Wednesday, December 31, 2014

peace out 2014

i don't even know if anything needs to be said about 2014.  it was a great running year for me.  started out pretty bumpy with some injury, but once that got straightened out it was mostly smooth sailing.  ran my first marathon and while i missed my goal by 4 minutes i still did quite well for a first timer.

rounded out the year with 1,229.12 miles ran.  that's almost 200 miles more than 2013.  i'm pretty proud of that.

i've made a lot of new friends and learned a lot about my running.

i'm going to call 2014 a success!  can't wait to see what 2015 has in store.

Friday, December 5, 2014

lazy lazy days

i have been very very lazy lately.  admittedly, i have been LOVING it!  my last race was in the beginning of november and once it was over i was so relieved!  i am really really glad that i decided not to race at all this winter.  i feel good about that decision.  i feel good just running when i want to and not when i don't want to.  my body is healing and i feel good.  i feel lazy... but good.

i can tell that i'm losing some conditioning in that i feel less capable of the same level of endurance but i don't even care.  i just feel good about not stressing over getting my runs in.  as long as i'm getting my 3 days a week in i feel ok about it.  i'm still averaging around 30ish miles a week and that's ok with me.

almost everything i've been running lately have been trail miles.  i love trail running.  my next race is the ice age 50K.  i don't start really training for that until february so i have another month of being a fat ass and then it's back to work.

our weather has been so weird lately.  it was very very cold for a week and then it has been 20-40 ever since.  pretty ok.  i got a new job and am working out my schedule and figuring out how my runs fit into it.  it's been a struggle but i'm figuring it out.  i'm sure i will be running more when the days get longer and the sun is out for a more significant amount of time.  it is really challenging to be motivated to run when it is dark and cold.  it starts getting dark now by 4:30pm which sort of blows since i don't get out of work most days until 5pm.

2014 was an excellent year for my running and racing and i expect that 2015 will be even better.  i'm getting smarter and training better.  time will tell.  for now... i'm just going to enjoy the run.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

who's with me?

everything about this is so incredibly inspiring.  before watching this i never thought i'd run an ultra longer than a 50K (which is coming up for me in may 2015).  now tho'... i'm inspired!  the journey is calling my name.  anyone else?

Sunday, November 16, 2014

screw shoes

it's that time of year again.  we got our first sticking snowfall overnight.  i ran at lapham this morning and was slippin' and slidin' all over the place.  it took me a minute to realize that it was because i was running in shoes with no screws.

so this post is about that.

last year i put screws in my shoes that were near death.  then i ran in those for the duration of the winter in 2013 and tossed them at the end of the season... no harm no foul.  worked great, costs pennies, and is easy peasy lemon squeezy.  here's how you can do it too:

i used 3/8" hex screws which i bought from home depot for a little over a buck a bag.  i think there were 8 in a bag so i bought two bags.  there are several "how to's" out there where a lot more screws are used but i found that seven per shoe were enough for me.  i placed the screws near the outside of the shoe (see image) so that i wasn't actually landing on them, and that is where it seemed the shoes were the thickest.   i recommend trying this before going out and spending $$ on yak traks or some other device that might not work as well, might be heavier than you expect, and certainly won't be as cheap.  also... it is notable that i didn't lose any screws on a couple hundred winter miles in 2013.  i believe that it is common place to lose some at some point so i'm pretty happy that i didn't lose any.  i think this is because i didn't pre-drill the holes.  i just screwed the screws in, and while it might have been a little more difficult to get them in the shoes i think it's why they didn't fall out all winter.
seven screws per shoe

my friend jeff's various screw patterns in different shoes

so... try it out.  if it doesn't work... you've only spent a couple of bucks.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

ischemic gut? show of hands!

so last monday i had a colonoscopy because of what happened at lakefront.

i want to take a moment to write a little commentary on the state of healthcare in the united states.  i went in for this procedure at 8am.  i sat in the waiting room for 30 minutes before someone took me back to a room where i was stripped of all the clothing and items that make me a person and put in a gown, robe, and booties that make me look just like every other sick person in the hospital.  just a number essentially.  then i was taken into a room that had a bed.  i was put in the bed, given an iv, given a wristband, asked a few questions, and then left there facing a window with my back to all the goings ons for an hour and 40 minutes.  at that point a woman came in, asked my name, and wheeled me to a different room and left me there.  i waited there another 30 minutes by myself before someone came in and told me what the hell was going on.  about 10 minutes after that the doctor, nurse, other doctor, and whomever else was part of the procedure came in.  i felt very invisible the whole time and it sucked.  it leaves a person feeling very vulnerable being all naked in a bed with some crappy little gown and thin blanket covering them.  it was lame and i hated it.  it is everything that is wrong with our healthcare system.  people are meaningful and important.  what is happening to them in a hospital is meaningful and important and while i understand that the healthcare workers are doing just that... working.  they could also treat the patients like human beings and not things on a conveyor belt.  </>rant

so i had to have this colonoscopy because i was experiencing a concerning amount of bleeding from my rectum after my marathon.  in hindsight (no pun intended) it is entirely because i was dehydrated and under fueled.  a doctor i work with informed me that it is likely i was suffering from ischemic gut.  this affliction is compounded by the fact that my migraine medication (topamax) has the unfortunate side effect of diarrhea which certainly doesn't help things.  runners trots has nothin' on me!  basically they found after my colonoscopy that i have a beautiful, pristine, problem free colon... my intestines are lovely... perfection really.  i was given the diagnosis of a whole lot of nothing at all wrong with me.  i was also told to try taking in some fiber.  um, ok.  thanks for nothing.

what i probably looked like 'cept i wasn't wearing
underpants or drooling or bald or homer.
nothing like having a camera shoved up one's arse and wiggled around for no good reason.  the funny part of the colonoscopy story is that they basically roofie you so you don't remember the procedure.  i remember the nurse pushing the medication into my iv.  i remember it hurting and burning and being incredibly uncomfortable.  i remember the tech telling me to turn onto my left side.  then i remember ABSOLUTELY NOTHING until i'm watching this HUGE TV OF MY COLON.

this is a reenactment of the one-sided conversation that ensued:

doctor 1 to doctor 2: "take a sample right there."
me: "no! do NOT take a sample right there! now look!  you made me bleed!"

i don't recall if anyone responded to me.

doctor 1 to doctor 2:  "take a sample there."
me: "no!  don't take another sample! you made me bleed again!"

