Thursday, May 27, 2010

Cellcom Green Bay Marathon

May 16, 2010 was the 11th running of the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon. This was the 8th time I have run the marathon. This was the first marathon I ever ran, back in 2003 and have run it every year since. I originally planned to do the half marathon that year, until I met Shanna Zahn at work and started training with her. We met on Saturday's with the marathon training group (which consisted of very few people and we met in the hallway behind the old Suanne's Bagels in East De Pere, now Cafe Indulge). The routes were incorrectly marked for distance, we didn't have GPS', I wore a big heavy sweatshirt and some soccer clothes in the dead of winter and I had never even heard of GU let alone tried it. Well I have learned a lot over the years and continue to search for the "secret of the marathon". Hopefully someday I find it.

This year's installment of the race turned out to be perfect weather wise. Couldn't ask for anything better. I ran with Mark for the whole race. Our original goal was to start and stay with the 3:50 pacer (which was my friend Craig). Well that worked until about mile 3 and Craig picked it up. Our pace up to that point was exactly where we wanted to be and I didn't want to hang with him and push it too much. The first couple miles were fast enough. I, of course, didn't feel that fresh. Mark did, as usual, and was just bouncing along but I held him back with my slow pace. I felt trashy and low on calories for miles 3-13. I didn't feel terrible, just felt like I was working pretty hard to keep the 8:45 pace I wanted. I was eating this whole time, but I think I start low on calories and so the first few miles of a race are bad and the back end are better if I can catch up on my calories, there's a big "IF" there. We ran into a friend of mine, Shauna, on the course and ran with her for a bit. We then saw my friend Stacy about mile 6 and gave her a big wave. We saw Sue at mile 6.5 and Mark changed his shirt and then shortly after we saw my sister. My brother-in-law Brent was running the half so she was there to cheer for him. He started with us but dropped back about mile 4.5 with a side ache. We saw a few more people we knew and just kept checking off the miles. I took a little longer water stop break at mile 9 to stretch, thinking this would help me to feel didn't help at the time but I think it did help in the later miles. We kept trucking along through the half way point, past where the half and full marathoners split (I almost had to pull Mark with me for the full....there was no way I was doing this alone....sorry buddy!). We ran right by my house about mile 15 and Mark about had to hold me back from going to get Asher. (I think Asher got more props in this race than I did, everyone wanted to know where my dog was!) My foot really started to hurt about mile 15 so I took some more ibuprofen. We ran across the bridge in De Pere and just as we were about to go on the Fox River Trail, we run into my friend Erik on his mountain bike....Awesome!! So he “tried” to stay with us for the next several miles, I say “tried” not because of our blazing pace but because there were so many people on the trail spectating and running that it was hard to maneuver a bike. But he tried and we got to talk to him several times. He left us and I asked him to meet us at mile 24, that's when we are going to need some help, or at least I would given my past marathon experience. About mile 17 I really started to feel good. I started to get my second wind and really enjoy the run. Mark stopped at Fox Point to go to the bathroom and the 4 hour pacer passed us….dang. We caught up to them but then lost them at the Schenck water station, I stopped at the bathroom quick and Mark stopped to talk to Sue. We continued to just plug on. Nutritionally I felt really good. I felt like I had good energy and wasn't lightheaded as usual. I liked the pace we were keeping and was even able to talk to people and look around. Except for my foot, I felt decent. We (okay, maybe just me) danced our way across the Walnut Street bridge downtown to Toby Mac "One World" and were on our way "home" to Lambeau. Mile 23 Jeff Zellner caught up to us. Not sure how he caught us because he started before us, but anyway. We ran with him for a bit. At this point we graciously conceded our demise to the 9's that we were trying to keep and rolled along at 10's. My left IT band got very sore at this point and felt like it was going to cramp around mile 23. Never had that happen before. I think that is because I was altering my gate because my right foot hurt so bad. Erik rode his bike from Lambeau and met us about mile 24. That helped. I talked to him which was nice, it kept my mind off of the task at hand. We cruised through the next couple miles and got back to Lambeau. We ran through the Mile 25 Margarita water station (in which we wisely did not partake) and rounded the corner onto Oneida and saw Jeff, Dave and Jess. We saw Mark's friends Walter and Carol while we ran into the party...aka Lambeau Field and the finish line. Jeff Z got his second wind and kicked our butts through the stadium. We ran out of the stadium and gave it our all to a strong finish. I was very happy to be done. I think Mark was too. Afterwards we met up with all our family and friends and chatted about the race.

