Friday, June 25, 2010

Review Crew: RoadID + Another Giveaway!

After reading about one of my run-ins with a certain ornery clawed duck, Scott from Outside PR contacted me to see if I’d be interested in trying out RoadID. Now generally speaking, I try not to think about all the ways I could get hurt, injured or into trouble on a run (talk about ruining your running mojo), so wearing a bracelet that identifies me and lists emergency contacts, doesn’t necessarily appeal to me. But I’m typically not one to turn down free goods so I figured, eh...what the heck?

I picked the RoadID Elite model (because it’s elite of course. Why else?). Black to match The Divas. So far I’ve worn it on a long run, a couple of rides, and even my first open water swim last weekend. And I’ve gotta say, even though I don’t like to THINK about all those things that could happen on my run, much the way I don’t like to THINK about all the things that could happen to my kids as I strap them in their car seats, it sure makes me feel a heck of a lot more comfortable out there knowing that if something did happen, EMT’s would know on arrival I have a medication allergy and that my family wouldn’t have to sit around worrying about where I was.

As a matter of fact, I felt so good about running with that little bad boy on my wrist that when thug duck showed up on my run, I flashed him my id…called him stupid. And you know what? He flinched (really. I swear. If ducks could jump, I would've said jump, but since I'm not entirely sure they can and you know how intensely important accuracy is to me, I'll stick with flinch). What’s up now turkey duck?! (DISCLAIMER: RoadID is a form of personal identification. It does not however, protect against attack by duck or other forms of wildlife no matter how many names you call them). So yeah, I’m digging it.

Now Scott, also asked me if I wouldn’t mind mentioning my thoughts on RoadID for kids being that I am a mom and all. And my intial thoughts on this were not what one might call exceptionally positive. For my 4 year old? A bracelet with her name on it? Oh yeah, she'd totally be all about that, so much so that she'd definitely want to loan it out to all her little friends to also enjoy. My 1 1/2 year old on the other hand, she’d probably just eat it. Now both of these anticipated reactions to RoadID I could overcome if necessary, but that’s just it. How necessary is it? I mean, I’m a stay at home mom. My kids are with me almost all the time. So really it was a stretch for me to see why my kids would benefit from something like this, with the exception of maybe when we go to events where there are big crowds and we stand a chance of being separated. At least, that was until earlier this week. On Tuesday, something happened that changed my mind (good thing I waited to write this review huh? Otherwise, I'd have had to come back and revise).

Tuesday, we were at my oldest daughter’s t-ball game, and my littlest one had just had it with sitting in her stroller. So, I let her out. She happily took off in her little toddle walking way as quickly as she could with me hot on her tail, but I noticed her sandal was a little floppy. When she stopped walking, I reached down to fix it and she, probably thinking I was trying to infringe on her new found freedom, tried to escape. Backward. I was holding her foot. This means she fell head first. Backwards. Smacking her head on the pavement. I heard it (what a horribly awful sound THAT was). She froze wide eyed. I was sure she’d fractured her skull, yet everything I had ever learned about head injuries flew right out the window as I panicked and scooped her up. After holding her breath for a brief moment, she started wailing in that I'm crying so hard I can almost not breathe sort of way when they really get hurt. I rushed her over to the nearby bathroom to get a look at the back of her head which was bleeding and was on the verge of near tears myself.

Now, don't worry. Baby girl, she’s just fine. No fractured skull. Not even a concussion. Just a little sore, with a nice bruise on the back of her head that's a little sensitive to touch. But what I realized is that if my child had been seriously injured, I don’t know that I’d have had the wits about me to give important information to EMT’s. I mean, I’d like to think I would, but then again, I have a hard enough time when I’m trying to make a dr’s appointment for my girls remembering their respective birthday’s. So why would I think I’d could do it under pressure? With RoadID, I doesn’t matter if I can or not. The information is there even if my head is not.

So my verdict on RoadID: Definitely Thumbs Up!


"I like the RoadID idea because my rides have been getting longer. I'm by myself on most of my rides. Riders don't like to carry many items. The only id I carried was my cell phone. This is ok as long as it could be found on me. That may not always be possible depending on the incident. So having a wristband with contact info on it gives me a little more peace of mind.” (and it gives his daughter's ALOT more peace of mind)


So who wants one? Courtesy of Outside PR and RoadID, I’ve got one to give away. Here’s what you’ve got to do to enter:


1. Be or become a follower of this blog and let me know via a comment.

Additional entries:

One additional entry for each of the following, just leave me a comment to let me know you’ve done it. I know what a pain those captcha’s are so individual comments aren’t neccessary. Just go do everything you want to do to enter and leave me one big comment.

- Become a fan of my page on Facebook

-Suggest my Facebook page to your friends

-Become a fan of RoadID on Facebook

-Become a fan of Outside PR on Facebook

-Update your FB status about me contest (this should say my contest, but it sort of makes me sound like a pirate so I’m leaving it in honor of my 4 year old who’s been a pirate on and off since she was 2)

- Follow me on Twitter

-Follow Outside PR on Twitter

-Follow RoadID on Twitter

- Tweet tweet about my contest

- Throw my blog on your blog roll

- Post my contest on your blog

- Send an email to your running friends & family about my contest

-Post on my Facebook Page or email me at some prank I can pull on my sister & brother-in-law on their long run in light of their planned attack on me.

How's that for options? Do them all or do none of them, that my friend is up to you. And yes, if you already have a RoadID, you can win one for somebody else. And doubly yes, if you already are a Facebook fan, following on Twitter, or have me on your blog roll because you entered some other random contest or maybe you just love me that much, that counts too. As long as you let me know that is. All entries must be recieved by 11:59 PM on July 3rd, 2010. I’ll announce the winner on July 4th.

Good Luck!

'Til next time...

P.S. Don’t forget about the Lanacane anti-chafing gel giveaway! There’s still time to get in that one too!

P.P.S. For you super sharp readers out there, technically I DID post this the day after I made the post about my being under attack as I promised. The date on that post is incorrect because I started it a day earlier. Due to another round of tornadoes in my area, however, I wasn't able to finish it and post as I was wrangling the girlies in the basement. That I did yesterday, just didn't realize the date would be the date I started it as opposed to the date I posted it. Oops! Now I know :)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

HELP! I am under attack (I think)

There is a plot underway. And it is a plot to take me down…or something like that anyway.

I spent yesterday at my parents with my kids, my sister and her kids to celebrate my birthday. And randomly, with absolutely no forewarning, my sister walked by me with a little grin on her face and mumbled under her breath, “we’re gonna get you on your long run.”

