Sunday, July 31, 2005

SF 1/2 Marathon Complete!

I did it, 13.1 miles! It took 1 hour, 55 minues and 34 seconds. I placed 508 out of 1688 (about in the top 30%). I had a great time. The morning was really foggy. The trees were dripping water they were collecting from the fog. While waiting for the bathrooms a second time, I started talking with two women behind me. They were from the Davis, Calif. area and had run a few Ultra-marathons (50 miles). Kristin and Jennifer decided to run the 1/2 as a training run for their upcoming marathon in Sacramento. Since Kristin was going to be running 9 minute miles, I asked if she mind if I tagged along. Since this was a training run for me also, I thought if I had someone to keep pace with, I wouldn't overdo it.
We kept a nice pace with walking one minute each mile. There were a few hills on the course but nothing as bad as ONE STEP from the road to the sidewalk at mile 12! We crossed the 3rd Street bridge by SBC Park (ballpark) and there were signs with caution of a step up. When we got to it, it felt like the biggest hill I've ever climbed. A guy next to me asked were the elevator was, he didn't feel like taking the stairs.
Once we got to the final mile, I decided to break pace and kick it into high gear. Kristin said see ya later (when you run with someone, sometimes you need them to tell you it's ok to run ahead). I took off. I finished the last mile in 7:43, which is quite fast for me (even during training). As I was turning the corner to the finish line (still not quite sure how much of the mile I had left) the crowd was getting bigger and so were the cheers. There's nothing like someone yelling looking great, kick it in, go strong...I was really giving it all I had. And then I realized that after the 26 mile marker (the miles were marked for the marathon, not the 1/2), I still had another .2 miles to run! I kept all of my focus on the road ahead, picking people off one at a time, not letting anyone pass me.
When I crossed the finish line, I saw Kara from the AIDS Marathon office. She gave me a big cheer. She asked my time, I told her and she gave out another big cheer. I waited for Kristin to finish (only two minutes behind me) and then for Jennifer. We walked over, turned in our chip, and received our medal. That's why I ran, to get my first finisher's medal.
Back to training. This coming Saturday is an easy one, only 6 miles! Boy, if you asked me six months ago if I could run six miles, I would have looked at you and laughed!

Friday, July 29, 2005

SF 1/2 Marathon this weekend!

Only a few more days until the San Francisco 1/2 Marathon! I'm a little nervous because I wasn't able to get all the running in that I wanted to this week, but I guess it'll have to do! I ran another 6 miles last night at Lake Merritt. I was 4 minutes faster last night than Wednesday night. No more running until Sunday!
If you are interested in receiving updates while I'm running on Sunday, you can sign up at This company sends text messages to your cell phone during the race. I've never used them before, so I don't know what to expect.
Hope everyone has a great weekend and I'll let you know Sunday (or Monday morning) how the race went!

Thursday, July 28, 2005

I ran......

six miles last night. I still have the sore throat and slight cough. It's sort of like come on already; either bring it on and let's be really sick or knock it off, I have work to do! I really kicked it up in the last 1/2 mile and sprinted to the end. My lungs were not so happy about that. I was able to catch my breath after a minute or two (vs. 15-30 seconds), but noticed what affect being sick has on my running.
Tonight will be another 5 or 6 miles and then the gym for some lifting. I'm going to take the easier route of Alameda instead of Lake Chabot. I'm not really in the mood to run hills!
Fundraising: $1,920 of $3,000 Only $1,080 to go (in just over 1 month!)

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

I'm sick!

Urgh! I have a sore throat and a small cough! It's not going away. Last night I scrapped the run. I'm hoping to be able to rest up and get better before Sunday! I hate being sick...especially during the summer. Isn't there a law against summer colds??
Going to try and run with EB Frontrunners tonight. I need to do a little running before Sunday!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

136 miles and counting

Tonight it's 5 miles at Lake Chabot. I have a sore throat and a little cough. I think I caught what John had. Not exactly what I need for the race on Sunday!
Planning a garage sale soon. Need to start collecting everything shortly!

