Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Women Run the Cities 10K 2015 (Dropping Down)

Women Run the Cities 10 mile 10K (6.2 miles)
Average Pace 13:59/mile

So.  Let's be real before I even get into this recap. 

Training for a race is hard.  It isn't always fun.  And for me, lately, running has been a drag.  I'm way slow compared to what I used to be, I get frustrated because of it, and I find I've lost my joy in running a little bit as a result.

I started out training for this race thinking - I got this!  I am SO going to be ready to run a 10 miler in 2 months.  But somehow, in the last few weeks, training got away from me ... and I showed up on race morning for this 10 mile race with my longest run to date being a 5 miler.  Which I completed two weeks ago.  DERP!

With a hard reality facing me, and knowing I have to do this again in one week (thanks to winning the TC 10 mile lotto - whoo hoo!), I made a decision that was a bit disappointing to myself.  I decided to participate in the race, but to remove the timing chip on the back of my bib, and drop down to the 10K distance.

It was a hard decision to make, and felt a bit defeating to my ego, but ... them's the breaks.  You don't train, you can't race.

And so the story begins.


You may recall that I ran Women Run the Cities last year and had a great time.  Since the race was so well organized in 2014, I was really looking forward to running it again in 2015. 

Before I go too far, I have to say -  sometimes, having run a race in the past and repeating it can be a bit of a sand trap.  I say this because, if you had a really good time one year, your expectations can be unrealistically high the following year.  Lucky for me, Women Run the Cities is not one of these instances.  My repeat in 2015 was every bit as fantastic as I could have anticipated, despite my own personal disappointment in my training.

With this being said, at 7 am on race morning, I found myself picking up a friend in Eden Prairie and driving off to the Fort Snelling light rail station.  Taking advantage of the park and ride service provided (for a price, of course), we hopped the train to Minnehaha Falls park, happily avoiding the parking log jam that is that area on event day.  By 7:45 we had parked at the station, caught the train, walked to the event, and found the third person in our party.  Easy-peasy.

Having plenty of time prior to the gun, the three of us spent some time roaming the pre-race party.  There were several booths with freebies - everything from protein drinks to drop bags to massages.  After looking around for awhile, we decided the freebies weren't really worth dealing with (either carrying on course during the race, or putting into gear check to retrieve later), and decided to flee from the ever growing crowd.  This meant heading down into the park, closer to the falls.  Which look like this, in case you've never seen them.

Since the park shelter near the falls offers - gasp - flushing toilets, it proved to be a handy last second, pre race stop.  And since the third person in our party had done packet pickup for us on race day, prior to me arriving, I decided to utilize gear check.  No point in running a race with a brand new shirt.  (I also ditched the jacket I wore pre-race, since it seemed warm enough to manage a tank top during the run ... go RaceRaves, and InkNBurn chameleon capris, lol.)  Gear check was even more efficient than packet pickup, so I was in and out lickety split.

Ok.  Well ... I guess this means time to line up for the race, then?

The race was scheduled to start at 8:30, so at around 8:15 or so the three of us meandered over to the corrals.  Lucky for me, we were all doubting our training.  So, we decided to self-seed towards the back of the pack.  I think, if I recall correctly, the nearest pacer to us had an 11 or 12 minute mile pacing balloon.  I saw that and thought ... works for me!

Some time around 8:30, there was lots of hub-bub at the front of the line.  It was hard to tell, but perhaps they were singing the national anthem?  I dunno.  I do know that some time around 8:35 (or maybe a hair earlier), we finally crossed the mat. 

And away we go!

Having started in the slower section, the first mile seemed both easy and hard at the same time.  Easy, because maintaining a 12 minute mile isn't too hard to do even on lack of training ... but hard because it feels like the next 5 billion miles after that are forever away time wise.  You can just about imagine my surprise, then, when we came across the 1 mile marker in about 7 minutes.

What?  I couldn't even!  My GPS said we had barely cleared 0.5 miles.  How could this be?

