Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Cleansing Diet's that time again.

Master Cleanser, Lemonade Diet, Beyonce Diet Neera Super Cleanse

I'm starting the cleansing today.....and plugging away on it for 5 don't say anything that will make me cranky!!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Saturday Long Run

where I ran on Saturday for 3 hours............

where I was running two weeks ago.......
Life isn't fair!!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Drugs In Sports

In light of what's going on with the drug exposure in baseball--I found a very interesting commentary from Joan Nesbit Mabe regarding our sport:

songs of experience » Drugs Killed Ryan Shay

May we all enjoy our sport, and every sport, honestly some day.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Tucson Marathon

I arrived in Tucson the day before the Marathon and was thrilled to see the magnificent hotel we were staying at! The Hilton El Conquistidor was surrounded by mountains with a glorious long-drive entering the compound. I splurged on the room as this was my 50th birthday celebration to myself!!

We all met up at the Expo and got our race bags. Coach Lisa was manning the table with race accessories to buy, so I introduced myself! It was great to finally meet her!! She introduced me to her friend, Greg, who was helping her out and running his first Marathon the next day. And she introduced me to one of her clients, manning the Muscle Release Spray booth, also running his first marathon. I, of course, bought his product to keep in my drop bag for the end of the race (it works to relieve muscle aches and pain).

Afterwards, my running group went for snacks in the hotel lobby (where this pic was taken) and shared our excitement for the next day. Three of us were running the Marathon, the other four were doing the half marathon. One was shooting to qualify for Boston, as she obviously couldn't do it at the Chicago Marathon, and this race offered us disappointed Chicago Marathoners a discount for entry. Thanks Race Directors!!

We all had signed up for the pasta dinner, so after running back to our rooms, we met back there. It was a fun dinner, the MC was very engaging and almost all of us got prizes! I got mine for having a close birthday (a hat and a running bottle with a handle!).

A crazed gal ran into the room while all this was going on and stated she had just been proposed to! It took her awhile to catch her breath and state this, and the MC was pretty nervous as to what he was dealing with. She flew out of the room as quickly as she flew in, and we were all in a state of amazement over her looney approach. The MC regained composure and we all had a good chuckle over it.

Shortly after we all went back to our rooms to prepare for a hopefully sleepful night. I decided to order room service then, as it wouldn't be open at 4 am (we had to catch the bus to the start by 5am). Luckily, they were okay with getting me a pb&j sandwich and a banana (Elvis would be envious).

I slept well, woke up, got dressed and headed out to the buses. I wished the half marathoners good luck and we parted ways. I didn't know anyone on the bus, so I chatted with the gal next to me (running her first marathon and hoping to BQ) ate my breakfast and watched outside for the sunrise. The driver stopped a couple of times to check his map. Ohoh! Sure enough, he got to the top of a mountain, tried to turn around and then asked us all to disembark since he was stuck in mud!! Now this was an adventure!!

We all got off the bus, cheered him on as he got out of the mud and tried to get our cell phones to find service as the driver was lost! Well, no luck with the phones--but the driver called to the front of the bus one of the runners that had told him she had driven the course the day before. He found the correct turnoff (he was wearing s Sox hat--so no wonder he couldn't find his way!!!) and we finally got to the lineup with the rest of the buses with 45 minutes before the start.

I stayed on the bus to remain warm, sipping on my newly won water bottle and watching the sunrise. Well, if you've never been to the Southwest, do put it on your list!! The sun rises creating all different shades of reds, oranges and the shadows on the mountains just leave you breathless. No wonder Georgie O'Keefe settled close by to paint her magnificent portraits.

I finally got off the bus and trecked up the hill to the first two buses which were where we had to leave our drop bags. I lined up at the back of the runners, knowing that this was my first non-flat race, and the hill was probably going to be my great challenge.

We listened to the "On your mark, get set, GO" guy, and took off, realizing that we never sang the National Anthem!! ohoh---don't let us be jinxed now!!

I had my running orders from Lisa---just run/walk for the first five miles at a pace that allows you to talk. Okay---talking down the mountain was a challenge, so I walked more than I would have liked. I found myself at the back-of-the-pack quickly and started chatting with three big guys who were running together and having quite the good time. I also met a former Chicagoan, doing the relay, who filled me in on his new life in Tucson. (Did I mention that I was considering Tucson as a place to retire and this was one reason for coming here???) So he told me how much he loved it here, and I discovered I was running waaaaay too fast and slowed myself up ( 1 1/2 minutes faster than I'm supposed to!! ohoh)

We all kind of ran close to each other and soon picked up another guy at our pace. This guy was all bundled up around his head and stated this was his first marathon and the longest he'd run was 13 miles. I told him to stick with me and I'd get him through. After chatting a bit, I realized he was one of the guys Coach Lisa introduced me to, so we now had a lot more to talk about.

He, Greg, was carrying two water bottles and was not a happy camper over how much Lisa had told him to drink. He soon needed a potty break, with no porta potties in sight. I told him to just head off the trail a bit, and I'd walk so he could catch up to me. Well....when he caught back up his legs were all scratched and bleeding!! My "Nursey Hat" immediately flew on my head, and I offered to clean him up, but he refused, stating he was really okay, it was just stinging. So I "chucked that hat" off and resumed being a runner. Meanwhile, Greg started entertaining me with some of his wild life stories, and I found myself not paying attention to my watch and giggling and loving the scenery way too much!!!

The 10-14 mile section of the race is uphill and downhill and I decided to mostly walk the uphill. We soon found ourselves at the back of the runners, with about only 7 people behind us!! We also had to stop at each porta potty so Greg could get rid of all the water Lisa was pushing down his throat! Though I must admit, one stop had me using the potty too!! Well, I realized I was waaaay behind the time I was shooting for, so I decided this race was going to be about totally enjoying myself and just getting through it.

