Take Me Home, Country Roads…

June 17, 2017

I ran the Hatfield McCoy Marathon last weekend, right in the heart of those famous feudin’ hollers, in West Virginia.  But as usual, this trip wasn’t just about the running.  There were pirates, marlins, deputies, a shooting guard, a very long steel structure, an iconic residence, and one long necked animal involved as well.

Also, that Last Gauntlet thing, 3 marathons in 7 weeks,  is now done. Yay! Only 4 states to go, and the next one is in paradise! (Kauai)

So lissen up, you’ens, cuz you kin hear mo bout dis lil ol’ hillbilly run, jes as soon as the pichurs and storey gets writ.

 


Far + Go

May 28, 2017

Fifty States Marathon Club Math Rule for you:

IF Go + Far = 26.2, THEN Far + Go = 45.

In non-math lingo, this means I completed my North Dakota marathon, for my 45th state, in Fargo last weekend.  It went well, even 7  minutes faster than my Kansas marathon 4 weeks previous!  And get this, in the last 6.2 miles I passed more people than passed me!


Kansas!

April 24, 2017

I completed the Garmin Marathon in the Land of Oz on Saturday.  Yippee!  44 down, only 6 to go!   Everything went well, actually better than anticipated, since 4 days before, they were saying 90% chance of rain. By the time the race started, the weather system had mostly passed through and we didn’t have any rain!

This was a relatively short trip, but lots of stuff to see and do (surprisingly) in Kansas. I hope to share my story on the blog before the next one in North Dakota in May.

Lots of Wizard of Oz related themes to this race in Kansas, since you may recall that Dorothy just wanted to go back home, to Kansas.  I actually ran into her at the Expo.  She’s doing well, although Toto is having a hard time getting around.  Maybe he needs another trip to see the Wizard?

Some of  you may not know that in addition to my quest to run a marathon in every state, I have a somewhat less passionate quest to collect a deck of cards from every state.  Sometimes I forget about this quest when I am somewhere, or I can’t find any cards.   I am not crazy enough to keep a spreadsheet to track this, (that would be really crazy) but I do have a collection.  On this trip, I remembered to buy a Kansas deck.

 


Training run

April 16, 2017

Kenneth and his son Elijah visited us in Seattle last week, and we went for a nice and easy 10 mile run on the trail.  We have run marathons in 7 states together, and will run our 8th state together in West Virginia in June.  But I will do my Kansas and North Dakota marathons before that.  Yippee!


The Last Gauntlet…

March 26, 2017

Okay, so I have 7 states to go, and I have them all planned out. And in order to do this in the most expedient way, I have scheduled my last gauntlet, which could be tricky to navigate.  I have had a few other gauntlets before- my first gauntlet was in 2010, when I ran the Outer Banks Marathon, then a week later ran the Philadelphia Marathon.   Then in 2012, I ran my New England Gauntlet- Connecticut on Saturday, then Rhode Island the next day!  And  my last gauntlet was in  2014, when I ran my Michigan marathon, then a week later did the Sunburst Marathon in Indiana- otherwise known as the Famous Michiana Gauntlet.  (What is a gauntlet anyway? I sure am using that word a lot.  Oh well, it is fun to type, I guess I will keep using it).

So this upcoming gauntlet, otherwise known as “The Last Gauntlet,” is starting in 4 weeks, in Olathe, Kansas, with the Garmin Marathon.  This will be state # 44.  This one used to be known as the Land of Oz marathon, but changed when Garmin got involved. It looks like they still have some Wizard of Oz themes, including the medal.

The next one, 4 weeks later, will be to see how FAR I can GO, at the Fargo Marathon in North Dakota.  Hopefully, I can go the full 26.2.

Then 3 short weeks after Fargo, I will be looking for the “country roads, take me home, to the place, I belong, West Virginia,” and I will be doing the Hatfield McCoy Marathon, out in the boonies of West Virginia in the Blue Ridge mountains. Hopefully the feud will be over by then and we make it out alive.  Maybe I will even see the famous Mountain Mama?

