Thursday, August 30, 2007

V02ing Our Asses Off

Yesterday we had a 9 mile run with 5x1000m @5K pace. Last week when we had our first VO2 max workout we had to take longer breaks between the repeats and so we were hoping for some improvement on that front.

I figured that a 3:40 marathon says your 5K pace should be about 7:15 min/mile. Doing some math to determine then how long the repeats should take we can just scale the time for one mile down : 7.25 min x 1000m/1600m = 7.25 x 5/8 = 4.5ish. So we were looking to get our 1000m repeats done in about 4:30 minutes. My Garmin has been having some problems getting a signal lately. I don't know what the deal is but it just kept searching for a signal outside our apartment. Since I knew how far we had run the previous week for 8 miles and that our repeats would be 1.25 miles longer (400m longer per repeat) that we could just end where we did the week before and be confident that it was long enough.

So we headed out and admittedly didn't feel wonderful heading to the track. But we got there and cranked up the iPods and started. We did better on the breaks needing only longer breaks before the last two repeats which was nice to see. Our splits ended up being :
  1. 4:19
  2. 4:24
  3. 4:24
  4. 4:26
  5. 4:19
So nice job us! When I looked closer at paces, a 5K pace for a 3:35 marathon is 7:06. This translates to about 4:25 for 1000m so we were more in range with a bit faster race which is nice to see. I was a bit worried about this workout after the speed we had done our long run at on Sunday, but not to many ill effects.

Two things of note at the Track :
  1. THIS IS NOT A FUCKING DOG PARK. While we were running one of our splits (I think it was the third one) some idiot dog owner let their dogs get off the leash and the dogs were running across the track right in front of me, leash (or big ass tripping hazard) trailing behind them. The owners ran right in front of me to get their dog to which I yelled an explicative perhaps. Seriously people, you have a whole fucking lake front to walk your stupid dogs, why come to the track? At least stay in the middle grassy part. There were several other people strolling along with their dogs right on the inside lane of the track. All they have to do is walk either on the outside or just go into the grass. I'm not saying that the people using the track are all important athletes because we are just regular Joes, but come on! It's a track for running, not putting your dogs on parade for an afternoon stroll.
  2. In one of the baseball fields that is within the track there was a father pitching little wiffle balls to his son. I didn't take notice right away until I heard a crack and that little kid popping off line drives. We told the dad that he had a really nice swing and he said, "Yeah he just loves to play and he just turned 2 last week!". We asked if he was a Cubs fan cause we could use him up on the North side. He answered that he worked for the Sox for 11 years so probably not. Given that we pay zero attention to the ball players on the South Side we were then wondering if that guy was a stupid would we have felt if he was. Jason says he was too small to be a player...let's hope so.
After the strides we ran back to Ogden and Chicago. Stopped in the CVS for a Gatorade and a water and since the first bus we saw was super crowded we walked on home. An ok idea until 3/4 of a mile later you realize that you still have 3/4 of a mile to go.

Off day today and then 12 miles tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Marking Our Territory

Yesterday on the way home from the Lab, Jason and I stopped at Oakbrook Mall because I wanted to go to the Apple store to get the new iWork '08 suite. Dad needs it too, so he had me get the family pack using his credit card. When I went to college my dad got me a card to use in case of emergencies and I still have it. Yes I do think that iWork '08 is an he told me to use it. ANYWAYS.

To get to the Apple store at Oakbrook, we always choose to walk through Crate & Barrel. I can't express how much I love that store. We walked around in the kitchen department and just would pick something up and look at it and ooh and ahh and put it down. I said we were putting our scent on everything and Jason said, "Maybe I should start peeing all over the place to mark our territory". We wonder what it's going to be like to walk through Crate & Barrel and not just wipe the drool that leaked out of our mouths but actually be able to buy those super cute dish towels.

We headed to the Apple store and I found exactly what I needed and then because it was there, played with the iPhone. Which is awesome. I couldn't believe how easy it was to navigate through the menus and I didn't think that the keyboard was hard to use at all. I didn't play with it at all but didn't seem too bad to me. Damn you Sprint for you and your stupid 2 year contracts. Oh summer of '08 how I can't wait for your arrival.

We decided to wait to run until it "cooled off". So when we went it was 87 degrees instead of 92 degrees. Blah. We had 8 miles, but cut it off at 7 and walked the last mile home. I want to kick the V02 Max today and don't want to do it on super tired dehydrated legs.

Oh and the Cubs beat the Brew Crew....looks like it's going to go right down to the wire, now if the Redbirds would just start loosing we would be all set.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Side by Side

I just got up to head to the bathroom and asked Jason how his analysis was going when I realized...I have known this was coming of course...but in less than two weeks that will be no more.

For the last 5+ years Jason and I have worked side by side. Same university, same professor, same experiment, same see what I'm saying. Most married couples when we tell them that this is what our lives are, look at us like we are crazy. However, it wasn't so un-normal for us. When we started dating we were friends and spent tons of time together and we met within the physics field so likely that our interests would be similar.

But oh how it's going to change. And I'm going to miss him.

My dad says that now, we'll be able to come home and tell each other about our day since we won't be living the same day. Which is true and that will be nice. But still.....I don't know, it's just going to be very strange.

He's thrilled (I think) because my usual get up to go to the bathroom might also include me flicking his ear...which I say, I'm going to do it every duck. :-)

Tonight is 8 mile General Aerobic. It's about 90 degrees here, so our plan to run at the lab ( shade and no water) has been moved to a run on the lakefront path.

Oh yeah....and in about 12 days...probably no more runs done at the lab. Shit. It's all going to change. For the better I think.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Long Running....and Feeling GREAT

Yesterday, for the first time I felt like the old runner that I was about a month ago. No getting frustrated 2 miles in and turning around, no whining about how horrible running is. Just going and getting the job done.

We had 17 miles on the schedule. We were out of the house by about 6:15 am. Nothing really interesting happened on this run which is always a good thing. Sometimes I hate my Garmin, because I'll be like, "OK, I must have gone at least 3/4 of a mile" and I'll look down and see that I am just 0.05 miles farther than I was the last time I looked. Then I play the, "Just don't look down, just run, doesn't matter what the watch says. You know exactly where you are...DON'T LOOK" of course I look and see that I only have gone 0.07 this time since the last time I looked.

