Twitter Updates

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Quick update for Facebook friends

I joined Facebook at the beginning of last week and suddenly I found myself with renewed contact (albeit very casual contact) with many friends from the past, a great many of whom I've had limited/no contact with since high school graduation in 1996.

I decided to do a quickie life update covering the last 12 years for those who care. I limited myself to 30secs of thought per year:

1996: Graduated from Eden Prairie High School. Left to go to college in Bemidji. Came back home to the Twin Cities after one quarter.

1997: Started at the U of MN. Went out to Glacier Nat'l Park and Yellowstone with Nora and PeeWee.

1998: Was a nanny in Washington DC for 8 weeks over the summer. Hot air balloon ride with Kristin. Another trip west with Nora. Moved out of mom and dad's. Started work at Northwest Airlines. Started working at Walmart.

1999: Moved back home. Quit the airlines. Went back to school.

2000: Spent 4 weeks in St. Petersburg, Russia.

2001: Started nannying part time along with Walmart. Moved out to Plymouth. Got a kitten.

2002: Moved back home. Went back to school. Met the main players in the Fab Four. Trip out west with Nora (Crater Lake, Tetons).

2003: Started mountain biking, some grouse hunting, went to Mazatlan and broke my foot. Ran the Jamaica Reggae marathon. Camped in Denali with Nora.

2004: Finally graduated from the U of MN with a degree in Russian language and literature. Moved to Washington DC for a ophthalmic technologist training program. Dropped out of school after 3 months.

2005: Moved back to MN. Bought a townhouse in Shoreview. Ran the Superior 50 mile trail run.

2006: Qualified for the Boston marathon.

2007: Ran the Boston marathon. Ran the Superior Trail 100 mile trail run. Sold the townhouse, bought a house in Coon Rapids. Two mountain climbing trips out to Wyoming.

2008: Bought a 2nd house in Anoka. I've run 3 50K trail races this year.

Sure Game Wilderness Resort

Over Memorial Day we weekend we stayed at the Sure Game Wilderness Resort in Wirt, MN ( . Deb and Jeff are great hosts and we will probably return again next Memorial Day Weekend.

Eforce and I might take the dirt bikes up there this fall as well.

The New Neighbor

Look at what lives in the neighborhood of the Anoka house! It looked like a stuffed animal. I felt repelled by the thought of touching the thing, but in my attempt to get the picture it rubbed up against me; it feels like it's real!

A grand return... Season 6. I hadn't run a step since before Superior, so going on two weeks. I had almost forgotten what was going on in the show. And I was starting to get lazy, and my knees were starting to hurt. Does anyone else start to get sore joints when they DON'T run?

I did 10 miles this morning (9min/mi). I'm just eating a peanut butter sandwich before I get on with my day. Haven't even showered yet, as I'm heading out to mow the weeds that constitute my yard.

The strawberries are not exactly bursting green and vibrant from the ground, but they are not dead either, so the prognosis is still unknown.

I'm going to get some pictures of the Anoka house this afternoon to post later tonight.

Friday, May 30, 2008

I'm a home owner (again)

Even with all the hoops to jump through with foreclosed properties, I've somehow manage to officially close on 2 properties: my current Coon Rapids house and my new-as-of-today house in Anoka.

I have two renters signed to year-long lease agreements.

The interior painting is almost done and the colors are very modern and classy. I'll get some pictures (especially of the upstairs bathroom).

The new patio door is order. The carpet is coming as well. And appliances.

I have some odds-and-ends to pick up at Home Depot on Saturday, although truthfully none of my list could truly be classified as "odds-and-ends".

Maybe I'll be able to get back to "24" and my treadmill now.

I need to go to the gym!

... or my garage.

I've been way too busy to do an official workout.

Last weekend I did about 4 miles of mountain biking on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, as well as a 6 mile hike on Sunday.

I lifted weights on both Thursday and Friday of last week (and, wow, could I feel it in my hamstrings and triceps all Memorial Day weekend!)

I've had full days at work since Wednesday (leaving the house at 6am) and going straight over to Anoka to do "house stuff". I haven't really gone to bed before midnight.

Wyoming mountain climbing is coming up and I really should do a more concentrated effort of some incline walking or stepping. Starting this weekend I will.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

MS150 donations

From the 6th-8th of June I will be doing the MS150, a 150 mile bike ride between Duluth and the cities to raise money and awareness for multiple sclerosis. I'm trying to raise $500 in donations (tax deductible) in support of this fight.

My grandfather had MS and passed away before I was born.

EDIT: Donate online at (Thanks, Wayne, for pointing this out!)

