Monday, March 17, 2008


Yesterday was the Chicago St. Patty's Day 5k. It was COLD! The boy came along with me with the camera so hopefully I'll get the photos from him to post soon. I'm not certain how many were signed up but I saw bibs with numbers into the 1500's. I was 171 and I'm just gonna continue telling myself I got a low number because I'm just that fast. *laugh* Anyway, even though it was kinda gloomy and very cold, I warmed up quickly once the race began. Nothing out of the ordinary. I was passed by many and I passed my share also. It wasn't until the loop swung back north that I felt the full force of the cold wind which made me question what in the hell I was doing out there. My eyes were watering and the air was stinging my lungs. (I still have a ragged wet cough from the cold wind burning my lungs.) I finished around 47:49 which was 00:26 slower than running at the gym but sounded good to me as running at the gym is always easier than running outside on uneven terrain. My first finish line crossing! And there were green bagels at the finish! The awards were held at Goose Island Brewery where there was a brunch buffet and a free beer for those with bibs. French toast has never tasted so good.

Running (with lots of walking) still seems foreign to me. I stood in the starting corral and felt out of place. I kept praying that there would be someone slower than me so I wasn't the last person to cross the finish line. I kept telling myself it was only 3.1 miles and I do more than that at the gym. After the fact I can say I did enjoy it but as usual, while I am doing it I always wonder "WTF?"

Now to prepare for the Race to Wrigley 5k where I get to finish under the Wrigley Field sign! Now that is the race I am looking forward to. It signals the start of baseball season and I get to run through the stadium!

Just a note to myself... skipping veggies the night before means no "intestinal disorders" during the run! I had a steak and potatoes with bread and not deadly urge to hit a port-o-let while I ran. My mind cannot fathom not eating veggies with every meal. It's just so wrong! But I'll skip 'em if it means I won't be begging for port-o-lets ever mile after the start.

Friday, March 14, 2008

48 hours to go...

This time on Sunday I will be nearing completion of my first 5k. I am really looking forward to the race even though it is just a short run. After the race there is a brunch at a local restaurant/brewery. Free beverage with my bib! This week was finals week at NU so Sunday's event is like a celebration for that also. And Saturday we are taking the two pups and going hiking after I pick up my race packet. I missed last Sunday's weekly Puppies/Pancakes/Park event. We take the dogs, get some brunch pancakes and head to a nature preserve/national park to go hiking. That's become my favorite park about weekends.

Unfortunately, due to it being finals week, I never made it to the gym. Not once. I spent in, then started work, then worked on my paper and studied for the exam. I feel very positive about the exam and I am glad that I wrote my paper on what I believed rather than what I thought the professor wanted to hear. Even if it gets me a poor grade, I know that what I learned and wrote about is real (modern intensive agriculture and the loss of biodiversity).

I also spoke with a classmate who, upon hearing what I did for a living and what I was in school for, said "you're just a do-gooder then, aren't you!" It made me laugh because I never really see myself like that. Certain things are important to me but I don't see it as doing good. I can't even think of myself as a runner even though I run races. I just think of myself as someone without a lot of motivation who loves to read and play with her dogs. Hell, I've been married almost 16 years and I never even think of myself as married!

Life is funny like that.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Testing a 5k...

Hmmm... I speedwalked a 5k today. My time was 47:42 and my average pace was 9:30 minutes per kilometer. With practice maybe I can work that down to a 30 minute 5k. And then I still had to hang around after to try and get my new gym id card. It was supposed to be left at the front desk and it wasn't there. I was afraid the guy behind the counter would think I was scamming him! *laugh*

Right now I am sooooo hungry. I didn't eat anything before the gym and only had a few Fig Newtons when I got back. I used to dislike Fig Newtons and now I crave them. The running magazines say they are a good source of energy. And that is a scary thought, that I read running magazines. I typically steer clear of magazines but Runner's World is interesting reading. I actually want a subscription!

I still don't feel like a runner. I definitely don't look like a runner. I have the gear but not the body or mindset. I'm hoping that will change this year. Damned Disney marathon hurt my feelings.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Run, run, run...

I switched my work schedule around so I could fit in a gym visit before work since going after work was interfering with my schoolwork. I'm a morning person anyway so this really works best. And I feel so energized!

I did no running today. I speedwalked 1.5 miles, lifted free weights, did leg weight machines, did 20 flights of stairs on the stair climber and walked for 15 minutes on the treadmill with a 5.0 incline at 2.7 mph. Illinois is pretty flat so I really need to build up my incline endurance so I can hike in the mountains!

So far I am signed up for the St. Paddys Day 5k Run-Walk in March and the Race to Wrigley 5k in April, a half marathon in August and a full marathon in October. I may add in a few more 5k/8k/10k's between now and August. The more fun runs I do, the better I'll do for the Chicago marathon. I can't fail to finish again! The Disney marathon failure hit me badly even though I got pulled out due to the "dreaded trots" and not because I gave up. At least I didn't give up.