Friday, July 30, 2010

Flashback Friday & Racing Updates

On my race calendar you may have noticed that I have almost as many races in California as I do in Utah.  Northern Cali is one of my most favorite places to run.  I grew up there, spent my formative years there and luckily married someone from there that still has family in the area.  So great!  Whenever we head out there to visit I usually try to sneak a race in. 

3 years ago I did the Muir Woods Marathon.  It begins on Stinson Beach in the sand and you proceed to head up a mountain for the first 3 miles.  It is an uphill climb for more than half the race but the first 3 miles took me about 45 minutes.  We're talking so steep that they have fire ladder steps up the mountainside to climb, not run up!  It is a trail race, put on by Envirosports.  Running through redwood and oak forests, jumping across little streams, climbing over and under fallen trees, switchbacks the whole way up. Once you get to the top, it is amazing!  Gorgeous view of the Pacific! Once you're running on top, it's all single track bike trails. There were definitely a few spots where I slowed down to prevent falling down the mountain. It was amazing.  The last few miles of the race were pretty steep with switchback downhills. I felt like one of those X Games athletes pounding through dirt and mud.  Loved it! Ipods/music devices are strictly prohibited but there is seriously no need with waterfalls and streams around every corner.  This is another one of those races where the aid stations had big bowls of gummies, trail mix, M&M's as well as water and gatorade. They do advise however to wear a water belt for the race.  They also advise that any ideas of achieving a PR or sticking to a specific pace will be crushed.  Of course run your best, but most importantly enjoy the experience, the views, and the course!  Definitely going to run that race again - maybe even fit it in my 12 in 12! 

Race reports...  I've known when it comes to running that I seem to have an addictive personality.  Once I'm in training mode it consumes a lot of my thoughts, as I'm sure it does most runners.  But since I've decided to do these 12 in 12, I'm finding that I'm getting addicted to doing races!  They're so fun!  I'm coming across and being introduced to lots of fun ones that aren't necessarily marathons. I want to do them all and I'm trying to fit them in here and there, hoping that they don't affect my monthly marathons...Do you think that's wise? 

There is a race this weekend that I've know about for several weeks and have been begging my friend to do it with me. It's called Hurt in the Dirt.  It's a run/bike duathlon up Ogden Canyon. My favorite thing to do... trail running!  It's a 4 miles run, 10 mile bike, 4 mile run, 10 mile bike.  I'm doing the running and my friend is doing the biking.  Sounds perfect!  8 miles total for me - that will be a perfect Saturday run for recovery week, right?  : )

**The pictures in this post were taken from  Didn't bring my camera to that race, dangit.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Q & A x 3

Don't be jealous of the yellow scout shirt...  : )  I actually had a pretty great day at scout camp yesterday.  It was up Millcreek Canyon above Salt Lake City and the scenery was gorgeous!  My friend, Lindsay, was up there with me watching over 6 scouts. 

Q&A x 1:  'Can we tip our boat over?' 'Please, Mrs. Lauti?' 'No, it's 10 am and we still  have to be here 5 more hours guys.'  3 minutes later...  'Can we go tip their boat over?' 'No boys, they have to be here 5 more hours too.'  3 minutes later... 'Boys, really stop rocking the boat - if we go in we're going home!'  'Aaah, man.' They actually had a really good time and only tried to capsize our row boat 5 times.  We never ended up all the way in the lake, but I was soaked none the less.  Super fun! This canyon is a favorite for cyclers and I am definitely going to go back and run it!  It's about 20 degrees cooler than the city and you seriously cannot beat the surroundings. 

Q&A x 2:  So last night was my first initial training session with the trainer I mentioned in a previous post. He will be working me out for the next year. It started out with the hopes and dreams discussion...Aaaah!  I know that they have lots of clients and have to get to know you, exactly what you're after, but that is what our whole session was!  A little frustrating and I'm sure he was a little frustrated with me too. He has a basic gameplan in his head that he uses on everyone and I pretty much told him to scratch that - here's what we're doin' my friend.  I hate having to throw out the 'I run marathons' card, but he gave me no choice.  I really have specific things I'm looking for, namely core & speed.  He did concede to doing 2 sessions next week instead of one since we didn't really get a session last night. So thats good.  I think I'll know pretty quick once we actually get started how well this is going to go.  For now I remain optimistic! 

Q&A x 3: Lastly, I received a great email from a friend yesterday asking me a few questions about running.  I get a lot of the same questions so I thought it would be fun to go over some of them here!  Let me first say that I am obviously not a doctor, nor a health care professional.  My answers are based on the research I've done and through my running experiences.