Nutritionally I felt very strong, especially in the later miles, which is where I usually run out of steam. I just need to figure out the early miles. My stomach felt good with the gatorade, water, honey stinger combination so I'm very excited about that. And my legs only got a little tight towards the end. I had stopped a couple times along the course to stretch which I think helped a ton in the later miles. If my foot wouldn't have been bad I probably would have done a warm up to get my legs loosened up and stretched out but I didn't want to pound on my foot any more than possible. I think this would have helped with the tight legs. It's hard to go from nothing to 26.2 miles with no warm up. I thought this year’s race was the best yet, the crowd support was fantastic. We saw a ton of people along the course that we knew....which is the huge benefit of running a marathon in your home town. (Mark, the social butterfly, definitely put me away with the amount of people he knows...holy smokes.) Our final time was 4:09:50.  Well my time was later changed to 51...not sure Mark....once again....beat me by 1/100th of a second. I'm going to stop running with him if he's going to continue to push me out of the way at the rude! J/K  Glad he can put up with me for 26.2 miles.  Until next time....

P.S.  Sue did take a couple pictures of us, but I can't seem to get them added.  Sorry.  Just words this time.

Swimming at Frank Murphy Park

Sunday I had an open house at my house so Asher and I headed out of town to go swimming.  It was almost 90 degrees at home.  Asher was in need of a hair cut and just looking outside made him pant so we headed to a cooler place...the water.  Asher loves to swim and I usually have to drag him out of the water when it's time to leave, full of sand and water and all.  It's tough to find beaches that are dog approved around here so we headed to Frank Murphy Park in Door County on the bay side. 

The Bay from the beach

The Bay from the beach

They allow dogs and they have a very nice beach.  This is where the Door County Triathlon is held.  When we got there it turned out to be about 15 degrees cooler than at home because of a strong East wind.  It was okay though, definitely still warm enough to swim.  So Asher played fetch and swam for over an hour and a half.  He had a blast and was exhausted for 2 days after wards.  Oh yeah, this is after he ran 12 miles in the morning in 90% humidity heat.  As most know, he can jump about 8 feet in the air, from a stand still.  He loves to display his incredible jumping abilities while fetching his ball in the water.  Here's a few pictures of him swimming and running and jumping. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

First Kayak of 2010

Saturday we finally got the boats out for our first kayak trip of 2010.  The place we bought our kayaks from had demo day so we went down there to try some higher scale kayaks, see if there was anything we liked better.  Overall consensus, we like what we have and are sticking with that.  So we then put ours in the water at Fox Point and paddled towards the De Pere damn and back on the Fox River.  It was nice pddle and very nice being back out on the water. 

The De Pere bridge and Damn

The Damn was flowing strong.

The Pelican's are back!!

Pelican's by the Damn

 (ignore the orange drainage pipe from the dredging of the river)

Mystery Solved

Well, my long standing foot mystery is finally solved.  I took all last week off from running after the marathon.  I even did very little walking to try and stay off it as much as possible.  I would go to bed at night and it would be fine, then I would wake in the morning and not be able to walk on it.  I could push on my heel with no pain.  Very odd.  So maybe it was something other than a heel bruise.  So I went searching on the internet and also called my PT to run through what was going on to see what he knew.  Well I figured it out before I even talked to him (but did confirm with him when he called me back).  I have achilles tendinitis.  Everything that was going on last week matched to every one of these symptoms.  Ugh!  I looked back and this has been a problem since November.  Double UGH!!!  So now that I finally know what the problem is, how do I get it fixed without ruining my whole season.  I talked to the PT and my mom who talked to the PT's she works for and came up with a game plan.  I have a Strassburg sock, so I have to wear that at night, ice....lots!, continue using my foam roller and use my ProStretch to stretch it out.  All things you would do if you have plantar fasciitis.  I also ordered some KT tape to tape the area which is supposed to help.  My mom said they use a ton of it at the clinic that she works at.  I've heard good things about it so I figured I'd give it a shot.  I figured this all out on Monday.  Oh and Sunday night my pilot light on my water heater went out so I had no hot water until the plumber came over on Monday to fix it.  My life is trying....a lot!  But it has been two mornings, two mornings of running and two nights of wearing the sock and I can definitely see a difference.  I can walk when I get up and I have very little pain when I run.  Knock on wood.  I hope this finally solves my foot issues for good.  I've had foot pain, of some sort, for over 3 years so I'm looking forward to finally being totally pain free. 

