Joslyn Castle Turkey Trot 5K

Friday, November 29, 2013

Thursday morning came very early and we layered on clothing for our Turkey Trot 5K.  It was 25 degrees outside but the wind was around 13 mph so it felt much colder.  We froze!  So the race started and it was running up a hill…seriously!  It was not a nice hill either.  Then we turned the corner to find yet another hill. I think the first half mile or so of the run was up a hill. I was so mad that I couldn’t run and ended up walking. I was really pissed.  I had been doing so well training but hills were not part of my training.  So DJ and hung out together, walk some, running some.  We did a lot more running the rest of the way.  I flew down a hill; DJ said she couldn’t keep up with me.  That was fun!  The whole time I was thinking don’t fall, don’t fall, don’t’ fall. My watch couldn’t connect to the GPS for the first .2 miles so according to my watch we did 2.9 miles in 39 minutes…a 13:30 pace.  But the actually finish time was 43:15 which is actually 13:57 pace.  Not bad considering we did some walking, especially in the beginning!    The rest of the times were Juliette at 23 minutes…she almost got the last trophy.  Some woman ran past her and Juliette just let her pass…if she would have known she would get a golden turkey she would have run faster!  Abbie did hers in like 32 minutes and swore she would never run that far again. LOL!  Eric of course was in at 34 minutes…no training of course! ARGH! After the run we made a well-deserved stop at Starbucks for breakfast sandwiches and hot chocolate.  Yum! Delicious!

Here are some pre-race was too cold to get action shots!

Another Rest Week

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Well it has been a rest week for me.  Not really by choice but with the Branson trip, I really didn't have much time to work out.  I did 3.1 miles on Sunday by Mike's house.  Again very hilly but I did much better than the last time I ran there.  Monday I was on a bus all day.  We didn't get to our hotel until after dark. I did manage to swim 30 minutes of laps in the small pool.  It was a bit difficult as every time I came up for a breathe I got a mouthful of smoke.  It was horrible. I can't believe they can smoke inside in Missouri...they are so backwards!  Tuesday was an early morning wake up call and more driving and then we had shopping, show, dinner, show.  We didn't get back to the hotel until almost 11pm and the pool was closed. Wednesday I went for a short run. It was about 2.5 miles of hills! It was a slow run but I think I got a good workout.  Thursday was another all day bus day and Friday I was just being lazy.  My long run yesterday was only 2.15 miles.  But I went outside in 8 degrees and ran!  I can't believe I did that!  I dressed warm and it felt pretty good.  The only reason I only went 2 miles was because we had to go to Evelyn's birthday party.   

Pounds lost: 19! (still at 19 even though I gained 4 pounds in 3 days...too many buffets!)
Week 10:  Swim = .5 miles;  Bike = 0 miles;  Run = 7.75 miles;   Total =  8.25 miles

That isn’t a violin, it’s a fiddle

Saturday, November 23, 2013

I know I already did a review of Branson but there are some stories I just have to share.  Here is the first one. During intermission at the Down Home Country Show, Mom told the guy behind us something along the lines that they play the violin well.  He corrected her and said that isn’t a violin, it is a fiddle.  When she told me this, I cracked up because technically she was right…but she was in the wrong town.  Here is a little lesson on the fiddle/violin.

If you are in Branson, never, EVER tell a musician that they are a good violin player. You will probably end up with a concussion and have a bump on your head after they smash their beer bottle over your head and tie you up with rope, rodeo style. Just don't do it!  They are fiddle players.

On the other hand, never tell a musician playing for the Boston Pops that they are an awesome fiddle player because you may still have bump on your head from their $1,000 bottle of wine and you will be tied up by their tuxedo tails. They are violinists and have over $100,000 in student loan debt from 8+ years of music school so they can be one of the elite players in the country.

The exact same instrument may be played as a violin or fiddle, it is almost completely an issue of style and intent. As a disclaimer so I don’t have somebody tell me I’m wrong… sometimes there can be differences in the bridge.

Christmas in Branson

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Well I’m sitting at the Petro Pete’s truck stop in Albert Lea waiting for Eric to pick me up.  My tour group has left me.  I was sad to see the bus pull out of the parking lot. :(  Hopefully Eric will be here soon but until then I want to reflect on Branson (surrounded by gruff truck drivers).

