Meet my new running buddy!

When I was a kid, growing up we’ve always had a dog and up until 7 years ago? (I am so terrible with time) I’ve had a dog in my adult life as well.  The kids have been asking for another for quite some time now and I’ve been putting it off.  Well, I finally broke.  Maybe it was the fact that I felt guilty cuz I told them we MAYBE we could get one after I got back from our Grand Canyon run, maybe it was that I really wanted one.  Whatever the case may be — I love our new pooch and am so glad that I caved.

I had an idea of the kind of dog I wanted us to get, the kids did too.  Although their requirement was; it had to be cute.  My requirement was a little more particular.  I wanted a dog that I could run with and I don’t mean 5-10k’s. I wanted a dog that, after properly trained could run a 50k plus with me!  So we started checking all the local shelters and some not so local ones.  There were so many dogs that needed adopted and it was so hard not to just adopt the first few we found.

After a while of searching we thought we finally found one.  It was in a kennel just over an hour away.  He was a Blue Tick Coon Hound and would’ve fit perfectly with our family.  I visited him, told the shelter about our house, our cat and played with the dog for about 20-30min.  I thought it was a good fit, so I told the kids about him and a couple days later we drove back down to visit.  I again told the kennel about our house and cat and we played with the dog outside for about 45min.  I asked the kids if they wanted to take him home and they said, “YES!!”  So we went inside to fill out all the papers.  I filled them out and the kids played with the dog through the glass door he was behind.  It was then when one of the workers noticed our form and quickly came over to let us know we couldn’t take him home because he wasn’t good with cats!  I was kinda pissed and the kids a little heartbroken.  But as I keep saying — everything in my life seems to happen for a reason.

So our search continued.  One night I was on our local “Buy/Sell/Trade” Facebook pages and came across a post from a family that had to get rid of one of their dogs.  I checked out the pictures and their description.  Many people that are getting rid of dogs on those sites get harassed about doing so and a few quite deserving so because it seems they are trying to make a buck or are basically a “puppy mill”.  Not this family.  They adopted two puppies from the same litter and as the dogs got older they began to experience “litter-mate syndrome”.  I’ve never even heard of that before, but apparently male dogs from the same litter will become combative and fight.  Which is what they were doing.  It was obvious that this family loved these dogs.  They’ve already had them fixed, put them through obedience training, had an invisible fence, plus their kids loved them.  They didn’t want any money for the dog, they just wanted to find it a good home.

I showed the kids the pictures of the dogs and submitted our “resume”, telling them about our family, our home, and how we would love to come meet them.

Our first glimpse of the dogs

Our fist glimpse of Cato and Finn!

Finn

Finn

Cato

Cato

We scheduled a time to come meet Cato and Finn and at this time weren’t sure which one they were going to part with.  When we got there the kids and I were so hoping it was going to be Cato.  Not that Finn wasn’t cute or playful, but it was something about Cato.  Maybe it was his two different colored eyes but when they said it was Cato that they were willing to part with before we even said anything — I had a feeling he was going to be ours.

The kids played with the dogs for a little while, while I chatted with their current owners (Joe and Lisa).  Well… long story short (yeah right, huh?  Too late.)  We took Cato home.  Their kids were pretty sad to see him go, but I think since they knew he was going to a good home they were able to deal with it easier.  Not to mention that I’m now Facebook friends with Joe and Lisa and their kids are Instagram friends with Jeremy and Emily so they’ll be able to see what Cato is up to.  Plus we suggested meeting up from time to time with them at the dog park for visits.

Well… without further ado.  Let the barrage of photos begin — say hello to CATO!!!!!

Cato's first night at his new home

Cato’s first night at his new home

Cato is an amazing puppy.  Well behaved (except maybe barks a little too much), attentive, obedient (as much as a puppy could be) and is turning into quite the runner!  I’ve started him out slow.  First with just a few miles building him up to where he is now — 10miles.  He won’t be a year old till the end of March so I’m not going to let him go any further till after he’s one and gets a check up.  Properly trained, he should have no problem busting out a 50k with me!

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I’ll end this post with a quick little video of Cato testing out one of his new harnesses.  Such a well behaved dog – love him and yet again, proving what I always say — Everything happens for a reason.  More exciting news along those lines later, very exciting happenings!!

