Monday, May 26, 2008

Come run with me!

Next Sunday (June 1) is my 35th birthday and way back in January I decided for my birthday I wanted to run 35 miles. I mentioned my plan to Bad Ben and it's kinda morphed into a real run complete with food & drinks. So please, if you're in the area (or even NOT in the area) and want to get in a good trail run, please join me at Clinton Lake in Lawrence at about 7:00am on June 1. You don't have to run the whole thing if you don't want to, it's a very well marked trail with plenty of places to turn around. My husband is planning on coming out and hiking a portion of it if that's more your thing. If it's forecast to be really stinking hot I may start earlier but I'll post if there's any changes. And for the record I'm planning on taking it slow since my highest distance to date is a marathon. C'mon you know you wanna!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Night hike

Friday night the husband & I went for a night hike at Wyco park. Left about 15 minutes before sunset and did a quick 4 miles. We saw a bunch of raccoons, deer and millions of bugs. We also heard lots of rustling and "scary"noises. I wanted to try out a headlamp and figured rather then sitting on our butts all evening this was a good way to get out. I enjoyed showing husband some of the trails that I run regularly and next time we do it, we'll start at a different spot so he can see yet another section. We had a really good time and he got a great introduction to Wyco mud. Saturday morning I just did 5 miles but for some reason I went really fast (well, fast for me anyway), my fruit smoothie must have been turbocharged! I went fast and felt GREAT. All runs should be like that! I skipped the group run at Clinton Lake this morning... husbands band played last night and by the time I got home it was close to 3 am and to make it to the run on time I have to be up by 5:30am... I decided to sleep instead. After a good sleep in, I ran to the City Market and husband rode down on his bike.. did a bit of shopping and ran home. Unfortunately, it was hot and humid, humid, humid. When I left the house the humidity was about 65%... yuk! It's going to take awhile to acclimate to the heat & gross again. Some ice cold watermelon when I got home sure hit the spot... couple slices and your core temp drops real quick. Now it's off to Costco to pick up some fans so we can put off turning on the A/C as long as possible.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

I had a fun day off on Thursday... I finally packed up my winter clothes and got my summer ones out of storage... I fully expected to wake up to snow on Friday.. but I guess I waited long enough! I also painted my toes... notice I said toes... I painted the toenails I have left & my nail-less toes and made it look like I still have all 10! I can wear flipflops now! My life is so exciting.

Monday, May 19, 2008


It's been a busy couple of weeks, I feel like I've not gotten a chance to breathe, much less rest or run! But it looks like things are back to normal, no more weddings, which also means none of the bullshiat that goes along with being in weddings. Don't get me wrong, both weddings were beautiful, but I don't deal well with my own family tensions, I don't like to be shoved in the middle of someone else's.

Sundays run at Clinton Lake was great.. a lot of the Trail Nerds were racing at Berryman, so it was just Sophia, Gary, Mark & I for 20 miles. The weather was beautiful and the trails are in good shape.. which means not very muddy, which means the Mud Babes might have to switch to their summer name of the Dirt Dolls (thanks Gary!). One of the things I love most about the group runs with the Trail Nerds is the vast amount of information available...everyone comes from such varied backgrounds and have done so much with their lives. I feel like I'm getting the best education in ultra-running & nature every time I do a group run. This week I got an education in identifying poison ivy (not personally thank goodness), a lesson in identifying copperhead snakes (Gary jumped over the snake, the rest of us took a bit of a detour around it) and a personal brush with bonking.
For some reason I forgot to start my garmin at the beginning of the run, and when I remembered we were already 20 or so minutes in, which threw off my eating, drinking, s-capping cycle. I usually start eating & s-capping at mile 5, but everything was off and so I didn't eat enough and I probably didn't drink enough for the heat either. At about 15 miles I started feeling pretty rough and ended up having to walk quite a bit of the last 2 miles after Sophia put the hammer down and everyone took off. I'm going to chalk some of the problem up to the stress of the last 2 weeks, and standing around in heels all day on Saturday, but I know that mostly it was my fault for not paying closer attention. Live and least it wasn't during a race!
I am digging all the animals I've been seeing on my runs, there have been countless deer, 2 turtles, 5 snakes, the cutest fuzzy yellow duckling that I almost jumped on at Wyco Park (it was an accident!), millions of colorful birds... I just love spring!


... nope, I promise, that's not wedding cake in my mouth..... ok, maybe I had just a few bites... but it's good luck right??

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I want my $200 back!

So we saw Elvis Costello & the Police at the $print Center on Tuesday night... and it kinda blew ass. It was our first time at the $print Center and we were completely underwhelmed. Why, oh Why, when they are building these new arenas do they not consider that bands will be playing these places and do something with the acoustics? The sound was so bad for Elvis that at times I was wondering just what the hell he was playing! It was better for the Police but not fabulous... the sound guy should be dragged out in the street and shot, that's for sure. The Police seemed to be just going through the motions, played all the hits but they did do some great versions and some of Andy Summers solos were amazing. I wish I could say something about the Elvis set, but other than Sting coming out and singing with him on Allison, I couldn't hear shit so nothing to say, which sucks 'cause I LOVE that man! We forked out $100 a seat and our seats were pretty crappy, I can't imagine how bad the nosebleed seats are! I give the evening a B.... hanging out with good friends always makes things better and even if the sound wasn't up to par, live music is great! I probably won't go see another show at the $print Center anytime soon though.. unless the tickets are free!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

People are dumb!

