Archive for the ‘Lauren Dieterich’ Category

…Another One for the Record Books

While we’re all still basking in the glow of our silver Peachtree t-shirts, and whether by laziness or celebration our orange D-Tags still hang on our laces… I want to thank the Atlanta Track Club and the AJC for another great year frolicking down Peachtree Street.

As always, it was humbling seeing the wheelchair racers take off, and inspiring to rub elbows (from afar) with the world class runners. I tried chasing down Dire Tune for an autograph, not only a top finisher in the 10k, but an amazing marathoner as well. Trouble with being star-struck with runners, is that you can’t quite chase someone down who has the ability to run a 10k 20+ minutes faster than you.

The Dieterich clan and significant others before the start.

The Dieterich clan and significant others before the start.

Overall, Sunday was a successful day. I met my brother and his lady for a nice pre-race walk from Brookhaven to the start line. After pausing for the national anthem, and maybe hiding a few tears (you try singing the Star Spangled Banner on Independence Day …

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The Final Countdown

The real purpose of running isn’t to win a race; it’s to test the limits of the human heart.
- Bill Bowerman


With apologies to the 80s hair band Europe, we’ve arrived - the final countdown. The gauntlet has been thrown. The opportunity to do work has passed, and the only thing between us and the start line at Lenox Mall is a mere two days.

Courtesy of

Courtesy of

Before we know it, we’ll be pinning numbers, affixing timing chips and walking towards the start line. The days just prior to races always give me pause. They force me to consider why I choose to race, why I choose this path of being a runner. It’s hard to articulate, so I have boiled it down to feelings instead of reasons. The feelings that running, preparing and then racing give me.

I live for this.   

I live for the feeling in your stomach that comes race morning. The one where excitement and nerves and fear all mix together in one glorious pit of nausea. The visceral reaction, the overwhelming accuity experienced …

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Ode to Training Partners

“Friendships are born on the field of athletic strife and the real gold of competition. Awards become corroded, friends gather no dust.”
…Jesse Owens


All of my training for the AJC Peachtree Road Race (and the other July events on my racing calendar) has been done alone. That’s fine for a few outings a week – I’m used to exercising 3/4 of the time on my own. But I’ve come to rely on my weekly training session with my loyal training partner.


Training partners in crime in Huntsville, AL.

Ever since we met as teammates on UGA’s rowing team, we have bonded through grueling and easy-going exercise sessions, as well as the highs and lows of competition. Since graduating college we have consistently met and trained together for races and lean on each other for a great deal of support in our athletic pursuits.

While enjoying many adventures during the first month of her teacher-earned summer vacation, my training partner has been sorely missed here in Atlanta. In short, I’m going …

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Finding Your Place in the Crowd

One of my good friends (who just happens to be married to my training partner) finished his first Ironman yesterday. 

I finished a box of Kraft Mac & Cheese yesterday. 

While reveling in the rockstar awesomeness of my friend (11 hrs – wow!), I had a little voice trying to sneak inside my head, challenging me with thoughts of “what did YOU do today.” I had to quickly silence that voice, because we all have to focus on our own individual goals.

My point? I shamefully, at the age of 28, still love children’s food. My real point? We are all athletes with our own agenda.

If you read through the varied comments on this blog, if you just read the blog itself, you can see the strong dichotomy in AJC Peachtree Road Race goals. With so many runners, obviously all ranges of athleticism and running ability will be covered on July 4th.  John and myself – both writers with a storied history of the Peachtree that spans most of our individual lives – have different training habits, different …

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Race Etiquette

As race day inches ever so much closer (yay!), it’s time to share some racing etiquette. The goal is to optimize the enjoyment of race day… but not at someone else’s expense. This is all shared in the spirit of love and learning, so let’s be good neighbors and remember… it’s everyone’s Peachtree, not just your own.   

Line up in your time group according to the pace you think you will actually run. Faster runners at the front, slower runners and walkers at the back. Nothing is more annoying at the start of a race than having to weave around slower runners after the gun goes off. Granted, it’s the Peachtree and we’ll all be doing some weaving regardless. Just do your part to line up properly and minimize frustrations. Not sure where you should line up? Ask runners nearby their anticipated pace, and if it’s faster than yours, move further back.

Many races (in the U.S.) begin with a rendition of our national anthem. Whether you believe in taking your hat off or putting your hand …

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All’s Fair in True Love and… Peachtree Numbers?

