{Ghoulish Gallop 10k}

A few weeks ago I ran the Ghoulish Gallop 10k. Since finding out I was pregnant a little over three months ago I haven’t been running as much as I’d hoped to.
A combination of super busy work weeks (70+hours a week) and the first trimester kicking my ass makes for not so many miles. I knew a half marathon could have been possible, but honestly I didn’t feel like running one at all. A 10k was just right. Pregnant running is not the time to go in unprepared.

The husband came along and took in the gorgeous neighborhood in the peak of fall colors with me on the run. While I was unprepared for the constant hills in this neighborhood, the distance felt good and I felt mostly strong. Despite feeling like I had to pee from mile two on I’d say this race was exactly what I was looking for.

My current paces are whatever I feel like that day. Sometimes in the 8’s, other days in the 9’s, occasionally in the 10’s and sometimes I just walk. I totally listen to my body and am doing what feels right. Race day was no different.

Post-run we enjoyed a delicious brunch…
Before heading to a nearby state park for some fall hiking fun.


Now that my energy is coming back, my nausea has subsided (mostly) and I’m done coaching, I’m looking forward to getting back into a routine. Any pregnant running tips?? Pregnant running gear??

Ghoulish Gallop 10k
Time: 1:01:30
Pace: 9:53

{Honky Tonk Half Marathon}


It was an early and cold start to the morning in preparation for the Honky Tonk Half Marathon. I woke up to my alarm at 5:45 a.m. tired and so cozy warm in my covers. You know the feeling; the air in your bedroom is cold and the covers are oh, so warm. It’s that amazing feeling where you never want to get up and feel like you could stay in bed for hours. Who are we kidding, I would actually never do that for fear of wasting my day, but sometimes I might spend 30 minutes slowly waking up. Well, hours for me this a.m. meant ten minutes. I checked the Weather Channel hourly forecast in hopes that it hadn’t actually gotten as cold as they’d said it would. It had. I scrolled facebook to see if there was anything super exciting in my news feed, although at 5:45 a.m. that is not usually the case. Then when I’d stalled past the point of leaving on time, I got up, showered, and got dressed for the race I wasn’t feeling so much.

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From earlier this spring!

I really wasn’t ready for running in pants, layers, and a headband. You see, it seems it wasn’t so long ago that this was an everyday thing. That’s because last winter lasted FOREVER and EVER, Amen. With snow flurries still flying in early May and a cold, rainy June I am just not ready for winter running yet. Fall is my favorite time of year to run ,but it seems we are already in colder than fall temps. It was 28 degrees when I woke up-not acceptable. But, what can I do. Put on my big girl running tights and suck it up I guess.

Enough complaining already! Or is it. I was in a grouchy mood on the drive to Wisconsin Dells. I pulled off the interstate and realized I was almost out of gas, but really didn’t have time to stop for gas, so I took a chance and pulled into the parking lot with 40 minutes before the race began. Because I’d payed extra money to pick up my packet race morning, I wanted to make sure I had plenty of time to get my race gear, use the bathroom, and get to the starting line on time.

The race was low key, fairly organized, and there was no waiting in line for restrooms or navigating through crowds. Aside from logistics, I was not really sure how I’d run. I knew I was treating this race like a longish training run, and that I had only run one 8 miler since the Big Cottonwood Marathon 5 weeks earlier. The 8 miler had been awesome, but sometimes one run is great and the next one is terrible.

The race started on time and headed downhill. I remember thinking that uphill finishes are my favorite-NOT. Like I said, I was kind of grouchy. The fall colors were beautiful though. Around mile 1.5 we had gorgeous views of the Wisconsin River and fall colors near the Wisconsin Dells River Walk.

