Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Run Survey

I Saw this on another blog and thought it was great idea!

Best Race Experience
I would have to say my best race experience of 2012 was the Rock-n-Roll Chicago 1/2 marathon or the Wineglass 1/2 marathon.  The RnR Chicago was my second slowest 1/2 marathon, 2:02:02 (out of 14) but it was my first "race" back after dealing with plantar fasciitis. It was my longest run since my time off.  It was such a fun experience! I loved every step of that run.  I guess when you are injured and you can run again you appreciate ate it that much more!  Plus, I loved running Chicago! What an amazing city! 
mom and I after 2012 RnR Chicago
Wineglass 1/2 Marathon was a comeback run of sorts.  The two previous 1/2 marathons I didn't break 2 hours.  I went out as an easy training run but felt so great at the miles went by so fast!  It was one of those great races and I finished with a 1:47:02.  I love the Wineglass course and since it is a local race I will definitely be hitting it up in 2013!
Finish of 2012 Wineglass 1/2

I also loved running a 5k with my daughter!  She is 5 and loved that she wanted to run!  We had a lot of fun.  I also ran a mile race with her earlier in the fall and she ran a sub 10!

Best Run
This would have to be a day that I ran while my daughter was at dance.  All my easy runs were hovering around 9:00-9:10 pace and they felt like a struggle.  I had been on the comeback from injury and my body was just not wanting to get with it.  I had been on the comeback for two months and my runs weren't "clicking".  Well, this particular day, I headed out for 7 miles.  I felt awesome!  Miles just started flying by.  I ended with 7 miles at 8:24 pace and felt like I could of run forever.  My easy pace seem to dramatically drop.  Muscle memory?

Best New Piece of Gear
This would have to be Hoka One One running sneakers!  These sneakers have saved my running!  After dealing with Plantar Fasciitis for 1 1/2 years in and out of the boot and trying many different sneakers.  I have been running pain free since I made the switch!  I truly love these sneakers! 
They may look like moon shoes but they are heaven on my feet!

I also have fallen in love with Oiselle Running Clothes.  The Lesley tights are an instant favorite as are the Stripey shirt, Runfinity scarf, t-shirts, Distance Shorts and the Trials Hoodie! Can't wait to add more to my collection in 2013!

Best Piece of Running Advice Received
Enjoy the run!  My mom told me if it I am not having fun and enjoying than I shouldn't be doing it.  I know that some runs are going to be harder than others.  But I run because I love it and have put that back into my daily training!

Most Inspirational Runners
First, I would I have to say my mom.  She may not be the fastest one out there but she gets out there and gives it her all.  This year my mom committed to run for Team Livestrong and raise money for cancer research in memory of a high school friend of mine, Dana Carr.  Dana was an amazing person with an amazing attitude about life.  Dana was dealt some tough cards.  He was hit by a motorcycle while training on his bike and left paralyzed.  Dana was later diagnosed with cancer for a second time.  As hard as Dana fought he passed in December 2009.  My mom was running NYC in his memory.  Unfortunately she didn't get the chance but she will in 2013.

Second, would be my friend "sole sister", Kelli.  Kelli has become such a fast runner through so much hard work and dedication.  Kelli always has an encouraging word for me when I am feeling down about my running.  I am truly lucky to have her as a friend!
Grill pic after a day of shopping in Ithaca instead NYC marathon

How was your 2012?  Did you achieve your goals?  Best of Luck and Happy 2013!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Holly Jolly 5k RR

Holiday Attire
We headed up to Orchard Park Saturday morning. It was a noon start for the 5k and we got to the packet pick-up at Runner's Roost at 10:20. My mom and I picked up our numbers and looked around a little bit. We had some time before we had to be at the starting line, so we headed to Marshall's. I found a pair of orange (Texas Longhorn orange) Nike Tempo shorts for $12.00. My son also picked out a pair of socks for me to run in. I had red and white striped ones with me (as did everyone else) and he liked the black with presents and red faux fur. Yes, new socks and a cotton shirt for a race.....

mom and me
My husband dropped my mom and I off at the start and I did a mile warm- up ~8:45/mi. I headed in to a construction zone to use the port-o-potty because there was no other bathrooms. Lined up at 11:50 and then gun went off at 12:00. I am not really in 5k shape and wasn't sure how this race would go. I sure did positive split the heck out of this race though!!!!

