June 2005 Archives

Monthly Report: June 2005

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Running: 11:53:47 | 76.65 miles
Walking: 00:04:25 | 0.25 miles

Not a very good month of running - need to get back on the ball.


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Check out the hook while my DJ revolves it.� Name that song! *

I almost used a different title for this post, but it wasn't very appropriate. I am getting so angry at the dog owners around here. I decided to go out and run after dinner, even though it hadn't cooled down very much. But as I was sitting on the step tying my shoes and waiting for the Garmin to sync up, an off-leash dog ran by my house. It ran to the end of the street and around a few houses, and then ran back up towards, and past, my house. I looked around for an owner (the dog did have tags, as I could hear them jingle) but no one was around. I got a little nervous about running with a loose dog around, especially since its owner was nowhere in sight, so I went and ran on the treadmill.

I had a more annoying dog encounter on Sunday. I was out running along the river, and came up to the pavilion area. I passed a little girl with her white lab. The dog probably weighed as much, if not more, than the little girl. (She was maybe 6-10?). She had him on the leash as I passed so I didn't think too much of them. A lady with a little dog approached from the opposite direction. After I passed her, I heard a commotion - apparently the white lab got excited by the little dog and started running towards the dog and owner. Because the girl was so small, she wasn't able to control the dog.

The lady picked up her dog (and told the lab "I'm sure you're a nice dog" and I think go away), and then the lab started running all over the place. I had stopped once I saw that the lab was off-leash, and when it started running towards me I jumped up onto a park bench. The lab then ran off towards the river. The lady and a man (not with the girl) told the girl she needed to go and get her dog - she didn't seem at all concerned that her dog was running loose. The lady commented to the man that the girl shouldn't be out with the dog if she couldn't control it. The lady also said something about how scared her dog was, which I can imagine. I was freaked out when the lab ran in my direction!

So the dog is running all over the place, and the girl isn't too worried. I'm kind of pissed because this is interrupting my run. I'm still standing on the bench when the girl wanders over and says "it's okay." WTF? Try "I'm sorry that my parents are assholes who let me walk my large dog that I can't control so that I'm interrupting your run, and that I'm not bothering to even attempt to catch him or call him back."

But I said something along the lines of "No, it's not okay. The leash law exists for a reason. And if you're not strong enough to control your dog, then you shouldn't be allowed to walk it." (I didn't yell or anything, just spoke calmly). She had no response, but wandered (moseyed, really) to attempt to get her dog.

She finally did catch it, but I ran the opposite direction so as not to deal with her losing control again. But seriously. What kind of person allows their small child to walk their large dog and then doesn't at least go with them to make sure that they are OK? What if they walk near a street and the dog gets excited by something on the other side? I hate stupid people!!!

* "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice. I was watching VH1 Classic on the treadmill, and someone e-mailed in to request that. Apparently their mom used to play it for them when they were a baby! Aside from that being an odd song to play for a baby, I can't believe that someone that was a baby when that came out is old enough to be watching and e-mailing VH1 Classic.

It reminded me of how bad I am at guessing people's ages. They finally posted the trail race results, and I was 2nd in my AG. I was pretty surprised, because a group of 3 women passed me in the last 15 min or whatever, and I thought they were all around my age. They were 39, 41 and 47. I would never have guessed that! I know online I tend to assume everyone is my age, but that makes a little more sense. But maybe the fact that I don't feel 26 (or like I look it) explains why I'd think that people older look like they'd be in my age group.

Shoe Sale

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Mid Year Shoe Mania: Save 30 � 53% off all Saucony, Adidas, and New Balance Shoes! Start Saving

I ordered my last pair of shoes during a NRC sale, and they got here pretty quickly. Just thought I'd share in case anyone needs new shoes.

Super boring post

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Saturday: 72 degrees | 77% humidity | 3 MPH
3.25 miles | 29:38 | 9:07/mi.