I can also accept cash or checks and can gladly provide a receipt for any donation made. Email me at or call 952-239-1629 and I can provide my mailing address.

Please consider supporting me in this!


The haunting of Glove Lake

This weekend we were up in Wirt, MN. Our original plan was to stay at a resort on Saturday night and then camp at this idyllic campsite on Sunday night, a repeat of the trip we took last Memorial Day. Plans changed, however...

We were sitting at the resort bar late on Saturday night when we brought up with the other bar patrons our plan to stay at Glove lake the next night. The bar immediately became silent. I guess local lore is that Glove lake is haunted and most people won't even go there during the day. One of the men said a couple times he wouldn't camp out there for any amount of money. One woman swore up and down that years ago (late '80's) she was there with some friends. They had found a rock in the shape of an indian head and threw it into the water. Immediately, so she says, dark clouds rolled in and covered the sun and it started to thunder and lightning. She was very serious about this.

We questioned the resort owners the next day and they assured us that these people weren't just fooling with us; they really do believe that there are bad spirits there and would not camp out there for anything.

Four of us had camped out there last Memorial Day weekend and none of us had any bad feeling about it. In fact, we loved the place and immediately made plans to come back in 2008. The sun was out, we played in the water, and sat and relaxed by the campfire.

We weren't afraid of "spirits" this year, but we were repulsed by the documented fact that in 1990 a woman did shoot herself at the campsite, leaning against a tree. Knowing that we did not want to go back and camp there.

We sent Eforce, the Nightman, and J out to Glove Lake to check it out yesterday during the day. They threw rocks of various sizes/shapes into the water with no response. They looked for bullet holes in trees, but really didn't find one.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Strawberry patch

FINALLY! On Sunday I had picked up a huge bag of strawberry plants from Vanessa. They had been pulled from her sister's garden, partially at my request as I had told her I would love some!

And I did want the strawberries. Just not all the work.

I meant to get them planted on Monday night. And Tuesday night. But I just had way too much else going on and usually didn't get home until too late.

Oh, and did I mention I didn't actually have a garden, either?

So between a couple hours yesterday and about 5 hours today I created a garden (20ft by 4ft) and planted 51 strawberry plants. Now I just have to hope that they start to grow and that the rabbits/deer don't eat them.
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"TO DO" Item 947

You know it's a busy week when in the order of importance "update blog" falls WAY down the list.

Here's what I've been doing this week:

I worked from 6:45a-5:00p M-W. Drive time was only 35 minutes each morning, but probably due to the weather my average drive time home was over an hour!

After work each night I went over to the Anoka house, a.k.a "Party Central". This usually involved a couple of Home Depot visits each night to pick up paint, supplies, and order the carpet. For some reason the carpet ordering took a half hour, which is way long considering all that needed to be done was to finalize an existing quote. The house is looking great! As of Friday morning most of the upstairs is painted. We nailed dead on the paint color we wanted for the front entry/upstairs hall.

Wednesday I had to check in (for the last time) with Ramsay County, so this involved a after-work drive to downtown St. Paul. Ironically enough this was one of my easiest commutes home (Bloomington to Coon Rapids via St. Paul?)

We're going out of town this weekend so I mowed my yard and Randy's yard (so he could continue painting at Party Central). Of course it turned out my mower blade is way dull. Anyone know of a good place near Coon Rapids to have mower blades sharpened?

I have a bag of strawberry plants from Vanessa's sister's garden that NEED to get in the ground. I planned on doing it every evening from Monday through Wednesday, but it just didn't work out. So yesterday after mowing I dug into a sunny section of lawn to turn into my strawberry patch. I got a quarter of it done (about 20 sqft.) I need to get the rest done this morning and the plants in the ground before heading up north tomorrow morning.

I have to start going to the gym again or else choose to cancel my membership. I really need to get a weight workout in and I've skipped the last month. I went yesterday and will go again today and tomorrow morning before leaving. Hopefully I can pick it back up again after the holiday weekend.

"24" remains on pause in my garage, as I don't have extra hours available to run more than the 20 minutes of intervals I am planning on doing at the gym following weights.

Good news: I think I've found a good fit for Party Central with Eforce.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Garage runner's club

I got to say "hi" to many people at Superior, none of whom I ever see in my garage on my treadmill:

Kel, Matt P. : Now when I read your blogs I no longer have to thinking I'm stalking you.
Curt, Carl: I've seen your names on emails and now have verified you exist outside of the computer
Kate: "The Lore of Running" is awesome... thanks much!
Wayne, Maria, Les: Very few muddy sections... thank God we had Psycho Wyco
Steve: Can't wait to read your race report.

