Posted by: traceyhanson | December 27, 2012

Review of 2012

Time for the reality check. Let’s see how I did with my 2012 goals:

  1.  Finalize the divorce
  2. Pay off my credit card (s)
  3. Open my own savings account (even if it’s only with $25)
  4. Start contributing to my 401k again
  5. Run a half marathon by May
  6. Run the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon in October – Ran a half instead. I realized that a marathon will not happen for a couple more years.
  7. Start using my camera more – I finally got my battery charged. Now there is an error message I need to fix.
  8. Enlarge and frame 5 of my pictures for my house – FAIL! But my sister gave me a beautiful frame with the kid’s picture. 
  9. Paint my bedroom – FAIL! But I hung up my running medals. 
  10. Go water skiing (it’s been 4 years) – FAIL! – Went tubing instead.
  11. Take a cooking class – FAIL! But I tried a lot of new recipes.
  12. Take the kids camping – FAIL! I camped by myself in the man’s backyard. 
  13. Enroll the kids in a sport and art class – Only got them in Piano class
  14. Get my library card – FAIL! But I did read 6 books on my Kindle.
  15. Go the Milwaukee Public Museum by myself – FAIL!
  16. Treat myself to an entire day at the spa. (well, after I get a job) – FAIL! I got a new job, but no spa day. But I got a really good job after the first job I needed in January. I got a better job in August. In sports. Although this is a fail, I see it as a positive. 
  17. Attend a fundraiser/ball/gala for one of my favorite charities – FAIL! At least I was able to give some money to favorite charities. 
  18. Take a sailing lesson – FAIL! I watched sail boats!?
  19. Go to New York for a weekend (that might be pushing it but I sure do miss it!) – FAIL! I looked at airfare. 
  20. See a show in Chicago – FAIL! I thought about it.

So, yeah, well ok, that doesn’t look good.  Yes, the top four are money related and big steps to getting back on track;  and yes, I ran my half in May and was very happy with my time etc. But after that, well, it’s a major fail.

Although, I would like to defend the full marathon. As I was training for the half marathon I realized I did not have the time and commitment I needed to train for a full marathon. Between my kid’s schedule and the new demanding full-time job, it wasn’t going to happen. Once the kids are and more independent I will be able to train for a full marathon again.

But I did run another half and it was so much fun. After the race in October, I feel like I could make the half “my race” for a couple of years.

Even though there are a lot of “fails” on my list, I am very happy with 2012. My running got back on track, I have strengthened some very important friendships, discovered some new “things” about me, met an amazing man and had the best times with my “babies” Anna and Luke.

Goals for 2013 to follow!

Posted by: traceyhanson | December 19, 2012

Nike Half Marathon – Old news

Remember that time I ran that half marathon in San Francisco? Two months ago? No update, I suck.

We (Me and the man) got out to SF Friday afternoon. Had a great lunch in Union Square and then picked up my race packet. Union Square was completely dedicated to the Nike Half/Full Marathon. It was pretty awesome.

We did a lot of walking around Friday afternoon/night in the Fisherman’s Warf and might have had a couple too many drinks at the hotel bar that night watching the MLB playoffs.

Saturday we did more “tourist” things and spent 90 minutes out in the Bay learning about the history of San Francisco. I started to get really nervous as the day went on. I just kept telling myself…. Just finish the race, just finish.

I woke up right on time the morning of the race and jogged over to the starting line about 1 ½ hours before the race. I heard that for this race you want to get in your spot early. It was dark, misty, foggy and for me, perfect running weather. I dropped off my bag and got my place. I met so many amazing women around me. Two people I started with were breast cancer survivors. Wow, just wow.

By time the gun went off the sun was just starting to rise. I went out slow, relaxed and calm; and I felt great. Once we got out to the coast, I was really relaxed and knew I was going to finish.  It was weird, I had trained more for my half in May and yet I felt so much better during this race. This race went so much faster. It was so foggy and misty. Yes, the hills were so hard. The hardest I have ever run. We couldn’t see anything except the hills as they got longer and harder. I kept telling myself, we are all in this together. We are all running this mile long hill! But I just looked down, took little steps and shook it all out at the top. The downhill made up for it. I felt so strong the last three miles. I wish I went faster but I was thinking there was another big hill and I was saving my energy. The last three miles were the best. We were in the park and it was fast. I ran the last couple miles with a couple 18 year olds. This 39 year old was proud.

I cried when I cross the finish. I needed it. I felt great. It was very overwhelming; especially when I was able to get my little Tiffany box.

I finished 110th place out of 2331 in my age group (35-39).