So that’s the deal with the Last Gauntlet that you have heard so much about.  After this gauntlet is done, I will have just four marathons left to complete my quest.  Hawaii will be later this year, and then the last three in 2018!  This whole craziness will be over with the Jackson Hole Marathon in Jackson Hole, Wyoming in September of 2018.  Yippee!!!

Gauntlet, Gauntlet, Gauntlet, Gauntlet…fun to type…:)

 


Got my kicks…on Route Six Six

November 30, 2016

I ran the Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa, Oklahoma last week. Lots of little story lines to this one, full story and pictures posted soon.

img_2669


November!!!

September 4, 2016

November will be a big month this year.  My oldest daughter Ellen and her husband Tim are expecting their first child at the end of November!  You may recall Ellen from many previous posts and Ellen and I ran a marathon together in Vermont last year.  She and Tim and Laurie and I had a great trip to New England, and she ran her first marathon!  Now they are starting a family and they will be having a little girl.  Here is the earliest picture I have of of my first grandchild!

VZM.IMG_20160828_204651

Before that happens, hopefully before, I am planning to run the Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa, OK.  After about three years of recruiting and cajoling and extolling the virtues of running a marathon, I finally have found a few people from work that have made the commitment and will be joining me in Oklahoma- Kate and Shawn.  Kate’s husband Matt will also be running with us, and I think Kate said her sister may be joining us as well.  Matt is from Tulsa, so we will have all the inside scoop on Tulsa and surrounding sights.  Here we are, standing around at work.

IMG_2411

 


Training for Delaware

April 16, 2016

3 weeks to go until the Delaware Marathon in Wilmington.  Longest training run tomorrow, then start the taper. Yay!  In the meantime, training runs continued last weekend in Austin, Texas, where we attended the wedding of my sister Barb’s daughter Lauren Claire.  I did a solo run Friday, then Saturday, my brothers Doug and Charlie ran for about an hour.  Almost 30 years ago, we all ran the Bay to Breakers 12K in San Francisco, it was just like old times.

b2b

austin16

 


Medal reflections…

March 13, 2016

When I ran the Little Rock Marathon on March 6, I got what is so far my biggest medal.  Luckily, I didn’t have to run 26 miles with this around my neck, because I am not sure I could have tolerated running with the additional 2.5 pounds of solidness.  It was hard enough to make it from the finish line to the refueling station.  It did make me reflect on the medals that I have received after 44 marathons (41 states).

Large, Medium and Small

Large, Medium and Small

Little and Big guitars

Little and Big guitars

Medals with State shapes

Medals with State shapes

 


11 to go, here is the plan…

December 9, 2015

After successfully completing Iowa back in October, I thought it would be good to start planning on how to finish this quest thing.  I have always been keeping an eye out for good marathons in states I still have to run.  Always listening for people’s recommendations about good ones, or looking at the reviews on Marathon Guide.  There really hasn’t ever been a master plan of which states to do in which order, it always just evolves that this or that one makes sense.  Now that the number is getting lower, I feel the need to make more of a plan.  So here it is…I should be done by Fall of 2018.  Less than 3 years!

Plans are all made for Charleston Marathon in South Carolina in 5 weeks, and I have signed up for the Little Rock Marathon in Arkansas in March.  Other than those, I am cautiously open to suggestions to modify the last nine after that.

  1. Charleston Marathon, SC, January 16, 2016
  2. Little Rock Marathon, AR, March 2016
  3. Delaware Marathon, DE, May 2016
  4. Route 66 Marathon, OK, November 2016
  5. Olathe Marathon, KS, April 2017
  6. Fargo Marathon, ND, May 2017
  7. Hatfield and McCoy Marathon, WV, June 2017
  8. Kauai Marathon, HI, September 2017
  9. Louisiana Marathon, LA, January 2018
  10. Kentucky Derby Marathon, KY, April 2018
  11. Jackson Hole Marathon, WY, September 2018

Then we’ll see what’s after that…