Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year!!

2005 is just about expired. I can't even believe how quickly the years go by. Yup, I sound just like my Mother. Good grief.

I spent the day just having a blast. I awoke at 5 AM so that I could be at Afton State Park prior to 8. On the way, stopped by St. Paul to pick up Marie and Bonnie. After unloading all of their gear into my car, we realized that I didn't have a State Park sticker. Oops. Had to get another workout carrying all the gear from my car to Bonnie's.

At Afton we met up with Scott and Alicia.

The snow was fabulous for snow shoe running. Just wonderful! I love Afton State Park. There is a nice visitor center with a wood stove, indoor plumbing with flushing toilets; what more can a gal ask for? Not to mention the best trails-wooded, open, meadow, ravines, hills, some flats, river, ski alps; you name it, Afton has it.

We spent a couple of hours out on the trail-running up and down the hills-looking at at the St. Croix River, watching the downhill skiiers. Just wonderful.

Each hour I gulped down a Coca Cola Cliff Shot (not my favorite..Mocha Mocha is) and I drank 60 oz of Hammer Heed. I never felt Bonkie; just feeling good.

After our run we warmed up in the Center, changed clothes and I, Bonnie and Marie headed off to Sunsets in Woodbury for a wonderful lunch to celebrate mine and Marie's birthday. I had a Tucson Grilled Chicken Salad that I highly recommend.

Tonight, per our New Years Eve tradition, the Big Lake Run Club gathers at 11:45 for a run around our Wednesday Night Run Club route at Midnight to ring in the New Year.

See..a fabulous day!

Tommorrow will begin with another couple of hours snowshoe running on my Blue Hill Trail with Topaz. He didn't get his Run On today!

Enjoy the New Year Celebration!

Friday, December 30, 2005

Winter Wonderland

We received a good 7" of fluffy white snow overnight. I was pretty suprised when I woke up and saw how much snow we received.

I and Troy hit the hill shortly after we awoke; we had to go out and mess up the new white snow.

The snow plows hadn't been by yet and I figured the Blue Hill Trail head wouldn't be plowed until mid-day. I decided to run a snowshoe run through our property.

We sit on a cul-de-sac and have over 5 acres so there is hardly any traffic around and plenty of space to run. I wouldn't want to have to run in my yard every day, but today it was actually fun.

I went up and down the driveway, through the cul-de-sac, onto our bike trail, around the veggie garden, up the hill, around the swimming pool, around the trampoline, up to the front yard and down the driveway. Repeat!

I was able to get in a good one hour run, huffing and a puffing.

The snow plow then came along and made a huge snow bank in front of our driveway. Steve is up north so is relieved of snow plow duty. I pulled out the shovel and got in a real good upper body workout.

Then figured Blue Hill Trail might be plowed out..and it was :)

What a wonderful way to spend my 41st Birthday.

Yard route Posted by Picasa

Driveway run route Posted by Picasa

Winter Wonderland Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

New Year..New Running Program

I mentioned in an earlier post that I had 'hooked up with a running coach' but offered no additional details.

I've never had a running coach, but once I decided the Grand Slam was going to be a future goal, I knew that I needed someone to guide me, someone to write me a plan, someone to teach me what to do to realize that goal.

I found that person.

I also mentioned earlier that I had been following "Paleo Eating for Athletes" By Loren Cordain (Paleo Eating) and Joe Friel (Going Long and other great books). I had been emailing back and forth to Joe and his son, Dirk, who have created Ultra Fit Training. They led me to Anthony Humpage of "Team Woofie"; an ultra runner out of Arizona who specializes in woman masters ultrarunners and Ironman. Well, Bingo.

Anthony is very good friends of Joe and Loren and fully believes in Paleo Eating for Athletes. A very good fit for me.

I will use to log my workouts, to view my upcoming workouts, enter food, etc.

My workouts will consist of three key running workouts a week: intervals, cadence, hills and endurance; I will lift three times a week- a whole new approach to RT. Instead of focusing on building muscle mass I will be focusing on strenghening the muscles I use for running. I will be working my core 2x a week along with swimming, jumping rope and bicycling. Wow. I'm stoked.

I completed a 6 minute run test to see how far I could get in 6 minutes; a treadmill speed test and a number of heart rate tests and sent Anthony video of my running gait. With that information Anthony created my workouts. I'll use my heart rate montitor during each workout.

Right now I am familiarizing myself with Trianing Peaks and looking over my schedule for the next four weeks.

New Year..New Run Program.

Run On!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Nephew with the first taste of the Waldorf Astoria Cake. I think he likes it :) Posted by Picasa

Christmas Run Posted by Picasa

For Christmas Baking this year I went to the Middle School for two evenings. Staff washed dishes; we mixed and baked. 160 cookies later, I came home. Posted by Picasa

MERRY CHRISTMAS! Posted by Picasa

Merry Christmas!

I hope you are enjoying a wonderful Christmas Day and had a great Christmas Eve last night.

I had my sister and her family over. We stuck to our tradition of lobster, new york strip and crab legs for our evening meal. Oh my gosh, it is all about food over here. Had some pasta salad-pasta that I haven't had in forever and a day, whipped up some twice baked potatoes that didn't call out my name but we finished the meal with my Waldorf Astoria Red Cake and Buttercream frosting. My first sugar high in a long time.

Today I'm grilling a turkey again. I just do not become tired of turkey. I won't have to make anything to go with the turkey as there are tons of left-overs.

I and Topaz are heading out for a snowshoe run..should be good and carbo-loaded for a good hard run.

Thanks to Darcy for tweaking my blog :)

Friday, December 23, 2005

2006 Calendar

The New Year is just about upon me. I feel quite different than I did last year at this time when I first created this blog.

I was feeling fat and unfit; although I was running 50 mile weeks. Somehow my weight had creeped up (read: sugar) and the big 4 - O h was making its presence known.

I was depressed.

Now, one year later, I am 25 pounds lighter and running faster than I ever believed I could. Once the weight came off, the miles became much easier.

Hey-and I'm not depressed about turning 41 next week. Not. At. All. Thank goodness. It's not like I could do anything about it anyway..hello!

Today I created my race schedule for 2006. All I can do from here on out is move forward. I have planned my races and have planned my workouts to get me there. I have big plans.

I published it on the sidebar.

I am going to begin taking swimming lessons next week so I will be adding in a few triathlons-when I'm not running races.

My 2006 goals will allow me to reach my 2007 goals.

I contacted a gal from MN who ran the Grand Slam a few years ago. She's the only woman in MN to have completed the series, plus, she is the youngest woman EVER to have completed the series. We are going to meet for coffee after the holidays so that I can learn from her. It will be very interesting to hear of her training and the races she completed to get her to the finish line at Wasatch. Wow. Sheesh. That seems so unattainable to me.

You know what, this all seemed so unattinable to me..

Today was a 10 mile snow shoe run in temperatures again, above average. 38F and sunny. Gotta like that.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Heat Wave!

I was shocked this morning when I and Tyler hopped into the car. It wasn't that cold outside, the radio then announced that it was 645 AM! Wow.

The day continued to warm up as it went on. The sun was brilliant, the temperature warmed up to 40!

After work I and Topaz went to the private property to get in snow shoe run. I could see the moisture rising off the snow, creating a fog. It was so cool!

The snow was soft and mushy, a bit hard to get through, but oh so nice and warm! I will not complain.

I snow shoed for 75 minutes and watched the sun set. A very nice afternoon.


Last night Kristin did show up for run club! It was so nice to have someone to run with. Susan, who heard my plead for runners, showed up too. She usually can't make Wednesday's during the school year, but made it last night. It was fabulous :) We had a great time.

The other day John used a digital video camera to tape me running. My run coach asked for side, front and back views; 10 second clips of each. I emailed them to him today. It will be interesting to see what he has to say. To me, it looked like I was one big fat plodder of a runner.

Tomorrow I complete the Conconi test for him. He told me to be sure I am rested, fuelled and hydrated. I guess I am??...

I'm now enjoying Christmas Vacation. Yippee!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Isn't it a beautiful place to run? Topaz was in the picture..but ran too fast! Posted by Picasa

Today's run; staying off the xc tracks! Posted by Picasa

Scheduled 'Sick' Day :)

In an effort to keep up with my medical priorities I let my manager know last week that I was scheduling a sick day today.

I had a late morning appointment with my gynocologist for the fasted chol. test, the CA125 cancer count blood test, the annual pap, the mammogram and to make another appointment to have my ovaries x-rayed at another office. All in an effort to stay cancer free.

A year ago this past June my Mother was diagnosed with Stage 3 Ovarian Cancer. She went through 6 chemo treatments, had her tumors and ovaries removed and has been cancer free for 1 year. Rock On Mom! My Grandmother died of the disease when she was in her 50's.

Every six months I have my ovaries looked at and my CA125 taken as a precaution. If the CA125 ever increases or the ovaries look like there could be something growing on them, a complete hysterectomy will be ordered.

After Troy was on the bus this morning, I and Topaz headed out to the Blue Hill Trail. If figured since it IS a week-day, Mr. Crabby XC skiier wouldn't be out there to chew me out. He wasn't, and neither were many XC tracks. I stayed on the side of the path with my snowshoes and pounded out 8 miles.

Oh my gosh, I was starving. Because the chol. test was the fasted version I hadn't eaten since last night, after my killer back/shoulder workout and a 5 mile treadmill run.

Tonight is Run Club. Since Ann hasn't been running, I have been the only woman, the only woman who runs a whole lot slower than the fast men. They wait for me at the finish, but you know, it would be nice to round up a few more runners.

I think I found one. Troy's 4th grade teacher has completed a few triathlons and wants to run more. I told her I'd go her pace, walk breaks, whatever, we'd just have a fun time. She said YES! Awesome.

I'm looking forward to another run this evening.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Snow Shoe Adventure

I was really looking forward to running today. I had a new place to check out; 480 acres to myself AND I had a new Polar S610i Heart Rate Monitor to try out.

