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The Great Minnesota Get Together (aka the State Fair)

I am an unabashed fan of the Minnesota State Fair.  My preference is to arrive early in the morning so I can see the kids compete in the 4H activities but this year I couldn’t make it before the afternoon.

Of course there’s an endless variety of great-tasting-but-bad-for-you foods (and I indulge liberally) but there’s also a fresh fruit stand and every year I get one of their fantastic Colorado peaches (the best bargain at the fair).  Every year I also get a flu shot (free with my insurance card). I also like to stop by the Dairy building to see the likeness one of the Princess Kay dairy maidens being carved into a 70 lb block of butter (which she gets to take home at the end of the fair).

But there are always new things at the Fair too!  Where else would you see a 700lb wad of paper (the world’s largest) or a live glassblowing demonstration?  In the end the Fair is a bittersweet event - I look forward to it, but it marks the end of the summer.

I was tagged by Fatman2Fitman and asked to post the most recent photo from my phone.  This is a picture from last night as Beth and I sat in our MN State Fair rain ponchos waiting for the start of the Prairie Home Companion show in the grandstand.
Prairie Home Companion is old-time radio show that is broadcast on NPR on Saturday evenings.  It’s normally a live show, generally broadcast from St. Paul, but most years they also tape a show on Friday night at the MN State Fair.
Even though it’s extremely uncool, I really love this show and it’s a treat to see it live.  Beth is a good sport and indulges me.  Also, how is it possible that she looks so cute in a silly plastic rain poncho?

I was tagged by Fatman2Fitman and asked to post the most recent photo from my phone.  This is a picture from last night as Beth and I sat in our MN State Fair rain ponchos waiting for the start of the Prairie Home Companion show in the grandstand.

Prairie Home Companion is old-time radio show that is broadcast on NPR on Saturday evenings.  It’s normally a live show, generally broadcast from St. Paul, but most years they also tape a show on Friday night at the MN State Fair.

Even though it’s extremely uncool, I really love this show and it’s a treat to see it live.  Beth is a good sport and indulges me.  Also, how is it possible that she looks so cute in a silly plastic rain poncho?

I did the ice bucket challenge…

The humidity is gone, temperature in the low 70’s and plenty of daylight left after work.  Could you ask for anything more?

Tonight was a short but quick ride - 50 minutes 17.5 miles.  It was nice to just get on the bike and ride - no bottles, no gels, no bullshit.

The humidity is gone, temperature in the low 70’s and plenty of daylight left after work. Could you ask for anything more?

Tonight was a short but quick ride - 50 minutes 17.5 miles. It was nice to just get on the bike and ride - no bottles, no gels, no bullshit.

I’ve lost my tolerance for humidity

Today’s 4 hour bike ride turned into a 3 hour ride when Beth’s electronic shifters ran out of juice.  It was incredibly humid so I didn’t protest the shorter ride and decided to finish cutting the grass instead of the 45 minute run.

I agreed to wash the Gatorade grime off the bikes and for the 25th consecutive year Beth agreed to launder my disgusting work out clothes and return them to my closet.  Yes, I know I’m getting the better part of that deal.

And I cleaned my running shoes - I hate when the white parts turn brown.  They’re not perfect, but they’re better. 

It’s important to hydrate before tomorrow’s 4 hour ride/45 minute run.  Good luck to everyone racing tomorrow.

It’s important to hydrate before tomorrow’s 4 hour ride/45 minute run. Good luck to everyone racing tomorrow.

The company you keep
I met my friend Susan a few years ago and she continues to inspire me.  Not only is she a fast runner (and a fellow member of the 50 States Club), but she’s also become a great endurance swimmer.  This summer she won the Masters National Age Group 10 mile Lake Minnetonka Challenge.
Susan and I ran 7.5 miles this morning before she dropped me and I ran the last 7.5 mile loop by myself.  As you know, I’m a fan of cold weather - even though the temperature wasn’t too hot this morning the humidity was 95%.  I have a hard time running through soup and by the time I was done I was completely soaked and dragging.  After a quick change of clothes I felt much better though.  It’s amazing what a difference it makes to be in dry clothes.

The company you keep

I met my friend Susan a few years ago and she continues to inspire me.  Not only is she a fast runner (and a fellow member of the 50 States Club), but she’s also become a great endurance swimmer.  This summer she won the Masters National Age Group 10 mile Lake Minnetonka Challenge.

Susan and I ran 7.5 miles this morning before she dropped me and I ran the last 7.5 mile loop by myself.  As you know, I’m a fan of cold weather - even though the temperature wasn’t too hot this morning the humidity was 95%.  I have a hard time running through soup and by the time I was done I was completely soaked and dragging.  After a quick change of clothes I felt much better though.  It’s amazing what a difference it makes to be in dry clothes.

Two kids in college and an exit row seat

This week RunningMyOwnRace and I dropped off our daughter for her freshman year in college and helped our sophomore son move into his new university apartment at a different school.  Both are good students and it’s exciting to see them venturing out on their own.  Although we’ll miss them, it’s exciting for us too.  I’m still trying to remember what our lives were like 19 years BC (Before Children).

Although we packed plenty of running clothes, the >12 hour drive each way and time spent packing/unpacking didn’t leave us any workout time.  

Work never takes a vacation though, so I spent much of the car ride in the passenger seat trying to stay on top of email.  I’m definitely looking forward to running, riding and yes, even swimming this weekend. 

Spousal Support

Generally those words are used in the context of a divorce, but in my case it’s a good thing.  I have the kind of spouse who supports and encourages.  It would have been easy to lay around in bed today recovering from Ragnar.  But instead we did the 60 mile Lifetime Fitness Gran Fondo.

Technically it’s a race, but we rode at a moderate pace, stopped at two of the aid stations and finished in around 3:15.  And then we rode another 45 minutes just because.

Done with legs 3 and 4 (my last).  8:26 in 1:10:18.  My van has 5 more legs and the other van has 6 and then we’re done.   I learned that at Ragnar when you pass someone they are considered ‘road kill’.  Teams count their kills and keep a running total on their van. I got 38 kills, net 33.

Done with legs 3 and 4 (my last). 8:26 in 1:10:18. My van has 5 more legs and the other van has 6 and then we’re done. I learned that at Ragnar when you pass someone they are considered ‘road kill’. Teams count their kills and keep a running total on their van. I got 38 kills, net 33.

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