Up Next: Rock and Roll DC!

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to XYZ race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
As I’ve shared in my last few weekly recaps, I’m running the Rock and Roll DC half marathon in just a week and a half! This race has been on my wish list ever since I started running. I’m so excited that it’s finally happening for me! Lets look  at the 5 reasons why I’m excited for this race:
1. Washington, DC is one of my favorite places. There are simply so many beautiful places. I’m looking forward to that the course is vastly different than the Marine Corps Marathon, and I’ll get to explore new areas of the city.
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2. The expo! – It sounds silly, but I’m excited for the expo for a couple of reasons. I hope to meet up with some other Bib Rave Pro’s, but I also am excited to hit up the Hoka booth! They have two new shoes, the Arahi and the Graviota, that I’m dying to try on. As far as I know, local stores aren’t selling them yet. My first pair of Hokas now have over 300 miles on them (and the second pair has almost 150), so it’s time to start looking for a new pair 😉
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One of the first runs in my Hoka One One Clifton’s this summer – love at first run.
3. It’ll be my 13th half marathon – there’s just something that sticks out to be about the 13th 13.1. It also falls at a great time in my marathon training. I haven’t yet decided if I’ll run for time or use the race as a training run.
4. A short getaway – I’m taking a half (or maybe a whole day) to go to the expo on Friday, and I got a hotel near the metro. No, the race isn’t all that far from me. But a night away to relax is just what I’ve been needing. This race falls after a busy two weeks at work so it will be a nice reward.
5. A HUGE race – This is likely going to be the second biggest race I’ve run. I like the idea of running with a lot of people, as having someone to pass always pushes me a little harder. This is also putting me out of my comfort zone. The logistics of Rock and Roll races have scared me in the past, and I’m excited to finally tackle that fear. My friend, Ava, is running too and I hope to see her!
If you want to run with me – it’s not too late! Online registration is open through 3/4/17. Save $15 off the half or marathon distances with the code BIBRAVE15 (which is also good for any RNR race, half or full distance with the exception of Carlsbad, which is good for the two distances.)
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Have you run any Rock and Roll races? In 2017 I have this one and Philly on my list!

NJ Marathon Training: Week 9

Finally – a week that I’m (mostly) proud of! While this week wasn’t totally perfect and my quad still isn’t 100%, I feel like Week 9 of training was the best so far this cycle.

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Week 9 training: 

Monday: Rest day, obvs. I was feeling alright after Sundays 11 miles.

Tuesday: 4 miles. It was absolutely beautiful out, and a run definitely helped me unwind after work. Mondays and Tuesdays always seem to be rough, so I love my Tuesday runs.

Wednesday: 5 miles. 2.7 miles at November Project – It was PR day (the same workout the last Wednesday of each month). I PR’ed for the first time since July! Ran another 2.3 with Jake after work. He claims he slows down for me, but I run straight (no intervals) for him and he makes me walk 😛

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Thursday: Rest. This killed me. It was the nicest day of the year so far, but I had a 13 hour work day and worked 7a-8p. A run wasn’t happening.

Friday: Rest, I intended to do some strength, but I just did a whole lot of relaxing after work.

Saturday: 4.75 miles in Towson. I love running there – it brings back such happy memories of college and starting to run again. If I had realized I was going to be thisclose to 30 miles for the week, I would have run an extra quarter mile. Disclaimer: It was hot and humid, and my heart rate was sky-high for a pre-long run run.

Sunday: 16 miles. This run went surprisingly well. My legs felt great – it was almost a perfect progression with my last 7 miles under GMP. I did hate that on Saturday I ran in a skirt and a tank and Sunday required leggings and three top layers.

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Week 9 total: 29.8 miles. (GRRR. MATH)

Last week would have been the best week for 5 days of running. (sigh-work). The weather won’t be as nice this week, but I’m still looking forward to 4-5 days of running. It should be 30+ mile week leading up to RNR DC in just two weekends! Don’t forget to sign up, before it’s too late! Saturday, 3/4 is the last day to register online! (Code good for all open Rock and Roll races, 13.1 or 26.2 distance.

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Were you able to take advantage of last week’s spring-like weather?

Race Recap: Little Patuxtent River Run Half Marathon

Right after finishing the Race 13.1 Half Marathon, this race popped up on my Facebook feed. A half marathon for $35? Count me in! I was a little weary about the trails, but I’ve run on them before and I was ready for a challenge. The race was on Superbowl Sunday (2.5.17) and I was ready to earn my feast for that night.

