Freezefest 2017

Corridor Running Freezefest 5k

I am so excited to have something to write about. I ran and volunteered at the Freezefest 5k or should I say “Warmfest.” (More on that later.)


As most of you know, I am on the board of my local running club, Corridor Running. This is the first race of the year for the club. In addition to running, and creating the playlist for the event, I was on board to take pictures, post to social media, shoot video and anything else they needed me to do.
For my official race review – check out bibrave.com

Gear: Ice Cream Sparkle Athletic Skirt, xx2i France2 sunglasses, Garmin Fenix 3, Go Pro, Adiddas boy shorts, Lululemon shirt, Corridor Running Trucker hat, spi belt,  2xu Vectr socks, aftershokz


The event always takes place in February, and it has a later start time of 11 am. It is in Marion, IA at Squaw Creek Park. This is mostly due to the weather. It can be cold or as we saw this year, record warmth, nearing 60 degrees.

*Personally, I would rather have a race start at 7 or 8 am. I run in all weather conditions, so I would just like to get up and get it done.

This is a smaller race, and it’s capped at 350 participants due to the lack of parking.. This means that packet pickup is the day of the race, which works out well because of the late start I was whining about above. Anyway…. the lodge allows room for an easy packet pick up as well as an area to get information about upcoming Corridor events & membership. It’s also a good location to stay warm, if the weather is cold. There is also indoor plumbing, however the system seems to get overwhelmed and backs up….but don’t fear there are extra, clean port-o-potties set up outdoors.

It was time to start the race. While there were no signs encouraging people to line up according to pace, everyone did an excellent job of self seeding.  Mark – the club president said some words, and then the National Anthem was sung live, however if you were in the back of the corral, you might not have been able to hear it.

With this being a 5k, my usual goal is to run it sub 30 minutes, however I had a Go Pro in one hand and my phone in the other. I wasn’t sure if I would be able to tackle all of this.

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The race course wasn’t too difficult, it was basically flat, and on all paved surfaces. Ok, so the finish was uphill and there were some potholes….but totally manageable. The course also has out and back type sections, so you can cheer on the others.


I crossed the finish line, while watching the clock…SUB 30!!! My official results:


After I was done running, I picked the camera back up and snapped some pictures of the award winners. Then I went to check out the post race food, since it was lunch time. Volunteers called the “cookie monsters” brought a lot of baked goods, and there were 2 different types of homemade chili. There were some sandwiches and fruit too. I waited too long and there wasn’t much food left, and I don’t care for chili, so I grabbed a cookie. There was also lots of beverages – bottled water, sodas, and some Miller Lite.

I really needed to get on my way, there was Hawkeye basketball game at 1pm… I was already late.

This is a great race! The price is right and it gets you out of the winter funk. The club does a great job too, everything runs smoothly. I also like getting to socialize with everyone. I also forgot to mention, a portion of the proceeds goes to benefit the Boys & Girls club.


See you at the next Corridor Running event, the Shamrock Shuffle – PS registration is still open. There is a 3.17k and a 6.24k. They could also use volunteers.

Keep up with Corridor Running: Website / Twitter / Facebook / Instagram & don’t forget to tag #corridorrunning

 

 

 

Amana 2017

The Amana Freezer 5k – 2017 Edition

This is my favorite winter race in eastern Iowa. You may have caught my previous posts about this, even calling it “January’s Hidden Gem.” Well 2017 didn’t disappoint.

In addition to the meat swag bag and the hospitality of Amana, IA, what makes this race so great is that the local running community comes out of winter hibernation.


So, it was a foggy and unseasonably warm day, temps over 40 degrees. This was a nice change from the freezing temps I have run this race in before.


Since I haven’t picked a training plan for my upcoming marathons – the IL Marathon and Grandma’s… I should probably do that….I didn’t have any goals, or a set amount of miles to run that day. After I arrived around 8:30 to pick up my packet and meat bag, I set out to run some pre-race miles, that ended up totaling 4 miles.

Gear: Sparkle Athletic skirt, Corridor Running hat, Brooks Ghost 8, Aftershokz, SpiBelt, Moving Comfort pullover, Adidas short, Procompression socks, Garmin Fenix 3.

