Friday, June 30, 2006

Afton Trail Runs

Tomorrow the Afton 25K/50K Trail Runs take place. My friend, Scott Wagner, is the RD. He does a fantastic job putting on the race. This year he is adding a post-race BBQ; that will be so much fun. People will hang around and visit instead of changing and leaving right away. I love hanging around chatting with everyone after the race.

Eve, who I have a picture of from FANS, posted earlier, is going for the woman's course record. She ran the course in 445 as a training run and I believe the record is 444, so she will have no problem, in my opinion. She's awesome.

Last year I ran the course in 6:20, it was a PR for me. This year I should break 6. Maybe even better. We'll see. This is a good training run for Voyaguer 50 Mile. Plus I'll have the Superior 50 Mile beta test run for the 100 next weekend as a good training run for Voyaguer. I PR'd there last year at 10:45 and would love a 1030 this year.

I felt twinges of knee pain while mowing the lawn today. It took me just under 3 hours and began twinging at the end. I iced it and I'm hoping it is fine for tomorrow. Maybe it is 'phantom pain' you know, seems like right before a race I begin getting aches and pains. I don't think this knee pain is that though. I've had it on and off since the week after FANS when I ran hard at Afton for 2 hours and shouldn't have.

Today is mine and Steve's 22nd Wedding Anniversary. How the hell did that happen? I can't believe I've been married for over half of my age. Yikes.

Well, guess I should get lucky tonight... ;)

Monday, June 26, 2006

When I'm Not Running...

Running is just one of the many things I fit into my schedule. Sure, it is up there pretty high on the list of priorities..Especially from January to April when I am training for my spring 100. Once that race is finished the base of my training is complete and I begin to focus on hills, speed work, weight training. Of course I still keep the mileage relatively high (for me that is 70-80 MPH) and I am always thinking about the next race, but the base it built and I am building upon that.

Come June 15 I am finished up with work for 8 weeks and am not running all day long. A few hours a day is sufficient, a few sessions of lifting a week, some recreational biking..this still leaves many hours of the day.

Both boys are active in football, baseball and basketball. Baseball has been their focus since April. I am at the fields 2-3 times a week watching their games or practices.

From June 15 to August 15 I take up the yard work: the mowing, the raking, the seeding, etc. I'm here and I enjoy it.

And the gardening. I love it. When we first moved here 15 years ago the whole area was all thick oak trees. We took down over 200 trees to put in the house and to give ourselves a yard. The trees were very very thick. I couldn't get the grass to grow, we had thousands of mushrooms and a ton of moss. It was a thick shady jungle. Over the years we have thinned out the trees for a bit more yard and room for me to plant a vegetable garden. We took down 20 trees this spring that were close to the house and we were afraid that in a storm they could do damage to the roof/siding. Now my shady hosta garden is out in the sun. I'll have to change that garden around to a sunny one.

Last year Ann helped me to put in a perennial garden up at the top of the driveway in the culdesac. It's about the only sunny area I have and it is probably owned by the township actually, as it is close to the right of way. I moved around a few tons of rock last summer and planted a bunch of perennials. They actually are coming around this year and looking pretty good.

Today I finally had more dirt delivered for the opposite side of the driveway. Now the fun begins! Tomorrow I'll level it all out and move around rock. I'll be building some muscle without dumbbells! I'm planning on doing bulbs in the fall so may leave it be for planting until then.

Let the fun begin!

The dirt arrives..

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Shade and the crazy running dog..

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New Project!

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Shady garden turned Sunny

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Veggies..and the crazy running dog..

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A sunny spot

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Lots of trees and a crazy running dog..

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Mostly Hosta, Impatiens and Rhodos in the shade..

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Shady Gardens

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Sunday, June 25, 2006

Does this look correct to you?

When I view my blog it is crooked. The side bars are off, the script is off, it's all off. Go down a few posts and how does it look to you?

I don't know what is up or how to correct. I hope it is just my view on this side ?

Today was the Big Lake 8K. I was apprehensive to run the race as running on ashpalt hasn't felt that good to me since FANS. My knee was hurting as well as my foot every time I ran on asphalt until Friday. I ran a mile or so up and down the road I live on with Topaz and I didn't feel any pain. I went to the track to run 800's and didn't feel any pain so I figured I'd give it a try today. I promised myself I would walk or drop, without feeling like a loser, if my knee or foot ever hurt during the race.

