Sunday, June 29, 2008

In Honor of Babette

I just have to take a moment here to mourn a lost athlete. Although I barely knew her, she inspired me greatly.

When I tell the story of my first-ever triathlon last Summer - of how I started in the "leftover" wave filled with first-timers, Athenas, mountain bikes and age 40+ women - it often turns into a comic display. I explain that since each athlete's age is marked on her calf, I knew that the woman next to me in the corral was 64. Babette introduced herself when she could see how nervous I was and told me that I would be just fine. She gave me some tips on how I should be warming up and then took her place at the waterline.

From there, the story painstakingly details how Babette clobbers me at each stage and how she is in fresh clothes by the time I cross the finish line. Babette is the reason I signed up for the next Key Biscayne triathlon a month later. She is the reason I vowed to go to spin class twice a week and why I bought fins to train better in the pool. And after she trampled me effortlessly again, she was the reason I signed up for the third and final race of the Trilogy.

But although it was disappointing to be bested by someone over twice my age, Babette's poise merited utter respect. She contested atrophy with each climb into a new age category. She was at once motivating and formidable; youthful and seasoned. She loved the sport for the sake of the challenge and for the community that builds itself around it. Babette makes you remember that "Men do not quit playing because they grow old; they grow old because they quit playing." - Oliver Wendell Holmes

Babette Kulka
died last Wednesday, training in the choppy ocean waters of Hollywood, Florida.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Are we there yet?

Hi Mommy Runners:

It's me Trice-- sort of back from the dead. I made it to Texas, did not find a house yet, but am still looking. I'm truly happy to be in Texas-- where I discovered my running self (All the runs prior to 1999 were for the Army - they do not count).

I am thinking about "The Woodlands" as a neighborhood to move. I saw lots of neat running Moms out there and lots of trails.

I'm computerless and in the library right now. The geek squad has my laptop so it may be a while before I can see how well you are all doing.

Happy summer running!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A Call to Arms Legs!

"From every continent, all over the world at the very same time, someone will be running with you! Join a truly global community of fellow runners in a free, non-commercial event that celebrates the joy of running, with the challenge of a race! Share your local experience with a world-wide audience of fellow runners in the Phedippidations World Wide Half Marathon and "Kick the Couch" 5K road race!"

Okay - this is a Call to Arms Legs for those of you who are ready to commit to your first 5K (3.1 miles), 10K (6.2 miles) or Half Marathon (13.1 miles). This virtual race takes place ANYWHERE you want: your neighborhood, on the first half of the Chicago Marathon, at a local race. You can run the whole way, you can run with set walk breaks, or walk the entire length. YOU choose your challenge.

For an in depth description of this cool race, check out the Extra Mile Podcast
(Episode 23 & 24) here or subscribe on iTunes.

So tell me:
Will you be signing up for "Kick the Couch" 5K?

The World Wide Half Marathon?
or THIS other cool virtual 10K?

We have 11 weeks until the
Phedippidations (pronounced: "Fed-Ip-Id-Aye-shuns") World Wide Race.

Need help with a training plan? Check out Runner's World Smart Coach HERE.

Need training partners? You should already know where to find them!!!! But in case it slipped your HERE.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Ladies and Gentlemen (if there are any) - I have officially become unrecognizable to my former self, that is, the person I was a decade or two ago. I hold in my hot little hand a "Liftlog," which not only implies that I am lifting weights, but that I plan on doing this on a recurring basis. I know that the old me would openly mock the new me, but I'm okay with that.

Now, if you wouldn't mind, let me have a personal word with the Crumbs of yesteryear:

Dear Crumbs -
At 20 years old, you are a loner in the world, finished with college, following bands from festival to festival, thinking you can make it as an artist. You're filled to the brim with cynicism, have zero tolerance for fashion and think sports are for meat heads. You wouldn't run unless a tiger was chasing you, however you'd probably be too occupied making sure no one hurt the tiger instead.

Well, times are a changin' and you'll soon find happiness in the most unexpected places. You'll discover windsurfing, kayaking and yoga. You'll start using your bike as transport and realize it's kind of fun. Turns out, you'll get married and have a baby (and it won't be snowing in hell).

And more shocking than anything, you'll find joy in running...even when nothing is chasing you. Running will introduce you to a world of new people, new attitudes and an entire sports wardrobe complete with running skirts. Your new friends will sign up for marathons, and you'll join them. Then you'll try a Tri. You'll even run past the tigers at a race at the Zoo. And one day, before you know it, you'll go to the gym and use the weights...but you still won't care if the meat heads think you don't fit in.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


12:30pm (Idaho time)
I was feeling a bit sluggish on my 5 mile run this morning...until it occurred to me that today is the Ironman at Coeur D'Alene and I've got a bunch of friends there swimming 2.4 miles, THEN biking 112 miles and THEN running 26.2 (yes, the distance of a marathon).