No problem with that yesterday, the miles just clicked off effortlessly. We had lots of miles at or under 8:30 and while that is too fast for our long run pace, it was the pace that felt comfortable. Sometimes I hate fighting the feel good comfortable feeling if it's too fast. So we did 17 miles in a total time of 2:30:23 or an average pace of 8:51 min/mile. I know that you missed my graphs over the last month, so here we go. The only peaks were from either the underpass that goes under LSD at Chicago Ave. This mile is always weird because we have to go down the stairs and so on. The other peaks were all just from gatorade/water/Gu stops and still all where they need to be.

A great run. And just what this marathon runner needed. This week we have a lot of miles and I am heading to Florida over the weekend with the Family to celebrate my Grandpa's 90th birthday. Jason doesn't get to go because a) we are broke and my dad had to buy my ticket down there and b) he starts his new job in two weeks and the thesis needs to be done by then. That means that our 17 miles with 14@MRP will be done alone. Although I might get my dad to find a bike and ride with me....but he's been really really sick and so he might not be up for it. We'll see. Then my dad will come back to Chicago and be here until the end of October...yay!

Friday, August 24, 2007


I first want to say hi to anyone that found their way to this blog from this post over at Pose Forums. There was a link to my scary finish photos on there and some comments. I wanted to comment over there but I don't have permissions. Anyways.

I was especially that the right word, by the final comment on the thread made by user jasquiers :
She seems like a pretty dedicated runner from reading her blog. Those pictures appear to be a very extreme example of a war between the body trying to stop running, and the conscious mind insisting it keep going.
The photos and finish of that race have been bothering me since I saw them. I don't know why they affected me so much. I realize it's probably a weird thing that happened with dehydration, mixed with the heat, mixed with we went in the race with some downtime beforehand and whatever other environmental factors could be thrown in there and probably a one time deal because it was a perfect storm of factors. I somewhat talked about this a few posts back. But being a physics grad student I tend to over analyze situations until everyone wants to kill me. So my apologies on bring it up again, but the funkyness of the last few weeks I think stems from that race.

I have been concerned about my need to push through the end of a race like that. I think that the comment above however, is perfect. My body obviously wanted to stop and on some level I knew that, but there is some little thing in my brain that goes, "No no're fine. You're almost done. One foot in front of the other...that's right....BITCH KEEP FUCKING RUNNING."

That little voice doesn't ever go away though. It's always there nagging me. It realizes there is a 100 degree heat index...but 11 miles is 11 miles. There might be a torrential downpour....but 20 miles is...well okay...that was 3 miles.....and the only saving grace in my head about that run last weekend, is that sometimes my mind isn't strong enough to overcome my body's need to "JUST FUCKING STOP FOR A BREATHER".

How about too much metaphysical garbage? Mind Body Soul...what? I think so.

I am just getting over the race finish slowly and getting back into it. This running life is my thing. If I don't PR or qualify for Boston at the Chicago marathon, I'm not saying it's okay. I'm not saying I'll be okay with that outcome as at this moment in time I still think I'm track for a 3:35 race. BUT I know that I'll be lacing my shoes up for the next 50 years of my life......and I do it....cause I love it. I just don't always remember that I love it. It's the only constant in my life. People surrounding you change, and apartments turn into condos turn into houses and jobs change and kids come and parents go....and the one thing that is always and will always be the same is my dirty running shoes in the hallway.....waiting to be put on.

Alright.....don't you love my posts when I don't run the day before. Tonight is 4 miles with 6x100m strides. That's one loop around the Tevatron.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Sore Throats, Goose Poop & 2/5

I have been battling a sore throat since about Monday. I am getting frustrated because my usual sick fix of sleeping as much as possible, isn't working as well as usual. I have been sleeping about 11 hours at night and still waking up with a scratchy throat. Although this morning it's actually maybe feeling a little bit better.

But in my new "get your runs in Bitch" mentality there is no room for "I have a sore throat and there is a 100 degree heat index outside." So we headed over to the Lakefront path near the totem pole and parked and we were off for our 11 mile medium long run. This is where the goose poop comes in. It's always around this time that the Canadian Geese come back and now they are all over the lakefront path between Fullerton and North Ave. Nasty...and they aren't scared of anything, so we are dodging them and their giant piles of poop. gross.

We were doing ok, miles where they should be. When we got to about 4.75 miles in we stopped for water and I stopped the watch (which I never do). But it's so hot out that we just stood in the shade for a bit before continuing on. At mile 6.5 we stopped and took a Gu and enjoyed the shade. One more stop at 8.5 miles in for some water and then we were on it to the end. Our last mile was in 8:22 (MRP) which was nice to see. We averaged 9 min/mile and granted this is our moving pace so with the stops I would say this would probably be around 9:15 min/mile which is still alright. I'm happy with that last mile and more importantly getting through it.

Hence 2/5 runs of the week done. We have a 4 mile recovery on Friday, an 8-15K race on Saturday (we are just going to try and do a one mile warmup and then 5 miles at MRP) and then 17 on Sunday. Should be doable.

Oh...Congrats to the Lovely Cousin Lisa and her Hubby who just bought their first condo! Now I am getting a condo buying bug. With Jason's new job we are looking to buy probably around May of next year. Plus I should have a job by then as well. Very exciting times. Wheeeeee!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Well....Where Have We Been?

We've been around....not running as much as we should.....but getting back into it surely. So let's not talk about what we haven't been doing...but what we did get done.

Yesterday we had a V02 Max workout. This was the first one that we would have done since we missed the first one in the training cycle. So it was 8 miles with 5x600m @ 5K pace with 90s jogging recovery. We ran down to the track on Chicago & Lakeshore drive which is just about 4 miles and then started in on the repeats. For a 3:40 marathon, a 5K pace is 7:16, so doing some math found that the repeats should be done at about 2:43. Our repeats were as follows : 2:32, 2:40, 2:42, 2:42, & 2:37. The 90 second break in between wasn't quite enough so we probably were taking around 2 minutes instead. It was 90 degrees out and it was our first real run back so whatever. We had about 1.8 miles to finish after the repeats and so ran back towards home. This had the sun directly in our eyes and our clothes were soaked through so this was probably a lot slower than it should have been...but whatever, we got stuck at lights and what not. We stopped at the CVS on Chicago/Milwaukee for some Gatorade and jumped on an empty #66 bus home.

