Runners Notes
By Heather Cass Erie Times-News staff blogger
If you want to know anything about the local running scene, ask Heather Cass. A member of the Erie Runners Club for 10-plus years, she is immersed in the local fitness culture, and she's taking your questions.   Read more about this blog.
Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category
Posted: April 16th, 2014


As you know, I joined an outdoor workout group this winter organized and run by Dr. Steven Krauza. Team Adrenaline is an “organic fitness” group, which means we use no “equipment” beyond our own bodies or some cones on a football field or curbs or playground equipment, etc.

I wrote all about Team Adrenaline here.


Last night’s Team Adrenaline workout was a super fun twist on the traditional Easter Egg hunt. Inside the eggs were exercises you had to perform, for example, 100 rockette kicks, or bunny hop 100 yards, or do 20 burpees, etc. Some were partner exercises, so you’d have to recruit the nearest to join you.

It was ridiculously fun with all of us running around doing different things.


Then Dr. Steve (that’s him in the bunny ears) had to go spoil it all and make us do 10 minutes of “on point,” which is some serious speedwork. Yeah, I whine, but you know I loved it. I’d never do sprints without peer pressure.

TA- cj baloons

We have a lot of fun at Team Adrenaline, but we also work hard. You are encouraged (OK…flat out pushed) to get out of your comfort zone and accomplish things you never thought possible — like carrying a buddy up a hill at Frontier Park!

hills hills2

For the next two weeks, Team Adrenaline workouts are FREE! Come try it out. See if it’s the right workout for you. (P.S. there are modifications for any exercise, so…it really can be a good workout for anyone). Just show up…and try it out.

T.A. currently meets on Mondays at 4 p.m. at Rolling Ridge Elementary School (harborcreek) and on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6 p.m. at the Iroquois High School football field (In may, the Thursday workout will move back to Liberty Park). There are also Saturday workouts — typically at 7 a.m. — and the location varies from week to week.


Visit krauzachiro or call 898-2346 or email: frontdesk (at symbol) with any questions (NOTE: I don’t put the @ symbol in email addresses in my blog posts or the person ends up with gobs of spam, but you need to use it in that address if you email Steve).

Come on….drink the Kool-Aide and join in the fun!


Posted: April 15th, 2014


Shalane Flanagan Featured on 60 Minutes

From Runner’s World magazine:

On Sunday evening, CBS’s “60 Minutes” followed American hopeful and local favorite Shalane Flanagan throughout her training for this year’s Boston Marathon. It was the first time in the show’s history that it featured a professional runner.

“Maybe it’s just a Bostonian thing, but I was really, just genuinely pissed off that someone would ruin such a celebratory day and a historical moment,” Flanagan said at the start of the segment. “It was a personal attack on my city.”

Between clips of her gliding along a snow-covered Boston race course, the segment dove into the hometown pride Flanagan has for the marathon and her unwavering desire to break the tape. Growing up in nearby Marblehead, Massachusetts, with two world-caliber runners for parents, Flanagan said, “I thought everyone go up and went to the ‘Church of the Sunday Long Run.’” Then she explained how the countless Patriot’s Day’s spent spectating on Hereford and Boylston Street inspired her to lace up herself.

“It’s my ultimate dream and goal to win the Boston Marathon,” Flanagan said. “I am all in with this training.”

If you missed it, you can watch the full segment here.


Erie Times-News/Jarid A. Barringer

50 years of fitness

While not running related, the Erie Times-News had a great story about a couple in their 90s who have been going to the Glenwood YMCA to workout four days a week for the last 50 years.

Read more about this inspirational couple here.


Erie Sports Commission needs volunteers

Fiona Branton at GoErie’s VolunteerErie blog said the Erie Sports Commission is in need of volunteers for four major events this summer, including the Zombie Run, the Color Run, the Biggest Loser RunWalk and the Life’s a Beach Triathlon.

The Zombie Run includes two events on May 17, both at Lake Erie Speedway in North East. The Zombie Run: Extreme takes place at 9 a.m., while the Zombie Run: Black Ops event begins at 9 p.m. Volunteers are needed for both races to help with check-in, assisting on the course and much more. To volunteer for either race, or for more information, send an e-mail to or visit

The Biggest Loser RunWalk on June 22 will be held on the campus of Penn State Behrend. Volunteers are needed to work water stations, registration and at the start/finish line. To volunteer, visit

More than 10,000 runners are signed up to participate in the Color Run on Aug. 9 in downtown Erie, starting at Perry Square. The event’s partnering nonprofit, United Way of Erie County, is coordinating volunteers. Those interested in helping should sign up at

Life’s a Beach Triathlon is a new event coming to Presque Isle State Park on Aug. 16. To volunteer, send an e-mail to or visit


Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: April 14th, 2014


Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: April 11th, 2014

This week’s question: What’s the best race sign(s) you’ve seen?