I logged on to check out how they are doing most are mid-way through the bike.

So here's to you, FOGO DO MIAMI!!! They've been featured in the local media and if you're looking for inspiration or are tripped up on the idea of "I could NEVER be able to..." or "I'm too overweight", check out their stories. Here are just a couple:



6pm (Idaho time)

This blows my mind.
swam for an hour, was on the bike for 6 hours and is near the end of a marathon right now.
Teresa swam for 1 1/2 hours, biked for EIGHT, and started her run just an hour ago.
Eddie swam for 1 1/2 hours, biked for 7, and probably has another 2 hours left in his marathon.

I'm exhausted just following them online!

Eddie: 14 hours 52 minutes
Mark: 11 hours 48 minutes
Tim: 12 hours 56 minutes
Teresa: 16 hours 50 minutes
Victor: 14 hours 19 minutes

What a journey!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The "In-Crowd"

I feel like I’ve been voted off the island.

Last weekend, I could still jog whenever I saw other people on the trail – which was frequent. Then I walked when no one was looking. I made it 5 miles and even passed a couple other joggers along the way. I was happy. Then I was sore for days.

Despite my greatest aspirations to run until the day I delivered, I think that I’ve crossed over the line of doing more damage (to me – not the fetus) than good, so today I walked. Unfortunately, my 8-months-pregnant belly is not yet bigger than my pride, so I’m a little sad to be out of the club.

You’ve probably noticed that runners typically acknowledge an oncoming runner with a quick wave or grunt or something…anything. At 3-years-old, my daughter even noticed that runners generally acknowledge one another in passing with a quick greeting: “Hi!”, “Good morning!”, or “Nice day!” “How about 'Macaroni and Cheese'?” she suggests. So for the rest of that day we said “Macaroni and Cheese” to each person we passed.

It seems, however, as soon as you are a “walker” you become invisible to these other runners. I’ve now noticed this phenomenon at different times and in different places, with and without my jogging stroller, and whether or not I attempt to greet them first. Have you noticed this?

I can’t remember specifically, but I only hope that when I was out running miles and miles, I gave an equal-opportunity grunt to runners and walkers alike.

More Socializing Opportunities!

What? What? What? There is a message board on See Mommy Run!!!!!
I have REALLY been under a rock. (Log in to see the Nationwide Message Board)

Sweet! See you there!

Friday, June 20, 2008


How cool am I? I can have a baby via C-section and run a marathon the same year. Go me. Woo hoo. After reading about the mom who had sextuplets (via C-section, as well as heart failure during delivery) and still ran the San Diego Rock & Roll Marathon - and looked good while doing it - I'm not even impressing myself! Well, at least I can try to beat her time of over 5:30.

I Broke Up With Running

I broke up with running, just like the ads say.
We saw too much of each other, day after day.
And then when I got sick, it didn't nurse me like I expected.  Up until that point, running always made me feel better: my health and self-esteem.  I started to resent running.

Miami spring days turned molten and soggy - running didn't make me happy anymore.  The time on my watch dripped by and each step drained me.  I tried the treadmill at the gym, but the halogen lights made our affair seem so contrived.  I tried signing up for races to be inspired, but they came and went without sparking anything.

So I stopped.  I rested.  I cleansed my system.  Then I watched it rain for three days.  In the height of the storm, in torrential monsoon rains, I decided it was time to run again.

I am in love again.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Go Maddie!

The other evening my hunk-a-hunk-a-burnin-love hubbie and I were sitting in the hof enjoying the cool evening air when he remarked that he had noticed my lack of use of his Walkman. (Yes, I said Walkman. We are the beautiful ages we are and we think we're better people for it.)
It's true. I haven't been utilizing the Walkman hook-up on my Jeep jogger because the batteries ran out. Instead I've been listening to my slider phone radio.
Feeling guilty, I changed the batteries. To see if it worked, I put in a CD by Evanescence. As soon as the music started, my wonderful dog perked up her ears and got a really excited expression on her face. Yes, my dog has expressions.


"Are you feeling it?" I asked her.

So today we went for a run. Me, Maddie and my beautiful son in the jogger. At first I listened to the radio through my ear buds and Maddie just wandered off into the trees and did her doggie thing. As soon as I switched to Evanescence, bam, she was there beside me, pacing me. I mean, right there beside me, following the trail with me, turning in tandem. It was amazing. When I stopped, she stopped, grinning as I hooked the leash back on her.

