100k WC 2011

100k WC 2011

Gagarin Half Finish

Gagarin Half Finish
Gagarin Half Finish

Awards Gagarin Half

Awards Gagarin Half
Awards Gagarin Half

Cosmonauts give out the awards:)

Cosmonauts give out the awards:)
Cosmonauts give out the awards



Monday, February 17, 2014

January Recap!

Work has been kicking my ass lately and I'm not complaining. I need the work. So, it's been eat, sleep, work, run, repeat and I am once again behind on blogging.
After a FAST 3000 on Jan1, I ran a VERY VERY icy 2 mile on Jan 4th. I won, but was not gunning for time. Even in the Icebugs, the course was a mess and I had to watch it. It was entirely on bare ice. They have a kiddie kilometer before our race and almost all the kids fell over at the start then got up to run! It was a tad wee bit slick!

                             Have an ICE Day!

Next up was the Christmas run -15k in Yegorevsk. This involved getting up long before the buttcrack of dawn and taking the train 2 hours out to the start. I almost rolled over and went back to bed when the alarm went off at 5:40!!! YUK! I rode the train out there in the darkness since it's dark in these parts til 10AM that time of year. When I got there, Polina was on the train but in the next car and we didn't even know because I had gotten on further up the line since the train stops not far from my house. Anyhow, the 15k was actually longer and the surface.....ooshy snow with ice underneath. It was just above freezing and we may as well have run on sand!!! Before the start, the priest gave us a Christmas blessing. Polina took off with Irina. Irina, is a top ranked skier and runner. I just sat back  and decided to play is smart since the surface today was killer. At about halfway, I moved up and passed both ladies for the lead. Soon after with about 3k to go, a new runner form Yegorevsk picked it up and caught me. Normally, I could respond, but I really couldn't drop the pace any further as the cumulative effects of having done FOUR races in NINE days had finally caught up with me. They do awards here strictly by category with the cutoff being 34 and under and 35+. I was 2nd overall and won the category.  Organization here was super. There was a hot shower and sauna after as well ad a nice banquet. I would do another race here if it fits my schedule this year. If not for the Moscow Masters Championships the 22-23rd Feb., I would do their marathon as a long run or their half as a tempo run that they have on the 22nd. I so wish it had been a week earlier. They have a 15k in May over the holidays that might be a possibility. Their summer marathon is late July, which HAD 100K WC NOT BEEN CANCELLED may have been my final long run before said 100k. Ah well, we will just have to play the schedule by ear again this year.

On the 18th, I replaced my Friday short speed workout with a 3000. This was fun. The only kicker is that at the Bauman Institute, the banked turns are just a beyotch! I won just doing this one as a workout. I miss the track and need it to keep my speed sharp because it does carry over into the longer distances. I started out ok only to take a big freaking nap in the 2nd km to the tune of about 10-12 sec then bust out a 3.40 final km. The banked turns on this track really slow things down and just kill my lower legs. This is a place for a good workout but not to go for a blazing fast time. I was 18 sec off my NY time. Ugh.
rockin' the hearts :

 starting  out smart and controlled

 and the chicking of guys begins

 ISO next victim up ahead
 ran the part of the 2nd km with Masha- didn't want to pass too soonbecause I know she's FAST

 still  pretty early on

On the 25th there was the indoor mile. I still have no pix from this one. In short, time was better, but finished a close second. I am still leading the series, but the final has been kicked all the way to March 16th because the track is booked busy til then. On the up side, I'll get to run the 3000 at the Moscow Masters Champs the 23rd of Feb. since the mile would typically have been that last weekend of the month. 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day? Whatever

This day has become increasingly more popular here in Russia over the years. I recently came across Phoebe Wright's blog posts on this whole topic and love her sense of humor. This pretty much sums it up-

On a more serious note, I have just learned to accept that I'll likely always fly solo. I pretty much understood that years ago. I pretty much blew the "proper meeting years" in my 20s in Fairbanks, Alaska which is NOT really the place to meet someone. Alaska girls have a very true saying,"The odds are good, but the goods are odd." Anchorage had a bit better pickin's,  but at that time in my life, I had already planned to take a couple few years to take off and teach in Russia. NO, I WAS NEVER EVER supposed to be gone this long, but the economy went to hell in the US while I was away and it's looking more and more like I may never be able to return. Anchorage/Wasilla  has had nothing on the job front now for a good 4+ yrs. Now, I am to the age when all you generally get are the leftovers that usually come with baggage. So, if faced with choosing a relationship that will always play second fiddle to someone's issues with ex wives and kids, or flying solo, I'm better off solo. Some folks are keen to go that route, and to each his own, but I'd rather not make life more complicated than need be.

So the whole other half/ Valentines thing...I gave up on ages ago. On FB, I put in a relationship because I had disgusting perverts mostly from Turkey trying to contact  me and  resetting privacy settings seemed to take care of most of it. On vkontakte (Russian FB) it's been less an issue.   I can handle a 100k, but prefer to spare myself the drama of the other crap. Actually, A couple months ago, I was at a race (won't state which one) and some guy was clearly "interested". Whatever.....not really my type and seriously? I hate to be cynical, but are you interested in ME or my PASSPORT?! Yeah, sadly, I have to look at things like that seeing as I have been offered a crapton of $ over the years for said passport. I have always been keen to let the guys know in which orifice they can shove that money too! So, I had to come up with a way to pull a quick escape. I just felt uncomfortable. The guy was way too persistent. The classic go to the toilet and don't return seemed to solve the problem. I hate to do that, but I feel like more a jerk if I have to tell someone out flat to bugger off.

So- Happy Valentine's Day all, and remember some girls just are not meant to be tamed :-)

Sunday, February 9, 2014


Well here we go again.I was going to post on the rest of my January racing, but not in the mood right now.
100km World Championships 2014 Cancelled in Latvia

We regret to announce that the 100km World Championships 2014 scheduled to be held in Daugavpils, Latvia have been cancelled.  

The Local Organizing Committee unfortunately has not been able to secure the sponsorships required to host the championships.

We understand that the championships are of prime importance to our athletes. Keeping this in mind we have begun discussions to secure another venue for the championships. The discussions are still ongoing and we hope to come back with some more news by the end of next week. We apologize the inconvenience that the cancellation has caused our athletes and member federations.

We request that you stay tuned to our website as we progress through the required steps in order to secure another venue for the championships.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Nadeem Khan
Director of Communications

Only this time it's happened to us. I had a hunch something was up when I hadn't heard from our team manager in January after asking a few questions on 50K dates and etc. He is always on top of things. I just knew something was up.

So now, I am just flat out demotivated. When we got Worlds last yr I was going tospend 2014 training my ass off for our 50k World Cup that was supposed to be in June as a tune up before the 100k in August. I really wanted to go after my best performance on a familiar course where I was comfortable and had had success before. Doing a spring marathon is really not feasible. It's just flat out not in my budget to be able to afford a marathon somewhere in Europe March-April ish. Honestly, I'm not much of a marathoner. I do far better at the 50 and 100k and that's what I train for. That's my thing to do.

The really shitty part of this whole mess is that I am actually in decent shape now just getting ready to tweak things before a few spring halves I was to use as stepping stone races before that 50k. I started upping the volume in January. The past few Saturdays, I've been doing short races then going out for a run after to the tune of about 25k or so then doubling back Sunday for 30-35 ish soon to do 40. My body has been responding well and lump I had on my left achilles is now gone for the first time in years. I'm not getting any younger and want to chase after another PR in the 50 and 100 while I still can. I don't have next year or whenever to put that off to. On the Daugavpils course I could have realistically done that.