Friday, December 23, 2011

Planning x-mas morning

Being a runner sometimes has a few drawbacks. This year Christmas falls on a Sunday. I was a bit bummed when I realized that because Sunday morning has been my scheduled long run for the past 15 years. Now that I am in full-blown marathon mode, I have been focusing on these long runs more than ever. I hate to get out of a routine, but Christmas with Jon and Quin is more important this year. Quin is just over 2 1/2 and really into Christmas this year.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Feeling good

My neighbor stopped me the other day and asked, “Don’t you have a big race coming up?” When I told him the Olympic Trials on Jan. 14, his reply was the “the real Olympics?” Yep, this is it the real Olympic Trials, not the fake ones. I am starting to get excited though. I have to say, I am really pleased with how things are going. It seems like the more I do, the better I feel, which is something I have not been able to say in a long time. That’s the best Christmas present I could ask for right now.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A smelly tale

This morning, I was dressed for running and snuggling with Quin before his nanny came over. He turned to me and said, “Mama, I smell your shirt.” Oh, boy, guess it’s time to do an extra-long laundry cycle. My running shirts have soaked up a lot of sweat these days despite the cold weather. In this week's column I'll be relating some even more harrowing stinky running tales.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Not a fun run

Oh no!  As one of my Facebook friends pointed out, not a good year for Rock'n'Roll marathon series, now this

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Benefitting from a 12-year coaching relationship

A few weeks ago, Quin was playing with his train set after dinner, my husband Jon was watching television and I was surfing the Internet for news (my morning news watching has been replaced by Sesame Street and Curious George). A headline caught my attention: “Runner seeks Mystery Woman.” I decided to read on, imagining that maybe someone was sure they had just run by their soulmate. As it turns out, it was a reporter from CNN who was using the iPod Nike App and every time he ran a personal best a woman’s voice would come through his ear buds and say, “Congratulations. This is (a name he did not recognize). You just ran a personal best.”

Of course I knew exactly who that mysterious voice belonged to, but this guy kept forgetting her name.

He finally decided to run longer than he had ever run before so he could get her name. As he stopped after his longest run ever, he whipped out a pen and paper ready to write the name down. He got the name and ran home to look it up on the Internet. Paula Radcliffe. He was shocked to learn that she not only had sweet voice, but is the world-record holder in the marathon at 2 hours and 15 minutes. Intrigued, he used his CNN contacts in London and talked to her husband/ coach and eventually Paula herself. He got to ask what her husband says to encourage her. She said he usually doesn’t say anything after workouts, because they know each other so well.

Usually just a look would convey his thoughts.

Occasionally, she said he gives her a hug.

As we count down to 2012, I realize my coach Bob Sevene and I are going on a 12- year coaching relationship which is a pretty long in athlete years.

He probably doesn’t realize that I know all his mannerisms and can tell pretty quickly if he is satisfied with my workout.

Often it’s the way he stands, or the way he calls out splits when I am running on the track. He gets quiet when things are not going according to plan. One
time, his best-known athlete, Joan Benoit-Samuelson was running a marathon and ran by Sev, but did not hear him say anything. She assumed she was running too slow since she did not hear him and dropped the pace. As it turns out, him not saying anything worked out to her advantage because she went on to a 2:26:17 a breakthrough race in the beginning of her career.

I have to say since I do all my runs and workouts alone, a little encouragement goes a long way. I even appreciate the random golfer or walker that will say, “wow, nice pace.” It’s hard not to feel a little more skip in your stride when someone thinks you are running well. The Olympic Trials are getting pretty close (Jan. 14) and my workouts have been a little up and down due to illness. I am looking forward to my next few longer workouts and I’m hoping they will go well enough to warrant a hug.

Though Coach Sev has been with me through all the training, he stepped out of his coaching role to help watch Quin as Jon and I bravedToysRUs. Wow, now I know why I prefer online shopping. But, it’s hard not to get excited about Christmas with a 21⁄ 2 year old in the house.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Jingle Bell Run

The Jingle Bell 5k run/ walk and kids 1k fun run looks like a great family event to get everyone in the mood for Christmas! Check it out this Saturday at Lover's Point in Pacific Grove.


Sign Up Today For The 2011 Jingle Bell Run/Walk®

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Lover’s Point, Pacific Grove

Arthritis Foundation Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis

The Arthritis Foundation is calling for people to take action against arthritis by participating in the second Annual Pacific Grove 2011 Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis. The annual nationwide event kicks off during the holiday season, raising awareness of America’s leading cause of disability, while raising desperately needed funds for research, health education and government advocacy to improve the lives of people with arthritis.

To celebrate the holiday season, participants tie jingle bells to their shoelaces, don festive holiday costumes and join friends and neighbors in support of the Arthritis Foundation’s mission to prevent, control a

nd cure arthritis and related diseases.

The Pacific Grove Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis will take place at Lover’s Point on Saturday, December 10, 2011 at 7:30 a.m. There will be a timed 5K run, a fun run/walk, and an Elf Run for children under 12 years of age. Santa will be there with his elves and other fun activities. More than 118 other Jingle Bell Run/Walks can be found at

The Arthritis Foundation is the only nationwide, not-for-profit health organization helping individuals to take control of arthritis by leading efforts to prevent, control and cure arthritis and related diseases -- the nation's number one cause of disability.

To get involved or to form a team, visit: or email – phone contact: 831-620-1699.