Thursday, June 30, 2005

Afton 50K

I'll be running the Afton 50K on Saturday. My friend, Scott Wagner, is the Race Director. He is all a flutter right now, making race packets, ordering food, making sure the tshirts and awards are ready. It is a huge undertaking, putting on a race. He is expection 100 to run the 50K and a few less than that to run the 25K. That's a big turn out for this race.

Check out for more details.

I'm going to take it nice and easy and enjoy the day in a great state park. No time goals, just to finish within the allotted 8 hour time frame. Last year I ran it in 7:14 so of course, 7:13 would be just fine this year.

This morning Troy rode his bike with me while I ran. We did the Eagle trail and spotted two bald eagles. They were guarding their nest. I bet there are little eaglets in there now. We did 8 miles. Topaz was a crazy runner dog, running up to Troy, back to me, up to Troy. He was trying to herd us back together. It was a riot. He's actually sleeping at my feet now.

Today I'm at my lowest weight: 130.7. I love it! Tomorrow I'll carb up for the race so I'll enjoy my low for today; it will be gone soon.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Yesterday I went to the Blue Hill Trail to run hills. There is a .5 mile hill with a pretty good grade % on it. I ran up hard, rested a minute and ran down; repeat 12 times. Then ran 6 miles easy on the trail.

I figured I might as well work my legs real hard and went to the gym to lift. My lifts are getting better:

Extension: 140x8x2, 160x6x1, 140x6x2
Squats: 95x10x1, 110x10x1, 130x6x1
Slanted Leg Press: 120x8x1, 140x6x2
Hamstring Curl: 40x10x1, 60x10x2, 80x6x1
Calf raise: 180x15x1

I have the Afton 50K on Saturday so I wanted to work my legs early this week.

Today I ran 8 easy on trail and will go this afternoon to lift chest, tri.

M1: Oat pancake: 2/3 c oats, 1 egg, 5 whites, sf syrup
M2: 4 oz chicken, 2 c spinach (finally, from the garden!), grape tomatoes, cucumber, olive oil
M3: Myoplex Shake, blueberries
M4: 6 oz salmon, 2 c grilled squash, eggplant, peppers and onions
M5: EFL Tropical Tuna

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Big Lake 8K Posted by Hello

Big Lake 8K

The Big Lake 8K is the first race that I had ever ever run. I ran it 8 years ago; I had been running for 2 months and decided this race would be the first.

I was scared to death! There were all of these 'real' runners, I was an imposter.

I conned my girlfriend, Sandy, to run the race with me. She had been running a bit on a treadmill, was about as experience as I, and said she would run it. I don't think she has run a race since.

I on the other hand, fell in love with the race at that time. I've gone to run every year since. It's in my town, my running club puts the race on, it's just a lot of fun.

When I first ran the race I didn't know anybody. That is the biggest change. I now know many many people (runners) at the race.

I've been putting in pretty big mileage so wasn't sure how it would go. I moved into Ann's age group this year (40-49) and would have LOVED to beat her..but really didn't think I had a shot. Ann's one of my very best friends. She's a fast friend! Then I decided I'd break my fastest 8K time: 41:36. That would be good enough for today.

I did it! I ran the race in 40:29; good enough for 4th in my age group. Ann finished in 38:45! Go Ann! She took 3rd in our age group.

It was a blast. A total blast.

Now I'm going shopping..something new for the Afton 50K i have next week:)

Thursday, June 23, 2005


When I first began this blogger, on December 30 or 31 or whatever it was, I was depressed because I had turned 40. The big 4 Oh! I was truly disturbed that I was feeling so down about a silly number. 40 really isn't old anymore. Sure it was old when my parents were 40, but hey, i am a young 40! My parents are now young 63's!

So at that time, my 40th BD, I set a few goals for the year. One goal was to run my first one hundred mile race. I chose McNaughton, and finished it, on April 17. It was awesome.

Another goal I set was to lose 22 pounds, to reach 130 pounds. I wasn't sure if I could. I had tried BFL and was just losing a few, gaining a few, building some muscle, but not getting lean. I wanted to be lean. I wanted to look in the mirror and feel good about my body. I wanted to see the muscle under the fat.