Last night I tried out a few of the features and read through the manual. I was ready to at least give it a try.

It was, again, -10F with a -35F windchill this morning. Brrr.

Before I left the house I told Steve that I better grab my cell, I wasn't sure where I was going to park the car at. I couldn't really just park on the road; it's a busy township road without shoulders. The old driveway to the farm house that used to be there was all covered in 15" of snow. So I told him I'd call him IF I became stuck. I was pretty certain I would be stuck.

Since 1991 I have owned 3 different Explorers and in 2002 I bought an Expedition. I never really worried about getting stuck before. Last year, in an effort to save the air and save some money on fuel, I traded in my Expedition for a little Honda CRV. My friend, Bonnie, has one, and I love it.

I really love my CRV. I get 35 mpg and it's cheap to own. But it can become stuck even with 4 WD.

I was parking on the side of the road, kind of near the ditch, and slid right into the ditch..right over the front hood. Ooops.

A quick call to warn him that he'd have to help me out in two hours..and I was off and running.

OH MY GOSH. It was tough plowing through all of that snow! Topaz doesn't make a great trail breaker! I was a huffing and a puffing.

My average hr was 171 for the 2 hours..that is HIGH isn't it? My maximum is 184, so yeah, that's high. It was quite the workout. I still need to download the file, I just looked at the average HR so far. I had to go shopping, you know.

I found 3 ponds on the property, lot of deer and 5 eagles. It was incredible. My battery pack became drained of energy..I think because of the cold so I don't have any pictures. I'll charge it up and get some tomorrow.

OK, so I finished running 2 hours and called Steve. I'm ready. OK, he's ready to come and get me. Before he drove the .75 mile over to me a guy in big, brand new sparkling red Ford F350 pulled along side me. He had me out of that ditch with one pop!

He was pretty satisfied with himself for saving the damsel in distress, with his big new shiny truck.

I said thanks and made it home before Steve's truck was even warm!

Tomorrow I'll park somewhere else...

Oh! The Florida Ironman is on TV today from 2-3 Central Time. I'll have to switch from the Vikings to the Ironman.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Foiled Again

Brrr! This morning it was -6 with a -30 wind chill as I and Topaz hit the Blue Hill Trail. It was crispy cold!

I wasn't able to attend the 50K Christmas Party. Troy's basketball team had a mini tournament that ran from 11-2 and conflicted with the timing of the run/party. It's OK; I did just run a 50K less than a week ago!

I noticed that the Sherburne County people had placed signs up on 'my' trail stating "CLOSED TO ALL BUT CROSS COUNTY SKIING" well, forget that business, I thought.

I have only seen one xc skier out there over the years. It makes me so mad because I am out there almost every darn day; he is out there once a week..usually Saturday.

Well he was out there today and he really chewed my butt! I was just finishing 10 miles when he found me. He yelled for a few minutes about the snow shoes ripping up his trail, then yelled about Topaz out there when the new sign clearly states no dogs. Well, I really didn't see that writing on the sign. Don't know how I missed that.

Guess I won't be heading out to Blue Hill in a while...

I came home and called a very good friend of mine. He is a developer who creates beautiful neighborhoods. We have a 2.5 acre minimum lot size in Sherburne County so when Steve is putting in a new development there is a lot of land involved.

He just purchased 480 acres near our home, I sit on the Planning and Zoning Board so new it was open and just sitting there. I drive past it numerous times during the day. It is beautiful; all pines and oaks.

I called Steve today to see if I could run upon his property with Topaz. He told me to act as though the 480 acres is mine. Yippee! At least I'll have somewhere to snowshoe this winter, and it is less than a mile from home.

A bad situation turned into a good situation.

I've been kicked off of so many places that I've run upon I can't count them all. Remember the Eagle Ridge situation last winter? Oh my gosh, fines and all. Then I was kicked off of the field route last summer when new owners took over the land..yikes. The County Sheriff was involved and everything..

On the heart rate monitor..I ordered the Polar S610i. Thank you very much for your input.

Have a great Saturday :)

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Heart Rate Monitor..

It is SNOWING!! A real old-fashioned snow storm! Rockin!!

School had a two hour late start so off to the trail I went, Topaz and snowshoes packed. The trail was powdery and lovely. 7 miles later I was totally exhausted..but exhilerated.

What a great way to start the day! Now, here I am, back at work..not so great.

So..I have hooked up with an ultra coach and he is suggesting I purchase a heart rate monitor. I have never used one because there are too many damn models to choose from!

He suggests Polar, with a downloadable HR file. Have you used one? Do you have a review?? Please..please..I will purchase one soon, I'd just like some input.

Enjoy the SNOW!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Each time I hear on the news that we are supposed to get a good snowstorm I can't help but roll my eyes. You wouldn't think there would be too much hurrah about a snowstorm..or even snow flakes in Minnesota.

All I hear on the news and radio is snow snow snow is coming. I won't hold my breath! I bet we'll be lucky to scrape out 2".

Today I brought my snowshoes to the trail but left them in the car. The path was pretty well worn down to the dirt so snowshoes weren't necessary. It still took me longer than sans snow to complete the 7 miles. I had to finish in the dark, in the middle of the woods. I had my headlamp stuffed down into my pocket. I somehow thought I'd beat the sunset. Nope. I didn't.

After a left over dinner of turkey and veggies I brought Troy to basketball practice, Tyler to guitar lessons and I hit the gym for 45 minutes of leg work before collecting my off spring.

My legs are tired now. That 50K on Sunday wore them right out!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

50K Fat Ass

The race..well, it really wasn't a race, it was a get together with friends for a fun training run..but it was a blast.

Of course. How could it not be? A bunch of runners who LOVE to run, get together for chit chat, catching up time and let's get one hell of a good workout out in too while we are it. It was fabulous.

We met at the Lake Harriet Bandshell in Minneapolis at 815. We signed a waiver and dropped a few bucks into a baggie..then headed up the hill to a runner's house. At the house there were cookies, candy, crackers, oranges and a big container of water and one container of an energy drink.

We wrote our names in on a big piece of tag board hanging from the wall. Each loop was 4 miles; after each loop and a run to runner's home we signed in our time near our name.

I think 15 or so of us began the run, most didn't have any intention of running the full 50K. A few of us did.

Running around the Minneapolis Lakes is really quite a treat for me. I live 54 miles away so don't do daily running over there.

There are LOADS of runners doing the lakes each day; it's awesome. There are port a potties all over the place so I could go in a dry place whenever I needed. The luxury!

4 of us ended up running the complete distance. Scott and I finished in 6:18 or so I believe. We stopped at Dunn Brothers for coffee afterwards to talk big with the other runners.

What a blast.

Before I left home this morning I placed a 20 pound turkey in a cooking bag. I left Steve a note: please place on grill on low at 12:15. I'll be home by 5 and turkey should be ready.

I called Steve enroute home and sure enough..turkey was cooking well. Asked Steve to foil wrap a few big baking potatoes and place on grill.


Awesome turkey dinner after the run. It doesn't get much better than that :)

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Wednesday Night Run Club

Well, Wednesday Night Run Club was..not. I had a 630 meeting, another member had a meeting, one member was sick. One member was going to run; I ran the run club route at 430 and then headed to my meeting. Meeting ended early so I went to the gym for an awesome chest/bicep workout and ran on the treadmill for a speedy 8 miles.

Had a great treadmill run..I shouted the whole time! A friend happened to be at the gym so we ran side by side. Sure helped the miles tick on by.

Hey-I was invited to a 50K Fat Ass run on Sunday around the Minneapolis Lakes. Woohoo! Lake Harriet to be exact. I'm sure looking forward to it. I had NO plans for Sunday and just like that..something fun to look forward too. Yippee.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The Need For Speed I

Yup, that time of year again. After not completing for speed workouts since October, it is time to jump on that horse again.

Today's workout was on the treadmill. It is minus fifteen frickin' degrees out there, without the darn wind, and it is windy!

I completed 5 800's at 7:15 pace, 2 minute recovery inbetween, 5 minute warmup 5 minute cool down.

Talking with a travel agent today about a nice little trip to Jamaica during spring break. Ever been to Negril? It rocks.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Let the Planning Begin

Bummer. I wasn't selected for the Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run. There were 6 lucky Minnesotan's that were selected.

However, I am very pleased that I was selected to pace Bonnie during the race :) That is probably more fun than running the whole thing! I get to take a fun little jaunt out to sunny California without all of the pressure. I get to hang out with the runners, the crews, the pacers; meet all of the people I have read about and go for an awesome run during the night time hours. Pretty sweet, hu? This may be better than the real thing.

So now it is time to plan my '06 racing calendar.

I would like to do McNaughton 100 again, although it is during Easter weekend so that is the pits. But I'd still like to do it. Family discussion.

FANS 24 hour run. Sucks because it is hard, mentally. I tried to complete 100 miles three times. I've come close; 83 and 86 miles..then dropped last year at 12 hours. So it would really be awesome to actually do it. We'll see. It's in Minneapolis; no travel. Good option. Just do it already.

Leadville 100. Shit. Scary. Wow factor. Jeffrey is doing it and seems to think I could as well. Since I'm not doing Western I'm actually thinking, um, Yes.

Superior 100. Used to scare me too. Hell, the 50 mile scared me. Now I totally love Superior. It is only 3 weeks after Leadville. But hell, Wasatch is only three weeks after Leadville and I'll be doing that little scenario next year.

What if I don't get into Western next year? This whole Grand Slam plan would fizzle on out. Guess I won't think about that..head in the

So those are the main races I'm thinking of for '06.

