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November 3, 2010

I'm late.

No, not in that way. I meant with this long overdue blog post about the Des Moines Marathon that I ran on October 17, 2010.

My tardiness in posting speaks to my level of exhaustedness and evidence that I ran my ass off, resulting in a thirteen minute PR.


Pre-race, chilly and nervous

It was pretty cold that morning and when I got to the starting corral, they were all but empty. I went to stretch and warm up inside a nearby building where other runners were waiting, thinking that I could just hop into the corral right before the start. I ended up waiting a bit too long and the corrals were packed by the time I got out there. I actually ended up standing outside of the corral and had to make my way up to the 3:30 group over the first two miles.

The half marathoners started with us so it was pretty crowded until mile 3 where they split off from us. The course for us heading straight up a long, gradual hill where I just concentrated on maintaining an even effort and didn't worry so much about pace.

In my original race plan, I had wanted to stay with the 3:30 group until 13.1, then pick it up for a negative split. However, the pacer for that group had never led a pace group before so my confidence in him was pretty low and I decided to forge ahead on my own.

I knew that there were going to be rolling hills and they appeared in miles 4-8. I actually like hills but when I say that, I mean running up them. I'm not a big fan of down hills, if you'll recall from this post. Long story short, I trashed my quads pretty early and could feel them tightening up.

Splits first half according to Garm:
1- 7:48
2- 7:33
3- 7:42
4- 7:56
5- 7:56
6- 7:51
7- 7:56
8- 8:00
9- 7:52
10- 7:54
11- 7:45
12-7:45
13- 7:57
Half: 1:42:49

In my original race plan, I wanted to pick up my pace but with how crappy my legs were feeling, I thought it would be better to just maintain and go for my "B" goal of 3:30 (my "A" was 3:25). Around mile 14, I started chatting with a guy who was running his first marathon and trying to BQ. He needed a 3:45 but was shooting for a 3:35 and asked if he could run with me. For the next 5 or so miles, we chatted about running and small life details. We had been talking for a while when we finally introduced ourselves. His name: Joel.

See? Told you it was lonely.

14- 8:00
15- 7:55
16- 7:45
17- 7:49
18- 7:54
19- 7:47
20- 7:47

Around Mile 20, Joel and I had tucked in with pack of runners. He slowed at a water stop and I didn't see him again.  I'm not going to sugar coat it- I was hurting big time. I was alone on the course except for half marathon walkers (seriously, people? Isn't there a 5K some where? Sorry, that was mean.)  and a few runners that I would occasionally pass.  It was also pretty windy and I was praying that I would catch someone that I could draft behind. No such luck.

My goals at that point became about not walking (Note: I've never not walked in a race, or even a long training run, for that matter) and not running anything over an 8:30 pace.

21- 8:00
22- 8:03

23- 8:14
24- 8:17
25- 8:22


Some side-boob, courtesy of photographer mom
The last miles were brutal. With no one with me, it was a total mind game. I was grateful for even the smallest distraction, like the guy standing near mile 22 with a sign that read "High five if you still like running." If I had the energy to lift my arm, I totally would have. My mom was there at a few points on the course but could never get a shot of me coming, just passing or leaving. After reviewing the professional race pictures, I'm still a total failure when it comes to taking a cute one.


Finally, I could see the 26 mile marker (8:18) and found one more gear to push to the finish (last .2, 7:16 pace). All I could think was "You can do anything for one minute" despite the fact that I had been repeating this phrase over the last 45 minutes. But finally I was done.

3:27:25. Not my A goal but not quite B either.

Some things to ponder:
1. My slowest mile in this race (8:22) was faster than my average pace (8:25) at Grandma's Marathon roughly three months ago.
2. No miles over 8:30
3. Didn't walk!
4. Kept a fairly consistent pace, except for those last few miles...
5. Finished 8th in my division (out of 121) and was the 28th woman overall! Out of 675! Not too bad, for me, any way.

