May 29, 2009

We're Gonna Rock It!

by Debamitra

I just read Suzy's recent blog and wanted to add that YES we are going to rock it in whatever way we can:) I know I can speak for all of us when I say no matter what happens tomorrow, just the journey to get here as been amazing. I realized I could do something that I never in a million years thought I could do and in the process I also got to meet some amazing women and build friendships. But that's it about me. Everything else is about the cause we are running for and what it means to Suzy and her family. I am glad that we could help out in this way Suzy!

Good night and see you all tomorrow bright and early!

The... RACE??

by Suzy

Wow, I can't believe the race is tomorrow! How on earth did that happen?

I can't help feeling that it's a little anti-climactic. For the last race, it was a production: we traveled to Carlsbad, we had events with Cure JM folks, etc. etc. I pondered a lot about the race coming up.

This time, I'm swept up in the midst of life, children and work and barely have time to think about the race! And it seems the same for everyone. Claudia's CRAZY busy with work. Anna's sick. Kirsten's been having trouble with leg pain since her marathon. I was out of the country for a job last week and am still way behind the eight-ball. Nicole's hubby is suddenly, unexpectedly leaving for a job - the MORNING OF THE RACE. Many of the hubs have to leave during or immediately after the race to work or whatever. Seems like nobody's been able to actually run much, lately. And Jan? I have no idea what's happening with Jan, because we haven't even had the chance to speak in weeks.

Claudia noted that everyone seemed to peak about a month ago - we were mostly running strong then - and it's kinda been downhill from there for many of us, in many different ways including work crises, illness, injury, etc.! Crazy!

But, we do have our plan for where to meet tomorrow. I'm sure that once we gather in the wee hours, scarfing bagels and bananas and coffee, things will sink in.... the race is here... we're going to run it and we're going to ROCK it!! (umm, we hope!) : )

May 19, 2009

Mamajog Shirts

by Claudia

Hot off the press....Mamajog shirts....wear one on May 30th and come cheer us on!

Please post a comment here if you are interested in purchasing one: we have women's ($20.-), men's ($20.-) and children's sizes ($15.-). 100% of the proceeds are donated to the Cure JM foundation. Click on the image for a large view of the Design.

May 12, 2009

May 10, 2009

Nr. 11991 & friends

by Claudia

This weekend, we will be tackling our longest training-run before the actual race: 14 miles, according to the training-plan.
We haven't made the final decision on whether we should run the full 14, or rather keep it to 12.5, since Nicole and I weren't able to run 12.5 miles the last long-run weekend (we were both down with the flu, and have a little catching up to do).

Another reason is that some of us just want to savor the great feeling of running farther than we ever have before, and reserve that pleasure for the actual race-day, when we will hit the 13+ mile marker.

But what we DO know is that we have a super-fun course picked out (thanks to Nicole's GENIOUS idea): to mix it up a bit, we all signed up to run the infamous "Bay to Breakers" race in San Francisco (all the way across the City and through Golden Gate Park, from Embarcadero to Ocean Beach). And - no - we will not run naked, or fabricate a float, but it'll still be fun. The Bay to Breakers-course is 7.5 miles long, so basically, we'll get to run to our halfway-point in a crowd of totally fun people in costume, wearing a number and a timing-chip, pick up a medal at the finish-line, and then cruise along the Coastline and back for another 5 to 6.5 miles for desert.

A few days ago, my B to B race-package with my number-bib and timing chip arrived in the mail, and I realized that I am ready to take on this race...instead of shaking in my sneakers at the thought of the 14 miles, I just tacked the envelope onto my fridge, wearing a big-fat, anticipatory grin on my face.

May 7, 2009

Sweet 6

by Suzy

Had to really force myself to get out there today. Told myself I just need to go 3, and once I got out it felt soooo great that I ran 6. Sweet.

May 4, 2009

Meet Debamitra!

by Suzy

This is Debamitra, with whom I've been acquainted ever since we moved to our fair island city nearly 7 years ago. We traveled in mom's-group circles that overlapped, and our kids now go to the same elementary school (her son is one grade higher than Mielle.) Anyway, after mamajoggers ran the first half-marathon, I was chatting with Debamitra in the schoolyard and she told me she wanted to run the next one with us. Fabulous!

