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Mo Cowbell Marathon

The Mo Cowbell half marathon replaced the Lewis and Clark marathon back in 2011. I ran the last Lewis and Clark half marathon and then the first Cowbell marathon. Four years ago the full marathon was added as an option. That year I had plantar fascia release on my right foot and the next year on my left. The third year it was two weeks before my fifty kilometer race so it was out once again. I decided I was running it in 2017 no matter what. I had originally planned to run the fifty in April but due to the headache from Hell I had to postpone it until August. This meant I had six weeks between races.

I had decided to do the ultimate reset and took three weeks off from exercise. I had a hard time having enough energy to walk much less consider running. And the next three weeks I just kind of ran but not super hard. I have done the half marathon three times so I remembered the course well. The second half was much tougher. I thought it was an out and back on the Katy trail but it wasn’t exactly. We somehow hooked up to a connector trail or something and I ran past one of the cake locations that Allyson and I only found by seeing the bridge in the picture and driving to it. It was close to the Family Arena. I felt great until mile 15 and then not so much. The same thing happened during the fifty mile. By mile twenty I was pretty sick of running. I only got through it by reminding myself I only had six more miles instead of thirty.

Around mile sixteen I started receiving texts from Emily. She was at urgent care with a massive kidney infection. They gave her three shots, one was an antibiotic, one was anti-nausea and the other an anti-inflammatory. They also checked her for strep and felt she most likely had viral strep and put her on an oral antibiotic as well. They were considering sending her to the ER. I think I finished the marathon about the time they decided to send her home and told her to come back the next day for another antibiotic shot.

I could blame my time on texting while running but it’s really because all summer I did not train for speed at all. I trained for endurance to make it through the fifty without dropping dead. I also didn’t want to push it too hard and injure myself and not be able to run the fifty. So this winter I plan to work on running a lot more and walking a lot less. I don’t plan to be super fast or win a race but I would like to beat my very first marathon time which was 5:25:00. We shall see if I can actually not have something else happen to make me start all over with running for the fourth or fifth time.

 

Mole Moral~ The faster I run, the sooner I’m done!

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In it to finish it

The past week has been brutal in relation to training for this fifty mile race. The three biggest factors are heat, humidity and distance. As I am now six weeks from race day the long runs on the weekends are getting longer and longer. For example the past two Saturdays have been twenty-six miles, (you know a marathon no big deal) and Sunday was ten miles. Last Saturday I woke up at five-thirty and on the road by six. I did not even think to check the temperature or the humidity. Around mile ten a little bit of intestinal cramping started in and by mile twelve nausea hit as well. Right before the turn around at mile thirteen I realized I could not safely finish the run. So I called Brian and asked him to come get me. He finally got to rescue his damsel in distress. I felt horrible the rest of the day and discovered the humidity was well in the eighties. On Sunday I took one look at the weather and said forget it and went to the Arnold Recreation Center to run. I decided I would rather run in circles for two and a half hours than feel like I did the day before.

This Saturday I got up at five thirty and the humidity was at eight five percent so I did what any normal crazy person would do, I got in my car and drove to the rec center. I then proceeded to run the first twelve and a half miles around Arnold and the last thirteen and a half in circles inside. I don’t think I could have safely ran the entire twenty-six miles outside yesterday either. This morning I got up at five thirty and ran ten outside while it was still “cool”.

I have now ran twice with the camelback. The first run was a true mole disaster. I was up at the crack of dawn on fourth of July for a ten-mile run. No matter how hard I sucked or bit on the mouthpiece I could not get any fluid to come out. I knew it was going to be hotter than blazes and I needed to get on the road so I kept the camel back on and bought a drink at the five-mile mark like always. In the past I tried the running belt with the four water bottles and couldn’t stand it. It would twist and turn while I was running and annoyed me to the point, I took it off during a long run and picked it up on my way back. The camelback was awesome. It didn’t move and it wasn’t annoying. Plus it has a pocket in the back where I can put stuff like gels, phone charger, chapstick, you name it. Although it was awesome running with it, I still had the I can’t drink out of it issue. So I get home and watch you tube videos and I still cannot get anything to suck up the straw. So I text my buddy Liz and she says maybe I have a defective mouthpiece. The next day I finally figured out what I was doing wrong and when I told her she said only you.

