Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Well, after trying over and over and over again to get everyone going again so I no longer have to run by myself, I think I have successfully convinced the ladies to train for the 09 SLC Marathon with me. We officially started training this week, and the first group run is Saturday. I hope everyone keeps it up! I get lonely out there by myself!
And, welcome to Ang from Marathon Mommies who is now a member of WRFDJ! She recently moved to Utah and is going to join us in training for the upcoming race.
So, here's to a fresh start! Gooooooooooo team!
P.S. Husband and I did complete the Snow Canyon Half Marathon in November. Race report to come soon.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Man, did I need a girl's night out.
We met at Thaifoon downtown, and had an absolute blast. It was so fun seeing the girls again- especially pregnant Kristie. I can't believe we are only 2 weeks apart! We ordered family style, which was great, since I didn't have any money, and sat and talked for hours. We walked around Gateway mall, and then went for hot chocolates at Barnes and Noble. We then continued to disturb everyone with our "girl" talk until they closed. It was awesome. I'm going to be outnumbered at home for next the few years, and it's easy to forget how essential good girl friends are.
I love you guys!
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
And, PS, I had a dream last night that it took me 7 hours and 52 minutes to complete the SLC Marathon next year. I was working out of town and had been drifting in and out of sleep-- I never sleep well in hotels.
In dreamland, by the time I reached the finish line, there wasn't a big crowd to cheer me on, just a few disgruntled volunteers who said "Geesh, it took you long enough. We've been waiting to clean up while we waited FOREVER for the last runner!"
I woke up in a panicked sweat at 2:30am in my lonely hotel room, with no husband there to say "it was just a dream. You're much faster than that, honey."
Please, tell me this isn't a sign of things to come next year.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
I love running at night. It's always so quiet, peaceful, with the moon shining down and the stillness of the darness. But, I shall not be running at night for quite a while, at least not in deserted parks after my run last night.
Husband and I both had things going on all day and finally decided to go out for our run around 9:30pm. We are at different paces (as I have mentioned before, husband runs at a completely unfair speedy pace he doesn't deserve) so we thought Sugarhouse Park was a pretty safe bet. It's a big loop, so we could run at our own paces, but still run together.
We drove to the park, parked on one side, and started off. I was keeping up with him for almost two laps, then I started getting a side ache and stopped for a minute. When I picked back up, I started noticing dark figures in the grass, people who for reasons I don't wish to know, like lurking in the blackness, a handful of drivers sitting in their cars with the windows rolled down, smoking cigarettes and staring. My mind immediately went to a story my station did recently on Cruising in local parks, including Sugarhouse. If you don't know what that is, ignorance is bliss.
Just as I ran through a narrow part of the path, lined with cars, the street lights went black, leaving me completely vulerable surrounded by creepy strangers and I started to panic. I heard a voice in my head say run-- fast! It's not safe for you here! I searched frantically, and couldn't see husband. I started to sprint. I sprinted up that massive hill, down the other side, and all the way to the car and still couldn't see husband anywhere. I waited by the car for several minutes, debating my next move. I still had one more mile to go, but didn't dare go back to the complete darkness. I started to sprint again, back the other direction, thinking surely I would run into him soon. My heart was pounding, and not from running so hard. I ran back up another huge hill, and finally found him. I grabbed him, with tears streaming down my face. I was worried something had happened to him because it was taking him so long!
So, lesson learned. No more running in dark in deserted areas.
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Anywho, I've decided I'm going to start blogging again, whether the other girls are or not.
Got some new running shoes and have a really fun run planned for this weekend, our anniversary:) Blog post to come.
How the heck are all of you? If you're even still checking this blog?
Friday, July 4, 2008
Runners are so gross.
Monday, June 23, 2008
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
I promise I will make it whenever I can. But warning: I will be walking 90% of the time. I am sincerely hoping I am not the only one who will be doing so. I am NOT in shape and my cardio is at an all time LOW!
Anyway, I'm hoping to see you gals soon! And Jen . . .I need help shopping for running gear! I don't know what the crap I'm doing! "Newbie" at this running thing, remember?!
Monday, June 9, 2008
Saturday, June 7, 2008
Here's the non-roll call as of this morning when I got the last cancellation via text from Kera.