I attached my bib to my belt, and the timing chip to my shoe and made my way to the starting line. This is where I saw running friend, Joel.  We chatted and then everyone was moving forward…ha we weren’t paying attention and someone jingled some bells and the race started.


A refresher on the course, it’s an out and back on the paved road, you run out to East Amana, circle around and come back to Amana. There is a hill when you get to East Amana, but nothing steep. The road is open to traffic, but the locals don’t seem to mind. The most scenic thing on the course is the occasional beer can in the ditch or the cow pasture. Hey, this is Iowa 🙂


I had an ok race for already logging 4 miles. My 5k goal is always sub-30 and according to my Garmin I finished in 28:05. I felt like I pushed my best, even though each mile split was slower… oh well, I had a year of distance running, it’s hard to get the speed back.


At the finish line, I saw a lot of friends from the 100 mile group and Corridor Running. I felt like a social butterfly. One of my favorite things about running is meeting the people.


The crowd moved towards the post race food and awards in the building where packet pick up took place. Usually it’s jammed packed, but since the weather was so nice, there was room to breathe.

There is always a great post race food spread, really quite a lot for a 5k. Clementines, bagels, bananas, fruit pizza, Fig Newtons, and cookies. Then there was bottled water and hot chocolate.


I chatted with more friends, including a reader of the blog, Hi Rosemary!! That was a nice surprise…as we chatted I chuckled as the lady tried to start the race awards. Every year it’s the same old problem, she has this microphone, but you still can’t hear her, and then she gets mad…I am still laughing. Someone eventually get her a bull horn, which you really can’t hear either as everyone is chatting.

We all stood around listening to the awards, then it was time for the raffle. I remember the year Laura won the bird seed and she didn’t want it… ha! I always am happy to win anything….and this year was my year, I won a bottle of wine, 2 wine glasses, and an opener!!  Joel was standing around with us too and he won a gift certificate for a bottle of wine too.  He really doesn’t drink wine, so he thought he would trade the bird seed winner….that didn’t work when the bird seed winner took her prize and immediately headed out the door. People want that bird seed!

Once all the prizes were handed out, it was time to redeem the Millstream Beer ticket that came with registration. The Brau Haus is located just across the street, and you just walk in and choose a craft beer or soda. I happily chose the Iowa Pale Ale. As I was leaving to drink my beer outdoors, someone asked “What is most similar to Coors Light or Miller Lite?” The guy pouring the beer chuckled, and said “tap water.” I laughed too.


I met Joel back outside and he was telling me how excited he was to tour Amana, and check out all the stores. The small town takes pride in their winter festival, so it is fun to check out all the shops. I couldn’t stay though, I had to get back to Iowa City and the Iowa Woman’s Basketball game. GO HAWKS!


I will always try to run this race. First, the meat bag! Second, the town rolls out the red carpet for the weekend. Third, the local running community wakes up for the year! Oh and the price is always right, around $25 (you can even get it for less if you want no meat bag or shirt)

January Corridor Update

Corridor Running – January Update

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Hey guys! If you don’t know I am on the board at Corridor Running. It’s my local running club (Cedar Rapids – Iowa City). The main website is going to be going through some updates, so I thought I would write what is happening or what is new this year with the club. (If you have questions just ask me – angie.maske-berka@corridorrunning.com, or you can find me on twitter, facebook, etc). This information is also shared in the Corridor Running newsletter, please sign up here.

2017 Membership– This year membership has changed to run a calendar year, from January 1 – December 31. Please note the new pricing tier as well. If you are a Corridor Running member you will have access to discounts on races as well as area businesses. Also new – VIP membership. VIP members receive an exclusive race bag and expedited packet pickup at all Corridor Running races, as well as entry to all Corridor Running sponsored race events. Please check out https://corridorrunning.com/become-member/ for more information.

Freezefest registration is open! Register by February 5th to guarantee a shirt and get your name on a bib. This race is capped at 350 participants, so register now. This race also needs volunteers, please sign up here. Check out this BibRave review if you would like more convincing. Join the event page on facebook, tell your friends!

