Thursday, April 23, 2009

Long 15 mile Run through Falmouth with Cathi - then flying home

I set the alarm for 7:30am so Cathi and I could go on a long run. The plan was to run 10 miles. We started off south on Gifford towards the beach and took the same route that we did two days ago, but instead of turning back in at 2.6 we kept going and going. We ended up running all the way to Woods hole which was 50 minutes. My GPS went in and out of satellite connection so the actual miles and time was spotty, but I got enough to track it and enter it into for getting actual distance. We ended up running back north on a bike path all the way back up to Brick Kiln Road. Then ran back to the hotel via brick kiln road. It was 2:21 of running. That almost doubles my last Personal Record! I don't think running a half marathon on Memorial Day is going to kill me. The distance was great. I felt like a machine and just kept going and going. I took a buzz bite at mile 6 and I think it gave me enough energy to just keep going. I was always about 10 - 100 yards ahead of Cathi the whole time. I turned around a couple times and ran back to her, so the map doesn't include those times. Here's the map of what we did:

We then hurried to get our bags packed and loaded. We left the hotel at noon to get to the airport. The GPS that Bill got to go with the car when we picked him up sure has been fantastic. It sure beats having to use mine where it doesn't have the voice commands, and also zooms in when needed. I'm thinking about getting one. It was sure nice to have and made navigating around so easy. When we got to the airport we got settled and were sitting at the terminal 3 hours before the flight leaves.

We had such a wonderful time and so stress free. It has been so fun and such a privilege to run in the Boston Marathon and have my wife run it. She did so good and her parents are so kind in giving us this opportunity which we may never have again. So it has been a memorable vacation and one we will always cherish. Thanks Bill and Roceil!

Now back to normal life......

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Another relaxing day in Falmouth

Today is my "swim" day. Cathi went running this morning while I went to the office and made use of the free wireless internet to do some blogging and catching up on email, etc. Got back and Cathi had run something like 12 miles again. Then we went to go check out the beach for swimmability. It was even more windy and the waves were even crazier than yesterday. We went to a pond, but found that the beach to get in was privately owned and I wasn't feeling comfortable enough to ignore the no trespassing sign. So I made a few calls and found that there is a 25 yard pool at Sandwich High School which is 12 miles North East. I called and found that the lap time is from 6:30 - 8:30 pm so we planned on going there after dinner.

We went back to the hotel and told Bill and Roceil so we went to dinner a little early. We went to Artie's Cafe. It was a family owned restaurant where the parents and two small kids ran the whole thing. The kids were cute as they were trying to be helpful and take responsibility for serving the customers. I order clam chowder which was even better than the chowder at seafood sams. It was delicious and had lots of clams. The chowder at seafood sams I couldn't even taste one clam in it, but the flavor was good, but at Artie's it was perfect! I also order some Shrimp Alfredo pasta dish. It was a little too much for me, but I hate to waste food, so I ended up eating the whole thing. I was so full afterwards.

Bill, Roceil and Cathi again wanted to get some ice cream, so we stopped at the same "Ben and Bill's Chocolate Emporium" that we went to yesterday. Cathi wanted to buy some chocolates as a thank you for the people watching our kids so we walked across the street to the other chocolate place to compare, but the prices were higher so we went back to Ben and Bill's. Bill and Roceil already got their ice cream so I stayed and got in line to buy Cathi's ice cream while she and Roceil went shopping for sweatshirts down the road. I was in a hurry cause it was getting close to 6pm and I wanted to go swim really bad. So I bought the chocolates, and the ice cream for Cathi and met her just in time for her to come out of the sweatshirt shop loaded with goods.

We then dropped off Bill and Roceil at the hotel. Cathi and I then drove to Sandwich High School to go swim. I probably drove too aggressively and scared Cathi a bit. When we got there there was a sign on the door. "Pool Closed. Power Generator Testing. Sorry for the inconvenience". I was irate! I was really looking forward to a good swim today! Nothing was working out. I was pumped with frustration and negativity that I wanted to hit something. On the way home Cathi noticed a gym so we stopped.

They wanted $10 for me to lift. Whatever. I paid it and had one of the best 2 hour lifting sessions of my life. They had so many machines, and a ton of free weights. It was one of the best gyms I've ever been to. I lifted chest, shoulders and back. I didn't want to do anything legs because the plan is to do a long run with Cathi tomorrow. It was a great workout and I know I'm going to be ultra sore tomorrow.

Cathi made a deal with her Dad. This time instead of being focused on weight loss, it was a "no sweets deal". No ice cream, donuts, cake, pie, brownies, cookies, candy, chocolate, fried foods, etc.. Sugar is OK if added to oatmeal, or rice pudding, but the obvious stuff.

