Most of the time I write to my blogs using software known as, “Blogjet.” It was developed by CleverBridge. It is WYSIWYG editor that allows you to insert simple audio files and pictures. This one is windows based.

On my iPad, I use an app called, Posts. It does everything Blogjet does except it does it from my iPad. I’m including this picture of a cat I’ve rescued called, Ralphie!

Unfortunately, this is not offered as an iPhone app.

(I just wrote this entry using, Posts…)

(more…)

The term, “Jump the shark,” comes from the television entertainment industry. In the television series, Happy Days, Fonzie drove his motorcycle and jumped a shark. It was a big event and was meant (I’m sure) to develop more interest in a waning series. A lot of people feel it actually spelled the end of the series. Out of that developed the term, “jumping the shark.”

I need to explain that the Rock and Roll running events include half and full marathons. These events need sponsors to help cover the costs. These sponsorships are two way streets. I look at it as a two way street, or a lot like advertising. The sponsor invests money, volunteers, or product and get to put their names in front of the competitors.

Rock and Roll (runrocknroll.competitor.com/) has jumped the shark as far as this running athlete is concerned. When a running athlete crosses the finish line of the event, they receive a finisher’s medal.

 Chicago 2013 RnR medal

(Credit for the picture goes to Stephen R. from Yelp.com)

The picture shows a finisher’s medal for the Rock and Roll Chicago 2013 half-marathon event. What is different? There are 2 sponsors on the medal.

In my humble opinion, there is no place on a finisher’s medal for the sponsors. The sponsors contribute to the overall operation of the event, but so do the finishing athletes. For an athlete to run the event, they pay to register. It is the time and devotion to training for the event that allows the athlete to complete it. In price alone, the registering fees more than pay for the medal. Had I run this event, I would have given the medal back.

I have written my disappointment to both listed sponsors.

I am pretty sure that Rock and Roll are actively researching how to charge spectators to cheer the competitors on.  Pretty sad.

My humble opinion is that we should boycott all Rock and Roll events.

 

I know. I can’t believe it either.

5:00 AM comes early for a runner/rider that works the afternoon shift. I never set an alarm anymore and I wake up in plenty of time. I think it is a hard-wired thing in me. I got up and started coffee. I was already packed and just needed to eat my oatmeal, drink 1 cup of coffee, load the bikes and the transition gear in the car and take off.  Simple.

It seems like no matter how you prepare, something takes time. I had a hard problem waking up and just tried to keep ticking the tasks off of the list. By the time the bikes were on the car, Tom was ready to load up, too. It wasn’t long after that we were headed out to do a Duathlon.

Tom is Tom Martin, a good friend of mine. He has swam/biked/run a triathlon, he has participated in 5 Duathlons. Yes. He is the one that talked me into this crazy multisport activity. He has placed first in his division in the past.

We arrived and parked at around 6:10 AM. The sun had just risen above the horizon. There were no clouds in the sky. We grabbed our bags and the bikes. We headed down to check-in and get our race packets. We found a rack with 2 spaces in it and put our bikes in it. We dropped our bags. We entered the start line / finish line staging area. The booths were on the East side. We stood in our respective lines. We got our bibs and our shirts. The line was already forming for the porta-potties.

I like the Barking Dog Duathlon. It is run by Racing Underground. They have a lot of experience and know what to do. That makes it easy for participants like me.

It was back to set up the numbers. 3 number bids. A small one for the front of the helmet, one for the cross bar of the bike, and one for the front of the shirt (I use a running belt to hold the run bib number –  also conveniently holds the iPhone).

Towels went out. Helmet and bike shoes went on the towel. The bike bag was set by the bike on the towel. Soon, we were ready to head back to the staging area and the race pre-race briefing. We would not return until after the first run. The transition area officially closed at around 6:50 AM so the chip readers could be turned on.

A transition area is used for change. It should only be used twice during the competition. Once between the first run and the bike ride. It is a time area. The first transition is to prepare for the ride. Off with the running shoes, on with the helmet (and buckle it on!), on with the biking shoes. Take the bike to the mount area then take off. The second transition is to transition back to running preparedness for the final run. Simple, right?