1.  Do you jump out of bed and go running immediately or do you go after you've been up for a while?
When I go running in the a.m., right when I get up, I eat a half peanut butter sandwich, usually on white bread - the white bread will digest faster and give you the quick carbs to get you going. Then I change clothes, lace up and drink a cup of water. I can do this in about 15 minutes and then be out the door. This works for me. Most sites say eat a 1/2 hr before you begin your run but if I have to go at 5:30 a.m., I'm sleeping as long as I can. I also go running at night too. Everyone is so different, and you gotta do what's best for you. You get to learn what's best for your body as you try various routines.

2.  Do you eat or drink before you run (I always have to pee really bad at about mile 4)? If so, how long before?
I eat the pb sandwich and then drink only 1 a cup of water before a run. You need to hydrate before you head out, especially in the morning to get some flow to your wake them up, if you will.  I have a bladder of steel so I don't have a lot of helps for weak bladders. I know lots of runners plan their runs by where they can stop to use a bathroom at a gas station or a friends house. I also know women runners that actually bring baby wipes with them just in case they have to squat! I know, crazy huh? I totally couldn't do that!  If you get the runs while you're on the move, ginger snaps are a must before your run to help hold the gates back from opening. If I'm running at night, I try not to eat the hour before.  For me, stomach cramps and side stitches are sure to follow. We all know that those can really ruin a workout.

I have heard from many that getting past the 3 to 4 mile range is tough and have a hard time getting passed it. It really is the first hurdle when trying to add mileage to your runs.  For me getting from 4 to 6 was tough.  The next hurdle for me later in training is getting from 13 to 16. You just have to push through and trust your body will remember the next time you are there and get you through. Stick with a plan and don't give up! 
Stay strong and you will get there!

Oh, another silly but good tip... I always chew gum! It is a lifesaver! Orbit lasts the longest for me - I can run a whole marathon with the same two pieces! They should totally sponsor me. : )

Let me know if any of this helps! I hope it does.I plan on answering more questions on supplements and specifics of training plans soon. I would be happy to hear your feedback and would be glad to answer other questions you may have. You can post them here or shoot them to my inbox at Happy Running everybody!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Music Downloads Page

You may have noticed by now that I have a music downloads page. As a fan of good music and of course good running/work out music, I thought it would only be appropriate to have such a page to share the music I've run to over the years. No need to worry about bootlegs, copyrights, etc. These mixes are free to you because they were free to me. These have been collected over time and I have many. So if you are in need of some new music or want to change it up a bit, grab a mix and head out the door. Amazing what good music does for a workout.

If you grab a mix, leave me a comment and let me know how you liked it. If you have a special request, let me know and I'll try my best to find something for you. For the most part, I'll try and mix it up as best I can.

Happy downloading and Happy running!

Off to Webelos Cub Scout Camp...

So, I am off to cub scout day camp today with a group of calm, quiet, and obedient 10 year old boys...yeah right! They are all the exact opposite of that. They are fun...most of the time ;)

My husband and I are the Webelos scout leaders in our neighborhood and we will be spending the next two days helping the boys earn various requirements towards their Webelos and Arrow of Light badge awards.

Would I rather be sweating it out on a run or work out session at the gym? Yes, but I bet I'll get a good sweat in keeping these boys in line under this hot Utah sun. FUN!! ;)

Also a quick reminder to enter my giveaway and visit my downloads page for some fun music mixes.

And off to camp I go...Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Power Song Tuesday

First off I want to thank those that offered me some helpful tips yesterday for my quad super-flex problem! I was still having issues with my quads so I tried some cold therapy, like Theresa suggested, and I'm feeling a ton better than I did yesterday. I had a free sample from my race swag bag of Biofreeze and used it only a couple times and it worked! On the information sheet it said it simulates the feel and results from sitting in an ice bath but without the pain of an ice bath. They did not lie. So I did sweat it out in the sauna last night for 30 minutes or so but tonight I'm looking forward to a nice easy run.
Today I thought I'd give some suggestions for that itunes gift card that some lucky winner is going to receive! It's so fun to have new music to run to...  (Make sure you click on the itunes box on my side bar to enter!)

1. Serena Williams Spontaneous Speed Workout - This is one of the workouts that Nike put together and I really don't love a lot of their workouts but this is one I come back to over and over again. It's from 2007 but I still use it during my training now. I use it on days that I don't want to plan my speed workout, which sometimes seems like every other week! It has great music and you have Serena in your ear telling you when to go, when to slow and a little chit chat here and there to distract you. One of the great things about it is that you can measure if you're getting faster or not using the same workout. It's about 30 minutes long, so the first time you do it you may get in only 3 miles but a couple months down the road closer to 4 miles. A measuring stick if you will... Anyways - worth the $10 in my book.

2. Are You In?: Nike+ Original Run - Now I'm not being paid by Nike but this is the only other Nike music I've liked. It doesn't have a trainer talking in the background but it is original music put together made for a run. The music has a warmup pace, picks it up a little and a tempo section and then cool down pace. It was put together by De La Soul, all you 80's hip hop fans oughta know them, and it is great! It is perfect for my 5 mile run - it's 45 minutes long, so another good measuring stick to see how you're doing in your training. Of course they have lots of other choices if you're not a hip hop fan, but these two are my faves!

