June 18, 2013

Niagara Falls

My kids have basketball camp this week (just a couple of hours each day). Yesterday, I dressed in my running clothes before we left, and decided to just run my four miles from the school where their camp was being held. The camp started at 10:00, and it was already 75 degrees (and very humid!) at that time.

I also decided to run the way I was pacing myself before my RRCA class, when I was training for my sub-2:00 half-marathon. Then, I was pushing myself on each run--not to the point that I felt awful, but a little faster than was comfortable. Lately, my pace has been slowing so much, that I just wanted a confidence booster, so I decided to see if I could still manage a sub-9:00 pace in the heat.

There wasn't a single cloud in the sky, and the sun was beating down. I swear it felt 100 degrees, and not just 75 ;)  But I was really happy with my pace, because I managed four sub-9:00 miles.

I think I paid the price for that today, though. My legs were tired, and I had intervals on the schedule.  I did the intervals on the treadmill before taking the kids to camp. I had 8 x 400's to do, which are done at a 6:58/mi pace. I honestly felt like I was going to puke. They felt SO HARD!

After I dropped the boys off at basketball camp, I headed to my mom's house to pick up my older brother, Brian. He flew from Minnesota to Detroit only to get his car from the airport to my parents' house, where my dad could fix a problem with it. He pulled his car into the driveway, then hopped in my car so I could take him back to the airport to fly right back to Minnesota. Crazy, right?! I guess when you're a pilot, it doesn't seem so weird.

Brian just ran the Ragnar Relay in Niagara Falls, and it was awesome to hear about it. His team had a really cool idea for choosing their legs for the race. Usually, teams assign their runners long before race day, and they know exactly what order they'll be running. Well, BioFuel (my brother's team), all threw their names in a bag (along with two "wild" cards). At the starting line, they still didn't know who was going to run first.

Brian's team (he's on the top right). I love the barrel costumes!
Very appropriate for a Niagara Falls finish line ;)

They handed the bag of names to the announcer, who waited until 10 seconds before the race started to pull out a name for them. When the girl's name was called, she quickly pulled out another name, who would be runner #2, and then she ran across the starting line and was off for the first leg.

At each major exchange, the team drew their leg assignments again, which meant they were also swapping van assignments around. I thought this was awesome! That way, you would get to see everyone from your team, rather than just the people assigned to your van.

The whole thing is SO hard to explain, but after hearing about it, I decided I'm going to put together a team for next year. It may end up being a From Fat to Finish Line team reunion, if everyone is interested. I just love the idea of the random leg assignments. It would be so exciting not knowing when you're going to be running next!

I just got a list of questions from someone via e-mail about Ragnar and how certain parts of it work. I'm going to post those this week, to hopefully clear it up a little.

The boys had a baseball game tonight. I really love watching their games! They're at the age now where it's actually kind of exciting to watch. Noah and Eli are both pretty good, and they work really well together. Eli usually plays third base (he has a good arm) and Noah usually plays first (he catches everything). Jeanie was actually able to go to their game today, too--this was the first time she's been in town for one of their games.

My friend Sarah also came with me, because tonight was the only time that worked for both of us to get together. She stopped by my house first with her 10-month old boy, Alex. I miss my boys being that age! He was walking all over, following my cats around. I showed him the feather toy that my cats love, and he was swinging it around while chasing the cats.

Oh, speaking of the cats... I've been meaning to give an update on Chandler's weight loss. He weighs 21 pounds, down from 25, so he's lost 4 pounds! I'm really excited about that. I can see a difference in his body, too. He doesn't feel like he's ready to bust open at the gut anymore, and his skin feels like there's some slack to it. He still can't reach his whole body to groom himself, but he's getting better at it. When he reaches 5 pounds lost, maybe I'll post comparison photos ;)


  1. Weight loss before and after pictures of Chandler made me laugh! Can't wait to see what 5 lbs looks like, since that 20% for him :)

  2. If you need a Ragnar teammate, I'm your girl! I have been wanting to do one since reading about your adventures in Key West. I have a headlamp, haha. And what a cutie your brother is!