 

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Time to play – I mean train, ah… run — Oh what the hell — PLAY!

Hey there folks!  Remember me??

Things have been plugging along lately and the weather here has been torturous which has really sapped me of quite a bit of my motivation to get outside and run.  I did manage to cover just over 150 miles of running in January including my first 50k of the year.  This was the Art More Fatass 50k, recognizing the contributions that Art Moore has made to Ultra Marathoning.  This was a pretty flat course on all clear multipurpose trails, so it made for an easy first one of the year.  It ended up being just over 32 miles (click here to see my run data) at which I averaged 11:49min/mile pace.  In typical fashion I did take a few pics during this run…

Clear and easy trail

Clear and easy trail

Scenic run through Rocky River

Scenic run through Rocky River

Bad ass "Big Sis" and I

Bad ass “Big Sis” and I

After this – the bottom fell out of our weather.  Temps were so frigid that schools were closed and they had to petition for extra “calamity days”.  Of course with this being some of the coldest temps we’ve seen in years – I couldn’t resist getting out for a few runs!

Time to stop your run when your water freezes

Time to stop your run when your water freezes

Dress properly!

Dress properly!

Starting temp of this night time run

Starting temp of this night time run

Not a soul on the roads made for an eerie run.

Not a soul on the roads made for an eerie run.

Ending temp -- yes that says -02deg F

Ending temp — yes that says -2F

So while some of my friends have been pushing through and getting their runs in — I.have.not.  And I’m not feeling too good about it.  Honestly, I feel like I am in the worst shape I’ve been in a LONG time :-/  BUT that IS changing!

The weather has also been messing up not just my training plans but my race schedule.  We were supposed to run the Pilot Mountain Payback again this year (click here for my race report from 2013) but North Carolina got hit with nasty weather as well so they wouldn’t let us on the mountain.  The race was rescheduled for April 12th, but I already have the Forget the PR Trifecta that weekend in Mohican.  After finding out our race was canceled I quickly shot Tanya (RD for Winter Run for Regis) a facebook message.  WRFR was my first 50k attempt and a race I’ve run for the past three years (click here for 2011 data, 2012 data, 2013 data, and 2014 data).  This race is typically in early January (click here for last year’s race report), but she changed the date and it happened to fall on the day we were already registered for PMPB.  I explained to Tanya that I just wanted to run a little bit of the course and play with my GoPro camera.  I was going to start with the half-marathoners and carry my own aid and record a bit of both loops.  Tanya explained (for those that know her well – in the nicest way Tanya could, ehehem… LOL) that she was not happy about me banditting the course.  Luckily tho she said someone dropped from the half and I could buy her bib – so I bought the bib, started with the 9:25am wave of half marathoners and made my first real GoPro running video.  I’m pretty happy with my first real attempt, there is a lot to get to know about this camera.  I’m excited about getting better with this thing as I make more and more. —-  Here is the entire Run for Regis course – enjoy 🙂

Waiiiiiit for it………

Once again – my typical type of greeting it seems lately – I haven’t blogged in what feels like forever!!!  We’ve been crazy busy (as usual) and our craziness is well documented (surprise, right?)  But now, I’ve removed all excuses for not keeping up.  My computer was a piece of !@#$ making it painstakingly difficult to blog how I wanted.  Some of you may or may not have (yeah right) have noticed that I like to include pictures and videos 🙂  I was trying to blog using a crappy Acer 10″ Netbook with a processor that moves at the speed of tar pitch (and then even slower when I synced it with my phone (that is what I used to take all the pics and videos)  Well NOT ANY MORE MY FRIENDS!  I am now the proud owner of a new laptop AND a GoPro camera, oh yeah — this is gonna be fun!