Kristi: still too hurt from the accident, bless her heart, to run
Kera: Here is the text I got at 8:24 (meeting time 8:30) verbatim: Hey im so sorry i dont have contacts to run in and mac isn't home from work yet to take owen.
Kimmie: teaching a swimming lesson
Tara: as told from Melissa, she was sleeping and has decided her Saturdays are too busy to run right now.
Angie: funeral and baptism this morning.
Christina: out of town for a work conference in Miami.
That left just three and the aforementioned bikers. Apparently the Salt Lake Cycling club decided they could close down Sugarhouse Park this morning and make our run more treacherous by zooming past us every few minutes during a race. Lame.
I have also been sooooooooooo crazy busy with life and work as of late that I haven't been the best about running on my own this past week. And, Wasatch Back is creeping ever so near, and I'm getting a bit, okay a lot freaked out.
So, bottom line, we missed you guys, and I need you back in my life, so stop being so busy/injured/tired/everything else already!
I've tried to fill the you-shaped holes with treats the past two weeks, and they just can't fill the void. Only you ladies will do.
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Saturday, May 31, 2008
I sent out the location and time email earlier this week like I usually do, and didn't hear back from anyone saying they weren't coming, so I assumed we'd be a full house. I had forgotten that Melissa had a garage sale, so she wouldn't be there, but everyone else, or so I thought, would be their usual wonderful selves at Liberty Park at 9am.
9am came and went, but I still wasn't worried. We are always late. Always. Someone is always running behind, okay usually almost everyone, so we always get a bit of a late start. Then, around 9:20, I started sending out text messages and making phone calls. Slowly, I started hearing back.... and, it ended up just being Steph and I, which is such a shame because the weather was perfect, it was a beautiful morning, and the park was irresistable.
I felt horrible, because Steph is so new that we are at dramatically different paces and I left her in the dust. So really, we both ran alone in the same park. Me and my thoughts, and the new Coldplay song. Loving it, btw. Great song to run to. Download it pronto.
Hope you'll all be back next week. Please feel free to post your excuses in the comments section.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Sunday, May 25, 2008
There's something wonderous about starting fresh... with a new goal, new group members, new running gear, and new hope. We here at WRFDJ started anew on Saturday, and I am already filled with a sense of anxious anticipation for the many miles that lie ahead... for this time I am an experienced marathoner, and know what to expect. But, we have some newbies in our group, and for them this will be a new journey.
Our group, though incomplete on Saturday (we missed you Kristi, Kimmie, Tara, and Angie!), is already starting to meld. Steph is a welcome ray of sunshine, and Mel and Kera, I'm so excited to be on this road with you once again.
Our new race goals: Top of Utah in September, and the Provo River Half in August. And, I have apparently lost my mind because I kind of agreed to run the Wasatch Back with my next door neighbor's team. They lost a member recently and even though the race is less than a month away, I said I'd be the fill-in. It's a relay race from Logan to Park City, over two days. Yes, you read correctly. I know, crazy.
So, here's to newness-- new experiences, new blisters and sore muscles I'm sure to feel for the first time, and new aspirations!
Saturday, May 24, 2008
To Designer Jeans!!!!
Monday, May 12, 2008
Miss you all girls and please let's plan another lunch or something.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Well, this morning I ran race for the cure. Yes, toenails weren't participating, and bothered me the entire time. And so I had a dilemna... do I yank it off? Do I leave it alone and let it continue to look disgusting and cause me pain? I tried my best to just leave it be and let nature take its course, but it's been nagging me all day, while I've been at work.
And so, tonight, just a few minutes ago....
I pulled it off. I don't know if you can tell there's just pink skin left there now... no nail. It didn't hurt, it just gave me sort of a shock to see the gaping hole on my second biggest little piggy, like an empty eye socket just waiting for a glass replacement. Sadly, I don't think they make glass toenails, and so I am hopeful a fresh new nail will soon grow in it's place.
