Running for Turkey: One of the Craziest Things My Family Has Ever Done

Probably not THE craziest.

But let me just say Thanksgiving rocks. It’s my favorite holiday. And our Saturday morning shenanigans were definitely a highlight. It’s been a longtime tradition of my dad’s to run to “the farm” for Thanksgiving dinner. (It’s not a “farm” – I just put it in quotes because we say it like it’s the only farm out there!) And ever since I got into distance running, I’ve been itching to join him.

Somehow when I was elbow deep in cookie baking, a plan was hatched that we should as a family run a RELAY from Wabasha to Plainview where we were celebrating Thanksgiving with my side of the family on Saturday. That’s about 19 miles.

This whole thing probably would have gotten a little more elaborate, but I had cookies to finish, nut goody bars to make fail, and walnuts to candy.

We quickly decided to give my dad the hardest/longest stretch so the rest of us could sleep in a little bit and catch up with him later. He’s the only morning person in the family. That’s the only reason he’s the one we forced to run up Kellogg hill. Haha.

You might not be able to make out that small print in the top right corner, but let me assure you that it says “sponsored by” I’ll do anything for free publicity. And yeah that’s my baby Garmin. We weren’t going to do this kind of epic mileage without a little Garmin pass action! :)

I did get up in time to snap a few photos of Dad as he took off. He’s a machine!

Check out the change in elevation Dad conquered before we met up with him at about Mile 10. I was hoping to get there at Mile 8 or so, but we accidentally left the ham in the oven and had to go back for it.

Back at the ranch, I had to get the kids on the road and toss back a few cups of coffee to get my own eyes open.

Once we were all in the van, Kevin & I jumped in with Dad at around Mile 10.

It was a LOT COLDER than I expected. Dad said it became brutal once he ran out of the valley. Out in the open plain, the wind was biting. Every exposed inch of my body was BEET RED within minutes. I almost always overdress, but that was the exception!

Mom wanted to run the flattest stretch so Dad selected this point right after the farm. She and Kevin switched places for about two miles.

Lucky Lindy & Big Daddy don’t mess around. They didn’t even slow down as Dad passed off his winter hat to Mom. Mom has this thing about cold ears. But my whole body was already an icicle so it didn’t matter.

Mom was impressed that I could sing & run at the same time. I was playing music over the iPhone, of course. I was just trying to keep from freezing to death!

Dad & I eventually heartlessly ditched Mom when we came to the hill. I just HAD to go faster I was going to make it without hypothermia. I really was thankful I impulsively chose to wear those ridiculous pink argyle socks. They’re J.Crew, by the way. Just in case that makes you think any more highly of me than if they were from Target. ;)

Dad ended up running 14. He couldn’t resist finishing a half marathon for fun. And then whoever was driving the van at that point had disappeared so he had to keep running!

Later, we even dragged Josiah out. Kicking & screaming. His bib reads: “I WISH I WAS STILL IN BED.” Josiah ran maybe 5k with us. He’s a cross-country runner. That’s about all he’s got. ;)  Josiah and I totally cheated and drafted off Kevin the whole way.

I could tell Kevin was in like race mode because he was really running more aggressively than normal. He told me later that he was mainly nervous about me getting by a car (totally legitimate!) or tripping over something so he wanted to stay in front. Either way, he kept us going through a pretty stinking hilly section doing about 8-and-a-halfs!

Our destination city!

We weren’t disappointed to be joined by an excuse to run slow reinforcements once we got into town.

Joanie was a good sport and went by “J-Slow.” That’s comedy, right? She said that next holiday she’s going to hang out with me, she’ll know better and start training a few months out! :)


Yeah, we’re totally faking here, but my baby sisters did jump in for the last half mile.

AJ doing the PHOEBE RUN!!! :)

We parked the van a quarter of a mile away from my brother’s so we could all do a victory lap. Joanie looks so HARD CORE in this picture. Do you think she’s channeling Britney?

The participants! We were too cold to get a decent picture. But let’s just say Kevin and I have lots practice with an iPhone in our face! ;)

Kevin obstinately wrote “McMillin-Kreisel.” He’s such a feminist. :) Josiah immediately noticed that I wrote 2011 on the runner bibs. Yeah. That means I’m already plotting for next year!

I’m very impressed by our splits & our average pace. Of course, Dad speeding through the first ones did NOT hurt! I’m trying to think of what to add next year. I was honestly disappointed by how easy it was. Haha. I ran about 9 miles, but honestly I wasn’t even really tired at all. Usually when I run more than a 10k by myself, I get pretty tired. But I was so cold and I had such good company that the miles literally flew by! If I would’ve had some super cute pink compression arm sleeves, I’m sure I could’ve done another 5. ;)

Did you run on Thanksgiving? I really wanted to do a Turkey Trot type thing, but this was even sweeter. I earned at least my first plate. :)

P.S. We also did a Fun Run 5K before our wedding’s non-rehearsal dinner. It was cold that day too! Haha.



19 thoughts on “Running for Turkey: One of the Craziest Things My Family Has Ever Done

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  4. i feel so lazy every time I read your blog. ;) pleaaaaase come motivate me.
    I bet someday when you’re pregnant ;) you’ll be one of those 9 month pregnant ladies running a marathon. I bet.
    So fun to see Joanie!!!! Did she spend thanksgiving with your fam?!?!

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  6. What an awesome recap! I’d love to do something like this with my fam, although I don’t see them going for it. The Phoebe run maybe, though, I LOLed at the office when I saw that adorable picture!!!

    I hear ya on the singing+running. Sometimes you’ve just got to LET. IT. OUT! Love your blog lady!! You had me at freckles ;D I love mine!

  7. I love the Phoebe run!!!!!! You all are nuts! Next year you can’t forget to include big brother. You could have convinced him to join!

  8. You guys are crazy!! Joanie was dreading what you had planned for her, but she looked VERY professional while running!! Looked like SOME of you had a Good time!! Way to go!! I wanted to get out one of the days and go walking, but didn’t even get that in!!

  9. I was just kidding around with my sister one day and showed her the Phobe run- I swear it burns 2X the calories! It’s tough and makes you work your core like crazy to keep from falling down!
    You *all* did awesome! Your race bibs were great, totally made the race! Way to go, family! Way to go!!!!

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