The briefing started. We heard how the course was layed out and how each segment would work. It was explained that the chip readers would start and stop from chip readers placed at the start/finish line, and the entrances/exits to and from the transition area. We also found out that the course had changed due to road construction in the state park.

A Duathlon is a multisport event. The Barking Dog Duathlon offers two venues in a long and a short course. The long course is a 5K run, a 30K, ride and finishes with another 5K run. The short course, or the Sprint, is a 2K run, an 18K ride, and finishes with a 5K run. Racing Underground offers age groups, Elite, Athena, Clydesdale, Fat tire, relay and tandem divisions. Both Tom and I decided to do the Sprint Du, so our start would be at 7:30 AM. We had a while to wait.

We watched many divisions start as we waited. It seemed like we had more than enough to get nervous about our start. Then, it was time. We entered the corral. The countdown went on, and then we were off.

As a group, we crossed the line and headed up the hill. It seemed to be all uphill as we ran toward that 1K turnaround on the out and back first run course. I was finding it hard to breathe. I was at the back of the pack. I turned around and head ed back. The downhill was easier. I was the last of our group as I entered the transition area. Geez, some of the women from the final corral start had already passed me. It was time to get busy.

I turned down the wrong aisle in the transition. I hopped over some gear to get to my bike. I put my helmet on and tightened the buckle. I stood as I got my left running shoe off and the bike shoe on. I untied and pulled the right shoe off and the bike shoe on. I pulled the speed laces for the left shoe and tightened them. I pulled on the speed laces of the right shoe. As I pulled, the lace broke. Oh, no! What will I do? The short answer is that I couldn’t do much without costing me more time. So, I grabbed the bike and headed toward the transition area exit. I tried to start my bike computer. I hit an incorrect button or two set it into some odd mode. I was going to do this run without it.  The judges gave me the go. I mounted the bike and started my ride.

Cherry Creek State Park has a large water reservoir in it. You would think that any place low enough to hold a major amount of water in it would be fairly flat and level. Not so. There are gentle rises and falls. There are also some fairly major climbs. Especially at the East entrance road. I’m not fond of the bike, but I am strong at it. The revised course had us riding about 9 miles.

I couldn’t catch Tom as he was so far ahead of me by the time I finished the run. We had ridden to the other side of the park and were past the East Entrance road when I finally caught up to him. I passed him. There were comments. I tried to get ahead, but he passed me. I saw a hill in our immediate future and knew that I had a chance. I waited until he slowed a touch, then I kicked it in and passed him again. He didn’t catch me again. He was so close, though.

I got off the bike at the dismount. My right foot was barely staying in the shoe. I moved to the rack without losing my shoe. I kicked it off and got in the running shoe. About that time is when Tom came in with his bike. I took off my helmet and placed it on the towel. I got my left running shoe on and tied them both. I looked at Tom and said, “Bye!!”

I exited the transition for my last run. What lead I had on Tom was minor and I knew I’d better beat feet to get as far ahead of him as I could.

On the first run, we went counter-clockwise. For the final run, the course went clockwise. We ran the first mile on the roadway on the right side.

I beat feet. I kept hoping that the 1 mile mark would come up soon. As I saw it, the longest 1 mile I think I’ve ever run, so did Tom. Soon after the 1 mile mark, the course turned to a trail.

Tom and I ran together past the water station and half-way up the first big hill. I slowed down but Tom kept his pace up. I followed him for the rest of the final run part.

The next mile seemed to go continually upward. It was steep and time consuming. Finally, I saw the last water station and we were back to a wide sidewalk. It was also downhill. The running got easier. I passed the 2 mile mark. Soon after that, I passed the 1K turnaround point of the first run. It was around the corner and down the hill. Soon I was passing the transition area. I picked up my speed. It was a turn to the right, then a turn to the left and I was in the chute. I picked up my speed again, threw my arms up, and crossed the finish line. The cowbell that I heard ringing was from Tom as he welcomed me across the line.

