CrossFit …. Day 2 …. FGB

Apparently every day at CrossFit will require me to google acronyms and try to figure out what the heck we are actually doing.  This morning’s 5am workout was the “FGB” workout.  Apparently that stands for “Fight Gone Bad”.   Ummm, okay.  I thought sure I’d be the only one that showed up but no, I had 15 other friends who were just dying to KILL the FGB WOD (workout of the day).

FGB – Fight Gone Bad

(3x) – 5 minute rounds  – 1 minute per station/5 stations, then 1 minute rest after completion  of all the stations in succession  = 17 minutes total

1)  Jump Lunges – Grab some coordination real quick if you are clumsy like me cuz your gonna need it.  Think walking lunge except there is no walking but rather jumping and changing feet in the air to get into the next lunge position.  I think I did 4 before the tears appeared and my quads started shaking.  Maybe 3.  Not sure but the good news is that once I got into a rhythm, it was easier, and faster.  Success.


2)   Kettlebell Sumo High Pull – Took me a “minute” to get this right.  My damaged hips/back/hamstrings took a beating here and I subconsciously wanted to cheat and not go down into squat to grab the kettlebell.  Photo source:  Google Images

KB Sumo High Pull_squat   KB Sumo High Pull

3)  Box Jumps – We got to use the small box today.  Yay for being a newbie!!!!  And yes, we’d totally steal the short box from that kid.  Photo source.

box jump

4)  Abmat Situps – Sit-ups with a device which supported the arch of the back.  I heard sit-ups and thought the doc would be mad at me but the support ensured that I didn’t hurt my back.  Image #2 from

abmat     abmat_stick figure

5)  Burpees – HA!  Apparently, I’m not very good at burpees yet.  This was by far my weakest station.  Here is a diagram below which I got from yakkaFIT HERE.


6)  REST – 1 minute – Cough up your numbers & repeat.

After each session were recorded our numbers, how many reps we did total.  So if we did 10 of each exercise while occupying that station for one minute, we would have had 50 reps.  Not sure if that’s the proper term but we were basically counting each thing we did and compiling a number as we went.

Round #1 – 97, Round #2 –  113, Round #3 – 116, Total = 326

No idea if that was good or bad in the grand scheme of things but I want to record it for comparison going forward.  I’d like to think that I’ll get better, faster, stronger.  My burpees were almost non-existent, so that was a wasted station for me.  I did much better in the other areas, and much better after I got a rhythm and an idea of how to do each activity.

Another fun, Fun, FUN workout.  Loved it and look forward to going back next week but for now, I’m going off grid to swim, bike & run.  Don’t forget about my giveaway for the Chicago Half Marathon cuz I’ll be drawing Monday morning!

** Let’s Get Strong!!  ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

CrossFit ….. Day 1

If you follow me on Facebook & Twitter then you know that I’ve been terrified brimming with excitement to start something new.  CrossFit.  It’s no secret that I want to get strong.  That I need to get strong.  That my body has been breaking down over the last year or so because it can’t keep up with the demands of what I ask of it each and every week.  So I NEED strength to carry me thru when my body just isn’t feeling quite up to the task.


I’ve tried to do things at home.  But getting out the weights is dangerous because my lil man then feels the need to also prove his strength.  Do it when he sleeps, right?  Wrong.  Lil man doesn’t sleep much cuz he’s my Mini Me

I would have taken a class at a local gym but with my lil man schedule being so crazy between work, “the commute”, kids, family, training & Aby’s extracurriculars  …… well, they aren’t open enough hours in the day.  I don’t have a traditional life and don’t fit into a traditional mold so I couldn’t get my ass to attend any classes at this point in my life.

Hmmmm…… what to do?  Continue to be weak and dream of being strong?  Sounds good!  Maybe I’ll wake up “strong” one morning, that sounds way easier.   Well, I’ve been waiting for years and that isn’t working.  Then, I started talking with a few friends and it seemed that many others were having a similar problem, wanting to get strong but lacking the time to make it happen.  So, I went out on a limb and asked a local CrossFit instructor if he wanted to open an early morning CrossFit class for us.   And he said yes.  Crap.  I thought he would tell me to shove it.  The fear seeped in immediately for all of us.  We were concerned we couldn’t do it.  I was concerned that he was going to try to kill us and “make an example” out of us by showing us how weak we were even though we were all runners cuz that’s how my one and only personal training session went back in 2008.  Yep, we were scared.  Like really scared.  And I was amazed that with all that fear floating around 19 people managed to show up for a 5 am CrossFit session.