Mile 1 6:46 Started with an uphill and then down and flat and little up. It was definitely a rolling course! At the end of this mile my left hip flexor/Quad/above inner knee decided to quit working. I am not sure what the heck was going on. I have had problems with the hip flexor but this covered more area of my left leg. I felt like I couldn't lift the left leg.
Mile 2 7:43 By time I hit 1.5 was hoping to hold sub 8 pace because my leg was not cooperating. It was so weird! about 1.6 miles you turn so you can see the people behind you. I also could count the girls ahead of me and I was 5th female. I just wanted to hold on. I felt great except the darn leg! I kept trying to go faster and it was like I couldn't no matter how hard I wanted to because of the leg.
Mile 3 8:12- At this point, I just wanted to finish. We came out of development and headed up. The last 600m were uphill. I got through it! It wasn't pretty but I was pleased with the overall considering how much trouble my hip/leg gave me
.12 :55 (7:33 pace)- As I was finishing uphill the announcer announced that I had the best skirt, socks, and shirt and then best costume (made me show everyone in the awards ceremony)

23:37 I was 2nd in my age group and 7th female.

having to show everyone my "costume"

Medal and Number
from result board

It was a great race with Awards in The Well (bar)! They were quick with the results too!

Today, my hip is still tight and my lower quad/upper calf are sore. But was able to do an easy RUNch.

Have you or are you doing any holiday runs?
Do you like dressing up for races?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Happy 7th Birthday to My Son



       Seven years ago, I became a mommy for the first time It has been a great seven years and boy have they flown by!  My son, Garrison, made a dramatic entrance into the world on 11/28/05.  I was induced at 8am and at 5pm I started pushing.  He did not want to enter the world easily.  7pm my midwife had to call in a Dr.   The doctor did not want to do a c-section.  9pm, my husband jokingly said "hurry up so we don't miss the kick-off!"  Patriots and Colts were playing.  Then things went bad.  My son, stopped breathing, they pulled him out at 9:07 pm.  It was quiet.  I was so scared. I looked over at my husband and he was crying.  I looked to where Garrison was and I could see blue feet.  It was the longest 2:20 seconds of my life.  The wonderful staff at the hospital got him breathing again and then they whisked him away to the NICU.  I was able to see him 2 hours later but he had to spend the night in the NICU.  He had to stay there until they knew if any brain damage had been done because of lack of oxygen.  The following morning, I was allowed to see and hold him for the first time.  I knew looking at him that he was okay.  He wasn't a pretty sight because of such a traumatic birth but I knew he was healthy.  The neurologist came in and told us that he was healthy and no brain damage had been done.  We were so happy and so lucky!  Seven years later and we count our lucky stars daily.  He is a smart, loving, caring, and energetic child.   I am so lucky to call him mine!  I never knew how much love there was in my heart until I held Garrison in my arms.
Missing 2 front teeth
Mommy and Garrison in Hurricane Machine

My Football Player

Mets Fan!

Running related news.....I have run once in the last few days because I have been down with the stomach bug. So, not anything exciting to report there!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Pie and Glove Recap and Other Thoughts.

Thanksgiving morning was the 19th annual Pie and Glove 5k.  I ran the very first Pie and Glove and have only missed it 3 times.  This year was different for me.  My 5 year old daughter decided that she wanted to run it.  I decided I wasn't going to race it and I was going to run with her.  It was a great decision for me!  I had so much fun sharing what I love with her.  She completed it in 41:04. There was so many people there this year and I loved how the course was set-up.  I was able to cheer for all the runners as we were headed out! 

