enjoying every second of life and running


Run for the Roses


Friday (6/17):

12.9 Bike Interval (P2, L5, 45:00, 17.2 mph), Upper Body Weights

Saturday (6/18):

1.77 Easy (Warm up, 18:12, 10:17 Pace)

15K Race (Steamboat Classic, 1:10:21, 7:33 Pace, 18th Female Overall)

Sunday (6/19):

13.1 Med-Long (‘Hood, 1:51:13, 8:30 Pace)

Monday (6/20):

5 Easy (Recovery, Very Windy, 47:20, 9:28 Pace)

Tuesday (6/21):


Wednesday (6/22):

7.2 LT (Treadmill, 2 Warm Up, 3.25 LT, 2 Cool Down, 1:01:33, 8:30 Pace)

Thursday (6/23):


Friday (6/24):

4 Easy (Treadmill, 34:19, 8:35 Pace)

Saturday (6/25):

2.75 Fartlek (Const Trail, 18:14, 6:38 Pace)

1.94 Easy (Warm up, ISU, 18:14, 9:24 Pace)

3.13 Interval (Track, ISU, 6 x 200s w/200 Jog, 4 x 400s w/400 Jog, 27:30, 8:48 Pace)

2 Easy (Cool Down, ISU, 19:10, 9:35 Pace)

Ah where to begin….it was a long, but productive week. During the week Rob and I both happened to be dressed up at the same time and I got to grab a pic of the occasion.

Drew came to visit twice and we had a nice dinner out and another at home. I had tummy pains mid-week, I suspect I ate something with gluten and paid the price.

Friday after a long day we drove over to my girl Abby’s bday bash. I got in a bit of girl time, but knew I had to get home to run a few miles since I had inadvertently had two rest days with my roller coaster week. Plus the next morning (today) we had to be up early to volunteer at a 5K race. The race was for the McLean County AIDS Task Force to raise funds for their program. Rob and I had planned to do a track workout after volunteering for the race. When we arrived our ORRT store owner and team manager says “Christine you should race this one. Get in a workout and win while you are at it.” Umm…okay, except it’s starting to warm up and I’m in adidas warm up pants (that are a size too big) and my adidas Boston shoes, which are my heavier, easy run shoe. I didn’t have clothes for track since we were planning to run back home later. No matter, they all say “just do it” and I laugh at how silly this will be to race in this attire. I make Rob take my picture for evidence.

I tie my pants as tight as I can and warn Rob that in a race I may lose them mid way. Luckily one of the other fast guys there to volunteer had an extra pair of shorts he could loan me, at least that meant I would fry in the sun.

This race was small, like 15 people small. Plus it’s in a park area that is not closed to the public. I wish more people would have come out, these smaller races are a great place for beginners to get in some racing experience without a ton of pressure. The big downside the course wasn’t marked at all. We all looked at the map before hand and tried to memorize the turns we would take. If you know this area you know there are many turn options so it wasn’t like there were street names to remember. It was more like, around the little pond on the outer loop, around the bigger pond, left at the porta potty type directions. And the course wasn’t even chalked or anyone standing at each turn, it would all be from memory. We found out quickly that when you are racing at a 5K pace, it all starts to look the same. This area is known for 5K course flubs because even when there are volunteers, they can get confused as to which way to direct traffic.

Okay so we take off and I assume lead for mile 1 and my watch beeps a 6:15, not too shabby in heavy arse shoes and random course turning. The guy behind me assumes the lead and I try to stay with him. Before mile 2 he juts to the right and makes a turn I’m 100% is wrong and I press forward. Where he turned he was out of sight and I’m just about to say “wrong way” when a friend behind me says, “we should have turned”. He’s trying to help me and I try to convince him it’s straight, not a right turn yet. And he insists to follow the leader, regardless. Bless his heart for trying to help, but I’m ticked at this point cause I’m certain which way to go and I want to do the course correctly. I’m not mad at our friend, I’m mad at myself for giving in when I knew better. I don’t know how to explain my brain’s logic when I’m in 5K race-mode. It’s just different so in that fraction of time I couldn’t debate the directions. 5K race brain for me feels a bit like being tipsy, my mind can’t process as fast as my body chooses the decision. Mile 2, 6:50, ugh logistics and talking mess it up. So the lead guy is further ahead because I’ve doubled back, there is no catching him and I’m chatting with my friend how I’m certain it will be short and then I try to get back to racing, but all I can think about is speculating how short we will all be. I lay off my pace and a young guy goes by me before we finish. 2.75 on my watch leaving me with a 6:38 avg pace. Since we are only 15 people most follow the group and run the course short. The race director suspected this may happen and places awards as we came in and tells us not to even worry about it. I take first female (3rd overall) and receive a nice trophy. I just wish it would have been the right distance. I’ve been in this situation before and I’m sure it won’t be the last time, so I just have to stop my pout-pants dance and get over it.

