Tag Archives: Buffalo Stampede


Why, why did I sign up for this race?”

That was the thought going through my head as my alarm sounded at O’dark-thirty. I very rarely ever wake up thinking that as I am genuinely always excited to run whether it is on trails OR roads.

Suck it up sister. You can do this,” my brain said as I rolled out of bed and went about my pre-race morning routine.

The Buffalo Stampede 10 Miler is a race that is near and dear to my heart. I’ve been running this road race since I lived in the neighborhood through which the course passes.

Once we moved away, my family made it a point to continue being part of this race. Typically I would run the race, the kids would do the fun run and we’d go visit Grandma and Grandpa who lived near by.

This year, and possibly part of the reason for my hesitation, was that the family wouldn’t be joining me. Squeaker had a soccer game later that morning. So no one on course to cheer me on – just me, myself and a bunch of super fast runners. My goal was to run it as close to last year’s time and then hop in the car and race home to coach and ref my daughter’s soccer game.


The one thing I do LOVE about road races, is the minimal prep work it takes to prepare in the morning. No packs or gear. Just shoes, hat/visor and something to eat when I am done.

I arrived early and sat in my car listening to as much pump up music as I possibly could before having to get out of the car and stretch/warm up.


I gathered by the starting area and started talking to a nice girl who was in her late 20’s and had never done this race before. She asked me about the course as she said the online map was a tad confusing. I’ve never looked it up honestly because I just know my old hood so well. 🙂

Talking with her brought me out of my funk. I think deep down, I was scared to run because I really wanted to do better than last year and I know how much I had pushed myself last year, I just wasn’t sure I had it in me to go any faster.

I situated myself kind of near the front. This race attracts a lot of the fast roadies in the area. It is put on by the Buffalo Chips Running Club, to which I am actually a member of this year but sadly, haven’t run with since last December.

I stood there pondering how I felt and what I was shooting for race wise.

The next thing I knew, the gun went off … it took me a bit to find a spot that wasn’t over crowded. All I kept thinking as I was running, was that “Man! I feel SO slow … my legs just are not pumping. Oh well, it’s going to be that kind of day I guess.

Then this happened …

Mile 1 – 7:31/mi: UM, WHAT THE? You were told to start off between 8:02 and 8:07! This does NOT feel like a 7:30 pace!

Mile 2 – 7:40/mi: Okay, okay. This actually feels maintainable … but come on Pam, do you REALLY think you can maintain this for another 8 miles? You’ve NEVER run this fast for a long time before …

Mile 3 – 7:43/mi: Shut up self! Look at that! You’re sticking to this pace. You don’t feel tired or out of breath. Keep breathing. Just focus on your form.

Mile 4 – 7:44/mi: Water! Oh, I should probably have a little, whatever it takes to not.lose.this.pace! Slurp … no stopping. Got the running and drinking thing down!

Mile 5 – 7:43/mi: Oh, this is where the course is a little different. We’re going down where we used to come back … okay, this is kind of cool. Wait, does this count as a PR? 🙂 It’s the same course, just a reversed direction for this part … shut it dork, just run. Form. Feet. Form. Feet. Breathe.

Mile 6 – 7:36/mi: Oooh look at you, back near the 7:30s … still feeling good. This is not my favorite section but at least now I can see some of the other runners coming back … oh look! There is that girl I chatted with at the start! “You go girl!! You got this!!!” She gave me a thumbs up!

Mile 7 – 7:41/mi: Okay Pam, here’s the deal. I waited this long to make this decision final BUT … you have 3 miles left, I do NOT want to see ANY 8’s on your watch. None .. you can do this, 3 more miles and you have yourself a new PR … just keep it steady! Don’t blow up!

Mile 8 – 7:34/mi: Don’t push too hard, but good job passing that dude back there. You were getting sucked into his pace and gait, I could feel it. His breathing was labored, yours is okay. Oh and that sip of water felt amazing, you had terrible dry mouth. Feet. Form. Feet. Form. Breathe!

Mile 9 – 7:40/mi: One.more.mile!!!! Come on!!!! Okay, you’re going to pass this girl whose has been in front of you all day … “Come on! You’ve been strong all race, come on, follow me! You got this!” She grunted and I think tried to kick it into her next gear. Go Pam, just run! There’s the right turn, you’re on the home stretch! There’s George, he’s cheering for you .. uh oh .. he’s also cheering for the girl behind you! No sneak attacks, push it, sprint!