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Shamrock Shuffle registration is open!! The early bird pricing has been continued through January 21 at 11:59pm, save yourself $5 and REGISTER! There are 2 distances for this event, the 3.17K and the 6.24k. Even better, wear your favorite green running attire and join the post race brunch at Micky’s Irish Pub. There is a facebook event page for this too.

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2016 Circuit – The 2016 circuit has come to a close, but will be open to add all your events through January 27, 2017. Here is the link to add your events. If there are questions, ask Mike. (mikenewman@corridorrunning.com)

2017 Corridor Running Race Schedule:

  • February 18 / Freezefest / 5k / Squaw Creek Park / Marion, IA
  • March 11 / Shamrock Shuffle / 3.17k or 6.24k / College Green Park / Iowa City, IA
  • May 7 / Y2Y / Prediction Run (7 miles?) / Cedar Rapids, IA
  • July 4 / Fifth Season Races / 8k or 5k / Cedar Rapids, IA
  • September 3 / NewBo Half Marathon / NewBo /Cedar Rapids, IA
  • September / Swamp Fox / 5k / Marion, IA
  • September 30 / TimberTrek / 4.3 mile / Obstacle – trail race / Amana, IA
  • October 14 / Indian Summer Distance Classic /10 mil or 4 mile /trail race / Solon, IA

Apparel – You can rep Corridor Running anywhere with your own CR gear!.

SOCIAL MEDIA– we are happy to see where you are running, where you are repping Corridor Running gear. Share the love on social media and tag #corridorrunning. Twitter – @corridorruning , Facebook – Corridor Running, Instagram – @corridorruning.

 

Run With Carl – 2016

Run With Carl

This race has become my labor day tradition. I think I have ran it the past 3 or 4 years. I have a few reviews at Bibrave.com if you want to check em out, but the race goes so smoothly, they are usually the same.

This race has a great history. Over 20 plus years ago, Carl Schilling, at age 15, lost his life in an car-pedestrian accident. He was a cross country runner. The race went on, in his name to raise money for scholarships for area schools. A few years back the family put on the last race, however with help from a title sponsor the race goes on today. This race is a great example of community.

Alright…so this year the event took place on Monday September 5, 2016 at 8:15 am in Bettendorf, IA, It was a sunny start, 70’s and humid.


Gear: Bibrave Tank, Donut Sparkle Athletic Skirt, Pro Compression socks, Ampla Fly shoes, Addidas shorts, XX2i USA1 sunglasses, Aftershokz headphones, Garmin Fenix

Josh was once again running this race too, and we met up with Kelly. Not only has this become my Labor Day tradition, I think these 2 have been running this race as long as I have.

We arrived in Bettendorf around 7:15 am, as Josh and I still needed to register. Race day price was only $25 and we were running the 5 mile distance. If we wanted a shirt we could pay extra…believe me, we don’t not need another shirt.  I emphasize this price, it’s a steal! I have paid $40 or more for 5ks, I don’t know why but I have….so this race keeps it affordable.

We have always parked at the Middle School, which is a short walk from the race start. There is plenty of parking and it’s free. Just make sure to get there in enough time before the road is closed for the race.

There are also plenty of port-o-potties behind the registration area. I also think the fitness center is open if you really needed to use an actual toilet. However the race is small enough and it’s first thing in the morning the porto’s are clean…and as many races as I have done, a porto isn’t a big deal.


We were all ready to run the race, so we stood near the start and listened to the pre-race announcements, and the live singing, by a quartet, of the National Anthem.

Having run a half marathon the day before, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I did plan to race this though. I was also in the testing period for the Ampla shoes, which helped create force in running so I would improve my mechanics and run faster.

I made sure not to start too fast, and being familiar with the course, I also made sure to watch my footing, as the first section is on the road and there are crack and some potholes.

Once off the road, the race goes onto the bike path. This area can be congested with runners, but it eventually spreads out. The bike path is an asphalt surface. It follows a little creek.

