Wordless Wednesday

Showing some Patagonia Love - that Nine Trails Skirt has pure brilliance written all over it. Great material and fit!


Paris Marathon Pics

Say hello to 'T-Rex' running form...

What the bleep am I doing with my left hand. I'm working on it...

Say hello to 'Crazy Nails'.

Say hello to 'Hello, Finish Line'. Okay, this one isn't even that awful.


Paris Marathon Recap

So, I ran another marathon. Last Sunday. Six days after the Utrecht Marathon. Three weeks after the Eco-Trail de Paris 50 miler. Yep, that plan had a ring to it. Brilliant.

Why? Does 'I love Paris, France' sound plausible? Because I do love Paris. As for the Paris Marathon - they have picked a great course. It really is sight seeing Paris in 26.2 miles. The course takes you to a lot of the high lights. And the crowds are amazing. In my humble opinion, Paris Marathon spectators beat NYCM spectators. They are just that amazing. :)

The same goes for the Paris Marathon expo. Best. Expo. Ever. Not only are my favorite brands featured at the expo, but they also have lots and lots of amazing marathons and trail races trying to get your attention. Is it legal to have that much fun at an expo?

As for the race. Well, six days after the Utrecht Marathon with its crazy headwinds, I was going for an easy easy pace long run. No pressure there. I was planning on taking in the sights and on enjoying the on course support / dance groups. 

Good thing I didn't plan on trying to hold a 'normal' pace. Since my legs hopped into 'mile 22 into a marathon sore' mode the minute I crossed that start line. Brilliant. Needless to say I was freaking out during the first 10 miles of the race. I figured, if they feel like this at the start line, how will they feel at mile 20. Yup. 

At mile 10 I ran side by side with a group of guys carrying/pushing a wheelchair with a little girl in it. How freaking amazing is that? And that's when I stopped worrying about my legs. I was running, right? Then what the hell was I complaining about? 

So, I hobbled on. Taking in the course and the people cheering on the runners. When I spotted Mom and her dog Diddy at mile 18-ish - and refilled my hand held - I figured I was so close to the finish line, I'd better keep going. So, I did. And I loved every minute of it. Lucky for me, it turned out the legs turned into sore mode at the start line, but didn't hop into 'sore sore sore mode' - they stayed at the same level of discomfort. Uh-huh. :) Go figure!

Since I was running at long run pace-ish my bladder was working full speed. Enter watering the bushes in the last couple of miles of the race. Plus, I was having fun. Enter dancing with the cheerleaders at mile 25 / 40K. :) 

Running at long run pace-ish left some energy to sprint to the finish line. And took me to the finish line in 3:57:28 - for a fun run and six days after the Utrecht Marathon, I was pleased with that. The medal is freaking cool (shaped like the finisher shirt - how cool is that), and the finisher shirt is a bright yellow color and very comfy. That combined with a great weekend in the city of lights with my mom - what else could this girl wish for? :) 

Oh, and the race pics are coming asap! :)


Another 'Why we keep buying Lululemon' piece

Just stumbled upon this article on businessinsider.com. Yet another 'Lululemon' piece.

I quote:

"Impressing men? That's easy,'' she says. "But impressing their friends in the studio is a lot harder."

You can read the full article here.

Is that why we keep buying Lululemon? I - for one- do not own a single piece of Lululemon gear. Too hard to get your hands on in Europe. And I can't believe this is the reason for Lululemon's success. Silly me for thinking their gear must be very comfy?


Confession time again

After running a 50 miler 2 1/2 weeks ago and a marathon 4 days ago (and I went out too fast on that one - since target pace was 4-ish hours), I have another planned marathon this Sunday. Long story short: my legs = no happy campers at the moment. Yep, I'm screwed. Big time.
The way I'm handling this? I squeezed my butt in a pair of compression pants. Have my hopes set on those pants squeezing the yuckiness out of my legs. Sounds like a plan, right?
Since the brilliant plan of squeezing the yuckiness out of them might not work, I'd gladly take any advice you can hand me. So, bring it on!


Utrecht Marathon recap

50 miler two weeks ago + another planned marathon in just a couple of days + shitty weather + strong headwinds + the most boring course you can think of = not a happy camper.
I must have cursed that course a zillion times. And those strong headwinds. For 36K of the total 42.2K. Seriously. What the heck was up with that?
To sum it up: I cursed a lot. I got bored to a point where jumping into the canal to go for a swim seemed like the fun way to go. I seriously considered taking a detour at 30K (19 miles) to finish those last miles/kms on trails. My legs felt that 50 miler 20K/12 miles in. Thank the running gods John was sweet enough to check in on his bike once every few miles. Again, not a happy camper. ;)
After the 36K / 23 mile point the course got better. More support. More people cheering us on. Enter moi being bored to a point where I kept looking for things to make fun of, and you can guess what happened. And yes I did boogie with John and Kees 39.5K / 25 miles into that marathon. :) I seriously messed up the chance of a decent finish time there. 3 hours, 49 minutes and 14 seconds after crossing the start line I knew why I prefer trails. Let's just leave it to that. ;) Slowpoke for life, baby! ;)
(Yep, I know I'm slow, but apparently that doesn't keep others from judging me: I was just told by some elite runners that I'm not a talented long distance runner, and that I'm setting a bad example for this sport. Ouch. That hurts.)
I'll let the pics do the talking. (Photo courtesy Bjorn Paree)
11K in.
39K in.
My thoughts on the course and the strong headwinds.
Finish line. Strong headwinds to sum up the day.
Finish line pic. Spot the rain?


Goofy or triple that?

So, here we go. I got a little confession to make.

That 50 miler 10 days ago? It got me hooked all over again. If I'd have it my way, I would do it all over again. Today. I want more. I'm screwed. My poor bod.

To make matters worse. I want it all. And preferably now. Not a great combo.

And I really want to give a 100 miler a try. The pain, the exhaustion, the suffering, the challenge. The vomiting, the hallucinating. I want. I want it all. And I want it bad.

See where I'm getting to?

I have some planned races for this year. One of them in particular scares the sh*t out of me. I'm registered. And training for it. But not ready to share that dream. Yet. :) Hint: it involves a heck of a lot of mountains, steep uphills, steep downhills and a 31 hour time-limit (due to highly technical trails and a 24,000 ft elevation gain). But it's not a 100 miler.

Next year (2013) I'd hope to be ready to give a 100 miler a shot. And I'd love it to be one in the good old US of A. I've been toying with the idea of Vermont 100.

But then there's the Goofy Challenge. And I love Disney. But I'm not making that trip from the Netherlands to the States twice in one year. Air fares are insane. Not to mention the fact that I don't have an unlimited supply of vacation time.

Registration for Goofy opens April 10th and I was told it's likely to sell out fast. So, I should make up my mind on this one as soon as possible.

And I suck big time at making up my mind. Lucky for me, that's where you guys come in. Please? So, help me out here and leave me your pick in the comment's section (or shoot me an email), will you? :)

Update: Air fares are insane in July (possible Vermont 100 idea). Just spotted the Virgil Crest 100 in NY in September - reasonable air fares. Still can't make up my mind, though...


Great initiative: Caballo Blanco Run

By now most of you have heard that Micah True is on the longest run. Sad news. I am wishing his loved ones strength in these most difficult of times.
A great initiative was born in the USA to run for Micah True this Friday. You can read about it here.
So, let's head out for a run this Friday - in honor and to celebrate the life of El Caballo Blanco, okay?