On February 9 I joined Leanness Lifestyle and the Bootcamp Intensive I. I lost 5 pounds and was pretty stoked about that, so I joined Bootcamp Intensive II and lost 8.5 more. The next Bootcamp isn't until September, but I've remained an active member of LL. I'm on Team Maintenance right now, even though I'm still in 'action mode' (losing), they invited me so I joined.
I've lost 20.5 pounds so far, I've almost reach my first weight loss goal. I did decide that I want to reach 125 and thought I would reach that goal on July 7. It may take me a few more weeks, but hey, I'm ok with that. I know I will get there.

Another goal I set was to run a 4 hour marathon. That was way out there. WAY out there. I thought maybe I could run 4:10, but didn't know if I would do the work for a 4. Then I really wanted to qualify for Boston but wasn't ready to put that down as a goal.

Well, it is now. After reaching 3:59:51 at Grandmas, I'm ready to put in the work to get a 3:50. To do that I have pulled up Hal Hidgon's training program Advanced II. I'll run more mileage of course, with the ultras I do, but the important additions for me will be hills, tempo runs and speed work. Next week I begin to add those three workouts that will get me to the finish line of TCM in fine fashion. I'll run one tempo run a week and will alternate a speed workout with hills each week.

Today it is 100F! Wow, that is one hot mama. We will be spending the day floating in our pool. I was at the gym this morning and did 60 minutes of legs. Ran a hot fast 5 miles with run club last night and am taking the day off of running today. It's too hot to get Topaz out on the trail and I really don't need to run today. Will do 20 minutes of abs. I'm doing abs every day this week, with Emily from CO!

Sunday is the anniversary of my first race ever! The Big Lake 8K was my first ever, 8 years ago. It took me one hour and five minutes to run the course. Wow, look where that first race took me. I think I can run it a bit faster this Sunday.

Oh my Wednesday is mine and Steve's 20th wedding anniversary. Yikes!

M1: Cherry Garcia Shake
M2: tuna, pineapple, mayo, onions, spinach
M3: chicken, carrots, onions, peas, mayo
M4: banana, vanilla pudding, splenda, vanilla protein powder
M5: salmon, cabbage
M5: large, real large, green salad w/turkey

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

20 Pounds Gone!

Today I weighed in. Imagine how excited I was when I saw the numbers: 132.5 That is the 20 pound mark! I've lost 20 pounds since February 9th, the first day that I began Leanness Lifestyle. What a difference this program has made for me.

My goal that I set on February 9 was to lose a total of 22.5 pounds, to reach 130 pounds. Then I decided I wanted to reach 125 pounds. Now I'm thinking I could even go lower.

I'll see how 125 looks.

I have no stiffness or pain from running Grandmas Marathon. I ran Sunday 6 miles, Monday 8 and today 8. Lifted Monday, upper body and am going to hit legs tonight. Woohoo!

M1: 3 egg whites, 1 egg, 1c oats
M2: 1 cup carrots, 1 cup celery, 1 chopped apple, 4 oz canned chicken, 1 T lf mayo
M3: 4 oz salmon, 1 small green salad, 1 T ff dressing
M4: Myoplex Shake
M5: 5 oz chicken, 2 c mixed veggies

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Oh. My. Gawd.

Oh my gawd. Quick Story: I did it. I more than passed my goal. I ran a 3:59:51. A sub four hour marathon. My dream. My goal. Yes, Jenna, it rocked my world!! You are so right. Thanks for your comments, I do appreciate them, so very much! I need your email address so I can talk back and forth more frequently!

I've never set high enough goals for myself, you know, I'm afraid of failing.

Grandmas Marathon holds so many, many wonderful memories for me,as I wrote earlier. It was the first, I ran one with my Dad, and now, I can add my PR, my first sub 4 hour marathon.

For many, a 4 hour isn't a big deal. They run it as their first marathon. That isn't the case with me. A 4 hour marathon was the big chimichanga. A sub 4 would prove me as a 'real' runner.