So there it is. Now I am taking a few weeks off of running to fully recover and then will get back on a training plan. I want to see how low I can go...

October 4, 2010

A Marathon Weekend

If you've been living under a rock, you might not know that this past weekend was the 29th annual Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon. It's called "The Most Beautiful Urban Marathon in America" and this weekend, it definitely lived up to it's name.


Runners had near perfect conditions for the 26.2: a crisp 38 degrees at the start, little wind, and sunny skies. It was the perfect day for a PR, and many did, like our Sergio Reyes, the men's winner, Buzunesh Deba, the women's champ (who also rocked Grandma's Marathon earlier in June), and blogger friend Matt.

But me, I just worked it.

My view for the day was the finish line, as I was stationed in the Media Tent a mere twenty feet from it. Talk about guts and glory. It's amazing. I think the best part was when Sergio finished and hugged his wife of four months.

Anything you saw on Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter was from the Media Committee in the Media Tent. They did an awesome job and made my job of writing press releases much, much easier. More photos and videos will be posted this week... I just have to get all of them off my camera.

Congratulations to everyone that finished! You've just accomplished something that only 1% of the population will ever do.

September 27, 2010

Obsessed

I have recently become obsessed with a few food items at Trader Joe's.


Nothing But... Banana, Flattened

 I've been trying to cut out as much processed food as possible so I was thrilled when I read the ingredients list and only saw "Bananas." What?! No sugar, no weird preserving chemicals? Sold.


Same goes for Just Mango Slices. No false advertising here, it really is just dried mango. And it's so flipping good I can't describe it. Not eating the entire pack of Just Mango Slices in one sitting is more challenging than a 20 mile long run with a hangover. I should know, I've done both.




 


And sweet sin, I've saved the best for last. This has changed my life:

















Yes, it's soy. And yes, it's delicious. I put a little in a cup with some peanut butter and it's like heaven. I literally bury it in the back of my freezer to prevent eating more, which works all the time, 50% of the time.

In running news, just finished my last hard training week. I ran 30 miles over the weekend (10 Saturday, 20 Sunday). Both went extremely well and were great confidence boosters. Now it's taper time!

September 13, 2010

September 5, 2010

Run. Work. Repeat.

I'm still here. I've been incredibly busy these past six weeks (new job, new apt, lots o' running) and haven't had much time to blog. AND I also don't have Internet in my apartment. I'm currently "stealing" it from the Starbucks across the street.

Rather than bore you with paragraphs about what I've been up to, I'll let some pictures do the talking.

Over the past six weeks I've...

Moved.
I don't have a picture to illustrate this because I was too busy moving to care about taking pictures so use your imagination. Sorry to let you down right off the bat.

Ran (and won!) another 5k.



















Met someone.



















Fine, not really. (I should note that this photo was taken after I spent several hours at a wedding reception and then had some beverages to celebrate my aforementioned victory. Benefit of living in a small town #278: News travels fast that you won a road race and people like to buy you drinks. Le Sueur, represent!)



Been treated for possible Lyme Disease.


















It's a little hard to tell but I had a HUGE "target"-like bite on my leg and I have no idea how I would have been bitten by a tick. I did a round of antibiotics just to be safe.



Ran the Great River Ragnar Relay.

















SO much fun! I definitely recommend doing a relay if you haven't done one!



Registered for the Des Moines Marathon!












Run. Early and often.


















I've never been a morning runner but this is certainly one of the perks.... sunrise at Lake Calhoun. I've already hit new weekly and monthly mileage highs and September is my most intense month!

And of course, I've been working quite a bit. It's crunch time over at Twin Cities In Motion as we gear up for the Twin Cities Marathon, now less than a month away.  Become a fan on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and you'll get a glimpse into what I do every day. All posts and Tweets are brought to you by yours truly.

 Til next time, Happy running!

 Des Moines Marathon logo is from their website.

July 23, 2010

Miley Cyrus doesn't run hill repeats...

... so what exactly is her song "The Climb" about?