CrossFit_Day 1

Wow, proud to know these brave souls!  And the workout was good, a nice intro to CrossFit without killing us.  I know that it was probably one of the “easy” sessions but I’m glad that he didn’t scare everyone away because I don’t want to be the only one who shows up for Session #2! 

Our first workout, WOD (Workout Of the Day) is below.

20 Minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) Teams

3 person teams – First team member completes a full round before 2nd person starts, 2nd person completes a full round before 3rd person starts.  Repeat rounds, rotating thru team as many times as possible.

  • 10 Ring Rows

Ring Rows

  • 10 Pushups
  • 10 Ball Slams

ball slams

  • 100  meter sprint

We had so much fun.  The group had so much energy.  The team concept really helped push us faster than we may have otherwise done had we been doing the workout “solo”.  It was good!  My group got thru 11 rounds in the 20 minutes.  Today, I feel slightly sore in my chest and shoulders but it’s manageable.  I was still able to swim last night.  The Tuesday WOD didn’t destroy me.  This means, I’ll go back for the Thursday WOD.  Cross your fingers for us!  We are all CrossFit “newbies” who are just looking to get strong!

** Trying New Things ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Chicago Half Marathon FREE ENTRY Giveaway

While most runners in Chicago are now firmly focused on marathon training, I’ve been focused on TRI training.  My life is swim, bike, run, repeat.  Swim, bike, run, repeat.  This means I have actually been running less than “normal”.  My miles are down.  In a sense, I’ve been in cross training mode, very unworried about how far or how often I’m running.  However, even I have now downloaded a training plan, ran my first workout, and am beginning to think about the fall running & racing season.  One thing is for certain, long hard miles in the summer bring fast times in the fall.  Where do I want to run fast?  The Chicago Half Marathon on September 8, 2013. 


While half marathons are now popping up everywhere, we still have a solid few that survive on reputation alone …. not gimmick, or hype, or a promise of a “good time” but rather a solid race that offers a fast & flat road race that brings the serious competitor and first timer alike.  One such race, is the Chicago Half Marathon, in Jackson Park, in Chicago.  It’s always the second Sunday in September.  It’s always the best race Chicago offers in September.  It’s always the premier half of the entire fall season for Chicagoland.

The Chicago Half was my first ever half marathon and one which I continue to return to year after year.  This will be my goal half marathon for 2013 and the one where I won’t run safe and smart but with my heart on my sleeve, pushing with everything I have in my tank on that given day.  Plus it’s a Southside race and although I’m not born & bred Chicago, I am a Southsider now and love any race that doesn’t force me to travel all the way downtown.

Course map (from 2012 because the website is currently having technical issues from the storms, but it’s always the same) shows a run thru Jackson Park then a balls out fast race on Lake Shore Drive where you can see your fast friends and those behind you too! 


    View from Lake Shore Drive       Chicago Half_stock


If you’re in it for the bling, here is a sneak peak at the medals for the 5K and the Half, plus the Windy City Challenge medal for those who plan to double up and run both the 13.1 Chicago event (which occurred on June 8th) and the Chicago Half on September 8th.

Chicago Half_medals_2013   Windy City Challenge_medal_2013

Now, I know you want to run but I also know that race entry fees stack up fast so US Road Sports is offering a free entry to one reader.  To enter this giveaway, comment below and tell me which is your favorite Chicago area half marathon.  I’m going to be super picky next year and select only a few quality races, so I need to know which one is your favorite so I can narrow down my choices!

Giveaway is live NOW and will run til Monday, July 1st at 9am when I will select one winner via a random number generator.  Good luck!

