Caren Ware's Blog

September 28, 2011

Being bugged…

Filed under: Uncategorized — Caren Ware @ 2:49 pm

We have been making tracks.  Good tracks.  Fast tracks. Timing some creative and stunning events. PRIME TIME is definitely adrenalized and has front row glamor.  But all said, comes Monday morning and the real work of contracting, prepping, preparing, and living with oneself filters in.  And the mind meanders.  And it has to take accountability for the toll of and ouches in life.  I have a stack of those. Have to find the “TIME” to share with you someday.

So this morning, after a weary night of broken sleep as I toiled over the toll of things in life I can do nothing about, I blinked my way to my truck.  Here, on the driver’s side mirror was a green, effervescent, odd insect who was cocking his eyeball at me, all the while ,moving his hands in a prayerful fashion. “How did you get here?” He didn’t seem to know how he came to be on the mirror of a truck about to speed away.  Nor how to get off.  I gently offered my hand.  The gentle insect readily accepted the offer to be helped to a better location in life. He climbed on and took with ease of acceptance the branch I lead him to.  He crawled on his new location and sent that same eyeball back at me as to say ‘thanks’.  I stood there for a few moments watching this creature. And I stop to know that we sometimes just need this kind of lift in life.  We have no idea how we got in our current predicaments.  And we know we are in them only when someone ,or SOMETHING, gives us a hand out of it.  Sometimes, we are so far into a situation that it will take the helpful hand of something else. They say that God’s hand is out there in much the same way as HIS funky Praying Mantis had to accept mine.

September 27, 2011


Filed under: Uncategorized — Caren Ware @ 5:42 pm


There were high school kids everywhere. Over 3,500. Uniforms warmed up together. Striders. Bouncing. Bopping. Easy up canopies were pitched all along the dirt course. Everyone was itching to watch these kids run their hearts out. The 38th Annual Bellarmine/Loyola Cross Country Invitational was held Saturday, September 24. It has an infamous course of ups and downs, twists and turns. Lining across a huge grass valley, the infantry stormed as each starter pistol fired. Girls were sprinting to the finish line as boy heats were pouring out.  And the day went on and on, yet never to be tired by the boundless energy and spirit of the kids competing.  Bell-jeff invite is a day all about running.  It was a day that Saucony and A Runner’s Circle   were a very visible part of.  The huge meet is undertaken by the dedication of coach Jim Couch from Bellarmine High School,a school themed to be small, but boast BIG things. This was a BIG meet.

I found a soft note on the Highschool website from this soft spoken coach who proved to us at PRIME TIME that he does well organized events.  “Thanks so much for everyone’s help, YOU made the 38th Bellarmine Invitational a huge success, the school and coaching staff truly appreciate the long hours and commitment to the team and school.  I have received many emails thanking us for such a great job and such wonderful volunteers.  We hope you were able to recover from the long day. “ Coach Jim Couch

A thank you back to you, Jim, your team, and your family for making an event that energized so many young legs.  PRIME TIME timing crew.

Bell-Jeff Invite

Filed under: Uncategorized — Caren Ware @ 5:21 pm

September 26, 2011

Moments on Maui

Filed under: Uncategorized — Caren Ware @ 12:26 pm

And I mean MOMENTS.  Most our MOMENTS on Maui were occupied by timing events. So we could only take ‘snatches’ of the island.  But even snatches of Maui are amazing. On Maui, the sport is paddling.  And there are clubs and seasons, and types of boats, and types of paddles, and all types of distances and paddle positions.  I was lucky to get an offer to paddle with a crew down the coastline.  Experienced paddlers patiently let me take the seat in front of the steerer (not sure what his oars man name really is, but that guy in the back that makes the 600 pound canoe turn in the desired direction). With stroke instructions and timing, pretty soon I was haw/ heeing along switching the paddle from side to side about every fifteen strokes.  I could keep up…in perfect time.  We slid across the swells and could look down and  ‘find Nemo’ in the 30 foot depth of visibility. No need for mask and snorkel.  The water was so clear gazing over the sides of the canoe. We had to stop and dive in.  It was not the easiest of maneuvers to get a crew with novices back into a canoe without tipping it over!  The coast was amazing, but so was the camaraderie with the paddlers.  Mahalo. Mahalo for a true island experience. 

