Friday, November 26, 2010

Making Headboards From Scratch....

is a bit of trial and error, a lot of duct tape, and some fishing line.....but Sophie loved it in the end!

It started with some sketches on plywood.............After hand cutting out everything, assembling, and standing it up, we realize it's pretty tall...better measure it and our ceiling hight....hhmmm...both are exactly 8 feet. No worries, I will break off the tip when we move it into the room : )

Then we all painted it....

And here is the final product! She loves it! Its hard to tell but the pink up and down part in the middle actually is bent and curves out so it has some depth. The pillar roofs are covered in straw grass stuff, really messy, but it works. Oh, and the pink details at the top of the towers are upside down foam crowns.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Still Here.......

We have a new bike rider in our family!! It has taken about a year, and a few attempts, but she did it!! We headed down to the school and within 5 minutes she was totally on her own, no falling at all. She practiced stopping, starting, going over bumps, up hills, down hills, figure 8's through the poles....she was a pro. Maybe because we promised her a new basket for her bike if she got the hang of it??
So this is our new view when we are running out on the trail. I think the happiest person is Brian as he is now only pushing Bubba in the jogger, although I don't think Bubba is happy about sis being on the bike now, poor guy was pretty lonely! She did great, knew the rules of the trail already from watching Em the past 2 years, and only ran into 3 poles on her first time out on the trail!
We have been promising Sophie we would make her a head board for a while now. This evening was spent measuring out everything, cutting it all out and developing a plan on assembling it. Tomorrow will be sanding, paint, and assembly. Below are pictures from our hike today with the Behrens in Briones. It was cold, but beautiful. We got up pretty high, and the views were worth it! It was mostly single track, which is my favorite.

The kids and Brian have been home all this week, so it has been fun, relaxing, hectic and crazy all at once. We are heading to bed early tonight so we can properly execute the yearly Black Friday tradition. Not much on our list this year, but we are after sheets, kids shoes, and a dvd player.....lets see if we stick to those 3 things! If you are among the crazies heading out early in the morning, have fun, drink coffee, and find your happy place!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

In May, I have a date with a school of fish in Maui!
Yep, me, just me....and 3 wonderful ladies I've known since childhood! There was a trip already planned, and they had an opening and asked if I would want to go!!
I have to say I have the best husband in the world to allow me to leave him home with the kids while I go play in Maui! I already knew he was the best, this was just a good reminder of how good I have it!

Friday, November 19, 2010

"Other Stuff"

