October 2008 Archives

Back in Germany

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We arrived safely back in Germany this morning, I will try to catch up on my posting this weekend.

Goodbye Mom, we will miss you dearly!

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As a long distance runner I know how quickly our conditions change during a race, we can go from feeling good to barely walking in minutes. Sometime life has similar surprises, as was the case with my mother today. Yesterday she was talking and smiling, this morning she was still talking, smiling and dozing off every few minutes. This afternoon at 3:47 she closed her eyes for the last time and drifted off quietly for her final rest in Jesus' arms. We will miss you dearly mom!

My mother's condition continues to improve, but she has a long hard journey ahead of her. On the possitive side she has been moved out of intensive care into a specialiyed care unit, which is a step forward. On the down side they are having problems maintaining her blood pressure, which interfered with her dialysis yesterday. So we remain in prayer and hope for the best. We are very thankful that we can be with my father during this time to help him as best we can. Although he still drives a car at age 87, the 45 minute trips to the hospital wear him out.

My youngest brother was up from New Jersey this weekend, which saved us the trip, and was nice as he could visit my mom several times. He also surprised me on Saturday by going for a run with me. Although he is in great shape he normally doesn't run, so I was quite impressed when he ran over 4.5 miles with me without a complaint! I went on and ran a total of about 7 miles (12 km). This morning (Tuesday) it is raining, but I might head out for a short run later, or tomorrow. The running is helping me to keep my head clear, particularly important with all thats going on.

Thank you everyone for your kind comments, thoughts and prayers!

Running in the USA, family update.

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I managed to get in an hour run on Sunday around the St. Clair neighborhood where our friends live near Detroit. We spent two very relaxing days with our friends there, sharing a sunny weekend with them on their boat on Lake St. Clair. On Monday my wife and I drove to my parents in Central New York. After running back and forth every day to the hospital to visit my mom I was ready for another run by Wednesday afternoon. I managed to squeeze in 45 minutes of laps along the country road in front of my parents home. There are lots of dogs running loose in the area, so I can't run too far without running into this problem.

My mom's condition continues to improve, albeit slowly. She has been moved out of intensive care into a normal room, but will likely need kidney dialysis for the remainder of her life. Her heart is stronger and she able to speak well and sit up. The doctor warned us that it will be a long hard battle before she has hope to return home.

I miss my running friends and wish you all. I'll try to post again this weekend! Happy running!!

Mom Update

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We have safely arrived in Detroit and spent a nice night with friends in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. My father said that my mother's condition has stabilized and she is talking and doing better. She is still in critical condition due to a combination of difficulities including a bad heart valve, kidney failure and a condition called atrial fibilation. Each condition alone is medically treatable, but combined they present a challenge to treat. The next days and weeks will remail difficult to predict.

Other family members report that she enjoys receiving visitors and is responding positively. My father felt that there is no sense rushig to New York, so we will probably spend the weekend here and drive on Monday. In any case I am remaining in contact with my family.

On the running front my friend Brian showed me a 4 mile loop around St. Clair Shores this morning, I look forward to running a couple loops in the morning.

Thank you everyone for your thought and your prayers, they are felt and appreciated. I will try to keep you all posted on my mother's condition and our vacation. Have a great weekend!

Thank you for your Compassion

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In four hours I must arise and begin a new day filled with uncertainty as my wife and I travel to the USA. My father is filled with faith that my mother's condition is slowly improving, but I know that he knows that it will truly take a miracle to restore her to the condition that we desire. This is also my prayer.

I have blogged about my running adventures for over 3 ½ years, it has been most rewarding in the fact that I have found many new friends that have shared my passion for running and living. As my mother's condition remains critical it has been most comforting to know that I have not only found friends who share my compassion for running but who also have compassion for what makes life a part of living and have ventured out and touched my heart in my personal time of need. Iris, Josef, Conny, Dan, Craig, Michelle (Eric you too), Neca, Jon, Thomas, Kim, and the many that have remained silent, you all mean so much to me. As my wife and I join my family in the USA in a time that could prove to be quite dramatic, I thank you all for your thoughts and your prayers, please continue your support as we unravel the journey before us.

My own desire for more speed, more miles, and more glory are shadowed as I wish for just one more day, one more week, one more month for my most beloved mother. She is ready to cross to the other side with our heavenly father, only we are not necessarily ready to let her go. What lies around the next corner is not clear, but we are willing to take the next step, God be our shining light!