So, all in all it was ok. Not perfect, but got though all of it and didn't give up on the repeats even though a big part of me wanted to.

Tonight is an 11 mile run. The goal is just to get through all the runs this week.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Every Year

Every year, I think around this time I get....I don't know...just blah like.

Our run on Wednesday was a 12 mile run which we cut to 10 miles after we ran the first 5 miles and were exhausted...we ran walked the second half of the run.

Yesterday we had a 12 mile run again and did it at Fermilab. We finished this run, averaging a 8:59 pace which isn't bad....but just felt....I don't know. Bad? Didn't care? Sloppy?

I usually will push myself to a point every year and get a little screwed because I end up exhausted or whatever. This year I must still be recovering from the race. Speaking of the race, I am freaking out about the finish. I don't want to be so competitive and worried about time that I have that kind of ending... it's not fun anymore when that happens.

Anyways, we are just trying to muscle through the runs these days. Today we have a 5 mile recovery run and then Sunday there is 20 on the schedule.....we'll see.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

The Plan Worked

After 5 long years in graduate school...the plan has paid off. We always heard, oh get a PhD in physics and the companies will be beating down your doors. With Jason graduating in about 2 months, we haven't had any companies banging down our door, and just a bunch of recruiters asking ridiculous questions that had no meaning on what getting a PhD actually, "How much have you been paid over the last 3 years?" "Well, I'm on a Department of Energy grant and they pay me just enough so that I can get one $2 beer a month at the bar next door to my ghetto fabulous apartment". Please.

Anyways, a *fantastic* recruiter found his way to Jason's resume, and landed him an interview with a Chicago company. They gave him a take home technical test which he passed. This was given to him right before Lollapalooza, so he was up at 5am working on that, and then to the concert for 12 was a long exhausting weekend.

He went in for an interview on Tuesday which went on for 5.5 hours....and at the end they had offered him a position. This morning they called back with an offer and Jason's going to accept it. He starts in the middle of september.


The best part is that we get to stay in Chicago. In my city that I grew up in. So maybe I have never lived more than 200 miles from Chicago...but you know what? Who cares? I love this town! Yay!

Scary Photos

Remember in my race report, I mentioned that I felt like I was leaning really far backwards when I was finishing the race? I thought that it was all in "I felt that way" not "that's actually what I was doing". I just found the race photos online...and they are creeping me out. I look HORRIBLE. What's funny is that in some of the other picutres of the same time of the finish line, there is another guy that is leaning really far forward and looking about to fall...he was also in the medical tent...the medics must look for non-vertical people. Actually I just looked closer and he did fall after he crossed the line...yowza..anyways....

I'm in the pink shirt/black shorts....not good!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

6 mile recovery

Last night after a certain someone spent many (many) hours downtown doing something that might be fabulous, we went out for a 6 mile recovery run with 6 strides. We ran our usual 6 mile loop and for the last mile we would sprint and walk and so on for 6 repeats. Nothing too fascinating but kind of nice running late as the traffic had gone down a little bit.

Today was a 12 mile run with 7 miles at LT pace. Since we had so many fast miles at the CDC on Sunday we are just going to do 12 miles today. It's a high mileage week with another 12 on Friday and then some kind of recovery on Saturday and the second 20 miler of the season. I think we might try for 21 and then hit 22 for our last big run about 3 weeks before the race.

That's about all from this camp....but stay tuned.

