Friday, May 28, 2010

Party in the Park

To all Minnesotans (and those who don't mind travelling to Minnesota):

My cousin and I, "Team Highlighters", will be hosting a "Party in the Park" on August 21st at Springbrook Nature Center in Fridley. There will be a photographic scavenger hunt at the start of the event. We are also gathering raffle items and so far have an autograph from Kevin Williams of the Minnesota Vikings!
Cost for meal tickets (no scavenger hunt): $10 adults, $5 children (12 and under)
Cost for scavenger hunt pre-registration (includes meal): $12 adults, $6 children (12 and under)
Get together a team of 2-6 people for the scavenger hunt! Register on or by emailing me for a registration form.
All proceeds will benefit the Children's Tumor Foundation to help find a cure for Neurofibromatosis (NF)!
Email me if you would like to purchase meal tickets or if you have any questions!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Busy Bee

First, let's do some backtracking to last weeks smaller runs. They all went fantastic! I finished every single one of them feeling great!

Then came the weekend. I had a 5 mile and 11 mile run scheduled for the weekend. We were in Kansas City for a graduation and I knew it was going to be difficult to get these done but had faith I would be able to. Well, I never did get the runs done while we were in KC. Saturday was the graduation and I was stranded as my mom drove us to the grad party and I didn't know that it was going to take so long. I figured I would just push to get the 11 miler done when we got back to Minneapolis yesterday. However, Andy (the bf), needed to pick me up when we got to Minneapolis to drive me home as my parents live over an hour from our house. Well, it turns out that he had a graduation to go to in Burnsville during the same time that we were driving in to the city. So, he picked me up in Burnsville and took me to the graduation party. It turns out that I didn't end up having time for an 11 mile run by the time that we got back.

I did, however, manage to get 5 miles done on the treadmill. I was hoping to just try to get the 11 miler done today but now I'm starting to even doubt that. It is really really hot and humid here in Minnesota today. Almost 90 degrees and really humid. And I'm already sunburned from this weekend. But...I NEVER miss long runs so this has me worried. I do have a 12 miler scheduled for next weekend before the half marathon the following weekend. It might even be best to skip it to prepare for those big runs. I guess we'll see whether it gets cool enough this afternoon.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wake Up

Yesterday my long run consisted of 9 miles. 9 miles that were a little better than last week's 10 miles but still not quite up to par. I was really dragging towards the end again. I felt really light headed once again and like my legs needed to be pulled along. I want my old long runs back--the ones where I didn't feel like passing out at any minute!

This weekend I will be headed down to KC for my cousin's graduation. I have an 11 miler on the schedule. Not sure when I'll be able to get that one done...I may have to rearrange my schedule and do it on Monday.

Friday, May 14, 2010

TC 1 Mile Race Report

I signed up for this race merely because it gives you better chances at getting into the 10 mile in October but actually had a pretty good time with it.

This was my first completely solo race with no supporters and nobody else running with me. I drove over to the Minneapolis Central Public Library before the race and parked in the ramp to pick up my packet. We got a bright neon colored Tech T and some Fitsocks (totally worth the $25 registration fee!).

I bummed around the library for an hour or so before the race started and then headed down to the starting gate to line up. I was running in the Friends and Family wave because it started earlier and I could get out earlier.

I decided to start a little ahead of the midway pack knowing that there might be some traffic jams to get through in this wave. I probably could have lined up even closer to the start line in this wave...

The start horn when off and I took off. There were many kids and families around me and it was difficult to get going. I found every gap that I could and sped through. I realize that I had a choice to sign up for my age group and avoid some of this traffic jam--so don't think I'm criticizing it. :-) Midway through the race I could hear a dad yell to his kid, "We're halfway through!" This is when I knew I really wanted to pick up the pace if I wanted a decent time. I tried to speed up but many of the people who started out too fast in the beginning were putting on their brakes. Literally. I almost hit a woman because she just stopped right in the middle of the race. For safety's sake...I think this is where an announcement might need to be made about getting over before you just randomly stop. I realize there were a lot of people not accustomed to races in this event, but that can get dangerous! Anyways, onward I flew....There were a few more people to dodge in the last 1/4 mile of the race. I could see the finish line ahead and it seemed to be crammed. I was really worried that I wasn't going to make it through the crowd.

When I got closer I realized that the crowd had some holes in it that I could get through. The clock read "8:06" as I saw it coming into the finish line. I picked up my pace and finished as the clock read "8:30". Not a bad time for all the weaving I had to do. I was really hoping for 8 minutes but I'll settle for this.

There were lot of people at this race cheering runners on. Such a fun atmosphere! I told Andy that I'm going to drag him to this race next year and we'll run in our age division.

Final chip time 8:17. Overall 1284 out of 2340. 437 out of 1226 Females. 138 out of 348 females in my age group.

Monday, May 10, 2010

10 Achy Breaky Miles

Saturday I had an awesome 5 mile run on the treadmill at the gym (it was cold here!).

Sunday I had a not so great 10 miler outside. I needed to do my 10 miler in the morning so that I could make the trek out to see my mom for mother's day. It was 40 degrees outside when I woke up at 8 am and I wasn't looking forward to braving the cold. I put on a sweatshirt and some athletic pants, attached my Ipod and headed out the door. I neglected to bring water because I didn't think I'd get my fuel belt on over my sweatshirt. That and there is a water fountain on my route that HAD been working a month ago (when we were in the 70's...more on this later).