My Mom in Critical Condition

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Gestern Abend habe ich ein letztes mal vor die Urlaub mit meine Lauftreffgruppe gelaufen. Ich habe mit die mitte-schnell Gruppe angefangen, aber trotz ein Erkaltung war die für mich zu langsame. Ich mit ein andere vor gelaufen und ein bisschen Gas gegeben. Nach die Lauf viel hat mich eine schone Urlaub gewünscht, es ist wirklich toll gute Lauffreunden zu haben!

Nach die Lauf habe ich geduscht und als ich habe für die Stammtisch vorbereitet hat meine Frau im Zimmer gekommen mit schreckliche Nachtrichtungen, meine 80-jahrige Mutter legt im kritische zustand im Krankenhaus in New York. Ich habe versucht meine Schwägerin das hat die E-Mail geschrieben zu erreichen, aber ohne erfolg. Ich habe auch mein Vater und mehrere Geschwistern versucht bis ich habe endlich ein Bruder erreicht das hat mehr gewusst.

Meine Mutter hat ein Nierenversagen und die Arzt krampft für ihre Leben, in ein paar Stunde wurde die Ärzten vielleicht mehr wissen. Schockiert habe ich überlegt was ich tun sollten und habe entscheidet nach die Stammtisch zu gehen. Ich könnte so wie so nicht mehr machen und habe frische Luft gebraucht. Meine Frau hat entscheidet heim zu bleiben in die Zufall das wir ein Anruf kriegen.

Ich habe meine Lauffreundin das ich laufe so gerne mit, abgeholt und nach die Stammtisch gefahren. An die Weg habe ich zu meine Freundin über die zustand meine Mutter informiert. Zu die Rest von die Gruppe habe ich entscheidet nicht zu sagen, weil ich habe so wie so nicht wie gewusst. Ich habe versucht die Zeit mit mein Lauffreundin zu genießen, aber mein Hetz war schwer und ich war nicht ganz erfolgreich. Nach die Stammtisch habe ich meine Lauffreundin heim gefahren, woher Sie hat ihre Mitleid für mein Mutter ausgesprochen und eine schone Urlaub gewünscht. Ich bin dankbar für die Freunden ich habe, die sind Gold wert!

Später habe ich mit mein Vater (87) gesprochen, er ist sehr erschüttert, aber ist optimistisch das meine Mutter wird besser gehen. Nachher habe ich ein paar E-Mail geschrieben zu die Rest von meinen Geschestern in die zufalle das die hat nicht über unsere Mutter gehört, dann habe ich versucht ein paar Stunden zu schlafen vor ich muss zu Arbeit gehen. Ich biete das mein Vater (87) kann auch ein bisschen schlafen. An Freitagmorgen fliegen wir nach die USA, ich wunder mich wie die Urlaub anfangen wurde. Bitte sag ein gebet für meine Eltern, Familie und für uns als wir anreisen.

Last night I ran with my running club for the last time before vacation. I started out with the mid-pack group, but somehow they were going too slow for me, so went on ahead with another runner. After the run several wished me a nice vacation, what a great group of running friends I have!

After showering I was getting ready to go to our monthly meeting when my wife came into the room with bad news, my 80 year old mother was in the hospital in critical condition. I tried to reach my sister-in-law that sent the e-mail with the news, but with no luck. Then I tried my father and several of my brothers before I finally reached one who could tell me more.

My mother experienced kidney failure, probably caused from a problem with an artificial heart valve that she received ten years before, in a few hours the doctors would know more. In more or less a state of shock I sat down for a minute an thought about what I should do, finally deciding to go on to the monthly meeting from my running club. I couldn't do anything more for the moment and I needed some fresh air. My wife decided to stay home in case anyone called.

I picked up my running partner and drove to the meeting. On the way I told my friend about my mother's condition, but decided not to say anything to the rest of the group, I didn't know all the details. I tried to enjoy my time with the group, but my heart and mind was elsewhere. Afterward as I drove my friend home she expressed her sympathy (her mother is 88) and wished us a good vacation despite the circumstances. I am thankful for the friends that I have, they are worth their weight in gold.

Later I was finally able to reach my father, he is quite shaken, but optimistic that my mother would pull through. Afterward I sent a couple e-mails to the rest of my brother to make sure they were all informed, then tried to catch a couple hours sleep before heading off to work. I prayed that my father could find sleep too. On Friday morning we are flying to the USA, I wonder how the vacation is going to go. Please remember my parents, family and us as we travel, in your prayers.

