20 lbs. vs. 30 lbs. to lose

Usually, I get my butt back to Weight Watchers right around the 20lbs. up mark.  This time, I was actually back to where I started back in 1995 or 1996.


Ha hahahahahahaha!  This picture makes me laugh.  Oh, and my dad doesn’t want to be on the internet.  But this was it.  This was THE PICTURE that made me go to Weight Watchers all those years ago.  Actually, it was this diet called the Deborah Hospital Heart Diet where you were supposed to lose 10 pounds in a week.  I just Googled it and couldn’t find that particular diet (because it probably wasn’t really a heart hospital associated diet!) and found this one that seems to be it exactly or close to it.  The last time I linked to a diet site like this, my WordPress got shut down for spam.  So, I am NOT going to link to the diet but Google this yourself:  Diet and Health Net 3 day diet.  You’ll see things on the menu like hot dogs and ice cream.  DO NOT DO THIS DIET.

After doing that silly diet TO THE LETTER, I lost exactly NOTHING in one week.  I decided then and there that I would not try another fad and went to Weight Watchers.  I lost those 30 pounds and became a Lifetime Member.

Last night was my WW weigh-in.  One month.

10 lbs.jpg

Yes!!  Actually, my one month total was 11 pounds.  This was the most I’ve lost in a month on Weight Watchers.  I think they are on to something with the SUGAR being factored into the formula.

I was down to fitting into three bottoms in my non-running* winter wardrobe: one pair of low cut jeans where everything can hang out over the top (so, really, they DON’T FIT but I can get them on), stretch pants or leggings (they ARE pants – they have pockets!) and a long skirt with an elastic waist.  This morning I put on a pair of pants for work and they fit pretty comfortably but the muffin top is there.  I put on a sweater (this one below – the 80s looking striped sweater!)


(that’s my long black skirt with the elastic waist!) and see that wide horizontal black stripe near my waist?  Well that was where today’s muffin-top landed when I put my black pants on that kinda fit now.  This picture is making me laugh too.  This was a meeting with our congressman at work.  I look insane.  Anyway, what I am getting at here is that the difference between having 30 pounds to lose and 20 pounds to lose is that after 10 pounds down, (well 11) I still have a muffin-top that is unacceptable when wearing a big horizontal black stripe around the middle.  So, yeah – I still have 20 pounds to go.  Ten pounds to go is actually a very comfortable and “skinny-ish” place for me.  I am happy that those black pants “fit” now but I probably won’t be wearing that 80s looking striped sweater until I’m down another 10.  Or, should I really be wearing 80s looking clothes AT ALL?  It’s very comfy and soft.  I need someone to dress me.

* I fit into most of my running clothes (except a few form-fitting shirts) which is one of the reasons why running clothes are my favorite.  Why oh why can’t we all just live our lives in running clothes??  Ok, I’d settle for living in my sneakers.  When God created clothes, he meant for us to live in running clothes!  Not the rest of this stuff that society has us believing that we SHOULD wear!  Heels? Pants that bind?  Bah humbug. 



Posted in fashion, weight loss, Weight Watchers | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Back to the beginning at Weight Watchers

Twenty years ago I became a Lifetime Member of Weight Watchers!  Since that time, I’ve never been back to my starting weight – until now!  I knew I was in need of going back to WW for some time, but just didn’t have it in me to join before the holidays.  I just wanted my cake and wanted to eat it too.  And I did.  Except it was mostly ice cream.  My plan was to go back first thing in the new year.  So January 4, 2016, my Mom and I met up and went.  I thought the line would be out the door like it usually is in the new year, but it was not.  I don’t know why.

So, they changed the plan.  I’m not sure how happy I am with it because now SUGAR is a major factor.  Sweet, sweet, sugar.  I LOVE SUGAR.  Especially chocolate.  Now the sugar content is factored into the equation.  So, my granola bar that inched its way up from two points to four points with the last plan change is now SIX POINTS!!  There is no way in hell I’m eating that damn thing for a snack anymore.  I actually have two left in my desk drawer at work.  I haven’t eaten a granola bar in 3.5 weeks.  I should take them up to the breakroom for someone else to enjoy.  Check out my entry from three years ago when I was having issues with that change in plan.

Ok, so here is my progression:

Weigh-in #1: -3.8 lbs
Weigh-in #2: -2 lbs.Weigh-in #3: -2.2 lbs.

TOTAL: 8 Pounds in three weeks.

Looking back at last time, and I’ll probably be jinxing myself here, but the third weigh-in (on Week 4) was 5.2 lbs.  So maybe there’s something to it.

When I look at it this way, I’m pretty happy with the new plan.  You know what has helped me a lot?  The less sugar I eat, the less I crave it and for the last three weeks, I’ve hardly gone out to eat.  I had one lunch out and had a huge apple salad with a few things in it like blue cheese and nuts but mostly apples and only a little vinaigrette dressing.  And then dinner at Ikea with Katie – Salmon with some sort of a veggie potato cake.  Yes, I ate Ikea salmon.  Both meals were in my daily points range so that was cool.  My plans for a big dinner out got canceled because of the blizzard and I was pretty happy with that.  So, being a hermit is working well for me!  I’m not that comfortable yet with the new plan to go hog wild yet.

I’ve also tried a few of the WW recipes that were on this meal plan sheet that were really good!  One was a baked salmon on a bunch of veggies that included cabbage, kale, carrots, ginger and cumin seeds.  It was fantastic!  Iain told me to stop dishing out the veggies but then he ate all that I served him and cleaned the plate!  And then last night I made a stuffed pepper recipe that was only 4 points.  I even have one left over for lunch today.  Yay!  And then there was this simple recipe that a woman in the meeting mentioned – bake an egg in a 1/2 an avocado.  O.M.G. – DELICIOUS!   It was a little “gourmet” treat during the blizzard.  It was surprisingly satisfying.  It was 6 points total AND I had to have a toasted sandwich thin (3 more points) to go with it for the egg, but I managed to fit it in my points range.  It’s working out.

Here’s an entry from last time:

Dessert for Breakfast?

That little two point muffin in now three points.  Since I like to eat two, it is now 6 points instead of 4.  I did the math on the Wegman’s mini-muffins for my book club and they also came out to 3 points each.  I passed on even having them at book club, so there’s no way I’m making muffins now.  It’s just not worth it right now.

Oh, and Ben and Jerry’s Phish food – IT IS NOW 15 POINTS PER SERVING.  4 servings in a pint.  I get 30 points a day.  A pint of Ben and Jerry’s Phish Food is TWO DAYS worth of points.  Yeah.  How did I get back up 30 lbs. and I’m a runner?  Because I’d eat TWO DAYS worth of points in ONE SITTING.