Sunday: 70-74 degrees | 88% humidity | 20 MPH
1 | 9:23
2 | 9:21
3 | 9:23
4 | 9:06
5 | 9:23
6 | 9:16
7 | 9:18
8 | 8:55
8.04 miles | 1:14:32 | 9:16/mi.

Monday: 87 degrees | FL 95 | 64% humidity | 22 MPH gusting to 27
1 | 9:04
2 | 9:01 | 18:05
3 | 8:46 | 26:51
3.06 miles | 27:26 | 8:58/mi.

Storms rolled through over the weekend and kept the temperatures down, but they got back up there again today. It's kind of crazy ... I've already run on more hot days this month than I did all of last year. But yeah, not a whole lot of excitement going on here.

Wish me luck ...

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because I'm about to go out and run in this:

Right Now forMN

On The Spot Weather




93�FFeels Like 94�F

Updated Jun 23 04:00 p.m. CT








UV Index: 5 Moderate
Wind: From SSW at 21 mph gusting to 27 mph
Humidity: 37%
Pressure: 29.85 in.


Dew Point: 63�F
Visibility: 10.0 miles

Yuck is right.

Later ...

Yeah, that was ucky. Not only was it hot, but the wind was pretty hard to run into. I attempted to bring a water bottle with me, and was quickly reminded why I don't carry water bottles in my hands. Very annoying.

3 miles | 26:58


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I title this yuck because I find this summer weather yucky! Today it was 90 when I got home; I procrastinated for about an hour which allowed it to cool off a whole TWO degrees. I decided that 88 was too damn hot to run with a shirt, and I didn't care who all had to be exposed to my belly. The Engineer could attest to the amount of time I spend obsessing over my stomach; I'd rank it as my 2nd problem area (back of thighs being #1) but it's the one I focus on, probably because I can see it easier. But when it's hot out - who cares? Being shirtless felt pretty good when I ran into the breeze. I still ended up really sweaty, even the ends of my ponytail were wet from the back of my neck. Gross!

I didn't mean to be gone for so many days. Thursdays during the summer end up being really crowded for time. The Engineer plays softball that night, and I like to go to the games. Lately, the games have been at 6:15, which means I have to run right after getting home from work, and then rush to shower, change and eat. We usually end up going out with the team afterwards, so I don't blog that day.

We went to visit my parents last weekend. Much like Jon, the Engineer doesn't like me broadcasting that we're going to be/are away from the house. This was our first visit since Christmas - the longest I've ever been away from home. It was a nice visit, but to my surprise it was colder in IL than in MN! I did run both days I was there, despite my dad's warning about a woman who was attacked and raped about 10-20 miles south of them. It's a little scary to think of something like that happening so close to where they live; I tend to think of their upscale neighborhood as being a safe place/crime-free. I do think I'm pretty safe when I run around there, though, I run only in the neighborhoods, and I tend to run in the actual street (as opposed to against bushes/trees).

Anyway. I kind of did a good deed on Sunday. While running home, I noticed a credit card on the side of the road. I circled back to pick it up, and carried it home with me. I initially thought I would look up the address of the user, but decided that was a bad idea because it might not be the right person. I decided it would be smartest to call the credit card company to see if they wanted it back or destroyed. I also hoped that they could let the guy know it had been found, because even if you canceled it I would think you'd wonder. I was running alongside a pretty busy road when I spotted the card, which is a really strange place to lose one.

Ok, saved the "best" for last. I ran a race last night! (I'm following a terrible precedent of disappearing for a few days and then coming back after a race). Last night was the All-Comers Mile Event. Every Tuesday night, the track club hosts an all-comers meet. In the past, it was mainly an adult event but over the years it has transformed into a kid event. But once a summer, they host a timed mile prior to the meet. I haven't run a timed mile in years, and this was worth Grand Prix points.