Some runners behind us started rejoicing and remarking that - wow, that first mile felt really good, and gee they were excited because this run was going to be a great one for them.  I hated to burst their bubble, but I informed them that everyone's watches around us were reading at a half mile.  As we neared closer to the sign, we realized that ...  Hahahahaha!  Just kidding.  This was the "1 Mile Turnaround" sign.  Blerg.

Prior to the 10K and 10 mile race, at 8am they hosted a 1 mile run for young girls.  Apparently that was their turn around point.  Good for them. Boo for us.  Man, that felt like false advertising.

Despite the let down, the three of us continued on at a conservative pace, chatting along.  Finally, when we cleared the first mile ... for real this time ... I told my friends I was going to take a walk break and waved them on.  From there on out, I was on my own.

Not having any real plan, after a brief walk break, I picked back up an ran with the goal of getting to mile 2 before taking another break.  Unfortunately, I was a little disappointed not much further down the road, since the first water stop was around 1.5 (very odd, and in my opinion, much too early).  Not knowing when my next chance for water would be, I decided to take the stop, slowing to walk so I could drink.

After that, I pulled on my headphones, and started "the game".  You know the one.  Run to a set point, take a walk break, repeat.  Choosing random intervals based on feel, I bumbled through the rest of the race using this method.

Somewhere around what I would guess was 2.5 miles, there was another water stop (why?!  why were they so close together at the beginning and so far apart at the end?!)  Again not knowing when I'd have another opportunity, I took a drink.  It was also at this point that the 10K and 10 mile split.  Hanging a left, I went up and over the bridge and continued on.

Ironically, after crossing the bridge, I found myself running in a crowd of women and listening to a song about how there were "too many dicks on the dance floor".  I couldn't help but snicker the whole song as I ran, knowing that there was hardly a dick to be found in the crowd. 

Not long after that, everything started to turn into a blur.  Rather than think about how much further I had left to go, I tried to focus on my run/walk intervals (which became more and more walk, less and less run).  By the final mile, I was pretty much just walk, and was dawdling at that.  If I recall correctly, as I cleared mile 6, my watch beeped out the current mile interval was 17:XX. 

Eeesssshhh.  That's no good.

On the plus side, I had rounded the final corner of the course and was on the home stretch back into the park.  Though I didn't have the finish gate in my sites, I knew I didn't have much left to go, and decided to put my best effort into running to finish.

And with much spectator cheering all around me, I made it all the way to the mat.  Huzzah!



As I cleared through the finisher's chute, I was given a BOTTLE of water (yes, a bottle - thank god!), and awarded a finishers medal.  Not to be outdone by previous years, this year's medal was equally as cute and featured both a small sun catcher portion and a little dangle at the bottom.


Upon clearing the chute, I was dumped out to a food tent, where I was disgusted by the lack of sportsmanship.  Just in front of me, a more elite runner who had gone back to gear check and retrieved her duffle bag, was pumping the bag full of Lara bars off of the post-race buffet.  She literally took multiple fistfuls.  How rude.  Thankfully, the volunteers were on it and scolded her immediately.  I was so glad to see that.  There is nothing worse than coming in as a late finisher to find out a bunch of jerks ahead of you were greedy pigs, taking three of each item and leaving none for you.

Upon taking my FAIR SHARE of snacks, I headed back to gear check and retrieved my things.  Then, since I had time to kill while my 10 miler friends finished the course, I wandered the vendor booths from the beginning of the day.  And, after some inner debate and realizing the shirt tent still had plenty of leftovers, I went and exchanged my shirt for one size up (I figured since it was a long sleeve, having a slightly larger size might be nice for layering).  The staff there was exceedingly friendly, and happily helped me with the exchange.

The shirt: essentially a maroon version of last year,
with the half zip moved to the side of the neck instead.

Not long after, the rest of my party made it through the finish.  With a fist pump and a few cheers, we celebrated that they managed to run the entire distance.  Then, after they had a chance to enjoy their FAIR SHARE of snacks, we said our goodbyes and headed for home.


