A few of my favorite things!

Happy weekend everybody!!! Lately I have been using a few things ALL the time and I wanted to share their awesome-ness with you!!

BUT FIRST. This popped up in my memories -It’s from 2011. My husband built my little a snow fort in the backyard. She was only 4 in this picture and a tenny little thing! I just love this memory and I’m SO THANKFUL that it hasn’t been a bad winter!!!


1.) I would normally NEVER post pictures of underwear BUT I had to tell my runderwear loving friends about these. They are Under Armour and I love them! They’re one size fits all and I love how cozy the material is!

2.) I am OBSESSSSSSED with my Nike Vapor Flash Vest and Nike reflective running tights. They are REALLY expensive, but, in my opinion-totally worth the money (I got them for Christmas!). I will have them for years to come and I try to take really good care of them. This is the only pair of pants that I wear at night/during the morning for outside runs. They are very flattering and I am HIGHLY visible. I’ve been described as looking like I’m wearing “flashlights” while I’m out running!

The vest is fitted but I have found that I can still put a base layer on, comfortably, underneath it and not feel squished or like I’m suffocating. 🙂

I’ve read a lot of reviews on the pants and I was a little skeptical about getting them-A lot of people said that the reflective parts come off in the wash. I wash them inside out on gentle cycle, and I haven’t had any problems!

  Lights on!

Lights off! This is what a car sees when they drive by me. SO MANY LEVELS OF AWESOME!

 

3.) Nathan Firecatcher Hydration Vest. I bought this as an alternative to my Camelbak. I LOVE my camelback but I often get chafed by it in the summertime so I wanted to find an alternative. This vest came with two front bottles and I bought the bladder for the back of it. I’ve used the bottles before but I prefer the bladder. I think if I was an ultra runner, I would use the bottles too since it would be a piece of cake to refill them at stops.

I still love my camelback a lot, but this vest has yet to chafe me so it’s been the first thing I grab for all of my long runs this winter. I do like the way the Camelbak sits on my back slightly better than the Nathan vest, though.

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The vest also has pockets on both sides of the front straps: a pocket and a zippered which is pretty cool!

 

4.) The Night Runner 270’s. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE these. This was another purchase that I was extremely skeptical about. I didn’t know if they were worth the $60, plus there was no store that I could go and check them out at. I don’t like to spend money on a product that I’m not absolutely sure about! I thought the concept of them was really cool and my headlight was uncomfortable & not that bright. I was looking for a better solution for running in the dark and a runner I follow on IG had posted about these.

Whenever I post a picture of them, I get a LOT of questions.  I think the company needs to market themselves a little more & put more info out about their product by way of more videos. (I’ve posted videos on my Instagram before but I don’t have a YouTube channel so I didn’t post it here) Their website is nice, but I think it needs a bit more info about their rockin product because it seems that people are just as skeptical as I am.

But I bought them anyway and hoped for the best. I use them ALL the time. ..morning, night: it doesn’t matter. They are rechargeable (love that) and you plug them into a USB to do so. I’ve gone up to 3 weeks without charging them and typically use them 2/3 times a week.

The range of visibility is incredible. You can read more about it on their website but here is how I like to describe it: They are really bright flashlights for my feet that make me feel safe & well seen. I also don’t bring my headlight along anymore-but if I’m out running in the dark, there are also street lights that are on. So this means that the roads are not TOTALLY dark to begin with.

I HIGHLY recommend them to all my night and morning runner friends. I’ve even taken them along with me to the dark track in the wee hours and I love being able to see my feet!

 

Happy Weekend, Friends! Have you tried any of these things, or tried any excellent running products lately??

Just a couple tips on getting a 5k PR

By no means do I think I’m an expert at the 5k. However, I’m pretty proud of myself for that 43 second PR that I had Friday night & I’ve had a few people ask HOW I did it, so I wanted to share a couple of things with you. 

Being that a 5k is only 3.1 miles-it doesn’t seem very fair that it can truly be the hardest PR to break. When you really sit down to think about it, it makes sense. It’s really easy to have the idea in your mind that you’re going to just “book it” the whole entire time until you get to the finish line. In reality-booking it for those 3.1 little miles isn’t all that easy. I truly would rather run a marathon than a 5k. It’s just so damn hard because you’re going so fast! Whether your “fast” is a sub 6 minute mile, or a sub 10 minute mile-the effort level is the same. It’s a challenge! Plus you have less time to make up for the seconds/minutes you lose from things like fiddling with your music, or going up a killer hill, or whatever else is slowing you down. 

These are some of the things that helped me to get a PR!

1. Be diligent with your speed work and do the hard work. I’m really good at keeping up with regular track work and tempo runs. I’m getting more comfortable at holding those uncomfortable paces. I know that improvements in my speedwork carryover into every aspect of my running. Do weekly speed work and you will see improvements, too.

2. Knowing the course. This helped tremendously. I ran this race last year and I remembered every single thing about that route, including the fact that the last mile is completely downhill. I knew exactly what I was getting myself into and set my sights on this race to break my 5k pr. 

3. Know your strengths & your weaknesses. I love this 5k course because the last mile is 100% downhill! I excel at coasting downhill! Some people take it easy going downhill, but I tend to go all out on them. I knew when I hit mile 3 that it was time to push it because I was almost there, dammit! It also helps to know your weaknesses:if you hate hills and running in direct sunlight, don’t pick a course chock full of hills that starts at 10:00 when it’s just beginning to be ridic hot outside. Everybody’s different& you’ve got to pick a race that feels right for you. 

4. Focus. I tried very hard to stay “in” the mile I was in. It’s not easy to do, especially if you’re doing a “booking it” pace. I swore, almost cried, and wanted to quit a billion times. I kept myself going though and tried to think ONLY about very small victories-like making it past the people who were handing out water. It was some really fast baby steps to get me the 3.1 miles, let me tell you! 