Barking Dog Du 05112013

This is the GPS track on the map for all three parts of the event.

I was tired (I think one is supposed to be at about this point). As I caught my breath again, we waited to watch the canned video of me crossing the line. We walked about checking things out. The meal was a submarine sandwich. Neither Tom or I wanted to partake. It wasn’t long before we talked about leaving; then we did.

After cleaning up, we went out for some Mexican food. As we ate, Racing Underground posted the results of the event. I realized then that I had won an award. I took 3rd place in my age group and I was 10 minutes ahead of the guy behind me.

It was a great event!

Tags:

Part of the fun for this event is the drive down and the drive back. Nothing like a road trip to raise the spirits and make the heart soar. I went to Lamar with my best friend, Tom.

I try to drive out and back a new way every time. It is getting more difficult, though.

On the way down, we found a ‘farm/ranch’ road that was literally several miles of road with nothing on it including towns.

We reached the town of Eads, Colorado. There was an area map at a rest area just East of town. We decided to go and see the site of the Sand Creek Massacre http://www.nps.gov/sand/index.htm.

This is a sad part of Colorado and United States history.  A 700–man force of Colorado Territory militia attacked an encampment of friendly Cheyenne and Arapaho encamped along a bend by the Sand Creek river.

Basically, it was a massacre. It has been claimed that as many as 163 people were killed.

It is a somber, and sacred, site to visit. After the rout, bodies were left where they fell. Some bodies were mutilated. The camp was gone through and things taken.

We did not stay there long. This site is one of the reasons that we must study history or we will be doomed to repeat it. Let’s not.

Lamar -

Lamar is the county seat of Prowers county. It is a small city of 8,800 people. The recreation department is active and sponsors many events for the residents. We participate in the Prairie Punisher. A Duathlon event held in April just about the time of my birthday. Both of us attended last year.

We came into town seeking food and shelter. The local Pizza Hut was our dinner venue. We both had an Italian sausage noodle dish with lots of salad.

We went to the Best Western Cow Palace to seek the shelter part. It was a disappointing experience. 20 minutes waiting, while being ignored. We walked out. Went a block South, where we were welcomed at the Days Inn. We had our shelter.

We drove around and found a sand storm. High winds came at us carrying a lot of dirt in them. You could watch as it approached, wonder at it as it passed us by, and then watch as it headed westward. Rainfall is in decline in that part of Colorado. It is evident.

The Prairie Punisher -

The next morning, I opened the window to a cold and grey sky. It was fairly cold, too. Weather reports had the cloud cover lifting, but around 9:00 AM. Our event was to start at 8:00 AM.

We got to the swimming pool at the event start. Both Tom and I were going to do the short course. The short course involved a 1.55 mile run, then a 7 mile bike ride, and ends with another 1.55 mile run. The pre-event briefing started a little after 8. The course and the rules were reviewed. Immediately after, the first run portion started. I ran back to the transition area to put my jacket away. The sun was starting to come out and I didn’t think I’d need it (I didn’t). While there I remembered that I double knotted my shoe laces. I removed 1 of the knots and headed back to the start line. As I ran to it, the director started the race. We were off!

I was no further then 50 feet when my right shoelace undid itself. I had to stop, tie the shoe, and watch as the rest of the pack got further and further away from me. I got myself ready and steadily started my run. I took the time to wave at cars as they saw us on the route.

The first transition was a slow one. I negotiated changing the running shoes for the bike shoes. I put my helmet on. I got the bike off the rack and put a water bottle on it. I walked the bike past the transition zone, got on it and took off. The water bottle fell right out of the rack. Bummer!

It seemed like the bike ride went uphill both ways. I know it didn’t but sometimes the body and the brain don’t always get along. Half of the bike ride was on the side of Highway 287 (the main drag in town). Everyone driving was nice and moved to the inside. I passed one rider, but got passed by 3 guys. They were good and earned that pass.