Hello hello ello ello llo llo lo……

Wow! How in the WORLD has time gone by so fast! There is no way possible for me to catch up on everything that has gone on in our lives. I can however share a few snapshots of what’s been occupying my time, tho 🙂 So lets see…. May – Training for Jeremy and Emily to run the CLE Half Marathon hadn’t gone as planned. Training with them through the cold weather months didn’t work out so well. It seemed every time we went for a training run in the cold – they would end up sick! I put the kibosh on this race for them and I don’t think they were too upset about it. It was always tough to get them on the trails, but once there they had fun. Since this race fell on a “nonkid” weekend for me anyways, I decided to ride my bike to it, meet up with my friends, eat some breakfast then ride the course to find friends that were running it. It was a 34mile round trip ride from my house – the furthest ride made this year. I was a little worried about the route to get there but after driving it the day before, learned that – HOLY CRAP there were some beautiful, crazy expensive houses along the way! I would have taken a few pictures, but I was afraid I’d get arrested! Made the trip there in great time and had an absolute blast! Here’s the map/data for this ride. I made it there, met up with Jocelyn (my buddy Jason who was running the race’s wife) and BMO. We had an awesome breakfast thanks to Darla who floats me VIP parking and brunch tickets every year — much appreciated Darla! After brunch BMO and I set out on the course to find Jason. Unfortunately we missed him till the last 1/4 mile, but got to see him finish and share some beers at the finish!

Celebratory beers at the finish

Celebratory beers at the finish

June –

Got the kids out for a little bit of trail fun, and enjoyed some more myself (surprise right?)

Jeremy and Emily --- back in the trails...

Jeremy and Emily — back in the trails…

Charlie and I --- chillin' in the river.  Don't judge, it was HOT out!!  lol

Charlie and I — chillin’ in the river. Don’t judge, it was HOT out!! lol

Towards the end of June also was Western States 100 Miler! That is a blog post in itself that I am working on. Too much to share in this trip to California to squeeze into here — just wouldn’t do it justice.

Now here we are in July…. Kids have been playing their BUTTS off – Jeremy with baseball and Emily with fastpitch. I couldn’t be more proud of these two. Jeremy plays short stop, outfield and pitches. Emily plays short stop, first base, catcher and pitcher.

Jeremy throwing the heater!

Jeremy throwing the heater!

I did find a pitching coach for Emily. She FIRES them in there but isn’t all that accurate. I’m also in the process of hiring a pitching coach for Jeremy, as well as a batting coach for both of them.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1I_JsAn5Bs

And speaking of dinners…. I unfortunately had to opt out of Fresh Fork this season. So much going on which made finances a bit tight. It’s an excuse, I know… If I were a better budgeter, I know I could do it but I’m not. I did keep up with my Fresh20 membership and dinners are back on! Expect to see more posts about them very soon! Just a teaser of a couple of our favorites…

From June - Herb Pork Tenderloin with Braised Leeks and Wheatberries

From June – Herb Pork Tenderloin with Braised Leeks and Wheatberries

Tex-mex sloppy joe with watermelon feta salad

From July — Tex-Mex Sloppy Joe with Watermelon Feta Salad

spicy sausage fishermans stew

From June – Spicy Sausage fisherman’s Stew

Alright, I’m tired and going to bed! I know — kind of a blah post, but I have to start somewhere again, right? I have a lot going on and much to talk about. Planning on not being gone for so long 🙂

Good thing pictures say a thousand words….

I have a lot of catching up to do and don’t feel like typing that much!  You ever get so far behind on something that the thought of trying to catch up makes you want to put it off even more?  Yeah, it’s kind of like that….   So after going back and forth with how to handle this, I decided that I would let the pictures we’ve taken this past month do most of the talking for me… That said, here is my lazy post —–

We are still eating REALLY well thanks to the Fresh 20, but I haven’t been as good about taking pictures of what we had.  I do have a couple of them tho…

Black Bean Soup with Chicken and Cheese Quasadillas

Black Bean Soup with Chicken and Cheese Quasadillas

Lemon Chicken with Farro Pasta and Bok Choy

Lemon Chicken with Farro Pasta and Bok Choy

Double thumb from Jeremy

Really doesn’t look like he likes it by his facial expression but he really did give this a double thumbs 🙂

Emily --- not such a fan of Farro

Emily — not such a fan of Farro

Ever see a kid double thumb up a tofu dish?

Ever see a kid double thumb up a tofu dish?

No?  Here's another! :)

No? Here’s another! 🙂

How about a little halibut --- just for the "halibut"

How about a little halibut — just for the “halibut”

This month also brought along mine and Emily’s Father Daughter Sweetheart Ball.  We do this every year,  buy her a “pretty dress” and “fancy shoes”, get dressed up and spend the day together dancing and having a great time, thanks to the Willoughby Recreation Center.  As usual, we went dress shopping and as usual Emily had an absolute BLAST modeling different dresses for me!  We invited Leah along this year but she wasn’t able to make it.  Here are some of Emily’s favorites from this day.