Starting line


Tour of the Bay


Macy’s in Union Square

1- 9:13
2 – 8:32
3 – 8:35
4 – 8:41
5 – 8:28
6 – 8:43
7 – 9:58 (first hill!)
8 – 8:08 (and down!)
9 – 9:46 (second hill)
10 – 8:35
11 – 9:06
12 – 9:18
13 – 8:36 (this was 1.1 – missed the “13” mile sign)

Posted by: traceyhanson | October 10, 2012

Quick update and my next race

Recently a friend texted me, “You haven’t updated your blog, since when do you have nothing to day?” Me? Nothing to say? Never. I’ve just been busy. It has been one of the best summers and when I get home I am completely exhausted and unable to form any comprehensive thoughts. Oh wait, it’s not summer anymore. Its fall and the Packers are 2-3 and I’m not happy. Was that a lane change?

So, what is new?

I got a new job. Actually, I feel like I have a start to an awesome career. In my head there is a difference between a job and a career. A job is a place to go to and make money. A career is something you love to do and still make money. Yes?

My new “career” is Assistant Brand Manager – Sports. Part of my job description? Be a sports freak. Watch sports. Keep up on sports news. If you know me at all you know this is something I do every day. Like my friend Ali said (and quoted Phoebe) “It’s like the mother ship calling you home.” Yes, that it is. I’ve been at it for two months and I love it.

The kids and I kept very busy this summer – Zoo, Summer Sounds, parks, beach, play dates, birthday parties and late nights out on the deck. They amaze (oh boy, there is that overused word) me every day.  They spent two days a week with my sister and their cousins and three days at Grow & Go/Trinity Lutheran where they went on about 6 different field trips. Their brains have sponged up so much information and they surprise me with some of their questions or conversations every day. Like this one for example:

“Mom I’m not afraid of storms any more cause Jesus is making the storms for us to watch and listen to.” – L

Or the sassiness of my little girl:

“Mom, he just makes me angry because he frustrates me!” – A (talking about her brother)

The two of them have turned into the biggest loves of all. They are such loving kids. They give hugs to their teachers, their friends, the Pastors at church; and the best thing in the entire world is when they come up to me and say, “Mom, I just want a hug.” My best mornings are when they both climb in bed with me to snuggle and wake me up with “I just love you mom.”

I have slacked off in the running department this summer. After the half in May and Ragnar Relay in June, I decided to take it easy and keep the miles low. In August I picked up the miles again because, oh yeah, I’m running another half in October! Remember way back in April when I was picked out of the random draw to run the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco, CA? In July I decided I wasn’t going to run it. I had a hard time justifying the expense. After I got the new job and a little nudging from friends, I took on the mentality of “live life” and booked the trip. I’m keeping it a short weekend but it will be nice to see CA again. Ahem….. it’s this weekend! Ack! It snuck up too fast. We leave Friday (me and the boyfriend. Boyfriend? I’ll save that for another day) and come back Monday.

Goal? Finish the race and have fun. I know I’m not in shape to run 1:51 like I did in May, which I will just accept. Add that to the fact that I will be running up mountains (did you see the elevation charts?!?) I will just take one mile at a time. As long as I finish and get my little blue Tiffany box with the coveted Tiffany/Nike necklace. I excited to run in a different city/state and along the ocean. Wait, what? In the 29 years I have been running, I have not run a race along the ocean? My most favorite place in the entire world!?

I’ll post race results and pictures when I get back!

Posted by: traceyhanson | July 9, 2012

Beer and Cheese Make Us Fartlek

I wish I would have written a post right after the Ragnar Relay to capture how I really felt about the experience. What is the Ragnar Relay? From their website:

“Ragnar is the overnight running relay race that makes testing your limits a team sport. A team is made up of 6-12 individuals; each individual runs 3 legs. The legs of the race vary in difficulty and distance, from 3-8 miles, allowing elite and novice runners to run together. Over 2 days and 1 night, teams run across 200 miles of the country’s most scenic terrain. Pair that with crazy costumes, inside jokes, a great finish line party and unforgettable stories. Some call it a slumber party without sleep, pillows or deodorant. We call it Ragnar.”

Yeah, I did that. I did that with runners I have never met before, or a couple I met just weeks before the race. How did I meet them? Facebook and Twitter. That’s how it works. And runners rock. And we had fun. My legs were 8.2, 5.3 and 4.8 to = 18.3 miles. It was hot and steamy. The best leg? The one at 2 am through Oak Creek, WI. Yes, 2 am. Best run ever. I can’t even explain it. It was dark, no lights, just runners with blinky lights on their back racing through some random streets and trails to get to the next point.

400 + teams. 6-12 runners per team. Vans decorated. Cow bells and whistles. No sleep and Jimmy Johns. Sleeping in vans, football fields and gym floors. Carbs and more carbs. Salt and Gatorade. Seeing old friends and meeting new. Beer at the end with the coolest medals ever.