While we're in the mindset of Nike+, let's talk power songs... Everyone has em. They play them on continuous replay at every start line at every race. Eye of the tiger, Beautiful Day, Born To Run... But my personal fave has gotta be Sexyback. I know, I know. Last week it was Justin Beiber and now I'm up to Justin Timberlake, but somehow that song is definitely a power song for me, has been for I guess a few years now! Love it, doesn't get old. Workin that body out on the run, bringin' sexy back - well as much as a 30-something, mother of 5 can do... I try.

So just a few ideas of how to use your giftcard... What's your powersong? Any good training mixes you've come across? What music gets your legs turning over just a little bit faster?

And for all you JT fans...  get your sexy on... ;)

Monday, July 26, 2010

2nd One Down....

Yay!  Deseret News Marathon was so amazing!  I actually got to watch a full orange moon set before the race started and then see a beautiful sunrise a few miles into the race!  The course was beautiful coming through the canyon and of course lots of great runners and support people along the way.  The marathon actually only had around 650 runners, the 10K draws the most runners in this race.  But it was mostly so amazing cause I rocked my time, if I do say so myself... :)  I finished in 4:17!  My fastest finish to date!  Yes the course had a lot of downhills, but these downhills were tough.  Hard on your quads tough.  And of course you don't realize it until you have about 4 miles left and your legs feel like you're pushing bricks through mud.  I hit the half-way point at 2 hours exactly and kept my pace up til mile 21 and I could feel it happen...  Started slowing down and by mile 24 there was the wall.  Sun started getting hot, no shade, and I had the worst side stitch ever!  Could not get rid of it.  If not for those last three miles, slowing down so much, I felt like 4 hours was within my reach...  So frustrating but yet I finished feeling so great that I had a new PR!

So I broke a couple of the cardinal rules of running...

1.  I stayed up way too late.  Here in Utah there is a state holiday that celebrates when Pioneers settled here.  They have huge firework shows and one of them happens in the park right behind my house!  So of course we have to have a party!  Didn't get to bed til almost midnight (left the clean-up to my husband & his family - very kind of them!).  And then had to be up at 2:30 am to get down to the area where they bus the runners up to the start line!  2 1/2 hrs of sleep... not so good.

2.  I tried some new supplements on race day.  They actually really helped but I went into it knowing that it could have affected me in a bad way just as easily.  And they possibly could be why I had such a bad side stitch the last 2 miles.  But the new stuff I used I'm definitely going to practice with during long runs coming up and use in my next race. **I'll share my new finds in an upcoming post!

For the most part, it was a great day.  I came home feeling good, took a shower, went to a movie (Eclipse!) and then wanted to take a little nap but couldn't.  I could not get my legs to relax.  Weirdest thing.  It happened after my last marathon too.  They weren't throbbing, it was almost like they couldn't un-flex.  So any suggestions out there?  I did drink a recovery drink right after the race, within a half hour.  I took some ibuprofen when I got home.  I don't know.  What else should I try next time?

Monday morning here now and quads are still feeling heavy.  Hopefully I'll feel like I can run 2 or 3 slow miles tomorrow...  Not much time for rest, but definitely no long run this week.

What race day rules have you broken?  Any great remedies for side stitches?  How bout for muscles that seem like they won't un-flex post-race?  Got a few more races ahead of me and I need all the help I can get!  Hope your weekend was a great one too!

Racing Dawn's First Official Giveaway

Please leave official giveaway entry comments under this post. These cards have played an important part of my running life and have saved me during my long runs and workouts. So, it was only natural that my first giveaway would be an iTunes card. Click on iTunes card above for details. Good luck!
Here are the rules:

1. Follow my blog Racing Dawn.

2. Follow racingdawn on Twitter and tweet about it.

3. Become a fan of Racing Dawn on Facebook and post a message on my wall mentioning the giveaway.

4. Go to the 'Upcoming Races' tab and tell me which month I don't have a scheduled race and suggest a race for me. (Doesn't have to be Utah)

5. Mention this giveaway in your next blog post with a link to or put a link to racingdawn on your sidebar.

Bonus Entries:
Leave a seperate comment for additional ways you spread the word and receive an additional entry.

**Please leave a seperate comment for each entry under "Racing Dawn's First Official Giveaway" dated Monday July 26, 2010. Entries under another blog entry will not be counted.**
This giveaway will end this Sunday August 1,2010 11:59PM MST. The winner will be randomly selected and announced on Monday August 2nd. If you have any questions please drop a line to

Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Flashback Friday

I'm not flashing back too far for today's post...  Last month I ran the Utah Valley Marathon in Provo, Utah.  It was the first race for my 12 in 12 schedule.  June is kind of a funny month here in Utah because school's out and it seems like summer should officially begin.  Most years though June is still pretty cool and as in this year very rainy.  It had been raining off and on throughout the week leading up to race and I was a little worried...  I went prepared though and it's a dang good thing! 