At the Expo on Friday evening I walked up to the "Cliff Pacing Team" booth. It is a booth where there is a designated person to run a designated marathon finish time. There is a 3:10 guy, a 3:20 guy, a 3:30 gal, up to 5 hours. They give out pacing charts that fit around your wrist, depicting the time you should be at each mile, to finish at your desired time. I asked a man for a 4:00 pacing band. He looked at me and said "JULIE"! I couldn't believe it. He was Danny Ripka, ultra runner extrodiannare. He wins FANS all of the time and just set the WORLD record last month for a 6 day race where he ran 490 miles. Yeah. He's very nice, but intimidating, hello...he's a professional! But a kind professional.

I told Danny I was looking to finish in 4 hours. We chatted, I told him what I'd been running, told him about McNaughton and FANS, etc. He told me no problem. I could run 4. Easily. Heh.

This was the first time I "voiced" my goal, that I wanted to run 4 hours. My friend Marie, who was with me was excited and told me yes, do it. OK, I'll do it. I'll try. That's all I can do . That's the commitment I can make.

At the Expo I ate 2 platefuls of spaghetti and meat sauce, 2 slices of bread and 4 cookies. Carbo load city. We went to the hotel well fed.

445 AM and time to eat again. 1 big bowl of raisin bran, 2 hard boiled egg whites and an english muffin. I'm full and ready to roll.

730 AM. I've found the 400 pacing time and am ready to go. iPod is on and loaded to rock. At this point I'm shy to introduce myself to the other members of the 4:00 group, I might not make it you know, (damn me and my low self esteem), and don't want to put myself out there to be anyone would. Sheesh. So I run in back of the 4:00 pack, by 50 feet or so. I can see Danny up ahead with a stick that says 4:00 pacing team and attached to the stick is a bunch of pink balloons. I followed those balloons the whole race.

I had to make three pee breaks and one poop break. Each time I veered off I was afraid I'd never see the group again. Once I ran up ahead of them before I had to veer off so I wouldn't have to run so hard to catch up.

I was totally amazed. I felt strong. I felt good. I am woman hear me roar! It was a perfect day, a perfect race for me.

At the start there was a tail wind off of Lake Superior, it was 45 degrees and sunny. The high near the lake was 65 at the finish. Perfect. I'm so sick of running in the rain that the sun didn't bother me. It did get to a lot of people though.

OK, so about 23 miles into it and I have to poop. I know that there is a porta pottie at the top of Lemon Drop Hill, but you have to cross the road to the other side and it's a pain. But I really have to go. But the team will get away from me. The team has dwindled down from about 15 at the start to like 3 people and Danny. I go to the porta pottie. Then I run like hell. I can't catch them. I see the balloons but I can't catch them. At mile 24 I look at my pacing bracelet and I'm right on to the second! Go Julie Go! Run On baby.

I do. I run as hard and as fast as I can. People on the sidelines say "RUN PINK RUN" You look strong, pink, (I'm wearing a pink hat and top). It was awesome. Mile 25. I'm 4 seconds under the chart. Go Baby Go.

I come in at 3:59:51. OH. MY. GAWD.

I spoke with Danny at the finish line. Guess what? He's leading the 3:50 pacing group at TWIN CITIES MARATHON. Yup, I need a 3:50 to finish. And I'm broadcasting that goal.


So learn from me. Set high goals and you can reach them. You may suprise yourself!!

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Grandmas Marathon

Grandmas Marathon is so much fun. It holds special memories for me, as it was my first marathon 7 years ago. I had been running for roughly 6 months when I did my longest run of 7 miles. Right then and there, as I ran into the driveway I had the great idea of running a marathon. I grew up only 60 miles north of Duluth, so I knew that Grandmas Marathon was a pretty big deal. Wow, is it ever!

I've run Grandmas Marathon every year since the first one. Saturday will mark my seventh.

I thought I'd be pretty beat up from running 24 hours at FANS 2 weeks ago, but, ahem, I only ran 50 miles so I'm pretty well recovered and think I can run the race pretty hard.

The Cliff Pace Team will be running-they have a 4 hour pace group I may run with. I've never run a 4 hour marathon. My best was last year at Twin Cities Marathon when I ran 4:06 or something.