Yeah, that’s me.  SWEET.


Posted in nutrition, weight loss, Weight Watchers | Tagged | Leave a comment

Beat the Blerch 10K Trail Run

Shane had no interest in running.  He did do the Butterfly 5K with me in March 2013 but pretty much didn’t have much interest in running after that.

Shane likes The Oatmeal.  The Oatmeal wrote this comic about running:  The terrible and wonderful reasons why I run long distances.  If you run, you know The Blerch.  He may be cute, but he’s trouble.


Shane knew about the Blerch from the comic.  So, last year, The Oatmeal put on a Beat the Blerch race in Carnation, WA.  I showed Shane and he was like, “I would run THAT!  Can we go to Washington??”  Well, sorry, we can’t go to WA during the school year, but I told him that if they did a race near us, we’d do it!  So this year, lo and behold, they scheduled a race in Morristown, NJ, just a little over 2 hours away.  We discussed doing the Virtual Race instead.  He asked, will there be Blerches on the course?  Cake?  Nutella?  Couches?  I told him there would not be, so it was decided – we’d go to New Jersey!  We signed up for the race in May and I told him – you can’t just up and run a 10K distance.  You have to TRAIN for it.  And since I’m not very successful with getting my boys to run with ME as their coach, I told him that if he was going to do this race, he’d have to join the cross country team.  So he did.  And he really likes it!

We signed up for the 10K race.  At the time, we didn’t know the race would be a trail race.  This is a bit different than running on roads.  But we were up for the challenge.  The Run for Freedom that I do in Malvern every year is a 5K cross-country race with a bit in the woods.  I’d say it’s about a mile’s worth of running through the woods and it is my favorite part of the race.  The rest is over grass, which I find difficult but in the woods, I feel fast and powerful and like a gazelle!  I know it’s slower on trails, but there is something about running in the woods that feels fast – I think it could be the closeness of the trees passing in my peripheral vision and the cushion under foot that puts a little extra bounce in my step and the need to leap over things and pay more attention to my footing that make me feel fast.  Whatever it is, I think it’s really fun, like being a kid again.  Other than this race, I’ve never done a trail race.  I’ve thought about doing one but never pursued it.  So after we registered and I started hearing buzz about this race maybe having some trails, I thought I’d better do some trail running for training.  But it never happened.

Race weekend arrived!  Shane and I booked a room at the Hilton in Parsippany, NJ.  Packet pickup on Friday night was only until 7 so we had to leave as soon as he got off the bus to make sure we made it on time.  We wanted to be able to get a copy of the Running book, meet the Oatmeal and get it autographed.  And Shane wanted to wear the shirt for the race so 12039440_10153004692635388_5325790090380649816_nwe wanted to get our bags the night before.  It only takes a little over 2 hours to get up there but it was Friday night and the Pope was in Philly so I had no idea how that would affect the traffic in the surrounding areas.  Some towns that had open train stations were calling for a State of Emergency so I didn’t know what to expect!  As it turns out, we made great time and I thought we’d beat our ETA but then we got close to the store and NJ traffic and traffic patterns are MESSED UP.  But we made it and we were happy.

This way to The Blerch!

Shane bought the Running book, the Exploding Kittens game and got the meet The Oatmeal himself, Matthew Inman!


Matthew liked Shane’s shirt and was also happy that his Blerch inspired Shane to run!

We were given buy one get one coupons for a pizza place so we stopped there for dinner and then headed for the hotel.  We were pleased with how Blerch-y we looked in our new Blerch fashion:


We were bummed to find out that they gave Shane a Women’s size L and not a Men’s size L so we needed to exchange in the morning.  In the meantime, I’ve decided that my next battle with The Blerch will be to fit into that Blerch shirt a little better and get my Blerch-y midsection and the rest of me back to Weight Watchers!  But not until AFTER the cake and Nutella at the race!

Race day had arrived!  We hit the road and found a bagel place for pre-race fueling and then headed to the lot for the shuttles.  We got to the start in plenty of time, but a lot of people were late for the other races (I heard there were parking issues) so they pushed our race back to 10:00 to let the half marathoners get started.  Shane and I enjoyed hanging out before the race.  It was a beautiful morning.  A little chilly but they had gear check right there so we were able to keep our jackets until close to start time.  We got some socks:

blerch socks

It was a Blerch-y party at the start – music, couches, pictures with The Blerch, a Bacon Announcer and people dressed in fun costumes.  Shane was fashionably Blerch-y from head to toe.


And now we are ready to run!


Shane and I started toward the back of the pack.  I guess I figured we’d line up at 10 when the race was set to start but a lot of people had already lined up so we were far behind.   This usually isn’t a big deal but the course was tight because it was a trail race so we were stuck behind most people who were walking.  I’ve never seen so many people walking in the first mile of a race before!  But it’s OK, it made it part of the challenge.  And I wasn’t planning on any sort of PR because I knew it would be a big challenge AND I wanted to stop for cake and couches.  Shane and I ran together until the first water stop and then I never saw him again until the end.  When we crossed the starting line, we high fived The Blerch and he cracked me up when he said to Shane, “Slow down, hippie!”

This course was tough, but seriously, if you are going to Beat the Blerch, it shouldn’t be an easy course.  You can run an easy course any day, right?  I was glad this was a trail race because now that I’ve done one, I’m up for another!  The number of people on the course was amazing and the backups were crazy, but most people stayed to the right and we could pass on the left but I did find a few people who passed me were very timid about passing others.  I schooled a few of these potential passers in the use of “On your left!”  I hope they didn’t think I was being pushy, but this is a RACE, not a walk in the park.  I was doing them a favor because then we were able to RUN!!  There were a lot of people with headphones on (I don’t think headphones were allowed) so they couldn’t hear if someone was behind them.  But basic running/biking etiquette says you say “On your left” when passing so the person you are passing is aware that you are there and can move to the right and won’t make any sudden moves.  It’s not rude, it’s what you do, so do it people!  There are couches and cake waiting for me!

When I COULD run, I was moving pretty good. It felt great!  I love running in the woods and don’t get to do it often enough.  I felt skilled and wasn’t having trouble with the terrain.  I thought to myself that I would run as long as I could lift my feet so I ran as much as possible.  There were some pretty good inclines.  We went up up up and then we started going down, and someone commented that she was wishing we were still going up because the downhill felt more treacherous.

Then I came across The Blerch!


She was fluffy and smelled like delicious cake.  I poked her.

And then I had cake, a Nutella sandwich and some water.  I stopped here for about 6 minutes, according to my Garmin.


