September Races

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Labor Day Run
2 miles
Monday September 1, 2014 8:00am
Baton Rouge, LA

Labor Your Legs
5K
Monday September 1, 2014 8:00am
Hattiesburg, MS

Lafayette Professional Firefighters 9/11Memorial Stair Climb
Saturday September 6, 2014 7:00am
Lafayette, LA

Run/Walk for Scott Ramirez
5K
Saturday September 6, 2014 8:00am
Hammond, LA

Saints Kickoff Run
5K
Saturday September 6, 2014 8:00am
New Orleans, LA

Rock the Road 5K
5K
Saturday September 6, 2014 8:00am
Slidell, LA

Loyola Invitational
Cross-Country Meet
Saturday September 6, 2014 7:00am
Metairie, LA

Race For The Cure
5K
Saturday September 6, 2014 8:00am
Gulfport, MS

Brett Robinson Tri
Triathlon
Saturday September 6, 2014 7:00am
Gulf Shores, LA

CajunMan Triathlon
Triathlon
Sunday September 7, 2014 7:00am
Lafayette, LA

Elmwood Fitness Center Twilight Run
5K run, 1M run, 5K walk, 1M walk
Friday September 12, 2014 6:00pm
Harahan, LA

Bay BridgeFest 5K
5K run, 5K walk
Friday September 12, 2014 6:00pm
Bay St. Louis, MS

Bridgefest Triathlon
Triathlon
Saturday September 13, 2014 7:00am
Bay St. Louis, MS

CASA Superhero 5K
5K
Saturday September 13, 2014 8:00am
Gulfport, MS

Marine Corps League 5K
5K run, kids run, 5K walk
Saturday September 13, 2014 8:00am
Hattiesburg, MS

Run Baby Run
5K trail run
Saturday September 13, 2014 8:00am
Picayune, MS

Run Upper Lafayette
5K run, 1M fun run, 5K walk, 1M walk
Saturday September 13, 2014 8:00am
Lafayette, LA

Don’t Stop Believing Run
5K run, 1M fun run
Sunday September 14, 2014 8:00am
Lafayette, LA

Twilight Run
5K
Friday September 19, 2014 6:00pm
Covington, LA

Fatseaux 5K
5K run
Saturday September 20, 2014 8:00am
Lafayette, LA

Walk 4 Recovery
5K Run, 1 Mile Walk
Saturday, September 20, 2014 8:00 AM
City Park Festival Grounds, New Orleans, LA

Ingall 5K
5K
Saturday September 20, 2014 8:00am
Pascagoula, MS

NOLA Blue Doo Run
2 Miles
Saturday, September 20, 2014, 6:00 PM
Tulane University Uptown Campus, New Orleans, LA

Alligator Festival Race
5K run, 5K walk
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Luling, LA

CMA Sashay 5K
5K run, 1M run
Saturday September 27, 2014 7:00am
Lafayette, LA

Lafayette Free to Breathe Lung Cancer 5K Run/Walk
5K run, 5K walk
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Lafayette, LA

IronKids New Orleans
Youth triathlon
Saturday September 27, 2014 7:00am
New Orleans, LA

Covington Classic
5K
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Covington, LA

Till Paths Meet Charity 5K/1M
5K run, 1M run
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Slidell, LA

Crescent City Century 2014
25, 50, 62 and 100 Mile Bike Rides
Saturday, September 27, 2014, 7:00 AM
St. Benedict’s Church, Covington, LA

New Orleans Man Up Triathlon
300M Swim, 10 Mile Bike, 2 Mile Run
Saturday, September 27, 2014, 7:30 AM
UNO Lakefront Arena, New Orleans, LA

Doc’s Dash
5K, 1 Mile Fun Run
Saturday, September 27, 2014, 8:00 AM
Baton Rouge, LA

Waiting For a Cure
5K
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Ocean Springs, MS

Joe Cat Fun Run
10K run, 5K run, 1M fun run
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Pass Christian, MS

Tupelo Officers Down 5K
5K run, kids run
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Tupelo, MS

IMMS Dolphin Dash
5K
Saturday September 27, 2014 8:00am
Gulfport, MS

World-Beater All-Beach 10K
10K
Saturday, September 27, 2014, 8:00 AM
Gulf Shores, AL

Q50 5Kanine Trail Run
5K and 1.5 Miles
Saturday, September 27, 2014, 9:00 AM
Fountainebleau State Park, Mandeville, LA

Tipitina’s Foundation Rhythm & Blues 5K
5K
Saturday, September 27, 2014, 5:00 PM
Tipitina’s Uptown, New Orleans, LA

Light the Night Glow Run
5K run
Saturday September 27, 2014 6:00pm
Amite, LA

Girl Power Triathlon
300M Swim, 10 Mile Bike, 2 Mile Run
Sunday, September 28, 2014, 7:30 AM
UNO Lakefront Arena, New Orleans, LA

The Dog Bite Saga

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Plantar fasciitis, shin splints, runner’s knee…….luckily I have been running for eighteen years and I have never really dealt with these common running injuries. Of course I would be injury free all this time just to get by leg chewed on by Fido.

