Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Race Schedule

So after all my updates yesterday, I thought I would add my race schedule up here for the summer/fall.

Here goes the craziness:
May 6: Providence UHC 1/2 Marathon
July 14: Jamestown UHC 1/2 Marathon
July 21: Chicago Muddy Buddy (more to come on this)
July 22: Rock n Roll Chicago 1/2 Marathon
August 12: Yankee Stadium 5k
August 19: Rock n Roll Providence 1/2 Marathon
September 16: Rock n Roll Philadelphia 1/2 Marathon
Oct 13: Rock n Roll 10k NY
Oct 14: Newport UHC 1/2 Marathon

It is going to be an eventful summer and fall for me! I have my training plan all set up for the first couple races and will post this weekend!

Happy Thursday Everyone!

Updates Galore

So I clearly needed to give you all a week to soak up my DC 1/2 marathon experience. All caught up on it now? Good, because I have oh so many updates for you.

For starters, my hair is blonde. Is this the most important update I have? Well since I just spent $195 and 3 hours getting it cut and turned back to blonde, yes I do in fact find this to be my most important update. Before and After Pictures to come.

Now on to the running updates. You all may or may not recall that I said after I did the DC half, I wanted to focus on shorter distances. I apparently lied to you all, as well as myself. On the way back to the hotel after the race, we ran into a guy who was part of the marathon maniacs. Paul talked to him for quite a while about how to qualify and etc. Of course Paul was interested, while I kind of tuned in and out with no hopes or interest in ever being a marathon maniac. The man noticed my half marathon medal and said "don't worry, they have something for you too". He then informed me all about the half fanatics. I was sold! I quickly did some research and found three half marathons I could do in three months. I selected Rock n Roll Chicago, Rock n Roll  Providence, and Rock n Roll Phili.

I had planned for a while to do Rock n Roll Chicago, so this was not a new addition for me. On Monday I finally was all registered and excited for it. I then received an email shortly after that made my race schedule just that much crazier. I had been selected to blog for the UHC Triple Crown. I am beyond excited to be doing these three races! Adding them to my race schedule however, now makes things crazy for me.  I will be running one of these 1/2 marathons the weekend before my Rock n Roll Chicago. I will qualify for half fanatics from doing just those two races alone! So all in all, at the end of the year I will more than likely have finished 7 1/2 marathons. I'm not sure how I went from possibly 2 1/2's to now 7, but I am extremely excited for every single one of them.

I have many more updates to come during the week, including my training plan! Training starts April 1!

Happy Wednesday Everyone!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

DC 1/2 Marathon Part 2

Saturday morning came so early. After a nice nights sleep I was up and getting ready to go. Paul and I walked down the street from the hotel and ran into many other runners waiting for the metro. Once we did finally get on, it was PACKED! I didn't really expect anything less though. Finally we got to the expo and I waited in the line for the bathroom that seemed to take an hour, in reality it did take at least 25 minutes. I walked with Paul to his group and said goodbye and good luck! Then I went toward the back and waited with my pace group. It seemed like I was waiting forever to start!

I finally got across the start line and was off. I got through mile one and felt amazing, and I mean AMAZING! I had never felt that good during a run, ever. I thought that I magically was going to be able to feel like this the whole race, biggest mistake ever! My plan to "run 10 minutes, walk 1 minute" went out the window quickly. I ran straight through mile 1 and 2 without stopping to walk at all. Mile 3 I started to slow down and realized I was not going to be able to run 10 min miles the entire race, I was correct. I walked for a minute and had a gu and some water around this time too. My 5k time I think was close to 35 minutes, which was what I was looking for. Unfortunately, I made my goal at 5k by not pacing myself at all. This would end up to be my biggest downfall in the entire race. 

After Mile 3 was done I tried to get myself back into the "run 10 mins walk 1 min" pattern. My legs were hurting from going out so quickly at the beginning though. Around mile 5 I hit a hill and it HURT! I was in pain from running too fast at the beginning and on top of it I had to run up a hill? I was not feeling fantastic. I was walking and running on and off from miles 5-7 because of hills. During mile 7 I ran into a dehydration issue. For who knows what reason I didn't bring extra water with me and I was getting nervous that I needed more soon. It was hotter out than anyone had thought and I was nervous another aid station wasn't coming for another couple miles. While I was contemplating how awkward it would be to harass a random runner for water, I saw people handing out bottles! I think I broke out into almost a sprint at that point. I cannot thank those people enough for handing out the bottles of water, you honestly saved me from having a serious issue. 