This morning I was getting ready to head out to the trail. It was cold. -5F. Crisp. Frosty. I was grumbling around the house about how cold it was, that I really sucked at snowshoeing yesterday, that the snowshoe marathon is a little over a month away, that I couldn't find my gaitors because I hadn't looked for them, etc. I looked at Steve and began to giggle as I felt so foolish! I checked the attitude right there and said "I'm grateful that I CAN go out for a 15 mile run at -5F, I'm grateful that I have a dog that will run alongside with me, I'm grateful I have a family that doesn't whine and complain about my running and I'm grateful that I'm healthy."

Guess what? I had an awesome time! I didn't get cold; I dressed appropriately and I found my gators..becauses I looked for them.

15 miles in 2:50. It'll do. My water bottles with Heed froze; I forgot to wear my pack inside of my jacket. Oh yeah, next time!

Have a great Sunday. Think about what you are grateful for!

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Sucking Wind

Today I removed my snow shoes from their spot in the garage. They were all full of spider webs and dust. Yuck. I didn't enjoy the thought of having to run on them, it's hard work..and I forgot that it is actually quite fun.

I am not a winter person. I TRY to enjoy winter. I snow shoe run, I cross country ski, I ice fish, I sled with the boys, I go snow tubing..but I don't really enjoy it all that much. I like swimming, I like beaches, I like green grass, I like running in the daylight for heavens sake...

Driving out to the trail, snow falling like crazy, I was thinking how much I enjoyed running sans snow.

Once I reached the trail head and strapped the Northern Lights on I began to think of the past four winters that I've run on these snow shoes. It's been fun.

I was planning on running 15 miles today; but for the first snow shoe run of the season, 10 miles had to be enough.

Sheesh, I was sucking wind. Topaz didn't slow at all in the snow. I was pretty much crawling.

I have a lot of work to do before the January 21 Northwoods Snow Shoe Marathon up in Duluth !

OH ... Today is the drawing for the Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run. I received an email that stated I have a 37% chance of being selected.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

This and That

I was becoming a bit disappointed since the scale wasn't showing any release of fat this past week. I have getting in my 100 minutes of excercise each and every day and am eating a very clean Paleo diet. So WTF? I don't know.

I dusted off my body fat caliper and tantina body fat analyzer. I hadn't used them since I reached my goal of 130 in July. Welll, guess what? Happy days! I have lost .5% of bf. I'll take that. Down to 14.5. I don't really need to go much below that. Made me happy :)

Yesterday I ran 35 minutes on the treadmill in the AM before work. Then ran 5 miles with Topaz on the trail in the PM. Then brought Troy to basketball practice and went to the gym where I lifted some personal bests! 85 pounds on the laying leg curl. Yeah! 85 rockin' pounds. I remember when a pb was 40. That wasn't too long ago.

Let's see..Monday was a 35 minute run on the treadmill and a 7 mile run with Topaz in the PM; lifted for 45 minutes at they gym: back and shoulders. I don't really like lifting shoulders. They're pretty weak.

Today was 50 minutes on the treadmill and will run 50 minutes tonight with run club. Then I have to attend the Orrock Board Meeting all nice and sweaty.

Did you watch The Biggest Loser last night? I caught the last hour since Troy has bb. Oh my gosh. It was awesome. All three had lost over 40%. Amazing and incredible. All success stories.

M1: 1 egg, 8 whites, banana
M2: 1/4 c dried fruit, 2 oz nuts
M3: large green salad with 3 oz canned chicken, olive oil
M4: apple
M5: 6 oz salmon, large green salad w/olive oil
M6: Fruit smoothie

Monday, November 28, 2005

Another Bonnie! Coming up the deer trail Posted by Picasa

Awesome aid station :) Yup, champagne and all.. Posted by Picasa

Coming down the hill on the deer trail Posted by Picasa

This is Bonnie (another Bonnie) out at Afton in her orange finest. Made me wish I brought another pooch along.. Posted by Picasa

Afton Fat Ass Fun

Saturday morning was the Third Annual Afton Fat Ass. As I explained in an earlier post, a 'fat ass' run in ultra lingo is a run that is low key, not certified or timed; just fun with friends.

Saturday's run/hike was all of that.

There were roughly 15 of us participating in the morning romp through the woods. About an inch of snow had fallen through the night; making the trail very slippery. The snow was covering a thick layer of oak leaves.

Now, Scott didn't lead us along the 'regular' Afton State Park trails that the 'normal' people would use. Oh, no, no, no; Scott led us on the DEER TRAILS. For real. They are the trails that the deer use. The trails go up and down the deep deep ravines, through the creek crossings, you feel like a billy goat hanging on the side of a cliff. It was crazy fun!

Scott was the leader and we all followed him. He even set up two aid stations for us. He had a cooler with grapes, cheese, chocolate and sparkling pear juice for those of us who don't drink alcohol, and champagne for those that do! Yes, Champagne at the aid stations! He had two of these set up for us. Incredible!

We were out traipsing through the woods for 3:45 hours. It was fabulous. I think we covered 10 miles. Seriously! Crazy, hu?

After the run we changed and became cozy in the visitor center. There were different soups, chili, breads, fruit, veggies, sweets, etc. It was wonderful. We just visited and had a good time.

As we were sitting near the fire, with plates of food on our laps, guess what we saw? 9 deer, coming up out of the woods, on the deer trail that we had just run upon! Way Cool.

We had a card for Ann and an amazing amount of donations were received. I brought over $1000 to Ann on Sunday morning. What a great group of friends!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Thanksgiving Day Run

This morning on the news KARE 11 was showing the entrants of the Northwest 5K Run in Downtown Minnepolis getting ready to run.

As I was pulling on mittens over gloves, hubby asked me "Didn't you always do that run?" "Yeah, I used to .." We then had a conversation about how my running has, well, grown..become a bit more extreme.

The 5K run was a 108 mile (round trip) drive into Minneapolis to run 3 miles. I drove for more minutes that I ran. Now that just seems wrong. I have a new rule. I need to run for more minutes than I drive to get to the run. Unless, of course, it is a 50 Mile or a 100 mile run. Then it is worth the ride.

Well, today it was a 20 mile (round trip) drive to run 15 miles. Plenty more running minutes than driving minutes.

PLUS I was able to run with my Topaz. As I was looking like a stuffed sausage, pulling on a second pair of pants, I realized he runs in the same attire all year long. Of course his fur coat he is sporting is a bit thicker, but how amazing nature is.

It was cold. 10F with a 35 mph wind which makes for a windchill of -17F. Yeah.
I just finished creating a super fruit salad: 4 apples, 4 oranges, 4 kiwi, 1 bag of green grapes, 1 bag of red grapes, 4 pears, 4 bananas, 1 can of unsweetened pineapple because it is out of season right now, 2 pounds of strawberries. YUM! Chop into BIG chunks (I only 1/2 the strawberries and leave the grapes whole), squeeze the juice of two lemons onto fruit and add 1/4 c honey. Stir well.


Must get to the grocery to get some veggies for the awesome veggie tray.

Enjoy the turkey and get your RUN IN!

Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Afton Fat Ass

Excuse the language! In ultra running a "Fat Ass" run is one which is free, where there are no shirts or aid and usually a pot luck dinner afterwards.

Scott Wagner, Race Director of the Afton 50K, has held an Afton Fat Ass for the past three years on the Saturday following Thanksgiving. Well, this Saturday will be the third year.

It's a blast! There are usually 20 or so runners who participate. We meet at the Afton State Park visitor center and run 'follow the leader' style, through the woods, through culverts, up and down hills, for 3-5 hours.

Scott says this year the route is 4-5 hours. A good enough run to wear off the Thanksgiving Pecan pie!

After a good run we'll converge on the visitor center for waffles, fruit salad, venison chili, multiple cake and cookie items and whatever else is brought along.

Most of all, we'll enjoy some very good company.

Do you know that I met all of these ultra runners on line? Yup. 3 years ago I wanted to run more than just marathons. I did a search and found the Minnesota Dead Runners list. I began to participate in online discussions and one day a woman (who turned out to be Bonnie!) invited me to a 'beginning ultra runner' discussion in St. Paul. Well, I was a bit nervous to meet a group of people that I had only conversed with online and had never seen in person. Thank goodness I did. This group of people have become some of my best friends.

After a few meetings..we met every Thursday night on Lake Como..Bonnie asked me to ride along with Bonnie and Marie to run the Ice Age 50 Mile. I had never even left home for a weekend!

I'm sure glad I attended that first meeting.

Ann Maser 8K

The 8K I am putting together for Ann is coming together nicely. Today I received the entries all printed and folded up nice and neat; ready for labels and postage.

For those of you that live in the Twin Cities area please contact me for an entry! I'd love to meet you all.

The race will be held in Big Lake, 54 miles NW of Minneapolis on January 14 @ 9:00. Get this: The Minnesota Twins donated 4 executive seating tickets along with some merchandise for door prizes. I also received 4 30 minute certificates for massages, various business certificates and running store certificates. Very cool.

Today was a good workout day. 3 miles on the treadmill in the AM and 7 miles on the trail after work. Troy's basketball isn't until 730 tonight so I had a bit of free time :)

Run On!

Sunday, November 20, 2005

To Start Christmas Shopping

Yesterday Troy had a basketball game at 10 so I planned an early morning run. Early as in dark. I and Topaz headed out to the trail, flashlight in hand, for an easy 10 mile run. It was beautiful. The sunrise was spectacular, a big fiery ball rising from the field, it was incredible. I counted 8 deer. I don't know if they were the same ones over and over again or not. Deer hunting must be over with in this area because I didn't hear gun fire like last week.

After Troy's WIN I headed out to the mall. My parents will be here on Wednesday; we have an early Christmas with them as on Saturday they head out for TX until April. Well, they have everything and what they don't have, and want, they'll buy. Duh. So after looking around and finding plenty for myself I decided to take the easy way out : Gift cards.

Mom will receive one from Marshall Fields and Dad will receive one from Barnes and Noble.

I also began to shop for the boys. iPod for Tyler's 14th Bday in a few weeks, paint ball guns, etc. The list is getting shorter.