So since you guys mostly hear about our running/fitness lives here, I thought I would share with you some of the "other stuff" that goes on. Believe it or not, while running and working out are key ingredients of our lives, there are a ton of other ingredients that are key, too.
So starting with last weekend till today, here is a glimps into some of the "other stuff" that went on -
Saturday mornings 99.9% of the time involve going out in service. It is very rare that this does not happen, and when it doesn't happen for one reason or another, Emma lets us know that it is not ok to skip service. Even when we are out of town (this is usually the only reason we aren't out in service) like for the last marathon, it will occur to her at some random time that we didn't' go out, and we hear about it.
Service usually involves Bubba getting his cupcake, either carrot or red velvet, and treats all around.
Saturday we had planned on doing a hike after service, but remembered there was a work party at the Hall, and the kids LOVE work parties, so that is where we spent a few hours after service. Then, we used our last 5 free movie tickets taking the kids to see a movie that they really wanted to see. They loved it, we didn't. Saturday nights we usually have the kids in bed by 7 and then Brian and I study for Sundays meeting, which we have at 1 pm.
Monday Sophie had her first BIG project due. She did a pressed leaf collection. She collected, pressed, organized them into groups, designed the page layouts, wrote a summary of what she learned, and made a front and back cover. This took a few weeks, and a lot of help, but the final result was really special! Mondays are also my cleaning day, I tend to clean everyday, but Monday is my day to get the house put back together after the weekend. We also did Family study Monday night this week. We usually do it Thursday night, but we are behind a week, so we added a Monday night Family Study to this week. Afterwards, we roasted marshmallows in the fireplace. This was our first fire of the year. We don't' have many fires as wood is so expensive, $5 a bundle and a bundle is good for maybe 2 fires, so this was a big treat for the kids!
Tuesday was a lap at the res w/a friend, then studying for meeting. I love my Tuesdays, that is my normal study day. Nothing better than laying everything out on the table, sitting down with a cup of coffee, and just studying. I don't put a time limit on myself, sometimes its an hour, sometimes it's 3. Just depends. I usually try to start getting myself ready for meeting between 1 and 2 pm. This is because I pick the girls up at 2:45, then do home work with them until 4, then make dinner, then get them ready for meeting and we leave by 7.
Wednesdays I spend at school. I start in Emma's room from 8 - 9, then Sophie's room from 9 - 12:30. Bubba comes with me. This week the 3rd graders had a Sports A Thon, so I started off in Sophie's room, and then ran the track station for the 3rd graders. This involved doing stretches, jumping jacks, and then running laps with groups from all 3 3rd grade classes. Bubba mostly hung out with the soccer players from DVC who ran the obstacle course. The kids get out at 12:30 every Wednesday, so I try to make that our 1 nap day a week, and if I can get everyone down by 1, they will sleep until 4:30 when Brian gets home. But, this week Em had her first Oral Book Report due, so we spent all afternoon working on finding pictures and objects and writing a summary, ect...I wanted her to work on it as much as she could on Wed as that would be her largest chunk of time to spend working on it this week.
Thursday was the girls Big Buddy Party. The parents took great measures to make sure there was nothing Holidayish about the party, since both Em and Sophie's class were participating. The usual Thanksgiving party was morphed into a Big Buddy Feast. Each family brought their favorite food and the classes came and ate lunch. Em's class is Big Buddies to Sophie's class, so the girls get to do fun things together every other week. Thursday morning was spent making a large amount of Taquitos, and serving up spoonfuls of mashed potatoes, orange chicken, weenies in bbq sauce, and various pasta dishes to 60+ kids. The food was pretty repulsive at 11 in the morning to me, hard to smell it even, but the kids came back for seconds, so there ya go.
Today, Friday, Emma's report was due, her first book report, and first oral presentation. I don't remember doing anything like that in 3rd grade! It was also Disney Day, so there was some time spent getting the girls hair into Mickey Ears.
Aside from this stuff, there of course was copious amounts of laundry, dishes, 10 lunches made and packed, meals planned and executed, errands run, ect. I also raked the yard twice. Once was to make a pile for the kids to play in, and then again today to get all the leaves up before the rain hits this evening.
So, there you have it. One weeks worth of a glimps into the "other stuff" that goes on in our lives. If you ever wonder if we have a life outside of running and working out, I assure you we do. It is crazy, busy, exhausting, and very full....and I love every second of it and wouldn't trade it for anything!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Congrats to my friend Nancy! Today is her LAST radiation session!!!!
Much Love!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Back to Non-Training Life......

We did our first post marathon run on Sunday. One lap of the Reservoir, Sunday morning.....have you been there on a Sunday morning? Looks like glass, full of quiet boats which are full of fishermen. Turkeys, deer, and the occasional heron are usually about. And....people. Lots of people on the trail on Sunday mornings, makes for a lot of shouting out "On Your Left...and your dog, too!"There are usually a handful of runners, but mostly walkers, mostly with dogs....strolling along. I always love to hear the bits and pieces of conversations as we come up on groups chatting as they stroll. We haven't' been to the res to run in quite sometime. We cut that run out of our routine when we start to up our mileage when training as the hills begin to bother our knees if we do it too often. (keep in mind we are each pushing a double jogger full of 80+ pounds around it) I forget how much I enjoy that run. It's so relaxing. Especially this time of year when there are so many colors in the trees, and its cooler and the air is crisp. The sharp inclines and the downhills don't seem nearly as brutal when it's not in the 90's.
It's one run that no matter how peaceful and beautiful it is, it is never easy. It has always remained a challenging run. Even when we would do it 3 times a week, 2 and 3 laps at a was always challenging. A nice thing is that Emma is now able to run it, rather than be pushed around it in the jogger stroller. So Sunday, we set out on our lap with 3 runners, and only one jogger stroller! So strange to have a kid running with us now! Seeing that we are still in recovery mode, and seeing that it has been months since we ran it, we were all about the same, slower than normal pace and stayed together most of the lap, which took 31 minutes.
We took Emma into Road Runner on Friday night to have her Gait Analysis. They gave her the full treatment - the treadmill, the questions about her running goals, how often and far she runs, any aches or pains, had her stand on the pressure mat to see where she tends to push off from, watched her stride on the big screen, in slow motion.....told her what shoe she needed, and that she was a size that could still wear the kids shoes, but also the smallest adult size, so she had lots of choices. He pointed out to us that the kids are a fraction of the price and he would go that route first. Brought her out 4 of the neutrals in different brands. She tried them on and did a few laps of the store in each shoe, hated the Nikes (that's my girl)... picked the Sauconys, and with that, she officially crossed over into the land of 'real runnerhood'. She has been asking to go for a run ever since, and couldn't wait to run at the res Sunday.
I ran a lap this morning at the res pushing Bubba in the jogger....not a great idea as I could feel my right hip and left hamstring giving me some left over marathon pain that had faded until this morning. I pushed through it and tried to suck it up while I met Brian at noon for our lunch break run, but had to admit to the pain as I knew I couldn't run on it again today. Well, Em came home from school asking if we could go for a run tonight. I love that kid! Brian did a mile loop from our house with her, again, her first time running it instead of riding her bike. Crazy how fast she is growing up.
Anyways....goal for this week is just getting back to our basic routine, as much as our bodies will allow. Paying attention to any pains that are lingering and/or things that feel off, and getting back to a lower cal, non-training mode diet....and by diet I mean way of eating, not diet as in temporarily restricting calories to lose weight. Just saying....
Today was the first run + workout day I have had in a while, and while the hip is hurting, it felt really good to have a 'normal' day. It was Brian's first day of riding his bike to work and back since the marathon also, and he says he felt really good. He did say he could tell his legs haven't recovered 100% on his run around the block with Emma.....but overall, I think we are both feeling OK and looking forward to getting back to normal life.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

