2015 Cinco de Mayo 5-Que

Date: 5/2/2015
Location: KCMO

The Cinco De Mayo 5K is a relatively new 5K, running through the Southwest Boulevard neighborhood. It was a really cool race in that it felt like the whole community came out to be involved. The race started and finished at the community center. After the race, there was a street carnival with vendors and lots of bounce houses for the kids. Seriously. At least 5 different giant bounce houses. It was really cool.

While waiting for race start, the boys played in the nearby park. We headed toward the start line and took pictures in front of some incredible murals. I was tired (I was sick but didn’t know it yet) and ate some salted caramel GU and assorted carbs before the race.

I headed over to the starting line and lined up at the front. (Right behind a girl who looked like she ran high school track, doing all sorts of calisthenics. Kind of weird).

The course wound around a sort of industrial warehouse type area, and residential area… so that was interesting. Many of the houses in the area had been renovated with a super modern style, which was really cool. I love architecture, especially modern, so I made it a point to go back and check out those houses after the race.


Course map from my Strava


The course itself was a small loop that dropped us on Southwest Blvd then back. It was pretty flat with just a couple small hills.

I made my perpetual mistake of going out a little too fast and paid for it in the last mile. Compounded with all the fatigue I had been feeling, I had to stop and walk a little – which is the thing I hate doing worse than anything in a race. (Other than maybe pooping my pants. Which I haven’t done. Yet). I mustered up some energy and ended the race with a small kick.

My boys hit the street carnival while we waited for the awards ceremony. I can’t say enough about how neat this community is and all the fun the boys had playing. At the awards ceremony, I learned I had gotten 2nd AG, where I was given a hat, bandana with chili peppers on it, a small bottle of Tabasco sauce and a little bag of cosmetics, as well as a medal. How is that for swag?



2016 St Paddy’s 5K

Date: March 5, 2016
Location: Lawrence River Levee Trail

I could not seem to stay asleep Friday night. I woke up a few times on Saturday morning and knew by looking out my dark window that it was nowhere near time to wake up. But I was nervous. And it wasn’t the happy-excited I used to have before races.


Ceremonial laying out of the outfit the night before


Last year, I ran the St. Patrick’s Day race on fumes. I hadn’t eaten or slept in a week so I had no idea how I would do. I knew that end of February, I was in fantastic shape. Then, March 1, my world imploded and I was not coping well.

Last year, I ran the St. Patrick’s race balls-out, guns a-blazing. I listened to an aggressive playlist and mostly just thought about running over the top of people I didn’t like. My lungs burned and kept my arms pumping so that my legs would match.

Last year, I took second place in my age group, with a 27:03. I knew with good sleep, and running a paved road, my time could be so much faster. I never had the opportunity to see how much faster because I got sick before I could run another 5K.


Amazing teammate Lisa sent me a lucky blue button for my shoe!


Saturday, I drug myself out of bed. I got dressed and focused on how my outfit didn’t fit as well as it did last year. I had gone up a size in shorts and my skirt and top were fitting tighter. I ate a banana and made myself a cup of tea. I should have had a second cup, but I didn’t have time.


Hoping for super powers from my tea


We stopped at Panera so that I could get my customary bagel and cream cheese. I managed to eat half of it, but my stomach felt terrible so I gave the rest to little Tatum.

We parked at the lot across from Johnny’s Tavern and made our way over to the race. I used the restroom and noticed I was still hungry so I ate half an orange. I still felt hungry. I was dreading the run. I knew it would be soul-crushing when I would get passed. I wanted to go home and sleep.


Starting line – ready for some dirt!


The 10K started before the 5K. When they called the 5K, I headed over to the line and tried to find a good spot. I wanted to be ahead of the walkers, so I lined up somewhat toward the front. When the race started, I found myself still having to weave around walkers and slow jog-walkers. This was unfortunate since the trail was so narrow, I had to run off into the grass to get around. I probably burned up some energy with all that jockeying around at the starting line.


So, cheating. This is toward the end.


I set in at 9:00 pace and it felt OK. It felt reasonably hard, and I knew that running levee trail would be slower than a road race, obviously. The problem came at about a mile in. a nasty twinge that I had noticed the day before. A twinge in my right shin that made my leg buckle under me. I had this happen at work on Friday and ignored it. I stayed on my feet and decided to just slow down a little. Maybe that would help. But it didn’t. It twinged and hurt and I really started thinking about the odds of being able to push past that much pain for 2 more miles.

