Danny Denim IN PITTSBURGH for the Great Race!

The JoggingJeans.com legend, Danny Denim, came to Pittsburgh this weekend to run the Great Race. He didn’t disappoint with his triple denim duds and had a “jorts PR” at the 5K with a time of 18:33 (2nd in age group).

DannyDenimGreat things about this morning’s Great Race:

1. Meeting Dan

GreatRace2013

2. Watching the faces of people looking at Dan while I was talking with him post-race. Their faces either said, “What the hell?” or “How awesome is that outfit?” All I can say is that watching their reactions was a whole lot of fun.

3. And I know this next picture has nothing to do with jogging in jeans, but these two little girls with their heads buried in books made me smile. Parents of these two, you get an A+.

ReadingAnd for those following along and wondering, I did not run. FU plantar fasciitis.

Suck it, Pittsburgh Haters

Angela, over at FitFunMom, wrote a post awhile back where she said, “…sometimes people drive by my blog in their Google cars and deposit one-sided evidence that they’ve been here, leaving me wanting a chance to holler back after them. Now’s my chance to talk back to people who’ve reached the blog through the power of Google.”

I LOVED the idea, so I am stealing it  – sharing with you some of the search terms that brought people to JoggingJeans.com.

1. The boob themed searches:

  •    “big boob jogger”
  •    “jeans and boobs”
  •    “boob women in overalls”
  •    “boob out”

…..My response to the individuals behind these searches: Men are pigs.

2. The foreign language searches:

  •    “joggingspijkerbroeken”
  •    “joggy джинсы”
  •    “que son los jeans joggalor”

…..My response to my foreign friends: Um, wut?

3. The search terms that hurt my heart:

  •    “i hate pittsburgh”
  •    “Pittsburgh sucks”
  •    “why do people like shithole pittsburgh?”

…..My response to these absolute idiots: Suck it, Haters.*

4. The search phrases that made me smile:

  •    “hysterical website running in jeans”
  •    “+Jill +Pittsburgh funny jogging jeans”

My response to these people: I love you too.

5. The search terms with important questions:

  •    “is it okay to run in jeans” and “can I jog in jeans?” 
  •    “Will people laugh if I go to the gym in jeans?

…..Yes, yes, and yes.

Jog

*I will ignore any comments about the performance of our beloved Steelers.

Plantar fasciitis can ruin some good-ass plans

Pittsburgh’s Great Race is three weeks away. Despite the crowds (and I mean LOADS of runners for a 10K), I love this race. The 10K takes you though the streets of Squirrel Hill, Oakland, Updown, and Downtown Pittsburgh neighborhoods. The spectators are great; all the colleges you pass (CMU, Pitt, Carlow, Robert Morris, who did I miss?) have cheerleaders, musicians, and students lining the streets. Plus, because the 5K was my first ever race (just 5 years ago), it has a special little cubbie hole in my heart. The fact that the finish line is IN MY BACKYARD only sweetens the deal.

For this year’s race, I had this whole idea to create a Team Jorts. I was going to put it out there if I could get 10 of you to run in denim, I too would run for the first time in jorts. Really, I had plans to collect the post-race sweat of the 10 people that agreed to do this so that I could have their awesomeness to carry around with me wherever I go.

However, plantar fasciitis has kept me from running since the day of my first half marathon in May. [My recap was kick-ass so go read it (again)].

If you have never experienced this horrible horrible ailment, I have three words for you: IT SUCKS. BAD.

It basically feels like someone is sticking an ice pick in your foot every time you bear weight. For months now, you could find me eating ibuprofen like Skittles, icing my heal, stretching, and cursing at regular intervals…all until two weeks ago when I got a shot of cortisone. Halleluiah. Thank God for ginormous needles filled with powerful anti-inflammatories. My heel feels SO MUCH better.

If I continue along this path of feeling good, and I am dedicated to resting and letting it heal in the next few weeks, I may still consider running the Great Race. But, obviously, I will be doing it pretty much untrained. And I won’t be in jorts. I decided that if I’m going to run in jorts, I need to be at my best. If people are going to point and laugh at me, I at least want to be kicking asphalt dust into their faces as I whiz by them. Next year, People. Next year is the year that Team Jorts rocks Pittsburgh.

However, there is some good news: one of my favorite jean-joggers is coming to Pittsburgh to run the race. I’m hoping we can see each other for at least a ‘hey.’