And that's the story of how race bib #65 joined my collection.  All in all, Women Run the Cities proved to again be a well run race with volunteers who are not only enthusiastic but also well equipped to do whatever job they are staffed to do.  In fact, I don't doubt that I'll end up running this race again next year.  Though ... the distance may be debatable.  LOL!

Here's to another race soon! 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Recipe: Delicious Way to Use Fresh Tomatoes - Roasted Tomato Base

Ah, summer.  Though it's coming to an end, I am still basking in its glory thanks to my ever fruitful vegetable garden.  For some reason, my tomato plants just don't want to throw in the towel this year, and about once a week I get a healthy 5-8 pounds of romas ripe off the vine.

As you know, I love to can tomatoes, so you think I'd be thrilled to have this ongoing harvest.  But here's the dig ...


That many jars of canned tomatoes took about 50 pounds of fruit.  So getting a meager 5-8 pounds from the garden just doesn't make it worth while to set up another round of canning.

So ... the challenge comes.  What to do with so many ripe tomatoes?  And how do I use them all up with out (1) getting sick of them by the time my next round is ripe to harvest and (2) avoid letting them get over-ripe in the process?

Luckily for me, about a month or so ago I came across a recipe on a woman's blog (who writes mostly about canning).  After reading the recipe, I thought it appeared to be easily scaled to accommodate any size tomato harvest, and figured it would be the perfect solution in helping me consume all this excess produce.  So I thought - why not give it a shot?

Although the recipe was originally written with the intention of it being soup, I took a guess that would work as tomato base for anything - marinara, pizza sauce, and so on.  So I tried it for the first time over labor day weekend while making eggplant parmesan, and I have to say ... loved it!! 

Needless to say, when I had another bountiful harvest again this weekend, I made a second batch for pasta dinner Monday night.

The roasted flavor of this sauce is just wonderful, the ingredients list is exceedingly basic, and using fresh harvested tomatoes you just can't get much healthier!!  As an added bonus, this pairs fantastically with zucchini noodles (if you're so inclined).



Roasted Tomato Base



  • 5-8 pounds Roma tomatoes
  • One large onion
  • Olive oil
  • Oregano
  • Salt


1. Wash tomatoes.  Remove top stem and any imperfections on skin.  Slice in half, and using a spoon, remove the inner seeds.  As you near the final 1/4 of your tomatoes, turn your oven on to 425 degrees.

2. Lay the tomatoes on a cookie sheet, cut side down/skin up.  You can opt to slightly overlap the tomato slices in order to fit more on per sheet, but make sure that at least 1/2 of each tomato's skin is exposed to flame.

3. Drizzle tomato skins with olive oil and place in oven.  You should end up with 1-2 cookie sheets of tomatoes baking at this point.

4. Peel the onion, then slice it into 1/4" thick rounds.  Place on a separate cookie sheet, drizzle with oil, and place in oven.  Be careful when opening the oven once the tomatoes are inside!!  The excess moisture cooking out of the tomatoes sometimes creates a hot steam build up inside the oven, and can scald your face when the oven is first opened.  I recommend carefully venting the oven open and standing to the side for a second, first, before looking inside.

5. Allow vegetables to roast for about an hour or so (timing isn't scientific and will vary depending on the tomato's thickness and how you stacked them on the sheet). 

**Tip - if you are serving this with pasta, start your water to boil after you vegetables have been roasting for about half an hour.  That gives you 15-20 minutes to bring the water to a boil, and 10 minutes or so to cook the pasta.** 

Make sure the onions are further from the heat source than the tomatoes, as they will brown much more quickly.  Keep a careful eye on the onions after the 30 minute mark - you may need to remove them well ahead of the tomatoes to avoid burning them.  Tomatoes are done roasting when they have cooked down and skins are caramelized.  Mine, when done, looked like this:

6. Remove vegetables from oven.  Using tongs or similar, remove onions from cookie sheet and place them in the bottom of a blender.  Then add the tomatoes (with skin still attached) on top of the onions.  Be careful to leave any watery liquid from the tomatoes behind on the tray - you may dispose of it after it has cooled. 

