enjoying every second of life and running


2010 Rock and Roll Chicago Half Marathon Expo

After a rocking good time seeing the The Dan Band at the House of Blues we woke today and took our time getting to the Rock and Roll Chicago Half Marathon Expo. The expo was in true Rock and Roll series tradition, well-organized and lots of products for sale. We got to see the medals and they look sweet! Also, the running tech shirt design is very cool!

As we were walking around and saw that Kara Goucher (1st Place Overall at 2009 RNR Chicago Half Marathon, 3rd at Boston Marathon, amongst other amazing creds and running pro) was speaking in 15 mins!! I freaked! We hurried up and snagged front row seats to hear her interview. Then while waiting, we see her standing off to the side of the stage. We went up and asked if I could get a picture with her and she chatted us up for quite a while! We discussed her pregnancy, how her back has been giving her trouble, her working out with Paula, how Adam did a great job of sticking with her most of last year’s RNR Half Chicago, how she has backed off her training for her upcoming due date at the end of September. She was totally amazing! I had to apologize for being trembly when we took the picture, once again I was so nervous meeting someone so talented.

I was also able to get her autograph on my bib. Unfortunately I didn’t notice that she wrote my name as it was on the D-tag, which was missing the “e” at the end, oh well. 

We thanked her and then settled in to hear her interview and it was very informative. The things that stood out most about her talk was how she was never really great at any other sport she tried growing up, and how running was something she felt she knew was right for her. She described the ups and downs of her college and professional running career. It was interesting to hear how she has had years of success, but also periods of it not coming together. There were times where she could have accepted her placing in a race, but instead has pushed herself to say that anything is possible and break the mold of predictions that others have set for her running.

She gives off the cool laid back chic runner vibe even while she is a top American female runner who is creating an amazing career for herself and the sport. It never felt like she was from some other universe of running, her kindness and warm personality really made me feel like she sees us as much a part of the sport as she is.

Afterward we did a 6 Mile Easy run next to Lake Michigan, it was amazing! It was so nice to be on the road again instead of a random treadmill. I felt my legs come back somewhat. I am still not sure that my legs will be race ready tomorrow though.

After our run we got cleaned up and met up with our new friends Mike and Mandy at Navy Pier. We met them at the concert last night, they are so nice! None of us had been on the ferris wheel at the pier so we did that and visited for a while before they headed home.

Pictures from the ferris wheel.

Now it’s time to relax and try to get into race mode. I hope it all goes okay tomorrow!



This is the longest ever that I have gone without blogging. I’m behind in every aspect of life lately and that includes running. My first reason since my last post I was prepping for a week-long work trip to California, the other reason was because I was interviewing and accepted a new job at my company. I begin my new role at the end of August. The busy schedule will continue as I’m sure I’ll be swamped as I try to transition and then learn my new assignment. It will be a lot of change, but I’m very excited. The work trip to Cali was very jammed packed, driving to a new city each night covering over 800 miles.

View from lunch at San Francisco Pier 39 – Fog Harbor Fish House restaurant.

Ocean view from the car on the last day.

I had to put my running schedule on the back burner. I got in a few miles on some hotel treadmills, but it just isn’t the same. At this point I will take anything, any run I could get in to feel like I was doing something. I left this week exhausted and sluggish in my runs. It has felt much like being sick with the flu, everything feels off and tiring.

I immediately went from Cali to Chicago, where we are staying all weekend to run the Rock and Roll Half Marathon. After my long flight back we ventured out to see The Dan Band at House of Blues. You may remember them from their appearances in the movies “Old School” and “The Hangover” (maybe others I’m not sure). They are freaking hilarious and did not disappoint. We were front and center at the concert and met nice couple that we hope to stay in contact with.

My attempt at a picture from my iPhone.


Tighten The Screws

So I ended up not running or doing any workout on Saturday. I was not thrilled about it, but it gave my body an extra day. I probably should have done some jump rope or something though, next time I will consider that.

Rob and I got to enjoy a cookout with some friends yesterday too.

This morning I got up and headed out at 7am. I was cloudy, humid, and felt like a storm may come in. I felt very rested and ready for a good run. My left knee was not sore, but only stiff. I would call it a 2. Something I’m aware of, but nothing sharp or worry-some.

16 Miles Long Run W/ 4 Miles @ MGP (‘Hood, 2:09:33, 8:06 Pace)
I did an ice bath and had a Starbucks Mocha Frap (that actually stats wise is like a low-fat chocolate milk, plus caffeine, yay!) and a Greek Yogurt.
My knee soreness is gone! I have ever so slightly on my left outside Achilles a tinge I would put at a 2. I hope by morning to be good to go. 🙂

Rob and I met up for brunch with Mary and Shippy. It was so delicious after a nice long run. 🙂

Losing two days of running made my weekly mileage lower. I should have been at 63, but ended up with 48.9 Miles.