** Run the Chicago Half Marathon ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Race Around the World Duathlon 2013 Report & Strike Out ALS 5K winner

Sunday brought us the annual Race Around the World Duathlon in Tinley Park, IL.  This is absolutely one of my favorite events of the year and consists of a 2 mile run, 11 mile bike, followed by another 2 mile run.  Duathlon is always “run, bike, run”.   It’s the multisport event that “some” scoff at for not having a swim but one that is much loved by those of us who don’t want to mess up our hair with a swim cap.  Duathlon is my personal favorite multisport activity and I am considering making it my main focus next year because it really is THAT.MUCH.FUN. 


The 2013 event was my 4th appearance, the first of which was in 2006 when I randomly signed up the day of the event with my trusty Walmart Special mountain bike.  It was a rough ride but brought me a 1 hour 17 minute finish.  Then in 2007, I arrived with a bit more of a plan in place AND a road bike.  This delivered me a 1 hour 10 minute finish.    Then I took some time to TRI, have a baby, and focus on the run only to make a return in 2012 with my F’N Running Club.  As history denotes, I showed up in 2012 with a torn tendon in my foot and a little girl who wanted to “run for her mom” so that I could still participate.    We took 5th in the women’s relay division, report HERE, and decided to come back for 2013 to move up in the standings.   The sole purpose of yesterday’s race was to go as hard as we could and try to take 3rd in our division.  Our team motto was to “run/race for the bling”.  True story.  We have no shame.

I’ve previously reported this to be a great event, good for both beginners & competitive athletes alike.  The event is short enough to not be intimidating but long enough to push the limits on fitness.   The course is nice, user friendly, has loads of volunteer and safety support, plus there aren’t too many turns.  The TP Fire Department brings fire trucks with “showers” for cooling off post race.  The finish is welcoming with cold drinks, the showers and plenty of  post race snacks.  Well organized event.  I love it and suggest that you DU Tinley in 2014.  Oh, and the  shirt is cool too!  Black A4 tech shirt with unique design.

Tinley Park_DU_13_shirt

Now let’s compare our 2012 race to the 2013 event.    2012 was good, we took 5th in our division & we loved the team dynamic.  What changed between 2012 and 2013?  Both Aby and I are stronger and more determined.  We always focus on fun but we wanted to push and  try to move Team 2 Tough Chiks up in the standings but knew that the competition was super tough last year and we had no idea who would “show up” this year.

2012 vs 2013

The F’N Running Club brought more people this year, some repeats, some new. 

Tinley Park_DU_12    Tinley Park_DU_13_group

Aby has grown.

tinleydu_12_aby2    Tinley Park_DU_13_Aby

We were faster pace wise, despite the 2012 bike course being 1 mile short due to road construction and 2013 having a hellacious headwind thru half the course.

Run #1 – 2 miles 18:54 (9:27 pace) 17:13 (8:37 pace)
T1 47.8 49.5
Bike 30:49 (19.1 mph) 34:00 (19.4 mph)
T2 43.6 42.6
Run #2 – 2 miles 19:04 (9:32 pace) 17:42 (8:51 pace)
Finish 1:10:19  ** Short 1:10:28

We brought home some bling, placing 2nd in the Women’s Relay division out of a field of 20.  We were super excited!!

Tinley Park_DU_13_Me&Aby medals

We are proud to push together, as a team, in an event that is fun and family friendly.  Also, please note that our 2012 bibs were 601, and the 2013 bibs were 602.  Is it too early to “request” that our 2014 bib assignment be 603? 

tinleydu_12_meaby   Tinley Park_DU_13_Me&Aby bike

So we’ll be back next year looking to steal that first place finish from fellow F’N Runner Deb & her IronSis (Team Twisted Sisters).  The IronSis beat me down on the bike and I’m gonna work on that for next year!!  Love that I now have a new goal for next year!!

See you in Tinley on June 22, 2014!!


The winner of the Strike  Out ALS 5K is #18 – @jmonst – please contact me at to collect your free registration!!


** DU Tinley Park in 2014 ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Short Run Long Day 5K – 2013


I am not one to run evening races.  I have the kids.  I have “things” that need to be done.  I have fatigue from a long day at work, plus my commute.  I don’t go out for just anything and it’s kind of a big deal if I get in a nighttime event or workout.   However, for the second year in a row, I attended the Frankfort Park District’s Short Run Long Day 5K event which is always at night, on or around the longest day of the year.  Why do I go?  Because of these people:


The Frankfort New Lenox Running Club.  These people (plus about 500 more from our FB page) are my friends, my run “family” and reason why I keep showing up.  The Short Run Long Day 5K is on our home turf and one of the races with the best turnout for our club members.  We had runners who ran 18 minute 5Ks then spaced all the way down to the end with our run/walk crew.  So proud of all of these people for continuing to show up and keep working on their fitness regardless of their ultimate goals.