Now, like several of us, Debamitra has never run before. And it hasn't been easy for her. In the beginning, she was easily winded and really had a difficult time running even the shorter distances. But she kept at it. I recall that one Sunday, early in the training, when we were all having a post-run breakfast at our favorite cafe (the Blue Dot), who should happen by? Yep, Debamitra. She didn't make it in time to meet us for the run, so she headed out on her own. In the rain, no less. Another time, a couple mamajoggers were running the lagoon loop and bumped into her - again, running on her own. She often had conflicts on Sundays when we did our usual runs, but she kept on going - having started from scratch - and made it all the way up to 8 miles, running solo.

Let me just take a moment to say that I, personally, have not run more than 6 miles all by myself. I really rely on the company of my ladies to pull me through the longer runs!

Anyway, Debamitra was doing this amazing thing all by herself, but by this time she had fallen a little behind on the schedule, and was really struggling to push beyond the 8 miles. The next distance to tackle was 9.5, and in fact she made 3 attempts, but each time made it only to 6 miles. We encouraged her to keep going, but also (and ever-so-gently) reminded her that there is also a 5K component of the race; she could run that distance this time, and go for the half-marathon next time around. There would be no shame in it! She was doing great, but maybe it was just too much to go from zero to 13 miles in only a few months!

Nope. Debamitra insisted that she wanted to do the half-marathon. And she'd try again.

Last week, I met her for another attempt at 9.5. I'd been in Chicago all week with Mielle and hadn't been able to run, so I was happy for the chance to log some miles. We met at the usual spot and started off on the 9.5 lagoon loop, which has worked so well in the past. I knew that Debamitra walked periodically when she felt tired, and I thought it might help to just plan little walk-breaks into the run - maybe those planned breaks would help keep her energy up and prevent her from having to walk out of exhaustion. So we ran 10 minutes, then walked one. I think it helped, but we also did add a few unplanned walk breaks that were a bit longer... it was very stop-and-go!

Along the way, though, something wonderful happened. It was the first time that Debamitra and I had the opportunity to really talk and get to know one another. I heard the story of how she met her husband, and she heard the story of how I met mine. We talked about kids, and parents, and Alameda, and all sorts of other things. And we talked about running. I offered some suggestions, based on my own experience and the tiny tidbits I've read/heard/learned here and there; I suggested she try really pushing through those times when she is tempted to walk, and also to run shorter distances during the week - but run them faster, or do intervals. Debamitra finished the 9.5 mile run that day, and I know she had cleared a big psychological hurdle. She planned to tackle 11 the following week, while the rest of us would be running 12.5.

So that brings us to yesterday. Anna, Jen, Debamitra and I met at 7:30 and started off. As the miles ticked by, well... I was blown away. Debamitra just chugged along with us, powering through the distance. There was a light rain for most of the run, so although we did make a few pit stops for water, potty, etc. we didn't stop as often as we sometimes do on long runs. Even so, Debamitra only took one walking break, around mile 5, for maybe 2 minutes. She was truly a different runner than the week before. It was so incredibly impressive!

Toward the end of the run, around 10.5 miles, I looked over at her. I know how hard the last couple miles are, when it's the farthest distance you've ever run. The other gals were chatting and laughing, but Debamitra was focused. Eyes straight ahead, arms pumping, feet lifting. Her body was moving like a well-oiled machine at that point - I know she was feeling the miles, but she looked amazing, so intent on her goal, and utterly determined. It was truly awe-inspiring to see this incredible transformation!

In two weeks, Debamitra will run 12.5 miles, and two weeks after that, she WILL run the half-marathon. I am so, so proud of her.

Thanks for the inspiration, Debamitra - and of course, thank you for all you're doing to help Cure JM!

May 3, 2009

This should be interesting

by Suzy

Today I'll find out if it is possible to photograph a full-on wedding, ending Saturday at midnight, and then run 12.5 miles at 7:30 am the following day. I'm a little worried... but thinking about Kirsten and Stephanie rockin' the Avenue of the Giants Marathon today will provide inspiration. They're probably starting about now. One step at a time...

Good luck Steph and Kirsten!

Well, I'm up insomniacal again, and so I can be the first one to post that today, TODAY, is the day that two of our erstwhile mamajoggers, Kirsten and Stephanie, are running a marathon. That would be a FULL marathon, which is something I myself can only still imagine. The Avenue of the Giants Marathon, up there somewhere beautiful in Humbolt.

So, our two dears, you will not read this til later, but know that we are all with you in spirit. Run and breathe. (As Suzy so movingly put it in another blog.) Run and breathe, and we are so proud of you.

And hey, after this, will you start running with us again? Cuz we miss you.