I love runners. I love the crazy shit we do. I love how we just get each other and our running life. At the second-hand off I just looked around and realized I’m not the only crazy freaky runner out there.

Best experience ever. Thank you Beer and Cheese Make Us Fartlek.


Posted by: traceyhanson | June 5, 2012

Madison Half

I rocked it but at the same time it was HARD!  1:51 was my final time.  I think I ran a smart race overall. The first 6 miles were very easy. I felt good and I kept trying to slow down from my 8:20 pace. I wanted to end strong. Mile 7-8 is where I started to have the negative thoughts. 8-9 sucked mentally and I had to stop for about 10 sec to stretch my ankle. Once I hit 10 I kept telling myself… only three more. At the final turnaround the sun was on my back and it was HOT. The last mile I was ok until the turn up the hill to the Capital. I literally walked four steps up the hill, the heat did get me that last mile. But I finished strong and had sprint to the finish. Got to meet so many awesome new friends. Great day. And great job city of Madison, good event.

I love runners. I love running events. It just gives me such a positive outlook in life when I see people who have trained so hard for something put it all on the line. From the elite finishing in 1:10 to the first time runner struggling to finish in 4 hours. Respect to every single person out there.

I was very emotional walking to the starting line. Seeing new friends and old friends/teammates made me smile. The butterflies reminded me of such bigger events (Nationals in College) and I had tears in my eyes. But once the gun went off, I just smiled and got comfortable with a bunch of crazy runners like me.

Madison did a great job. I was very impressed with every volunteer, race official and whoever made the day possible. High fives all around.

One of my goals for the year is in the books and it has a smiley face next to it.

Posted by: traceyhanson | May 25, 2012

Remember that half I registered for?

Well, it’s on Sunday. THIS SUNDAY! I’m so nervous and excited.

First of all, there is a lot of drama going on regarding the race. It’s suppose to be hot. I mean HOT for WI in May. Madison race directors have decided to cancel the full marathon and I completely support their decision. My friend and fellow runner Krittabug has a great blog on the decision, I’ll let her speak my mind.

But any who. This isn’t a big deal. People run half marathons all the time. Some people run them every weekend. But this is a big deal for me. This is my first big/real race in  2 years. This is my second half marathon since that first one I ran back in March of 2006 and I was young and fast and didn’t have kids! (1:37) This is all different for me. I use to run in grade school and then high school and then in college. Every single weekend there was a race. But now, it took a lot of courage to 1. Accept that I will never be that fast again, 2. Train for something other than a 5k or 10k and 3. Accept the fact that, OMG, I’m old.

Is the heat bothering me? No, not really. I love the heat and I usually have been able to compete well in the heat. On my run tonight I was laughing about some of our races in college and all the different weather we have dealt with.  Remember at TAC Nationals when we ran in a foot of snow? Or how about the time we ran at North Central in 30 degrees on a Friday and exactly 1 week later at the same location it was 90….. oh and that 10k started at 11:30 pm. This is a good one, my first 10k was at Carthage in a 40mph headwind (OK, maybe not that bad). Oh, oh,oh, and that one time in CA we ran the 5k at about 95 degrees, all 30 of us on a small track cause they didn’t want to run a semis!? LOVE! MISS!!

What is my goal Sunday? Well duh, just to finish. Before the heat I wanted to run under 2:00 hours. I would have been thrilled with 1:50. But I’m going to go out conservative and pick it up from there. Once I finish I will call Coach and ask him for my adjusted time cause Coach has a formula.

But most of all? I’m just excited to be back. Running. Feeling like a runner again. And meeting cool running people and establishing new friendships cause we all know….. Runners rock.


Posted by: traceyhanson | April 29, 2012

Very exciting (running) things are happening!

Currently I am training for the Madison Half Marathon that is taking place on May 27th. So far the training is going well. I started with a  really good base and I am making an effort to lift weights too. The long runs have been good. I have no problems with the miles or distance. I’m just very scared about my legs. When I ran Chicago way back in 2002 I injured my IT band the week before the race. I was able to complete the race but had significant pain at mile 7 that continued throughout the race.I qualified for Boston but was unable to run it.  A couple of years later when I ran a half I had the same pain at mile 10. So honestly I am very scared about that same thing happening again. But I think I training smarter than I did for those other races. I made sure I had  a good base and I have been lifting weights to increase my muscle strength.

In April I was on twitter and saw a tweet for the Nike Women’s Marathon random draw. Oh I know this race! I have always said I wanted to run this race. Come on! At the finish you are greeted by men in a tux handing you  a Tiffany’s finisher necklace.  Two things there – men and Tiffanys. But I knew that I wasn’t ready for a marathon, not this year. While checking it out I realized they had a half marathon! Without thinking about it I registered for the random draw. Then came the wait.

