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My 2013 Dance Card Is Looking Pretty Full…Part Deux

3 Mar

So as if my race docket wasn’t full enough…

Apparently, I need to cram as much into a four month period as I possibly can.  Get outdoors, enjoy nature, right?

I don’t know HOW I found the moxie to add a few more events to my summer/fall race “to-do” list…but I did!! Probably gonna regret this, but what are ya gonna do??

Minnesota Half Marathon and 5K
August 3, 2013

Saint Paul, MN
Duathlon (Inline / Run)

This will be my third inline half marathon, but my first inline duathlon. So here’s how it breaks down. The first leg is a lovely 13.1 mile inline skate along the Mississippi River  – from Downtown St. Paul to the front steps of Fort Snelling and then back. Once the first leg is wrapped up, participants then embark on a 3.1 mile run along the river.

While ‘m not too concerned about distance, I am little curious as to how it’s going to feel running after blading for 13.1 miles!! I usually have a tricky time just walking – much less running a 5k afterwards.

This should be really interesting…to put it mildly.
North Shore Inline Marathon
September 14, 2013
Duluth, MN
Marathon (Inline)

I’ve done one inline marathon. That was the Metrodome Inline Marathon. That particular event took place on the perfectly smooth concrete floors of the Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis. No traffic, no hills, no potholes…nada. Practilly broke the sound barrier!

This particular inline marathon takes place along the shores of Lake Superior in Two Harbors and Duluth, MN. The scenery is nothing short of spectacular.


That’s a whole lot of bladers…

Why does this remind of "Rollerbll"...?

Why does this remind of “Rollerball”…?

Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon
October 6, 2013
Minneapolis / St. Paul, MN

This was the first marathon I had ever run. Ironically, it was the 25th anniversary of the Twin Cities Marathon. The tag line “The Most Beautiful Urban Marathon In America” is no joke!! The course winds through the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul and covers some of the most gorgeous and picturesque areas of both cities. The lakes, the river, some of the most beautiful neighborhoods, and a culmination at the State Capitol.

This marathon cannot be beat. Period.

So that’s it kids!! I mean it!! No more!!! 😉



My 2013 Dance Card Is Looking Pretty Full…

9 Feb

So…here we are yet again. Another year and another race season is upon us. Already. It seems like only yesterday, the better half and I finished running the Frankfurt Marathon. So much for taking it easy for a while. Although, I really shouldn’t bitch. She ran two marathons in three weeks. I was lucky to finish one.

2013 promises to be quite the year. We’ve got all kinds of fun and fantastic things planned! Hopefully, I’ll somehow survive them all. It really is going to be quite the season. We’re pretty much doing everything under the sun: marathons, triathlons, half marathons, inline. I really don’t know what my problem is. I swear: I’m not one of those overachiever types. I hate those people.

But I figure if it keeps my Two Gingers consumption down to a minimum (fat chance), it can’t be all that bad…right?!?

So, let’s break down just what we’ve gotten ourselves into:

Team Ortho Get Lucky – March 16, 2013
Minneapolis, MN
Half Marathon

This will be my third Get Lucky half, and I gotta say, barring the first time when I was literally the LAST person out the gate because I showed up late, and the second year when I had that nine minute bathroom pit stop three minutes in, it’s a pretty decent race. It runs along the river in St. Paul starting from the old Ford plant and ending up near the Science Museum. The one “downer” of the course is a little stretch I like to call “The Widow Maker”. It’s quite a long windy steep hill about two miles from the finish. It. Blows. But hey…what doesn’t kill you only makes you that much weaker!

Rock the Parkway – April 13, 2013
Kansas City, MO
Half Marathon

In my quest to run a race in all 50 states, this one will go down as number two. So obviously, this is gonna take for fucking ever.

My better half turned me onto this one, which she’s run a few times. The field is pretty average – around 5,000 runners – and the course is fairly flat. There should be no reason why I can’t knock this out in two hours. But then again, I always say that…

Great Wall of China – May 18, 2013
Beijing, China

That’s right. China. Great Wall. Bamm!! That’s how we roll…

This is destined to be one of those once in a lifetime events – for obvious reasons. This also promises to be the hardest, craziest, most insane marathons I’ve ever run. But it will bring me one step closer to knocking out all seven continents. I still don’t know about that Antarctica thing. That’s just messed up. But I digress…we were talking about China.

So contrary to what you may think, the entire race isn’t run on the wall. The beginning and end are wall bound, the rest of the marathon winds its way through the surrounding villages and cities. And when I say villages, I mean villages. The “Wall” portion is comprised of around 5,000+ stairs, plus the uphill climb just to get onto the wall. It’s going to be hot, dusty, and who knows what else.

The little lady and I will be a part of a tour group led by my good man Steve Hibbs with Marathon Adventures based right here in Minneapolis. I’ve run the 2500th anniversary of the first marathon in Athens with his adventure marathon company. A great guy and a great organization! I highly recommend him for all of your adventure marathoning needs.

