Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sunriver Marathon and fun

The Surniver marathon went very well.
I didn't sleep very well that night thanks to my irritating tickle cough, kept me awake for a long time.
I of course woke up before my alarm, jumping out of bed.
When I went outside at 6:30 AM, it was seriously 26 degrees outside. I haven't felt air that cold since we moved out of Oregon.
I ran 3 miles prior to the marathon start, my warm up. I didn't like that we had to walk a 1/2 mile to get to the marathon start. But once it got under way, it was fine. I stayed to the side knowing this was just a training run for myself and I was not going to breaking any records.
Even though there was an aid station every mile with a honey bucket, I brought my handheld water bottle and filled up when I needed it, about every 5 miles at first, then every 4. I did stop at the honey bucket twice throughout my whole run.
It was a nice run, very well organized. It was neat to hear the announcer call out my name at the 1/2 and at the finish.
I saw a total of 4 deer throughout the run. The elevation was not a factor.
So my time for the marathon was 4:48 and total with the extra 5 miles that I ran was 5:48, neat how that worked out. My age place was 4/11, overall was 120/171, sex place was 51/84.
My 2 youngest daughters did the kid triathlon and had a lot of fun. My youngest had this horrible earache and refused to see the doctor until after the event. She is a mini me, will do the event even though she feels absolutely horrible. Gee, I've done that several times. Hmmmm.

My oldest daughter, sister, niece and nephew all participated in the 5K run and did well. My nephew came in at 24 min, sister 35, niece 37 and daughter, who ran, well she walked it her first 5K came in at 50 min.
And then, there was this guy. He was so proud of his fur coat, he not only passed it around the night before at a concert, he wore it at the 5K.
But exercising isn't the only thing we did in Sunriver. There was one evening when there was a storm and the thunder and lightning was so close. My crazy family decided to sit out on the deck, in the rain watching the storm. When I came outside, my brother said I needed to wear the "special" hat, a metal bowl. Uh, don't think so, so then they just passed it around. They were outside laughing hysterically at the lightning for a good 45 minutes. Crazies!!!
Here more photos and videos of our talent show; 


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Cheers to the Sunriver Marathon

While I have ran 7 distances between a marathon and a 50K, I have not signed up for an official marathon since 2006.

This weekend, I am running the Sunriver Marathon.

I am actually training for the Mt. Hood 50, which is schedule 7/30 and am using the Sunriver Marathon as training. Why not? I will be vacationing there anyhow.

My schedule actually says 31 miles. So as I show up and am in line with a bunch of die hard speedsters, I must remind myself that the Sunriver Marathon is not important to me and that I need to treat it as training, especially since I am adding 5 additional miles on at the end.

Although I heard that there will be an aid station every mile and I feel spoiled. I do think the Sunriver Marathon is wonderful training in preparation for the Mt. Hood 50. The elevation will be near 4,000 like the Mt. Hood 50. It will also be warm like the Mt. Hood 50. I've been warned that it's hard to keep moving at the 1/2, because it's at the start/finish. I have been trained for this:

Back when I was training for my first and second marathon, the excellent coaches made it so during our very hot and first 20 miler, we would run by our cars 4 times. Twice in the beginning, twice at the end. And we were told that we could quit. It was this kind of torment that makes it easy for me to keep going, even when everyone else is done. Throughout the years, I have experienced this kind of torment. I experienced it at the Hagg Lake runs in Forest Grove and I've often set up an aid station at my car or even home.

So in preparation for the Sunriver Marathon, I have been transitioning between running on the road and trail, obviously focusing more attention to the trail. Once, the marathon is over, my runs will be mostly trail runs.

And while, my family is vacationing in Sunriver and while I'm running and sweating to death and have thoughts of them lying around at the pool, I know one other person who is feeling the burn at the 1/2 ironman, my sister in law Julie.