Last night was a hill repeat night. I ran a hill that is about a half-mile in length and varies in degrees of steepness, sort of leveling out and climbing again a few times. Here are some photos to better explain it.

Bottom of the hill. Notice the red trailer...


At the red trailer, still going up.


Yes, still climbing.


Leveling out for a bit. Notice green garbage can.


Starting to climb again. Closer to green garbage can.


Scarlett the dog demonstrating the steepness.


Leveling out again with final climb ahead. This was my favorite part!


Top of the hill. 

I decided to run it both ways five times with a two minute break after each uphill portion. Here's how it went down (and up).

Set 1:
Down- 3:12
Up- 3:19

Set 2:
Down- 3:04
Up- 3:22

Set 3:
Down- 3:18
Up-3:15

Set 4:
Down- 2:59
Up- 3:16

Set 5:
Down- 3:25
Up- 3:11
1 mile cooldown wog (walk/jog) with the dog

Total workout stats:
5.52 miles; 48:07; 8:43 average pace

As you can plainly tell from my splits, I evidently can get up in roughly the same amount of time as it takes me to get down, which seems odd to me. I wasn't trying to run slow downhill and wasn't trying to push it running up. I might need to practice some downhill running!

In other disturbing Miley Cyrus-related news, I read in Newsweek this morning that her video Party in the USA is the fifth most watched video on YouTube... EVER. Really, America? (And no, I'm not into Miley Cyrus at all but do get the "Hannah Montana" thing all the time. Thanks, Disney.)

Happy weekend, happy running!

July 19, 2010

XT Monday

I've been pushing pretty hard these past few weeks in my training. I was gearing up for the Twin Cities Marathon in October but now that I'm working for TCM, I can't run it. Any suggestions on what to run instead? I'm thinking either Whistlestop, Richmond, or Outer Banks.

Anyway, Monday is my cross-training and only non-running day of the week. Since I don't have my gym membership yet, I haven't been doing a whole lot and basically have been taking Monday's off. However, this week I'm housesitting for my aunt and uncle who have a dog and a pool! So tonight when I got home from work, I took the dog for a leisurely 45 minute walk and snapped a shot of this:


It's slightly hard to see (okay, almost impossible) but there is a deer on the tracks.

After our little walk, the dog and I went swimming. Rather, I ran laps in the shallow end of the pool while she would jump in after a frisbee. This was the first time I have ever done any pool running and it hurt my shins a lot. I don't have shin splints or anything and it was more in the muscle on the outside of my shin than on the bone. A good workout, nonetheless.

Question: What's your favorite form of cross-training?

July 15, 2010

Song of the Day

Today I had a 10 mile run to do after work. I checked the weather right at 5pm and it said the current temp for Minneapolis was 93 degrees but with the humidity, it "feels like" 103.

Guess who ran anyway?

Granted it was around the lakes and I literally stopped at every drinking fountain. AND I jumped in Lake Calhoun after.

10.01 miles; 1:26:48: 8:41 average pace

I'd like to dedicate this song to July 14, 2010.



Bonus question: Guess who can't wait for their gym membership to get activated so she can run inside?

July 8, 2010

Coolest. Job. Ever.

I am happy to announce that I have secured a full time job! The best part is, it has the makings of being the coolest job ever.
I will be a Communication Specialist for Twin Cities in Motion (TCM), the nonprofit that puts on the Twin Cities Marathon as well as a slew of other running events in the Twin Cities.

I officially start on Monday so I am in the midst of trying to find an apartment and a new work wardrobe (my 40 mile weeks have made my clothes too big). Exciting and busy times!

July 1, 2010

Almost Famous

This article (and photo) was in the Henderson Independent...


Andrew Gerdts was the overall champion at the Sauerkraut Days 5k. Hannah Schroeder won the women's division and set a course record. (Photo by James Brenno)

Records set at 4th annual Sauerkraut 5k Run

For the second year in a row a course record was set at the annual Sauerkraut Days 5k. This year, however, it wasn’t the men’s course record that fell. Instead, Hannah Schroeder of Le Sueur won the women’s division and set the women’s course record at 20:48, nearly two minutes faster than the previous record of 22:23 set by Jamie Bachaus back in 2007.