5. Mantra’s & Music: Two things that helped me tremendously! I kept repeating the word “PR” over and over in my brain. I still wanted to throw in the towel. But, before I could quit, I told myself that “I CAN DO HARD THINGS.” This kept me going! 

Music also saved me. I was so freaking tired by the time that mile 3 hit. I think I was halfway through it and about to cry when “Eye of the Tiger” came over my headphones! Talk about a stroke of luck! I couldn’t quit-I was running with Rocky for gosh sakes!

6. Not placing a whole lot of pressure on myself. I wanted to do well, & I wanted to PR. But if I didn’t-I knew that I was at least running a race with my friend, and that was a pretty great thing. I was 100% okay with not hitting a pr. It just so happens that I did get one, but I really removed the pressure from myself and just rolled with it. Above all-I wanted to have fun! I don’t know if this attitude helped me get it, but I would like to think that it did! 

I hope these little tips help you, and feel free to share some of your own tips that have helped you better your 5k time!

Sports Bras: My Favorites, non favorites, and some just so-so’s!

As promised: My sports bra favorites! I never realized that I had such a large sports bra collection until I sat down to write this post! Not pictured here are the duplicates I have of my favorites. I think that I have been on a quest to find the “Perfect Sports Bra” and never knew it until writing all this down!

I decided that I would score each bra in my sports bra collection. Scores are based on support, comfort, price, chafe-ability, and cuteness (I had to put that in there). To me, my perfect bra has adjustable straps & back closure, comes in bra cup sizes, doesn’t chafe me, is reasonable priced, and offers good support. OH, and it has to be a really fun/BRIGHT color! Most bra’s last about 6 months for me; sometimes they last longer. I try to extend their life with hand washing & line drying.

1.) For years, I only bought sports bras at places like TJ Maxx & Marshalls. I still peruse the aisles to see if I can find one that I like, but lately I haven’t been as lucky.  The first sports bra in my collection is one I have had for YEARS. I don’t even know how long I’ve had it for- I would say at least 3 years? You’re not supposed to keep/wear sports bra’s for that long, but this one has held up over the years. It’s a new balance sports bra and I probably spent $12.99 on it.

I give this bra a score of 75%. I now only wear it for shorter runs (7 or under). It hardly ever chafes me and it’s really comfortable. It doesn’t have lined cups or anything that makes it look supportive, but it is. When I first bought it, this was the bra that I always made sure was clean so it was ready for me when I wanted to use it. Because it’s really old-it’s not as supportive as it used to be and I no longer wear it on long runs. I find that it gives more of a uni-boob look rather than two separate boobs (that was such a weird sentence) and the score was lowered in the cuteness category. If it was a brand new bra- it would have scored higher!
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2.) Moving Comfort. Last June was the time that the above NB bra started to chafe me so I was on a MISSION to get some sports bra’s that did no such thing to my poor boobs. I bought 3 Moving Comfort sports bra’s (2 pictured here because I have 2 of the same ones). I really liked these at first, they are very supportive and I love the color. But they began to chafe me within a month.

The hotter the temps got, the more these bra’s began to leave marks. No matter how much glide or vaseline, it seemed that I was left with a mark. I know a lot of you have amazing luck with Moving Comfort, however, I do not. I would probably give them another shot, however it would only be if I found a MC bra on a very deeply discounted clearance price. I was really disappointed that these didn’t work for me because I spent about $50-$60 on each one. I hate to give these such a low score… but I have to do it-55% (don’t hate me, Moving Comfort fans!)
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3.) Under Armour. I found one similar to mine here. I love the bright blue color of this bra. I bought this one on the same day that I bought the Moving Comfort bra’s. it works great, but I can only wear it when it’s cooler outside: the little zipper leaves a little mark on me when I’m super sweaty! The support on the bra is decent. If the straps adjusted-It would score higher.

I give this bra an 73%…It’s score is lower because I can’t wear it all year round, it’s not 100% in the support category, and it was about $50, so that’s a lot to spend! (In my opinion!)
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4.) Target C9. I didn’t buy high impact bra’s when I made this particular trip to Target. I should have but I didn’t. These two pictured below are really cute and comfy. I have worn both running before, but I don’t anymore because the stripes one isn’t supportive enough, and the purple can randomly chafe me if I get too hot. Now I use these bra’s solely for BBG workouts, or any time I want/need to have a bra on but don’t want to feel like I’m actually wearing one. I would wear it for yoga or any low impact activity, just not running.

Since they are so reasonably priced (each bra was under $20) and very cute, I give them a 90%! Keep in mind, this isn’t a running sports bra for me though. For the purple, I found a similar one here, and you can go here for a similar one to the stripes!
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5.) This is the bra that inspired Friday’s post. It is SO CUTE! It’s PINK! BRIGHT PINK!! It comes in cup sizes vs s-m-l, and felt very supportive and comfortable. It also has an adjustable back closure, which I love.

This bra is really pretty & I’ll be honest with you: I bought it because it was pretty. I was SO EXCITED to wear it on a tempo run last week. It was really cool morning-only about 55- and completely dry. I finished the run and immediately felt how chafed I was. Band area, under my boobs, side of my boobs. I don’t get it. It’s not too small, and it’s not too big. It is the “baby bear” of sports bra’s but apparently I’m Goldilocks and I don’t belong in this bra? I don’t know. I want to give it another shot, but I also want to NOT be chafed like this ever again in my entire life. So we’ll see. I refuse to keep something so expensive that draws blood-so if I’m not going to keep it, I’m going to return it this week. The bra cost $49.50, but I had a coupon so I spent less. Still, I am not going to keep it if I’m not going to wear it!