After the first mile, I could tell this was not going to be a great run. My mind was all there. I was pumped for this run. My body wasn't quite feeling it. I felt completely drained of energy. I had eaten a FiberOne bar before I left...this wasn't anything out of the ordinary for a long run. I didn't quite understand what was going on but I thought it would maybe wear off. I kept running...and actually telling myself to keep running.

Right around mile 3.5 there is a water fountain at the nearby high school. This happened to be a water fountain with no water. Evidently they shut it off because of the cold temps we have had this week. Not good. I had brought a gel along but clearly couldn't take that because I had no water. I continued on my way. Around mile 4-5 I got a little bit of energy on a downhill. I started to really feel great. But that was short lived.

A little bit past my turn around point at mile 5, I started to feel like my energy was slipping away again. My whole body felt like I'd been hit with a 2 x 4 and my legs were barely trudging along. I was getting so frustrated. I kept telling myself just to keep running.

The last 2 miles were brutal. My body was dragging and I found myself walking when I really didn't want to. It was a run/walk situation for the last 2 miles.

When I finally made it back home, I felt like a truck had literally hit me. I heated up a bagel hoping that would get rid of the feeling. I found myself not even wanting to eat anything because I was so exhausted. I ate the bagel, drank lots of water, and then rested for 20 minutes or so before heading out to see my mom. The whole rest of the day I felt like I'd been drained of energy.

This seems to be a common theme lately and I'm not sure why. Normally I can bounce back from a long run pretty easily and I don't usually completely wear out of energy that quickly! So frustrating. I was thinking about heading to a dietician to see if maybe there is something I could/should be eating/not eating to help this. I haven't really changed much in my diet from previous years so I don't know exactly what is going on. Perhaps it just stress and it will go away.

I have a 1 mile race schedule for Thursday evening. The shortest distance I've ever raced! It should be interesting...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

9 Miler on the Luce

Last weekend I finished up with a 9 miler on the Luce Line (See previous post for more info on Luce Line). This time we hopped on the Luce Line near Maple Plain so that we would get to see a little bit more of it. Andy rode his bike alongside me again which is nice because then I don't have to carry a pack of water. I started out pretty slow because my legs were really tight from the previous day's race. It was a tad bit windy and chilly but as long as I was running--I was fine.

Halfway through the run I needed to stop for at a restroom. Just as I was slowing to a walk, a snake jumped right out in front of me and I made some funny noises. I LOVE running out in the middle of nowhere with nature but I hate it when creepy crawly creatures scare me! Haha.

The middle part of my run was probably the best as that is when I finally seemed to get my groove. Towards the end of the run, I started to get really tired and Andy was trying to push me along as best as he could.

This weekend I have a 10 miler planned. 30 Days out until the Minneapolis Half Marathon!!

In other news...Go check out Julie's Running Blog for a giveaway. She is another Twin Cities area blogger!

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Run of the Mills 5k 2010

I ran this race last year with my dad and brother. It is a General Mills sponsored run for employees and their families. This year my dad "adopted" my cousin Stephanie for this run as well.

My dad told us that the race started at 8:00 AM and we planned to meet them in the parking lot at 7:30. Stephanie, Andy and I got to the parking lot at about 7:20 and there was like three cars in the entire lot. The year before the lot had been completely full. I had a feeling dad was wrong on the start time so I gave him a call. He said, "No, I'm sure it was at 8:00.". Dad arrives, we get our race numbers on and go in to the General Mills campus. Dad runs off to talk to some of his coworkers and then returns to say, "I made a mistake. The race starts at 9:00." Turns out we had to stand around for a while before the race actually started. This gave us ample time to get pictures with all of the General Mills cereal characters.

Steph and I wore our NF jerseys to this run. We were actually suprised to see another NF runner in the crowd so we ran over to her and talked to her. She had cycled the MS 100 the year before and her daughter had NF. We took a photo with her and then parted ways as the race director was asking everyone to line up.

As Steph and I lined up for the race, another woman came up to me and said, "I like your shirt!". She then asked me where I'd "run that race"? I told her I ran the Twin Cities Marathon and then she said, "No, where did you run the NF race?" I explained that I was a part of the NF Endurance Team that runs for NF and she said, "Thank you for doing that. I have NF." Truly inspiring.

It wasn't long before the race started and I had lost Steph and my brother Joe. Joe had sped ahead of me but I never realized it and thought he had somehow fallen behind me. I knew Steph was behind me because she wanted to run/walk with my dad. The wind was realllllly strong for this race but I just kept charging through it. I made it to the first mile at 9:15 clock time. I felt amazing and was really hoping for a PR (at least on this course!). The race winds through quite a few trails and you never really know when the winding will end and you will see a new mile marker. I started to slow a bit towards the end as I was battling the wind and some side stitches but kept telling myself to push forward for that PR.

When I saw the finish line, I bolted. I couldn't remember my time from last year but I felt like maybe I was faster? It turns out I was a minute slower! My time was 29:09 and last year I ran it in 28 something. GRRR! Anyways, I don't know what the deal is lately. I've been speed training this year and somehow my race times are coming up soooo slow! Well, at least it is the beginning of the year and I still have some time to improve. My little brother Joe, who doesn't run regurarly, finished in 25 minutes! So proud of him!

My dad and cousin Steph came through the finish somewhere around 37 minutes.

Dad,me, Steph, Joe before the race.