Sunday, August 18, 2013

Lake Erie Shores and Islands Half Marathon...

Great day for a race!  Left the house this morning about 6:15, race started at 7.  Sometimes it is really nice to have a local race, no worrying about time and where you are going to stay, traffic etc.  Still kind of dark when we arrived and fog.  This is the 3rd year they have held this race and I have done all three.  Very few people running today though, apparently there was a triathalon in the next town over today too, so I think that ....took some of the usual runners.  As I was looking around and saw so few people I thought to myself, oh no, so few people I will be dead last,,,they will probably send out the local police to look for me.  I really get nervous before races.  I one point I said to my husband, why do I do this????  He said "because you love it"...yeah he is right, even as slow as I am I do love it and I love competing, even if it is against myself most of the time.  So anyway, played the National Anthem and away we went!  The course was a little different this year, past years we went about 1/4 mile and then ran on a kind of trail for a couple of miles.  This trail has never been well maintained, it is single file and does have some really low spots and holes that aren't readily seen when you are running, but I kind of like that part of the run myself.  But today we stayed on the highway instead, not a lot of room on the shoulder to run, but they did have the orange cones, making a sort of running lane.  Traffic at that time of the morning was not bad though.  It is pretty scenic, some beautiful homes along lake Erie, the first mile went really fast for me. I was wearing my Garmin, but I decided to just use it today to help remind me of my Walk/run ratio.  I have been doing the Walk/run for my past few halfs and it has worked for me.  I did not want to know how fast Iwas going...I get too caught up in that and I think I think about it too much, so it was hard, but I did not look.  I did however check at each mile to see what my pace was.  I didn't let it get to me though, just looked. This stretch of highway was about 3 miles I think and then we entered the small town of Huron, running through the neighborhood, then out on a highway again.....I think it gets a little hilly here, but probably most people would not think that it is....not a lot of room again and more traffic.  Got a little dicey when the lead runners were heading back and we were still running to the turn around.  My son and grandson live in a subdivision along this highway and they were standing on their corner to cheer grandme on!  This year I crossed the street and gave grandson and son a hug, never did that before, but seemed the thing to do today.  Continued to the turn around, which I thought would never come, but I still felt pretty good.  The way back is more downhill so I tried to kick up the pace a little......back into town, and my feet start cramping a little, they always do this and as long as I keep running they usually calm down. By now we are in mile 9 and going pretty well.  The sun is up now and getting a little warm, but not bad.  At this point I did pass 2 ladies that had been ahead of me the whole way.  Out of the town and back out on the highway...mile 11 I started getting a twinge in my right calf and I keep saying, please don't cramp up now, please don't, I think I am going pretty well.  Kept twinging and more cramps in the foot....mile 12 twinges are getting worse, but keep moving Ginny, keep moving.....10-20 feet from the finish my right calf grabbed me so bad I had to stop, nothing else I could do......I am alone, staring at the finish line, the photographer is there and I had grabbing my calf at a dead stop!  My husband saw me and came to me, so I leaned on him, we are both rubbing that dang finally let up enough for me to cross the finish line.....but I was so disappointed.   Really????  10 feet in front of the finish?   BUT  I still had a personal best!   I couldn't believe it....for whatever reason they had the sign that showed your time turned off, so I figured I must be way over 3 hours and they just turned it off...but Ken said you had a really good time...I said I did?  I looked at my Garmin at it said 2:46.  I know to you runners this is not that good of a time but it is the best Ihave ever done, so I was thrilled!!  Ken said when he saw me approaching the finish he thought Wow she is doing good!   So even with my calf I did well and I am just so happy!   Bring on the next one in September!!!


Monday, July 29, 2013

What Happened to Summer???????

I mean this morning and last night I was wearing my winter robe and socks!   In July!  This just isn't right!  We have approximately 6-8 months of winter here in northern Ohio, I need a couple paltry months of summer please before we are plunged back into cold and dreary.

My running has been going pretty well though.  I guess this weather is conducive to that anyway.  Ran 11 miles yesterday morning and felt really great.  I am running another half marathon on August 18th so I need to get in some longish runs.  Up until this past week my running has been sub par, feeling really sluggish.  Don't know what causes this.  One day you feel like you cannot put one foot in front of the other and a few days later you can be running like the wind!   Well I never run like the wind, but you get my gist.  Very perplexing as I know most runners experience this phenomena.  I have tried to keep track of my runs and figure out if there is a common thread when I have these terrible runs, but I have not been able to find one, it just seems to happen.  Maybe the stars aren't aligned right or something, who knows?  As long as I  don't stay in a running funk I guess I can handle a few bad runs.

Ran a local 5 K over the 4th of July and did pretty well for me.  Ran it in 36:22 and placed 2nd in my age group.  Not bad and it was fun.  Always fun to place, which never happened when I was younger.  Perseverance pays off I guess.

Completely off topic from my running, I became the proud grandmother of twin girls almost 2 weeks ago now!

They are too cute aren't they???  What a blessing.
These two little angels are grandchildren number 9 and 10!


