Sunday, February 28, 2010


Some things just can't be explained. And today is one of them. I am not even going to post what my workout consisted of. Too many of you would give me grief, which you should! I don't know ... all systems were go. I just felt great. If I'd had the time, I'd have worked out all day. And I have to say that the sunshine, melting snow, and temperatures above 30 degrees certainly lift my spirits. Anyway, maybe it was the overabundance of calories I consumed yesterday that got me all jacked up. I think maybe even after running 20.59 miles, I might not have had a calorie deficit. More on that later.

Today the RTC News was calling. It pretty much took all day to finish, but it's done. I just, seconds ago, sent it off to the webmaster for posting on the RTC website. So look for it there in the next day or so. It's nice to be able to use lots of color photos. And so nice not to have to deal with all that paper. Saves lots of $$ as well by going to digital only.

I'm going to the RCTC indoor track tomorrow evening at 6 PM. Trevor is going to join me. Possibly Randy. And anyone else who'd like to join us is more than welcome ... you can walk, jog, run, do speedwork. Whatever trips your trigger. I leave for Florida early, early Tuesday (4 AM airport shuttle ... yikes!!) so I'll miss the regularly scheduled Tuesday workout. Possibly next week's too, but I will be at Beetles at 6 PM on 3/9. For sure!! Hopefully rested and energized from a week of serious downtime. I like to pretty much vegetate while I'm down there, other than when I'm running or swimming.

Classes starting at the Y: Boot Camp, 3/1 thru 4/9 M, W, F 5 to 6:15 AM. Kettle Bell Body Blast, 4/13 thru 5/21, Tues 6:30 to 7 PM and Fri 5:30 to 6 PM or Tues 7 to 7:30 PM and Fri 6:00 to 6:30 PM. I'd like to take that Kettle Bell class, but I'll be gone to Boston for part of it.

Angie Haugen is tackling the Rochesterfest Sprint Tri this year. You go girl!! She's doing the sprint with a bunch of gals from work. And Ross Hamernik said that he and his son Cory, a student at Mankato, are going to both run Med-City Marathon this year. This will be Ross's first running (but he's been a volunteer every single year) and Cory's first marathon. I'm excited for them.

I think the Grandma's half marathon lottery is tomorrow. My fingers are crossed ... I'd love to be chosen. But I've not had good luck with race lotteries in the past. :o(

I'm still thinking about this orange Trek. Gosh, it'd be a dreamy bike to own ... I think I'd call it my "dreamcycle" (kinda like that delicious dreamsicle at Brothers ...).

It's just so hard to spend the $$. Last night John Dinusson said, "It's worth it." It almost felt a little like spring today. I can't wait to get out and hammer on the bike again.

I tried a new recipe to bring to Laura's last night. Blueberry Crumb Cake. It was a keeper.

2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder (yes, Tbsp. not tsp.)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. vegetable shortening
1 c. 2% milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 c. fresh or frozen blueberries

1 c. sugar
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/4 c. butter, melted

1. Coat a 9 x 13 pan with nonstick spray.
2. Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Using a pastry cutter or two knives, cut in shortening.
3. Combine milk and eggs; beat until mixed. Add to dry ingredients. Mix lightly. Fold in berries. Spread in pan. (May be refrigerated overnight at this point.)
4. Preheat oven to 375.
5. To prepare the topping, combine sugar, flour and butter in a small bowl. Mix until crumbly. Spread over batter. Bake, uncovered, about 25 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean and topping is lightly browned.

So, back to last night. The LUABC committee gathered at Laura's house for a potluck dinner. Delicious food and wonderful company.

I thought Benjamin Schmitt's vest was cute.

Dr. Zhao, Kristin's husband, made the most incredible green beans I've ever had. They were prepared in the Chinese fashion--stir fried. Absolutely incredible. He used 2 whole bulbs, not cloves, of garlic. Green onions. Ginger root. White pepper powder. Salt. Sesame oil. He explained the whole process and the proper timing, but I doubt I'll be able to do it right. They were to die for. He's a very good cook. And a surgeon. : )

My plate ...

Everything was delicious. Mike made a curried lentil soup which was also delicious.

Laura presented each of us with a certificate and 100 Grand candy bar. So nice of her.

She deserves a huge amount of thanks for the countless hours she put into the event.

Then it was off to Mark Wernstrom's surprise 50th birthday party ...

and more food and drink. Here's me and the birthday boy.

Lots of running friends in attendance.

Barb, Gary, Ross...

Jim and Jim...

Three sisters: Mary, Karen, and Nancy.

Well, it's time to wrap this up. I need to remove myself from this computer. Here's a quote from Kermit the Frog: “Time's fun when you're having flies.”

Good night.

Saturday, February 27, 2010


Yup, it was another 20-miler this morning. : )

The morning started early ... packed all the stuff required for: running, eating (cookies) and hopefully eating some more (breakfast somewhere).

