Monday, November 29, 2010

Who wants to Run a Marathon on Cape Cod in the Dead of Winter?

I DO. And Miss Bethany is getting dragged along, as she is my personal pacer. We just signed up today to do the Hyannis Marathon on February 27th. 

The appeal for me is that:
(1.) There is a Clydesdale division, so I can go battle it out and race against the heavyweights. :) 
(2.) Also, I LOVE running in cold weather. If we're lucky, maybe it'll even snow. 
(3.) It's a double-loop course, and I love loop courses.

Miss Bethany did the marathon in 2006, and she says it was cold and boring. But she's in a far different place now, with 17 more marathons under her belt. And she'll be running with ME, so how could she not be excited?!
One of my good friends from work is coming down to do the 10k there, and we have a number of other running friends doing either the half or full marathon, so it'll be another running weekend filled with good friends and good times.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A MUST-Add to Your Holiday Wish List! (Possibly the Best Book I've Ever Read!)

I (Bethany) finished reading this book a few weeks ago and I LOVED it. It was a quick read because I was SO into it, I had to keep reading!! I laughed out load a lot and I cried a lot too, not always in a bad way though, but I did have to get up and blow my nose a few times. I don't think I have 1 bad thing to say about this book! It was awesome!! Quite possibly the best book I have ever read! (I think I would rank it higher than Harry Potter and The Twilight Saga on my list of favorite books! *gasp*)

The Long Run, by Matt Long

I know most of you have already heard of Matt Long through articles published in Runner's World. This book goes much more into detail about his life, accident and comeback. There is so much that Runner's World did not include, it's DEFINITELY worth buying the book!!! Incase you don't know about him, here is a quick recap...
Matt was a New York City firefighter who was hit and run over by a 40,000 pound bus while riding his bike in NYC (during the transit strike). When the bus ran him over, the seat post of his bike went through his body. He was given a less than 1% chacne of survival and in two days was given 69 units of blood. He nearly bled to death but doctors say he survived because of his marathon running and triathlons, basically, his body was tough enough to withstand and survive such trauma. The book goes into detail about his family/friends, qualifying for Boston, his receovery, competing in Lake Placid Ironman before and after his accident, September 11th when he was at the World Trade Center, nutrition etc.

I hope you like this book as much as I did!!

What's your favorite sports-related book??

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ryan's StoneCat 26.2 Report

Sorry this race report is a little late, I've just been a bit busy with work and school and all. StoneCat was certainly one of the most fun races I've done this year. As you guys already know, Miss Bethany ran her first 50 miler, which was awesome. She totally inspired me to do a 50 next year. A few of our other track club friends ran either the 26.2 or the 50 as well.

The race had a 6:15am start time, so we got there bright and early. We got our headlamps strapped on and headed into the woods. I don't wear my glasses when I'm trail running, for the simple reason that I don't want to break them when I undoubtedly fall numerous times. So with it being pitch black except for the light of our headlamps, I had a bit of trouble staying upright and on the right course for the first 45 minutes or so, until the sun came out. I was very tentative weaving in and out of the trees and rocks until the sun came out, and I felt I could open it up a bit and run a little harder. 

Here's the photo of the starting line before we headed into the woods. (Photo by Keith Magnus,

Once the sun came out, I picked up the pace, and really felt good on the trails. I really liked these trails, as they weren't very technical, and pretty run-able for the most part. Some roots, some rocks, some water crossings, weaving in and out of trees, but overall a really good trail for a marathon. The course was a 1.2 mile loop, and then 2 times on a 12.5 mile loop. I felt pretty good the whole way, and finished in 4:50:56, about 10 minutes faster than I expected. The whole time I was just thinking about doing the 50 next year. As soon as you cross the finish line, you get a finisher's jacket, which was nice as it was something different than the usual medal or whatever. (However, Bethany's 50 mile finisher jacket was about 100 times nicer than the 26.2 finisher jacket. As it should be, though. Haha, more inspiration for doing the 50 next year.)

I think this is around mile 13.5. (Photo by Keith Magnus)

Bethany around mile 13.5, all smiles as usual. (Photo by Keith Magnus) It was nice, since it was a loop course, I got to catch up to and pass Bethany around mile 6 or so. She looked great and was happily chatting with our friends that she was running with.

Bethany with our track club friends, Mark Kruger and Kenny Rogers. (Photo by Keith Magnus) All 3 finished the 50 looking strong. They've definitely all inspired me to step up my game.

After I finished, I hung around with our track club friends who ran the 26.2, and we waited for our 50 miler buddies to come in. When Bethany came in after her 3rd loop (mile 37.5), I was waiting to help her out in any way I could. She felt hotspots developing, so I grabbed the Vaseline and lubed up her feet. (That's true love.) Then (after wiping my hands, of course) I grabbed a bag of her all-natural cookies, her cranberry juice, and her organic toaster pastry and ran back into the woods with her, making sure she got everything she needed into her pockets or into her mouth. Sure enough, she stayed well nourished, and even finished the race with cookie crumbs on her face, haha.

She looked great when she came back around to the finish line at the end of 50 miles, and I couldn't have been prouder of her. She's truly an inspiration. Hopefully next year we'll be crossing the 50 miler finish line together.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Our Halloween Pics (Races in Costumes!)

A little late, but we figured you guys would still wanna see our Halloween pics! As always, we had to have couple-themed costumes, and Miss Bethany got a little creative this year. 