WHAT?! Excuse me? What does that even mean exactly? As if I don’t already have enough to worry about: heat, humidity, mosquitoes, turkey duck, not to mention mile after mile after mile. Nope. Now, I also have to spend my next 18 miles wondering at what point my sister and brother-in-law are going to jump out of the woods and scare me or whatever it is that they’re planning on doing because I could pry no further information out of her except that she does have to go to the store before her master plan can fully take shape. And also that no, they are not planning on running with super soakers strapped to their backs to hose me down as they run by (which actually would be kind of fun I think. Just imagine if during the hot hot summer months we all made a pact to do our long runs with super soakers, a wild pack of outlaw runners hell bent on cooling off any sweaty soul that crosses our path. Would definitely make the time go by faster don’t you think?)

So anyway, I need help. First, what do you think they could possibly be planning on? And second, how do I get them back? Now, they both read this blog (sometimes), so if you’ve got something really good, go post it on my Facebook fan page instead of here so they won’t see it. (See Sis I told you you should get on Facebook. So, na na na na na na :-p ). I’ve got a little time. No long run this weekend b/c of the triathlon, but by next weekend I need to be prepared. So think people! Think! I need a plan (imagine me silently mouthing HELP here).

'Til next time...

P.S. Giving away two tubes of Lanacane Anti-Chafing Gel if anybody wants to give it a show you can view the details here. Also announcing ANOTHER terrific giveaway tomorrow! Stay tuned...

Grins & Giggles: Charlie and a whole bunch of baby giggles

How about one of my favorite videos? Thanks to blog reader Andriana for sending it over during our One More Mile Giveaway

And how about one more?

'Til next time...

P.S. Have something funny to share? Send it to me at

Monday, June 21, 2010

Review: Lanacane Anti-Chafing Gel + Giveaway!!

DSCF6347 Wait…let’s refresh here. First there was the delayed onset chafing and then the painful reminder of a silly little mistake. So is it any wonder that Lanacane wanted me to test out, their new Anti-Chafing Gel? I can just hear them over there. “Poor pitiful funny walkin’ girl. We’ve got to send her some of this stuff.”

But seriously folks, chafing while running, for those of you who have perhaps not quite worked up to chafing susceptible mileage just yet, is really no laughing matter. It’s a very serious issue because…IT FRICKIN’ HURTS! Even the most seemingly insignificant loose string or piece of fabric can cause a major flesh wound when it rubs against your skin over and over and over again for 10, 15, or 20 miles. I kid not.

For me though, it’s not my clothing. No, I’ve learned (the hard way of course) the fine art of selectively choosing my runwear and testing it out carefully on shorter runs before weaving it into my long run wardrobe (which btw consists primarily of one running skirt and a multitude of race tech shirts). Any article of clothing that causes the most minor of skin irritations, and I’m talking about the slightest change in pigmentation you can possibly imagine, is automatically ruled out for endurance work and sent rather to the speed, tempo, hill or even cycling department.

But despite my best efforts, I am sadly not chafing free. It’s inner thigh trouble for me and it becomes painfully obvious oh…around mile 8. So typically I use a little Body Glide (when I remember) to save myself the horrible misery of forcing myself to finish a run despite a worsening condition and the weird waddle walk that will necessarily follow.

So how does Lanacane’s new product stack up to the competition? Very nicely actually. I gave the Body Chafing gel a test on my 15 mile run. Right away what I liked about it is that you only had to use a little bit according to the directions. It didn’t stink (although I don’t necessarily think Body Glide does either) and it absorbs right away. You really can’t even feel it’s there, not so with Body Glide. The weird thing about this though is that it actually does feel like you might possibly be on the verge of chafing. I mean you can feel skin on skin. But it doesn’t hurt. It’s not even annoying or anything. It’s just different.

Still at mile 7.5, at a quick bathroom stop, my Dad asked me if I wanted to reapply, we had brought the tube along as a precautionary measure. I was tempted, but really wanted to review the snot out of this product for you all (see how much I care :-) so I risked the damage that might possibly await and refused the re-app.

Results? After 15 miles, not only was I chafe free, I wasn’t even the slightest shade of pink in the usual problem area. So despite feeling like, uh oh, I might start chafing here for pretty much the whole run b/c I couldn’t actually feel the product (as compared to the way Body Glide feels), I did not. And really, I only used a teeny tiny smidgen of product. So I think the tube will last you a pretty long time.

Other positives? This product is available at Walgreens and CVS among a whole slew of other locations both on and offline which for me is a good thing, because there’s a CVS around the corner. My local running shop, on the other hand, which is generally the only place I can find Body Glide not online is 20 minutes away (and that’s the one I don’t like. They’re not friendly so usually I drive the extra 15 minutes to go to the other one). Not good in a pinch if you’re like me and wait until the absolute last bit of Body Glide can be scraped from the container before you go purchase another stick.

Also, Lanacane’s Gel is supposed to help heal chaffing, which I really could have used about a month ago because lotion is about as effective as trying to smooth it away with sandpaper. Body glide and Aquaphor are a sticky mess on your clothes. And nothing…well…then you just have to attempt walking without allowing your clothes to touch your body and/or your legs from touching each other until it finally heals itself. Which is pretty ridiculous to watch.

Price? Similar to Body Glide. I searched online and found it for $7.99 which is about a buck more than I’d pay at my local running shop for Body Glide. You know, the one I’d have to load two kids into the car, drive 20 minutes to, and then have the guy in the running shop devoid of customers act seriously annoyed that I interrupted him from God only knows what he was doing in the back room. Which would you prefer?

Negatives? I really wish they would make this product in little single use packets you could purchase, like the way you get a sample of lotion, so I could stick one or two in my fuel belt just in case some weird random chafing issue pops up or I do in fact need to reapply at say mile 20 or so. There’s no way I’m carrying the tube with me on a long run. I just don’t have room in my fuel belt pocket. So little packets Lanacane people. Little packets. You guys would totally be ahead of Body Glide on that too, because even their sample size has to come like a deodorant applicator which would be much bigger than the little squeeze packet you guys could do.

My verdict: Thumbs Up!



“So, I tried out the Lanacane. I'm not quite sure how I feel about it. I typically run in bike shorts/ compression shorts since part of my legs do rub together when I run. I have recently bought a pair of real running shorts (you know, short with the mesh sides) that I desperately want to wear but the threat of chafing has sidelined my purchase.

So, I tried out my new shorts with Lanacane last night. It comes in a tube that you have to squeeze onto your finger or the troubled area and then rub in. It doesn't smell or feel sticky. I made it about 30 minutes into my run when I started to feel a little sticking when my legs would rub together. I was wishing I had brought it downstairs for a quick reapplication, but I didn't. I made it through the rest of my run without my legs catching on fire or feeling too uncomfortable with the leg rubbing. When I checked my legs, the Lanacane was kind of peeling off my legs like when you get a sunburn. But, I did not have any chafing. The next morning my legs did feel really soft where I had applied the product. So, I'm thinking multifunctional product. Stopping chafing (with reapplications as needed) and good for dry skin, maybe even diaper rashes. Just to be clear, I am NOT a doctor, nor do I play one on TV, so please do not take this as medical advice.”

