Monday, August 23, 2010

North Coast 24 Hour training weekend = FAIL! and the I2P fundraiser kicks off!


My Impossible2Possible fundraiser has now begun! My goal is $500 and I have reached $150 of that goal so far. Please help by going to the following link to donate:

Special thanks goes to those that have donated so far! The following have been so generous in helping out, thank you!

Ron Kageyama - California
Cyrus Taylor - Ohio
Pam Rickard - Virginia
Kelly Matter - Ohio

Impossible2Possible is an incredible organization that reaches out to inspire youth everywhere. Please join us in donating to this wonderful organization!

North Coast 24 Training weekend = FAIL

This week started like all others have been. Running. Running. Running some more. This past weekend called for a big long run, and I was pumped. I've put in the hours I was scheduled to run before during this training period, and it was fast becoming my new favorite training distance/time. I had all my gear set out by Thursday, my potatoes boiled and I was ready for Saturday's run!

Possible TMI for some people, but I feel I need to share it. One day it could be helpful to someone out there.

Saturday started out like any other. I woke up very early to get my long run in. Scarfed down my oatmeal and coffee and headed out the door. It was extremely humid and pretty warm out. I got to my starting location and off I went. By a mile I was drenched. Other than that I felt fine, except for this horrible feeling that I needed to go to the bathroom REALLY bad. And I did. Again. And again. And again. There are port a potty's and a gas station along my early a.m. route - the route I run before the rest of the group trickles in. They became my new home on Saturday. I was frustrated. Mostly because when I would go - I would STILL feel like I needed to go. I couldn't figure out why I felt this way. It was uncomfortable, but I could still run. Not fast, but I was doing it. It was more like - well it just pissed me off, basically. A couple hours into my run is when I started to feel somewhat concerned. It was still dark, but I could tell what little I was going was very very dark. And getting darker each time. All I could think of is the news clip on CNN that flashed up images of Badwater: urine cups all in a row, doctors checking them over and over. I started questioning myself. "Am I drinking too much? Am I drinking too little? Did I over do it with the electrolytes? WHAT THE HELL!" I met up with some NERC runners (thankfully) around 6:00. By then it was even worse. I told a couple of the runners that I didn't know what was going on - that something just wasn't right. I just had to watch, and if it got worse I (1/4 jokingly, 3/4 seriously) said at least I was close to the hospital. All this time in my head I'm still trying to figure out what the heck I was doing wrong. Well the run with the group didn't last long! We reached a turning point but I was close to the bathroom (about .20 miles away) I ran to the bathroom and most everyone ran on. I got to the bathroom on the path and there it was. Blood in the urine. Freakin awesome. It wasn't too bad yet, but that has never happened to me so I was pretty worried. I came out of the bathroom and told a couple running buds that had waited at the turning point to just run ahead, I had my cell. And that was it. I was pretty scared at that point. I can't even say how many times I called my son - waking him up telling him to check the internet for some sort of clues to what was going on. NADA. Husband was at work, where it's almost impossible to get ahold of him. I wanted in every way to call Ray, but didn't want to wake up him or his family, so I held off.

It seemed like it took forever to get down that bike path, uncomfortable and just worrying, not understanding, and just being plain pissed off. I had a time goal to fulfill - but I also had a goal within a goal - was really gunning for a certain mileage within my first goal (being time). Funny I was still thinking about running after what was happening. I'm such a stubborn ass (yes husband, I admit). I can never stop on my own. I always need someone to tell me to stop, or tell me I can't run. Hell last year I had pneumonia and still got my miles in! (Stupidly, yes I admit.) Pneumonia had me down for 2 days and I tacked the extra miles that I missed onto the first few days that I started running again. Also ran one day until my treadmill caught fire. NO JOKE. The poor thing started smoking, stinking, and here's me like an idiot: "I'm only on mile 5 I am not stopping!" Broke out the fire extinguisher soon after. All this being said I just shake my head and wonder what in the world's wrong with me. Still I can't stop on my own. Even if I have to walk, crawl, limp my way through - I'm NOT stopping. Sometimes it's not something I'm all that proud of, because it winds up being completely irresponsible.

