Life's What You Make It!

This blog is designed to keep you up-to-date on our familiy's adventures!

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Craziest Frickin' Day of Your Life!

We picked Tracy up at the McStop...she was ready to in hand

This must have been what Woodstock was like.

Why is everyone so muddy?

DeNae, Tracy & myself before the race with our warrior hats on


Waiting at the starting line.

And we're off....

DeNae on the home stretch.

Yup, that's me leaping over fire!

Right about now Tracy is thinking "What did I get myself into?"

Muddy Tracy

Seriously? Do I have to do this?

I was so happy to finish, I didn't even care how muddy I was!

After the race

I did get this cool necklace for surviving the race!

We even got one free beer!

The pile of wrecked shoes

The Warrior Dash! The name itself sounds kind of daunting. This is not your run-of-the-mill 5K! They do advertise it as the craziest frickin' day of your life! DeNae had casually suggested this race one day at work. "Hey, I found this race and it looks like so much fun! We should do this." And, because it was the middle of the winter and probably 4:00am in the middle of a night shift at work, I said "Sure, sounds fun!" Really, I need to learn to only commit to things when I'm not so delerious from lack of sleep. So, months went by without me giving this race another thought. Then in March, when Corey and I were in Mexico, I got a call from DeNae. "Hey, we need to sign up for this race now before it's full." Once again, a little giddy because I was on vacation in Mexico I said "Sure, sounds great! Sign us up!" (Really, how was I going to stop her? We were out of the country for heaven's sake!) Then around April or May, I started thinking "Wow! I really should train a little for this race!" and started looking up Couch Potato to 5K training schedules on-line. Many of them claimed to be able to make you race-ready in anywhere from 5 to 7 weeks. Ok! I still have some time! Then, around the beginning of June, I thought, "Holy Cow, I really need to get going!" Corey and I had recently joined a gym so we started going and I started jogging on the treadmill and lifting weights. I am proud to say that I, on several occasions, was able to jog over 3 miles at the speed of 4.4 on the treadmill without stopping and was able to bench press 10 pounds!! WooHoo! This race would be a piece of cake! I can do this!

We had researched the Warrior Dash on-line. There were a few obstacles--climbing over junk cars, having water blasted into your face, climbing over cargo net, jumping over fire, and crawling in the mud under barbed wire. Okay! No problem! I've been training! I got this!

So, finally race day came. The Warrior Dash was this past Saturday. On our way to the Dash, we met a few people coming back from the race that said "There are a lot of hills!" Even with the warning, I was nervous, but confident! On the bus from where we had to park to the race site, Tracy and DeNae were even excitedly planning how we were going to recruit a whole bunch of people for next year and were busy thinking up team names and what costumes we were all going to wear when we ran the race. Next year? Seriously, maybe we should see if we survive this year's race first!

The Warrior Dash was REALLY hard and you got REALLY wet and muddy! There were so many people there! There were thunder storms that rolled through the area, but luckily the rain stopped before we started the race. Waves of hundreds of racers started out every 1/2 hour. Our wave kicked off at 5:30pm. The beginning of the race was a nice, short little level jog, but then you turned and started climbing the ski slopes. (Seriously, the race was at Afton Alps ski area!) The whole race was climbing up and down the ski slopes with a few obstacles thrown in for good measure! There was hardly any part of the race that was flat! The hills were so steep it felt like if I stopped, I would start sliding backwards! Going down the hills was almost equally as tough because you had to hold yourself back so you wouldn't get going too fast and start tumbling down the slope. At the top of the first HUGE hill, they had machines blowing water in your face so you couldn't see and almost felt like you were drowning. Once you got past that, you climbed up and down a few more hills before jumping over junk cars and running through tires. Another obstacle was a 30 foot tall wooden beam you climbed up and over using a cargo net. There there was the horizontal cargo net crawl, wooden walls you had to jump over, a really tall wooden wall you had to grab a rope and climb up and over, a dark tent you had to crawl through without being able to see anything, really skinny wooden planks you had to balance on and climb up and down, a waterslide, jumping over fire, and a really deep mud/water pit where you had to crawl under barbed wire. Not to mention that a lot of the course was a mud pit (on purpose) that smelled like fish guts that you had to slop through.

Wow! I finished! I survived the Warrior Dash and took 688th place in my age division and 9,184th place overall! Rock on! I'm not sure if I had fun--I'm still working through some post traumatic stress issues--but will I do it again next year? Bring it on!!!

The 4th of July

Trying to teach Chloe to do a back float


Taya leaping for it!

Molly enjoying the water

Maggie might be a model one day

The boys staying cool in the shade

Taya & Chloe enjoying the parade

waiting for candy....

Chloe is a little exhausted after the day's activities

Taya cooking with grandpa

Chloe watching the fireworks

I love the 4th of July! I don't know exactly why, but it is my favorite holiday behind Christmas! I was lucky enough to have a nice long weekend off over the 4th. On July 3rd, we went to Spicer with Mike and Tracy. We enjoyed lunch at Melvin's On the Lake and the kids had so much fun swimming at Green Lake. In particular, Taya loved jumping off the platform they had at the beach. I worked really hard with Chloe to try to teach her how to do the back float, but she just can't get the concept that she needs to completely relax. We walked to the DQ to get ice cream and there were little stands set up along the beach so later we enjoyed mini donuts! Then, we went back to Mike and Tracy's, ordered pizza and had a bonfire.

On the 4th, we woke up early to go to the parade in St. Joe. Then we went to Big Lake and the girls enjoyed swimming some more and playing at the playground on the beach. For dinner, we had a wonderful home cooked meal with my dad and sister. Then we watched the fireworks. Man, the mosquitos were bad!!! My dad and Corey finally gave up and sat in the van, but the girls and I stuck it out and watched the fireworks till the end!

The Velander BBQ

Naomi, who is always crafty (& I mean that in a good way), brings along crafts for the kids to work on.

Hi Miss Molly!

How cute are these two sweethearts?

Mom, the mosquitos won't get me.

The ladies telling ghost stories

Summer BBQ rounds have proven to be a little more difficult to plan this year. Tracy works a different weekend then she used to and we have a few other summer activites and get-aways planned. Why are summers always so busy? Anyways, Tracy and Mike had the first, and possibly only, BBQ of the summer back in June. (I know, I'm a little deliquent with my blogging!). Just sitting around relaxing in the backyard watching someone else BBQ is like heaven to me. Corey played a few rounds of bags with Tracy, Angi & Amanda. The kids love playing together at the park or running around the yard. Then we had a bonfire & roasted smores. A perfect evening! I laughed so hard when I took that picture of Chloe, Maggie and Elli. They were up in the neighbor's swingset telling ghost stories! I love it!!