Thursday, September 22, 2011

MRRR fan on the west coast

Hello ladies,
I just put on my MRRR jersey so I can go on a (solo) run. I really miss you!! Hope everyone is enjoying the fall weather and each others' company.
Anyone want to run the Nike Womens Marathon in SF? Ask Amy to convince you :-)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

It's been awhile.

Remember that cool, overcast day in Duluth? Since then, the heat index in Minneapolis has skyrocketed to over 110 at least twice (postponing Torchlight until August 25th). Luckily, MRRR teammates have been running in other far-off places. Europe. Taos and Chicago. San Francisco. One teammate is now married. One roommate has moved to California, with a very important detour to Iceland.

We were 3rd place at Grandma's! The USATF team results for Grandma's Marathon are posted here

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

San Francisco Marathon: Worth the Hurt

Steve, me, Steve, Drew post-race!

Last Sunday, my brother, his friend, and I all ran 26.2 miles in San Francisco. My husband ran the half marathon. We all started off together at 5:42 a.m. in the third wave. It was a cool morning in the 50s, and amazingly, not that foggy!

Steves, me, Drew, at the start!
The Bay Bridge, beautifully lit behind us at the start

Overall, San Francisco is a good marathon. I particularly enjoyed the first 13 miles. We began along the Embarcadero, and ran along the coast to the Golden Gate bridge, across it and back, then went into the Presidio, through Golden Gate park, and ended through the Mission.

Drew and I started with even 9 minute miles, right on the agreed upon pace (I crowed every mile about how exactly evenly I was pacing us!). Those first 13 miles were great. It was beautiful to run as the sun was coming up and watch the Golden Gate bridge come closer into view as  we ran past Chrissy field and Fort Mason. There were a few hills before the bridge, and then a doozy of a hill just after the bridge. They weren't bad, and for me, it was great to have a local guide in my brother to warn me and tell me what was coming up. As with any race, it's so important to know the course and be psychologically prepared. He had run the race before, and had done training runs on the course. In addition to the course info, it was great just to have him tell me what he knew about various landmarks and neighborhoods as we ran past/through them. I had really been looking forward to running across the Golden Gate bridge, but it turned out to be underwhelming. It was too crowded up there! Runners have two lanes, and the bridge was still open to traffic. That made it pretty crowded and pretty loud. I was really glad we were in an early wave, because passing required both technique and etiquette.

The worst for me were the "rolling hills" in the Presidio, just after the bridge and before Golden Gate park. Between miles 10 and 13, I was done with hills. I said to Drew, "You said there wouldn't be hills! I'm from Iowa!" That comment elicited a chuckle from a woman near us. When we entered Golden Gate park, around mile 14, we decided that each of us was ready to run our own race. I needed to go internal to get strong again. The part in Golden Gate park is mentally challenging. It seems a lot longer than it should be. There are a lot of twists and turns between miles 13 and 19, all in the park. Meanwhile, the first half-marathoners finish in the park (and the marathoners have to continue on past that enticing finish line), and the second half half-marathoners start. On the upside, there were a lot of people cheering over those miles. Still, the miles in Golden Gate park were the toughest and slowest for me. I wasn't hurting as bad as the guy in the S/M black patent boy shorts and chains (but he probably liked it...) My mantra in those miles was "you trained for this." A positive mantra really does help! I also break down the goals. I pushed for mile 20 because then it would be "only an hour left."

Indeed, after mile 20 I could smell the barn and I was feeling okay. At that point I knew I could do it and the worst was behind me. There were a lot of downhills after the park as well, and despite the half marathoners blowing past us, they and the increased number of people cheering helped. The last two miles I was able to significantly pick up the pace. Mile 25 was fun because of the "tempters" dressed in devils costumes, offering bourbon and candy and saying "haven't you run far enough? Just stop! Join us!" I didn't stop, I ran faster.

Exiting Golden Gate park, refreshed by seeing my husband and bro-in-law cheering
Psyched to be done and have run well!
Probably the worst part of the race was the inconsistently-plotted water/electrolyte stops. I can only suppose that the constraints of San Francisco street traffic made race planners unable to have them every two miles. Instead, they seemed *about* every two or two-and-a-half miles...but it was kind of frustrating to be obsessing over thirst and unsure whether water would (and when) actually appear. Moreover, the mixing of electrolyte with water was very inconsistent. Steve choked on the 3/4 powder he got in one cup. All in all though, those are minor complaints. I was totally happy with the 4:00:27 I ran. This was a fun destination marathon. On Monday, Steve and I continued to Yosemite National Park and recovered by doing awesome hikes in the Sierras.

And finally---I'd like to use this platform to solicit each of you as members of MRRR:

I will be running the 30th annual Twin Cities marathon October 2, 2011. It will be my 3rd Twin Cities. I will be running for Bolder Options as part of their charity team. That means I need to raise $1000 in order to run! This Twin Cities is a big deal marathon for me. My Personal Page at Bolder Options explains why this race in particular is meaningful for me. Bolder Options is a great organization that promotes healthy bodies and minds by pairing community athletes with youth in Minneapolis. I have a sentimental reason behind why I am running. My dad ran the first Twin Cities marathon 30 years ago, and many after that. It will be neat for me to follow in both my parents' footsteps thirty years later. I am asking for your support now. Please visit my donation page and give what you can. As athletes, I'm sure you can empathize with the importance sport had in defining your identity and helping you learn how to work towards goals in all areas of life. Thanks in advance!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

In Absentia: Elizabeth Sutton

Just a quick introduction before blogging post- San Francisco Marathon! I've had the pleasure to meet just a few of you at the track and running hills, and I look forward to meeting others at the City of Lakes and TC 10 Mile!