I'm sure there were other people, too, that I didn't mention here.

How I learned to love Oberg Aid Station to Finish

Well, I maybe didn't learn to love it, but for the first time in my experience with the Superior races I got to cover this section without being in a complete physical and mental pain, fighting to just keep moving forward, close enough to know I would finish, but far enough away to know I still had some work to do.

There's a good portion of this section that is very runnable! I had no idea. In my previous experience I remembered it as a miserable section that never ends.

I finished yesterday running up the gravel road all the way to the finish, instead of my past finishes where I would burst into tears when I got to the gravel road and slowly drag myself to the end.

I finished the 50K yesterday in 6:22. I was guessing/aiming for about 6 hours, but since the treadmill-to-trail time estimation is always a tough one to do, I never really know what to expect. I'm happy with my time. I think that maybe if I'd really pushed it I could have cut 3-5 minutes off, but not much more. My time was good enough for 3rd place women's open.

I was very lucky to meet Rachel early on in the race and we ran from probably mile 4 to the finish together. This was her first trail run (and she loved it) and her first ultra! It was great to have the company and camaraderie throughout the run, and it worked out great because we seemed to have a very similar pace for the race.

I fell only once, an "uphill" fall leaving just a slight scrape. I started to fall and caught myself a dozen or more times. Rachel did a "downhill" fall, a.k.a. the "superman" and has an awesome bruise/scrape badge of honor.

Starting the run I was not "feeling it". I had pulled myself out of bed at 6:30a, not really wanting to go. I ran the first couple miles thinking to myself that it'd be awfully easy to just turn around and walk back. Ultimately I'm glad I worked myself through the rough spots.

I stayed the night at the Mountain Inn. I had been planning on sleeping in my car, but once I arrived in Lutsen I realized I really didn't want to do that. I have a feeling my car sleeping days might be over (unless I literally don't have the choice). I slept in my car before the Superior 50 mile in 2005 and before the Fargo Marathon (where I qualified for Boston) in 2006.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Eforce takes the stage

I FINALLY figured out where my saved photos go after I transfer them from my camera to the computer. They continued to get lost in some mysterious folder.

My first picture showcase goes to the Enforcer (a.k.a. Eforce, Enforcimus, Enforcicles) on his dirt bike at some random dirt pit in the middle of a X-mas tree farm between Duelm and Santiago, MN. This picture was from our first venture out, back on April 4th.

Figuring out my camera may prove to be a dangerous thing.

I still plan on Superior for Saturday, leaving for Lutsen tomorrow afternoon. After sleeping in I have to do some cleaning in Anoka to make sure the house is presentable to show to renters. I also have a to-do list that's a mile long in general.

I won the email race for a free copy of "The Lore of Running" that Kate H. was giving away and I need to pick it up in Lutsen, so I had better go!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Blowin' in the Wind

Right now it looks like I WILL be at Superior on Saturday.

Of course this morning it looked as though I would NOT be there.

But yesterday morning it seemed like I WOULD.

And Saturday? Well, I didn't think I could.

I'll "twitter" you updates as they happen.

A great new idea!

I was running on my treadmill tonight and super unmotivated. So I came up with a new idea for an interesting workout. No, I didn't do the work out tonight. I'm often much more interested in living in my head and coming up with great plans and ideas than I am in actually following through all the steps necessary to put the ideas into play.

[10 minute mile, 9 minute mile, 8 minute mile, 7 minute mile] repeat ad nauseum.

And that's really all the further I can press that idea for now due to lack of speed/endurance. I could maybe/probably throw in a half-mile repeat at faster-than-7min/mile, but I'm not really sure. I probably should throw in a minute of walking in there a few times, too.

What did I do tonight? The above one time, followed by 4 minutes of walking at an incline to finish off my episode of "24".

My new house

I'm buying a new house in Anoka, about 5 miles from where I live. I'm not going to live there, but I'm going to rent it out. Eforce is a lock, but I'm looking for one other person to share the house. Here are the details, straight off my craigslist ad. Please pass this info on to anyone who would be interested:

Share a newly remodeled single family house with one adult. You will
have three bedrooms and full access to all shared areas of the house
(kitchen, laundry, all appliances, baths, backyard/patio/deck). You
will also have one space in the attached double garage, along with
storage space. There is plenty of room in the house for your

Quiet residential Anoka neighborhood with fast and easy freeway
access. Located close to downtown Anoka and its shopping,
entertainment, and parks.

All utilities will be shared. Pets are negotiable.

Available the first part of June.