How Long is Your List?

"...In the end, people either have excuses or experiences; reasons or results; buts or
brilliance. They either have what they wanted or they have a detailed list of all the rational reasons why not."

~ Anonymous
(taken from Matt Erbele's, It Takes Time to Get Good)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Two Cities Race Re-cap

I will start with an apology for how long this is. I waited a few days to let it all sink in and so that we could really process a few things, believe me, this is the short version.

This was marathon #4 in 1 year and 1 month. The recommendation for mere mortal runners (meaning non professional, non elite, non pro, non professionally coached, average joe runners) is 2 full marathons max per year.

This is not new info to us, we have known that since we started researching marathons before we ever ran our first one. That said......they are addicting. Not only that, they have served the purpose of giving us a goal to be working towards. Always "training" has kept us on track, and kept us pushing ourselves. It has provided hours of the free "stress relief" that is running. There is also the fact that Brian and I do this together. We enjoy working as a team, being each others support system, motivators, coachs, dietitians.....we are always working together towards a goal. As soon as we cross the finish line, we are already analysing what we would do different next time, how we would train differently, pace differently, fuel differently during the run.....we wait a month, register for the next one, and go to work again. The pain fades so quickly afterwards that it is extremely easy to forget the toll the whole process has taken on your body. Although the pain fades quickly, there is damage that has been done that takes much longer to repair. If you aren't' allowing your body the time it needs to heal in between, it's only a matter of time before it catches up with you.

It caught up to us at Two Cities. More me than Brian.

We had a great round of training this go round, no injuries or nagging pains. We ended up with about 350 training miles in prep for this marathon. So we got to the start line feeling pretty good. Our goal was 4:40. Previous times were this - 4:48 for our first marathon, 4:42 for our second, 5:07 with an injury for our 3rd. So getting to the start healthy, knowing this was supposed to be a "flat, fast course", 4:40 was a very reasonable goal.

Mistake #1 - We lined up behind the 4:15 pace group. We didn't really discuss this, we just got into our corral B, saw the pace group, and I think we were both thinking that if we stayed with it for as long as we could, even if we faded back and the 4:30 pace group caught us we could stay with them. We managed 11 miles with the 4:15 group. I was exhausted 6 miles into it. We had not run that fast in any training runs, nor was there any need to have run that fast to finish in 4:40. We really started slowing down between 11 and 13 miles, and at 13.5 the 4:30 pace group passed and left us behind. There was no pace group after that, so we were on our own.