But Schroeder, who finished 16th overall, wasn’t the only one to best that record in the women’s division. Parry Larson finished the course with a time of 21:05 and took 18th place overall and Jessica Eibs finished at 21:52 and took 20th.

Overall, soon-to-be LS-H senior Andrew Gerdts defended his title and course record as Gerdts was the overall champion with a time of 17:44. Gerdts set the overall course record last year with a time of 17:23.

Two previous Sauerkraut Days 5K champions and course record holders came in second and third.

Sam Straub, who won the first Kraut 5k and recently finished a marathon in roughly 3 hours, came in second place with a time of 18:11. Lucas Giesen, who’s course record of 17:24 was broken last year by one second, was third this year with a time of 18:33.

Rounding out the top ten were Joe Stuewe at 18:53 and Brian Petzel at 19:04, Chris Lagergen at 19:31, Tom Wischnaek at 19:35, Nate Reiman at 19:43, Kyle Lamberton at 19:48 and Alex Wischnack at 19:56.

But perhaps the biggest story of the race was the turnout. With clear skies and warm temperatures on Saturday morning, (a stark difference from later that evening) nearly 150 runners/walkers attended this year’s event, making it the largest Sauerkraut Days 5k race ever.

Last year, the fun run saw roughly 100 runners and walkers.
*For complete results pick up this week's Henderson Independent.

June 28, 2010

Henderson Sauerkraut Days 5k Race Report

Remember this post about my goals? Goal number two was to place in a race and guess what? I DID!

The course for this run was essentially two loops around the lower portion of Henderson, meaning it was relatively flat. There were maybe 50 or so runners and another 50 walkers/mom's with strollers. I lined up a few rows behind the starting line (all the boys) and tried to size up my competition for the girls. There were some girls that looked pretty fast (long, lean, young) and I was watching them warm up, envisioning myself getting dominated.

To start the race, there was no gun, no horn, just some guy yelling "GO!" And off we went. My first mile was definitely too fast but I wanted to keep an eye on the girls that took off out of the gate. Soon enough they burned out and I passed them, trying to keep my pace as even as possible. It was extra incentive being the female front runner to keep my pace up. I didn't want to get passed by another girl or anyone. And I didn't.

By the second lap around the course I was definitely getting tired. I knew that unless I walked the rest of the way, I would have the new course record. The last 400 meters or so runs along main street which slopes ever so slightly downward. I used gravity to my advantage and crossed the line in 20:48.

First female, new course record.

I even got a cute little trophy. The guy at the top is a cabbage with legs (for Sauerkraut Days, duh).




This race is technically a fun run meaning it wasn't chip timed so I don't know if I can technically count this as a 5k PR but I'm going to anyway. I haven't run a competitive 5k since April 2009 and my time then was 23:57. Massive improvement, no?

The best part of the race was after I was waiting around for the awards ceremony, the boys high school track coach came up and started talking to me, asking me where I was from and if I ran in high school. He said he could tell after I ran past him on the first loop that I was a runner. I don't know why this is so flattering to me but it pretty much made my day.

However, the big fail for the day was that I did not accomplish my 2a goal of wearing a costume. Just running shorts and a tank. Next year....


June 27, 2010

Grandma's Marathon Race Report

What: Grandma's Marathon
Where: Duluth, MN
When: Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Expo
I know that some people aren't huge fans of the expo but I love them! Free food. Free gifts. What more can you ask for? It's also a great place to pick up some fun running stuff, like this shirt by Sistas Shirts.


I thought it was pretty applicable.

It's also a great opportunity to learn about new organizations. Before I left for Duluth, I saw on the Grandma's Marathon Facebook page that Medals 4 Mettle would be at the expo. This organization collects medals from races and gives them to people fighting serious illnesses or that have debilitating handicaps. Their mission is really personal to me because of what my family experienced with Joel so I donated all of my medals from past races.

