Nine Days

Comments 6 Image

Nine Days

Bella is enjoying her last few days of being an “only child”. According to my pregnancy app, baby should make her appearance in about 9 days (give or take), which is hard to believe. My doctor does not want me to go past 41 weeks, so that means baby will definitely be here in 16 days, but for some reason lately I’ve been feeling like she might actually come on time.

I’ve been running or run/walking 4 miles almost every day this month. Today I ran the full 4 miles and felt pretty darn good. Of course, this is all relative as I probably average 10 or 11 min miles, but it feels much faster than that.

A few other fun things I learned at my doctor appointment yesterday. The baby has a lot of hair (who knew you could see that on an ultrasound), I could see her practicing her “breathing”, and she’s in the perfect position for delivery already. High five, baby Turner!

Happy birthday!

Comments 3 Image

Happy birthday!

My running partner is four years old today!

Just a quick note to say that I am running the Surf-n-Santa 10 Miler tomorrow morning in Virginia Beach. I haven’t run a step since the marathon, but I am finally able to traverse the stairs at school without turning sideways.

My first goal is to run mile one in 7:00 and my last mile in 6:00. We’ll see what happens in between.

My second goal is have at least two beers in me before 9:30 am (ok, that one isn’t a real goal).

And my third goal is to cheer my friend Lisa on to her fastest 10 miles ever. This is her longest race to date. Go @patsmom12brady!

**disclaimer: I am NOT a Patriots fan. I am only a fan of Lisa, who happens to be a Pats fan (and we can still be friends).**

Dog Days

Leave a comment Standard

Luckily the summer heat has disappeared, which gives me the change to train with my favorite running partner… My dog Bella!

Bella just being her usual happy self.

I do not claim to be an expert on running with your dog. However, I’ve done quite a bit of training with Bella in the three years that we have had her, and I’ve learned a lot in that time. First of all, I always bring several doggie bags with me. There’s nothing worse than having your dog go to the bathroom on someone’s freshly manicured lawn and have nothing to scoop it up with… and then realizing that they’re sitting on their porch drinking coffee. Whoopsie.

We used to use one of those retractable leashes, but I found that it’s actually better to have a traditional leash. Ours is about 5-6 feet long. I can quickly pull her to my side if we encounter a cyclist or another runner, and there is less risk of getting tangled up or cut by her leash. We almost always leash her when we run, although we have allowed her off leash to run the .6 miles around our neighborhood a few times. We only started doing that a few months ago because she’s becoming a little more mature now, but when she was younger she would have never stayed by our side off leash.

In the summer months I pay very close attention to how Bella is breathing because dogs do not tolerate running in the heat very well at all. Humans have a very effective sweat mechanism for cooling, but dogs only “sweat” through their tongue. Bella only runs two or three miles at a time in the summer, and I usually run with her around our neighborhood so she can stop for water breaks. For comparison’s sake, in the winter she has run 14 miles without stopping. When she was little, she would almost always begin our runs at 6:30 pace, so I had to train her to start much slower. Now she starts off at about 7:30 pace and is able to maintain that pace for a lot longer. She’s actually a great running partner for easy days, and sometimes on other days I will start my run with her, drop her off, and then finish my workout at a quicker pace. On days when I am feeling unmotivated, she helps me get out the door because I know she needs the exercise just as much as I do.

One of the things we have to be especially careful of is to check Bella’s paws during the run and afterwards. We have these burrs that sometimes hide out in the grass, and they have this almost Velcro-like property where they stick to shoelaces and get stuck to Bella’s paws occasionally. It’s only happened a few times, but I can tell something’s up when she starts to drag behind suddenly. Those suckers hurt just to touch them with your fingers, so I imagine they must hurt her paw pads a lot. Another thing worth mentioning is that we frequently check Bella for ticks if we go running in the park or on the trails. Even if your dog gets regular preventive flea and tick medicine, it’s still a good idea to check.

Dogs make great running partners. They never complain about the pace, and they are always ready to go at a moment’s notice. I never thought our dog would enjoy running so much, but she actually helped me get out of my training rut during the winter when we first got her. Just remember to give them lots of water and lots of love, and stay alert.

Also, we found out the hard way that Bella loves Picky Bars, but don’t feed them to your dog! There’s lots of good stuff in there that dogs can have, but they also have chocolate which is a no-no for pups. Bummer for the doggies, but more for me.

(Check with your local SPCA or Humane Society for more information.)

Por Fin… Eugene in Pictures (Part 5)

Leave a comment Standard

Early wake up call on our last full day in Eugene, but it was for a good reason. I met up with some of the Oiselle Elite Team ladies as well as well as my blog friend Morgan (miss @mohosjo) for a long run. We ran about 10.5 miles and time flew by as we chatted about random topics and gossiped. I wish I could run with them every day.

Afterwards Pete and I hit up the famous Voo Doo Doughnuts.

Interesting slogan, eh?

The aftermath. From top left: The Loop, Maple Blazer Blunt, Triple Chocolate Penetration, VooDoo Doll, Chocolate Coconut, Maple Bacon Bar

I had a few bites of each one. I really liked the one with Fruit Loops and the VooDoo Doll, but my favorite was the Maple Bacon Bar. Pete and I felt a little queasy for the afternoon but it was worth it. We showered and headed to the track for the final day of the Olympic Trials.

It was a short day that was also packed with finals.

We ran into Ato Bolden on our way to get lunch.

We were seated in the East Grandstand, with a great view of the javelin final. The field events were more exciting than I had expected. We watched one of the women hit the Olympic A standard and a huge PR on her final throw, and with that she had made the Olympic Team. We also saw Brittany Reese defend her title in the Long Jump after protesting the call by the judges that her jump had been a foul. Lots of drama even before the first race on the track.

Olympic Gold Medalist and (former) World Record holder Dan O’Brien presenting awards to the women’s javelin team.

Women’s 400 meter hurdles final, won by Lashinda Demus (hip number 6). They were moving so fast it was hard to take a photo!

I had to take notes for a Oiselle guest blog post during the women’s 1500 final so I didn’t get to take any pictures, but it was a great final. The men’s 1500 final was exciting too, as I was obviously too enthralled to snap any photos.

The last event was the men’s 200 meter final. Wallace Spearmon, Jr. won and his father, who was seated directly behind us, broke down into tears and wept. Everyone congratulated him on his son’s achievement, and he asked me who else had made the team. He had been so happy for his son that he didn’t even pay attention to whoever finished behind him (and rightly so). I quickly checked Twitter and let him know that Maurice Mitchell and Isiah Young had also made the team. Mr. Spearmon, as well as everyone else, was surprised that Shawn Crawford had not made the team.

Men’s 200 team: Mitchell, Spearmon, and Young

The Trials were over… so what next? Time for some food and then the after party. We met up with my James Madison teammate Claire, a rep for New Balance, at the Wild Duck.

Me with CW at the Wild Duck.

We were hoping to see Juli Benson, another JMU alum, and also the coach of New Balance athlete Jenny Simpson. Unfortunately Juli did not make it out that evening, but we “settled” for meeting the 2011 World Champion at 1500 meters. She was very nice despite having been in drug testing and processing for hours after her race.

Pete and I with Jenny Simpson.

Eventually we made it back for a couple hours of sleep before our early flight back to VA.

Wings out!

Although we were sad to leave, we were happy to see her once we got home!

Bella our “furry daughter” on the way to NY the next day.