I'd be super thrilled to run a 4-415, satisfied with a 415-430 considering I haven't done a ton of speed work. But for TCM, I'm definately training for a sub 4. Yup. I'ts time.

My Dad ran Grandmas with me in 2000. That was awesome! Sharing the race with him is something I'll always cherish. Mom, Dad, my sister and her family, my family, they all come along and cheer for me. Our hotel is at set at mile 23 on the race course so I give out hugs there and then they find me 3.5 miles down the road at the finish line. It's loads of fun!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Yasso 800's

This morning it was pouring outside. Again. Instead of taking Topaz out on the trail as planned I decided I would do some speed work.

Have you ever run Yasso 800 s? I haven't for a long time. Since I began to run ultramarathons I've kind of let the speed workouts slide, other than the fat burning HIIT I do frequently enough.

Here is a description from Runners World:

My favorite track workout is "Yasso 800s," named after Bart Yasso, a friend, ultramarathoner, and Runner's World colleague. I like the workout because it's a great predictor of marathon-finish time. I'm sure it's more complicated than I make it, but for me the workout boils down to running two laps (800 meters) on the track at a sustainable, faster-than-usual pace.

The goal is to be able to run 10 800s, each in a minute-and-second time that matches your expected hour-and-minute marathon time. So, if you want to run a marathon in 4 hours and 30 minutes, you start with four or five 800-meter repeats and gradually work up to 10, running each in 4 minutes and 30 seconds.

With any interval workout, it's important to recover between repeats. During these rest periods, I try my hardest to look as if I'm actually doing a track workout. I walk to my water bottle, wipe off my face, bend over and gasp, fiddle with my shoes, adjust my shorts, and maybe do a little half-hearted but very intense-looking stretching. Hey, I look just as good resting as any other runner.

At the track, I learn from watching the runners around me. I watch their strides and arm swings, and try to copy those that look the best. And when I'm feeling really good,
I even talk to some of the faster runners.

Cooling down after a hard (my definition) track workout is one of the most pleasant running experiences. It's the perfect time to bask in the glow of your accomplishments. You know you've made a real effort; your sweat and fatigue tell you that.

And there's nothing like standing around afterward and complaining about a track workout to make you feel like a runner.
This morning I ran 2 miles at a 9 minute mile pace warmup, then banged out 5 of the 800's at 8 minute mile pace. I want to run a 3:45-4 hour Twin Cities Marathon this fall. The workout was awesome. I was able to hold the pace without a problem. My goal is to do 10 of these without dieing, in order to run a sub 4 hour at Twin Cities Marathon this fall.

I am running Grandmas Marathon this Saturday, but with all the miles I have put in recently it won't be a fast (fast for me is 4 hours) marathon. It will be a 4:20 ish I'm sure.

Today: 6 miles speed workout, 4 mile trail run with Topaz
M1: 6 whites, 1 egg, splenda, sf syrup, banana
M2: tuna pouch, carrots
M3: McDonalds grilled ceaser salad, ff dressing
M4: Myoplex Bar
M5: 6 oz salmon, cabbage

Weight is down to 133. Hoowah!!

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Baseball, Baseball and more Baseball

Troy had a weekend baseball tournament here in Big Lake. Yesterday I was out on the trail with Topaz at 6 AM so I could get a good hard 10 mile run in before I had to work the concession stand for 2 hours. It was nice, sunny, low humidity; a beautiful morning.

At 11:00 Troy's game did the rain. It rained for a full two hours..and the game lasted the full two hours. We were miserable. Sitting in a lawn chair, an umbrella over my head, the water dripping into my shorts..misery. The poor boys out there playing. Ugh. They lost 8-10.

After the game we came home and I quickly had him peel off his clothing to put into the dryer. 30 minutes later were back into the car, on our way to game 2. This game they won and the sun came out and everything was A-OK!

Today I again was out on the trail at 6 AM for an 8 mile run. It was sunny, warm and lovely! Back to the baseball fields for two back to back games. Both winners and no rain! It was wonderful. We invited the baseball team over for swimming and grilling after the tournament.