We all always go to Rosedale ( big suburb mall) the day after Thanksgiving so Mom and Dad will be able to shop for their gifts from me at that time.

Last night both boys had over nights; I and Steve sat here by ourselves. It was too quiet! We watched a movie and were in bed by 10. Just like an old married did that happen?

Today was 20 miles on the trail. It was a bit cool to start-28F but not very windy. I ran 4 loops and never saw one other person out there. Heavenly! The rivers are still open so Topaz was able to drink; he never did lie down in the water today. He must not have felt very warm. I didn't feel warm either! I haven't run a 20 since Ed Fitz. I've taken a whole month off from long distance stuff, a 15 and a few 10's has been it for long stuff. It was tough-the taking a break part-but everything I read says I should rest. OK, I rested. Now I'm ready to run.

Planning on lifting legs this PM.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Wednesday Night Run Club

When I went out at lunch today I could not believe how windy and cold it was! 15F and 35 mile per hour winds makes for one cold temperature.

It wasn't any better come 5:00 tonight. I wanted to run 10 miles so figured I'd begin an hour early and run one loop myself and another with the fellow run club members.

Out came the fleece tights, under the wind pants. The two long sleeved shirts, the jacket, the fleece gloves, under the wind mittens, the wool socks and the fleece hat. All set.

I know that I've never had a run I haven't enjoyed and knew that I would enjoy this one too...once I began. I just had to get out there.

The hardest part was the first 1/4 mile..right into the wind. I had to pull my hands-covered with two layers of mits-into my jacket sleeves. Eventually I was able to pull them out and pull down my fleece face mask onto my neck.

The moon was big and full, beautifully reflecting upon itself upon the lake. Magical.

I misjudged my timing and was finished before the other runners had arrived for the 6:00 run. I was beginning to get cold so headed out for loop two on my own.

I finished by myself and was able to cheer and yell as the 5 men finished.

We stood around for only a few minutes. Enough time to stand in a circle, hold hands and offer a prayer for Ann.

Cold and wind blown, we all headed home.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Badwater Ultramarathon

It's one bad ultra..135 miles through the desert. Yeah, 135 miles.

You must watch this 15 minute movie. It only takes a few seconds to register and then whammo! You are at Badwater.

Note: Dusty Olson is Scott Jurek's pacer. I met him at Ed Fitz in October. He was fun to talk to and awesome to watch run :)

Go here. Go here now:

I'm off to the gym to lift chest/bis/tris

Leanness Lifestyle Bootcamp Ala Julie

Because there isn't a LL Bootcamp Intensive to participate in until January I have decided to have my own little party.

My Birthday is on December 30; my gift to myself...120 pounds of me. I'm at the lowest I've ever weighed, but in the back of my mind I always wanted to hit 120, then be able to have a few pounds cushion for PMS bloat, post race carb, etc. Yup, 120 it is.

I now consider myself in 'action' until I weigh 120 pounds. 6 weeks=5 pounds; very doable. Unless my body throws a fit and does not want to leave this 125 place. It threw a fit at 140 pounds too.

The plan: 3 days rt; 7 day cardio=100 activity minutes is the minimum each day. Food wise will be Leanness Lifestyle as usual on the Paleo side.

I track my food daily at

If you are interested in looking at Leanness Lifestyle you can go here:

Yesterday: 2.5 mile treadmill run and back/shoulders

Lat pull down: 100x8x3
Cable row: 100x9x3
Bent over row dumb bell: 30x12x3
Good Mornings: 105x12x3
DB over the head press: 30x12x3
DB lat raise/superset front raise/side 25x12x6

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Weekend Runnings

I think we had three different seasons this weekend. Summer, fall and winter.

Friday was summer. It was beautiful. My parents are visiting for the weekend, while I and Topaz ran the trail they walked along. It was fabulous. We did five miles; the leaves were crisp under our feet, the sun was high and full at the the finish we watched a beautiful pink/orange sunset, we then came home for grilled turkey tenderloin and a huge green salad. Yum.

Saturday was fall. Troy had an 830 basketball game so I went out for 5 miles before the game. Watched the game..and watched Troy make TWO baskets...and ran another 5 miles before running around like mad mice at the malls. Yes, Christmas Shopping. It was getting windy and feeling like fall.

Today is winter. I and Topaz headed out at 8 AM for 15 miles on the trail. We left in a cold rain and returned in a white fluffy snow jag. WOW! I'm not quite ready to have my running snow shoes pulled from the garage rafters, but it is coming up soon.

I'm having thoughts of the Northwoods Snow Shoe Running Marathon in January. It is SO much fun! Yup, a marathon on snowshoes. Last year I wasn't able to make it up to Duluth on race day because of a winter storm. The prior year I finished the marathon under 6 hours and the prior year it was 615 I believe.

Yes, it is as difficult as it sounds: 26 miles in deep snow/hills on snowshoes. Bring it on!

M1: Orange juice/banana/All The Whey Protein Powder
M2: (On the Run) Myloplex Bar
M3: Oat Pancake (1/2 cup oats, 6 egg whites, splenda, sf syrup)
M3: Apple, left over grilled turkey tenderloin, 2 c mixed veggies
M4: Sliced tomato, grilled chicken breast, large green salad

Calories: 1597; Carb: 39% Protein: 41% Fat: 20%

Friday, November 11, 2005

Julie, Ann and Bonnie Superior 50K Start Posted by Picasa

Western States

Well, you know that I have applied for the Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run. ( won't find out until the first week of December if I have been selected in the lottery or not.

Last year over 1000 people entered the race and 300 something only get to run. There was a 47% chance of being selected to run.

Western States is one of the premier 100's. It is also the first race in the Grand Slam. If you don't get into Western you won't be completing the Grand Slam.

If you are not chosen for two years to run Western; on the third try (consecutive) you are given a slot.

I have a very good chance of being there in June.

Bonnie asked me to pace her next year! So, if I am not selected to run it myself, I will be running alongside Bonnie. A runner is able to pick up a pacer at the 60 mile mark. The pacer can run with the runner to the finish.


Here's a pic of Me, Ann and Bonnie at the Superior 50 K start this past spring.

A Run For Ann

I'm planning an 8K race for Ann.

Yes. It is Ann who has lymphoma. Ann; whose face graces these many pages of my blog. Ann is one of the healthiest people I know, and for her to come down with cancer, is simply shocking to me.

I still haven't been able to wholly grasp the fact.

She'll fight this cancer. She'll fight it off and come back healthier than ever. Yup, I know it as fact.

The Big Lake Run Club is helping me to set up the details. We have Debbie, who is an artist, and does fabulous work. She will design the T-shirts.

The company for which George works is going to sponser us and pay for the shirts.

I've contacted local businesses to donate for food and drink, I've contacted running stores to donate merchandise for door prizes.

We'll use the clock and finish chute that we use for our summer race.

The date: January 14.

Ann is in for the race of her life. We'll be there to help her win this race.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Windy City

Man, the temperature is 38F and there is a 40 mph wind. It's dang chilly out there! What a change from the balmy weather we have had all fall long. Tomorrow it is supposed to be back to 60 though. Unreal, but, I'll take it.

Troy's basketball was rescheduled for tonight from 6-730. Scheduled perfectly. I brought him to basketball and just about made it in time for 6 o'clock Run Club. Just about. They were all heading out of the lot as I pulled in. Dave was running loop two back and noticed me beginning the route and waited up for me. Kurt did the same. We had a nice chat between breaths. They are much faster that I.

We ran a 38 minute 8K. I like that :)

Back to the basketball practice all cold and sweaty. Brrr.

Good news: Steve received a mega raise. More than my two jobs put together. Guess I'll be quiting the grocery gig.

Yesterday workout:
4 mile treadmill hills
5 mile trail run with Topaz
M1: OJ
M2: 6 egg whites/banana
M3: Raisins/nuts
M4: 4 oz canned chicken/celery/apple/lf mayo
M5: 4 oz rotiserre chicken/large green salad/olive oil
M6: Banana/All The Whey Protein Powder

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Last night Tyler's guitar lesson was cancelled. This meant I could spend more than 30 minutes at the gym. Yippee!

I was planning on working legs only; but when I was finished I was SO enjoying working my body that I went onto biceps. Heck, I had plenty of time.

Something that has never happened at the gym to me happened last night. I was at the rack; doing squats. A guy (mr. huge, fit, gorgeous and young guy that is always at the gym) came up to me and said "damn, your legs are really comming around; look at 'em, just look at 'em" and he shook his head. I was like WOW!

Nobody ever comments on my legs; it is always my arms. I get plenty of arm comments but I must say, the leg comment, it probably was the reason I wanted to lift longer.


I feel it this morning. DOMS has set in big-time and I love it!

This morning I hobbled through a treadmill workout-I set up the hill workout-sheesh, I was breathing like I was in the Sierra Nevada's (ha). Tonight Troy's basketball practice is rescheduled to tomorrow so I and Topaz will hit the trail for a few.

Barbell Squat: 130x4x3, 115x8x1
Barbell Deadlifts: 90x10x1, 110x8x4
Press: 160x6x3
Ham Curl: 60x12x1, 70x8x3
Extension: 120x12x4

Barbell 21's: 50x4x3
Dumbell Curl: 30x8x4
Cable curls: 70x12x4

Staying right on track with the Paleo for Athletes:
M1: OJ
M2: 6 fried egg whites, 3 T raisins, Banana
M3: Nuts/raisins (not really a meal is it?)
M4: 4 oz salmon, large green salad, Olive oil, apple
M5: 4 oz lean flank steak, large bowl of brocolli/cauliflower/olive oil
M5: All The Whey Protein Shake w/ 1/2 banana

Monday, November 07, 2005

Mile Repeats

During many weeks I choose not to run on Monday's. I usually take a day off of running and lift in the evening; during Tyler's guitar lesson.