Provo is about an hour drive from where I live and I had to leave my house by 2:45 a.m. to get there before 4 a.m. to make sure I was on a bus that would drive us up to start line!  The race was scheduled to start at 5:30 a.m. but due to some issues which I still know nothing about, the race began almost 20 minutes late... have you ever heard of that?  So we were hanging out at the start line for over an hour which thankfully it stayed in the 50's at the top of Provo Canyon - not shivering cold.

The course is gorgeous!  Beautiful, green canyon with a slight downhill grade for most of the course.  However, around mile 4 it began drizzling...  by mile 6 it was a downpour.  And raining hard for the next 4 miles.  We're talkin' wring out the sleeves of your shirt raining. Rain like I had a shower-head over me full blast.  I did say I was prepared though, I brought a garbage bag to put over me!  I really wish though I would have brought an extra pair of socks & shoes.  That is what killed me.  I might as well have had a swamp in my shoes.  This is gross, but it felt like the bottom layer of my foot was just going to pull away from my foot.  So so wet, and I never dried out before the end of the race.  Needless to say not by best finishing time.  4:41 to be exact.  I did finish feeling strong, I never hit the wall, but my feet were the problem...

Yeah, I know - that's not pretty but proof that I wasn't lyin'!  My feet had it rough! 

So onto Deseret News Marathon!  Hoping to get around a 4:20 finish time.  I went to pick up my race packet last night with my friend Lindsay, who is running the 10K!  She's a cycler but I'm trying to convert her!  This will be her first running race!  I hope she has a great experience and wants to do more.  You can check out her blog here...!

Happy Running!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

It's Official! Part 2 - Even More Official...

Yesterday I told you about a new running friend named Amy.  Well Amy happens to be a writer for the Deseret News, Utah's oldest continually daily running newspaper and second in daily circulation. She wrote a story about my 12 in 12 adventure and it's on the cover of the Outdoor section in today's paper!  Check it out...

I know, crazy, right?  I can't even believe it to be to be totally honest with you.  So now, it's even more official to carry out my goal.  It's not just black & white on the computer screen - it's black & white in documented newsprint, archived and kept for generations...  Getting a little carried away now?  Yeah, I think so too.

Anyways, I got to speak with Amy Donaldson, who has her own blog on Deseret News website, over the phone first and then we met up at the media preview for the Dirty Dash this week.  She was kind and definitely a force to be reckoned with!  She is running all 13 Ragnar races this year!  Some teams she's putting together and other races she's jumping in with teams that just need a runner!  So brave!  She's off to Washington this weekend and I'll be thinking about her covering her mileage with a team she doesn't even know, while I'm covering the mileage of the Deseret News Marathon this weekend.

Also in the article, Amy wrote about a man named John Bozung, who is completing his 300th marathon this Saturday at the same race as me!  Wow!  He is very motivational and has an unofficial world record for running at least a marathon a month for 188 months!  Something to work towards!  I'm definitely keeping my eye out for him this weekend in hopes for a chance to talk it up!  Amazing...

So countdown to marathon....2 more days.  No running today or tomorrow.  I did an easy 2 miles last night just to get some nerves out.  Water, water and more water! I started eating a couple of extra servings of carbs yesterday.  An extra piece of wheat bread and an extra piece of fruit throughout the day.  Today I'll do the same with 3 extra carbs tomorrow with some pasta tomorrow night.  Tonight is the packet pick-up, so we'll see what this years T-shirt looks like as well as what other goodies might get thrown in!

And, hey, if you're a Utah dweller go pick up a copy of the Deseret News!  Whew hew!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Dirty Dash

Whoa!  I had so much fun yesterday!  I had the opportunity to preview a new race course at Soldier Hollow in Utah.  If not familiar with the area, it is where there were several events held during the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics, like cross country skiing.  During the summer there are great trails, and one that is being created for an upcoming race called 'The Dirty Dash'.  You've got to check the website to see all the obstacles, but it is going to be crazy fun on race day!  We ran 5.2 miles of the 6.2 mile course at 2 o'clock in the afternoon.  Yeah it was a little warm, between 85 and 90 degrees.  Had a nice elevation of about 5500 ft. Quite the training run while trying to be conservative before my marathon on Saturday!

Let me tell you about the race...  There will be hill climbs, hay bale walls to jump over, walls to hurl your body over, a giant slip and slide about half-way through the race, water balloons thrown at you and a huge mud pond to cross before you make it to the finish line!  We were able to run the course, get some water balloons thrown at us and running/falling into the mud pond actually felt great! 

Imagine a giant slip n slide and going head first down this section!  Does it get any funner?


We followed the rollercoaster trail...there were way more ups than downs!