It was kind of hot (83, felt like 84), but not humid. I didn't leave my house early enough, so I was only able to run 1/2 mile for warmup as opposed to the mile I'd planned. I stretched, and then changed into my race flats. I had thought about bringing my old track spikes, but I didn't know if they'd be allowed/appropriate.

They announced that we'd be running in 2 heats, and anyone planning on running <7 minutes should go in the first heat. I knew I could run right under 7, but I hesitated about running with the 1st group. A few people around me were also debating what to do. I didn't want to be the tail end of the heat, but I also didn't want to be one of the fastest in the 2nd. I spotted a girl from my AG (that I'd like to be able to keep up with) lined up, so I decided to go with the 1st group. A bunch of younger kids were also lined up, so the guy in charge clarified a few times that everyone was planning on running <7. The kids didn't budge, and it was kind of a large group. So a few seconds later, the guy in charge announced a change in plans - the first heat would now be for <6 minutes. A lot of us left the start line at that announcement.

So while the first heat went off, I did a few strides and more stretches. The heat was won by our local prep speed demon in ~4:40. After the last finisher came around, they lined the rest of us up. Very short set of directions, and we were off. I immediately had to dodge some of the younger runners. (And while it's nice to see young kids out running, it's always annoying how they like to start right on the start line and just kind of get in the way because they don't know how to race yet).

The race went by pretty quickly. I don't know if this was a cinder track, but I can tell you that it wasn't an all-weather track like I'm used to. The traction was kind of distracting; I'm not used to my feet slipping like that. Maybe the race flats were a mistake? I wonder if my track spikes would've helped. I went out a little quickly, and then slowed some. I tried to fight back for the last lap, but I was having trouble with traction and just found it hard to go fast. I can't believe I used to run (close to) this distance weekly! While I would've liked to run faster, I think I put in a good effort.

3.07 miles | 27:51

4 miles | 36:12

5.03 miles | 45:45

0.5 mi WU | 4:45

1 | 1:34
2 | 1:40 | 3:15
3 | 1:43 | 4:58
4 | 1:41 | 6:40
All-Comers Mile | 6:40
3.04 miles | 28:28

4.03 miles | 35:23

Socks and foot care

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A few months ago, I bought some new socks. Aside from one report, I don't think I ever posted reviews. I absolutely love the toe socks. I think they may be the key to making my toes slightly less ugly. The problem has been that I only have 1 pair so I've had to decide which day I want to wear them.

I decided that I needed more than 1 pair. It would be cheapest to buy them at the running store, but that would involve 160 miles of driving. As I didn't want to drive that far for just socks, I decided to find a place online. I ended up buying 5 pairs (wanted free shipping) from C&C Outdoor Store. They just sent me my FedEx number, so hopefully I'll have them soon.

While googling places to buy my socks, I came across a blog entry from an ultra runner about his experiences solving his blister problems. I thought it was an interesting read. I need to work on his tips for preventing blisters on the tips of my toes.

Summer stinks!

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I have decided that the thing I hate most about summer is the sweat. I don't think I normally smell that bad after running (the Engineer might disagree), but the summer? Yuck. It was only 70 today, but sunny, and I got really sweaty. CoolMax clothing + sweat is not a pleasant combination.

I was a big slacker yesterday. I planned on running after work, but then it started raining. The rain was off and on, but after the lightning incident a few weeks ago, I'm a little skittish about getting caught in a storm again. So instead the Engineer and I went to get groceries.

I'm kind of mad at National Running Center. I was going to post a link to their expo coupons for anyone running Grandma's this weekend, but I'm annoyed with them now. My favorite running shorts are Moving Comfort's Freestyle shorts. Over the weekend, I was looking at NRC's shorts page, and it said under the freestyle shorts that they were an additional 20% off through 6/14. I added a few pairs to my cart, but the discount didn't apply. I took the order through to the credit card stage, but the discount still wasn't there. So I e-mailed them to ask what the deal was. By Tuesday, the last day of the sale, I hadn't heard back so I e-mailed again (a different address in case there was a problem with the first). They haven't written me back - jerks! I had always heard good things about their customer service, but this is sucky.

