Last week C.B. and I met for a run followed by lunch (some women shop and do lunch, others run and do lunch). It was our first chance to talk for more than a few minutes. Here's C.B.'s account of our chance meeting a month ago:
Yesterday I ran into a runner. No, it’s not what you think. I wasn’t out on a jog, I was at a shopping center. It was someone I’ve been wanting to meet because we enter many of the same races in our region, are the same age and run very similar times. I knew her name and face because we were on the podium together at last year’s Midnight Christmas Run in Lausanne, she in first place and I in third (among the “senior dames”). So when I walked by her in the mall, I got very excited and introduced myself. It turns out we have even more in common than I thought!

She’s American and has lived in Switzerland for 40 years (for me it’s been 30). Running is a family sport, like it is with us. Her three kids are my three kids’ ages. Her husband is from Fresno! [C.B. is from Bakersfield] I’m sure we’ll find more parallels as we get to know each other. We’re already Facebook friends :-)
And we did find more things we have in common! I'm looking forward to our next run together, even if it will have to wait until after our five-week trip to the States.

Gotta run...


Say “cheese”

Husband and I have been in Gruyères all week. Last night I had to choose between running the third leg of the Tour du Pays de Vaud and having dinner with our coworkers. Having chosen the latter, I went for a long run up the sentier des fromageries, past the alpine chalet where we had had fondue the night before, and on up to a spot with a fantastic view of the whole valley 700 feet below. By dinner time I was quite hungry. The meal and the company on the terrace of the Fleur de Lys were excellent. I knew I had made the right choice.

Gotta run…



Neighbor had warned me that this week’s leg of the Tour du Pays de Vaud wouldn’t be a picnic. The first few kilometers of the 8.5K course were downhill and at the gunshot we took off like rabbits with hounds on our heels. I knew I would have to pay for the fast pace in the final uphill kilometers. Sure enough, runners I had passed last Wednesday shot by me this time. Even though I had a tough race, it was fun to see so many friends. Besides those who were at Saint Prex, I saw and old friend I’ve known for over 35 years and a new friend I met just three weeks ago!

Gotta run…


Smart Coach

Husband and I are toying with the idea of attempting the Beaujolais Marathon again this November. So just for fun, I went to the Runner’s World website and clicked on Smart Coach. I entered all the pertinent information; weekly mileage, recent race time, training intensity. A 13-week training plan popped up instantly. Smart Coach is confident I can run a marathon in 3 hours 47 minutes and 57 seconds! That’s over 7 minutes faster than I ran the Geneva Marathon! And with “moderate” (3 weekly runs totaling up to 50 kilometers a week) training! So I don’t think I’ll take Runner’s World up on it’s $29.99 offer for a 16-week “Break 4:00 Marathon Plan,” which features 5 weekly runs totaling as much as 80 kilometers per week! That makes me a Smart Runner.

Gotta run…


Go jump in the lake

The first leg of this year’s Tour du Pays de Vaud was held Wednesday evening in Saint Prex. Husband, Son 2 and I got there in plenty of time to warm up and talk with friends. We were glad C. and B. had decided to make the hour-long drive from their house. Almost 800 runners lined up for the 9.1K race. I was glad I knew the course from last year and gunned it the first few kilometers to avoid the bottleneck in the woods. After the race, B. talked us into taking a dip in the lake. I think more races should finish just a few hundred meters from the lake.

Gotta run…

p.s. Have a good year at college, Son 2, we’ll miss you!


Final resting place

Speaking of stationary bikes, Husband maintains that a relatively small number of these bikes have actually come off the assembly line. According to his theory, the same few machines make the rounds, going from home to home as one owner after another gives up on this form of aerobic workout. (By the way, there’s no need to actually buy a stationary bike since people will all but pay you to take their practically new one off their hands.) The manufacturers are aware of this phenomenon and don’t even bother to make their stationary bikes durable. That’s why I completely wore out the first two bikes I was giving. The one I have now originally belonged to a semi-pro cyclist. You can tell it’s a pro bike from the seat. It’s not one of those sissy seats, like on those old three speeds, it’s a sleek racing seat, the torture kind. It will probably be years before this machine gets put to rest.

Gotta run…


Row, row, row your boat

The same friends who had given us two stationary bikes in the past recently offered us a rowing machine. Daughter was the most excited about it, but Sons 1 and 2 have used the rower too. I was waiting for the bad fall weather to try it out. Little did I know summer would end the first week in August! So earlier this week I put on an episode of Monk (the one where he is practically paralyzed by all his phobias, but manages to solve the case anyway) and rowed for 42 minutes. Husband was sure I had overdone it and would be sore in all kinds of places the next day. I thought I had got off pretty light, with only slight stiffness between the shoulder blades, until I ran some sprits the next day. Lets just say rowing is an excellent abs workout. At least it only hurt when I sprint, not when I laugh!

Gotta run…



Switzerland hadn’t won a gold medal at the European Track and Field Championships in 24 years (anyone else remember Werner Günthör? the giant shot putter who for some reason always made me think of William Tell). Then yesterday, Viktor Röthlin won the Championship marathon. Not exactly an unknown, Röthlin won silver at the 2006 European Championships and bronze at the 2007 World Championships before winning the 2008 Tokyo Marathon in 2:07’23’’, setting a Swiss record. But Röthlin suffered a nearly fatal double pulmonary embolism a year and a half ago, and more recently underwent surgery on his heel, so his win yesterday was quite a comeback and a fitting way to celebrate Swiss Independence Day!

Gotta run…