I’ve felt before that VS is off in their sizes- I often buy a size and wish I had sized down to a smaller size. However, their bra’s have always been on point (for me). I think that if the straps of the bra were adjustable, I wouldn’t have gotten so beat up. Overall-it got a score of 66%. This seems really high to me! I only wore the bra for 52min and I was ridiculously chafed like I had run a marathon! The more I write about the bra makes me realize–> IT MUST GO BACK!
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6.) This is another VS bra. Again, I had a coupon and didn’t pay the full price of $58.50. I adore this color and the strappy back of the bra is my favorite part! This bra doesn’t have adjustable straps, but maybe the thickness of the straps makes it not need it? When I wear it, I don’t feel the need for them. I have to be honest with you in the fact that I’ve only worn it 4-5 times. But, i haven’t chafed and it has remained comfortable. I am giving this bra an 85%! It scored only 5 pts in the “price” category. If I hadn’t had a coupon-I wouldn’t have paid full price for it because that’s ALOT!
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7.) This is the last VS bra I’ll show you, I promise! I bought this one at the semi annual sale earlier this month. I try to stock up on stuff during that sale because you can get alot of extremely overpriced merchandise for a good deal.

I love the adjustable straps and the light coral color. It also has an adjustable closure back. BOOM. A trifecta of important things! Again, I’ve only had this bra for a few weeks, but it’s fairly comfortable, has good support, looks cute, and it comes in bra cup sizes. I got this bra on sale, but it’s regular price is $49.50. Even though it’s comfortable, I think it has the possibility to chafe me on a long run, so unless I’m stuck-I’m going to stick with wearing it for shorter runs. Overall, I scored it at 85%.
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8.) Nike.I LOVE this bra. I love the color, the fit, and how seamless it is. I bought it 10 months ago and wore it consistently for 6 months. For the first 6 months, it never once chafed me, stayed put, didn’t give me a uni-boob. I wore it for every long run. After those 6 months, it started to wear out and randomly chafe me along the straps and my back. I haven’t gotten a replacement (yet) but I truly adore this bra. Although it doesn’t have adjustable straps or closure, it stayed right where it was supposed to and it also comes in bra cup sizes. I now only wear it for shorter runs. I think that the support in it is wearing out and it holds up better for shorter runs.

I’m going to pretend that this is a brand new bra instead of an older one (it’s my scoring chart and I can do what I want to!) because this bra REALLY did its job for it’s predicted life span. ANd although it IS expensive ($65), I firmly believe that it was worth every damn penny: 90%!
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9.) Skirt Sports! Save the best for last! I love this bra and I have 3 of them. It has adjustable velcro straps and you also have the ability to make it a cross back bra. There is also an adjustable closure in the back. I love the bright pink color, and it’s really comfy. It’s now my go to bra. I’ve been wearing this bra for about 8 months, and so far none of the 3 have worn out on me. SS also has “Bra bling” and you can swap out your bra straps for new ones! Pretty cool!! This is my go to long run bra, and really, I tend to pick this bra up first before any others. I’m an ambassador for Skirt sports, and I swear, they are not paying me to say this: I LOVE THIS BRA!!!! I am actually planning on buying a new one soon because I think one of my pink ones is going to be hitting the good will bin sometime soon. It’s pricey- $65, but just like the Nike bra, I think it’s worth every penny. Annd you can use my 20% discount code (SSGWR20) some good savings 🙂

I gave this bra a 95%! It got 15/20 in the “price” category because you can use my discount code and save. Other than that-it scored a perfect 20 in everything else!!
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I hope this helps you! And for anyone who wondered what scoring model looked like (Don’t judge me on the white out, please and thank you!)
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How long do your sports bra’s typically last for?

Mileage Totals for 5/18-5/24 and things to remember about hot weather running!

Monday-Off

 Tuesday-7 hilly miles 54:25, 7:46 avg pace 

 Wednesday- Track: Mile repeats. 6:36, 6:44, 6:48. These are something I need to keep working on to get my times down!   

 Thursday-7 sunrise Miles- 54:55, 7:50 avg pace 

  

Friday- Off. 

 Saturday-16 miles 2:05:49, 7:52 avg pace 

 Sunday- 5 miles, 8:13 avg pace. Cut my run short because I was SO hot. I ran midday and I’m really not used to that yet! Lately I’ve only been running early in the morning before the sun comes out and my body is NOT ready for heat yet!!

42 miles, 7:53 avg pace

As my body adjusts to the heat, my paces tend to be a little slower than they normally are. I have to Remind myself that this happens and it isn’t a big deal. Once my body fully adjusts, I’ll be fine. This year feels harder to adjust than it has in past years because it was colder than ever this past winter!  These are some charts that have helped me rememebr what happens to my paces during the heat& humidity! I hope they help you too!   

Much like winter running, summer running has an adjustment period too. It’s helpful to know your body’s limits when you’re trying to push it in the heat. Remember to take it easy and slow down if you’re feeling out of it. There have been plenty of hot weather runs that have left me drained because I pushed it too hard. Remember to drink lots of water too!

Enjoy your Memorial Day!!!

Guest Post: My Journey from Sedentary Car Guy to Marathon Runner

Happy Friday Everybody! Today I would like to share a guest post with you written by Dan Button. He is the author and owner of the blog “My Running Life At Speed” and he is QUITE an impressive runner. After meeting Dan on Marathon Monday and then conversing with him on his blog, I asked him to share a guest post with you all. Dan has come a long way in a short time: From his first marathon at 3:31 allll the way down to a 2:39..amazing! I love reading stories like his! Plus, he has big dreams and is heading towards them one run at a time! Dan has been kind enough to answer my barrage of running questions, and I think his story of success can help runners of all levels!

