Foto Friday

Courtesy I <3 to Run.

That said...this weekend's Half will have a no. 1 limitation set for moi...the weather. Too freaking hot. Here goes nothing!


Three Things Thursday - Happy Things Edition

1. Runner's high: Fall weather (well...it's still way too hot, but the days are already getting shorter...). An early morning trail run. Me and the dogs were the only ones out there. Seeing the world wake up. Enough said. :)

2. The Plan: Happy things: receiving an email from a blog buddy that says: 'Would you like to run the Trans Rockies Run together?'. Uhm, heck yeah!!!!!!!! :) Receiving that email is a true gift! :)

3. Gear: They now make my favorite Salomon compression tights in...Blue! Bright blue! Woo-Hoo! :) Curious? Check out this link for some extra info on the Salomon Exo tights! :)


Wordless Wednesday - About this Fall weather

Hmmm...I can pretty much forget about any PR plans for the planned Half this weekend...that temp is in Celsius. Too hot to race in for this girl. Bye bye PR Half, hello Marathon Pace slog...


Why Haile is still my hero

[Warning: I'm a huge Haile fan...huge! I basically stalk the guy...so...if you're not a fan...you might not want to read this post. ;)]

Let's be honest here. Last Sunday, Haile Gebrselassie didn't have the best of days. Not even close.

Berlin Marathon 2011. Fast course. World record course. 2:03:59 course. The 2011 Berlin Marathon was Haile's fifth Berlin Marathon. He'd never crossed that Berlin finish line anything but first. This was number 5. Lucky number 5.

Well, not so much...

Berlin had some perfect marathon weather last Sunday. At least, for the elite runners, who'd finish before the heat would kick in. Sunny.

Even watching the Berlin Marathon on tv, you could feel the 'buzz'. The excitement. The 'this could be WR day'. The Race Director had even hired six (yes, six!) pacers to pace Haile and Makau to a 62 minute half. Taking into account the probability of a negative split, this would mean a new WR. Makau had told the press he was there as a student. To learn from Haile. Oh yeah, everything was set for Haile to work his magic one more time!

We all know what happened next. The lead pack crossed the half way mark with some seconds to spare. 'New Marathon WR' was buzzing through the Berlin streets.

And then the 27K mark came. Haile stepped off the course. Out of the blue. He seemed to have GI / breathing issues. 'Okay, this is NYC 2010 all over again. Effing Ef!'. Then the small-boned Ethiopian did the unimaginable. He stepped back on the course again. After 1 or 2 minutes (it felt like a couple of hours to me...). At that point he must have known that any hopes on winning the race and/or setting a new WR were out the window. But still...he continued. And that's one of the reasons why this guy is still my hero. A true athlete. A man that's doing this because he loves the distance (and - let's be honest here - because he's good at it...and makes a living out of it... ;)).

In the meantime, Makau was cruising his way to a 2:03:38 marathon. A new WR. But Makau jumping his way to the finish line isn't the 'Berlin 2011' image I'll remember. The image that I will remember is the one of Haile clearly struggling at the 35K mark...with one of the pacers next to him. The pacers that were hired to work their magic till the 30-ish K mark. The pacer that decided to stick with Haile. To say that Haile has earned some respect among his 'fellow runners' would be an understatement.

That image is what symbolizes the magic of Haile to me. And yes, I am convinced that he will fight his way to London 2012. And I'll cheer him on while he's working that Haile magic. :)


Three Things Thursday - the 'Fail' edition

1. Major fail: Still beyond angry about the whole IAAF thing I wrote about yesterday. One more reason to cheer Paula on in Berlin this weekend! Check out yesterday's post on the IAAF mess here. Fail!

2. Stupid fail: I'm easing myself into this minimalist running thing. 3 days a week in minimalist-ish shoes, 1 day a week in light-weight trail running shoes, and 1 or 2 days a week in the more 'old-fashioned' kind of running shoes. I find the minimalist style more comfortable, so I skipped the other options this week. Result: angry calves. Fail!

3. Food fail: Eating chili beans, corn and chili cheese wrapped in a burrito for dinner...pre run. Enough said. Fail!

What's your 'FAIL!' of the week?


Wordless Wednesday - Are they out of their freaking minds?!

What the heck is going on in the heads of those IAAF guys/chicks? This is beyond me. Check out the full article here for some background info!


Race photos 101 - How (not) to rock the 'wet look'

Photos taken at last Sunday's 10 miler (Dam tot Damloop). How to work that silly face and mess up race photos in the rain. A short 'how to' guide:

Throw a heel strike in there once in a while. Just because you can.

Whenever the weather forecast says 'a heck of a lot of rain' on race day, wear white. Pair it with a bright colored sports bra. Be prepared for weird looks, though.

Do not close your mouth. This will make you look like a true intellectual.

Practice on looking like you're doing the bunny hop. Just ask your local kiddy day care for course dates.


