Run like a Mother and running on the Ice Age Trail

May 13, 2014

Sunday was also a crazy busy day for me!

Run like a Mother

As you know, it was Mother’s Day*, and my awesome friend Rachel from We Run This was race directing a 5k called “Run Like a Mother.” I drove down to Milwaukee to help her out with it and it was a blast! Here’s Rachel and I at the start of the day:

IMG_3256

It was so cool! First there was a 1 mile kids run. What was great was that even though there were some kids who were there who were serious:

Kids Run 1

There were also plenty of other mother/kid pairs that were there clearly just enjoying the run together:

Kids run 2You gotta love that! At least I do!

Then the moms got their turn:

Moms runAgain, a few competitive women but overall just a great bunch of women spending a nice morning running. Can’t beat it! It was an honor and a privilege to help out and I hope I can do it again if (likely when!) Rachel directs a race again :)

My Run

After all I did Saturday and the lack of sleep, my legs and brain weren’t all that excited about running, but I was supposed to do an 80-100 minute run. I thought about running down in Milwaukee but I didn’t finish with volunteering until about noon, and it was already in the 70’s and bright, hot sun was shining down. I thought possibly the lakefront might be cooler, but I wasn’t sure. Also, I hadn’t been good about eating that morning and I knew I was down calories. Combine those things with my lack of desire to run and a lack of planning a route, and it was a recipe for disaster. So, I opted to go eat some lunch, and let that get into me while I drove to the Parnell Tower area of the Kettle Moraine Forest (Northern Unit) and the Ice Age Trail.

I’ve gone hiking there before, and I knew the Parnell loop (purple) connected to the Ice Age trail (Yellow).

Ice Age Trail Sign

This was important because I knew the Parnell Loop wouldn’t be long enough, but I figured I could run the Parnell loop to the point it connected with the Ice Age and follow the Ice Age trail for a while. I could do an out and back, which would accomplish several things: 1), the run I needed to do 2) in the shade 3) on soft(er) ground 4) without much thinking required. Perfect! Here’s what it looked like on a map:

Ice Age runI ran 4 miles out, and 4 miles back:

Ice Age Run Summary

It was not fast. Some of that was my being tired, but much of it was the trail. Some of it was smooth:

Smooth Trail 1

But much of it was not so smooth…and went downhill or uphill.

Rocky Trail 1Rocky Trail 2

Hard to get a picture that does it justice. Much agility was required, trust me!

And the last part…the last part was really, really hard. I was tired, of course, and probably should have had more than 1 gel and a bottle of Hammer Heed, but it I also had this thought when I looked at the elevation profile when I got home:

Ice Age Run Elevation textIt was a lot of uphill! I knew it was, obviously, but seeing it like that…I instantly forgave myself for not running super fast and feeling so tired.

After finishing the run, I hauled my butt up to the top of Parnell Tower:

Parnell TowerTop of Tower

It’s 60 feet tall, and supposedly on a clear day you can see 25 miles:

IMG_3324IMG_3318

You know what else? A good wind blows up there. And if you’re all hot and sweaty, there a few things as awesome as that cool wind, let me tell you! It was fabulous, it really was!!

Then I hiked back to the car and quickly downed a liter of bottled water I was glad I took from the leftovers from the race in the morning. It’s probably officially time to dig out the Cambelbak for the long runs…

And then I went home and pretty much collapsed on the couch. Hope you had a good Sunday/Mother’s Day too!!

*Yes I called** my mother to wish her a happy Mother’s Day. We talked for a while, too.

**And texted. As I always do when I do these types of workouts, I texted her (or someone else that I know is free) that I was starting a solo run in the woods, my intended route, the latest time I should be back to my car and have texted again, and a picture of me so she could show the search party what they should be looking for. ;)

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