Thankfully Jonathan was pushing the stroller because I had all I can do to get myself up the hill. 

Finally we started hearing music and the next thing we knew we were in the festival. You could feel the excitement all around! This was Jonathan's first bib number race and I knew he was nervous. I have run tons of (regular) races and I would have been nervous walking into this too (back in the day when I was in shape). But I knew his excitement was way more than the nervousness. I had to get pictures before of the racers!
Adalyn giving her daddy a good luck kiss.
 Billie, Tim and Jonathan right before lining up for their heat. 
Derek and I hung out with the kids during the race. We really thought we'd be able to see a few obstacles on the course, but the way the course was made was all through hills and woods so we literally could only see the final obstacle that was at the finish line. We were a bit bummed since we wanted to see what they were doing. Of course I had to get some pics of the kids. They were all so good in the heat and sun.

We had no clue at what time we should expect our people to come across the finish line since it's hard to know how long the course will take. The first guy came across around 24 minutes and everyone standing around started yelling for him. It was such a cool atmosphere. So we were just kinda hanging out watching the random few people come across the last obstacle. Then it got so that there weren't big gaps in between the runners but just kinda steady people one by one. I screamed when I saw Jonathan so soon! I couldn't believe it as he came running toward the obstacle.  The last obstacle was crawling under barbed wire and then crawling through a foot of mud and water, then up a hill and across the finish line. I was holding Adalyn in one arm, a camera in my other hand, screaming and jumping up and down. I tried to get the best pictures I could. I then started running toward the finish line to get a picture of him coming across.  This was the best I got...
(Those volunteers were right in the way! But they wouldn't move.)

 Uphill out of the obstacle towards the finish line.
 Pumped up! Finish line is in the background. He finished 18th out of the 500 in his heat!! (It was about 32 minutes...I don't have the actual chipped time.) I am so proud of him!! He was also way cleaner than I was expecting. But I guess it helps when you're one of the first to go through all the obstacles instead of doing them after hundreds of people have gone through them.  He also started at the back of the pack and although it is chipped timing so his time didn't start until he crossed the start line, he had to wait for a few of the first obstacles because they get bottle-necked.
Billie came across next. I always knew she was super tough and pretty much superwoman, but seriously she ran the race for the most part carrying her shoes. She was having issues with her feet so she just took her shoes off. I can't fathom running this race with shoes on, let alone with shoes off!!
 Eli wasn't sure about his mom being so dirty. It was hilarious!
Tim came across the finish line just a couple minutes after Billie. They all 3 did awesome!! Just to finish this race would be an accomplishment, but on top of finishing, they all finished in great times!

 Jonathan's personal cheering section. We were so proud of him. (Can you tell how hot it was? We were all a bit flushed even though we were just standing around.)
After all of the heats finished the official finish times were posted. Jonathan finished 302 out of 5169. In his age group he was 86 out of 1008. I am so impressed by that. It would be awesome if it was even just a running race, but knowing he did a bunch of obstacles that he has never done before in crazy heat makes it even more amazing. And in case you are wondering, he wanted to get back out there today to see if he could better his time by starting at the front of the pack. And yes, he has looked into other locations in Ohio, Michigan and Tennessee where the race is taking place later this year. I think he might be hooked... I'll be cheering him on next time too:) Can you tell I'm proud of him?


Lindsy said...

I am impressed with his time, though I knew I would be...he's been clocking impressive run times for while now (obstacles or not). They aren't NEARLY as dirty as we were when we did it (thanks to the early heat recommendation by ahem...yours truly) or half the others I saw posted pics online. Thank heavens they ran early though - that bus wait sounds AWFUL! I'm glad Tim got to come and do it - he seems really proud of himself for accomplishing it with so little training. =) Thanks for the recap - I felt like I was there and you know my hubs said little to nothing about it so it's good to be in the know.

Janine said...

So SO SO awesome! Way to go, Jonathan! It cracks me up how squeaky clean he still is after the race...almost seems like someone needs to throw some dirt on him to make it more "official." HA! Looks like lots of fun!

Savannah said...

What a very cool experience! I had a friend complete this race and she said it was super tough. Big congrats to your sweet hubby on his incredible performance!

Sarah Beth said...

So I was looking through your blog some more! I am from Elizabethtown! I am pretty sure you are the first blogger I have found from Kentucky.