Fell asleep to Karate Kid.

Rainy Day in Falmouth

This morning I got up and ran with Cathi down to the water. We ran this route.
It ended up being 6 miles. It was tough. I then showered and ate some oatmeal while Cathi continued on. She ended up running 15 miles. We then went to get some souvenir shopping. We had quite a few things to get for people who were watching our kids.

Ended up getting alot of shirts. I also picked up a really nice rain coat and a yellow hat to go with it. We then went to Green's Pond where they supposedly rent boats and hopefully go crabbing. It wasn't very far, but when we got there realized
that the kind of boats they rent are yachts, not little motor boats, nor do they supply bait and nets for crabbing. We went to the beach on the way back and
picked up some cool shells and some cool rocks. The wind was going pretty good, but the weather forecast says it will calm down a little better tomorrow with it being really nice on Friday. Hope so, cause tomorrow is my swimming day. We went back to the Hotel and took a "nap". Good times.

Later in the afternoon we all went out to eat at Seafood Sams, on Hwy 28. I
ordered some Clam Chowder and Salmon with rice and veggies. It was nice. We then stopped at a place where they had homemade ice cream. I got a single cone of fat free mint choc chip. It was delicious and sure didn't taste fat free. Came home and fell asleep to "Jaws".

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Touring Harvard and Downtown Boston

Today I woke up at 7:30am and while everyone was still sleeping went on a short run knowing it would really be short. It was a little cold outside and sprinkling off and on a little. It rained pretty bad last night. I did a small loop around Braintree and ended up walking and running about 3.5 miles.

When I got back Cathi was still sleeping and Bill had gone on his own walk. We got dressed and went out for breakfast at a nice little diner. Bill, Roceil and Cathi all gave the waitress great compliments and Cathi was trying to talk the waitress into running for fitness. It was funny how close they were getting to this stranger. I ordered oatmeal with fruit and raisin toast. It was delicious. Then we got on the train for Harvard.

We walked around Harvard square and over to the library building and through the dorms. We saw people rowing in the Charles River. We then walked over to the place where Bill and Roceil stayed when they were here going to Grad School. It was alot of walking. We went back to Downtown Crossing and took a "Duck Tour". This was a large bus type vehicle with a propeller in the back which converted into a boat. It was very cool. The driver told us about all the famous places and a history of the city, but there was so much to take in that I forgot most of it and it was trivial stuff anyway.

The most interesting thing he said was that there was a huge tank many years ago that stored molasses. The guys who designed the tank didn't do a very good job with the design and when it got hot it built up a huge amount of pressure and the tank blew up and it was a huge blast and made a massive mess. There was molasses everywhere.

The locals here recently had some scary stuff happen. A student from Boston University was just caught this week in connection with a couple of murders of prostitutes. Well that was big in the news this week where this guy was caught and charged with the murders.

After that we went to a huge mall downtown and went to a fast food place where I got the best salad! It really hit the spot. Cathi bought about 4 more cookies including the one that came with the meal. I also gave her mine, so she had plenty to snack on. She's going to need a deal at the rate she's going, but she's on vacation and she just ran a marathon so I'm not going to give her grief.

We made our way back to Braintree after which we then drove the car which we left at the Motel 6, down to Falmouth.

We then went to bed.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Running the Boston Marathon

We got on the train at 6:10am and started our way up to Park St.

I transferred over to the Green line and went another 7 miles to Newton Center. I walked up about 1/2 mile from the station to Commonwealth Drive where the route was. It was like a ghost town. I could see the barriers on the side of the road ready to get setup, but nobody there. I was there 5 hours early though. The first runners wouldn't get to Mile 19 until probably 11 am. I walked up to the top of heartbreak hill. It was about a 2 something % grade so it wasn't terribly steep and only about a 1/2 mile long. Then I walked back down and continued on to mile 19 and found that Heartbreak consists of really two hills.
From Boston
It starts at mile 19 at Walnut Street where the John Kelley statue is. There is a hill that lasts about a 1/4 mile, then it flattens out for almost a mile, then another hill that lasts about a 1/2 mile. But after that its all downhill.

From Boston
While waiting for Cathi at mile 19, I froze my butt off! The wind wasn't going too fast, but it was cold and really chilled me. There was a concession stand right there and while waiting for her to get there over the next 4 hours I must have bought 5 cups of hot chocolate. It was cold! I started getting text updates of her race and she was running a high 9 minute mile. That would get her here at about 1:45.