During the wait, a cool runner on twitter tweeted that their Ragnar Relay team needed a runner. (Notice the twitter theme.) Again without even thinking about it I tweeted back, “I can run!” And I am now part of a very cool Ragnar Relay team. I have never met anyone on my team in person but I know them from the Internets and I promise you, they are cool!

This past Thursday on my way to work I got an email, no, I got the email:

“Whether it’s your first or fiftieth race, there really is no other feeling quite like standing at the starting line.

We’re so glad that in 2012, you’ll be sharing that moment with us.

That’s right, you read that correctly. You’ve officially been selected to run in the 2012 Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco. Congratulations!”

That’s right! I’m going to San Francisco in October and I am more giddy than ever.

I’m feeling pretty confident in my running again and it’s been years since I have felt this way. I am connected to some of the coolest running people around and running is just cool.


Posted by: traceyhanson | March 6, 2012

Lets talk about running

Or, how about I talk about running. I think I have said in the past that I like LOVE to run. For those who don’t know I have been running/a runner/crazy running freak for about 27 years. I have been called crazy, stupid, freak, dumb and many other names because I love to run. That is fine, none of that bothers me. It is what I do, it is who I am, it is in my blood.

Today was one of those “everything is great about this run” day. It was the first 60 degree day of the year. I rushed home so I could get on the trail before it got dark. Got on my shorts and NEW SHOES on and jumped on the bike trail. And then the biggest smile came across my face. It was warm, the snow was melting, there were puddles to run through and everyone in the Burg was grilling. All of that put a little extra spring in my step.

When I run, I’m free. I don’t have to obey any rules. I can choose whatever path I want. I can run fast or slow. I run in puddles and mud and get dirty. There are so many wonderful smells to take in when you are outside; Fresh cut grass, grills, mud, flowers, etc. I love that I have control over every aspect of my run (well, except a tight muscle or heavy legs.)

I love the way I feel after I run, even a bad run. It’s such a high and exhilarating experience.

I just had to get that on paper or blog…..whatever. Looking forward to my next run.

Posted by: traceyhanson | March 4, 2012

And so it begins

The ex has a girlfriend. Oh, I’m totally fine with him having a girlfriend. But what I don’t like that my kids know the girlfriend and is spending time with her, and her son, on the weekends. I know, I have to get over this. My fears?:

1. They will like her more

2. They will want to spend more time with daddy and his new girlfriend etc cause it’s, er, um, more normal? A family?

I don’t know.

I haven’t felt that from them yet. And they are happy to be here with me. I just think the ex needs to have that wife that will be submissive and create that family feeling. While me, oh me, I don’t know. I don’t even know if I ever want to get married again. I am completely happy, well ok with being alone for now.

I need a lot of time to just concentrate on my babies (yes I know they are almost 4), my health and my running. I need to focus on the three of us. But that doesn’t mean that I’m not lonely.

Although I do love Kelly Clarkson’s song “Stronger” and the line “Doesn’t mean I’m lonely when I’m alone.” That is true.

Contradiction? Oh sure. I get it.

Any who….. running is going well. Ran good this weekend. I’m going to be ready for the Madison Half Marathon with no problem.

Posted by: traceyhanson | January 29, 2012

I have Hashimoto’s Disease…..

No, not Unagi.  (Friends reference)

Salmon Skin Roll anyone? Now I want Sushi.

Seriously. What is Hashimoto’s you ask? Well, the clinical definition according to Mayo is:

“Hashimoto’s disease is a disorder that affects your thyroid, a small gland at the base of your neck, below your Adam’s apple. The thyroid gland is part of your endocrine system, which produces hormones that coordinate many of your body’s activities. In Hashimoto’s disease, also known as chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, your immune system attacks your thyroid gland. The resulting inflammation often leads to a underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism). Hashimoto’s disease is the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the United States. It primarily affects middle-aged women, but also can occur in men and women of any age and in children.”

This all started 2 years ago when I had a lump in my throat. The lump ended up being a Thyroglossal duct cyst. My Doctor (very hot doctor) removed it but further testing indicated I had a Hypothyroidism and then more testing revealed…… the Hashimoto.

Seriously I want some sushi.

PEOPLE! I HAVE GAINED 25+ pounds. This is not cool. I run, lift weights count my calories. UGH

I don’t feel “fat” but I feel very bloated. The Docs say this is common and a result of the disease.

What’s next? More tests. They are testing the hormones that affect the pituitary gland and the adrenal glad. I have done a lot of research and find it so fascinating how all these hormones work together. If one isn’t doing its job, they all fail!


In other news…. I have officially signed up for the Madison Half Marathon. AND!!! I was able to cross off two of my 2012 Goals.

Whoooo hooooo! Yay me!

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