 

One of the first things that really drew me into the running scene was the sense of comradery among runners. I started small, like many of us did, with a local 5k that I wanted to run out of a desire to do something for others, something bigger than me. A teacher at a local elementary school had passed away suddenly and a 5k to raise money for a scholarship in her name was planned shortly afterwards. The race happened to start right at the school where my church was meeting at the time and the start time was right when church got out. I borrowed some basketball shoes from my dad and signed up to run 3.1 miles on a hot summer day. I finished in 23:30 and almost instantly realized that I wanted to do it again soon and run much faster. Having not run at all to train for the 5k I was pretty happy to just finish without having to walk at any point, though I did want to a couple miles in!

That first race was on 10-10-10 and over the next couple of months I ran many more 5ks, progressively working down to the 20 minute range. I was running 3-5 times a week by the end of the fall, up to 7 miles long. Over the winter of 2011 I read Born to Run and was certain that I wanted to move right up to ultra-marathons, wisely I chose to at least run a standard marathon first. I should mention that along with Born to Run, one of my best friends had just started running and my sister-in-law was also a great encouragement in convincing me to run and train every day. I ran my first 15k and first half marathon in the spring of 2011 as part of my long build up to running my first marathon that fall. My friend was also working towards his first marathon so we were training together occasionally and talking about it a lot. Like I said, running is all about community and making friends through running is only trumped by gaining normal life friends as running friends too! The 15k I ran was quite hilly and my projection of finishing in under an hour ended up way off as I finished in 1:06, I believe. That first half marathon went a bit better as I finished in 1:27:xx and had a smile on my face the whole way. My “A” goal for that first marathon was to BQ (3:05) as I knew by then what a BQ meant and how great it would be to get it, even though I had little intention of running Boston at the time.

I continued to train hard over the spring and summer with a target pace of 7:04ish/mile for the marathon. I ran following a training plan I’d found on Cool Running’s website, which had my peak mileage around 50 a week, if memory serves correct. My long runs were quite long though and I peaked with a full 26.2 run where I simply ran out and back on a stretch of road I assumed was mostly flat. Looking back I still draw strength from that run, I can’t remember how long it took, I think it was around 3:48 or so, which puts it still as one of my longest runs to date. I did it entirely solo with nothing but a fuel belt of water and some Gus, and on a road that I would never run on now (If you’re from central NH, you know Route 28 is a crap road to run on)

In October of 2011 I was set to go in my first marathon, training had gone relatively well with no major setbacks or injuries and I was off to Bristol NH to run the scenic NH Marathon. My dad gave me a ride to the start and I had friends showing up later to cheer me on and give me a ride home. I ran the first 7 miles right at 7 minute pace and then made myself slow down until after the hilly middle miles where I tried to speed back up, to no avail. I ended up hitting the wall, HARD, around 21 miles and jogged/walked/shuffled until 24 where my good friend who had been training with me gave me a Snickers bar that quite literally saved my run. I wobbled in to the finish in 3:31:xx and was 26 minutes over my goal and still thoroughly satisfied with the effort. I couldn’t walk right for a week, but still signed up for another marathon right away, certain that I now knew the way to run it in BQ fashion.

Well, fast forward to February of 2012 and I was towing the line at the Hyannis Marathon with a doozy of a head-cold or possibly the flu and very real fears that I might not even finish. It was a brutal grind from start to finish but I stayed more consistent, albeit slower, than the first one and finished in 3:36:xx. After that race and the subsequent week off from work with a horrible, almost ER worthy flu, I decided to take a slower approach and train until the fall for a real attempt at that BQ. To speed up the story I will simply say that I followed nearly the same training approach as I had the first time, just with faster running the whole way through as my body was getting stronger and stronger. I again sought to run at about 7 minute pace, which was now realistic, given the pace I was running in training leading up to it. I ran the Hartford marathon in October 2012 and two years after I started running I had my BQ, finishing in 3:01:20! Soon after finishing I realized that I didn’t want to run ultras just yet, but genuinely wanted to run Boston and to keep running marathons to see how fast I could get.

I signed up for a spring marathon in 2013 and was seeking to jump right down to 2:40 as my goal, having successfully chopped a half hour off my personal best in my last race, it seemed reasonable. Looking back now, it was far too big a goal, but I upped my training anyway and followed the “competitive plan” on cool running’s website. I had recently read Brad Hudson’s book, Run Faster, and was also starting to mix in his training style. Rather than the same old half mile or mile repeats for speed work and excessively long, long runs found on Cool Running, I started mixing in longer workouts on my weekend long runs and short hill sprints at the end of runs on pre-workout days. My biggest mileage weeks were in the upper 60’s, but I was forced to start my taper early with a couple nagging pains. My longest run to date was ironically in that time though, as I did run a 50k at one point. I had only been doing the occasional track workout and getting most of my speed work in with longer efforts on the road, tempo runs, fartleks and mile repeats mostly. I still didn’t own a GPS watch so most of my training was done by measuring out distances on the road and then timing with a stop watch. For someone so interested in getting faster, I certainly took an interesting approach to get there, in retrospect. Though my training was up and down with not near enough consistency, I was still getting faster and it did pay off. I ended up running a 2:48:26 at Sugarloaf in May of 2013 and it still stands as my best paced marathon. I held back for the first 8 miles running under goal pace and then tried to push to goal pace or under (6:15ish) and though I couldn’t hit it, I did only slow down by 10 seconds in the 2nd half. Thinking I just needed to train harder and run more, I redoubled my efforts over that summer and had every intention of breaking 2:40 in the fall. I peaked at close to 70 miles again and for the first time I was following a solid training plan from a top marathon coach. It was still just a canned plan from the back of Hudson’s book, but it was really challenging my body to adapt in different ways. Cue first real struggle with injuries. I had been nursing hip flexor muscles of varying tightness and soreness for months over the summer before I finally gave in and went to the doctor in September, hoping he’d have some last minute magic cure, weeks before my fall race. I ended up missing two weeks completely, when I was ordered to rest, and then put in two 30 mile leading up to the race. I decided to drop my goal time and run with a friend until mile 24 where we’d race each other to the finish. He ran 2:53 and I came in behind in a hard 2:54, but happy to be feeling healthy again and not too sore after. I signed up for a second race that took place a month later, and used the 2:54 marathon as my peak training workout. I only had a slight recovery period and then went back up to another couple weeks around 60 miles before tapering for my second go at the big PR! I took a vacation out in Bend, Oregon and plotted my move to runner heaven during my taper. Taking it easy is a much better plan, I now know, but I’m still trying to find work out there and madly in love with central Oregon. Anyhow, in November of 2013 I ran the Manchester City Marathon in NH and though I went in feeling great, I was once again let down with my time. I ran a 2:50:28 on the tough, hilly and freezing cold course and was more than ready to erase the fall of 2013 from my memory. I am proud of what I ran then and what it taught me about what to do, and what not to do now, however.