The highlight of the expo by far was hearing Kara Goucher speak. She is my favorite runner and I've been following her for quite a while. She was just as down to earth as I had hoped and so inspirational. And probably the cutest pregnant women ever... who still maintains 40 mile weeks at 6 months pregnant.

Kara is in the blue tank and her husband Adam (who is also an elite runner) is to the left.

And thanks to the wonders of social networking, I was able to meet up with a bunch of friends from dailymile. It was really fun to put a face with name.



Marathon Eve
I sort of have a ritual that I do the night before big races and it mainly has to do with food. My biggest thing is to not try anything new and I also don't like to eat out because I like to know exactly what I'm eating. This is the only time I'm a picky eater!

I made my typical pre race meal of whole wheat pasta with chicken and marinara sauce. And garlic bread of course.

Morning Of
I never sleep well the night before  a race. I think it's mostly anxiety and also a fear of oversleeping, despite the fact that I set like three alarms. I woke up at 4:30, showered, and forced down two pieces of toast with peanut butter and a half of banana. My mom helped me pin on this picture of Joel that I have. I've only worn it for the Twin Cities Marathon last year and just feel like it gives me extra motivation during the tough points.


Because the race begins up in Two Harbors, all runners are asked to take buses to the start to avoid having 7500 cars trying to make it to the start line. They have pick-up spots all over the city so catching a bus is easy. I got on one of the first buses and left Duluth at 5:30.

It was a little cold that morning, mostly windy, so I wore a long sleeve over my tank. There were photographers at  the starting line and one snagged this photo of me right after we all got off the bus.

I knew a few people that were running, including my friend Shauna. I had spoken with her the night before and we said that we would look for each other at the start but didn't designate a meeting spot. When I first got there, I immediately got in line for a porta potty and lo and behold, Shauna was two people in front of me in the same line! A photographer snapped this photo of us.

You can see my GUs that I pinned to my shorts.

The Race
The race was set to begin at 7:30 and did, more or less, minus the few minutes it took me to cross the start line. I positioned myself between the 3:50 and 3:40 pace groups since they did not have a 3:45 group. I knew that I wanted to negative split the race meaning that I would have to run a controlled (slow) first have and stick around an 8:30 pace.

I was running with the Garm on my Arm and had practiced locking the bezel during training runs by pushing the stop and start buttons simultaneously. However, my worst fear was realized when I accidentally stopped it 30 seconds into the race and panicked trying to get it back on. I didn't know exactly how much time I had lost but it also screwed up the auto-lap function a little since I had it set to tell me my pace every mile. C'est la vie.

For all you number lovers, here you go. My first half:
1- 8:35 (approx)
2- 8:30
3- 8:27
4- 8:31
5- 8:36 (GU)
6- 8:39
7- 8:25
8- 8:26
9- 8:25
10- 8:21
11- 8:43 (GU)
12- 8:24
13- 8:17
First half: 1:51:29, 8:30 average pace

This is when the race really started for me. I was feeling great, since I had been running so conservatively. I think I might have jumped the gun a little as you can see from my mile splits.

14- 7:58
15- 7:57
16- 7:56
17- 8:11 (GU)
18- 8:00

Mile 19 is when the race comes into the city of Duluth. The course is not really spectator heavy until that point and I think I got a little carried away by the crowds.

19- 7:44
20- 8:19 (GU chomps)
21- 8:22
22- 8:22

This is when the race got a little difficult for me. There was a really strong headwind and the majority of the time, I was alone with no one to block the wind. There is also the infamous Lemon Drop Hill

23- 8:35 (Lemon Drop)
24- 8:50 (walked)
25- 9:19 (lots of slow walking through the water stop)

These miles were painful. I walked a few times and contemplated if I even wanted to finish (though I knew I would). The hardest part was knowing that I was going to be thisclose to a BQ and that if I didn't pick it up, I would regret it. And so I ran with burning quads and burning lungs.

