JMERLAU   68,115
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JMERLAU's Recent Blog Entries

Never workout without these....`

Monday, September 19, 2011



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Pics from my trip to France

Monday, September 19, 2011

A few pictures from my trip to Aix en Provence, France. I had a working trip for a week. I worked and tried to sleep most of the week.
























Best part of the trip.......landing in TEXAS!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KINSBAILE 9/22/2011 12:37PM

    Nice, looks like you at least got to see some sites!

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NANHBH 9/21/2011 3:30PM

    No wonder the French are so thin. Look how narrow their streets are! Great photos!

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OKIEGIRL75 9/20/2011 10:04AM

    Thanks for sharing. I couldn't agree more with landing back home. It's nice to visit other places, but there is no place like home.

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OLDERDANDRT 9/20/2011 9:44AM

    Lovely! Your pics and televised travel-logs is the closest I'll ever get to seeing it! Thanks for posting! Cool! emoticon

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FINALLYBEINGME 9/19/2011 10:05PM

    emoticon Thanks for sharing :).

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RUNNER12COM 9/19/2011 9:50PM

    Great pics, but... ahem... where are YOU in any of them?

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MRSJOCCO 9/19/2011 9:40PM

    Beautiful photos--thanks for sharing! emoticon emoticon

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DEBTOLOSE 9/19/2011 9:33PM

    very nice it looks like you got to see some of France

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The HOTTEST HALF - my 3rd half marathon

Monday, August 15, 2011

August 14th, 2011
The Hottest Half - my 3rd Half Marathon
White Rock Lake - Dallas, TX.
7:30am

I have to start this blog on FRIDAY NIGHT since that was the sleepless night before this race. Friday night, I DID NOT SLEEP for some reason. My mind was racing, my legs were racing, I was up and down, right side, left side, the couch, back to bed. OMG..I JUST NEEDED SLEEP!! LOL

Saturday I was on my legs nearly all day due to functions going on at which I was the host and had to be mobile. NOT the best way to spend the day before a half marathon, but it is what it is, right?

Saturday night I actually slept like a rock, which was a surprise. Had to be exhaustion from the days activities. I woke up at 4:30am to start getting ready with the typical quick shower, small breakfast, made my energy drinks, etc and left the house about 5:15. I had to make a quick stop to get gas and off to White Rock Lake. I arrived about 6am and my normal parking lot was already full, oh well, off to park along the road. At this point, I started my active warmup and stretch to get the blood moving. I was feeling pretty good, even though the humidity was extremely high! We've had extreme drought conditions here in Dallas for MONTHS now. Well, it rained Saturday leaving it extremely humid. Having training really hard with almost 140 miles in July and a few nice runs early in August, I felt ready. Oh this humidity was tough!!

I got a text message from Nancy and went off to find her. I LOVE seeing spark friends at races, especially Coach Nancy. We've run 6 races together now and I enjoy learning from her every time we are together! About 6:50 or so I take the last of my fuel to allow time for that to start workin.

SO....it's no 7:15....I start getting in the zone and move toward the starting line. Still working on the legs with stretching, etc. Finally we're off and running. This was a very crowded race and I started way back in the back. The first half mile is elbow to elbow people, fairly typical. My only complaint is when people run/walk 5-7 wide, the rule is two wide incase you wondered. The first bridge we had to cross is within the first mile. Nearly had to walk across due to the amount of people. These bridges at WRL are flex bridges. They flex alot as you run on them. This was incredible how much it was flexing during this race. These crazy bridges throw me off every single time I run on them.

Miles 1-3 where 9:49, 9:01 and 8:53 each, feeling pretty good even though I was running through a wall of water!
Miles 4-6 were 8:56, 9:17 and 9:23 - couple hills in the section that were tough on my piriformis muscle!
Miles 7-9 were 9:49, 10:11 and 10:02 each. About mile 8 or so I really started having serious doubts in my abilities. I was seriously questioning if I could finish this thing, question my training, questioning my ability to ever run long distance, questioning how mentally tough I really was, questioning my physical abilities. I was questioning everything about my being I think! I finally snapped myself out of it and told myself that I have a warrior spirit(that's whay I got the tat that says just that!), that I am as tough as I think I am, that I can run long distance, that I am a runner!!! I was able to pull myself together and beat those demons back, thankfully!!
Miles 10-12 were 10:21, 10:58 and 10:17. These were much slower than I wanted, much slower than I had trained at, but the humidity was a major game changer for me!
Mile 13 was 10:09 and the last .32 was 8:18. I was really able to turn it on big time. Some younger guy on the inside of me cranked it up so I cranked it up as well!!