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Birthday Party

Last night we went to a Birthday Party at Zesty's for Maggie (my friends Mark and Sue's lab).  She turned 9.  We had 5 dogs and 6 adults.  It was crazy but lots of fun.  The dogs had a pup cup of ice cream (no pictures, it was devoured too quickly).  Asher loved his.  He kept sliding the cup around so I was going to hold it, he thought I was going to take it away so he ate the whole rest of the scoop in one bite.  Talk about an ice cream headache.  Then he had ice cream all over his face so I tried to wipe his face off with a napkin but he was just interested in shredding and eating the napkins so that didn't work.  Maggie was nice and shared her ice cream with her sister Ruby and her niece Abby.  We then went for a walk on the trail, 5 dogs 6 adults.  It was quite a circus.  It's so great that summer has finally decided to arrive.  Summer....we missed you.  Here are some pictures of the kids (the birthday girl was being snotty so I only got her back side.....possibly because she had to share her ice cream, not sure though).  It proves to be very difficult to get 5 sugar hyped up dogs to sit nice for a picture.  Especially when one is just a pup.  I think if you combine all of these together you get one with all 5 of them in it. 

Maggie (on the left), part of Abby (next to Maggie), Asher, Ruby (in the cart), Zeke (on the right)

Asher's head, Abby and Maggie

Asher, Ruby and Abby

Asher's head, Ruby, Abby and Zeke

Monday, May 17, 2010

Cellcom Marathon Expo & Kids Run

This past weekend was the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon (I'll write a more detailed race report in the next couple days).  I went to the expo on Friday night with a couple friends and picked up our packets, did some shopping and talked to a ton of people.  Then on Saturday I worked at the Door Country Triathlon/Fall 50 booth with Jeff Z, Tammy and Ivy.  That was fun.  Got to get all caught up with the three of them and saw lots more people I know.  I also saw my friends daughter do the kids run.  Here are a couple pictures I took.  She did awesome and ran strong! 

Kids running around Lambeau Field for the kids run 5-15-10

Kids running around Lambeau Field for the kids run 5-15-10

Grace and Brian rippin' it up during the kids run 5-15-10

Friday, May 14, 2010

Can I Get A....

Hostess Cupcake?  Got behind this car at lunch....

In case you can't see, the back hatchback and back seat are filled to the top with boxes of Hostess Cupcakes.  I assume from the Hostess wholesale store.  RAZTOO had a little trouble with the pick up getting on the interstate with all those cupcakes in the back seat, but when I left them they were well on their way to a clean get away, with a whole ton (literally) of cupcakes.  The guy driving had the wrap around Ray Ban sunglasses on too.  He definitely thought he was a catch.....

Mexican Casserole

One of my favorite types of food is Mexican. Most things are made out of corn instead of wheat so it's usually pretty easy for me to be able to find something at a Mexican restaurant to eat. My mom used to make this dish but once I went gluten free I wasn't able to make it anymore because you used crescent rolls for the bottom crust. Then I got to thinking, I could use my corn bread recipe for the crust instead and just bake it first. And it worked!! Awesome. Here is the recipe in case you want to try it. It's so good!

Mexican Casserole

1 corn bread recipe
1 lb. Ground Turkey or Beef
1 package taco seasoning
1/2 cup water
1 cup sour cream
1 pkg. shredded cheddar cheese
Crushed chips (can either use corn chips or Doritos)

Make corn bread recipe as normal. Spray a 9x13 pan and pour the corn bread in the pan. Bake this at 350 degrees for about 20-25 minutes. You want it almost done.