Apparently it's all in my head - The 'race pace' post

Confession: I used to be (no longer 'am') a strong believer that I could not run faster than 12K/hour (8 minute miles) on distances longer than 8K. This was something I truly did believe. Breaking 50 minutes at a 10K was something that seemed impossible to me. Then again, I hardly do any speedwork. With this ultra thing, I'm trying to focus on mileage instead of speed. So...how could I expect to ever break 50 minutes in a 10K?

Do you have an 'I can't run faster than that' pace?

I am actually trying to make a point here. Promise. ;)

I'd registered for the charity team of Hulphond Nederland at yesterday's Dam tot Damloop 10 miles in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Imagine 40K runners on one course. And the slower runners blocking the road instead of staying on the right side of the road (duh...common race etiquette!). But...on the plus side: the on-course support is amazing! :)

So, there I was: yesterday morning. At the start line of the Dam tot Damloop 10 miler. Goal?

Okay-ish: sub 1-30 - long run pace.

Okay: sub 1:26 - marathon pace.

Woohoo good: 1:23:20 or faster - new PR.

Absofreakinglutely amazing - not going to happen: 1:20.

The course was crowded. The weather was...interesting (rain rain rain like you've never seen it before! Seriously, believe me on this one...I'm Dutch...I know rain!). Due to the rain I couldn't really look at my watch: it was raining to a point where I figured my Garmin would be dead if I didn't cover it with my arm sleeves. I looked at my watch when I passed the 10K-mark, and at the finish line. Tried to hold a 'this feels comfortable, but not like I'm pushing it - do not feel the need to puke' pace.

Finish time: 1:18:06.

What the bleep!

Apparently that 'can't run faster than' pace really is in my head. Well, at least yesterday it was. But I'm not complaining. ;)

(And yes, I do realize that I'm nowhere near speedy and still slow, but I'm happy with this finish time. Little old slowpoke me. :))


Three Tiny Things Thursday

1. No Golden Showers?: The registration cards for the NYC Marathon are up on your NYRR profile-page. Last year I had the Green start, which means your on the lower deck of the Verrazano Narrows Bridge. I'd heard stories about Golden Showers, so was kind of worried about that, but it turned out there weren't any. Plus, it was actually quite peacefulon the lower deck. However...all these classic photos of the NYC marathon start are made on the upper deck, so...I would have liked to be up there. But guess what? This year my registration card says orange start...meaning: upper deck. :) Yay! :)

2. Work: I've not had the best week ever. That's all.

3. No!: Just got home from my Thursday evening run. Was out there at 7:15 PM, and in again at 8:23 PM, and it was already dark out! What the bleep! It feels weird running in shorts and wearing a blinking light at the same time. Any day now it will be too cold to run in shorts...Yeugh! ;)


Wordless Wednesday

This song kept coming up on my playlist during the Swiss Alpine ultra. Funny how the 'right' song can come up at the right moment. :) Just listen to it...the lyrics say it all. :) Power song to add to your long run/marathon/ultra playlist! :)


Fastinista Schmastinista

Fas.ti.nis.ta woman who likes to look stylish when she runs.

Ahhh....that would make me a fastinista, right? Well...maybe in the US it would, but the Dutch idea of a Fastinista seems to be slightly different.

Recently a fellow runner explained to me what the Dutch idea of a fastinista is. Then another one gave me the exact same criteria. As did the next one, etcetera. It comes down to this:

- woman who likes to look stylish when she runs...and:

- has at least two kids;

- runs 15 miles a week...at most;

- sticks to ladies only races;

- won't race any distance longer than 10K;

- sticks to road running;

- likes her make-up to be perfect throughout the race;

- won't even think of running up and down a mountain.

Okay...I guess I won't have to make you guess about my answer on this one. There was some swearing involved. Alright...a lot of swearing. These guys/girls are obviously morrons. Plus, I don't really care whether or not I qualify as a fastinista under these 'Dutch criteria'. But still...it made me wonder...

Bad.ass.ti.nis.ta woman who likes to look stylish when she runs - preferably up and down a mountain, while kicking ass. Picks trail running over road running any day of the week. Does not mind getting dirty. She does not mind at all.

So..there you have it: I'm a self-proclaimed Badasstinista. Boohaa! And in case you were wondering...this is what a badasstinista looks like. :)

Tutu much? Neaaaaaaahhh...
Dumdadumdum...try not to feel the freezing temps...