RunSis Verdict: Thumbs Up! (I think)

Want to try it out yourself? I’m giving away two tubes thanks to Lanacane. All you’ve got to do to get your hot little hands on one of them is:

1. Become a follower of this blog and leave me a comment to let me know you did so. If you already are a follower, sweet! Just leave me a comment so I know you want in.

Bonus entry:

Include in your comment why you deserve to win the chafing gel. And let’s see…if you can do it in the form of a haiku, I’ll give you two bonus entries instead of one. I don’t know why exactly, I’m just feeling particularly poetic tonight and a haiku about chafing and/or chafing gel, well, that has got to be funny and you know I’m always up for a laugh.

All entries must be received by June 29th, 11:59PM and I’ll announce the winners on June 30th.

Good luck!

'Til next time...

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Secret No.11: There’s another sport (or two) in my life


It’s time to come clean. I’ve been cheating…on running.

Really, if you think about it, this was the natural progression of things. First, there was running. Just to lose baby weight right? No big deal. But then came racing (you know, just for fun) with which I fell head over heals in love with. The desperate need to get faster led to some cross training…swimming, biking, a random hop on the elliptical machine.

Then there was a du. But a relay, A RELAY people. Nothing more. I was the runner, my dad was on the bike. But somewhere a little seed was planted. The same one the gets me every time. It starts out with “You know, I think I can…” and ends with me crossing some unexpected finish line (well, unexpected in the sense that if you would’ve asked me a year earlier I would have laughed, not unexpected as in “oh hey look, what do you know? I just happened to cross a finish line! Thank-you for that medal and bagel).

This time it was, “You know, I think I could’ve finished that whole duathlon myself” (although it would not have been nearly as much fun without my Pops of course). Shortly thereafter, (I think. It could’ve been right before the Du too. Long day. Brain’s not functioning exactly right.) a fellow running mom blogger posted about her first triathlon (stupid motivational blogposts ;-) ), which was followed just a couple of days later by a random postcard about the Iron Goddess Triathlon which had among other races a mini sprint tri:

1/4 Mile Swim. 10.7 Mile Bike. 1.5 Mile Run.

All distances on their own I’m fully capable of, but together hmmm…. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Then my mom told me she wanted to do the duathlon at the Iron Goddess and that was pretty much that. I mean, now I had a partner in crime. Besides, the race director specifically gears this event towards newbies. I figured I could at least give it a shot and see if I could finish.

Now, I haven’t necessarily been hiding this from you all. Take one hop over to my calendar and you’ll see that race on the agenda and it’s been there for quite awhile. I’ve also been chatting about it a bit on the Daily Mile. But I’ll admit, I wasn’t exactly excited to bring it up in a blog post. The run, of course, I feel I’ll do fine (except for the super bizzaro legs I’ve discovered you run with after you bike, but that’s a post for another time).

As far as the bike goes though, I’ve been a little concerned about my balance. After all, I haven’t been on a bicycle (stationary not included) in nearly 8 years back on my honeymoon and that, my friends, did not end well. I ran into a parked car. Literally.

Then, there’s the swim. Now technically speaking, once a week I swim a 1/2 mile in a pool, take a break, then swim another 1/2 mile. So, a 1/4 mile should be a piece of cake right? RIGHT?! (this is the point where you yell through the computer screen, “oh absolutely Kelly, you’ll have no trouble at all on race day!” Thank-you very much.)

But, you see, a pool has walls every 25 yds that you can take a little break at while you turn and push off. And a pool also has black lines painted on the bottom that you can easily follow to stay on course. Now, you might on a busy night, get one or two people in your lane, but in the lake at the tri I’ll have hundreds all around me with no lane lines to prevent all the waves they create from choppying up my waters and making my swim much more difficult. And furthermore, there’s no seaweed in my pool. Maybe in others, but not in the one I swim at. I am NOT a fan of seaweed. Nor am I a fan of fish (unless it’s on my plate). I dread seeing them on my swim and I CERTAINLY DO NOT want to be touched by either one. Or by anything else (other swimmers included) for that matter. So you see my problem. It involves drowning and also me being a sissy. Sissy drowning if you will. Not common, but also not impossible.

So I figured, I’d keep this little endeavour to myself. Make sure I survived and then tell you all about it. Maybe.

But I can’t wait any longer. I’m having a blast on the bike. I’ve got these funny “brick” (bike followed by a run) workouts I’m dying to tell you all about. And today I survived my very first open water swim!


Yep. That’s me. Horrible tan lanes. My bathing suit’s totally crooked (that’s how fast I swim baby!) But no, those aren’t horrible bags under my eyes, though I am super tired since I swam the 1/2 mile course instead of the 1/4 mile course by accident (I was supposed to head for shore at the fourth buoy, but forgot to count the first one. Oops! Guess I know I can do it now though huh?). Those would be goggle lines.

I survived the people, survived the waves, survived the seaweed (is it actually called seaweed if I'm in a lake rather than a sea?), even found myself a little rhythm on the 2nd half mile so I can spot where I am AND swim at the same time. My goal was to swim 1/4 in 12 minutes or my out there reaching for it if all goes wonderfully goal was to swim it in 10. Then do it all over again. I ended up swimming the 1/2 mile in 20:40 instead and decided to leave it at that. And yes, that would be my I’m feeling totally accomplished look.

So that’s that. And now that the cat is out of the bag. I feel we can go forward here, honestly and productively in our relationship. I sincerely hope you will not judge me too harshly for keeping this little secret. Know ultimately that I love running no less. My heart has just grown to include a place for swimming and biking too. Besides have you seen my arms? Look at that picture again. They could use a little more swimming. Don’t you think?

'Til next time...

P.S. Tomorrow: First Review Crew Review – Lanacane Anti-Chaffing Gel vs inner thigh chub rub. Are we walking around funny AGAIN? You’ll have to stop by to find out. PLUS: Giveway will be announced and who doesn’t like free stuff?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Introducing…The Review Crew

So you all know already that I like to try new things and give my unsolicited opinion to whoever is willing to listen, but instead of me taking the blame if you are less than thrilled with one of my reviews, I figured I’d rope a few people into trying running goods out with me. You know, spread the blame around a little bit. Ok well that and I thought it’d be fun. And just in case you’d like to know a little bit about the people offering up their reviews, they’ve each put together a little profile for you in completely their own words (except of course for the ones I added, but that probably goes with out saying ;-) )