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Running into Relatives!

With my genealogy-obsessed coworker I have digging into my past for the past several years.  Recently we discovered that my father's cousin lived less than an hour away!  This was quite a find, since most all of the relatives are in the Scranton, Pa., Philadelphia Pa. area.  So this cousin's father and my grandfather were brothers!  I had the pleasure of meeting Jack last summer and again just last week , with an added bonus!  His sisters were there visiting, so I got to meet more cousins.  We had a wonderful time and I loved hearing stories that I had never heard before.  We figure we may have met up sometime in Philadelphia when we were very small children.  Below is a picture of my grandparent's Emma and Ambrose Murray.

They both died when I was in my teens, but I do remember them of course.  I was born in Philadelphia, so I remember them being babysitters when my mom and dad would go out.  One night I remember that it was snowing and my parent's specifically asking me and telling my grandparents not to let me go out in the snow!  I have no idea why they would have said this, maybe I had a cold or something, I just remember that my grandparents completely ignored these instructions and we went out and played in the snow!  Once we moved to NY, my grandparents would frequently visit and we would visit Philadelphia.  However, I do not remember much about any other relatives.  I have no idea why we were not involved with other aunts and uncles, maybe my parents were and I just don't remember.  It was quite exciting then to meet my grandfather's brother's son!  Below is a picture of  a my grandfather, Ambrose on the right, Emma (grandmother) then Kay and Jerome ( Ambroses' brother) at my grandparents home.

Added bonus, when I met with Jack and his sisters, Peg had brought a picture of Ambrose's mother.  I have never seen a picture of her.  She was born In  Ireland in 1863 to James Fleming and Bridget O'Hara.  Her first husband was a James McCann, he died very young.  It was with her 2nd husband John T Murray that she had 4 sons, Walter, Joseph, Ambrose, Jerome.  You can see them listed here in the 1900 census in Scanton, Penna.  Also listed are 4 other children of which we really cannot figure out the connection.

Below is the picture of my great-grandmother, Mary, with 3 of her grandchildren and a neighbor.  According to my cousins, Kay and Peg, she was quite stern and you learned to mind Grandmother Murray!

Sadly,  I did not connect with Jack Murray until after my father passed away.  My Dad would have been so excited to meet up with one of his relatives, that I am sure he knew when he was young.  They would have had so much fun talking about the past!  My Dad was proud of what I had found out already, but this really would have put him over the top.  

Monday, June 10, 2013

Why we do this?????

Those of you, who are not runners, may wonder why we do this to ouselves?  We pay money to run these races, where at times, we run with cramps in our feet and calves, aching knees, nausea...we keep running even though we feel like walking (which I do), but even when I do walk, I will myself back to running even though it hurts.  I really don't know how to answer the question of why we do it.  For one thing, the comaraderie is awesome.  I have met such wonderful people and made, I hope, lifelong friends.  Before I started running the longer distances it was a pretty solitary activity.  I mean it still is solitary when I do my runs, but not at the races, and I get such support from my running community.  I believe some of it may be the competition, even though I know I am not going to win one of these races I compete against myself I guess.  There are so many times during these races that I really want to stop, get on one of the vehicles that roam these races and tell them take me back, I am done!  But I just can't make myself do it!  As long as I can propel myself forward, I just cannot DNF, Did not Finish.  I feel I would be disappointing not only to
 myself, but my friends and family, even though I know, in my heart, that they would not think any less of me if this happened, but my head just won't let me do it...I just keep going.  Maybe it is because I always thought my Dad was disappointed in me as a kid, (don't mean to go deep here), but sometimes I wonder why I do it myself and it hard to figure out or explain.

Who knew that when I first took that first step out the door with running shoes over 30 years ago, that I would still be at it and running half marathons!  It certainly is character building!  I still haven't really explained why we do it.  I would be curious of what other runners think.

By the way, I won 1st in my age group, for the first time in a half this weekend, which is probably why I am feeling emotional.  It's a great feeling.


Sunday, June 9, 2013

Hatfield/McCoy Half Marathon....WV and Kentucky

First of all, this was an amazing Half Marathon!

Left for the Hatfield/McCoy about 7:30 Friday morning.  Driving by myself, so for the first time I used a GPS that my daughter let me borrow.  Loved it!  Would literally have been lost without it, even with the directions I had printed from GoogleMaps.  Driving from northern Ohio to Kentucky.  Once I got south of Columbus it was a beautiful drive.  Not that the beginning of the drive isn't nice, but I am used to that one.  I have lived in Northern Ohio so long now that I almost forgot what mountains are like.  The scenery was breathtaking once I was in Kentucky, the roads are carved right out of the mountains and they are just right there.  So green, everything so green, beautiful drive.  There was nothing for miles and miles and then all of a sudden, just stuck there was a tiny store, looked like a mobile home almost, with a big sign Haircuts and Barber!  It was just so odd.  The more I drove the steeper the climb was, gave my little Rav4 quite a workout!  Arrived in Pikeville, Ky about 3:30 in the afternoon.  The worst part of the drive was locating the dang Hotel, had to call Marjorie, who I was rooming with...ends up I was only about 1/2 a block away, I totally missed it.  Hampton Inn, great Hotel, beautiful room.  Rested for about an hour and then joined the rest of our little group in the lobby and headed off to the pasta dinner.  Guess we had to drive about 1/2 hour.  Good food and company and then moved to an aud.  itorium where they had the author, Dean King, speaking about his book "The Feud, the Hatfields & McCoys, the True Story.  Very interesting and then there was a brief skit, which was a dialogue between an Hatfield and a McCoy...very good.