The Short Run Long Day event brings out all the local run clubs too with a large contingency of Yankee Runners and Tinley Track & Trail fasties.  This “short run” is competitive and fast with a course that is flat and mostly shaded.  But the race is growing fast and “the word” is that next year, we will be running the course in reverse to accommodate the increasing field and to relieve congestion in that first mile.  Win, Win!!

The race is a family event with pizza, family games and activities.  Runners, walkers and families with strollers are all welcome here.  The event is chip timed but with a “gun” start so that first mile is a bit congested as everyone tries to jostle for the best position due to the gun start.  Half of the course is ran on Old Plank Trail while the other half is on the streets of Frankfort.  One water stop.  Bathrooms at the start/finish and at the Grainery area on Old Plank Trail.  Course is mostly shaded.  Lots of volunteers.  Nice goodie bag with a cute cotton tee, a $10 off coupon from Running Excels, coupon for a free ice cream cone at the Creamery, chapstick, pen & toothbrush:

Short Run Long Day_goodie bag

Great race.  Great crowd.  Great event for the competitive age grouper as well as mom/grandma who may need to push a stroller in order to participate.  I’m super pleased with this race and the growing popularity.  We had 420 finishers this year for a small town 5K on a Wednesday night.  Yay!

Join Aby and I and our F’N friends next year in the 14th Annual Short Run Long Day 5K in Frankfort!  

     Short Run Long Day_Aby_2013          Short Run Long Day_me_2013       

2012 Race Review HERE.

** Come Run With Us ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Courthouse Classic 5K – 2013

Every year we head to the lake for Father’s Day and also participate in the Courthouse Classic in LaGrange, IN.  The race is always the day before Father’s Day, on a Saturday and benefits the Lakeland Cross Country teams.  Good race.  Good cause.  Good family fun.


One of the sponsors for this race, if you don’t remember from last year’s report, is a local grocery store so our goodie bag always contains groceries and usable items.  Then they specifically pack Aby’s for a “kid” and give her school supplies, candy and activity books.

My SWAG bag, Aby’s SWAG bag & the cool tee for the 2013 race.

Courthouse Classic 2013_me-swag Courthouse Classic 2013_aby-swag Courthouse Classic 2013_aby-shirt

This race is cheap too, which is especially nice if you are taking the entire family.  The 5K run/walk pre-registration cost was $14 and the 1 mile fun run (kids only) was $9.  Win!! 

This was Aby’s third year running this event.  I like running the same event annually because it’s about the only way to compare your fitness or lack there of over time.  And while I am getting slower, Aby is getting faster without even training, which is super exciting.

Aby’s Courthouse Classic 5K history in time & photos:  2011 (age 9) – 33:19,  2012 – 30:37 &  2013 – 25:09

Aby & Me_Courthouse Classic_2011  Courthouse Classic Aby2_2012   Courthouse Classic 2013_me-aby

If I’m being honest, I wasn’t all hip on returning to run this year and registered only after Aby begged.  I didn’t run last year (the 2012 race) because of a torn tendon (which happened on June 2, 2012).  I’m okay now but still not running fast and I’ve been having a hamstring “issue” that seems to dislike any sort of uphill/incline or long/open stride.  In short, I honestly can’t run fast, even when I try.   In fact, it’s been so long since I’ve ran fast that I wish I could just erase those “fast” times out of my brain to eliminate my constant disappointment.  I’m trying to focus on the fact that 1) I can run and 2) running makes me happy.  Does running faster make me happier?  Yes.  But only a little.   I just want to run and I want to be able to do it with Aby while she still wants to actually do it with me.  So I registered for this race even though I knew it would be a disaster I wouldn’t be fast and I wouldn’t be able to perform up to my own expectations. 

To complicate the situation, I’m TRI training and Friday is my long bike day.  And while I felt good on the 55 mile bike ride Friday ….