The Review Crew

racevinephoto Known As: RunMom (that’d be me)
Age: 31
Size: ok I know this one sounds weird but it might be important if there is something that would make a difference for reviewing a product. In my case, for example, I’m tall. 5’8. But most of that is my legs so it makes buying pants (and skirts and shorts) interesting at times.
Bio: Stay at home mom of two little girlies. Runner. Blogger.
Races Run: Couple of marathons, couple of half marathons, a duathlon relay, and a whole bunch of shorter stuff at various distances and each one challenging in it’s own respect.
Favorite Distance: Half marathon b/c it’s just long enough that it doesn’t render me useless for the rest of the day.
Why I started running: I have literally loved running ever since I was a kid and when you’re a kid you just like to run because it feels good to go fast (or you’re trying to avoid being caught with something). Now why I started going out for the long haul? That would be because my husband got this crazy idea to run a marathon. And you know how that story goes, the minute I finished the first one with him, I just had to see if I could do it faster. (So far no. But that will change this fall!)
How long I’ve been running: Ever since my little toddler legs could carry me quickly. Marathoning– 4 years.
Why I like to run: If you ask my 4 year old daughter what mommy’s favorite thing to do is, she will unequivocally reply “EAT.” Need I say more?
Current Goal: PR at the Air Force Marathon in September ideally by breaking 4:30
Someday Goal: Run Boston and Comrades Ultra (and I refuse to hear your laughing through my computer screen)
Running Pet Peeve: Turkey Duck and people who insist you meet their dog in the middle of your run
One thing I must have on a run: Fluids with higher electrolyte content than what the average bear might drink. I am a ridiculously salty, heavy sweater and as such highly susceptible to hyponatremia which is so very much not a good thing.
Random Fact: as if the 50 I’ve already given you aren’t enough
What you can expect from my reviews: parenthetical speech and thoroughness (otherwise referred to by my husband as a lack of brevity)


DSCF6044Known As: RunDad (or Love of My Life or FuelBelt Bottle THIEF)
Age: 44
Size: Linebackerish
Bio: Athletic Trainer, teacher that sells wine and golfs (what can I say? I married a Renaissance Man)
Races Run: Detroit Marathon twice, Buffalo Half Marathon, CRIM, 5Ks
Favorite Distance: how far is it from the TV to the refrigerator and do I have to run?
Why I started running: to stay in shape
How long I’ve been running: 13 years on and off
Why I like to run: feeling of accomplishment, good for the self image when you finish.
Current Goal: to get back into shape after my knee surgery last year
Someday Goal: break 4 hours in a marathon
Running Pet Peeve: not being able to get my shoes tied with equal tension on both feet
One thing I must have on a run: shoes
Random Fact: He’s a firm believer that toilet paper has a very specific way to go on the roll & is shocked that all people don’t know this
What you can expect from my reviews: An over scientific analysis


Willow Duathalon 026 Known As: Mighty Mole Man and Mobile Mile Marker
Age: 56
Size: Big Bio: Biker (as in cyclist. He also fails to mention that he just recently completely a 100 mile ride. As in pedaling. With 30 miles of head winds no less. Oh and also that he is the proud father of two delightful young women, one of which happens to be me.)
Cycling Races: Senior Olympics (Which he won. And the Willow Duathlon Relay which he also won)
Favorite Distance: 20 miles
Why I started biking: Doctor said I needed to get exercise or go on medication
How long I’ve been biking: 2 1/2 years
Why I like to bike: It's fun (he’s a man of many words)
Best Biking Moment: Competing with my daughter (awww….)
Current Goal: Win a 10 mile race at the Senior Olympics in August
Someday Goal: Cross country ride
Cycling Pet Peeve: Loose dogs, drivers that think that bikers shouldn't be on the road
One thing I must have on a ride: cell phone
Random Fact: If you're going to bike, start slow and work your way up. Get fitted for a bike.
What you can expect from my review: I have no idea! (oh I totally do. Short. Sweet. To the point. And if he ever gives you anything more than “It was alright.” You should immediately go buy that product because it must be amazing. No. Miraculous even.)


DSCF6168 Known As: Runsis
Age: 30
Size: none of your beezwax or if you must know, short
Bio: Sister of certain overachieving running mom/blogger. Married with children. (she only says overachieving because she refuses to acknowledge the sheer & utter disaster that would be my house on a somewhat regular sort of basis)
Races Run: Applefest 5k, detroit marathon relay, turkey trot, martian 1/2, Indy mini, dexter-ann arbor 1/2
Favorite Distance: Depends on the day, how much sleep I've had, how my kids behaved, what I ate for dinner, and if the moon and the stars have aligned.
Why I started running: I looked like the before picture in weight loss commericals and wanted to look like the after picture (which she totally does!!!)
How long I’ve been running: It'll be one year on July 1st!!!!
Why I like to run: To get ENERGY, to have time to myself, to STAY in shape, to set a good example for my kids
Best Running Moment: Seeing my kids at the finish line of several of my races.
Current Goal: Finishing the Airforce Marathon in September
Someday Goal: Total World Domination and maybe some triatholons
Running Pet Peeve: Fellow runners that don't wave or acknowledge my existence while on the trail and trail hogs (you know runners/walkers/bikers that would prefer to run you off the path then move over).
One thing I must have on a run: Shoes? Someone to tell me how far I've gone since my Garmin STILL hasn't shipped!
Random Fact: I refuse to belong to Facebook (I can almost hear the shrieks of horror!!) (don’t worry all. She spies on mine although I’m sure she’d never admit it)
What you can expect from my review: Spelling errors

**SPECIAL NOTE ON RUNSIS: Did you all notice she also speaks (writes) in parenthesis. See. It’s not my fault. It runs in the family.


DSCF4792 Known As: RunNana
Age: 56
Size: Hopefully, getting smaller by the minute
Bio: Nana, teacher, runner who also bikes and is trying to learn to swim
Races Run: 5K, 10K, 10 mile, half marathon
Favorite Distance: Half marathon (when I've trained for it) Actually, the shortest distance possible that still gets me a medal
Why I started running: I went to Runmom's first 5K after she got back into running and was totally SHOCKED at all the people who seemed older, heavier, limped, etc...and still had the guts to try and some did pretty well I might add. I suddenly realized that the only reason that they could do it and I couldn't was that they JUST DECIDED TO DO IT. I decided to try too. I had problems with heel spurs and plantar fasciitis and had tried to run when Runmom was running high school track...I couldn't walk for a week after that attempt because my heels were so bad. But, Runmom made me a nice, gradual running schedule. I had been walking for a lot of years and was pleasantly surprised that I could follow her schedule and was thrilled that I could run at all. Start slow and keep at it and you can do it!
How long I’ve been running: Almost 3 years
Why I like to run: That feeling of doing something you never thought you could spills over into other parts of your life, Stress relief, being able to do something with my girls, There's something addictive about that totally emptying yourself out feeling, running is very spiritual for me
Best Running Moment: Running in the dark through the park at 5 am, during a snowfall, Finishing my first half, running the connector-every time, Traverse city half, Seeing family members start and be successful running AND biking, It's never about my time-it's always about just being a part of it, the peacefulness and emotions in me and the people around me, being inspired by the courage of everyone in the race who had the courage to take the first step, the people in the back -near ME!- inspire me most.
Current Goal: Continue working through some joint issues and running another half this Fall.
Someday Goal: Get/keep myself healthy enough to run for a long time yet
Running Pet Peeve: Running snobs, persnickety joints, no pockets in my shorts, porta potty problems, other runners who don't at least give you a head nod when you pass them on the trail
One thing I must have on a run: lipstick-weird, I know but I can't stand dry lips, religious medal, sunglasses-even if it's not sunny-they're prescription, phone, watch
Random Fact: Can't stand running in a hat or with gloves, would NEVER run with an ipod-I'd miss too much nature, would rather run in the cold weather than when it's hot, So proud of my fit biking/running family,
What you can expect from my review: I'll be honest. I have no time or patience for products that don't do anything for me. I like it simple! (My mom would also be polar opposite of my dad. So if she ever just flat out says a product is horrible without putting some sort of positive spin on it, you would do well to stay far far away from that particular item.)