Mistake #2 - Thinking a 26.2 mile run in Fresno would be scenic, fun, or in anyway enjoyable. It wasn't. I had been in pain, (not normal marathon pain, but "my Achilles is going to snap and roll up into my calf pain) starting at about mile15. I came out of San Fran marathon with a strained calf that took a while to get rid of. I think about half way into this training go round I was finally pain free, which sent me into this marathon thinking all was well. At mile 15 I knew it hadn't healed completely, and that not only had it not healed, I could feel the damage being done. Every step I was waiting to feel a snap, pull, tear......I truly did not believe I would finish without it happening. Combined that with an ugly, boring course full of long ascents and descents, slanted roads during the flats, and an overwhelming feeling of not wanting to keep going and it was a long, long second half of a marathon. Fresno......its Fresno. We got what we got....20 ish miles of Fresno. The first 6 miles or so we ran from Fresno to Old Town Clovis, which was cute, but then we turned around and ran right back into Fresno.

Mistake #3 - Although we had looked at the course many times on the map, there were certain things we just didn't realize would be as big of factors as they were. The rolling hills in the beginning, run at a faster pace than we should have been running. The 4 underpasses that dipped down through tunnels under the road and then back up the other side. The design of the course itself. We started at a park, ran away from it, then back to where the finish was, then turned and ran away from it again. Mentally...not a good thing. When we turned away from the finish and headed out Friant Road it just went on and on and on. We didn't' know what mile we would finally turn around at (ended up being near 19.5). We could see everyone already heading back in the other lanes, and that isn't a great feeling either. There was also the fact that here we had been busting our booties struggling along and are at mile 17, and we can look at the lane next to us and see the half marathoners who are at mile 5 or 6 walking. To each there own, maybe that was their plan for the day, but there was a lot of me going off in my head Jillian style yelling at them to move their butts and run. 2 seconds later I would be stopped, crying, saying I was so tired, I don't want to do this, ect....Brian telling me to stop and walk, me getting mad at him and saying no, I don't want to walk, hyperventilating because..who can run, cry, and breath at the same time?

There was a lot of pain, lack of mental stability, lack of overwhelming feeling of it all not being worth finishing. Why was I doing this? Why finish? Why am I still going? I was not into the crowd support which is usually very important to me during a race. I had my head down most of the second half, not taking in anything that was going on around me or on the sides of the road, including the people or bands playing. When someone would say something to me, I would manage a thumbs up, but would make no attempt at looking up. Because I was looking down, I could see the kids along the course and did manage to high five any that were in reach. I dropped Brian at a porta pottie. He told me to keep going, and normally I do, but then wait for him at an aid station while I drink and fuel. Well, he had my Sports Beans, so I had no fuel. I grabbed water and kept going, afraid that if I stopped I'd be done. I power walked up the hills, and ran at a good, even pace and stayed ahead of him for about 2 miles.

We had asked Simone to have the kids waiting at mile 26 so we could see them and have a boost for that never ending .2 miles at the end....but mile 26 was not where we thought it would be, so mile 25 seemed to never end. We turned to enter the park and saw another hill, with the 26 mile marker on it. The kids were there, and when you see the pics you will see a series of me locked onto something on my left side, and you will see me drift over in front of Brian to the left. I locked onto the kids and didn't blink, they definitely pulled me up that hill. We got our high fives and I looked down at my watch and saw 5:06:24. I said to Brian, "Lets Go!" wanting to make it in under 5:07. We picked it up as much as we could, but as we came up on the finish I saw my watch click over. I laughed and looked at him and said we were finishing the same as San Fran (you will see these facial expressions going on in the pics, so now you know what was going on : ). We did beat San Fran by 35 seconds, for what its worth.

We both agree that this was our 4th and final for a while. For me, my bodies lack of ability to produce the results it was capable of a year ago, my minds total lack of ability to focus and keep me in the game, my lack of desire to keep running during this is all a clear message to me that my body has had enough for now. It needs a break. I proved this year that I can do it. Even if it isn't pretty or fast, I can physically and mentally get myself across that line after 26.2 miles. I am capable of accomplishing more than I ever dreamed I would be able to do. I do have the physical and mental ability to do this, and I didn't know a year ago if I could. I no longer feel the need to keep proving it over and over again though. And now I am developing the common sense, humility, and self control to know when to take a step back and allow my body the time it needs to recover from a hard yet amazing year. So all though this was a brutal run, it served a purpose.