Nothing ached throughout the race. I was able to run just fine; THANK GOODNESS! I wasn't fast; I ran the 8K in 40:22 which is just fine with me. It was a lot of fun, we had a record number of runners who turned out. I placed within my age group and brought home a ribbon.

It was tough to think about Ann, but I kept changing my sad thoughts into happy memories of her. I know she was out on that course today.

Next up: Afton 50K next Saturday. Fun!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run

Today is the Western States 100 Mile Race.

Bonnie is running right now; she is at mile 13. The webcast at the WS website shows approximately where your runner is and what pace, which aid station, etc. that they have passed through. It's an awesome way to feel that you are at the race, when in fact, you weren't lucky enough to be selected!

You can do it Bonnie!!

I'm following 10 runners, 5 are Minnesotan's.

I entered the lottery for the race but it wasn't my year. Hopefully I will be selected next year .. the second week of December I will know for sure. If selected, I'll begin the quest for the Grand Slam. 4 100's in the mountains in 8 weeks. I'm crossing my fingers!

WS has a three times rule. If you are not selected for the race two years in a row, you automatically are selected the third year. So, I could be trying the Grand Slam in '08 if not in '07. Another year older..great.

Tomorrow is the Big Lake 8K. This was the first race that I ever ran, and have been running it each year since. My first year it took me 65 minutes to complete..and I ran it the whole way! There were some walkers, so I wasn't dead last, but I wasn't very fast either. Nonetheless, it was a great day, and I would have never believed what that race would lead too!

The Big Lake 8K was Ann's first race too, we ran it together and have run each of them since. Tomorrow will bring another 'first without Ann' there have been many of those this summer. I know she will be there though. We always stood together, at the finish, talking about/with the other runners, enjoying the awards ceremony after the race.

After the race tomorrow I am heading over to Afton State Park. I have a 60th Birthday party to attend. Most of the others will run Afton, then party. I'll run Big Lake, then party! All of my running friends will be there; great fun.

Friday I ran 800's for the first time since prior to FANS. It went very well. 8x800: slowest: 3:32 fastest: 3:21 with a one mile warm up and 1 mile cool down. Yeah. Rode bike 20 miles, recreationally. I just rode into Big Lake, around the lake, and back home..nice and easy.

Today: 10 miles on the gravel road of Prairie Drive. There were some girls out there walking, training for the three day walk against breast cancer. It was nice to see some other bodies out there moving.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Strength Today: Lost Some and Gained Some

Topaz and I headed out for our usual run on the trail yesterday. Oh my gosh, the deer flies were horrendous. I had spray and a hat on and they still bit through both. Poor Topaz, they were hovering all around him and burying themselves in his ears and stomach fur. It was not a pretty sight. We managed 5 miles but couldn't enjoy it. At all.

Today we headed for the Prairie Drive. It's a 7.5 mile gravel road that goes through fields, woods and bogs. There is a huge eagle nest close to the road. I haven't run there since the Scary Run I posted last summer. A guy drove past us 7 times, was wearing no shorts, and well, you know the rest. Yikes.

Today there was no vehicle traffic; just I and Topaz. We ran the 7.5 look and didn't feel a deer fly. Thank goodness. They'll be at the Prairie Drive in a few weeks, then I'll have to move up onto the asphalt. Bummer.

After dropping Tyler off for guitar lessons I went to the gym. Today was chest, bicep and legs.

Prior to FANS I was lifting 2 45 pound dumbbells and able to bench them for 8x3. Not today. Today I lifted 2 40 pound db for 6x2 and then had to go down to 35! Oh the HORROR!! I was benching a barbell at 130; today I struggled on 120. EEK! Bicep lifts were the same as pre-FANS and legs were a bit heavier. Yeah! I was squatting 130 but was able to squat 150 today. What's up with that? Shouldn't they be tired and wimpy?

Hopefully my chest will be stronger next week..

DB Bench Lift: 40x6x2; 35x6x2
BB Bench Press:120x6x2; 110x6x2
Incline Press (Machine) 50x8x4

BB Curl: 50x6x3; 40x7x3
Curl Cable: 75x8x3; 60x8x2; 50x8x1
DB Curl: 35x8x2, 25x8x2, 20x8x2

Extension: 145x10x3
Dead Lift: 90x10x3
BB Squat: 150x8x3; 130x8x2; 90x8x1
Ham Curl: 60x8x3
Leg Press: 145x10x3

Ingesting large quantities of protein today!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Happy Father's Day!

Another Father's Day! Happy Father's Day to all of the Dad's out there. I hope you enjoy YOUR day very much!