I had a lot more fun on the trip than I thought.  We had a good group of people.  The trip started early Monday morning.  We had a long ride to Clinton, MO.  We stopped in Albert Lea for our first coffee break.  Mom and I shared a cinnamon roll. Exciting right?  Anyways the next stop was in Des Moines at some buffet place. It was pretty awful food.  The root beer was good and buns.  That is one thing about buffets it seems like they do dinner rolls right.  That was about it.  After another couple hours we stopped at a rest area and the final stop was in Clinton.  This put us about 2 hours from Branson.  The hotel was nice, the pool was warm but they let people smoke in the pool area.  Really?  What is this the 1970s?  Who smokes inside anymore?  I guess in Missouri they do.  Yuck! I swam about 70 laps in their tiny pool.   Mom and I went to Applebee’s for dinner.  It was either that or Arby’s. 

Tuesday morning we made the last stretch of the drive to Branson.  Our first event was shopping in Old Branson which was basically an indoor flea market. Not really my cup of tea.  We walked down to Branson Landing which is a more modern shopping area.  I really liked that.  I bought a nice scarf for $5 and mom got a really nice sweater.  We were running out of time for lunch so we just popped into Subway.  It took 20 minutes for me to get our subs.  I was first in line but there was only one person working and she helped 6 people before she checked us out.  So my toasted sub was cold when I finally got it.  Mom and I rushed through our subs and hopped on a trolley back to the bus.  It was a bit frantic!

After a stop at the hotel to freshen up we hopped back on the bus to our first show, Pierce Arrow.  It was a good show but I really can’t remember much about it.  I mean come on, I saw 4 more shows since that one.  Mom really liked that show.  We went to the Grand Buffet for dinner.  Again it is a buffet and I’m not a huge fan but it was way better than the first buffet we went to.  The dinner rolls were delicious!  The rest of the food was ok, I was desperate for something sweet so I had ice cream. If you know me, that is crazy because I don’t like ice cream! We convinced the bus driver that we need to drive through the Christmas lights display. It was nice.  They had the 12 days of Christmas illustrated so that was cool.  That night we saw the Andy Williams Christmas Show staring the Lennon Sisters and the Osmonds.  They were good.  It wasn’t Donny and Marie though…it was their siblings.  It was a late night as we didn’t get back to the hotel until almost 11pm.

Wednesday morning I went for a run in the Ozark Mountains.  I did about 2.5 miles.  The first mile was mostly downhill so it was fast. The last 1.5 mile was mostly up hill and it took me 3 minutes longer to run the second mile!  I was thinking it has to be elevation.  Now the bus driver informed me that the elevation was only about 1000 ft.  Way to bust my bubble. I thought I was struggling because of altitude.  But I guess it was just my attitude.  Darn.  Wednesday was a busy day. We had 3 shows and 2 buffets.  The first show was Down Home Country at 10am.  I thought it was pretty good. I like old country music.  After the show we went to the first buffet of the day. I liked this one the best but it was a pizza/salad buffet. It really takes a lot to screw up pizza.  I thought it was good.  Our next show was the one that Mom was looking forward, her heartthrob…Daniel O’Donnell.  It was a long show, almost 3 hours.  It was also packed. There were 27 coach buses there!  Crazy!  I liked this show too.  Our last buffet of the day was at the same place as the night before.  We were fortunate to sit next to the bus driver. He was really interesting.  He was probably around my age and we had a good time taking about sports, running and Australia and New Zealand.  He spends 4 months a year driving bus and giving tours over there and he was leaving in January.   The finale show was the Grand Jubilee.  I really wouldn’t say it was a great finale but it was ok.  The thing is I was really annoyed with the female singer. She reminded me of some toothless chick from West Virginia. She butchered every song she sang. How can you screw up “Go Tell it on the Mountain”?  The best part is when they dragged on of the ladies from our tour on stage and sang a bunch of Elvis songs. That was entertaining.  Overall it was an exhausting day!

Today we drove home, nothing to exciting.  We stopped about every 2-3 hours.  We had McDonald’s for lunch and it was delicious…I was craving a burger and fries after 3 days of buffets.  We stopped at a rest area north of Des Moines and it was freezing rain.  That wasn’t very pleasant. We got to Albert Lea about 5pm and Mom and I shared a Pizza Hut personal pizza and now I sit and wait for Eric.  I thought it was nice the bus driver came back inside to say good bye.  As I said, it was very sad to see the bus take off.  Here are some pics from the week:

9 weeks and still going!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

So I just completed week 9 of training.  9 weeks and I'm still running and swimming and biking. I'm a little surprised.  So I pretty much went through my weekly workouts in the last has been an off week with all our extra special trips after work.  I didn't get to swim Friday because we went out for dinner with Greg and Celeste. I really tried to go swimming but it was closed by the time I showed up.  It made me sad.  Eric and I went shopping instead. 

