Foul Ball, Rain Delays and Wins!

Sunday, August 5, 2018

It was a week of baseball!

We started the week watching the Twins playing the Cleveland Indians. I exchanged some of our seats for nicer seats down by the Twins dugout to celebrate Eric's 40th Birthday. I really don't remember much from the game until the top of the 8th inning. A bullet...foul ball came our way. I had a brief second to think about what I was going to do. I thought maybe I could catch it but at the last minute realized it would probably break my hand so I throw my arm up so it wouldn't take off my head. It hit me on my elbow and upper arm. It burned like a son of gun but it wasn't too bad. Some kid got the damn ball! The guest services people were constantly by me, asking if I as ok. And then the Medics showed up an gave me an ice pack. I had to sign a form and that was about it. Eric got a picture of me after the incident.

Fast forward to Friday night, the next game in our package. It was against the Royals. Prior to the game we went for a swim in Lake Nokomis to cool down from the late summer day. My bruise from Monday night was in full color.

During the first couple of innings the scary clouds started to roll in. It was so cool to watch:

Well it didn't take long before the downpour started. Just before the rain I saw a Facebook post from one of Eric's friend's wife, Jana, that she was also there with one of their kids, Adam. We made a bee line to their section to catch them in the rain delay. We found them!  We spent the rest of the night with them.

The rain delay lasted an hour and half. The four of us went to our seats as our ticket partners went home. It was an upgrade for Jana and Adam! They played a couple more innings before rain delay #2 happened. Ugh! This one was an hour. By this time, the stadium was mostly cleared out. They actually kicked us out of the upper deck and told us to sit where we wanted to in the lower deck. Adam picked the first base line with the hope of catching a foul ball.  We didn't succeed. We did, however, get on TV:

The game resumed at midnight, way past my bedtime. We stuck it out until the top of the 8th inning. It was almost 1 am. We gave Jana and Adam a ride to their car in Bloomington since the light rail was running a very reduce schedule that late. We didn't want them waiting 30 minutes for a ride.

Our last game was this afternoon. Again it was against the Royals. Not much exciting happened at this game. haha.

The best part is the Twins won all 3 games we attended this week!!!! GO Twins!

Staring Lake Concert

Lift Bridge 10K

Sunday, July 29, 2018

I love this course. It is mostly downhill and fast. I thought last year was awesome but this you was even better! I PR'd the course by almost 2 minutes!The weather this year was perfect, cool, not humid and no rain. We have ran this race (10 miler two years ago, 10K last year) and it is always hot and humid. So this was a pleasant surprise.
There were only 162 people running this race but I never felt alone. There was always somebody around me. The first mile was pretty fast for me. The weekly speed workouts have been helping! Mile 2 was mostly down hill and I ran it like the wind. That was my first under 12 minute mile since the Halloween run last year. Woo hoo!

Mile 3 was a struggle but I just thought to myself I need to keep it under 13 minutes and I did, barely. I think the faster than normal mile 2 is the reason for the struggle. After that mile, I settled down and just got into a flow of running. I did .08 running, .02 walking. I used this interval for most of Grandma's Marathon. As a result the last 3 miles were very consistent with negative splits. The worst part of this race is the last 2 miles on Hwy 95. Cars don't slow down and you are running on the shoulder with traffic which bugs me. But only one dead animal this year and he was past the smelly phase. haha. 

Normandale Concert

Melissa's Bridal Shower

Blake's First Swim

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Danielle and Blake met us at Flandrau State Park to go swimming. He wasn't too sure about this at first but later he really enjoyed it.

Grandma’s Marathon Race Report

Monday, June 18, 2018

We took the 6:00 am shuttle bus up to the start in Two Harbors. The ride seemed to take forever and I was a bundle of nerves. Eventually we got to the drop off point at the start in Two Harbors and the first thought I had was, “crap, I have to run back to Duluth, that is a long way!” Well duh, I had been sort of training for this so that should not have been a surprise to me but for some reason it was.