And then I was off on my merry way on a happy sugar high.  I was feeling great and saw a lot of people tripping, a few falling and a few who were already down.  At one point a medical truck was headed down a wide fire lane type trail to help someone out.  After a little while, I wondered if cake was a good choice during a race.  I could taste it coating my mouth, and while not an unpleasant taste at all, it was making me thirsty!  And then I could feel it a little in my stomach, but that didn’t bother me long.  Shane said he threw up after eating the cake. This is not unusual for Shane so I was not concerned.

As I was approaching mile 5, I was beginning to feel a bit nutritionally depleted and my sugar was crashing.  My body was tired but I kept pushing through.  I was looking forward to seeing Shane at the end!  I was running fast down this one hill and felt like I was flying!  Woo hoo!!  And then SPLAT!  I took a header and slid sprawled out face first, BAM flat on the ground.  People helped me up and I got right back to it because if I slowed down, I’d REALLY slow down.  I ran it out and then felt fine.  One guy offered me water.  I wonder now if he was offering it for me to clean the blood.  I took him up on his offer and drank it instead. I just squirted the bottle into my mouth without touching my mouth, so no germs, but now I think he was offering it for my wound.  LOL!  Either way, that was very nice of him.  Thank you to those who helped me up too.  Everyone out on the course was great!

Here’s my boo boo:


Right before the end we came out of the woods and into the sunshine.  The day wasn’t hot but the sun felt hot.  I hate the sunshine during a race LOL!  And then we looped around and came back to the finish line which was also the starting line and it was done!  And there was Shane – he loved the race!  So proud and happy that he ran this race.  We went over and checked our results:

my results

I was not unhappy with this – I didn’t expect to win any awards and was out for fun.  I thought it would take longer so I was happy.

shanes results

SHANE – SECOND IN HIS AGE GROUP!!  Dude!  My son rocked that race – run, hippie!  Run!  Don’t listen to that Blerch!  Woo hoo!

We headed over to medical to get my knee cleaned up.  The line was so long!  I’ve never seen a line for medical, much less a really long line.  It was crazy!  I wonder if this is how it is at all trail races.  I’ll bet it is.  They came up to you in line and wrote you up with a ticket with your issue.  She was going to call mine a “scrape.”  I made her write me up using the word “bloody.”  So she called it a “bloody scrape.”  It felt like more than a scrape!  The guy who worked on me was just going to give me a bandaid and told me to go pour water on it but I wanted it cleaned out because we had a long ride.  He took a wetnap type of thing and rubbed it and pulled debris out of it.  And didn’t clean up the blood!  Apparently there wasn’t any water at medical.  I’ve never been to medical so I don’t know if this was normal.  I sat next to a lady who had fallen all over – face, shoulder, knee!  That course took out a lot of people, but in the end WE BEAT THE BLERCH!

The after party was fun.  We got our pictures taken again with The Blerch and our medals and we napped a bit.


We got our medals signed by The Oatmeal.


We had more cake and purple drink!


We lounged around some more.


We hung out for a bit but then they said they weren’t having the awards and they’d mail them.  I was bummed but Shane took it all in stride.  I told him we’d have our own awards ceremony at home when his medal comes in the mail.  Hop to it, Blerch!  I’ve got medal presentation to do.  And this is not my first medal presentation rodeo.

This was a really fun race and a great first 10K/trail race experience to share with Shane.  It’s amazing that it was The Blerch who gave Shane the gift of the love of running!  That cute troublemaker may not be so bad after all!

Thank you, The Oatmeal and The Blerch for a wonderful experience.  We’d love you to come back east next year!  We have more friends that want to Beat the Blerch next time!  You should come to Pennsylvania instead – we have good trails here too.  We loved beating the Blerch!


Posted in Beat the Blerch, challenge, family, Fun, hard core, injury, medal, races | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Winter Favorites!

Brian’s Run! 

You can read about how it was my first 5K, 10K, 5 miler here.  I always say that (because it is true) and Brian’s Run holds a special place in my heart!!   It was a beautiful day for a run!  My friends Kristine and Brenda were running Brenda’s first marathon in Rehoboth the day before and Deb was running the half down there so they couldn’t make the race.  They were lucky that the weather was good in DE but we had horrible (Love Run-type) rain on the day of their race.  Yuck.  For Brian’s Run on Sunday it was 38 degrees, sunny and perfect for December!

Jill and Buzz met me at Wawa and we headed over together.  It wasn’t too cold at Wawa so I ran back home and got my baseball cap because I thought my winter hat would be too cold for the run but when we got to Henderson, the wind was whipping and it was cold so I decided to keep the winter hat on.

photo 1(45)

We were ready to run!  I ditched the jacket before the race and it was all good.  I missed Brian’s Run last year for the first time since 2006 since it was only three weeks after my marathon and I was still tired LOL!  I was really happy to be back to it this year!

We started and it was crowded as usual, so I did a little bit of sidewalk, but not too much.  I was enjoying seeing West Chester in sunshine since was always run in the dark morning hours.  It is such a pretty town!

There’s a part in this race where you can see the leaders coming down the street toward you before you both turn off in different directions.  In years past, there have been more runners on that downhill and this year I only noticed a few.  I mentioned this to a guy next to me and said that either no one is running this race this year or I’m faster!  He said we’d go with option #2 and I agreed.  We were at the bottom of one of the many hills in this race and he told me to go ahead and that I needed to catch up with a girl named Erin (he described what she was wearing), who is his niece and tell her than her uncle said Hello.  Right – ME catch up with some young girl way ahead of me on a big hill.  But then I thought of my friend David Willey and how he did this for me at the RW Half and caught up with Kristine so I decided that it was my duty.  I dug in and caught her!  I said hi and told her that she didn’t know me but her uncle wanted me to say Hi.  She didn’t think this was weird (or DID she?) and I told her about by friend Dave at RW 1/2 and she said that she also did the Hat Trick and Dave was her friend too LOL!  We chatted a bit and went our separate ways.

I didn’t feel as though the corkscrew at the finish was all that bad this year.  I passed a few people and didn’t get passed myself, so that’s good!  After the race, the three of us were discussing that the hills weren’t as bad this year – because we are more badass than previous years LOL!!  I didn’t get a PR, but I actually TIED my Brian’s Run PR – 46:22 – to the second! The Downingtown Running Store race where Deb ran with me and we came in dead last is still my 5 mile PR.

photo 2(44)

Post race is nice, they have pizza, but I sure do miss the days of the race being at the University and post race was inside and they gave you great hot soup at the finish.  It was THE BEST!

Jingle Bell Run

I love the Jingle Bell Run – it was Iain’s very first 5K when he was 8 years old.  We’ve been doing it every year since – sometimes as a family with Chris and Shane participating as walkers and sometimes I end up on my own.  This year, I thought I’d be going it alone (we hadn’t yet registered) but then when the time came for everyone to get ready, I found myself with the car filled with the family!  Yay us!