After I got more water in me I got myself back on track with the running. I wasn't going as fast as I wanted to, but I was running and not walking so I thought it was good. I got to mile 10 and tried to figure out just how costly my walking during the hills was going to be. I realized that based on my pace at the time, I was not going to finish with my goal of 2:45. The camera man chose to take pictures at this exact moment as well. Not cool camera man! I was starting to hurt and couldn't will myself to go faster. The only reason I was continuing to run was because anytime I stopped to walk my back would hurt. My legs hurt running, but my back hurt even more when walking, so running it was! At the start of mile 12 I hit 2 hours and 45 minutes and can honestly say that was the one moment I did not enjoy during the race.

I finished the whole thing in 2 hours and 56 mins. While I did hit my sub 3 hour goal (I know kind of sad that it was in fact a goal), I was a little disappointed that I did not hit my actual goal of 2:45. All of the above being said, this is the only race that I can say I really enjoyed. Running with a large group of people the entire time was amazing. The sites we got to see along the way were fantastic, and the groups of people lining the course along the way were appreciated by every runner. I would of obviously liked to have gone faster, paced myself better, and trained on hills, but it is what it is. 

After the race I waited for Paul to finish his first marathon! I can't even begin to describe how much emotion I felt watching all the people finishing the marathon. If you ever need inspiration to get up and do something with your life, go to the finish line of a marathon. 

Paul and I met up after he finished and got a couple of pictures of us with our medals!

Ignore the mans thumb in this. 

We got all our things together and managed to each buy a new shirt. It says rock n roll usa half marathon finisher on the front and finisher on the back. 

Love the shirt! 

We got on the metro and headed back to the hotel. We grabbed lunch at chipotle and then some ice for Paul for an ice bath. 

We relaxed around the hotel for most of the afternoon before going out and celebrating for dinner! We had dinner at the Cheesecake factory!! I hadn't had it in forever and it is absolutely my favorite restaurant!

We skipped the cheesecake after dinner and instead walked down the street to get cupcakes at CRUMBS! Love!

They were so delicious! 

We finished up the weekend at breakfast with Beckie and Parker before driving back to NY. The weekend was so much fun! I loved DC and as crazy as it is to say this, I had a blast running 13.1 miles!

Sorry for the length of this, I even left things out (crazy I know)! I'll have more plans for whats up next for me and running later this week!

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

DC 1/2 Marathon Part 1

I've decided the only way I will ever write a 100% accurate race report, is if I write it while I am running it. Even writing it later that day, never mind a couple days after, I have this glossed over idea of the race. Looking at all the pictures from the race site (no they will not be posted here) I realize that at times I clearly must of not enjoyed it. To save all of your sanity, I broke this post up into two parts.

Friday morning Paul and I left at 5 am...5 am people! It was so early and I was so tired! A medium iced coffee with skim milk later and I was ready to rock n roll...haha no pun intended on that one. The drive there seemed fast, but I was hungry most of the way. Finally we stopped in Maryland at IHOP! Let the carbo loading begin!

Chocolate chip for me!

We were back on the road after and drove straight to the Race Expo. I have to admit I really enjoy expos usually, but this one was even better! 

We got in easily and picked up our swag bags, shirts, timing chips, and race bibs. After we walked around and enjoyed the rest of the expo. After the expo we went to check into the hotel and unpack.

We clearly cleaned up at the expo!

We adventured around DC a little and saw a few things along the way!

After walking around for a little while and seeing the sites, we stopped to see one of my old roommates, Beckie! After that we headed back to the hotel to get ready for dinner. We drove around for what feels like hours trying to find a place for dinner. Paul and I both wanted penne a la vodka for dinner and finally found a restaurant with it. 

It was delicious, but also one of the spiciest things I've ever had. I stopped eating part of the way through because it hurt my mouth too much to continue. After dinner we stopped at CVS to get a couple bottles of water and then headed back to hotel to get a good nights sleep. 

6 am came around very soon and I had to get ready to Rock n Roll! 

Part 2 will be posted tomorrow! Happy Tuesday everyone!

Monday, March 19, 2012

I Finished!

My official race recap will be up tomorrow (busy day at work means no time to finish writing it up), but a quick update to show I survived!

I swear I enjoyed every minute of the race! The picture above depicts that, the picture below does not.  

Yes I do look incredibly lost and confused. If i remember correctly this was around mile 10, and I thought "This camera man better not be taking a picture of me".

All the details to come tomorrow!! Happy Monday everyone.

Friday, March 16, 2012

DC 1/2 Marathon Goal post!

It is finally the weekend for the Rock N' Roll USA 1/2 Marathon!

That is my holy crap face! 