Vacation Plans

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Things are starting to wind down around here as we turn our attention to our trip to the USA on Friday. Yes, three weeks of vacation, it sounds good anyway, but from a purely running perspective not so much. For the first time ever I find myself a bit sad though, I have a hard time picturing myself sitting around visiting, eating and relaxing for three weeks. On the other side my body tells me that is what I need if I want to run well next season.

Of course running aside, I am excited to be able to see family and friends again, I know the time will go too quickly with that in mind. On Friday we are flying from Frankfurt to Detroit and spending a few days with good friends in St. Clair Shores. From there it's off to Central New York to visit my parents, siblings, and my own children and grandchildren. Lots of driving, but lots of good times too!

For me it is the official end of my race season, when I come back in November I will slowly start building up my base for the next season. I will participate in a couple short races still, but these will be more just for fun. I am really looking forward to the Neckargemund Mountain Run on November 8th, nothing like an 11.8 km uphill race to jolt you out of vacation mode!
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I am bringing my running shoes with me to the USA, but to appease my wife will try not to run too often, just enough to keep the joints loosened up. Hopefully I won't put on too much weight...

An Easy 12K Run

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My training over the last few days has been pretty spontaneous, I've just been running whatever feels right at the time. When I got home last night I tried to decide if I wanted meet some of the members of my running club for a run. The problem was that I would need to wait for an hour before the group met and I was anxious to get my run in so I would have time to take care of some other things. My thoughts were interrupted by the ringining of the telephone, it was my running partner, she wondered if I was going for a run. We discussed our plans and decided to meet right away and do about an hour run. So I finished getting ready and jogged over to her place to pick her up.

We set out on about a 10K loop around the bike paths and fields surrounding our town. We planned on an easy pace, around 6:00-6:15/km (9:40-10:05/mi.), but due to our chatting had trouble keeping the pace down. After a few kilometers our pace evened out and we had a consistent run. The slightly slower pace felt good after running intervals on Saturday night and the hilly run on Sunday.

The run ended much too fast, I am really enjoying these runs with my friend, I hope we can continue when I get back from vacation. I believe the runs are mutually beneficial, the companionship motivates me and keeps me on pace, and it offers my running friend a chance to train at a faster pace then with other people she trains with from time to time.

On Wednesday is my last run before vacation, I will be running with my running club. Later that night is our monthly meeting, I am really looking forward to it!

Enjoying some Autumn Running

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The long weekend continued for me with a run with my running club on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. I originally had planned on running a 10K race at 4:00 p.m. in Durlach, near Karlsruhe, but allowed myself to be distracted by my wife who wanted to go to a furniture store. In any case my wife was able to find a throw rug and some curtains that she was looking for and made up for the race by running 1000 meter intervals with some of the running club. I haven't run intervals for a long time so this really kicked my butt. I found satisfaction in that I could at least keep up with them, but my legs sure felt it the next morning.

On Sunday after church my wife needed to prepare some things for work on Monday, so I took the opportunity and drove to Weingarten to run my hilly route. My legs felt like I had run a marathon the day before as I climbed the first hill. I loosened up after awhile and could enjoy the forested trail. The leaves are beginning to change in our area, so the trail is wearing its finest colors. I ran 12 km/7.5 mi. and decided it was enough for the day.

I am looking forward to another run or two this week before we fly to Detroit on Friday. I hope on Columbus Day I can run a loop around St. Clair Shores. Anybody know a good place to run in this area?

An Easy Two Hours on an Autumn Morn'

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Today is a holiday in Germany, so I slept a bit later than normal rising about 7:30 a.m. As I quietly went through my morning routine my wife rolled over for another lap around dreamland. Shortly before 9:00 I slipped out into the cool air (9C/48F) and jogged over to my friend's apartment on the other side of town. As I was about to ring the door bell she opened the door, I think she knows my promptness by now. As she laced up her running shoes her landlady came out with a friend, they were on their way for a walking tour somewhere. After exchanging greetings and bidding them a fun day on their walk my running partner and I set out on our own path.

The sun tried to find its way out amongst the clouds, but with little success. The wind chilled our bones as we headed for the protection of the woods on my friends side of town. We settled into a comfortable pace as we made our way towards the local research institute on the other side of the forest. My friend suggested we run the trail that another friend of ours and her run from time to time. This time of year I always open for a new trail so gladly accepted this ideal.