Nancy and several other friends (Mimi, Karen, Shelly) were there to cheer me on as I sprinted to the finish which is always awesome. I saw Nancy out of the corner of my eye yelling something at me, no clue what! After I crossed the finish line, I went straight to the Muscle Milk tent, I started craving some chocolate LITE milk about mile 12ish. OH man that was delicious. I found Nancy, we took some pictures and I was off to church. I had to be there by 11:15 at the latest so I was on a tight schedule, but I made it work!

Finish time was 2:09:47 - my slowest half by over 2 minutes - but also the HOTTEST HALF I'd ever run. I think it was about 87 when I finished.
Age Group place was 57th out of 125 in my age
Overall place was 505th out of 1375 HM runners.

All in all, I learned a few things and I finished as strong as I could.

Here are a few pictures from the race

Ofcourse this is me and Nancy (love her!)


Group of friends who all ran the 10K flavor of the race


Here I come to the finish








YES......I got my chocolate muscle milk!!!


Me and Karen


Me and Nancy again


and ofcourse the medal!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HCARLILE73C 8/21/2011 11:17PM

    AWESOME!


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IMSMILEY88 8/20/2011 12:36PM

    Love it! I thought about doing this race, but not in this heat. Ugh! I'm so proud of you!!! And all who ran this! WooHoo!

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ORANGECOWCAT 8/18/2011 1:04AM

    well done! Congrats on completing another half!

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ABSOLUTZER0 8/17/2011 7:27PM

    My bro is a BEAST! He has done it again! You are truly a warrior! You know it's all about pushing though it and finishing and leaving nothing! Woohoo!

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NANHBH 8/16/2011 1:04PM

    Dude, look at that 6-pak! Nice race. Love the way you fought off the demons.
emoticon emoticon

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SMILESRME 8/16/2011 10:58AM

    I enjoyed reading your blog about your 3rd half. Congrats on finishing strong and completing your goal! Fabulous! Thanks for the motivation that you also gave me. I have my 3rd half marathon scheduled this October in Denver for the Rock and Roll. My mind is already playing tricks on me and I am not feeling the push to train like I need to! Ack!! It's so good for me to know that I am not alone in the mental game! My mantra is "lose your quit" that I heard from another sparkfriend.

Way to go on a job well done!
Joy!
Julia : )

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LUCKYDOGFARM 8/16/2011 10:50AM

    congrats Jerome! losing confidence seems to be a theme happening around here, me included, so it is nice to overcome that! woohoo!!

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CBAILEYC 8/16/2011 10:33AM

    Way to beat back the left brain and all its chatter! You are completely awesome and an amazing athlete!
WooHoo You!
emoticon emoticon
C~

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CHEPRBYTHEDOZN 8/16/2011 10:03AM

    Great blog and AWESOME race!!!!! LOVE the pictures,too. You really did take those doubts and kick them out!!!
Congratulations!

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CHIFANG130 8/16/2011 9:11AM

    You are on fire! Just like the medal! Running with heat and humidity and you still pulled in a very decent time. You even made it to the church after the run! That was amazing! emoticon

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CHELLEJOBEAN 8/16/2011 9:09AM

    Nice blog honey! I hope the girls and I don't have to miss cheering you on at anymore races. We are so proud of you and all that you are accomplishing!

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JERIBERI1 8/16/2011 9:02AM

    Great job, Jerome!!! Heat and humidity can make a race really, really difficult. You finished in a fantastic time!

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SPARKLE1908 8/16/2011 8:24AM

    Congratulations Jerome!!!!!!!! Another wonderful job with the run....

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RUNNER12COM 8/15/2011 11:14PM

    What can I say? You already know I'm a big of yours, so it's no surprise that I love reading this race recap. You really did capture the mental game. It's crazy how fast the doubts can raise up and how strong they can seem.