Our team is the Mad Hatters –


We wear hats!  (everyone but Chris…)

Check this out – first picture is our first Jingle Bell in 2007 – Iain’s first 5K when he was 8! We ran it in 37:00. Today was a course PR for both of us – me at 27:36 and Iain at 20:46.  Iain won third in his age group!  He’s come a long way, baby!


I have not been able to beat my 5K PR since 2010 so I’m going with a new thing – course PR!  Today I had a course PR of 27:36.


Hooray Iain!  So proud of you!  (Who’s that crazy photobomber…?)

Note on my blog hiatus…

So, I’m playing catch up here with my blog entries.  I took a break for 10 months but had this blog entry started with Brian’s Run completed.  I’m going to just add a few details and pics.  Yesterday Shane and I did the Beat the Blerch 10K Trail Race and I want to get back to blogging since it was so fun!  But I feel as though a big block of missing races will be sad.  Since I do have photos from each race, I’m just going to do brief overviews to catch up.  I will do a big entry for the Love Run since that was a big deal in many ways.

Icicle 10 Miler

I enjoy this race as a mid-winter motivator and because it is pretty awesome.  It’s challenging but fun.  Great after-party and you feel pretty powerful after conquering some pretty impressive hills.  It is in Wilmington, DE which is pretty easy to get to – parking is easy, nice shirt and if the weather is bad, you can wait inside the YMCA until start time.

This picture says it all about how much fun this race is:


Posted in races | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

It’s all about the medal.

They call me the Medal Nazi.

If you recall, I started my marathon journey all because of a shiny gold medal.  When I completed the Philadelphia Marathon last year, I thought to myself, “I think I want to give out the medals at a race some day!”  So when I saw the call for volunteers on their Facebook page, I had to check it out.  And there it was – a list of all the jobs you could sign up for, including MEDAL DISTRIBUTION.  I’m in!!  And Kristine and Jill signed up too!

I didn’t know too many people running it this year.  I thought if one of my close running friends would do it, I would cheer them from my bike like Maria and I did to cheer Rose in 2012 – the day the big fat sparkly medal lured me into doing it too.  But the marathoners of 2014 are Anne, who ran NYC (yay!!) and Kristine and Brenda who are doing Rehoboth (December at the beach! Brrr…)  So, why not hand out medals to thousands of strangers?  I am so excited for these strangers!!

We took the train down (Kristine’s only second time on the train ever!) and the timing was perfect.


We got to our check in post with time to spare.  We got our sweat shirts, credentials and a water bottle.  I was VERY disappointed to find that the promised refreshments were gone.  I ate breakfast at 6:30 and now it was almost 10 – I was hungry!  And we had a 5 hour shift to work!  No one seemed to know when they’d replenish the food.  So we headed to our post.

It was a bit of a maze trying to figure out how to get to the starting line but we eventually figured it out, but not before seeing the cool glass trophies that the overall race winners would receive!  Woo wee!  Don’t worry – I know my limitations and mostly live in the real world so I will not be pursuing one of those.

We felt like VIPs, especially when I saw how everyone else probably wanted to be where we were!


I thought the 1/2 and the full finished in different locations but they actually finished in the same place but on opposite sides of the street.  I believe there is a median in between the two finishes because we seemed to be all on our own when we finally found our post.  They just had tons of medals hanging on these racks and the people loading up the racks would hand you some. I would take as many as I could handle on both arms and I’m feeling it today!  It was a little chilly when we got there but we had layered up and the sweatshirts were good (not a fan of the color but they are snuggly.)  I brought both a winter hat and my RW Hat Trick hat to make sure I could adjust to the changing temps and not be caught with hat head if I had to remove my winter hat.  Good plan!  The “what to wear while standing still” plan was more difficult than the “what to wear while running plan” since I’m a lot more used to that.  But we were keeping warm by getting a workout presenting medals.  I put a medal around every single neck except for maybe two people that didn’t want me to.  There were a lot of tall men whenever I had my arms loaded up the most, but I didn’t care – I was so honored to be the one presenting the medals to all of these awesome strangers!!

We are ready to MEDAL!!


Since our shift started at 10, the first marathoners we encountered where finishing around the three hour mark.  It wasn’t as crowded as it would be soon, but I was getting a kick out of seeing them walk toward us.  We were to stand behind a white line and they were to come to us.  Look at them:
It was like the zombie apocalypse!

I only mocked their walking if they looked like they could take a joke.  I was loving it.  They gave it all they had!  Some people were DRIPPING of sweat.  And amazingly, some people were DRY!  Lots of people were salty, hardly any were smelly, believe it or not.  And we got close!  We got hugs, Jill got kisses, and everyone was awesome.  If people were looking iffy, I’d ask them if they needed medical.  I took two guys over to the first policeman I saw who could take them to medical.  No one knew were it was. I would think a nice medical tent right after the finish line would have been a good idea.  I ended up giving all my water away to these guys in need – some emergency water would have been good to have available too.  I couldn’t even see where they got their water.  I was in a daze last year so I have no idea where the water ended up being.  During the time I was taking this other guy to medical, my friend Keith finished.  I was hoping to be the one to give him his medal and was keeping an eye out, but I had to make sure this guy got medical attention so when I took him, I knew it was close to the time Keith would be crossing.  Just as I was getting closer to the policeman, I turned and saw Keith so I was able to congratulate him and get a picture with him after we handed the the sick runner off.


Congratulations, Keith! Looking pretty in pink as usual!

Kristine was the one who got to present him with his medal so that’s good!  Way to go, Keith!

It started to get more crowded.  We were all jammed in and the zombies runners were coming at us in droves.  At one point I looked over at Kristine and saw her getting all choked up.  I am glad I wasn’t the only one!  It was really such an honor to have this experience!

It was around this crowded time that my friend Deb arrived after running her friend Gisela in – she beat the 4:00 hour mark with a finish time of 3:57 – AMAZING!  This was probably the most crowded part of the finish line so I didn’t get a chance to chat longer – it’s all kind of a blur to me!


I made a point of presenting the runners with their medals by name!  I love when the bibs have names on them.  There’s nothing better than being cheered by name!  I’d try to catch a flash of the bib when they were adjusting their heat blankets.  As the crowd started to thin out and the medal distributors were more plentiful than the medal receivers, I decided to see if they wanted their space blankets tied on them.  I remember that I was grateful to have Iain as my butler to carry everything for me and bend down for me if needed, but a lot of these people were alone and would need their hands free for their water, goodie bag and soup so I would tie their blanket for them and walk backward with them as I did it so they didn’t have to stop.  I was like, “I trained for this!” and I guess you could say I did since I knew what I needed after my race last year.