then i remember nothing until they're asking me if it's ok to call my husband.  then i remember my husband being there and the nurse giving him some directions that i don't remember.  then i remember doctor 2 telling me that i was right and they found nothing.  that i'm perfectly healthy.

while i'm happy about that i'm also thinking that is super lame and stupid because it doesn't solve my problem.

so what is ischemic (is-KEY-mik) gut?  glad you asked... ischemic gut aka ischemic colitis is a sudden swelling of part or all of the intestine that occurs when there is a temporary lost of or reduction in blood flow.  there are innumerable things that can cause this including exercise (although it's supposedly uncommon).  strenuous physical activities, such as long distance running or cycling, have been reported to lead to colonic ischemia, presumably by physiologic shunting caused by mesenteric vasoconstriction and intravascular volume depletion from dehydration.  (SEE dehydration! that's totally my problem!)  basically, when you're running your blood flow is diverted from other parts of your body... um, like your legs (duh).  effectively cutting off flow to the intestines to get blood down to the legs... but then when the blood redistributes back to the intestines shit gets real (pun intended)...  and not in a good way.

in hindsight (which is always 20/20) the fact that i didn't consume all of the water in my water bottle as well as the fact that i stopped taking in supplemental nutrition at or around mile 7 is EXACTLY why my body freaked out.  i didn't even realize that i had almost a full water bottle until i finished!  it was cool out so i wasn't sweating much and didn't realize that i was barely drinking anything.  plus... i felt FINE until mile 13.  add to that i consumed way too much caffeine and it was a recipe for disaster.

i think i'll start the fiber regime soon.  i'll keep ya posted on how that's all working out.  since i'm not training right now i'm really only running around 25-30 miles a week and keeping it to 3 days a week.  2 short and 1 long run.  i'd like to run more but my work schedule is just not allowing it right now.  i just gave my notice at the temp job i've been working for the past 2 months and i start a new job on the 24th.  i'm super excited about it!  i will have stable work hours then and hopefully will get my running schedule back on track.  i get a one hour lunch and am wondering if i can pull off a runch a couple times a week but i'm not sure i'll be able to.  might not be good to be all sweaty and gross, but we'll see.  maybe i can pull it off once a week for 2-3 miles.

and that's all i have to say about that.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Milwaukee Beer Run 5K & .05K

Milwaukee Beer Run 5K & .05K - November 2, 2014
time = 24.35
pace = 7:55
placed 3 in my age group (40-44) out of 131
placed 13 in women out of 1061
placed 48 overall out of 1542

i want to preface this by saying that the course ran long.  turns out that the race organizers (via twitter) said that they made it long for "safety" at the turn around.  what a crock of shit.  the turn around went off the path onto a gravel chunk around some trees and back onto the path.  i've run the striders half that past 2 years and they have a turn around right on the path with no issue so i'm not sure what this race thought might be the issue with safety... makes me wonder if these people are even runners?  my garmin said 3.31 which puts my pace at 7:26 and considering my splits were 7:09, 7:31, and 7:35... i'm going with that.  i'm not buying the 7:55.  that's straight bullshit.  why this matters to me?  well, because i'm hyper-competetive.

bib and mug goodness

so... the race.  i'll say nice stuff first because there's not a whole lot to say:  the best thing about this race is that they gave out a hoodie and a beer mug!  that alone was worth the race fee.  even though i don't drink beer the mug is pretty great and it's cool that i have a mug that commemorates a race i've done.  estabrook park is pretty, and all things considered the day was perfect for racing.

i am disappointed that they didn't have age group awards.  this is a draw for me in that part of the reason i run races is for the recognition.  it's a hold over from my childhood (probably) and some serious psychobabble garbage but whateves... i like to be recognized for my accomplishments.  running is hard and (in my opinion) running a 5K FAST is REALLY hard.  i want it to be noted that i've tried to do that.  gosh... seriously not enough attention as a child... lol!

so THAT was a bummer.  the second bummer was that it was cold out.  i was really hoping that it would still be sorta warm given that it was 70 degrees only 2 weeks ago.  no dice... it was 35 degrees as we were sitting in the car waiting for the race.  it may have been in the mid-40s by the start.  the third bummer was that i was running this on a totally empty stomach because i am having a colonoscopy tomorrow and can have nothing solid today.  sucks.

at the start of the race there was confusion about where we were supposed to be.  the .05K went first and there were people milling all over the course so no one seemed to really know what was going on.  once those "racers" took off then the rest of the runners seemed to figure out what was going on and got out of the way.  after that was done then the 5K runners began lining up.  the organizers decided to do waves.
the people standing in front of me
8min mile and under first wave.  unfortunately people didn't listen and i was standing behind 3 people who were absolutely not running an 8min mile or faster.  i guess that's par for the course tho'... at the end kellie told me the same thing happened to her and she was stuck behind a whole group of people who she couldn't get around and she ended up missing her PR by 2 minutes or something ridiculously tiny like that!  it really doesn't take much...

kellie and i - happy finishers
another thing i noticed was that the volunteers at the water station were just standing there... they weren't handing out the water to anyone.  maybe they weren't instructed on how to do this?  i thought that was surprising... they must have gotten the hang of it because after the turn around they were doing it.  or maybe they were told not to do it until after people started heading back?  either way... poorly organized and disappointing.

the course was pretty unremarkable.  it was an out and back on the oak leaf trail.  pretty much following the same course as the striders half.  i like the out and backs only because you can see who's ahead of you.  other than that not so much.  this race i was really annoyed by the out and back because the runners on the way out were running 4-5 deep and edging us on the way back off the trail.  i actually yelled at a few of them to move over.  probably because i was finding it so challenging to continue running at a fast pace and with no nutrition to speak of.  i was getting more and more irritable by the second.  to say that i enjoyed this race would be a low down dirty lie.

this race left much to be desired.  i will not be running it again.

i suppose it is as much my fault as it is the race's for why i didn't enjoy it.  a race like this is going to draw non-runners and that will explain the lack of etiquette on the course with the 4-5 deep run/walkers as well as the starting in the wrong corrals and not caring about it.

i guess i take my running too seriously to run races like these.  if i'm going to pay for a race then i want to get out of it what i want to get out of it.  i'm just not a fun run kind of runner.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

possible 2015 races

so... yes... i've been looking at races.  i did, however, go run even tho' i was dragging my feet earlier today waiting for the rain to stop.  below are the races i've got my eye on for next year.