For the Father of this house, three baseball games during Tyler's tournament; then Grilled Ribeye, Corn on the Cob, Twice Baked Potatoes and a Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake. All Steve wants is a good meal; I can provide that! Well, other things too..but I won't write of them here :)

Each year, during the boys tournament, we invite the team over for swimming and BBQ. They will be here inbetween games today, from 1030 to 200 so I have some setting up do to. Then the masses will arrive! I'm expecting 15 14 year old boys. Oh boy. I have 60 hotdogs, 4 cases of pop, 2 cases of water and 6 bags of Doritos. Then we'll go back for another baseball game.

Running this weekend was excellent; I and Topaz ran by ourselves. Saturday and Sunday I ran 10 miles each day. The deer flies are getting pretty bad but it's still better than going to the gravel road through the Eagle viewing area. I'll be there soon enough when I can no longer handle the deer flies.

Yesterday it took me 1:20 to run 10 miles; today it took 1:35. Topaz took a few more water soaking breaks!

This next week I'll get back to my track workouts and hills. I'm looking forward to it.

I feel fully recovered from FANS now, but still think it was a good idea not to run Grandmas. I don't think I was ready for 26 miles of asphalt. It looks like yesterday was a hot, humid and stormy day in Duluth. A number of my Run Club friends were running, I'll hear their stories on Wednesday.

OK, off to get ready for the boys.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Superior Hiking Trail FUN

My blog crashed yesterday. Everything was wiped out; my template, pictures, side bars, everything. Darcy (, bless her heart, is getting it all back together for me. Today is her birthday. Happy Birthday Darcy!!

As you know, I love running the SHT. It's magical. I was hoping to be able to get up there during the summer to check out the portions of the trail that I haven't yet run upon, but will be running at the Superior Sawtooth 100 Mile in September.

WELL, get this..

Scott is in charge of many duties for the race. One of the things he is trying to figure out is how long the aid stations are going to have to be available to the runners. The race, in its history, has never begun at Gooseberry Falls, as it will be this fall. This is a very rugged portion on the trail, and he really doesn't know how long it will take the runners to get across.


He put out a post to the Minnesota Dead Runners to see if anyone was interested in going up to the SHT to either support or run 50 miles as a test to figure out the aid station details. Yeah. How awesome is that?

The date is July 6-9; we'll caravan/car pool up there, Scott has rented a beautiful home for 12 of us to stay put. I am SO looking forward to it. I thought Steve may want to come along as support, as he took that week off, but no, he is going to build a deck around our pool after we arrive home from the cabin that week.

I'm glad I'll have another training run on the SHT for the 100!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Tough Decisions

First of all, I don't see my Diet post here. I see jibberish. Is that just me or is that everyone? Hmph. Guess I'll look into that again later.

Man, I've been exhausted this week. Rightly so, I suppose. I come home from work, run, bike or lift weights, flop onto the couch and lay there until I have to get up, cook dinner, clean up the kitchen, go to the baseball field, to bed and when my alarm wakes me in the morning, I can't believe my night of sleeping is already over with. Time to do it all over again. I'll be very happy after tomorrow. I'll be enjoying SUMMER VACATION for 8 WEEKS!

Last night Tyler had a game against another Big Lake team. We won 9-7; in 9 innings! They usually play 6 innings but the game was tied forever and a day, so it went long. We play the same team tomorrow.

Tonight Troy has baseball in Becker.

I ran on asphalt yesterday morning to see how it felt. I ran five miles and it didn't feel good. I felt aches and pains in my feet and my knees. My foot still feels tender today. It didn't hurt at all while I ran trail 2 & 4 hours this weekend. It's the asphalt; after running for it on 24 hours, my body is tender to run upon it again-so soon.

Grandmas Marathon is this Saturday. Grandmas was my first marathon and I've run it each year since. I don't really care for the race anymore. It's crowded, it is expensive (you have to book hotel for 2 nights now); I enjoy the history I have with Grandmas Marathon. The fact that I ran it 6 years ago, when I wasn't sure if I could run a marathon. The fact that I ran Grandmas with my Dad, his first marathon, and that I ran Grandmas with Ann, her first marathon. All of those firsts are very special to me.

This year is Grandmas Marathon 30th year and I figured I'd run it, and it could be my last. I really prefer ultra distances now, and Grandmas doesn't serve me as a training run for any future race; as Twin Cities Marathon does for the Ed Fitz 100K.