Headed back to the Hotel for an early night.

Arose about 5:00 a.m.  The marathon started at 7 and the 2nd Half Marathon, which is the one I was doing, started at 8.  Went downstairs and had a complimentary breakfast, the Hotel started their buffet at 4:30 just for the runners, thank you Hampton Inn!  Those that were running the marathon left around 5:30.  My friend, Cindy and I left around 6:30 for our half, thinking we had plenty of time, it was about a 40 min. drive, WRONG...first of all the ramp to the highway we were supposed to take was closed for whatever reason.  Had to take a little detour to get back on and then we missed the first turn, had to double back, so by this time the marathon runners were on the same highway!  Not good.  Finally we are clear of runners and decide to take a shortcut!  Another bad idea, we ran into the runners again and this time there was no escape!  We had to follow a police car at about 5 miles an hour, runners on the right, cars on the left on a 2 lane road, with cars coming from the opposite direction also!  We did get to see a lot of scenery though, going that slow, the world's smallest horst, the Hatfield homestead.  We also passed our friends, already running the marathon!  Needless to say, we missed our Half Marathon start by almost an hour.  As there was not time limit for the race, we just jumped in where we were supposed to start, which was the 1/2 way point for the marathoners, so the start was still up and running, so we were going to be timed.  I started out way too fast for me and I knew I was going too fast and I just couldn't control myself.  It was mostly downhill at the start through the small town of Matewan WV, lovely , you could see peoples flower and vegtable gardens right at the road, everything was just so green, so pretty..  The first 5 miles, I would say was rolling hills, small hills, seemed to be more down than up at this point, so I was cruisin, some of the marathoners were showing up behind and passing me at this point.  Everyone saying good job, as I suspect they thought I was running the marathon, they didn't know I had just started.  I did start to slow some and then had to slow a lot as we came to about a 2 mile area that was all mud.  Not deep mud, but very sticky and slippery mud.  As I am not used to this at all, I had to walk some as I did not want to do a fanny plant in the mud.  I don't know exactly what mile I was at, but afterwards we came to a golf course to run through which contained a swinging bridge.  It was a little disconcerting, as it made me a bit dizzy, cause as the runners ahead ran over it, it swayed and you could see through the slats to the water below, it was different though.  There were some steep hills at this point, not long hills, but steep.  After the golf course we were running through the woods again, I know I sound like a broken record, but it was so beautiful, vegatation right to the edge of the road....I noticed wild roses, which I didn't even know existed, looked like grape vines too, no gaps, just green , green, green and gorgeous valleys and bridges and water falls and just mountains no matter where you looked.  We heard roosters crowing and turkeys gobbling , I saw chipmonks running back into the woods in front of me.  A few homes, but not many.  At one point there was a beautiful colt , just beautiful and there were 3 men passing me at the time, one of the men said "man, that is a beautiful dog"  Just cracked me up, I laughed for quite a while thinking of that comment, we all did around him.  A lot of hills now and I was getting really tired and my back, right between my shoulder blades was killing me.  I admit, I walked a lot after this.  One of my friends who was doing the marathon came up behind me and stayed with me up one the steeper inclines, not sure I would have made it without her.  Thanks Tessa!!!  She ran on and I kept plodding alone.

The last 3 miles were very hard for me.  I really could not wait to see that finish line, it seemed like it would never come, but once I was in sight of the finish, I just could not walk, so I did run down the chute, which was kind of long.  BUT  my friends were there yelling my name and cheering me on, so that helped a lot!  I think my time was 3:08, which isn't my worst, but I hate finishing over 3 hours.  Oh well , with all the hills, that isn't bad for me.  I never train on hills.  There were a Hatfield and McCoy standing at the finish line who high-fived you as soon as you crossed, which was cool and then they handed you an ICED towel!  It felt heavenly, as it was pretty warm at this point.  Oh and they had watermelon, which also hit the spot.  I felt okay, but just could not eat anything, except the watermelon, they didn't have chocolate milk, so I just drank something and sat down for a little while with my friends, got up and walked a little.  We had to catch a shuttle bus to take us back to the car.  Got on the bus, and not 5 minutes later I thought I was going to be sick.  I just sat there with my head down, holding the towel to my face, but I got worse and worse, broke out in a cold sweat, I was just waiting for the leg cramps to begin, but they didn't and I started feeling better, thank goodness.  However, in the meantime, my friend was getting motion sickness, so now she was sick!  Believe me it wasn't fun , in small school bus, going around very steep curves and up and down mountains when you are not feeling well.  That was some long ride!  We were so thankful when we got off that bus!  Unfortunately we had to get back in the car and drive 40 minutes to the Hotel, around all those curves and hills...oh my, neither one of us felt well.  Couldn't wait to lie down back in the room.