Team Tough Chik_2013 kit_6-14-13

My legs were “slightly” fatigued when I hit the start line on SAT morning.  Oh well, it’s not always about me and we were here to get Aby off her ass running and ready to start training for Cross Country season.  And thankfully my friend Adella came along so that I had a shoulder to cry on friend in misery. 

We all three stand on the start line together, somewhat near the front.  The gun goes off.  Aby takes off.  We follow.  My little girl has one mission in life, to beat her momma at any and all foot races.  Good news, I just need to stay close and she runs.  If I get close enough to pass then she surges to get further ahead of me.  It’s a game of cat & mouse.  We play it for about a mile.  We hit the mile mark, which has a volunteer reading splits:  7:45.  I think at this point I may have laughed.  I was pushing it, not dogging it, pushing it and starting to fade.  I, of course, think back to split times from “years gone by” when they started with a 6 instead of a 7 but that’s been a while now so I push it out of my head.  I keep pushing and keep fading.  My legs feel like bricks.  My quads burn.  My hamstrings ….. well you don’t really want to know what they were saying.  Good bye, Aby.  Good bye, Adella.  Good bye, Noble County Runner, Jim! 

Although, I didn’t remember this course being so hilly (a few small inclines in reality!) from years previous, I did remember the finish to be downhill.  By the time I reach this downhill, Aby and Adella were waiting for me and probably wondering if I DNF’d.  I finished my slowest Courthouse Classic 5K to date:  25:51.  Hmmmm, I should probably be disappointed but I’m going to revel in the fact that Aby didn’t steal the car and leave me did well, that Adella hung tight with her to try to push her when I couldn’t and that I ran and finished another race that last year I couldn’t even have walked.  So it’s a win in my book and I’ll keep chasing down my little girl.  I doubt I’ll catch her but I’ll keep trying if for no other reason than to make her surge ahead and run faster, even if for just a minute.   Goooooo, Aby!! 

When results came in, Aby won her age group.  Adella took 3rd in “our” age group and I finished in the 4th spot.  In unprecedented fashion, the race officials gave out a 4th place award for age groups this year.  I’ve ran a lot of races and never seen age groups go 4 deep.  Thank you!!  It was nice to be able to take a pic with the girls and us all have some “bling” to show for our run.  Me, Aby & Adella below.

Courthouse Classic 2013_me-aby-adella-trophies

“Run”way Fashion:  Team Tough Chik run singlets (this is what tough looks like) and RunningSkirts snow leopard skirts.

Yep, I’ll be back for the 2014 Courthouse Classic.  Come try to beat me.  I might be faster.  I might be slower.  Who knows what another year will bring, but I’ll be there.  It’s a tradition for us. 

** Run the Courthouse Classic ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Chicago Triathlon Open Water Swim Clinic ….

Last Friday a few friends and I headed downtown to experience an open  water swim clinic organized by Lifetime Fitness and the Chicago Triathlon.  It was the kickoff party to the Chicago Triathlon training season!


The clinic was $20 and included a box lunch + drink at the Park Plaza Grill in Millennium Park, open water swim instruction (or time trial for the more experienced), 2 beers, ice cream, a goodie bag and loads of fun, fun, fun.   We checked in at the Park Plaza Grill around noon for the 1pm start.  We had our own area, were body marked and got to meet up with friends while we lunched.  I know the “body marking” seems pretty official for a swim clinic but it was an easy way for them to keep track of us, our bags, and this made bag check super easy.  A lot of photos in this post are courtesy of the Lifetime Triathlon photog. 

Open Water Swim Clinic_check in

Speaking of friends, it’s always good to know crazy F’N Runners people who are willing to skip work on a Friday to go downtown to see if their wetsuit will really keep them afloat.  F’N Runners from front left:  Julie, Betsy, Suzanne, & Kate.  Back left:  Don, Me, Susan, Amanda W, Michelle, & Ed.

Open Water Swim Clinic

After lunch we suited up in our wetsuits for a 1.5 mile wetsuit “waddle” or “dash” to the beach.  It was a sweaty, hot leisurely run to the beach but first Lifetime Fitness and the Chicago Triathlon toured us around the park and gave the tourists a real show.  Push-ups, jumping jacks, mountain climbers in the Millennium Park fountains.

