Tag Archives: half marathon

last day of Vancouver

legit this day happened August 16, 2015, but a TON has happened since then anddddddd here we are. I need to wrap up this last day so I can move on to everything else that I’ve been meaning to blog about. 2016, you WILL be the year I get my blogging on track. on the regular. as often as I can / want / feel the need to.

VANCOUVER, our Saturday was race day, run around, explore & finish up with a wicked float tank experience. The next morning, we slept in a little, but not too much knowing this was our last day in ‘Couve.

We woke and decided an impromptu photo shoot on the sweet roof of our airbnb was in order.  Somewhat coordinated tops and an hour later playing with the Camera Remote app on our Apple Watch’s produced these gems.

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He snagged me this simple triangle necklace at Pike’s Place back in Seattle.  Love it.

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the watch doesn’t fit well under the sleeves of this Lulu top when the thumbholes are in use… #priorities

We headed to 49th Parallel for a morning experience. I remember coming here the last few times I’ve been in town for the Lululemon Seawheeze weekend.  It’s all sorts of fantastic espresso and Lucky’s Doughnuts. On the weekends is insane. Lines out the door for this joint.  Wish there was one in Minnesota!

Any establishment with a line like that deserves to be experienced.  A garage-style door lifts up where we were sitting, fresh air when the weather wants to cooperate.

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Cool vibe and amazing peanut butter and jelly doughnuts like this one with the peanut crunchies.

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baby espresso / wild mane / wake me up

I purchase a large latte cup & saucer for a souvenir. There’s something about this blueish-teal that strikes me as necessary.

We walk around the city and explore the sights.  We have a photo shoot with the new cup and saucer. For nothing more than to kill time on a lazy Sunday afternoon in Vancouver. Reapplying more Peppermint Halo from Saje – an amazing essential oil + therapeutic shop in downtown Vancouver.

For lunch, we put our name on the list & wait another 45 minutes for a table at Medina Cafe. Now our favorite place for lunch on this side of the planet.  Gold goblets of fresh water and all.

We had the Avocado Toast (duh), Saumon Fumé and a few of their signature Liege-Style Waffles [White Chocolate Pistachio Rosewater + Salted Caramel].

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IMG_2591Everything about this spot was to die for. The bathroom had dimly lit displays nestled into the walls… their matchbox takeaways are square and the exact logo of their sign out front [obsessed, I took 3].

We slowly sauntered our way out of here and set out to explore more of the city. This was our last day, so we really wanted to take it all in!

When more directions are needed, we sit outside one of the many Starbucks available to us on every street corner (thanks!).

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We explore the art installations scattered throughout town. Old world, modern, metal & sky-high.  The sun is shining and we are traveling all over this town.  New sights, fresh air, this is the mantra of a “feeling like a million bucks” pair of Midwesterners.

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We got some Vegan Pudding & Co. from a tiny shop that took up all of 3feetwide street space between storefronts.  Be jammin’ out to your music and you might totally pass it by.  Shame. Keep your eyes open for these gems!

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I cannot remember what flavor we selected but I’ll bet all my Lululemon Vinyasa Scarves that it was the Coconut Milk & Sugar one.

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It was some sort of custardy-flany-syrupy-goodness dish and I wouldn’t hesitate to get another if given the chance. #seawheeze2016

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We get back to the airbnb to have a FaceTime chat about our upcoming wedding with The Adventures Of videography team.  A few hours of creative discussion and we are feeling very excited about our upcoming wedding video (to be delivered next week!).

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We head to Granville Island Public Market via the public bus and walk the aisles, look at art, have some snacks, talk on the river… pet the local dogs waiting for their humans.

 

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Who knows how much time passed.  We switch back to nice clothing and head to a date night.  We wanted a special spot, good food, awesome service, cool location… Yelp led us to Seasons in the Park.

The directions had us on a public transit bus for quite a while, headed somewhere into the suburban surrounding downtown Vancouver.  We got off in a large public park.  We hiked the sidewalks down, around, for what seemed like forever.  We took pictures + took our sweet time, happily enjoying a beautifully warm evening.

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We hiked a small, Mount Kilimanjaro-sized mountain to get to the restaurant.  Breaking a small sweat and feeling the burn in our quads.

