50 State Challenge Map

50 State Challenge Map
States completed

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Halfway to 50!

It was December  2011, sitting on the couch with my sister Carla, when I decided I wanted to take on this 50 state half marathon challenge.  It's a bit surreal to now be here at state/marathon 25.

This morning I completed the Rock n Roll St. Louis Half Marathon (1:40) officially putting me at the halfway mark to 50.  If I continue on this current path I may be crossing the finish line in Hawaii (reserved for 50) by November 2015.  So I continue on to Savannah next month to start the second half of this challenge.

Thanks to everyone who's been supportive throughout my training, travels, and races.  I am going to single out my two biggest supporters.  They are my sisters Maria and Carla.  They are amazing and nobody supports me as much as those two incredible ladies.

Up next:  Savannah, Ga.

Thanks, Mari!

Thanks, Carla! (clearly this was not taken during training time)

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Missouri day two

It was a fun day to be in St. Louis.  It consisted of preparing for race day, touring the historic Anheuser-Busch brewery, and meeting friends for game 3, Cardinals vs. Red Sox.

I picked up my packet early and then headed over to the brewery for the free tour.  The Brew House was built in 1891-92. The structure is on the National Register of Historic Places and the complex is a National Historic Landmark.  The tour took you through the history of the Budweiser brand and the brewing and packaging process.  It was pretty cool.  The bonus is at the end of the tour you get two free beers.  That's always fun.

Afterwards I took a cab over to Soulard to meet Jon and his lovely girlfriend Mandie at International Tap House for the game.  It was a great game ending well for St. Louis but not without a little controversy.  Needless to say St. Louis is still partying as I type this post (12:45 am) and our Boston friends look forward to a little revenge tomorrow.

Time for bed.  7 am race.  Details and more pics tomorrow.

St. Louis is ready for a marathon

Budweiser brewery, historical landmark

A Clydesdale!

Historic clock tower

Brewing some beer

Packaging plant

Game time at International Tap House in Soulard

A friendly rivalry between love birds

Missouri arrival

A great first day in St. Louis.  The city was preparing and buzzing for game 3 of the World Series so it's going to be nuts here today.

I was also able to meet up with my good friend Melissa (in town from DC) for brunch and met her friends Heather and Shannon.  These girls are simply hilarious.  And last night I met up with my old Cleveland buddy Jon.  It was a fun night grabbing drinks out in Soulard and over by St. Louis University. 

Today I pick up my packet, finish up sight seeing, and will try to find a place to plant myself for the game tonight.  Race starts at 7 am so fingers crossed I can keep it from turning into a long night. Details tomorrow.

Welcome to St. Louis


Mighty Mississippi

ESPN setting up

Drinks with Jon to get the night started

Friday, October 4, 2013

Government shutdown = no race

I enjoy politics.  Living in DC is perfect for me because politics and current/international events are happening around me all the time.

I decided early on to keep this blog politics free and stick to my travels and races. However, this week politics decided to creep its way into my race life.  We had a government shutdown.  That means our government ceased many of its functions due to lack of funding.  And that includes national parks.  The first eight miles of the Woodrow Wilson Half Marathon runs along the George Washington Memorial Parkway.  That is a national park.  That is now closed.

Below are two letters that all runners received.  Postponement was set for next month, November 10.  However, I will be in Savannah, Ga. that weekend completing that state and race 26 for the year.  So I will be deferring my entry for 2014.

What really bugs me is I signed up to do this with Carla.  She's training for a full marathon.  She needed this as a training run.  Sure, she can go out and knock out 13 miles on her own.  But, it would have been nice to have been part of that training with her to see her get to Philadelphia.

I sure hope our elected representatives can get their acts together. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The last minute race

The last minute race is always fun.  A friend mentions it to you in passing, they say "come on just do it," you debate it, you go to the race site to sorta peruse it, and then say "what the hell .. let's do it."

My sister Carla is running the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon this Sunday.  It's a training run for her as she's preparing for the Philadelphia full marathon next month.  She's pretty baller. 

She mentioned the Half to me last week and asked if I wanted to do it with her.  I have St. Louis at the end of the month so I paused for a moment.  But, I think they're pretty spread out from each other and I am not running this one for time.  So it won't be a problem.  Plus after Wichita I sorta want to get on the pavement more often than not.  So I registered.

I've actually done this race before.  It's where I PR'd at 1:31.  That was a pretty great day.  It's a nice course that begins at Mount Vernon in Alexandria, Va and ends at the National Harbor in Maryland. I'm looking forward to doing it again. 

As I mention above I won't be running this race for time but rather to provide Carla any encouragement I can.  Her ankle has been bugging her lately so we need to keep an eye on that.  

Plenty of race day pics this weekend!