Monday, July 25, 2005

10 Miles...or was that 12?

This past weekend, we were scheduled to run 10 miles. I've run 10 miles once before so I was feeling good about being to run it with no problems. When I walked out the door at 8am Saturday, the sun was feeling warm and I had a feeling that it was going to get hot (plus I looked at the weather before I left). It was already in the mid-70's in Walnut Creek and we started out at 9am. We were suppose to run part of a trail out and back (2 miles) and then loop around back to the park (8 miles). Well, we should have known we were in trouble when we could find the turn around point on the first out and back. We ended up running a total of 4 miles instead of 2. When we got to the 4 mile mark we about fell over (the other part of the trail wasn't marked), we had been running for 55 minutes, it if it really was mile marker 4, it should have been 36 minutes. So we slowly were trying to do the math (and fill up with water!) and realized that we had done an extra two (we thought). As we got to mile 6, there were so jugs of water sitting next to the marker. Now we were getting confused if this was our water or not. It said that it was for AIDS Marathon, SF Marathoners. We are Honolulu marathoners, so we thought that the SF people were also on the course that day. So we passed the water thinking it wasn't ours. At mile 7 (really 9) we decided that maybe that it really was our water, we were starting to get low on water again (plus we were suppose to have salty snacks). At this point Paul was starting to feel dizzy, so I decided to stay back with him and let the others keep running. He had run out of water (luckily I just bought a 70oz Camelbak, so I had some to spare) and we had no idea when the next water stop would be. He thought that if he could just walk a little longer he would be fine. He drank some water and we walked an extra minute and he was up and running again. We slowed the pace down, probably to a 10 minute/mile pace. We finally got to the next water stop at mile 8, filled our bottles, grabbed some pretzels and kept going. Now, we realized that we only 2 more miles to go. The sun was really starting to beat down on us, and there was VERY limited shade on the trail (it was around 85-90 degrees). We kept going and going and going. We started talking about turning around, thinking we may have missed a turn somewhere. It seemed like we were going no where fast. Paul said we really need to turn around, I think we're lost. I told him one more curve (the trail curved back and forth) and if we couldn't see the hospital (or next landmark to know we were on the right course) then we would turn and go back to the water stop. Just as I got done saying that, the hospital appeared. We both got a little teary-eyed. We were less than a mile away, and not a moment to soon. We ran through the sprinklers before heading off to try and cool down a bit. We finally made it back to the finish line in 1 hour and 52 minutes.
I was sort of worried about running the 1/2 marathon (not having covered more than 10 miles at one time). Well, I ran 12 miles in VERY hot conditions, I think I can handle another 1.1 miles in much cooler weather this coming Sunday.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

6 more miles complete!

Did 6 miles last night in Alameda. It's nice to run on flat land! There was quite a wind out there yesterday. Just a quick comment, it's sooo nice to live in the East Bay. From the island, you can see SF. Well, there was so much fog flying through the gate and swallowing SF and Berkeley. It was probably 5-10 degrees cooler just a few miles away. Sure, the East Bay isn't as cool and hip as SF, but I'll take better weather any day! Were else in the country can the temperature range from 55 on the coast to 105 inland (all within 35 miles!) We are right in the middle, a nice 75-80 degrees! Go East Bay! We rock.
Oh yeah, I'm running 5 miles tonight.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Week 7 = 10 mile long run

This weekend I will be running 10 miles. This is the second time that I've run 10 miles. We will be running in Walnut Creek, so we will be running some hills and with some heat. I need to stop by the store and pick up some Gu packets. Gu is exactly what it sounds like...Goo! It comes in a little squeeze packet and tastes about what it sounds like too! It's sort of hard to swallow and you have to drink water with it to help it down and dissolve. Sort of weird but it really gives an extra boost of energy.
Last night 5 fast miles on the Lake Chabot trail. Tonight hopefully 6 or so miles on the flat island of Bay Farm in Alameda.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Running the SF 1/2 Marathon!

Ok, I've decided to run the Runner's World San Francisco 1/2 Marathon. The most difficult part of the decision was trying to figure out how I was going to get there and get back! BART doesn't run that early in the morning, and the start line for the second 1/2 marathon is in Golden Gate Park (on the other side of the city!). Jack from my office has been kind enough to offer me a parking spot at his place and is willing to drive me over the GGP for the start. (WHAT A GREAT GUY!)
So, as you are rolling out of bed (or just rolling over) at 8am on Sunday morning (July 31st), think of me running in the cold fog for 13.1'll really appreciate your bed!
Oh and a link to a picture of the 10k race

Saturday, July 16, 2005

8 Miles completed! (107 Miles!)

Today was a nice 8 mile run at the Berkeley Marina. Unfortunately there was a huge accident on the freeway that closed down I-80E and some lanes on I-80W. That really had traffic messed up. It took me an extra 45 minutes to get there! They were not able to get the mile markers out because of the bad traffic, we only had the turn-around marker. We did a great job though! We were 2 minutes behind at the turn-around, but made those two minutes up and came in only 3 seconds slow. That is pretty amazing since we did not have any mile markers to help us track our time. Our bodies are starting to get into quite the grove.
Debating whether or not to do the SF 1/2 Marathon on July 31st. I have a week or so to decide. I would trade my July 30th 12 mile long run for the July 31st 1/2 marathon (which is 13.1 miles).
I'm also thinking of a 1/2 marathon October 8th. My aunt is getting married at Lake Tahoe, and there just happens to be a marathon going on that weekend!! I need to run 10 miles that day, so I might just add an extra 3.1 miles!