Monday, August 13, 2007

105 Things About Us

I know that most people do these 101 things about themselves....but seeing that Jason and I are co-owners of this blog...and today is our 3 year wedding anniversary....I thought a list of us would be just as interesting...and just a little too cutesy. And, being truly spectacular, we could not be contained to 101 items, so you get 105. What can I say, we're rebels.
  1. I was born and raised in and around Chicago...a city girl at heart.
  2. Jason was born over the border in Fort Wayne, Indiana...which is famous for...Frank Burns from M.A.S.H! But I think that's about it.
  3. My high school graduating class had 500+ people in it.
  4. Jason's went to a small private school, graduating with 48 of his closest friends.
  5. Neither of us talk to anyone we went to high school with (for the most part).
  6. I was on the Cross Country, Gymnastics & Track team in high school and headed to the state track meet in the quarter mile my senior year.
  7. Jason was a FAMOUS bowler in the he was the Fort Wayne city champion his senior year of high school.
  8. We are both very coming in at 5'11" and Jason coming it at 6'3" (if you round up (and if he is wearing shoes)).
  9. Yes, I was the tallest person on my gymnastics team.
  10. No, I didn't play basketball
  11. Jason decided to major in physics after taking it in high school (he was going to do Chemistry until he realized that it's stupid).
  12. I took my dad's physics class in high school, got a C and then took art and photography my senior year. I went to IU undeclared.
  13. Both Jason and I had our Dads as teachers in high school. Jason's dad is math teacher. Jason got a B.....way less embarrassing that my C
  14. My freshman year I took a Calculus class and swore that I would never take another college level math class or major in anything that dealt with it. The professor didn't know anyone's name at the end of the semester.
  15. I said that, but then I took Physics 201 my second semester because I think I needed some hours to fill in. I also took The History of Comic Book Art and the professor looked just like Clark Kent....when he was wearing his glasses (naturally).
  16. I got, like, a 98% in the physics class.
  17. My GPA that semester was almost 4.
  18. Even though I got mono and missed the last 2 weeks.
  19. I decided to major in physics because I did so well in the class and loved the professors.
  20. Jason's freshman year couldn't have been more different. He had a set class schedule
    as he was un-undeclared.
  21. He took the Honors physics course that went over the first two semesters.
  22. We didn't know each other that year at all.
  23. Sophomore year started and I took P222. This is the second semester of the calculus based physics program. I took P201 the year before so there was a bit of a jump. My dad asked the professor if there was anything I could do over the summer to be ready...the professor said that it was summer and I would be fine come the school year.
  24. In that class I met Emily and Clayton who would be close friends for the next 3 years.
  25. After college they both worked for NASA at Harvard. Clayton has since left the computing world for the natural world and moved to Maine and opened an organic farm with his girlfriend. Emily moved to New York City while her husband went to seminary school. She was at NYU for nursing...but I don't know what happened after that.
  26. That semester I also took an astronomy class. We had to do that introduce yourself and state your major crap.
  27. I said "Leah...physics"....everyone else said their name and Astronomy....except one boy who said, "Jason...physics".
  28. I thought I should get to know that guy because maybe we would have some classes together. He had long hair that I thought looked kinda goofy.
  29. Then he didn't show up for classes anymore....but only because he was playing ping pong and skipping all his classes.
  30. Later that semester I was in the Teter dining hall with Bridgette and I saw a tall skinny boy across the room and I thought he looked familiar. I told Bridgette, "Hey I think that cute skinny boy over there is in my astronomy class! He cut his hair, he's really cute." (only in true girl fashion....maybe I need a "he's sooooooo cute" in there) Bridgette said he was too skinny (she ended up marrying the center for the IU football team...she's not so into the skinny stick look like me).
  31. The second semester we both took the Physics Lab class. There were computers on all the tables where we had the lectures and Jason would watch the Cubs games on Gamecast while the lecture was going on. I sat behind him and just thought he was pretty cute AND a Cubs fan AND watching the games during class.
  32. Then we were randomly assigned lab partners and I was so excited to be paired with him. He said he was as well...I was one of 3 girls in the class, the other two were "physics" I understand the excitement.
  33. I didn't want to tell him I was dating someone at the I didn't mention it until I absolutely had to.
  34. We became really good friends that semester and I always looked forward to that class. From that time on we would have almost all of our classes together.
  35. At the end of the summer following the semester I got an e-mail from him asking about the books that were used in The History of Comic Book Art class and if he could borrow mine. I almost peed when I saw that I had an e-mail from him. He said he couldn't believe I wrote him back.
  36. Junior year started and we had most of our classes together.
  37. We would frequently study at the Union and "just take a break" and play some pool or bowl....but we would play for hours...I rarely won either game.
  38. We would always go get Cokes at The Den....$0.50 for a 32 oz drink...quite the bargain
  39. The Den closed recently which we were sad to see.
  40. At the end of the year we had a dinner at our professor's house and after I dropped Jason off I asked him if he wanted to go to a movie or go shoot some pool....
  41. He said he hadn't seen his friends for awhile and so he was going to pass....
  42. I said..."uh...really?"
  43. No I haven't let it go.
  44. Yes he still claims he didn't realize I was asking him out.
  45. One of the friends he was hanging out with, Joe (who was the best man at our wedding) said Jason was stupid (and Leah has since never let it go).
  46. We started dating a few days later after an uncomfortable..."So like, do you want to go out with me?"
  47. We stayed up talking forever, but nothing really happened. I stayed up all night and someone knocked on my door at about 7am while I was blow drying my hair. It was my friend Clayton who had seen Jason and I talking outside the physics building late the night before. He said, "If Jason comes to class in khakis and a button down shirt I'm going to kill him". (I didn't blow dry on a daily basis).
  48. Jason and I officially started dating that afternoon.
  49. Jason left for a summer internship at Stanford two weeks later.
  50. We broke up a month after that...I'm not good at the long distance.
  51. That summer I worked in the physics department and spent most of my nights with Bridgette at Yogi's...yes we were only 20....shhhhh.
  52. Jason read every book by Kurt Vonnegut while in California.
  53. Before we broke up I went to visit him out there. I loved San Francisco.
  54. A naked women spit on Jason at one point during out site seeing.
  55. That's the summer I read Atlas Shrugged and my life changed.
  56. We named our cat Dagny after the main character.
  57. The cat has ended up being very whiny & needy...just the opposite of her namesake.
  58. We love her every minute....except when she's licking our noses at 2:37am.
  59. We got back together after a physics club meeting at the start of our senior year...yes I did say Physics Club....shut it.
  60. We were listening to Purple Rain by Prince.
  61. We were in my old studio apartment in Bloomington.
  62. I loved that apartment as it was MY first apartment.
  63. Jason basically lived there our senior year.
  64. Towards the end of the year we decided to move in together. I got a job at an engineering company in Chicago and we found a one bedroom place in Chicago.
  65. When we moved in I stood in the living room while he was in the dining room and yelled, "I'm all the way down the hall in ANOTHER ROOM!". We had lived in a one room studio for the previous year.
  66. We spent most of the money we made at a bar called Murphy's on Broadway between Wellington and Barry.
  67. They still know us there even though we only go once a year for the Gay Pride Parade.
  68. We realized that we weren't going to forever want to be in the jobs we were in, so we decided to head back to grad school.
  69. I retook the Physics Subject GRE and did horribly.
  70. I don't like standardized testing and I think it should be removed from the school systems. How can you quantify a person based solely on standardized testing...where is the test for your creativeness? How do you put a number on that? And what does it really mean if someone gets a certain number on a certain test and another gets a few points lower or higher? Is that person really "smarter"? Give me a break. Alright mini-rant done.
  71. I am getting my PhD in physics within the year so apparently it was incorrect on my "smartness level"
  72. Jason did really good on all of his GRE tests.
  73. We went back to IU to work with specifically with the guy who is now our advisor.
  74. Best decision we ever made.
  75. He's the epitome of what you should be if you were to go the academia route.
  76. Over spring break Jason and I went to Paris. Round trip flights were only 450 a piece and so we were like...ok let's go. I realized then that you go to Paris with the boy you are going to marry.
  77. He didn't propose while we were there (and he doesn't understand why anyone would think he would have).
  78. He did give me pewter Eiffel Tower statue on our last day there. I wanted to throw it at him.
  79. The first summer after your core courses you have to take a qualifying exam which covers all the material you learned (or were supposed to learn in the first year). It's a two day exam going from 9am - 2pm each day.
  80. It was one of the worst summers of my life.
  81. After the second day of testing Jason and I jumped into the car and drove to New York City for 5 days.
  82. We stayed at a hotel called The Jolly Hotel in Midtown. We got it off Priceline and I almost cried when the name came up....but it was awesome and in a perfect location.
  83. While walking down 5th Avenue one day, Jason turned to me and said, "Let's go in here." I looked up and it was a jewelery store. It was a place that had the loose diamonds and so we looked at all different shapes and sizes and then picked one.
  84. Sales tax in NYC is almost 10%....but if you mail something back you don't have to pay the tax. So we bought the ring, and it was put in a box to be mailed. We found another cheapish ring and went for a walk on the Brooklyn Bridge.
  85. He officially proposed. I said yes.
  86. We called everyone we knew.
  87. No one was home.
  88. We spent the next year finishing our course work and planning the wedding and moved to Chicago in May of 2004 to start our research at Fermi National Laboratory in Batavia.
  89. We refuse to live outside of Chicago so we have a hefty commute.
  90. We got married on Friday the 13th, 2004.
  91. We danced to In My Life, by the Beatles.
  92. People said it was the best wedding they had been to.
  93. The summer of 2005 was the summer we trained for our first marathon
  94. We followed a plan that was in the book, How to Train for and Run Your Best Marathon by Gordon Bakoulis Bloch.
  95. We had no idea what we were doing.
  96. We finished together in 4 hours and 20 minutes, 2 minutes ahead of schedule.
  97. The next day we went out and bought Advanced Marathoning by Pete Pfitzinger and Scott Douglas.
  98. The marathon hook had officially settled in our cheeks.
  99. 2005 was also the summer I started this blog.
  100. We still can't believe the friends and support that we have gotten from what just started out as a training log, moved to a place where we can become better writers just by writing everyday and now is just a bit of both.
  101. This summer we are running our 3rd marathon.
  102. On some days I hate it. On most days I love it and continue to strive to be faster and stronger than my previous races.
  103. I am uber competitive and a bit anal retentive on my training schedules...and about everything in my life.
  104. Jason isn't so much.
  105. But he's him and I'm me. And we fit.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