I was going to meet Tom O'Leary at 6, but he was still a no-show at 6:04 so I took off. Apparently we must have just missed each other, and headed in opposite directions so we both ended up running by ourselves. I got in just over 9 before meeting up with the group at 7:15. I have to say, I felt pretty sluggish, even kind of dizzy, and it showed. Just nothing in the tank. I had a salad, asparagus and some cabbage soup last night for supper and I guess that just wasn't enough calories for such a long run. I even had a few handfuls of animal crackers in the evening.

Thank you Randy for manning the aid station this morning. It's greatly appreciated by all of us, especially in these temps. And the candy bars really hit the spot. Emily said the 3 Musketeers were raspberry flavored and delicious. : )

Anyway, I slogged through the first 19, then had a cookie back at the RAC and felt soooooo much better after that. And now ... I feel great. The best I've felt after a 20-miler yet this season. And some more good news ... I ran with Dave Morrill for a few miles (thank you Dave for escorting me back to the RAC ... you made the time pass quickly : ) and he's feeling really good now, and Boston is looking good for him. I am so happy! He and Marcia will have a great time out there.

But it was another good crowd this morning (55-60) despite single digit temps.

And a blast from my past ... Nick Payne. In shorts!! I couldn't believe it. But he runs so fast that I'm sure he generated enough heat to stay warm.

Cookies were consumed when we were done.

Mark and Craig
Roger and Mark

Then it was off to Brother's for breakfast ...

(It's great to have Dave Duncan, right, back on the roads with us)

and a delicious walnut pancake ...

and more cookies.

John Shonyo is now an official, card-carrying Team R.E.D member. : )

Then it was off to the mall to pick up the March book club book (My Life in France, by Julia Child ... luckily it's out in paperback) so I can read it while travelling next week. I stopped in Macy's as they were having a sale (aren't the dept. stores always having a sale?) I fell in love with this jacket (I had to strip the size small off the manequin ... but not to worry, I quickly covered her up : ), but it wasn't on sale and I didn't want to shell out the $ for it.

I just loved the ruffle. It's so different. And I tried on this very fun, cute little number. But it, too, wasn't on sale. And where would I wear it??

At Barnes & Noble, I looked at the selection of magnets. I'll close this post with one of those:

Be strong. Live honorably and with dignity, When you don't think you can, hold on.

Until later. Or tomorrow. Depends ...

Friday, February 26, 2010

So Much to Blog, ...

Got home at 10:12 PM last night from Brothers! Oh my, I haven't laughed that hard in a LONG time. I just love listening to Paul Melby tell stories. : ) MUCH more on that later in this post.

First off ... Emily (and everyone else), there will be treats after the run at the RAC tomorrow! For anyone who comes in the front doors when you're done running. So don't just run 'n leave ... come on in for a cookie!! I'm hoping maybe we can organize breakfast after the run tomorrow. I'll be off the radar next week Tues, Thurs and Sat and will miss all you guys!! My flight gets into MSP at 2:50 on the 9th, so I'm hoping I can make the track workout yet that evening. Hopefully, I'll have a little glow from the Florida sunshine. : ) The forecast for Sarasota calls for upper 60's to 70 next week. Not as warm as other years, but it's about 50 degrees warmer than it is here today. I'll take it. Like so many other things in life, what're ya gonna do??

I'm starting to think about the USATF race series for 2010. The first race is the Human Race 8K on 3/28 (which is also the weekend I should do my last 20-mile run before Boston ... don't know how I'll quite work that out yet). There's a part of me that doesn't want to race the same races as last year as I had a good year and I'm afraid I won't be able to run the same times as I did in 2009. I ran a 34:42 at that race. Kinda like "leave well enough alone", "quit while you're ahead", ..., but I can't go through life saying and thinking things like that. I guess I'll just do the best with what I have in the tank this year.

I saw Ellen Hamernik at Target yesterday. Along with Lisa Pelowski, we're running the Disney Princess Half Marathon on 3/7 down in Orlando. Lisa said that the buses board between 3 and 4 AM, and that's Eastern time. Our body clocks will think it's 2 or 3 AM. Ouch. I'll feel like the walking dead at that time of the night. And that's the time we have to be at the bus, which means we have to get up even earlier! Anyway, Ellen said that she'd just bought pink hair extensions and pink nail polish for the three of us. Pink is definitely the color for the day! I have a pink kind of Hawaiian-print running skirt, which I might bring. Also, I picked this up at Run N Fun ...

yesterday for 50% off.

I think this will be just the ticket along with a little running skirt. And hair extensions. And nail polish. A girl can never wear too much pink. Can she?? I also stopped at Trader Joe's on Lexington and Randolph in St. Paul.

I just love that store. Fun stuff, and very good prices. Cheaper than I can find anywhere in Rochester on every single thing I bought.

When I got home, it was quickly off to Brother's for Byron Team R.E.D., who was "on the road" at Brothers Gar & Grill for the evening.