Mile 10: 7:17/mi: I see the clock!! Oh my gosh, you could have  a 5 minute PR … RUUUUUUNNNN PAM!!!!!!

Official Finish Time: 1:15:58 / 7:36 pace! 


Post Race: Oh my word .. don’t hurl, whatever you do don’t HURL! hahaha!

I was okay, just a little nauseated at first but that went away. I was beyond excited. I grabbed some water and talked with some Buffalo Chip members that I haven’t seen in YEARS. Man, I love this community. Such good people!

But,  I had to race back to the car. My cool down was jogging the few blocks it took to get to my car. I texted everyone who wanted to know the results while I tried to stretch as much as I could.


I am super excited by my race and my results. The mind is a funny thing and can really send you in one direction or another if you’re not careful.

I feel fortunate that I tend to have a positive mind that, for the most part, is always motivating me and if not me, allows me to motivate others who are running as well. I think that’s super important to having a good race. Happy that I shook off that morning cloud I woke up with.

The Stats

I ended up placing 4th in my age group! Third place came in 2 minutes faster … so not super close and I don’t think I really even had two faster minutes in me but dang, I am proud of that 4th place! This race is no joke!

Also, because I am apparently 40 now .. I was added to the MASTERS category of runners as well. 🙂 This took me by surprise, not gonna lie. However, I was 13th(!!) in the Masters category – the first 12 were insanely fast and well over the age of 40 … I am honored to be in that category. What a bunch of speedsters!

Happy Trails!



2016 Stampede Race Report

2015 Stampede Race Report

2011 Stampede Race Report (3 months after Squeaker’s birth!)

2010 Stampede Race Report (this one has adorable Peanut video!)

All years prior … I wasn’t blogging. 🙂

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Home from Plant-Stock and trying to get back into our routine and into the swing of things.

One of those “things” was running the annual Buffalo Chips sponsored Buffalo Stampede 10 Mile race. I have been doing this race since we lived right on the course many years ago.

It is a road race, not a trail race which meant I had to dust off my road shoes and hoped they still fit.

Last time I wore these was for CIM December 2015.
Last time I wore these was for CIM in December 2015.

The morning was a bit chaotic so I ended up leaving the house solo and letting Vans and the girls sleep in. The plan was for the Peanut and Squeaker to run the kid’s free half mile race when my race was over. There was no reason to wake them up at the crack of dawn to drive down and wait.

Having left the house much later than I wanted, I arrived at Rio Americano High School, parked the car, RAN to the race area, picked up my race bib and schwag bag and then ran BACK to the car to put that all away. I then pinned on my number and raced to the starting area with about six minutes to spare. Whew!

The race started and I just tried to find a groove. I had no expectations for this race. I haven’t been running regularly enough nor have I done any speed work. I just decided to let whatever happen, happen and hope I lived to blog about it.

Mile 1 (8:13 pace) : Okay, that’s probably about as fast as I will be able to manage today…that’s fine. Good pace.

Mile 2 (8:14 pace) : Yup. Hey look there is Allyson! She’s running strong.

Mile 3 (8:00 pace) : Okay. That’s okay. Still seems manageable. You tend to run faster when chatting with people.

Mile 4 (7:51 pace) : Hmm, that was quite a jump but it is because I am running past my old house and while I know Vans and the girls won’t be there, I always speed up here thinking I’ll see them. Settle down. 

Mile 5 (7:58 pace) : Yup, slowing back down. Uh oh! What’s that? A giant turkey?! Oh geez, not again!

Mile 6 (7:49 pace) : Your pace is faster only because of the turkey, I am blaming the turkey on this one. Where did he go?

Mile 7 (7:58 pace) : Is that them!? Is that my family?! No. Man, there are a lot of tall skinny guys who have cute blonde little girls out on this course. 

Mile 8 (7:47 pace) : Just hang with these two guys. You’ve been behind them all day and they are setting a nice pace. BEEP BEEP! Hey! Look! It’s Vans and the girls! They made it. Now just stay steady. Don’t go crazy. 

Mile 9 (7:52 pace) : What!? My pace guys are pulling away! They must not want to be “chicked” at the last minute haha. Come on, you can do it, pick up the pace. Move past this group but keep it steady, you still have a mile to go.

Mile 10 (7:49 pace) : There they are! I see my family! They made it! Woo hoo you did it! Now don’t hurl, whatever you do, don’t hurl! Your kids are watching!