So just how hard will this actually be?? Well…here’s the race elevation profile:

This Is Messed Up

And a map of the course…


But I think these next few pictures say it all…

What have I gotten myself into

What have I gotten myself into

That's just weird...

That’s just weird…

He does NOT look happy

He does NOT look happy

Not a Porta Potty in sight...

Not a Porta Potty in sight…

Okay...this is just cute

Okay…this is just cute


This is seriously f*ed up.

This is seriously f*ed up.

So suffice it to say, we have our work cut out for us on this one. I am so very much afraid. So very afraid.

Minneapolis Half Marathon – June 2, 2013
Minneapolis, MN
Half Marathon

Why I decided it would be a good idea to run a half marathon after running a marathon on the Great Wall of China I have no freaking clue, but whatever…

I’ve run this particular race the last three years. The course runs along West River Parkway, so it’s a pretty scenic course. The only thing that truly blows, however, is that very deceptive hill at the finish right before the Guthrie. It winds and winds and goes on forever. Nothing like a long slow climb to finish out a race. Jerks.

Red, White, and Boom! – July 4, 2013
Minneapolis, MN
Half Marathon

So last year, this race was shortened from a half marathon to a five miler – due to the “heat”. Needless to say, there were quite a few pissed off runners. Their Facebook page was lit up with some very dissatisfied folks. There’s a big difference between five miles and thirteen miles. And sure as hell didn’t pay $65 to run eight miles. But luckily, another runner took it upon himself to arrange a pre-race run to make up for the eight miles that were shaved from the original race.

The ironic thing about the pre-race was that it was hotter at 4:30 in the morning than it was during the start of the real race. Go figure.

This race winds its way through North Minneapolis and is pretty flat. Plus…free ice cream and hot dogs after the race!
Lifetime Fitness Triathlon – July 13, 2013
Minneapolis, MN
Sprint Triathlon

I was originally supposed to run this in 2011, but an unfortunate injury sidelined me for that one. So I deferred my entry to last year. And well, frankly, I was just plain old scared shitless of the thought of actually doing it. So, once again, I deferred. Here we are in 2013…third time’s a charm hopefully!
The one thing that truly strikes fear into my heart is the thought of being stampeded by dozens of swimmers. I’ve heard the horror stories of being literally run over during the swim. Not looking forward to it. Nope. But at least this gives me an excuse to buy a new bike.

Maple Grove Triathlon – August 24, 2013
Maple Grove, MN
Sprint Triathlon

So unlike the Lifetime Minneapolis triathlon, I actually did participate in this bad boy in 2011. Being my first triathlon, yes, I was scared shitless. Literally. I didn’t poop for three days before the race. With that being said, it was a great introduction to triathlons.

The field of competitors was pretty small, the wave start for the swim portion was just the perfect size, the swim distance was perfect, and there was ample support during the swim. If anyone ran into trouble during the swim – looking at you Anthony – there was someone right there.

Actually looking forward to this one. Go figure…not to mention it’s one my birthday. Happy birthday to me.

Minneapolis Duathlon – August 25, 2013

Yes. You read that right. I’m doing a triathlon on Saturday and a duathlon on Sunday. And yes…it is on my birthday weekend. I’ve actually done this before if you can believe that sh*t.

The “du” consists of a 5K run, an 18 mile bike, and another 5K run. It essentially follows the same route as the Minneapolis Half Marathon. This race is a nice little change from the run run run thing. Plus they always have free beer afterwards. Score!

So that, kids, is my spring/summer in a nutshell. Really don’t know what possessed me to subject myself to this torture. I’ve considered having a psych evaluation done, but not sure if that’s covered under my insurance. That would be cool if it was.

Does anyone know where I can take the MMPI for free?

Intervals Schmintervals

10 Jan

So…spring marathon training season is in gear, and I need to get my ass into gear. It’s always a little “rough” getting back into the swing of things after a little hiatus from hitting the hardtop. It’s especially tricky to get motivated when you have to train in the occasionally inclement / arctic weather of Minnesota. I’m hearty, but even I have my limts!

This year, I’m considering two marathons: a spring and a fall. Not sure what’s gotten into me, but let’s hope it’s not terminal.

Although this time around, I really do intend on training for real!!!

As proof positive of this new found motivation, I’ve actually decided to add speed intervals to my repertoire. This is a first. I know that every single training plan out there has some kind of interval work, I’ve never actually done them. That all changes now.

This is a nice little interval workout that I’ve become quite fond of. It’s easily adaptable to fit your needs and doesn’t take long. It’s designed for a treadmill, but can be easily modified for outdoor training.

  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 7.5 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 8.0 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 8.5 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 9 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 9.5 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 10 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 8 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 7.5 mph
  • 1/4 mile at 6.7 mph

Follow this with a ten minute cool down at 3.7 mph with an incline of between 10 and 15.

As your training progresses, feel free to up the intervals to .3 miles. It may not seem like much, but you will definitely feel the difference! Or you can set a specific amount of time and repaet intervals until the time elapses.

Happy running!!