This was a wonderful race though.  You have got to go down and run it if you can.  I will go back, long drive, motion sickness and all!


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Cleveland Half Race Report......trains, trains and automobiles

I have run the Cleveland Half Marathon twice before, both times I booked a Hotel and stayed in Cleveland. This time I signed up too late and all the hotels nearby the race were booked, so Ken and I decided we would just drive into Cleveland the day of the race.  Having never done this before we were not sure about parking, RTA riding etc.  The website for the marathon stated that runners should be at the start by 6:00 a.m. as there would be road closures.  So.....we left Sandusky at 3:50!  Yes that is 3:50 A.M.!!!  Yikes!  That meant arising about 3:00.  I usually don't sleep well the night before anyway, but poor Ken.  Needless to say, very little traffic at that time of the morning!  Still no traffic the closer we get to Cleveland, we are thinking the race is today, right???  Parked at the West Side Market on 25th Street to take the RTA into Cleveland, got our tickets and as soon as we walked down the stairs a train pulled in....yes!   Get to Tower City, get off one train, go through the gate to catch a train to Brown's Stadium and again..immediately there is another train!  I am thinking this is going to be a good race for me, everything is going soooooo  smoothly!  Arrive at Brown's Stadium around  5:45 and still not many runners, so much for having to be there at 6:00 a.m.!  Next year we will know better.  It really wasn't bad hanging around the was completely open and they were selling some refreshments.  We sat in the stands and struck up a couple of conversations with fellow runners.  What is so neat about this race is there are no port-a-potties at the Start, all the restrooms in the stadium were open for the runners, so you get to use clean, flushing toilets!  Let me tell you, that is quite a treat for a runner!!!

Decide that it is time to wander to the start where you line up according to your pace.  This means that being the "fast" runner that I am....I am in the rear with the walkers...oh well, I will never get used to this, but it is what it is.  I did hear a few comments from some of the runners walking by, you know the ones I mean, the ones that are jogging around, bare chested, stretching, young jocks  (sorry but they irritate me)..anyway they were making fun..pointing at the pace corral saying "this is where you belong, with the walkers"  I just wanted to slap them!!  You know what????  So, it takes me almost 3 hours to run a half, I am doing it, aren't I?  Come back to me when you are 63 years old and see if you are still running!!!!  Sorry, I digress!  Join the rest of the runners and wait for race to start.  There was a moment of silence for the Boston Marathon, then the National anthem........"Cleveland Rocks"  starts blaring over the loud speakers....I just love that, I start getting emotional, I always do this right before a race starts and my brain starts saying "why am I doing this again?"  That passes, it always does.  Takes about 10 minutes  for us at the back to get to the start and we are off!!!  I forget that the first mile is uphill, how I forget this I don't know, but it is a good way to ensure that one doesn't start out too fast.  However, I am feeling tired and sluggish and my legs already ache, not a good sign...By mile 3 I am getting warm, glad that at this point it is overcast and breezy, although why the breeze always seems to be in my face and not at my back, I can not figure.....glad I am carrying my own water.  I still don't feel that great, but keeping my pace.  Mile 5, I am starting to wear out, for some reason mile 5 is always bad for me, but I talk myself out of it...still going pretty good for me.  Miles 6 through 9 are going through some neat neighborhoods, edgewater was earlier in the race, but going through Ohio City and Tremont is nice, although I don't remember much of it, unfortunately I was dwelling on how tired my legs were.  I kept anticipating a huge hill at mile 9, which I thought I remembered from last year, but it isn't there, so I either imagined it last year or they changed the course a little.  I took a Gel at this point, but I never seem to get that jolt of energy that other people say they feel when they take one, actually I felt a little nauseous, but I got over it.

At Mile 11 we started going over the Lorain_Carnegie Bridge which is quite a climb, I had to walk a lot of it, the sun was really beating down by now, but what goes up must come down, right?  I tried to pick up my pace some going down, but I couldn't even do that for too long and I had to stop again and walk.  Mile 12 I am thinking that maybe I will listen to some music, so I put my earphones in.  I have never used music while running a Half before....I didn't like it.  Took them out, the spectator crowd was picking up now anyway as we were back in downtown.  Lots of noise and bands playing, which kind of got me going again, but then the right foot cramped up and stopped me in my, no...I will keep going gosh darn it!  Rounding the corner and I can see the line of American Flags leading to the finish line...I am not going to get a PR, but I am going to finish under 3 hours if it kills me!!!!!   I do finish and it doesn't kill me.  As soon as I cross the line I look for Ken and see him right away!  Yay, I made it!!!  Once again I finished a Half and at that moment I do feel proud!  My official time was 2:58:34, so under 3, not what I wanted but I will take it.