Saturday: I headed to Columbia (about 25 minutes from my boyfriend’s place) around noon to pick up my packet. The store was packed with two packet pickups. I was in and out without a hitch. I don’t remember doing much during the day except having a pasta dinner and an epsom salt bath. After packing up for the next day and a couple of glasses of wine, i was off to bed.

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Hoka Challenger ATR 2’s, Mizuno Breath Thermal leggings, Balega blister resists, CEP sleeves, 3 layers (+ my MCM jacket), Nike gloves, UA Headband, (+ hydration pack).

Pre-race: The race was to start at 8, and I arrived just after 7 to assure decent parking. There was plenty of parking, so I just stayed warm in my car until around 7:40 because boy was it COLD! It was a 20 degree “real feel”, and would warm up to about 40 by the time we were to finish. There were about a half-dozen porta potties, but I didn’t have to wait long. I easily found Ava, who coached me for the Marine Corps Marathon, who I’d be running with for at least the first half of the race. I also found Beth. She is an ambassador for the race company and ran the 10K!

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I missed the black and pink memo.

Miles 1-6.3: The first lap was exciting because the trail race was such a refreshing feeling! Ava and I ran without intervals, but walked when needed and up big hills. The first 2 miles were groomed trails, before 2 miles of more technical terrain, then the 2 miles back to the start. The two miles of technical terrain was hard, with steep uphills and downhills. Our pace slowed significantly during these miles, which was okay. Worst part: the nozzle on my hydration pack broke within the first mile. WOMP. I was still able to drink, but it required more work. We finished the first lap in 1:14.

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Miles 6.3-12.7: Ava mentioned separating from me for the second lap, but I’m glad she stayed! After the 10K’ers were done the course was pretty lonely. The second lap definitely felt like it dragged on, but I also felt more comfortable on the trails. We walked more as my legs were getting tired and I kept tripping over my own feet. Around mile 9 my hamstring started to get really tight, and I started struggling hard and walking a lot around mile 10. I kept telling Ava to leave (I always do this when I run with people) but she is very sweet and never left me without coming back for me. The last two miles were rough as I definitely didn’t drink enough, but coming around to the finish I was still able to kick it in. The course was short which really irked me, but it wasn’t the end of the world.

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Finish line:  I was so thankful we were given a heat sheet at the end! It had warmed up and I was having trouble regulating my temperature. We got a pint glass as a finisher’s gift, which I’m a fan of. During the last few miles I was craving Fritos – and they had some at the end. CUE HAPPINESS. I didn’t stay for long, and by the time I got to Jake’s, I was very sore and stiff. We went to lunch, where I had a delicious meatball sub and then relaxed before getting ready for the Super Bowl! He had a little party where I successfully passed out in the second half of the game.

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Post-race thoughts: This race was a fun challenge and change of pace. It was just the right level of trail and challenge for someone who sticks to the road and rail trail. It was very well organized and CHEAP. I would do it again, but likely stay with the 10K. I was hurting for too long after this race, and normally after a half marathon I’m good the next day.

Verdict: This race had some flaws, but all in all, I really liked it and would be back again and recommend it to others! Check out my other review of the race on Bib Rave!

Have you run any trail races lately?

 

NJ Marathon Training: Week 8 + RNR Discount Code

Another week of training is complete! Schedule wise, it wasn’t the most beautiful, but I got my four days of running in. My right quad/hip was still feeling off, so I changed weeks up and used this week as a step-back week to lower the mileage a bit.

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Week 8 (February 13-19):

Monday: Rest – I was actually sore from my long run.

Tuesday: 1 mile on the treadmill. My hamstrings were weirdly tight, and I didn’t realize it until I started running. My form was suffering, so I came off and spent lots of time with my R8 Recovery and foam roller.

Wednesday: 3.5 miles before SkeeBall. My hamstrings felt better, but my hamstring/quad still felt off. Sacrificed an extra .5 mile to have extra time to stretch before hitting happy hour.

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Thursday: Rest day. I had planned to run 6, but between house work and trivia, I didn’t have the time.

Friday: 4 miles before work. It was the coldest morning of the year, but I made myself get up (after some bargaining). Hamstring/quad felt about 80% – didn’t hurt while running but was really tight after.

