Thursday, November 28, 2013

FINALLY! NOT a dns! yay! (otherwise known as the Drumstick Dash 5K)


Drumstick Dash (5K) - November 28, 2013
time = 24:35
pace = 7:44 average
placed 2nd in my age group (40-44) out of 146
placed 36th in women out of 1515
placed 166th overall out of 2478

 i woke up around 4am super bummed to be awake.  my alarm was set for 5:30am and i was really hoping for that extra 1.5 hours.  i fell back to sleep but it was fitful and filled with too many puppies.  too many puppies that (according to my dream) belonged to me and were truly overwhelming to care for and pay attention to.  i wonder what that means?

when the alarm went off at 5:30am i was out of bed and taking care of the dogs in a flash.  its nice being the only one up sometimes.  i decided to make banana bread (which, incidentally, was nearly gone when i got home from my race), eat a banana, and then get dressed for my race.  it was 23 degrees this morning so warm enough to not have to have a ton of layers but too cold to not wear my winter coat.  when it was time for me to leave to pick up kellie the banana bread still had 7 minutes to go so i woke up brian and asked him to watch it and take it out… then i said my goodbyes and off i went!

it is amazing how few cars are on the road at 7am on a holiday morning.  i flew down the highway and made it to our meeting place (the petit center) at 7:25am.  we decided not to leave kellie's car at the petit because there were weird towing signs all around.  we went down a parkway, left her car there, and proceeded to miller park.  parking was a breeze even tho' we had to PAY for it… $5.00 in addition to the cost of the race… that was a bit of a bummer but no matter… i paid in advance when i picked up our packets yesterday.

we sat in the car for a little while and then decided to go inside and take a trip to the bathrooms.  it was very crowded inside and NO HEAT!  not only was there no heat they also had a bunch of the doors propped open letting all of the winter air in!  that was awful.  after the bathroom we decided to go back to the heat of the car to wait.

we stayed in the car until about 8:10am and then decided to head to the bathrooms one last time.  the line was redonkulous!  moved fast tho' and then we headed to the start.  it was a challenge to find the actual start through all the people.  we dodged and weaved our way from the very back to pretty close to the front.  national anthem… some announcer talking… and we were off!

i was too far back and had to cut around the far left edge to get around a bunch of people but once i got out of the group things were moving smoothly.  there were a few inclines that were awful because they were gradual and long… i much prefer a real hill and then it's done.  these are worse i think.

many people passed me because i started in the front and i'm not sure if i passed anyone… i try to run my own race and not worry about what the people around me are doing until the final stretch.
i ran positive splits which is my downfall… it seems i have the most challenging time NOT doing that.  i always mean to run negative splits so that i have the energy to really punch it at the end.  it never seems to work out that way.  maybe i'm just not controlled enough?  maybe i never will be.  there was a kid (probably around 10 years old) who was running all willy nilly all around me the whole time.  sometimes behind, sometimes next to, and sometimes in front of me.  its pretty great to watch children run… they're like rag dolls with no limb control.  when we got just past mile 2 he was running next to what i assume was his father.  all of a sudden he bolted and passed about 6 people in front of us before i stopped watching him.  i turned to the man (father?) and said that i wished i had his energy!  he told me that the kid wasn't feeling well and usually is much much faster.
i feel pretty fortunate that i was running at all today so even tho' this last mile or so was feeling really really challenging i was very happy that i was there and able to do it.  i feel very fortunate to have friends like kellie do these crazy things with me and that my body will still work the way i want it to.  life is really great guys!  i hope you realize that!  really really great!  all in all this was a fun race because i was there with a friend i enjoy spending time with and i love to run.  it is really too bad that i have to run in 23 degree weather but that's what happens when you live in wisconsin.  i'm doing another race december 8th with a different friend and after today i'm not looking forward to freezing my buns off… i will probably layer more for that one.

i liked the fact that this race had a wide range of runners… all ages.  i liked that they had bananas (my favorite) and cookies and water right in the finishers shoot.  i didn't like that they had no heated area for staging or at the end or the fact that they didn't have age group medals.  i mean… c'mon!  i will never come in the top 3 overall so i look forward to my age group medal!  i can almost always count on that!  lol!

happy thanksgiving everyone!  enjoy your day and be kind to yourself and others.

