One last gasp

October 4th, 2010

The week before the ironman, I came home from a run with such exhilaration for completing the workout so perfectly, that Adam looked at me and said, “Why don’t you run another marathon and qualify for Boston?”

That’s all I needed to stoke that flame.  A quick email to Scott wondering if this was a bad idea or worse yet a HORRIBLE idea went off.  He suggested waiting until after the ironman was done and then decide.

So while Adam and I were driving home from the ironman, I flipped open the computer, Adam handed me a credit card and said, “Sign Up!”

Here is the email thread that transpired next:

Me: I want to go to Boston.  Whislestop…Oct 9.  Get me there.

Scott: Done.

So this Saturday, I will be attempting, yet again, to qualify for Boston.  Since I am now 40 the cushion is a bit thicker, I need to finish in 3:50.

I will see if the gamble of riding this wave of fitness will pay off or if it will all come crashing down.

Bets start at $1.


August 5th, 2010

I’ve hit it.  Whatever “it” is, I smacked into it two days ago and it has not let go.

The past three days have got me in a place I question if I will be able to crawl out of.  That’s bullshit actually, I’ll crawl out, it’s just not pretty and very dark in there.  It’s not like I’m dying of cancer, I have CHOSEN to train for an ironman.  What was I expecting, a picnic?

The week started fine enough with a 35 mile ride and a 3 mile run (this is where Adam says I sound like his dad replaying his golf game–let’s talk Den).

Tuesday morning’s track workout got aborted due to childcare issues, so I had to do it at 3pm, when it was BLAZING hot.  Once I was on the third of 8 800’s at the track, I decided it was not smart to continue (the temp gauge in my shoe read 104 degrees) on the black track of death.

Wednesday was a 2 mile swim, which went fine and then a 60 ride.

Many months ago, Jon rode with us and spoke of his “pain cave”.  The place where you get to when it hurts so bad you don’t want to continue, but you have to, so you find a happy place and try to live in the cave and hopefully then it passes.  Well, I am pretty sure, in that 60 mile ride, that I bought a pain cave, lived in it, remodeled it, had a family in it and then sold it for another better pain cave all by mile 54.

I seriously crushed my 100 mile ride last week and crumbled on 60 this week.

Today, due to the fact I did not finish my 8×800’s (which I will reattempt next week), I got to do an 8 mile time trial run down by the river.  So for me, the goal was to run an average pace of 7:30’s or so.  THIS IS HARD WORK FOR ME PEOPLE.  Again, I had child care issues, so had to do it later in the day, thank God it was cooler and slightly breezy BUT when I came to the half way point (this tt is timed and then posted and then you race against yourself again later) there was construction on the way back, which brought me off track and out of the way on a detour.

I decided to stop to figure out how to get back (which totally screwed my time and rendered the tt useless), then I limped along wondering if I would ever get back, then I got back on track and THEN I decided to try to haul it home (darkness, should I keep going or not, does it really matter or not, who cares it’s totally a waste because it’s not the same as last time is what was beating in my brain) only to be smacked in the face with a 20 mph head wind.  Needless to say, all that effort seemed like a waste.

So here I sit, crabby, exhausted, mean and nasty. Simply wondering what problems I will have on my 18 mile run tomorrow and how the hell I am going to finish 115 miles on my bike on Saturday.

Maybe I should just bring a little bit of the Windsor along, because THAT will help with hydration in this heat.

To pluck or not to pluck

June 30th, 2010

So I have this toe nail that is ready to fall off.  In fact, after I was done teaching swimming lessons today, it would flip up like the lid on a top loading washing machine.  That said, it was still hinged to the base.

It’s like when you are a kid and you have a loose tooth, did you pluck it out when it got loose or did you just wait until it dangled there so nasty for all to see, just waiting for it to fall out on its own?

I am a waiter, which is actually funny because I have no patients.  It was more that I was scared it was going to hurt.  I never let anyone touch my teeth.  I never pulled out my own teeth.  I just waited.

I am hoping the hinges of this toe nail will just let go, so when I walk off the pool deck it stops spitting and bubbling water right out of the lid.

Race #1 Down

May 3rd, 2010

The first race of the season was kicked off yesterday in between the slow roasting of a pork shoulder and PJ’s birthday party.

Katie, Laura and I headed out to Wayzata to run the Lake Minnetonka half marathon.  This photo was taken just before we shut the doors to the car and walked to the start line.

The race went well for all of us yesterday.  If I remember correctly, Katie is already talking about a spring marathon next year…let’s get planning!

I went into the race just wanting to run well, whatever that meant for the day.  I felt really good all they way around and ended up with a PR, coming in at 1:47.  That’s 4 minutes off my best race!  Needless to say, I’m thrilled

Look who showed up and went boom

April 22nd, 2010

A while ago, T-odd broke-up with our little girly running group.  Yeah it was hard on us for a little bit but he said, “Oh it’s all me…not you, you guys are great I just need to move, need my own space, find my way.”  Haven’t you heard that before?

Anyway, I was running with Jen last week and T-odd joined us for the first 2.5 seconds of the run, that was right before he put on his jet pack.

As Jen and I were finishing our run, we see T-odd walking back in the opposite direction toward his car.

We come to find out that he bit it…HARD.  Really hard.

His foot got all caught up in his very loopy lace and he went down flat but still had enough strength to shut off his watch.

Here is the detailed version of the fall, including the trip to the doctor the next day for an x-ray of his rib.

But there was no mention of Jen, who with the meds that she was packing, nursed him back to health.

What up with that?