But... you did what you had to do and you held tough. That IS the Warrior Spirit that you have.

And yep, you rock!

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LUCKY117 8/15/2011 11:07PM

    Congrats Jerome!!

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LOREENYK 8/15/2011 10:10PM

    I wanna get me one of those!!!! Great race!

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GERSHOM2011 8/15/2011 9:41PM

    That is what intrigues me about running, the mental aspect. No matter how much you run, you battle doubts and fears and have to come out the other side. Jerome, great job, you are an inspiration and I appreciate your insights. Keep on keepin' on.

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BOBBYD31 8/15/2011 8:52PM

    congrats jerome, you should be proud of yourself for pushing thru the doubt. now you know it won't get any worst than that.

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SUSIEWHITE1109 8/15/2011 8:44PM

    That was a Hot Race with a Hot Runner and a HOT medal!!! Congratulations on a great job!!! You really rocked that thing my brother! I'm always inspired by your story - thanks for sharing! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DREBENEZER 8/15/2011 8:43PM

    Great job! Way to push through the mental wall!

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KAREN_NY 8/15/2011 7:55PM

    Great job! And way cool bling!

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KKINNEA 8/15/2011 7:35PM

    Wow, great job! I don't think it was even that hot when I got my 2:18 and I was pretty happy to be done. You aced that heat and humidity!

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SP_COACH_NANCY 8/15/2011 7:27PM

  It's always an honor to run with my SparkFriends! TRUST ME when I say I have been blessed to have you and all my SparkRunners as friends!

HUGS!

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TAMTAM64 8/15/2011 7:27PM

    Love the pictures! And the medal!

Good job in pushing down the mental demons & getting in a strong finish! The next time the demons flare up, you will remember how you finished strong at this race. Mental training is an important aspect of training.

Keep Running Strong!
Tammy



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LAURIE5658 8/15/2011 7:22PM

    Jerome, first of all CONGRATULATIONS!!! What a tough tough HM and what a tough tough runner you are! That has to be one of the coolest medals I have seen and you earned every bit of it.

You RAWK!

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My biggest month to date (running stats)

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

July was my biggest month since I started running! I'm training with a purpose and I'm driven to that goal!

Here are my stats from my garmin:
Count: 21 Activities
Distance: 139.75 mi
Time: 21:32:53 h:m:s
Elevation Gain: 2,148 ft
Avg Speed: 6.5 mph
Avg HR: 153 bpm
Avg Run Cadence: 83 spm
Avg Bike Cadence: --
Calories: 19,269 C
Avg Distance: 6.65 mi

I'm in a slow taper period right now as I prepare for a half marathon on Aug. 14th. August won't have as many miles, but I still have a purpose, I always do.

I'm curious, what's your purpose for training?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LULAMAE2005 8/28/2011 2:54PM

  You are a Spark of inspiration to all sparkpeople. my purpose is healthy thinking, and healthy life inside and out. Keep the Spark!!!!

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IMSMILEY88 8/20/2011 12:32PM

    My purpose?...to stay healthy, to stay at this healthier weight, and to prepare for my races! Right now, I have a 5K, a sprint triathlon, and 3 half marathons coming up in the next 5 months. Gotta run!

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BOBBYD31 8/15/2011 8:53PM

    what are you using that is calculating your cadence?

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KINSBAILE 8/11/2011 11:47AM

    My purpose for training is to increase my distance and length of time. You taught me of all ppl not to run to race but race to run and that's made ALL the difference!

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CHIFANG130 8/7/2011 12:58PM

    Wow! With Dallas breaking the heat record, I can't believe you are still raking up so much more distance! So inspirational! emoticon

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PELESJEWEL 8/7/2011 1:07AM

    My purpose is to get healthy.

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MAGGIE805 8/6/2011 7:55PM

    I need to start tracking with my Garmin. Very impressive! Keep on keeping on and best of luck on the HM.

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SPEEDYDOG 8/6/2011 12:51PM

    Hi Jerome,

Your training is impressive. The only parameters that I can boast about are:


Elevation Gain: 17,950 ft (90 miles)
Avg HR: 116 bpm

Other than those items, you blow me away!