I got back to the transition area and walked the bike in. I switched shoes again, then took off on my second run. Somehow the transition seemed too quick or I had forgotten something. About halfway through my second run I realized I still had the bike helmet on. Oh well…

I ran the event this year in 1:02:26. That was 2 minutes and 6 seconds slower than last year. Tom concluded the event in 57 minutes this year. He was 5 minutes fast than I, but 4 minutes slower that his finish last year.

It was a great event with a great group of people! I really, really enjoy this event in Lamar.

Conclusion -

We wanted to shower after this physical exertion. When someone suggested singing Happy Birthday to me, I thought it may time to leave. Tom agreed and we headed back to the hotel. We requested a late check-out. We didn’t need it as we out in plenty of time.

It was my last event in the 50 to 59/55 to 59 year age group. Sunday was my my 60th birthday.

 

 

 

Tags:

I am a Runner.

I am a runner. I have run marathons. I have participated in large events. Why? Because I am a runner.

Running is easy. No experience is necessary. Running is the type of activity that can keep you fit. You don’t need anything to run. Just get up and run. The distance is up to you. What you decide to wear is up to you. You don’t need to be fast. You just need to be able to place one foot in front of the other in a manner so that you cover a distance faster than walking.

Running is also a group thing. It is also a sisterhood, a brotherhood, a fellowship of people with similar interests. Those interests? Anything involved with the activity of running.

I can go for a run at the park, on the street, on a trail; Someone else is there doing the same thing. You greet and then run together. It is a great thing to be a part of.

I will never qualify for the Boston Marathon. It truly is a prestigious event for the best of all runners. You have to qualify for it. Factors include age, a qualifying event pace, or as a charity runner. I’m not good at charities. It is difficult for me to ask others (mostly friends and fellow runners) for money. Even though it goes for a great cause, I just cannot do it. So, I don’t think I can ever run in the Boston Marathon.

Having said that, that doesn’t mean that I don’t have thoughts about someone or some organization that felt it was necessary to disrupt one of America’s very best, and certainly the Boston Athletic Association’s premier event.

Runners were hurt. Spectators were hurt. Bombs were placed in and around areas where both would congregate. Then they were detonated. This was an act of aggression toward a group of people that just want to prove something. For most of us, it is proving something to ourselves.

Let me say something about spectators. Nothing can get a runner excited about running quite like a spectator. They cheer, they ring bells, they clap, they whistle, they cheer you on. They are often the wife, the husband, the kids, the grandmother, the grandfather, the uncle, the aunt. They are the people that sit at home worrying about the runner as they go on training runs. They worry that their runner is nourished, hydrated, and in good spirits. They have the burden should something happen during training to go out and assist their runner. They are the support that every runner needs.

Others may have been curious people. Others may have been interested in taking up running. Some may have wanted to celebrate ‘Patriot’s Day’ in a traditional Boston way.

Why hurt the innocent? It makes no sense to me.

Now for the Personal Part…

Hurting the spectators makes it personal. Hurting a runner? Any runner? That’s personal, too.

I had to think about it after it happened. Will I run any more races? I can run and enjoy it, without competing. When I do compete, I have no chance to win, place or show. I can be just as comfortable running on my treadmill, running the streets of Englewood, running the local parks & trails.

A favorite way for me to vacation is to run a race with family and friends. I’ve run a Rock’n’Roll full marathon in Seattle, the Route 66 Half in Tulsa, I’ve run the Big Sur Half in Monterey, I’ve even run the Vegas Strip in Las Vegas in both a half and whole marathon! Do I want to give that up because of this? Even though (with my speed), I would not be in the path of danger; that does not mean that these events should stop for me or any runner.

I also thought about the bad guys.  At the time of this writing, they are just that. Anonymous individuals willing to take away the achievement of an endurance runner. A runner who has trained for months, each week with runs that get longer and longer. A runner that did speed work regularly to be able to meet his/her goal pace.

