Monday, October 14, 2013


Dear Jadoo,

You came bounding into my life with your giant paws and long fuzzy tail. You pushed your big Rottweiler head into the side of my leg and forced me to pet you (and almost knocked me down in the process). Ever since that moment, you filled a hole in my life that I didn't even realize I had. 


You never met a stranger and gave kisses freely. You protected me from terrible predators like lizards and pelicans and squirrels, and wouldn't stop barking until they were gone.You let me dress you up in ridiculous outfits for the holidays. You would do just about anything for a cookie. You knew when I was happy or sad and would come lay next to me when I was sick and not leave my side.

I will miss how you ran around in circles in the backyard right after a bath. I will miss having you at the bow of the boat as the first mate. I will miss how you would lie down right smack dab in front of the bathroom sink every single morning, making me stretch and reach over you to brush my teeth. I will miss doing my cool down walks with you after a long training run. I will miss having you rush to the door to greet me after getting home from work. I will miss how you barked at the swimming pool whenever someone would jump in. I will miss hearing your footsteps go up the stairs like a herd of elephants. I will miss how you attempted to attack the vacuum cleaner but then would get scared of it and run away. I will miss sitting out with you on the dock watching the boats go by. I will miss how you tried as hard as you could to get comfortable in the back seat of my Civic, 99% of the time being unsuccessful because you were just too big. I will miss the tumbleweeds of your hair swirling across the floor, no matter how often it was swept. I will miss how you tilted your head to one side and hiked up your ears when I said the word "hungry". I will miss constantly picking up your toys (which also included the empty milk jugs that you would chew into a ball of shredded plastic). I will miss how you'd follow me from room to room.

Most of all, I will miss your unconditional love.

You touched so many people's lives and will never be forgotten. I can't wait to cross the Rainbow Bridge with you someday. Until then, rest in peace my handsome boy.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

In Sickness and in Health

For the typical marathoner, you are married to your sport. You wake up with it, think about it all day, hang out with it after work, and have dreams about it at night. Through all the trials and tribulations, you continue your relationship with it and work on it every day to try and make each day better than the last. 

My Twin Cities Marathon experience was a true test of my relationship with running. 

It was a perfect day for a race - temps in the mid 40's with a little cloud cover. The course was absolutely gorgeous and full of fall colors. I had never felt better at the halfway point of any marathon I've ever done and was hitting my goal paces almost spot on. I felt totally invincible! 

Then mile 15 happened. 

It felt like someone punctured a knife through my stomach. Then the nausea came, with dry heaving shortly thereafter. 

Ummmm, excuse me running, but WTF?! We were doing so well!

I pulled over to the side and was assisted by an EMS guy on a bike who gave me some fluids. They asked how I felt about 5 minutes after the heaving stopped, and I lied and said I felt much better.

Stubborn, party of one.

By the 22nd mile, I had to pull over to the side again. The same EMS guy on the same bike saw me that second time, walked me to a nearby emergency aid station and gave me hot chicken broth. They advised I drop out and said I looked pale. 

Sorry dude, but I always look pale. It's my German/Irish heritage. I'm continuing on. 

Plus, there was no way I was dropping out at mile 22. I would walk/crawl/stumble my way across the finish line before I DNF'd.

I thanked them for the broth and continued as best I could for the next 4 miles, all the way across the finish line. 

My legs felt great. My lungs felt great. It was just not my day on the G.I. side of life. But, like Nemo with a bad fin, I persevered and just kept swimming.

A day later I am already in heels with hardly any soreness in my legs. And I am already plotting another marathon in the next few months for redemption. 

Marathon #5, I'm coming for you....