ice age 50K - 31.06mi - may 9, 2015 (already signed up for this one)

summerfest rock 'n sole - 1/2 marathon - june 13, 2015 (signed up)

ragnar chicago - madison to chicago - june 12-13, 2015

dances with dirt - 1/2 marathon - july 11, 2015 (signed up)

ragnar great river - winona to minneapolis, mn - august 14-15, 2015

striders 1/2 marathon - august 29, 2015

instep trail races - 1/2 marathon - september 5, 2015

lakefront marathon - october 4, 2015 (signed up)

i'm really liking this line up.  i might go with it.

it's raining

this week's weather and work schedule has really put a damper on my running.  although, to be honest i've not much felt like running so i guess i'm not that bothered by it all.  the work schedule through to the end of october allows for me to get 3 week day runs (2 morning and 1 evening group) and then my long saturday.  unfortunately, today it is raining so i have to wait until it stops raining to get my long run in.

i am not a fan of the late day saturday run so i'm losing momentum as the hours tick by.  i got up at 7am with the intent to throw on my running clothes and GO... only to take the dogs out to rain.  *le sigh*

i skipped my morning run on thursday due to being so tired from this new schedule that i opted for going back to bed instead.  let me tell you... those extra 2 hours were heaven.

maybe my body needs this?  maybe i'm just lazy now that i've got no big runs coming up... i guess i don't really care.

i feel apathetic about it all.  i feel really good when i run but the getting there is the hard part it seems.  life is making me tired and unmotivated.  maybe it's just the weather... fall has arrived and what that means in wisconsin is cold, dreary, dark, and right now... rain.  all the makings of staying inside in bed.

i just want to watch all the tv.  all of it.  no matter how bad.  hopefully the rain will stop soon and i can go out and get my run on.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon - 26.2

Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon - October 5, 2014
time = 3:51:13
pace = 8:50
7mi = 59:58
13.1mi = 1:54:36
20mi = 2:51:54
placed 28 in my age group (40-44) out of 185
placed 175 in women out of 1028
placed 580 overall out of 2086

i don't even know where to begin.  i wasn't nervous to run this race.  i was nervous about my stomach cooperating.  i believe in my ability and since i've already run 20 miles at the 8:40 pace i figured how much more challenging can an additional 6 be?  barring complication i mean.
quick recap: i've been having serious issues with my left hip since north face, saw the chiropractor twice the week of the race, and then saw my PCP on the friday prior to the race to try and get the GI and pain management issues straight.  saturday morning before the race i took 2 imodium, saturday evening i took another one, and then race morning i took a fourth.
i slept terribly saturday night.  went to bed around 8:30-9pm but didn't actually fall asleep until somewhere around 10pm.  then i was up basically every hour after that.  i finally just got up at 4am since i was awake anyway.  probably for the best.  got the rest of my family up at 5am and we left to pick jim up at 5:30am.  after we got jim we headed to get sree and off we went to grafton.

spirits were high and positive.  sree was super chatty which kept the nerves down i suppose.  i never really felt nervous about the race per se... i guess because i wasn't really looking at it as a race.  i know i could never WIN the marathon itself so i'm really just running against my goal.  that helps me not to be nervous.  we got to grafton and parked in a lot that turned out to be super far from the high school.  i forgot my headphones so my husband was kind enough to run back and get them while the rest of us continued on to the school.

there were a lot of people there which was really exciting.  i love the energy of my people!  i feel like i belong.  so we got inside and sree headed right to the bathrooms, jim headed out to do a little warm up, i went out to the port-o-pottys, and max waited for brian to get back.

once we all reconvened we just did a little stretching and a little more waiting.  then it was time to head to the start.

just like that.

sree was running with casey who was pacing the 5:00 hour group so he left us straight away.  jim and i found the 3:45 pace group and lined up there with brad.  the national anthem played, a horn went off, and then we ran.  it was beautiful!

at about a mile in we ran past my dad's old house on falls road which was cool.  the weather was about 36 degrees and beautifully sunny.  i was wearing shorts, a tank, and a thin quarter zip tech long sleeve.  i wore gloves too because my hands tend to get cold.  it was the perfect outfit.  i was cold at the start but after about a mile i warmed up just fine.  i have to say that this was a pretty amazing experience from the get go.  a guy named dan fell in with jim and i right away.  jim's shirt had a donkey on the front and a carrot on the back which is pretty distinguishing.  easy to pick out of the crowd.  there were a bunch of women who were very very chatty at the start.  they simmered down after a few miles which was nice.  there were also some younger girls in what looked to be the most uncomfortable booty shorts.  i can only imagine that the chafing must be horrendous today.  the one girl kept pulling said shorts out of her ass the entire run... why you would wear that to run a marathon is beyond me but i'm in my 40's and not my 20's so there's that...

i felt really great up until mile 7 when my hip started to give me some trouble.  we were coming into concordia college and it was really just beginning to hurt.  i was hoping that it wouldn't get worse, but i feared that the pain i was feeling at this point was just foreshadowing for what was to come.  we saw jim's family cheering as well which was pretty great.  it was just what he needed i think.  at mile 10 brian and max were waiting for me!  that was fantastic.  i wasn't expecting to see them until the end so it was really nice to see friendly faces that were there just for me.

by mile 13 things got a bit messy.  i realized that my stomach was not going to cooperate with my plan and that i needed to find a port-o-potty pronto.  jim and i had lost dan at some point so i told him i was going to hit the bathroom and catch up.  the first one i saw was occupied and then... i pooped my pants.  yup... you read that correctly.  now, don't get me wrong... i didn't full on POOP my pants.  just leaked a little but that's more than enough to qualify when you have to wear those suckers for another 13.2 miles.  (the worst part about this is that my shorts were neon yellow so i spent the next several miles wondering if it could be seen such a bummer.)  i made it to the next potty and took care of business but lost around 2 minutes (to the tune of a 10:23 min mile at mile 13) in the process.  i spent the next 3 miles (see splits) successfully catching up to jim only to leave him behind because he wasn't feeling well enough to keep on our originally decided pace and then up to my pace group.  i felt pretty bad leaving jim behind at mile 15 but i had a goal and i was dead set on achieving it.

at mile 18 another leak caused me to stop for a 30 second potty break which is barely noticeable on my splits, but it was noticeable in the miles after when i had to again catch up to my pace group.  i'm almost certain that those 2 sprints were what killed me in the end.  shorts were fine on the outside by the way... and i felt great at that point!  that's all that matters anyway, right?  how things look on the outside?  haha!  when i hit the 20 mile split i felt so good that i picked up the pace a little.... ok i picked up the pace A LOT.  it was a huge mistake.  i should have known that it was the calm before the storm.