There are 3 water only stops on the course, with easy to pinch paper cups. Each mile is marked and there is a volunteer standing at each one shouting the overall time.

From the bike path, the course then goes through a residential neighborhood and then finishes on a busier city street. This year the last street was under construction, so the course was on the sidewalk, which was no problem as it is really wide.

The one thing I forgot about this race is the hills! They are not steep, but there are quite a few that make pushing the pace a little more of a challenge.

I came across the finish line, and found Josh cheering in finishers. I waited next to him and we saw Kelly finish the 5k. Wahoo!


We all walked into the finisher’s area and where there was bananas, apples, bagel pieces and cookies. We were all too late for the cupcakes. 😦 I wish they would have enough for all, but a cookie did the trick.

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There was a tent printing out results, just had to show them your bib number. Ugh, my time was slower than last year by about 2-3 minutes. I really felt like I was flying through the race course, just must have had tired legs. My time was 47:30, which is still a great pace of 9:30.

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We milled about for a while, but it was time to go to Dunkin Donuts and get some coffee and donuts of course. So we said our goodbyes to Kelly and were on our way.


Ok so we didn’t eat all the donuts… But left them with my niece. 🍩

I like this race and will always try to run it, let the Labor Day tradition continue. I am happy the community has stepped up to make this happen. See you next year Bettendorf!

 

New Bo Half Marathon

New Bo Half Marathon – Race Recap

Ahh man it’s halfway through September and I am just getting to this review. I guess football season and all the races have taken over…Anyway, here I have for you my New Bo Half experience…

For my official race review, please check Bibrave.com. I would also like to read your review, so add one!

The 2016 event took place on Sunday, September 4, at the New Bo Market in Cedar Rapids, IA. It was a cool morning, about 60 degrees, and partly sunny. It would warm to the upper 70’s and the sun made an appearance.


I arrived with plenty of time before the 7:30 am start. I needed to grab my packet and was planning on taking some pictures for the running club. There was plenty of free parking in a lot about a block from all the festivities. This lot was also easy to leave from, you weren’t blocked in due to the race route.

Gear: Sparkle Athletic skirt & Visor, Orange Mud Hydraquiver, Brooks Ghost 9, Walmart Tank, Procompression socks, Garmin Fenix, Addidas boy short, Aftershokz headphones, XX2i USA 1 sunglasses

I had registered online for only $40 and if I wanted a shirt, I could pay extra. I don’t need another shirt, so I love this option. There was also race day registration available. The line looked to go fast, I noticed it as I picked my packet up in the neighboring line.

Included with my $40 was a bib and timing chip, sticker, post race reusable cup and beer, and a handmade ceramic finishers medal.

I had some time to kill before the race started, so I milled around, talked to a few people and took those pictures. There was an announcer telling people all the happenings as well. I was on the lookout for my friend Jen. She was running her first ever half marathon.

It was close to starting time, and all the participants lined up at the start, which wasn’t the same as the finish. I happened to bump into Jen at the start. I was happy to see her. She looked very nervous. I hope my “it’s just another race attitude” didn’t frighten her more.


We listened to the National Anthem, which was sung live and the race was off! The spectators were lining the course the first few blocks, I made sure to slap some high fives.

Jen and I stayed together for a mile or so. I had to get to the North Liberty Farmers Market after the race, like immediately when I was done. I really wanted to stay with her, but she insisted I go ahead, and it made sense due to the time crunch. I was also stopping to take pictures for the the club too.

The course was an out an back, with a section on trail before we ran back. There were some rolling hills. Each mile we passed was marked with a flag. Once we got out of town, there were very few spectators. There was a photographer around the start and finish, pictures were provided for FREE! So many volunteers on course, and they were all friendly! There were police at the major intersections.

There were a lot of aid stations, but they only had water in plastic cups. There was no electrolyte drink on course. There was however a Gu stop at the halfway point. I need my electrolytes and I don’t do gels, so I made sure to carry my own. This was all mentioned on the website, so I was able to plan ahead.

I had a decent race, nothing to write home about. I finished…my time was 2:20:18.

I crossed the finish line and a medal was placed around my neck. These are really cool hand made ceramic medals, they were in the shape of Iowa.