Bruce


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ELYMWX 8/3/2011 8:33PM

    I had to write my own to respond:

http://www.sparkpeo
ple.com/mypage_public_journal_i
ndividual.asp?blog_id=4405466R>
However the answer to your question is:

Because I enjoy the feeling of being healthy and learning where my limits truly are, and because I enjoy realizing just how far those limits are beyond where I thought they were.

Last July, I was laser focused on ramping my training distance for my first Half Marathon. This July, I'm also ramping my distance (for my third Half Marathon) but I'm not quite so focused because I'm also rehabbing my Tibial Stress Fracture, and the numbers show it.

Comment edited on: 8/3/2011 8:33:57 PM

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CARLA0716 8/3/2011 6:27AM

    Niiiice! I should keep a record with my Garmin as well. Its motivating to see it all laid out like that... Keep it up, only 11 days til that HM!

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ANELAKANOA 8/2/2011 7:50PM

  emoticon

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ABSOLUTZER0 8/2/2011 7:45PM

    Woohoo! My bro has done it again! Yes, look at you bringing that intensity! To answer you question I will take from my latest blog. Ultimately, I want my mind, body, and soul to be in synergy! Training empowers me to be at my best while I'm feeling my worst.

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MICHCLEARY 8/2/2011 4:15PM

    Way to go!!!! You're doing great and I wish you well with your event that you have trained so hard for!

emoticon emoticon I think SP needs a "you are awesome" icon. I'd give you one!

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PIXIEMOM13 8/2/2011 3:30PM

    My purpose -- training for my upcoming 5 miler and 10K.... and challenging my own notions of what I can and can't do.

And being sexy. hehehe

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SUSIEWHITE1109 8/2/2011 2:26PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon You are a constant source of inspiration!

My purpose for training is to show gratitude for my life and health by taking good care of myself! emoticon

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DIREXTOR 8/2/2011 12:51PM

    Jerome...there is nothing greater than living your life on purpose. Your progress is proof positive of that. You inspire me!

Keep Sparking!

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NANHBH 8/2/2011 12:22PM

    Yowsa! Look at all those calories burned!
emoticon
What's my purpose for training? To maintain my weight and keep my good health. I walked into the Fitness Center at school today. The sign on the board said - "Motion is lotion for your joints." My purpose is to keep applying lotion to my joints!
emoticon

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CBAILEYC 8/2/2011 11:57AM

    Fabulous stats! Well done!

Me and my purpose?
Well, I've done a Half for the first time, and have another one on the schedule for October. Part of me wishes I'd have waited so I could focus only on 5Ks and 10Ks and ease back on the LSDs. The rest of me, though, is glad I have the Half in October, and then another one in May. It's enough to keep my on schedule, keep pushing and working to improve, but not so much that I burn out. I think. Hope?
emoticon
C~

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ANDREA0301 8/2/2011 11:12AM

    Well done my friend! emoticon emoticon

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MOMOF6BOYS 8/2/2011 9:45AM

    Great job Jerome!!! Keep it going! You are an inspiration!!!!!

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Too Hot to Handle Race Recap - July 10th, 2011

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Too Hot to Handle
July 10th, 2011
White Rock Lake - Norbuck Park
My first 15K
Temp = 84ish degrees - HOT!!

Like most races I run, I did not sleep well the night before. Now then, I could blame it on the fact that my family and I had been out of town at China Camp the week before and drove 5 hours home Saturday evening. I'd like to say that is why I didn't sleep well, that's not true though. I didn't sleep well because I was nervous, excited, and concerned, all those little thoughts that run through your head the night before a race. My alarm went off at the usual 4:15am so I could start my day as normal as possible. You know the drill, quick shower, dress and start warming up the body a little bit. I did take time to post a status to Spark People and FB ofcourse, isn't that on the 'normal' race day schedule? LOL

I arrived at Norbuck Park at White Rock Lake around 6am, race didn't start till 7:30am. I knew that parking at Norbuck would be a mess so I planned to arrive plenty early and finish my warm up there. My plan worked out quite well, I got a great parking spot with plenty of time to get some active warm up done. I had a nice conversation with a gentleman who has run numerous marathons, his latest was the Oklahoma City Marathon, it was raining and very cold that day. We were talking about how we train our minds and bodies to take the beating of running. When he ran the OKC Marathon, he went into hyperthermia, his core temp was 95 degrees when he finished. He said he knew he could finish, because his mind was made up, so he did. It took four medics to get him straightened out post race, but he fully recovered. It was one of those conversations that reinforces the fact that we as runners train our bodies to sometimes do the unthinkable, sometimes ya gotta dig deep and that part is 99% mental.