A runner learns to set goals. They also learn to achieve a major goal by setting many minor ones. Everything they do during their training is to achieve that goal of the Finish Line!

I won’t let them do that to me. I can’t let them do that to me. You don’t have to run with me, but I will continue to run events. I will not let the bad guys win!

How You Can Help!

BM 9News

The above picture is courtesy of Channel 9 News in Denver, Colorado.

The FBI has identified the people above as ‘possible’ perpetrators of this miscarriage of societal mores. Share this picture with your friends and social contacts. Let’s get them and have them questioned. They may not be the ‘ones,’ but they should be questioned.

It is a different world now. Running may no longer be an ‘innocent’ individual sport anymore. We are banding together even to make an even stronger running community.

The bad guys will not win.

This is what I would like to finish with:

On this day of April 15th 2013

A pledge of a runner:

I will run. I will compete.

I will NOT run away.

 

Part of the fun for this event is the drive down and the drive back. Nothing like a road trip to raise the spirits and make the heart soar. I went to Lamar with my best friend, Tom.

I try to drive out and back a new way every time. It is getting more difficult, though.

On the way down, we found a ‘farm/ranch’ road that was literally several miles of road with nothing on it including towns.

We reached the town of Eads, Colorado. There was an area map at a rest area just East of town. We decided to go and see the site of the Sand Creek Massacre http://www.nps.gov/sand/index.htm.

This is a sad part of Colorado and United States history.  A 700–man force of Colorado Territory militia attacked an encampment of friendly Cheyenne and Arapaho encamped along a bend by the Sand Creek river.

Basically, it was a massacre. It has been claimed that as many as 163 people were killed.

It is a somber, and sacred, site to visit. After the rout, bodies were left where they fell. Some bodies were mutilated. The camp was gone through and things taken.

We did not stay there long. This site is one of the reasons that we must study history or we will be doomed to repeat it. Let’s not.

Lamar -

Lamar is the county seat of Prowers county. It is a small city of 8,800 people. The recreation department is active and sponsors many events for the residents. We participate in the Prairie Punisher. A Duathlon event held in April just about the time of my birthday. Both of us attended last year.

We came into town seeking food and shelter. The local Pizza Hut was our dinner venue. We both had an Italian sausage noodle dish with lots of salad.

We went to the Best Western Cow Palace to seek the shelter part. It was a disappointing experience. 20 minutes waiting, while being ignored. We walked out. Went a block South, where we were welcomed at the Days Inn. We had our shelter.

We drove around and found a sand storm. High winds came at us carrying a lot of dirt in them. You could watch as it approached, wonder at it as it passed us by, and then watch as it headed westward. Rainfall is in decline in that part of Colorado. It is evident.

The Prairie Punisher -

The next morning, I opened the window to a cold and grey sky. It was fairly cold, too. Weather reports had the cloud cover lifting, but around 9:00 AM. Our event was to start at 8:00 AM.

We got to the swimming pool at the event start. Both Tom and I were going to do the short course. The short course involved a 1.55 mile run, then a 7 mile bike ride, and ends with another 1.55 mile run. The pre-event briefing started a little after 8. The course and the rules were reviewed. Immediately after, the first run portion started. I ran back to the transition area to put my jacket away. The sun was starting to come out and I didn’t think I’d need it (I didn’t). While there I remembered that I double knotted my shoe laces. I removed 1 of the knots and headed back to the start line. As I ran to it, the director started the race. We were off!

I was no further then 50 feet when my right shoelace undid itself. I had to stop, tie the shoe, and watch as the rest of the pack got further and further away from me. I got myself ready and steadily started my run. I took the time to wave at cars as they saw us on the route.

The first transition was a slow one. I negotiated changing the running shoes for the bike shoes. I put my helmet on. I got the bike off the rack and put a water bottle on it. I walked the bike past the transition zone, got on it and took off. The water bottle fell right out of the rack. Bummer!