26- 8:12

I knew as I rounded the last corner that I was within seconds of a BQ. Since I had accidentally stopped my watch at the beginning of the race, I didn't know how much time I had lost. So I put everything out there and ran.


.2- 7:17 pace

I crossed the finish line, tried not to collapse and tried to do some quick math in my head. When I stopped my the Garm on my Arm, it read 3:40:16. I didn't know how accurate that was and could only hope it hadn't been off by that much. I needed to be under 3:40:59 for a BQ. Drum roll......

3:40:21! I qualified for Boston by a measly 38 seconds!

After Effects
After grabbing some water and free food, I headed over to the family meeting area to find my mom and did some light stretching. I was covered in grimy sweat and Body Glide so after my mom came and did my best to give myself a towel bath. Here I am rocking calf recovery sleeves and toweling off. Cute, right?


And this pretty much illustrates the exhausted glory of the marathon. And the top of my mom's finger.


Aside from my burning quads, I felt pretty amazing. Shortly after this shot was taken, we walked about a mile to the car and I settled into the back for the four hour trip home. Not something I would typically do, but my mom needed to be back and it did give me the opportunity to sort of sleep.

So I did it. I ran a great race, I negative split it, and I qualified for Boston. Onward.

Final, official stats:
3:40:21, 8:24 average pace


(ETA: Accidentally hit Publish before it was ready to go so apologies to those of you that are getting this twice!)

June 21, 2010

Second Day Sore

Here's to wishing every set of stairs was an escalator....




Full Grandma's Marathon race report coming soon.

June 13, 2010

Goals and stuff

Just in case you thought I do all of this without rhyme or reason, here are some running/fitness goals I've set for myself for the summer. Sharing them makes me accountable and accountability is good. You can all shame me mercilessly if I don't reach them.
1. PR in Grandma's Marathon:  Ultimately I'd like to run anything under 3:50 (but secretly am wishing for something under 3:45). I finished the Twin Cities Marathon last year with a time of 3:55:46.



2. Place in a race: Small towns, here I come! Here's the thing that makes this one completely doable: A week after Grandma's, there is a local 5k race for Henderson's annual Sauerkraut Days where the female course record is 22:23. A few weeks ago I ran a 5k route during a training run in 22:43. How awesome would it be to not only win the race (for girls) but hold the female course record?! I think I have this one in the bag as long as 1. The marathon doesn't kill me; 2. The fast girls don't show up; 3. I don't eat too much sauerkraut the night before. 

2a.  I'd like to accomplish the above while wearing some sort of costume. Any ideas?

3. Shrink my boobs: So it's not like I look like JWoww or anything when I work out but I have a decent rack and as a result, have to wear sports bras that look like this:

And mine aren't even a cute pink... they're scary, industrial black with adjustable straps and three hooks in back. Smaller boobs would just make running easier, I think. Besides, as my Oma used to say, anything more than a handful is just a waste. Achieving this goal will most likely help me achieve goal #5, too. Less to lift.

4. Take a decent race photo: In all of my race photos- the ones they charge you like $50 for- I usually look like I'm on some sort of death march. I don't make running look fun or sexy or anything remotely close to something one should attempt. Any suggestions on how to improve? And please don't say smile. That would make things worse.

5. Be able to do 5 consecutive pull-ups: As of today, I can do 2 real pull-ups, under-handed or over-handed, pulling myself up from the ground, not jumping to the bar. Being able to do five would just make me feel like a stud.

Do you set any goals for yourself? Do tell.

Images from here, here, and here.

June 10, 2010

Busy like a bee

I have been away from my computer for like a week as I was up in the Twin Cities enjoying a little lake action over the weekend, going to a concert at First Ave on Sunday night, and had my first day at my new job on Tuesday! I'm only working part time but I feel like it's a good spot to be for now and it's at a local running store so my job mostly consists of talking about running all day. Love it.

Grandma's Marathon in 9 days. Tapering and feeling good, albeit a little tired.