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This was the first of 53 hills we climbed 🙂

Seasons on the Park has a view of all downtown Vancouver.  We were seated at a huge glass window.  As the sun set on the incredible view, you couldn’t help but feel like you were on another planet, looking at another colony, from a land far, far away. Gorgeous + galactic!

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After dinner (fantastic, not a clue what we ate… but damn was it good!)  We splurged and got espressos.  This happens rarely… who are we kidding, we’ve never gotten them before.  It seemed like a perfect idea for a day that has been one for the record books.

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Vancouver: until next time, you gorgeous city!

ejh

 

Listening to this song because I heard it on Peaky Blinders [watch it!]

 

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what a Saturday!

this ones for the books. we woke at 5:30am to hike towards Vancouver Convention Center where it’s Lululemon SeaWheeze Ground Zero.  To stretch, drop our gear bag and get ready for the run.  The weather was chilly, 60 some degrees and slightly drizzling. We were playing the game of what do we wear? What layers are needed? Knowing full well 1 mile in, we won’t want extra clothing and won’t stop sweating.
Keep in mind, neither of us trained for this one as a result of planning World’s Best Wedding.  A week ago I got turf toe in a yoga class.  Brett’s shoulders have been hurting.  His hamstring gets tight. Basically, we are a pair of hot messes and just wanted to finish the damn thing without having to drop out. Needless to say, we both finished. We both have smiles on our faces. We both are limping around the city, clearly struggling.  Don’t ask how many crosswalks we didn’t “risk it for a biscuit” because the fasterst we could go was a slow walk. 😂 (hint: more than 20)


Some key highlights from the run- on one stretch of the race, across a high bridge over the city, there were a ton of spin bikes in a row with people spinning and cheering us on as we ran past. So much energy! I half wanted to join them!  I cannot find a picture of it anywhere.  Pretend you took an entire spin class onto a high rise bridge and lined up 20-40 bikes, everyone cycling and cheering with music pumping as we ran past. You get the idea. Excellent!

The race route was great this year, the weather was perfect, the solitude on the SeaWall was glorious.  Running for miles along the SeaWall in a fog with a light drizzle, makes me feels as if I’m on the wharfs in some coastal city out east. (Never been, next trip?) 🙂

All around a great race.  We died, but it was still great!
After we met at the Digital Orca, we grabbed runner’s brunch (soy yogurt, a waffle with magical jam, cherries, grapes, and a baby quiche)

We applied a layer of Saje Peppermint Halo on every inch of the back of our legs. He gave me a stretch on the ol’ calves. We died, came back to life, and allowed a restart of about ten minutes and then laced up to head out.
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As we sloth-walked towards home. We wanted a shower and we were hungry for a real meal. Our first stop was JJ Brew, they gave free drink tickets to the SeaWheeze runners.  We both got a cup of java and split a chocolate chip cookie. It was nice to duck out of the chill for a moment, to regroup and try to find wifi.


Every little boutique is adorable, the fonts and marketing so well done.  Why don’t we have nearly the amount of awesome hidden gems in Minneapolis!?  A few blocks further we pass Nectar Juicery.  I’m a sucker for a good juice. Fruit, soy, greens, iced, I don’t care.  Me love juice. We settled, after much discussion on a bottle of their Sacred.  It was refreshing, I’m super excited to make my own juice and use the glass bottle it came it. (3 stars, they were sold out of what we wanted, and this was just so-so).

  

  
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Down the way is a little spot called, Old Faithful Shop. A cute little boutique with hand picked curiosities.  Their shop mascot is a french bulldog, named Pierre, whose outpost is a small doghouse inside one of their bookshelf tables.

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And then, B realllllllllly wanted a sandwich. Like now. Well, like yesterday. He loves a well-made sandwich. Love that about him. We had seen a few spots when exploring, and noted to visit later on. Meat & Bread was open for business and busy! A very good sign. (5 stars)

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This is his domain, so I let him order. He settled on the Porchetta and the Daily Special. The bread was sliced in front of us.  Small wood boards held the sandwiches on top of a slice of parchment paper, with little mountains of condiments. We got ours to-go.

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We walked to the grocer next door and loaded up on liquids before heading home.