Last year I was able to PR at Grandmas, but I had +only+ run 52 miles at FANS two weeks prior. The previous two years I had run 80-85 miles at FANS and still ran Grandmas in 430 or so. There is NO WAY I could PR at Grandmas this year after running a hard, long FANS.

I could hurt myself. That's the bottom line. I just ran 116 miles on asphalt, less than two weeks ago. I don't think it is smart to run a marathon on asphalt so soon. I know that my body isn't recovered. If this was a trail marathon, I may give it a go. But no, I'll be staying home this weekend.

Tyler has a baseball tournament in Big Lake this weekend; I won't have to drive up to Duluth, run the marathon, drive home, miss a few of his games, etc. I'll be right there watching. And that's a good thing :)

Monday, June 12, 2006

DIET..Processed Carbs..Leanness Lifestyle and Performance

I've had quite a few people email me here to ask about how I eat, how do I run such high mileage without processed carbs every day and low calories..what is the deal with Leanness did I lose the fat?

Well, first of all Leanness Lifestyle (just click my sidebar link to Leanness Lifestyle) is the reason that I have lost 30 pounds of fat and kept it off. I have tried all diets: Weight Watchers, eDiets, Body For Life, Slimfast, Starvation, Adkins, you name it..I have tried it. I would lose a bit, then lose energy and not be able to run, then eat more than necessary and get fat again.

In January of 2005 I was at my heaviest weight since my pregnancies; 156 pounds, 23% fat AND I was running 40 miles a week, biking and lifting weights 2-3x a week. It sucked. I couldn't get the fat to budge.

I saw something about Leanness Lifestyle on another blog and figured what the hell, I might as try this 'diet' too. I joined LL and immediately saw that there was a 'bootcamp intensive' beginning that February. The bootcamp was described as one on one, intensive coaching for weight loss and activity. I applied. When David Greenwaldt called me to interview me for the bootcamp, I was very impressed. I told him how much I ran and he didn't tell me that I needed a diet of 60-70% carbs. In fact, he told me "I bet you hear that you need a diet full of processed carbs because of your running, well, I'm going to tell you that 30% of my clients, mostly women, need a diet low in processed carbs, high in fruits and veggies and protein." He told me I was probably a 'weight fighter' and that I would need to train my body to run hard without eating processed carbs every day. He told me that I 'couldn't out-run what I could potentially eat'. I would still eat a daily diet of 100 + grams of carbs, but they would be unprocessed. I had found my eating plan!

That first Bootcamp Intensive I lost 8 pounds. The first two weeks were kind of rough. My body wasn't used to eating clean. I gave up breads and pastas, I ate 4 cups of veggies a day. 4 cups seemed like so much. I have been eating that for over a year now, every day, it isn't too much! I learned to fuel my body with processed carbs the day before a race, when the race was 50 miles at least, during the race, but that the processed carbs were not necessary for recovery. I began to track every calorie, every carb, fat and protein. I began to listen to my body.

I applied for the Bootcamp Intensive II and lost another 6 pounds, then took part in the Bootcamp Intensive III and lost 5 more.

Since I've lost the race time has decreased significantly. My 50 mile PR prior to Leanness Lifestyle was Voyaguer 50: 12:30, then last year 10:47. My Superior 50 Mile was 14:10, last year: 12:20. My 100 mile at McNaughton was 29:07, then this year: 27:30. I was never able to get over 84 miles at FANS prior to LL, this year..116.8. Prior to LL I ran 7:09 at the Superior 50K, this year..6:03 my marathon PR at Grandmas was 4:27, last year was 3:58. I'm getting faster. I'm losing fat, gaining strength and getting stronger. I'm now at 14.5 % body fat. I carry it all in my thighs/butt, but am trying to lean out the lower body.

Sure, I've added hill work, speed work, longer runs, more races, more miles, it isn't ALL diet. I've moved from the back of the pack to mid and front. Much of the reason for this is my diet. It's easier to move a leaner/lighter body than a heavier one.

The day before a race like McNaughton or FANS I carb up. I ate a Subway Sandwich, a bagel, fruit, some pasta. Plenty of good old processed carbs, but no processed sugars. During the race I eat plenty of potatoes, sandwiches, Hammer Heed, gels, lots of soups, lots and lots of carbs. If I go lightly on carbs, I will have no fun. My brain tells me to quit. That's what happened at FANS last year. I didn't eat sandwiches until 4 hours in and it was all downhill from there.