After all the planning and preparing I can't believe the weekend is finally here. Paul and I are driving now down to DC for the weekend. We have packet pick up today as well as some exploring around the city. Race is tomorrow morning (St. Patrick's Day!) at 8 am! I have to switch my coral today as well (for a faster time!). So here go the goals for the day!

Goal A: Finish in 2 hours and 45 minutes. For many of you reading this you are going to go "OMG?! Goal A is 2:45? How is she that slow?" I'm aware for many my goal A would be their goal F. I have done two 1/2's before and finished the first one in 3:27 and the second in 3:05. 2:45 would be a HUGE improvement for me.

Goal B: Finish before 2 hours 45 minutes 40 seconds. I'm aware this seems silly, but there is a reason! Paul's 1/2 marathon PR currently is 2 hours, 45 minutes, and 41 seconds. Huge motivation to have the better 1/2 time of the two of us!

Goal C: Finish under 3 hours. Since both of my previous 1/2's were over 3 hours, I really am working hard to improve a great deal from them.

Goal D: Finish my 1/2 marathon before Paul finishes his marathon. 

So here goes nothing! I will keep you all updated to how it went!

Wish me luck :) 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Last long run!

This weekend was full of sunny skies, movies, dinner with friends, shopping, and of course my last long run! Friday night, after a delicious penne a la vodka dinner, I went to see The Lorax with Paul and friends! The food was delicious, as was the movie! Saturday morning included some laundry and my first attempt to dye my hair back to blonde (more on this later). Later I went to buy some delicious snacks for race day! I got lots of gel bites from PowerBar and also got some Chomps to try by GU. I of course grabbed some gels, because as much as they gross me out, I know they help. There was some ridiculous deal, if I bought 12 products I got a 20% discount. How could I resist?! So now I at least have a whole bunch of new things to try!  Saturday night was dinner and a movie (Tower Heist aka awesome movie), which also included attempt number 2 at dying my hair (again more on this later).

Sunday morning I was all sorts of confused. I woke up at 9:45 and couldn't understand how I possibly slept that late. Paul nicely reminded me about daylight savings and that my body only thought it was 8:45. After slowly getting up and ready, I finally went out for my last "long run" before the race. Since my real "last long run" was two weekends ago and was 10 miles, I had this run be 6 miles. I of course wanted to be at race pace. Mile 1 was good, after that it was rough and I kept thinking "what am I going to do for the race?". However I pushed through and managed to make it work. I was 3 minutes over my "goal" time for the 6 miles, but I was overall happy about it. Mile 6 hurt a lot, but I also know in all my other long runs, mile 6 hurt and after that I felt better. I have to keep this in mind during the race so I know not to panic during mile 6 if it isn't going well.

I can't believe the race is less than a week away! I am incredibly nervous, but excited all at the same time! The "hair dye" post is coming up as well as a final goals post before the race!! Happy Monday everyone!!!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Tri Nutrition Meeting

Hopefully by now you all have realized that when I say I will post something the next day, I really mean two days later! So last Thursday I went to a triathlon team meeting with Paul. I had gone before and really found it interesting, so I figured why not go to another one! They have them twice a month, and because Paul is on the team he goes to all of them...I only go to the one's that I think have interesting topics.

So all that being said, the meeting last Thursday was on proper nutrition during races. As you all found out in my 10 mile run post, I never do much nutrition during the race. I am good about eating a protein bar of some sort before, followed by nothing during the run, and eating my face off usually after the run. Not that this will shock any of you, it definitely didn't shock me, but apparently my nutrition plan is not the most effective plan for racing.

One of the guys talking was from the PowerBar company. While I wanted to hear more about general nutrition, I was interested in what he had to say about all the PowerBar products. He went through all the basics of what each product was as well as the best times to take them. Since I had never had any of these products before (mostly out of fear of how they will taste), this was all pretty new and interesting to me.

After that, one of Paul's team members talked about basic nutrition for the days leading up to race day. I clearly also do not have this down correctly, so I found it just as interesting. He gave some good tips on better nutrition, as well as how to keep your nutrition plan on track. Some of the things I have heard before (keep track of food, food log etc...), but sometimes when you hear it just enough it actually clicks in your head what you need to do. Starting Sunday, cause I want to start at the beginning of a week, I am going to keep an actual log for the whole week as to what I eat. As much as I convince myself that "I really do eat healthy most of the time" I know seeing it in writing will confirm that is not true. Once I can see what I am really eating on a daily basis, I hopefully will be able to make the right changes.

The best part of the meeting was clearly when we all got free samples! I found out just how much I like the gel chews and as much as I dislike the actual gels, I'm glad I got to try them out.

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Monday, March 5, 2012

10 Miles!!!

Just a warning, this post is long. Get some coffee, relax, enjoy!