Friday, July 15, 2005

Oh so close to 100!

I am one mile short of 100 miles!! I ran 5 miles last night for a total of 99 miles! Saturday I will be running 8 miles, so after the first mile, I'm going to let out a Whoop! to let everyone know! :)

The garage sale money has finally been posted in my fundraising account. I am now at $1,645!! All of you are amazing!!! I am more than halfway to my goal of $3,000, but only have 6 weeks to come up with $1,355! Sort of a scary thought when I think back when I did the AIDS Walk and raised only $500 and that was a big deal! I'm planning another garage sale probably near August 14th. If you have things you want to donate, please let me know. I sold most of my stuff at the last one!

If you have been wanting to give but don't have the cash...NO PROBLEM! Let me know and I can sign you up to be a waterboy/girl! I get a $20 fundraising credit and you get to feel that feeling that only volunteering can bring! What does it show up 20 minutes early, you take water and go to a certain mile mark and as groups go by, you hand out water and cheer us on! And we cheer YOU on for being such a great person for helping!

As you can tell, this has turned into more of a fundraising campaign post then a how I'm doing post. I just sent out a gazillion (or so) emails out and hope someone is looking at this!

Happy Friday (my rest day!)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Week 6 = 8 miles (88 total miles)

So far...88 miles! Last night I ran 5 miles. It has been pretty warm around here (~80 degrees) so that has been a new variable to work with.
After reading an article about weight, I've decided to lose a few pounds. The article said that long distance runners do their best when they are 80%-90% of average weight. That puts me around 147 - 164. I'm 174 right now (I've gained about 10 pounds the past three weeks). Since I've been running so much, I haven't been getting to the gym for cross-training. That's why I've gained the 10 pounds around the mid-section. Also, I had given myself permission to eat whatever I wanted because I was burning it off. Well, I wasn't burning that much! I'll be trying to hit the gym 2-3 times a week and watch the fatty foods. I should be at my ideal weight of 164 in about three weeks.
Tonight: Running with the EB Frontrunners around Lake Merritt. Will do two laps (6 miles). Hopefully I'll get someone to run the second lap with me!

Monday, July 11, 2005

Run to the Lake 10k

Well, I did it. I ran a 10k race on Sunday. It was for the Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley. I placed 76th overall (out of 267) and 4th in my age group (out of 9). The race was a personal record (PR) at 49:19! I could have ran a little faster but I was still tired from the 7 mile run Saturday morning (Don't tell my coach I ran the race!) The race was a lot of fun. The weather was cool and cloudy, the people very friendly, and the volunteers were really encouraging! As we were heading through mile 2 and nearing the lake, some of the volunteers mentioned that everyone was so serious, so I let out a big Whoop! and waved my hands. They started laughing and cheered me on! It's amazing when you are running a race, just a little "way to go" or "keep it up" really helps. Especially if you are running by yourself, which for the second half of the race, I was pretty much alone. I had paced myself with a few people, but a couple took off and others fell behind. I was really proud of how well I did on the hills. I felt very strong and wasn't too tired at top. I do need to work on going downhill though. It's difficult to keep in control yet take advantage of gravity! On some of the downhills I did a spring forward and glide type of step. Sort of hard on the knees but I was able to take off without much effort. I'll have to ask my coach next Saturday.

Week 6 = 8 miles!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

77 miles and counting!

Saturday's 7 mile run was pretty easy. I think that the first two miles were really 1 1/2 miles. There was no way we were running 6 min/miles in the beginning! Everyone was in really good spirits through the entire run.
I decided to do a 10k race this morning. It's for Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley. The race starts at EMC and then goes through Lake Chabot. I run Lake Chabot each week, so at least I know the two hills that we'll have to climb. If I hit 53 minutes, I'll be really happy. That was my time for the last 10k I did (though I didn't run 7 miles the day before!)

Fundraising: $945 out of $3,000 raised! And if you donated and I haven't sent you a thank-you message, it's not because I don't's because it can take up to 10 (sometimes more!) days for it to post to the website.

And to those that have already contributed...THANK YOU!!!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Week 5: 7 miles!

Wow, I'm already to Week 5!! This Saturday I will be running 7 miles. I didn't make it to the last training run. John and I were up at the Russian River camping. I had planned to drive back down to Walnut Creek Saturday morning to run, but I was promised that I would have company and would not have to run my 6 miles by myself. Well, for the first four miles I ran with Aidan, then the last two were by myself. I did have John and Aidan at the end cheering me on though! I ran just under 54 minutes (which is where I needed to be!)

The mileage is starting to add up. I think I'm at 52 miles or so. The week before training started I had ran 30 miles though! Right now I'm running about 17 miles per week. Each week it should be going up another mile or two.

To the Niess Family: Have a great time at the reunion. I wish I could be there.