The Date girls are ready for the Twin Cities Marathon

I know you’ve heard this before, but I like my daughters — a lot. Today happened to be one of those days where I was really feeling proud.

Emily and I ran the City of Lakes 25K (that’s 15.5 miles to you and me) this morning. It’s two laps around Lake Harriet and Lake Calhoun plus an extra 2/3 loop of Harriet.

Emily looks refreshed and ready to enjoy a cold beverage in her commemorative stein an hour after running 15.5 miles around Lakes Harriet and Calhoun.

As was the case the day Emily and I ran the Gopher to Badger Half-Marathon (see my post from 8/15/10), younger daughter, Lauren was running a race in Chicago. Today it was the Chicago Half-Marathon. Over 13,500 runners finished this behemoth of a race. Lauren did great — ignoring the pain of her blistered feet, she finished in the top 27% of all women and top 39% overall. Way to go, BabyDate!

The City of Lakes is a nice race — beautiful but predictable course, plenty of water and porto-potties, small field of well-under 1,000 runners. One thing Emily and I both noticed right away when we arrived this morning was the general high-quality of the field. This is very much a tune-up race for people planning to run a fall marathon. The vast majority of entrants looked great — lean, mean and serious about running. So we had a little trouble blending in, but we got over it.

Emily was up to the task, running a steady 9-minute pace with enough left in the tank for a little kick during the last mile. I really enjoy running with Emily and I’m so grateful to be able to do these training runs with her. She’s going to do very well in the Twin Cities Marathon — 3 weeks from today.

Lauren is going to do great in the marathon, too. I should mention that she’s gotten herself into shape even while working long, stressful hours at a new job for the past 3 1/2 months. It’s very impressive. I wish I could run with her, too, but she’s over 400 miles away. She prefers running alone, but I’d still like to join her once in a while — or at least be there to cheer her on.

I’m so proud of both of my girls — not just because of the running, but because of the people they’ve become. It’s so cool to see. May all of you be so lucky to have kids like these.

I’m very much looking forward to October 3rd. See you at the Dome — and the Capitol.

There are no available photos from Lauren's race this morning, but I'm guessing she looked pretty much the way she did when she finished her first road race, the Get In Gear 1K in 1992.

Gopher to Badger 13.1 and 16 sweltering miles in Chicago: the Date girls seriously rock.

It’s time to get serious about the upcoming Twin Cities Marathon on October 3rd. OK, it’s BEEN time for a while, but we’re entering the toughest month of preparation. Emily and I ran the Gopher to Badger Half-Marathon yesterday morning as a checkpoint to see how we’re doing.

400 miles away at exactly the same time, Lauren was grinding out an impressive 16-miler in the heat of downtown Chicago. Lauren is the only actual Badger in the family (UW Madison, Class of ’07) and I thought about her a lot and how much she would enjoy this race — especially as we crossed the bridge over the St. Croix River into Wisconsin.

The G to B is a good race, on a mostly scenic course that begins in the northwestern edge of Stillwater, Minnesota (Gopher country) and ends at the riverfront park in Hudson, Wisconsin (Badger land). The field is a manageable size — 736 finishers out of about 1,300 entries. Shuttle buses efficiently take runners from the finish area up to the start before the race. With the exception of one early water stop that apparently ran out of water (?!?!) it was a very well-run event. They took good care of us — lots of treats at the end, too.

Emily was very strong for the first 11 miles and then toughed it out for the last two when she was having some muscle pain. She still finished in 1:55:36 and was in the top 15% in her division (age bracket) and top 16% of all women finishers — yowsa !!!!

I made her wear the Badger hat for the photo. Lauren, I know you wish you could have been here to wear the red!

There were no photos of Lauren's run, but I'm guessing she might have looked like this as she headed out yesterday morning.

I’m such a proud papa. It was so great to be able to cross the finish line with Emily today and I was thrilled to hear that Lauren ran her longest run ever. I’m really excited about the Twin Cities Marathon when both Date girls will be here and we’ll all be running together.

Emily and Lauren — you both rock.