DannyDonutHere he is as Danny Donut (going double-denim with jorts and jean vest) at the finish line of the Piqua Heritage Festival 5K last weekend. The donut in his mouth is because he was practicing for next weekend’s Celina Donut Dash. And the containers under his arm? He needs a way to carry his donuts, doesn’t he? BTW, he PR’ed for his fastest mile while carrying a dozen donuts (6:10). Wonder if that is Guinness worthy?

Anyone else have Pittsburgh’s Great Race on your race schedule this year?

And save those old jeans to cut into jorts for next year’s race. You are all invited to be a member of Team Jorts in 2014!

Reason #585 why Pittsburgh is awesome

Need another reason why Pittsburgh is awesome? Of course you don’t, because you know it already and believe it with all your heart. But reason #585 is that Pittsburghers jog in jeans. We’ve seen the Genesis Riverside 10K Runner, the Great Race Runner, and the guy I creepily stalked with binoculars.

And because of Kristy, lover of running and all things Pittsburgh, we know of another:

PittsburghTrack

Kristy blogs over at PGHRunner and is worthy of a follow there and on Twitter (@PGHRunner). However, based on the crazy-large number of my Twitter people that follow her already, I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know.

Another runner IN JEANS at the Pittsburgh Marathon 5K

Although I missed him when I was on the sidelines cheering on my new friend, Andrew, there was another runner at the Pittsburgh Marathon 5K in denim.

Josh was running as part of a group raising awareness and money for L.I.V.I.N.G Ministry. And he did his fundraising in the most awesome way! From his website:

I need your help…

  •  If I get $100, I’ll run in jeans.  Whoever breaks the $100 threshold decides whether those jeans are cut offs, and if so, how short.
  •  If I break $200, I’ll wear a suit and tie.  I have no idea what the weather will be like.  But i’ll be the best dressed runner, I assure you.
  •  If I break $300, I’ll skip the entire last mile.  No, not bail out, I mean skip like in hop scotch.  For a mile.
  •  Guess what, I’m on call for work next weekend too.  It’s only fitting then, if I break $400, I’ll open a conference call and give all donors the info to dial in and I’ll give live progress updates for the duration of the race.
  •  If I break $500, I will do ALL OF THE THINGS.

You all have heard me talk about the L.I.V.I.N.G Ministry before.  It’s one of the best ministries to the homeless, struggling, hungry, and forgotten public in Pittsburgh.  Not only the mission, but the staff are by far the most focused, compassionate, and  passionate people I’ve ever encountered.

Apparently, he met is $500 fundraising goal. Here is a picture of him running IN JEANS and a suit jacket:

Josh

And here he is skipping across the finish line:

Josh, contact me. We are destined to be friends.

Of course LL Cool J’s “Mama Said Knock You Out” was on my training playlist

[Sorry if you are looking for a new exercising-in-denim picture today. I need a place to talk about my first half marathon.]

Short version of my race recap:

My ran the Pittsburgh Half Marathon today (my first) in 2:09:40. I gave it everything I had in me. It was awesome. Of course I didn’t wear jeans, Silly.

Long version of my race recap:

I’m a weight lifter. Serious running along with serious weight lifting, in principle, are counter-intuitive. I’ve said it before: even though I run, I don’t consider myself a runner. I run because I know it is good for me. I don’t love it. I have no burning passion for it. I don’t identify with it. I’m not fast. My form is terrible. My face turns tomato red. I feel all sorts of terrible when I’m doing it. And I’m sure I do serious damage to my lung tissue with all the coughing that occurs (I have asthma).

But there is something about turning 40 that makes you want to punch that “4” and that “0” right in its old-lady, sun-spotted, fine-lined-and-wrinkled face. So I signed up for my first half marathon, trained for four months,* and then today…

…I caught 40 square in the jaw with a right hook, landed a spinning back kick, and then submitted that bitch with a rear-naked choke. It wasn’t the fastest “win” by any means – I did it in a shocking (for me) 2:09:40 – but a win is a win, right?

