Monday, May 26, 2008

Fun Memorial Day!

It's a rare treat when the VA Speidels visit us in Cincinnati. We took total advantage of their presence this Memorial Day weekend when we headed down to Coney Island t take in a few rides. Here are the three cousins ready to roll! We spent a few hours takin in the rides and eating some fine food...the Montgomery Inn Combo meal was a big hit...NOT! Poor Rusty had some issues with one of the rides, but we all survived, puke-free!
Looking forward to another get-together soon!

Monday, May 19, 2008

My First Official Trail Race!

The shoes say it all! Well, it wasn't an ultra, but I went on my first trail race on Sunday, and I have to admit, that was the most invigorating run I have been on in quite some time. T-Shirt courtesy of my bro and sis-in-law.
The race was a short 5.5 miler through the beautiful and rugged trails of Mt. Airy forest on the west side of Cincinnati. What I really enjoyed was the focus I had to maintain throughout the run. It kept my mind off the distance and time, and more on the technical aspects, such as the roots and rocks. And that was good, since I spent the previous night at a graduation pary for my friends daughter. Too much "carbo loading," if you know what I mean.
I felt totally in the element, and that was a great feeling. This race was part of a trail run series put on by our local running store, Ronckers Running Spot.
The trail was mostly single-track, which made it difficult to pass others, so time-wise, I had to maintain an 8:50 pace or so. The winner completed in just over 6:00/mile! Egad!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Another Successful Semester!

YES! Another great semester at NKU. I was hoping for at least a B, but LOOK at this!! WOO HOO! It's party-time!

Ok, I'm done.

Friday, May 09, 2008

We have a house-guest!

Penny (left), our very friendly neighborhood lab is staying with us for a few weeks while her parents are in Spain. Not only is she as sweet as she looks, but Courage has taken a liking to her! After an initial scuffle, Courage established his role as the dominant alpha, and the rest just fell into place. During the day while we are at work and school, the two remain in the house, and so far, no major accidents.
We'll miss her when she has to leave!
Until next time....

Sunday, May 04, 2008

The Flying Pig - DONE DEAL!!

Well, 4 hours and 20minutes later, with several blisters in "toe", I have ended the day with another Flying Pig under my belt. It's been 9 years since I last ran a marathon, and I totally forgot how painful they can be, but all-in-all, it was a great experience.
Last night, I was dreadfully nervous. After an anxious night at my brother-in-laws for dinner, I had an equally nervous night's sleep, if that's what one would call it. Maura and I woke at 4:30 this morning to begin our adventure. She was walking the half and I had opted into the full marathon. The crowd was huge...11,000+ runners and walkers graced the starting line. At 6:45, the race was on.
The course winds through northern Kentucky and re-enters Cincinnati to begin a long, steep climb, reaching the top at around mile 9. The half marathoners take a left and head home, while the full marathoners begin their journey by heading right and through Hyde Park, Mariemont, and back downtown. I was feeling good and running comfortably, but in the back of my mind, I kept remembering that my training leading up to this point had not been optimal. With 17 miles to go, there were doubts that I would finish this thing.
Thank god for the crowds! They managed to pull me through some tough areas. Miles 23-26 are on a relatively flat, unpopulated area, and with full sun and rising temperatures, my feet were blistered and very sore. I had to walk several times during this leg, but once we reached the downtown area, I was able to "sprint" to the finish.
Photos to come, but overall, it was a great marathon!

Photo is courtesy of The Cincinnati Enquirer.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Some Wacky Runner Observations

As I prep for the pig, there have been some funny things that I have noticed about my habits that I am sure many others have experienced:
1. Tops of Gel packets are littered about my house and car
2. The smell of sweaty running clothes doesn't bother me as much.
3. If my water bottle doesn't have a colored fluid in it, something isn't right.
4. Socks have taken on a new importance in my daily routine.
5. If I forget to wear my running watch, it's a bad day.
6. Polyester has become a favorite fabric...ouch!
7. I know what NUUN is!
8. I find myself stretching all the time.
9. Searching for running videos on YouTube has become a habit.

There are more, I'm sure! Add yours!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

THREE DAYS TILL PIGGY I ready? I don't believe I put in enough miles on the road to kick butt, but hopefully enough to squeeze through with a respectable time. I went for a short run yesterday, and was all achy, so I hope that is not a predictor of things to come.Weather is looking great, however!