Dress #1 of 1,345,363 tried on today..

Dress #1 of 1,345,363 tried on today..

Dress #2

Dress #2

Dress #3

Dress #3

Dress #4

Dress #4

Time for the Ball!

Time for the Ball!

Excited to dance

Excited to dance

This girl has got some moves!

This girl has got some moves!

Ahhhhh  refreshements...

Ahhhhh refreshments…

Love this kid!

Love this kid!

My little girl is getting so big!

My little girl is getting so big!

What would a post be without another 50k run????   Well this one isn’t going to include one either because while the run was a 50k, most of us bowed out at mile 23.x.  This was the “No Shirt Fatass 50k”  — however it was WAY to cold for anyone to go sans shirt!  This was my first time at the Cleveland Metroparks, Hinckley Reservation as well — beautiful place and I can’t wait to take the kids here.  Here is my Runkeeper data — SLOW…..

Beautiful ledges area

Beautiful ledges area

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One of the creek crossings

One of the creek crossings

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Best way to finish a run!

Best way to finish a run! “Burgers 2 Beer”, Burger-onion straws-chili-cheese

I followed this run up the next day with a trip to New York to hit the slopes for the first time this year.  It’s nice to have Peak and Peak ski resort so close.  It is about an hour and a half drive for me and well worth it!  The place wasn’t crowded at all and except for the delays I had on the lifts – the day was amazing.

Skiing1 skiing3

Conditions couldn't have been better

Conditions couldn’t have been better

skiing4

After posting these pics and looking back at this month — this must’ve been the “Month of Emily”.  Jeremy had a sleep over at a friend’s house so I took Emily for a run in the morning.  She is really starting to enjoy it and was able to run most of our route.  There was also a race going on in the park at the same time in which many of my friends were participating in.  Emily and I ran to the start/finish line and cheered them all in.

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A new find in our park — never saw this little hut before

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I’ll help you up — just as soon as I take your pic, typical 🙂

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Beautiful scenery – Beautiful little girl!

That pretty much takes care of some of what’s been happening in February.  Things are REALLY starting to get busy now.  So, if you haven’t boycotted my blog because of this post – stick around!  In addition to things that are already on my plate, kids sports starting again (basketball, baseball, and fastpitch), and our Fresh Fork Market Summer CSA starting (whoo hoo!!!),  I started a youth running group thanks to the Lake County Department of Health.

Just RUN

and am also co-hosting a fun run in April to help out two great causes

Reaching for Recovery

Catchya later! 🙂

The Frosty 50K, North Carolina – Let the 2013 “Craziness” Commence!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!

And what a way to start it! My running plans for 2013 seem to be ever evolving. Originally I was planning on running a race in Iceland (check this race out here) as part of the Runwell Team. There was much fundraising involved in order to run this, a challenge I was prepared to take on, but my plans fell thru when spots were filling up quickly and we needed to come up with some money to register within a few weeks. This is when I had the idea of running the entire Buckeye Trail as a fundraiser for Rush for a Cause. I wanted to start this in January – I quickly realized that taking on such a task required much more planning than I was able to do in a short time. Don’t get me wrong, this is something I WILL still do; I’ve gained access to all of the maps for the entire course, talked with the founders of Rush for a Cause, and have talked to a few people who are willing to take time and help me out with transportation, maybe in 2014? Who knows — the 2014 run for Racing the Planet is in Madagascar!

Since I pulled the plug for the BT run in 2013 because I didn’t want to go into it unprepared, I decided I needed to register for some races. First up for 2013; The Frosty 50k in Winston-Salem North Carolina. This is the fourteenth year that this race has been run! It is hosted by a group called Twin City Track Club. To quote from their website;

The Twin City Track Club is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting running and fitness in the Winston-Salem, North Carolina area. They are Winston-Salem’s oldest running club and one of the largest clubs in North Carolina. Their members are a cross-section of the community, representing runners and walkers of all abilities. We have group activities to promote the social aspects of running, and bring in nationally known speakers to educate and inspire, and we assist other organizations with their organized running events.