7. Once all roasted vegetables are in the blender, season lightly with salt and oregano - the roasted flavor doesn't require much for additional seasoning.  Place the lid on the blender and pulse until the vegetables reduce into a smooth sauce.  Be careful while blending, the sauce inside will be hot.  You may need to vent the lid once or twice in between pulses to let out built up steam.

8. If you are serving over pasta, serve immediately - while the sauce is still hot.  If you are thinning with stock to make tomato soup, move the sauce into a larger pot and stir in heated broth - again, serve immediately while still hot.  This base also keeps fantastically well in the freezer, so don't be afraid to pack it down into smaller containers to save for future meals.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

A Minor Shift

Hm.  I've been writing this blog now for a little over two years, I think.  Maybe close to two and a half. 

During the time that I've written this blog, I've always tried to keep on a set posting schedule - Monday, Wednesday, Friday.  I set that arbitrary rule because I realized when I started reading others blogs (well before I ever thought I'd start this one), nothing bothered me more than to really get sucked into someone's blog ... only to find out a few days later that they had built up a string of 5-6 posts and blew through their story telling wad ... so they'd disappear for a month straight.  Or longer.

When I set up this blog, I told myself I didn't want to be "that guy".

Regardless of my original goals, in the last few weeks, I've gotten a little busy with other things.  Which has left me a bit deprived from my usual hunt and peck for info that I want to post on this blog.  Not that this is a bad thing - it's good to keep busy.  But it also means that for me, right now, keeping up with 3 posts a week is a bit much.

So starting today, and for the foreseeable future, I am going to change my blog to a 2 post a week set up.  Check in with me each Tuesday and Thursday for news.

And who knows ... maybe I'll make it through this busy spell and switch back to a 3x format.  We'll see!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Suds Run 5K 2015 (Wearin' Jeans)


Suds Run 5K (3.15 miles)
Average Pace ??:??/mile

*untimed course, forgot my gps watch

Last weekend, if you had seen me in the morning, you would have never known it was a race day.  I slept in until 7, got up and showered, and even dried my hair.  Then, with the unseasonably cool weather, I put on a long sleeved shirt, a sweatshirt and ... jeans. 

Yes, I just said jeans.

Ok, so let's set the record straight before I go any further.  I wasn't so much "racing" this event, as I was participating in it with family.  See, we had all registered together for this race earlier in the spring with the intention of most of us running (and a few walking with strollers at the back of the pack).  And then, something terrible happened and ... well, let's just say cancer sucks.

So, like all good families do, when race day arrived - we decided to pull together and walk this race as a team instead.  Regardless of the situation, we were just going to have fun.

Which meant that, at 10am on a cool Saturday morning, we found ourselves here.

Of course, I was reveling in one additional special treat.

I guess when you say beer, my husband will do just about anything.  Heh.

Though the starting area was crowded, things seemed reasonably well organized prior to gun time.  Most of us stood in line for 21+ wristbands (this is a SUDS run, after all), which went quickly and without event.  A few in our group did day of packet pickup, and although that line was a bit longer, it still went just fine.

Well, fine except for the fact that our shirts looked like poop.  Literally.

Ugh, so ugly.  Oh well, I guess I can't love them all.

After everyone in our group was properly bibbed and banded, it was just about time for the gun, so we headed on over to the starting area.  There we saw markers for various paces, starting at 8min/mile or better and working backwards to 12min+.  Though the race was fairly casual, with no assigned corrals, people seemed fairly respectful of the system and looked to be choosing appropriately.  With the seeding system as it lay, we found ourselves behind the dogs in the walkers/stroller section. 

Despite being in the very back corral, we were pleasantly surprised by a timely release, and before we knew it we were on our way and crossing the Stone Arch Bridge.

Though I've done several races downtown that utilize the Stone Arch Bridge, I have to say that this course was slightly more interesting than many I've done before.  Maybe not so much in the beginning, but later on the course does filter into Boom Island Park and through the trail system there, which is really a beautiful wooded treat.