No worries, we are not hanging up our Brooks and Mizunos just yet. We have some very fun runs coming up in the next few months, and one I am especially looking forward to! Our immediate plans include weekly miles in the 25 - 30 range, and keeping a base at a 13 mile long run every other weekend....that is after we finish enjoying whats left of this week off!
I am posting the pics, ours and the professional pics, on our Dropshots site. I will be back to link to it as soon as they are all up.
ok, they are up and start here

(If you read this whole recap, you deserve your own finishers medal!)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Why Run Two-Cities Marathon?

If you are a local runner looking for a Fall half or full marathon, here are a few reasons Two Cities is a great option for you over other races out there.
- Price - We paid $70 for the full marathon registration.
- Clothing Related Amenities - Nice long sleeve tech shirt, nice running hat, very nice long sleeve hooded sweatshirt which you receive just past the finish line instead of the foil blanket.
- Organization - the expo was extremely well organized, no confusion, no crowds, no lines...maybe a bit on the small size (think Napa Valley Marathon as apposed to Long Beach or San Fran), but very nice. We peeked into the banquet hall where the pasta dinner would take place and it was very nicely decorated. There were more than enough volunteers around to answer questions.
-Port a Potties - Race morning always involves the bathroom line for us. This was the first race I have been too where there were no lines anywhere! Granted, they had to have a near 1:1 ratio of porta potties to runners, the line of green outhouses seemed to fade off into the sunrise there were so many, and this is a relatively small race, somewhere around 6000 total runners for the half and full, so they are really prepared for a much larger race when it comes to the number of toilets available.
- Aid Stations - every 2 miles. They were all where the map said they would be, all fully stocked, all with plenty of volunteers ready and waiting with cups.
-Medical Tents - there were over 60 med personnel on course, tents at about every other aid station, but there were roving meds in golf carts cruising the course. As someone who ran this race thinking every step could be the one the calf tears on, or the Achilles rolls up on, there was peace of mind knowing if I went down I wouldn't be down for long before a golf cart showed up. When I did finally make the call to stop for meds, I was in a bit of a panic, tearing up, and couldn't stop walking or my calves would cramp. There was a lot of me dancing around saying I can't stop moving, and them asking for my info. They stayed calm, helped me open the pack of Tylenol ( i tore it open, but couldn't get the pills out) and get it in, marked my bib with a red sticker while telling me this was so that I could not get anymore meds during the race to protect my liver. They wished me "good luck" and sent me on my way.
- The last .4 miles- Have you ever seen a big marathon on tv, or the Ironman finish?? When the runners get close to the finish and somewhere around half a mile to go, the road is lined with orange baracades on both sides, and soon you are in a running shoot. You come around and can finally see the finish (at the top of a hill) and ...what is that? Bleachers are set up for the spectators! The finish line is first class, no small banner, the full scaffolding decorated with race signage, a DJ announcing names and keeping the crowd entertained, music, people far as finishing lines go, it had everything you could ever hope to see waiting for you. Including Medical volunteers at the finish line, and a huge med tent immediately to the right of the finish line. You might not need it, but you know it's there just in case!
-The Runners Village- Ok, so some races we have run have said they have a "runners village" at the finish area, and it ends up being like every other race. Get your water, only take 1 banana, move down the line. NOT this race! After you cross the finish, you walk down a finish shoot that is fenced off from everyone, only runners can get into it. You walk for ....ok, you walk farther than you should have to, but it ends up being worth it. You come around a corner, and the fences open up into about a 2 acre fenced off area. First you come to your medals, then you pick your size of sweatshirt, then there's a fully catered breakfast! Eggs, potatoes, sausage......a fruit stand like at a farmers market, a nut stand with whatever you could want. Just passed that is an area full of tables and chairs to sit, eat, relax, talk with other runners....then there's an ice cream sundae bar. Volunteers where there to clean up after you so you didn't have to get up and walk to throw your things away. You could have whatever you wanted, from all the stands,as much as you want. There was a huge RV from a radio station that was playing music. Deluxe, huge, nice, clean porta potties. After having such a horrific run, I cannot tell you how nice this was. Oh, there was a tent from a chiropractic center for free massages, too. And again, because everything is so organized and because they are really set up to accommodate a much larger crowd, there were no lines for anything.
-Beer Garden- this race had a beer sponsor, so there was a free beer garden. Pretty common post race, but what was nice is that it was outside the finishers village, down around a corner in another fenced off area. So for those non beer drinkers, we didn't have to see, or smell any of those festivities.
-Parking- parking was free, easy to get to, and within a 2 minute walk of the start.
-No Runner Left Behind Mentality- While this race has a 6 hour limit for the Full Marathon, we left at the 6:30 mark. Everything was still set up, DJ still at the finish line waiting for people to come in. We stopped along the course and cheered in 2 people. Guess what? They kept it up for the very last runner who came in in 8 hours and change. They kept a volunteer waiting with a medal, sweatshirts, and kept food warm for them. This says so much about what kind of race this is. Most marathons sweep the course and pick up runners in a van who won't make the 6 hour cut off, or move them to the side walk so they can close the course down. I can't imagine what it meant to that runner to make it to the finish and know that they kept everything going just for them!

