Saturday, April 24, 2010

Starting Over

Well, I'm up to a 15 mile run now. Egads! I feel like I am starting over although I know that I really am not. My body doesn't ache .. my mind just worries!

Thankfully I really didn't have too much scheduled for today. Troy had to be at the baseball fields at 10 AM so I wasn't going to be able to make it to Afton. Steve and Tyler are both gone for the weekend so I had to get him there. No problem. I'd run with Topaz for 5 miles on the trail and then head over to the baseball fields, running in town during the two hour practice.

Topaz and I headed out at 7. It was a clusterfuck. Topaz had to wear a leash and it wasn't very fun. It was a drag, really. I was ticketed last week while he was running lose, although he never leaves my side and never approaches anyone. He always runs to my front and sits on my foot when we see a body. I snap on his leash and we are off. Well, this time the officer was behind a bush video taping us. Really. Topaz saw him, ran to my front and sat. I snapped on the leash. I was cited. Nice. So today he was leashed. The leash was in between his legs, in his mouth, dropped, stuck in the branches, stuck in the rocks, stuck on the wooden bridge and I stepped on it over and over. Pain in the ass. It will take us a while to get this down. Or I will find another place to run leash free.

After our not very fun run I arrived home to an email that baseball was postponed to 12 because of the rain. Oh yeah, it was raining pretty hard. We were soaked and very muddy. That doesn't bother us.

I didn't want to wait around for three more hours to finish my run so I decided I'd eat breakfast with Troy..oatmeal and eggs.. and get in two hours before he had to be at the field.

I headed off with my iPod and new Garmin 310XT. The downpour of rain didn't bother me, my run was nice and easy. Relaxing, not much traffic. I mostly worried about getting in miles before Bighorn 100. I'll have to create a schedule for long runs. I'll take myself as a client and train as I would a client. Five miles into Big Lake, turn around, 5 miles back to Orrock. I ran slow. I was slower than I thought I would be. 1.5 hours later I was back home.

Thankfully I didn't have to work today or my run could have been messed up with the rescheduled practice. My second job may get in the way of my training. I didn't put in for the Superior races off in May and now it is too late to. I need a 5 week notice. If by chance I have the date off I'll be running the 50K race and an additional 18 for a 50Mile. I don't enjoy running 50 mile training runs by myself. I hope I have the day off. If not I'll be running one solo.

And yes, that will be OK, too :)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Skipping, Leaping and Bounding

I am so excited to be coaching the MDRA woman’s run group each week. Last night we met for Week 3.

Our schedule had Adam from TC Running Company slated to present to us but he didn’t show up. Coach Nobby quickly stepped up and decided to go through the biomechanics of running and running form. He did a great job and he makes it look so easy!

Nobby created a power point presentation showing proper form and then we were off to the track. The Maple Grove Middle School has a fine gravel track that we use. It’s very nice to have a measured area where we can complete our workouts.

We had the group pair up to complete ‘pounding’ exercises. We would pound on the ground with our right foot making sure to come down on the middle of the foot-not the toe or heel. We then added a skip motion to the pound as we finished a complete loop. It is much more difficult than it sounds. Nobby made it look so easy. He looked like an antelope leaping down the track. After skipping we added in leaping and bounding. My calves/hip flexors were feeling it. I probably don’t lift my knees high enough, this exercise reminds me to LIFT!

Nobby suggests that we complete this workout once a week for 20-30 minutes. I will add this quick workout into my training runs!

After leaving class I made a trip to REI to spend my dividend check. I’ve been saving a gift card I received at Christmas to add to my dividend check. I bought the Garmin 310XT. I’ve wanted it for almost a year. I have it charging on my desk now. I can’t wait to figure it out!! Topaz and I will be venturing out for a 10 miler on the trail after work today. I don’t work my second job tonight, I have no baseball games, I am a free agent! I will catch up on The Biggest Loser and hang out with the guys. Fabulous.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Quick as a Blink

Yes, that is right. I have yet again changed my course. A woman's prerogative, correct? Hmm..

As I look back I can see that when I begin to struggle with winter depression I create a new focus. Something to break me out of the depression that comes with darkness from 4 PM to 8 AM, bitter cold weather,endless slow snowshoe running and the extra few pounds that come along with that. By the time January/February roll around I am batty and thinking about the ultra season ahead is just not enough. The hamster running circles in my brain is bored and looking for something new. I realize that I have decided to train for triathlon during the winter season three times and bodybuilding the past two.

In the past I grabbed a drink, maybe next year I should grab a therapy lamp instead of a new focus.

As winter approaches (groan) next year I will remember what I need to focus on: resting, recouping, relaxing for the next ultra season. Take a full month off per Ronda's advice. Let that be my focus! Gear up for the 2011 (gasp!) season: maybe the Gnarly Bandit, maybe the Grand Slam, who knows..just don't jump off the deep end. Lift heavy if I want to but don't be placing goals upon myself that may take over a year to reach and don't include ultra running.

I hadn't verbalized to anyone that I was training for bodybuilding in my real life world. Only via this blog/email as I am not a great communicator in real life. I sent out an email to Alicia on Friday as I hadn't contacted her in way too long. I tend to hide within myself during the dark winter so we hadn't spoke in quite some time. I think it was an SOS email. As Topaz and I finished our run and were entering the car on Friday afternoon my cell was ringing. It was Alicia. She had heard/read about my latest endeavor and asked about it. I told her it wasn't what I wanted. She began to laugh and it was just what I needed to hear! I was able to speak to her about how I really felt and before I knew it I was feeling so much better. Eventually I asked her about Bighorn. She invited me to travel with herself along with John, Karen and Jim. As quick as a blink I told her I may be up for the 50K and would confirm later this week.