And this has nothing to do with running but it makes me fall even more in love with MN.


Happy running.

June 2, 2010

Ode to Running

It was National Running Day today! Hooray! I ran a six mile tempo run in honor of this special day. During it, I began to think of the reasons why I love running so much. Here's what I could come up with:

1. You don't need much to do it. A decent pair of shoes and a sports bra to hold the girls and you're set.

2. The running community is not pretentious. Everyone is welcome. All ages, all abilities. It's like we exist to encourage each other. What other sport do "elites" run with people dressed as hot dogs? (If you haven't witnessed this, check out a 5k race!)

3. You compete against yourself. There's no team to fall back on. Just you.  Since I am not Kara Goucher or Kenyan, I have very little chance of actually winning a race but I constantly work to improve my previous times.

4. It's a great stress buster. I can go out for a run after a horrible day and come back feeling like it was nothing.

5. Running makes my legs and butt look amazing.

6. I could outrun the nuclear holocaust. Okay, probably not, (especially since I plan on camping out in my basement eating sticks of unsalted butter with wheat bread) but this is the answer I love to give when people ask why I run so far/much.

What do you love about running?

June 1, 2010

Running the Recovery Road

I've been a bit lax on the posting and really have no excuse so my apologies if there is any one out there that looks forward to my musings.

First, I'm happy to report that Juli finished the Fargo Marathon in 4:22:23 so thank you to any of you that sent her good vibes. I spoke with her shortly after she finished and she said that she enjoyed herself and the crowd support was great. She hasn't even sworn off running another marathon but will probably need some coaxing. Actually, she recently told me she is considering doing a figure competition (what?!) so I think her energy might be focused on getting her body to look like this:


It is a little known fact that when female figure competitors stop their strict exercise, diet, hairspray and tanning regimen, they begin to look more like this:


But anyway, more power to her, I guess. I'll stick with running.

On that note, I am happy to report that I am nearing 100% again with the hip/ass pain having subsided. I dropped my mileage substantially to what it had been prior to injury and cross-trained like mad. I am still planning on running Grandma's Marathon in about three weeks which means that while all of you were enjoying a long Memorial Day weekend, I was prepping for, completing, and recovering from my last long run.  

I woke up at 4:30 on Sunday morning to eat a quick breakfast so I could be on the road by 5 before it got too hot out. There is something very peaceful about running so early that it almost makes me wish I was a morning person. The night before I drove my intended course to stash some water and Gatorade bottles so I could refill Nathan as needed and brought along two GUs.

After getting some of the kinks worked out in the first few miles, I settled in to a comfortable pace and set my mind to enjoying the next three hours. Toward the end my quads started to feel a little tight and I slowed my pace to prevent further injury. Apparently I slowed it too much because this guy passed me.


But I eventually finished and had the dreaded tangled ponytail. I think my head sweats an abnormal amount. I can literally wring out my hair when I'm done running. Is that weird? To give you an idea of how bad it really is, my hair is shoulder length and as you can see in the photo, it has knotted itself up to four inches. Lovely.   


After showering, eating(!), and napping, I scrolled through the Garm on my Arm to check out my last long run stats. 20.23 miles/3:04:11/9:06 average pace.

So now it's taper time!

If you want to check out more hot photos of female body builders, I found that photo here. And the after photo here.

May 22, 2010

Go, Juli, Go!

My sister Juli is running the Fargo Marathon today. This is her first marathon. She has a goal of finishing under 4:20. Here we are after a 20-miler a few weeks ago.



Please send good thoughts/vibes/prayers her way!

Good luck, Juli!

May 19, 2010

Random Wednesday

I picked up some new shorts yesterday and this Nike Dri-Fit top:


There was some debate among the store associates if it was a cupcake or muffin. I'd like to think it's a cupcake but a muffin does make more sense (as in "muffin top").

It's kinda cute, kinda random, and it was on sale. Plus, it's hard to take yourself too seriously with a legged pastry on your chest.