I decided to jog in the neighborhood next to mine for a change of pace last Friday. As I was running a large brown dog ran up behind me. I’ve had dogs run behind me before but usually an owner is not far behind fussing at them.

Something must have angered pooch because he grabbed on to my calf like a T-bone. He bit down and would not let go. The pain was instant and excruciating. I tried to pry off his jaw with my hands but that didn’t work. After hitting him in the head a few times he let go and ran away.

Some people have asked why didn’t I shoot the dog. First off I couldn’t secondly I wouldn’t. In a close situation like this you have just as good a chance of shooting your self as the dog. I would, however, recommend pepper spray as a good animal deterrent. Unfortunately I did not have any on me. Maybe I’ll stuff some beggin strips in my pockets for next time.

The up side was I made it home and I did not need stitches. The down side is I am missing a chunk out of my leg and haven’t been able to run since. It is not so much the extent of the injury but the location right on my calf.

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The injury is healing well but I think I will be skittish around loose dogs for a while. I hope to be back in action Saturday for the Loyola Cross-country Invitational. Our alumni puts together a team every year to relive our glory days. The meet will feature the college men and women’s 5K as well as high school races. The running starts at 7:50am at Lafreniere Park in Metairie, LA.

 

Special Olympics Fundraiser

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I will be fundraising at the Gulf Coast Half Marathon on October 19, 2014. I am asking friends, family, runners, law enforcement, and Special Olympics supporters to help me.

The catch is I will be running the full 13.1 miles in full police uniform: shirt, pants, gun belt, boots, etc. Just for reference I gain about 25 pounds every time I get dressed for work.

I need YOU to bet on me! Pledge a donation in any amount. If I finish you will donate your pledged amount directly to the Special Olympics of Louisiana.

You can comment below with your pledge or tweet me on Twitter @bakramer1. You can also email me at bakramer@loyno.edu.

To make your donation you can visit the Special Olympics website: www.laso.org and click the DONATE TODAY button at the top of the screen. You can also mail a check to their office at 1000 East Morris Avenue Hammond, LA 70403. Please put Mandeville Police Department in the memo so the organization can recognize our fundraiser.

Hopefully I can talk some of you into running with me! To register for the race visit the Gulf Coast Half Marathon website at http://www.gulfcoasthalf.com/

Happy running and happy pledging!

Varsity Sports Beer Mile & 7th Birthday Celebration

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Varsity Sports Mandeville celebrated its 7th birthday this week culminating in the Birthday Beer Mile. The race was held Saturday evening at the Covington Brewhouse in downtown Covington.

The race day registration and beer station were held outside the brewery. Michael Ogden, of the Covington Brewhouse, gave tours and samples of beer to the runners while we were waiting for the race to start. Of course my husband volunteered to accompany me to this race and had more than a few samples.

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The Beer Mile had three divisions: all Women, Mixed, and all Men. Each team had four runners. The rules were to drink your beer as fast as possible then run 400 meters. You had to tag your teammate in order for them to start drinking their beer. The beer provided was the delicious Pontchartrain Pilsner from the Covington Brewhouse.

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The women kicked off the excitement with their heat. The Varsity Vinos (Diane Weiss, Jenny Peters, Jessica, and Jane) took first place with an 8:00 minute finish. The ladies set the pace with the beer chugging. One gal chugged her beer in about 4 seconds! Go ladies!

Next up was the Mixed teams. Mother Nature was not favoring our heat and the rain commenced. Seven teams competed including my team: Two Short of a Six Pack. Jason Schock (pictured below in the black shorts) started out the race for our team.

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Jason took the lead and Allison Bodet was up next. She absolutely dominated the beer chug in about 5 seconds.

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Allison gained a solid lead and passed the figurative baton to me. I was hoping my college beer guzzling days would aid me but that was over ten years ago. I did ok, not great, but I chugged my beer down. We were still in first and by this time it was pouring raining.

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We were still in first after I finished my lap. Our anchor, JenaDiliberto, chugged down her beer and was off. We won first with a time of 7:00 flat. Our team voted 6:59 because it sounds better.

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The last heat was the Men’s race with five teams competing. The race was fast and intense. First and second place came down to just a few seconds with the Varsity Voltz (including Jeff Genusa) taking first and The New Orleans Power Milers (including Mark Berger) taking second. The winning times were somewhere in the 5 minute range.

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The award ceremony was held in front of the Brewery. The top three teams in each category were rewarded with prizes from Varsity Sports and Covington Brewery.

