Holy guacamole! It’s been a while (2 years, to be exact) and a lot has changed…the abridged version is as follows: I became a “real” aunt, then got married and became a real aunt x5 (that’s 6 in total), traveled to the other side of the world to hold a koala, got a brandy new kitten, Betty Boop (pictured below in her “going to camp” outfit) and then finally settled back into normal life where my *husband* and I made our marriage goal, which is what this post is about. That should pretty much catch you up.
After thinking long and hard, we decided that together we will run a race in every single town in our home state of CT – that’s 169 races! I also want to disclose that I thought this was a COMPLETELY ORIGINAL idea – it was not, but I still think I should get creativity points, because I really did think I came up with this idea. I even told Ben that at races we should make sure we tell every person we meet our plan so a few months from now people will see us and say “Hey look, that’s that power couple who is running races everywhere in the whole state”. Obviously by this point we would have been on the news a few times, probably have a book deal, and definitely would have at least 2 body guards (we needed those ever since our appearance on the Ellen Show). I mean lets be honest, we only have so much time to shake hands and sign autographs.
Anyways, since we have been dating we have run about 10 races together, but the trouble is they were ALL in either Hartford or Manchester…so we are pretty much starting from the bottom. I have personally run races in about 20 towns, before I started dating Ben, but I figured it was a good idea to get really out of shape, fat and slow before starting this challenge with Ben – you know, to boost his confidence. The good news is that the only place to go from here is up. In the past week we have also added two more races to our repertoire: Milford and Enfield.
Race 1: Hartford Scramble Series. We ran this series together when we first started dating. The Scramble series was a cool race where you ran through the woods and also in urban settings and finished off with a free taco and beer. (you’ll come to see that races that end in beer are our favorite).
Race 2: Manchester Thanksgiving Day Road Race. We ran this race when we were engaged in 17 degrees. Frankly, it was one of the more horrific events of my life, but decided to do it that year instead of drinking at my brothers – stupid decision.
Race 3: Milford Road Runners 5K. We ran this race last week on the 4th of July on the face of the sun, a town also known as Milford, CT. I ran into an old friend, who told me at the starting line that it was a hilly course, and I’ve never heard a more true statement. The first half mile was directly uphill…somehow I made it, but it wasn’t pretty. While Ben pranced through the course waving an American flag like a true Patriot, I barely slogged over the finish line. I think its clear that the sunglasses were weighing me down.
Race 4: Enfield Celebration 5K. We ran the Enfield Celebration 5K on Saturday, and it was literally even hotter than the 4th of July. Perfect. My only goal was to keep up with the 83 year old man who (obviously) was drafting off me. At mile two we turned onto a hill similar to Mt. Everest – that’s where I lost Tom. I hope in 50 years I’m still as ambitious as he is.
Anyways, per usual, since all the registration information and reminder emails harped on the importance of bringing your ID, I forgot mine at home. This has happened to me on several important occasions, including a brewery visit for my dad’s 60th birthday and also at my own sister’s Bachelorette party. So I had to do the usual – rely on my charm to get me to the other side (except for the brewery time when my mom got me in by “pulling a JoAnne”). Luckily, I was able to get into the beer tent. Unluckily, we parked “inside” the parade route, so also had to sit through 40 minutes of boy scouts, wheely-popping shriners, karate kids, home improvement companies, and no less than 4 million sirens. cool.
If you have gotten this far down the page, god bless! Going forward, I’ll update more regularly with Do Every Blessed Town In Connecticut (debtiConn) updates! I may even pop in with other fun and interesting things that I come across, because after all, Erin (still) Has Thoughts.
Dear teenage boy who literally stopped driving today to tell me I’m beautiful while I was out for my run,
Thank you. You made my whole day.
☮xo – Erin
PS- driving by a second time and giving me a thumbs up was a nice touch. 😉
This past weekend I got a more-than-healthy helping of all my favorite things in life: Running, Fresh Air, Beautiful Scenery, Comradery, and Competition, and got to do it with an amazing group. And now I’m back…Reality Bites. I was lucky enough to be asked to be part of an amazing group called The Marathongs to compete in a crazy race called Reach The Beach. Reach The Beach is unique because it’s the LONGEST (in distance) relay race in the whole entire country. Holler!!
The longest relay race in the nation? Yep! 204 miles through the White Mountains in NH, starting at Cannon Mountain in Franconia, NH, and ending at New England’s Jersey Shore: Hampton Beach. The goal is to complete the 204 miles within 24 hours among your team of 2 – 12 people. Our team, The Marathongs, came in 87th out of 480 teams, averaging about an 8 minute pace. Each team member has three legs along the way, giving a little bit of rest in between, but little to no sleep. Everyone on the team ran somewhere between 15 – 24 miles over their three legs. Basically, it was awesome!
Our team comes from all over: West Haven, Ellington, Vernon, and Glastonbury CT, Buffalo, NY, New York City, Boston, MA, and Newport, RI. There were some (super boring) super serious teams, but many dressed up. Our major competition was “The Kilts”, “The Lumberjacks”, who, by the way, ran in jorts – no kidding, and “The Cropdusters”. Most of the teams had really great names. It was really an awesome experience as all the teams were supportive of each other – all with the same crazy goal of running 204 miles and “reaching the beach”.
I think from here, the best way to show our journey is through pictures and videos.