Ok back to the run. Finally! The path ends and I'm on the road, and get to the gas station I had visited many times earlier in the morning. It was 7 o'clock ish. I ran into the bathroom and that was it. I cannot even begin to describe the amount of blood. I almost started crying right there. Headed out the door, I dialed Ray's number. Hung up though, because I decided it was still too early. I walked to my car faced with an important decision. Should I give up for the first time ever? Telling myself not too be so stupid - I still couldn't help contemplating continuing my run. I knew I could not tell myself to stop. So again I called Ray. I wasn't sure if he'd answer because #1 - it was freakin early. #2 He was out of town with his family. Thankfully he answered! I could tell it was at breakfast time too and felt really bad about that. Like a smart runner though (not me!) He told me "Obviously you have to stop running, go to the doctor - and if you can't go to the doctor go to the E.R." By that time I was in tears (trying to hold it back) but I think he could tell, because he said it was most likely no big deal and not to worry - but was something that cannot be ignored. Feeling a little better, a little more calm (but STILL bummed about my run - seriously?) I left for home and called the doctor.

Fast forward to the doctor: Even the receptionist knew what was wrong! Oh it sounds like UTI to me. What? Never had that before. Nurse - same thing. Sounds like UTI. Really? I started to tell the nurse everything fell apart during my run and got the typical "How far were you going" question. I told her and she whipped around and said "WHAT?" So I lied and said a couple hours. (Did tell the doctor the truth though, since he pretty much knows how I am) Took tests and for sure: UTI. The doctor called it by a different name, hemorrhage something or the other but said: "It's not worse than regular UTI, just more dramatic looking." Dramatic is right! Sheesh! Freaked me out just a little! He gave me some meds and made me tell him I would not run Sunday. He just said "I know it's hard for you, and you run all this crazy amount of mileage, but please take off tomorrow. Can you just give me that?" Again - bummed. He also said if things don't get better, if what happened Saturday happened again to come in, and they'd check out my kidneys just because I run so much. That being said I'm feeling so much better now, the meds are working fast and I'm ready to go!

This is why, sometimes, I'm STUPID

I told my good friend Daniel what happened since I couldn't make it to the North Coast training run. Daniel knows tons, and he's heard of this happening before with worse consequences. I did a little research, too, and here's what I found:

#1 UTI's) are of particular concern to women runners, UTI's can involve the lower urinary tract or, in more severe cases, the kidneys. Antibiotics generally resolve the problem in short order, keeping after-effects at bay can be summed up in a word: hydrate.

#2 Untreated UTI's can lead to acute or chronic kidney infections (pyelonephritis), which could permanently damage your kidneys.

All I can say is thank goodness Ray answered his phone at a time when really, he should have just ignored my call. He continues to amaze me every day. I know damn well I would've kept running if I would have not gotten ahold of him (again, not something I'm really proud to admit). Sometimes I sit back and wonder how he does all that he does. HUGE Kudos to Ray for being there, and to his family for putting up with my early a.m. phone call! I am SO appreciative!

Check Ray out on CTV - good piece on hydration!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

North Coast 24 Hour Training and the NERC XC Series - Race I

North Coast 24 Hour Training

Well how about this? I'm officially going along with everyone else and saying that I'm ready for fall. We haven't had a summer quite like this in a long time, and it's getting a little old really. Easy runs have turned into "I think I'm going to puke and pass out" runs.

NC training is going really well and I'm having so much fun doing it! I'm really liking this training! (Minus the puke and pass out stuff) This weekend was a blast as I ran with my husband and Eric Ford (Saturday) and Charlie Bolek and my husband (Sunday). Klutz me has fallen 2 weeks in a row now. This a.m. I got a mouthful of dirt and it was well, crunchy. Good stuff. I wonder if there's protein in dirt? Tops on the list for the weekend: seeing the biggest, most beautiful owl I have ever seen. This is the joy you get when you run early in the morning! After the rain subsided this morning we finished up back to school shopping for my son (hehe) and then it was off to the beach for some skimboarding action. The waves were great for it today! Back to reality though - blah - MONDAY!