Saturday: 5 miles in 70 degree weather!! My body was not ready for the sudden heat shift, but I can’t complain. My HR was high for the day before a long run, but I felt great and my quad loosened up after about 2 miles.

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Sunday: 11 miles in BaltimoreI was torn on how much to run, but running out of water and needing a potty break told me that 11 was how far I was going! My leg felt about 90% after 4 miles, but is still pretty tight the next morning (I haven’t gotten to roll it out yet)

Week 8 total: 24.5. Not the best, but I’ll take it for a step-back week.

The next two weeks will have higher mileage (hoping I can break into the 30’s) that I’m hoping will bring some needed life back to my legs. Higher mileage felt so good on my legs during my last cycle, but I just can’t get there as of yet. After that I have a weekend of races – Rock and Roll DC Half Marathon and the Baltimore Shamrock 5K. I’ll likely run both for fun and not focus on any time, but we’ll see.

Have you wanted to run RNR DC but haven’t signed up yet? Sign up with the code BibRave15 and save $15 on the half or full! (This is good for ALL open Rock and Roll races!)

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Also don’t forget about my New Jersey Marathon code – it saves you $5 off the Full, Half, or Relay! (I’ve guilted Jake into doing the 5K, but alas – no discount).

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I’m linking upCourtney of Eat Pray Run DC for her Winter Training Recap linkup. Check out how other runners are training this winter!

Do you have any races coming up?

 

NJ Marathon Training: Weeks 6 + 7

Two more weeks of marathon training have passed, and unfortunately they weren’t the best. Especially this last week. I’ve been overrun with stress and anxiety to the point where I was shutting down in every other aspect of life. In terms of running, it’s left me un-motivated and frustrated. A low-key, relaxing weekend helped me snap out of it a bit, and I’m hoping to further come back with a good week for Week 8!

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Week 6 (January 30-February 5):

Tuesday: 4 miles on the treadmill. I set out for 5-6, but my right quad started feeling odd, and I stopped to have extra time to stretch and roll after.

Wednesday: Not enough time to run before SKEE BALLL. We went 2-0 for the night.

Thursday: 6 miles on the treadmill. I was “so stressed” that I didn’t go to trivia in order to do work. In all actuality, I didn’t do any work and should have just gone out with  my friends. Oh well. My leg was still feeling a bit weird.

Friday: Whatever exercise is involved in lifting beer(s) to my mouth, I did that.

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Saturday: 4 miles that should have been rough, but actually felt great.

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Nothing burns off a couple too many like a cold run.

Sunday: 12.76 miles on the trailsA trail half marathon (that was short). I’ll have a recap up within the next day or so, but it was quite the experience! (Followed by Super Bowl festivities, and sleeping through the second half)

Week 6 total: 26.76 (Sadly my highest so far this cycle)

Week 7 (January 30-February 5): 

(Sunday night and) Monday: Sore. So, so sore. Also came down with very odd shoulder pain.

Tuesday: 3.75 miles. Tuesday at work was pretty rough. Honestly, I can’t remember now what was so bad about it, but I was so anxious. I needed a run – so I went without any intervals or set heart rates. Honestly it wasn’t as freeing as I needed it to be, but it still felt good emotionally.

Wednesday: I didn’t go to November Project due to weird shoulder pain that developed Sunday night. My right quad was really starting to feel funny, so out of caution I took a total day off. #noregrets

Thursday: Had a “snow day” (SO NEEDED), and went to run before trivia….except the wind was blowing at 30 mph and I didn’t bring warm enough clothes with me. WOMP.

Saturday: 3.75 miles. It was supposed to be “super easy”, but on the hills around my house that is easier said than done. I felt very stiff and off, but it felt good to be out in a SKIRT!

Sunday: 15 miles. This run started out badly, and rightfully so. But around mile 8 things started to turn around, and by mile 10 I was in the zone. Long runs are hard in terms of time spent, but they are why I love marathon training.

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Week 7 total: 22 miles. OOPS. 

You won’t be surprised to hear me say I’m disappointed in where I am so far in this training cycle. While my long runs have gone well, I’m not hitting the mileage I hope to run. That’s probably why I was legitimately sore after my 15 miler.

Thankfully, I still have about half of my training to go, and it’s not too late to turn it around. I know I want to run 5 days a week, but with work, Jake, and friends, it’s just not happening! I’m going to try to focus on 4 days a week, with as high of mileage as is reasonably possible (I need to get up to 30 mi/week for my sanity), while truly getting in some strength work – whether it’s at November Project or glute exercises in my room.

