Green Jewel 50K

I am overwhelmed and humbled by the love, support and kindness I have received in reaching a running milestone.  For all you do, for all you are, I will be forever grateful you are in my life.  Thank you to everyone who has shared this moment, and all the moments leading to it, with me.

"Life is worth living if you love to love, if you do what you like, if you work with pleasure, if you live so that you can leave something behind, if you learn to share and appreciate every moment you are healthy, free and alive." Andy Hertz

I have now competed:

27-Marathons  2-Full iron-distance triathlons 26-50 k's(31 miles) 14-50 milers 4-100k's (62 miles) 4-75 mile runs 20-100 mile runs 1-115 mile runs 2-150+ milers  Making my total marathon number 100.

All that I'm after is a life full of laugher, and I will chase it with relentless forward progress.
Next goal:  Make my ultra total = 100.  And, to get Roger to get there, too!

Dirty German 50K: Some Statistics

As I am closing in on a personal running milestone, I thought I’d do so research on what other runners are doing out there.  Here’s what I found:

Number of miles in a marathon:  26.2 Number of miles in a 50K:  31.07 Number of miles in an Iron Distance Triathlon:  140.6 Percent of US population that has run a marathon:  0.5% Total number of people who finish a marathon annually:  581, 811 Total number of US marathons held annually:  570 Average number of sneakers needed to train for a marathon: 2 Average number of calories burned by a woman running a marathon:  2,880 Average number of miles per week for marathon training: 40 Percentage of Ultra finishes that are 50k, 50M, 100k, or other:  92% Percentage of Ultra finishes that are 100 miles: 8%
Female marathon participants:  38% Percentage of women marathoners in my age bracket:  11% Percentage of women at 100 mile races: 26% Oprah time:  4:29 Number of weeks Runner’s World says you should wait between running marathons:  8-12 (6 if you’re in shape) Pe…
I have this hat.  It was one of the first things I ever received from Brooks.  And, it says “Run Happy”. It’s in rough shape, since I’ve worn it to almost every marathon I’ve ever run.  

It won’t be long for this world, but, as I put it on this morning, I thought about just how important “running happy” has been for me.  Today would be no exception.

Before I left, Nat asked if I’ve run this race before.  I couldn’t remember. We had to go to the wall. “Mom, you’ve ran it TWICE!”.  

“Oh!, Now, I remember.  They had clowns at mile 24.  Who puts CLOWNS at mile 24???”

I shouldn’t have shared that tidbit.  She used it against me when I asked her to join me and run the 5k.

Then she followed with “ Mom, actually, running is not my thing.  How about we take a yoga class from Megan?”

It was similar with Noah: Boy:  “Mom, find me a race”. Me:  I’m all over that.  How about Mississauga?  Net downhill. Gorgeous lake views and it puts us in Canada during hockey playoffs. He was in!  I was pumped! Then …

Start Before You are Ready: C+O Canal

My brother is not the most patient man, and really wasnt when we were growing up.  I remember standing on the high board, ready to practice my back dive. I was taking a few seconds to get ready and I can still hear him “What are you waiting for?  It’s just going to get harder if you wait. Just GO!”

That lesson has carried with me.  I get so frustrated when I hear people say “I start XYZ on Monday”.  Just start. Once you’ve decided to start, you have started: get going.   

I dove off that board, at that time, to get my brother off my back.  But, he taught me a lesson: It’s okay to go before you are ready. And, “ready” can make it harder to go.

I had the flu last week.   They yucky, can’t move, feel horrible, no food going in, flu.  I also added bronchitis to the mix. I was not training. Actually, I was not doing much of anything except feeling sick and binge watching ‘The Good Doctor’.    And, I had C+O Canal 100 this week. I was not ready.

One of the teacher’s I worked with,…

Hat Run 50K: In Loving Memory of Robert Harris

He knew I could do it before I did.  Back in those days, I was trying to do 40 races by the time I turned 40.  It was his idea that the 40th race would be a marathon. I thought he was nuts.

But, I did it.   He was so proud of me!  He even asked for my sneakers when I finished the race.  “You are something special Base. You know how to turn the power up to 10!  I just want some of the magic you’ve created to rub off on me” I handed them over.

Fast forward a few months, I remember sitting next to him.   We were bickering about where to go to lunch the next day. He wanted Red Robin.   I wanted Banchetti's. Going out to lunch for teachers is a big deal. It doesn’t happen often. Clear as day, I can remember him walking out the door saying, “It doesn’t matter where we eat.  All that matters is who is sitting across from you at the table”. Those were the last words he ever said to me.

His name was Robert Harris and we never made it to lunch.   Robert died that night.

Robert an…

Rock and Roll DC-It's About the Experience

This weekend, I was afforded the luxury of giving back to my sport and sponsor.  Brooks is the title sponsor for the Rock and Roll DC Marathon, and once again, I was invited to represent my niche in the running world.  It is a unique way to see the sport, and an honor for me as an athlete. The DC Marathon is the only road marathon I run.  And, this trail runner is always shocked at the commercialism at these events.  At many of my trail races, perhaps the race director has a box in the corner of last year’s swag.  Maybe they have an online store (Russell-your ears should be ringing).But, at these expos, the commercialism is paramount.  The R&R DC rents out the Armory and every available foot is filled with vendors. Walking through the expo, I will admit that “kid in a candy store” feeling.  You name it, they have it.But, on second pass, you realize that you do not need the majority of stuff they are selling.   (Brooks--this does not apply to you.You have never let me down, and you …

The Beast-Running for My Dad

“Tips up.”
“Put the rope between your skis.”
“When the rope gets tight, stand up and lean back.”
That’s how my dad taught me to water ski.  We had this old aluminum fishing boat with a 9 horsepower engine.   My brother would have to sit up in the front, or the nose would rise too far out of the water.  I skied on a pair of adult skis that my dad had cut down.   
Eventually, we moved up to a proper motor boat, and real slalom skis, but what did not change was my dad driving the boat.   He spent hours driving us around that lake...taking us through the whip so that we could work on our leans and sprays...and, alternating my brother and I through the slalom course, so that we could turn on a dime.   Rick and I spent countless hours behind that boat.  We were competitive, and we held our own with the Ski Nautique skiers on the lake.  The rest clamored to go tubing.   My dad took the helm for all of us.
When he would drive us by our house, we would flash four fingers if we wanted to drop off.  …