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It was actually cloudy during the race, and I didn’t feel like taking pictures, so I found this one online. It really looked like this though fall color and all. (http://www.flickriver.com/photos/27847413@N00/sets/72157625219745538/)

A mile ahead we turned onto the main street of downtown Wisconsin Dells, crossed the Wisconsin River, and then turned down a country road with rolling hills and lined with trees showing their colors for the miles leading up to the half marathon turn around.

mile 1-9:18

mile 2-8:22


At mile two I made a mental note that it seemed there would be a lot of uphills on the way back. Still grumpy! Probably good I was alone at this race. I would have been nobodies cheerleader.

mile 3-8:55

By mile three I was not crabby anymore. Imagine that; running improves your mood. I’m feeling a little sassy as I right this report as I had such a great day doing all things active and fall. There were great views of the water, rocks peeking out of the hillsides, and tree lined roads.

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Ditto with this photo (dell.com)


mile 4-8:16

mile 5-8:47


At mile 5 I took my first GU, a new flavor I had never tasted before, Salted Caramel, but had ordered just for my fall races. This may be my favorite GU ever. It might have been the fall flavor, the colorful leaves, and cool temperature. Or it might just be these are awesome. Imagine eating a rich caramel; sweet with a hint of salty. It was divine. Cam from Modern Family would be so proud of my word choice.
Honky Tonk Half Marathon 2

Soon we hit the turn around for the half marathon. It is often at this point in a race that I encourage myself to pick up the pace. I also couldn’t believe that we were already half way.

mile 6-8:48

mile 7-8:29

mile 8-8:20

At mile 8 I was hoping for some water, but the water stop was out of cups. I knew I’d survive, but I felt bad for those full marathoners who would hit that water stop at mile 21. If those volunteers didn’t replenish the cups, then their lives might be in danger.

Getting high fives from the kiddos!

Getting high fives from the kiddos!

mile 9-8:06

mile 10-8:24
Honky Tonk Half Marathon 3
Mile 10 had water AND cups. We climbed the hill and rolled back down (not literally). We then made the turn back down the main street of downtown Wis. Dells before turning back towards the start.


Once I saw the River Walk and the 5k turn around, I knew that I was going to feel good the rest of the way.

mile 11-8:18

mile 12-7:46

Mile 12 was uphill, then a slight downhill, and then uphill before flattening out for the last 100 meters. Poor marathoners. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

mile 13-7:11

This out and back course had rolling hills, with some that were of medium size. I hate to say this to hill haters out there, but I really didn’t notice the hills. Even though I rarely train on hills, I’ve always considered myself a good hill runner. I always pass a large number of people without much of an increase in my perceived effort, and almost never see those runners pass me in future miles. Today was no different. I ate those hills for breakfast!

Screen shot 2013-10-20 at 10.21.17 PM

Speaking of hills, the downhills which I had previously not loved in the past-ain’t no thang! After running down a freakin’ mountain last month, I could really tell how much better I was at running downhills. Either that or my pain tolerance has increased to new levels after the pain cave of an experience I had those last 6-8 miles running the Big Cottonwood Marathon in Utah. Maybe it is some of both. Regardless, hills seem a lot easier than they used to.

Big Cottonwood Marathon 11

I came through the finish, accepted my belt buckle medal, cowboy hat, and banana and water. There was a free beer ticket that came with our race entry, and growing up in Wisconsin I learned that you don’t pass up a free beer even if it is only 9:55 a.m. I’d like to say this is the earliest I’ve ever enjoyed the barley pop, but we all know that’s not the case. I mean some Badger games start at 11:00 a.m. and required tailgating starts long before that. Then there is the Oktoberfest parade that begins at 10:00 a.m. You wouldn’t want to bring beer that went bad to the four hour long parade, so you’d obviously test it ahead of time.



After drinking up my one whole beer and enjoying the live country band for a few, this cowgirl was onto greener pastures. I had plans that involved Pumpkin, Spice, and Latte followed by a hike.


A photo from my post-race hike.