Seen at the Pittsburgh Marathon: “Yous running and no one is chasing you?” — Benjamin Reitz

At Richmond Marathon – a little boy had a sign “This is the worst parade ever!!” — Tom Grant

From our Erie Marathon water stop last year: “Chuck Norris never ran a marathon”, and “Worst. Parade. Ever.” — Ross Aresco

Last fall the Marine Corps Marathon was held right after the government shut down (and the shut down ended just in time for the race). Lots of signs read: “You’re running better than the government!”  My FAVORITE was an older guy holding a sign that read: “Keep running, I just farted!” I laughed, and his wife said, “He’s not kidding!”  — Tracy Jenks
A couple of years after Forrest Gump, I saw one that read “Stop, Forrest, Stop!”— Jim Lang



Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: April 10th, 2014

Worth Reading

* What’s the best way to plank? Depends on what you’re trying to accomplish.

* As if a traditional foam roller wasn’t torture enough, I give you: The cold roller (Actually, this might feel really great this summer).

* While I’m not big on “rules,” (you can the rebel girl out of Jr. High, can’t take the Jr. High rebel out of the girl), I am doing pretty well on these New Rules of Fitness as I pretty much follow all of these now. How about you?

* If you Run Slow, Who Cares? (“There’s always someone faster: Unless you’re Kenenisa Bekele, Mo Farah or Galen Rupp, chances are there is always going to be someone faster than you. Fast is relative.”)

No, Eating Fruits and Vegetables aren’t bad for you. You know that the only good “diet” is one with protein and lots of veggies and some fruits. Avoid processed foods and chemical-filled “diet” foods.


T-shirt of the Week


Available here for $22.


Posted: April 8th, 2014

I knew it would die eventually, I just didn’t expect it to be on a random Tuesday afternoon. That’s how these things are though. We never really “expect” them. There were signs. It’s battery life was growing shorter every year. It was becoming “temperamental.”

When I grabbed it for a lunchtime walk last week, it was stuck in some strange diagnostic (think Courier font) mode. I couldn’t get it back to the main menu and when I returned it couldn’t be revived at all.

I tried everything. A  hard reset didn’t work. Plugging it into the charger didn’t work. Syncing it with my computer didn’t work.

I finally had to accept that my beloved iPod nano was dead.

I bought it as a refurb from the Apple site in 2005 for about $100.  If I figure conservatively, we’ve run about 10,000 miles together since. Much as I love to bash Apple, I think I got my money’s worth.

It’s so old it was a 2nd generation. While it was classically sleek and thin, it was no longer cool or sexy. It was plain black and silver–iPods didn’t come in colors back then. It was my constant running companion before I had running partners, and was still my “go to” for solo runs and distance races.

Several years ago, I had a major iTunes issue on my PC (involving upgrades) and I lost everything. I got the music back, but it was no longer in the orderly categories that you know my anal self had them arranged in and I never found the time to reorganize them. So I listened to the same playlists for years, literally years, until I found the energy to figure out the iTunes mess (mostly because the kids got iTouches).

I ordered a new one Nano weekend. It’s purple and has twice the memory.  But I can’t bring myself to toss (recycle) my old one yet. We’ve been through too many miles and milestones together.


About Just Write
“What ends up revealing itself when free writing is that everything has meaning. That is a magnificent gift of writing. If we write from a free heart-gut place, our souls start speaking.

Posted: April 7th, 2014


Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: April 3rd, 2014

Worth Reading

5 foam rolling mistakes to avoid.

Glute activtion: 10 must-do exercises (Weak glutes are to blame for many common running ailments, including low back pain and knee and hip problems.

Solid running advice for all of us from ultramarathoner Dean Karnazes.  (“Fail boldly. The more you take on, the more you will fail. But the more fail, the more you will learn—and the more you will succeed.”)

Sore hip flexors? It may not be what you think.

Your running Rorschach Test.


The next big thing in racing?

