Sunday, May 31, 2009

Fantastic Minneapolis Marathon/Half

Lining up for the Minneapolis Half Marathon, together with the marathoners for a glorious out and back along the scenic Mississippi River

Temp ranged from 45 to 70 degrees, sunny and breezy.

See the young spectator viewing from an apartment window at the start.
Crowds were plentiful and enthusiastic at many areas along the route.

Early part of the course, views of downtown Minneapolis at her finest.

Interesting bridges

Here, the great new 35E bridge, which replaced the old bridge which disasterously collapsed.
On the right, the Washington Avenue Bridge, connecting the east and west campuses of the University of Minnesota.

The course includes crossing the unique historic stone arch bridge.

Spectacular view of St. Anthony Falls, from the Stone Arch Bridge, accessible only to pedestrian traffic.

Start and finish are near the new Guthre Theatre on the river.
A major part of the course is along he Mississippi, on the West River Road (TOTALLY CLOSED to TRAFFIC for the races).

Spectators, including this sweetie who momentarily lost her sun hat, lined the West River Road.

When I taught in an elementary school near Minnehaha Park years ago Mississippi River Road was my communte. Today I searched archives without finding any pictures of the Mississippi River Road. Sigh.
So, put Minneapolis Marathon on your calendar for next year and come and see it for yourself!

This picture was taken in April, before the trees leafed out. The road you see is part of the marathon course. From there, the course continues south to Fort Snelling and a loop around Fort Snelling State Park.
More description of the course on Don's Make It a Masterpiece.

We registered for this race before I crashed my knee (see previous posts).
With pain of 9 on a pain scale of 1-10, I walked this half marathon in support of Sweet Pea. It was a marvelous race; I wouldn't have missed it.
We finished and got our super medals.

Some marathons are not just for super jocks anymore.

Another major reason I am an enthusiastic supporter of the Minneapolis Marathon:


Saturday, May 30, 2009

Flowers & Kids

Running fast.. downhill.. this is where, distracted for a moment, I fell, sliding on hands and knees. April 25 at the Get in Gear 10K. You can see the knee brace in the previous post.
Pictures, as always, posted by Sweet Pea. You may click to enlarge.

Dawn of a beautiful Saturday on the way to join the St. Croix Runners.

Then on to the St. Paul Farmer's Market: plants, flowers, early organic produce, bread, chocolate.... and CHILDREN!

Sweet Pea carrying the cosmos for our sun garden.

Wagons for the plants, strollers for the small children, Farmer's Market is a great family outing.

Then over to Minneapolis to the Minneapolis Marathon/Half Marathon Expo. Again, the children were out enjoying summer.

This boy gave his dad a hand.

Statue called "Dancers" near the entrance to the old Milwaukee Depot, site of the expo.

We stopped at Caribou for a latte on the way to drive the race course.
Usually, I shoot twice, and wish I had this time, because a second later, this dear girl gave me a sweet shy smile.
And I missed the shot of the 3 year old boy, reclining in stroller, hat at just the right tilt, one leg crossed over the other in a casual attitude, taking in the day. So cute. And, no doubt, reminding me of other dear 3 year olds I have known.

The races are tomorrow.

Friday, May 29, 2009


Just getting in the car at the Brace Place, I knew this brace was what I needed now. My MCL seems so fragile, the smallest twist fills my knee with pain. The brace holds my knee straight.
I asked if they had the brace in pink. He said they had black and black.

I'm walking every day, plus keeping up with everything from the recent posts.
Racing season is here; challenge is to discern how hard to push.
The brace will help me to avoid re-injury, but cannot prevent stupidity.
Thanks for well wishes!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Woodpecker & Me

You may notice a bit of repetition; therapy and healing is like that.

From the couch I can see woodpeckers pecking away at the suet, hummingbirds sipping syrup, several other songbirds feasting on black oilers (sunflower seeds), and yes, I can see this woodpecker coming back for orange to take back to babies.

And I have my lap top computer (thanks for blog comments and e-mails) and television and favorite magazines and some fresh books and my support family of Don and Sweet Pea, and my sense of humor. No excuse for boredom?
But I want to be running.

Twenty-four days since the Lincoln Half Marathon and getting better: therapy sessions, stretching, sleeping, good nutrition, supplements from the naturopathic doctor, ice and heating pad, and some whining.

Still some sharp pain in both the MCL and the inflamed bursa in my knee when I walk and even lying in bed. Physical Therapist, Sara, says walk, keeping pain down to 2 or 3 (on a scale of 1-10).
Today I discovered that slow and careful low-pain walking is finally actually a possibility.
Today I did 2 fifteen minute "slow-pedals" on exercise bikes and walked more than half an hour, oh so slowly, on the community center track.

Oh yes.
Thanks, everybody.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Bursa & Birds & Bad Fats

My huge fall on hands and knees resulted in injury to an MCL, but it turns out the inflamed bursa of the knee is the source of the extreme pain in running/walking. After consulting with my physical therapist, it seems like the best hope of healing an injured bursa may be to totally quit annoying it. I'm on the couch.

Sweet Pea caught a woodpecker enjoying the orange we had put out for the orioles.

Minnesota's own trans fat (don't eat it ever) salted nut roll post race freebe.
Check the ingredient list and pass this one by. "Partially hydrogenated" !

Next New Year's when you think about taking down the holiday wreath... consider that a robin may build a nest in it if you leave it up for Memorial Day.

Mamma Robin appreciates.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Visiting the Puppies

We went to visit new puppies!
No, we won't be adopting one, but it was delightful to hold them.

Thank you Thank you Thank you for all the empathy, prayers and well-wishes.

I can walk some now, but of course I am anxious to run.
Two appointments with the therapist and an appointment with the internist... By the end of the week there should be more concrete news.

Suddenly HOT in the Twin Cities. Reportedly 97 degrees in Minneapolis today... 86 out here.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Ducks in Trees plus Knee Injury

Wood ducks are nesting now. It amazes me to see ducks standing in trees.

In the Get in Gear 10K on April 25 ... at mile 6 ... running downhill some sort of cobblestones and gravel... I was distracted and performed my first fall in a race, making a 4 point landing on both knees and the palms of my hands.
Reluctant to continue to leave skin on the pavement, I rolled, twisting my right knee.

Note: I jumped up and finished the last 2K of the race.

Not realizing the potential for more extensive injury, I went ahead with the Lincoln Nebraska half marathon the following weekend, placing in my age group!!

Unfortunately, I had injured my MCL and the last 2 miles I could barely walk.
A week later, still walking with extreme pain, I checked in with my internist.

I am taking Ligplex II, a nutritional supplement for buiding ligaments, suggested by my naturopathic doctor (ND).

This week I have had 2 sessions with a physical therapist (which I highly recommend).
Ultra sound therapy and electrical stimulation with cold application, plus, rest, more cold packs, and a compression sock have brought me limping to today... The first steps without pain since Lincoln... not running, but walking carefully in the house.

Sweet Pea has been doing a lot of cooking and clean up. Bless her!

Having waited all winter for this spring weather, and anxious to be running, I am not a happy camper. But I am determined and hopeful.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Lincoln National Guard Full and Half Marathon

Hurricane Ike flashed its tail at us at the St. Charles Marathon last September: the race was stopped after 10 miles. And yes, we were at Chicago Marathon a year and a half ago for the heat shut-down of the race.

And when we saw the headline below in the Lincoln Journal Star, we hoped we had not arrived for the shut-down of the marathon because of the H1N1 Flu.....

Hurrah! Sweet Pea and I finished the half marathon and Don ran the marathon... in Lincoln, Nebraska in the bi-centennial year of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. Temperatures in 50's to mid-60's: our favorite running weather.

The race took us past the Nebraska Capitol.. on the east side and back on the west.

Registration and expo were at a hotel near the University of Nebraska campus.

SPRING has arrived in Lincoln!

Parks and golf courses in the residential neighborhoods made a pleasant run.

Never seen so many little lawn signs, colored sidewalk chalk messages ("I think I can ... I think I can ... I think I can") ... cheering folks nearly all the way.

At two different locations little pre-school boys were blowing soap bubbles for the passing runners.

Start and finish were on the University of Nebraska campus. Post-race party in a nearby building offered a variety of party food.