For recovery, not so carbby. Plenty of veggies, fruits and lean proteins. No sugars, no processed carbs. This is how my weight is finally where I like it to be. I am no longer 11 pounds heavier post race. In the past, I thought I deserved a treat. You know, a large Blizzard Georgia Mud Fudge was pretty damn nice. How about a Quarter Pound Cheeseburger and Fries? Those things I 'couldn't have' because I was on a diet. Ah, no thanks. I don't even crave them anymore.

So that's it. I don't eat processed carbs if I'm not racing. It's easier to move a lighter, leaner body than a heavier one.

Leanness Lifestyle offers a website with great tools for tracking weight, food, activity, etc, not to mention the Bootcamp Intensives. Paleo Eating for Athletes is a good resource as well.

If someone tells you that you need to eat 70% carbs..they could be wrong. We are not all created equal..some of us are just weight fighters..

BUT you could be like my friend, Crackhead Sheila, ( and be able to eat 4000 calories a day and maintain a 112 pound body! Rock on Sheila!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

John ready for another loop.. Posted by Picasa

Eve-my excellent helper! Posted by Picasa

10 Hours In. John #1; Julie #4 Posted by Picasa

I'm ready for another loop.. Posted by Picasa

Getting warm; Eve putting an icy bandana around my neck. Posted by Picasa

FANS Setting up "Tent City" Posted by Picasa


I'm feeling good. My appetite has come back somewhat; I don't think I ate over 600 calories each day the first few days following FANS. I was nauseous and felt like I could barf any second. For some reason I felt most horrible while driving. I had to pull over a few times while Tyler and I were driving to school. Odd.

Thursday night I and Topaz hit the trail for 5 miles. It went very well, I did a slow jog and he raced me..and won.

Friday night I jogged another 5 miles and felt fine.

Saturday Troy had 3 baseball games during a tournament; I and Topaz went early for 10 miles. It took me 2.5 hours, but it felt good. Nothing hurt or felt tired.

Today I met friends at Afton. I had so much fun. Everyone that helped out/ran at FANS was there. Duke, Eve, John, Shari, Jeffrey, Alicia, Scott. I and Jeffrey ran for 2 hours and called it enough. We went to the visitor center and Jeffrey got a big warm fire going outside-we waited for the others and then visited/ate for a while.

I headed back home to watch the final two games of Troy's tournament. We are on the way to the field now...

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Wednesday Night Run Club

I seem to be recovering well. The best part is that I could walk right away. Normally, with 101 blisters, I'm not walking very well. The one blister is just amazing; I've never had one blister.

My calves are probably giving me the most pain. They look and feel like a large cement brick; they are very tight. I try to massage them, I use a rolling pin on them (I think I may order the STICK from, and they are still stiff. I probably should have immersed myself in a tub of cold water after the race but forgot about that.

I've been forgetting about many things.

It seems that after a 100 miler, or very tough effort, my brain is out of it for a while. I forgot that Tyler had a make up baseball game last night, I forgot that I was working the concession stands, I forgot to pay the first of the month bills, I forgot to take 3 days of birth control pills, yikes! Luckily I remembered all of the preceding before we were late and all was well.

Last night I joined the others at Run Club. I was feeling pretty good, so though I could jog slowly with the others. Ha. I began to move and my inner thighs said NO, slow down! I only jogged maybe 1/2 mile and began to walk. It felt good to stretch out by walking, I joined Kevin and we walked 30 minutes.

There is a group of Run Club members running Grandmas in 1.5 weeks. Curt is planning on running 3:45; that's what I need to qualify for Boston. I don't know; on Monday I was thinking I might not even run Grandma's, but it is the 30th, it was my first and I have run it each year since. I think I've run 6 Grandma's now. I'll be there. I may even try running a 3:45..or not. I certainly couldn't do it this weekend, I'll find out what kind of difference a week makes.

Last night I worked the concession stand at the baseball games. I was stuck grilling hamburgers and hotdogs. I haven't had much of an appetite this week and those greasy burgers about did me in!

OH..I havae less than one week of work left and then I am off for 8 WEEKS! WooHoo!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Detailed FANS 24 HOUR RUN Report

Thanks for all of the congratulations and thoughts you are sending my way. I appreciate it so very much.

I wanted to post a more detailed report as to how I was feeling, what was going on, how the food was going down and how the feet were holding up.

More personal items that I am more comfortable posting on my blog (for the world to see..why is that) than in an email that I send to people that I really know in the real world. I probably feel they would be sick of me, you know?