I was beyond excited to be running Boston for the first time in 2014 and tried to really start training smarter and more consistent than I ever had. At the end of 2013 I joined my first club and started doing track workouts with them, it was very intimidating running so fast with much faster runners at first. But, the guys totally changed my view of my own running and with the confidence inspired by them I ran a 5k in December of 2013 in 17:00, which was more than minute under my personal best at the time. Over the winter I followed another training plan from Hudson’s Run Faster book and with the encouragement of my club teammates, my mileage began increasing. I started out in January with my mileage right where the previous year had peaked, meaning 70 miles a week, in my big training weeks in March I was running over 90 miles and finishing every other long run with a fartlek or marathon pace progression. My midweek medium long runs were between 10-13 miles and my speed work went through stages of shorter repeats on the track under marathon pace to working up in length and slowing the pace right to marathon effort and doing what Hudson refers to as specific endurance efforts. I ran a half marathon in New Bedford and finished a minute under my goal time in 1:15:30. Finally my dream of sub 2:40 was a realistic goal! I went into Boston shooting for a 2:37, only slowing by 2 minutes in the second half, I finishing a little slower than I wanted in 2:30. Notice a theme? Always setting big, tough goals! Boston 2014 was an absolute dream and a party from start to finish and rather than re-tell the entire story; I’ll simply link to it here.

Much has changed in the year since then; last fall was my first season with no marathon, as I opted to train exclusively for shorter races and XC. I also had the privilege of getting my first coaching job as the assistant for a local DIII T&F program and was able to run the workouts with the team, while training for my own races.

In 2015 I shifted gears yet again, with running Boston as fast as I could, the major focus. I signed up to be part of the newly formed coaching program offered by my favorite coach, Brad Hudson, and started getting my training from someone besides myself for the first time. The goal for 2015 is to break 2:30, it didn’t happen in Boston this year where the winds and cold got the best of me and I slowed down 7 minutes in the second half, but I’ll take another shot in December at CIM in Sacramento. My training leading up to Boston this year was similar to last year since I was using a training plan from Hudson last year as well. The big difference was no more guess work when training had to be adapted or moved around, simply email my coach and ask what to do! Having someone else doing the planning made the task of training much easier for me, as I would do what I was told as best I could. I worked up to 20 mile runs on the weekends by the first month into marathon training this time around, having come into training with a base of 80-90 mile weeks from most of last fall. I think keeping a solid base year round is another key to my training too, as the up and down periods are when injury seems to strike. Without worrying about bringing mileage back up for each training cycle I can easily transfer from steady base miles back into workouts and long marathon efforts. Speaking of workouts, I should mention what the workout plan over the last year has looked like in a little more detail. I normally run a hard workout of intervals of some type on Tuesday, followed by a medium long run Wednesday and a supplemental workout on Thursday, with a long run on either Saturday or Sunday. The other days are reserved for easy mileage, which was 10-14 a day with a short lunch time run and longer evening run in peak training and is now comprised of a single 7-10 mile run. My highest mileage week this past cycle was close to 130 and my average up through that week from the beginning of the year was 94 a week. I did suffer from some plantar pain and started the taper a little early before Boston, but am now recovering alright after a 4 day break post-race and slowly brining mileage back up.

I realize now, that this is more a story of what I’ve done and less on my specific training during those times, but the training was never anything too special. In the words of John L Parker Jr. the trial of miles and miles of trials is what it’s all about. The more consistent my mileage was and the more I ran my workout days at specific marathon efforts in my peak training, the faster my marathons have been, among other factors of course. I think it’s super important to set short term, achievable goals and long term dreams that will be stepped towards until they become the next short term goal and a new dream needs to be dreamt up. I wanted to break 2:40 for a couple years and as soon as I did, I set my sights on 2:30. After running a 2:36 at Boston this year, my next goal is still to break 2:30. But my dream is to one day run a sub 2:18, the current Olympic Trials ‘B’ Standard in the US.

Thanks for reading my little running tale!

 

You can follow Dan’s journey here! Thanks Dan for sharing your amazing story! Any questions for Dan can be asked in the comments as he said he would do his best to answer!

Marathon & Long Run Fueling Strategies

I get a lot of questions this time of year regarding my fueling strategy for the marathon. I don’t think I’ve ever done a solid post on fuel so for all of you who have fueling questions, this post is all about my personal fueling strategy.