i ran a sub-8 mile at 20 and then still a really good mile 21... 22 my stomach started talking to me again and then at 23 i stopped dead in my tracks.  if i hadn't i would have lost my stomach all over everything right there on the road.  after a moment i began walking it off and telling myself that i could get to the next potty with some deep breaths and positive thinking.

i had passed my friend sun in one of those miles just before the dead stop when i was feeling deceptively fantastic.  her words of encouragement as she passed me in my painful walking moment was a godsend!  thank you sun!  it was at this moment that i saw a potty in front of a house across the street that was being worked on.  i have never been so happy to see a port-o-potty in all my life!  i sprinted (probably looked closer to a hobble) over and let it go.  everything that was in my body fell out at that moment and it was such a relief.  the only problem is that i'm quite certain that it was at that moment that all my electrolytes also fell out of my body and i lost everything i had been running with and now i was running on empty.  my gas light was on and the needle was below empty... i was the walking dead!

i pulled it out for mile 24 because it was downhill... but miles 25 and 26 were torture.  i alternately walked/cried and ran.  it hurt more to walk and when i would i began hyperventilating and crying so i'd begin running again just so that no one would see me crying.  those last 2 miles were the hardest miles of my entire life.  everything on my body hurt.  my right foot started hurting at some point after mile 15 or 16, i was hungry so my stomach was hurting because of that, my left hip was alternately throbbing and experiencing a sharping shooting pain, and the front of both of my hips were hurting simply from the distance at that pace.  my knees hurt and my toes hurt and i was a little worried that the bottom of my right big toe would be a huge blood blister (turned out not).  i couldn't wait to finish.

it was at that moment that i heard my friend james scream my name!  i know he was with amanda but i didn't see her...

you guys... i cannot tell you how invaluable you are as spectators.  your support is so important.  there were three times when someone yelled my name right when i needed it, and i moved my ass a little bit faster with a little more joy in spite of all the agony i was in at the end.  so thank you megan, rachel, and amanda & james for helping me through some of those super tough spots.  you will never know how much that meant to me.  this is one of the most challenging things i've even done, as well as one of the most beautiful!  i cannot believe what an amazing experience i had and that i actually accomplished what i accomplished!

when i finally made it those final tortuous miles i was so happy to see the finish shoot.  i would like to say that i picked up the pace and sprinted to the end but my splits tell a different story. hahaha!  all i can say is that i finished and i finished as strong as was physically possible.  i ran it in.  i didn't walk.  i made it.  i finished my very FIRST marathon!

the story (unfortunately) doesn't end there.  my stomach freaked out.  i'm sure it was a combination of all the things.  i began cramping pretty quickly after i finished.  i managed to eat the bowl of pasta they provided but little else.  i did drink some water and i tried to eat some of the other things, but i felt so dang awful that i just really wanted to go home.  i was in the potty when i heard jim's name as he finished!  i texted him a "great job" from the port-o-potty cuz that's how i roll.  we left pretty shortly after that.  as we were walking to the yacht club where the car was parked we saw sree and casey so we cheered for them.  sree was having so much fun he didn't hear us until about the 5-6th time we yelled his name.  by the time we got to the car my stomach was cramping so badly that all i wanted to do was lay down.

i got home, took a bath, a shower, and then got in bed.  i tried to eat something a couple hours later but promptly threw it up.  i managed to keep gatorade and water down until the evening when i ate a piece of pizza.  i was up every hour or so until monday morning and by then i was eliminating no more waste... only blood.  i work in a doctor's office but i called my primary doc to update him on how our plan of attack didn't work.  they wanted me to go to the er.  um, no thank you.

after getting a second opinion from one of the docs i work with we determined that i didn't need to go to the er and that i could wait it out a bit longer and see what happens after i got some more food into my body.

today my body is still not right but it is better.  my stomach is tender to the touch but there is no more blood.  everyone thinks i should get a colonoscopy to figure out what's going on in my GI tract so we'll see how that pans out.  that will hinge on my insurance and whether or not it is covered.  while i don't want to screw around with my health i also just got back on the re-employment train and after having been unemployed for about 6 months... well, i've got a hole to dig out of and i can't be paying a big 'ol medical bill right about now.

i'm going to chalk this up to some crazy crap with my body (no pun intended)...  there are several factors that go into what happened.  lack of proper fueling, dehydration, the side effects of my migraine medication, mixing imodium and all of the above... who knows?  the body is an amazing, beautiful, and mysterious organism... it must be respected and cared for.  what i just did to it certainly wasn't caring for it so i need to find a better way to do what i want to do and still respect and care for it effectively.

as for the marathon... it was AWESOME!  well managed, beautiful course, the volunteers were top notch, the whole experience was nothing but positive.  i will run it again.  i want to thank jim for getting me through the first 15 miles full of laughs and smiles (dan too).  their support and encouragement was instrumental to me ignoring my hip pain and pushing through when i might have walked or doubted myself if i were on my own.  thanks guys!

i realized that i never even talked about missing my goal.  my goal for this race was to boston qualify.  in order to do that i would have had to run a 3:45.  i missed it by SIX MINUTES.  today (2 days later) i am not as upset about missing it.  i am, however, still trying to figure out where i could have shaved those minutes even with all the bathroom breaks.  i mean... 6 minutes is simply ridiculous!  only 6 measly minutes!  next year... i'm really proud of my time, but i missed my goal and i'm very disappointed about that.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

oh the possibilities

one more sleep... less than 12 hours from now and i'll be at the start of my first marathon.  i don't really feel nervous.  i am concerned about my hip more than anything else.  mostly worried about hitting a time where the pain is so bad that i can't push through.

 i saw my magical chiropractor (magical as in unicorns and baby ewoks) on tuesday and thursday and he determined that there's something up with my si joint.  a few adjustments both days and some kt tape later and he said he feels i'm about 50% better so that's as good as i can get right now.

i can run through pain with very little fan fair... what concerns me is when it gets to a point of such severe pain that it causes limping and tears.  if i'm 50% better than i was the last time i ran 20 miles then i should be GREAT!  i should be able to finish the marathon with no problem.

on friday (yesterday) i saw my PCP to discuss pain/poop management.  because of my GI issues with NSAIDs i was concerned about what i can take and how to manage the whole issue.  we discussed and pretty much the plan of attack is that i doubled up on the imodium this morning, took another imodium around 4pm today and will take another one (or two depending on how things are working or not working out) tomorrow morning before i leave for the race.  in addition to that i will take an aleve to mitigate any pain i might have from the hip.  hopefully, this cocktail will not backfire on me. only time will tell.