Known As: Spazz, always planning or doing something silly! (A.K.A. my neighbor who runs alot)
Age: 33
Size: 5’8’’ no curves, kind of like a pencil.
Bio: Mother of two, Nursing student, Runner, Hiker.
Races Run: Too many 5k’s to remember, Detroit ½ Marathon and Relay, Woman’s Only Triathlon (Sprint), Race for Recovery Triathlon (Sprint) Favorite Distance: Five miles. Just enough time to quiet the voices in my head.
Why I started running: Like most women my age to get back in shape and have a little time to myself.
How long I’ve been running: About 5 years.
Why I like to run: The health benefits and to get free stuff at races!
Best Running Moment: The first time my daughter ran with me.
Current Goal: To keep running while pursuing a degree in nursing without losing my mind.
Someday Goal: Find the time to train and run a full marathon.
Running Pet Peeve: Cars that don’t move over and fling dirt and dust all over you.
One thing I must have on a run: Food! I have low blood sugar and I tend to consume lots of energy on a run.
Random Fact: I have the attention span of a nat and I’m pretty silly most of the time. (Just ask my kids.)
What you can expect from my review: Probably stuff about nursing so I can show off what I have recently learned and pretend that I am smart.


And I’ve got a few more crew members to add, but I’m still waiting on their profile information. Hmm….wonder if they realize I’m giving them no products to review until they get it to me? We shall see now. We…shall…see.

I’ll try to post a review once a week as long as I’ve got stuff TO review. And if you have something you’d like me or one of the crew members to check out, email me at and we’ll see what we can do.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Grins & Giggles: Polar Bears & Ninja Baby

Iiiiiiiiiit's Wednesday! Time for a laugh.

Here's a joke from blog reader, Holly:

A baby polar bear comes over to his mom and says, "mom am I a full blooded polar bear?" "Yes, dear" she says. He goes back
to playing.

A little while later he comes back over to his mom and says, "Mom, are YOU a full blooded polar bear?" "Yes, dear" she says. He goes back to playing.

A little while later he comes back over to her and says, "Mom, is DAD a full blooded polar bear?" "Yes, dear" she says. He goes back to playing.

A little while later he comes back over to her and says, "Mom are grandpa and grandma full blooded polar bear?" "Yes, dear. Why do you ask?"

"Because I am FREEZING!!!"


And then there's this that I stumbled across last night:

Hee hee. Hope you're laughing! Have a great rest of the week!

'Til next time...

P.S. On a not funny, but totally cause worthy note, check out Cynthia, super fast running mom blogger extraordinaire's virtual run for kids. Kids running for kids to raise money for kids. Does it get any better?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

FuelBelt Responds...


Yesterday, I received a response to my email to FuelBelt with regards to the tragic end of the life of my fuel belt bottle and my current red/pink cap dilemma. That email, in case you were wondering, was pretty much identical to my blog post.

Since I know you are all super interested, can think of nothing else, biting your fingernails, and waiting with baited breath to see how this whole bottle cap situation plays itself out, I thought I'd share the response I received from the Director of US Retail Accounts:

I am so sorry that you have separated from your bottle. Please provide me with your address and I will make this nightmare go away for you... I am even going to include some extra bottles, just in case your husband plans on stepping over the invisible guard rail that surrounds your FuelBelt... I was very happy to read about how much your FuelBelt means to you and am very much looking forward to fixing this for you...

Just one more reason to love love love Fuel Belt all. Not only do they have prompt efficient stellar customer service, they also have a sense of humor. And really, after all, what else can you ask from the makers of your hydration belt?

So **PHEW**, problem solved. I believe I can now move on. Thank-you FuelBelt!

'Til next time...

P.S. As for my husband, well...all will be forgiven as soon as he does in fact purchase a fuel belt of his own as promised. Until then, I guarantee you I'll be hiding those bottles much the way he should probably be hiding his running socks :-)

P.P.S. Two fun things to post for you tomorrow! No hints! You'll have to come back and visit!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The sad sad but true story of the end of running companion…

There are few things in this world that I wouldn’t share. As a matter of fact, I can really off the top of my head only think of two. My goggles being one which I’m sure is a remnant from my lifeguard days after having more than one pair disappear to Goggleland never to return. (You know Goggleland don’t you? It’s a neighboring city to Missing Sockville. Many many lone socks take a one way trip via the dryer to Sockville. Or would that just be my socks?) Whenever someone asks me to borrow my goggles, I can’t help but start to twitch.

The other non-sharable item would be my Helium 4 Fuel Belt. I love that no bounce, no chafing belt. The bottles are the perfect size to hold enough fluids for a half marathon. There’s a little pocket to store my gel. And it’s a sleek black and pink. It’s sweet. I don’t long run without it. And I don’t share it because I don’t want the elastic to get stretched out, or the bottles not to be clean when I need them, or **GULP** a bottle to get lost.

And despite making my non-sharing wishes perfectly clear on more than one occasion to a certain other running someone in my household who shall remain nameless in order to protect his identity, my fuel belt continues to be “borrowed” nonetheless, at least the bottles anyway.

You see the bottles, are 8 oz and a slim design. They’re small so if you happen to have large pockets like say…oh I don’t know…let’s see…my husband. Yep, that’s a good example, if you had large pockets like my husband does in his running shorts, then you could easily slip a bottle in your pocket and run with it.

And furthermore, if you park your car in the middle of the trail you run like, oh wait…that’s right…like my husband does, then you could also put a bottle on top of your van, I mean vehicle, and grab another bottle when you run by. The only problem with this little plan would be if you forgot you had in fact put a bottle on top of your van, er…vehicle, which might be a strong possibility when you’re exhausted at the end of your run and you’ve got yet another stolen, I mean “borrowed” fuel belt bottle.