Goofing around before the race, getting our wiggle on!
The MarathonG boys’ dance. Get it boys!!
Who says white girls can’t dance??
It was the longest 24 hours of my life…but surprisingly to most, I’m saying that in the best way possible. Things that happened on Friday afternoon seemed like they happened 2 weeks ago by Saturday night. I dont know if it was the lack of sleep, the overexertion, or the amount of things that happened, but it was truly an experience I will never forget and I’m already counting down the days until the MarathonGs run Reach the Beach in 2014.
Last night at work I had a conversation with one of my co-workers about my morning run the next day. The conversation went a little like this:
Me: So I’ll be running by your house tomorrow.
Co-worker: Oh yea? What time?
Me: Early…I’ll probably pass your place around 5:25AM
Me: What, are you going to come out and cheer for me? haha I would die if you were standing out there with a sign or something.
End of story. Now this particular co-worker is a bit on the unpredictable side. Nothing that he does, or doesn’t do, really surprises me. He’s a rolling stone of sorts. So this morning I was running with one of my girlfriends and as we were coming close to my coworker’s house I was telling her the story. We rounded the corner, and to my surprise, a small sign low to the ground caught my eye.
This was surprising, even to me! But it absolutely put some pep in my step! I have a great appreciation for thoughtful little surprises like this – it will not be forgotten!
I’m a runner. By this, what I DO mean is that I have been mostly-consistently running since I was in 5th grade. By this, what I DON’T mean is that I’m an elite, or even a really “good” runner. I run the Manchester Thanksgiving Day Road Race on Thanksgiving Day every year and then basically stuff my running shoes into the back of my closet until March. If you read my blog at all you’d know by now that I HATE winter and HATE the cold. Running and winter are two words that do not go hand in hand. Not in my book anyway! All winter I hole up in my apartment, do puzzles and get fat and then come spring I absolutely dread the thought running, until I get a few runs in and once again achieve that runner’s high. Its takes me about 2 -3 runs, and then out of nowhere I’m border line obessed. I think about it before I go to bed and can’t wait for the morning to lace up my shoes and put in some miles.
Anyway, this past Saturday I ran my first race of the season (“season” is used loosely here, because while most runners will run year round, I consider “racing season” any time of the year when it’s warm enough to be outside and not see your breath. If you can see your breath, its not only not racing season, but you also have no business being out on the streets running!) and it really pumped me up! I went to bed on Saturday night thinking OK, I’m gonna go out for an easy run tomorrow since it’s supposed to be nice. And that it was – low 40’s, not a cloud in the sky…dream day for running! I went out for a quick 4 mile run…9 miles later I happily popped back into my apartment. What happened?
OMG, it was sooooooo nice out, and where I live out in the country there’s a lot to see (and by a lot to see, I mean there’s tons of livestock – see inset pic of my favorite part of country running – the cows). Normally I don’t run with music, but since I just got a new phone I decided to bring it with me so I could use my mapmyrun app and tried out listening to a new running playlist I created. I don’t know if it was the fresh air, getting back in shape, or the music, but my legs just took me and before I knew it I was dancing around town. Now I say “dancing around town”, becuase my playlist was so awesome that I was literally singing (and semi-dancing) along with all my songs. OK, as any runner would know, its much easier to run with a partner…and why is that? because talking makes the time go by quicker! So why not talk, or in my case sing (loudly, and with hand gestures) to yourself!? It’s kind of like that episode of Friends where Phoebe runs “like a kid” through Central Park, except this is real life and I actually do that. Go ahead and judge me, or laugh thinking about. I’m sure I look like the village idiot doing it, but I could care less! It just makes it more fun and something to look forward to, rather than something you “have to do”.
If you’re wondering what on earth could have given me so much pep (besides my everyday bubbly personality), I’ll share my playlist…you may be surprised by the variety, but it really works…throw that puppy on shuffle and you never know what’s around the next corner (pun intented).
- Lady Gaga – Love Game
- Jeremih – Birthday Sex
- Biz Markie – Just a Friend
- Everclear – Father of Mine
- Everlast – What it’s like
- Flobots – Handlebars
- Iyaz – Replay
- Jurassic 5 & Nelly Furtado – Thin Link
- Lady Gaga – Love Game
- Myley Cyrus – Party in the USA
- Soulja Boy – Crank That (Soulja Boy)
- Taylor Swift – Our Song
- 3OH3! – Don’t Trust Me
- Lady Gaga – Beatiful, Dirty, Rich
- Three 6 Mafia – Lolli Lolli
It was really an awesome run, and awesome day, and I really can’t wait to do it up again!! 🙂
So if you follow the erinHasThoughts Facebook Page, or follow @erinhasthoughts on twitter, I’m sure you already saw that yesterday I was out running and somehow I managed to miss a turn. Yea, I’m sure this has happened to thousands of other runners in their lives, but in this case it was different. I mapped my run on mapmyrun.com on Monday night, then I rode the route on my bike in order to check out the elevation etc. (I am still relatively new to the area). So why, the very next morning, could I not remember the route? I don’t know. By the time I realized that I had missed the turn, I had no choice other than to just make my run an out-and-back. I am a complete idiot, but on the bright side, my modified run was within a quarter mile of my planned run, so I guess I can get over it.
Oh, and if you don’t ‘like’ the erinHasThoughts Facebook Page, you should now! doooo ettttt!