the weather is not going to be that awesome.  it is forecast to be around 36 degrees at the start, but sunny which is nice.  the problem is that i'm unsure about what to wear.  i don't want to be too warm because that will be the kiss of death.  however, if i am dressed in too little that will be bad too.  i've settled on shorts, a tank, and a thin long sleeve with a zip neck so that at least i can open that if i get too hot.  i can also push up the sleeves if i need to.  i'm hoping that i'm warm enough in that and i'm also hoping that i'm not TOO warm.  36 is not warm... but with the sun out it might be perfectly fine.  it depends on so many factors.  if it's windy that will feel colder... i don't know if i should wear a hat... sheesh... i just don't know.   i guess i'd rather be too cool than too warm when running.  it has been my experience that when i've over dressed i've been much more uncomfortable than when i've under dressed so i'm going to go that route.

i just really want everything to go smoothly and take off without a hitch.  if you had told me 2 years ago that i'd be running a marathon i'd have likely laughed in your face and yet... here i am.  i'm so proud of how far i've come.  let's see how tomorrow shakes out...

Sunday, September 28, 2014

lakefront marathon playlist

the below is just under 4 hours of fast paced hilarious music.  i was turned on to this website called steady130 by someone on one of my fb running groups and man... i am so stoked! turned out to be really an awesome thing!  all of these are supposed to be paced at a 130 heart rate and you can choose from other mixes that are faster than that.  i chose these based on the song selections.  the first time i ran with one of these playlists i ran pretty fast and it felt effortless.  just goes to show that music can make all the difference.  at least for me.  we'll see how i do with this race...

1. Led Zeppelin vs. Jay-Z – Rock n’ Roll Dirt (DJ Topcat Mashup)
2. The Police vs. Eminem vs. Bloc Party – Like Eating Moon (DJ Moule Mashup)
3. The Doors vs. Goose – Heartbreaker Woman (DJ Moule Mashup)
4. The Killers vs. Hyper – Somebody Told Me To Push It (DJ Schmolli Mashup)
5. Van Halen vs. Michael Jackson – Panama Beat (Wax Audio Mashup)
6. Ozzy Osbourne vs. A-Ha – Take Me On The Crazy Train (MadMixMustang Mashup)
7. Faith No More vs. Soggy Bottom Boys – Epic (DJ Pozsi Mashup)
8. Iron Maiden vs. Run DMC – Running Adidas (The Illuminoids Mashup)
9. Led Zeppelin vs. The Funk Hunters & SkiiTour – Whole Lotta Bass (Colatron Mashup)
10. Airbourne vs. Pharrell Williams – Running Happy (Chocomang Mashup)

1. Marky Mark vs. Eminem – Good Vibrations Without Me (Sex Ray Vision Mashup)
2. Madonna vs. Duck Sauce – Barbra Vogue (Robin Skouteris Mashup)
3. EMF vs. Icona Pop – Unbelievable Love (Stelmix Mashup)
4. Deee-Lite vs. The Prodigy – Groove Is In The Girls (Dunproofin’ Mashup)
5. Notorious B.I.G. vs. A-Trak & Dillon Francis – Mo’ Money Makin’ Mo’ Problems (914 Hit Squad Mashup)
6. Tag Team vs. TJR – Whoomp! There’s The Funky Vodka (House Hunters Mashup)
7. The Bucketheads vs. Pitbull – I Know You Want The Bomb (DJ Dain Mashup)
8. Robin S vs. Avicii – Show The Levels Love (Jyvhouse Bootleg)
9. Montell Jordan vs. LMFAO – This Is How We Party Rock (Stelmix Mashup)
10. Reel 2 Real vs. Dev – Move It In The Dark (DJ Kirillich Mashup)
11. Cathy Dennis vs. Todd Terje – Touch Me (Dave Wrangler “Spiral” Mashup)
12. No Doubt vs. Rihanna – Just a Girl (In The World) (MadMixMustang Mashup)
13. CeCe Peniston vs. Childish Gambino – Finally Got This Money (Dannahan Mashup)
14. Daft Punk vs. Stardust – Music Around The World (DJ HP Mashup)

1. Skee-Lo – I Wish (Soulwax Remix) [3:00 Warm-up]
2. House of Pain – Jump Around (Loconyan Edit)
3. Sir Mix-a-Lot – Baby Got Back (Bingo Players Bootleg)
4. Digital Underground – The Humpty Dance (Michael Carrera Re-Boot)
5. Coolio – Fantastic Voyage (DJ FLO Bootleg)
6. Vanilla Ice – Ice Ice Baby (DJ Keith Marshall Bootleg)
7. Wreckx-n-Effect – Rump Shaker (Thick James Remix)
8. Young MC – Bust a Move (DJ Atwill Redrum
9. LL Cool J – Mama Said Knock You Out (DANK Remix)
10. Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock – It Takes Two (DJ Atwill Redrum)
11. Tone Loc – Funky Cold Medina (DJ Atwill Redrum)
12. Will Smith – Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It (Albina Mango Remix)
13. Ini Kamoze – Here Comes The Hotstepper (DJ Atwill Redrum)
14. Kris Kross – Jump (Gramo Edit)
15. Bel Biv Devoe – Poison (INDO Remix)
16. DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince – Summertime (Warehouse Remix)
17. Ice Cube – It Was a Good Day (Matt Nice Remix)

1. Salt n’ Pepa – Push It
2. Bel Biv Devoe – Poison (INDO Remix)
3. Bobby Brown – Every Little Step (Superfine! Remix)
4. LL Cool J – Mama Said Knock You Out (DANK Remix)
5. Keith Sweat – I Want Her (DJ Ekho Remix)
6. Heavy D & The Boyz – Now That We Found Love (Base Music & Trojan Project Remix)
7. Wreckx-n-Effect – Rump Shaker (Thick James Remix)
8. LL Cool J – Around The Way Girl (DJ Ekho Remix)
9. DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince – Summertime (Warehouse Remix)
10. Zhane – Hey Mr. DJ (Richie Jamz Edit)