The 2007 Chicago Distance Classic Race Report

Going into this race I had no idea what the expect or what to assume I could do. I hadn't run much in the previous week and half and those runs that I did do, I either had to start walking within a few miles or less or I just "got through them". Weather reports for the day were and humid...which is killer for any kind of race.

We still had in the back of our minds that if Jason ran 1:45:59 or less he would qualify for the 'C Corral' Start at the marathon which I was placed in due to my 2006 Chicago marathon time. However, we had missed a 15 mile with 12 at Marathon Race Pace so our plan was to try and keep 8:15 as our base goal pace.

We woke up at 4am to make sure we were up and had some coffee and breakfast in us and were awake enough for the start. We went to bed at like 8:30 the night before and so we had gotten plenty of sleep. We drove downtown and parked and walked/ran to Jackson and Michigan to meet my mom and her husband who were going to see us racing for the first time. We walked to the start and told them where they could see us the easiest and then had them head off. We hit the portapotties one more time and then headed to the start.

We positioned ourselves between the 8min/mile and 9min/mile signs and a bit behind the 1:45 pacers. I was feeling so unprepared for this race and I got really nervous when we started. When I have done everything I can do to prepare for a race, I'm not as emotional for the start. This time though, I was having trouble breathing and might have had some watery eyes (no idea what that was about)....but then we were off.

Anyone who does Chicago races is familiar with this start as I think it's the same for the Shamrock Shuffle and the Chicago Marathon. So we are moving pretty well, trying to keep the first mile under control and a nice easy pace to ease on into the race. We hit Mile 1 at 7:44. I looked at Jason said...alright guess we are going for 1:45 then (we would have to pace 8:00min/mile to make that).

We went past the 1:45 pace group and hit Mile 2 at 7:44....again. Alright then....maybe it's still just a fluke. I started keeping track of how much of a buffer we had (so 30 seconds at this point). We saw my mom at this point and waved and smiled. We flew by Mile 3 at 7:40....ok, might need to slow down as these have typically been our Lactate Threshold paces. Saw Mom again right before Mile 4...which came in at 7:37.

(Jason says: at this point I was getting pretty annoyed with our fast pace. Well, maybe more worried than annoyed, but whatever. I never seem to think that I can run as fast as I probably can and so I freak out a bit when I go out as a quick pace. Negative thoughts creep in and I worry and it makes my breathing worse. It's something I need to work on.)

We stopped for a shot of gatorade and kept going. Mile 5 was at 7:50....Jason said he was really worried about keeping these paces up. I told him that if we die we die but we have built up a nice buffer. I wanted to get an idea of what it feels like to start a race at a certain pace and maintain it (basically) throughout the race. By this time in the race it had really heated up. I was noticing that I had goosebumps (or as Micheal Jordan called them...Chill Bumps) on my arms. This happened during a previous LT run where we ended up a bit dehydrated.....but I was still running ok, so it wasn't a huge problem. Nothing too thrilling for the next two miles just plodding along. Mile 6 : 7:49, Mile 7 : 7:52, Mile 8 : 7:59. We got another shot of Gatorade right before Mile 8.

Miles 9-11 were on the lakefront path. We love running on the lake front path...but for some reason (read : we had gone out to fast) this part was really felt non-ending (Jason says: oh, wait, there's the sun. The sun is hot. Why won't the sun go away. Why does it hate me so.). Mile 9 was done in 7:53 and Mile 10 in 7:59. We had yet to have a mile over 8 minutes which was great......

and then...well, and then....I don't know if the going out too fast hit...or the heat...or whatever but we started to slow down.

(Jason says: Somewhere around mile ten or eleven I started to get really down on myself. I was completely exhausted and I was worried that my quads were going to give out on me like in Chicago last year and I honestly just wanted to cry. Or sleep. Or cry myself to sleep. It was everything I could do to keep from walking. But, I was extremely disappointed in my performance during that last four miles of Chicago last year and I wasn't thrilled with my mental state the year before that in the last four, so I decided to get tough, it's hard for everyone, and just push through. That seemed to help a bit. I still slowed down, there wasn't a choice in that regard, but I didn't walk)

Mile 11 was in 8:29, but to be fair to this mile we did have a longer Gatorade stop with the addition of grabbing a glass of water (we walk through the water stations so they tend to be a bit slower). But it was horrible. We turned onto the road that goes to the Planetarium and I thought that the mile marker was going to be right there, but it was still a ways away.

Between about Mile 11.5 and 12 there were some official race photographers...those are going to be HORRIBLE pictures of me. Right before we hit 12 I told Jason to go on ahead. I was feeling really really bad and I didn't want to screw up his chances for qualifying for the 'C Corral' because I had to slow waaaay down. He went on ahead and I went forward working on that last mile. Mile 12 was in 8:18.

(Jason says: Leah was worried that we weren't going to make it because our time was too slow, but I had been doing my own math and my watch said we had plenty of time. Still, I didn't want her to push it too hard on account of me, and I had no choice but to go as fast as possible, so I agreed to go ahead without the usual arguments.)