Along the course we all happily chatted and tried to keep the munchkins in the stroller entertained.  As we walked, we were pleasantly surprised that the cool morning was turning out to be a lovely and sunny day.  In fact by the time we cleared mile one, I was regretting wearing a sweatshirt and long sleeved shirt, and was secretly wishing I would have had the poopy race t-shirt with me to change into on course.  But I didn't, so I just shed my sweatshirt and hoped for the best.

By the time we cleared mile two, we were definitely ready for the on course beer garden, and happily herded in to have some fun.  The dedicated area was surprisingly large, below is only about half of the space captured via the panoramic feature on my iPhone.

Of course, it's not a party without some photo evidence.  Notice the "Duck, Duck, Gray Duck"' costumed group behind us.  It was fun to see people get into the spirit and have a little fun.

Surprisingly, though we walked and were definitely at the back of the pack, we were neither the first ones in, nor the last ones out of the beer garden.  Maybe the nearby band encouraged people to stay an loiter, I don't know.  But after the beer cups were emptied, we were ready to be on our way.

The final mile (or what was left of it, since the beer garden was well past the 2 mile mark) was a very pleasant journey along the Boom Island trail system and then a short jaunt back to the starting line.  Before we knew it, we were near the finish. 

A few in our group had started to lag behind, but my husband, myself, and the two who had originally planned to run with me excitedly held hands and raised them in victory as we passed through the finish line.  There, we promptly hustled over to the snack table and - screw bananas - filled our pockets with mini nut goodies.

After everyone cleared the finish, we headed into the park for our free post race lunch and second round of beers (our bibs included 2 beer tickets each).  Lunch, by the time we got there, consisted of your choice of a veggie burger or non-veggie brat and a bag of plain potato chips.  Beer options included a few light versions - Miller and maybe MGD?  I don't recall as I don't drink water when I want beer, lol!  Plus, there was a gluten free option, and then Smithwick's or Finnegan's.  In addition to this bounty, there was a water station and a root beer station as well, though the root beer had run out well before our arrival - a huge disappointment for any kids walking the course (perhaps they should have required people to cash in their drink ticket for it instead of just pumping it freely?)

As we feasted, we enjoyed watching the costume contest, and also people in the "suds pit".  Which eventually proved irresistible for a few in our party.

Finally, after lounging in the grass and enjoying the sun for maybe an hour post race, it was finally time to call it a day.  So, we said our goodbyes, and headed for home.


And that's the story of how race bib #64 joined my collection - here's to another race soon! 

Monday, September 14, 2015

The Marilyn Myth

How many of you have seen a quote something along the lines of this?

Yes, I have too.  Though the size seems to fluctuate when I hear it, anywhere from a size 12 to a size 16.

Every time I see some sort of motivational quote about body acceptance and beauty standards that ties in Marilyn Monroe, I get super frustrated.  Not because the concept is wrong - I whole heartedly agree that you should accept who you are.  I get frustrated because beauty standards have not changed over the years like people try to say they have.  And here's a photo example of why:

Wait, wait, wait - how can this be?  What is going on above?  Is this a visual trick?

Nope, check this out:

"In 1945, a 19-year-old Norma Jeane signed up with modeling agency Blue Book. The receptionist wrote down her measurements as 36-24-34, which at 5’5” and 118 pounds would be considered, by today’s BMI standards, a completely healthy, average size. But even then, the head of the company referred to her as "too plump, but in a beautiful way." Another note from the receptionist: "Size 12.""

OK, so yes - even in the 40's, Marilyn was considered "plump" via fashion standards.  But let's compare her to some modern day divas:

Throwing Marilyn into the above shows that there's really not much different in the spectrum of what we consider attractive today, right?  Yes, we could say that someone like Cameron Diaz would look like Twiggy compared to the women above, but again ... even Marilyn was considered curvy by media standards back in the 1940's, so let's just compare like with like here.  No "Twiggies" allowed.

Also, before we move away from the above, I want to point out something interesting - look at Marilyn's measurements compared to Beyoncé.  Yet no one is using Beyoncé as some sort of plus sized fashion icon ... right?  Why is that?  Well, simply put, Beyoncé would never be measured at a 12+ using today's sizing standards.