I know that there are many of you out there who haven't run a marathon, want to run an ultra, who want to lose some weight, who are afraid to run because you think you are too fat (been there). These are details for you. If I can do this, YEAH, you can too. Hard work and training gets you there.

So, as you know, I was scared shitless. Scared to death. I pulled into the FANS parking lot and there was my friend, Don. He said good morning, I said goodmorning. Here we are at f*cking FANS. I told him I was going to check out my attitude right there. It was a wonderful race, I was dropping the negativity. I had tried to drop the negativity I felt for FANS (last year race) all week but was having a very difficult time of it.

I and John had planned to set up next to each other. Shortly after I pulled in he and his wife pulled up. We set up tables, tent, coolers, etc. John taped an inspirational message to the corner of my table that I looked at every other lap. We pulled out our bottles, drink mix, etc. We were all set up with about an hour to race start.

I checked in, had to pick up my packet, a cool t shirt and do the weigh in. Every 4 hours they weighed me. My weight only fluctuated 1-2 pounds each time. At the final weigh in, I had 1/2 lap to go for 100 miles. I told the 'weigher' 'Don't you dare take me out of the race now! I'm about to get my 100.' He said he knew all about that, hop up on the scale. All was well!

Before the start I glopped on my foot potion. I received quite a few questions, rolled eyes, etc. but hey! I was desperate, I will try anything for my feet and it worked at Superior 50K. My plan was to re - lube every 30 miles.

This year we didn't have to clip the lap numbers onto our shorts. As I passed through the start I would yell out "41" which was my number(my age) and my lap counter would tell me what lap I was on and what mileage I had in. I was very fortunate to have Maria and Amie as lap counters, two friends of mine, for 1/2 of the race.

The Director gave a few minute speel and bang! We were off and running. I was filled with terror. John told me that pain is fear leaving your body. Bring on the pain. I want this fear gone.

The first couple hours went by uneventfully. I was running with a gal I recalled from last year; Deb Robinson. She ran her first 50 mile last year and this year was entered in the 100. She had a stress fracture in 2 places in her foot over the winter. I can't imagine. I enjoy speaking with people who have come off an injury and are back stronger than ever. Some day I'll be in their shoes. I hope I can handle it. She ran the full 24 hours.

Duke and Eve are John's friends; they came to watch/run with him and really helped me out. Each time I ran through our area they would get me whatever I needed. Gel, turkey sandwich, HEED, etc. They were awesome. Sometimes you just can't think of what you need while standing there. I would think about it while running and then shout it out as I came up to them. They'd have it all ready. It was great.

I was getting sunburned. I don't need any more wrinkles! I kept on applying sunscreen but it must have dripped off immediately. I think it was 80F, but not sure. I did manage to cover most of my face with a hat and sunglasses. It was getting warm; they stuffed my hat with ice and I dug around and found a bandana for my neck to fill with ice as well. That helped immensely.

The first 4 hours were probably the toughest. Trying to find my rhythm, trying to gag down food. I mean GAG it down. I would take 1/4 of a sandwich, go 1 mile to the bridge and it would finally be in my stomach. Then I'd feel better. But it was horrible gagging it down. I learned though that I have to eat. That's the only way for me to finish this monster.

I drank 1 scoop of HEED in a 24 oz bottle each hour. I took 1 SUCCEED caplet each 4 hours. My hands didn't swell at all, which always happens. I think it is because I cut back on the SUCCEED since there are electrolytes in HEED.

Someone told Eve and Duke they were mixing my HEED too strong. She asked me about it and I told her to keep on doing what she was doing; it was just how I liked it and how I had been drinking it the last year. HELLO! Eve was doing a fantastic job. She would pop out of her chair and do a cheer for me as I came in. It was a riot!

At 2:00; 6 hours into it I was ecstatic. I was ahead of my pace chart for 104 miles, nothing hurt, I had good energy, my blisters were not there. Not even a hot spot. I have never had white sweat lines on my shorts before. I was full of that, so I figured I must be salting/sweating enough.

I grabbed my iPod and just had fun. Round and round and round I went. Eventually my iPod froze, the stupid thing. I have had more problems with that iPod. I brought a back up radio which was OK. I like to listen to hard rock and 93X came in perfectly. I listened to it until the finish. I was dancing across the bridge and someone told me I was having too much fun. I heard that a lot. I was having a lot of fun.

At 30 miles I removed my sock and re-lubbed. NO BLISTERS! Incredible. Absolutely incredible.