For those of you that ran this fucking horrible was that finish!?!? For those of you that didn't, it was about a quarter mile north, quick left turn and then right back south ...right next to the people going the way you just came...then you headed around the softball fields.....back up north for the same block.....another quick left AND THEN back south to the finish. At this point I had lost sight of Jason in front of me...the 1:45 pace group passed me (along with everyone else actually). I couldn't get my legs to do anything that my brain was telling it to do. My feet were burning burning up, and I kept feeling like I was leaning way back when I was running.

Finally, I made the final turn onto Columbus and saw the finish line...and just put whatever I had left in my legs into turning them over for the finish. I took a quick look at the finish, saw Jason and ran towards him. At this point I felt like a cartoon character running. It felt like my legs were way way out in front of me and I was leaning really far back. I crossed the finish line, ran towards Jason and stumbled. A medic was there in an instant and said are you ok...I said, "no".

He got some people or Jason (Jason says: two medics were holding her upright, and then I came over when I turned and saw this (making the horrified husband face)) to help me walk because I couldn't support myself. They told Jason to get a wheelchair (Jason says: the guy kept telling me to get the wheelchair, but I didn't see a wheelchair. I was all frantic like a guy trying to get his wife to a hospital on TV. I think I almost killed a couple of people). Those of you that know me have to know how thrilled I was to have to be wheeled around in a wheelchair. They took me over to some fans and I was insisting that I was ok, that I just wanted to go. But every time I would get up I would stumble and get really dizzy. Finally someone else from the medic tent came over (she seemed to be in charge) came over and said...loudly, "You are not fine. You can't walk. You are coming into the medic tent and laying down" (Jason says: there were actually three doctors who all came over at the same time and I'm pretty sure they were ready to use physical force. One of the doctors turned to me and said "she has here own ideas about what she should do, doesn't she?" Yes, yes she does.). So I did just that. I layed down and they put ice packs under my head and stomach and then ice cold towels on my legs and then took some blood pressure readings, asked my name if I knew where I was, etc. The good news is that my usually high BP was low (low for me) I think I wasn't thinking about them taking it which helped. I had to lay there and drink some Gatorade and cool down for about half an hour.

Of course at the time, I was clicking through my mile times on my watch and getting frustrated that I couldn't see them or understand them. I did realize that I had finished in 1:44:54 which was awesome as it's a big PR...especially on such a hot day. This also means that Jason should be able to make it into the Preferred 'C' Corral.

I am kind of frustrated with myself for being pretty stupid on the last mile. Now that I think back on it, I really don't remember anything. I really don't remember the last 0.1 miles and that's usually my favorite part of the race...but I have no recollection of it. I had no need to keep pushing it as I had already qualified for the corral based on my Marathon time from last year.....but I still wanted to. There is something wrong in my brain that makes me compete until...well apparently until I literally drop.

So final time 1:44:55...Jason's finish time by the way was 1:44:35. This is a PR by about 2-3 minutes. Plus, we get to use this as our 12 with 7 lactic threshold run, getting out of that crap.

But let's all realize what this really means. Leah's back bitches. 56 days until the Chicago Marathon and I am right on pace for a BQ time. I think with cooler weather I would have been 2-3 minutes faster given the time on the last 3 miles

(Oh and I had no hamstring pain. The time off must have been just the right cure!)

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Back in the Thick

Well well well. How much to update? How about quickly using bullets.
  • We ran last week on Wednesday what was supposed to be 14 miles. I ended at 5 with a very sore hamstring.
  • I didn't run at all for about 5 days.
  • We did walk around and stand at Lollapalooza for 3 days straight however, which I am going to call cross training.
  • On saturday I turned into Leah circa 2002
  • I yelled a lot at my Dad and Jason
  • I cried on the phone with my mom
  • We only slept 4-5 hours a night for about a week and didn't eat or drink much of anything, due to an assignment Jason was working on (it's a secret).
  • On Tuesday I decided to test my leg on a simple 5 mile run. The good news is the leg felt great, but I couldn't get my heart under control. It was about a billion degrees out and I was worried I was going to have a stroke, I ran 2 miles and then walk/ran home...mostly walking by the end.
  • The next day we sat in our non-airconditioned apartment and cleaned and sweated and cleaned some more and then tried to go out for a run. We made it about a half mile before I bagged the run again because my heart was beating so fucking fast.
  • I realized later that day that I was severely dehydrated. I went pee at about 6am on Wednesday morning, and then not again until 10pm that night. That could have been a major problem with those two recent runs.
  • We worked at the Indiana State Fair on Thursday...long story. But I made sure to keep up on the water intake.
  • Friday we went for a run...about 6 and a quarter miles along the lake front. It was still tough because the weather was again in the 90s...but we made it through without any drama.
  • Today we did a nice easy 3 mile recovery.
  • And NO hamstring pain whatsoever.
  • Tomorrow is the Chicago Distance Classic half marathon.
  • My goal is to do as many of the miles at Marathon Race pace as I can. It's going to be about 75 degrees at the it's going to be a nice hot run to say the least.
Alright, that's all from this camp. Feeling better every day and hoping to have a nice run tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

He's Right

I am mentally weak.

My hamstring is fine after taking care of it the past few days. However, I can't get through a mile or two without my heart feeling like it's going to leap out of my chest and on to the pavement. When that happened once I took it to be because of non-sleeping and bad eating. When it happens a second time and only making it a couple of blocks before backing out and walking home...that makes him right. I am a mentally weak person and with out the mental marathon game...I'm done.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Lollapalooza 2007 - Day 3

I have a new found love of new music. What a fantastic experience. Go figure that there are other artists than the six that are on my iPod rotation. Sunday proved no different than the other 2 days. Oh except it was so hot on Sunday that Jason and I were in a constant state of sweating...even we were were convincing each other that it wasn't "that bad" (it was always "that bad"),

We got there at about 1:30 pm and caught Rodrigo y Gabriela. As usual, no idea what any band is, but these two were *amazing*. They each play an acoustic guitar, and seriously I don't understand how they made so much sound come out of them. The Gabriela woman was awesome, I couldn't believe how fast her hands were moving to play. They played a few well known songs redone in acoustic guitar style, including One by Metallica which you just have to hear to believe. Incredible.