We had about 45 minutes to wait for the start. It was very foggy and cloudy the entire drive but all of the sudden the sun came out and my thought was crap, it will get hot. So we headed to the medical tent for some sunscreen. Like usual, I failed to get in the bathroom line with enough time to use it before the start. I had a similar problem with the half marathon two years ago.  Some year I will run a race at Grandma’s and actually start at the right time.

The Start
After a quick bathroom stop we headed to the start. They were playing The Emperor's Theme from Star Wars. Seriously. It is like a death march ugh! But I was off. I tried to make sure not to go out to fast. The sun disappeared…thank God and the fog rolled in. For the longest time I couldn’t see more than 100 feet ahead of me. The nice thing is it was cool. That helped a lot. I was very happy and surprised with my first 11 miles. I kept them all under 14 minutes which is huge for me. And they were all fairly consistent. I think I finally felt a runner’s high during mile 10! But it was short lived. Around mile 12 it started to pour and I thought oh no, blisters! It was not fun but thankfully it was only a couple minutes and my feet didn’t seem to get too wet, the rest of me was soaked. It also made me chilly…but I’d rather be chilly than hot!

Half and beyond
Coming up to mile 13, I was very impressed with my time. I managed to have my fastest half marathon without running with Eric. It was also my first sub 3 half in almost 3 years. I was thrilled. I wasn’t sure what to expect after the half way mark as my training on maxed out at 13 miles. I was pleasantly surprised that my miles were not getting that much slower. I creeped in to the 14 minute mile mark but considering that most of my half marathons end with 15+ minutes miles, this was amazing. I managed to keep my miles under 15-minute pace through 16 miles. Woo hoo!!

During miles 17-19 things were starting to fall apart. I was still trying to run as much as I could. These miles ended up in the 16-minute pace which to me was ok. But I knew I had to keep going at this pace to make my goal of 6:40 marathon. 

Mile 20 was tough, during the middle of it I was texting my niece, Danielle, asking her to do math for me because my marathon brain couldn’t think. I’m very grateful for her doing this for me. She told me what pace I had to maintain for the last 6 miles to match my goal time and also the course cut off time. I was happy when she said that I could walk 20 minute miles and still beat the course cut off. Haha!

Mile 21.5
So I bounced back from mile 20 with a good mile 21…I had a 16 minute pace again. I decided to walk for a bit longer and eat my granola bar. After about a half a mile I wanted to start running again. My upper body was onboard but my legs and feet didn’t get the message. Most people “hit the wall” while running the marathon. I didn’t hit a wall, I hit the ground. I can laugh now but at the time it hurt and I seriously thought my day was done. It was a hard landing on the ground. My hands, elbow, shoulder, knee and head all hit hard, not at the same time. I could have done without my head hitting the ground. I was a bit dizzy for a second but I pulled myself up, somehow, and pressed on. I’m not sure how many people saw me. I know the guy behind me did. I wiped off my hands and elbow with the sponge I was carrying. And I started to cry. Stupid emotions, this is not the time or place! So the guy behind me caught up and asked if I was alright. I said yes through the tears and continued my walk. I’m pretty sure I cried the rest of the way to the 22 mile marker. Even with the fall, I still had an 18 minute mile. I had just over 4 miles left and I was done running. It was a 4 mile death march to the finish.

After the mile 22 marker, God sent me a guardian angel. Her name is Courtney and she is the reason I made my goal. She was also done running for the day but wanted a walking partner. When I walk by myself, I’m slow, but when I get with somebody who walks fast, I will walk fast.  She had us going at a 16 minute mile pace. That is a fast walk for me but I felt great the whole time. I really didn’t have much pain the last 3 miles. I was feeling awesome. As we got closer and closer to Duluth, I kept an eye on my time and I was trying to do math in my head. We hit mile 23 at 5:40:31. That meant that I had hour to go 3.2 miles. I could easily do that. I finally relaxed and enjoyed the brisk walk to the finish line. 

Final time:   6:34:55

I did it! I ran a marathon without Eric’s help. I crush my goal time of 6:40:00 and I had a monster PR. I finished 31 minutes faster than the Little Rock Race. Overall, I’m very happy with my results.

Abbie's Pinning Ceremony

Albert's Graduation

Noah's Graduation