Thursday, June 27, 2013

Summer Time!

Are you a camel? I like to pretend I am. (When I'm not busy pretending I'm a superhero or something.) That means going for long distances in the heat with no extra water. Usually it works for me, but I don't have too many problems with hydration, stomach, etc.  In spite of all that, I pay real close attention to what my body is telling me, especially in hot weather. 
For most people, the heat is something to deal with. Plan your routes around the locations of water fountains. Carry a bottle or two with you. Go out in the early morning before it gets too hot. BE CAREFUL! The hot weather can cause some problems and you need to be cautious. You've only got about three months of this to deal with -- in Michigan it's usually less than that. So be careful - -we want to see you in October at the starting line!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Print it!

It's a marathon worth of effort. Maybe an ultra. But I just reviewed the final edited version of my book, called the publisher, Mascot Books, and left them a message. "Print it!"
In three or four weeks, I should have actual copies of the book in my hands. To say I'm excited by that is probably an understatement.
and the adventure continues....
That's the title of the book. It's the story of setting a world record. It's the story of the Grand Rapids Marathon. But most importantly, it's the story of how an ordinary guy can do some pretty amazing stuff -- AND HOW YOU CAN TOO! 

When I was training for my first marathon in 1995, I discovered/decided that if you can run a marathon, you can do ANYTHING. Since then, I've been privileged to run marathons in a lot of really cool places. I've seen all the oceans, climbed a few mountains, made a ton of friends. Wild horses, penguins, cheetahs, whales and animals of all kinds have crossed my paths during a bunch of adventures. 
RUNNING CAN TAKE YOU TO AMAZING PLACES! You can enjoy adventures all over the globe, or even close by, as you explore the trails and streets of your own city.
My friend Bart Yasso puts it like this: "Never limit where running can take you!"
Check out some of the great destinations on, or get even crazier at and go explore the world!
Sign up for something cool and go do it.

Sunday, June 09, 2013


I'm hoping that the cooler temperatures will be good for the crops so that food prices will go down. I didn't realize that the cooler temps would increase the price of gas so much. Oh well. Guess I should just go for a run and save the gas. 
I like it when people read what I write. I can tell especially when I make a mistake because someone (usually several people) will be nice enough to point it out. They're always nice, though.
And then I'll get something which I'll share a little bit with you. It reminds us of the joy we get from running, sometimes when we don't even expect it.
"I was in the process of deciding whether or not to run my hometown race, the Sunburst (half marathon) in South Bend, when your newsletter hit my inbox.  This year year was supposed to be my "redemption race" after running in brutal  heat in 2011 and running injured in 2012.  But, as life goes, training did not go as anticipated this spring and I knew I could not run the race I had been hoping for.  The debate raged in my mind and heart, "should I just run for fun and set aside the hopes I had, or should I just wait until next year and shoot for the redemption I longed for?".  After reading your heartfelt words, my decision was easy.  I signed up within the next hour.

And this past Saturday, I ran.  I ran because I could, I ran because this moment was here and now, I ran because it is a gift I've been given.  I smiled through a good portion of the race.  I even made myself run the entire "damn Niles hill" (that's what I like to call it :-) ) at mile 12.  The joy of coming through the tunnel onto Notre Dame field this year was second only to finishing GR.

And wouldn't you know it.... I still finished 3rd in my age group and 18th woman overall.  My time was not my best, it was even slower than what I ran last year when I was injured.  But NONE of that mattered, the "goods" or the "bads".  All that mattered was that I had the chance and ability to run and I didn't take either for granted.

So thank you Don for the inspiration you have given me once again.  Thank you for the reminder of how precious life is and to embrace every moment. I thought of you often as I ran even though we've only met through newsletters and a finish line hug!
Thanks to Cleary Jankowski for this. Sometimes I get kinda choked up by reading my email. This was one of those mornings. Here's some video of Cleary running the marathon.
"I had the chance and the ability to run and I didn't take either for granted."
Did you get that?