We FaceTimed with our other traveler partners, my parents.  We showered and put on compression socks (glorious!). And we ate our sandwiches in the little quaint apartment we’re calling home this weekend.

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Explored their balcony in the day light.

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A slow rise to the 12th-floor gave us a chance to relax, recoup and enjoy the beautiful view.

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those white tent tops is where the Vancouver Convention Center is located!

those white tent tops is where the Vancouver Convention Center is located!

We took a nap and around evening time, headed to the Sunset Festival in Stanley Park. A chance for all the runners to get together, drink some beer, listen to awesome music, test out the trapeze, and generally have a very chill, beautiful evening.  I sported the Lululemon Vinyasa Scarf as there are clearly a million ways to get comfortable in it.  (see below) 😀

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Craving something sweet, we waited in line FOREVER, for Archimallows – artisinal, fire-torched marshmallows (3 stars), not worth the wait but we did it anyway!  Here is a pano of the view before me (the stage, the sea, the trapeze, the mallow tent, and the line (can you spot B?)

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As the sun went down, the lights came out, there is an awesome drone that shot footage during the event – the video can be seen here – a quick view of everything that went on this amazing weekend!

We beat the rush and left a bit earlier during the last set.  The shuttle took us back to Ground Zero and we walked home.  On the way, we grabbed dinner from Tacofino – probably the best place I’ve had a burrito, EVER.  B ordered the Spicy Chicken and I ordered the Vegetarian.  Mine was ON POINT!  (5 stars)

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During our trip, we tried to find something to spend our “When In Rome…” fund on, a ‘change and small bill’ jar that we save up in and then splurge on something during our adventures.  We decided to book a 1am float at Float House – the late night ones are 2.5 hours… we were excited beyond belief.

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The whole interior vibe is very calming.  Blue and purple neon lights throughout.  There are stacks of salt bags in the hallway that lines the chamber rooms.  We each had a room with a shower and our deprivation tank inside, a fluffy white towel, robe, and organic body soap and shampoo for afterwards.  They provided ear plugs (both foam and wax!).

After we were both introduced to our chambers, which each held about 850lb. of Epson salt, we said adios and rinsed before entering our tanks.  It’s a sort of indescribable experience.  I spent about 3 minutes floating on top of the water, getting calm and slowing my breathing… my head tilted back and held in place by the salt water (so dense, you float effortlessly on the surface) – it’s hard to know where the water begins and wear the surface is.

I swear, three minutes go by and the next thing I know, someone is knocking hard on my tank.  I slowly open my eyes in the pitch dark chamber and immediately think the Float House concierge is going to open my tank door while I’m on full-nudity display.  Turns out in was B.  He cracked the door open, I couldn’t hear anything as I had my wax ear plugs in and my eyes tried to adjust in the darkness with this new neon blue light shining in.  His voice reminded me of Charle Brown’s teacher, as I couldn’t understand any words with plugged ears.

Apparently I had slept through TWO 6-minute song cycles meant to wake you up.  I slept through the computer voice saying, “Your float is now completed, please exit the tank.”  The employee asked B, now 30 minutes out of the tank, to check on me and wake me up.

Three hours went by in what seemed like minutes, and yet I was so unbelievably relaxed, I felt like I was floating on earth.  Highly recommend this experience!

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Needless to say, we walked out of that Float House around 4:15am and felt like we could conquer the world.  Instead, we crashed and had the best sleep of our lives.

What an incredible Saturday,

em j

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Rise and shine Saturday!

We woke up at the crack of dawn (read: 5:20am) because our apartment we rented out this weekend is a small marathon-distance to the start of the Lululemon SeaWheeze Half Marathon (oops!)