We are a proud member of the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) and United States Track and Field (USATF).

I had the pleasure of meeting many of their members and several of their board. They are a great group of people. Here is a link to their event schedule. If you get a chance to participate in any of their other races – DO IT!

My plan for this race — I didn’t have one. I didn’t train, I didn’t even book a hotel! I headed on down Friday morning around 10:30/11:00am. If you aren’t familiar with this drive down I-77S, it’s very scenic and very easy.

Lots of mountains to pass through

Lots of mountains to pass through

Pilot Mountain

Pilot Mountain

This one I'm going to have to come back and hike soon

This one I’m going to have to come back and hike soon

One of two mountains you LITERALLY have to pass through

One of two mountains you have to literally pass through

Winston-Salem

Winston-Salem

The drive was easy. It took just over 6.5hrs. Packet pickup was at Twin City Diner, check them out on Facebook. That is where I first met some of the great people from Twin City Track Club (TCTC). I picked up my packet and had an AMAZING dinner.

Chicken, pasta, artichoke, asparagus, sun-dried tomatos, and a Great Lakes Edmond Fitzgerald

Chicken, pasta, artichoke, asparagus, sun-dried tomatoes, and a Great Lakes Edmond Fitzgerald

Now it was time to find a hotel. I used the “Around Me” app on my phone to find one that sounded nice. To which my new friends quickly informed me that — “Oh no! You don’t want to stay there!” And they directed me to one right around the corner. If you need a place to stay, I also now highly recommend the Holiday Inn Express off Miller Street.

Love this king bed... May have to buy a new bed for home :)

Love this king bed… May have to buy a new bed for home 🙂

So after a good nights sleep I headed to the course. The weather couldn’t have been better! It was about 30deg. in the morning with a high in the low 50’s! Running an ultra in shorts, in JANUARY?! Yes please!

Of course I was traveling with Peg --- she was crewing and waiting after the halfway turnaround.

Of course I was traveling with Peg — she was crewing and waiting after the halfway turnaround.

Yeah, the leg… I guess I should start making a link to some of “her” details when I make a post that contains a picture of her,  lol — click here to find out more.

The course was/is beautiful. We ran around Salem lake. The trail is crushed gravel and a small portion of it was a paved path.

The trail

The trail

Salem Lake

Salem Lake

This reminded me of North Chagrin --- I wanted to run through it so badly!

This reminded me of North Chagrin — I wanted to run through it so badly!

When I say I didn’t have a plan for this nor did I train, I wasn’t joking. I seriously haven’t trained for anything since BR. I’ve been just running for fun and my last long run aside from the 12miles on 12/12/12 was Bills Badass 50k in November! I just wanted to run this race and have a good time doing it.

And thats what I did! The course was pretty flat and whenever I glanced at my garmin my pace was upper 8min/mile to mid 9min/mile! I hit the halfway point at 15.5miles in 2hrs25min. putting me on par to finish this 50k in UNDER 5hrs! For some reason tho, I started getting a blister on my left foot. Why? I have NO clue! Not new shoes, I’ve worn them for about 200miles without any problem. I brought another pair of shoes along with me, so I decided to change them at the halfway point. I changed my shoes and headed back out. The shoes I changed into where a completely different brand, Asics. Which is strange for me – I’m brand loyal to Saucony and have only bought the Exodus 3.0’s for the past couple years, I’m on my 11th or 12th pair! I thought I would give these a try because I’m STILL dealing with that pain in my foot. So unfortunately, the second half I slowed down but still PR’d this race! While it may not be an apples to apples comparison to other 50k’s I’ve run, it was my fastest 50k ever at 5hrs 12min! I’LL TAKE IT! Check out my Runkeeper data here.

My new 50k PR - 5hrs 12min

My new 50k PR – 5hrs 12min

Pam and Jamie - Runwell ambasitors

Pam and Jamie – Runwell ambassadors

Sporting "Runwell"

Sporting “Runwell”

As usual, Peg got a TON of attention. I’ve told the Peg story more than a dozen times this day and Angi with TCTC was just as eager as we were to get Peg some new swag. Angi is awesome! She didn’t have a sticker but I gave her my name and address and she’s going to mail one out to me! Rock on Agni!!! I would love to thank everyone by name for showing me such fantastic hospitality, but this post has already gotten too long, sorry — just know I really appreciate everything!