We poked around on beaches, made a dedicated effort to watch every sunset, and explored the west end by bluffing it and snorkeling its bays. We came to love a little coffee shop called Java Jazz in a shopping center just above Kaanapali. The owner is a gifted jazz guitarist and offers live music.  Java Jazz is shared with a great , quaint restaurant called the Soup Nutz.  This is quietly away from the tourist hub bub in Lahina. And we enjoyed it as much as the solitude on the bluffs.

Trying to savor every moment on the island made us try for one last fast cup of coffee and a  drive along the coast in the opposite direction of the airport. We then scurried back to FED Ex and paid high digits to ship all our timing gear home…and came within MOMENTS of missing our flight.  Guess we didn’t really want to leave the island!


September 23, 2011


So I look up feeling like I have asked the enduring and impossible of any crew…to do all these hours  and days in the sweltering tropic sun with little sleep.  No problem for them. They always find their own fun.  They cheered in their escape of racing down the road in the ‘borrowed’ Westin luggage cart as we lingered for the last finishers. Salt stained their sweat wet shirts, but they still were handsome.  And as they glided by, sun tanned and alive, they announced, “ meet BOYS A LA CART!”

PRIME TIME has a great cart full. A big thanks to my son, John, for staying so focused on the computers, and Ben for being at the back of the chutes, and Steve, Nick, and Garret for tending to this crowd start to finish.  And a big thanks for  Cris , Ray, Kevin, and Mitch for manning the mainland races so we could Maui it.  Mahalo.  Mahalo.  Mahalo.  I only hope we get to experience the islands someday like everyone else…on a vacation. 

















THE WORKs. 2011 Maui Marathon/Half Marathon/Maui Taco 5k/Run Forest Run1 Mile Heats.

Nick nicking times

This marine carried his pack 26.2 tropical miles

I think these ladies shared a beer every mile!

5:30am StartsThe Finish 8 1/2 hours later.


The Maui Marathon wasn’t just a one day marathon.  It was a weekend sports festival well themed in island style.  It boasted a pasta party at the Hardrock  Café in Laihina and a Hawaiian Luau at the Westin in Kaanapali. The Maui Tacos 5k kicked  off on Saturday morning, followed by  an afternoon of one mile heats in front of Bubba Gumps. Front Street in Laihina was jammed pack with a crowd who roared as much enthusiasm for the youngest groups as for the elite milers. To attest to the miler caliber worth yahooing for, the top three fastest male milers,  David Torrance (3:56.72), Jon Rankin (3:59.14), and Garret Heath (3:59.89), went sub four minute with Brandon Bethke (4:04.92).  And the girls produced blazing times of 4:38.87 by Heather Kempf, 4:39.69 by Angela Bizzari, and 4:42.90 by Lea Wallace.

The cheering never stopped.  It filled the half and full marathon finish line the next day. An island cheer leading squad stayed to the very last participants.  There was a man who did the entire 26.2 miles of stilts. And a lady the fact that this cheering squad stayed brought tears to her eyes and she called for a group hug right under the finish banner. 

With vision and investment, Rudy Huber, the event director labored to make this a destination race worth experiencing.  A personal trainer, coach, and track athlete, Rudy has made Maui his home.  He said his biggest desire for the Maui Marathon/Half Marathon, Maui Tacos 5k, and Bubba Gump’s Run Forest Run Mile was to let runners come and have a very Hawaiian running experience. The island did not disappoint.

And if running a full marathon was not enough, the event offered a WARRIOR CHALLENGE…see if you could run a 5k, 1 mile, and longer distance all in one weekend.  Do all three!

The PRIME TIME staff did a ‘take a bow’ job on your Maui race weekend.  I am proud of my behind the scenes, unsung timing heroes.  They never let up for five straight days. They got their own form of the ‘WARRIOR CHALLENGE’ timing all four events! If you got up at 4:00am to be at your 5:30am Maui Marathon start line, we got up at 2:00am. That’s only after we packed, shipped, and flew timing mats, heavy reader boxes, computers, printers…you name it… to the event.  And only after days of sorting, assembling, and handing out bibs and chips.  The event builds finish line chutes and timing tents.  And we wire reader boxes and routers to mats and cables.  And we test it all to ensure everything is fully charged and fully functioning.  Just so your chip on your shoe goes beep, beep.  Believe me.  It is demanding, 15 hour days done, pre-dawn ,to baking mid-day heat.  Not to mention printing finisher certificates all afternoon and an award presentation evening.  We were up for the Warrior Challenge…and so were a lot of you.