Soon my single bottle waist pack was bugging me so I switched it for a hand held carrier. I really liked that; I used it the rest of the race. I know that when I used it before-a year or so ago-my arm became extremely tired. That didn't happen this time-at all!

At 800 the night runners arrived and the day runners were finished. FANS offers a 12 hour option. Kevin, from Run Club, arrived for his first distance longer than a marathon. I was quite a bit faster than the pace we had planned on. I think I was just about at 60 miles when he arrived. We ran a few loops, then Jeffrey showed up on his bike and we ran some more, we were going at a good clip. Kevin backed off a bit, and I and Jeffrey ran 5 loops together. We were moving along pretty good. He was pointing out the city architecture to me!

Jeffrey headed out and I ran the rest of the race myself. I preferred it that way. A few friends asked if I would like them to run with me, but I was honest, and said no. I was having a great run, I was enjoying my music and was feeling fine. Crazy but true.

At 20:05 I reached 100 miles. I was coming into Alicia and Scott's aid station. There was a group of people there waiting; they rang the cow bell and I was just kind of in shock. 100 miles. My goal. I reached it. I couldn't even cry or have any emotion. I wasn't sure this was really happening. I told them I was just going to keep on plugging away, that this was a 24 hour race. Scott said "OK, tough girl" and I was off.

There weren't many people running in the early morning hours. I came across a few walkers, but many must have taken a rest or were finished reaching their goals. It was pretty quiet. I decided to grab my flashlight. Eve and Duke had taken off, it was really quiet in 'tent city' where everyone set up. As I ran through with my bottle and ice it was the loudest sound in the area. Strange.

I was able to run, in large part, because I had only ONE blister. I've never had ONE blister. My gosh, what a treat!

I never felt sleepy, I was drinking Coke and Code Red Mountain Dew (sometimes mixed with Cytomax), the Heed, it kept me up all night and all yesterday.

The sun came up, more life showed up on the trail. More people running and walking, ready for the end to come.

I was ready for the end. At 21:30 hours I told Scott and Alicia that I was tired. That my legs were feeling tired and was ready for the finish. I was trying to time myself so that I wouldn't have to do much of the short laps but I couldn't figure out 1+1 so I certainly couldn't do the math.

I saw on the leader board that I had jumped into second woman. I couldn't believe that. How? Did they make a mistake? What's up with this? I am dreaming.

I could no longer look at my pacing sheet-it went up to 104 miles, I never dreamed I would ever run longer than that. 104 was a long shot. I just wanted some 'cushion' to get 100.

Finally, the last loop. One more loop and I'd be doing the short course. I arrived at the last finish with 45 minutes to go. Ugh. 45 minutes of out and back along 1/8 mile (I think) short course. Back and forth with many other others and all of the spectators looking at you. They all cheer though, and it turned out to be fun, but long. One group of visitors told me 'we like you best, you never stop smiling' and they made the wave every time I went past. It was crazy fun.

Finally the race was finished. 24 hours. 2nd woman. 4th overall. It's all too much to believe. I didn't know the total mileage until the breakfast and awards after the race. I though I had heard the counter say 118 but he must have said 116.

I walked to my spot, Kevin was there, packing up his stuff, he ran 45 miles!! Awesome. Kevin walked up to the breakfast and Scott and Alicia came to pick up all my stuff. Again. Just like McNaughton. They packed me all up, and up I went to the breakfast/award ceremony.

I couldn't eat anything. I had been eating and drinking constantly for 24 hours. I felt like I could barf and any second. I received a plaque for 2nd woman at 116.8 miles. Wow. I also received a FANS sweatshirt that says 100 miles in a day.

But most importantly, I learned that hard work pays off. "Feel the fear and do it anyway" I was scared to death. For a YEAR I have thought about this darn race. I almost didn't run it. Why go through it again? I'm glad I did. Hell, I may even try it again.

As I pulled into the garage yesterday morning Topaz was at my car door. I opened the door, he jumped on top of me and I just cried. And cried and cried. I held him and I bawled. It finally came. All the emotion I had been holding back, afraid to let it go. All of the gratefulness, the fear and the thankfulness came pouring out.

Last night I and Topaz were curled up on the couch. Tyler sat with us and said 'Look at you two, he ran around the pool and played baseball with us all day and you ran for a day. Now you both need to put your feet up and rest'. We did.

Troy was happy that he didn't have to beat me with a baseball bat. He told me if I came home early, like last year, that is what he'd have to do.

Steve is just in shock.

Run On!

