074 Reach the Beach: 26:09 (hours)

The Reach the Beach relay is a 200 Mile (36 leg) race across the state of Massachusetts. Each team is comprised of up to 12 people who run constantly until you ‘reach the beach’ 200 miles later. You don’t sleep, you just run, eat, and use the bathroom. This race is particularly monumental to me because last year on the day I was supposed to leave for it, I received a call telling me my father was dying and that I needed to get to him immediately to say goodbye. Instead of racing, I was a part of the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life. They say time heals all, and while that may be true I have learned (in this last year) that our time is limited, so you must embrace every moment of every day. I could think of nothing more fitting then to do what I love most right now, to run all night. Our super start team, Team Honey Badger, left Thursday afternoon in a 2 van caraVAN (see what I did there? Clever right?) towards New Haven. Team Roll Call Go! Alamar, Maura, Elyssa, Neal, Allen, Abbe, Robin, Patricio, and me! After spending a few hours in rush hour we finally parked in New Haven, aka Neal’s turf. He went to grad school here and has a pulse on the scene. What scene are we talking about exactly… Pizza! “I’m going to take you to the best pizza restaurant ever.” To which I replied in my snotty New York voice, “Um, I rarely eat pizza outside of NYC.” If there were a pizza scale, lets say it was 1 to 10 (10 being supreme-o) Pizza Moderna was an 11. We had a fried clam pizza along with the Italian bomb and the veggie bomb. I think I had like 3 huge slices! We had a few pitchers of beer which Maura entertained us with stories of her doing hard time. I’ve known Maura for awhile so having a convict on my team didn’t really bother me. Back on the road we arrived at the start (Fitchburg, MA… home of the corn dog) by 11PM. RACE DAY(s) Abbe, Elyssa, Robin and I got up early and went to the local grocer to get supplies. “Hmmmmm.” you ask. “What does on need on a 200 mile race across a U.S. State?” We picked up bananas, apples, water, Gatorade, Peanut M&Ms, granola... read more

New York I Love You

I am going to start doing a series of posts on my experiences here in New York City and this is numero one. Dig it. — One of the things that makes New York great is the ability to do anything. Do you like to sew? There are classes and talks on sewing. Maybe you like to collect butterflies. Yes, there is a butterfly collector meet-up. When my friend Elizabeth asked if I wanted to go see Chrissie Wellington speak this week I thought, “Oh man, Triathlon Nerd Meet-up.” “Hell yes I want to go!” For those of you who have no idea who Chrissie Wellington is, I’m going to slap you. Seriously though, the gal won the Ironman World Championships 4 times. What would I wear? A running outfit? Perhaps a Rev 3 visor? My wetsuit minus the goggles and pee? (people were actually wearing these things by the way.) I get out of work at 5 and the event started at 7… what to do, what to do? Abbe invited me to be her guest at a wine tasting downtown that started at 5:30. Perfect! I arrived at the very dark and sleek venue and met some of her colleagues before getting started on my Vouvray wine experience. We started with the drier wines, moving down the spectrum to some sweeter ones One of them literally tasted like you were biting into a crisp green apple. Amazing. All of this was happening while we were being served some spectacular hors d’oeuvres. My favorite were the lamb tacos, which were no taco at all mind you. It was more like spicy lamb wrapped in puff pastry heaven. At 6:30 I left the gals and headed uptown to see Chrissie. I blasted north on the Subway, arriving promptly at 7. Timing is everything. As I was entering I saw my friend Josh! Josh is a speedy runner (Homeslice just ran a 2:38 in the Dirty Jersey Marathon coming in 3rd overall) who runs for the Front Runners team. Shorty after that I found Elizabeth and we took our seats. John Korff, the man who’s company puts on the NYC Tri and Ironman NY was our MC. Chrissie was really fun to listen to. She gave a lot of great pieces of advice, most of which I have heard over the years from others, including my Coach. What was so captivating about her though was how she used Ironman as... read more

073 The Kentucky Derby Marathon – 2:54:04

It’s funny how plans can change. Sometimes maybe it’s better to not even have a plan, or a goal for that matter. Boston was supposed to be my PR marathon and 2 weeks later, The Kentucky Derby Marathon was to be a fun run if you will. That all changed when Boston, or Mother Nature, kicked my ass. I was so bummed and worn out that I wasn’t even into running Kentucky, just come and cheer on Abbe and Katie. Arriving in Louisville Thursday night we immediately went to ‘Joe’s Old as Dirt’ to meet Katie, Dr. Jordan, her brother Chris and parents Clay and Linda. They were already into some beers so we naturally followed. We stayed at Katie and Dr. J’s that night and in the morning went on a ‘shake out run.’ Katie showed us around her town, it was really pretty and smelled so fresh, especially compared to NYC. The weather report said we were going to have great temperatures (55-65 degrees) but thunderstorms in the morning. Not good. After our run we headed to the Expo to get our bibs. We then went to BBC Brewery to have a hearty lunch. Abbe’s folks Linda and Dave arrived and joined the party. I tried to eat smart and had a rice and bean burrito and an ESB. So far so good… Pre-race dinner was at this really cool place called Bello Rosso. It looked like someone’s house. Well, actually it was a house, it just looked like a family still lived there with tables sprinkled throughout. Way artsy. I had the lasagna. I normally don’t get lasagna out because I make a pretty serious home made lasagna which is my Mom’s recipe which in turn is our family friend Debbie’s (she Italian) recipe. What I’m trying to say is that Debbie’s recipe kicks ass so why risk eating a lower grade lasagna. I chose to because our waiter said it was good. It showed up and was roughly 3 servings worth of lasagna. Was it good? Yes. Would it feed an entire starving family? True. I ate maybe 1/3rd of it before feeling like I was going to give birth to a lasagna baby. We will come back to this topic in the Race Day¬† section of our story. The weather report had also been updated constantly all day and it now looked like 20% chance of thunderstorms. That means no rain in my book.... read more