Funny stuff


Posted: April 1st, 2014

Everyone hates March in Erie. I get it. The weather is completely schizophrenic (it’s hot, it’s cold, it’s hot, it’s cold…all in one dang day, sometimes) and, after a loooonggg, cold winter, we’re all anxious for spring.

I saw lots of signs of spring at Preque Isle State Park this weekend — ducks galore in the bay, red-winged blackbirds (the true harbingers of spring), fishermen in hip waiters, boats being uncovered, a turkey tom fanned out and guarding his hens, etc.

long run

Weekend Run No 1: We thought it was spring on Saturday morning at PISP.

But, we know winter isn’t over yet.  We know that spring — flowers, grass, regular sunshine, and trees full of songbirds — doesn’t really arrive in Erie until Mid-May, yet every freakin’ snowflake that falls after March 20 feels like insult to injury.

Snow doesn’t bother me now. Because it can’t last forever. It can’t. And it’s on it’s way out.  (I get depressed when it snows in October and we’ve got months and months of it to go).  In March and April, we get a few warm days mixed in with the cold ones. Like little previews of spring. Soon, those nice days outnumber the crappy, cold ones. The daffodils push through the last of the snow, the ducks fill Presque Isle bay, and office A/C kicks on.

So while the six to eight inches of fresh snow that fell overnight Saturday sent many off the deep end — as if their anger alone could melt the icy heart of Jack Frost — I saw it differently. I realized it might be my last opportunity this season to run in a winter wonderland. I’m sure most of you hope that it is.

Weekend run No. 2:  A mere 24 hours later and winter is baaaackkk! 



Yes, I look forward to solid footing again, but I’m not so quick to wish the winter running season away. I like running in cooler temps. I like cozy layers of Under Armour. I like having pockets to carry my stuff. I like not sweating to death. I like feeling like a badass because I run 8 miles on days other people don’t want to leave their house. I like running in the peaceful silence of winter.

This will all be over before we know it.


Pix by Eloise

About Just Write
“What ends up revealing itself when free writing is that everything has meaning. That is a magnificent gift of writing. If we write from a free heart-gut place, our souls start speaking.

Posted: March 28th, 2014

Finish this sentence: I Run to_______________.

…maintain my ability to run. — Pat Krott

…get away. — Jodi Herman

…stay fit and have fun. — Tom Madura

…challenge myself! — Christine Kalie

…my car when it’s pouring down rain. — Rob Engelhardt

…stay in shape. Lose weight. Be able to keep up in soccer game. Feel a sense of accomplishment. To explore unknown territories. And finally EAT ICE CREAM!!! — Jessie Zahner

…counteract criticism, to feel comfortable with myself, to be able to keep up with others, to not have my ass kicked by running girls. — Tom Twohig

…get the last chicken wing. — Doug Oathout

….fit into my clothes. — Lisa Shade

…socialize and check something off my to do list. — Renee Uht

….socialize (beer, ice cream and pancake runs rock!), Destress and challenge myself! — Leslie Cooksey

…think, pray, gain perspective, develop perseverance, de-stress, feel strong, express joy, relax, focus, and to just be me. — Karen Beebe

…feel strong. — Carol Crandall

….drink more wine!  — Tracy Jenks

…get my daily high. — Barb Armour

…reduce the stress that build up from the aggravation of work. The run clears my head & gets me ready for “what next?” — Jim Lang

…feel better about everything. —Kristen Currier

…because I’m a parent!!!  — Jenn Bauer-Pinzok

…stay sane. — Michael Morris

…beat the clock. — Jack Byers

…relax. — Amy Cronk

…stay healthy, have some me time, and model a healthy lifestyle for all the children in my life both at home and at school. — LeAnne Morton

…train, get in shape, spend time with my hubby, de-stress, & socialize. — Lisa Meyer

…relieve stress, catch up with friends and burn enough calories to eat ice cream and drink beer :) — Stacey Hammer

…stay healthy and also because my dad, who is no longer with us can’t run anymore! — Kristen Carpenedo

… go to the bar and the coffee shop and to hang out with with friends. Also to consume, coffee, food, and/or beer. — Matt Kleck

…feel a sense of accomplishment. — Lauren Kelly

….relieve stress. —Melissa Bessetti

….hang out with friends and to decompress. —Debbie Humphreys

…stay sane. —Bri Hodges

…collect my thoughts, relieve stress, and to socialize with friends!!! — Brenda Carr

…socialize. That is all. —Jen Kelly


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