When I got the 30K text update (18.6 miles) I knew she would be there any minute. I started stretching at 1:30 and by the time I finished stretching the text came. I started looking for her brown shirt and saw her far off. I took video of her when we met. You can see it below.
From Boston
We ran up Heartbreak hill at a good pace and were passing people left and right. I felt guilty getting cheered on by all the spectators. I tried to zone them out cause they should direct their cheering for the real marathoners, not me, as a phony. I tried to be the carrot dangling in front of Cathi.
From Boston
I tried to keep in front of her just enough to push her, instead of being behind her. It was too crowded to run side by side for long. So I tried to pave a path for her to follow as we went in and around people.

From Boston
When we got to Mile 24 I texted to Roceil and she called saying they would be on the left side of the road at mile 25. I also took video when we saw them.
From Boston
I was planning on bailing out of the race when we saw Mom and Dad, but Cathi told me to just stay with her a little longer. So I stayed with her until 26. I found a small place to jump over the barrier and so I gave her a pat on the back and she continued on. Within a minute I got the last text message saying she just finished with a time of 4:10:31
Click the picture below to see video highlights.

She did so good and her pace kept improving throughout the entire race. Heartbreak Hill wasn't an issue at all for her. She's a tough lady and I'm proud of her. After the race I walked up to Boston Common where I thought the reunion would be, but no signs were up there and Bill and Roceil found the meeting place. They found her and eventually we met up. One thing I noticed is that they could have done a much better job with signage. They could have put signs up showing were to meet runners after they finished.

Anyhow we finally met up and then caught the train back to Braintree where Cathi showered at the Motel. I had made reservations for dinner at Plaza III, a steakouse at South Market at Fenueil Hall. It was a nice 3 course meal that was quite fancy. I saw an opportunity to buy Cathi one of those nice Boston Marathon runners jackets so I went over and bought one for her after we were seated. I had flowers delivered to our table and that was a surprise for her.
It was a very romantic evening and very enjoyable. It started to rain and were were prepared with umbrellas and walked through downtown Boston for a bit. We then went back to the motel for one more night in Braintree.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Staying in Falmouth, MA

Cathi, Roceil and I arrived in Boston at 4:00 pm yesterday and drove down to Falmouth where we are staying at Briarwood. With the help of the GPS, it wasn't too tough to find.

We went to church this morning to the Cape Cod Branch and there were about 30 people there. It was nice to visit a small branch where the people seem so familiar with each other and tight knit.

Afterwards we went back to the resort. We discussed our options with Bill and decided to find a place closer to Boston so we didn't have to drive so far so early in the morning on Monday for Cathi's Marathon. So I quickly went over to the office and connected to the wireless internet and found a Motel 6 right next to the Braintree station which takes right in to the race. It was a great deal and worked out great.

We began the drive back to pick up Bill who stayed in SLC on Saturday to participate in Bill Jr's last thing for his Masters Degree. We picked up Bill and he decided to get the GPS that has voice commands. At first I thought it would just be as good as mine. But those voice commands, and the display how it zooms in when necessary and puts in arrows and turns sure was nice and made it much easier than mine. OK so I'm hooked. We drove down to the Motel 6 where we stayed and went to Chili's for dinner.

I'm eating healthy on this trip. I don't want to go back home and see that I've gained 10 pounds.

During our dinner at Chili's I told Roceil that I was setup to get text updated on my phone when Cathi reached 10K, 1/2 Marathon, 30K and finish. She was interested so I set her up to get the updates on her phone as well as how she could text people and receive texts. She tried it out by sending Bill Jr and text message. Bill responded and she send back a response which was just a blank message. We got a good laugh. Cathi and her were texting people a few times that night. Sheesh! Newbies!

We got back to the motel and Cathi started getting ready for the next morning. Braintree station to Park St Station is about 30 minutes and the buses leave Boston Common near the finish line for the Starting line from 6:45 - 7:30 so we planned on getting up there at 7:00 am.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Leaving for Paradise

Cathi had arranged all the kids clothes out so we could leave early Sunday morning. We got to my Mom's house and she took us to the airport. We checked out 4 bags and breezed through security. A couple days ago some guy tried to ignite a bomb on his leg and ended up setting himself on fire. So security has been vamped up a little, but nothing that has been noticeably more time consuming. Getting all the kids through went smoother than I thought.

We met at the gate about 1.5 hours before the flight so we had plenty of time. Meg and Steve were there. Our flight was at 10 am. The flight went well and we were in Florida at 5pm. We got to our resort and unloaded our stuff. By that time it was 9pm and I was beat. Went right to bed and slept great.