I have to say that this marathon had the best amenities, organization, and attention to details of any that we have done. We thought we wouldn't find a race that could compare to Napa Valley Marathon as far as taking the extra steps to make the runners feel special, but I have to say that Two Cities out did Napa. Two Cities is setting itself up to be a big time marathon, and they are prepared for it to grow. It was set up to handle a much larger crowd. I am glad we ran it at the stage it is now, only in it's 3rd running, still a small crowd, and we could enjoy all the details.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Finish Line Video

We come on screen at 2:25 -

The story here is the last .25 is up hill. We could see the finish line forever....I looked down at my watch and saw 5:06:24, I say to Brian "lets go!". We finished San Fran in 5:07 and change,and I wanted to come in under that. So we somehow pick up the pace, at the time it felt like we were sprinting, but seeing the video, looks like we picked it up from a shuffle to a semi-run : )
We crossed with a chip time of 5:07:04....thus the disgusted head shake at the end. We did stay under San Fran by a few seconds : )

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Body's Talking....and I am Listening

Two Cities Marathon..............we are home. No DNF's, we finished it.

The main event of this run was total body rebellion. I have never felt my body turn against me like it did today.

It is sending me a message, loud, clear, and un-ignorable.

Surf City in Feb will be a half.

Part of having these new bodies with new capabilities is learning where the limits are. It was probably 2 marathons per year....not 4.

Lesson learned....the extremely painful way.

That is it for tonight, time to shower, settle in and watch a taped NYC Marathon.
A race re-cap and more about what a wonderfully run Marathon this was will come soon, maybe tomorrow.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Family Marathon Fun

Above is Emma's window, Below is Sophie's

Above is another Emma window, Below is Beth's

Aside from car window decorating, we are getting things packed up and ready to head out in the morning. We will hit the expo tomorrow, get checked in and pick up our gear. Then we plan on driving some of the course and getting familiar with the park where Simone and the kids will be during the run Sunday.
If anyone is interested, the NYC Marathon is also happening this Sunday and will be televised on NBC Universal Sports starting at 5 pm and KCRA will be airing the marathon starting at 6 a.m the highlights from 11 - 1.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Fighting Taper Madness...

Last long run....done.
Last training run....done.
Last taper week run.....done.
Last workout....done.
Sneaking hour naps whenever I can....done.
Was it all enough?
Enough to go sub 4:40?
How many bananas do I have to eat to guarantee avoiding a repeat of the leg cramp incident?

I am fighting off the taper madness with frantic house cleaning, which, since it works, has become part of the official taper process. From runners I know, and reading experiences, I know most runners have some sort of taper routine that involves a few "quirky" ways of dealing with the mental aspect of all this.....which makes me feel way less "crazy"....or at least that this "crazy" is normal runner/taper/ less than 3 days till marathon "crazy".

2 days, 18 hours, 57 minutes and we will see how it plays out.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Confirmation Email Has Arrived

We got our final instructions/confirmation email today! Always exciting as it means we are really, really close to marathon day!

2010 Eye-Q Two Cities Marathon and Half Marathon
E-Confirmation & Bib Number Assignment Information

Below is your bib number assignment and race information.

Name: Elizabeth (F33)
Bib #: 1652
Race: Marathon Run

Changes to your registration information can be made at the Expo Registration Solutions Booth.

Please Print and Bring this Bib Number Assignment With You to the Expo to Pick-up Your Race Packet. If you are planning to pickup a race packet for another runner, please ensure that you have a copy of this email for him/her and/or a copy of his/her picture ID.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Mr. Legs.....I mean Karnazes

One of the things we enjoy at the race expo's is listening to the running stories of the guest speakers. We got to hear Dean Karnazes speak at the Napa Valley Marathon, and we will get to hear him again this Saturday at the Two Cities Marathon Expo.
There is a bit of controversy amongst runners about Dean. Did he go too commercial? Is he one of the greatest runners ever?? As someone who enjoys nice legs, I find any controversy irrelevant. I wonder if he'll be wearing this on Saturday??
He's got nothing on you, honey!

Monday, November 1, 2010


There is one race I run every year for "a time". Its the one race I will not run with my husband, or kids, or anyone else. The one race I let myself obsess about a finishing time, my AD place, and going as hard and all out as I can the entire 3.1 miles. One 5k, happens to be the first race of any kind I did. The Lafayette Reservoir Run. The first year I ran it, I had severely sprained my ankle 3 weeks prior to the race. I waited until the day before, going back and forth on what to do. I had been preparing for the run, my first race ever, for a while, and I hated the idea of not doing it. I didn't really know what kind of a runner I was, or if I would even be able to run. Was I a slow runner? Middle of the pack?? What was my per mile pace?? I had no clue. Didn't even know how to put on a timing chip. Never mind that I couldn't walk for 1 week, hobbled for the next week, and was barely able to run by week 3. I went down to the Lafayette Chamber of commerce the day before the race and registered. Done. I ran it faster and pushed harder than I had ever ran before, finishing in 27 and change, and coming in 4th in my age division. I knew I would run it again the next year, and that if not injured, I could take 1st in my age division.
So I did. Came back the next year, had been working on my time, now had a year of running under my belt and had run many races since that first one. I knew what I was doing this year, I had no nerves. I knew I had improved over the past year, and was feeling confident. I shaved 3 minutes off my time, finished in 24:45 (which would have taken first in my age division the year before)...and guess what?? I was 4th in my age division......again. Highly irritating. It's just one 5k, no biggie. I'll work harder, come back faster next year, and get it done.
Which brings me to present day. The Lafayette Reservoir Run always takes place on the last Sunday of October. (for those who don't' know, I do not celebrate Halloween, you need to know that or the rest doesn't make sense) Imagine my horror when I went to the website and see the Halloween shirts! Say it isn't so?? Halloween hit on the last Sunday of October this year, making the Res Run Halloween themed. Without kids, this may not have even fazed me. I'm not celebrating it, just running a race. I can decline the shirt. I just want to run. With becomes the "I just ate the cake, I didn't celebrate the birthday" argument. Running it just wasn't' going to happen this year. I have to say I look forward to that run every year, I think about it when I'm running. I think about it at random times...will this be the year? How fast can you go? Do you think you are capable of pushing harder than last year? Will the top 3 have improved, too, just like last year? Seeing that web page pop up and staring at the Jack O Lanterns and having that sinking feeling of 'oh, have got to be kidding me!"........well, that feeling could only be topped by logging on to the results page from yesterdays run and seeing that the 3rd place time in my age division was 24:50. My time from last year would have beaten this. I could have done it. Not only that, but 1st and 2cd were in the 23 minute range. If I have improved in my running at all in the past year,(I may not have improved in time, but with 3 marathons this past year, I will push harder, and endure more pain to reach a goal than I would have a year ago!) not only would I have had 3rd, 1st or 2cd were well within reach!
Next out!!
I feel like I should add to this that I have no regrets about making the choice to not run it. It was the only choice, really. Could I have justified running it, could I have "gotten away" with running it....yeah. We can all justify whatever we want when its something we really want to do. There really was no even attempting to rationalize it, I just saw the screen and knew I wouldn't be running it this year. So I am not irritated that I 'couldn't' run it, or that I had to make that call. I am irritated that had I run it, it would have been "the year" for me, and I could stop obsessing about it! That's ok, though, its just one more thing to keep me pushing and on track for another year! : )

Running With Emma

Part of tapering is still getting in a few runs, just much shorter than normal. Saturday we were heading out on a 3.5 mile run. Emma asked us if she could run it instead of ride her bike. I was a little unsure about it as since it was a short run, I hoped to maintain a good pace. But, it seemed like a good opportunity to see how she would do, since we don't go on many runs under 5 miles. Well, she did great! She kept a good pace, and ran the whole time. We were able to work on a few things, too, like her breathing, and keeping her upper body more upright (she complains about her lower back hurting when she runs). When we told her she ran further than a 5k, she decided she was ready to start training for a 10K. We are both super proud of her. She is such a determined and focused kid when it comes to accomplishing a goal!