Why am I Running from Cancer?

Why am I Running from Cancer?. . . check out this post for an explanation

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Bloggie Get Together and Madison Mini Marathon

Last evening we had a bloggie get together organized by the infectiously happy, cheerful and beautiful Jamie, Running Diva Mom.  Also at the get together were Chelsea, Early Runner, Kerri, Running for (My) Life, Erika, MCM Mama and Heather, RunODonnell.  Jamie had great goodie bags for all of us and made cookies too.  WOW!!!  We met at a wonderful Italian Restaurant, Porta Bella, and both the food and conversation was great.  It is so nice to meet other women that blog and run.  I love it.  It makes me feel part of such a large community.  Here is a photo of us after we ate - thanks to the wonderful hostess that took out picture -  (stole this photo from Chelsea)

THANKS Jamie for organizing the get together, goodie bags and the cookies.  I know that I should have taken a picture of them - but I devoured the shoe and flower cookies as soon as I got back from the run this morning.  Not normal post run food - but there were calling to me.

This morning I set the alarm for 5:00.  I had set the coffee pot the night before to start at 5:00 - but missed the AM part of the start time.  ;-)    So when I got to the kitchen - NO coffee.  So I started it manually - I thought maybe this was a bad omen that the day wasn't going to go as planned.

Headed out around 6:10 - I had wanted to get going a little earlier - but that didn't happen.  It takes about 10-15 minutes to get to campus and when I rounded the corner to the parking ramp and traffic was backed up - I got a little nervous - me thinks - bad omen number 2.  Eventually, I pulled into the ramp and headed to the Memorial Union.  I walked back and forth looking for Jamie or Chelsea or Kerri or Heather . . . but didn't see anyone else in a black 13.1 Bondi Band.  Found my spot near the 2:00 - 2:15 time area and waited for the start.

The race started and I felt pretty good.  Mile over mile I was pretty consistent with last year.  Shaving a few seconds off on most miles - but nothing major.  BUT I did kick it in the last mile + and for that I am happy.  Knowing the lake shore path and knowing that I could do it was great.  I tacked a little time to mile 1 from this year because my Garmin didn't have a satellite at the start of the race.  ;-(

2010 2009
1 9:53 9:25
2 9:47 9:10
3 9:25 9:36
4 9:30 9:47
5 9:48 9:57
6 10:06 10:09
7 9:58 10:05
8 9:52 10:08
9 10:21 10:04
10 9:42 10:34
11 10:08 10:20
12 10:07 10:27
13 8:48 10:38
0.1 8:42 9:16
2:08 2:12

There were a lot of people along the route cheering.  Many races in Madison run through the Arboretum - in the past I have not liked running through there - while it is beautiful - I find it somewhat boring.  Trees - trees and more trees.  I like looking at people, and houses and dogs and kids . . . . But this year I have biked through the Arb on a lot of my bike training rides - so I felt like I really knew what was coming and have come to enjoy the coolness of the air.  I looked for wild turkey's (there were some at last years race and I have seen them during bike rides) but none were visible today.  

Can't wait to read the recap from Jamie, Chelsea, Kerri and Heather.  

ENJOY - on to the next goal . . . youngest son moves to college next Saturday.   I will be looking for some runs this fall and I can't wait to get back on my bike.  I haven't biked for two weeks and I can't wait to bike to work next week.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Surgery Updates

My son had his 4 wisdom teeth extracted on Monday - only one is causing him any problems and we think that is because of the stitch - but he says that it still hurts when he chews.  He and I just got back from a trip to Target and Bed, Bath & Beyond shopping for college . . . $500 later and I am wondering how the hell is he going to fit this all in his dorm room.  YIKES!!!  He moves in next weekend.

My husband is home and recuperating.  He has been going for short walks and says that things are feeling good.  He has to be careful not to bend or twist for awhile - and is bored - but will hopefully continue to get better.

No running this morning - I slept until 9:00 - which is unheard of - sleeping late for me is 7:30 - my dog, Sophie got up and wanted to go out at 5:30 - I got up and then went back to bed.  Heard my oldest son leave for work around 7:30 and just kept sleeping.  At first I was a little upset to have slept that long - but once I was up and realized that my body needed it - I was OK.