 I am grateful to a new running friend, Amy, who invited me out to be a part of the day.  We had a small group of 20 or so runners and it was fun to make to new connections and experience a unique run.  I even ran with one of the organizers, John, who shared some of the exciting details for race day.  Check out for all the info!  If you're going to be anywhere close to Utah at the end of September you've got to come run the race!  Photo-ops galore!

Come race day the mud pond will be 10x this size with grandstands of spectators watching with amusement!

That's me in the background crawling... Your feet literally sink as you try to run!

Amy & I lovin the mud - think spa treatment...

You'd think it would feel good to wash up after the run but a fire house is a far cry from a nice shower. Nothing like getting powered washed!

Yeah, that's mud in my teeth. I had a blast!

A special thanks to our friends Jimmy & Jan, who live close to the area and allowed me to clean up after the run!  Didn't really feel like driving home caked in mud!  Also fun to hang out, catch up and let the kiddos play.  I was instructed by Jimmy that I need to bring my kids out to the country more often because my 2 yr old mooed at a horse.  Hey, I try!  My kids were completed enthralled with the chickens running loose around the yard.  So much fun.

Here today I have my own Dirty Dash.  A course constructed by a family of seven.  It consists of many uphill climbs of stairs, mounds of shoulder high piles of laundry, mud ponds otherwise know as the kitchen floor and a slip n slide made by a 2 yr old on our bathroom floor.  My in-laws are coming into town tonight and the race is on...  This could be a PR for house-cleaning!  Better go down some Gatorade and stash some Gu in pockets to get me through the day... : )

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Not feeling so well today....

I woke up this morning not feeling the greatest. I leaned over to my husband and said, 'Feel my head, is it hot?' He confirmed it was warm. You guessed it my friends, I have Beiber fever! I know, I know. I am well past my tween years but I love this song. I sing it all day. And add Usher to the track and you can't go wrong. Put it on your playlist and I dare you to not get a little hop in your step. A little synthetic pop never hurt anyone. Enjoy with your tween girls or get goofy looks from your teen boys. Either way its fun.

And a little side note... one of my other favorite obsessions is reality dance tv. So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing with the Stars, America's Best Dance Crew. So watch for the cameo dancers in the video. Love it!

PS... By the way, I'll be running a different type of trail today. Never tried it before and I am excited just thinking about it. I am looking forward to sharing my experience and posting pix soon! Happy Running!

Monday, July 19, 2010

TRX Training

Last Wednesday I met up with a trainer for my freebie session at the gym.  I gave him my 'I've been working out awhile, I know my way around the gym, just try and throw something at me that I haven't tried before...' speech.  I really wasn't that arrogant but I try to be tough.  : )  So he says, 'Have you tried TRX training before?' with a little giggle in his voice.  And I honestly had not ever heard of it.  I must be out of the loop cause there are a zillion pictures on the Internet of it.  Here's the basic system...
Yep it's just some straps with handles, but holy moly it works you.  All the exercises are done with your own body weight.  I wish I would have brought my camera or iphone with me to actually show some of the exercises I did. 

A 45 minute session with these bad boys and I was sore for days!  I did push-ups with my feet in the straps and just stabilizing to keep the straps from moving is a workout all by itself.  He also had me do one legged dead lifts with a 25 lb bar and I think that's what did me in...  Sore hammies and booty my friends.  I also did the one legged squats pictured above as well as leaning bicep curls, tricep pull, planks, pull ups and more.  I can't wait to do this workout again!  The only downfall is that the gym only has a couple sets of straps so it can only be done in a trainings session.  Way to sell it trainers.  So, ya, you guessed it, with my tough speech and all, I signed up for training sessions.  Two, hour sessions a month for $30 (shared sessions with my sister - she pays $30 a month as well).  I'd say that's a pretty dang good deal.  We get some other stuff too - workouts to do while not with trainer and some diet plans etc.  But between all my running I think I could only handle this workout every other week!  If your gym offers it - do it!  It works all major muscle groups as well as those little stabilizer muscles that never get worked.  In between your shoulder blades, little muscles in the triceps, the side dimples of your booty, and hamstrings big time!  I will definitely request a workout with them again!  Anyone else ever tried them?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Weekend Fun!

This weekend has been non-stop!  So much fun.  Friday we decided to go with some friends and their kids up to a gorgeous landmark in Salt Lake City.  Red Butte Garden.  If you are ever in SLC it is a must.  It is up above the University of Utah right on the mountain. It has pristine, manicured gardens, trails, mazes, and fountains.  It closed in on 100 degrees yesterday here and the kids got completely soaked in the fountains designed for just that.  As well as having a fragrance garden, medicinal garden, and rose gardens, they also had a children's garden.  It had vine covered trails and trees with tree stump chairs.  It was like their own little club house.  They honestly could have stayed all day but us ladies were melting in the sun! This venue also hosts weddings and has its own outdoor concert series through summer and fall.  We've lived in Utah for 20 years and this was my first trip there.  Crazy.  We'll probably be going again before summer is over!