I slowed down and dropped off onto the grass. I tried stretching my calf out on the edge of the trail but it didn’t seem to bring any relief. I tried to walk it out, but it brought on horrible shin splints that made my clench my teeth. I would start to run again and tough it out as long as I could until the twinge would make my leg buckle again.


This one, too.


We reached the turn-around point and I continued to run. I thought I could just tough my way thru it. Once I hit 2 miles, I knew I was fooling myself. I t wasn’t going to happen. I looked at my watch and knew that there really wasn’t a point to torturing myself, so I started taking walk breaks. Just doing anything I could to finish the race and not cry.

I spotted my children right before the finish line and managed to wave as I jogged by. My son Emery had made some pretty epic signs for me and seeing their little faces and hearing them cheer genuinely made me smile.


Home stretch


After the race, I helped the boys make plates of pancakes, sausage and fruit. Once I made it back to my car, we wrapped my right leg with Arctic Ease wrap and I headed home to rest.


I didn’t teach him to eat like that.


Running a race 4 minutes slower than the previous year was a painful reminder that I am still not well. But… I did get up and race. I am still fighting, and that is something I can hold my head up about. It was a stake in the sand. I did it. Onward from here.


Emery looks excited to be with his mom.


Saturday afternoon, I took Emery to the democratic caucus to support Bernie Sanders. It was an amazing time but wow, sitting for hours on the hard bleachers did nothing for my back. Bernie won our district 78% to 22%. Yay! J

Monster Dash

Event: Monster Dash 5k

Location: City Market, KCMO

Bat-Tatum wished me lots of luck before my race

Bat-Tatum wished me lots of luck before my race

I ran the Monster Dash a few years ago and loved it! I love running at night. I loved running the City Market area! I love seeing the costumes. I decided the day before the race to run, so I dug around and found my costume from the last time I ran it. (I had to pull a Winnie the Pooh and think thin to get my pants on. Yikes! Being sick and gaining weight isn’t good for my ego.)

This race winds through the City Market, which is basically to the side of downtown KC, near the River Market district. The City Market has some really cool restaurants and shops which I really mean to check out sometime. The course sends you along the Heart of America bridge and back. The race starts with a nice downhill, which become a crappy uphill when you finish. (Funny how that works).

Since I decided to run at the last minute, I signed up at packet pick-up. The line was ridiculously long, and moving really slow. I was in line for 30 minutes and they delayed the race for many of us. (There were still people in line when they started, I believe). This is really strange for a KC Running Company event as they are always so well run, so I don’t know why the wait to so long. Maybe more runners than they planned?

While I was in line, the boys checked out the Halloween activities. They had face painting and a kids maze. Tatum enjoyed getting some candy – because, candy.

I was running for fun – since I am no where near PR shape. I was watching my pace and kept it at a good clip. Not fast enough to suck wind, but enough to keep it fun and get my legs moving. It felt nice to work my legs and lungs a bit.

I stopped for a short walk break when I felt like maybe I was over-doing it. It isn’t worth setting my recovery back at a fun run that I won’t PR at. There were a lot of cute costumes. My favorites were a Walking Dead Michonne (with a sword!) and Reno 911 Lt Jim Dangle. (Lt Dangle actually won the overall. Capt America was 2nd).

I was so happy to see my boys cheering at the finish line. I kicked a little when I saw them. The race had a super cute medal waiting for me at the end.

For dinner, we took the boys to Lulu’s Noodle Shop. It was a nice treat and I am always so excited when a restaurant has a nice gluten-free menu. My favorite is the pineapple fried rice — so good!! I get mine mild and add spices since the medium is pretty hot. (I like spicy foods – but I also don’t like my lips to burn after I eat!)

Result – 12th out of 62. Not bad for a sick puppy.

Monster Dash 5K

Date: October 26, 2013

Location: Kansas City, MO


My son, Bowie, was really excited to run this race… anything Halloween-themed is cool with him.  Dane decided to try out the race as well. To be honest, I didn’t put a lot of effort into my costume. I don’t tend to dress up for races. I found a black tutu that lit up. I found a pair of black running tights at TJ Maxx that I drew spider webs on with a white paint pen. I wore that along with a black long-sleeved BCG shirt and the Halloween edition Pro Compression socks.  I put my hair in braids and stuck little orange and black spiders in the braids, and I put on a ton of eyeliner and eyeshadow.