NERC XC Series: #1

So I know I said no more races until NC - but this one was only $3 and my son had not run yet for the day, so we went. Going into it I knew I wasn't about to run like Speedy Gonzalez after an amazing training weekend, but it's always fun to run at Pen Glen. (My favorite time to run there, stupid as it may sound, is during wicked thunderstorms. The thunder just echoes off the old Halle remnants and is incredible!) In the end I wound up with 2nd place in my age group. This Tuesday brings race #2 with a potluck dinner at Guy Gadomski's house for NERC members. Last year he had 30 + people, so be prepared to eat if you're coming! I'm not sure if we'll be able to make it this week, it will most likely depend on what my son does during his XC practice for the day - but for everyone else interested: 3 bucks how could you go wrong? NERC does sell tshirts before and after the race if you'd like to purchase one. (Technical shirts! WOOT!)

Endurance Junkies

Check it out! Endurance Junkies has taken me on as a Guest Blogger. The first stories they are putting up are my race report from Mohican and a recipe of mine. The recipe appears to be going up first:

Everyone have a great week! Looks like temps will not be in the 90's, so that's always a plus! Happy Running All!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Northcoast 24 training and the NERC Cross Country Series

North Coast 24 Hour Training

So I've been busy. Running. And running. And running. Running in itty bitty circles, and running in big ones. My son is thrilled about this whole running in circles thing. He's been going skateboarding a lot! It works out nice as he can be at the skatepark while I am running and get to do his favorite activity - and I can see him every minute he's doing it.

I have come to a couple realizations this past week.

#1: Bats like my headlamp. And I do not like bats.

#2: Yes I actually have butt muscles, not just fat! And they hurt.

I was a bit bothered while running this weekend. The end of a run took me through a neighborhood in Concord. I was hurting. I was tired. I wanted to stop. Bottom line: IT WAS HARD. Many people were out doing things. Walking their dogs, landscaping, riding bikes. Now here I am - hurting, struggling, you name it - but every single person that I passed I made sure to say "Hi" to. I mean, that's what you do right? Be friendly? Dissapointment struck as not a single person said "Hi" back. Or even just threw out a smile. I'm used to the occasional person just looking at me like I'm a freak if I say hello to them, but everyone I pass? SHEESH! Maybe I looked like a crazy person, running along through their neighborhood - half dead haha! But this half dead person was still saying HI.

NERC Cross Country Series

The NERC XC Series begins this week! The series is a set of 3 5k's - cheap - $3 each! The runs are held at Pen Glen in Kirtland. They will held the next three Tuesday's and many XC kids attend as it's a great way to start to get back into racing for the XC season! Come down and have some fun, bring your family and have a picnic afterwards. Pen Glen is a beautiful park - come check it out!

Monday, August 2, 2010

BURNING RIVER 100 Mile Endurance Run and the upcoming I2P pizza party/fun run for kids!


Never before have I witnessed such an amazing event. I witnessed the end of a 100 mile race for the first time this weekend and I'm still trying to find the words to explain it. I witnessed tremendous acts of courage, bravery, and determination. I witnessed people who pushed themselves past their breaking point and keep on going. I saw both laughter and tears. I saw pride and a strong sense of accomplishment on the runner's faces as they crossed the finish line. Runners, you are incredible. You are INSPIRING. Congratulations to all the runners, and thanks to all the volunteers who made their day special. This race was well organized from top to bottom. I witnessed the RD, Joe Jurzyck, personally shake the hand of every runner that crossed that finish line. Incredible! Job well done - everyone!

I took many photos of the finish line Sunday a.m. (Beginning at first light - I didn't want to blind the poor runners with my flash!) I have uploaded them all to the WalMart photo center, please feel free to purchase your photos for whatever the price walmart charges for them (I think 20 cents is the cheapest). You can also find the same photos on my facebook page.

Just a few of my favorite moments from the finish line:

I2P Pizza Party and One Mile Fun Run

Saturday is the big I2P pizza party and fun run at our house! Bring your kids - this is an event created to inspire kids and educate them on I2P. Need more details, send me a message! We will have a one mile fun run, volleyball, human foosball, a bonfire, and the bigun: FOOD!!!! Please come, you are all welcome!

My I2P speech/flyer for Saturday, will be directed towards the kids:

Q: What is Impossible2Possible?

A: Impossible 2 Possible is an organization that was created by Ray Zahab, an ultra runner who lives in Canada. I2P’s goal is to encourage all of you to reach beyond your limits. They want you to realize that nothing is impossible. If you put your mind to it, hard work into your goals, there is nothing that you CAN’T do!

