Tag Archives: dog rescue

World Run Day – A “Race” Recap


Did you know that Sunday 11/11/12 was World Run Day?

I decided to participate!

World Run Day was established in 1999 to promote running around the world as well as charitable giving. Anyone can participate, anywhere, run any distance and donate to a charitable cause of their choice. Some cities have racing events set up specifically for World Run Day. Some people decide to run on World Run Day as part of a group. I decided to run the “race” as an individual, since I do like running alone.

I planned to cross running around Lake Calhoun off my list as part of World Run Day if it was a nice day. Otherwise, if time didn’t permit, I would just run a route around my neighborhood. In addition, due to the flexibility of running it on my own, I changed my race date to Saturday – 11/10/12. The drawback is that they didn’t have my race bib ready for download, but I did have my World Run Day t-shirt which I planned to wear!

My cause:

Homeward Bound Rescue

Homeward Bound is the non-profit organization through which I adopted my beloved Sophie Jean back in 2005. I actually went to the adoption to look at another dog, but upon seeing him didn’t think it was a good fit. I passed by two crates of puppies. One of the pooches turned her head and looked up and me with these darling eyes. It was love at first sight. I picked her up and couldn’t put her down. I went home with Sophie Jean that day. We are currently living happily ever after. 😉

March 2005

The Week of the Race…

It was kind of a rough/busy week.

The previous week I actually had to take Sophie to the Emergency vet one night. Talk about scary!

Then, Monday turned out to be a binge day for me. I scarfed down cheese and crackers. I haven’t done that in a long time. I made a mental note of it, picked up and moved on.

Tuesday, I was still feeling a bit down. My husband encouraged me to run before dinner. Afterward, I felt much better!

Wednesday, we went downtown right after work to enjoy dinner and beers at the Acadia Cafe in Minneapolis. We walked across the street to attend a concert at the 400 Bar. Although it was one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to {check out Shovels & Rope here!}, we didn’t get home until about 1am.

Then after little sleep and working all day Thursday, I had a Wine Tasting Thursday night. It was such a fun group of women and I got to see some people I haven’t seen in a really long time!

Still, by Friday, I was feeling very run down. I woke up with a nasty cough. I don’t get sick that often, so I thought it was really strange that I was getting this cough not long after getting a over a cold.

Then I had an epiphany.

This is the cough I would get once or twice a year in college. It didn’t hinder me from going to class or parties or out with friends. It’s just an annoying cough that comes from deep within my lungs. It’s rough sounding, kind of like a smoker’s hack, only I’ve never smoked a day in my life.

After all these years, I’ve finally  learned that this is my sign that I need to slow down…

That Friday morning, I also got up early to take my little Jean in to have her comprehensive exam, dental cleaning and some dental x-rays ordered by the ER vet. The poor little girl had to have two teeth extracted.

Still… Did you notice that all week, I only worked out ONCE?!

The Night Before…

After picking up Sophie from the vet and watering down her food so she could chew, she settled in for a long nap. My friend Stacy and her daughter, Delaney, were in town. So we dined at one of our favorite places to share a cheese plate – Enjoy! We also split a flatbread. {That’s kinda Mediterranean, right?}

Poached Pear Flatbread
poached pears, prosciutto, arugula and gorgonzola

We skipped our usual bottle of wine and opted for alternative beverage.s We knew we’d be splitting a bottle back at my place anyway!

We stopped and picked up dessert, too. Delaney was asking for cheesecake! And once we popped the cork on that bottle of wine, I enjoyed one of the best raspberry chocolate bars along with it.

We sipped and chatted up until midnight. {Can I just say that when Stacy and I get together we could talk for so many hours that we never truly catchup entirely?!}

I’m sure I wasn’t taking this as seriously as I would a “normal” race. But with Stacy and her four-and-a-half-year-old daughter staying over, I just wanted to relax and enjoy the company. Our plans for the following day were to just go with the flow. Which meant that I didn’t have a normal early “race time” and could even sleep in, as far as race times go!