Next weekend is Tyler's baseball tournament. I'll be driving to Duluth, MN for Grandmas Marathon on Saturday, then will come home right after the race so I can catch Sunday's tournament games. I hate missing Saturday's games but I entered Grandmas months ago and I hate missing that race too. At least I'll get his Sunday games in.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Bloat is Gone

Thank goodness that 11 pound bloat is gone, as well as a few more pounds for good measure!

I'm back down to 134. My lowest weigh in with Leanness Lifestyle. That's an 18 pound loss. WOW! I can't even believe it. Sure, I've been working my ass off with running and lifting, sure, I've been counting every little thing I stuff into my face, sure, I've been eating 4 cups of veggies a day and sure, I'm eating only one non-cruciferous carb meal a day..but still..18 pounds .. that is a LOT of fat! Who hoo! I'm stoked.

I can't believe that the 50 mile race, the carbs I ate during the race and the salt caused me to retain 11 pounds of water. That's so weird. I've spoken with MANY MANY other runners and this just doesn't happen to most of them. Most of them lose wait, become dehydrated, etc. Oh well..whatever.

I'm just happy I'm losing weight. I'm still on track for 127 on July 4. I think I'll make it!

Today: 5 mile run with run club; lifted back, shoulders, biceps

M1: 4 egg whites, 1 egg, 1/2 c oats, splenda, sf syrup
M2: Large cobb salad from Crostini's; ff dressing
M3: 3 oz tuna, 2 c. mixed veggies, banana
M4: Myoplex Shake, blueberries

So stuffed from Cobb salad lunch I skipped afternoon snack.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

FANS 12 Hour Run..Yup, 12!

Well, I didn't run for 24 hours. I ran for 12. EEK!

I don't know, well, yes I do. I just didn't want it badly enough. You can't just ask for determination and motivation. It has to be there at that moment that it is called upon. I didn't have it and didn't want 100 miles badly enough.

As I stated earlier, this race, FANS 12/24 hour run, is directed on a 2.24 mile asphalt path around Lake Nakomis in Minneapolis. You go around and around and around, each time passing the start/finish line the racer deposits a bar code into the basket. The mileage/lap count is computed immediately for your totals.

I began excited and thought that I wanted 100 miles badly enough. But things changed. By the time I had run 4 hours I knew that I did not want to be out there for 24 hours. I also knew that I shouldn't have been having those thoughts 4 hours and 20 miles into the race! I still had a long way to go.

I had, what I think, are electrolyte problems. I was taking an ecap (salt/potassium) ever hour as it was humid, about 70-75 degrees, thunderstorms, etc., I was drinking 20 oz of water/electrolyte drink every hour but I was peeing every lap. Sometimes 2x a lap. I wasn't sweating. I wasn't having fun. Something was just off.

A friend of mine, Kevin, from my Big Lake Run Club came and ran 15 miles with me early, that was fun. After he left I grabbed my iPod and began running alone. Around and around and around I went, thinking about how boring this was.

I was eating but not enough. I had no appetite but knew that I needed to eat. I was trying to eat PB&J, bananas, oranges, etc. but nothing tasted good. A few bites and I'd toss the food into the garbage. Not good when I needed so much nourishment to get 100 miles. Not eating enough led to me not having much fun. I needed to eat carbs o plenty and I just wasn't. Low blood sugar=crabbiness. I was crabby.

Well, 6 hours into the race, I knew I was bailing at 12 hours. I figured 50 miles was enough and I just didn't want 100 miles badly enough. How bad did I want it? Hardly at all. I didn't want to put in what it took to get the result I thought I had wanted.

You know, that last two trail races I ran were just a blast. This asphalt torture was not. I could feel every step crunch my pelvis to my toes. Crunch, crunch, crunch. Asphalt is tough to run on. A marathon, OK, I can do that for 4 hours, but more than that it really becomes painful.

At 8 hours the medics weighed me and I was up 8 pounds. Yup, run 37 miles and gain 8 pounds of water/bloat. No one of the 115 runners was up more than 3 pounds. Except me. They told me to take more salt, eat chips and pretzels (made my stomach turn) and pee again, then weigh in. I was still up 8 pounds. I think they were relieved when I told them I was bailing at 50 miles so they didn't have to worry about me any more!