70 degrees | 11 MPH
3.08 miles | 27:59

Heat and Hills

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Heat + Hills + Humidity = the 3 Hs of Hell in Minnesota (summer edition).

Thankfully, I only had 2 Hs today, as the humidity was not high. I'm kind of surprised about that; this morning, the TV weather people threatened us with afternoon thunderstorms and tornado warnings. But it was sunny and clear.

I hate all the hills in my neighborhood. They aren't near as bad as the stuff I saw on Saturday, but there isn't a lot of flat ground for me to run on. That's one reason I go run around the lake/river so much - it's flatter over there. The hills around here are one reason I gave up on the heart rate training, as the hills made it difficult to run an even pace/keep my heart rate in the right zone.

I started running this afternoon, and the first few steps were not fun. I debated turning around and the end of my block, actually. But I decided that I'd gone to all the trouble of putting on my running clothes and putting sunscreen on my face (I HATE wearing sunscreen, but know it's a necessity) that I should at least go a little farther than that. I also knew that there was a good chance I just needed to work the kinks/lactic acid out. And I was right on that part, as my legs loosened up and I felt okay. A little tired, but not hurting. I wasn't pleased to run up more hills, but, again, I have no choice when I run around my house.

Summer is one of the few times of year I'll say I'm glad I live in Minnesota. My hot weather today was 80 degrees, and I doubt I'll have many days of running above 90. That's a lot better than what I put up with in Missouri and a hell of a lot better than what people in the south and/or east coast deal with,

3.02 miles | 27:25

Crazy Old Lady

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I'm secretly an old lady. I (try to) go to bed early, I often eat dinner at 4:30, I think the neighborhood kids are annoying, and that most "young people" dress too skanky. Oh, and if you ever see someone walking around Target muttering "stupid f*ckers" under their breath, it's probably me being annoyed that they have either moved stuff around or are out of apples AGAIN. I don't know what Target's problem is, but they cannot consistently stock quality apples and it is so annoying.

My first trail race

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Disclaimer: I'm fully aware that running this race after not running for 5 days and with an iffy hip was probably not a good idea. But what fun is it to be in your 20s if you can't do dumb stuff?

Ok, seriously. Minnesota has a lot of trail running (they even have a race series), but most of the trails are north of me. Today was the only trail race in my area, and it even counted for Grand Prix points. I'd been kind of waffling about running this because it was 10 miles and my hip was still stupid last week. One of the guys I work with runs at Oxbow Park a lot, so I talked to him yesterday about how long it would take me to get there. He kind of freaked me out by talking about the hills, but he also said it is a really pretty park and nice trails.

I had to go into work for a few minutes before 7 this morning, so I decided that since I was up, what the hell, I might as well go run it. Since it was a trail race, it's not like I had to run fast, right? I found the park pretty easily (turns out its ~10 miles/6 minutes from my house) and got registered. Then I sat around for awhile.

We headed down to the start as a group and got some last minute instructions. We were given a simple countdown and a "go," which I preferred to the starting gun. We ran down the road for a bit and then headed into the woods. We were immediately slowed by a set of wooden stairs, but then got onto the actual trail.

And then we ran around in the woods a lot and I had no idea what was going on.

I made a big rookie mistake of going out too hard in the first half. I did run up a few hills, but eventually started walking up them like the real trail runners. There were no mile markers, so I had no idea how fast I was running. I felt like I was really booking it in parts, though. And my cross country coach would've been proud of how hard I pounded the downhills - although, running down one long hill was really scary because my contacts don't focus sharply fast so I was worried about falling on a root, rock or branch as I flew down.