Yesterday morning I had a shorter long run due to this being a taper week.  Got in 13 miles that felt pretty dang good, all except for running in 80 degree weather with super high humidity at 6 a.m.  Just keeping fingers crossed that it crosses over to next week's race - you just never know.  And I enjoyed a Jamba Juice for my recovery drink.  I don't get one very often so it was a fun treat. 

As soon as I got home my husband was working on home repairs so I took a couple of the kiddos out to the farmer's market in SLC.  It has been on my list all summer and it was fun to finally go.  Here's some of our fun finds!

This guy is making kettlecorn right there in the park!  I finished half the bag by myself.  That's a good post-recovery meal, right?
Me with 2 of my kids.
 Some radishes, squash and cucs with fresh bakery baguettes and loaves... mmmmmm.

I swear every other person had a cute dog with them.  This guy was our favorite!

 Fresh eggs, the live chicken coup was there too!  Fresh raspberries, my personal fave.  And Sweet Salt Lake Fresh Mint Limeade - perfect for a summer day!
I don't know if you can tell in the picture but his bike is actually hooked up to the piano.  Notice the wheels... : ).  He was very talented.  All those lessons as a kid payed off!

Now just relaxing on a hot Sunday evening.  Might still go for a walk with the kids if it can cool off a little.  Love great weekends! 

**Monday I will be sharing my new favorite strength training workout. It's a good one for those little muscles that have a hard time getting worked!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Flashback Fridays

One of my favorite races is one in Northern California.  It is called the Sequoia Trail Race and is put on by Pacific Coast Trail Runs.  They have a whole series of trail runs through the state and are a very organized racing group.  I did the race in February of 2007.  It was actually a particularly warm February for the Bay Area.  Race day was beautiful and the whole race was through wooded trails and single track bike trails.  Gorgeous. 

At every aid station they had sweet and salty snacks.  M&M's, almonds, trail mix, gummy bears. I had never done a race that had aid/hydration stations like that before.  I was used to gatorade/water and be on your way and maybe a Gu at the halfway point.  At first it seemed kinda funny to take snacks from one giant bowl with 300 other runners but you needed fuel so... when in the woods, do as the woodsmen.  : )   During trail races you go in with the mentality that you're not going to PR on any distance so you really just completely enjoy the run, all those around running with you and the scenery.  Whenever I'd come up to an aid station it wasn't drink and go, it was pause at the snack table, talk it up with whatever runners happen to be there and thank the volunteers that were hanging out in the mountains for the day, handing out fuel.  Relaxed and fun. And once you got to the end of the race, it was a bowl of chili or chicken noodle soup.  Seriously.  How great is that?   I would love to go back and do that race again! 

Side notes...  I have an exciting week coming up and can't wait to share more but as always another crazy weekend coming up!  And... I'm super sore!  I'll tell you all about my awesome training session on Monday.  Preview: my trainer wasn't an 18 yr old that just got his PT certificate last month!  Yay...

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wednesday Ramblings

43 minutes, 5 miles this morning.  Yay!  I had a great morning run, and that is probably a record time for my fairly easy regular 5 mile route.  What pace is that, hold on, I'm gonna check runnersworld real quick.... Sweet, that is 8:35 miles!  I even had a hill for the final .5 mile with about a 5% grade.  Whew hew!  Now if only I could translate that speed into my marathon.  It is my challenge right now.  I really want to break the 4 hour barrier.  If you all remember from last week I have a free training session with Jason, the triathlete, at the gym I just resigned with.  I'm going in with a list of questions.  This is going to be no easy training session for him.  I'm not going to let him take the first half hour to put in all my measurements into their computer to spit out what my BMI is.  Or to have him log what all my hopes and dreams are for coming to the gym.  I'm going in with my clipboard and questions and seeing what he can do for me.  Hopefully I'm not disappointed!  Hopefully he's not an 18 yr old that just got his PT certificate last month and just finished his first Sprint Tri.  I did have an awesome run this morning so that is a good sign!  Lets hope that the gym is not false advertising him..... Stay tuned tomorrow for what I learned!