I love my dog.

Monday, June 16, 2008

OK I know we are all about the LURKING here

not so much the commenting BUT Id love your input.

two words: RUNNING SKIRTS.

five words: love em or leave em?

inquiring carlamind & all.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Not Quite as Informative

This little post may not be nearly as informative as the one below (I am so impressed with the awesome instructions for how to fix a jogger tire!!!), but I hope it is useful to some...specifically those who have never run or have taken a break from running to, say, wallow in pregnancy. I am just here to say, give it time. You can get your mojo back. You really have to just do it and it really will get better. After too much huffing and puffing, I can now exit my house and run for a quick 20 minutes just to squeeze something in. And the more I do this, the longer I can run on weekends, which is a good thing, because my training buddy rides a 2 wheeler now - and he's fast!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Flat Tires

Oh no! You have a flat! You could
a) Quit running.
b) Bring your tire to a bike store and PAY someone to fix it.
c) Fix it yourself!

Here's how:

Step 0: Remove wheel from the stroller. The front wheel probably has a quick release lever and the back wheels probably have a quick release push button.

Step 1: Use a set of tire levers to remove the tire from the rim.
Step 2: Remove flat inner tube from tire.
Step 3: Carefully check the inside of the tire for any sharp objects that may have caused the flat. (You can also add air to the old inner tube and submerge it is soapy water to find the location of the hole.)
Step 4: Partially inflate new inner tube* before placing between tire and rim. This will decrease the chances of pinching it and causing another flat.
Step 5: Starting with the valve in the rim, slide new inner tube into tire.
Step 6: Lever tire back onto rim, being careful not to pinch the inner tube.

Step 7: Re-inflate to desired pressure (read the side of your tire for how many PSI are right for your tire. Ideally, use a hand pump with a meter. Try to avoid air compressors like the ones at gas stations as they are very strong and are likely to over-inflate your small tires.

* A note about inner tubes. If you can locate the hole on your old inner tube, you can patch it with a kit available at any local bike store. Sometimes it is just easier to buy a new tube. If you are not sure what size wheel (usually small = 12", medium = 16" and large = 20") you have, just pop it off and bring it with you to the store. It might even be the same size as your older child's bike wheels.

Thank you to my friend, Eileen, for taking the pics!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Ashamed Part 2

Here it is:
I decided I WOULD run it........I went out 6 days before the race to see how 10 miles would go and it went FABULOUS!! I was soooooo excited. I felt like I could have continued on the rest of the 3.1 without issue. I couldn't believe I really a runner, be it slow, for real!?!?!

Then life happened. described before, it has been so crazy here, drugs would be justified (LOL)!! I took son #2 to his Peds Cardiologist Electrophysiologist for the final check before moving on his pacemaker ( he has congenital heartblock, on his 3rd pacemaker). This appt should have been very routine with plans for follow on care in NC with a new doc..................Except..............after hooking him up to the computer, we discovered his pacer isn't quite working right and now we are doing more monitoring with probable surgery before we leave for NC, which by the way is in less than 4 weeks.
The original plan was to leave the hospital in DC and drive to Alexandria to pick up my race package. We left the hospital with a heart monitor and drove the 30 miles which took 2 1/2 hours (Friday evening DC traffic) to the package pick up location. My mind was a blurr, not knowing what I was going to do.......still drive the 2 hours to the race the next night before and run....but what about my son being a heart monitor with an appointment the day after the race in DC again.......Plus, he is a tough little guy but these things scare him and he just needed his mom too. Anyway, I was still gonna get that package and then decide exactly how to handle things. I parked across the street from the shop leaving my 11 year old son in the car since he didn't want to be seen by anyone with his monitor ( he thinks it looks like a purse and he is a bit of a manly boy!!)......somewhat still on the adrenaline rush from all that was happening to find out I went to the wrong freaking town!! They offered to give me directions to Arlington, but I just said forget it, obviously Karma was trying to tell me something. Race day was officially cancelled.

I did end up having a friend pick up my package in Annapolis the following day since she lives there, so at least I'll still get the T-shirt for the race I didn't run.

We'll know more Tues when his heart monitor results are evaluated. He is such a great son that being there for him if only to listen or sit near was worth giving up my goal of a first 13.1

PS. Did I tell you my ferret of over 6 years is being euthanized in the morning for his adrenal cancer?! Seriously, I need a break, or a drink!