As it approached the end of our shift, we saw signs of them starting to wrap things up.  Only a handful of us were left handing out the medals.  I am not sure where the rest of them went since everyone’s shift ended at 3:00.  You could tell who was a runner and who wasn’t.  One of the girls who stayed to the bitter end with us is running the Rehoboth Marathon with Kristine and Brenda on Dec. 6th.  I hope they meet up again at the race!

We were way up close now and could see the mayor and the race director.  I had several medals left on my arm but the racks had been packed up.  We got way up so that we were able to cheer the final runners crossing.  The crowds were sparse now and they deserved a big cheer!

Adam came through and I presented him with his medal.  We hugged and he was very emotional, which of course, got me emotional!


Congratulations Adam!  So happy I was able to give you your medal!  So proud of you!

I tied his heat blanket for him and offered to take his picture.  You know when you get this close to the finish line arch, most often you have to pay for the photos so here was his chance for a victory photo!  And then his phone died at that moment!  But I told him I’d take it with my phone and text it to him.  I’m glad it worked out that way because I got a great text from him later that night that really made my day!  Everyone was thanking us but I’m not sure if they knew that giving back in this was was really a wonderful experience for us!  Sure, we worked hard, but it was great!  I’ve been feeling out of sorts lately and was so looking forward to this.  I knew it would be the perfect attitude adjustment for me!

The next runner of note was Andria.  I was back a bit and thought I’d snap a few shots and it wasn’t until I uploaded my photos to the computer later that I discovered this shot:


Woa!  She JUMPED over the finish line!!  Look at that!  Amazing!  And I actually captured the moment!  When I cropped it I was surprised how it came out pretty good.  Look – she beat the mayor and the race director!  We talked after this and she still had a friend out on the course so she hung around a bit.  She told us what town she was from so I was able to look her up and mail her a print of this shot.  The professional photographers were still there, so hopefully they snapped this too, because that’s a keeper!

We went and got our picture taken with Mayor Nutter.


It was around this time that a guy who worked for the Mayor started taking medals from me.  I’m not going to go into all the details here because he was a condescending jerk.  But he suddenly started acting like he was the boss of the medals.  Since the medal racks were gone,  we only had a few left and we wanted to make sure that everyone that was still out there got their medal!  This jerk kept taking them from me and I started getting salty.  What the heck, dude?  He took one and brought it over to this woman who had a baby (not sure who they were) but I was saying to my friends, “That baby did NOT run that race and he’d better not give it a medal!”  He gave the medal to Mayor Nutter who put it around the woman’s neck.  She was shaking her head “No” and when he was done, she took it off and gave it back.  She knows what’s up.  The Marathon Medal is sacred.  Then there were these city employees asking me for medals.  I was like NO! you have to run the race to get one!  I was appalled.  And all the while this jerk keeps taking medals from me and talking down to me.  Then Mayor Nutter and the race director come over and take medals from me and start handing them out the the city workers!  What the heck!  I said to them, “They didn’t run the race!  26.2!  TWENTY SIX POINT TWO!”  The Nut just ignored me and the race director told me that the race wouldn’t happen without these hard workers.  Well then, give them a mug or a hat or a gift card or a plaque but NOT THE MARATHON MEDAL!  The ONLY people who should ever have the Marathon Medal around their neck are the people who completed the entire TWENTY SIX POINT TWO.

Just call me The Medal Nazi.

I DO have to note here that this is the third year I’ve participated in the Philadelphia Marathon – first as a spectator, then as a runner and this year as a volunteer.  Other than this terrible breach of protocol, it is an amazing event.  The mayor is out there from start to timed finish (3:00), high-fiving EVERYONE!  I googled the race director and discovered that she is NOT a runner but a city employee, so I guess she doesn’t KNOW any better.  But other than giving the medal out like candy, she does a terrific job.  You cannot beat Philly!  So, thank you for that, but knock it off with giving the medals out to those who didn’t earn them.  Get a stash of something else to present.  Thank you.

Jill checked the train schedule and discovered that we needed to get moving soon to make our train or we’d have to wait an entire hour for the next one.  I was already hungrier than ever since I hadn’t had anything to eat since 6:30 a.m. and now it was 3:30!  I never go for more than four hours without eating.  We tried to figure out how many people might still be out there and there were some family members that we gave medals to (so they could HOLD them and present them, not wear them!)  I wanted to stay to the bitter end but sadly, we had to go!  Then they were taking down the timing strips in the road!  I was heartbroken that they wouldn’t get their official time!  The gentleman who was timing the race came out and told me that he would manually enter the times of the people who were still out there!  I recognized him as the same timer from the RW race.  I was so happy that he was looking out for the runners who were still out on the course!  I told him that we believed that there were only two more out there and they had passed the 25 mile mark and it probably wouldn’t be long and he said he’d be staying for another 1/2 hour or hour.  I didn’t think they’d be that long.  But I was just a volunteer and my only indication of who was still out there were the loved ones still waiting for their friends.  Imagine my surprise when I checked the results later and saw that there was a guy still out there that took 9 hours and 21 minutes!  And he got his official time!! This guy went way above and beyond to get the final runners their official times.  The marathon is such an incredible accomplishment and I am so happy for that 9:21 finisher that he was lucky enough that this guy was timing his race!  I really hope he got his medal too!

26 27

Isn’t it lovely?  Congratulations to the 10,348 runners who crossed the finish line of the Philadelphia Marathon on Sunday!


Oh, yeah – I made sure we got our own picture on this side of the finish line arch too!  Was Jill trying to get away from me?  I made sure she wouldn’t escape by keeping her in a choke hold.  What a great day!


Posted in medal, races, Volunteering | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Runner’s World Half & Festival Hat Trick

Runner’s World, you are a class act!  What an incredible weekend.

So this is the race I’ve been waiting for – my big one!  Well, three races, actually – The Hat Trick!  I have been wanting to run this race since they first started two years ago.  We go up to Bethlehem a lot for musical events – Musikfest, Celtic Classic, and the ArtsQuest events at the Steel Stacks.  Every time I’m at the Steel Stacks, I imagine running under the flaming arch to the finish!  The day had finally come where I’d get to run under it, not once, but three times!  I knew that the race would be hilly because I watched Bart Yasso’s tour of the course – how cool is that?

Apparently they changed it up this year so it was “flatter”.  I saw a few guys at Musikfest this summer who had run the Hat Trick and they told me that it really wasn’t all that flatter.  I was still looking forward to the challenge.  I never wanted to do a hilly long race, but after doing the Icicle 10 miler twice in Wilmington and the Caesar Rodney 1/2 with the giant hills, they don’t scare me anymore.  Not that they ever scared me – I just thought I didn’t want to run a hilly half.