While on this long run I got my head around the next 12 weeks. As of Monday we are 12 weeks out from Chicago Marathon. My first week in will be a recovery from the speedwork training I’ve been doing. As I started to think about my running for this marathon and what I could improve on, I keep going back to the other aspects that go around running. I haven’t spent as much time as I should on items that should help support a strong running plan. So with that I plan to “tighten the screws” for the next 12 weeks with the following:

  • I will log all food intake. I think the data will help me figure out ways to improve my nutrition and ensure I am eating the right amounts of protein, carbs, fat.
  • I will weigh in each Sunday. Not really a weight loss reason, just to keep note of changes. I will note what I see far as body composition.
  • I will log as much data as possible in my training log. Heart rate, weight, mood, effort, soreness.
  • I will ice bath after quality workouts. 15 minute investment, each session.
  • I will trigger point at least once a week. 20 minute investment, each session.
  • I will do Ab Ripper at least twice a week. 15 minute investment, each session.
  • I will cross train at least once a week. Bike, jump rope, whatever I can.
  • I will do drills at least once a week. 45 minute investment, with warm up, each session.
  • No horseplay. I need to state this one since I made the mistake of playing sand volleyball and aggravating my knee and costing myself some good training.

To some people this may be a duh-list, something not needed to declare, but for me writing it out makes it real. On the days when work makes me tired, or I feel like it’s too much, I will remember the promise I made to myself to treat not only running seriously, but the items that keep me healthy to train well.

It all begins again tomorrow!!


Tri A Relay

So today’s post is a FlyRunner first, I’m blogging about a triathlon. Most of our running friends are triathletes and the subject of us trying out the sport comes up about every other conversation when out with any of these folks. I have to admit I’m warming to the idea. I’m not psyched about all of the logistics or getting wet, but I assume as with training to marathon, I need to just start with a little piece at a time and get used to the idea.

Anyways, yesterday Ryan told us he had a friend who was in need of a runner to be on his relay team for a race the next morning (the Evergreen Lake Triathlon). Since my knee is bugging me Rob and I didn’t have to flip a coin on this one, and he took the opportunity. It was a sprint tri so Rob would be covering the 5K. This was a great opportunity to see the sport up close and get an idea of the logistics involved. Plus we got to see so many of our friends race!

This was also my first time spectating, and that stunk! I wanted to race so badly! I played camera person and took as many photos as possible of everyone we knew. Since the race started in waves it was non-stop action!

The beginning.

Transition: Nick left on the bike and Brittney and Rob talk about her swim. This was her first open water swim ever!

Rob getting going.

Rob finishing it up.

Rob finished with a 20:30.

Nick (Rob’s Bike Relay Teammate), Ryan and Rob. Ryan did the International Distance (1.5K Swim, 42K Bike, 10K Run).

The Sprint Relay Team (500M Swim, 42K Bike, 5K Run). Rob, Brittney, and Nick.

Lance and Rob. Lance did the International Distance.

Rob’s team got 2nd in the Coed Relay group! Rob, Brittney and Nick with their awards.

More cowbell!! 😀

Rob’s team stats:

Swim: 16:56.4

T1: 43.6

Bike: 1:25:18.1

T2: 39.4

Run: 20:30.9

After seeing the event in person I can picture myself doing this sometime. I used to set limits and say things like “I’m not a runner” or “I’m not a marathoner”, now I’ve learned to stop saying things like that and instead say “Sure why not?”. I really won’t know what I think until I get out there sometime and give it a whirl. 🙂 I think Rob has also got the bug now too. 🙂


28 Days

A new running milestone, 28 days of straight running. I loved very minute of it, even the difficult days.

Today I was scheduled for 2 Miles Easy Warm Up, Drills in the morning and then 6 Easy in the evening but neither will happen as my left knee is inflamed. I don’t think it’s anything too serious, just a mix of some sand volleyball and then later running hills caused my knee to ache. So time off is required.

Today Rob and I golfed with our friend Craig and got in 9 holes, it was a perfect day for it too. Tonight I am doing Ab Ripper and upper body work.

So to catch up on the week here is a summary.


6 Miles Easy (Treadmill, 1% Incline, 56:38, 9:27 Pace)


This workout was key for me, I felt a whole new strength and posture. It was utter joy!

3 Miles Quality Warm Up (ISU Track, 23:18, 7:46 Pace)

.46 Miles 6x50s (ISU Track, 6:20, 13:47 Pace)

3.9 Miles 20x200s w/100M recoveries (ISU Track, 46:32, 11:56 Pace)

3 Miles Cool Down (ISU Track, 31:04, 10:22 Pace)


My morning workout was a 4 am shuffle around the hood before work. Then the evening run I ran into our neighbor and friend Lance and we trotted around the hood and chatted about training.

AM – 4 Miles Easy (‘Hood, 39:33, 9:54 Pace)

PM -5.2 Miles Easy (‘Hood, 48:02, 9:18 Pace)


An unknown mistake and set back. I felt fine at the time and participated in some sand volleyball at a team outing. Little did I know the hill workout that Rob and I would do that night would leave me with knee pain by morning. Rob and I’s hill work was done at 10pm with headlamps on, I’m sure the people in the neighborhood thought we were nuts. 🙂

1.59 Mile Warm Up (Jersey Ave, 16:27, 10:21 Pace)

3.7 Miles 12 Hill Sprints (Jersey Hill, 51:27, 13:48 Pace)

2.02 Miles Cool Down (Jersey Ave, 22:10, 10:59 Pace)

I’m not excited about being sidelined even for a day, but I will just have to deal with it and get back to it as soon as my knee feels ready.

With my new training I foresee some more stints of running with no days off, but for now my record will be 28 days. 🙂

Tomorrow I will have a very new running post that I’m excited to share. 🙂