Last night I decided I'd run this morning. I felt so awesome after endulging in the carb-fest and then eating super Paleo clean yesterday; I knew I would have a great workout.

I did.

I woke at 4 AM and chugged 4 oz of water; then 8 oz of orange juice. I was afraid I'd be burping the oj all during my workout, but that didn't happen.

Mile repeats! I haven't run them before..ever. So on the treadmill I went, iPod in hand.

I ran 4 miles @ 7:45 minute mile with a 2 minute recovery @9 minute mile. Yahoo!

I'll be lifting legs tonight.

Yesterday eats:
Pre run: 1 banana, 4 hard boiled egg whites
During run: 2 gels
Post run: raisins, protein shake with fruit, 4 oz chicken breast, 1 cup mixed frozen veggies
M4: apple, large green salad, 4 oz salmon
M5: 3 oz flank steak, 2 c steamed brocolli

Run On!

Sunday, November 06, 2005


Yesterday Troy and I did eat at Champps. Boy, did we eat at Champps!

Troy had the chicken fingers and dirty worms. Yeah, worms. Chocolate pudding with oreo crumbles inside of a waffle cone bowl with gummy worms coming out of the top. Good stuff you know!

I had their Chicken Cyn sandwich which is just wonderful. A big juicy chicken breast marinated in a pineapple juice with melted provolone, bacon, tomato and avacodo; served on big whole grain bread that has been toasted..probably soaking in butter for a bit.

I also had a large portion of criss cross potato fries. OMG; I ate them all!

Needless to say-this morning I was up 4 pounds. Each gram of carb holds another 2.5 grams of water. My glycogen stores were good and full!

I read through most of The Paleo Diet for Athletes last night. Very good reading material, although, I could have done without all of the pages of recipies.

I have been eating Paleo pretty much since February. Today I will begin to make a few changes that the authors' suggest. Such as eating prior to working out more that 90 minutes in duration. I usually don't. Today I had a banana and 4 hard boiled egg (whites). I had an excellent workout. Of course, the Champps extravaganza was partly responsible.

I and Topaz ran 10 miles at the trail today. I was turbo-carbbed. After our run we met Ann and her pooch, Maggie, for a 2 mile walk. Lots of good talking time.

The weather is very odd. Warm and foggy; not normal for a MN deer hunting opener. There is no snow on the ground and it should hit 55F today. Very odd indeed.

Special thanks to Darcy of for setting up my blog. I appreciate it so much!

I took the header picture yesterday at the trail. Topaz is a blur, but he always is; I have a very had time photographing him, he doesn't like the noise the camera makes and is always moving around like a crazed dog.

Have a great day :)

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Yippee! The Weekend is here!

I always hate to wish days away. You know, wish for Friday, wish that the weekend would hurry up and arrive, etc.

So I don't.

The days pass too quickly; just as I have turned 40 much too quickly. How did THAT happen?

Anyway, today is Saturday and I am pleased.

I worked the usual 40 hours at school and then 10 at Cobornes Grocery. Not too bad.

Steve and Tyler have left for the weekend; the great Minnesota tradition of deer hunting which must be passed down from Father to Son. All I can say is please be safe!

Troy and I have the weekend to ourselves. I'll be heading out for a run in a few minutes; I slept in today. Troy and I will then head into town (yeah, we live 54 miles from Minneapolis/St. Paul so 'town' would be MSP) to visit Barnes and Noble for a while and have lunch at our favorite lunch restaurant, Champps. It's very nice to have some one-on-one time with each of the boys. This weekend it will be my time with Troy.

I'm looking for the new book (I'm really not sure of the title) Paleo Eating for Athletes. It's by the Paleo Guru himself; Loren Cordain AND Joe Friel of Going Long fame. I have been eating Paleo since I realize I had a little sugar addiction during my first Bootcamp with Leanness Lifestyle. The combination of an author on Paleo eating and the author of Ironman Triathlon Training is JUST what I need!!

The deer hunters are able to hunt on both sides of the trail which I run upon. There are dirt roads posted on either side of the property which clearly state NO HUNTING. I will hear many shots and see many deer, running onto 'my' trail for safety. I and Topaz will wear our blaze orange.


Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Wednesday Night Run Club

Minnesota experienced a wonderful fall day today. The sky was clear and blue; the wind light and the temperature..a balmy 71 degrees F! Spectacular!!

The only bummer is that it is now dark at 530 PM. We turned out clocks back on Sunday. I hate that, why can't we just enjoy the night light and keep the morning dark? I don't get it; but, I digress.

As I pulled my reflective vest over my short sleeved shirt I realized this was the first time I had worn the vest over anything other than a jacket. I didn't need a jacket today, or pants. Shorts and a tee on November 2. That hasn't happened before.

Run club was fun. It was only 1 and 4 of the guys. They actually ran at my pace tonight. We finished the 5 miles in 39:40.

I ran 2.5 miles on the treadmill this morning too. I'm finding that I don't like to start the day without a couple miles on the treadmill. It's becomming my cup of coffee-so to speak.

M1: Oat Pancake
M2: Banana/cottage cheese
M3: Tuna pouch, green salad, apple
M4: (Pre run) 1/2 Myloplex Bar
M5: (Post run) 2 c. ff pop corn (no appetite)

Monday, October 31, 2005

Too much stress..

I normally don't become too stressed. I usually just go with the flow, taking what comes as it does. No big deal. I really don't have a life that is filled with stress.

Well, this week is feeling a bit stressful.

Steve told me that he is thinking very seriously of accepting a job offer with a different company. He's been with the same company for 15 years. It's been very stable, very safe and I'm afraid, he is now thinking, very stagnant.

After a few very long discussions he has decided to accept the offer.

This scares me to death. I like the same old, same old. I don't do well with change.

This is a very good opportunity, more money, less cost in insurances, etc. But it is a change. An unknown.

He doesn't jump right into anything. He'll weigh the pros and cons and do what he has to do. And I'll support him in his decision.

I have been working two jobs this week. I accepted a position as a cashier last week at our local grocery store.

I had added up my expenses for 2005 so far. In just races, hotel and gasoline; no shoes, clothing, bars, gels or ecaps, and I spent over $2500. The races for '06 will cost even more, as I'm planning on running 3-100's and Western is a huge $250. Plus I'll have to add in air fare and expenses for any pacers I might be lucky enough to talk into pacing me.

I figure Grand Slam in '07 will cost me a cool $6500. I decided not to take any more $ out of the family savings account. Hence, the second job. It is only a few nights a week-a few weekend afternoon's-not bad at all. I think of it as my race job.

So with Steve's job offer, my second job, Topaz's foot and my friends' cancer..yeah, I'm a bit stressed.

I think I'll go for a run; it beats grabbing that Halloween candy or a Special Export :)

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Running. Alone.

Thump, thump, thump. 5 AM and Topazs' tail is thumping on my comforter, wet kisses on my face. I can hear the rain on the window. "We are going to get wet this morning, Topie."

I roll out of bed and follow Topaz to my bathroom. I can hear his akward gait on the tile. He is limping.

Last night we were all playing football. Topaz was fetching the football; back and forth. He went out for Tyler's pass. On the way back to us he jumped over the bird bath and landed akward. He yelped loudly and began to limp.

This morning he is still limping.

I hated to leave him at home. He looked at me so excited as I put on my running clothes, anticipating our morning run.

I had to run alone. In the pouring rain. I knew I was going to run, rain or not. I didn't know I would be running alone.

I don't think I've ever run this trail without Topaz. I've run 10 miles with him, then have had Steve pick him up so that I could run another 10, not wanting to take him too far. But I don't recall that I've ever run the trail without him at all.

I had a lot to think about.

My very dear friend found out that she has lymphoma cancer. We found out on Friday. We thought she had mono for the past few weeks. Maybe she doesn't have mono at all. The symptoms of mono and lymphoma mirror one another.

She's one of the healthiest people I know. She's very moderate, I always tease her about it. She never smoked cigarettes, never tried drugs and has one glass of wine a month; at the most.

She used to run in a very moderate way too. Until she met me. I talked her into running her first marathon at 40. And she did, in fine fashion.

We've shared many miles and many races together. I love her. Dearly.

And she has cancer.

I realized, as I was running, that this was exactly what I needed to do. I needed my body to move as it knows to move. The consistant motion that has become so very comfortable. I needed my mind to open up and to feel. To think. I needed to cry. I needed to cry hard.

I realized that I am a runner. Not too long ago, I wasn't a runner. I didn't know how to deal with stress, I didn't know how to open my mind. I didn't know how running can make me feel more whole. More focused. More clear.

As I felt the rain and my tears run down my face I knew that I was where I needed to be.

Running. Even if I had to run alone.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

It's A Wrap

First of all, why is my blogger bar fat up at the top and blocking out the title of each post?

Today is the last day of the Leanness Lifestyle Bootcamp Intensive III. Our last phone conference will be this evening.

I've lost 4.5 pounds this past 5 weeks. I'm all 'bootcamped' out. I've struggled a bit during this bootcamp. I was SO focused on Twin Cities Marathon and Edmund Fitz 100K that the camp became a secondary focus. Still, I'm happy with the 4.5 loss.

I had my body fat tested yesterday at the gym. 14.7%. Lowest ever. I like that.

So for the next month I'm going to run approximately 30-40 miles a week and focus on lifting and a bit of swimming. The swim coach at the High School for which I work has offered to give me swimming lessons on Sunday and whenever I can fit them in. If I want to try a tri, I must learn.

Admission: I don't know how to do the freestyle stroke. Ahem, must learn.

30 minutes HIIT on treadmill AM
55 minutes trail run PM

M1: 8 egg whites/stir fry veggies
M2: 1/2 c cottage cheese, apple
M3: 1 chicken kabob, veggies (more leftovers!)
M4: 4 oz tuna, carrots and peppers
M5: 1 chicken kabob and more veggies.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Biggest Loser

I barely made it home in time tonight for the ending of The Biggest Loser. Actually, I was able to catch the last half hour.