#rantover. Ready to start anew this week!

What are your tricks for getting over a funk in training?

Don’t forget, you can run the New Jersey Marathon too!

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3 Years Running

This week marked three years since I started running again. I had just been broken up with, I was in a bad place with my body image and was super stressed about getting into grad school. My best friend had kept trying to get me to start running with again, and I finally gave in. I started with the Couch to 5K plan, running a few 5ks before graduating college and ran a half marathon 8 months later.

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Still sad we didn’t get to run this. WDW Marathon Weekend 2018 is happening.

3 years later, I couldn’t be more thankful that Beth started to get me running again. We were good friends before, and she would still be my best friend without running. But our love of running (and Tri’s for her, too) really strengthens our friendship and allows us to have some great times together. (If wine festivals, wedding dates, and double dates weren’t enough)

3 years and 2,000 miles later, I’ve..

…Run 10 half marathons, cutting 20 minutes off my PR…

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“First” (but really second) half – all by myself, all day. But I lived.

…Completed a life goal of running a marathon.

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…Recovered from my 7 year eating disorder & failed attempts at recovery. I didn’t think full recovery was a thing 3 years ago, but is if you believe it can be. Despite the occasional, fleeting thought that I’m “too big” or eating something that’s “unhealthy”, the biggest reminder is a pen I have from a speaker event I went to when I was truly starting to recover, in February 2014. (That pen is starting to die and I’m SO SAD because IT’S THE BEST). I’m still at a point where truly “dieting” brings out the risky thoughts, but I’m okay with leading a rather “balanced” life for now.

…Had/have amazing times with friends (and family) running for fun and in races.

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And now I’m “coaching” my roommate though this year’s B3 series.

..Developed much bigger legs that chafe if I wear shorts, but they’re much more powerful.

…Gone from running guns blazing every day and being injured to running modestly, but healthy.

…Stopped/started blogging a few times, but still enjoy writing.

…And oh yeah I ran/crawled 3 miles up that mountain after running (and coming in DFL) a 10K, while injured. That was a blast and I will happily never do it again.

…Always set bigger and better goals for myself.

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Hat Trick in October. 3.1 and 6.2 on Saturday, (HILLY) 13.1 on Sunday
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Goofy 2018 – I’m coming for ya!

If I didn’t start running 3 years ago, I probably would have gone freaking nuts in grad school, would have gained much more weight, and honestly would still be at war with myself in my body. I often think of how my relationship with running would be if I didn’t stop after my first half marathon, when I ran for the completely wrong reasons. But yet, I almost don’t want to know, because I love the relationship I have with the sport now.

 

NJ Marathon Training: Week 5

Just like that, the first month of training for my second marathon is complete. I can probably rank this as the top week, this far, running wise.

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Monday: Rest

Tuesday: 5 miles on the treadmill, and I didn’t hate it. Did a progressive workout, running faster throughout each 60:30 interval of a mile. Mile 1 started at 5.2 and ended at 5.8, mile 5 started at 5.9 and ended at 6.6. I was pretty dead after.

Wednesday: NP headed to M+T Bank stadium for the week! 1 mile beforehand + 40ish minutes of straight stairs (with some planks interspersed). It was so hard – I was good for the first half but really struggled the second half and started getting some knee pain.

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Thursday: 5.5 miles, easy. This run felt great, mentally, after a long few days at work. My knee hurt slightly from the day before, but not too badly. The run ended at trivia night with my friends, where we came in second!

Friday: Rest

Saturday: 4 miles super easy – easy with my roommate. My HR ran pretty high for the pace, not sure why. I finished feeling good, but slightly tired.

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Thanks for the picture, roomie!

Sunday: 9 miles – w/ 6 miles tempo. This was supposed to be 10, but I cut it short. I intended to run 6 miles at MGP, but they ended up being 1:00/mi FASTER than MGP. I can’t be mad at that, except for I know I can’t keep that pace for a marathon. I was completely wiped by mile 9 when I got back to my car, and bailed on the last mile.

Weekly total: 26.5 miles

Despite not finishing my long run, I was pretty happy with this week. I’m still feeling under the weather and was busy/stressed with work, and managed to get 5 pretty good runs in. This week will have 3 easier runs, before a trail half marathon on Sunday!

Don’t forget, you can join me in New Jersey and save $5 on your registration!

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