Sadly, this is the story of what happened to my lonely loyal bottle yesterday, one that served me so well in many a races and was there when I needed it most during some particularly rough patches. Needless to say, I was a little upset. “Well, let me go check and see if it’s still on top of my van,” this certain someone tried to ease my worst fears, as if by some miracle, or perhaps sheer love of owner, my little fuel belt bottle was able to grasp on tightly to the hood and survive not only the slow drive through the park, but the 15 minute EXPRESS WAY DRIVE HOME.

Unfortunately, the little guy could not hang on. I have high hopes he’s moved on to a better place, perhaps filled with some delightful little fru fru drink preferably of the strawberry variety with a little whipped cream on top.

But the nightmare doesn’t end there. The moment I found out my bottle was gone, I headed straight for the computer to order a new one. I had been thinking about upgrading to 10oz bottles anyway, and this, this was my chance, not just for new bottles, but to make good out of bad. Until I discovered one devastating bit of information. The replacement bottles come with red caps, not pink.

And as I wrote in my email to the Fuel Belt people recounting the terrible fate of my bottle (really, I did), ultimately I will survive with a red cap. But every single time I take a drink out of a red capped bottle from my pink fuel belt I will be faced with the horrific reminder of my bottle’s demise, a memory I would soon forget.

So, I patiently wait at the mercy of Fuel Belt to see if just one pink replacement cap is even possible. Money is no object (as long as by “no object” that means about $5 or less. We’re only talking one cap people).

In the meantime, if you happen to notice a pink capped 8oz bottle lying around, you know who to send it to.

'Til next time...

P.S. Another reappearance by you know who today on my 15 mile run. He’s getting bolder. Today Turkey Duck was standing right smack in the center of the trail. “It’s my world Runner Girl. You’re just living in it.” He mouthed as he stared at me with that beady little side of his head eyeball as a I ran by. I thought about running right at him to scare him for a minute, but remembered the claws and opted to run off the trail around him instead. Other than his head, he didn’t move a muscle. Stupid thug duck.

P.P.S. Have you joined my Facebook Fan Page yet? Ok I realize it’s not much of a fan page if I have to ask you to join, but I can post short sweet quick things up there, that I can’t do here like a RoadID coupon or when I update the Giveaways. So if you haven’t done it yet, click here for the link.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Grins & Giggles

Dun da da duuuuuuun....

Introducing the inagural Grins & Giggles post. I'll keep them short and sweet (Wait stop laughing. No, really. I mean it. That's not the giggle. I promise I'll be brief). And hopefully, I'll have these up for you every Wednesday. You know, mid-week when we could all use a little grin (or giggle).

For starter's I'm sending you elsewhere. Check out this little runner in the making. I know he'll make you smile:

A Day in the Life of the Bashas

Thanks blog reader, Judy, for the submission. He's soooooooo adorable!

If you've got something you'd like to share that will make us all say "awwww...", grin, giggle, laugh out loud, or shoot gatorade out of our noses, please send it to me at Family friendly please :-) (that way I can get my 4 year old giggling too).

'Til next time...

P.S. I'll be compiling these all under that Grins & Giggles tab at the top for easy access. So should you miss one or have one of THOSE days, they'll be easy to find. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Dexter-Ann Arbor Race Report...Or not

So yesterday was the Dexter-Ann Arbor Half. **SIGH** While I'd love to fill this post with info on the course, stories from the port-a-potty lines (b/c that always seems to be where the funniest stuff happens, at least at my races) mile splits and finishing times, sadly, I can not. I didn't run it.

Generally speaking, I'm not one to punk out on races. I mean, even my last 1/2 I had been sick for three of the two weeks prior. I only started running again during my "taper" week, which meant I never got above 10 miles in my training. But I figure, hey, I paid for the race. I might as well run it, even if I have to drag my sorry behind across the finish.

But sometimes I think you've got to recognize when all signs are pointing to NO!!!! and heed that warning. And I don't think it was possible to receive any more negative indicators than what I did.

For starters, I've been keeping a little secret from you all this past week. I'm sick. All week I've been blowing off this sneezy, stuffy, runny nose; itchy eyes, and headaches. It's just allergies I kept telling myself, despite the fact that my allergies seem to have started two days earlier with my 1 year old and after attacking me spread to my niece, my dad and my 4 year old (weird how allergies spread like that huh?). But Saturday, I was really starting to feel that all over tiredness that comes with being sick. Even my 4 year old, whom I never said a word to, started telling me I felt really hot and asking if I had a fever. There was pretty much no denying it.

Then my sister called. She and her husband drove the course. Hills. Awesome. I actually knew the course was hilly when I signed up, but when you're already not feeling so hot the thought of running a humid 13.1 miles on a hilly course is far less exciting than it was originally. But fortunately, I wasn't going to have to run them in the hot humid weather we've had around here lately, because conditions were changing. Nope. Now I was going to get to run them in a torrential downpour. Just frickin' awesome.

So later that night, after struggling with the girls all day (because I don't know if your kids are anything like mine, but when they sense weakness, they attack and attack hard) just before I went to bed, I had a whole conversation with my husband about whether or not I should run. 5:30 AM was going to come mighty early. I didn't really have a goal in mind for the race except maybe to PR and that I figured was pretty much shot. So should I even bother? Maybe just run it like a training run? He was leaning towards me not running for fear that I would aggravate whatever little bug has gotten ahold of me which then out of stubborness would insist on sticking around for awhile. Me, I was still leaning towards running, just seeing how it felt and pacing myself accordingly. With no official decision made, to bed I went.

Then there were sirens. Before I had even shut my eyes, the tornado sirens were going off. In the 4 years I've lived here, I can honestly say I've never heard them except for testing and it freaked me out. I ran downstairs to see if my husband heard them too, as if my ears were somehow deceiving me. He was already watching the local news and had checked outside. Weird skies. Super calm. Totally eerie. We had a tornado warning. "Go get the girls," he said. I ran upstairs, and grabbed the baby my heart racing. He was only about a step behind and picked up our comatose 4 year old and we headed for the basement.

Once awake, the girls, especially my one year old, were thrilled and ready to play. But we had the news on downstairs and soon enough my 4 year old started asking questions. "What's a tornado?" "He said dangerous. Will it hurt us?" "Can it suck up people?" "Can it suck up houses?" I answered all her questions as softly as I could and did my best to reassure her as I quickly cleared the area under the stairs just in case we started hearing those freight train winds. She got back under her blankets and wrapped herself up tightly. I don't think she was convinced, but eventually she did fall back asleep. My one year old, not so much. She hadn't been in the basement since she was little enough to sit in one of those activity centers while I ran on the treadmill. It was a whole new world for her down there and she was ready to explore.