I really enjoy this Half and will do it again.  Love Cleveland!!!!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

I ran 14 miles this morning in just under 3 hours!  This is great for me!  I am so excited.  I usually run a half in just under three , so to run 14 at the same is an accomplishment!  I almost bailed at mile 12, thought to myself that that was enough, but I gave myself a talking to and went for it.  So glad that I did.  The whole run felt pretty good.  Not saying, that my legs didn't get tired, because they did, they always do, but I did okay.

For these longer runs, I have been using Jeff Galloway's run/walk method.  I read , that for the marathon, he and his wife use 30 second run, 30 second walk.  I started out using exactly that this morning, or as exact as I can get, I still don't have a watch, so I count in my head.  As the run progressed I kept the 30 second walk, but upped the running.  It really does seem to work , to keep me from getting so tired.

I did register for the Cleveland Rite Aid Half marathon on May 19.  I hope, hope that I do well, I would love  to break 2:45 for the Half!  I would be a happy woman.  I will never be fast, but I would be happy with that.

I have been feeling kinda good doing these longer runs lately, dare I think that I might do another marathon?  It has been niggling in my brain the past few weeks.  What I would like to do is the Marine Corps marathon in Washington D.C. and wait until after my 65th birthday.  That would be November of 2014, since I will turn 65 Oct 31st of that year.  Then I would be in the older age group...I don't know, we shall see what happens.

Beautiful day here today.  Hopefully get outside and do some planting today.  Also cooking out for the first time this year.  Love it!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Born to run? Not really.

Some people are born to run, I am not one of them!!  In school I was very non-athletic.  You know, one of those that are always picked last for teams, left standing there while the team captain knows that they will have to pick you  because you are the only one left?  Yep, that was me, how humiliating, it still hurts.  I was a little bit on the chubby side in school, could not run fast, had no interest in sports.  In my senior year I finally decided that I could stand to lose a little weight, and I did!  Just set my mind to it and lost probably 20 pounds or so, was able to keep it off over the years, but never by exercising, I just never ate!  In my mid- 20's aerobics was the craze and  a friend and I signed up for a class at the Y, found out that I was pretty good at the aerobic thing and actually got chosen, along with some others to demonstrate at a local mall, pretty nifty for someone who had always been chosen last.  Plus, the aerobics helped keep my weight down and I could eat!  So....a couple of years later I started the running and have not quit in 35 years.  I have never been fast, or had good form, or looked like a runner, I just run.  I can't tell you how running has helped my self-confidence.  I have found, over the past 5 years, since I started running the longer distances, the running is as much a mental exercise as a physical one.  I can tell you that there have been times during a half marathon when I felt I could not put one foot in front of the other, but have been determined that I will not, not finish that half marathon!  I have had aches and pains and still continued to run.  Many, many times I really do not feel like getting up at 4:30 a.m. so that I can get that run in before work, but 9 times out of 10 I do it.  I get discouraged because of my slow pace, and always bringing up the rear at races, but I keep on, just telling myself that I am doing it, I am not sitting on a couch somewhere, I have run a marathon!  For me that is amazing and I have to be reminded many times that it is quite a feat, especially for those of us who are not fast, not born to run, it does not come easy for us, every mile sometimes is hard, but we do it and we do it over and over again.

I hope this does not sound like I am patting myself on the back and saying what a wonderful person I am.  Just wanted to emphasize that you do not have to be "born to run"  you just do it!  The satisfaction you get crossing that finish line is amazing and it doesn't diminish no matter how many time you do it, even coming in dead last, which fortunately I have so far avoided, but even if I did come in last, I did it gosh darn it, and it wasn't easy, never has been.

My gym teacher would be so proud!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

I have been feeling so good lately, that is kind of scares me!  What happened?  I always run the same, wear the same shoes..etc etc...what makes us have these wonderful runs and then out of the blue, a streak of terrible runs?  Wish someone could give me a little insight into this phenomena, because I know it happens to a lot of runners.  Part of it , for me anyway, I know is the winter, but heck it still is winter around here!  Maybe it is all mental, wish I had an answer.  All I know is, for the time being, I am going to go with this feeling of euphoria I have been having with my runs.  Even the weight training hasn't been bothering me, and usually I do not look forward to that at all.  Also, I feel addicted again, like I did when I first started running, it's like I can't take a day off, I have to do something, whether it be a run, or weight training, or the walk/ jog DVD.  I have done something now for 10 days in a row and I NEVER do that!  I like the feeling, but I am a little obsessed!  Right now, I am at work wondering if I should work out over my lunch hour....never do that either.

Oh well....I will just go with it and hope that I am still motivated a month from now.

Happy running! is a pic of my new running shoes!  Just arrived UPS yesterday, love the colors, can't wait to take them out for a test drive.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Today would have been my Dad's 96th birthday.  He passed away almost 2 years ago now.  We didn't always see to eye to eye, but I know how much he loved me and I miss him.