Family Fun

Me, Michele, and My Mom

Daddy made her a sign!

    We headed to my mom and dad's house for Thanksgiving.  My sister and her family were in town so it was a blast!  I ended up having a sleep over at my parents house so I could hang out more.

Happy Thanksgiving

    Friday, we went to a local parade.  I also won a contest on Oiselle and won a shirt!  I can't wait as I am so in love with their clothing!

Parade Viewing

     Saturday was my son's 7th birthday party.  We headed to the arcade at the mall!  I think a good time was had by hall.  I can't believe he will be 7 on Wednesday!  He's growing up way too fast!

Lego Cake
          Sunday we put the Christmas tree up.  The kids really enjoyed it this year! I think it is going to be a great Christmas this year.
My Peanuts!

My Youngest
      Training plan is ready to go! Just need to register for the Rite-Aid Cleveland Marathon.  25 weeks to go first run is today :)

Are you running a spring marathon???  Which one???
How long are your marathon training plans?  Usually 18

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

New Goodies and A Speed Workout!


In My New Oiselle Trials Hoodie and Thanksgiving Bic Band
              I have been eyeing the Oiselle Trials Hoodie.....Perfect reward for completing a marathon???  I thinks so!  I ordered the hoodie on Thursday and received it in the mail yesterday!  I wore it to work today....not normal teacher clothes but oh so comfy!  I am in love with this sweatshirt already and will probably wear it all of the time!  I also ordered a pair of the Lesley tights and tried those out on my morning track workout!  They are great and I will definitely be ordering a pair of the Lesley knickers!

Great Coming Home to This on My Porch!
Goodies Inside!
               I also entered the lottery for the Nike Women's 1/2 Marathon in Washington D.C.  I entered under group with my mom!  Have my fingers crossed that we get in!

      This morning, I headed to the track for a workout.  It has been awhile since I have been to the track so I wasn't sure what to expect. I am only 9 days out from the marathon so I wasn't sure how my legs would feel. I am 26 weeks out from the Cleveland Marathon. Not definite that it will be my spring marathon but it's heading more and more that way! I have decided to focus on some speed work until 18 weeks out.  I ran 1.1 mile warm-up to the track, 8x400m, and 1.1 mile cool down.  Would of liked to run a little more so may head out for a double. 

              I had hoped that I could hit around 1:40 for each 400m

1. 1:39
2. 1:41
3. 1:40
4. 1:40
5. 1:42
6. 1:40
7. 1:42
   8. 1:38   
Overall, it was a good first speed work out back.  I definitely still have some lingering aches from the marathon!   On Thursday, I am running the Pie and Glove 5k!  I ran the inaugural race of this and pretty much every year since, except for a couple pregnancies.  This year it is at a new location because it has grown so much over the years! I am so excited to see so many runners from my past!
Are you running a Turkey Trot?  Which one?  How far?
How long before you start training hard again after a marathon?

Friday, November 16, 2012

My Love for BIC Bands

running with my BIC Band
My collection of Bic Bands

I am in love with BIC Bands!  I found out about them through SkinnyRunner's Blog. about a year and 1/2 ago. I was looking for something to keep my hair out of my face and I had tried a few different head bands and they didn't work for me...they would slip, I would get a head ache ect... Well, once I found BIC Bands I was hooked!  They come in so many designs and styles and they work! Finally a headband that keeps my hair back and stays in place! I am obsessed with them.  My husband gave me a gift for my birthday about all the reasons he loves me and one was my obsession with the headbands that I always wear.  One of my favorite things is that money from each order is donated to a charity that is chosen each month..

new bands that I just received (SkinnyRunner Special) I love the denim one!!!