RandyCouture

Notable things on race day:

  • I cried twice. Neither tear-fest occurred at the finish line or because of pain. At one point, early in the race, I was overwhelmed with how blessed I am – that I am able and healthy enough to run 13.1 miles. The second time I cried was when I saw all the military service men, in full gear, on the railings of one of the bridges cheering us on. Runners were yelling “thanks” back at them, drowning out their cheers for us. It was moving in a way that I can’t put into words. And the tears? Full on sobs.
  • My performance. I followed all the advice from my running friends (and sister) and, if it was possible to re-do today’s race, I would not do one thing differently. I had a negative split and gave it EVERYTHING I had in me – 100% was left on that course. I remember thinking when I hit the 13 mile marker that I DID NOT have another tenth of a mile in me, but somehow I was able to focus on the spectators’ cheers and that was enough to carry me across the finish line.
  • The concerned volunteer. A lady, when I crossed the finish line, asked me, “Medic?” as she grabbed my arm and nodded her head up and down. I must have REALLY looked bad. I was, and am, fine.
  • Spectators. I’ve written before that I could not have trained for this race without the support of my running group, Steel City Road Runners Club; their support and company has been vital in the success of my training runs. Today, the spectators were my support. The cheering, the positive energy, the cowbells, the bands, the signs were out in full force! I beamed with Pittsburgh Pride the entire race.
  • The weather. Beautiful. Perfect.
  • Miscellaneous. 1) The kid drummer for the band Chess Club and a Chick that was playing on the North Side. He was awesome. 2) The people handing out gummy worms on Carson Street. I so needed them right at the moment they appeared before me. 3) I didn’t see anyone running in jeans. :(

Start

And the weekend as a whole:

  • Meeting and hanging out with bloggers Charla (Running Haiku) and Tracey/Andrew (Stride and Joy) made for a memorable weekend that surpassed all expectations. Our time together was fun and comfortable and will be cherished forever. I’m looking forward to when I can get together again with my new friends.
  • I have an old man stalker. The full story is almost unbelievable (in a very fun way). For another time…

NewFriends

* I came up with a training plan on my own and it consisted of one day of running each week [yep, that is all the running I did - 128.5 training miles to be exact]. I’m still deciding on the title of the book that will bring in royalties matching Hal Higdon and Jeff Galloway:

BookTitles

The best dressed runner at the 2013 Pittsburgh Marathon 5K

I’ve said it before: the best part of having this website is the awesome people that I have met through it. This weekend, I got to meet IN PERSON three people I’ve previously only known online.

Running Haiku‘s Charla came all the way from Seattle. Stride and Joy‘s Tracey and her husband, Andrew, are in from Boston.

They are in town for the Pittsburgh Marathon!

While we are all registered for the half marathon tomorrow, Andrew was also registered for this morning’s 5K. We had plans to meet near the start line. And guess what?

ANDREW SHOWS UP FOR THE RACE IN JORTS!! How great is that? Besides being super-impressed with Pittsburgh and telling me how much you love it, this is next in line for the best way to make me happy.

HappyJill

Andrew

Look at that form!

Andrew2

Supporting his hometown in his Boston Marathon shirt.

Andrew3

Post-race looking like he didn’t even run!

He had a great run with no reports of chafing. I am officially his biggest fan.

After today’s 5K, Andrew is now a “Runner of Steel.” Charla, Tracey, and I will hopefully earn our titles tomorrow. Send prayers and good vibes our way.

RunnerOfSteel

Final Dedication Day + Motivational Poster #4

The final day is dedicated to all the rest of you! You are ALL my favorites. Whether you did a jog in jeans once, think that some day you might try it, or just laugh along with us – you are the best and I love all of you. Just as you are. Don’t change one little thing.

But I gotta list a few people by name. Thanks for promoting and appreciating the jogging-in-jeans cause in the way that you do. And, yes, I’m hoping you come to the ‘Burgh some day.

The jean-joggers:

Charla: She nabbed a PR running in jeans, writes me poetry, and is always scoping out jean-wearers at her races. We ARE going to run a race together some day – I am sure of it.

Gabe: No words needed.

Katy: She ran in jeans and then, although it was quickly abandoned, started a 12 Days of Christmas jeans-running streak. The fact that she attempted it earns her major love points from me. (However, I am using her experience as scientific evidence for why I won’t try this whole silly jogging-in-denim thing.)

Jorts House Mafia members: How awesome would it be to be IN A PICTURE with Brian #2  in his underwear in front of the Point State Park fountain?

The non-jeans-joggers:

Minka: If you read her blog, you’ll know that she is incredible and the type of person that you want to have around you.

Elisa: Another person that you want to have in your circle. Plus she sends me jean-jogging pictures all the time AND she doesn’t live THAT far away for a Pittsburgh trip.

Jen: I don’t want her to just visit, I want her to move to Pittsburgh so we can be real friends. Anyone who announces her pregnancy to the blogging world in this way is clearly awesome on so many levels.