Open Water Swim Clinic_fountains

Photos by the symphony pits:

Open Water Swim Clinic_symphony

Then the dash to the beach in our wetsuits!

Wetsuit Waddle

   Wetsuit Waddle_general

Once we got the beach, it was swim instruction, swimming and overall clowning around.  The water was cold, breathtaking with Lake Michigan being a cool 61 degrees!   Fun!! 

Open Water Swim Clinic_swim    Open Water Swim Clinic_water

This clinic was a TOTAL blast. Possibly because I was with a bunch of people I know & “love”.  Possibly because the instructors were all super cool and actually gave good tips that were useful and applicable to real life open water TRI swimming.  Partially cuz any day is a good day to skip work and go drink beer work on your open water skills.  This clinic was as much party as it was clinic and the $20 price tag was cheap for everything that we received.  However, if $20 is beyond your budget but you are still interested in some open water swim help, the Chicago Triathlon is offering open water swim clinics a couple times a month for $5, wetsuit use included for the first 50 participants.  The next one is TUE, June 25th at 6pm.  Here is the link to the FB event HERE.  Or maybe you should just go like the Chicago Triathlon Facebook page HERE so you’ll be up to date on all their upcoming clinics & events. 

Cover Photo

Triathlon is one of those things that may seem intimidating at first look but the majority of those who participate are doing so for fitness.  To test themselves.  To challenge themselves.  To step outside their comfort zones and do something that will make them stronger mentally and physically.  This is why I love triathlon.  This is why ….. as much as I bitch complain about the swimming being an inconvenience and how I dislike going to the pool …. it’s the bare bones reasoning of why I keep coming back. 

If you are interested in triathlon or signed up for one this year,  I’d strongly recommend checking out one of these clinics.   Even if you’re a pro at the open water swim, it will force you to put on your wetsuit and get in the cold water your feet wet.  This is cheap clinic to help people get over their fear of the open water swim, or help them to get more comfortable in the water.  Big win in my opinion.  I’ll definitely go back and do another one if I can work it out with the family.  And to be honest, this may even sway me toward the Chicago TRI sometime in the future.  Thanks, Chicago Triathlon

** Give it a TRI ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Strike Out ALS 5K Free Entry GIVEAWAY

We are so fortunate that we have options when running and racing.  There are new events popping up every day and if you want, you can race every weekend and a couple times thru the week.  The race distance which seems to be growing the fastest is the 5K.  This is a distance that is family friendly, fun and challenging all the same.  It can be fast and furious or a measure of one’s ever-growing fitness level.  For this reason, charities seem to favor this distance for both fun and fundraising.  One such charity is the Les Turner Foundation which is hosting it’s 4th Annual Strike Out ALS 5K on Tuesday, July 16th at US Cellular Field.


What is ALS?   ALS = Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
ALS—often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease or motor neuron disease (MND)—is a progressive, degenerative disease affecting motor neurons. Motor neurons are specialized nerve cells that carry impulses from the brain to the muscles by way of the brainstem and the spinal cord. The muscles then move in response to these impulses.

In ALS, motor neurons gradually cease functioning and die. As this happens, the muscle tissues waste away because no movement is being stimulated. This results in gradually worsening muscle weakness, atrophy, and often spasticity. Only the motor neurons are affected. Other nerve cells, such as sensory neurons that bring information from sense organs to the brain, remain healthy.  Source & more info HERE.

The Strike Out ALS 5K gives runners a one-of-a-kind experience.  The race starts at the iconic home plate of Comiskey Park and finishes on the warning track inside U.S. Cellular Field. Following the race, runners can celebrate with family, friends and White Sox fans at the after party featuring the 2013 MLB All-Star Game under the lights of the ballpark. The concession stands will be open and the game will be broadcast on the Jumbotron.  This race is on a Tuesday night and includes free parking at the ballpark.  Free Parking = WINNING!!


The race entry is currently valued at $40 but might be considered “priceless” to White Sox fans in the CHI.  If you would like to be entered to win this free entry, please comment below.  If you REALLY want to win this entry then share this post with your friends via Facebook or Twitter and let me know that you did so (in the comments below).  You’ll get an extra entry for each social media share.  I’ll draw a winner via a random number generator at 9am on Monday, June 24th.  Good luck!