All of us runners.

This race has very nice food, lots of cold water and fruit, plus really great raffel prizes. I won a $50 gift certificate from a local florist!

I envision a large bouquet of roses and consider who to send them to or if they will look nice in our house. And then it hit me like a ton of bricks when we were at our track workout. I’m going to donate the gift certificate back to the organization to surprise one or two people that are either in the hospital, going through treatment or something serious and need flowers to brighten their day. That idea washed away the frustration I had with myself for not trusting my gut mid-race mode and put the focus back on to what was important. Running for the roses was all worth it.

Rob and I had a great track workout. We had the company of Mitch and some running friends out there too. Even with my mini-race I hit all of my track times spot on!

We had planned to fly out to Indiana for lunch and shopping, but the weather had other plans. Instead of letting it spoil our day we headed up to Chicago area for shopping up there instead. We got Rob some amazing new shave products and I got a special new purse, Louis Vuitton Artsy MM!! Ahhhhh swoon!!!! 🙂 Then we went to dinner at our favorite place in the area, Braxton’s. The food was outstanding as usual and the service was perfect, they always take such good care of us there.

Fuzzy picture at dinner.

Trying them out in the store is essential. Online the size can be deceiving. MM was the perfect size and I love the soft lining, 6 pockets, 1 zipper pocket, the key ring and D-ring detail, and braided handle. I love everything about this purse!

Outside the restaurant.

And one of it with its huge box and bag! Eeeeee! 😀

A very full and truly amazing day!


2010 Steamboat Classic – 15K – 1:10:21

Today was the Steamboat Classic in Peoria, IL. This race offers a world record class 4 Mile and the toughest 15K in the mid-west. We took the longer and more painful option. There are not a ton of 15Ks in this area, so it’s a chance to run the longer distance and get in a great hill workout!

We were off and all felt well, even up and around the steep hills, the first time around. Second lap around the steep hills into the park and my legs were toasted. I definitely need more strength and hill workouts. Still it was a great time to get out and race!

Me with part of ORRT group.

I finished in 1:10:21, not a PR, but 18th place female overall. The top 25 men and women for each race are recognized with an award.

Everyone did great! Rob finished in 1:05:25! This was Drew’s first time doing the 15K with a 1:24:00!

Me and Mike (fellow ORRT) and a girl he coaches.

The 15K finisher’s medal and my award.


7:33 Pace

F: 18/?


Go Redbirds!


Thursday (6/16):

1.1 Warm Up (ISU, 10:53, 9:54 Pace)

3.5 Track (ISU, 4 x 200s @ R w/200 jogs, 2 x 1000s @ I w/2 min jogs, 2 x 400s @ R w/400 jogs,  32:13, 9:13 Pace)

0.63 Cool Down (ISU, 7:09, 11:21)

Last night Rob and I did a track workout at our alma mater. I haven’t done a track workout in forever. I struggled with the 1000s @ I pace and did 2 instead of 4. Next time I will do 800s before stepping into 1000s. The weather was absolutely perfect. It was nice to have that slimy sweat from a track workout. On our cool down I was able to get a picture on the football field. Go Redbirds!!


A New Way


Wednesday (6/8):

6 Tempo (Treadmill, 2 Warm Up 2 @ LT 2 Cool Down, 49:07, 8:12 Pace)

Thursday (6/9):


Friday (6/10):

6 General Aerobic (Const Trail, 48:16, 8:03 Pace)

Saturday (6/11):

6 Easy (‘Hood, 52:21, 8:44 Pace)

Sunday (6/12):

0.91 Warm Up (8:41, 9:33 Pace)

4 Mile Race (Peoria Chiefs, 27:49, 6:58 Pace, 1st Female Overall)

0.63 Cool Down (5:33, 8:49 Pace)

Monday (6/13):


Tuesday (6/14):

5.15 Tempo (Treadmill, 2 Warm Up 3 @ LT .15 Cool Down, Tummy troubles cut cool down short)

Wednesday (6/15):

6.4 Easy (‘Hood, 56:11, 8:47 Pace)

Sunday after the race we headed over to dinner with Drew’s family. They are so sweet and made us feel right at home. Rob and Drew’s dad went for a flight in his Archer.