So this morning on my run as I'm coming up a hill on 9th street and a guy is coming down the hill... in the middle of the road on his cell phone. He's dressed like he should be running or doing something athletic, but he's strolling down the middle of the road, talking... make that yelling, into his cellphone. I'm watching as a car gets closer and closer to him and finally I yell out CAR! No response, keeps strolling down the hill.... some people are just fucking hopeless.

This week and last week have been silly busy... too many weddings and shows and just general crap to do. The older I get, the less I like going out every day of the week. Tonight we're going to see the Police & Elvis Costello at the Sprint Center... I'm so excited I could pee! Elvis puts on the best show and I can't wait to see the Police. Husband is really excited since he had tix to see the Police on the Synchronicity tour, drove 10 hours to Sydney and ended up getting in a fight with his girlfriend on the way and didn't go. He's kicked himself ever since. I'll try not to fight with him on the way there.. luckily it's only a 10 minute drive.
The picture is from my friend Heather's wedding, there was a big window in the 2nd floor ladies room and we were all hanging out the window catcalling scantily clad women on their way to a party across the street... cheap entertainment... a little bit of booze, a bunch of girls and a window. Who knew it could be so much fun...even the bride was doing it! Thanks to my friend Toast for playing paparazzi!

On Friday night I went to a bachelorette party for yet another friend getting married... I had never been to one before... all my other friends either hadn't had one or just had co-ed parties. It was really interesting to be part of that "girl zoo" as my friend Kaite puts it. I'm going to start keeping a white feather boa and tiara in my car permanently, because guys will give up their table at a crowded bar for a bachelorette party... who knew! We even got kicked out of a bar! It was fun but I much prefer the kind of last fling party I had... husband & I and our 4 closest friends in the presidential suite of a swanky hotel, drinking and eating pizza all night. Perfect.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Spring Thoughts

I ran the trails at Shawnee Mission Park yesterday morning and they are gorgeous right now. I hadn't been out there since November, since they close the trails when it's real muddy to prevent damage. These were my first trails when I started running.. and I really like them, so I was super excited when I called and found out they were open again. My husband & I have a deal, when I run trails by myself he has to know where I am going, how long I'll be gone and I have to call him when I get back to the car, so I told him I'd be gone for a few hours and set off. The last time I had been there the trees were bare and everything was very brown, yesterday everything was such a gorgeous shade of green. I saw a million deer and even had 2 that refused to run away from me.. I talked to them and they just stayed hanging out about 200 yards away, it was pretty crazy! I rescued a turtle that was "cruising" down the trail.. I moved him to just off the trail since I've seen how fast the mountain bikers bomb down the trails. When I picked him up he hissed at me and tucked everything in, but then when I set him back down he kept on meandering down the trail. I wish I had brought a camera!
The run was really a measuring stick at how far I've come since November... the loop seemed much shorter and easier.. and those hills that seemed pretty big to me then, just looked like a slight incline now, and it made me feel pretty darn good. I did 6 miles and then called my husband to tell him I was done and he freaked out... "It's only been an hour.. what's wrong?" I just felt like doing 6 miles... "but are you OK?" It totally cracked me up! Since I'm not training for anything in particular right now, I'm just running to what feels good. It was kinda freeing to head out without a single thought as to how far or how long.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Helen Keller tour of Lake Perry 15K