The Peanut cheering me on at the finish.
The Peanut cheering me on at the finish.

While I hadn’t set out to race this by any means, I did end up with a 17 second PR! Whoo hoo. I ended the race 6th in my age group (out of 60) and a sub 8 pace (per my Garmin – official race results have  me at about 8 mins).

After my race was the kid’s 1/2 mile free fun run on the track. Both the Peanut and Squeaker showed up ready to run. Squeaker’s best friend from her old daycare also joined them and it is total cuteness from here on out!

Squeaker and her BFF about to run!
Squeaker and her BFF about to run!

Ready set go! They all took off!


Squeaker blew me away. She kept a great starting pace while all the other kiddos took off like a bat outta hell. Eventually, all the speedsters slowed down realizing that two laps, is kinda hard!

Even the Peanut was winded and tired but not Squeaker! That girl just kept going!

My little speed demon
My little speed demon

When they completed their two laps, Squeaker said, “Can we do it again!?” 🙂

And they did. She and her BFF walk/ran another two laps around the track bringing their distance to a full mile! She’s five! 🙂

Racing kids!
Racing kids!

It was so adorable to watch. I hope that we can get these three together again soon for another run.

The rest of Sunday was spent visiting with an old friend of Van’s and then home for a nice family afternoon.

I was pretty hungry after my  race and only had a few random things in the fridge.

Homemade Chipotle Bowl
Homemade Chipotle Bowl

I took some left over rice that we had in the fridge and I threw it in a pan with some lime juice and some veggie broth and cooked until warmed through. I added a bunch of cilantro and cooked it a little longer. I then layered the bowl. Steamed kale with vinegar on the bottom, my cilantro lime rice in the middle followed by some oil free roasted onions and zucchini. Some salsa to finish and voila, an easy homemade post race meal that really hit the spot.

I do say that was a perfect Sunday after a weekend of traveling.

Happy Trails!


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Sunday welcomed the first road race that I actually “raced” in quite a while.  I did not intend to race it per se, but well, things just happened along the way. 🙂

I am officially in CIM (California International Marathon) training. I have run CIM for a number of years, almost every year since I started doing marathons back in 2004. However, the last 3 or 4 CIMS have been ran for different reasons. Whether it was ankle surgery or running to keep a friend company, I just have not “trained” for a marathon in quite some time.

I know that sounds weird. Who goes out and just runs a marathon without training?! I do, that’s who but the end result is never one for time or PRs … I have done it this way for various reasons. Much the same way I am running a trail marathon in about 2 weeks with little to zero training under my belt for such a tough marathon. It is a bad bad habit of mine and I fully admit to it.

After my last marathon in Oregon last June, I just can’t escape the feeling that I am done with “half-assing” races like this. I want, more. That is not to say in two weeks I will kill this trail marathon, no. No, that will be a training run and pure JOY to experience trails once again amongst this road racing I have been doing. 🙂

But I have set my sights on the 2015 CIM as the year I would LIKE to get back to running with some heart and soul. So, in doing so, I have actually been, you know, training! What a concept!?

Sunday was the Buffalo Stampede 10 Mile race. I have been doing this race since I lived 4 miles from the start with Vans in our little condo after we were married. I wasn’t blogging then but I do have my race report from 2010 and 2011 if anyone cares to read. Actually, I encourage clicking above because the photos of the Peanut are just too precious. 🙂


Okay, on to the race report. The above drawing is the Peanut’s rendition of the Buffalo. 🙂 I kinda dig it and think it should be on the race shirts next year, just sayin. 🙂

The best part about road racing is that there is no excessive packing of a hydration packs or thinking about fuel. You just dress, eat and go. The worst part is that the WHOLE family has to wake up with you because generally, it doesn’t take as long to run a road race and therefore, they have to leave when you leave … which means waking up early.

Vans dropped me off with about 20 minutes to spare before the race started. I jumped in the porta potty line and saw LOTS of familiar faces including Dasie and June! Porta potties at road races seem to move faster too … it was pretty miraculous how fast that lined moved.

I wasn’t sure where to position myself at the starting line. I told Vans to expect a pace between 8:30 and 9 minute miles because honestly, that’s how I felt I have been running lately.

When they let us go at the start, I just ran. I tried not to think about pace too much. I figured I’d wait and see what my Garmin said.

Mile 1 –  8:01/mi : Mmm, really?! That’s what I am doing? Doesn’t feel that hard. Let’s stick with this and see what happens ….