I started to get tired around the 21 miler mark, and Greg, who probably could have taken off ahead of me, stayed with me to keep me going!! Boy how quickly the tables can turn!! We met up with two guys, one who was 19 and not trained for the race, but being coached by a friend, and kept up with them a bit, but the competitive Lora decided to blow the 19-year old out of the water, so Greg and I took off, leaving him to eat our dust! (in reality I came in only about 2 minutes before him but I just love that "eat my dust" saying!!).

At around mile 24, the medic on the bike came by us to see if we were okay. By now, the truck was coming by to pick up the cones off the street!! I yelled at the driver, but he ignored me! Hey---we're still out here!! And we didn't know where to go!!! The biker Doc said he'd meet us up ahead where the turn into residential streets was supposed to happen.

Well, we got there ahead of him, but saw him up ahead, so we made the turn. The truck that follows the racers was there and asked us if we wanted a ride in. NO WAY!!! Greg didn't care about his time, he just wanted to finish. So we just trudged in, and at around mile 26, I got a call from one of my Chicago runners asking if I was okay. I told him I was almost there and they all came to see me run in. Greg finally took off ahead of me, and made it in one minute before me.

So my time???? 6:22!!! Crazy I know---but I just loved this race, I had a wonderful time and didn't care that I blew my goal AND the race ended at 6 hours!! Know what?? I just love that I can be out there, meet new people and have the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful scenery that Mother Nature has bestowed on us. I also love that I have this attitude. Gratitude! That's what it's all about for me now. Thank you legs for letting me do all these races! I'm happy where I'm at---and I have lots ahead of me in terms of running. I'll fill you in soon!

In the meantime----I'm training for Rocky Raccoon 50-miler! It's another present to myself. Fifty miles for my 50th year!! No time constraints!! I just want to get out there and do it without any injuries. So here we go again...............

Friday, November 09, 2007

Go Bears!!

Bears party this Sunday with some wild running friends above. Making my favorite salsa dish. Can't wait!!!
Sometimes ya just gotta party!!!!!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Whole different way to Train

It's been an interesting ride with my Coach. I keep having to ask her if I'll be ready for this upcoming marathon. Four weeks away, and no recent 20 miler!!! But she says I'm ready.

I did a lot of Saturday and Sunday long runs. Lots of cross training during the week. And now I'm focusing on getting my Quads strong as the course is all downhill. Hard to find hills in Chicago to train on, but they have a man made one on the lakefront. So this past Saturday I ran up and down it for 2 3/4 hours. Hope that counts!!!

My weight stays the same, but I'm tightening up. I've gotten real tired of watching the calories (or Points--25 nurses at work have joined Weight Watchers, so the meeting is at our office!) I joined in with the group.....but I'm not behaving!! I'm supposed to get 7 points for my workout days, but the leader says we can't take more than 4!! What's up with that???!!! I'm hungry, damnit!

So I'm rebelling from the "diet" and just eating healthy (well, don't count the animal crackers I like to munch on late at night!)

I guess I'll just stay a size 8---cant complain about that now, can I???

I've gotten a small group of runners to continue on from the half marathon training program. We do monthly pot luck dinners, and now we started a book club. First book is, "Eat, Pray, Love" (my suggestion). Four are coming with me to Tucson to do the half marathon. I'm loving this!!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Body Changes.....FINALLY!!!

I'm finally starting to see the effects of all my hard work. My body is firming up -- blows me away actually because I've started to believe that I'm just too old to ever see the body I've always dreamed of---well, ladies and gents....I am here to announce it is NEVER too late!!!

Today's workout:
20 mins on treadmill with incline
20 mins on stairmaster
10 mins on rower

10 mins stretching
3x (5 frog hops and 5 mountain climbers)
2 x 2 min wall-sit

No wonder this body is changing!!!!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Chicago Marathon cont.....

Great headgear, huh!! Glad I'm familiar with the Badwater Marathon for that extra clothing idea!! And that bump on the top of my head--ICE ICE BABY!!!!
Well....I'm just kinda in shock over this whole experience. I only found one water stop that ran out of water....I don't use the Gatorade, so I have no clue what was going on there. The runners behind me must not have had water though, since, at my pace, we were grabbing whatever was left.
I do believe the water stops were not prepared and that there should have been sprinklers and ice at each one. The weather was no surprise, the forecast had stayed the same for the past five days. So how could the race officials not have had time to prepare. They also knew how many 1st timers there were out there. Those are the ones that most need to be helped out.
Thank goodness for the spectators! They were fabulous! Bringing us water, ice and turning their sprinklers on! I had my salt tablets and GU every 45 minutes, and Sharkies every hour. I brought Heed in plastic bags to empty into my water bottle, so my calories were okay.
Some people ignored the police telling them to quit and went all the way through. I'm not that kind of a rebel (anymore). I decided at the 3 mile mark (the second water stop) that this "race" was going to be a fun one and time had no significance......I just wanted to finish. I wanted to enjoy this race. I removed my earphones, and just took in the crowds. Being my third Chicago Marathon, I pretty much knew what was out there.....but this was one wild day, and I didn't want to miss what was happening!!
The firemen!! I can't say enough about them. They were out there on their engines, spraying us down!!! On the ground handing us water. Someone near me stated they just wanted to see the chicks in wet tee shirts, but I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt! Thank you Chicago Firefighters!! You were awesome!!
The police!! Yes....they made me stop. But they were very busy keeping an eye on each runner that fell, waiting for an ambulance to come and help.
The Chicagoans!!! Wow!! What a big heart these folks have!! Great big thanks to the people of Chicago for pulling us through!!
All my friends made it in okay. No casualties here!
Now check out this video Blogger Todd is the big guy getting interviewed, AND, my pace leader for my first marathon is the guy at the end who takes off his glasses!
It seems the man who died had a heart defect that had nothing to do with the weather. My sympathies go out to his family.
More and more people are taking up running. I support that 100%. But there doesnt seem to be a need to keep increasing the size of a marathon. This year had 5000 more than last year! It took me 25 minutes to get to the start line. Thats just insanity!!
So what have I learned from all this? Maybe it's time to learn to run with a camelbak!