Race Day…

When I woke, it was chilly, rainy and just all-around dreary outside. Bummer. My hopes of running around Lake Calhoun on perhaps the last beautiful day of the year went down the tubes. Sure, I’ve run in rainy, chilly, cloudy weather before. However, there was no way I was going to make Stacy drag her wee one to sit outside in that while I ran around a lake for 40 minutes before going to lunch with them. Besides, the nice weather that had been predicted was still in the forecast… just not until 2pm.

We still went to Uptown and enjoyed some Punch Neapolitan Pizza and had coffee at the Rustica Bakery afterward, for more chatting, of course! A double espresso is just what I needed to pick me up from this “lovely” weather.

Rustica Double Espresso

My mother-in-law had mentioned this bakery a couple of years back having heard about it from a friend when she mentioned her son lived in the Twin Cities. I love this place and highly recommend it if you are ever in the area around Lake Calhoun!

After I said my good-byes to Stacy and Delaney, I drank what I realized was my first glass of water of the day. DOH! Then I laced up my shoes and got ready for my World Run Day 5k run around the neighborhood.

I felt a little wonky at first. After all, I’d only run/worked out once that week. But I slowly worked my way up to feeling good and running at a decent pace for me. I got a few side stitches early on, which doesn’t happen to me often. But knowing that they’d eventually go away, I tried to focus on something else.

But then came the horrible feeling in my stomach. Despite the fact that I had enjoyed (too much) Italian-style thin crust pizza over three hours earlier, it wasn’t doing me any favors. Blech. Again, I told myself that the feeling would eventually go away. Yes, I was very uncomfortable for much of that first mile, but it was my fault for overeating and I was willing to take responsibility.

That is when the mental battle began in my head.

Here’s somewhat how it went:

“This sucks! I just want to stop and walk.”

“But you’ve only worked out once this entire week! And you’ve been indulging in a few more goodies than usual. You just HAVE to get this run in.”

“Ugh! But this is so hard today. I just can’t do it! I want to walk!”

“Well, how ’bout once you get half-way, you can stop and walk?”

“Okay, I’ll keep going.”

“But really, you haven’t walked in a race yet. Why start now?”

“Hmm.. That’s true.”

Then I started thinking about the cause I was running for.

What if running this entire race meant ALL of the animals for Homeward Bound were adopted?

Then I wouldn’t quit.

What if Sophie’s life depended on me running this entire race?

Then I wouldn’t quit.

These thoughts kept going through my head that it was enough to keep my mind occupied for a while. At this point, I realized that my pace had been pretty decent. So if I really was struggling and wanted to walk, why not just slow up a bit instead? I gave myself that permission.

And I finished it, without stopping to walk.

That, in and of itself, is success to me!

My time:

HRM – 38:45

RunKeeper – 37:41

I have no idea which one I started first and for some reason had a little trouble stopping my HRM clock. I’ll just split the difference in order to record an “official” time:


I have one more race scheduled this calendar year. But don’t worry, I’m not hanging up my running shoes altogether! I’m working on some HIIT, strength training and getting ready for my spring 10k.

Don’t forget that I’d like you and anyone else you know to join me on April 21st, 2013 for the Challenge Obesity 5k!

Info here!

Here is a list of my 5k race results for my own personal comparison:

  1. 38:54
  2. 38:20
  3. 38:40
  4. 36:08
  5. 38:27
  6. 37:44
  7. 35:35
  8. 38:13
  • The Event: World Run Day 2012
  • The Location: Anywhere.
    • My location: Lake Calhoun Around my neighborhood.
  • The Date: November 11, 2012.
    • My Date: November 10, 2012 – 3pm
  • Night Before Dinner: Cheese plate and flatbread at Enjoy!
  • Pre-race Breakfast Lunch: Punch Pizza
  • My Time: 38:13
  • The Weather: High 60s in November!? Unheard of in Minnesota!
  • Attire: World Run Day T-shirt and long running pants – it was too hot for these!
  • General Feeling: Frustration, but pushed through.
  • Uniqueness: Anyone/Anytime/Anywhere. Supporting a cause that matters to me: Homeward Bound Rescue
  • Size: 2435 people worldwide. At the “race” – just me! I like to run alone. I’m alone with my thoughts!
  • The Goods: World Run Day T-shirt and bib#
  • The Grub: Not included. {But seriously, I already had my share of eats that day/week.}

What causes do you support and why?