After this we headed right across the field to see Amy Winehouse. She has a very large band consisting of horn players, dancers, drummers, guitarists and herself as the lead singer. Their show was incredible. It seemed very calculated and rehearsed which was not the usual for the shows that we had been seeing. They started about 10 minutes late and Jason and I thought that she was a bit snotty as she just did her deal and waved and headed off stage. That all aside, it was an incredible performance and yet another CD that we'll need to pick up. Oh and I also think that Mrs. Winehouse could use a cheeseburger or two, as she looked to weigh in at about 93 pounds.

We met up with my friend Aga that I randomly ran into a few days early. She and I were friends in high school and haven't seen each other in 10 years. We headed over to see Paolo Nutini who apparently is the new it guy on the European circuit. He was *awesome*. Very strange voice, but really incredible. He looked to be having a fun time up there on the stage.

After this show it was Iggy Pop & the Stooges. While it was like watching a train wreck.....I mean you couldn't quite look away, it's not my style, so we headed over to the other field because we wanted to try and hear a bit of Peter Bjorn and John. I was so exhausted at this point though that we just kind of walked around in a daze. We heard like one song of Peter Bjorn and John and headed back to the field where we started and put our mat down and sat and relaxed and listed to the end of Yo La Tengo and waited for Modest Mouse to start.

We caught up with Aga again when Modest Mouse started and hung with her for the rest of the day. Modest Mouse was awesome, and the crowd was really into them. They had a great show with lots of energy and excitement.

(can we tell that I'm tired today....that band was good....this other bad was really good least I can make fun of my tired writing :-) )

After Modest Mouse it was with everyone else to where Pearl Jam was playing. We caught the end of TV on the Radio which was ok, but I was chatting with Aga about all the people and teachers and high school in general and how both of us haven't really kept up with anyone from those days. We exchanged e-mail addresses with her and then Jason and I went to hit the bathrooms and get a spot for Pearl Jam.

so ok ok. I want everyone to leave me alone. I was never a huge Pearl Jam fan and given how exhausted I was (We had still been getting up between 5am-7am...yes even after going to bed at 2am on Saturday night after the night of too much drinking.... because Jason is working on a....oh wait I can't say....needless to say we hadn't gotten much sleep for the past three days)....we watched about 4-5 songs and then headed home. From what I could see though Pearl Jam did put on a really good show.

We Blue lined it to Chicago Ave and then waited for 20+ minutes for the bus bus. So we decided to walk home...until Jason snagged us a cab which we both just about fell into.

What a wonderful weekend of music. I'll for sure be looking into getting tickets again next year.

Another shout out to Gary for his generous gift to us. Thanks again man, it was an awesome time. Next year we'll have to catch up with you there.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Lollapalooza 2007 - Day 2

Well day two was another busy one filled with known and unknown music. This concert is so super fun....alright here we go.

We got to the concert around 1pm to catch Pete Yorn. On the way to the Pete Yorn stage we passed a stage where Ryan Shaw was playing. I have no idea who that was, but had a good sound for sure. What's awesome about this concert is you are just walking around and it's like...wait that sounds good...what is it? Very cool. Anyways...Pete Yorn. Gary (who also gave us the tickets) gave me a Pete Yorn CD many years ago...which had it been a record I would have played grooves into it. It was one of my favorites and I played it all the time so I was really excited to see him live. He had a great set and has a high cool factor look :-) He played a couple songs off that first album musicforthemorningafter. Another song I think called The Man or something which was very good.

Towards the end of his show we headed across the fair to see the 90s band Silverchair. They were quite the rockers and had a good show. Nothing too memorable though.

BUT THEN...then I thought maybe we would like to see the band described in the Program as "so punk they self released their first album twice". So it was across the field to see Motion City Soundtrack...who were so so super fun. They had a great show and had the look of recently playing in a parents basement, probably not quite true...but they were really good and they got me hooked. I love this concert for the way wide variety of stuff that we saw.

After this Motion City Soundtrack funness we headed back over to the addidas stage to wait for Regina Spektor to play. We have been a fan of hers for awhile, first hearing her on the Steve Dahl radio show. Very different and kinda strange...but good all the same. Check out her songs Fidelity & On the Radio for an idea of her stuff. So we heard The Roots who were playing across the field while we waiting about 5 people back from center stage for Regina. And she way didn't disappoint. She was just her...using a piano, guitar, her finger on the mic, a drumstick on chair, her voice to make all the sounds and noises. When she came out she had a look like she couldn't believe there were that many people there to see her. She looked very gracious and appreciative of the audience. While in the middle of one of her songs she suddenly stopped and said, "Is someone sick out there.....stop everything" and had security come out to the crowd to get a girl who was passing out amid the masses. One of her songs had a great line, "my neighbors are fucking to my song" that the point where you go...I might have made it :-). Anyways, she was really amazing and just as good live as her album. Oh and she's on Jason's "list".

After her show we transversed the field a little bit and listened to Snow Patrol. Jason realized he liked them a lot better than he thought he would. When we were in London last year we were staying in this super shady although cheap hotel and caught some documentary on this fun looking band....I think that Snow Patrol was then famous about two seconds after we got off the plane in Chicago, but I always mention that I saw them on that little TV in that shady hotel for the first time.

After this show there was a choice. Stay for Patti Smith and then have close access to Interpol which were both in the same field that we were in....or walk back over to the other two stages to see Spoon...but then back for Interpol since we wanted to see them. We opted for option 1 because it allowed us to buy a bottle of wine and sit in the grass and drink...and talk politics, spirituality or lack there of, friends, parents, running. Just an evening I'll probably always remember, "kids, one summer your dad and I were at Lollapalooza had no money but bought a bottle of wine that was too expensive anyways and sat in Grant Park in the rain and laughed and argued and agreed and talked about the future" Just a nice evening. We watched Patti Smith who was pretty good. We don't have any of her music, but we realize (like with most of the bands that we saw that day...that we should).

After that show, we again just moved across the field to see Interpol....who were awesome. I texted Barb at this point to find out that they were at home hanging out. So we lugged our semi drunk selves over there and there *might* have been a letting out of my Crazy... but what are friends for if you can't show them the Crazy once in awhile.