The race was held in the City Market district of Kansas City.  It was a night race with the kids race starting at 6:30. We checked out the kiddie area first and took our picture in the scary maze.  The boys all got candy from giant candy buckets. (I even snagged some crackers).


Bowie ran first in the Lil Monster kid run. (I should note that Bowie had played 3 games in a soccer tournament that morning). Bowie came in second, but if he had a few more feet, he would have reeled the winner in. If Bowie hadn’t played soccer earlier that day, I am sure it wouldn’t have been close at all.  That is Bowie on the right in the picture. Dane ran in the next heat. He ran so fast he lost a shoe! He came in 5th.

And then I was off!  My knee was still a bit sore from the KC Half Marathon last weekend, so I was wearing this super-bionic knee brace I picked up.  The brace did something weird to my gait, like I couldn’t bend my knee maybe? Every time my left foot would hit the ground, it came down with a loud thwapping sound.  My knee didn’t hurt but my shin started to hurt… which I ignored and kept going.  I started the race a little too quickly and slowed down mid-way thru.  It was a nice course and it was fun crossing the bridge at night.


After I got my medal (super cute medal, btw!), the boys chowed down slices of pizza. I wasn’t in the mood to eat anything greasy after running, so I just ate a little bag of trail mix.

Not a PR for me but I was happy to run without being in serious pain. Also, note to self: running in tutu isn’t for me. The tutu kept hiking up high and I spent too much time pulling it down.


#9 in Age Group

Stars N Stripes 5k

Event: Stars N Stripes 5K

Location: Blue Springs, MO

Date: 07/04/2013


I signed up for this event before I found a Fourth of July run closer to home… oh well… I signed Bowie (6) up for the Kid Run as well.

The course description mentioned a beautiful scenic course, but in actuality, it was just doing laps through a shopping mall parking lot.  Fail.  The volunteers were really friendly and the medals were really nice…. but doing laps around a parking lot didn’t really make my want to push hard.  (Considering I had injured myself doing the Double Road Race just days before).

Bowie was disappointed that the Kid Run was very short – he really likes competing long distance.  Wonder where he gets that from? 😉 But his medal rack is filling up so he doesn’t complain too loudly.

Time: 28:36

Pace: 9:14

#16 of 82 Age Division

Shamrock Shuffle

Event: Shamrock Shuffle

Location: Lawrence, KS

Date: 3/9/2013


The course for this race was again on the levee trail in Lawrence, but instead of starting behind Johnny’s Tavern as the Sweetheart did, it started on the other side of the bridge in the opposite direction.  It was a rainy day and I didn’t want to take my phone (I didn’t have a Garmin yet) so I ran “blind.”  I did some stretching and slow jogging to get ready. My IT band was feeling tight and my hips were sore.  There were some interesting costumes that morning – one guy was running in tighty-whiteys and suspenders.  Yikes.  I wore a white running skirt, white and green shirt and shamrock Pro Compression socks.

I was feeling great in the race, chugging along, but I probably started out a little too fast.  I didn’t know how far I had gone and that was really messing with me mentally.  I took a short walk at what was probably 2.75 miles. If I had known I was that close, I wouldn’t have walked, but like I said, mentally I was beating myself up.  When I saw the finish line, I started sprinting.  This was actually a really bad thing as I over-strided and ended up really hurting myself.  More on that in a bit.

Time: 29:11

Pace 9:24

Aftermath… Months of training for the half marathon on the brick streets of Baldwin had taken its toll. After this race, my IT Band was angry. I had ignore my aching hips and weird feeling in my right leg for a month and this race did me in.  After this race, I was not even able to run a mile without having to sto in pain. My mileage plummeted and my hopes for a first marathon with “all running” were gone.  I learned running on cambered brick streets was a BAD THING to do.  I began seeing a chiropractor upon recommendation by my friend LaRissa.  Twice a week, I subjected myself to ART, Graston and dry needles.  I ordered custom orthotics. I was ordered to do lots of exercises (which, ahem… I never do).

I knew my next race, the Diva Dash, wasn’t gonna be good. I just didn’t know how bad…

Sweetheart Run

Event: Sweetheart Run

Location: Lawrence, KS

Date: 2/16/2013


This race started behind Johnny’s Tavern and ran along the levee in Lawrence.  It is a pretty narrow trail there, often times making it difficult to pass. It was snow packed and cold, to boot!  I had planned on wearing a cute pink and red tutu I made, but ended up just bundling up, trying to stay warm.  My hip was still a little sore, so I kept it pretty slow.

Time: 31:12

Pace: 10:03