From the BIC Bands website

These amazing headbands started all as a fundraiser for my run with Team In Training. I was looking for a way to raise the necessary funds to run my first half marathon. I had started to make some handy dandy headband that didn't slip because I was cheap and crafty~ friends said they'd buy them, so I decided to try my hand at making and selling them. My small little venture began and I started sewing. I donated the profits to The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. OVER $1000 was raised through the sale of B.I.C. Bands!
Because B.I.C. Bands were such a hit after my race, I decided to keep making and selling the bands, and keep giving back to those in need!

WHAT DOES B.I.C. Bands stand for?

B.I.C. Bands~ Because I Can Bands ~We raise funds because we can…for those who can’t so that one day they will!
From the beginning days of making B.I.C. Bands for my run with Team In Training, giving back has been at the heart of the business.
Each month we donate from the sale of every band to a different charity. Check out the facebook page to see who we're helping this month!

-What are you favorite products for your hair and running?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Harrisburg Marathon

at the packet pick-up

            Well, things didn't turn out how I wanted at the Harrisburg Marathon.  I guess some days are better than others.  After a rocky start to marathon training because of plantar fasciitis, I started to feel more confident when my runs started to "click".  Since I was originally training for NYC and picked up the Harrisburg marathon after NYC canceled I had an extra week of tapering.  I am not sure that my body does well with tapering so two weeks was rough.  My fastest marathon was used as a training run the week after a 20 miler and tough week of training.  My slowest was this past weekend after 2 weeks of taper. 

        As for the course and the race itself, everything was perfect.  The course was a nice course, lots of friendly volunteers and many people out cheering.  I knew by mile 6.5 that it wasn't going to be my day.  By mile 8 my quads were already tightening.  Not sure what went wrong?  What got me through was that I ran every mile for someone/something.  Finishing this race was an accomplishment for me.  I am may not be happy with how it went but I am proud of myself for sticking it out.

getting ready to high five my Ally
       The main thing that kept me going was getting the miles for everyone.  I couldn't quit on anyone that I dedicated a mile to.... 
Here is my list:
  1. Staten Island
  2. Brooklyn
  3. Queens
  4. Bronx
  5. Manhattan- Miles 1-5 were for the marathon that never happened last weekend.....
  6. My Grandma Phillips- she was at many of high school races and always supported me.  I miss her much
  7. My Papa- he passed away when I was in Middle School but I am sure he would of supported me!
  8. Grandma Lady- My dad's mom-  so many memories and wish I had been able to have her in my life longer.
  9. Dana- Dana was a high school friend and runner.  Dana Passed away from cancer a few years back.  He was inspiration to many.  He had a lot of challenges thrown his way but always stayed positive.
  10.  Kelli- My running buddy!  She is the girl who gets my crazy obsession with running!  I am luck to have her as a friend! 
  11. Grandma Mac and Grandma Bal- my husband's grandmothers who were are so lucky to have around still.
  12. Sam- My father in-law.  I am very lucky to have such amazing in-laws! 
  13. Nancy- My mother in-law.  A cancer survivor and an amazing person!
  14. Kathryn- My sister who lives in Virginia with my niece and nephew and her hubby.  Wish they lived closer
  15. Danny- My brother who lives in Chicago and I miss a bunch! We are running Chicago Marathon next year....his first, and I can't wait!
  16. Tom- My other brother.  He lives close by with my nephew.  He is going through a lot right now and remains positive and shows such great character!
  17. My Dad-  I love my dad and wouldn't be who I am without him!
  18. My Mom- My biggest fan!She has been to everyone of my marathons and so many of my races.  He support continues to amaze me!  
  19. Ryan- My oldest him!  I am lucky enough to watch him in the summer and spend lots of time with him.
  20. Teegan- My 3 year old niece.  She is a bundle of energy. Such a a sweet child that brings many smiles to my face.
  21. Dexter- My 1 year old nephew.  There is something special about this kid!  He makes me smile!  
  22. Bryson- my step-son.  He is a hockey player who plays with lots of heart!  I used some of that to get through that my mile
  23.  Garrison-  My oldest.  The song Greatest Love All started playing right at the beginning of this mile.  Truth - there is no greater love than what I feel for my little ones....thinking about Garrison surely got me through...
  24. Ally- My daughter- She is such an amazing child! She made me the best sign ever! I loved giving her high fives when I ran by her
  25. Carson- My baby- who is 4.  He is my challenging child! Always keeps me on my toes! I love him to pieces
  26. Mike- My husband.  Without him running a marathon would not have been possible! So Thanks HONEY!         
.2 was for me