So anyway....I finish my warm-up, get the legs stretched, work on the hip flexors, etc. I texted Nancy to see if she was there yet. After confirming that Nancy is onsite, I take off to find her. It's always a pleasure to see Nancy, because I always learn something from her. See, in this picture below, she is teaching Amy the perfect way to stand around pre-race with your hands on your hips:

Pretty good technique...don't ya think??

Amy is one of the co-leaders for the SparkDallas-The Official Team. We've not seen Amy in a while so it was good to see her and catch up on her life for a little bit as well! Here is a pic of the three of us:


Nearly race time and I have a decision to make. Run with or without my shirt, that is the question. You see, I have a problem with bloody nipples, oh my goodness those hurt. I'd bought some body glide, but forgot to put it on before leaving the car. Not willing to take a chance this time, so off came the shirt. That was a good decision as I used it as a sweat towel the entire race!

7:30am and we're off like a herd of turtles! There are around 2500 runners between the 5K and 15K race. Both start at the same time and run the same route for the first ¾ mile or so. Needless to say, it's very crowded.

Miles 1 and 2 were somewhat fast at a 9:46 and 9:39 respectively. Nancy and I are running pretty much step for step at this point of the race. Pretty much in an aerobic workout sort of running right now as we are able to carry on a conversation as we run.

Miles 3 and 4 were a little slower at 10:20 and 10:03 respectively. I'd call this smart running, conserving energy due to the heat and it was getting even hotter, fairly quickly. Between mile two and three are some of my favorite parts of the lake, huge trees, very wooded area, SHADE!! Somewhere around mile 4 Nancy and I got separated.

Miles 5, 6 and 7 I sped up a little to a 9:56, 9:07 and 9:24 mile respectively. I've learned that I am NOT a very good pace keeper when I run. My pace is typically all over the place, even if I have the 'juice' to hold a pace, I find myself slowing down or speeding up to much. I'll work on that and get better though! Somewhere around mile 4 or 5, I met a lady and ran with her for a while. She was 57 years old and in fantastic shape. That was fun to talk with her as we ran, talking about health, fitness and of course I shared my story with her. :-)

Miles 8, 9 and change were 9:28, 8:49 and 8:37 for the last little bit. If you look at the timing chart below, you'll notice several sections of slowing down. I've learned to never pass a water stop during a race, especially in the heat. I stop at each water stop, get a couple sips of water and then I pick up where I left off and start running again. This is critical I think!!
Here is the link to my garmin stats
connect.garmin.com/activity/98214732
#.ThxnlxIbrtI.email


My 5K split was 31:30:45 and I was in 49th place in my age division. The 10K split was 1:03:46.34 and I was 37th in my age division. At the finish I was in 27th for my age division with a time of 1:32:38.00. Over all time was 1:30:51 in 36th place out of 63 men in my age division. I am extremely happy with this time and I didn't run to 'race' this one, this was a training run for me.

This race is special for me due to that fact that one year ago I ran my very first 5K ever at this race. One year later, 4 or 5 10K's, 2 half marathons, and several other distances under my belt, I ran my first 15K. As Coach Nancy would say, "What a difference a year makes!"

Here are a few pictures from around the race site:

YEP, that dude ran the entire race in that costume!!




bathroom lines!




tubs of ICE water that they were soaking towels in and giving them out at the finish!


Race Logo

Over all, it was a GREAT DAY!!

Oh yeah...I even finished with enough time to visit with Nancy and Mimi for a bit AND I made it to church! LOL

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SPDEWINA 7/28/2011 11:05PM

    Fantastic! Im from Malaysia so the climate is hot all the time..So can really understand what you meant by heat. Here, we have to deal with humidity too. One day i hope i can run in a place that is cooler. Wonder how that feels? Congrats anyway..