Me Angi (TCTC) and Pam

Angi (TCTC), Peg, Pam and I

Long sleeve tech shirt and a handmade finisher medallion - THANKS TCTC!

Long sleeve tech shirt and a handmade finisher medallion – THANKS TCTC!

As much fun as it is to travel and meet people, there is no place like home.

To quote Montgomery Gentry ---- Yeah... I'm pretty damn proud where I come from...

To quote Montgomery Gentry —- CLE “Yeah… I’m pretty damn proud where I come from…”

Remember I said my schedule was booking up quick?

  • January – Frosty 50k (complete), Winter Run for Regis 50k
  • February – Bills Fatass 50k
  • March –
  • April – O24 (Outrun 24) – maybe 100miles
  • May – Rite Aid 5k with Emily followed by Rite Aid Half Marathon with Jeremy the next day
  • June -Olympic Distance Tri / Half Iron Man (what do you think Doug?)
  • July – burning River 100 miler — planning sub 24hrs
  • August – BikeMS
  • September – Not Yo Mommas 100 miler — DNF’d in 2012 at 47miles, need to finish this one!
  • October – Running with Scissors Double Marathon
  • November – Bills Badass 50k (possibly mentoring Jeremy) 🙂
  • December –

How does your schedule look? Any big runs on your horizon?

Have I told you how much my kids ROCK!

Hello there! It’s been a little while since my last blog post — not that there hasn’t been much happening, quite the contrary — SO much has been going on that I haven’t had much time at all! So hold on! This is going to be a long, entirely “Bragging Parent” post complete with an overabundance of photos portraying some seriously happy, healthy and somewhat injured kids!

As I anticipated, my food related blog posts have REALLY slowed since our Fresh Fork Market, Summer CSA program has ended and as much as I wanted to, I didn’t subscribe to our Winter CSA program.  However, I got my latest Fresh 20 email the other day and the kids and I grocery shopped and plan on following this one for the entire week. That is a blog post for another time tho. I’ll be sure to let you know how it went.

OK, back to the kids. As I said in the beginning of my blog I wanted to use it to chronicle our life’s adventures and partly use it as a virtual scrap-book to share with my family and friends, as well as anyone else interested in the same things we are 🙂

I think the best way to get anyone interested in anything is to make it fun, especially for the kids! If you remember our first venture into the trails, I taught them the basics – run, jump in puddles, splash one another with mud, run through streams not tip toe through them, and smile and laugh! Our next venture I took them to enjoy the incredible beauty of our park system. This time we traveled out to CVNP and spent some serious time exploring the ledges — begin part I of photo overload…

Start of our ledges trek

Start of our ledges trek

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Discussing where to go next

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Tight squeeze

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You go into that dark cave first…

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Up and up they go….

Taking a break.

Taking a break.

Made it to the top!  Love the pose - very Pam R'ish :)

Made it to the top! Love the pose – very Pam R’ish 🙂

We spent this entire day hiking this park and exploring the caves. The kids were AMAZED and pretended they were real explorers. Was truly a great day! Part II of getting the kids hooked on being happy, healthy and active complete!

On to our next adventure! They’ve already experienced a couple runs in the trails, did some serious exploring and time again to experience the thrill of a crowded race! What better race to then the YMCA Turkey Trot.

These two are just TOO cute!

These two are just TOO cute!

Nice sized race!

Nice sized race!

Serious Outrunner - Peg, garmin GPS, Ipod...

Serious Outrunner – Peg, garmin GPS, Ipod…

Serious Outrunner/fun seeker - love her spirit!

Serious Outrunner/fun seeker – love her spirit!

Em and our close friend Kellie (she's not the turkey in the middle)

Serious Outrunner/fun seeker along with a creepy turkey and a seriously good friend

This was our friend, Kellie’s, 2nd 5k and myself and another friend intended on sticking with her for it, but I told the kids.. RUN! And run they did!! Emily finished this race in just over 32min, Angelo (Kellie’s son) finished seconds after Emily and Jeremy rocked out a 29min PR! They all waited for us to come across the finish line and cheered us through the chute! You could check out Jeremy’s data here… (yes, he’s 11 and loves his Runkeeper data as much as I do).