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On account of the fact that I didn’t have an arm band (and none of the other girls did) – we all went iPhone-less.  It made for a more focused and intimate experience.  On our walk to the start line we found a coffee shop.  And then the second stop brought us to a Starbucks to get espresso shots and use the restroom one more time (if you know what I mean…).  The entire convention area was filled with runners in the most beautiful of attire.  All Lululemon.  It was chilly, we jumped around to keep warmed up and made jokes about people taking it too seriously… until that morning Molly wasn’t even going to run with us!  I’m so glad all 5 got on the bandwagon.  Threw on some teal crops and some running shoes, downed an espresso shot and took the bull by the horns!
The starting gun went off and into the Vancouver city-life we went.  Tons of people cheering.  Over bridges, up hills into neighborhoods.  A good couple miles were spent running along a cement wall that bordered an inlet of the ocean.  What an unbelievably beautiful run!  We laughed and enjoyed ourselves.  There’s one image of us floating around during the race – mid-run, that someone else took… and I’d rather it stay hidden on account of the fact that we all look drained and depleted of happiness – which wasn’t true!  It was just taken at an unfortunate moment….!
At the finish line, we received a whole bunch of swag goodies.  Some of these items went right up on eBay for the diehard fanatics… SkullCandy EarBuds ($21), a wooden finishers medal ($18), a canvas SeaWheeze tote ($23).

 

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We munched on post-run treats like baby quiche, a warm waffle, and fresh fruit.  Drank some coconut water and stretched out our calves.  The slow walk back to the apartment took place on E. Hastings Street (you know the one…) – so thankfully, we kept our shoes tied and securely on our feet, for fear of stepping on a syringe.
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We showered before we took naps… well, some of us did.  Others just fell right onto the sofa and were fast asleep before it was their turn.  #sweatycushions

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We celebrated with Strongbow Cider and dark chocolate.  Some of us wore compression socks because it’s a guilty pleasure after a long run.  These are from Pro Compression in hot pink and yellow (get on their email list, typically they have 40% off and free shipping on a certain style each month!)

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It’s an interesting thing to be spending a period of time in someone else’s home.  The owner is a doctor and travels all over the world, he might even be a professor.  The bookshelves near the master bed where we all piled in to play games and giggle looked something like this the whole weekend…

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And his freezer looked similar to this…. the beverage of champions.

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We napped, played games, had some drinks and giggled the rest of the afternoon away.  Towards evening, we decided to dress up and head out for the night.  My hair was something similar to The Princess Bride, up and off my neck, braided and wrapped in a loop.

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An elevator shot of the group gives you an idea of how cool my friends are… wannabe Spice Girls anyone??
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We found a little French dining hotspot on OpenTable called Tableau Bar & Bistro.  The menus were beautiful (I’m a font lover), and we ordered drinks all around followed by a small party foul of spillage on the menu.  We cheers to our beautiful day and a great evening of laughter and friends.

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The appetizer we started with was some special avocado asparagus egg roll thing – divine.  I ordered the Pappardelle & Mushroom Pastra – also divine.
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For dessert we decided to walk our fullness off towards the gelato spot I remembered from last year’s SeaWheeze.  We passed the Fairmont and had a moment of silence once more (that’s what you would do, right mama??)

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Bella Gelateria always has a line out front.  We’re 20 people back from the front door and it’s moving ssllooowwwwwwwww…. but that’s okay!  A good 40 minutes later, we’re in the front door, placing our orders with mouthes watering.  This gorgeous gentleman didn’t speak much English, and that’s okay… all I needed him to do was scoop the Salted Chocolate Gelato onto that cone and give me a smirk to make my lady parts quiver.

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To die for.  Unbelievably delicious.  And expensive, but well worth it.  We cheers’ed (again) to a beautiful run in a beautiful city.  Our walk back to the apartment was met with a skyline to suit the Gods.

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Until tomorrow,
xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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a small, unnecessary explanation

Let me take a moment to explain what I enjoy most in life.

Traveling, friends, adventures, running, good food, lovers, family, my dog, memories, experiences, and laughing.  I place a high value on traveling and friendship.  It may seem as though I just came back from Scottsdale due to my delayed blog posts but I really came back July 1st.  Bright and early tomorrow I will fly to Seattle, explore a little, then we take a train to Vancouver, BC for….drum roll please…… THE FOURTH ANNUAL GIRL’S TRIP!!

This is now feeling 150% like a tradition that will take place each year.  My closest high school girlfriends and I.  Meeting up in a city (domestic or international) for a long weekend of girl talk, mimosas, laughter and memory making.

This time we’re flying in from Minnesota, Arizona, Florida and Colorado to meet in the rainy city of Seattle.  Then venturing by train up to the most beautiful city I’ve imagined myself owning a home in – Vancouver.