Wendy managed to qualify for the NYC Marathon without even trying to do so. Qualified. Yep. :)


Janina is a finisher of the Trans Alpine Run, as is Ricarda. Did I mention yet that Ricarda did the Ultra Trail du Mont-Blanc 100+-miler as a warm/up for the Trans Alpine Run? :)

This IronLady is speedy...you'd better believe it. ;)

Now if only I could get Ron to work with me on some kick-ass shirts for our 'movement'. ;)

Photo courtesy of Punk Rock Racing


Everything for charity

And when I say 'everything', I mean 'everything'. :)
Lordie and I, and mom and Diddy, were in a charity race last Saturday. The girls that had organized the race were raising money for 'Hulphond Nederland' (partner of Assistance Dogs International). So, since both Lordie and Diddy are service dogs (well, Lordie didn't pass the exam and is technically a pet ;)), but Diddy 'works' as my mom's seizure alert dog), we were running with Lordie and Diddy. Fun! Money raised: over 8,200 Euro! Amazing! :)

So, where's the 'everything for charity' part? Well...here it is:

Yep, that's a tutu. :) Lordie is rocking that pink bow!

This was a fun run (5K) for charity. I did not plan on racing, and ended up pausing quite a few times, because Lordie was thirsty. It was a hot and humid day and way too hot for Lordie to be running...

Lordie, 1K in, right before he decided he was entitled a drink...every 800 meters...

Home stretch. It was way too hot for Lordie. Had to stop numerous times to let Lordie drink some water, made me slow down a lot (I wasn't racing to begin with), but still came in 5th overall in 25-ish minutes. Go figure. ;)

Service dogs at the finish line. :) The white one is still a puppy. ;)

So, I guess we could say the tutu wasn't so bad after all (no chafing!). I might just wear it again for another charity race. ;)


Foto Friday - I'm classy like that...

How to get your body temp down post run in awful heat and 1000% humidity - Silly Girl Running style. Yep, the garden hose. I'm classy like that...


Three Things Thursday

1. Life gets in the way: sometimes life gets in the way of blogging. Busy days at work, lots to do at home = no time to blog. Well...there's time to post a photo and name it a 'wordless' post, but how many of those could you handle? ;)

2. Rain:

Dear weather gods,

Could you please stop this endless rain? It's early September and I'm already wearing a rain jacket. Not cool. That's all.


Silly Girl Running

3. Great customer service: Once in a while you find a company with great customer service. Well, not just great...amazing customer service. One of these companies is Gear for Girls. They shipped me a different item than I'd ordered. After I'd emailed them about it they did not only ship me the correct item in a split second, but also added an extra tee as a bonus. A-ma-zing!


How to mess up race photos 101 - how to work the 'Shoot Me' pose

How to make sure to look nothing like a serious runner in race photos. A short 'how to' guide:

At the start line:

Creating this look is actually quite easy. Just make sure to make your stretching routine as random as possible.

Never ever face the camera face forward. Stick your ass into it.

Stare like you mean it.

At the finish line:
Eyes closed + bunny teeth = guaranteed goofy look.

Signature pose. Easy like that. ;)


August Recap/Stats

September already? Don't even try to get me started on this one... ;)

Miles / Km planned / ran: 130 miles / 208 km planned 155.9 miles / 249.4 km ran - easy month post Swiss Alpine ultra. :)

Rest days planned / taken: 14/10

Highest mileage / km week: 22/8 - 28/8 : 52 miles / 83 km

Long runs planned / ran: 3 / 3

Pace / speed work outs planned / ran: 6 / 6 - easy on the legs

Cross training work outs planned / done: 8 / 7

Donuts burned: 150-ish...

Current shame-inducing guilty pleasure: Ben & Jerry's Coconut and Chocolate ice cream. :)

Current obsession: Cleaning out my running gear closet.

Current drink: Still fennel tea, water and diet coke. And Gatorade. Bo-ring.

Current song: William (is that how you spell it?) - I like to move it

Current need: No lottery for the www.ultratrailmb CCC race. Enough said...

Current triumph: Still riding high on that 'finished my first ultra' wave. ;)

Current bane of my existence: Every itch of pain in the legs makes me have a 'SF' freak-out! :(

Current blessings: Being able to run today. Yep, I still consider it a gift. :)

Current excitement: Fall! :)


Three Things Thursday

1. I like me some deals: The website Gear for Girls has some amazing deals and discounts on Salomon, The North Face and Patagonia running gear (and ski / winter gear), shoes and packs at the moment. If you're looking for some high quality running gear for Fall/Winter (or Summer!) make sure to check it out! :)

2. Fallalalalala: On tonight's run - hit the trails with the dogs again - I could smell 'the last days of Summer'. Love when it smells like 'still warm, but yet already some crisp air'. Who needs Chanel no 5? ;) That's all. ;)

3. On a more serious note: I got a retweet on Twitter today about a blog post from a fellow blogger/runner and that blog post was pretty obvious on her being suicidal. Actually, while reading her blog, she had been having suicidal thoughts for quite some time now. I was shocked. Honestly, instantly this 'I have to do something' feeling came over me. But it's a blog, and you don't know the person, so there's really not a lot you can do. Except for leaving a comment. How would you handle this?