Both Jeremy and Emily had an absolute BLAST at this race and their comments to me afterwards were as follows;

  • Emily — Dad, the roads are boring, I want to do 5k races in the trails
  • Jeremy – Dad, the roads are boring, I want to run trails and farther

So what do we do now? What do you expect, hit the trails! I posted on Outruns FB page that the kids and I would be hitting the trails at North Chagrin for a 3 mile run one Saturday morning. A couple of our friends were running 20 miles that day and said they would swing by and meet up with us. We arrived at North Chargin at 9am and met up with Charlie and Eric. We headed out, crossed “whoo hoo” creek splashed in some mud and then Emily fell 😦 —

We were about a quarter of a mile into the run, Jeremy splashed us all with some mud, I splashed Emily and then much like when Doug bloodied my nose in a training run, Emily and I went to jump into the same puddle, and WHAM! We jumped into each other and she ended up on the short end of it! I felt so bad, but even though she was covered in some mucky water, she was giggling and telling me how she was going to pay me back! I helped her up, got her cleaned up a little bit and asked if she wanted to head back. “Nope” she says and onward we ran. A short while (maybe another quarter-mile) I looked down and she was bleeding from her knees!

OUCH!

OUCH!

Loves taking the hard way

Loves taking the hard way

His best Karate Kid pose

His best Karate Kid pose

Em doesn't like "root hill" all that much

Em doesn’t like “root hill” all that much

Love this kid - notice the left knee :(

Love this kid – notice the left knee 😦

Post run, bloody knees, ONE TOUGH KID!

Post run, bloody knees, ONE TOUGH KID!

Emily and I cut this run short to just shy of 2 miles, but Jeremy went on with my (our) friends and finished off almost another mile. Not an easy mile tho – they ran up “Kiss my ass hill” (or as Jeremy says, “Kiss my butt hill cuz I can’t say the other word”) and then flew down to meet us at the car.

Almost done… still with me?? (I warned you that it was gonna be long 😉 ) We were eating dinner about a week ago and during our usual, “How was your day, what did you do, what was your favorite part” conversation it somehow turned to running (and not by me!). “Dad, after dinner could we go for a run?” Uh, HECK YA! So with the sun setting so early now, we donned our headlamps and off we went. Emily and I ran a little over two miles singing Christmas carols badly and loudly for all to hear, while Jeremy ended up busting out just over 5 miles!

All set for our evening run

All set for our evening run

I don’t have any video of our version of the 12 days of Christmas but I do have this. This is what I heard for an entire mile — and so did all our neighbors 🙂

OK — last part of this post — honest 🙂

So we get home and Jeremy says he wants to run the 12k’s of Christmas on Sunday with me. My good friend Desiree put on this event as a fundraiser for Runwell (check them out here). The idea behind this run was we volunteered to sponsor a “K” and brought Christmas related food and drink. After each “K” you would come to the aid station and eat/drink and socialize 🙂 The event was a success and everyone had so much fun – I’ll let the pictures tell the rest of the tale…

Pre-run shinnangans

Pre-run shenanigans

We repeated several of the "K's", without running them tho.

We repeated several of the “K’s”, without running them tho.

This kid rocked it!

This kid rocked it!

Proof that she ties kids up in the woods and leaves them!

Proof that she ties up faster kids in the woods!

Katelyn, Michele's partner in crime, caught in the action

Katelyn, Michele’s partner in crime, caught in the action

Santa and some AWESOME elfs!

Santa and some AWESOME Elves!

Festive Peg

Festive Peg

Jeremy's finish - 7.5miles / 1hr20min.

Jeremy’s finish – 7.5miles / 1hr20min.

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What a spread!

Check out Jeremy’s data from this run here. He killed mile one at 8:17 and mile 2 at 8:19 before I made sure he cut it back some, took his time and had fun. I’d post mine, but I DNF’d at the 7k mark – spent way too much time goofing off and eating/drinking at the aid station 🙂

Shew! That was a lot to get thru! I’ll try not to let so much time go by between posts next time. Up next – our Fresh 20 week and some more miles to be logged!

Hope you all are keeping busy and healthy as well!