I then grabbed my reusable plastic cup and filled it with water from the cooler at the finish line. Then up next was the post race food, there was a lot to choose from! The New Bo market is short for New Bohemia…so the post race takes pride in that and offers kolaches and pretzel rolls, there are also bananas and breakfast burritos.

I emptied the water from my reusable cup and made my way to the beer! The lady took my cup and filled it with a Lions Bridge brew, Yum! She never checked my ID and I am not sure she looked at my bib or medal to see if I ran the race. I only note this as later Jen told me she didn’t get any beer, they were out.

So I had walked through all the post race beer and food, and who do I see is also already finished…yep, JEN!!! She totally crushed her first marathon. She was thinking sub 3 hour and came in sub 2:30 or something. That is amazing!!! Congrats to her!!!


That was about it, I had to get moving to the farmers market. I said my goodbyes and walked the short walk to my car. I was out of the parking lot and in NL in no time.

This is a really nice race. For one – $40 for a half marathon is a steal!!! Next – it’s a fair course, not too flat, and some good hills. Love the personal touch of the handmade medal. My only one suggestion is to add some electrolytes on course. If I can do this again, I will.


Also instead of my traditional post with 23094820934  pictures, I will share my youtube video I created from the pictures I snapped when running.

 

End #NF 5k – recap

Iowa NF 5k Walk and RunIowa NF 5k Walk and Run

I had run this race last year, and wasn’t too impressed. However, a friend, Jen was going to run this year and I thought I would join her. I could also run to and from this event getting a few extra miles for the day.

Check out my official review at Bibrave.com

Gear: Sparkle Athletic superhero skirt, ProCompression socks, Moving comfort bra, Green Walmart Tank, Nathan race belt, Garmin Fenix 3, OM Endurance Pack, xx2i sunglasses, Adidas shorts, Brooks Ghost 9


This year’s race was on Saturday Aug 13. It was warm, sunny and humid.


I woke up early and ran to the Terry Trueblood Recreational area. It is about 4.8 miles from my house. I was hoping for more miles on the day, and I was early to register so I ran around the lake when I got there. I actually ran into Jen, when I was about done.

Registration opened at 7:00am, and it was about 7:15. I walked over to the table to register expecting it to cost more on race day, but nope, only $20, and I didn’t have to buy a shirt. The last thing I need is another shirt.

Jen and I talked until the race started, mostly about her neon orange shoes.

We lined up and noticed that the one and only Erik Sowinski was running this event. He’s the coolest, compete at the Olympic trials and come back to Iowa City for a low key 5k.

Ok, after sizing up the competition…who am I kidding I will never be that fast… the race started. It was an out and back around the lake this year. There were 2 water stops with plastic cups. There were no spectators and the course was not closed to the public. It was nice on the out and back to wish others good luck as you passed by them.

I started way to fast, I think it was because I was trying to keep up with Jen (who by the way is a former college track athlete.) I only caught her at the turnaround, and that was because she stopped to take a drink. I had my OM pack on, as I needed it for running to/from the race.

Jen and I ran for a while together and chatted a bit. I told her I ran the first mile in 8:44 and that was way too fast. I slowed down and she kept moving faster, I just couldn’t keep up with her, and I think she was trying to keep up with a 10 year old kid.

The course was all paved and flat, but I just didn’t have any more speed in me. Running a marathon a month, I haven’t done any speed training except when I pick up a 5k here or there. Sure I can run 26 miles, but pushing in a 5k is tough!

I crossed the finish line in 27:15, wahoo!! It’s always a goal to hit sub 30, well and to finish.


Once I finished I made my way to a banana. They also had cookies, granola bars, apples and bottled water. Pizza would be showing up at 11 am. They had events all morning until then, including a one mile walk, a silent auction and things for kids to do.


Jen and I waited around for a while as there was mention that Star Wars characters would be showing up. While we waited we found Herky.