I have been running since my freshman year of high school at good ole Minneapolis South High. That was waaaay back in 1995. I actually didn't join the cross country team until sophomore year, and didn't join track until I was a senior. I played softball and volleyball instead. I began running the blocks around my neighborhood the summer before school started because I was determined to transform myself from bookish nerd to cool chick. Needless to say, since I am now a professor at the University of Northern Iowa, I clearly couldn't totally relinquish my bookish proclivities. In any case, those same two interests also brought me to Carleton, where I met Jessica and many other fun, fast, and smart people. I might only be fun and smart, but amazingly, in my 31st year, I am actually getting faster (although it's all relative!).

I've never been a speed demon. At Carleton I ran cross country and indoor and outdoor track, where I focused on the 1000 and 1500. I chose those because they were short, but not so short--or so long--that I'd get lapped!

5K: 21:43 7/4/2008 Firecracker race, Williamsburg, IA tied with 2009 Park2Park 5K, Cedar Falls, IA
10K: 47:40 Run For The Schools, 10/15/2006 Iowa City, IA
7 mile: 54:20 Run The Flood, 6/11/2011, Cedar Rapids, IA
10 Mile: 1:19:57 MDRA 10 Mile, 5/29/2011, St. Paul, MN
1/2 Marathon: 1:43:33 Sturgis Falls 6/26/2011, Cedar Falls IA
Marathon: 3:53:27 Twin Cities, 10/3/2010, Mpls-St.Paul, MN

My favorite places to run are: Minneapolis Chain of Lakes and anywhere that I'm traveling. I love exploring cities and countryside to get a feel for a place! I travel a lot for research and conferences.
My favorite thing to do is: read and pet animals
My favorite post-run snack: fruit and peanut butter!
On my ipod: ummmm...Enrique Iglesias, Madonna, Ne-Yo, A Perfect Circle, VNV Nation and Covenant. Any suggestions for the upcoming SF marathon are very welcome!!

My goals are: to keep running marathons and feeling good while doing so! I'd love to get under 3:50--doubtful for San Francisco considering the terrain. Mostly, I just want to have fun and feel good and push myself intelligently. It's taken me 10 years to start listening to my body, and I am running happier, healthier, and faster because of smarter training.

After I get back from SF and Yosemite August 8, I'll post about that race! I also have my own blog about running:

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Amy Elson

I'm Amy Elson, and I'm a 2010 Carleton grad. At Carleton I ran track
and field--my favorite event was triple jump. Otherwise I did the
pentathlon/heptathlon. My favorite events in the multis were high jump
and 800m.

Then I graduated and signed up for the Nike Women's Marathon in SF.
Quite the leap from sprinting 90 feet and jumping into the sand to
26.2. (To be fair, I ran cross country in high school, but even so
before I started training I'd never run longer than maybe 8 miles at
one time in my life). And now here I am, a year after graduation, and
I've run two marathons!

What I'm doing with my life: I work with K-3rd graders at Four Seasons
in St. Paul, and hope to be an elementary school teacher
one day! Kids are the best. I also do some volunteer coaching at St.
--it's fun to still be a part of the MIAC even if my meet gear
has changed from maize and blue to purple.

Favorite Running Locations: Lake Calhoun in the summer, so I can end
my run with a jump in the lake and walk home. And you just can't beat
the Carleton Arboretum.

Favorite Post-Run Snack: Chocolate-Peanut Butter-Banana Smoothie

My i-Pod Playlist is: Ridiculously random. Right now I'm loving Girl
but you can always find a bunch of 80s music on there.

Favorite Workout(s): Repeat 200s, like the sprinter that I am (was?)

Goals: Right now I want to get used to racing again/learn how to
actually race longer distances so that next year I can focus on
getting faster. So I don't have any expectations right now for times.
And if, and whenever my next marathon is, it'll be to break 4 hours.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Grandma's Marathon 2011

The Scene

Fog City the day before the race.
We stayed on the lake, less than 2 miles from the start line.

The Not-So-Secret Secret Weapon

They promised PRs for everyone if we got the rhubarb raspberry with whipped creme. Thanks, New Scenic Cafe. You do not disappoint.

The Results

Keren Gudeman: 3:18.51 chip; 3:19.28 gun.
Jessica Deutsch: 3:17.24 chip; 3:18.01 gun.
Kelsey Barale: 3:17.38 chip; 3:18.16 gun.
Amy Elson (the awesome sign for Amy): 4:01.23; 4:05.15 gun.

USATF Team results to come.

Shauna Overgaard: 1:38.45; 1:42.07

Friday, June 10, 2011

Jessica Deutsch

I began running 100 and 200 m dashes in the 7th grade and then became a mid-distance track & field athlete and cross-country runner in college. Now I race everything from the mile to the marathon.

In 2007, after three years of running on my own, I missed having a team and competing but wasn't quite elite runner material, so I started the Mississippi River Road Runners with Sarah Margoles. The 2011 season is our fifth year competing on the USATF MN Team Circuit. I love this team! I am impressed by the talented, smart, and interesting group of women who are my teammates.

My favorite places to run are on the Mississippi River, on the quiet gravel roads of Finlayson, and in the Arb in Northfield. Recently, I have enjoyed running on the public tracks of New York City and a rustic gravel trail cutting through the pastures between Ripon and Berlin, Wisconsin.

Personal bests include: ING New York City Marathon, 3:25:07 (7:49 pace); New Prague Half Marathon, 1:31:xx (watch time, 6:56 pace); City of Lakes 25K in 1:48:08 (6:58 pace). New goals: sub-1:30 in the half marathon, sub-1:08 in the Twin Cities 10 Mile.