Troy began basketball practices tonight - seems like we just finished football - and I ran to the gym for 45 minutes to lift while he practiced.

Did you watch? Pete had lost 80 some pounds in the past 8 weeks. 80 pounds! He was voted off, although they all loved him very much, and since he has been home he has lost another 50 pounds. That's incredible!

There was a clip of Pete and his wife running down a road. She's lost 50 pounds along with him. Amazing.

The show has changed their lives. I think it is so good to see that people 400+ pounds can make a lifestyle change. He would have NEVER believed that he would be running miles with his wife. Now that's inspiring.

I'm pretty well recovered from Ed Fitz 100K. Last week I ran 30 miles and I'll probably continue to run only 30-40 miles a week through November.

I applied for Western States 100 Mile Run ( I Won't know until December 5 if I've been accepted to the race. Once I find out I will begin to make my running plans and workouts for '06. It all kind of hinges on getting into Western.

I'm scared to death, I've never run on a mountain! My long range goal is to run Grand Slam so I better get started :)

This morning I ran 45 minutes on the treadmill for 5.75 miles.
Lifted tonight: Chest/Biceps

DB Chest Press: 40x6x3
BB Bench Press: 110x8x3
Pec Dec: 60x8x3
BB Curl (21's) 50x6x2; 40x8x1
DB Curl: 30x8x3
Preacher Curl: 25x12x4

M1: 8 whites; banana
M2: cottage cheese, apple
M3: chicken kabob w/veggies
M4: cherry garcia shake (post lift)
M5: All The Whey

And Flatman ( tagged me and I have never been tagged before and don't know the 'etiquette'. So I tag Wil ( as I am excited to watch her transformation to lean mean muscle machine!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Feeling Fine

Thank you so very much for all the kind words and congratulations. This cyber-world is pretty incredible. I sure enjoy the enthusiasm and the support I feel from you.

This week has been all about recovery. I've been sleeping a bit more, eating a bit more, stretching much more and doing a bit of walking/running and resistance training.

Monday I and Topaz went for a walk in the woods. It was just beautiful. I had to break into a run for a few miles but it was mainly walking.

Tuesday I lifted. I was able to lift the same weight and reps as prior to Ed Fitz. That makes this gal very very happy. Running and eating less could be disasterous for my muscles. I do not want to lose them.

Next week it is back to lifting 3x a week. I will be doing a split of chest/bicep/tricep; back/shoulders/hams; quads/calves/abs.

Last night was Run Club. It was so much fun to talk to death Ed Fitz Relay and the 100K Solo. Everyone had a great time. I ran /walked the 5 mile route.

Tonight I and Topaz ran 4 miles on the trail and now I have to get to a Planning & Zoning meeting. Joy.

M1: Oat Pancake ( 1/2 c oats, 6 whites, sf syrup)
M2: Banana/All The Whey
M3: 5 oz tuna/large green salad/olive oil
M4: 4 oz sirloin/2 c frozen veggies
M5: Orange/cottage cheese

Calories: 1354 Carbs: 38% Protein: 42% Fat:20%

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Scott and I at start of Edmund Fitz 100K

 Posted by Picasa

Edmund Fitz 100 K . . . ROCKS!

On Friday I arrived to the DECC in Duluth for the mandatory pre race briefing. I was going to meet Scott and Alicia and attend the meeting, then follow them to a mutual friends' home who was going to put us up, or put up with us, for the weekend. It was really nice not booking the hotel and spending a wad of cash, that whole scene. I was looking forward to staying at K's home.

Scott was running the 100K solo and Alicia was going to crew for us. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that she was planning on doting on me every bit as she was going to be there for Scott.

We attended the meeting, picked up our race packets and headed over to K's. We hadn't had dinner yet so we stopped at CUB FOODS and did a fair amount of shopping.

The three of us were able to have the guest house to ourselves. It was very nice; we set the alarms for 2 AM and dozed off to sleep.

2 AM and the wind was whipping! I could hear it blowing outside. Oh man, I just didn't want that. Luckily, the temperature was 48F, it was temperature was warmer than I had thought it would be.

We packed up all of our junk and headed off to the start line, in Finland, MN.

It was REAL windy. But REAL beautiful. The stars were so bright, up in the beautiful north woods. The moon was almost full; just spectacular. We were watching shooting stars. I asked the stars to guide me to the finish line without an injury. They obliged.

At 4 AM the sky was so bright that I didn't need a flashlight. I put in back into my bag and never did use it.

As I went to the port-a-potties I realized that I was definately going to put my wind pants on over my shorts. It was freezing! That wind was crazy, I'm glad I didn't know what the wind chill was, but I bet it was in the 20's.

5AM and were ready to roll. I had my iPod, food, clothes, etc. with Alicia in her car; she would follow us along the 62 mile course to the finish. She was going to pull over before each 5K aid station to see what we needed.

This is an interesting race. There are 100+ relay teams, consisting of 5-8 people. Each team has a vehicle, one person runs a 'leg' of the race at a time, hands off a baton to the next person, and so on. The team, in the vehicle, drives along the course.

For the solos; if you are lucky, you have a crew. That person will drive along the course and cater to your every whim. Alicia even bought us hot coffee at one point..just because we thought it would taste good at that moment. And it did!

You would think there would be a ton of traffic and chaos; but there isn't. It is very well run and quite organized. If one isn't up to the solo, I would certainly suggest one try the team relay.

OK, so 5AM and we are off! The solo runners are offered a 5 AM or 7 AM start. If you can finish in 10 hours, you are encouraged to take the 7 AM start.

As I was running along someone introduced himself as Brent. Here it was Brent from WI who posted on my blog a week or so ago. It was real neat to actually meet him in person. Brett finished in 11:15! An awesome first finish at the 100K distance! Congratulations, Brent.

I really struggled with my running the first 4-5 hours. My right thigh was hurting, it's never ached before and I was worried about having had the flu earlier in the week. My legs were dead. Just tired dead. I was thinking about all of the miles I have run this summer, all the races, TCM was just 2 weeks ago, well, duh, I should have tired legs. But I didn't want them this early in the day. I didn't feel like I had eaten enough carbs the night before, I didn't have my usual pasta feast. All of these things kept nagging at me.

Around 1.5 hours into the race I fell in back of Scott and just couldn't catch him. It was making me mad; not that he was in front of me, but that I could not catch him. He would run, then take a good long walk break, run again, walk break. I could make NO gain on him. I wasn't taking a walk break, I was running consistantly and could not catch him. Up the hill he'd go and I'd be trudging along trying to catch him.

I was lucky, eventually he waited for me to catch up. I think he was stretching and just decided to wait. I ran the next 45 miles with him! We would run a while, then walk, 'run to the passing sign', then take a walk break. He told me this is how he has always run this race-I figured I'd run along with him, he has 5 finishes here!

I think the walk breaks saved my legs. By miles 25-30 I was coming back, getting into what I call "The Julie Zone". I get into a place where nothing hurts, I have only happy thoughts and yeah, I'm going to finish this thing.

My Big Lake Run Club was doing the relay race out there. I was SO happy to see them along the course. It was awesome. They all piled out of their van, ran around me with hugs and candy, gave TONS of encouragement and piled back into their van, continuing up the road. I saw them out there a few times. Once I was so happy to see them I did a little dance.

I was feeling awesome.

Eventually it warmed up, I was able to give Alicia my pants, gloves and ear band. Thank goodness!

Just before 50K the 7AM starters began to catch us. It's so cool to see them. The winner from last years race was the first to pass us (he won this race, too). He moved along like a well oiled machine. I just can't imagine to be able to hold that pace. He finished in like 7 hours. Gah.

Somewhere along the course Scott told me his favorite part was coming up. We turned the corner and there was like a one mile rolling downhill. The sun was shining, the leaves were in their full color, the road went down, down, down; and you could see Lake Superior in all her splendor. It was beautiful. It took my breath away.

We ran and ran and ran..down, down and down. It was awesome. I think I smiled the whole way.

Scott has run the course .. and finished .. all five times. He knows it very well. He told me when each aid station was coming up, etc. It made it very nice. It was like I had a tour guide!

Alicia, as I said, was just fantastic. I told her at one stop that I'd like a sandwich, she'd pull ahead to the next 5K check point, walk across the highway and stand there, sandwich in hand, asking me what I'd like at the next check point. It truly was a treat.

At one point, near the end of the race I asked her for a potato chip. I and Scott had grabbed a handful from her earlier and they were really good. Sure enough, at the next aid point she had a baggie chips for me to carry along the course!

The last 18 miles of the course is run on Grandmas Marathon. I know that course very well, so it really surprised me that the course seemed so hilly yesterday! Of course, after running 50 miles I guess anything seems hilly.

I and Scott hit 50 miles at 9:45 or so. You know, when I run FANS, on pavement as well, it takes me almost 12 hours to get 50 miles. And there aren't any hills! This makes no sense to me. I suppose since I usually enter FANS for the 24 hour option, maybe I run slower. I don't know.

Shortly after the 50 mile mark Scott began doing calculations and figured maybe we could break 12 hours. I was feeling really good. I thought maybe we could. We ran/walked a while longer and Scott told me I should go ahead and break 12 hours. I thought about it a while and decided yeah, I'd give it a try.

I ran ahead, I felt sad to break away from Scott, I had really enjoyed running with him and he saved my legs. But I wanted to break 12. Off I went.

I asked Alicia for my iPod at the next station and rocked on for the finish line.

The relay runners make the ultra runners feel like rock stars. I had one group of relayers stand along the shoulder and do the WAVE as I ran by. They yelled and screamed at me and told me how awesome I was. It was incredible.

It was one big ego trip, those last 5 miles in.