1. Nelly vs. The Bee Gees – Stayin’ Hot (DJ Lobsterdust Mashup)
2. Justin Timberlake vs. Chic – Good Suit & Tie Times (White Panda Mashup)
3. Fun. vs. The Village People – It’s Fun to Be Young At The YMCA (DJ Lobsterdust Mashup)
4. Usher vs. Donna Summer – DJ Got Us Falling in Hot Stuff (DJs From Mars Bootleg)
5. Ciara & Justin Timberlake vs. Kool & The Gang – Let’s Groove The Magic Bass (DeeM Mashup)
6. Kelly Clarkson vs. Michael Jackson – Stronger Enough (DJ Lobsterdust Mashup)
7. Britney Spears vs. Supermen Lovers – Toxic Starlight (Bobby Martini Mashup)
8. Taio Cruz vs. Cerrone – Dynamite Love (GonZo Mashup)
9. Sean Paul vs. Kool & The Gang – Kool Temperature (DJ Mashup)
10. Martin Solveig vs. The Bee Gees – Dancing The Night Out (DJ Lobsterdust Mashup)
11. Ellie Goulding vs. Donna Summer – She Works Hard For The Lights (DJ Shy Boy Mashup)
12. Chris Brown vs. Eastside Connection – You’re So Yeah 3X (GonZo Mashup)
13. Bruno Mars vs. Michael Jackson – Gem (Treasure/Rock With You) (Flipboitamidles Mashup)

Saturday, September 27, 2014

left hip and the lakefront marathon

so... ever since i ran northface i've been having this hip thing happening.  well, that's not entirely accurate.  ever since i ran at lapham AFTER i ran northface i've been having this hip thing happening.

what it seems to be is this:  by about mile 7 or so something in my left hip feels like it isn't where it is suppose to be.  two wednesdays ago at the LPTR group run someone mentioned that when i got adjusted by the free chiropractor at the northface race he may have messed things up.  the more i've thought about that the more i'm wondering if that might be the case because i was perfectly fine before he touched me and then after is when this all started.

at first i thought it was because i had run on pavement during the race but really that was only 1.5 miles so it shouldn't have had any effect at all.  i feel like something is out of place and it hurts so incredibly bad that i am in tears.  today when i ran i was fine until about mile 7.  mile 7 is when i noticed i was getting a bit fatigued and i think my form starts to suffer.  i think then my gait changes and that's when whatever is off in my hip begins to shift.

i noticed today that when i put pressure on it with my hand that the pain goes away but if i apply pressure while running in the wrong spot that the pain is magnified in intensity.  i then adjusted my form and stiffened my back and the pain was manageable in the sense that it still existed but whatever i was doing with my back was mitigating the intensity.  i was able to hold my pace at a really decent clip.

if you look at my splits you can see that i ran through the pain with minimal difference in pace.

mile 7 was a tiny bit slower but that's when i was holding my water bottle nozzle into my hip to try and figure out if that would stave off the pain but i must have pushed on the wrong thing and hit a nerve or something... there was a sharp pain.  i think i ran pretty strong throughout.  mile 6 was a weird fluke of my garmin.  i stopped to pee and failed to restart it right away.  it glitched somehow and gave me that 11min mile... such a bummer.  when i saw it i couldn't believe it. lol!

anyhow... i'm really worried now about lakefront because i'm not sure how i'm going to make it through the race if this keeps up.  i'm going to call the chiropractor (my REAL and AWESOME one) on monday and try to get in to see him ASAP... i am going to hope to all the powers that be that he can fix me this week so that i can run relatively pain free during the race.  i just need to make it through the race.

i'm also seeing my new primary care physician on friday and plan to ask him about pain management.  it's an issue because i am unable to successfully take NSAIDs because they wreak havoc on my GI tract.  i may be mildly allergic (or have abused them so much over the years) that they've caused me to have a leaky gut, and the end result is that i have intestinal bleeding and diarrhea whenever i take them.  not a good outcome when one is attempting their first marathon.

i've got a food and imodium plan for the marathon and the days leading up to it so hopefully the pooping won't be an issue, but this hip thing... i don't know what to do about that.  it's really becoming terrifying.

i guess only time will tell... it has all come down to one week left.  end of race season.  this is what i've been training for all year.  sink or swim time.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

North Face Endurance Challenge - 5K

time = 23:19
pace = 7:31
(there is no age group placing because i placed overall)
placed 2 in women out of 64
placed 6 overall out of 107

finished with my finisher medal
i entered this race at a lower distance because i was going to be coming off of the lapham race and (originally) was supposed to be running a 10K next weekend.  i thought it would be in bad form to run 2 big races in a row and then follow that up with a 10K.  now, the 10K is really no big deal, but running 2 halfs or a half and then longer 2 weekends in a row?  yeah... not such a good idea so i didn't do it.

i really wanted to run this race tho' so i opted for the 5K.  5Ks are no joke tho'... it seems like they should be easy peasy lemon squeezy since they're ONLY 3.1 miles, but DAMN... 3.1 miles of balls to the walls running is a damn challenge!

today was cold!  woke up to about 39 degrees so i wasn't sure how to dress as the weather said it would be up to 50 by the time i ran.  50's i can deal with and i know how to dress for but what to do about the pre-race dressing?  ugh... i hate being cold!  so i first opted for shorts and a tank.  i figured i could throw a fleece over it and be done.  yeah... not so much.  SO.COLD!  so i threw a long sleeve on and then the fleece and took off for ottawa.  when i arrived i saw so many LPTR friends.  it was great!  chatted for awhile and watched the other runners mill around then it was time for the 10K runners to take off.  thankfully, the race had provided nice little fire pits to keep warm around.  without those i would have been totally frozen!

stood around for another 15 minutes and sized up the competition... then it was time.

i decided to start at the front because this race goes along the shoulder of the road and i didn't want to get stuck behind anyone so i figured starting too fast would be ok since i'd rather get passed than get frustrated trying to pass.  proved to be good and bad as usual.

the front of the pack was 4 men and i pulled up on the 4th almost immediately and had to try to get around him.  it took maybe a quarter of a mile and then i got around.  i was right on the heels of the 3rd guy, feeling pretty good, and then i glanced at my watch.