We got in 5.73 miles. It was nice to have some daylight for the beginning of the run. I counted about 22 runners, though not all were pictured. A very good turnout and what turned out to be a marathon of sorts for the socializing afterwards. I got home at 10:12 PM. And I wasn't the last one to leave.

 It turned into a kind of 20 questions by Marilee and myself for Paul Melby, which was so much fun. I haven't laughed so hard in a long time. I just love hearing him tell stories. So ... here's a bunch of random, little-known facts about Paul Melby:

His middle name is Emmitt
He was born in Red Lake Falls, MN and his H.S. graduating class had 18 graduates
He has a 36" vertical leap
He likes COKE, straight up ("no fruit" :-)
Favorite shoes are asics gel Nimbus
Favorite indulgence food is nuts, any kind, daily
"Chia is the magic"
"Don't eat string cheese if you don't know how long it's been in your gym bag" (that's a story in itself)
Both ketchup and mustard belong on a hot dog
He doesn't like chocolate
Favorite beer is Guinness
Electric razor or straight edge? Electric (never has used a straight edge)
Boxers or briefs (Marilee's question!): Boxer briefs
No tattoos, no piercings
He was the mascot (Buzz, a bee) for a semi-pro basketball team in Fargo (very funny story attached to this one)
He was on the cheer team at NDSU (another funny story)
He has blue eyes
His weight is correct on his driver's license
He likes Colgate TOTAL toothpaste
Favorite race was Med-City Half, 2009 which he ran with his dad
He likes his Injinji toe socks
He wore braces when he was younger
He's an electrical engineer and was the first student to ever receive 100% on his Diffy Q (Differential Equations for us math-major types) final exam in college
He was valedictorian of his H.S. class and used to be very shy
He has never broken a bone
He was a jumper on the high school track team

Paul is actually a very likeable, fun guy. And now you know him just a little bit better. I'm hoping to do more of these "interviews" after group runs so that you can meet some new folks!!

OK. Here's a shortened version of Paul's trampoline story ... bee costume ... mini tramp at the free throw line or 3-point line--can't remember but it's irrelevant ... tunnel vision due to costume ... somersault/flip ... hit the rim ... smack down on the floor on the edge of the mat ... stunned ... VERY SORE. You had to hear Paul tell it. We were ready to split a gut. He survived. He is (apparently!) fine. (Actually, he's pretty lucky he didn't break his neck.)

Welcome to newest Team R.E.D. member Jean Murray.

I ordered a grilled chicken sandwich, mayo on the side. They must have given me 1/4 cup of mayo. Ridiculous.

I gave my fries to Karl-Peter.

Apparently I'd eaten too much popcorn first. : )

And was a little too full of fluids, too. (Actually, this is a bit of a set-up.)

But one of the glasses of beer, the diet Pepsi, and the Dreamsicle are mine. Someone ordered Marilee and I a "girlie" drink and this is what the bartender came up with. (amaretto, orange juice and half & half--I have to say, it was delicious).

And then low and behold, someone ordered a Pina Colada for Wendy and Ann.

Someone must have had a h-u-g-e bar tab last night. The beer was REALLY flowing at the west end of the table.

This morning I ran my 11.2 mile hill route and decided to bring my camera. It was chilly, about 4 degrees, but a beautiful morning. So I headed down Fox Valley Drive and out to Salem Road.

On the side of the road, I found several old LPs that had fallen out of someone's vehicle.

Then I turned off on Mayowood Road.

I was already plenty frosty, and my top and bottom eyelashes were freezing together.

I continued south on Mayowood Road and turned east and crossed the (closed) Mayowood bridge.

And continued east on Mayowood Road. This is my favorite spot on the whole route as far as scenery goes. It's just beautiful when the sun is coming up.

Mayowood Farm.

Then past Bamber Valley School, the ice rinks on the soccer fields ...

and to Lenwood Drive ...

where I run hill repeats.

KC's farm is just on the edge of my route.

Then it's up 18th Ave SW ...

Then it's a right on Westwood Dr SW and another right on Merrihills Dr SW.

A left onto Hillside Drive, and then a right onto Institute Road (where Mayo has what I think is an animal research location) ...

Then it's a right onto Crest Lane (and yet another hill) ...

A left onto Merrihills Drive and a right onto Bamber Valley Road, a left on Mayowood Road and then I retrace my steps back toward home. There is an abandoned farmhouse on/near Mayowood Farm that I think makes a great photo. I'd have liked to have seen it when it was being lived in.

The last mile of this route has one last long hill.

Quite an enjoyable run. If anyone would ever like to join me (at about 6 bells AM), lemme know!! I'd love to have you join me.

Tomorrow AM, the run at the RAC is 10 miles. Up toward Think credit union where there will be a water stop, up to Culver's, frontage road to 41st, north on 31st Ave back to Think and then back to the RAC. See you there. Tom O' and I (and whoever else would like to join us) will be frontloading at 6 AM.

Tomorrow PM, a LUABC potluck at Todd and Laura's house. And another party after that. That ought to keep me out of trouble. : )

Have a wonderful weekend one and all.