Now on to some randomness.  As I sit here, semi - enjoying my protein shake (I'm out of banans and thats what makes them just right) I'm thinking about the big questions in life.  What am I going to teach my kids today?  How can I serve someone today?  What I am going to make for dinner tonight? and Why don't all runners wave?  Are you a waver?  Do you acknowledge your fellow runner while out on the road?  During my run this morning, at my super fast pace ; ), Usain Bolt passes me.  I tried to holler at him that the high school track was back at the last stop sign so he could finish up his sprints there.  But really he was already out of ear shot.  My route is out and back, so he passes me on the out and then again on the back.  Really? I say, 'Good Morning' with a wave and I can't even get eye contact?  He didn't even have ear phones so I know he heard me.  I don't know why I take this is so personally but come on. The non-runners/walkers are always very kind.  They would stop and have a conversation.  Moms with jogger strollers take their hand off and give a quick wave.  Even cyclers occasionally give the head nod and they're going at least 10 to 15 miles per hour.  I just don't understand the non-greeter.  Am I wrong, am I taking it too personally?  I don't think so.  I feel there is an undeclared bond between runners and we're happy when we see others putting in the hard work and enjoying our sport.  What do you think?

btw - My 'speaking engagement' went great last night!  I met a lot of great ladies and had fun discussing running and nutrition with them.  They are beginning a 30 day health/fitness challenge and I encouraged them to sign up for a 5K at the end of August or early September.  I hope they take the challenge, I know it would be a great experience! Go ladies!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Summertime Tunesday

Who doesnt' love Will Smith?  Come on... Love this song.  Never gets old and even though its a slower beat it always make me smile while out on a run.  Summer out in my corner of the woods is heating up.  Although we haven't been poppin any water plugs, just for ol' times sake, we've been doing lots of fun swim days with the kids, bbq's, and our family eats a watermelon a day!  I still haven't made it to our local farmer's market yet but it's on my list for this week! 

I'm over my bad run from yesterday.  I had to let it go out into the universe.  And even though I was trying to tell that dog where to go, I hope he made it home. : )  On to better runs for the week.

Tonight I have the opportunity to speak to a group of women that are beginning a 30 day fitness challenge!  I'm so excited!  I'm going with my friend Lindsay, some of you may know her from  She's going to be discussing health, fitness and weight loss and I am speaking about running and how to begin a program.  It's my first time talking to a group on the subject but I feel like it's going to be great.  I talk about running all the time to anyone that will let me catch their ear and tonight I'll have 30 or so cornered, so they'll have to listen!  Wish me luck... and luck to the women taking the 30 day challenge!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Who Let The Dogs Out?

I had a very busy weekend, was out of town on Saturday and so I didn't get my long run in.  I only got 4 miles in.  Very disappointing.  So I decide to try to creep it in this morning.  I'm  actually on a taper week but was really shooting for 16 miles.  2 miles into my run I see a dog with no collar that decides I should be it's new owner.  This is one of those car chasing kind of dogs.  It almost got hit 10 times and the drivers gave me the dirty looks.  I tried to shake him a few times but he found me and enjoyed running through my legs.  Not so much fun for me.  Threw off my whole run.  I finally shook him when I went past a parking lot with lots of people.  But the damage had been done.  I only got 13 miles in today.  I hate runs like that.  I'm feeling a bit defeated.  Lost my game-face...  Hopefully my workouts will better throughout the week.  I'll melt away my sorrows as I sit by the pool with my kids this afternoon.  How do you get over a bad run?

Friday, July 9, 2010

Flashback Fridays

So one of my favorite stories to tell is that of my very first marathon.  It was 11 years ago, the St. George Marathon.  I followed a training plan religiously that I got from  I know that I had a couple bad long runs towards the end of training but all that I had read said if you get up to between 18 and 20 miles you'll be fine.  I did that, so yeah I'll be fine.  Mmhmm. 

Like all newbies the excitement of the big race was pretty overwhelming.  Hardly slept the night before and a million butterflies as I sat at the start line.   But I was there, part of the experience.  I even ran into a few people I knew that I didn't know were runners.  Bonus. 

As I started the race I felt really good.  I probably started a little faster than I should have, but adrenaline and all.  I think I settled into a 10 minute pace after a few miles which was my goal.  I talked to people every so often but mostly stayed by myself.   So I did pretty well til mile 17.  I started slowing down.  By mile 22 I was done.  My body literally started falling apart.  Pain in my back, pain in my legs and it was now 90 degrees out and just breathing was hard.  I was that person you see at a race and you say 'You ok? Do you need some help?  You're not lookin so good.'  Which when these kind people say these things I'm ready to break into tears.  The mental game had begun.  At mile 24 they  had sprinklers and also a nurses station.  A nurse actually came out to me, asked me if I was ok, and I didn't have enough oxygen to speak.  Sounds would not come out of my mouth.  I actually pushed her away and whispered, 'If I stop, I won't be able to start again.'  And I kept going.  I'm sure the nurse thought, 'This stupid runner..."

I was a bit of a mess.  I get to around mile 25, you know that point when all the spectators along the course say, " You're almost there!"  Really, you think so?  I'm at 16 minute miles right now, I'm limping, and tears are disguised as sweat running down my face.  Really, almost there you say.  So at this point I begin my angry phase.  Angry at myself that I thought I was gonna rock this marathon, angry that I didn't do more in training, angry at that guy with the beer belly that just passed me.  And then something happened.  It's something that many runners have experienced.  The inner battle. 