Christmas Eve Morning Run

December 24th, 2009

Adventure Cats

As our new running buddy Katie, who chose to go to the gym this morning instead of run with us said, “You’re kinda like the Postal Service, you run in anything.”

That we do.

This particular run, with all the snow and unplowed streets was ridiculous and funny and fun.

Thanks for the run girls.

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Talking talking talking

November 12th, 2009

There are so many things about running in the dark of the morning that I love.  One of them happens to be the company I keep and the discussions that occur.  It’s almost a data dump of the mind and then we confer and then we move onto the next subject and then we are done and ready for the day.

Today we talked about the following:

An amazing play Erika saw by a Polish playwright
Big M’s trip to Turkey
Crohn’s Disease

Odawalla Dan and how his new baby changed his life
Recent car accidents in the news
Upcoming trips over Thanksgiving
Then a lost dog, Stella, found us.  We tried to figure out where her home was for several minutes, then her owner showed up with not even a thank you.
Finished up discussion of upcoming trips
Chess Club
My dad

For me it’s like doing the Artist’s Way morning pages but running and using my mouth as my pen.

No ticket to Bean Town today

May 31st, 2009

Marathons are funny.

Marathons are hard.

There is a reason it takes people six swings at it before many get the time they need to go to Boston and live the dream.

The weather was perfect.  In fact, it was beautiful.  My head was on straight.  I was feeling good.

The first half of the race we were on pace, if not a touch fast.  21 minutes in, toe number 4 and five both went numb.  54 minutes in, toes number 3 went numb.  Just remained positive and tried to put it behind the door.

Once we hit Fort Snelling and started running around the lake on a dirt path our times slowed.  It was lonely down there, not a lot of spectators and the run was getting tough.   Then you get to run up a 1.5 mile incline back out, this added insult to injury.  The quads started yelling uncle along with T-odd who was telling us we needed to pick it up and there was not alot of time to give away.

Around mile 19 we got a shot in the arm by seeing our families, these things could not be done without them.  My friend Kuan was on his bike and followed us a long bit of the way and Vincent showed up to cheer Laura on.  I was hoping to get a free dinner invitation to Vincent’s, but no luck.

I’m not sure what mile it was that Laura and I knew this wasn’t going to happen, maybe on the slow incline up, 19, 20, who is to say?

My legs started cramping severely during those last 6 miles.  It was not just my quads, but then my calves got into the action and then came another hill.  Where I ran with my feet locked into a flexed position due to cramping…THAT WAS AWESOME.  But guess what, no toe pain OR bunion pain, they all went back to normal.  Or maybe the cramping just over rode it, does it really matter?

It’s at this point where I am saying to myself, it’s not for lack of training, it’s not because I gave up, it’s not because I am not digging deep enough. 

My mantra for the first half was what Adam told me right before I went to bed, “Whatever you do, don’t give-up.”  My mantra for the second half, “Pain is only temporary!”  Over and over and over.  I came to peace with the fact that I was digging as deep as I could today and that will be good enough.

In the end T-odd finished strong, Laura pulled away and worked her magic like only she can.  And then I saw them, the rest of the running group (plus Becca) waiting almost at the top of the last hill.  They ran me in and they cheered me on and without them I am pretty sure I wouldn’t have made it under 4:00 hours. 3 hours, 59 minutes and 46 seconds to be exact.

Still a PR, so I can’t get too upset.

Marathons are funny.

Marathons are hard.

And for me, marathons take a village.  Hats off to you my village.

Thanks for being there, every last one of you:

Adam, PJ, KP, CT, Roxi, Jay, Becca, Nana, Papa, Ted, Lovie, JC, Teddy, Megan, Jen, Erika, Nathan, Sam, Pete, Ann, Elie, Finn, Kuan, T-odd’s mom and sis and Laura and T-odd.

Positively thinking my glass is half empty

May 28th, 2009

“The difference between the mile and the marathon is the difference between burning your fingers with a match and being slowly roasted over hot coals.”

Hal Higdon

This Sunday is the Minneapolis marathon. The many miles and many hours of training are now done and gone.

We have done everything we can do to ready our bodies for this race, specifically for the goal we are looking to attain. The goal, 3:45.

What’s with 3:45 you ask? That is the Boston qualifying time for old hags like Laura and I. So, when we turn 40, we can be there with bells on. It doesn’t matter to me that it typically takes people 6 attempts before they hit qualifying time. We’ll just disregard that study.

Like I said, we have readied our bodies. T-odd will be pacing us, holding us up with all his witty banter, keeping the monsters at bay and telling us to stop bitching. Mrs. B will be running too. Our families and running buddies will be there like beacons of hope at the top of the hills and around the most important corners.

My mind on the other hand…that is a different story. It gets real dark in those corners when there is pain.

So I just keep telling myself:
It’s going to hurt.
But I have trained.
My toes will start going numb around mile 5 with a burning tingle and move on to utter agony by mile 13.
But I know it is going to happen.
My bunion will be screaming from the start.
But my hot podiatrist and I have done everything we can for it.
I will be exerting myself and pushing myself harder than I ever have at this distance.
But I gave birth naturally to three kids and still lived to tell the tale.
I will get dizzy and tired and think I can’t go on and want to stop.
But I won’t.
I know all these things and will let them go one at a time as they come up, there will not be any surprises (ok that’s a crock of shit).
We have trained hard.
We have trained well.
We can do this.
We will do this.


Let me hear you say it people…

Just funny

May 21st, 2009

The other day during a morning run, T-odd told us about the new tri top he purchased for the upcoming season.  Then he went on to tell us about his struggles gettting it on.

It got even more funny when he blogged about it and added photos.