Race Director Rudy Huber on far right deserves to smile. GREAT JOB!


Impressive sub four minute milers.Race Director Rudy Huber, far right, deserves to smile. Great job!

behind the scenes matching chips to bibs.

John producing certificates

September 20, 2011

The setting sun…

Filed under: A Runner's Story,fitness,Marathon Running,Women Running — Caren Ware @ 1:39 am

The sun setting on me has been a ” being chased by life, thrown into nightness” theme these past years.  In Maui, you can only dance and capture the sun…and its setting.  Every evening around 6pm people would begin to stroll, grow internal as they had to admit eternal.  In Maui, you can not miss the setting sun.  It is a daily ritual.  Lounge chairs come out and people souly find spots to bid that big red, orange, yellow glow good night.  And as it pops below the horizon, only after it throws an array that is ever so individual per day as is our finger prints, everyone on shore claps in admiration and says very quietly good-bye for today.  God’s finger print?  I venture to vote so. The setting sun thereby takes on a nicer place in my life if I watch it through these thoughtful glasses.

All that it is CRACKED up to be.

Filed under: A Runner's Story,fitness,Marathon Running,Women Running — Caren Ware @ 1:22 am

I am on my way to time the MAUI MARATHON.  I was determined to get an EPIC run in before
all our time on the island was dictated by the needs for timing . Here’s a RAVE run beyond rave.  Park a car at 8,000 feet on the road to the Haleakala Volcano on Maui, Hawaii.  Get dropped off at 10,000 feet on the moon scape crest of the eroding crater where the most powerful telescope in the
world is perched.  It is a grand perch. The wind whips, the clouds whirl, and an ocean air seeps into every cell.

Thankfully, the clouds were high for the moment and we were gazing at the entire island of Maui. In the clouds was a horizontal line of…?  Not LA Smog, but Hawaiian ‘Vog’.  Volcanic haze.   So out of the usual for anyone from the mainland.

Thank you, Cindy from EPX for being just as enthused to RUN the crater.  She has lived on the island and owns property here.  She flew in to vend at the Maui Marathon.  We flew in to time.  I begged to steal this one day of adventure on the island; adventure not involving timing or selling! She told me  it would be fantastically f-ing worth it.  She was so right.

I was instructed to hunker into a sandy running shuffle,slide down the side of the volcano.  Then we  would be crossing across surreal geology. That the flora would consist of only one plant that can grow in ashen elements, the silver sword.  That a cabin was built deep in the crater valley that you could get a key to and could experience an evening in a crater.  That would be cool.  But we didn’t have that kind of  time.  We had time to RUN the 12 miles crest to crest.  One side is a sandy slope down; the other is a craggy, cliff hanging climb out of what they rightfully call the ‘switchbacks’. Switchbacks so surreal I felt I was back in Peru approaching Machu Picchu.  I was awed by the originality of scape at every turn.  And how silent it was down in the crater pan.  Fauna was staying clear of inhospitable here.

We only encountered two parties of people on the entire moon walk of a run.  A couple that had the KEY
to the cabin for the night. They winked.  And three world traveling foreigners who hooked up to explore Hawaii.  They smiled in their varying accents that they were from New Zealand, Australia, and Germany.  They thought we were cracked to be RUNNING down and then  Up the volcano.  Hiking it was whipping enough.

Whether runner or hiker, we were unified that this was an epic place we were experiencing.   Haleakala Volcano.  It was a run to rave about and a reason to appreciate being in good health enough to explore at a clip.  It was all that it was cracked up to be.

September 14, 2011


To capture the mind, muscle, focus, and finesse of a Hepthlete,  the photographer, David Palmer, set up a shoot that would depict a ‘warrior’  women mood. David is a talented ‘mood’ shot photographer that captures motion and movement in a snap.  Not an easy thing to do. The “Warrior women” theme sent jokes floating through the PRIME  TIME office.  But it is actually harder to enact than you think.

We permissioned to use the track at Glendale City College in  the glowing time of the day.  At 4pm we arrived and camera equipment umbrellaed out. Slight problem.  We didn’t know  college was already in session so we had the football team on the infield, the girls’ basketball team running laps, and straggler cross country students in the stands.  We took close to forty takes out of the blocks and equal, as many, takes over the hurdles…and just as many javelin and shot put throws.  The coaches commented that even the fit of their team would be hammered by that kind of endurance, burst of speed workout.  So SHHHHHhhh.  I am trying so hard the day after to not walk as sore as I really am.  But not bad for a 48 year old lady.