ARGGGGGG - the temperatures are heating back up - I was so hoping that things would stay cool for the Mini this weekend.  The weather report calls for showers and thunderstorms ending early Saturday morning - my guess is that temp's will be in the low to mid 70's for the race - but the humidity will be high.  Well at least we have all been running in these conditions all summer long.


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Surgeries - Son & Husband

Surgery #1:  My 18 year old son had his 4 wisdom teeth extracted yesterday.  He was miserable yesterday - but is doing much much better today.  People usually say that the 2nd or 3rd days are the worst - I am hoping that  . . .  so far - so good is the way it will be.  We took a look in his mouth at where the teeth were and to the uneducated mother - it looks great.  There is nothing red - or even pink - the gum tissue looks exactly like the rest of his mouth - hoping this is a good thing.

Surgery #2:  My husband's back surgery was this morning.  We were at the hospital at 6:00.  Actually my son came along - he really wanted to be at the hospital with his dad.  ;-)   Todd was scheduled for the 1st surgery of the morning - at 8:00.  The surgeon came up to the waiting area around 9:45 and let us know that the surgery went well and that Todd had been in recovery for about 1/2 hour.  We went to his room and waited for him to arrive and then spent most of the day with him.  We got home around 3:00 and I am exhausted.  I made dinner - rice with chicken and marinara sauce - something my son loves.  We figured he could easily eat the rice with marinara without much chewing and would try some of the small chicken pieces.  As everyone who has tried to chew without using their molars - it is tough . . . pun intended.  ;-)  My husband will be spending the evening at the hospital.  We will go pick him up tomorrow morning.  Then hopefully a couple of weeks to recuperate - and then really hoping that his back is better.

I had planned on running 6 miles this afternoon - but just couldn't . . . I am listening to my body and it says NO WAY!   If I would have come by myself - I had thought about bringing my workout gear and getting a run in early in the morning - there would have been plenty of time - but since my son was with me - I didn't want to leave him sit in the hospital by himself.  Tomorrow morning I am planning on running 8 miles and then will probably do a short 3 on Thursday - taking Friday off and running the 13 miles for the Mini on Saturday.

Here is to healing and recovery.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

I am on VACATION - Yahoo!!!

I am on vacation - as Anne at Asthma and the Gift of Runninghere says:  Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!

It feels wonderful - knowing that next week I can run in the morning and not have to rush to get ready for work.  Plus the weather is finally suppose to break - with much less humid conditions.  I can't wait.  I have a 12 mile run scheduled for tomorrow morning - the weather report calls for less humid conditions and lows around 65 tonight.  I have thought about waiting until Monday morning to run the long run - just to make sure that the humidity is gone.  I think I will play it by ear -

This coming week will not exactly be too relaxing - but it will be nice to run and bike during the day.  

On Monday, my youngest son Charlie will be getting his wisdom teeth taken out in the morning.  He has all 4 teeth - so his mouth will be sore and more than likely swollen.  :-(

Then on Tuesday morning, my husband will be having back surgery.  I haven't mentioned this earlier - but he has a bulging disk in his lower back that is causing a lot of pain and weakness in his left leg.  His back has bothered him before - but usually gets better, but he has been having issues with it since the middle of May.  Due to his back issues our summer has not been normal.  Usually we spend days and many evenings after work on our boat or jet ski's - but not this summer.  Hey, trying to look on the bright side - we have saved a lot of money because we aren't buying gas for two jet ski's and a boat and we are doing our part in lowering our carbon emissions (at least for this summer).  ;-)  He has been able to work for about 4 hours a day - but can't really sit in any chairs around the house.  So when he isn't working he is laying in bed.

Not to whine - but it has been a LONG summer. 
 I will admit - I was not built to be a caregiver.  It just isn't in my personality.  ;-)  

On Friday I am looking forward to packet pickup for the Madison Mini Marathon and then getting together with some fellow bloggers from the area that are running in the Mini.  Jamie, of Running Diva Mom, here is organizing the get together and knowing her . . . it will be wonderful.  

Saturday is the Madison Mini Marathon.  Yahoo!!!

Any prayers or positives vibes would be appreciated.  