i was running a SIX MINUTE MILE!  WHAT?!?  after i glanced at my garmin i didn't feel so good anymore.  what's that they say about ignorance being bliss?  so, i slowed my roll as there's absolutely no way on this earth that i could maintain that pace and come out alive.  mile one turned out to be 3/4 on the road and i'm a bit disappointed about that.  i sort of think that this can't actually be called a "trail race" because so much of it was on the road.  sort of 1/2 and 1/2 actually.  *sigh*

me and angelena - 2nd and 1st place respectively
my first mile i was the lead woman, and then at about a mile and a quarter or a mile and a half i glanced behind me... that was mistake number 2.  i saw who would be the eventual winner right behind me.  right after i caught her in my rearview she started gaining on me, and then passed me just before the turn around.  i stayed on her heels for the next half mile or so, but she hit a downhill at a great time and got away from me.  at that point i must have slowed down with all the little hills because she just kept getting further and further away from me.  after the turn around i got the opportunity to see everyone who was behind me and just how much leeway i had between me and the 3rd place woman.  it seemed like a 30 second lead is what i had but the finish put her at around a minute slower which is awesome.
all the goodies
i'd like to also add that the 3rd place finisher was 33 years old... this is notable because i'm freaking old compared to these 2 women!  yay!  i blew away everyone in my age group with a time gap of almost 7 minutes between me and the 1st place finisher in the 40-44 age group!  that's crazy!  the first place winner overall who beat me is 32 and she gapped me with just over a minute!  such a bummer, but it couldn't be helped.  i was running my hardest and doing my best.  my best wasn't enough to catch her or stay ahead of her... she did amazing!  competitive much? yeah... sorry.

back to the race... that's about it.  the course was not notable.
the blue is the first mile and as you can see where it veers off of 67
that's where it begins on the trail
it was an out and back with half of it being on the road.  the trail was what looked like a mowed down section of grassy trail with huge tire divots the whole way through.  sort of rocky in spots and i really had to watch my footing the whole way because the footing was very uneven and a rolled ankle was totally possible.  there was nothing all that exciting about the trail part of the race and i won't be doing this distance for this race again.  especially if they have it at the same place.  i suppose for someone who's never run a trail race before this would be a good way to get your feet wet because it wasn't totally trail.  however, i run trails all the time so this was pretty disappointing.  i expected a better trail (and total trail) experience.

next year i'm running a longer distance to make sure i get an actual trail run.

everything else was awesome.  i got a chiropractic adjustment and a (sort of) massage.  the food looked good (although i didn't have any).  the awards were awesome and the support was fantastic!  the volunteers were amazing and probably the best part.  the vendors were cool but i don't really care about that stuff so i didn't really spend a lot of time on that.  getting the results was really easy and they had a PODIUM!  that was really cool.  this is the first race i've been in that had one... i'm easy to impress... obviously.  i came in 6th overall and honestly i have no idea where the 4th man came from since after i passed the initial 4th man so there were only 3 in front of me i'm pretty sure that no one else passed me... i'm guessing that maybe one passed me  on the way back out of the woods or maybe there was a man in front that i never saw because he was so damn fast.  the lead winner finished in 19:36!  so very fast!  impressive to say the least.

i'm not sure i enjoy 5Ks anymore.  i like them to measure my speed but they're so hard and not very fun.  i feel like i'm going to die the whole time i'm running this distance.  i wonder how i'll feel at the marathon distance?  now that'll be interesting...

top 10 finishers overall
pre-race lookin' fresh
on my tail and so close!

crossing the finish with a smile

Friday, September 12, 2014


so... this past week has been something.  i started a new job on the 3rd and the 8:30am - 5pm work hours have been taking their toll and some considerable adjusting to.  honestly, i'm having a challenging time adjusting.  mainly because my son also started school at the same time and has to be on the bus at 6:30am so we get up at 5am.  i haven't figured out how to run in the morning yet so i've been trying to do it when i get home at night and frankly... i'm slacking.

this week was different tho'... i came off my 1/2 flying high and not much worse for wear.  i ran a sore but fairly easy black loop on sunday and then life took over.  monday my older son came over so i didn't run and then tuesday everything went to shit.

i suffer from migraines.  generally speaking they are under control.  i take daily medication to mollify (or beat them into submission), and then a different medication when one does rear it's ugly head.  unfortunately, i started to feel the tendrils of a headache reaching across the left side of my face and wrapping around the back of my eye.  by the time i left work the whole front of my face was pained and threatening to get worse.  to compound matters the barometric changes in the weather effects my head as do hormonal changes, and of course stress.  all of these things on tuesday created a perfect storm as they say.

tuesday the weather had changed dramatically from warm, humid, and in the 70's to cold, drier, and raining, the new job is causing new stressors, and as i was leaving work i got my period.  as i said... the perfect storm.

when i got home i took a 10mg maxalt and went to bed.  woke up at 2am and took another 10mg maxalt and then at 5am wednesday morning when it was time to get up i had a full blown head in a vice migraine.  i got to it too late on tuesday.  i'm a trooper tho' with a very high tolerance for pain and i went to work.  as the day droned on my head just felt worse and worse.  the vice got tighter and tighter.  before long i couldn't blink or turn my head without pain.  by 2pm i was experiencing muscle spasms in my back which has never happened before.  it was all i could do to keep my composure and not cry.  by 2:45pm i decided i couldn't stick it out until 4pm... i needed to go home.

i went into my manager's office and told her that i was experiencing a migraine and that i needed to go home.  as soon as i got outside of the building i burst into tears which was all that more awful.  the pressure of my sobs just made the searing pain in my head worse.  as i tried to stop the tears i began to hyper-ventilate.  i was a mess.

i made it to my car and took a few minutes to calm down before i drove away but the whole time i was driving i was alternately sobbing and hyper-ventilating.  it would have been comical if it weren't so painfully awful.  as i was driving home i decided to call my new doctor to see if they could fit me in.  unfortunately, i have not been established as a new patient yet so they told me to go to urgent care.  i drove straight to urgent care.

the doctor at urgent care was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!  she was kind, generous, and caring.  she was eager to find a solution and willing to help me.  she was wonderful.  she gave me a shot of 30mg of toradol for the migraine and 4mg of zofran for the nausea.  my pain (in 15 minutes) went from a 10 to a 5 or 6.  it was life saving... dramatic i know but if you've ever experienced a migraine you know what i'm sayin'.

i went home, took another 10mg of maxalt, and went to bed.  the next morning i woke up in the same predicament i was in when i went to bed so i called my original primary care clinic, and begged to get in.  i got in with one of the physicians whom i had seen in the past when my doc wasn't available.  when i saw her the care was again phenomenal.  again i received the toradol, but this time 60mg to really try and kick it out.  she then refilled my maxalt script and we were on our way.  i suppose it's needless to say that i didn't go to work on thursday...

when i got home i took yet another 10mg maxalt and went back to bed.  i took my last maxalt at midnight last night and woke this morning with just the ghost of the migraine.  i've walked around all day today precariously turning my head and blinking my eyes.  i have so much medication in my system that it bums me out but really... what else can you do?