Then it was on the Chicago Ave bus...and a crash into bed. One more day to go with another full lineup including Rodrigo y Gabriela, Amy Winehouse, Iggy & the Stooges, Modest Mouse and the big headliner.....everyone's favorite Alternative band....Pearl Jam.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Lollapalooza 2007 - Day 1

Yesterday Jason and I were at Day 1 of Lollapalooza. A friend of the family couldn't use his 3-day passes and so passed them onto us. Jason and I aren't huge into the music scene so we knew that most of what we would be seeing would be new.

We started with Ted Leo & the Pharmacists as per the recommendation of the Chicagoist and the Chicago tribune. We got there about 45 minutes early and were able to stand right next to the stage. They start and none of the mics are working....and then all of a sudden they get the technology worked out and they started rocking out. Oh while we were waiting for the show to start there were two guys in front of us that were (I know nerds....) big big music nerds...but not in a cool way. The one guy talked really loud and didn't stop. Finally they saw some friends and stepped aside...but I know all about a concert they went to in Gary. Wacky. We moved back a little because we had ended up right in front of the speakers and on the way back we ran into a Fermilab person. Always funny seeing people outside of their usual venue.

The show ended and we headed over to the other stage in the field to see Jack's Mannequin. I know their song Dark Blue, and thought it was music that would probably fit my style. And I was correct. This ended up being my favorite show musically of the day....and the fact that one of the band members had a giant silver 1980s era bass ....and there was a Grand Piano on stage and the singer needed two mics right next to each other made it for a great show as well.

After this show we had some time before the next show we wanted to see and so headed back into the city to get out of the sun and heat and have a beer. While walked down Congress Ave, a girl walking by said, "Hey hey....." I looked at her and did a double take and realized it was a friend that I was pretty good friends with in high school. I haven't seen her since then and so it was quite the random meet up.

Heading back to Lollapalooza and we saw Blonde Redhead which I was in between of liking and questioning whether the whining into the mic was anything worth listening to. Bad stage presence as they didn't seem to be having much fun up there. They were actually the exact opposite of the next band we saw.

Heading again just across the field we caught the band Satellite Party. The front man for this band is Perry Farrell of Jane's Addiction and Porno for Pyros. He's also the creator of Lollapalooza so we thought it would be fitting to go see his show. Talk about someone that likes to be on stage! I think this was my second favorite show and not because I loved the music (although they pulled out some old Jane's Addiction which was super fun) but because it was just a good show. Farrell was jumping all over the stage and they had a gogo girl dancer. It was just fun times.

We decided to stay in the field as the headliner Daft Punk was playing on the same stage. I had no idea what to expect, but had heard some of their songs which I thought were fun. Yeah.....uh.....well their entrance was interesting. They have these helmets on that make them look like aliens and they were standing in this big pyramid thing and then the stage would light up and there was loud noises....and yes it was fun. But hour an half of two guys on stage when in the end (quote of the day), "They are just two guys standing in a triangle". Strange.....but still fun. So we headed over to the see the other headliner of of the night, Ben Harper. We grabbed some fries and listened to a couple of his songs and realized that our 5am wake up call was catching up with us, so we headed home.

A great first day of music. We saw bands we would have never heard of and had a ton of fun. Today is day two and I am really excited because we are going to catch Pete Yorn, Regina Spektor, Snow Patrol and Interpol. Stay tuned for our report from Day 2.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

I Don't Want to Write This

Because then it might be true and not just some awful nightmare where you wake up in the middle of the night sweating and then smile because you realize IT WAS ALL A FUCKING DREAM.

I made it out 5 mile on our 14 mile run yesterday...only to have my "twinged" hamstring become a full fledged problem. The entire back of my leg hurt from the top of my leg to my ankle was pretty tight and in pain. So to try and save any resemblance of LeahRunner, I decided to junk the run and head back. We ran into Mike on the way and we walked to McCormick Place and found a pay phone to call Barb to come grab us. It was quite the adventure getting out of McCormick place with a few dead ends non-exits....but we eventually found our way out...and met up with Barb. Thanks again to those two kids for being such good friends...those kind of people really do exist. You guys are the best.

I'm sad.

I don't know what to do. I know pain and I know my body. I can run through just about anything and have a very very high pain I know that I didn't stop because I just didn't want to run or whatever. I knew I would be pushing it to keep going and actually keeping going wasn't a viable option. It was the first run I have missed since about April.

Today we did have a 6 mile recovery which I am going to skip. Tomorrow was an off day anyways. We have a 6 mile recovery on Saturday and then 15 with 12@MRP on Sunday.
I am going to ice aggressively today (working from home) and hopefully the shortened run yesterday and the two days off with icing will get me back to normalish.

I am of the camp that to achieve a goal that might be slightly out of reach....but totally graspable with hard work and have to do the fucking work. I am *freaking* about missing some runs....and my precious 3:40 is looking farther away. I know it's probably not as bad as that because there is still a lot of training to go and if I can get it under control and healed I'll be ok.....but I don't like missing runs. Son of a Bitch.

Fucking Bullshit.

I am going to be joy to be around today.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Is it possible to be too recovered?

Somebody out there needs to say yes. If you say yes, I can stop my recovery runs at 5 miles and not have to endure 6 miles of trudging through Chicago. Seriously.


Okay, I'm not really serious. Yesterday we had a six mile recovery and it went just fine. My legs felt fine the whole way and Leah's felt fine until the last quarter mile when she felt a twinge in her hamstring. I'm not sure what that was all about, but I think she's feeling better today. Wait, hang on, I'll ask her.


She said it's kind of tight but she's not that worried about it. Hmm. Well, anyway, the 14 miles today shouldn't be to hard on it. No, really, it might not be. I've never felt that long, slow distances were all that hard on the hamstrings. Although, I suppose that doesn't explain the fact that 6 slow miles caused the initial pain. I seem to be waffling on the issue. Maybe I should think my posts through before I post them?

Well, maybe we can run a half mile and stretch (to get the muscles warmed up), and then run the last 13.5 miles. Or not.

The weather forecast for today calls for 95 degrees, but it looks like it might be a dry heat. I know, it sounds like a hot heat, but it's not. It's dry. We won't start running until probably 6 tonight, though, and the temperature is expected to be down to 91 degrees, which is really not that bad.


Oooookay, this post was a bit more rambling than really necessary, but that's what happens when all one has to write about is a recovery run. So, I'll just leave you with the fact that the Cubs are still winning and are a mere one game out of first.

Go Cubs.