What a beautiful weekend!  I was planning on doing a longish run on Sunday.  Longish to me these days is over 5 miles..  Rain was predicted for Sunday, so I decided to get out on Saturday instead.  Did 7 miles and felt great!  I haven't felt this good running in months and it is such a relief.  The weather was perfect, sunny, in the 40's and no wind.  I actually got to run without layers of clothing...just an running shirt and liberating.  Sunday ended up even did not rain and temps were in the 60's, I couldn't resist and went out for another 3!  Ordinarily do not run 2 days in a row anymore, especially after I have done a longer one, but could not pass up those temps!  I didn't feel as good as I did on Saturday, but it was still good.  Today is rainy and windy and snow showers predicted for tomorrow...Spring in Ohio!

On the days that I have not been going outside to run, I am continuing to do some free weight training and the walk/jog 4 mile DVD with Leslie Sansone, this is really a good DVd and gets the old heart rate up...I really think it has helped me with my speed, believe it or not, she really has you moving continuously for about 45 minutes...highly recommend if anyone is in the market for a good workout inside.

I am a little concerned about a weird pain that I have been experiencing in my left calf.  It is a dull ache and it feels like it is going to cramp up, but it never does.  What has me concerned is I was reading an article about blood clots in runners by Jenny Hatfield and the sensation I have been experiencing is one of the symptoms.  If it continues, I will have to have it checked out.  If I had not read the article I would not even be worried about it.

Made this great potato salad this weekend:

2 poundsclean, scrubbed new red potatoes


    1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain and set in the refrigerator to cool.
    2. Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Cover and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool, peel and chop.
    3. Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.
    4. Chop the cooled potatoes, leaving skin on. Add to a large bowl, along with the eggs, bacon, onion and celery. Add mayonnaise, salt and pepper to taste. Chill for an hour before serving.

    Sunday, March 3, 2013

    Because I had such a good run on Friday, I was all set to go out and try to do a longish run this morning.  I was going to try for at least 6 miles.  Anyway, got up at 5:30 this morning, walked downstairs and saw that it had snowed overnight again!  Darn it!  It isn't much, but enough that I don't want to go out in it!  Darn, darn darn!  I am so sick of this winter, I could cry.  I know I can get out there, but it is probably slippery and it just dashed my intentions.  Guess I will wait now until it is light and see how it is.  I do not want to use the treadmill.  I really think I do suffer from the seasonal disorder where the lack of sunshine really despresses you.  The weather should not affect my mood as much as it does.  There is nothing we can do about it and I live in an area where the winters are long, long, long!  Should be used to it.  Just looked outside again, it is starting to get light, made me even more depressed, looks worse in the light.  Plan #2...I will do Leslie Sansone's walk/jog 4 miles in my living room, not the same, but better than nothing I guess, I just can't take the treadmill this morning.   At this rate I  will never be ready for a half marathon in May.  I have to say, in my younger days,  I would get out and run in any weather...I have run during sleet storms in Kansas City where I would sink ankle deep in slush!  I have run in Colorado where it was so cold one day that a person yelled out to me "are you crazy, it is 20 below zero"  , no lie, we had just moved there and I had no idea it was so cold.  But I much prefer when I am running in the warmth with sweat running down my legs, now that is my kind of run!  I totally should be living somewhere in the South.

    So, do you think I have gone on and on about the weather enough?  This too shall pass, right???  right????  I live in fear of another year without a summer that occurred sometime last century.  I couldn't take it, I tell you, I couldn't take it!  

    On a more cheerful note...I have to brag on my granddaughter, Mikayla.  She is 10 years old and is becoming quite a basketball player.  She played at her school earlier this year and now she is playing at the YMCA.  She is the only girl and can play with the best of those boys!  It is so much fun to watch.  My 2 other granddaughters are grreat at sports also.  Cassidy shines at softball and so does Meadow.  Meadow is only turning 10 and has been asked to play with girls much older than she.  Cassidy has always been good at softball and she is a junior in high school now  With softball season right around the corner, I am looking forward to many games.  They certainly did not get this talent from this grandmother!  I am terrible at sports, I will stick to running!  I was always the last person standing when choosing teams (Gees, I hated that feeling)  Just thinking of that makes me feel humiliated all these years later.

    Okay, think I might go out and run anyway, or maybe not......