So I say cheers to Julie and cheers to the Sunriver Marathon. 
I wrote the below statement on my Facebook account and as always in this stage of training with just a month to go till my big day, this is so true:
 "To me, the real test of one’s character isn’t defined by completing the marathon on race day, but rather by having the self-discipline and dedication to commit, sacrifice, and endure the months of training required to complete such an event."

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Beauty of Forest Park

My favorite photo

Stone House. See bottom for further information on this landmark

Forest is located in Portland, OR. 
I have ran many miles here.
All photos were taken by me.
Go to the Forest Park Conservancy for trail information.

An abundance of wildlife (more than 112 bird and 62 mammal species) can be found in Forest Park. With its massive tree canopy and substantial undergrowth, the park serves as a natural air purifier, water collector, and erosion controller.

The 30-mile Wildwood Trail in Forest Park is part of the region’s 40-Mile Loop system that links Forest Park to pedestrian and trail routes along the Columbia River to Gresham, through southeast Portland, along the Willamette Greenway, and back to the Marquam Trail in southwest Portland. A landmark on the trail is the Stone House. This structure was built in the mid-1930s by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) as a public restroom. The infamous Columbus Day storm on October 12, 1962, took out the water line. Because the structure had been heavily vandalized over the years, the decision was made to gut the building rather than embark on costly repairs. It remains as a favorite spot to rest along the trail.

Historical Information

In 1803, William Clark (of Lewis and Clark fame) paddled far enough up the Willamette River to see Forest Park's present location. He described this forest as having Douglas fir as its predominant tree, with trunks ranging from five to eight feet in diameter.

From almost the earliest time of subsequent European settlement along the confluence of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, the vision of a great natural park along the eastern slope of Portland's northwest hills, which Native Americans called the Tualatin Mountains, was pursued over the years by various civic leaders. The first of these visionaries was the Reverend Thomas Lamb Eliot who arrived in Portland in 1867. His persistence led to the formation of the Municipal Park Commission of Portland in 1899. The Commission brought in the famous landscape architecture firm, Olmsted Brothers of Brookline, Massachusetts, to prepare a park planning study for the City in 1903. Their recommendations included the development of the 40-mile Loop and the acquisition of the wooded hills west of the Willamette River for a park with a wild, woodland character. In their report, they maintained that "...a visit to the woods would afford more pleasure and satisfaction than a visit to any other sort of park..." and " use to which this tract of land could be put would begin to be as sensible or as profitable to the city as that of making it a public park."

Frederick Van Voorhies Holman, a prominent lawyer in Portland during the 1890s and a president of the Oregon Historical Society, donated a 52-acre parcel to what would become Forest Park. Part of the Holman property had been flushed down to Guild's Lake by Lafe Pence's flume in 1909. After Pence was brought to task, Holman had a plaster of paris scale model made of the property to estimate how much it would cost to return the property to its original contours in order to develop it. Discouraged by the City from taking such a great risk, he offered the property as a park if the property between it and Macleay Park were acquired. The property was donated to the city by his siblings George F. and Mary Holman on August 16, 1939.

Various setbacks delayed the formation of the forested park, including rumors of oil existing in the hillside, until the City Club of Portland undertook a feasibility study which it published in 1945. From there the 'Committee of Fifty' civic leaders persevered until 4,200 acres were formally dedicated as Forest Park on September 23, 1948. Additional acres have been added over the years; Forest Park now includes over 5,100 wooded acres making it the largest, forested natural area within city limits in the United States.

Monday, June 6, 2011

25 mile run for 6/5. What went wrong

Sunday 6/5, I was scheduled to run 25 miles. It would be the first day of running 49 miles in 3 days. It would also be the start of  a 87 mile running week. Next Saturday on June 11th, I am traveling to Mt.Hood for a 28 mile training run.

A few days ago, I woke to an achy upper back, wasn't too bad, but visible. Well the back never got better and on Saturday, I had the not so brilliant idea to have my husband push on it a little. Well he made it worse and I had to take one of my pain killers. I got these pain killers a few months prior for when I had my sinus infection.