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KINSBAILE 7/26/2011 9:22AM

    Wow, way to go!

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DAVIDPRESCOTT 7/17/2011 12:04AM

    Awesome blog - and how amazing the change you have seen in yourslef over time - you rock!

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ANDREA0301 7/14/2011 11:39AM

    You have made such great strides along your journey to a healthy lifestyle. You are the real deal my friend!!

emoticon

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KLONG8 7/14/2011 12:09AM

    I felt like I was with you step by step. Thanks for the report. I hate running or biking in the heat but your matter of fact attitude is something I can try to add to my training. I tend to complain just a little bit....

Great race!

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OLDERDANDRT 7/13/2011 11:20AM

    emoticon

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NANHBH 7/12/2011 11:45PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
You are such an inspiration, Jerome! You make running sound like so much fun. Wish my feet and knees were up to it. What an amazing journey you have been on! It's great to be along for the ride with you!
emoticon

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SRHALLIN 7/12/2011 10:38PM

    Positively inspirational! Congratulations to you on all of your many successes!

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DMGABBETT 7/12/2011 7:29PM

    Congrats, J-man great race report and a good time to boot!

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BTRTHANEVA 7/12/2011 7:26PM

    I trust you showered before church, and I'm not talking of blessing yourself with holy water...

JMAN! You done fabulous! Love that you finished strong! Congrats on unracing (training) so well!

I'd say you've made huge strides (channelling racing lingo) since last year! Congratulations!

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PIXIEMOM13 7/12/2011 5:52PM

    That was a great race report!

I had a 5K on July 10..and it felt so hot to me.. and the towels in ice water that my training group got... ahhhh! Priceless!

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CHIFANG130 7/12/2011 5:07PM

    emoticon Way to go!!! Great finish time as usual!

Getting up 4:15 am on the race day, that's unheard of. That show us how determined you are. Congratulations on another great run! Love the race recap blog!

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KAREN_NY 7/12/2011 4:52PM

    "... and I made it to church." LOL!! Thanks for sharing a great story... and CONGRATS!!! Yepperdo - what a difference a year makes!
K:)

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SP_COACH_NANCY 7/12/2011 4:29PM

  Running is all about attitude...hehehe! Thanks for an AWESOME day! See ya Saturday!

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SUSIEWHITE1109 7/12/2011 3:46PM

    emoticon Love the recap, and I'll have to start working on the "stand around pre-race" look. She's got great form!!

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ABSOLUTZER0 7/12/2011 3:28PM

    Woohoo! My bro is always KILLING IT! That was a nice report! Taking off the shirt to show off the muscles and that tat, eh? LOL! I totally understand about the bloody nipples. Anything over 10 miles and I have to worry. I know, it is not a laughing matter.

It's always cool to see people you haven't seen in a while. I am sure Amy was just as thrilled to see you, too! Nancy is definitely right about what can happen in a year. Just think about where you will be next year!



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LOREENYK 7/12/2011 2:47PM

    Chafing is not fun! My husband uses Body Glide everywhere else but he uses Nip Guards or those little round bandaids on those extra sensitive spots!!!
Great report!
emoticon emoticon emoticon
Happy Running
Loreen

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FREES1 7/12/2011 2:17PM

    way cool!!! congratulations!!!!
White Rock Lake is such a wonderful place...
gonna go up to Wichita Falls and ride in the Hotter N' Hell 100??

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KKINNEA 7/12/2011 1:59PM

    Great job! I'm all over the place on pace in the same way - I think I'm going to program Garmin to beep at me when I do that. Sounds like fun in spite of the heat.

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RUNNER12COM 7/12/2011 1:53PM

    Dude, you are a serious rock star. I love the recap and you had a fantastic run!

And yep, Nancy is a pro at that "stand around and look fabulous" thing. I was so happy to finally get to meet her here in San Diego last month!

Well done.

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BOBF15 7/12/2011 12:57PM

    emoticon emoticon

I am in awe! Wow, what an accomplishment, you sliced and diced the guy in the blue shirt didn't ya? Great job! Proud of you.

emoticon

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LUCKYDOGFARM 7/12/2011 12:28PM

    Great Run Jerome! Congrats on a Healthy and Happy YOU!

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