Indy 500 OneAmerica Mini Marathon

I’m really late getting this out–I’ve got to do better but the time just seems to fly. We departed Nashville in a blaze of heat but by Monday morning the weather was getting a little chilly in Evansville. The winds were really blowing too. Somer and I went out on a short run and the wind along with the stiffness from Saturday’s half marathon turned an easy run into a not so easy run. We kept the pace down and ran only about 2.5 miles. Since we were going to run another half marathon none of us wanted to push it during the week. The weather got a little colder every day. I drove to Versailles, KY for a couple of days to visit my mother and sister. I didn’t do any running but I did go for a little walk on Wednesday morning before heading back to Evansville. Kentucky horse country is so beautiful so I had to take a few photos along the way.

I would have like to have gone on a run while I was there but there are so many hills around my sisters house that I felt like I should take it easy and just go out and walk to stretch my legs and get some fresh springtime air.

After my walk it was time to get cleaned up, go out for a little lunch and then hit the road back to Evansville. It was good to see Mom and sis again but the stay was short. Oh yeah, I got to have chicken noodles with mashed potatoes too. Yeah, if you’re not from a small section of Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky you probably think eating two starches is crazy. This stuff is good! It’s carbo loading to the max for sure.

Thursday and Friday in Evansville was even colder than the first few days. I wasn’t prepared for the chilly weather and the forecast for Indianapolis on race day was looking pretty bleack as well. They were calling for temps in the low 40’s and rain all morning. The percentage of chance of rain seemed to change every hour but it wasn’t looking good when I got up on Friday.

But wait, it gets worse. I guess due to the chilly temps my muscles and tendons really tightened during the night on Thursday. When I got up I had pain and tenderness in my right Achilles’ tendon. As the day went on, it only got worse. After the three plus hour drive to Indianapolis things seemed to tighten even more. I managed to move enough to get through packet pickup and dinner but it was painful. I spent the rest of the evening soaking my heel in hot water followed by massage, stretching and ice. I also took a double dose of Aleve. 

We were up early on Saturday morning and the pain and tightness in my right Achilles was even worse. At this point I wasn’t even sure I could make it a mile. I ate a light breakfast and swallowed a couple more Aleve. Our motel was close to the OneAmerica Mini Marathon start line so we didn’t have to get up quite so early and it was a short walk to our starting queue. Just before heading out I tried doing a little run up and down the hall of the motel. It felt better running than it did walking that’s for sure but it hurt! The temperature was in the low 40’s and we had a light drizzle which continued at our 8 a.m. start time. The forecast was for continued rain all morning.

I had to change my foot strike to avoid some of the pain but by the time we hit the two mile mark my Achilles was feeling like it was loosening up. I was so focused on finding a way to continue that at first I didn’t notice the rain cleared out. By mile four, the sun was starting to shine! For this Georgia boy it was still chilly so I kept my top layer on as well as my glove but by mile five the gloves came off.

Brian and Somer ran together and I was on my own. Somer wanted to use run/walk intervals so we pretty much took turns passing each other. I didn’t know it until after mile four that Brian had to stop for a potty break and I lost sight of them for quite a while. I wasn’t really sure what was going on. I entered the Indianapolis Motor Speedway at approximately the 5.5 mile mark. 


   

 

If separated, we agreed to meet up after turn four heading toward the main straightaway. I’m not sure how long I waited. Maybe two minutes before they caught up. Right away we had to get some photos together and then head to the row of bricks to indicate the start/finish line.

     

I don’t know how much time we spent taking photos on the main straightaway. I’m guessing 5-8 minutes. After kissing the row of bricks it was time to finish out the next five miles. As we left the track you could still thousands just making their way to the famous raceway. The first mile or two after leaving the track the course was a little tight and crowded. My right foot was feeling fine but I wasn’t going to push my luck. One thing about the Mini Marathon course is it’s very flat. It seemed weird to never be able to see very far ahead of you. I only recall one very small hill. Can’t remember where but I think it was around mile eleven. A very short hil and really didn’t take much extra effort.