It seemed like the bike ride went uphill both ways. I know it didn’t but sometimes the body and the brain don’t always get along. Half of the bike ride was on the side of Highway 287 (the main drag in town). Everyone driving was nice and moved to the inside. I passed one rider, but got passed by 3 guys. They were good and earned that pass.

I got back to the transition area and walked the bike in. I switched shoes again, then took off on my second run. Somehow the transition seemed too quick or I had forgotten something. About halfway through my second run I realized I still had the bike helmet on. Oh well…

I ran the event this year in 1:02:26. That was 2 minutes and 6 seconds slower than last year. Tom concluded the event in 57 minutes this year. He was 5 minutes fast than I, but 4 minutes slower that his finish last year.

It was a great event with a great group of people! I really, really enjoy this event in Lamar.

Conclusion -

We wanted to shower after this physical exertion. When someone suggested singing Happy Birthday to me, I thought it may time to leave. Tom agreed and we headed back to the hotel. We requested a late check-out. We didn’t need it as we out in plenty of time.

It was my last event in the 50 to 59/55 to 59 year age group. Sunday was my my 60th birthday/ 

 

 

 

Tags:

Well, it is the 2013 season. That means training again. I am running and riding!

My schedule? To start, I will participate in the Lamar, Colorado Prairie Punisher! I will be running the short course on the morning of Saturday, April 13. What is the short course?

2.5 K run (1.55 miles), 7.25 mile bicycle ride, and then a 2.5 K (1.55 mile) run. I will complete  it. I know that as I have been doing my training. Tomorrow and last weekend I have performed the entire thing.

Other notes for April 13th? will have worked for my employer for 30 years. I find that phenomenal in this day and age. Thank you, Master Klean.

Other things for that weekend? My birthday is April 14th.. I will be home recovering. Maybe from the race… Maybe from turning 60…

After the Prairie Punisher, I will compete in the Barking Dog Duathlon! I will compete in the short course again. A little different, though. 2 K run, 14.5 mile ride, and finish with a 3.1 mile run. All at the Cherry Creek reservoir on the South side of the Denver area. This one is tough, though, as there is one major hill in the middle of the ride and the last run!

The last scheduled event is the Bolder Boulder 10K in Boulder, Colorado! This is a major fun run for runners, walkers and people that just want to have fun! Music, marshmallows, doritos, a road summit, lots of hills and mini-events during the run.  That will be on Memorial Day!

Will I see you at any of these events?

There is an up and down to training for larger races. I was advised by Manager John ( http://www.gagthemanager.libsyn.com/ ) to “Do my hill training” for this event. He ran the Big Sur Marathon earlier in the year. I took his words to task, but not enough.

The training was fairly typical for a half-marathon. I worked my way through a training schedule developed by Hal Higdon ( http://www.halhigdon.com/training/51312/Half-Marathon-Novice-2-Training-Program ). The miles under my feet began to increase about half way through as I usually run 18 to 20 miles a week. I picked hilly routes around my house which just happens to be at the top of a hill. It wasn’t enough hill training.

I had been watching the weather for at least a week beforehand. It wasn’t looking good. Rain was predicted and expected. On the morning of the race, I got out of be and looked outside. It was raining, misting actually. I wasn’t looking forward to running in the rain. The next time I looked out, the rain had stopped. Now that was a good thing!

As a group, we met at the San Jose airport. I flew in with Tom Martin, a friend from Denver; and we met Don, Nancy, Julia and Mitch there. Don is Tom’s brother. Our group run races together. We rented a minivan. We piled in and headed for the Monterey area.

Monterey, California is a great place to visit. A scenic city with seashore, a bay, a marina, a fisherman’s wharf, and all sorts of restaurants and hotels. After we attended and participated in the excitement of the Expo, we took in the sights of the fisherman’s wharf area. They were preparing the start and finish lines, as well as setting up some of the after race venues. We also explored, including a photowalk with Mitch, the marina and Monterey’s Fisherman’s Wharf.