And do I keep the now detached nail, sort of like a missing tooth? If I put it under my pillow tonight will the running fairy come and leave me money?.... or acceptance to the St. George Marathon? (wishful thinking:)
So, calling all toe-nail-less ones who have limped the path less travelled before me. My question is, so uh, what now? I don't know how to get my cute pedicured toe-nail-ful feet back. Assistance needed in the repulsive isle. Yeah, I'm gross. Awesome.
Friday, May 9, 2008
So, looking ahead already... ideas for other marathons in the fall? Maybe Top of Utah?
I'm going to sulk for the rest of the night with a cookie-dough shake from Sconecutter. So there, St. George.
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
Take a look at our selections.... and btw, the dressing room attendant wanted to punch us in the face with every picture taken because it was a busy night at the Nordstrom Rack. But, come on, how could we NOT document such a momentous occasion?
I love love love these ladies, and can't wait for our next training schedule to begin. Until then, I will strut my stuff in my new jeans and feel so great about what we accomplished, and the friendships gained.
Even if I don't make it all the way to the marathon I'm hoping this will lead to a healthier life. I needed to make this commitment to give me a push into the right direction. (Thanks Jen for being the "Push")
I had no idea that by agreeing to register yesterday on the phone to Jen that I would get on the blog this morning and find my picture and profile as the newbie of WRFDJ. I guess there's no turning back now! Toenails, . . . I send my apologies now.
Monday, May 5, 2008
Sunday, May 4, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
It may seem like a weird thing to become addicted to, but for someone who doesn't drink., doesn't smoke, has never tried drugs, and for pete's sake, doesn't even drink carbonation (except for the occasional root beer or red cream soda, I can thank my father for that addiction), running gives me a high that my body and mind crave. It truly is a form of meditation for me.
Like a true addict, I already know that although it has only been a week or so since the marathon, I am hooked. I need another race plan to get me going again. I have not quite decided what race will be next.... if I'm up for another marathon this year (say, St. George?) or if I should do a half....
Thoughts? Input? And, I'm tossing the invitation open to you.... if you want to join me on my next running quest for designer jeans, let me know! We usually do our long runs on Saturday mornings.
Here's to another amazing race! Can't wait to get training again.... yep, I'm an addict. But at least I'm not in denial.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
So hooray for me! I guess I got exactly what I wanted- a baby for after the marathon. How cute.
Anyway, the race was good. It was so fun to go to the Marathon Mommy party the night before. What amazing women you all are!!!
The morning of I got dropped off by Mac, and got to stretch and listen to Mama's (really bad) Fake Temple Choir. Some guy even recognized me from the news.
I started off with Jen, but lost her within the first mile. But I enjoyed the run by myself and got to see Mac and Owen, Kristie and Kimmie at Sugarhouse. I was chaffing in between my legs (what the freak) and my knees were already killing me, but they were so cute to encourage and support me.
I rubbed some Butt Paste on (thank goodness for diaper bags) and kept going. I saw more family at 2300 east and 4500 south. My knees were really slowing me down, but I still kept going. Then on 6200 South I saw Mac and my family again, and I had to stop from the pain. These two older women were running behind me and stopped to ask if i was ok. Mac got me some MyoMed and they asked if they could have some too. My father-in-law gave me an Ibuprofen and they wanted one too. We finally had to tell them that my family weren't volunteers, and they were so embarrassed. It was funny. They were so nice though and told me they'd be watching out for me.
I kept going and got to see cute Kristie at VanWinkle. I passed the Brazilian band and thought that was pretty dope. My knees started feeling better, but I suddenly was surprised at how tired my quads were. I kept going despite wind, and dust and sweat and pain. When I got to mile 24 I was so tired that I was fighting back tears. I kept passing and then falling behind the same group of cute people. We were in this vicious cycle of passing and then having to stop.
A woman ran by me and asked if we could run each other in. She told me that she was on track for Boston, but got turned around where the 1/2 and full split and went 5 miles off course. She was a veteran and was so nice to encourage me the last bit.
It was amazing to run through the finish line and see the people that support and love me the most. Thank you to everyone who made this day possible for me. (and i guess little embryo).
I also finally started a family blog so check it out if you are cool.
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Click here to register.