Fuel: I wasn’t always great with taking in fuel. I’m finally in a pattern that’s working and feel comfortable (as comfortable as one can be sucking down fuel while moving at a fast pace) taking it in. I’ve experimented a lot with different fuels-Cliff Shot bloks, starbursts, Powerade gels, skittles, Hammer Gel, Swedish fish, Honey Stinger gels and waffles….I’ve learned that the harder & more solid fuels (shot bloks, starbursts, skittles, Swedish fish) are great and give me energy, however, it’s extremely difficult for me to swallow and chew them without choking. Plus, when it’s really cold outside & these things are also cold- it become even more difficult for my body to process them. I don’t like the texture of Hammer Gel or Powerade gels: They are so liquid-y, it grosses me out. I love the taste and flavors of Honey Stinger gels, however, I don’t think they pack enough of a wallop to give me the energy level I need. GU seems to work the BEST for me. I like it’s consistency and find that it gives me the exact energy that I need. I swear I can feel its magical powers as soon as I take it! (Fave flavor: Salted Watermelon. I really like Salted Caramel too, but I find it sickeningly sweet at times, and harder to swallow. Plus- I like caramel on my ice cream…not during my runs:))

As far as hydration goes: I used to stop at a convenience store halfway through a long run, or, on a hot day, halfway through a shorter run to get a Gatorade/ Powerade. It’s really a lot of sugar though.. I would rather save those calories for something else! I switched to water for my training runs about a year ago, and it’s worked great for me. I also eventually started to use a Camelbak for long runs to alleviate the need to stop at a store for a drink. I fill my Camelbak up for my long runs and drink from that. In the winter runs- I typically go through 2 water bottles. However, during the summer, I can fill the whole litre up and need to refill it half way through the run!
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I also drink a lot of NUUN. You know the days when the thirst is REAL and you CANNOT GET ENOUGH liquids into your body and you’re still parched like the Sahara desert??? NUUN helps me with this. I’ve thought about putting NUUN into my Camelbak, but just haven’t yet! Maybe next marathon training cycle…
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For me, personally, this is what works:

Regular runs and training runs:
-If I’m doing a shorter run after work, I’ll eat a Honey Stinger Waffle about 20 minutes before I head out. I think they are delicious and they are the perfect amount of calories to fuel me for a 7-10 mile run. I find that I don’t really need anything else during these runs and can get away with not eating more than just the waffle. Which is good because they are expensive!

-GU: I take GU’s with me for longer runs. I try to take them at the same point in all of my long runs: miles 6/7, 13/14, 17/18. Ever long run is different. Sometimes, I only need 2 GU’s to make it through a run, some runs I could have 4. I find that when it’s really windy, I need more fuel. This weekend, I took my GU at miles 7, 13.4, and I tried to take a 3rd at 17.5, but I could only choke down a tiny sip of the 3rd because it made me feel like I was going to throw up. For the previous weekend’s long run, I took all 3 (6, 12, 18) and could have used a 4th (it was also really windy that day). It goes to show you that not all runs are fueled equally!! I always make sure I drink a quick sip from my Camelbak when I’m taking the GU because the combo of those two things is what makes the GU work.
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Marathon strategies:
-Gu: I plan to take it along the same mile markers that I do for my long runs. If it ain’t broke… Since it IS 4 more miles than what I train for-I will probably take more-maybe even up to 5 of them? It depends on the day. I’m thinking I’ll end up taking it 6/7, 13, 17, 22, maybe even 24…I know I get REALLY tired in the end so I will need all the help I can get. Of course, past 22, I could really use an IV of BEER instead of GU….

-Water/Gatorade-The BAA has banned hydration packs and vests again this year, so I will have to resort to getting water from the aid station. Boo. I’m going to do my best….but I usually end up with my beverage of choice all over myself, or, somehow manage to snort it up my nose. I don’t like to stop and walk unless I HAVE to and I prefer the little quick sips of water to stopping and drinking the cup. Its just too hard. I’ll probably do every other if its warm out, and every 3rd stop if it isn’t. I try to cup the top of the cup and form a point in which to drink through…but it’s still hard to do that at times! I’ll only take Gatorade if I need the sugar boost….I’m not used to training with it and prefer to stick to what I know!!

I hope this helps some of you! It has always helped me to have a strategy in place. Of course, strategy can go RIGHT out the window come marathon day, but its still nice to have a plan!

What are your fueling tips?
What’s your fuel of choice for long runs?

Things I learned from the New Bedford Half Marathon: a race recap of sorts

Last weekend, after having three cancelled races (1 marathon, 1 twenty miler, 1 half marathon) I finally got to run a race! It was really fun-especially since I have been basically shunned by any and all races in my area. It was the New Bedford Half Marathon, and it was a really good time.
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The only picture I took of me at the race!

I held off on doing any kind of review for this race because I really didn’t want to be judged on my poor performance that day. Yup, you read that right. I don’t always love the negativity via social media that can sometimes come with being a running blogger. I make the fact that I want to get faster extremely clear. I know that I put myself out “there” into the world by having this little public space. And that’s ok. I love the encouragement that I receive from my fellow bloggers and friends that I’ve made by writing as “The Girl Who Ran Everywhere” (A little sidenote: In case you’ve ever wondered, I do know that I’m 32 years old and calling myself a “girl”-But, “The Woman Who Ran Everywhere” just wasn’t as catchy 😉…) I know that by opening myself up, I’m subjected to criticism just as much as I am praise. It is what it is, and I’m learning to shrug it off.

As some of you already know-My time for this race wasn’t great: 1:42:47. It was an “off” day for me, and I just want to go on the record here by saying that I am 100% okay with that. My coach had a goal for me, and I didn’t make it, or even come close to it. But, honestly-it’s not a big deal. There are plenty more races to run. In the past, I’ve gotten pretty down on myself for not hitting a “goal” time that I set for myself, but I know now that in the long run, it doesn’t do me any good. I decided that I wanted to do a non-traditional race recap for this one. Instead of telling you in detail about how this was the biggest half I have ever run (huge!), the porta potties at the start, or, the fact that it was windy and I had a terrible leg cramp for almost 3 miles of the race, I wanted to instead tell you some things I learned from my race. Maybe you can learn something that will help you.
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Biggest half I’ve ever been to!