We wound our way over the forested trails, the quiet morning interrupted only by our falling feet and our chatter. Occasionally we passed a cyclist out for a morning ride or an occasional dog walker, we stopped our chatter to say good morning. It really was a good morning, the sun finally made its way out of hiding - I think we both felt privileged that we had our health, that we could enjoy this morning on the trails. Why did I wait so long in my life to start running, I feel like I missed so much.

We made our way over to our running club trail, then beyond to my own loop that I frequent during the week. After an hour and half or so I sensed that my funning friend was slowing, so I led the way back to town. We finished our roughly 18.5 km (11.5 mi.) run in about 1:51:00, exactly the 6:00/km (9:40/mi) pace that we had planned on.

We chatted a few minutes until the cool wind chilled, so I reluctantly made my way back home. The sun warmed me as I jogged back across town, it is so nice to run with friends, I am fortunate to have found one that lives close enough that we can share the trails on occasion. Life is good!

A Nice Run on a Stormy Day

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(The English version of the previous post)

Last night I ran a loop with my Running Club. Most of the day was stormy, with high winds and rain, but shortly before the run it settled down a little. I warmed up with one slow, then two fast kilometres, and chatted with friends until our run began. I stayed in the back of the mid-pack group with my running friend that ran the first half of the Baden Marathon with me.

We ran the first three kilometres with the group, until they started running intervals. My friend and I aren't training for any races in the moment so decided to maintain our own pace. After a few kilometres we caught up to three of the group and continued to run with them. Eventually I started talking with one of the ladies at the front of the group and after a couple kilometres we noticed that we had left the other three women way behind. We decided to continue on to the trailhead, we would see them there.

Tomorrow my running friend from last night and I are meeting for up to a two hour run. My friend lives in the same village so it is easy for us to get together to train. On Saturday I am signed up for the 10K Turmberg Run in Durlach (near Karlsruhe), but I'm not sure if I will actually run it or not.

Ein schone Lauf an ein Stürmische Tag

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Gestern Abend habe ich ein Rund mit der Graben Lauftreffgruppe gelaufen. Die ganze Tag war stürmisch mit hohe Windgeschwindigkeit und Regen, aber kurz vor die Lauf hat es ein bisschen aufgehört. Ich habe mit ein langsam und zwei schnelle Kilometer aufgewärmt, dann ein bisschen mit Freunden geredet bis wir haben angefangen zu laufen. Ich habe hinter die Gruppe geblieben zusammen mit meine Lauffreundin das hat die erste halb von der Baden Marathon mit mir gelaufen.

Wir haben drei Kilometer mit die Gruppe gelaufen bis die hat angefangen Intervall zu machen. Weil meine Lauffreundin und ich trainiere nicht gerade für eine Wettkampf haben entscheidet unsere eigene Tempo zu halten. Ab ein paar Kilometer wir haben doch drei von dem Intervall Läufer wieder geholt und gemeinsam weiter gelaufen. Irgendwann habe ich angefangen mit eins von die Frauen zu reden und ab ein paar Kilometer wir haben entdeckt die andere drei Frauen war weit hinter uns. Egal, wir haben weiter bis am Ziel gelaufen.

So, morgen habe ich ein Termin mit mein Lauffreundin, wir wollen bis zwei Stunde rund die gegen laufen. Mein Lauffreundin wohnt in die gleiche Ort, so es ist sehr leicht mit ein andere zu trainieren. Am Samstag bin ich für die 10K Turmberglauf in Durlach angemeldet, aber ich bin noch nicht sicher ob ich laufe es wirklich.

Cycling Plans

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A few days ago I noticed an ad in our local paper that the bicycle shop around the corner is having a sale on all of this year's models. I bought an inexpensive mountain bike a couple years ago and find it a bit impractical for most of the cycling that I do. I have also been listening intently to a small group in my running club that take regular 80-120 kilometer cycling tours in the warmer months of the year. I've decided that I would like do that too, but not with my heavy mountain bike.

At first I thought about a racing bike, not top of the line mind you, but something that I could also use if I get the urge to do a triathlon sometime. But after talking with my cycling friends, most said that a touring bike would be more appropriate unless I planned on doing an Ironman anytime soon. So touring bike it is, I'll be picking up my new baby this weekend!

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This page is an archive of entries from October 2008 listed from newest to oldest.

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