How is that true?  How could Marilyn be recorded as a 12-16 size and Beyoncé never larger than ... oh, maybe an 8? 

To address that question, let's talk about how Marilyn was sized in the 1940's, and the introduction of vanity sizing in consumer fashion in the early 1980's.

"Before World War II, women's clothing was mass-produced with the same sizing mindset as men's—the only measurement taken into account was the chest. While an assessment of the chest measurement can roughly deduce the proportions of the rest of the body for menswear, that obviously doesn't hold true for women. Following the war, more standard measurements were put in place for women's wear, and in the 1950s, a commercial standard was set. Women's clothing for off-the-rack production would range from 8 to 38 based first on bust, and then height, hips, and girth. There was no such thing as a sizes 0 through 6.

This sizing was standard through the early 1980s when it was withdrawn—companies noticed that appealing to one's vanity helped with sales (which still holds true today). The private standards organization ASTM International, which publishes annual updates for clothing manufactures, regularly accommodates for this size inflation. As the size and shape of the average American woman began to change, so did the vanity sizing aimed at soothing egos. While a size 8 was considered the smallest available in 1958 when the initial sizing standards were put into effect, an 8 corresponded to roughly a 31-24-33 body. By 2008, a size 8 had increased by five to six inches for each of those measurements. By 2011, the ASTM even had a standard size 00."

So ... there you have it.  Sizes have changed.  And Marilyn was never "plus" sized. 

So please stop using her as a plus sized inspirational icon.


If you want to read more of the source article, which I quoted above and which inspired this post, check out this article.

Friday, September 11, 2015

How the French Eat

Over Labor Day weekend, I spent some time reading articles online and came across something I was slightly dubious about at first.  The article was titled:

Yeah, yeah - I thought.  I've heard this before.  The French women all drink loads of wine and eat tons of cheese and bread, and yet they stay so slim.  It must be because we American women are doing it wrong.


But, of course, I was curious.  So I clicked on the article.  And ... I was kind of impressed.  Not only did the list emphasize slowing down and focusing on your eating, it also touched on being mindful of your eating ... and it mentioned that we should actually be thinking about how WHAT WE EAT later effects how it MAKES US FEEL.  It's that last bit that a lot of people miss when it comes to healthy eating and nutrition, and I was thrilled to see it added to the list.

Below are the 17 items, without the breakdowns included, for your review.  If they catch your interest and you want to read more, click on the article title above for the full article.

Have a good weekend!!


1. Set your intention for the day.
2. Decide your daily mealtimes and stick to them.
3. Keep breakfast simple. 
4. Don’t skip meals. 
5. No matter how simple a dish is, savor it and eat slowly. 
6. Sit down! 
7. Don’t be scared of a “large-ish” lunch. 
8. Power down during meals. (*Turn off cellphones and other distractions)
9. Do not mindlessly snack.
10. Let hunger in calmly.
11. Stop eating meals on the go.
12. Let your family know when the kitchen is closed.
13. Set the scene. (*Use nice dishes, proper silverware, attractive linens, etc)
14. Eat with your eyes and your mouth.
15. Be mindful of where food comes from. 
16. Be aware of how food makes you feel. 
17. Digestion is a national obsession.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Lake Run 5K 2015 (Burpin' Up)

Lake Run 5K (3.15 miles)
Average Pace 12:29/mile

Ah, the Lake Run ... my age grade placement nemesis 5 years in the making:

2nd in my age category (never to be repeated, boo)

On the plus side, look at that thigh muscle definition - ra-ow!
Oh, and note the InkNBurn, of course

As you can tell based on photos, the temperature of this race has varied quite a bit over the years - with a pre-race hoodie required in 2013 and 2014.  So of course, the year where I'm feeling marginally sick pre-gun, it had to be so hot I wore shorts.  And was sweating prior to even lining up.  Barf.  (Well, not at the beginning of the race, but ... stay tuned).