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Preparing for the Madison Mini Marathon on Aug 21

Well with the MS 150 bike ride checked off the list of To Do's . . .  I can now concentrate on the Madison Mini Marathon on August 21.  YAHOO!!!  I had wanted to get two long runs in - but I just don't think that is going to happen.  This week's temperatures are pretty warm and humid.  It is currently 8:00 PM and the temperature is 85 with a current heat index of 90.  Hot! Hot! Hot!

MY Schedule

Monday:  I rested on Monday - my legs needed a break.

Tuesday:  This morning I only ran the short 2 mile loop with my dog.  My legs felt good.  I could have run further -
BUT I didn't get up early enough.  
So top priority on my list for the last two weeks is to 
get to bed early.  

Wednesday:  10 x 400 5-K pace.   DONE - average pace 9:51 and my last 400 was at a 7:58 pace . . . if only I could keep that up.  WOW!!!

Thursday:  5 miles     DONE

Friday:  Rest       DONE

Saturday:  3.5 miles      DONE

Sunday:  12 miles     11 miles DONE


Sunday, August 8, 2010

MS 150 bike ride

It was an awesome two days.  Riding through sun, humidity, wind, more wind, rain, more rain and finishing in the sunshine.

On Saturday I started the day at 4:00 - up, grabbed a granola bar and coffee and headed to the Alliant energy center to hop on the bus and depart at 5:30 for Pewaukee (the start of the race).

Here are a couple of photo's of team mates at the start.

There are approximately 2000 bikers and volunteers - so it was crowded at the start.  They send out the riders in approximately 200 biker waves.  It was pretty intense for the first 10 -15 miles because there were so many bikers on the road.  We saw one accident - all it took, was for someone to be following a little too close and a slight shift and . . . . crash.  

Once we hit the first rest stop the bikers spread out - but there were always people near by - chatting and offering support.  The ride is fully supported - there are rest stops every ~15 miles with food and drink, medical support and bike repair people.  There are also SAG trucks covering the course - so if you do get a flat or have bike problems . . . or simply have reached your limit - you can wave them down and get a ride to the next rest stop.  The temperatures were pretty nice on Saturday - but it was windy - 15-17 miles per hour.  I was salty when I got done.  I left Pewaukee at 7:50 and got to Whitewater . . . 75 miles later right around 3:00.  Checked into the dorm - showered and then gathered at our tent . . . ate, drank some beer, played some cards and chatted.  Headed to bed at 9:00 - back up at 5:45.

Here are the girls - right after lunch.  
This morning we got up and packed up - ate breakfast and got on the road by 7:30.  It was raining / REALLY raining!!!! And although I thought it was windy on Saturday - after experiencing the wind today - Saturday was just a little breezy.  Today the wind was up to 29 miles per hour with wind gusts of 33!!!!.  Since the ride travels East to West - you are almost always biking with the wind in your face.  Oh and did I mention it was pouring.  .  .  .  POURING and BLOWING!!!!

We stopped for lunch at 11:30 and decided that we would do the shortened route.  We did a slightly shorter route - due to the weather they actually were discouraging people from the 75 mile course - instead we did 68.  Once we got back on the road after lunch and about 10 miles - the rain stopped and the sun started to come out.  Hallelujah!!!  We cruised into Madison at 1:30.

Two days - 143 miles - overall the ride raised $1,500,000 for MS research.  Amazing.  Our team raised over $20,000.  Being diagnosed with breast cancer 6 years ago - I realize that there are a lot of diseases - cancer isn't the only thing that changes your life when you hear those awful words - You have MS.  

I am planning on doing it next year.

Now on to the Mini marathon - August 21st - 13 days away.  I need to get two more long runs in.  But I think tomorrow is a rest day.


1st 75 miles done!

Don't ever let someone tell you that 75 miles on a bike isn't a long way.  Oh my gosh!

Yesterday went ok.  The winds were around 15 and directly in our face for most of the day - so that took a lot out of you.  The bike ride goes east to west - so you have a really good chance of heading into the wind!  At points it felt like you were standing still.

Everyone you meet is very nice and offers encouragement. 

This shot is at the starting line yesterday morning.  Some of my team mates.