As soon as I arrived home I jumped online. Bighorn 30K, 50K and 50 Mile..all full! The 100? Still Open!! Well, guess what that meant? Maybe I should enter the 100 Mile.

Our family then discussed the race and another vacation out west. As long as Steve can get the time off we are going to do it. Otherwise I'll travel with my friends. Our last family drive out west was for Leadville 100. Ah, Leadville. Maybe this August.

I entered the Bighorn 100. Here I go: 10 miles to 100 in 8 weeks. I like a challenge!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

My Passion

Dear Julie,

Congratulations! You are now registered for Merrell Bighorn Trail Run 2010. Please check the event's official website for updates:

View your complete registration details »
Congratulations!!! We have received your entry, and you are now registered in the Merrell Big Horn Trail 100 for the year of 2010. We look forward to seeing you in June. We encourage you to check the web site ( for new updates, and it is recommended that you print the race packet from the website approximately one week prior to race day. Happy Trails!!!! Keep training! Big Horn Trail Run

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Home Opener

Yesterday marked the home opener for the Minnesota Twins at their new Target Field. In case you hadn’t heard (HA!) our Twins are no longer in the Dome. They are now housed in an incredibly awesome outdoor stadium. It’s amazing. It’s like walking into an art museum, a garden-there are huge pine trees planted and flowers and an herb garden- an architectural marvel. Yeah, amazing.

Early last fall Tyler and I attended the Metallica concert at Target Center. Target Field was pretty far along in construction but it was still hard to imagine a complete Target Field sitting right there in the plat allotted.

The weather yesterday was perfect; partly sunny, 66F, a slight breeze. The fact that there is not a retractable roof was not an issue. If a retractable roof is not an issue for me I don’t think it will be an issue for anyone. I was very worried about getting wet and being cold this season. I never disliked the Dome, it was all I knew, the only venue where I had watched Major League Baseball. The beauty of the park surpasses the worry of a roof. Watching baseball in the open air-it felt like skinny-dipping, like running barefoot! Free, fresh air, feeling the great outdoors, incredible! So if it rains I’ll bring rain gear. If it is cold I’ll bring my down blanket and fleece pants. I’m no longer concerned. I kept on thinking that the Dome reminded me of concrete and gray-ness, enclosure. In addition to the obvious fact that Twins home baseball has moved outdoors, this venue features another huge game-changer — fan mobility. In the Dome game-viewing was pretty much confined to a person’s assigned seat. We were stopped from entering the Dome from the concessions until there was a break in the play. Target Field’s double-wide open concourses encircling the entire park allow fans to get up and roam at will. You can watch the game all the while you are moseing around, taking in the different views. You aren’t scolded for sightseeing, for browsing, for taking it all in.

The Food! There are steak sandwiches from Murray’s for heaven’s sake; espresso, fine bakery and my favorite: the Twins permit fans to bring food into Target Field as long as its eaten in the general seating areas and is packed in a soft-sided container that can fit under a seat. Sealed bottled water 32 ounces or less and soft-side single juice or milk containers also are allowed. We weren’t able to bring anything into the Dome. I had to throw out many containers from my bag into the dumpster many different times .you know, I had to try to bring my own!

I wasn’t sure where the season package seats would be located. The Diamond View in the Dome is now Home Plate View. I shouldn’t have worried. They seats are fabulous.

Well worth $545 Million. Gulp.

Oh, and a win. Twins 5, Red Sox 2.

I didn’t miss running McNaughton 100 this past weekend. This is the first weekend haven’t run out of the past 6 years. I didn’t miss packing, preparing meals for the family while I was gone, driving for hours on end and wondering if I’d fall asleep on the way back home. It was actually kind of a relief not to be involved.

Of course Mike, the new race director of McNaughton 100, and an online client of mine, let me know that there was a touch of heat and not a drop of mud at McNaughton this year. That has to be a first!

Instead I was a spectator at the NPC Gopher State Classic Bodybuilding Show. What an experience! I have only attended two other shows in the past, a few years ago. This show was directed by Christine Bongiovanni, IFBB Pro. It was a fascinating show. Bodybuilding, Fitness, Bikini and Figure were all judged. I kept on thinking that this will be the show that I will be competing at next year. Yikes! The routines were amazing, the physiques incredible.

When I went to the gym yesterday I was thinking about the women I watched compete. It brought me motivation to lift heavier, to get in one more rep. As I was walking toward the bathroom to change a women approached me. After an introduction she asked questions about my workouts, if I did any cardio, how long I had been lifting, etc. At the end of our conversation she asked me if she could take a picture of me for her “vision board”. At first I was kind of taken aback and embarrassed. She explained that she has been working to lose weight and become fit for quite some time. I eventually agreed and chose to be flattered instead of weirded out. As I left the gym I decided I should have a vision board as well. Dream it, See it, Believe it, Be it!

I am so excited to go to Chicago next month to watch Mary and Liz compete at the Rockford show. David Greenwalt, Leanness Lifestyle creator and Coach is going to lead us all in a workout at his friend’s gym Saturday morning before the prejudging. He said it will resemble a Biggest Loser Last Chance Workout where all levels of fitness will be able to participate. I may puke into a garbage can. I just can’t wait! I fly out on May 20. It will be here before I know it. Yippee!!