The last mile is pretty exciting. The crowds are larger and the shouts of encouragement seem to be much louder. Brian Somer and I stayed pretty close to each other during the last five miles. Once we got within site of the the finish we got together so we would finish at the same time.


Our official chip time was 2:53:19. Considering how my Achilles felt at the start of the race I’m just happy about just finishing. Once we got to the finish and received our medals. I joked to Brian and Somer, “Where’s ESPN so I can annouce my retirement from half marathons?” I was only half joking because I really was thinking my half marathons days were over. But after a few days of rest and some time to think about how much fun the course is, I went ahead and signed up to run the Indy Mini Marathon again next year!

St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Half Marathon

We did it. Two half marathons in seven days! It wasn’t always pretty–especially the half in Nashville where the temps were unseasonably warm. That was a difficult day. It started out warm and only got hotter as the run progressed. The half marathon in Indianapolis was the exact opposite–chilly and sorta damp. Indy could have been awful but the weather reports were wrong about the rain. Thankfully!

Things got started on April 28th; the day before the St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Half Marathon. My wife and I flew from Augusta, Georgia to Nashville where we met up with my daughter Somer, and my son-in-law Brian. The three of us ran this event last year so it helped we sorta knew the ropes going into this one. My training and Somer’s training leading up to Nashville hadn’t gone as we hoped. Last year our goal was to run in under 2 hours, 30 minutes. If not for a necessary potty stop we would have made it. This year, our expectations were lower. I was going to be happy with anything under 3 hours. Brian on the other hand had higher expectations so instead of us running together this year he was going to run on his own. Because of the heat the race start time was moved up by 30 minutes. The temperature at start time was around 75 degrees and only got warmer very quickly. I didn’t think to find out the temp at the finish but I’m pretty sure it was around 85 degrees or warmer. Brian finished with an approximate time of 2:08. Somer and I on the otherhand walked more than we ran on the last five miles and finished around 3:14.

None of us had the finish we expected because of the heat. I still think it was a success though because this year I entered as a St. Jude Hero to raise money for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. My goal was to raise $2620 which comes out to $200 per mile. I had over fifty donors from fourteen states help me not only reach my goal but to exceed it. In all, I was able to raise $2665 for the St. Jude kids! Thanks so much to everyone who helped me help St Jude.

After the race we found some shade around the Nissan Stadium and enjoyed our chocolate milk and ice cold Mich Ultras and did some stretching. Unlike last year we are staying an extra night so there wasn’t a big rush to get back to the motel to check out. Once we got back to the motel we were ready for a shower and something to eat! We wanted to try Hattie B’s hot chicken but the line seemed like a mile long out the door and by then it was at least 90 degree’s out. So we settled on a Tex-mex place called Chuy’s. Service was great and the food tasted pretty good too. The rest of the day/evening we just relaxed and hung out together then got up early on Sunday to see my wife off since she was flying back home and we got in the car to head to Evansville. My next post will be about the Indy 500 OneAmerica Mini Marathon. Hope to have that one posted before the end of the week.

100 Days Until St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Half Marathon

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Knowing the St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Half Marathon is only 100 days away gives me a sense of urgency to get ready. At least when I first got the reminder in my emails today. But really 100 days is plenty of time to get physically ready.

If fact, I’m feeling pretty good about it right now. I had a shakey month of December and started the year with a cold/bronchitis/virus but I’m over all of that now. Training went well last week and so far this week it has been even better.

I do have a sense of urgency about something else related to this half marathon though. And that is hitting my newest goal of raising $2620 for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Thanks to so many generous friends I’ve raised $1740 so far but I know the remainder may be a little harder to get.

To my knowledge no one in my family has directly benefitted from St. Jude but I do appreciate the indirect benefit of St. Jude. My granddaughter was born with hydrocephalus and spent quite a bit of time at Riley’s Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis, IN. I’m happy to say my granddaughter is a now a middle school student doing just fine. I know without the special skills and care that hospitals like St. Jude this might not be the case.

Won’t you help? Whether it’s $5 or $500, every little bit helps. Please. Help me help St. Jude. You can donate to my cause by visiting a special website, http://heroes.stjude.org/rickhannon

Don’t wait a 100 days to donate. Please donate today.