Rick; an ultra runner friend of mine appeared around 55 miles. He ran the Glacial Trail 50K last week so wasn't running. It was so neat to run with him for a while. I had no idea he would be out on the course. He just wanted to offer his support.

I had 5 miles left. If I ran 11 minutes miles I would make it. I had been running 11 minute miles; I could do it. Maybe. If I didn't fall or puke or who knows. Anything could go wrong at this point.

Alicia parked her car and ran over to my side of the road. "Right here, this spot is 4.5 miles to the finish" I told her I might be able to break 12 hours. If I ran my ass off.

I ran my ass off.

The relayers were SCREAMING! "Woman solo! Woman solo! Your an inspiration! How do you do it? GO GO GO GO GO GO!" It was crazy fun. I was smiling so much my face was hurting!

I turned into the wooded finish area, about .5 mile left and knew that I was going to do it. Woohoo!

Oh my gosh, as I'm running into the finish, there is Bonnie. I couldn't believe it! She was clicking off pictures and clapping and yelling. She and her daughter had driven up and were able to watch Scott and I finish.

The announcer: And here's a solo..Julie Berg..from Big Lake..just ran 100K..congratulations!

11:53! Yeah hoo! I ran this race 2 years ago in 12:40.

It was awesome.

I felt really good. 4 minutes later, here came Scott, in 11:57! He broke 12 hours; a PR for him too. Woohoo!

We walked into Lake Superior and soaked our feet and legs. It had warmed to about 55 degrees, but by 5 PM it was cooling back down.

Bonnie went back to Minneapolis and I and Scott were treated to massages. It was fantastic.

What a wonderful day in the beautiful Minnesota northern woods.

***I brought along my camera; I didn't realize the battery was low. I did get 2 before pictures I'll post. Bonnie will be emailing me many that she took. I'll post those when they arrive.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Stung by the Flu Bug

Yuck. Tuesday night I came down with the flu. I imagine now that I have been moved to the main office of the High School, I am going to be coming down with more cold and flu germs than ever. Germy students!

Three weeks ago it was a horrible cold, now it is the flu. I stayed home ill yesterday, but hated to stay home today when I am taking Friday and Monday as vacation days.

Friday I am leaving for Duluth for the race and on Monday Tyler's Middle School has their 'take your parent to school day'.

So, I went into work today, even though I was feeling sub-par.

Tomorrow I'll head up north. I need to attend the mandatory Ed Fitz 100K meeting at the DECC. I'm going to hook up with a few other runners and spend the night with them at a mutual friend's place.

We'll head out at 3 AM for the bus ride to the start of the race, up near Lutsen. I begin the race at 5 AM and expect to finish around 5 PM.

The forecast looks wonderful. Lows in the 40's; highs in the 60's. No rain so far.

I received the funniest email from my run club today. They are taking part in the Ed Fitz relay. Here goes:
1)Question to Relay team:
A woman starts running at 5am on a beautiful moon lit morning on a quiet country road in the Minnesota Northwoods. She runs about 6mph, or
in running terms a 10 minute per mile pace.

The woman is an experienced ultra marathon runner with several wins
under her belt. She has trained hard for this race, and is prepared to

At approximately 7:30am, on a cold, dark and dangerous gravel road high
in the Saw Tooth Mountains, one of the older members of a mostly middle
aged relay team, flashlight and pepper spray in hand, starts his run. The
team hopes to average about 7.5 mph, or an 8 minute pace. The relay team,
due to very unfair race rules must run 5k more than the individual woman

The Question: Will the old men catch the woman? and if so, at what mile

2) Reply from a relay runner:
IF the assumptions are correct (see caution below) the old guys
should pass the foxy blond at 3:30 PM.
The girl has an hour and half head start at 6 mph (9 miles)
The girl has a course that is 3 miles shorter and that is "felt" at
the beginning,
thus, the real head start is 12 miles
The old guys run 1.5 mph faster (CAUTION - there is one of them that
thinks we should add a probability factor to that in that there is a high
risk that he can't perform as expected). It will take 8.00 hours (12
divided by 1.5) to make up the 12 mile head start.
That puts the cross over point at about 3:30 PM. By that time, the
girl will have been on the course for 9.5 hours and the guys for 8 hours
3) Response from another relay runner:
That's not quite the formula I used to solve the problem.

I think your close, but according to my calculation, we will not catch
the blonde unless she stops at the finish line and waits for us. unless of
course she does some walking along the way... then we have a chance....

here is my formula (I haven't done a story problem in years so not sure
if this is correct):
Distance = Rate * Time
Blonde: d = 6mph * (t + 2.5hours)
Team: d = 7.5mph * t - 3.1

then just solve for t
6 * (t + 2.5) = 7.5 * t - 3.1
6t + 15 = 7.5t - 3.1
18.1 = 1.5t
12.067 = t

now substitute for t
Blonde: d = 6mph * (12.067 + 2.5hours) = 87.402miles
Team: d = 7.5mpr * 12.067 - 3.1 = 87.402miles

However, if for example, the blonde stops for a couple nature breaks, and
maybe a bite of smoked salmon along the way, and only averages 11 minute
miles, and the guys maintain the 8 minute pace, then the guys would catch
the blonde at 66 miles (the finish line)

Wonder how a college calculus student would solve this probem?

4)Me: WOW. A formula. I should have paid more attention in Math!!

Blonde had the flu yesterday. May make more potty stops. Ewwww.

5) Relay runner: this may be the first time I've applied any math formulas or knowledge to a real world problem!

I'm not sure how to work in "potty stops" or "being taken in the woods" into
a math formula? that could obviously throw all the calculations off.


I'm impressed/happy that they actually tried to figure out when they'd see me :) But, as I said before..they are a great group of guys!

Talk Sunday.. Over and Out....

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


Troy's football season is over. His team lost their game on Saturday, so the season came to an end. For now, I have my evenings FREE. Next week he begins basketball, but for now, I'm free.

Tyler had a football game after school today. They lost. Poor kid, out of 4 games..they have had 4 losses. He's pretty disappointed.

It was cold sitting out there on the bleachers watching them play. I wanted to get up and run around the track! At least I would have warmed up. But I held back, for I had already been running today. Took Topaz around the neighborhood, in the dark, headlamp on head, running up and down the streets at 430 AM. I got in 6 miles in :48:10.

It looks like I'll have a crew after all. A friend of mine that is running Ed Fitz will share his pacer with me. Thanks! This eases my mind a bit.

So I guess I'll be hitting the couch and the TV button. It's been months. I used to like watching The Amazing Race and The Biggest Loser. I'll see if I still enjoy them!

Sunday, October 09, 2005


I ran my yesterday run today. I was scrunched for time yesterday so ran 5, today had more time so ran 10. The rivers are real high; Topaz went for a swim instead of just laying in the water. We've had torrential rains this past week.

It's a beautiful day today in Minnesota. When I hit the trail it was 40F, now it is up to 56F and sunny. The smell of fall is in the air, the leaves are changing, it is truly wonderful.

So while I was running this morning I began to think about Ed Fitz 100 K. The race is taking place next Saturday. I'm feeling good and recovered from Twin Cities Marathon last Sunday. Next week I'll feel even better.

I ran Ed Fitz 2 years ago; I had a crew of Ann and Bonnie. They met me at most of the aid stations every 5K to cater to my every whim. It was a great day. It was my first 100K and I finished in just under 13 hours. I ended up taking 3rd woman and won $150. Go figure!

Last year I caught a cold right after running Superior 50 Mile, I still had it while running TCM and by the time Ed Fitz came around it had turned into bronchitis so I never ran Ed Fitz. Bummer.

This year I'll be at the start. I don't have a crew though so that's the pits. I can have a drop bag at 50K so I'll put a few Myloplex bars and gels, maybe a sandwich or something in there for the half way point. I'll probably begin the race in pants, over shorts, then I can just pull the pants off and tie them around my waist until I get to my drop bag. That's kind of a pain. I'll have gloves, ear band, etc. I'll feel like a damn pack mule. I've even been thinking about wearing my camelback just to carry stuff, but oh, how I hate wearing that.

When I first began running ultras I used the camelback and I packed everything but the kitchen sink. During Ice Age 50 Mile it weighed 27 pounds. That's crazy!

I've since pared down a bit.

I really like my Nathan Sports 2 24 oz water bottle carrier. I'll probably just use that.

The aid stations at Ed Fitz mainly cater to the relay runners. They are many teams that run the 100K. My Big Lake Run Club will be up there with a team.

If you don't have anything to do next Saturday and would like to go for a drive in the great north woods, hey, maybe you want to spend 12 hours driving around, crewing for me?

I better check the weather forecast for next Saturday.

Enjoy today!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Leanness Lifestyle Bootcamp Intensive III Week III

Yesterday marked the beginning of Week 3 of the Bootcamp III.

I'm down 4 pounds. I did have the Blizzard extravaganza the weekend prior to BCI-III so I've mainly lost gain from that episode. I'm working on an additional few pounds to lose over the next two weeks. I'll get there too.

Last night we had the conference call with Coach Dave. There are 32 members of this Bootcamp and together we have lost over 100 pounds. WooHoo!

We spoke about the addiction to foods; sugar mainly. Yes, I whole-heartedly know about that one. I have found that the only way I can stay away from sugar/processed foods/bakery is to view them as cigarettes and alcohol. Sounds crazy; but it works.

Today a co-worker brought in a pan of home made Special K bars. She melted one bag of butterscotch chips with one bag of chocolate chips for the frosting on top. Do you know how that smells? Very, very good. I had the gals cover them up with a sheet of saran wrap so I didn't have to smell them all day long.

Then I walked into the lunch area. There in a big bowl sits a mixture of dry roasted peanuts (shelled) with halloween candy corn! Can you imagine how good the sweet/salt must taste? It must be like a Salted Nut Roll.

I ran away from the bowl. I hope it is gone tomorrow. I don't know how much more I can take!