Mile 2 –  8:01/mi : Ok, ok. Not too bad. This doesn’t feel that hard to me right now. Just going to go with it.

Mile 3 – 8:06/mi : Aaaah, okay, this must be where the slowing down happens. I did stop for water though, which I normally don’t do so early but it just seemed right and I was thirsty….let’s just keep running right between this group here.

Mile 4 – 7:58/mi : What!? I am speeding up because I know I am going to see my family in about 20 yards, that’s it. That’s why I am sub 8 right now.

Hi girls! Thanks for the high-five!
Hi girls! Thanks for the high-five!
Such a boost to see them!
Such a boost to see them!

Mile 5 – 7:59/mi : Okay, I stopped to high-five the girls and I am STILL under an 8 minute mile. What is going on here?! Oh no, wait! What is that!? Holy crap those are TURKEYS! BIG HUGE turkeys! Quick move to the other side of the road! Who cares about cars!

Oh crap, turkeys ahead.
Oh crap, turkeys ahead.

Mile 6 –  7:58/mi : Well crap, I have to keep this up now! I am over half-way … maybe the turkeys made me run faster?! I could have a sub 8 average if I can just keep going at this pace!

Mile 7 – 7:57/mi : Ugh, that turn around kinda sucks but now I can see people cheering for everyone. That’s kind of nice.

Mile 8 –  8:02/mi : Yup, through my old neighborhood where I would cool down after all my runs … that’s what is going on here. But it is mile 8, I can handle this for 2 more miles! Come on! Pick it up!

Mile 9 – 7:54/mi : Okay, 1 mile. You can do this. This is a super flat course, nothing in your way. Run to the 9.5 mile sign (yes there is a sign that says 9 1/2 that makes me laugh every time) and then sprint! Hold on and then go!

Mile 10 – 7:42/mi : go go go go! I passed this guy who cheered me on and told me ‘good job’ but then I could hear him really trying to turn it on himself. Never saw him again.

Go Mommy Go the girls yelled!
Go Mommy Go the girls yelled!

I saw the time on the clock and I knew that I was within seconds of my previous PR from 2010.

I just couldn't move my legs fast enough!
I just couldn’t move my legs fast enough!

I crossed the finish line just in time to hear them mutilate my last name! 🙂 I did it! I had a PR. It was within seconds (like 40) of my last race but definitely not a planned situation at all.

6I wanted to just run this race and see how I felt on a flat hard road … I had no intentions of racing let alone PR’ing for this race. I am not complaining, I am just in shock.

Just days ago I had begun thinking that CIM may not be what I want this year and that maybe I will have to settle for another marathon where I just run it to run it … but now, now I have hope. Big hope.

Final stats
Final stats

After my race was over, we waited around for the kids free half mile race to start.

My two runners
My two runners

Rio Americano High School is where Vans went to High School so he had a nice time sharing with the girls all the spots where he used to get into trouble or eat his lunch. 🙂


But the girls had a race to put on! I think the Rio Americano High School Cross Country Team was in charge of managing this race for the kids. It was cute. They had them do all sorts of drills to warm up.

All lined up ready to go!
All lined up ready to go!

Squeaker wanted me to run with her so I quickly got behind all the kids. Little did I know, that really she didn’t need me for support but instead, she wanted to race me!

Off they go!
Off they go!

They ALL took off like a rocket! The Peanut was up front for a  while and I feared that she’d had gone out too fast. Squeaker was just smiling ear to ear and looking behind her to see if I was there.


The Peanut however did not fare so well. She had a rough race. I think she went out way too fast but Squeaker! Man! That kid passed her sister and just kept going!

Medal winner!
Medal winner!

She wanted that medal, more than anything, she wanted it! 🙂


Don’t let this photo fool you, she wasn’t tired in the least! The Peanut did finish and then went around two more times with me make it a full mile. We talked a lot about breathing and pacing, both of which she will have to do during cross-country season.

After all the girls racing events, we went to visit Grandma and Pappa who live in the old condo complex that we used to live in. The kids got to play with their cousin and I got to just sit. 🙂

Overall, it was a great race and I am pleased with the results. It gives me the boost to continue with the way I have been training thus far and shows me that what I have been doing is working more or less.

My trail marathon in two weeks will be something fun, a mental break from the pavement on some incredible trails with a good friend. Trail running also makes for better blog posting sometimes. 🙂

Until then…

Happy Trails!



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