50 Days Until the Augusta University Half

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Received this reminder in my e-mail this morning. YIKES! The AU Half Marathon will be here in 50 days. With the holiday travel and recent illness I’m afraid I won’t be quite ready. I’ll be close. Close enough to finish anyway. I hope I’m in shape enough to finish without stopping but we’ll have to wait and see. Since it’s at the end of February it’s very likely the weather will be cool. If it’s cool I don’t see too much of a problem.

I did get a few short runs in this week at least. I’ll talk more about that in next weeks training week recap. My lungs felt more like normal during this mornings run so I think it’s safe to assume my training will get back to normal next week. YEAH!

Here I come AU Half! Time to get serious!

Favorite Workout Songs 2016

I couldn’t run without music. That’s me. I’ve just gotta have it. I listen to all types of music but when I run I do prefer pop, dance, and rap. Kinda weird for someone that loves bluegrass too! Here are my favorite workouts songs from 2016:

TOP THREE FAVORITES:
CAN’T STOP THE FEELING! – Justin Timberlake [113 BPM]
Chase You Down (Extended) – RUNAGROUND [123 BPM]
Sound of Your Heart – Shawn Hook [122 BPM]

ALL THE REST (Alphabetically):
Cheap Thrills (feat. Sean Paul) [Le Youth Remix] – Sia [120 BPM]
Don’t Let Me Down (feat. Daya) [W&W Remix] – The Chainsmokers [80 BPM]
Greenlight (feat. Flo Rida & LunchMoney Lewis) – Pitbull [115 BPM]
HandClap (Dave Audé Remix) – Fitz & The Tantrums [129 BPM]
Help Me Run Away – St. Lucia [158  BPM]
Higher – Carly Rae Jepsen [14 BPM]
Just Like Fire – P!nk [81 BPM]
Me Too 3:01 – Meghan Trainor [124 BPM]
Move Your Body (Alan Walker Remix) – Sia [128 BPM]
Rise (Monsieur Adi Radio Edit) – Katy Perry [124 BPM]
Scars to Your Beautiful (Luca Schreiner Remix) – Alessia Cara [118 BPM]
Summer Nights (feat. John Legend) – Tiësto [124 BPM]
This Is What You Came For (feat. Rihanna)- Calvin Harris [124 BPM]

What are some of your favorite workout songs?

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 

For the second year in a row I’ll be running in the St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Half Marathon. Last year I just ran in the event but after experiencing the event and seeing so many people running to support St. Jude Children’s Hospital I decided to do the same in 2017. I decided my goal would be one hundred dollars for every mile of the run. That comes out to $1320. [EDIT: Math is not my strong suit. After further review, my goal is $100 per mile + $10. LOL!]

I signed up for the 2017 event shortly after finishing the race last year. The event seemed so far away I thought it was too early to start my fundraising campaign so I held off on asking anyone to support my cause. On November 29th, which was #GivingTuesday I decided this would be a good time to start raising money for St. Jude. I emailed a bunch of friends and family and posted a link on Facebook and twitter. The response was way beyond my expectations. In seventeen days, not only did I reach my goal–I exceeded it!

I’ve reached $1430 from online donations. I have another $40 in cash to forward to St. Jude. That makes a grand total of $1470 donated in seventeen days! Just awesome. When I started I wasn’t sure I’d make it to $500 so to say I’m overwhelmed by the support I’ve received would be an understatement. Thanks so much to everyone who has supported me. I’m still a little shocked by how quickly so many came out to support this cause.

Just in case you’re not familar with the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, they lead the way in the treatment of childhood cancer any other life-threatening diseases. Treatments invented by St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to 80% since it opened more than 50 years ago.

I’ve already reached my goal but I still have almost 133 days until the Half Marathon. I think I should continue to fundraise until the day of the race. I have no idea how much further I can go with this but it will be interesting to see the progress. So if you haven’t donated yet, please do. Today! Don’t wait. You can donate to my campaign by clicking on the graphic above or taking your web browser to, http://heroes.stjude.org/rickhannon

Thanks again to everyone who has supported me in supporting St. Jude. Please consider supporting this wonder organization.

Happy Holidays!