On the Friday before Halloween, we ran a 1-mile race around Boston Common. It was a lot of fun, and a number of our Team Racemenu friends also ran, so we got to hang out with them. After the race, there was a Halloween party at one of the bars downtown (with good free beer!). We did the mile in about 8 minutes, which Miss Bethany was very pleased with, considering her costume. :)

On Halloween, Miss Bethany ran a 10k (in costume, of course), and Ryan volunteered out on the 5k course (in costume, of course). (There was both a 5k and 10k.) She was hoping for 8-8:15 pace, but somehow ended up running 7:35 min/mile pace. She started off slow not sure how the costume would hold up but then began picking people off. She got 2nd in her age group.

Here's some pics from our Halloween:

Monster Dash & Bash 1-miler. Miss Bethany made her costume from scratch the night before, cost less than $15.

Miss Bethany's "Trick or Treat" jack-o-lantern

Our nephew, Robby. (2 yrs and 5 mo.)

Popeye, Spinach, and a Dragon

 Popeye and his beloved dog, Ginger

Here comes the Organic Spinach bag! Remember: eat 5-6 servings a day!

It was really hard to run because of where the armholes were, not to mention the heat of running in a plastic bag!

Popeye on baby-duty. Our other nephew, Josh. (2 months)

Stay tuned for Ryan's race report from his trail marathon last Saturday. 

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

My First 50 Miler!! Race Report (and 100th post!)

I completed my first ever 50 miler this past Saturday, November 6th. It was fun, I would definitely do it again!! I'm going to do this race report a bit different than usual. First off, the race was the Stonecat Trail Race in Ipswich, MA. The 50 miles took much longer than I thought it would, I figured it would take about 10 hours but I did it in 10:53:00. I'm not a great trail runner so I definitely lost a lot of time due to poor trail technique!!

- The weather was great! I wore the same outfit all day long, just changed my socks once because they were soaked(had to run through water 8 times)
- I can't even tel you how fast the day went by. It was by far the fastest day of my life. The first 3 loops flew by and then all of a sudden I was on the 4th and final loop.
- I liked the course, it was a 12.5 mile loop 4 times.
- Mentally running 50 miles was EASY. That's right, I said easy. Mentally, not physically :-)
- Ryan was a great supporter, he ran the marathon so I got to see him a few times during his run and then I saw him at mile 37.5(end of 3rd loop) and then at the finish.
-At mile 37.5 Ryan put Vaseline on the bottom on my right foot, awww.
- I rant he whole way with my friend Ken, who was running his 7th 50 miler. I also ran part of the way with my friend Mark (from Biggest Loser season 5) he did amazingly well! (watch The Biggest Loser special the night before Thanksgiving to find out...)
- All 50 miler finishers got embroided fleece finisher jackets!! Very nice! And we got tech shirts too, and all the food we could possible eat! I only paid $65 to run! What a bargain!!
- I felt really strong running and I was able to pick up the pace from miler 45-50. I was really pleased with my endurance.
_ i did a good job with nutrition and hydrating. Actually, I probably drank too much bc i peed 5 times!
-I slept 8 hours the night before.
-The race organizers, volunteers and fellow runners were all AWESOME!!!

-I'm NOT a good trail runner!! Although most trail runners would say this course was easy, I definitely struggled through all the loose rocks, roots and wet leaves.
- The trail was covered with leaves so we could not see what was under the leaves.
- We had to run through (freezing cold) water (about 7" deep) 4 times and then there was another wet spot later on in the loop but it wasn't nearly as bad.
- My feet were soggy, I could feel my wet socks pulling on my toenails, lifting them up.
- As usual, I rolled/twisted my ankles at least 2 times per mile. My ankles are VERY flexible so when I twist/roll them, I'm still able to keep on going, it doesn't usually hurt til the next day.
-The back of my left knee bothered my after about mile 32. That has never happened before but it quickly went away once I stopped.
-We started in the dark and had to wear headlamps, mine was obviously too tight because my forehead is still sore to the touch!
-My time wasn't bad, and it was my first 50 so I'm definitely NOT complaining, but it is a little frustrating because I know I lost at least 1 hour due to bad trail technique.
- My feet and ankles HURT
- My muscles weren't too sore after wards, it was more joint/tendon discomfort from 10 hours and 53 minutes of rolling and twisting. Everyone always says how painful running on the roads is. Running on the roads is NOT painful AT ALL to me, running on trails is painful to me!! I'm like polar opposite of everyone else but I'd much rather run 50 miles on roads! It would have hurt a lot less!!

I really did enjoy the 50 miles! I will definitely run 50 again! Ryan wants to do the 50 next year so we will most likely run it together.  Here are some pictures from the day:
 About 20 minutes before the race.

 Mile 37.5, end of the 3rd loop. Apparently I don't like whatever I'm drinking.
My soggy feet at mile 37.5. I was getting a blister so Ryan put some Vaseline on the spot while I changed my socks.

Coming into the finish. That is my friend Kenny, he always does this thing where he pretends to block the person he is running with. I ended up beating him tho, by like 1 second.

More pictures to come once they are posted by the race people. Ryan will write his race report soon. Thanks for all your support.

woohoo, 100th post!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Trail Running in Our Neck of the Woods (PHOTOS)

This Saturday, we went for a nice run with some friends on our trails. We are so lucky to have trails like this is our area, they go on for miles and miles, and are especially beautiful this time of year with all the foliage. We decided to bring a camera because it's so nice out there! Check out the photos below:

Last week, we had a group of about 17 runners on the trails.

Stay tuned for our Halloween pics later in the week!