I am already looking for another marathon....Even though this one wasn't plesant and think I will be running 2 marathons in the fall I need to try again!  I need something to train for! I need redemption!

I am leaning towards Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon or Charlottesville Marathon..... Any advice/pros/cons on either????                    

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Runner's World 1/2 Marathon

Mom, Me, and Bridget After the Run

        When I saw that Runner's World was putting a 1/2 Marathon I was quite interested.  I knew I was definitely in when I saw the course went through my Alma Mater, Moravian College.  My only nervousness was the timing....2 weeks before ING NYC marathon.  I was scheduled to run my last 20 miler that day.  My mom, cousin and I headed down on Saturday and went straight to the expo.  It was a small expo but quick and efficient.  Runner's World had so many different things going on for the those registered to attend.  We picked up our numbers, walked around and then headed to get some fro-yo.  I drove around my former college campus to see the changes and then headed to the hotel.  We checked in got in our room and rested up.  When dinner time came we headed to Victory Pizza.  My roommate in college and I had Victory Pizza before every race.  I had some yummy baked ziti.  After a full belly we headed back to the hotel and I got everything out and ready to go for the next morning. 

Ready to Go!

          We left the hotel early enough the next morning so I could get some miles in before the race started. I ended up getting 4.7 miles done and I loved every step of it. Something about being back on the roads in Bethlehem! I was only going to do 4 before and 3 after but the start line was farther away than I anticipated. 

apartment from college that I ran by
view from bridge on my pre-run

Steel Stacks
             By time I got to the start line it was 5 minutes to go time.  I moved through the crowds to get to the pacer that matched my goal pacing.  Then the gun was off.  I had a stomach ache from the get go and needed to use the bathroom (TMI). But ran out of time. Made it an interesting run for sure.  I figured I could stop along the way as I was not really racing. That never happened because lines were too long.  I ended up finishing in 1:52:48 and was quite pleased.  My last miles were my fastest.  It was probably one of the toughest courses that I have ran.  I must say that my favorite thing about the course was that 95% of the course was on roads that we ran on in college and I loved the nostalgia of that. 
            After the race was over, I headed to add on and ended up with 20.2 for the day.  I highly recommend this race and hope to do the Hat Trick next year.



Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Practicing the Start
                         So, it has been awhile.  I have raced a few 1/2 marathons, a 5k and was supposed to have completed the NYC Marathon.  I had been stuck in a rut the last times I had posted.  I was bumming and having trouble getting through my long runs.  I had a run about a month and 1/2 ago that everything clicked again.  It was one of those runs that I could of run forever and I enjoyed every step!  I then ran the Wineglass 1/2 marathon and finished with a 1:47:01.  It was not a PR but it was 14 minutes faster then the Catharine Valley 1/2 in August so I was beyond happy with how it turned out.

Finishing the Wineglass

5k finish
         A week later we headed to Winchester, VA to visit my sister and celebrate my nieces 3rd birthday.  There happened to be a 5k and mile fun run while we were there.  I signed up for the 5k and my 5 year old wanted to run the mile fun run.  I ened up finishing 3rd in my age group with a 23:29.  I was very excited that my 5 year old ran the mile fun run in 9:52.

Ally finishing her mile in 9:52
with her medal

3rd in age group

Next I will share my race re-cap on the Runner's World Festival and Some thoughts on the NYC marathon debacle.