Monday, April 21, 2008
Sunday, April 20, 2008
The week before the race: I was taking it easy. I have been nursing a few injuries and didn't want to worsen anything before the race. I was eating a lot of pasta, and planning my day meticulously. I laid out everything, making sure it was all in place. I even went tanning so I would be sure not to blind the other runners-- you know, because I wouldn't want someone to blame a bad time on me because the glare was blocking their view to the finish line. I felt prepared, and confident.
All of that confidence went out the window the day before the race. I kept getting flits of butterflies and couldn't believe I was ready for the journey that was ahead. Seriously? I could run 26.2 miles, by myself? It was so hard for me to believe.
The night before, I went to the Marathon Mommies Pasta Party, and oh, how great it was to finally meet the sweet faces of wisdom and encouragement who leave little "you can do it" posts on our page. I feel like I already know all of you! Thank you for your kindness, it means so much to us here at WRFDJ!
That night I went to sleep, after checking my alarm clock, garmen charger, ipod charger, and cell phone charger approximately 5,000 times, filled with excitement, nerves, and anticipation. And so, here is my marathon day report:
2:02am: "Oh no!!!!!" I thought. "My alarm didn't go off! Didn't I check it?!?! I am going to be late!" I blindiy grabbed in the darkness for my clock, and through my squinted eyes could see it was still too early for me to get up. I checked the alarm, yet again, and tried to go back to sleep.
3:34am: Pretty much a repeat of the 2:02am experience, only with a little "if I keep waking up, I'm not going to be able to keep my energy up tomorrow!" panic thrown in.
4:37am: "Okay, it has got to be time to wake up now!" I thought, and it was pretty close, so I just turned off the alarm I had so carefully checked repeatedly. Didn't even need it. My body and mind were already alert to the fact it was race day. "Here I go," I thought.
I put on my carefully selected running clothes (my WRFDJ shirt, gray and blue running shorts, socks, and shoes) and put my hair in a pony. I braided my bangs so they would be sure not to distract me during my run. I knew I would have plenty of other distractions. I then checked my bag. Garmen, check. Powergel, check. Phone, check. Utility belt, check. Ibuprophen, check. Ipod, check. I was ready.
I made myself my usual runner's breakfast of wheat toast with peanut butter and bananas, and headed out the door. I turned onto Van Winkle and saw police officers in place, preparing to block the road, and a huge smile spread across my face. I would be running along this road in a few short hours, and these officers would be there to guide my way. I rolled down my window and shouted "I'm running the marathon today!!!!" The officer threw me a thumbs up, the first of thousands of thumbs that would be thrown up in my direction, and I am so grateful for every single one.
5:50am: I pulled into Gateway and parked my car. I went to meet Melissa and Tara for our ride on the train to the starting line. They looked so adorable and cheerful! We crammed onto the overcrowded car and started to chat with people around us. It was all abuzz with runners-- some chatting nervously, others praying, some sleeping like the man wearing a fake mustache. Some people think running a marathon is not enough, they have to throw in some sort of gimmick or distinguishment. I will share a story of one such man coming up, and this man I'm convinced is insane.
6:45am: We arrived at the starting line. A rush of excitement filled me as I heard the gospel choir, saw the mile long port-a-pottie lines, and the thousands of other runners just like me, and suddenly I was in awe. How could it be there were so many people who had been through the sacrifice, pain, and dedication that I had all to bring them to this very moment where they were so close to accomplishing a life-long goal? I was so humbled by the human spirit. We are so strong and driven!
6:59am: I heard Sky2, our station's helicopter, fly overhead and knew we were close. Suddenly the countdown began, and everyone was yelling, and then BOOM, the crackle of the gunshot, and we were moving. Kera and I started out together, running down toward Foothill, and around the corner, as Tara and Melissa fell behind. We were smiling, and so happy to be in this together! It was just as we were curving onto Foothill I first noticed the aforementioned crazy man with the gimmick to top all gimmicks: he was running barefoot. And he had a full marathon bib on. The man was going to run all 26.2, on asphalt, with no freaking shoes on. WHAT?!?!?! Kera and I shook our heads in disbelief.
I was trying very hard to pace myself, to go slow and resist the urge to keep up with the speedie-gonzales' as I call them. I had a long way to go, and I wanted to do everything I could to avoid "hitting the wall" somewhere along my course. And when I rounded the corner to 21st south and started going downhill, I was feeling and doing great!