Chicago Marathon

I'm okay. I'll add more later. Just a crazy day out there! I was forced to stop at Mile 16. While I trained for an 11:20 pace, I had to hit a 13 mile pace by mile 3. They had no water at the seconde water stop.

People were going off track to hit the water fountains on the lakefront path, some bought water in the stores.

By the third water stop, we were all over the people with the big water containers. They didn't even have time to fill the glasses. Neighbors were bringing out water, turning their hoses on. Every medical tent was filled. They ran out of ambulances!

Firemen turned on the hydrants and hosed us down and finally blocked the streets off at Mile 16 and made us walk in 4 miles to the finish. All the hydrants were open the entire 4 miles! It was nuts!!

But I'm okay--much too sore for only 16 miles! Crazy experience!!!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Marathon Eve

Prep time!!
Went to the Expo today and tried to zip through it quickly, as Coach suggested, but you know how that goes.
There were great deals on boxes of Gu and boxes of Nuun tablets that I HAD to search around for them.
And since RED is my fav color...and lo and behold a booth for "Dirty Red Athletic Wear for Women" appeared, I just had to hit that place!!
Well....I gotta say I'm nervous. The forecast is for a high of 88F. Not good. I'm hoping to meet up with Haight at the half way mark and further on down so he can pass me ice in a bandana. Hopefully, kind souls along the way will provide us with ice.
And I have something wonderful to look forward to. Rene, who ran with me two years ago at this marathon, and has been healing from her pelvic fracture ever since, has just gotten back to running and will run me in the last few miles!!!! She was my lifesaver when I hit the wall way back then. So I'm sooo looking forward to having her run me in.
I am dedicating Mile 21 to my wonderful Coach who is presently sitting on her butt pedaling her bike across the desert to accomplish another one of her amazing goals. And mile 25 is dedicated to Jack, who today ran his first Ultra back on our home shores.
So I'll have plenty to think about. I have strict instructions from Coach on eating and hydrating every 40 minutes which I'll have to write on my hand so I don't forget.
And tonight is another cooooooold bath. BRRRR! I think that's the absolutely worst part of long-distance running!!!
Here's to tomorrow and whatever it brings!!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

tapering and carb loading

It's going to be a long week! Gotta get in lots of carbs. Here's my marathon group at breakfast after our last run together. They're all focusing hard on the menu. I think the restaurant is still getting over our visit!

Haight is doing a 5K tomorrow. He picked up his race packet today and the jacket they put in it (and a hat too!!!!) was too small for him.

Lucky me!!!!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Future Race...

I put my 2009 wild goal race to do on the sidebar.

Lord help me now!!!!!! When does the craziness end?????

Friday, September 21, 2007

Why I Run....

I run because I need to feel deeply. I don't like to spend day after day just shuffling along with the average Joes. I need depth of emotions, soulful experiences, powerful situations and deep moments of appreciation. It took me a long time to understand's why I love being a nurse of folks trying to live comfortably through the last years of life. It's why I love supervising the nurses that give hard to these fascinating folks.

And I need to remind myself of that. It came back to me strong this past week. I was off one week of work to spend time with my Mom visiting from NJ, and to share the holiday meaningfully with my family. It was a great week---just quality time with those I love most dearly. But I missed my work family too. So it was rewarding getting back to work this past week.

But my running has been disappointing me. I fell off the wagon, so to speak. I forgot why I run. I've been following my wonderful Coach's training program, and I'm loving it, but I started to get very worried that I won't be able to do the Chicago Marathon under my goal of 5 hours.

So Coach Lisa had to shake me up--I got my pep talk. I remember now why I run. And I will run--for my depth of feelings will get me to do what I need to do so that I can be awash with those emotions throughout those 5 hours. Just watch me!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Chicago Half Marathon Results

Well....I bonked at 8 miles!! All was going okay....I got there early, met up with my friends at the RoadRunner tent, even bumped into two bloggers, Denise and Josh!! (I stole this pic from her site---thanks Denise!!)

But I should have realized the day was going to be an "off" one when I took my digital camera but left the battery in the charger on the wall!! I used my phone's camera, but I don't know how to get those pics on here (geeks out there help!! I think that's Travis for sure) AND---I lost my garmin 305!! That made me real anxious as this pace was a bit faster than I run naturally, so I was concerned about keeping pace (not a good thing for a pacer!!). Two strikes for me already!!

The pacers lined up and I was asked lots of questions by the runners. This year they used different colors for the race numbers--white if this was your first time doing this race, blue if you're an old-timer. So it was helpful in answering questions, Soooo many first-timers!!! The race this year had 2000 more runners!! The marathon has 5000 more runners!! This sport is going wild!!

A man came by with a camera, saying he was from AP, and took our pics. He said he'd email them to me, but I have yet to see them.

Many of the runners I trained for this race were sticking with me. I was excited to have them around as I really wanted to see them come in on time. I found a girl with a nike whachamacallit that keeps the pace, and asked if she'd run right next to me. She was happy to do so (She'd probably regret it later as you'll see).

We took off and I had a large crowd around me. It was already in the mid 60's and I warned everyone to keep hydrated throughout the race. The first few miles went real well, and then we hit Lake Shore Drive, which is an 8 mile loop in the steaming sun. Haight met me at the 4 mile mark with a new water bottle filled with Succeed Ultra, but I forgot to tell him to give me the extra S!Caps, which may have really cost me.

As we neared 7 miles, I started to get a little lightheaded. That's when I realized I didn't have the extra salt tablets. Damn!! I drank a lot but I just got more dizzy and then the chills started. That's where I draw the line, so by mile 8, I gave my pacer stick to the sweet girl with the Nike thingamajig and told her to just keep going! Her look was priceless!!!