So running in this kind of weather has made my pace horrible, to the point I am paranoid I won’t even meet my own personal goal for the run. I have to constantly repeat you are in this to finish it, not in it to win it. I remind myself if it takes fourteen hours, it takes fourteen hours (my goal is under twelve). That regardless of time, I only know one other person who has done fifty miles. Time really is irrelevant. I will get the finisher belt buckle no matter what the time I finish, as long as it is under sixteen hours and I don’t drop dead. In it to finish it, in it to finish it.

 

Mole Moral~ When drinking from a camelback, always bite on the end closest to your mouth and farthest from where the straw starts.

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How I ended up with purple toes

All good stories start at the beginning and this one starts back in January of 2005. Mercy had just ended their nurses strike and I was waiting to return to work after being off for six weeks. My friend Laura asked me if I wanted to sign up with Team in training to do a half marathon. One could walk, run or a combination of run/walk. I figured I needed something to keep me busy and to keep me from running my mouth at work so I agreed. She would end up becoming pregnant and so sick she had to drop out and I went on to do the thing by myself. And now we fast forward to eleven years later…

Laura asked me if I wanted to do a half marathon in Branson. I agreed if she promised to not become pregnant again. She assured me she was more than finished with that phase of her life and we both signed up. By this time I had already signed up for two other halves and a full marathon so what is one more. She and her husband have a place at table rock lake so we could stay there. I was supposed to work Friday evening until seven so we ended up leaving Saturday morning around nine. It took us about five hours to get down there and we went straight to pick up our packet. After that Laura said let’s go to the outlet mall. She knows I am not a big shopper but I was like this sounds like a good idea. And so we went and I bought quite a bit of stuff. I found myself a really cool pair of orange under armour running pants which I ended up wearing to the race. We finally made it back to her place around seven where we rested for a short time and then went and had dinner with her husbands parents. They were really nice and reminded me of my own in-laws. I told Laura she really had a great set of in-laws and she agreed. We finally got in for the night around ten and I didn’t fall asleep until eleven thirty.

The next day we were up at six thirty as the race started at seven forty-five. I did not get my pre race coffee and then my phone went dark and I couldn’t get it to work. So for this race it didn’t rain but I ended up with no music and no idea what kind of pace I was at. Oh and let me also throw in I had changed my diet to low carb and high fat two weeks ago and am not anywhere close to being able to do thirteen miles on no sugar. But I started out carrying a package of sports beans in case I was dying anytime after mile six. By mile three I had some Gatorade at the water stop and I did end up eating my sports beans. The race had an insane amount of hills, so much so that my Fitbit logged ninety-eight flights of steps. So we finish that and do even more shopping. We walked another five miles after the race. We stopped in some shoe store so she could look at Birkenstocks. I started eyeing up a couple of shoes and this super nice salesman had me try on Chaco’s. I gave him the song and dance about how I couldn’t tolerate anything between my toes and have never been able to tolerate flip-flops. So first he had me put on the style without the toe stabilizer and the feel was amazing. I have never felt that kind of arch support since the original sketcher go run shoe. Although these were even better. So he then has me put on a shoe with a toe and he was right, it didn’t bother me at all. So I walk out of that store with a pair of sandals that I plan to wear all summer. Next we hit up the candy store and I’m so glucose deprived that I go insane and buy about three pounds of candy with plans to have a few pieces and pawn the rest off on my kids. After the spending spree we go back to her place to shower and get ready to leave. On the way out, I decide I’m in a sugar coma anyway I’m drinking a diet Dr. Pepper. By this time Laura starts to feel bad and I said I’m a big kid and I could have not bought anything and not eaten candy and drank soda so don’t worry.