1.) Its really important for all runners to remember that not every day is “Your day” for racing. Sometimes I feel like all the things in the universe need to align and Mother Nature has to cast great weather in order for me to have the “perfect” race day. Traffic, your period, a snowstorm, ice, wind, a late night, cramps, constipation, diarrhea, bad sleep, bad sneakers, wrong foods-any or ALL of these things (and I think I could list PLENTY more issues) can go wrong for anyone, on race morning. It is what it is and you shouldn’t sweat it if it doesn’t go your way: There WILL be more races in your future.

The feeling of “today is not your day” also carries over into your every day runs. There are some days where I will head out and I’m on FIRE, and others where I’m just “meh” and not that into it.

I didn’t really have a whole lot that went wrong for me race morning. It was more that I had a day that I wasn’t really in the mood for “pushing” it during the race. I can’t explain it any better than to say that I was tired, and that feeling translated down into my tired legs. Not a big deal, it happens. I’ve realized that I’m not always the best “racer.” I get really nervous and psych myself up WAY too much. I think we all have felt the overwhelming weight at one time or another to “run more/run faster/be better.” I put a lot of pressure on myself to do just that, end up overthinking things, and it messes with my mojo. Sometimes, my brain doesn’t feel like taking over and going into “race mode” I don’t know if it’s because I didn’t technically start “racing” until about 1-2 years ago? Who knows-I know its something I need to work on. But anyway, there are days that I am not feeling the amazing-ness of racing, and I had one of those days during the New Bedford half.
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2. Silence the noise. This is a big one for me. I’ve heard the words “Can’t” and “won’t” a little too often for my taste. Tuning the negatives out is something I’m working on. I believe in me, my husband believes in me, my friends believe in me…that’s enough. Sometimes we get in our own heads a little too much. Sometimes we let someone else in our heads who doesn’t think we can do any better. Don’t focus on the negativity and focus on your own strengths.

3. You can cross the finish line of a race but you are most certainly not “finished.” You may “finish” a race, but you (most likely) are not “finished” with running. It’s important to remember that in the back of your mind. Crossing a finish line is just one more step on your own personal running journey, whatever yours may be! I might hit a new PR, or bomb a race, but I know that I’ll be right back to running my next possible chance. Running is a lifetime sport for me, full of ups and downs and I don’t intend to ever “finish.”

4. This last one is the MOST important thing: You are not the measure of just “one” race. You’re much more than that. A good race will help you put a new notch on your personal tallying stick of racing, but it does not define you. A bad race may make you upset for a little while, but it gives you something to learn from. You are so much more than your numbers, please don’t ever forget that. When I think back to why I started running, it had nothing to do with “the numbers game.” I knew that I loved to run, I was pretty ok at it, and it gave me a lot of joy. Don’t let a bad race rob you of the joy. I always tell fellow runners to remember WHY you are running in the first place. Take that reason and hold it tight. You should never forget your “WHY.” The numbers that you want will eventually come, because your “WHY” will drive you.

So, to any of you who wonder post-race if you’ll ever meet those goals you have set: remember these things! Never give up on your dreams or what you want just because of an off day. Even if some weirdo tells you that you are delusional for the goals you’ve set…ignore it, and move along. Believe in yourself and trust that you can. And as my best friend tells me “Even if you don’t PR and you do your best that’s all that matters.” —> truth.

Happy Tuesday!

Some lessons you’ve learned from racing or running?

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Fantastic is….

…A date with your running partner that you don’t get to see as much anymore! Why don’t I get to see her as much anymore? BECAUSE SHE IS HAVING A BABY!!!!!
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I’ve left that off the ‘ole blog for quite a while, but last week when we had our date, she told me I could post this pic! And along with that, I am going to tell you the weird story of how we met, and then give you some reasons why I LOVE to run with people!

I met my RP last year (around mid-January 2014) in the most unusual way. We both had commented on another blog, and on this particular post, the “question of the day” was something like “What is your next race?” I commented that my next race was the Boston Marathon and it was extra special to me due to the fact that I couldn’t finish in 2013 and that I was about 10-15 feet from the 2nd bomb, and less than a tenth of a mile from the 1st.

A girl replied to my comment “Dude, we must have been right next to one another because that’s where I was.” We took a look at pictures, and it turned out she was right next to my patient partner during the marathon bombings and probably 15-20 feet away from me!
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(she is the circle, my patient partners’ mom& sister are the arrows)

We commented back and forth on that post a little more about our whereabouts on that day, and then I decided to check out this chick’s blog, The Fast And The Foodiest. I started reading her most recent posts and it turns out – she had just run a race in the next town over from her-Lowell, MA. How about that-The next town over from ME is Lowell MA. We began to email back and forth, and it turns out that we both live in the same town. Weird, right? It gets weirder. We start talking running routes- We run the exact same roads every day. We decided to meet at a spot close to our houses, and little did we know that for the past 5 years- We have been neighbors. We live less than .25 miles away from each other…and had never seen one another before!!

We started running together right away. Running with a partner is Sooooooooo different than running solo. Night and Day.

These are my top 10 reasons running with a friend is way more fun than running solo:

-Getting the “Workouts” done. Even when you are just not that into today’s workout-When you have somebody waiting for you and counting on you to be there, it is much easier to just do it that to wait and do it solo.

-Motivation. Even When one of you is tired, you can count on a partner to help motivate you along.
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-Waking up early for a run. When you have sombody meeting you, getting up early takes on a whole new meaning. Its much easier to get out of bed because you know someone is counting on you.

-When you’ve got a good match, running with a partner is effortless. You will draw from each others strengths. We are attune to each others footsteps. When one of us has a “slower” day, running with a partner can get you going faster.

-Long runs. Slogging through miles is better when you’re slogging through with someone else!