  3. AnonymousJune 18, 2013

    I love the idea of the random draw for the legs of a Ragner. I still want to run one one day but it is so hard to get a team together and fly somewhere....so if you need an alternate teammate keep me in mind! I did email you last time you were looking for a final member...
    Strong work on the sub 9pace by the way...i am so trying to get there someday. I am down to a 9:27 from an over 13min/mile when i fist started running just over a year and a half ago. YOur progress is such an inspiration for me to keep getting faster! Maybe once i lose my final 25lbs i'll be faster!
    Cat in texas

  4. Yay for Chandler! Not sure why, but the thought of comparison pictures for pets struck me as funny - and now I want to see!

  5. Katie,
    This is not really related to today's blog post (though I enjoyed reading it). I just wanted to share a story (I will blog about it tommorow, but was just getting caught up on my reading of blogs tonight). Anyway, I have been having "mental" problems in my runs. I feel like I am making progress then I use my progress to allow myself to walk. Anyway, Runner's World had an article called Mental Muscle and it referenced ways to beat your own negative way of thinkingl I've been working on some of their suggestions. Tonight, I was running and I really wanted to walk. Instead, I started chanting (in my head, and only for a few seconds) 'Runs for cookies". I don't want to sound like a creeper, but the wording worked with my pace and I was trying to think of ANYTHING other than walking! I ran my first mile in 10:43 (my fasted outdoor mile yet!) I finished my whole 3.1 miles is 36:04 (again my fastest time yet!). And, when I got home, I had two oreo cookies for 4 points plus. I really did Run for Cookies today!!

    1. Hi, Kati - thanks for sharing your "work it through" story. this morning on my way home from the gym (it's exactly a mile, mostly down hill, so I try to run the whole thing) I was thinking "Katie would finish out the mile and not walk." Katie - you inspired both Kati and me not to walk today. thanks!!
      oh, PS: every time I see the word "motivation", and it's OFTEN at the gym and in fitness books, I change it out for "determination" in your honor!!

    2. well June and Kati you aint alone. Every time I dont want to walk( im not a runner yet) I think of Katie(U) & keep walking.
      Other than that, I too use the word Determination to remind myslef that Iam determined just like Katie.
      Thanks Katie. I even read your FAQs each time I feel I may fall off the wagon.

  6. I love the idea of a cat before and after photos.

  7. You should have taken a picture after every pound! LOL

  8. Hi Katie, thanks for sharing. I was wondering if you got faster as you lost more weight. I am also doing weight watchers and 20 pounds from goal (half way). I can't seem to break the 10-12 min miles and it is so frustrating. I'm hoping as I shed the weight the miles will get faster. Thanks

  9. AnonymousJune 19, 2013

    This may not be appropriate.... but your brother is HOT!! :) -- Aundrea

  10. Lol comparision photos sound awesome!

  11. AnonymousJune 19, 2013

    I had to laugh when I read, "She stopped by my house first with her 10-month old boy, Alex. I miss my boys being that age!" because when I was reading about your boys playing baseball I was thinking the same thing - mine are now 16 and 21 and I miss that age. Every age is nice, I guess.

    Hoping to see Chandler's before and after in an upcoming Motivational Monday...

  12. I'm always amazed by how even your outdoor splits are. Maybe because you run on a treadmil often or something. Mine always seem to bounce around +/- 15 seconds from my average time.

    That does sound like a fun way to do a Ragnar. I'm doing the Hood to Coast here in Oregon this summer... it's basically the same thing. My first time doing something like that... I'm worried about sleep! So I guess I'd be pissed if I just finally got some ZZZZZs and then the random draw had it my turn to run!

  13. I was going to say the same thing as Thomas. I can't keep my pace that steady. Is your route usually fairly flat? If not, how do you keep up for pace for the hills? Hills kill my pace!

  14. What an awesome idea drawing legs last minute! I love it!! I would love to be considered for your team!! I've run one relay and I loved it! Ragnar is something I really really want to do!

  15. Sounds like fun, but I wonder how difficult that would make logistics. It's already enough work to figure out gear, legs, etc.


I used to publish ALL comments (even the mean ones) but I recently chose not to publish those. I always welcome constructive comments/criticism, but there is no need for unnecessary rudeness/hate. But please--I love reading what you have to say! (This comment form is super finicky, so I apologize if you're unable to comment)

Featured Posts

Blog Archive