Yesterday was my long run day.  I did 5.5 miles and like previous runs, I ran almost the entire time. I think my walking was about a minute.  It wasn't my fastest which makes me disappointed but I got out there and did it and felt great at the end. Here is my splits:

I have discovered I love SmartWool socks. It is incredible how warm my feet feel.  They have great cushioning and after a long run they were not wet.  Normally my socks are soaked but not these.  I have a new love.  

After my run we drove down to Winona and met Mom and Mike.  We had lunch at Jefferson Pub and Grill.  That brings back memories from college!  Eric and I took Mom to the Verizon store so she could get a new phone. She copied me!  But I think she will like her phone.  The sales woman was persistent...I was really annoyed with her. It took us almost 2 hours to get out of the store...CRAZY!  We didn't do much the rest of the night.

Today after church we had a delicious Pork Roast dinner and played three games of this Yahtzee dice game.  It was fun.  Eric left me here at 3pm and I went for my run.  3 miles in the hills again. It felt much better than the last time I tried to run it here. Tomorrow is the start of our Branson trip.

Pounds lost: 19!
Week 9:  Swim = o miles;  Bike = 7 miles;  Run = 9 miles;   Total =  16 miles

A Night in Rochester

Friday, November 15, 2013

Wednesday night, after work, Eric and I drove down to Rochester to see Dan and Libby (and DJ and kids too).  We had a dinner and spent the night just hanging out and talking.  Sadly, Dan was at Mayo clinic to see another oncologist for a second opinion on his bladder cancer. After being cancer free for over a year, Dan's bladder cancer returned and spread into other parts of the body. He plans to start treatment for his cancer, including chemotherapy when he gets back. So we are praying he does well with the aggressive chemo.   It was a long night as we didn’t leave Rochester until 10:30pm so we didn’t get home until after midnight.  It was a tough day yesterday at work.  Here is the whole crew...minus me.

Also this week…
Sunday I went for a 3.5 mile run and felt pretty good. The weather was prefect. After that I took the Greg and Celeste’s Christmas pictures in the same park I went running.  Wow did it get cold in that short time!  We were freezing!  After that we Eric and I pretty much just lounged around the rest of the day.

Monday was pretty boring.  After work we worked out and that was about it.  Tuesday was volleyball.  Again we only had 4 so I got a good work out.  And last night was band.  Eric watched my friend, Jenny’s kids so she could go to band too.  They love him.  So that is about it from here.  I’m so happy it is Friday!  I’m planning on swimming tonight.  :)

Starting tomorrow, I’m going to be busy!!  We are driving down to Wisconsin tomorrow and then Monday, Mom and I start our whirlwind trip to Branson.  5 shows in 4 days plus driving.  Should be fun. 

What is Up with the Gophers?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Well here we are, another week complete and I’m still training!  It is very shocking, I know!

Sunday morning I went running again. I’m very proud that I ran 3.25 miles and never walked!  It felt great, but I was disappointed that I was really slow…I mean slower than normal. :( But that is ok, at least my endurance is building.

Monday was another late night at work.  We finally filed our 10-Q quarterly report at 6:36pm.  So I didn’t get home until almost 8 and I was whipped so I decided to take a day off again.  It seems that Monday’s have become my off day. 

Tuesday was volleyball night.  Our game was at 9:15pm.  Ugh! With the time change it was brutal staying up that late.  To make sure I stay awake I dragged Eric to the community center where I did the elliptical and stationary bike.  We only had 4 for volleyball so I think I got a good workout.  It also snowed…that sucked!

Wednesday was another swim day.  I only did a half mile and tread water in the deep end for 10 minutes. I know I was swimming more early this fall but I was by myself and I could swim laps for an hour easy but the Mr. has been coming with me and he doesn’t like to go longer than 30 minutes.

Thursday we had a happy hour after work to celebrate another quarter end being done.  I stuck around until after 5. With band practice at 7, there wasn’t any time for me to workout. 

Friday we stopped at Eric’s favorite restaurant for dinner…Boston Market.  They were having a free tasting for Thanksgiving. Basically we got the full Thanksgiving meal so we were stuffed.  We also got our intended meal but just took it to go.  Even though we were overly stuffed we still went swimming.  It was awful…I kept thinking I was going to throw up.  I love green bean casserole but it doesn’t like me. I struggled to a half mile before I called it quits. 