I went over to the side and put my head down. Meanwhile in the background there was the sirens from emergency vehicles for the past 10 minutes blaring at us. I was hoping I wouldn't need an IV, so I paid close attention to my symptoms. When I felt a bit better, I started walking.

I met up with one of my runners I trained who was having bad IT problems and we walked in. His partner was on the sidelines around 9 1/2 miles and I left when I finally found my Mom and Haight. Mom was very worried, but she was counting on the fact that I never do anything that would endanger me (as far as she knew!!) and was hoping if I didn't feel good I would have just stopped.

I walked back to the Roadrunners tent, deciding not to finish the race. I was actually very okay with what happened to me, I was just worried that my pace group wouldn't make it in.

BUT THEY DID!! They bonded together and kept each other going. I waited for everyone to get to the tent and I was beaming at all of them! They were just so proud of themselves--it was great to see!!!

The next morning I woke up with a sore throat, so I may have been running with a slight fever, as I was sweating like crazy.

I emailed Coach Lisa and she recommended new salt tablets and electrolytes just to make sure. I'm waiting for them to come in the mail.

The Chicago Marathon is in 4 weeks, so I'll work on getting my act together before then. Today is a 1:20 run with speed surges. I'll see how that goes.

In the meantime, I have to order a new Garmin!! Damn it, Janet!! (do you know what show that's from?)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Purchases :)

So Coach Lisa advised me how to avoid the messes I got into at Howl. I now own Kineses Sunscreen spray and three pairs of Injinji socks. No more sunburns or blisters for this girl!!

While I had the credit card going, I finally went for a Running Skirt. Girls---if you haven't tried one, check it out!! Running Skirt, GymGirl, MarathonGirl, Nicole DeBoom, SkirtSports, TRIKS I'm really loving it!

And just what is that necklace you see above?? Well, I went to the Expo for the Accenture Triathlon here in Chicago to see all the "stuff" and found a wonderful exhibitor called, "I Run Like A Girl". I just had to have their necklace!!

Yesterday was my hardest track workout. 1 miles x 3, with as long as I wanted in between. I pushed myself to make each mile harder, but cut it short on the last mile as I lost all my steam. I'll ease up a bit next week.

Today is an easy hour run with 10 minutes on stairs. Then a day of rest!! Am I the only one loving the rest days???!!!

This Saturday is the last run with the Half Marathon training group. I've really loved being out there with their wonderful enthusiasm. A handful will continue training with me as we head towards the Tucson Marathon. It's been a great ride so far.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


30:2 Those are the magic numbers. Thirty compressions for every two breaths. Remember them!!
A blogger recently collapsed and needed CPR here in Chicago. So realizing it was used twice in just a few weeks, I thought it would be smart to pass on to all the runners out there the importance of learning it.
We pass our time in a sport that requires we know this. You can contact your local Red Cross to find a course in your area.
If you do nothing else, read it and remember!! And pass it on to your loved ones!!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Howl At The Moon

What a wild day this was! We arrived 45 minutes before Start time, having stayed at a nearby hotel. Tents were set up all around the Start, with people finishing up their morning coffee, stretching and getting over to the scorer who kept track of your laps, to sign in. I found my friends and we schmoozed a bit and then Haight set up the area where I would stop at each lap to refill my Succeed powder, grab a GU and do anything else I needed. My own personal aid station. Everyone had one, it was great after each 3.29 loop, even though they had a "Margueritaville" aid station halfway. Always nice to have your own personal stuff available.

It was going to be a hot day. Temps were expected to hit the lower 90's. I planned on drinking my water bottle with each lap, along with having a GU and a salt tablet. I had never eaten anything else on a long run, so I wasn't sure about the aid station food. I was going to try the food available and see how my stomach handled it--good test for my 50-miler.

300 people started out - runners and walkers alike. The walkers had numbers on their backs so you could "report" them if you saw them running, which would lead to disqualification. We all took off--very casual start, which is the great part about Ultras.

As I was around the 2 mile mark, I saw a group of people on the side, some kneeling over someone. A man was down---and they were doing CPR on him! I got closer to see if they needed a nurse and found out an EMT was doing compressions, and Juli A, an oncology RN, (that's her in the pic with me) was doing the ambulance had already been called and the RD was being notified. I didn't think it would help if the crowd got larger around him, so I took off with a heavy heart. I said a little prayer for him. Unfortunately, we found out later he didn't make it-- two others would need to go to the hospital before the day was out, but they were okay.

I continued to follow the 3:2 run:walk then 10 minute walk that Coach Lisa prescribed for me. I walked a bit more, feeling that my longest run of 13 miles wasn't really enough and the heat was certainly a cause for concern.

I found Todd along the trail and stayed with him for quite a few laps. At the Margueritaville aid station, I dosed my head and body with the cold water they provided from a hose. I screamed each time, but asked for more. After about the fourth lap, I decided to try the food. I went for the cooked potatoes in salt. mmmmmm---perfect! The next lap, I tried it again along with the cookies. My stomach held up real well. I never felt lightheaded, so I knew I was taking in enough water and electrolytes.

The last lap I pulled Haight to join me for a walk. It was the only lap I fully walked. My feet were hurting so much. They felt like they were boiling in my socks and shoes. I wished I had brought my Keen sandles as they would have been perfect for the last few laps.

I did 8 laps--just a smidge over a marathon. I never expected I could do that. I was actually hoping I could last 20 miles, so this was a great accomplishment. I never "hit the wall". I realized how strong I've become and how well my training has been going.

The best part was taking my shoes and socks off!! Oh heaven!! Though I discovered I had a blister on each foot. I popped them, applied neosporin and covered them up. My first blisters!!

Afterwards, we all went to the 4-person outdoor shower to wash off the salt. We were all a saltlick of our own! The line for the shower was long, as we shared stories and watched those ahead of us soap up.

Most people were staying the extra night in their tents. Haight and I had no idea this was a weekend party, so next year we'll be more prepared.