Since I've run this race 5 years in a row now, and it's just a small town local event, I showed up with little time to spare on race day.  With about 20 minutes until the gun, I scrambled over to the pre-registered packet pickup area and grabbed my swag:

Yeah, the shirt was more or less the same shirt from the last two years, with the only difference being color.  Here's last year's shirt for reference (2013 was the same design as well, with a slate blue t base):

I sure do wish they could come up with a more unique and sleeker looking design.  I dunno, say ... something like this:

Oh if I were king.  But I'm not.  So ... anyway.


As I was saying, I wasn't feeling so great prior to this run.  I had a fairly acid stomach and was suffering lots of ... burps. 

Lady like, I know.  Sorry.

Unfortunately, the stomach didn't settle, and when I lined up for this race I had some serious thoughts of posting my first ever DNS.  Between the heat and humidity, and the off stomach, I really wasn't feeling it.  As the national anthem was played live on trumpet, I may have shed a tear ... only because, I really didn't want to run.

Bang!  No turning back now.   Time to go.

I've mentioned in my previous year's recaps, this is not a very eventful race course.  It's fairly flat and boring, and although you are running the lake ... you never really see it from the road, as cabins and trees block your view the entire way.  Also, there's very little crowd support (almost none really).  And the participant pool is small, so there's not many people around you to watch as you run, either.  So, as I slogged through my first mile and I burped my acid stomach away, I regretted my decision to run this race yet again in 2015.

Truly, this isn't a BAD race, it's just not particularly exciting or interesting. My only real reason for running it again this year was the fact that signing up for this race would force me to get in some sort of workout over labor day weekend.  Otherwise, I'd be sitting at the cabin getting fat.  So as I hit about mile 0.5 or 0.75ish and burped ... a bit more than a burp ... I was not loving life.  And was REALLY wishing for some on course distractions.  Which unfortunately never came.

That made fighting off the urge to puke in mile one a bit of a challenge, that's for sure.

Trying to find something else distract myself, I decided to focus on the deal I hade made with myself pre-race: I was going to TRY to continuously run at least the first mile.  Mostly because I wanted my misery over with as quickly as possible, but also because I didn't want my time to suck too bad. 

Luckily for me, I managed that goal. Though, depending on your definition of "running" (pace), you may dispute me a bit on that statement:

Once I completed mile one, the course became a game of "how far can I run until I NEED to walk".  Fortunately, I was able to mentally push myself a bit, and I did an OK job of winning at that game.  As you can see on the chart below, I managed actually to "run" a fair percentage of the course, with only a minor walk break at the end of the first mile, an extended slow down at the turn around point (lets face it, after those fabulous burps, I needed to drink some water), another walk break around the end of mile 2, and then two brief walk breaks in mile three before finishing strong in the final stretch.

Not too shabby, though I do wish I could have done better.  Seeing the 38 and change on my watch when I pulled into the finish line was a bit of a let down.  I did feel a bit better when the woman taking our bib tags complemented my shirt.  And even better yet when the timing official said "Oh yeah, that's Natalie.  She's always wearing something, and runs all our races.  She's like a local celebrity."  Heh.

Sweating profusely, after the steps were taken to record my official time, I headed directly to the refreshments tent.  There, I promptly downed three or four paper cups of water.  Unfortunately though, all the food on the table just didn't do much for my upset stomach, so I declined.

Once I knew the water was staying down, and my sweating had subsided some, I decided to head on out.  With a 38+ minute finish, I knew I'd never take an age placement.  And honestly, I just wanted to get home and shower.

Which by the way, felt fantastic ... and was followed by a 2 hour nap.  Huzzah!


And that's the story of how race bib #63 joined my collection.  Here's to another race soon... next weekend, yikes!  Hopefully this race goes better!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Mini Hiatus

For the last few days I've been debating what my upcoming posts should be on this blog.  It's not that I'm struggling for content so much as ... I don't want to just write something to fill a hole.  Yes, I set a goal to publish on this blog every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  But the flip side of that is, I don't want to just publish crap.

With that in mind, I'm going to take a mini hiatus until next Wednesday when I have my next race report ready.

Until then - go get a workout in!