So the day started early early.  Kristine and I decided to drive separate since I wanted to stay for a seminar after the races on Saturday.  When I got to the parking lot, I was just about to text her that I had arrived when I received her text – she overslept!  I was on my own.  Bummer.

Oh well, I’ll make the best of it.  I always talk to people on the course anyway so I’ll make friends for the day!  I parked in a free lot that didn’t look too far from the start but the bus driver told us that it was near impossible to walk because there was no sidewalk on the busy road back and there was road construction that had part of the road torn up.  Here I thought I could come and go to and from the car to get and leave stuff.  I had a throw-down shirt on and my phone belt so I really didn’t need to come back to the car.  I usually don’t gear check but I figured I’d give it a try since it was right at the starting line. It was easy.  They had bib pickup first and then you get your shirts later so I didn’t even have too much to check. The bathroom situation was easy too.  I knew it would be better than most races since I’d been to Steel Stacks before I knew they had around 50 flush toilets with hot running water, in a nice heated building.  They also had portapotties outside if you wanted the traditional race experience.  I did not use a portapotty all weekend!!photo 3(4)

I’m about to gear check here.  I decided to check the throw down shirt and I’d save it for the next race.  The Steel Stacks are behind me and the sun is coming up.  I drove in the dark the entire way.  I got up there just before 7.

photo 4(4)

I am usually up here in the evening when the sun is going down and then they light up the stacks with colored lights.  It was just as pretty to see the sun lighting them up.  This would be my home base for the weekend.  Both the 5K and the 10K would start right near here and all three races would finish right out front.

When I arrived at ArtsQuest, there was a tent out front and there was Bart Yasso, just talking about stuff and getting ready for the day.  Bart follows me on Twitter.  He followed ME first.  (Twitter is so weird.)

photo 1(4)

I lined up at the 9:30 pace group.  It’s not often that they have pace markers for a 5K but since they were having three different races this weekend they would need them for the 1/2 so why not?  The starting line had a party atmosphere and music blaring.  It was fun.  And then it was time to run!

photo 1(5)

The plan was to take it easy and not kill myself so that I’d have the energy to get through all three races.  I tried my best. Funny, right around 1/4 mile there was a water stop!  But it was really for the way back. I passed on the quarter mile water.  Shortly after that I looked up on a bridge in front of us and saw all these runners!  We just got started – how are all those runners up on that bridge already?  I actually asked someone if that was a different race (duh!) and then next thing you know, we are going under the bridge and looping up onto the bridge too.  It was pretty cool because you could see back to the Steel Stacks and up the river – it’s such a pretty town!

The course was good, challenging and fun.  There was a bit of an out and back on the bridge where we got to see the leaders for a bit.


Runner’s World Half and Festival 5K Course

Things were going well.  I tried to talk to a few people here and there but I didn’t make any friends.  5K funners aren’t all that chatty.  At the beginning of the last mile we started going up a slow incline.  When I am alone and don’t have music, I notice my breathing a lot more than usual.  I noticed that my heavy rhythmic breathing made me sound like a pervert – like a dirty prank phone call.  Then I heard someone coming up behind me – who also sounded like a pervert – like a dirty prank phone call.  So this amused me that we both sounded like we were making dirty prank phone calls.  So when he came up beside me I turned and said pleasantly, “You sound like a dirty prank phone call.”  He looked at me with dead eyes and no response. (No wonder I was making no friends in this race…)  At this point he was in the process of passing me.  So I said to him, “Huh – no sense of humor!” and I took off.  I was already pushing my pace at this point but now there was no way I was going to let this humorless guy pass me so I booked it at least 3/4 of a mile to the finish.  I really wanted to take it easy but when this kind of thing goes down, my competitiveness kicks in.  Yeah, eat my dust, buddy boy.  I never saw him again.  I finished with an official time of 27:18.  That is on the faster side for me.  I felt great and Bart Yasso called MY name!!  Oh, and btw – he led all the races on his bike (without a helmet, bad Bart!) and then cheered everyone through the finish!  Talk about the host with the most!  Yay!  I’m loving this race!!


So now I had an hour to the next race so I decided to go get my shirt, socks and hat.  Yes, hat trick racers get a shirt, socks and a hat, in addition to a finisher’s medal for each race!  This was the first time I would receive a finisher’s medal for a 5K or a 10K.  Hey, if you want a medal and don’t want to do a long race to get one, do one of these!!  They had the Hat Trick logistics planned out well for us.  We could claim our 5K medal after the 10K so we didn’t have to worry about what to do with the medal during the next race.  Thank you!!  I went over to bag check and got my bag.  I texted Kristine to send me a copy of her ID and registration email so I was able to get her stuff too.  I checked the bag again with all of our goodies and got ready for the 10K.  The gear check was so easy!

The 10K started and ended in the same location but obviously added on.  This time we didn’t loop under the bridge and around, we got right on it.  The weather was perfect for running and this race took us through neighborhoods with grand and gorgeous homes.  I was thinking how pretty the town was and wanted to tell someone how nice their town is. Then I heard a runner greet a spectator by name so I asked if he lived here and noticed he was RW staff.  He said he did.  I told him how gorgeous the town is (as if he didn’t know already) and how great this weekend was turning out to be and that I would be telling all my friends and making this my must-do fall event!  He was very nice and I noted his name to look him up later.  Marc Parent – the guy who writes the Newbie Chronicles!  So cool – I love his column.  I noticed that the 10K runners were friendlier than the 5K runners – more willing to chat.  I’m beginning to put together why I like the longer races better – what’s more fun than running AND making friends along the way?


Runner’s World Half and Festival 10K Course

The 10K took us down Main Street too, which is such a pretty downtown street.  I just loved seeing the different locations that I’ve been to before by running all over the place!

I didn’t feel like I was pushing too hard and I was having a great race.  We headed back over the bridge and back the way we came.  When I reached the spot where I met up with that humorless guy in the 5K, it was soooo quiet but it was a busy road with traffic.  I decided that I’d get a trucker to blow his horn for us!  You know, like when you were a kid in the car, you’d do this:

I just love how you can find anything on the internet in 5 seconds to illustrate a point.  So I do this.  A lot.  And the response I get from the truckers?  NOTHING.  Just like my humorless friend from the 5K.  Now I’m feeling like an ass and I turn to the guy beside me to tell him what I am trying to do here because it is so quiet.  He does smile a bit and then his wife (I’m guessing wife, it was his female running companion, whatever their relationship – we didn’t get that close since it was the last mile) decides to try and help me out.  She gets into the act too, and gets NOTHING also!  Really, people?  10:30 on a Sunday morning – what else do you have to do when traffic is backed up a bit – show us some love!  Whatever.  At least I had fun with my new acquaintances trying to get some love.