Sunday 6/5 I woke  up ready to run the 25 miles, except for one problem, my back was seriously hurting.I decided to take a pain killer. Well considering about a hour later, it still wasn't any better, I took another.(I could take 1-2 in a 4 hour period of time) Well a little while later considering I felt like I was dying. It hurt to sit, I couldn't lie down, I was miserable. I took a muscle relaxer. Did I mention that I don't always make smart decisions? I decided that I probably shouldn't run, since um I couldn't, but I could walk. So I walked to a neighbors and back home. I then decided that I was going to go for a long walk and see where that got me. I was only carrying my hand held water bottle. Well this got to me to the trail and I even attempted to run a little. Imagine that.

I called my husband and asked if he would do me a huge favor. I asked him to bring me my car with a bunch of Gatorade, my almonds and another pain killer. (Not kidding) He parked the car at the top of the hill and rode his bike back home. I must stop here and change the subject a little. When he and my daughter got back to our house, there were 6 neighbor kids taking pudding and lord knows what else from our garage. My little daughter tried stopping them, but they wouldn't. Not good. So anyway, I re-filled my water bottle and headed towards my favorite hilly trail, did an out and back with no problems. Back was feeling pretty good, not great, not horrible, so I decided to take the other pain killer. (Husband already lectured me,  you don't need to.)

I head out for a different trail and this would get me the out and back that I would need to finish. I was doing just fine, until I hit mile 18.5. I started to feel a bit nauseated and had the feeling things were not going to end well. There you have it, at mile 19, something came up and it wasn't pretty. But hey, I felt better. Having no cell phone reception in the forest and only one way back, it was one foot in front of the other to the car. Well I threw up about 4 other times which includes a really good one at my car. It was nasty!

I lost about 2.5 pounds from this experience. When I woke up on Sunday morning, I was 123.8, when I got back from my run, I was 121.8. I tried to eat that night, but I couldn't keep anything down. So I just went to bed. I however, did eat 2 applesauce cups during the middle of the night. And when I woke up I was down to 121.00. I know that's bad.

I get the fun task of replacing lost calories today. I had a big breakfast this morning, a protein shake and a healthy lunch.

There is a story that I won't have to tell too often, thankfully.

Run for Sunday 6/5 25.11 miles.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Gift of running

"When I think I can't do it any more I reach out to "GOD" and ask Him to help me take another step or to help me to just keep moving."
Richard Szymanski  

I like the girl that looks back at me in the mirror. She is full of hope and pride. She has scars on her belly that show the joy of child birth. Her smiles shows warmth. Her eyes show compassion. Her legs show strength. Her mind shows knowledge and experience. Her experiences can be summed up with one word:  

I still can remember the pain that I felt when I ran my first marathon. The picture to the right shows my veins popping out of my neck. I love this picture, it is my favorite. It shows strength, the strength that says I didn't give up. Strength that says I conquered.

Finishing line at first marathon, 2005
Now while, running a marathon has become easier for me, it's not easy. I will never forget all the hard work that I have endured over the years with my training.Lots of hours, no excuses even when I didn't want to or didn't feel good or the weather was unfavorable.

Before I ran my first 50. I prayed at church with a member of the church. I had her pray for success and strength and I was successful. Running that 50 hurt, bad.  I had a do or die attitude. I was going to finish that race. I am always motivated by myself.

So, in 59 days I will run my 2nd 50 mile run. I am calm now, but at times I get butterflies when I think about it. A favorite prayer that I say repeatedly during races is "I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me!" It gets me through my races. I usually wear a cross necklaces during my runs. God is definitely invited to go with me. If it were not for him, I would not be as successful. I believe he gave me the gift of running.

So as this skinny from California, looks back at me, I feel proud of her. I wouldn't want to be anyone else.

You too have a gift, it's up to you to find it and be great at it.

"It's not how far you go, but what happens along the way. Even though you want to give up, you must find the will to finish the race."