Let me paint the picture...  Just passing mile 25 marker.   I'm  concentrating to put one foot in front of the other and notice that lots of clumps of people are now lining the course.  I get a few claps here and there as I pass and about 20 seconds after I pass I hear a roar of applause from behind.  Aww, that group must have seen who they were waiting for.  And again, a roar 20 sec after I pass a crowd.  After this happening about 6 or 7 times in a row I look back to see who is behind me.  Does this person know everyone in St. George?  No...  this person is a silver-haired, lavender 80's sweatsuit wearing, closing in on 80, runnin grama.  And she's closing in on me.  Now obviously at this point I'm not winning any races but there's no way in my dilapidated, 24 yr old state that she is going to pass me.  Hence, the inner battle.  I had to mentally will myself to not let her pass me.  The roars kept getting closer behind me as I came down the final .2 chute to the finish.  I dug deep and pulled out my 15min/mi sprint.  I won.  She didn't pass me!  In your face grama.  I come around the gate and see my husband, still trying to be strong, I make it over to him.  He says to me, "You did it! You made it! Hey did you see that grama behind you?  Pretty awesome, huh?"  Yeah, pretty awesome.

I still to this day feel justified in pouting the 4 hr car ride home.... : )

P.S. To all you runnin' gramas out there - you really are my heros! Much love and respect. I hope to be you someday!  Until then, watch out... game on!  ; )

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Summer Training

Summer time is so tricky for training.  I know I'm not alone in this.  Its just as hard to fit running in as it is to try to actually build mileage, do quality runs or complete runs with a purpose. 

Our family went on a family campout last weekend which had us away from home on Saturday, aka Longrunday, so I put it off til Monday.  No prob.  Tuesday my husband and older boys left out of town for a camp out leaving me to be creative on how to fit running in with no one to watch my three younger kids.  I asked my sister to come watch the kids while I thought I would go kick out a quick 4 mile run with some speed intervals and get right back home.  To the gym, run, get back home - 45 min tops. 

Allow me to give a quick back story...  My gym contract has been up for several months but I've just let it go to a month to month status because I'm always looking for the best deal.  A manager has been calling me at my home weekly to see when I would sign and recommit to a new contract, offering better rates each time we talked.  So last night on my 'quick trip' to the gym the manager actually saw me come in to the gym and somewhat cornered me on a treadmill.  He was nice and all but nothing like a little pressure, make a decision now kind of sale.  It did feel like he all but offered me stock in the company to resign but hey I'll take it!  Lower monthly rate, next month free, free training session with a legit triathlete, free childcare, free tanning - alright sign me up.  Sounded good to me, should of held out two years ago when I signed up to get all that stuff.  Oh well...  An hour and a half later I got home with contract in hand to be able to have the kiddos watched while I go run next time for free! Sweet!

So I did get that quick run in but had to bring Slurpee's home to smooth things over with my sister.  Luckily she's the best sister ever and didn't even mind that I was longer than I had planned!  Love her.  And I shouldn't complain about fitting in summer training because the school year time is just as tough - it's all a juggling act.  Good thing I love it!

Dilemma of the week:  I'm going to be out of town again on Saturday...  So do I do my long run Friday night, remember I just did a 20 on Monday, and it will probably still be in the 80's Friday night.  Or do I do it on Monday, and throw next week off too?   Decisions, decisions....

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Undo It

Tuesdays are officially Tunesdays. I know, not original, but it just fits so perfectly. I am so not a country fan but this song could cause me to get a little extra kick in my step. The live version is the best. Enjoy!
On to sad music news... My old school silver ipod nano is dying a slow death. Tears, tears, tears. It has been with me for years. Gotten me through lots of races, lots of long runs, and lots of long sessions in the dry sauna. Yesterday while out on my long run, it would not let me select songs, scroll, or really see past the main menu list. I got it to play and thankfully my husband loaded some killer mixes the night before. No way could I survive a 20 mile long run without music. It made me feel a little extra sadness remembering the moment when I realized I washed my husband's brand new blue ipod nano zipped up in my running pants. I should have been a little more upset, he should have been a little more upset. He had just got a new iphone though, so come on, don't get too mad at me... It all worked out, however I can't "Undo It" and get that ipod back. Crap. :)

It's Official!

So, here we go...

I'm putting it out there to the whole world. Or at least to those that read my blog. The goal I have set for myself is to run 12 marathons in 12 months. I've already got one under my belt for the month of June. I ran the Utah Valley Marathon on June 12th and am now looking forward to the Deseret News Marathon in Salt Lake City on July 24th. This is a daunting task but I feel this is the year to take it on. Am I crazy? Probably. But I hope this will be a fun, rewarding experience that will help motivate others to set and achieve their own goals. Maybe some will even choose to join me!

With this blog, I plan to share tips on training, nutrition, and basic running survival. Check back often.

Happy Running!