As I was approaching the finish, I was surprised to see the clock reading 1:00 and some seconds.  My current PR was 1:01:05 from the Dayton Celtic Festival 10K.  I was going to have a new PR!  And… with the chip timing, I was guessing there was a slight chance that I could have come in in under an hour!  I booked it for the finish, made sure I ran on the left hand side where my friend Bart was calling my name, high fived him and crossed the finish line!  I immediately checked my phone for the results.  They weren’t there!  OMG – it showed my start but not my finish!  Woe is me!  I sat down and had some snacks and watched the finish for a bit.  I love the way the finish was set up so that you could sit and watch.  Then I went to information and they told me to check at the timing tent, which I did.  The guy was very helpful, found my result right away.  He said something had happened with the connection or something.  Ok – was was it?  He told me – 59:59!  I think I may have jumped up and down – “I knew it!  I broke an hour!!”  YES!!  I would have never guessed I could PR at this race.  I was trying to take it easy.  The course was not flat and easy by a long shot.  It was actually quite uphilly.  I think that the great energy just moved me faster!  I was thrilled!


photo 4(5)

TWO medals!

I had signed up for a seminar so I decided to get some coffee and then check out the expo before the seminar.  The seminar was at noon.  The speaker was Sean MacMillen:  How Running Helped Save a Soldier from Depression, Substance Abuse, and PTSD.  I wanted to sit in to get some ideas on inspiring some of the people I work with to do the Love Run with our team Baker Industries Steps to Independence.  His talk was great and I am glad I stayed for it.  I got some info on Team RWB for two of the guys at work who are veterans and interested in doing the Love Run.  Sounds like an awesome group.  I see them at most of the big races and Kristine’s brother runs with them in Florida.  Click on the photo to read the full article:


Sean MacMillen and another member of Team RWB running with the flag

I headed for the shuttle after the seminar.  I stood there for about a minute when I noticed that no one else who looked like a sweaty runner was around.  I pulled out my handy Runner’s World Half and Festival app and checked that I was in the right place.  I was.  But the shuttles stopped running at noon!!  Ugh.  The bus driver told us that they run about every 8 minutes.  She told us that it was near impossible to walk back.  She did NOT tell us that the buses stopped running at noon.  Ugh. 

It was about a mile and a half back.  My two medals were amusing me so here’s this:

Two medals walking. Just amusing myself since I am all alone. The most melodious annoying sound ever!

A post shared by Jackie Johnston (@jackjnston) on

Love how flattering the front camera and the upshot are.  Shortly after this I ended up on a highway road without a sidewalk (top right pic) and then the road was all ripped up and I was lucky not to twist my ankle (left pic) and when I got back to the lot, I noticed that everyone else got the “Shuttles stop running at noon” memo.  Oh, well.  I didn’t die and I got to listen to my two medals walking for that much longer!


Since it was a two day event and I was home by 3:30, I could have planned other things but I am really glad that I didn’t.  We were having our Art Fair at work this weekend.  When they were choosing a date, I told them that the ONLY weekend I wasn’t available was Oct. 17 – 19, if my scheduled mattered to anyone.  I guess it didn’t because that is the weekend they picked.  I actually could have attended but then I would have been in uncomfortable shoes and not as well rested for the next day so I’m glad I said “no” to everything.  I had all this energy when I got home but then I took a shower and was DONE.  I chilled out and had a good dinner and went to bed early.

Remember I told you Bart Yasso follows me on Twitter?  Well, I figured I’d tweet that he called my name and we actually had a Twitter conversation –


He can’t wait to see me at the start!  See how special this race is?

The next morning Kristine picked me up (yay!  she’s running with me!) and we headed for Bethlehem.  We arrived in the dark (again) and this time we parked in the paid lot because the free ones were on the course and you couldn’t leave until 11:30 or something like that.  It was close enough.  It was COLD AND WINDY!

photo 1(7)

Good thing we noticed that everyone was walking in the opposite direction of where the race started yesterday because I thought we were starting at the Steel Stacks again but we were starting at The Sands.  We headed over to the new start and decided to go into the Sands to use the bathroom.  It was a big weird mall with outlets and there was a nice family bathroom right there for me to use.  When I came out there was some guy from RW staff waiting after Kristine.  When she came out, he told me she was much faster than me in the bathroom and somehow insinuated that I had butt in front of him.  Whatever.  He was wearing florescent yellow that you couldn’t miss and there was nobody standing outside that bathroom when I got there.  I did not catch his name.  This is pertinent information to the story, believe it or not.

We got started and the temperature was ok.  There were some wind gusts here and there but with the variety on the course, it wasn’t awful.


Half marathon course


I felt pretty good, which was nice after all that running the day before.  I was excited to show Kristine the sights of Bethlehem!  She was the tour guide last year during the marathon.  Not that she had run it before, but she had assisted Rose in 2012 with an emergency issue.  (Runnergirl code – what’s discussed at the starting line of the Broad Street Run stays at the starting line of the Broad Street Run!)  She had run through this section of Philly assisting Rose and I had never run this section before so she gave me the play-by-play.  I was able to give Kristine the play-by-play of the parts I’d run the day before and the parts I’d been to that I hadn’t run.

The course was very varied and fun!  Uphills, downhills, twists and turns.  Cemeteries, golf courses, downtown, uptown, all over town! The hills were plentiful. I could do them but not as quick as Kristine but she would wait up for me and I’d catch up when I got to the top. Along the way we met a girl named Nancy who was our age too and she ran with us. She’d wait for me too! She had run a breast cancer run the day before that they combined the two races and called it the Pink 16.2 – cool!  We had a good time.  I like meeting new people when I run – in case you didn’t already know that.

At one point, Kristine and Nancy were ahead of me and there were a couple of guys chatting next to me. The one guy asked how I was doing and I noticed he was RW staff. I said, “Are you my friend from the bathroom?” and he said he was not and asked if I always make friends at the bathroom. Sometimes I do.  So I checked out his name and saw he was David Willey, the Editor-in-chief of Runner’s World. I was like, no wonder you look familiar!! We chatted for a bit, I told him that the RW Half and Festival is my new MUST DO fall race and I’d be telling all my friends. I told him why I was saying goodbye to the Rock and Roll race and how wonderful and hospitable RW is. Then I told him he ought to catch up with my friend Kristine and tell her “Hi!” and that I was looking for her. So he did.  I knew he would. Ha! I caught up and we laughed and agreed again that this race was amazing.