Yesterday was my longest training run scheduled. 10 miles. This was the longest training run I was going to ever do. Yes I have done two half-marathons and never did a 10 mile training run. We can all guess why those races didn't go so well now can't we?

I had two good 5 mile runs during the week (the fact that I got them done was why they were both good).  Both were the exact same time, 64 minutes a piece. That just sounds slow, but other than that, they were slower than my goal pace for the race. I was worried going into the 10 mile run only because I didn't want my pace to be even slower. On top of this, the day before Paul and I moved furniture and etc to multiple different houses. As unhelpful as I actually was in carrying things, my arms were still sore when I got up to run. So yes, this all set the scene for a pretty rough 10 miles for me to run.

I tried to have this run be just like a test run for the race. I ran in the exact same outfit I plan to wear race day to make sure it was worries it was. I also decided it was time to add in some nutrition during my races. I know many (many) people that have gu's and etc during races and training runs. I have never had a gu before in my life. I typically will have a protein bar (Luna bars are amazing) about 20 minutes before I run, and just gatorade/water when I am running. I decided it was time to at least give the gu's a test run....I also had free samples from my tri meeting the other night (more info on that tomorrow). Paul helped me figure out what to have and when to have it etc during my run. I was very skeptical about gu's (as I clearly should have been), but knew this would help so I listened to the advice and brought them along.

On to the run! I had a key plan for this run. I was going to run 9 minutes and walk for 1. I heard about it a few times and believe it was started in Canada, I figured why not give it a shot. Once I started running however I got a little confused on my timing. I couldn't remember if I was supposed to be running 9 minutes at a time or 10. I also realized how short 1 minute actually was when you need time to recover. I very quickly decided I would do 10 minutes straight running and then 2 minutes of walking. I had planned to have a gu at 30-35 mins, 60-65 mins, and then some chewys at 90-95. By breaking my runs up by time, it was easier for me to get through the 10 miles, mostly because I wasn't focused on the mileage at all.

At 34 minutes I had my first gu. At 35 minutes I almost threw up from the gu. It was not for me....and that is an understatement. After some time though I noticed times that I usually would of been tired I was able to push on. At 61 minutes it was time for gu number two. While this flavor was better, some how I had to throw up more. I am unsure if my relationship with gu's will continue in the future, but I am glad I at least got them down for the run. At 95 mins, I had the most delicious snack in the world. The raspberry PowerBar chews I had were fantastic. I would sit down and eat these things just as a regular snack. I can already tell these chews will be my friend in the future.

Finally after 2 hours and 3 minutes, my 10 miles were done. This not only was better than I had expected, but put me on track for my race pace! I could not have been happier with my 10 mile run yesterday, and I'm pretty sure nobody expected to hear me say those words. If my race day goes as well as the training run I will be very happy.

Happy Monday everyone! I'll have my post about my nutrition tri meeting tomorrow!

Friday, March 2, 2012


Happy March everyone! As it is the beginning of a new month, I want to check in again with my New Years Resolutions to make sure I'm staying on track.

1. I was supossed to run a race for every holiday. Unfortunately in February (even though I wanted to) I did not run a race for Valentine's Day. My work schedule conflicted a little and then it was Paul's birthday, so there was no day I was available. The 1/2 marathon does fall on St. Patrick's Day so I know I am already set for the next holiday at least!

2. Run 2 or 3 half marathons. DC 1/2 marathon training is still going strong...sort of. I'm unsure if the Chicago half marathon will happen or not unfortunately. As much as I want to go back to Chicago and visit, there are a few issues with the trip in general. For one the amount of money it will cost is a problem for me because I should be saving every dime I have towards a new place to live. Also time wise, I'm not sure if I will be able to go for the amount of time I want to. I think it is a waste of money if I'm only flying out for 48 hours when I want to be there for much longer. Finally the last reason is because this half marathon training has shown me that maybe I'm not ready to sign up for the race yet. I need to have a good base before I start training and signing up for the races. If time wise and money work out, but I'm not feeling comfortable with my running then I shouldn't do it.

3. Stretch every morning. This has changed into stretching 3-4 days a week. I figure if I can do the weekends as well as 2 days during the week of stretching then I would call it a success.

4. Run at least 10 miles every week. Check! One of the resolutions I am completely sticking to!

5 & 6. Running 5k's and 10k's in a certain amount of time. I'm not going to work on these until after the D.C. half.

7. Take a pilates class. I'm still failing at this one. I have a 10 more months though!

I have more running updates, cupcake updates, and tri meeting updates coming in the next few days!!!

Happy March Everyone!