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Boston or Bust! December 28, 2006

Posted by Lisa Sabin in boston marathon, fitness, marathon, running.
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I have had a goal in the back of my mind for the last 12 years. Ever since I started running, I have wanted to run the Boston Marathon. Each and every marathon I ran, Boston has been on my mind. The one consolation I have is that every time I missed my goal, I knew that I would get an extra 5 minutes to get the job done in the next age category.

Well, the clock is ticking. I have 12 years of running and 7 marathons under my belt. Last time I missed the qualifying time by 3 minutes! Now I am in a new age group. I have become a master. As a master female runner, I will have to run 3:50 to qualify. I have run 3:55 a few times, 3:52 once and 3:49 once.

I think Boston is within my reach, but it will take some serious dedication on my part. Sacrifices will have to be made. I know I will have to give up mochas and red wine, a couple of my favorite addictions, besides running. I will have to become runner skinny, not just able to fit into my jeans slim, but hip bones protruding, not able to pinch an inch skinny!

Frankly, I have noticed that maintaining my weight has been more difficult since I turned 40. I am not really looking forward to the dieting part. I really like to eat what I want and run my butt off. I think I am running a little less, as a result there is a little extra stuff around the middle that I am carrying. Maybe some of you can relate.

I think if I wait until I am 45 I could easily run a marathon in 4 hours, but I cannot guarantee it. I have noticed my half-marathon times getting slower. This is the year for me to take action.

I have chosen Portland Marathon as the race to qualify. Portland was the first marathon I ever ran. The 1995 Portland Marathon fell on my 30th birthday. I think it’s only fitting that I go back and give it another go.

This is my New Year’s Resolution. 2007 is the year to run Portland Marathon and qualify for the Boston Marathon. Does anyone want to join me?

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How I Started Running December 21, 2006

Posted by Lisa Sabin in fitness, marathon, running.
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I started running seriously in 1991. My second child was born in December of 1991. She was 7 months old when I went down to Oregon with some friends who assembled a team for “The Hood to Coast Relay” My husband Phil, was supposed to run 3 legs of this challenging relay course, which starts at Mt Hood and finishes on the sandy boardwalk of Seaside, Oregon. Unfortunately, he sprained his ankle and would not be able to run. I went out and ran a 10k off absolutely no training to see if I was a viable replacement for our team.

I had no idea how to run a steady pace. I was a runner in high school, but not competitive. I ran to finish and somehow made it in under an hour. If I was to replace Phil and run 3 legs, between 4 and 7 miles, I could do it. I was ready or at least willing!

Another friend stepped up to take Phil’s place. I was off the hook. Instead of running, Phil and I went down to volunteer. We volunteered at one of the stops towards the final portion of the race. We saw runners of all shapes and sizes, young and old, novices, to elite. Someone even pointed out Alberto Salazaar. There were teams sponsored by Nike running along with everyone else. The excitement was contagious. I looked at the runners and I wanted to be one of them. Okay, I wanted my legs to look like theirs and to move with grace and ease.

I was inspired to run. I went home and purchased a double running stroller and bought some running shoes. I began training with both my kids in the jogging stroller. My son was 4 years old and my daughter was 15 months, when I completed my first half-marathon.

That was 15 years ago. Since then I have completed 50 half-marathons, 7 marathons, 7 triathlons, an endurance duathlon and the STP 204 mile bike ride. I’ve ran more 5ks and fun runs than I can count.

I have met some great friends who will be friends for life. We share something deep within our souls that only runners can relate to. We pound out miles and share both our victories and our challenges. It all gets left on the road. We even have a saying “What’s said on a run stays on the run”

I cannot imagine my life without running. Running has added richness and meaning to my life. It has become a part of who I am.

New Las Vegas Marathon December 14, 2006

Posted by Lisa Sabin in fitness, marathon, personal training, running.
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The New Las Vegas Marathon and Half-Marathon Rock! The weekend started out with dancing at Margaritaville, a fun bar next to the Flamingo Hotel on the strip. There was a rodeo competition in town, and something going on with the Marines. Needless to say, there were a lot of men in uniform! This made for an interesting mix of people with all the runners too. Our group consisted of a nurse, a hospital sales rep., a firefighter, a middle school administrator and a couple of personal trainers. Most of us know CPR, so we were in pretty good hands in case anything went wrong.

I have run a lot of races in different states, from California, Arizona, Tahoe, etc. One thing I have learned is that the weather conditions, elevation and climate have a huge effect on me. Training at Sea level in the mild Seattle climate doesn’t necessarily prepare me for elevation and desert climate. I felt parched the moment I stepped outside. One of my friends from Colorado gave me a saline gel to help with the dry nose. The product is called Ayr. It worked really well.

The race began at 6 am, so I ordered coffee delivered from room service ahead of time. This allowed me to avoid the Starbucks line at 5 am. The race was limited to 15, 000 entrants between the marathon and the half-marathon. We ended up with about 6,000 marathoners and 7, 174 half-marathoners. Robin Leach was the announcer and The Blue Man Group performed right before the start. We were all inspired when it was announced that the day before Sigfried and Roy did the Santa 5K. Roy was able to walk with a cane and give his cane up towards the finish of the race.

I began shuffling towards the starting line along with numerous Elvis impersonators and runners from every state in the US. I brought my camera phone and snapped a few pictures along the way. We ran down the strip through old town and the Freemont Experience. We passed Binyons, the Gold Nugget and a bunch of little chapels. This was the fun part. Soon we turned to head back towards Mandalay Bay Hotel. There was a fierce headwind for at least half of the race. The wind didn’t let up! I adjusted my goal of running a 1:50 to just breaking 2 hours. I ended up running 1:58 with a sprint at the end.

There were definitely some talented runners out there. The stats for the marathon were 2:16 Male and 2:35 Female. The Half-Marathon stats were 1:10 Male and 1:23 Female. The purse for the marathon was $65,000. I guess that’s enough to attract the elite crowd!

Vegas knows how to put on a race. I am going back next year. Sign me up!