Thursday, November 21, 2013


i am so fortunate to have the opportunity to run, spend time with, and share the ups and downs of these ventures with the people i get to do this with.

tonight i ran in lapham with my friends megan and jeff.  it was SO.MUCH.FUN!  running in lapham is one of my favorite things of all time and running there in the dark with great company just makes it all the more so.  it was slow (11mi mile average pace) but considering we couldn't see much, it was muddy, and it would be dangerous to run faster in the pitch black… i'll take it!

jeff took a few pictures… i think this is the only one that turned out.  i really appreciate that someone takes pictures of this stuff so that i have the memories.  i've just become so apathetic about taking pictures myself so yay jeff!  thanks!

in other news i've joined a ragnar relay team (the puddler striders) for june 2014.  very excited about that.  we will be running from madison, wi to chicago, il.  2014 is shaping up nicely.  i'm pretty excited for my 2014 goals.  this will be my first relay and it seems like it will be a very good time.
in case you're new to this sort of thing… here's something interesting to give you a little idea of what it is.   sounds like a great deal of fun huh?  it does to me.  i'm really excited about sharing the experience with a group of people… all of which are strangers except for megan.  it will be an exceptional experience for sure!

my body seems to be 100% with the exception of my endurance… that sucks but it will come with time.

in yet still other news…
my friend kellie and i are running a 5K on thanksgiving day.  at first we were going to run it together but our paces are so different that i decided i'd like to run it separate.  it is hard to explain, but it is just as hard for a faster person to run slower as it is for the slower person to try and match the pace of the faster person.  it hurts my hips to run a lot slower because i think it throws my gait off and then puts strain on my hips.  looks like 2013 is going to go out with a bang!  i will get to run one last race and hopefully do well.  it is so needed after those 3 DNS races.  such a bummer…

life is good people!  count your blessings and run!

Friday, November 15, 2013

I'm BACK!!

yesterday i psyched myself up all day to go run in lapham after work.  i had my husband change the batteries in my son's headlamp so that i'd be able to use it and i planned to run the black route because i know it well and figured that i didn't really need to be able to see all that well. 

i got to lapham around 4:45pm and it was cloudy so it was already getting dark.  i start at the bottom in evergreen grove and take the trail from there. i turned the headlamp on from the get go and started running.  i learned pretty quickly that no matter how well one knows the terrain it is totally different in the dark.

i was considerably slower (likely a combination of loss of speed and the pitch black trail) and needed to really watch my step a lot closer.  within the headlamp beam it feels totally enclosed.  i felt so alone but in a glorious and beautiful way.  i saw one small black body of movement once (i think it was a raccoon) but other than that absolutely no wildlife.  usually i see quite a few deer.  at one point i was running ahead of 2 other runners who had turned onto the route i was on but when i took a hill they veered off to the left to run the flat and ended up in front of me for a little while.  this was just before reaching homestead hollow.  i followed the path i always take and headed towards the hill back into the woods.

since i'm coming off of injury i'm trying to really be mindful of how my body is feeling at all times during runs.  i turned off where the fork for the black route goes right and continued running.  i was only a minute down that route when i thought better of it and decided to double back to go on the easier and flatter meadow route because my foot was starting to ache for some reason.

once i got on that trail i had no idea where i was or where i would end up because i rarely run it.  i figured i'd just keep plugging along because it would have to spit me out somewhere and hopefully it would be somewhere familiar.  it is amazing how isolating the dark + a headlamp makes the world seem.  i reiterate... not in a bad way.  just as if i was the only person in the world.  it was quite beautiful actually. i spent this "lost" time thinking about how i really hoped it wasn't adding a lot of mileage to my distance because i really just wanted to be done.

as it turns out it spit me out back into the meadow and right next to the trail.  running in the meadow is beautiful in its own right because of how wide it is the light of the moon was really helpful.  i even turned my lamp off for a bit and could see better without it.  i could see the world!

i got back on the trail and was heading backwards which threw me off in the dark and i just kept hoping i was going the direction i thought i was going.  turns out i was!

i got back to homestead hollow and decided to play it safe by running down the paved road back to evergreen grove (and the car) but first... bathroom break!

running down the road had me FLYING!  it was really beautiful and turns out that my headlamp seemingly works much better on road than on trail... maybe i need a different one?  who knows... i could see well enough that i'm not really going to worry about it right now.

all in all the run was great!  i missed running the trails and while it was beautiful... i think i prefer running them in daylight.  this doesn't mean i won't be running them regularly at night... it gets dark so early now.