Mile 8 was at the top of a hill.  I like to take a Gu around the 8 mile mark during a 1/2 and there was a water stop.  AND THIS:

Wow!!  This was called the #skirtencounter.  I was eating my Gu and said to a girl, “What’s going on?” and she just started putting a skirt on me.  FOR REAL!!  Oh my goodness!  How cute my new skirt is!  The skirts are from RunningSkirts.com.  They had all different skirts, everyone was getting them, even some guys!  It fits perfectly and didn’t ride up.  I LOVE IT!!

photo 3(7)

What a nice perk.  The #skirtencounter was so much fun!  A Gu, and new running skirt and I was revived and ready to run the last 5 miles!

In spite of the wind, the day was pretty nice while we were moving.  The sun was out, the chill was nice now and sometimes we actually felt the wind at our backs!  It was such a cool course.  I never thought I wanted to run such a hilly long race, but it really added to the interest of the course and the challenge.  I loved this race!!  We saw our friend David Willey again along the course – he had actually started in the back of the pack and was running and talking to everyone he could.  Such a friendly race!  If I had my own race and I was super fast, I’d do that too!

As we ran the last mile, some of Nancy’s friends were around and cheered us, which was great!  We saw them on foot and then again along that lonely stretch of highway where no one would beep in the races the day before.  They did!  Hooray!!

As we finished, the crowd support was great!  I got my final Bart Yasso high five and I was done the Hat Trick!  Happy to be done and immediately looking forward to next year!  It was an all-around fantastic experience!!

photo 3

High five, Bart!

photo 2(3)

Hooray! Done the Hat Trick! (Nancy is in green and Kristine is in pink next to me)


Not bad after running a 5K and a 10K the day before!  22.4 miles over two days – WOO HOO!!

We got our medals (#3 in two days!!), got our space blankets (those things really work!) and went to the finish festival area for our snacks and to watch some of the finishers coming in.  We were hanging out and our friend Dave stopped by.

photo 2(8)

Thanks for a great race, Dave and Runner’s World!  We will be back next year and we are bringing friends!  The Runner’s World Half and Festival was the epitome of everything good about the running community, running and being a runner.  There was something for everyone.

photo 4(6)

No, that is not our ride home.

We hit the road after hanging out for a bit and stopped at the Coopersrburg Diner for a nice breakfast.  What a great weekend!  Can’t wait for next year and the chance to share the experience with more friends!!

Oh, and one last thing – can you say SWAG??


3 medals, front of hat/shirt, back of hat/shirt, skirt, right side of sock, left side of sock (other sock in wash – I hope!)


Posted in challenge, Fun, hard core, medal, races | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Steps4Hope 5K

When I heard about the Steps4Hope 5K I was hoping to be able to do it.  I remember asking a young girl I know to do it with me but unfortunately she is back in rehab now – more reason to run this race.  The Steps4Hope 5K was held  to promote the awareness and prevention of substance abuse and addiction and was held in loving memory of Jonathan Moules who was a 2010 graduate of Great Valley who lost his life to the disease of addiction in January.

The week before the race, there was a talk at school from the NOPE Task Force of Chester County.  It was a very powerful and informative presentation and I was happy I was able to support this race.  The weather was not looking good (think Love Run LOL!) but it was a 5K so it wouldn’t be too bad.  There were 6 of us that I knew who were planning on doing it but they started dropping like flies the night before and it was down to just me and Jill.  I was really glad Jill was doing it because sometimes it’s hard to get out the door when the conditions are not perfect!  And I KNOW it wouldn’t be so bad once we got moving.  So Jill picked me up and we headed to Ridley Creek Park – she had never been there!  They have a nice 4.5 mile loop with a huge hill but since it was a 5K we’d be doing an out and back without the huge hill.

When we got there, they had a good turn out which is great, especially with the rain.  Jill had a big umbrella and since we were able to park right near the start of the race we could hang out under the umbrella before the race start.  We headed to the starting line and then we were off!!

We decided to run together – it was fun.  The rain was soon forgotten and then it felt good.  We were cruising along and then we saw the leaders heading back.  Then we saw the turn around.  And I thought to myself “I’ve never been this far up in front in an out and back!”  So we made the turnaround and enjoyed the glory of seeing all but 30 runners on our way back.

As we approached the finish line I saw that the first two numbers on the timing clock were 26.  Oooh, baby!  I wasn’t trying to break any records but 26:39 is my PR.  I wasn’t going to beat that but 26 something makes me happy LOL!!  When I crossed the finish and stopped my Garmin, the time was 26:59:59. Talk about cutting it close!  Under 27, baby!  When the results came in my time was officially 26:55.  Jill beat me at 26:54 – she’s fast!  She would have gone faster too if she’d run her own race but we had fun together.

We went and got our water and then headed back to the finish line to cheer on more runners for a bit.  The rain was pretty much over by now I think, but it was muddy.  We discussed the fact that we really didn’t see too many ladies around our age group ahead of us on the out and back.  That morning before I left, Kristine had texted me to wish me good luck in the race.  I told her our group of 6 was down to 2 and she said that Jill and I would probably place in our age group – and I thought “Ha ha!! Right.”  But now I wondered if my friend might be psychic!  So Jill and I decided to wait for the awards.

As they were giving out the award to those younger than us, we liked that they would tell everyone’s time.  We were enjoying hearing that we beat several winners who were younger than us – male and female!   And we were happy to find that we scored 2nd and 3rd in our age group!  Yay!!


I did not think that I’d be going home with a medal today so this was a special treat!  Congratulations to us!  We were psyched and feeling very badass after running in the rain!  I’m so glad we braved the rain and did this race.  As it usually happens, the rain made for fun once we got moving and gave us badass points.  Can’t beat that!

I had wanted to do a long run this weekend but my long run running buddies were signed up for the LBI 18 Miler the next day so they weren’t up for it.  I thought about doing the Ridley Creek loop after the race but changed my mind when I saw the forecast.  I’m up for running once in the rain, but the idea of running again after being soaked did not appeal to me.  But then I decided that when I took Iain to his cross country practice at 2:00 that I’d run a 10K as training for my upcoming Hat Trick (5K, 10K and half marathon).  It turned out that the day was pretty perfect at this point – the rain was gone, the sun was still tucked away behind the clouds (I’m not the biggest fan of the sun when running) and the air was chilly. I parked at the Exton end and ran out and back to Rte. 100, then stopped at the car for a Gu and water and then out and back for the rest of the 10K the other direction.  I was happy that the 5K with a real good effort and then doing a 10K in the same day felt good.  Tomorrow I’d cross train by riding my bike and cheering my friends at the 18 miler!

Check out this video some information and statistics on prescription drug addiction:

I Am the Face of Addiction from Natalie Costa on Vimeo.

Read more about The Jonathan Moules Memorial Steps4Hope Foundation here.  For a lot of good information check out the NOPE Task Force here.

Posted in friends, medal, races | Tagged , | 2 Comments