Whitney: She’s “racing the states” and hasn’t yet ran a Pennsylvania race. Hoping it is Pittsburgh some day! And we’ll go to the zombie store together.

Mary: I love her. My #1 site commenter! Woot woot!

I realized, while making this list, that there are oodles more of you that should be on it. So I’m calling this “Dedication Week – Part 1.” All of you, if I find out that you were in Pittsburgh without a heads-up…well, let’s just say that I better not find out [scrunched up nose and vicious evil eyes looking at Y.O.U].

And because I can’t have a post without a picture, enjoy JoggingJeans.com’s motivational poster #4:

4

You can see all of the past posters that are motivating you to jog in jeans here.

Have you SEEN the thighs of hockey players?! Can they even fit in jeans?

If you tell me that you love JoggingJeans.com, that you like Pittsburgh, and also make a joke about bored NHL players, the picture you send will get bumped to the front of the queue. Just FYI.

I love your blog!  I’m a vet student, which can be PRETTY stressful, so I always need something to laugh at!  I’d been dying to try jogging in jeans, and got my chance when we got a little bit lost on a a walk with the dogs and ended up on a road instead of the trail.  Oops.  I ran ahead, single-handedly determined that we were going in the wrong direction, and I attribute that to jogging in jeans.  Thank you.  Also, I like your city.

Keep up the good work!
 
Andrea
 
P.S.  Any pictures of bored hockey players playing in jeans?
.
Andrea
The picture was taken at the Noxubee Wildlife Refuge in Starkville, Mississippi. I NEED to go there – it looks beautiful. Thanks, Andrea!

Don’t hate me because I’m… from Pittsburgh

I received my first bit of hate from a JoggingJeans.com visitor last month. The comment was nasty for no reason except to be mean.* But one part of it made a reference to me being from Pittsburgh and I got to thinking about something @BrianBWatkins shared with me once that I did not know having lived in Pennsylvania my whole life:

I am from Dallas, therefore since birth it has been engraved in my consciousness that Pittsburgh (along with Philly, Washington, and New York) are all horrible horrible places. This is 100% a football related sentiment. Mention the terms “Steel Curtain” or “Terry Bradshaw” to anyone over the age of 40 and expect them to blow a f%^&ing gasket. Blame my upbringing. I’m sure “yinz” guys and the city itself is sweet.

Is it true that those of you from other big football cities hate Pittsburgh?

Well, you shouldn’t. Hate the Steelers, hate that the fans in Pittsburgh are a bit obsessive [sorry, Folks, but you are], but PLEASE don’t hate this city. I’m putting my offer out there again: if you have plans to visit here, contact me. I’ll buy you a coffee and show you around my city and knock your socks off by the awesomeness of it all. If you are a runner, better yet, let me show you the city that way. Warning: it will involve an almost mile run up a mountain [McArdle Roadway] with a payoff like no other. NO OTHER. Trust me.

So, the reasons this city is so great are numerous (to name a few ’cause, ya know, I’m me: the landscape, its low cost of living, because we put French fries on EVERYTHING, world-class medical facilities, diverse neighborhoods, abundant recreational amenities…do I need to go on?). While these are all awesome, the real reason is because there are people like John that live here. John ran the Freaky 5K dressed in a 1970’s denim leisure suit:

If you don’t love his wig and headband, then you have serious problems.

And while being from Pittsburgh AND running in denim are reasons enough for me to love you, John gets even more of my love. The reason? The stuffed goat that he is holding.

He ran with the stuffed goat to raise awareness for Haiti H2O Goat Project. He is running the Pittsburgh Marathon in May and is hoping to raise money to purchase 26 goats as part of a livestock exchange program to aid the people in Haiti. What is incredible about this program is that not only do the animals provide immediate nourishment to those in need, the recipients pass on the goat’s offspring to others in the community, thereby supplying food and income far beyond the initial gift. You can read more about it here.

How about doing socially responsible gifting this year instead of just exchanging gift cards? How about making purchases that actually might make a difference in this world? And who doesn’t like gifts that keep on giving?

Please go to John’s fundraising page and consider buying a goat as a gift to help a fellow Pittsburgher do some good. Come on, undo that Pittsburgh Football Hate** you’ve been storing up inside you all these years. ;)

* Thanks to those that saw it before I deleted it and came to my defense or wrote me an email [hugs]. But in all honesty, I thought it was AWESOME. There should be some “badge” you can put in your sidebar after your first particularly vicious comment.

** I totally want credit for coining this phrase.

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