I really enjoyed this race course. The country roads in the fall were scenic and the hills were surprisingly a breeze. I’d recommend the race to anyone who lives near or far. The morning logistics were simple with plenty of parking and a warm place to stay inside with restrooms and food/drinks to purchase. The belt buckle medal is unique and the free cowboy hat a fun touch to fit their theme. I’m not sure where exactly the theme fits the Dells, but yeehaw.


Aside from the race there are so many fun attractions in the area that it is a great race to make a weekend of. With nearby shopping, hiking, and family friendly fun (indoor water parks, Knuckleheads, etc.) there is something for everyone. Literally everyone if you consider Cruisin’ Chubby’s, too. I did’t consider this though.


Honky Tonk Half Marathon (RunKeeper said 13.56 miles)
Age Group-6/69

{Friday Fab 5}


{#1-The Great Gatsby}

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Ryan and I watched this movie a couple of weekends ago.  I had never read the book before and LOVED the movie so much I watched it again the next day while grading papers.  Just as good as the movie is the soundtrack.  I’ve had some of the songs on my running playlist for the past two weeks.  Definitely check both out.  I just got the book in the mail and am hoping to get some reading in this weekend.

{#2-Autumn Beer}


I’m a big fan of seasonal beer.  I love Blue Moon’s Harvest Pumpkin Ale, but had never tried the Caramel Apple Spiced Ale until Monday.  The fresh apple juice with cinnamon, nutmeg, and caramel malts is fall all the way!

{#3-Honky Tonk Half Marathon}


Sunday I’ll be heading to the Honky Tonk Half Marathon.  I know a few of you are racing this weekend.  Will anyone else be racing there or elsewhere this weekend?

{#4-Hitting the Trails}


After racing this weekend, I hope to continue my goal of hiking somewhere new each weekend this fall.  So far, I’m 4 for 5 of hiking in new places each weekend.

{#5-October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month}


Now that it is getting colder outside in the mid-west, I am back to wearing hats often.  All of my favorite hats are from Under Armour.  One of them happens to be hot pink and has a breast cancer ribbon on it because part of the purchase price goes to breast cancer research and charity organizations.  Under Armour has some very cute ways to support the cause.  There are also many local races to support the tas’!

Happy Weekend!

{Friday Fab 5}

This week was one of those weird weeks where it feels like I can’t believe today is Friday and TGIF.
{#1-I heart pumpkin anything…especially pumpkin dip}

I ate mine with apples and it was the perfect fall snack! Warning: this recipe makes a lot. I’d recommend cutting it in half if you don’t want a huge bowl!

{#2-Wine & Memories}

Ryan and I cracked a bottle of wine last weekend and added our cork to our vase with corks inside. Per a Pinterest idea I found a while back, we’ve started dating and writing what we were doing when drinking the wine on the cork. It is a fun way to look back at all the little celebrations we’ve had. The wine was purchased while in Texas Hill Country while on vacation this past summer. Another tradition we’ve started is buying local wines while visiting places and saving them for future dates to reminisce and enjoy the places we visited.

{#3-Getting back in the groove…the running groove}

They say it takes 21 days to make a habit and I’d agree most of the time. Lately I’ve only been running with the cross country kids and not so much on my own. While it saves time, I don’t get that I’m a runner and I loved that run feeling, so this week I started my mission of getting in some quality runs solo after practice. I managed a blissful, geeked out smile 8 miler and a recovery 4 miler in addition to practice runs. This week was about falling in love with running all over again runs. More on those later!

{#4-Chicken Quinoa Chili}

This was one of my freezer meals I wrote about in August and let’s just say…AMAZING!

{#5-Fall Runs}

I’ve made it a goal to really enjoy fall outdoors (and not just by running) since it is my favorite way to experience the season. What are your fall goals?

Oh, and it’s not too late to sign up for the Glow in the Deke 5k this Saturday. It is a great family event and you can read more about it here.
Happy Weekend! 😉