At around 1:30 AM, after the special edition of our local news had been covering the weather for a few hours (this stuff doesn't happen in MI all that often), we got the all clear. Most of the storm had moved on, what was left had died down. So we took the girls back up to their bedrooms. "Think this was a sign?" I asked my husband. "God saying 'if you won't listen to your body, I'll send you a tornado to keep you up all night.'" He laughed, but then said he really didn't think it was a good idea for me to run. I agreed, but secretly plotted to just run/walk it. I would need to get a long run in anyway. Why not do it there?

Back in bed I lay there for awhile listening to the monitor to my baby trying to figure out how to get back to sleep, chitter chatting away to herself. But after another 1/2 hour or so, it was quiet and it seemed she had finally given in to her heavy eyes. And with sounds of snoring coming from my older daughter's room (and beside me), I figured it was my turn to do the same. But I couldn't have been asleep for more than 15 minutes or so, when I heard a loud squeal come across the monitor. I could not believe that child was still awake. We were pushing 2:30 in the morning for crying out loud! I took a peek on the monitor screen to see what she was doing and yep, she was definitely up, but now myself fully awake and all my senses returned to normal, I realized why. The tornado sirens were going off again.

I shook my husband to wake him up and he took off downstairs to check the weather. I ran and scooped up my baby and woke my 4 year old up enough so she could manage her way downstairs holding my hand. I had no idea how long those sirens were going off before Madelyn notified us, and was afraid a tornado could already be on top of us. All I knew was we needed to get down two flights of stairs without falling as quickly as possible.

Not sure exactly where the weatherman was on this one though because when we flipped on the tv, it was just an infomercial playing. But I had brought my phone down to the basement with us so I could check the weather channel and get some info anyway. We had another tornado warning and the worst part of the storm, according to this warning, was going to be on us around 2:30 AM. I checked the time. 2:34 AM. I no sooner relayed this info to my husband then the heavy rains and wind began. My 4 year old never woke up. My 1 year old was fighting with me like a baby tiger to escape my grasp. I was praying, it wouldn't get worse and we'd be safe.

Fifteen minutes or so later, it was over. By 3:00AM we were once again in the clear. I would have just kept the kids downstairs and slept in the basement, but my 1 year old would NOT go to sleep. So we all headed back upstairs. And this time I shut my alarm clock off.

Had it been any one of those things: just sick, just up all night, just rainy the next day, just a hilly course; or even some combination of a few, I would have still opted for the race. But all of them? Not this time.

I'll admit I was disappointed in the morning, when I saw my little pile of running clothes I had planned to wear for the race sitting all by their lonesome. But when I checked the news later in the day and saw the devastation this storm reeked on some communities in Ohio and just a tad to the south of us in MI, who cares about a race? I'm just thankful that we're all ok because 7 people were not and a lot of others had their homes completely ripped apart. If you're a praying person, please be sure keep these people who have lost so much in your prayers tonight. I'm going to do a little surfing now to see if I can find somewhere to donate to help them out. If I do I'll be sure to post it.

'Til next time...

P.S. But I must say congrats to my sister and brother-in-law who DID finish the Dexter Ann Arbor Half yesterday! My sister for sticking to her guns and her pace and keeping this race a training run for her marathon. WTG sis on not getting sucked into running too fast! And congrats to my brother-in-law for not only substantially PRing but also for breaking 2 hours at 1:56! Woohoo!! See I knew you were sandbagging this whole time! Maybe one of them would be willing to write a race report for us? We'll see...

P.P.S. I will of course be looking for another 1/2 to run pre-marathon. July or Augustish. So feel free to leave me suggestions. Found one already in Petoskey, MI up north* that looks interesting. Hmmm...vacation possibly?

*Upnorth- a general term used by residents of Michigan to signify any number of Michigan vacation destination cities located below the Upper Peninsula but north of the approximate middle of the mitten. Frequently, but not always, these cities are located on one of the many many beautiful Michigan lakes. Really Northern Michigan is a gorgeous place to visit and can hardly think of another place I'd like to be in the summertime.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

More on turkey duck…

Because ultimately I know, there is really only one good reason to follow this blog and that is, of course, turkey duck.

After a night of searching, and I do mean searching because even after wading through the many references to turducken*, generally speaking and much to my surprise, not too many avian websites list in the official description for this species, duck that looks like a turkey or vice versa despite that being exactly how this creature appears, but still, I do believe I have correctly identified our web footed, wattle necked, fair feathered foe.

And no he (or she) is not some weird mutated duck or the product of some wild turkey’s last night on the market before he, um… actually went ON the market. He’s what’s known as a Muscovy Duck.


There he is. Isn’t he cute? Uh...maybe not so much. Mine’s a little more wattle and pretty much all black and BIG. Well actually, I think that’s the female. The male has a pretty similar face but a little bit more colorful black and blue wings. Or at least, I’m assuming the female’s all black and the male’s got some blue. I haven’t exactly checked to see who’s who.

Now, according to the officially official source Wikipedia (official in the sense that pretty much anybody, including my brother-in-law for a class project, can write up an entry), the Muscovy Duck is an invasive species in the US. They’re tropical birds that find a way to adapt to cold, snowy conditions. And they eat pretty much anything, fish, bugs, frogs, reptiles, plants, whatever. And apparently in some areas of FL, they’re a bit of a problem.

As far as the charging the other day goes, looks like my guess was right. Since he came charging out of the woods and they nest in tree hollows, there’s probably some soon to be hatched babies in the area. The good news is the babies look like this:

baby muscovy ducksSay it with me now, “Awwwwwwwww.” So they will be totally fun to watch waddle about shortly. The bad news: daddy and mommy have “long claws” on the ends of their webbed feet and they ARE in fact fast. I haven’t been able to find their exact land speed, but if Wiki says fast AND claws, trust me, I’m not looking to evaluate it first hand. Chances are, though not always, daddy will be sticking around for 10-12 weeks for protection and some friends may or may not lend him a hand, if there does happen to be some more in the area. Even if there isn’t and daddy chooses to move on (stupid deadbeat duck dad), I’m thinking mamma’s probably not one to mess with either. So looks like I’ll need to keep my eyes open on the trails for awhile (hmmm….wonder if I should warn Zen Runner. Have I told you guys about him? I always see him running on the trails with his ipod on and eyes closed. Seriously. It’s like he runs just by the feel of his feet on the pavement. I did bust him once though. He was wearing sunglasses and I don’t think he realized that I could see his eyes. They were open. Pretty sure he just doesn’t want to talk to or acknowledge anyone else is out there with him. Guess a turkey duck is the price you pay for being the one unfriendly runner on the trail eh?)

But what Wikipedia fails to report about turkey duck, sorry, Muscovy duck, is that he’s a bit of a prankster. A prankster with my dad for an accomplice to be precise.