A wonderful experience--with great jobs by all the volunteers and an awesome RD. My thoughts go out to the family and loved ones of the runner we lost. He was in his early 50's -- way too young, though the RD said he was a lover of the trails and if he had his choice of how to go, it would be this way. Still.........

Friday, August 10, 2007

Day Before Howl at the Moon: 8 Hour Race

We leave tonight for Howl at the Moon! It's a 3 1/2 hour drive, and I remember Rob, Running Further, telling me you're not supposed to drive further than the race distance, so I think I have that right this time!!

I'm having the usual dreams of forgetting my water bottle, getting lost in the woods and not having my running shoes with me. Now I know I'm really excited!!

I don't know what to expect and that's part of the fun. I have never tried anything like this so I'm just going to enjoy the experience and see what the day holds for me.

Coach Lisa instructed me to do a run/walk at 3/2 minutes with a ten-minute walk and to rest for 5 minutes each hour. Then, when I really have to, just walk. So those are my orders and I'll stick with it.

Haight has his lounge chair all ready -- and the cooler will be filled with his favorite beer. Why do I feel he may have the better deal here????? What a lucky man he is!

Interesting info: the website states that they got the name Howl at the Moon in honor of the RD's brother who passed away and was a lover of wolves. I just love that. So no, I won't be howling at the moon anytime soon - but I will honor the memories of loved ones lost.

And away I go................

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Officially NUTS

I have a crazy race coming up---Howl at the Moon 8 Hour Race!! I've never done anything as nutty as this so now I am at peace with the fact that I've totally lost my mind when it comes to running!!!!

I emailed Coach Lisa, who is recovering from an amazing Badwater Double Relay, and she gave me my strategy. I set my Half marathon runners up with my girlfriend to get them through their training run of 13 miles since I won't be there. I told them why and, of course, they think I'm nuts. That's okay---I give them a few years....we all know what will happen!! ;)

So that's the latest in my life. I've actually just been busy with my own training and keeping in close touch with the people I'm training for the Chicago half Marathon. I'm loving it all!! These runners in training are just great to train. They share their fears and their excitement and it's great to share their journey towards a wonderful goal.

My dilemma---I was asked (begged) to be the 2:30 pace leader again at the Chicago Half Marathon. That would mean I won't be able to run with the people I've been training as they will be with the 2:40 pacer. Though that pacer is the man that paced me through my first marathon, that's our picture from last year, and he is a great and inspiring guy. So, I'm thinking I'll pace again and meet up with my training group at the finish line.

I had a visitor on my run today. BUBBA!! That's him showing his medal after he completed Ice Age 50-miler! As I was at around mile 11, he spotted me in front of my group and joined in!! Most of them were just asking about the distances of triathlons, and here in real life was an Ironman!!! I think Bubba got a kick out of being a little celebrity in the group!! It was great catching up with him...he's doing IM Wisconsin and I'm thinking of being on the sidelines to cheer him and others I know out there towards their finish. That is, as long as the weather is nothing like it was last year!!!!

Life is pretty darn good!!!!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Beatiing Up the Thighs

I asked Coach Lisa to kick it up a bit with my thigh workouts. So today she ordered:

Spin Class

Stair Master for 20 minutes

Rowing Machine for 10 minutes

I think she got the message!!

My daughter's puppy that she rescued comes home from 2 weeks at Boot Camp today!! Let's see if it worked!! Wish us luck!!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Wrigleyville Summer Fest

Headed down to Wrigleyville (GO CUBS!!) to see the fun bands, Too White Crew and Elevation (cover band for U2). Haight's sister, Amber, visiting from Sarasota, enjoying the crowd with my daughter and I. I LOVE summer in Chicago!!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Chicago Half Marathon Site Coordinator

A lesson.....if you keep showing up, they'll eventually ask you to take charge!!

Yep......they asked me to be in charge of the whole half marathon training group. I learned it's the only site in the Chicagoland area for this race. So that means 205 people!! As expected, most don't show up....I've never understood that, since they've already paid...but that's the way it is.

I must say, though, I truly enjoy it. Especially with the beginning runners....which the majority are. They are just hungry for information, and absorb it like a sponge. I'm still training my little 12:00 pace group, which is about 25 folks, and that is a great experience.

So, I'm combining my half marathon group runs with my own marathon training. This week, the group had to do 5 miles and I added another 45 minutes on my own. We were lucky to have a slightly overcast and drizzly morning, great to keep you cool, though the humidity was still high. I wind up drinking so much more on those days.

I'm amazed at my training program. I havent even done a 20-mile week yet! Though my cross-training is intense, involving: rowing, spinning, powerwalking with weights, weight training, yoga, core workouts, jumproping and speedwork. I do feel much stronger...especially my arms and thighs. So time will tell if it all comes together.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Hills, Pacer Promise, Books & New Wine

I went to the wine shop in my town, telling the owner that I can't seem to find anything that compares with Santa Marguerita Pinot Grigio, and he recommended Bracco Pinot Grigio. So, I've saved it for the last episode of Sopranos. Pasta and a new Pinot---what a way to go!!
Saturday was hills again. But this time running up them!! My girlfriend, Anne, decided to join me, and since we're planning on running the Marathon together, I was thrilled to have her with me.
She's the one that helped me pr 1 1/2 yrs ago at a zero degree 5 mile race with crazy winds. She's done the Chicago Marathon 13 times!! Well, she kept me running those hills yesterday--six times!! She LOVES to talk---was great in helping me ignore any discomfort. SO--I asked if she would pace me on my 50 miler in February. SHE SAID YES!! I'm sooooo thrilled!!

Sunday was my yoga class and weights. I'm feeling stronger and stronger. I'm really enjoying this training, it's great to believe that I'm really on the right track with my training. Coach Lisa has been quite the inspiration.
I've become so narrow with my reading choices. Seems this past year I keep reaching for the books that are about running. I'm in the middle of reading Under an Equatorial Sky: Books: Rebekah E. Trittipoe and Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why: Books: Laurence Gonzales and then to really top it all off, I LOVED watching Running on the Sun: DVD: Gabriel Flores (II),Lisa Smith,Jack Denness,Nick Palazzo,Eric Clifton,Ephraim Romesburg,.... Am I addicted to this sport or what???!!!!