Brown the meat and add the water, taco seasoning and sour cream. Mix all together.

After taking the corn bread out of the oven, sprinkle a layer of the crushed corn chips over the corn bread. Then evenly spread the meat mixture over the crushed chips. Next sprinkle the cheddar cheese over the top of the meat. Last put another layer of corn chips on top of the cheese. Put back in the oven for about another 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Cut and enjoy!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

House for Sale

Hot off the presses:  House for Sale.  I'm putting a shameless plug out in blog land for my house.  Got all the pictures up today and everything is set to sell.  Check out the link.  Pass the word to your friends, family, co-workers, heck even dogs (they talk amongst themselves, don't kid yourself).  If anyone is interested let me know and I'll get you hooked up!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

May Snow

Okay, this trend needs to right now.  Friday was nasty here, lots of rain and wind and it got pretty cold over night....and that's right, it snowed.  I don't know how common this is to get snow in May but I would have felt my life complete if we hadn't gotten any snow.  Here's photo proof:

Navarino Trail Half Marathon

I did the Navarino Trail Half Marathon back in mid-April but never posted anything about it.  I'm a slacker...I know.  Anyway, this was a Marathon or Half Marathon.  Totally awesome.  I go over and run on the Navarino trails a few times a year.  It's one of the only trails in the area that it's okay to have dogs....and yes that erks me to no end!  Asher loves it and so do I so when they changed their previous distance of a 15K to a marathon or half marathon I knew I had to do one.  I didn't want to do three marathons in three months so I stuck with the half.  It was great.  A couple friends of mine ran the full so I got there early to watch them start (they started an hour before us halfers did).  I ran the half and then went back and got my friend Jeff and finished again with him.  It was a cool and windy day but you didn't notice it too bad in the thick forest.  This race is really well run and the trails are soft and challenging.  I recommend this to anyone that likes to trail run.  I never posted the few pictures I took from the race so here they are:

Marathon Start

Marathon Start

Brad after the first mile (he went on to take second for the marathon)

Mike after the first mile (he's in the white shirt)

The Half Marathon medal

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Agave or no Agave....that seems to be the question

Is agave bad for us or is agave good for us, that seems to be a hot topic lately.  This is a topic my friend Tammy and I have been tossing around.  She saw something on Good Morning America that said it was terrible for you.  Then I found this link that also says it's terrible.  (This woman did a nice review of the article.)  I also found two articles (#1, #2) saying good things about Agave.  And I found this quote....which is now my favorite quote ever: "Moderate amounts of sugar can certainly be enjoyed as part of a healthy diet for an active individual."  That to me means I can eat sugar.  Yeah!!  Anyway, this is all confusing.  Any one else understand all this?  I say, it's not like you are eating it straight from the bottle every day so a little in baking can't possibly be poison....but what do I know....  Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Hello all.  As you might have noticed (I'm not really sure how many people actually read this) I have been taking a bit of a break from blogging for a while.  I have been bored with my blog, as I'm sure you have been bored with it as well.  Things have been very busy at work and at home which has left me no time to blog either.  I have lots of good recipes to share, a few pictures to share and some other fun stuff, I just haven't had the did I mention I was bored with my blog (that's pretty sad when the blog author is bored with their blog....ugh).  I need to spice thing up a bit.  I need to change things.  I'm not going to post my weekly training recap for now.  It's boring, it's the same every week and I am trying to avoid my ever favorite comment "you train too much" or "you train all wrong" or "you are a loser because all you do is train".  So for now that's gone.  If I have tough workouts, fun workouts, crazy workout, etc. I will post about that.  I also need to get it in my head that every post doesn't have to be a big production.  I read lots of cool stuff on the internet so I'll try and post more links for everyone else to join in on the knowledge I am gaining.  So some days I'll have small baby posts and some days I'll post something big and fun with pictures and such.  I'm not a very "sharey" person so I'm trying here and the concept is cool, I just really kind of suck at it.  So who ever you are out there, please bare with me.  Thank you.