Tonight: 1 hour run during fb practice

M1: Oat pancake
M2: Banana/All The Whey Protein Powder
M3: Tuna pouch, 1 bag frozen veggies, apple
M4: EFL Taco Salad
M5: FF Cool whip/FF Pudding :)

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Here I am, recovering nicely from the tough effort at the marathon on Sunday.

I'm surprised at how sore my upper body is. I recall scrunching up my shoulders during the race, then letting them go, trying to run relaxed. I was so tense and must have been scrunched up most of the race.

My neck, shoulders and arms are SO sore! I don't think I've ever had such a stiff and sore upper body after a race before. It was very sore before I lifted weights last night. It actually felt good to lift and stretch everything out.

After lifting weights I attended a beginning Yoga class. I have gone to the pilates classes before; but never Yoga. I enjoyed it very much. I felt like my cat, Toffee, doing all those stretches! I'll definately attend again.

I wish I could afford a massage! That seems like such an expensive luxury; I think I spend enough on this running habit-I don't really need to spend more for recovery :)

Tonight is run club but I may opt for a kinder, more gentle run on the trail with Topaz.

M1: Oat Pancake
M2: Banana/All They Whey Protein Powder
M3: Tuna Pouch, Apple, large green salad
M4: Turkey Patty, 2 c cabbage
M5: Apple, cottage cheese

Monday, October 03, 2005

TCM finishing grounds at the Capitol Posted by Picasa

TCM After Posted by Picasa

TCM Before Posted by Picasa

The Day After...

Thank you for so many nice congratulatory messages; even though I didn't reach my goal. I realize that it isn't the end of the world, that there are other races and that yesterday just wasn't my day.

I really ran my hardest, albeit not my smartest. How could I not realize I should wear my water pack. Did I lose respect for the marathon distance? I would never ever not wear a water pack while running an ultra. Maybe I have never worn a water pack during a marathon simply because I didn't know they existed prior to ultras. Maybe it wouldn't have even mattered.

And why was I SO focused on running with the pace group? I know why. I really thought the group would make it easier for me to run the distance in that speed. Well, hello, did I really think it was OK to run 3 sub 8 minute miles to catch them? No, I know I have no business doing that..very strange indeed that I did. I don't understand some of my actions.

Gels and bars. I ate two. Two gels. WTF? That's not enough. That's stupid. I had 8 in my waist pack thingy bob and 1 myloplex bar. But I was running so damn fast I didn't have time to eat one. I didn't FEEL like it. Whine whine whine whine.

OK, so I am learning from this race. That's what it is all about.

Next year (yea, next year) I'll train on the course. Why wouldn't I have thought of that this time around?

So now I'm thinking about Ed Fitz 100K in two weeks..well, less than two weeks.

I'll recover a bit, bike a bit, run a bit and stretch; mainly just rest up.

Blech. Another rest period.

M1: Oat pancake
M2: 4 oz tuna, large green salad, ff dressing
M3: apple, cottage cheese
M4: Cherry Garcia protein shake
M5: Boca Burger, large green salad, ff dressing

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Not Boston Bound :(

Hi there,

Below is a copy of my race report to my ultra running group. I didn't do it today. I did not have what it took to qualify. I'm ok with that (like I have a choice in the matter-well, I suppose I could be pissed, I'm not)as I gave it all that I had today. I could not hold the pace. Man it was hard!!

Thanks for all of your encouragement and support while I was training for this buggar! I appreciate that so much.

Sometimes days just go like this and we have to learn from them :)

I'll post some pics in a bit.

TCM was tough tough tough for me.

Last June I pr'd at Grandmas in 3:59:58 and this surprised me greatly. I had never broken the 4 hour barrier.

I then hatched the great idea of trying to qualify for Boston at TCM by running a 3:50.

I trained hard these past few months. I began to run at the track, running Yasso 800's in 3:40-3:45. I started with 3 and worked my way up to a dozen. I began to run tempo workouts as well, these are two workouts that I've never incorporated into my training before because, well, running faster than what I was used to, hurt. Plain and simple.

The speed workouts and losing some weight helped to quicken my ultra distances. I began to PR at the 50K and 50 mile distances.

I thought I could run a 350 today, maybe even a 345.


I drove over to Ann's this morning. I was so lucky to again be able to ride with Ann, her hubby Fred and son Kyle. Kyle entertained me all the way there .. and back. He's a funny little energetic 7 (I think) year old that reminds me of how my boys were at his age.

After we were dropped off at the Dome we stood around in lines, met up with friends and then I was ready to find my pacing group.

I thought I had plenty of time to find them. Wrong again. 20 minutes prior to start and the chutes were already crammed and full. I pushed my way up to the 445's and stopped dead. Oh well, I figured I'd catch them soon enough. Wrong again.

We were off and running. I crossed the start and tried to find my group. I spoke with Val from Voyageur, whom I and Jeffrey ran with at V for quite some time, it was awesome to see her again.

1 mile down and I still hadn't caught the 350 pace group. 1 mile: 7:34. Not good, way too fast. Mile 2 and I still hadn't caught them! Not good again: 7:56. Mile 3 and finally caught them. Mile 3: 8:00. This was bad. Way too fast for me. In retrospect I SHOULD have just run my miles off of my pace band but at the time I was hell bent on catching the group. (another lesson learned) I was out of breath, hot and dry.

I realized that I should have been carrying my ultra pack with the 2 24 oz bottles. Heck, I always train with this and I always drink 24 oz an hour. That's what my body is used to. Why didn't I have it? (another lesson learned). I was having trouble sustaining on the 3-5oz cups of water, even though I was trying to chug as many as I could.

At mile 10 I was at 3:45 pace. I was pretty excited about that, but not excited about the way my quads were cramping. I've never had cramping in my muscles. Never.

I was doing electrolyte caps, did a gel, more water at the aid station..then guess what. Another first and bad move. I missed an aid station! I thought there was only one table that I passed, I guess I must have passed a few more because all of sudden I realized the water tables were gone and I hadn't had anything to drink. (another lesson learned)

Mile 13 and holding onto the 345 pace but fading fast. I could feel it fading.

Mile 16 and holding to the 350 group..then I had to make a pit stop. Yeah. Of course.

Mile 19 and I fell. Yeah, fell during a marathon on asphalt. No roots, no rocks! I was running along and didn't notice (wasn't looking I guess..duh) the guy with the rake in front of me, raking out the cups and runner debris. My toe hooked the rake and BAM. Face plant. Scratched my sunglasses, the hat flew off but I was OK. I caused a collision in back of me. It was the pits. My iPod shot out of its case on my arm and slid a ways. I probably would have laughed it I wasn't feeling so lousy and hot and dry and crampy in my quads.

Mile 20 and I'm falling off of 350 pace. Mile 21 took me 10 minutes. I just want this over with.

Then I changed my attitude. I was going to finish and I was going to have fun. I couldn't qualify for Boston today but I could at least enjoy the marathon, enjoy the spectators and enjoy the other runners. There was no way I could keep the 350 pace. That was real fast and real tough for me to hold. I was going to finish the race in 10 minute miles, around 4 hours and enjoy the surroundings. I could not go any faster.

I enjoyed the spectators. I saw members of my Big Lake run club: Kevin and Ken were loud and encouraging! I saw Jo, Don and Chris and the girls; I kept seeing Marie's Tom over and over again! It was so much fun finding spectators that I recognized.

My legs were heavy and tired. Man they were tired. I was running as FAST as I could and I could not break a 930 mile this last section. I'm sure I didn't.

I was running my best, doing what I could do today and it was not good enough for a Boston qualifier. It was just not good enough. It was the best I could do today. The best I could, that's all I could give and I'm happy with that.

My watch time was 4:02, I think the race clock said 4:08. A TCM pr for me.

At the finish line I was able to watch Ann run in, it was fun to see her finish! A PR for Ann. Woohoo!! We hobbled to the changing tents and who was there but Leslie from Voyaguer! A gal I and Jeffrey ran with for a while. I never did see Val from V again.

Leslie left behind a container full of wet wipes. Ahh, how good it felt to wipe the salt from our face! The little things in life!!

Kyle entertained me all the way back to Ann's. All in all, it was a great day!

There were many of the MN-DRS out there, don't let me be the only one to talk about the day:)

Julie Berg
Big Lake

Saturday, October 01, 2005


This morning I wasn't going to run. I really wasn't. I was going to take a day off. But when I woke up it was 55 degrees out; a beautiful morning, we won't be having many more mornings like this in Minnesota..for a long long time.

What's a gal to do?

I had until 930 before I had to be home to do the football goings-on. I grabbed my running clothes and I and Topaz were out the door and driving to the trail.

It was a fabulous 3 mile run. Short and sweet. I didn't feel like a beached whale; I felt sharp and focused. Just what I needed.

Off to the football game where Troy's team won 25-6. Yippee!

I and Marie were off to the Twin Cities Marathon Expo. Neither I nor Marie are big shoppers. We just kind of mill around, aisle after aisle-looking for the free stuff. Today I came home with many free items, even Fresca pop. 6 cans! Unreal. Plus Listermint strips (do runners have bad breath?), chapsticks, cereal samples and a whole lot of unimportant flyers and papers that I tossed out.

Oh yeah, and a Clif Pace Team 3:45 wrist band..gulp.

I decided not to try immodium since I haven't tried it in training. I'm going to try something else. I and Ann aren't leaving until 6 AM so I have plenty of time to go for a little pre-run, a warmer upper of sorts. I'll hop on my treadmill for a mile or so..then I'll have to go..for happens every time.

The forecast for tomorrow is 65F start time and 86F for a high. My kind of running temps. I much rather have warm than cool and rainy.

If you are out on the course tomorrow I'll have on black shorts, pink sleeveless top-that may be tied around my waist showing a multi pink/black jog bra, white/purple Montrail "Run Like A Girl" hat. Number 3980. I hope to see you!

Over and out...