Sunday, June 03, 2007


Saturday was a hill workout. There are none close to my home, so I headed back up to my old house, parked across the street, enjoyed that the new owner hadn't yet changed much, and started out.

The first thing I noticed was this screeching noise off in the distance. What was that???? Ahhh yes the cicadas!! They have arrived. Actually, they were all over the course, getting crunched by me. I plugged my ipod into my radio doodad, and took off listening to NPR. The talk was about the new book for boys, and they discussed how to make a go-cart. How that brought me back! When I was young, a new development was going up by my home, the Paedergat townhouses, and my friends and I would go there at night and take some wood--we found some wheels somewhere, and made our own go-carts! No, this chick was never dainty!

Anyways, I did a 10 minute running warmup, but had to throw a little walking in as it was terribly humid, and I made my way to the hill. I absolutely love that I'm pretty much by myself down there, but also quite bothered that nobody makes use of this beautiful area. There were four walkers and two bikers. That was it!

Something that I don't understand is while I'm running, I pass through cold spots and then hot spots. The first time it happened I thought my body was freaking out, now I realize it's something with the weather. It's bizarre, but I enjoy it. And being a city girl, I have no clue as to what it's all about.

So, I powerwalked the uphills as instructed, and ran the flats and downhills. I drank like crazy, though I'm starting to think of adding a waist pack instead of holding two water bottles---maybe it would help to free up one hand. I'll have to look into what feels comfortable.

This year, I've again been asked to pace the runners in Lincoln Park for the Chicago Half Marathon every Saturday morning. I loved doing it last year, so I ran it by Coach Lisa and she absolutely agreed I should do it. It will be great to have her guiding me towards the Marathon this time, as last year it was terribly confusing mixing up the two training programs.

I'm starting to get real itchy to do more races now. So we shall see what comes to pass.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Soldier Field !0 Miler

What a fun race!! About 5000 runners were signed up. Though it didn't seem as crowded as that.
I followed Coach Lisa's instructions and warmed up for 10 minutes, ran easy the first two miles of the race, then did a run/walk combo, and kicked it in the last two miles.
I was hoping for a 2 hour time---I made it in 1:56:26!! I'm real pleased as I'm just starting to get back into the shape I was last year and it seems with my Coach's new plan, my body is responding quicker.
I've added the Tucson Marathon to my list of races for this year and I'll be celebrating my 50th birthday there as it is close to my real birthday. Coach Lisa will be there with a bunch of the folks she's coaching, so it should be a fun time!!
I'm treating myself to Ben & Jerry's Mint Chocolate Chunk tonite (don't tell Coach!!).

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Not Even 3/4 of a Glass???

I had a difficult run today---why would that be?? I tried to think--I slept hard last night==why would that be??? Well.....I'm a cheap date. I only need 3/4 of a glass of wine to hit the "tipsy" status. Yep...real cheap date. Went out with the girls from work to celebrate one of them finishing chemo for breast cancer and I had my favorite wine. I only left with cursing as my only vice??!!

Saturdays I've been running along Lake Michigan, along the parks of Evanston, IL and meeting up with the magnificent campus of Northwestern University. It's mostly trail running, so my legs are happy campers. I love seeing all sorts of folks out there, running, walking, hiking, picnicing. There was some sort of Walk for the Family going on with lots of strollers and lil tykes out there. How fun!

I bought the radio extension for my ipod and am sooo enjoying NPR while I run. I sometimes need a break from just music, and laughing during my run is most enjoyable.

And, you'll all be glad to know, my jumproping is getting better. I'm just about at a full 2 minutes of it!!! Next Saturday is my next race...The Soldier Field 10-Miler....where we wind up on the 50 yard line at the finish. Too cool, huh???

Monday, May 14, 2007

The Greatest Gifts in my babies...

I feel so blessed to have the gift of children!!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Training Has Begun

I got my first two weeks schedule for training. Interesting to see that my coach fully believes in a mix of running and walking and a day of powerwalking. I've discovered I'm a much stronger runner when I mix the two together.

She has me starting slowly, the first two weeks I suppose is to see how I do and then know where to proceed from there. I've done my first yoga class already and loved it. Of course, as my luck would have it the intstructor who so impressed me is leaving for the summer! The class was interesting as ten years ago yoga was only known in very small circles.

I went to dinner with three guys that use my coach, well actually two of them hire her, the other enjoys learning from his friends. These two were wearing Marathon Des Sables teeshirts and were happy to share their experiences. They believe that will soon become my goal too. Well, I've learned never to say never! I certainly never thought I'd be training for a 50-miler when I was heading towards my first marathon!

So far, I've done running/walking, powerwalking, the elliptical, spin class, core exercises and a yoga class. She had me buy a weighted jumprope too---can't ever remember the last time I used one!! I was probably 10 years old!!

When I told her about my puppy eating my $500 custom orthotics she recommended I purchase this: Treat-Heal-Cure: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs which I have and noticed I had no shin pain while running. Spending $30 is much more appealing to me, so I'll see if it continues to work in the long run.

She also has had me track my eating over the last two weeks. I don't think she'll like seeing the few cups of ice cream I indulged in, but ya gotta live, don't ya??

I'll be at the Ice Age Race this coming Saturday, serving at the 40-mile water stop. My daughter will be joining me, and will help me cook our family's special chicken soup for the runners. So stay tuned for pics!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

My Plan for this Year....

This year has been pretty erratic with my running. Trying to get used to my early work hours has been challenging for me and has affected my running. I am not going to make it to do Ice Age 50K--I haven't been able to get a long run beyond 15 miles in. Well, I think I"ve finally got it going steadily again, but I've made a big decision. I'm hiring a coach!