Sugarhouse Park was in my sight, and I was so excited-- Kristi would be there waiting for me. I then ran into Jared, my friend from KUTV who had done some of his training with WRFDJ, and he was a welcomed running buddie! As we ran toward the park, I saw my sweet girl, Kristi, with a giant pink poster, screaming my name and jumping up and down. Next to her, was Kimmie, who I was so surprised to see, and I suddening started to well up with tears. These two girls had put in just as much time and dedication to this goal as I had, and because of injuries weren't able to run. But, as hard as it was for them, they had come to cheer me and the rest of our group on, and I was suddenly even more grateful for their friendship.
After a few quick hugs, I was off again, running through the park, and that's when I ran into a Marathon Mommy-- Annie Bananie! She was doing so great! We chatted for a minute and then she left me in the dust. I love those ladies! Way to go!
On the way out of the park, Kristi and Kimmie cheered me on again, and gave me a boost that would carry me until I saw them again.
Jared and I headed up 23rd east, and watched the lucky half marathoners head in the other direction. And then, slowly, he started to inch ahead of me. And I knew, I was once again on my own. I stopped my music for a moment, and was suddenly consumed by what I heard around me: the sounds of feet hitting the pavement, cowbells from patrons, claps and cheers from complete strangers-- and they were cheering for me! I pulled off my headphones, and everyone I passed was looking directly at me, saying "You are awesome! Way to go! You're doing great! I'm so proud of you! You can DO IT!" I am tearing up as I am typing, because I was so overwhelmed by their kindness and encouragement. They don't know me from Eve, but there they were, all over the course, cheering me on as if I were their sister/daughter/mother/friend.
I started to notice the signs, posted all over and carried by fans. There was a giant sign posted on a garage that read "Spandex is Happiness," one someone held that said "Go (insert your name here)!" And, one that said "You can and you WILL!" There was a mariachi band, a family who had set up a table with treats for runners, and a boom box with YMCA blaring for all of us to dance along to. I will never forget these kind souls who were there along the course where my family and friends weren't, for they really were happy for me, and I thanked each one of them I could as I passed.
I was on Keller Ave when a nice man ran up from behind me and said "You're at the front of the pack, aren't you?" "Huh?" was my response. "You have other friends with the same T-shirt on, and they all said you were up here so I've been looking for you, and here you are! Way to go!" So sweet. I also had a girl say "Are you Jen?!?!? I read your blog all the time! I love you guys!" What a nice surprise from a reader-- whose name is also Jen. Thanks for reading and for the support!
It was on 23rd east when I first noticed what would turn into the biggest problem of my day-- the wind. It picked up around mile 8, and I mean it picked up. The headwind was against us, and I felt as though I were running through water. I tried to fight through it, and just when I thought I was gaining some ground, a dust devil came swirling past me, blowing dirt into my eyes. I turned my head, and saw an older gentleman to my right, breaking down and starting to walk. He said "F*^$ing wind! It's ruining my race!!" And, that's when I realized this was a huge problem.
The wind was against me for nearly half the race, and I exuded so much energy pushing against it, I knew it was going to affect me in the end. But despite the wind, as I hit the half way mark, I was right on target to meet my goal time: I crossed 13.1 at 2 hours 4 minutes. I was so excited! And then, around mile 16 or so, I felt something most unexpected... a sharp digging pain in my foot, and knew I was in trouble.
You know those black toenails I have? Well it seems three of them decided to make their long awaited departure during the race. But rather than coming all the way off, they just lifted, and were hanging by a thread, and pushing back into my toes, causing a jabbing pain. I could feel the blood seeping through my socks, and a couple of miles later, two nails on my other foot were feeling left out and joined the going away party. I ran the rest of the race this way.
On Van Winkle, several things lifted my spirits. The row of kids with outstretched arms wanting to give me a high five. The two guys who ran up along side me and said "You sound like you're ready to play marbles!" It was my little tube of Ibuprophen in my utility belt jingling. I hadn't noticed it making all that noise! The Latin band complete with dancers and a drummer. And, another appearance from my Kristi, who ran along side me, and gave me another boost of encouragement. I love this girl.