The upcoming weekend is Lululemon’s SeaWheeze Half Marathon and we are all running it.  Combine an adventure with friends, laughing, good food, AND running… I’m content and in the best frame of mind.

Some people like to spend money on new fur coats, high heels, expensive $50 mascara that still smears all over after jumping in the water… some people even buy $6 lattes each morning.  But me?  I like to spend my money on travel.  On adventures.  On spending time with people I love in different corners of the world.

Stay tuned for updates on our weekend in Vancouver, starting tomorrow!

xo

Listening to

Sipping on

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weekly iPhone pic drop

This month is hands down all about adventures.  The first one took place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.  Four of us ventured north to join in on the Lululemon Athletica SeaWheeze Half Marathon festivities.  My love for yoga pants tripled when I tried on their Groove Pants and since that day – I have been infatuated with Lululemon.  We flew to Seattle and took a train up.  An early morning flight forced us to locate the nearest java shop.  It happened to be Zeitgeist Coffee in Downtown Seattle.  We refueled with Honey Soy Lattes and Huckleberry Greek Yogurt before hiking the city.

My travel mates include a close work friend (Chelsea), another work friend-turned mentor/guru/lover (Molly), and a newfound friend with a bottomless pit of wisdom and peace (Berit).

There were 14 statues down by the ocean in Vancouver.  Giant bronze laughing ones with huge grins on their faces.  We climbed around like monkeys.  The piece is called “A-maze-ing Laughter” was made by an artist named Yue Minjun and he used his own iconic face in a state of hysterical laughter as a signature trademark as it is recognized universally as a sign of happiness!  It is the city’s most recognizable piece of art and valued at $1.5 million.

These cherries were the best, most freshest I’ve ever tasted.  We found them at Seattle’s Pike Place – a place that I’m truly fond of.

All throughout our time in Vancouver, they used these little handheld credit card scanners at restaurants and bars.  They never took the card elsewhere, and it made tipping that much easier to calculate (#ihatemath).  Why do we not have these in the USA?  This is the first thing we need to adopt!

A local hat shop, family-owned, called Goorin Bros. was drop-dead fabulous.  Old-fashioned hats, newsboy caps, top hats, they had everything.  The staff was great and informed us that Minneapolis is getting it’s very own shop soon!

Pikes Place, nuff said.

Ocean view in Vancouver, thinking about the half marathon in the early AM, a little ocean-side mental prep.

Long, flowing grasses surrounded a pier and we had to play hide-and-seek like young’ins.

The first I heard about Lululemon SeaWheeze Weekend, I signed up super quick.  Running is run, and destination runs are even better!  Especially sponsored by a rockin’ yoga/run gear company!  In Vancouver!!

Instead of number bibs, we had wristbands.  That say “i runcouver” with our name on them and YES, I’m still wearing mine proudly.

Inside of our gear bag was a free coffee drink at a local coffee shop, custom SeaWheeze flipflops from a local shoe company, a 15% off at the race clothing store and some cranberries!  As we were standing in line they handed out fresh lime and watermelon popsicles that had us all in a silent-lick phase.  The branding was beautiful throughout the event, great colors and solid design!

At the race expo store, I dropped more than I care to share on new yoga clothes and running gear, as well as a workout bag!  Outside on the patio of the convention center (facing the ocean and mountains) we were treated to mani/pedis and massages.  After the race, we were given keychain medals hanging on new shoelaces with the quote reading Sweat Once A Day.  After the race and a little relaxation, there was a free concert.  An amazing local band called Hey Ocean opened up with music about what else but, oceans!  After that – I died as we stood front row and listened to 2 hours of one of the best bands of 2012.  FUN!

I don’t know what hurts more, my voice from singing all the songs at the top of my lungs, or my legs from tackling the Vancouver hills.

I love Lululemon.  I loved this weekend.

Cheers to travel, friendship and a healthy lifestyle.

xo

Listening to.  Sipping on.

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first poll: half marathons

As I’m getting over the second long-term winter cold – I’m itching to get outside and run.  Each summer I like to run a few half marathons – in the spirit of being organized, it’s time I register for them.  I have picked four halves – help me narrow down to two!  Two is a good number to start with, and I’ll populate the in between with 5Ks, 10Ks, and a few 10 mile races.

Please pick two.  And thank you!

chase me.

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