Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Columbus Marathon Weekend

Denise's 3rd Columbus marathon is in the books! She had an awesome day with a 3:58:01 finish, giving her another sub-4-hour finish. A well-executed race by her and she had smiles all day long! It was fun to meet her at various points along the course and to see a LOT of vertical runner shirts and jerseys. I always come away from that race wishing that I was running it too. Denise's master plan is to run this race 10 years in a row and have Gina and Abby run the 10th one with her. That will be fun!!!

My running however has been very hit and miss, with more miss than hit. I am trying to keep consistent with at least 3 runs per week, but am honestly having a motivation problem.. The cooler temperatures are great and the fall colors are also a nice change, it is just the problem of getting home from work and sunset is a mere 20 minutes later... I guess I need to become "one with my headlamp" again..

Gina had her last cross-country meet last night and she finished her season with a PR. Perfect way to end her first year of cross-country. It was fun to watch her get better each week and to enjoy running more and more.

Forrest is back to his poor night sleeping and as a result, Denise and I are also not sleeping well. We are about to resort to the radio up loud and ear-plugs so we cannot hear him barking... Tell me again why we have him??? Actually he is a great dog, just high need. As a rescue dog, we expected this, but the rewards of having him as part of our family is well worth a few sleepless nights... Besides, sleep is over-rated anyways...

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Perkins/Riding Run trail and "crunchy" french fries

We took a family hike yesterday on the Perkins and Riding Run trail. in the valley. We parked at the covered bridge and enjoyed the 4 mile hike through the fall colors in the valley. The girls enjoyed the 'strange' oak tree with all of the branches sticking out every which way on the Riding run trail. They said it looked a bit like the Whumping willow from Harry Potter! It was nice to see this trail again since the last time I was here was at 2am during the Burning River 100.

After the hike we stopped at Slazys farm market for some fresh produce and then to the Winking Lizard for dinner. We were pretty hungry after being outside in the fresh air and I was biting into a steak-fry and noticed that it seemed a bit 'crunchy'. One of my right molars decided to fall apart! A nice piece had chipped off, explaining why my tooth has been a bit sensitive the past couple of weeks... So I get to make an unplanned trip to the dentist; not one of my favorite places to go.

I had a great 9 mile run yesterday before our hike and another 4 miles today. It was a perfect weather weekend and one that the whole family was able to enjoy!

Next stop: Columbus Marathon! This will be Denise's third time for this race and 7th marathon overall. We are all looking forward to putting on our Buckeye's Best!

Monday, October 6, 2008

10 miles of fanny-kickin' hills

I sent an email to JP last week and we were able to meet for a trail run saturday afternoon. I met him at Sand Run and we ran the 'infamous' Mingo trail. I have heard a lot about this loop and it was a very pleasant trail with lots of ups and downs. I have not been running hills lately, in fact, I have not been running much at all lately, and those hills kicked my fanny pretty good. We finished the Mingo and then started off on the connector trail to Cascade park, which is also a nice trail. JP was trying to explain to me how the various parks are all interconnected and how you can string them together into an all-day run if you wish. I need to see a map before it will really click for me but I am anxious to get back down in that area again.

Sunday, Denise and I ran 4 miles together and then Abby and I took an hour-long tandem ride. She is growing so fast now and her legs keep getting stronger and stronger! It almost feels like Densie back there pedaling away! After the bike ride, the combination of the exercise and fresh fall air was too much to overcome and I fell into an 'exercise-induced-coma' for an hour. Gee, that nap sure felt good!

Tomorrow morning, I'll bundle up and get out for 4 miles before work. I really like running in the coolness of the fall mornings. The air is so crisp and the sky so very clear. There are even fewer people out on the path when the temperatures start to drop and I'll probably have the trail all to myself, except for the deer...

Ah, yet another reason why I run...

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Trying to hang on...

Oh my are things crazy around here... Let me try to recap the last few days.

Saturday: Gina had a cross-country meet at Kendall Hills. Fun fun fun! I left the house at 6:15am for the drive to the valley. I ran two laps of the Salt Run trail with a loop of the cross-country trail thrown in between for a great 10 mile run. It felt great to be on the trails again. Then I met Denise and Abby and we cheered for Gina and the other Twinsburg Middle School girls as they ran what someone said was the toughest cross-country course in Ohio. Don't quote me on that - but that's what was later said! It was really great to see that incredible place jam-packed with people who enjoy running. The last time I ran through there was during BR100 around midnight and things were definitely more subdued at that time! I definitely prefer the solitude, but there was a lot of excitement and energy flowing through there on Saturday morning. Gina ran well and later remarked that it was such a fun course - she is a great storyteller and made a big funny about how during the race there was a small "thornbush" caught around her ankle so it was digging at her while she ran. She finally managed to set it loose but she was cracking up with fits of laughter as she retold the story. She also found it hilarious that the entire middle school team was later "racing" by rolling down the sledding hill as fast as they could. I am sure that in a few years this would be considered inappropriate but at her age they still found the humor in hot-dog rolling down a big hill. Oh to be 13 again.

After that I made a solo drive down to visit my family in Dayton. Denise and the girls stayed home as they had much to do and Denise has not been feeling quite well. With her 20-mile long run due this weekend, she opted to rest and ended up doing 21 miles on Monday morning.

I was able to run again on Sunday morning as my Dad rode his bike along side. I ended up with 12 miles for a whopping total of 30 miles for the week!

So I have toyed with the idea of Towpath marathon for a week or so now. Quite honestly, I am still on the fence. I am underprepared but know that I can cover the distance. Same story as last year! Part of me wants to show up just to heckle Paul a little bit by threatening to pass him. The other part of me wants to put the money and energy into something else on my incredibly long to-do list.

What would you do!!??