The smells, the tastes, the restaurants, the shops, the colors, the people all made for a great time. There were seals in the harbor and sea lions in residence in the marina. We had talked about dinner on Fisherman’s Wharf, but decided to head for our hotel in Marina, CA. The hotel was the Best Western Beach Dunes. If you get a chance, stay there. Close to the beach, comfortable and amiable. They even opened early so we could get some food before the race, and let us stay later than the check out time so we could shower afterward.

Nancy was kind enough to drive us to a shuttle parking lot. We stayed warm in the car as long as we could. We did need to board a bus and head to the start line. We did. The weather continued to improve. It was a cool morning, but we were ready for fair weather. All of us stayed in this old man’s corral so we could start the race together. Time for our start got closer and closer. The corral made the start line and the gun went off! We were on the run for the tenth annual presentation of the Big Sur Half-Marathon!

The Start Line

I’ve always thought that the coast line would be fast and flat. Not this course. We would run up, then run down, run up and then run down. No one rise was overly large but as a combined total, there were quite a few.

If you want to run a scenic event, then this one is one for you to experience. There were waves breaking against the shore. There were birds of all kinds on the land and over the ocean. We noticed harbor seals lounging in the sand along the shore.

We ran through Cannery Row made famous by John Steinbeck. We ran by Lover’s Point Park. We ran by the famous light house in Pacific Grove. We ran by Esplanade Park in Ocean View. We ran by many, many, sights and scenes. We ran quite a bit of Ocean View Boulevard. Amazing!

At 7 1/2 miles along, Don, Tom and Julia passed me. Of course, they passed me in the lane returning from the turn around point that I was still on my way to. I figured at that point they were two miles ahead of me. They only increased that distance.

I made the turn around point still feeling good. I felt really good, when I passed the 2:45 pace group still headed toward the turn around point. The race did start to wear on me, though. The way back had us running on the Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail. Very beautiful.

I was disappointed when I turned the corner and approached the 11 mile mark. There was supposed to be a water station there. There wasn’t! At the cost of this ‘presentation,’ they should move heaven and earth to make sure the runners, also known as participants, are hydrated and in good condition. Closing a water station prior to the end of the race should not happen!

I have to admit that I really tried to run the entire race. I didn’t though.  By mile 11, some of those rises were such that my hamstrings and quads were starting to bark like junkyard dogs! Walking was necessary. I tried to run, but this course defeated me for parts of it.

I did get a little frustrated when that same 2:45 pace group passed me in the 12th mile.

Eventually, I saw masts of ships in the marina. I was going to finish this thing! From mile 11 on, there were spectators all along the course. They were encouraging us on.  I’m not sure if people understand how much spectator participation encourages runners. These people were great!

Soon, I turned a corner and saw the chute. The chute is a marked off area that channels the runners toward the finish line. I saw them setting it up the day before, so I knew how long it was. Just before I crossed the finish line, I heard my name announced. I was there!

I slowed down, and took in the sights of the finish area. First thing I looked for was that distinct piece of ceramic that I earned. Yes! That finisher’s medal!

The Ceramic

A young lady handed me my medal. I asked her if I could get a hug. She told me yes! So far, I have received a hug from every person that has handed me a finisher’s medal.

This was my thirteenth 13.1 mile race. It is one that I will remember, but I may not run this one again!

Julia did great on this run. She placed 2nd  in her age group!

After? We went back to the hotel, got cleaned up, then came back for a delicious dinner at Cannery Row!

 

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 Beers.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class b

egan, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full.. The students responded with a unanimous ‘yes.’

The professor then produced two Beers from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand.The students laughed..

‘Now,’ said the professor as the laughter subsided, ‘I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things—your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions—and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car.. The sand is everything else—the small stuff.

‘If you put the sand into the jar first,’ he continued, ‘there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life.

If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness.

Spend time with your children. Spend time with your parents. Visit with grandparents. Take your spouse out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and mow the lawn.

Take care of the golf balls first—the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the Beer represented. The professor smiled and said, ‘I’m glad you asked.’ The Beer just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a couple of Beers with a friend.

author unknown — happy to attribute if somebody knows

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