The post race party was held at the Columbia Street Tap Room. The Tap Room provided salad, buffalo wings, catfish, and quesadillas. Maple Street Bakery of Abita Springs made a beautiful cake to celebrate Varsity Sports’ Mandeville’s 7th Birthday. All of the runners sang Happy Birthday to Varsity Sports to celebrate.

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Thanks to Jenny Peters, Diane Weiss, Bud Weiss, Ryan Green, Varsity Sports, Maple Street Bakery, Covington Brewhouse, and The Columbia Street Tap Room for a great event! The consensus among the runners is we want to make this an annual event!!!

Self-defense for Runners

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Last week a female was attacked on the St. Tammany Trace. (For those not familiar with the Trace, it is a former railway that was converted to a cycling/jogging path that spans 28 miles in southern Louisiana. It is very popular with local runners.) The female was walking in between Lonsome Rd. and Koop Dr. when a male approached her from behind and grabbed her around her neck. Luckily a cyclist was nearby and scared off the male. The cyclist called 911 and the male was apprehended a short while later by police.

What if the cyclist was not there? Could the female defend herself? What was the male’s intention? Robbery? Sexual assault? Worse?

Many Northshore citizens were outraged with this news. Any type of crime is a rare occurrence on the Trace but it sparked dialogue among local runners about how they would defend themselves in a similar situation.

As some of you know I am a police officer, and a runner of course. Some of my fellow runners reached out to me for advice. I would like to share some tips with you:

1. Don’t run at night. If you must, run in a well lit area or with someone else. The same with secluded areas.

2. If you frequent the Trace the safest areas are near the Mandeville Trailhead. The stretch in between Koop Dr. and the Abita Trailhead is relatively safe but very secluded. Be vigilant if you are running in the area between the Abita Trailhead and Covington. This rate of crime in general is increasing in this area and a few robbery incidents were reported on the Trace. I don’t run on the Lacombe or Slidell portions of the Trace so I can’t give advice on that.

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3. Do run with your cell phone. I put mine in my Spibelt, which goes around my waist. You can always use your phone to call 911 in an emergency or report a suspicious person.

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4. Tell someone (parent, spouse, friend, etc.) where you are going running and about how long you will be.

5. If you run with a music device have the volume at a reasonable level. If you have Britney blasting in your ears you won’t hear a potential threat coming up behind you.

6. Be VIGILANT! Watch your surroundings at all times. Look over your shoulder periodically. If you get that tingly feeling on the back of your neck turn around, cross the street, or do whatever you need to do.

7. Don’t be a target. There is no reason you need to wear enough jewelry to rival Liberace while you run. Leave the valuables at home.

8. Your set of keys can be a nuisance because you have to find somewhere to stash them while you run. Your keys can also be used as a method of self defense. Just the look of jagged keys coming out of your fist can be intimidating to your attacker. If you must strike, here is the proper technique below. The top hand is incorrect, but the bottom two hands are the correct way to hold the keys. (Photo credit: Think Like a Black Belt.)

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9. Pepper spray (mace). This is a good, easy, inexpensive tool to have with you. If you can point away from yourself and spray then you can use this form of self-defense. Easy! There are many types of spray and many forms to carry it. Here are some products for runners:

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10. Electronic Control Device (Taser, Stun Gun). I am not this biggest fan of this option. Most civilian products for sale require you to be in close proximity to your target, unlike police models where we can shoot from several feet away. I have been “tased” already as part of training and I was able to fully bounce back 100% as soon as the electric current stopped. When I was sprayed with pepper spray I was completely blinded and disabled for about 20 minutes. I was in pure agony. So my vote is for the spray but here are some options for a stun gun:

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11. Handgun. #1 rule: If you don’t think you can shoot someone then this is not the option for you. #2: There is no such thing as shoot to injure so you have to have the mindset of shoot to kill. You are not Billy the Kid and unless you are a sharpshooter and have nerves of steel, you will not be able to shoot someone in the foot, leg, or other “non-lethal” area in a heated moment. This is why shooting ranges have center mass (head and chest) on their targets. Louisiana is an open carry state so if your gun is properly holstered, visible, and you are not a felon you are good to go. If you have a concealed carry permit, even better. Another logistic to consider is training. Do not carry a weapon unless you have shot at the range and are versed in gun safety. Last but not least, this option is probably the least practical and comfort-wise, for running. I have ran already with my Ruger LCP .380 and it is not the most comfortable but I am glad to have it on me. It is light and compact. Here is a picture of the gun I have:

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12: Hands-on. You don’t have to be Chuck Norris to fight off an attacker with your hands. Just screaming and throwing your hands towards your attacker is better than nothing. Hitting an attacker with the palm of your hand on the face, knee strikes, kicking their shins and/or knees with the bottom of your foot, and striking with the meaty part of your forearms or elbows are some basic moves. You at least have a chance if you fight back.

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I hope my tips are helpful. Safe running to you all!