I've been pretty conservative with my running. Like many of my constant readers know, the girlfriend I ran my first marathon with got a pelvic fracture during that race and to this day has not been able to run. That and hearing about the many injuries that runners succomb to has made me ever so careful with my running. Though I must say I've always enjoyed myself, but I've always held myself back. I've hardly done any speed training.

So I went and asked Lisa Smith-Batchen - Endurance Athlete & Personal Coach to coach me through the rest of the year.....right into my first 50-miler Rocky Raccoon---and she said YES!!

I told her my goals were to run a 5-hour Chicago Marathon (last year was my PB at 5:14) and to just finish Rocky Raccoon. She said she could absolutely help me obtain those goals. Oh boy.....I must admit I'm scared but also verrrrry excited. She said last year she helped 20 of her clients achieve this goal and they had a big dinner there the night before. Wow---how amazing does that sound??!!

So this is my 50th birthday gift to myself--wanna come and help me celebrate???

Thursday, March 22, 2007

The Beauty of a Teenager

My daughter is in her first year of college. So far she's gone through 4 different decisions of what she wants to be when she grows up. A surgeon, a pediatrician, a lawyer and now, a psychologist. Recently she told me she's reconsidering this decision.....she feels she will be too confined in any of these fields and asked me where can she best feel free to express her depth of emotion out in the real world.

Oh I remember this stage well enough. I went through five different majors before I settled on nursing. And my last year at school had a considerable amount of "staying with it" talks to myself as I was ready to quit over and over again.

Yes, my job confines me. I have more passion in me than I'm able to express during my day. I want to curse at some of my coworkers, I want to make a face at some of them, ask them "Did you skip the line where they were giving out common sense??? Do you really need to waste my time with THAT??

But I control myself. And, I must admit, I don't have trouble with it. Know why??? Because I run.

It's when I run that I can really allow myself to fully let out all that I need to. I can focus on a strong thought and work myself through conversations, speeches and lashing outs until I'm all used up. I had a run like that today. I lost 3 miles being so focused on my thoughts. It was quite the workout of mind and body. I havent had such a great one like that in a long time. I'm happy to have it back.

And so, I tell my daughter.....Run, baby girl, just run!!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Four Days Til Spring!!!

Yeah...I know...not a running related pic, but I'm just sooo excited that jean skirts are back IN...cuz you all know I'm all about being with the IN crowd (blah). Tell the designers to stay out of the special hippy closet....we need to be different!
Now for running.....but first...let me get this off of my daughter got another tattoo! On her neck! Damn....why can't these teens just grow their hair long, smoke weed, and have sex with lots of partners like we did!!????
So my running....I actually wound up taking 3 weeks off unintentionally as I tried to get used to my new work schedule. The half marathon was planned to get Haight through it, no PR's or racing for me at all. As he didn't run longer than 6 miles (I think he followed the Lance Armstrong rules for marathon training!) I knew we'd have a slow time, but the goal was to get to the finish line without a breakdown and we accomplished that!
The weather turned out magnificent---50s to start, up to 70 at finish. The course was just beautiful.....running through the streets of Sarasota, over the bridge, along the shore....quite the beautiful part of America. The course for the half was open for 4 hours and I was pleased with that. I know there's a lot of controversy over limiting times for races, but I'm a real advocate of getting people out there to run/walk---anything to cut down on heart disease (the number one killer in the US). So I loved seeing all sorts of people out there just trying to get thru! Kudos to them!!
I did another couple of 5 milers along the streets of Haight's parents community during the week--real pretty trail going through it. And the weekend following the Half I did a 15 miler--real tired through the last 3 miles, but I made it through. I also visited their neighborhood running store Fit2Run - The Runner's Superstore which boasts being the largest store in the U.S. and I was very impressed with their wonderful customer service. I got a new pair of running shoes Wmn's syncroFLOAT 2 - Pearl Izumi there and had to get new inserts as the new pup decided to chew up my million dollar orthotics!!
I'm back into action now. Even plan on getting the weights in. I figure if I just go for the real needed exercises, I have a better chance of keeping up with it. So it'll be.....
Bench Press
Upright Rowing
.....all done at home with hand weights and a stability ball.
Back to my vitamin regimen that I've tightened up too. Yep, I'm one of those that firmly believes in vitamins--though I know there's lots of controversy over that too. I take, on a daily basis.......
Vit C
Vit A
Vit E
Vit b-complex
Brewers yeast
Fish Liver Oil
Calcium & magnesium
I never get PMS on this ladies take note!! I order my vitamins from which always has a two-for-0ne sale going on, and my readings have shown the quality of their products are very pure.
My goal for this year ends with my first 50-miler at Rocky Raccoon....having my first 50K in May to get me towards this goal. I've hesitated to do it since I've taken so much time off, But I THINK I'm going to go for it (damn these women that always change their minds!), so I'll train towards it and see how it goes. I'm hoping to make it up to a 50-mile training week, with a 3-week taper.
I'm back to my nutritional plan with running too.......
Accelerade before a run
SUCCEED! S CAPS every hour if on treadmill, or hot weather,
GU every 5 miles
EnduroxR4 for recovery.
Come on Spring.....I've been a waitin' for ya!!!!!

Friday, March 02, 2007

new race's the latest "do".....only wish I could fix it up the way they do in the salon!!

Haight and I are off to Florida tomorrow for a week in the sun. We'll be visiting his folks in Sarasota and running the Sarasota Half Marathon. Actually, since neither of us is really ready for the race, we'll just walk most of it....I'm sticking with Haight to make sure he gets through it!

Work changed my hours to an hour later....YAY!!! Now I can wake up at 4:30 instead of 3:30....a normal hour for me! Running has been challenging for me...was still getting used to the new work schedule....and I think since I finally got back at me and kept me exhausted all the way through it!