Contact via phone or email.

952/239-1629 /

Monday, May 12, 2008


... a sunny weekend day.

Yesterday, Sunday, after a Mother's Day brunch at OCB, I was able to enjoy the sun and the weekend simultaneously.

Eforce and I did about 7 miles or so of dirt biking up near Orrock, and then did a 2.5hr (approximately 7-8 mile) hike through Sand Dunes State Forest. It was quite sandy.

I still need to get out on my mountain bike sometime soon, but time is scarce.

Due to a bus party this weekend splitting up the Fab 4, I may make an appearance at the Superior 50K this weekend. Have not fully mentally recovered from the 100 last fall, however, as I feel a little anxious while thinking about it. But on the bright side, this might be the first race I finish at Superior that doesn't end with me stumbling up the gravel road at the end, sobbingly thankful to be finished.

I'm still trying to get my new camera cable squared away so I can post a picture, namely of Eforce on the dirt bike.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Season 6

Yes, I'm finally watching Season 6 of "24" for the first time. I'm two episodes in and it's a good one.

I've done a distointed 7.5 miles or so both today and yesterday. Disjointed because I've been interrupted and have come and gone from my treadmill at least once each of the days and have had the treadmill power-off on me. And I've been on the treadmill for 3 episodes each day, which, at about 42 minutes/episodes, is about 84 minutes. And I'm moving at 5mph and alternating my incline up to 12% and back down. It actually works out great as one "up-and-down" equals one episode.

I also did 11 miles on Friday afternoon, a straight 6mph jaunt.

There's a good chance I'll be camping next weekend and will choose to skip out on Superior 50K.

I'm heading off to church now and get to go to the tanning booth afterwards. Yippee!


I think rain has cancelled our camping trip for the weekend. Bummer.

It's supposed to be sunny on Sunday afternoon, anyways, so maybe a person can do a little mountain biking or dirt biking.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Shopping deals

I am using some of my excess funds to finish up my summer camping supply shopping on Monday night. Here's what I scored:

At REI I bought a water filter (Katadyn HikerPro $74.99), a new purse ($34.99), and some tent waterproofing ($19.99). I had a 20% off coupon (used on the filter) and had $66 of dividends, so my grand total was about $30.

At Cabela's I bought a new handheld flashlight (Cabela's brand, 5LED with a laser option $29.99), a couple of packs of clearance duracell batteries (2pks of AAA for $0.88!), and something else I can't think of. I had a $25 gift card and a $15 gift certificate, so my grand total was $10.

The power of 3's

Last night I did some incline stuff on my treadmill at home. I'm getting so close to the end of season 5 of "24". I think this season is a pretty darn good one.

I did a pyramid type incline workout, all at 5mph and 1 minute intervals: 1%, 2%, 1%, 3%, 1%, 4% etc. up to 12% and back down, then back up and down in multiples of 3. Was the multiple of 3 technique some secret formula? Nope; it was just something to get me to an hour long workout.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

My gym workout

I ended up driving over to the gym tonight to finish up a workout that was waylaid by an impromptu Wyoming Wilderness planning meeting that suddenly convened in my garage. At its conclusion it was too late for me to risk disturbing the neighbors with the sound of "24" gunfire and explosions, erupting from my t.v. at volumes loud enough to overcome my squeaky treadmill.

Lifetime Fitness, of which I am a member, is 1/2 a mile away from my house. I sometimes act like it's a huge inconvenience to go there; it's not.

I did one of my favorite "gym treadmill workouts": 60 minutes on the "random setting" and level 20, at 3.5mph. Level 20 randomly switches around between 9-15% incline. I do this workout as an interval session by running every 4th minute at 6mph (10 minute mile). It's luck of the draw: I don't know what incline level the 4th minute will be. 9% ends up feeling "easy" quite quickly, because running a minute at 12-15% incline is a BEAR.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Skipped the 10K

On Saturday I skipped the 10K in Milaca, which from what I've read was really wet.

I did do 6 miles on Friday and 12 miles on Sunday on my trail treadmill. I had the revelation about a week ago that it is now a trail treadmill (uneven and dented bed) due to the fact that when I bought my three new house windows in February I stored them on the treadmill for a week or two. Lesson? Okay to hang clothing on unused treadmills. Not okay to rest windows.

I'm not going to be at Ice Age on Saturday as I will most likely be either at Savanna Portage State Park or Jay Cook State Park camping and mountain biking. Although I might run on some of their trails, it will not be 50 miles worth of running unless the rest of the Fab Four sleep in until 12noon.

I may make an appearance at Superior.