I got passed by a lot of people that ran smarter than me. One guy came up, and we chatted real briefly. He's run this a lot and let me know we were around the half point. I said something about how I didn't think I had been running that slow, and he said something about how it was a trail race (ie, time doesn't really matter). I said I knew that ahead of time, but was just kind of surprised. Shows how slowly I was taking the hills, I guess.

There was another guy that I came up along as we approached a hill. I didn't want to be the first to start walking, and apparently neither did he. I stopped right after he did, and he joked about how he'd been waiting for me to stop.

The hip was mostly okay. I did stop to stretch it a few times, which seemed to help. I'm amazed I didn't have more problems, because my footing was kind of crazy. We ran through a really squishy mud section, and I swear I almost did the splits.

The finish was kind of mean. You turn this corner and can hear (but not see) people cheering. And then you have to go up concrete steps, run across a bridge, go down concrete steps and run a few feet to the finish. But everyone cheered as people finished, so that was cool.

I didn't stop my watch at the finish line, but I finished around 1:46. They'll post the results online sometime, not that the seconds make a huge difference. Speedy Guy was there (he won the whole thing in 1:08 - that's pretty fast!) and as I told him "That was the hardest "slow" run I've ever done!"

I kind of wish I'd worn the HRM because I bet my heart rate was over 200. It was warm and really humid, which made catching my breath kind of difficult.

I don't know if I'm cut out for trail running. The hills were brutal, and apparently some of the other trail runs (Afton) are even harder! But I did talk afterwards with the guy that passed me around the 1/2, and he suggested that if I started slower it would probably be easier. He said it also helps if you've run it before, because then you know "what's a real hill." And there is truth in that; I probably wasted some energy at the start by charging up some hills, and probably also wasted some time walking up some hills that I could've run up.

I think I placed 2nd in my age group, so I got some badly needed points. I say "think" because I only heard them call my name, not the place; I got a nice silver colored medal.

Gut Buster 10 mile trail run | 1:46ish

Catchin' Up

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According to my auto-fill, I've used this title at least twice lately. I'm so not creative. I'm also really lazy, so thanks to everyone that continues to read my sporadically updated blog. Thanks for the nice comments, everyone.

Stayed tuned ....

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because I plan on posting at least one, maybe two, updates later on with content. In the mean time, here's a peek at what I was up to this morning:

That's after clapping a lot of mud off.

In other news, my internet is half broken. Since Thursday, I'm only "allowed" to visit maybe 1/3 to 1/2 of the sites I want. I don't know what the problem is (Yahoo Groups is one of the not-allowed sites, and I've had issues with Monster), but it's happening on all 3 computers here at the house. It's kind of pissing me off.

AFC (Away from Computer)

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Ugh. I have been AFC for the last couple days, and am so far behind in responding to comments/e-mails and in reading everyone else's blogs. I think I might have some real computer time tomorrow.

Short story about last Sunday before I go AFC again. The mile markers were off, some by as much as 0.1 miles, which pissed me off. I've tried to make sense of my splits, but I can't. So I wasn't sure of my pace during the race, and I'm not sure of it now. Annoying! I've decided to just go with what Garmin says, which was 13.23 miles. I did make a point to look at my watch when it said I'd run a half, and that was 1:42:55. That's about what I figured I could run, so why am I unhappy? Because around 3 miles, my right hip started hurting. It definitely slowed me down as the race progressed. I also started getting precursor ITB pangs around 7 miles. I was so glad to be stopping at the "half" point! My hip started spasming as I walked to find the Engineer. I got to be the first person to visit the medical tent (to get ice for the stupid hip).

Ok, half marathon short story out of the way. Aside from not being at the computer, I couldn't post anything about last week until I'd explained about the hip problem. It hasn't gone away! I took it pretty easy last week, mainly because my hip forced me too. I think I'm going to see a chiropractor, because I am positive that the hip pain, ITB problems and strange left hamstring pain are all related somehow.

Gotta go ... I'll be back to respond to stuff soon, I promise!