I've also had a new puppy in the condo. My daughter decided to help a friend out and watch his 8 month old puppy this past month....and she is quite the naughty little thing. She shall be caged while we're gone as I just know my daughter will be totally overwhelmed dealing with her this upcoming week.
But...the biggest news??? I sold my house!! Glory Hallelujah!! One little mortgage, one wonderful condo!! Now to sit back and finally start to enjoy life a bit more!!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

They Bullied Me!

...into a "new and improved" blogger. I couldn't do anything unless I accepted! The Brooklyn chick inside me wants to beat the crap out of them for not giving me a choice, but I will behave like the serene, mature woman I have become (vomit now) and take it in stride (damn mf'ers!). that off my chest......

I've been out of it as far as running goes the past week and a half. Not sure what was up...combination of the cleansing diet tiring me out, working overtime at new job, new hours to deal with....blah, blah, blah. Doesn't bother me much, I will be back tomorrow. Life sometimes throws ya curves and ya gotta deal with it. (still dreaming of my cabin in the woods with no stress).

I have been without my garmin for a few months now. Lost the base it sits in to recharge it, along with the cable. Lost the cable (rather, the dog my daughter rescued chewed it up) for my digital camera......then discovered the camera cable and the garmin cable were the same. I asked on the ultra list about a new charger and someone recommended a site that had it (garmin was out of it!), so I ordered it and received it Saturday! I'm back in business!!

Unfortunately, I can't post ya any new pics cuz, being the wonderful girlfriend I am, I encouraged Haight to go down to Key West with his pals this weekend (was supposed to be a wedding for one of them but that was cancelled--they still went down to party anyways!) and he, of course, took the camera. So you'll all have to be patient!

In the meantime, I've been catching up on reading.....the paperback for "The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Dideon just came out and I snatched it up. Already started it and am enthralled! Finished my easy read--I'm an addicted fan of Sue Grafton, the "alphabet mystery writer", her latest being "S is for Silence". I think I most love her protagonist, a female P.I. who I dream of being in one of my many fantasies.

I also cut my hair.....couldn't make it to the required 9 inches they want to have it donated. Cut off 6 inches---word in the salon was "adorable" old does one have to be before she becomes "sexy" not "cute"!!????? Guess in my next life!

So new haircut, nails manicured for work, next glasses!! Stay tuned!!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Just couldnt do it.....

tho i really tried!! Well, one full day and then a half. The cleansing diet---the lemonade diet, whichever you want to call it. Haight and I started it yesterday....bought all the supplies, the book (Barnes and Noble was out of it, as was Whole Foods!the lady at B&N said it's been flying off the shelves lately) which we finally found on amazon, and we were ready to go!!

I did real well the first day. Was surprised at how few hunger pains I felt. But the second day...oh boy!! I love to run but I don't love getting the runs!! The cramps...uck!! I called Haight to confess that I was through and I was on my way to buying lunch!

Guess what my first dinner was??? Pizza of course---I'm a true blue American!!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Changing things around...

I'm trying to get used to my new work schedule. Problem is, I can't wake up early enough to run before work. So I'm trying to run afterwards. It hasn't worked out too well...yet.

Two days this week I was just too tired to do an after-work run...I've been a morning person for as long as I can remember! I made it to the club a few days ago, but never even thought about worrying what I had for lunch! As a regular morning runner, there's never anything in my stomach before I run, except for a banana and a cup of coffee. The pickle I had with my sandwich for lunch that day was not settling in well a few hours later and it totally ruined my running.

I tried again tonight. Skipped the pickle that Panera Bread included with my tuna on wheat (love their bread!) and the run went much better. But.....I wasn't hungry for dinner afterwards! So I had my Endurox drink. Guess this will bring me down a few pounds!

The trainer approached me again.....offered me a free weight training hour with him. Begged me to try him out. I told him I can't afford him.....he gave me the whole sales pitch that the club will be having specials at the end of the month (probably around the time the "resolution people" fade away). I gave in.....Saturday at 3 pm. I told him I won't tolerate him beating me up as I want to run long on Sunday morning. If he tries, I'm just going to have to take him down!!

p.s. anyone interested in my amazing dating stories must fly out here and run with me!!! :) And remember, whatever is said on a run, stays on a run!!!!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Tagged AGAIN!!!

It's just an epidemic!!
I must name 5 things that are mainly unknown about me......hmmmmmmm

1) I am an absolute PEN freak!! Never, and I mean NEVER leave me alone with your pens for you shall never find them again!!

2) I HATE shopping for clothes. When I absolutely must, I will go and buy an entire wardrobe so that I can avoid it again for years. (running stores are totally excluded from this hatred, I'm out of control when I get into one.)

3) I do believe I was one of the first to be on back in the day.....where I was given horrible looks from neighbors and friends when word got out.

4) I hired the same P.I. that checked out O.J. during his famous trial, to check out a man I was dating. (Did I forget to mention that I have THE MOST wildest dating stories from after my divorce??!!) I met this P.I. at a Denny's where he actually showed up in a trenchcoat!! His work was shoddy and I yelled at him and refused to pay him in full (No wonder O.J. got off!!)

5) When pushed I can argue like the wildest lawyer you know (I look very innocent don't I??--many confuse me with a librarian), in home care I was known for putting in catheters before you knew what hit you (or entered you as the case may be), I suck at drawing blood, I can curse and pull out my Brooklyn drawl in the thick of any ghetto situation, AND I am one wild disco dancer--raised during the 70's when the glistening ball in the middle of the ceiliing was all the rage!! Do the hustle....dododododododo!

You all didn't think I would only give you five now did you?? After all, I'm tawkin about ME here! :)

I won't tag anyone cause it goes against my religion..the eleventh commandment that Moses dropped stated....Tho shalt never pass on infections to the innocents. the fun stops here!

Friday, January 19, 2007

are we having fun yet????

Red Nails is correct....tho the actual name of the color is FISHNET STOCKINGS........

Sorry....just wanted to have some fun!! ;)