While we were standing around, I was tapped on the shoulder by an Iowa City police man. I was like uh, what did I do? He noticed my OM pack, and as he had an OM bottle pack, was curious about this new one. He asked me what I was training for, probably confused why I was wearing it for a 5k. I told him I ran there and that I was running a marathon a month. He then topped me and said he needed something to help him train for his first hundo in a few months. I wished him luck.


They had the awards presentation. Jen and I won our Age groups and received a plastic medallion.


Then we saw the storm troopers from the 501st Legion, and other characters. Of course, we had to get a picture. They insisted I hold a light saber. I was all sorts of confused as they talked, I have done too many Disney races.


It was time for me to get moving home. I had about 5 more miles and it was plenty warm. I said my goodbye to Jen and trotted back.

This race was much improved over last year, and I forget that it’s a fundraising event versus a competitive 5k. I would consider running it again. I had around 13 total miles on the day.

 

50k? Ok!

Why would you run 31 miles?

The most obvious, cocky answer is … because I can! Also, have you not been reading the blog? JESH!

Alright, I’ll be nice. I ran 31 miles or 50k as part of my goal to run a marathon a month. In my previous post about this run (CVNT Ultra) I had planned to run from point to point on the Cedar Valley Nature Trail to accomplish at least 26.2 miles. However last minute safety issues near the starting point (runners being attacked) had me re-assess the plan. That turned into an out and back, that would be 31 miles or 50k (due to facilities)….that is why I ran 31 miles.

Background – I was on a short road trip with my dad, and we stopped to check out the “Largest Skillet” in Brandon, IA. We stumbled upon the Cedar Valley Nature Trail, a flat crushed rock, maintained trail that runs from Cedar Rapids to Waterloo, IA, approximately 51 miles long.

It’s hard to find a close race in the summer, or it’s a tough terrain on a trail that I am not trained for. Instead of spending all my money traveling and on hotel, I planned my own event.

Race Day – Josh was going to be “crewing” and friend, Joel was going to be biking. There were really no plans, but to make it out and back.

July 16, 2016. We arrived at the Center Point Welcome Center, which had a parking lot. There were bathrooms, but at 7am, the building was still locked. We made sure to utilize a nearby gas station. The weather was perfect for running this distance in mid July, 60’s and low humidity. (It would warm up)

Gear: Badass Running tank, Magenta Sparkle Athletic skirt, neon green Pro Compression Socks, Brooks Ghost 8, Orange Mud Endurance Pack, Bibrave Tech Hat, Garmin Fenix, 2 Toms, XX2i USA1 sunglasses

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My pack was loaded with food and water. Josh stood by with his phone and sounded a “Gong” and the race was on! Joel started near me and biked ahead. He was getting in some miles for the upcoming RAGBRAI. Josh got back in the car and planned to meet me in about 6 miles, at Urbana, where there is a bathroom.

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I was really enjoying the trail, I also had a new audiobook to listen too, which was drowning out the sloshing noise from the water in my pack. I was about 4 miles in, when Joel came riding back towards me on his bike.

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He notified me there was a dog up ahead. When I reached the home with the dog, it was barking at me, but appeared to have a collar on that was hooked to an invisible fence. It was nice to get the warning. Thanks Joel!

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I kept on trucking and met Josh on the trail. Not only was he crewing, he was going to run some miles. We ran into Urbana, where we met Joel. We stopped and used the bathroom and I had some snacks and Gatorade, it was about 6 miles into the run. Josh continued to run a little further with me.

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He turned back to get the car, to meet me again along the way. It was getting warmer and there were spots without shade. The next stop I met Josh, he ran a little more, but when we came to the car I drank more G2 and we put on some sunscreen.

After I parted ways again with Josh, the next meeting point was going to be Brandon, IA. There was a bathroom there. When I was about 2 miles away, Joel came riding back towards me. He said he was going to ride further to La Porte City, and he would catch up later.

I trotted into Urbana and spotted Josh. We had talked via phone (hell0 bluetooth headphones) and told him how I would love a cold orange Gatorade (heavy). My Garmin had 15.42 miles, but I thought since I had made it to Brandon, we needed a picture at the giant skillet, so I hopped into the car and we made it the few blocks to grab a photo. After chugging more Orange Gatorade and eating a bag of trail mix, I was now half way done and on my walk back to the start.