Sunday, June 04, 2006


Wow. Just wow. I can't even believe my good fortune at FANS this year. I though about all of you cyber space people out there..I knew damn well I didn't want to come back and post that I couldn't take the heat and that I bailed the race.

I'm happy to say that I didn't bail. I surpassed my wildest dreams.

Following is the race report I sent to my online running friends.

I will have pictures later, my camera went home with another inadvertently but I'll have it back next weekend.

Thank you for all of the well wishes prior to the race and for all of the
congratulations following the race. It means very, very much to me.

I was very frightened to run FANS this year after losing it mentally last
year. I bailed at 11 hours because "I wasn't having fun." I even verbalized my
unhappiness to the volunteers, runners and the race staff. I whined about
how much it all sucked and that I would never be back again. Bad Move. I have
been apologizing all year long.

Much was learned from that race. I learned that I need to eat constantly to
keep the bitchiness away and to fuel myself for the long haul. I learned
that I had to become tough mentally. I learned that when I went through a bad
patch I couldn't bag it. I was going to hang in, I was not going to climb into
my car and bail.

I was still scared to death.

Race morning was beautiful. Sunny, breezy; just how I like it. I felt good,
strong. I was afraid of FANS but I was going to do whatever I could to 1)
reach 100 miles which seemed impossible to me and 2) run the full 24 hours. I
had never been able to complete either of those goals in the past.

I had printed off a runner's splits from last year who had run 104 miles. I
had highlighted where I wanted to be in mileage at what time and told myself I
could obtain this goal. I still wasn't convinced.

At 5 hours I was on target, at 12 hours I was on target and by 15 hours I
had surpassed the 104 pacing chart. From 6 hours on, I felt euphoric. Everything
just clicked. I was on a high. I was running strong, I was eating, drinking,
I had great helpers (Duke and Eve) who were taking care of my every need,
the volunteers were uplifting. Jeffrey came out to run 5 laps with me, my
friend Kevin ran the night 12 hour race; his first ultra and reached 44 miles! It
was all very incredible. I felt like I was running in a dream and that I
would probably wake up tomorrow morning and it would be race day.

At 20 hours I pulled into Scott and Alicia's aid station for 100 miles. I
was in shock. I couldn't believe I had reached that number. I had met goal one.
I told them this was a 24 hour race and I would be back for more laps.

I began to slow down, but still ran, for another 4 hours.

116.8 Miles, 2nd woman and 4th overall. That's nuts. It surpasses my wildest
dreams. I had to pinch myself to see if I was dreaming. I wasn't!

So, set those goals and work toward them. The are attainable. That's the

Thanks again; so very very much. I appreciate each and every 'good job,'
'you look good' 'go girl, this is the race of your life' that I heard along the

You guys rock.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Ball Girl

The weather forecast for FANS is warm. 89 and sunny; slight chance of thunderstorms during the evening with lows in the 60s. We are running a 2.4 mile asphalt strip around a lake so I can always take a cooling swim break. A friend of mine running the race is hoping for thunderstorms, a tornado and then widespread fires. He'll probably win the race. I told him to call me a weak wussy pussy bitch if I tell him I am going to bail early.

Tonight I'll make sandwiches, pack clothing, bottles, HEED, Code Red Mountain Dew, Diet Pepsi and get to bed early.

Race start is 800 AM. I'm not going to make it to packet pick up and weigh in tonight so I'll arrive to the start early to take care of all of that business. We have to be weighed every 4 hours. If I am way under they will make me stop and drink and eat until I am back within 4% of starting weight or if I'm way over they will warn me of hyponitremia which I have battled in the past.

Yesterday I and Topaz went out for 5 miles. Oh man, the deer flies and mosquitoes are really really bad. We were running from the deer flies. Topaz had to take a few rolling breaks to get them off of his back. I have a screen to go around my head/face and a 'dog jacket' made out of screening. I'll have to pull them out for next week.

Last night both boys had baseball games in town. I dropped Troy off, Steve hooked up with him after work, I went to Tyler's game. Each time a ball came over the fence I ran for it. I was still dressed in running clothes and shoes so didn't have to worry about turning an ankle in sandals over the bumpy grassy field. A 10 year old boy was racing me for the ball a few times and I beat him. I felt like Topaz! As soon as I saw that ball come over the fence I ran as fast as I could for it. It was hilarious! I wanted that ball and I was racing the young kids. Tyler's team was cheering me on, it was a riot.

They called me the Ball Girl. Better than Ball Old Lady.