    Friday, March 1, 2013

    Hurrah!!!   I ran 4 miles this morning and I felt great!  First time in a long time that I had a good run.  I am so relieved.  I was beginning to think that I had lost it.  It was cold and a little breezy, but streets were dry.  Almost didn't go out, was feeling really lazy and the thought of going out in the cold for another lousy run, just did not appeal to me at all, but out I went, and I am so glad that I did.  Now I have to make up my mind whether or not to run the Cleveland Half in May.  I had a terrible experience there last year.  It was a beautiful day in May, but unusually warm for Cleveland.  In fact we had an unusally warm March last year, but then it turned cold in April and May...anyway, the day of the Half was sunny and hot even.  I felt pretty good for the first 5 or 6 miles, but by mile 9 I almost gave it up and boarded "the bus"..having never, ever not finished a race, I just couldn't make myself do it, so I kept plugging alone.  I remember thinking to myself that it was so hot and I wasn't sweating and thought that was odd.  There was a lot of walking, but I did run over the finish line with a terrible time of over 3 hours.  Saw my husband waiting for me, got some water and walked around some, feeling fine....all of sudden I started to feel very sick to my stomach and sat down on the curb, feeling worse and worse, I finally asked my husband to walk to the medical tent and get someone...while he was gone I threw up (luckily it was mostly water) and feeling very shaky.  My husband finally arrived with someone and they walked me over to the medical tent, took my BP, which was very low, and I have HBP normally....then the leg cramps started, from the tip of my toes to my waist, both legs simultaneously, I didn't know where to grab, it was the way the tent was full, I was not the only one who experienced problems that day...finally, the doctor asked my husband to hold my legs so they could get an IV in me....almost immediately I got relief.  In a few minutes, I was able to drink some chocolate milk and felt so much better.  They wouldn't let me go until I could get up and walk around the tent twice, did that, and I was done.  I have never had this happen to me before, I don't know if it was because it was so hot that day and I hadn't really run in the heat that year because Northern Ohio does not normally get heat like that in the Spring.  All I know is that I hope it never happens again!  Watch, this year it will probably be snowing!  That is entirely possible also!

    Oh what the heck???  I will probably sign up for it again.  It would be nice to see the course, I felt so bad last year I didn't take in the scenery much, I was too miserable.

    Tuesday, February 26, 2013

    Sheesh, I haven't run in a couple of days again.  Unlike , a couple of weeks ago however, I really feel like running, so that is good!  Bad is that we are supposed to get ice/snow starting tomorrow again, so will have to do the treadmill  I suspect.  I still am not as motivated as I would like and it worries me..I still have so much I would like to do with my running, but I am feeling inadequate.  I know I sound like a broken record, but the slowness really bothers me.  Just the thought of going out for a 10 mile run and having it take over 2 hours,just pushes down the spirit. I just being pessimistic and I can really amp up my time or is age just taking it's toll on me?  I do not want to hurt myself so then I would not be able to run at all, and , I know myself, I don't want to burn out and resent the running.  Just not in the best place right now I guess...hoping, against hope, that it is just the winter that is getting me down.  I have to say, getting up at 4:30 a.m. and facing the dark and the cold is not appealing one bit.  Last week I was doing really well, this week not so much.  Wish I had a running partner who would make me feel accountable.  If I know someone is counting on me I won't let them down.  Same thing with signing up for a race, if I know I have a race to run, I won't let myself down.  I did do that once though, I signed up for the Flying Pig  half marathon in Cincinnati two years ago and I did not train enough to participate.  Again, the race was in May and I had a bad winter!  Make myself mad!  The only solution I see is moving south... LOL.  I think "LOL" is passe now, but I still use it.  I also like to use the excuse of time.  Working full time really does make it difficult.  Seems that I am wanting more and more down time to myself the past few months.  I get home from work and I just want to sit and read or knit, not exercise.  I have found that I do much better with the weight training if I do it in the evening, but again the motivation factor.  I have to go home and immediately change and exercise or I won't do it! Plus, I find myself thinking about how I have to go home after work and exercise and it depresses me, i just want to go home. Period.  Man, I really have to get out of this funk!

    I have had a bad toothache since Friday.  It is subsiding a little, but right now it is killing me again.  Went to the dentist yesterday and am on antibiotics, so hopefully this will go soon.  Need lots of dental work, but I knew that I did.  Being an ex-hygienist I am not fearful of the dentist, so I am looking forward to finally getting the work done!

    Saturday, February 23, 2013

    I really have to start getting in some longer miles.  I am doing the Hatfield/Mcoy 1/2 marathon on June 9th for sure and I am still comtemplating the Cleveland Half in May, but I have to get some long runs going.  Just don't have it in me right now.  I so wish the weather would turn for the better, although that is not an excuse. I should not complain because I am slow, but I am going to anyway.  It just takes me so darn long to run 10 miles anymore.  I don't want to run my 1/2 marathon pace for my practice runs, so I slow down even more for them....takes me almost 2 hours to run 10 miles, so it has to be on a weekend.  The weekends go so darn fast.  Plus today I have a killer toothache!  It started bad last night, the whole right side of my face hurts, ibuprofen helps for a little while, but not for long, I am miserable.  Dentist on Monday.  It is my own fault, I have neglected visiting the dentist for a long time and now I am paying the price.  Going to the dentist is expensive, very expensive.  I need so much work I will have to take out a loan, I am sure...darn teeth anyway.  Since we are living so much longer these days, I really think we should get a third set of know like when you are a child, you lose all those baby teeth and get new grown up teeth?  That's what should happen in our 50's, get a third set for the rest of our life, cause this set just isn't going to last!