This looks like a great event that would be fun for the whole family.  I like that.  All proceeds go to the Les Turner Foundation.  I like that.  Free parking.  I REALLY like that.  If you are too excited to wait for the drawing for the free entry, go HERE to register now.  Enjoy!

** Win an Entry to the Strike Out ALS 5K ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Winners!! RMHC Raffle!

Many thanks to everyone who was able to donate to the raffle for the Ronald McDonald House Charities!  I really appreciate it and please know that the families that utilize RMHC are so very thankful.  If by chance you are still interested in donating but didn’t have time or weren’t ready, the charity page will be open until a couple weeks after the Chicago Marathon so feel free to utilize it anytime between now and the end of October 2013. 


Now the fun part!!  The numbers have been drawn and we have lots of winners.  The list is below, please email me ( with your address so that I can send your goodies!! 

  1. Amy Dykstra – Lock Laces
  2. Mag Mile RunnerBoston Strong Tee
  3. Run With JessAdvoCare Fueling and Rehydration pack
  4. Nicki T – Aspaeris Pivot Shorts, ibungee speed laces & Team Tough Chik Sponsor Pack
  5.  Erica Finds –  Team Tough Chik Sponsor Pack
  6. Anastasia Kwitt – Women Rock Chicago calendar & headband
  7. Susan D – Venus de Miles Entry & prize pack
  8. Frogger – Handana
  9. From Ice Cream to Marathon – Women Rock Chicago calendar & headband
  10. In Mid StridePro Compression marathon socks
  11. Amanda W – Get to GoalFlip Belt
  12. Running KellometersPunkeeLove Headbands
  13. Sara & David J – Boston Strong Tee  & Biofreeze prize pack
  14. Suzanne Westenhofer – GU prize pack & Tough Chik $25 gift card
  15. Bonita F – Mission Athlete Skincare prize pack, Adidias headbands, & ibungee speed laces
  16. Pam S – Bastille Day 5K/8K entry
  17. Lynn S – Team Tough Chik Sponsor Pack
  18. Marcia’s Healthy SliceRoad Runners Sports 2 Bottle Belt
  19. Walissa D – Team Tough Chik visor
  20. Michelle Pluhar – Cytosport prize pack

Congratulations everyone!!

Check back in tomorrow for a giveaway!!

** Amanda – TooTallFritz ** **

How to Love Life …..

It’s true that I haven’t always been in love with my life.  My job.  My city of residence which is far away from my family.  However, running has taught me to appreciate the little things.  It has given me an avenue with which I can process life.  Destress.  Regroup.  Recharge.

Lake MI_6-13-13_me

If you don’t run then I’m not sure why you are reading this unless you are my mother, you may not understand what I’m trying to say.  You possibly think that running actually makes a person tired when in fact it actually recharges the “battery”.   It makes me feel alive.  It gives me a sense of self.  It gives me time to think.  It gives me peace.  Possibly you can find this thru another activity but that isn’t the case for me. 

I also find the running gets me outside in the sun far more often then if I were NOT running.  I go out during lunch at times and just cruise the city of Chicago.  It’s a bit of “stolen” time that helps me feel free.  Less like I’m always tied to a desk and more like I actually have a life that I enjoy.  It also enables me to see MORE of the city than if I were just strolling along.  Today I hit the lakefront trail to see how the lake faired after yesterday’s nasty storm.  Apparently it’s still angry and expelling that energy.

Lake MI_6-13-13_2

A few friends and I “might” be doing a swim clinic down at Ohio Street Beach tomorrow, so I wanted to take a peak and  see how it looked.  Rough.  Really rough.  Hope it calms down by tomorrow!!

Ohio Street Beach_waves

So a 5.5 mile jaunt thru the city and on the lakefront trail at lunch left me happy and smiling again.  Loving life.  Loving my job almost.  Loving the city of Chicago.  I encourage you to steal a bit of time for yourself to recharge your batteries …….. in any way that you are able. 

** Love YOUR Life ** Amanda –  TooTallFritz ** **