It looks like we might have rain today - yikes.  Hot, humid & thunderstorms.

I will see - just how my legs and bottom feel today!


Friday, August 6, 2010

MS 150 bike drop off

Well this is it!  We dropped off our bikes this afternoon.  They will be transported to Pewaukee in this semi - and waiting for us tomorrow morning.  My team the Power Peddlers decided to tail gate while we loaded our bikes.  So a couple people brought a grill and cooked hot dogs and brats.  There was also beer involved.  ;-)    

I have my bag packed and am getting ready to go to sleep.  I have to leave the house around 4:30 and it is almost 9 so i need to try to get to sleep. 

Peace - I am very excited to get riding.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

August Events

So this is a big month for me.  All of my summer training will be tested this month.  I had run the Inaugural Madison Mini Marathon last year and really liked the course and event - so I was committed to running that again on August 21.  Then I got the idea to join the team from work and train to bike in the MS 150 bike ride.  Two days of biking 75 miles each day, August 7 &  8 - two weeks before the 1/2 marathon.  The MS 150 is a fundraisier for the local MS Chapter.

Well this weekend is the MS 150 bike ride.  The weekend starts on Friday afternoon - when we take our bikes to the drop off site to get them loaded on to a semi to be transported to the start of the ride.  The team that I am on is called the MGE Power Peddlers and there are 28 members.  Because we are a top tier team, committing to raise at least $20,000 - we will have a 20 X 20 tent waiting for us in Whitewater,  the MS staff will be grilling food for all top tier teams and we will be eating in the tent instead of the cafeteria.  (I am not sure that is the best idea - burgers, brats, etc. vs.  spaghetti, salads, etc. in the cafeteria.)  As of this evening we have raised $16,900 - so we are almost at our goal.

On Saturday morning we need to be at the bus pick up site by 5:00 - which will mean getting up by 4:00.  We will then be bused from Madison to Pewaukee, which is the start of the ride.  Our bikes will be waiting for us there.  We are all allowed to bring two bags for the over night stay, a box fan counts as one of the pieces of luggage.  We will be biking from Pewaukee to Whitewater on Saturday and staying overnight in the dorms at UW- Whitewater, which are not air conditioned - so I think that a box fan might be a GREAT choice.  On Sunday - we get up and ride from Whitewater to Madison.  Knowing that the actual driving distance from Pewaukee to Whitewater is 36 miles and Whitewater to Madison is 44 miles . . . yet we will be taking the longgggggg route - which will be 75 miles both days.

I will be trying to take a few pictures and post an update on Saturday evening from Whitewater.

My other event this month happens on August 21 - two weeks after the MS 150 bike ride.  The Madison Mini-Marathon.  Since the MS 150 bike ride is this weekend - I won't be running at all (two weeks before my 1/2 marathon and I am not running !!!!!!)  I have actually had thoughts of bringing my running shoes and trying to get some kind of run in on Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning . . . but then I snapped back into the real world and decided that would be just plain stupid (for me).  So no running this weekend.  I am trying to get some good solid runs in this week - today (6 miles) - tomorrow (8 miles) and Thursday (8 miles).

Plans are in place - More to come about the bike ride . . .

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Sunday morning run - 85% humidity

I just got back from my 8.5 mile run.  It is beautiful out, clear sky, no wind - but muggy.  The temperature is only 74 . . .  gorgeous  . . . right . . .  well the humidity is 85% . . .  so it is really MUGGY.  When I got up - no kidding it was 67 and the dew point was 67, which means 100% humidity . . . the air couldn't hold any more moisture.  OK - even though I am married to a meteorologist . . . I just don't get it.  Shouldn't  rain be falling from the sky when the humidity == 100%.  Yikes!!!!

My run went pretty well - I finished at a 9:51 pace and only took a couple of little walking breaks.  I am home for a short stretch - eat a little food and then set off on my bike.  Yesterday I biked 38 miles and today I did plan to do the same route - 35 miles.  For a grand total of 73 over the two days . . . which is still 2 short of what I will do in one day next weekend.  YIKES!!!!!   :-)  This is the last weekend before the MS150 bike ride . . . so these are my last longish rides.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend.