Archive for May, 2012

You Ran the Cellcom? What is your Story?!

9:39 on Saturday and I am sitting on the couch with a cup of coffee, cheers! Weird. I remember February 11th; it was the day of the Seroogy’s 15K Valentine’s Day run. I remember thinking after that run that I will be running, and running far, every Saturday morning until May 19th. Through the 15 weeks of training I often times envisioned crossing the finish line hearing my name announced with the music blaring and people lining the finish outside of Lambeau Field. I also envisioned there being a slight chill in the air, as typically in May the mornings still are cool. This moment kept me motivated when I was tired and pushed me through the last few miles of some very tiring runs.

Had I known that moment I dreamed of would actually be me dodging cones to cross the finish line, with a time that would not count, in 90 degree heat with only my family in the stands, no music and no announcer I might not have been so motivated during those tough times. This is a case where ignorance is bliss. I would have struggled to wake up at 6:15 on Saturdays and 4:30am on weekdays to train had I known the exact weather conditions we all faced last Sunday. Had I known I would be sweating before I even started the race at 6:55 and had I known the course was going to be closed, I would not have changed a thing. I still would have registered, I still would have trained and I still would have started the race. What about you?

Green Bay has been buzzing the last week about the Cellcom Marathon and the decision to close the course. Everyone you talk to seems to know someone who ran the marathon and it is clear that the heat affected everyone. I have never heard so many different stories after a marathon. Some people kept going, some people stopped, and some people switched to the half; I mean these stories were interesting! Usually everyone just tells you his or her time, but this year was interesting. I can honestly say it was a new experience.

My story goes like this. Kristy and I started the race together, we knew it was hot and we held back in the beginning.

We kept each other in check, if one of us was surging the other was there to pull it back.  We joked about the heat and enjoyed each other’s company, my favorite first 18 miles of a marathon, ever. Mile 18 seemed like it was going to be like every other water station we had passed, grab some water and go, but it was different. ‘Course is closed, shuttles will pick you up right over there’ they said. I was confused, Kristy was mad. She threw her cup on the ground and said ‘I’m finishing this is my first one!  Let’s go!’ I said the course is closed we have to get on the shuttle and she said okay well I’m going good luck! So off she went. I cried, walked slow and actually never saw the shuttle they talked about. I finally got so sick of walking that I tried running, it felt all right, so I kept going.  Then I see my brother, who ran the half, running towards me waving his arms. He said the family was at mile 20 and they were worried so he came back to look for me.

Eric said ‘let’s finish this, I’ll run with you! You are at mile 19 anyways!’ And we did.  Eric and I ran those last six miles tortoise style, slow and steady. We thanked volunteers cheered other finishers on and we had a great time. It was the best last six miles of a marathon I have ever ran. The volunteers were absolute soldiers out there, standing their post handing water and ice to every runner still going. A million thanks would not be enough to give the volunteers and my brother Eric.

Oh and let’s not forget about Kristy, she finished too, she killed it. Way to go friend!  So when I break it down this cannot be considered the best marathon of my life. It was my favorite first 18 and the best last six, but those two miles between mile 18 and 20 were miserable. Thank goodness I prepped myself to enjoy the run and take in the experience, because that is exactly what I did.

Whatever your experience be proud of what you did and try to draw on the positives and forget about the negatives. I was lucky and never felt faint or dizzy or sick, so I kept going. The best thing anyone could do was listen to their bodies and I hope you listened to yours. Do not be too hard on yourself if things did not go your way, 90-degrees and sun are not ideal running conditions. The memories will live in your be with you forever, so try to remember the good things! The fact that we all decided to register, train and start the race already show a lot about our character. We all have a lot to be proud of!

-Jenna Matzke

More from Jenna:

A little crazy, a little determination Double Digits

Is This Supposed to Hurt?

To run far you have to run far

If you’re tired…raise your hand

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Prevea On the Move – Medical Preview

Marathon weekend is here! This week’s Prevea On the Move features Tom Krahn, Medical Coordinator for Cellcom Green Bay Marathon, discussing the courses, medical support and other race day details to help you be more prepared for race day and what happens along the course if you get injured or need medical attention.

Along the route: Prevea Health has 10 medical stations along the course marked by the red medical flags. The stations are staffed with licensed athletic trainers, physical therapists, nurses, and physician assistants to take care of all of your general first aid needs. For medical emergencies, the local 911 system is activated.

Finish line medical tent: This main tent at the finish line is fully staffed with physicians, registered nurses, physician assistants and emergency medical technicians with the capability to handle any general first aid needs or other medical emergencies. Paramedics from the Green Bay Fire Department are onsite with ambulance to handle emergency transportation as needed.

 

It is the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Do you feel it? It is the feeling you get when you wake up and remember you only have to run five miles instead of eight, it is the feeling you get when you skip spin class because it is not in the taper plan, it is also the feeling you get when someone asks you ‘when is the marathon?’ It is the feeling of relief, nerves and excitement all mixed together…it is the marathon feeling!  Writing that just gave me the chills. My foot is tapping and I am smiling thinking about Sunday May 20th!  The day we have all been training for is just around the corner. I. AM. SO. EXCITED.

Whenever I think about the race I cannot help but think about something I have never addressed in a blog article, a goal time. What number just flashed on the big clock outside of Lambeau as you envisioned you hear the beeping of race chips crossing the electronic line?  Are you striving for a personal best or are you just looking to finish the race? Anyone who knows me knows I am marathon crazy, and would expect for me to have a specific time expectation. Honestly for this marathon I have no idea.

It has been an interesting training season, a few good runs and a few bad ones and a lot of just okay runs. I actually do not wear a watch at all when I run. This started a few years ago when Garmins took the running world by storm. Of course I had one, and wore it for every run obsessively checked my pace as I ran along. I wanted every run to be faster than the day before. If it was slower, I would feel bad about myself and vow the next day was going to be the best. One day my Garmin’s battery was dead so I took off without it. It felt amazing! I had no idea what I went, what my pace was, if I negative split the run, if I ran 5.96 or exactly 6 miles and I did not care. It was the most enjoyable run of my running career. My Garmin’s battery remains dead in the back of a closet somewhere; I keep it just in case, but in reality I know I will never touch it again. 

I train how I feel and I push myself, but I never, ever want to feel bad about a run. After running a PR during the Cellcom last year I have mixed feelings about even setting a goal time for this year’s race. Of course my ultimate goal would be to run faster than last year’s official time of 3:48.55. When I was running last year I knew I was having the race of my life, and I do not want to be disappointed if I don’t have that feeling this year. Unfortunately, I cannot throw the Cellcom race clock in the back closet, so instead I am choosing to focus on running my heart out and loving every minute of it. Let my time be what it is, but this year’s marathon is about the experience. It will be different than last year because I will be running with one of my best friends. It is her first marathon, and after she has spent years supporting me through marathons and running the last miles of long runs with me, I am beyond excited to support her through her first!  If you see two girls running in teal tops, floral running skirts and fuchsia sparkly headbands a ‘GO KRISTY AND JENNA’ would be greatly appreciated, especially around mile 22!

Everyone has at least one major concern for the marathon, and mine is making sure I can focus on the energy, excitement and experience of the marathon instead of worrying about a pace and a time. Marathons are so much fun!  If this is your first one it might seem like running 26.2 is going to take forever, but anyone who has ran a race will tell you it was tough but that it goes by fast. My advice is to focus on the awesome crowd support the flat course and all the other wonderful things that make Cellcom such a great race. Do not spend too much time overanalyzing the specifics we are trained and we are ready, now let’s do this thing!

Oh and PS…running is faster than walking!           

 

-Jenna Matzke

More from Jenna:
A little crazy, a little determination
Double Digits

Is This Supposed to Hurt?
To run far you have to run far
If you’re tired…raise your hand

Prevea On the Move – Good Luck

The physical part is done. You’ve ran the training runs, you’ve ran the miles, you’re ready. Now all that’s left is to wish you luck. This week’s Prevea On the Move gives you some last piece of advice and encouragement from Mike LaMere, Prevea Training Run Director.

Feeling joy again while running

My boys and me, after I ran a 5K in Jacksonville, FL in April.

As I type this, we are two weeks away from the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon! I can’t believe the event almost is here, and I’m excited to run the relay. Today three of my relay teammates and I had lunch, and then drove the course see where the exchange zones are. All four of us were in agreement as we drove along what will be our 26.2-mile adventure two weeks from now: We are ready, and we are excited! Running legs ranging from 4.2 miles to 6 miles, the five of us each will have a hand (or better yet, feet!) in getting our team to the finish line!

It’s been four months since I started running again – where did that time go? When I started training and got our team signed up for the relay, May 20 seemed like a long ways off. Now it’s almost here. One thing I have learned since I started running again post-baby is that I feel joy more often while I run.

Since I started long distance running in high school, I always have enjoyed logging the miles. But, over the past few years, running just for the love of running has taken a backseat to a new set of emotions. Running became a way of coping through the emotions of back-to-back miscarriages.  Heartbreak. Anger. Sadness, to name a few. Wondering why us?

As soon as I was physically able after each loss, I started running again as a way to work through those emotions.  Block after block, mile after mile, I worked through what I was feeling. There were tears. There was anger. There was wondering what our future held for a sibling for our older son.  Those miles helped to heal. During many races I ran, I got emotional as I crossed the finish line, thinking, I shouldn’t be running this race. I should be home with a newborn, a one month old; I should still be pregnant…

Last year began a new chapter in our story, and I took the year off from running to focus on something we had waited a few years for: Our son, born in October. I look at him, his older brother, and my husband, and feel so blessed, and thankful, for all three of them.

Recently, I was running and a smile crossed my face. I don’t recall if it was the music I was listening to, seeing a cute dog during my run, or thinking about my boys waiting for me at home, but happiness was the main emotion. While I won’t forget what we went through, each day has gotten easier, and I have running to thank for that.

Best of luck on race day to everyone taking part in the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon!  I know there will be many emotions felt on the race course, but I hope the majority of you feel excitement!  I know I will share in that excitement as I take the first leg of the relay for our team.

See you on the course!
Amy Behrendt

More from Amy:
And baby makes four: Ready to run again
What runs through your mind when you run?
Ah, spring has sprung!
The Social Side of Running

Weather or not: it’s what you make of it

When I was six, I had a huge crush on the Channel 7 weatherman. My dad knew where he lived for some reason so he drove me past his house and Ken was actually outside getting his mail. Major excitement for a kindergartener!

You could say I’ve had my “head in the clouds” ever since. I’ve always kept one eye out for a funnel cloud and the other on the National Weather Service.

But weather really became relevant when I became an outdoor endurance athlete three years ago. In over 125 races, I’ve had more problems with heat than I have falling precipitation. Of course it does happen (including one memorably ridiculous race in Appleton last year where there was snow, sleet, rain, hail and lightning all within one 5K!)

This past weekend I did the half at the Jailbreak Marathon in Wautoma, 70 miles south of home. I looked at the forecast for my area and it was going to be cool and cloudy. Then I looked at the forecast for Wautoma. It was like on a different planet. About 15 degrees cooler, with a 75 percent chance of rain, possibly mixed with snow! We actually hit freezing rain at mile two, and it kept raining moderately until mile nine, right before we headed into the wind.

Yet the reception couldn’t have been warmer. There were kids playing kazoos, people ringing cowbells in the middle of nowhere. At mile nine they had a series of “thank you” signs. I assumed they were thanking the sponsors, but it was thanking US, the runners. Very classy. In keeping with the “jailbreak” theme the finisher medals even had a black and white ribbon. Afterwards, the organizers couldn’t stop apologizing for running out of corn before I got there. And I was only one minute shy of my PR!

Fast forward to a 5K in a city-to-be-unnamed-later the next day. Although it was a little windy, it was 58 and sunny with a bright blue sky. While I realize some of it was self-inflicted (we won’t discuss my time), everything that could go wrong for me did. They ran out of t-shirts, and then it appeared I won a door prize, but didn’t (no apologies from the organizers for either.) Then someone took off with my jacket. One of my friends joked that they didn’t want to stand too close to me in case I’d get struck by lightning! So remember, perfect weather doesn’t always make for a perfect day.

I felt the same way at last year’s Cellcom as I did in Wautoma. The wind last year made things difficult for everyone (and I realize the marathoners had it much worse going up the Fox River Trail on the way home.) Good organization and a genuine concern for the runners can really overcome weather difficulties. The same thing goes for our attitudes: if you dwell on a few raindrops, it can really put a damper on your race experience (pun intended!)

While we all watch the forecast for race day, let’s prepare for the worst, but hope for the best.

-Patty Grove

More from Patty:
Let me try again
Back in the saddle again
Not all finish lines go beep
Tips for a Cellcom Newbie
Savoring Small Victories

Prevea on the Move – Pints & Pointers: You Have to Believe

This week’s Prevea On the Move previews the upcoming Prevea Pints & Pointers event entitled You Have to Believe. Christian Jensen, Executive Director of MyTeamTriumph and his captain Mary Cox will tell their story about fear turning into success. Also, hear  Rod Maccoux and his brother John tell their inspirational story about how they overcame Rod’s challenge of being blind and started running together. To close the night, Larry Lueck, First Timer Director for the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon, will address any questions or concerns you may have about marathon day and leave you prepared and confident.

The last Prevea Pints & Pointers of the season will be held on Wednesday, May 9 at 7 p.m. at Titletown Brewing Co., second floor, 200 Dousman Street, Green Bay. Prevea Pints & Pointers is a free series with expert speakers offering tips and answering questions about running and preparing for the marathon.


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