Along with thousands of others, I was rewarded on Monday.

PRRNumberAhhh… the glorious Peachtree packet peeking out of my mailbox! As predicted, I was happily greeted with my Group A number after submitting a qualifying time from a 2009 10k.

Excited, I called my boyfriend to discuss his number. Though a native Atlantan as well, the 2010 event will be his first time running the AJC Peachtree Road Race. I’ve been prepping him since last summer, so the self-proclaimed non-runner could work on getting himself a qualifying time to run with me.

After lots of blood and sweat (his) and tears (mine), the guy who’d never run more than 3 miles prior to summer 2009 pulled off an amazing first half marathon time of 1.59:00 at the Atlanta Thanksgiving Half last November. According to the ATC PRR time standards, this time would qualify him for Time Group B in the Peachtree. Good news for me – we get to run together, and good news for him – I won’t make him train his tail off to run a qualifying 10k. …

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R & R – It’s taper time!

[Be advised - No elephants were harmed in the making of this post.]

Rest does a body good. After a weekend of mental and physical relaxation, I think I’m starting to feel more like my old self. Darn those doldrums for trying to interupt my training regimen though! After taking it pretty easy this weekend, I’m hoping the mental benefits will outweigh any physical loss experienced from, well, taking it easy.

With the countdown to raceday officially less than two weeks, we’re on the “downhill” anyway. In other words, rest is a good thing! For those of you who have been training hard, focusing on doing your best July 4th, now is the time to think about giving yourself some rest too.

As with all our other crazy running lingo, we have a name for this period of rest before race day – your taper. A taper means reducing, or tapering off, exercise in the days just before an important competition. A taper can be a beautiful thing. After weeks of pushing yourself, now is the time to ease …

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Overcoming Adversity: How to Eat an Elephant

“Adversity causes some men to break; others to break records.”
-William Arthur Ward, American author

Whew – what a week.

Lately work and personal life have been particularly taxing on me. To be honest, I’m feeling a bit in the doldrums, and not looking forward to my weekend workout routine like I normally do. But I’m trying to not allow a little adversity to get in the way of my goals.

We are human, and last time I checked, life puts a toll on even the toughest of us from time to time. And mental exhaustion can really take it out of us. Sometimes when I am mentally tired, it feels worse than when I am physically tired. Do you get that way?

Enjoying time on the Silver Comet with Mom

Enjoying time on the Silver Comet with Mom

I had the chance to take a load off the other day – leave serious workout mode and enjoy a nice easy bike ride with my mom. An amazing lady, she has a great way of putting things into perspective for me. When things build up and life seems to be so overwhelming you’re not really sure how to move …

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A Course Map of Memories

When prepping for any race, many of us have made a habit of studing course maps to familiarize ourselves with what’s ahead. I’m a planner… somewhat obsessive-compulsively so. Throughout my life, I’ve spent an embarrassing amount of time nervously analyzing elevation profiles, mile markers, aid stations, water stops and bathroom opportunities in the hopes of fully preparing myself for success on race morning. Not to mention street closures and spectator guides so my family can find ways to cheer me on.

But with the Peachtree… it’s different for me.

Please don’t take this as blasphemous, since I speak of speed work and training hard and pushing yourself, but I never “race” the PRR. It’s one of my favorite events of the year, and I thoroughly enjoy running it for fun, without the pressures of performing. I take it stride by stride, soaking up the joy of exercise, community, fun and patriotism that permeate Atlanta on July 4th.

Leading up to July 4th, I study a different course …

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Things I Think I Think

There is a great little column in many an issue of Sports Illustrated entitled, “Things I Think I Think.” In a slight homage to SI’s Peter King, I’ve been doing some thinking of my own on this fine (manic) Monday.


I think the air was so thick over the weekend, I was swimming down the sidewalk. Passersby may have thought I was running, but nay… arm strokes were needed to make my way through the air.

I think I drank approximately 10 gallons of water between Friday morning and Sunday evening. Yet I still manage to feel at once puffy and dehydrated. Sweating all those gallons of water right out is a feat. Alert the Guinness World Record team.

I think sweating 10 gallons is pretty disgusting.

Successful cool-off Saturday morning!

Successful cool-off Saturday morning!

I think little kids need to quit hogging the Suwanee Town Park fountain. Even though you’re cute and adorable, and have way more right to be here, I just sweated my way through a 2-hr workout, and I want… NEED… to …

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