It was my last long run (with my husband, YAY! Our first long run together since his knee surgery last year) that turkey duck and I had another run in. As we crested the bridge in the area where I spotted him swimming the first time, I pointed it out to my husband. “Right over there, out of the corner of my eye, he swam by. I wasn’t sure what I saw,” I reported, our heads turned to the left as we scoped out the scene to see if we could catch another glimpse. “But that’s not where the nest is,” I explained as we kept our eyes locked on that location lest we become victims of a turkey duck sneak attack, “the nest is further down, about a 1/4 mile or so on the other side.” And at that we turned our heads to the opposite direction. One guess who was patiently sitting to our immediate right almost on the trail. You got it. Turkey duck himself. I screamed, practically knocked over my husband to move over to the left and get away from him, and of course ran faster.

My dad, who was just sitting up a few feet ahead at the one mile marker on his bike, was laughing hysterically. He saw turkey duck the whole time but apparently the two had a secret pact not to divulge his location for entertainment purposes. And turkey duck…he just followed us with his eyes as we ran by. Didn’t get up, didn’t flinch, “yeah runner girl. You remember, I own you. Keep movin’” (be sure to read that in your thug duck voice. If you don’t have one, the Terminator will suffice. He’s not from around these parts anyway).

So there you have it. See Virginia. There is a turkey duck. Unfortunately, he’s fast and has claws.

'Til next time...

P.S. Don’t worry. I WILL actually warn Zen Runner about turkey duck should the opportunity present itself.

P.P.S. I will NOT be giving up my trails to a duck. So feel free to leave me any defensive strategies or evasive maneuvers in the comments. You know how some people carry dog biscuits to toss out to neighborhood dogs so the dogs won’t bother them, I'm thinking maybe I could carry a spare frog in my fuel belt pocket (one that died of perfectly natural causes of course). Only then I won’t have anywhere to put my GU or E-GEL. Darn you Fuel Belt people! Why don’t you make that little pocket big enough for a frog?! I mean really. Other suggestions?

P.P.P.S. Ok just one more thing then I will leave you to your Saturday night. Promise. I've decided to leave that little Giveaway button up over there on the upper right. Even though mine's over, there's a few around town you might want to check out (including another One More Mile giveaway-SWEET!), so I posted them there. But nobody go thank me just yet, I must admit, I get entries into those giveaways for posting them on my blog so my intentions are not entirely pure. But hey, I won't hold it against you if you snake the prizes away from me. At least, not for too long ;-) Have fun! And check back often for updates. Feel free to notify me if you've got one going on I've missed. I do have turkey ducks to contend with after all so I'm sure I've overlooked some good ones. Ok now, carry on.

*Turducken – typically a Thanksgiving or Christmas dish of turkey stuffed with duck stuffed with chicken which may or may not be stuffed with sausage. Variations of this dish include any sort of bird stuffed with any other sort of bird. Really. Historic origins of this dish are highly disputed as it seems a number of various ethnic groups would like to be credited with stuffing meat with meat. Probably tasty, but pretty sure turkeys are highly insulted.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I’m sorry Ruby…WHAT did you just say?

Memorial Day my family and I had the great pleasure of participating in a shadow run/walk for charity (which just means it’s a run wherever you are. There’s no official race location). It also happened to be a cross training day for me, but as of that morning I hadn’t decided what sort of activity exactly I’d be crossing into considering it was about 80 degrees already nearing our start time at 9AM and my legs hadn’t totally recovered from the Saturday hot humid long run. And the hotter it got as we neared go time, the more I started leaning towards an expected 5K of run, walk, skip, jump, stop, start, push a stroller, piggyback a 4 year old being all the cross training I needed for the day.

Then SHE showed up.

Cute as a button and all smiles. Long black ponytail. Gym shorts and a cotton t-shirt. Twelve years old and wearing a pair of running shoes.

Ruby came with my niece. Now, I’ve met Ruby before at birthday parties and such. She’s a cousin on the other side of the family, but I didn’t know much about her. So when she and my niece took off hard at the start, I figured no big deal. I’ve run with plenty of kids before. In fact, prior to having my own, when I worked as a Recreation Coordinator, I used to organize a running club every summer for kids ages 8-14. And nearly every single one of them ran the same way when we started, as fast as they could for as long as they could which typically wasn’t very long, generally 100-200 meters, on occasion somebody would bust out a entire 1/4 mile. But that was it. Our goal, besides having fun (and popsicles) was to slow them down a touch and increase their stamina, eventually working them up to running one mile continuously, which almost every single one of them did at the end of the summer at a fun run during a neighboring city’s festival.

So when these two girls took off, I just turned around and shouted to the rest of the crew, “I’ll go with them,” not only because I didn’t like the idea of them running the trails alone, but also because I figured by a half mile I’d be back with everyone else leisurely walking and probably looking for the perfect stick, stone, leaf or whatever had piqued my daughter’s interest for the moment.

Not too long after we started running, my niece (who also happens to be quite the little athlete by the way) dropped back and started walking. One down. I thought to myself. She sprinted back up a short while later, but it took about all she had to do so and she fell back with the rest of the group after that.

But not Ruby. Nope. Not only did Ruby keep running, she wasn’t losing pace, she looked good, great form, and wasn’t even breathing hard. Actually, she was talking to me too.

As we neared what I thought must be getting close to one mile, I finally looked at her and said “Ruby, do you run often?” To which came the surprising reply, “Yep. I run for an hour everyday.”

Now, I think the actual words that came out of my mouth were something along the lines of “that’s great!” but what I was thinking was “oh shoot. I’m actually running this thing today.”

And my very next move? Why, start timing her of course! I had my watch on just so I could see what time it was, but I hadn’t started it. I mean, I hadn’t really seen the need at first figuring it was going to be more of a stroll than anything else and it was highly likely I’d be turning around early because my 40lb kid was getting too heavy to carry. But that all changed the moment I found out she was a runner. I knew we were running at a pretty good clip already and I wanted to see how fast this girl could go.

Here’s what she did:

Mile 2- 10:27 (now this mile she definitely slowed down a touch from mile one. It was hot, humid, a little hilly and no shade. I’m thinking mile one was around 10 minute/mile pace)

Mile 3- 9:55

.1 – 0:50

2.1 Miles- 21:13 (so estimating 31:13 for her 5K)

So surprise surprise for me eh? This from a girl who has no running club, no track team, and no cross country team, at least not until she gets to high school. It’s just her on her own running. She likes it. She’s good at it. She finishes hard. She wants to excel at sports. And she wants to run a marathon (a very fast marathon) one day.

So now I need to ask a favor. If you all would be so kind as to please leave a comment for Miss Ruby to encourage her on her running way that would be sweet. Let her know where your from too so she knows people from all over are rooting for her. Maybe even a little advice for her as she gets started.

Rock on Ruby! Always give it your best and you are going to do some mighty big things girl!

'Til next time...