We got back in town around nine-thirty and before I go to bed I decide I must have my toes done so that I can wear these new fancy sandals. Yesterday I could barely get out of bed, so today I drug Emily to the nail place.

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I am sure most of you are shocked that I didn’t pick orange but I wanted them to match the new sandals. They had pink and purple in them and Emily found this fantastic purple color so I stole it from her. And my shoes can also be used for hiking. They have a lifetime guarantee and can be resoled every five years. This would be a Brian Moehlmann dream come true since he thinks my running shoes should last forever. I only wish I could run in them because the arch support is fantastic and much better than my seven hundred-dollar custom orthotics.

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What started out as a run that only cost to entered it, turned into a huge shopping spree, a candy binge, a soda binge, new shoes, new toes, sore legs and a great time. I did realize that although I still think I’m twenty in my head, my body says oh no you are not and two days later, I’m still not fully recovered!

Mole moral~If Laura asks you to do a race with her, work a few extra shifts and get plenty of sleep the week before. And for crying out loud do not decide to go low carb two weeks prior!

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Once again, the word never bites me!

It was exactly 11 years ago today that I did my very first half marathon. At the end of January that year the nurses strike was coming to an end and my friend Laura asked me if I wanted to sign up with her and do it through Team in Training. We had to agree to raise fifteen hundred dollars for leukemia and we were given a coach, training plans, and group long runs. I had never ran a day in my life and was smoking at the time so my goal was to walk the entire thing. I did a lot of my training at Seckman High School track. This was before the days of iPods and iPhones so I would walk with a portable CD player. Often the kids would be out for walking class gym but there never was much fast walking going on. My friend soon became pregnant and had to drop out because of morning sickness. I however stayed in and did my very first race all by myself and smoked a cigarette before and after the race. I will always remember my sisters best friend Laura showing up at the end and taking my picture. That meant more to me than she ever knew.

It would be another four years before I would do another race. By this time I had quit smoking, so when my coworker Erin (who is now my boss) asked Jen and I if we wanted to do the Lewis and Clark half marathon I said sure. Erin ended up not being able to do it because she was heavily involved with computer charting go live and couldn’t train. Jen and I however completed that one together. Erin was able to do the Go run with us the following spring. After this my addiction was in full swing.

The following year I did the Go relay with the girls from work. I ran a section of Forest Park and said I would never do a full. This year they changed the course and said it was flatter. I originally planned to run Christie Clinic at the end of April but that is the same weekend Emily receives her white coat for physical therapy school. I liken it to the old days of when a nurse received her nursing cap. About three weeks ago I decided I would do the full today since it was the eleventh year anniversary of my first half marathon and only with thirteen weeks of official training.

The run started out great. I walked a lot the first thirteen miles so I wouldn’t blow out my legs and drop dead at mile twenty-two. My longest run was twenty-two miles and this made me nervous. It poured rain around mile eighteen till mile twenty. At mile twenty I ran into Rich Simpson. He was the one who blew the lid off of the corruption in the Fox School District as well as had horrible things posted on Topix about him by the former superintendent. His lawsuit over that was recently settled. He’s not allowed to discuss but I did tell him no amount of money could compensate for what was said but at least he had acknowledgement. We finished the marathon together. Somewhere between mile twenty-two and twenty-three my left quad started locking up and his calf was a mess. We managed to gimp across the finish line. One other fun fact, I had a huge crush on him in high school.

At the end of this torture I said I have no intentions of ever doing the Go full again. I know better than to say I’m NEVER doing it again because then next year I’d be right back running if. I now have three full marathons in the book. If I could only get my brain to agree that’s plenty.

 

Mole moral~ If anyone would have told me I would run the last six miles of a marathon with Rich, I would have laughed my head off and ask them what drugs they were on. It’s funny how life turns out!