As I reached 45th south, I knew it was just a couple of blocks to 5th East and I would have another moral boost. That's where my family would be waiting. I could see the corner in the distance, and saw my dad chasing my nephew, Noah. I suddenly started to run a little faster. I turned the corner, and there they were-- my own little cheering section. I yelled for them, and then I heard my aunt say "There's our Jen!" Then my nephews and cousins sprung into action, running toward me, giving me hugs and hi-fives, and chanting "Go Jen! Go Jen! Go Jen!" My little Noah didn't want to let go of my hand as I blew a kiss goodbye. They ran along side me and chanted their cheer as I headed toward Fitts Park, and my eyes full of tears again. I loved my little cheerleaders. I later learned they had been practicing for my arrival.
I passed the park, and was a bit behind schedule but still in pretty good shape. 5th East seemed to go forever. Just before Liberty Park, I could see the pink sign again and knew it was Kristi. She had travelled to yet another location to cheer me on. She said "Jen, you're so close! You're almost there! I wish I was running with you!" And, I wished for that too. It's so hard to do it by yourself. Jon and Phil were there too. They all gave me hugs, wished me luck and said they would see me at the finish line. And, I raced onto Liberty Park. And that's where I hit the wall.
I've never hit the wall before. In all my days of training, I've never had a moment where I thought I couldn't go on, but with 3 miles left, my body started to shut down. My hamstrings started to cramp and lock, my stomach felt as though a giant was grabbing and twising it like a wash cloth, and my feet-- oh, I could see the dark blood under my shoes. I could see the time starting to slip away. I looked around, and saw other running roadkill-- people who like me, didn't know what had hit them and that's when something hit me, and this time it wasn't a wall, it was my vision-- with me and Kristi running together, and suddenly I didn't feel like I was alone at all. I imagined her saying "Jen, we can do this-- we're almost there," and I felt like she was with me. I mustered up everything I had and started to run again.
Those last three miles were truly some of the most trying moments of my life. I wanted to burst into tears, and I had to run and walk off and on for the rest of the race, but I wasn't giving up. I had come too far.
I could see Gateway before me, and I started to cramp, and it was then when an angel appeared. I thought maybe I was hallucinating, but a man, who looked like he could have run a thousand marathons came running toward me. He had already completed the race and was coming to cheer me on. He grabbed my hand and with a huge smile said "What's your name?" "Jen," I breathlessly said. "Is this your first marathon?" he asked. "Yes, it is," I said. And then he did something I will never forget. He put his arm around me in my darkest moment, said "That is amazing! I am so proud of you! You are almost there, and you CAN do this! " He guided me around the corner and said, "two more blocks-- run for it!" And so, I did.
I ran down the center of Gateway saying out loud "two more blocks, two more blocks!" I turned to the runners next to me and yelled "We're almost there! Way to go!" As soon as I came into view, my friends and family started screaming for me, and I threw my hands up in victory! I gave them high-fives, and started to sprint toward the finish line. In my head I could hear Kristi saying, "finish strong,' and so I ran for my life. And, I crossed the finish line.
Immediately I was supported by a sweet girl who asked, "are you okay?" I wasn't. I felt as though I might pass out. She said "oh dear, keep walking, are you going to barf?" It was possible, and so she walked me over to get my medal, and then held me up until I was okay to stand. She too was genuinely happy for me, and gave me a hug.
I am proud to say I finished before the man wearing no shoes, but I did not have the time I had visualized of 4 hours. It's okay though, I am proud I was able to push through my pain, and complete this goal. And Kristi, just tell me when and where, and we will run a marathon together. My vision won't change. This is something we have to do together someday.
And to all of you wonderful patrons who cheered me on as if I were family, all the volunteers who, God bless you, gave me water and gatorade, and to my own family and friends, who flooded with me text messages, emails, phone calls, and race day support, you will never know how much your love and kindness means to me. I am truly amazed by how powerful something like running a marathon can be. Thank you.
Today, I feel as though I've been in the ring with a sumo wrestler, and I can't wear anything but flip flops, but I am a new woman. I am a marathoner.