OK... the race this weekend was actually called the Rock Creek Trail Series 10K, but due to my (and a bunch of other peoples) complete inability to follow ribbons, it turned into a 15K tour of Lake Perry complete with some bushwhacking and begging at strangers houses for water and directions. The weekend started off on a bit of a bad note anyway.. I got a freaking speeding ticket on Friday, which really sucks since most of the time I drive like such a grandma, but the sun was shining and I had the sun roof open, cranking the new Elbow CD (thanks Travis) and I wasn't paying attention. Bam.. 12 over the limit. The officer has such bad handwriting that I have no idea how much money I owe or if I want to go to court, when it is! Worse than a doctor I tell you!
We spent Friday evening wandering around First Friday, taking in the sights and enjoying a "date" of sorts. Went home for dinner and watched the Golden Compass and shared some freezer space with some friends who haven't had power since the storm blew in on Thursday night. They had about 40 pounds of meat they didn't want to lose, so they stuck it in our extra freezer.
Got up this morning to drive to Lake Perry, a little worried since I wasn't sure how long it would take me to get there, and forgot to eat some breakfast... no big deal it's only a 10K. (insert ominous music here). Sometimes I'm not very smart (OK a lot of the time I'm not very smart), when a race director gives directions to a race, it's probably best to follow them and not go haring off on some random road just cause the sign says Lake Perry. Once I got myself turned around and heading back on the CORRECT road, it was cool I figured I'd be there in plenty of time. Found the start easily, and also found a hidden ditch while trying to park my car. Thankfully runners are a helpful bunch and were "happy" to help push my car out of said ditch. Once I was out of the ditch, one of the girls helpfully handed me a chunk of my car that had fallen off. SWEET! I was just hoping that nothing was broken bad enough that I couldn't get home. I did notice that the organizers then put up some ribbon so that the hidden ditch was now a visible ditch. Glad I could point that out for them.
Got checked in, got my number and swag bag... good looking tech shirt and a montrail water bottle that says "run like a girl"... I'm going to cross out the girl part and make it "run like a mud babe". Found the Trail Nerd contingent and huddled with Christy & Sophia since it was in the 40's with a biting wind until it was go time.
The 5k & 10k start out together on the pavement to break things up before you hit the trail. Trail was pretty darn muddy but no where near as bad as Psycho Wyco (which will forever be the measuring stick), very nice small rollers and some technical section... I really liked it.. in fact I liked it so much I figured I'd run an extended tour of it. Sophia & I started out pretty easy but at about mile 3(?) there was an aid station, but we skipped it (after all it was JUST a 10K) and I kinda put the hammer down (for us anyway). We were cranking out 9 min miles and feeling good when I realized it had been awhile since we'd seen any ribbons, my garmin was saying we were at 5.7 miles and we didn't seem to be heading back towards the direction of the start/finish. We conferred and decided to run to 6.2 and then turn around if we hadn't finished. Sure enough 6.2 came and no finish, so we turn around. (I must say that our time was 1:02:20 at 6.2 miles so I'm calling that my finish time!) After heading back aways we run into another girl (Melissa) who thought she was lost too.. so she joins us on our backwards trek.. a few minutes later we come across Christy who says the guy behind her swears we're not lost. Said guy comes up and says he runs the trails and we're not lost... I swear loudly & rudely and take off back in the direction we had just come from. Another mile down the trail and said guy has been renamed big fucking liar.
At this point it's Sophia, Melissa & I, we slow down to a mellow trot and figure we'd be out for awhile. I'm not sure why we didn't just turn around again, but we didn't. Another mile or so and we come to a fork in the trail and decide to take the trail that heads upwards toward the finish line direction. It also heads towards a house with ladies sitting outside talking, so we beg some water and directions from them.. bless their hearts they were very kind to supply us with both. None of us had carried water or cell phones 'cause it was JUST a 10k! (mental note: always carry both!!) Christy catches up to us at this point and the 4 of us stick together down the trail that the nice ladies said was not very long. Another mile and we figure the nice ladies maybe have a different definition of "not very long". It wouldn't have been a big deal except for the lack of water and nutrients and Melissa wasn't an experienced trail runner, she had done 10 miles before so at least she was doing OK mileage wise, but she was looking a little dazed.
We saw a house and bushwhacked to the driveway hoping to end up back at the finish via the road. By this point we had been out almost 2 hours and KNEW that people would be out looking for us. The very helpful gentlemen hunting morrels gave us some directions back to what he thought was the correct road we needed and sure enough, not very long after that Christy spotted a familiar truck barreling down the road.. Yah-hoo Greg our saviour! We hopped in the back of the pick up and he took us back to the finish. Turns out there was another 4 people still out there... combined with the people that got lost at the beginning of the race, that tells me they need to take some lessons from the Greg Burger school of course marking. So we ended up doing over 9 miles, but at least there was a group of us and we had some good laughs during it. After all the lost folks were back they called in all the runners who went back out in search (thanks a bunch Gary, Ben & Greg!)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Random Thoughts

I took Sunday and Monday off of running to just relax.. I wasn't sore but I felt tired, so I went hiking with the dog instead. Otis just loves to snuffle through the trees and hang out in any water or mud he finds. I wish he could run further so I could bring him on runs but he poops out after 1 mile. We are going to do the Dog n Jog in June but just the 2 mile walk... the Husband said no running and since we're going to wear costumes it's probably for the best.

Tuesday I went out with Ben & Christy and we finished taking down all the signage from the course, a lot of it was already done but we got the rest and picked up some trash along the way too. I think the only runner related trash I found was a gu packet... the cigarette packets and beer cans I'll attribute to non- runners... although I could be wrong!

Yesterday & today I just did a few easy miles on the road, there is a 10K trail race on Saturday so I'll just kinda take it easy till then, I'm going to squeeze in some Pilates tonight and tomorrow and see how things go on Saturday. Dad has already challenged me to another marathon.. this time he wants it on his turf! We're going to do the Discovery Trail Marathon on Sept 1st in Colorado Springs.. he figures he can beat me 'cause I'm not used to the altitude anymore and he trains on that trail pretty much everyday. We'll see! I also told him to put Feb 7th on his calender, I think I'm going to try & shoot for Rocky Raccoon as my 1st 100... (I'm putting it out here so I can't chicken out!). Dad owes me for years of crewing for his ultras so now I'm going to take my revenge! <>