Yesterday was a very fun and tiring day.  I started it with Swirl waking me up at 6ish.  I really hate him sometimes and 6 yesterday was one of those times.  I poked around Facebook for a while and found this pictures and thought it described me to a tee:

So after I kicked Swirl off my lap, I ran my normal 5 miles (I never in my life thought those words would come out of my mouth).  I only walked about a minute of the entire run!  I’m in shock…it felt great.  The weather wasn’t the best.  20mph winds suck when you are running in an open plain.  Why did they get rid of my trees???  But I survived and like I said I ran the entire time and when I got to mile 5 I didn’t think I was going to die!  I actually ran mile 5 faster than mile 3 or 4. You will see below in my splits.  SO yay me!!

Now the really fun part…Gopher game.  I love going to Gopher games. I only manage to get to one a year which is sad.  Of course I picked a day when the wind was whipping around at 20+ mph and it was 40 degrees and no sun.  But I still had a blast.  And they beat evil Penn State!  I’m not sure what is going on with them.  In August, they were picked to finish dead last in the conference.  But they beat a formerly ranked Northwestern team in Chicago, then came home and beat No. 25 Nebraska…they beat Nebraska!  The first time since 1960!  Whoa. Then they went to Indiana and beat them.  So with the win yesterday, they have won 4 Big Ten games in a row (the first time since 1973!) It is really a fun team to watch…but the last two games are against Wisconsin and at Michigan State.  I’m glad that I was went to a game this season. 

Pounds lost: 17!
Week 8:  Swim = 1 miles;  Bike = 4 miles;  Run = 9.25 miles;   Total =  14.25 miles

My Travel Map

Thursday, November 7, 2013

So what do the colors mean?

  • Green for states I've spent a great deal of time in on multiple visits.
  • Blue Purple for states I've spent a lot of time in or seen a fair amount of.
  • Amber for states where I've at least slept and seen some sights.
  • Red for states where you've not spent much time or seen very much. (I have stayed in every state/province I have visited so this doesn't apply to me)

You can create your own map at this address.

Very cool stuff!

I am a runner!

Race Schedule

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Haha. I have a race schedule. LOL!  So here is the deal, after my meltdown on Tuesday (which you could read about here), I have gotten serious about this training.  I have signed up for the Monster Series.  I did it mostly so I could get this cool jacket.  

So here is my schedule:

November 28, 2013 – Turkey Trot (in Omaha)
December 7, 2013 – Reindeer Run
January 1, 2004 – Polar Dash (Monster Series)
January 1, 2014 – Commitment Day 5K…yes that is two…hopefully we can get to this one in time.
March 15, 2014 – Lucky Day 7K (Monster Series)
April 12, 2014 – Goldy’s Run
June 7, 2014 – Lola’s Lake 5K (not sure about this one yet)
June 29, 2014 – North Mankato Triathlon or
August 3, 2014 – Lakefront Days Triathlon
August 31, 2014 – Women Rock 5K (Monster Series)
October 4, 2014 – TC 10K (we will see about this one…might just down the 5K)
October 25, 2014 – Monster Dash (Monster Series)

So there you have it, eight 5Ks, one 7K, one triathlon and one 10K.  Can I do it? I sure hope so.

So this week was busy at work. I stayed until 8pm on Monday, 6pm on Thursday and Friday.  I don’t feel bad about skipping work for 2 hours to watch Abbie’s state soccer game at the Metrodome…my last time ever in the Dome…sniff, sniff.  Unfortunately they lost 5-1 to a rude Benilde-St. Margaret team.  Being a good Catholic school you would expect better behavior from their fans but no. But Abbie is on the 4th best team in state so she has that going for her.

Tuesday was the meltdown day…

Wednesday was pretty normal.  Work, Swim a half mile and Sleep.

Thursday was Halloween.  I was happy to get home in time for trick-or-treaters. We had around 25.  It was not as many as last year but it was colder.  Next year is a Friday so it should be better. 

Friday was another busy day at work and after work was another swim.  My life is sometimes a broken record.

Today was my long run day.  Swirl didn’t wake me up early enough to do my long run before my band council meeting so I had to do it around noon.  I’m pretty happy with the run.  I went 5 miles.  My first mile was really good, my second, third and fourth weren’t bad either.  Mile 5 was slow but I walked quite a bit of it.  I ran all but 2 minutes of the first 3.1 miles.  That is the best I’ve done…I think ever! I ran most of the 4.3 miles (that is a 7K which I have to run in March).

Here are my splits:


Week 7:  Swim = 1.1 miles;  Bike = 0 miles;  Run = 11.2 miles;   Total =  12.3 miles