    Making homemade bread this afternoon, it is rising right now.  Nothing like fresh bread out of the oven with peanut butter!  Yum!  Soft enough so I think I can have some even with this darn tooth!


    Thursday, February 21, 2013

    Not too much to report today.  Still snowing....I should be used to this weather, having grown up in Western NY....major snow country, and now northern Ohio.  I get down in the dumps this time of year and usually fall into a real running slump.  So far, I have not done too badly this winter.  I did slack off for about 2 weeks, but this past week I have done really well.  Also been doing some free weights at home with a DVD.  The DVD is Ripped and Chiseled (both of which, I will never be) by Jari Love.  I really enjoy this DVD, easy to follow, good music, and you can make it as hard or easy as you like.  However, I have found my problem is not poor muscle tone, but loose skin!  Too much information???  LOL! is a killer!  Oh well I will keep working out anyway, mentally, the exercise makes me feel much better.

    So looking forward to getting outside more to run and complaining about the heat and humidity!  Oh well, we have to be thankful for the little bits of sunshine that we do get this time of year and keep on keeping on.

    Wednesday, February 20, 2013

    Let me tell you how I started this running experience.  I was about 25 years old (this was the mid 70's)  Remember how the health spas were springing up all over the country?  We lived outside Kansas City at the time and a co-worker and I decided to join one of these spas.  All went well for a few months, took aerobic classes, think Olivia Newton-John.....  One morning we go to the spa and there is a note pinned to the door....went out of business!  Out of luck, lost the money etc.etc...  this was also happening to these spas all over the country.  Anyway, my co-worker was a runner, so she suggested I take it up too.  I decided to give it a try, put on my regular old reboks and off I went....yeah, right, I made it about 2 blocks and thought I was going to die!   Never one to give up, I kept going out day after day until one day I ran 2 miles and I was ecstatic!!!  Entered a 10K with same friend only about a month or so later and thought I was going to die again.  Remember, I was not training, I was wearing regular tennis shoes and have never run over 2 miles, BUT  I finished in under an hour, so felt quite proud of myself.  I Had 2 young children at the time, ages 6 and 3, both could ride bikes, so I would take them with me on my runs.

    Throughout the years we have lived in Kansas, Denver Co, Louisville KY, and my home now in Ohio.  I never did long distances and I never worried about my speed or competing.  Just in the past 4 years I have started doing longer distances .  My first half marathon was in Cleveland Ohio, my second was Detroit, which by the way, is my favorite.  I have run the Detroit marathon once and the half 3 times I it!  I believe I have done 16 halfs now, doing usually 3 or 4 a season, but last year I ran 5.

    I have never had a major injury and the only time I have stopped running was because of my third pregnancy, due to health issues I had to quit for a few months.  That baby is now 25!  I attribute my lack of injuries to the fact that I run slowly and over all those years I did not run an excessive amount of miles.  Although I do like the longer distances, I am still not into intervals, or speed work, I just run.  Sometimes lately, I do get discouraged reading about PR's and great speed and unbelievable times (at least to me), but Ijust have to keep thinking how fortunate I am to still be running, and running these distance at the age of 63!  Heck I am starting to place in races now, simply because there aren't many of us out there, I love it!   Won, my first, first place ribbon in a  local 5 k this summer!  How exciting! 

    Snowing again!

    Was planning on running outside this morning, but with chill factors in the single digits and snow, I opted for the treadmill, which I hate.  Did 4 miles, but it wasn't pretty.  I have not had a good run in weeks.  Feel sluggish, my legs feel like lead.  Hoping that it is just the weather and that I will perk up when the weather does.

    On a positive note I am still running in my 60's.  That's a good thing!

    Anyone struggle with Morton's Neuroma?  I have it in my left foot.  Not really much pain, more of an annoying numbness and the feeling that my socks are bunched up under my toes.  Makes buying new running shoes, which I am due for, a little difficult.  I have a narrow foot, but need a wide toe box because of the neuroma.  Was wearing New Balance, but wasn't real happy with them this time, may switch back to Ascics.


    Tuesday, February 19, 2013


    As an avid runner of over 30 years, I am now in my 60's and have lots of questions about what to do, how much to run, what kind of aches and pains to expect, etc etc.

    I have found very little on the subject of woman runners over the age of 60 and am hoping I will find others out there so that we can commiserate!

    A little about myself....I am the mother of 3 grown children and 8 grandchildren, with twin grandchildren on the way!  I started running in my mid 20's, mainly for weight control and have not stopped since.  Never did long distances until the past 4 years, but now have run about 16 half marathons and one marathon, am currently training for another half in May in Cleveland.

    I have never been a fast runner, my best was probably 9 minutes miles, but then, I really didn't work at speed, I just ran.  I have slowed considerably and now am lucky if I can do a 12 minutes mile over a half marathon.  I do get discouraged and would love to talk to other runners who are a bit older and maybe slower like I am!.

    I also love to knit and cook, so I may throw some knitting and recipes in with the mix!

    Hope to hear from someone soon.