The impossible will become POSSIBLE. There are no limits. YOU have the power to change the world. I2P uses adventure to educate and inspire to make positive changes in the world.

I2P uses adventure to cultivate a generation of leaders. YOU. Kids who are old enough, usually 17 years old and up can apply to go on youth expeditions, at no charge. If you aren’t old enough – you can do the next best thing. You can ask your teacher, principal, school to follow along in school. All I2P expeditions will make use of t.v., film, and the internet to broadcast these expeditions and spread messages on human and environmental issues. Previous students have followed I2P’s expeditions to Baffin Island, Tunisia, and Siberia. You are considered part of the expedition team, and as you follow along you get to ask questions and do experiments based on what is happening during the expedition. Sound better than just reading some boring textbook? It is! And the best thing about it is it’s all free! There is NO cost to the teacher, NO cost to the school, and NO cost to you. I2P’s goal is to simply to reach 1 million young people that will become agents of change. That basically means I2P wants you to take action! Is there something wrong in your community? Think of ways to change it! Some examples of students changing the world are:

Trailblazer elementary: They are selling “Otter Pops” at lunch to raise money for GivingWater, an organization that helps people get clean drinking water. You know – we have it easy here in the U.S. We just go into the next room, straight to the faucet, and BAM! Magic – we have clean drinking water. We’re USED to it. What you may not realize though, is in many places it’s not that easy to get clean water. One billion people don’t have access to clean drinking water. 3.900 children die every day due to the lack of clean water. Some students at Trailblazer Elementary heard this, didn’t like it –and thought “What can we do to change that?” They took action and started selling their “Otter Pops” to help raise money to build wells for these communities. This is what being an “Agent of Change” is.
Riceville School decided to have a hat day to raise money for their well project. Students paid $1 to wear a hat to school.

D’arcy McGee School held an all night ball hockey tournament to raise money, and Southside Elementary school held a Candy Gram sale around Valentine’s Day.

All these students are making big changes in the world – and you can, too!

About the founder of I2P:

Finally, a word about the founder of I2P, Ray Zahab. Ray made history when he ran across the Sahara desert with 2 other runners, Charlie Engle and Kevin Lin. There’s a documentary movie about the run on Cinemax, or you can rent or buy the movie – but it’s very very good. It follows their entire run across one of the harshest climates on the entire planet. They ran for 111 days - nearly 40 miles every day through 6 countries. He also ran across Lake Baikal in Siberia and traveled 1100 km’s in the South Pole – he was the first person to do so without skis. He was just wearing his snowshoes.

Now, you can follow along on these same adventures, just convince your teachers! The next expedition will be to the Amazon. 4 youth ambassadors will be picked to actually go on the trip (they’ve already submitted their applications. The I2P team is in the process now of choosing the 4 kids who will go with them). You can still be a part of the team though by following along in your classroom. It’s free, just let your teacher know about it! Give them this flyer, or led them to the Impossible2Possible website. Many many schools have signed on so far – you guys are all missing out on all the fun! Your teachers will have questions, though. Lots of them – I’m sure. Just point them in the direction of the website - and they should find all the answers they need. They can also email or call any of the following people:
Ray Zahab - i2P Founder
• email:
• phone: +1 613.868.2888
• web:
Bob Cox - i2P Executive Director
• email:
• phone: +1 614.296.2736
Dr. Ewan Affleck - Education Director
• email:
Mark Dohn - Education Program Coordinator
• email:
• 8.2460 +1 818.448.2460

For a list of schools that have participated in the program so far go to

i2P adventures:
What could be better? It’s free, it’s adventure, and teachers love it because it’s educational!
• Are challenging: physically, emotionally, relationally, and spiritually
• Push the limits of what seems possible to the adventurer
• Provide young people with a two way street of communication through a live website
• Young people are active team members whether through web communication and learning or active participation in an adventure
• Include a service component relevant to the adventure setting
• Challenge and improve the adventurer's knowledge, understanding, and ability
• Increase awareness of the environment's impact on humans, and humans' impact on the environment
• Expand the adventurer's personal definition of what is possible
• Involve risk (not to be confused with danger) including a risk of failure
• Require extensive intellectual, physical, and logistical preparation
• Require assistance from others
Push the adventurer beyond herself physically, geographically, socially