There are so many quiet heroes in the sport of running. I meet one on the sidelines that day of the shoot. Karen S. Rosas is a current athlete at Glendale City College. She runs Cross Country and Track. I could tell by how she carried herself that she was fit.  I could sense she had drive.  And witnessing the hovering guidance of the coach, I knew he knew too.  This was a winner.   Coach Eddie Lopez has guided a lot of winners.  I can attest as he took a few of ‘my boys’ and ran them into ‘most valuables’ and ‘ athlete of the
year’.  He knows he is a stepping stop and catapults those that dare to new adventures they never thought imaginable until they took up running.

Karen shared with me.” I really have to tell you this has been the best experience in my life so far. Running for this team has made me a lot more disciplined and determined
in ALL aspects of my life.  For this reason I cherish and enjoy to the fullest this sport.  I started running my sophomore year in High School in the fall of 2006. I had never done a sport before so I really didn’t know what I was getting into. Fortunately, for me, the High school experience turned out to be good. I qualified to compete at the State level. I was just starting to discover I really did have a talent for the sport. “

“I was very lucky to end up at Glendale”.  Karen shared she was the first in her family to ever go to college. “It was here where I really did learn to be a competitor.  I am now planning to transfer to Adams State College in Colorado and can’t wait to compete at that higher level.  Also, I am very thankful with God for giving me the gift of being a good runner because through this, now I can finish my education since I will be receiving a full athletic scholarship.”  Karen excels in the 5000m and 10,000m.

September 10, 2011

Laces in life

Filed under: Uncategorized — Caren Ware @ 12:23 am

As I fought the Friday traffic home my mind wandered. St John Vicinity’s did they say? I grew up in Hacienda Heights with that church filling the entire block directly across from the football stadium of our High School.  The church didn’t complain of the huge High School audience.  Instead they helped us.  They threw great dances that we could count on wouldn’t end up with drunkenness and drugs.  And their priests attended all our stadium functions and walked our High school halls. They were just a part of my growing up.

I wasn’t your typical thrilled to go dancing teen.  I was the quiet gal with long legs that liked to run.  But I did give dancing a try at St. John’s.  It was a disaster.  I can recall finally getting the guts up to ask this other equally shy, but gorgeously handsome football player to dance. We spent the entire time looking at our toes.  To my horror my shoe was untied. I didn’t know what to do? How embarrassing.  Here was my chance to DANCE with a guy it took me months to even have the nerve to walk up to and my shoe was untied. I shuffled and tried to hide the flapping strings.  But my awkward attention to it made my awkward dancing even more awkward and he awkwardly said, with his forever eyes glued to the ground,” Your shoe is untied.”  And I said.”Oh.”  Oh? That was all I could come up with. Yes.  And they called those the good ole days.

Now, let’s take a stock of how many shoe laces I have had to tie since….especially as a runner.  They come untied…a lot.  And I think nothing of it. I do try and double knot them before a race. But in all the ‘unties’  I cannot recall why a lace out of place would have to be carried in my ‘embarrassing moments’ historical archive. It’s such a natural act to reach down and lace it back up.  It is if you are over sixteen.

I can recall one shoe I should have thought before retying.  I was in the first half of the Paris Marathon.  I was in my thirties by now and no longer lingering on that shoes coming untied were embarrassing. The narrow, cobbled streets of Paris, France were forcing the 30,000 of us to run in mass.  Our elbows were bumping.  It was hard to see the sights save thousands of bobbing heads prancing down the roadway. We would bottleneck and have to run in place at the turn abouts and city fountains.  But it was Paris.  And it was a marathon.  And I was so into the moment of it that I never THOUGHT what the repercussions were going to be when I leaned down, put my knee of the ground and started to tie that dang dangling shoe lace. BOOM. I was knocked down. And feet started slamming into me.  I heard. “Oh, Sorry.” “Hey, what’s that I stepped on”, and “ahhh. What are you doing down there?”. I was literally being trampled.  Every time I tried to stand up, I got knocked down by someone that did not expect a body to be in the next
step of their marathon stride.  I had to crawl in a savior type of way to the curb before I could erect and jump back into the prancing pack as a regular prancer.  Did that really just happen?  I ran on shaking my head and wondering why I seemed like the only one that ever had my shoes untie.

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