BOO(hoo)! I Hate Halloween.


I’ve never really liked Halloween. It’s not because I don’t like being spooked. I have watched my share of horror films and have been to haunted houses. They are fine.

I’m just not into it.

You probably think I’m crazy. I mean who doesn’t like dressing up in costume?

I don’t.


For me, it’s stressful. I’ve never been creative. I’ve never been crafty. I can’t sew a cool costume together or paint my face with clever make-up. And those pre-made costumes you buy in the store? As an overweight person, it’s frustrating to learn that it’s even harder to find a costume that fits than it does to find regular clothes. That can rule out any sexy nurse or sexy cat costumes, too.

One year, in college, I was so frustrated that I just decided to go à la Adam Sandler with a protractor I’d pull out of the back of my pocket: “I’m Crazy Protractor Man! Give me some candy!”

As a kid, our costumes were ones that my mom would usually pick up at K-mart. You know, those ones made of smelly plastic that had warning labels of being highly flammable. The ones with the plastic masks with string around the back that would pull at your hair. The ones that were made for whatever characters were fashionable that year: Smurfs, He-Man & She-Ra, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. She wasn’t a crafty costume creator either.

And I couldn’t care less about how stores, restaurants and houses are all decked out with cobwebs, witches, spiders and tombstones. To me, it’s just a waste of money. I know some people love that stuff. But I don’t.

We don’t even carve pumpkins at our house. {Although I do love roasted pumpkin seeds!}

Just call me the Halloween Scrooge:


And who doesn’t love Halloween candy?

Of course I did as a child. But as a shy kid, going up to a stranger’s or even a neighbor’s door yelling “Trick or Treat!” made me nervous.

As an adult, having Halloween candy around the house to give to the kids trick-or-treating just meant having leftover candy to overeat. And feel guilty about.

It’s the weather, too.

It’s this time of year that the overcast skies, wind, cold and rain start to depress me. In the Midwest, kids often end up having to wear winter jackets over their costumes when trick-or-treating. So what’s the point in dressing up anyway!? I hated that as a kid.

Maybe it’d be different if…

…I lived closer to my nephew. Maybe I’d take him trick-or-treating or to a Halloween party. Maybe I’d take pictures of him in his costume every year. Because Halloween really is about the kids, right?

In recent years, I’ve combated my depression of the weather this time of year and my disdain for Halloween by traveling:

  • In 2006, we took our trip to Paris at the end of October/beginning of November.
  • In 2010, we went on our Honeymoon at the end of October/beginning of November.
  • Last year, over the weekend just before Halloween, we visited my friend Penny and her husband Jeff in Iowa and celebrated a wine weekend with other Wineaux friends.

But there have been times that I’ve really tried to embrace it.

I’ve gone to parties with my husband: once as Static Cling with some dryer sheets pinned to me {he thought it was stupid}, another time as Shaggy {an itchy polyester costume that didn’t fit very well, made me feel self-conscious and that I couldn’t wait to take off} to go along with Rob’s Scooby costume.

My best costume however, was probably that of Mary Katherine Gallagher from the SNL skit. Although it should have been an easy costume, it was stressful for me to find and gather each of the pieces. But it ended up turning out great. I wore it out on State Street when visiting my friend Stacey in Madison, Wisconsin. Madison is one of the best places to celebrate Halloween as an adult, especially if you want to check out some fun creative costumes. That was my favorite part!

So, as usual, hate is a strong word. I guess I don’t hate Halloween, I just don’t enjoy it as much as others. I need to find ways that I can enjoy it myself.

This year, I’m running a 5k:

The Spooky Tails 5k Run and 1 Mile Walk. We were invited by our friends Terri and Steve. All proceeds raised by this event will go to Wags & Whiskers Animal Rescue! You know that I’m all about that.

And while I sometimes think it’s cute that people dress up their dogs for Halloween, I also sometimes think the costumes are way too cruel. That being said, we’re giving Sophie a go at it this year. I wanted to get her a costume that was warm in case it is cold and rainy the morning of the race. She’ll be outside for a few hours, the poor thing. But I couldn’t really find anything like that in a short mount of time.

You’ll just have to come back on Monday to find out what she’s dressed as!

What do you love about Halloween?