the last time my head hurt this bad was probably 10 years ago.  i honestly cannot even remember the last time.  i wouldn't wish this on anyone.  it is really the worst feeling.  all i can say is i'm so glad that i feel better today.  unfortunately, all that medication has screwed up my other bodily functions.  let's just say i need to drink a TON more water in the next few days to try and get things straightened out.

north face is on sunday.  i'm only running the 5K so it should be fast, fun, and easy.  i'm looking forward to it.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

InStep Trail Races - 1/2 Marathon

InStep Trail Races - 1/2 Marathon - September 6, 2014

time = 2:03:58
pace = 9:27
placed 1 in my age group (40-44) out of 8
placed 6 in women out of 49
placed 24 overall out of 103

THIS.IS.AN.AWESOME.RACE! if you read my blog at all you know how much i LOVE LOVE LOVE lapham peak.

the start/finish BEFORE we start/finish
it's my back yard and an easy go to when i need to get in some beautiful miles without thinking about them.  this race was a no-brainer so i signed up.  admittedly i was very intimidated because i run this so often and i KNOW how challenging the course can be.  it can take a lot out of a person so i was a bit concerned that i wouldn't do well on the second loop or after running the tower.

i woke up to a perfect day.  58 degrees and the humidity had dropped considerably.  it was sunny and cool... absolutely wonderful.  i pulled into lapham and got perfect parking in evergreen grove as i had hoped.  great timing too because it filled up right after i arrived.  once i parked i looked up and saw that i was parked directly behind my friend nic!  how awesome!  so i got out and introduced myself.  we chatted (me, his mother, and myself) and then she and i headed to the bathrooms.  once that task was completed i ran into a couple of other LPTR runners and since the marathoners were about to take off we headed over there to cheer them on. nic was running the marathon (FOUR of the black loop) and i wasn't the least bit surprised to see him in the lead.

the marathon started a 1/2 hour before the half so we chatted a bit and milled around near the start for a little while.  i was looking for my friend jim but didn't see him.  once everyone started lining up there was a pretty good group of LPTR runners and i cannot explain how wonderful it is to start a race with a bunch of friends.  no nervous jitters at all!  jim showed up and we discussed our goal finish which was the same so we planned to run together.

we took off and i pressed the wrong button on my garmin!  good thing i noticed right away because i had turned it off!  i got it started again and all was well with the world.  we took off hella fast, but since that part of the course is mostly flat it felt ok.  we ran all the hills and killed it on the downhills. the first loop went by pretty quickly.  we kept pace with a pack of about 4-5 people in front of us, but once we had to climb the tower we totally lost them.  i have no idea what happened to them.  the tower climb wasn't as bad as i thought it was going to be.  it was tough but mostly just the going up part.  the coming down was easy peasy.

throughout the entire race we were jackrabbiting this one guy in a blue shirt.  he was so good on the up hills!  it was crazy effortless.  he passed us every time and then we smoked him on the straightaways and downhills.  i honestly expected him to pass us at the end, but it never happened which was surprising.

we came through the start for the second loop feeling really good.  nic's mom told me at the end that she saw us but nic was coming through directly behind us and needed gear support so she couldn't say anything to us.  i had no idea he was right behind us!  so weird... the course isn't that big so we thought it was strange that we weren't really seeing anyone from the other race while we were running.

we started the second climb up "gut buster" and surprisingly were only a little bit slower.  11:50 min/mi pace compared to 11:08 min/mi pace the first go around.  this hill is crazy!  it's a half mile long (not counting a smaller part of the hill before it really starts to go up), and this is the fastest two times i've ever run it.

we kept trying to haul ass and we did really well.  there are only two splits that were not so fast.

mile 5 - which looks like the hills leading up to the tower, the climb at the tower, as well as the downhill after the tower so i guess that part was S-L-O-W...

mile 5

mile 8 - which looks like the little hills before "gut buster", "gut buster" itself, and then some of the hills after that.
mile 8

all of the splits

during the second loop we passed one girl on "gut buster" who was a marathoner, and the jackrabbit dude was with us.  after that we saw no one.  no one behind us and no one in front of us save for a couple of marathoners and a couple 7 milers that we passed.  for our race tho'... no one. jim and i decided that was a good thing because there was no way we were going to catch the people ahead of us and the people behind us we gapped big enough that they weren't going to catch us... all that was left was the damn guy in the blue shirt.  we decided he wasn't in jim's age group so not an issue. hahah!

eventually, we passed him up near the end on the "magic carpet ride" down hill and lost him.  i expected him to catch us here but he never came.  on this downhill we finally saw people ahead of us.  tim... one of the LPTR group was directly in front of us but we never did catch him.  much too fast for us.

at the very finish i put it in over drive and ran as fast as i could and got in just before jim.  funnily enough our finish times have him finishing seconds ahead of me.  we decided that he paid a higher entrance fee to get that done.  hahah!  actually, he probably crossed the start before i did and i just made up a little bit of time at the end because i think i was lagging a lot during that first loop compared to him.  he really is why i kept up that awesome pace.  if it weren't for him i would have probably had a much slower finish time and not gotten nearly so close to my goal!  i am so thankful for his encouragement and camaraderie today!  running something this challenging with friends makes it so much more enjoyable and endurable.  we had a magnificent time!  the gap between me and the second place finisher was 19:20 which i think is a significant lead.  i could have totally ran slower! hahah!  the gap between me and the third place finisher was 21:53.  (i'm talking age group placing here... just so that's clear.)  jim came in second in his age group.  the gap between him and the first place finisher was 11:24.  that's a pretty big gap.  then between jim and the third place finisher was a mere 2:03.  so close!  he ran such a great race! man, we killed it!  i'm pretty proud of that.
jim, maggie, and me right after we finished the race
photo by kristine hinrichs

my one complaint is that they didn't have any port-o-pottys right on the course.  i mean... i know where the bathrooms are all along this route but if you're running a race the last thing you want to do is go a few minutes off course to go.  there should have been a port-o-potty right on the sidelines of the start/finish so that all one would have to do is pull over, go, and start running again.  that would be my suggestion for next year.  other than that... aces.

if you get a chance to get out to lapham for a run, race, or hike... you will not be disappointed.  i will be doing this race again for sure!

all the bling with all the sweat and tireds
shows my 19 second time difference from starting my garmin a bit late
me and nic - finishers!