Work priorities are still filling my plate the most, but I’m also trying to focus on my lifestyle change to gluten-free. It will take a bit more planning, but luckily the changes so far don’t seem super dramatic. It’s just figuring out a new way to make recipes at home. I’m trying to look at it as a discovery of new grains and foods to try. I will be updating my nutrition page with my favorite gluten-free finds. 🙂

Here is what I made for dinner the other night. I used polenta sliced and heated in a pan with olive oil. Then I layered the slices with fresh basil from our garden and topped it with a little herb olive oil and had gluten-free pasta sauce on the side. I also had a gluten-free “wheat tasting” baguette that was super yummy for dipping.

Rob’s version had basil herb cheese in between the layers. I’m still staying lactose free until my stomach is better. I may try a little when I’m feeling better to see if it’s something I can have moderately.

It was delish! The only thing I would change is I would use a little less olive oil next time, the polenta didn’t need very much.  Polenta is very versatile and it says that it can be used in dishes that call for pasta or grains. If you have any great polenta or gluten-free recipes, please share! I’m sure restaurant choices will be a bit trickier. I’ve started mapping out some gluten-free menus. If you have a fave place give me a shout! Thanks! 😀


Peoria Chiefs – 4M – 27:29

Today was perfect weather for a race, mild temps and a light breeze. Rob, Drew and I headed to Peoria for the Peoria Chiefs 4M race. It’s the fourth year of this race, but the date this year was moved from Memorial Day to today due to the Peoria Chiefs calendar. They have the race when the Chiefs are home because all entrants get a ticket for the game that day. The date change appeared to have a huge effect on attendance. Last year’s race had 283 participants, this year seemed like less than 100. It was probably the smallest race I’ve ever ran. Still I was going to give it my all. I spent the race running alone.  A small handful of guys in front of me that included Rob and another ORRT member Mike. I was never challenged for position, but I pushed forward and tried to mentally stay in race mode even with the solitude. The course is three loops around the outside of the baseball stadium and then finishing with a loop inside to home plate. I love the format of this race, such a simple course to just do loops.

Mike took the win and Rob was 3rd overall. I was first female overall with a 27:49. It’s not a PR, but I improved my time on the course. Drew set a wicked PR improving his 38:XX 4M time with a 33:52.

This race does great with awards. Mike and I both received Louisville slugger bats that were embossed with the race and our Top Male/Female Overall.

Rob was first in his Age Group and received the mini bat with embossed with his win.

And Drew got 2nd in his Age Group and received a Peoria Chiefs ball embossed with the age group win.

The best part was after we received our awards they asked Mike and I to come back for an interview down on the field before the start of the game. 🙂 So we zipped home to clean up and head back for the afternoon game.

The interview went well. They mentioned that I’ve raced every year since the race’s inception in 2008 and asked us about ORRT. They even called attention to our green adidas uniforms and I made sure to mention that our uniforms were the new season colors for adidas and everyone should check them out. I also got to mention to the crowd that this award was special to me because it was my first 1st Female award. They mentioned the range of ages for the race being from 6 years to 73 years old. I said that running is a lifetime sport and I hope to enjoy running and racing for the rest of my life.

After our interview I popped down into the dugout and asked some of the Chiefs to sign my bat. They were very nice. They seemed impressed with my ability to run 4 miles straight and in a time they considered fast that they couldn’t do for a mile. I said they are probably so used to sprinting. We talked about upcoming Steamboat and I wished them well on their game.

We were able to stay for an inning, but then had to leave to get to Drew’s family cookout. Chiefs did win their game against South Bend, 5-1. We got in a couple more pictures before we headed out. Me and Mike with his son Shelby who is also very fast and won his Age Group.

6:58 Pace
F: 1/?
Overall: 6/65
It was such a fun day! We all enjoyed the race and the weather and then we got to spend the evening with family. 🙂