I found out that I really enjoy trail running! This road stuff isn't nearly as interesting to me. I will, of course, run Grandmas Marathon in two weeks, on asphalt..but 26.2 miles is a long way from 50.

I feel great today. No aches, pains or blisters. Even with the never worn before yesterday blisters! I took Topaz out for a 6 mile run/walk on the nice wooded soft trail and said YIPPEE!

Results should be posted soon at

I'm up 11 pounds today. Wowzie. I'm peeing it all out, quickly!

Jen, Maggie and Nico: thanks for all the well wishes and support. I appreciate your comments!!

Thursday, June 02, 2005


All that I am thinking about is my FANS race this Saturday. It is completely consuming me.

The race is set up on an asphalt path around Lake Nakomis, near downtown Minneapolis. It is 2.24 or so miles around the lake one time. It sounds dreadful, going around and around like a hamster in a cage, but it isn't. There are 100 plus runners and walkers that are either going to run the 24 or the 12 hour. Near the start/finish line is a 'tent community' where the runners and crew set up home for the 24 hour stint. Our coolers, tent, foot supplies, changes of clothing, etc. is all located in the tent community. It's really quite fun. I'll post pictures after the ordeal is finished.

This race is really tough. I'm not sure why it is so tough. Well, duh, running for 24 hours is tough in itself, of course. I'm not trying to trivalize that fact. Running on asphalt is difficult. It does a number on my joints, tendons and whole foot. I blister, I'm sore to the bone, really, my bones ache after this race. It has to be the asphalt. It hurt more last year, after 21 hours of running, than it did at McNaughton where I ran for 29 hours. Hmph.

Of course, maybe I'm tougher now. Maybe my body is stronger, my mind stronger to get this done.

Last year I quit at 21 hours 19 minutes. It became apparant that I wasn't going to make 100 miles, I was at 83.99 miles and figured why bother. My feet were hamburger, my bones ached and I had enough. My last loop took 55 minutes! I could barely hobble to the finish. I sat on the side of the path at the start/finish and watched those more tough than me do their thing. People were reaching their 100 mile mark as I sat there in pain. I swore I'd never do FANS again..not the 24 hour option..and held to that feeling until McNaughton 100 mile race. When I was able to finish that I figured I'd give FANS another here I am..two days to the race and figuring out a plan.

I will not stop until the 24 hours is expired. Unless I need to quit due to injury of course. So with three additional hours I can get some more mileage. Last year I slowed dreadfully after the 100K mark. This year I have a few friends that are going to come and run with me. Ann is working an aid station from 1 AM to 8 AM; I told her that was crazier than running the darn thing! She'll run with me before her shift-probably from 10 to midnight; as I'm slowing down. Kevin, from my run club, is going to run from 9AM to noon with me. That'll be fun. Bonnie will run some with me during the night too. Guess I have all my ducks in a row. Hey; I have 15 pounds less fat attached to my body too!!

I'm down to 134.5 but I suppose with the carbs from the race I'll pop back up. I'll get right back on track Sunday and then don't have a long race for a while. Well, this will be it for 50+ miles for the summer. I'll have 50K's, 50 miles and that 100K in the fall.

I lifted upper body 2x this week, am giving my legs a rest. Today I didn't wake up to run cardio and didn't know what to do with myself. I slept in a bit, but not much. I actually missed it. I'll do P90X Yoga and abs today instead. I still have to install my pull up bar so I can begin the program. Once I get finished up with work here I'll take care of that. I only have 9 days left to work..then I'm off for 8 lovely weeks. Yahoo.

Oh, while lifting at the gym yesterday a burly man said "boy, wish I had those arms"..I liked that! In celebration, I'm wearing a sleeveless shirt today. Weight training rocks.

M1: 1 egg, 6 whites, splenda, ns syrup, 1 banana
M2: McDonalds Ceaser Salad, nf balsamic dressing
M3: Tuna pouch, apple
M4: Salmon, cabbage
M5: Myoplex