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It was about 80 degrees, and I was enjoying listening to my audiobook. However I was starting to slow, had to start walking a bit. I just kept moving though. The parts in the shade were great!

Some bikers passed by, some shouting they liked my skirt and my socks.

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I met up with Josh again. I was having an issue with chaffing, and I was out of 2Toms (GASP!) As the water drained from the pack, the fit became looser and I didn’t tighten it, causing an issue around my sports bra. I tried rolling more 2Toms, had Josh try to put it on too, but with the sweat and empty feeling of the bottle, I can tell you it didn’t help. (Review of the pack coming soon)

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I remember checking my watch around mile 21 when I saw Josh, I slowly ran until about mile 26, when I was back in Urbana. I was proud, I made it about a marathon distance and was still moving. I was also out of water.

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When I got to Urbana, I stopped at the bathroom again, and this time (thanks to a phone call via bluetooth) Josh had Orange Gatorade with ICE!!! It was the best ever!! He also filled my bladder with water, which made the pack fit lots better.I ate some more snacks and kept walking towards Center Point, I was on the home stretch.

Josh said he had a text from Joel. He made it to La Porte City, and said it was a good thing we changed the route as parts of the trail were closed to the north. He also realized he had been out for a while and enjoyed a hamburger and ice cream, and would try to meet us back in Center Point.

I developed a weird pain in my right calf at this time. However if I slowed down it felt worse, so I shuffled along. There was also an issue with time… I was close to setting a PR in the 50k…however I didn’t think I could push it…also we had 2 dogs at home that needed to be let out (Thank you neighbors for taking them out last minute.)

Joel came riding up behind me with about 2 miles to go. Josh had also parked in Center Point and ran back to find me, we had all met again on the trail. I think I remember Josh walking as fast as I was running (but he does have longer legs.)

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I remember looking at my watch when my 50k PR time passed, I had .40 miles to go….Then there it was the Center Point Welcome Center.

I looked at my watch and I still needed to run a few more tenths of a mile, so I made sure to get 31 miles by running a little past the center and back.

DONE!!! 7:14…5 minutes from my PR. With a last minute decision to run this far, I was ecstatic. I received some high fives from Josh (and some stares from the people at the Welcome center)

Josh had run about 17 miles and Joel had biked 60.

I attempted my post race jump photo, it was tough. My calf was in pain, felt like a giant knot and bruise at the same time.

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I needed a beer! We went to the Center Point Travel Plaza, it also had a McDonald’s. I got a chicken sandwich and the best, most saltiest fries ever!!!! We snagged some Summer Shandy tall boys and popped a squat in the parking lot. Joel joined as well. The best post race party ever! We had fun catching up and discussing the day.

I would love to make this an annual event. The trail is flat, and a great place to run. You can run as far as you want, bathrooms and towns to use or buy things as needed. There are roads to cross, but just make sure to look both ways and should have no problems with traffic. There are other users on the trail, but it’s long enough for everyone to share.

*Note on my health. I had been having some weird low blood sugar kind of issues. My stomach would feel super hungry, then coincidentally on my last long run effort I felt light headed like I needed to pass out. Well leading up to this, I cut out drinking so much sparkling water, see I don’t drink carbonated beverages regularly… I feel like I was filling myself full of bubbles and causing some weird gas feeling.  I also improved my snacking and protein intake. I was trying to eat something about every 2 hours, string cheese, nuts, and apple, peanut butter, etc. I ran this and had no ill effects, never felt hungry, or light headed. I had plenty of snacks with me, and drank a butt load of liquids. I am also writing this a week later… I have had a sparkling water or 2, and I noticed if I drink too much at once, I feel weird… so I will just not drink a lot of them. I also have not been super ravenous or felt light headed…this is after running 31 miles.  I will continue to monitor this situation.

I do not currently have an August 26.2 or longer on the calendar, I am still looking, but leaning towards the Wausau marathon. I wish there were some trail races that weren’t on tough technical trail, I am not trained for elevation at this time.

Stay tuned for my next adventure…..