-New routes. It’s easy to get stuck in a routine with the places you run. Running with someone else offers you new routes and challenges that you’ve never done before- from hills to hidden neighborhoods, you can learn a lot of new stuff.

-Bouncing running plans off of one another. I love to tell my RP new things I want to try, and she will tell me what she thinks of it and what has worked for her. Only a running friend can listen to you drone on and on for hours on end about race strategies and then give you great feedback.
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-New friendships! One of the best things about running with a friend is the bonds that develop really quickly. Running with a friend guarantees lots of long talks about that thing called LIFE. It’s not just time to see your friends, its therapeutic, too.

-Races. Doing a race with a friend is way more fun than doing it solo!

-Safety in Numbers. Not only is it Fun and Friendship-forming, it is safer too. Running at 5 am solo in the dark- dangerous. Meeting my friend to run at 5 am in the dark? Not dangerous. Bringing a friend along means 2 cell phones, 2 of you to be seen on the roads, 2 of you to look out for ice…you get the picture!!

Do you run with friends? If so- Whats your favorite thing about it?

Some notes on long runs outside & transitioning back to outdoor running from the Treadmill

I had wanted to include this in yesterday’s post since it is reflections on last weeks’ runs… However… If I did that, the post would’ve been wayyyy too long. So pretend you just finished reading about my mileage totals (Short recap: 47.9 miles/long run of 16 miles/4 days outside)

This winter is, without a doubt, the coldest one I can remember.  This year will be my 9th Boston Marathon. This means that I have trained through hundreds of cold, unpleasant days in order to get to Marathon Monday. I decided to compare my winter runs from last year to my winter runs from this year. I realized that the majority of last year’s long runs were done outside, in 25-35 degree weather, and that it was, overall, a heck of a lot more pleasant to run outside in that weather. It is no wonder I’m feeling like I’m getting seasonally depressed! I’ve spent more time indoors than I ever have before. Sure, there have been weeks at a time where I’m stuck inside, but usually I can get out for at least 2 runs a week.

Last week was my first week since.... actually…I have no idea since when, that I have been able to run outside MORE days than I have run INSIDE. That is actually pretty amazing. I had February vaca last week, so I was able to structure my runs around times when the roads were apt to be traffic free, along with being able told sleep a bit later (8:00 am!).

I think my body and my soul NEEDED that week of outside running! There were so many things I had forgotten about that go on when you are mainly running outside. Each run from last week is permanently etched in my brain. It’s funny how sacred something becomes to you once it’s returned. Just to be able to be outside made it into an awesome running week for me! Even though, YES. . . my goal marathon was cancelled. But, last week, I saw the beginnings of the transition back to outdoor running, and I began to break free of the shackles formed by spending three + months with my treadmill.

Some notes for you!

First….Some long run notes.
My 16 miler on Saturday was my first outside long run (over 10-11 miles) in a while. Over the past month- month and a half, I’ve had to either split my run up with some outside/some inside, or just treadmill-ed all of it. Yes, mentally, it has made me a much stronger runner…But there really is nothing like the feel of accomplishing a really hard, long run with your own two feet hitting the roads/trails. That sense of accomplishment- I live for that!

Things I noticed…
-Fuel. I noticed that I was hungrier/thirstier MUCH more quickly than I would be on a treadmill run. I was also using a different fuel than I normally do : Honey Stinger (I usually use GU). I’m not sure if this is why I was so hungry?

-Wind. Saturday was extremely windy, and for a while now, thats not really an element my body has been exposed to lately during long runs. I don’t know if the wind made me feel like I needed more fuel? But I thought it was worth mentioning to you so that you can make a mental note of that for your future long runs/races! When you are only running on a treadmill-you have zero wind resistance. Research has shown that setting your treadmill at a 1% incline helps simulate the outside environment. And while I DO set my treadmill, always, at a 1% incline, I have to say there is nothing like battling wind in the actual outdoors. In my own mind-> there is nothing my treadmill can do that will make me feel like I am running through 20 mph winds…

-Exhaustion/soreness. Since my original long plan had been to do 17-20 miles, I planned to hop on treadmill for another 2-3 miles. 16 miles is usually nothing for me. It certainly has never left me feeling achy or exhausted. Right when I walked through my front door- it was clear that there weren’t going to be any more miles for me that day. My body felt SO tired and beaten up from being in the elements. But, being the trooper stubborn pigheaded runner I am, I forced myself down to the basement, and onto the treadmill. Two steps in–muscles were hurting that NEVER hurt. I quit right then and there and opted to do more stretching than running. The way I feel after a 16 miler on the treadmill is completely different than how I feel after an outside run. Also, I think its important to note that my body isn’t used to multiple days outside yet. I know  if I had been running outside every single day, that I probably would have felt stronger at the end of my run.  My body has to adjust back to different terrains, and wind. Transitioning back to pavement will take time, and apparently, leaves me more stiff and sore than what I am used to!

-Running outside vs inside. I have always had a little lag in paces when I return back to outdoor running from indoor running. The temperatures/ air/ pavement-its a tough transition. I have to say i’m really happy with how it is going so far. I’m pretty proud of myself for being able to nail certain hills at certain paces. It’s weird how I’m sore in different areas though…The treadmill makes my lower back hurt. But with outdoor running, my calves are sore. I know my stride is different on the roads. Its longer outside, but it also has to change depending on the inclines and the declines. When I come home from outdoor running, I feel more of an “all over” body/ muscle soreness. Even when I include steeper inclines– running on the treadmill is a different kind of sore.

Anyway. I wanted to make sure I told you all about these things because like me, alot of you have spent a ton of time inside this winter because DUH, you have to because its been the Snowpocalyse, or perhaps you feel like Antarctica has become your home lately. I noticed these changes in my body last week and thought I would pass them on to you to remember that when you start transitioning to outside running, these things can happen to you too and its important to keep them in mind. If you run solely on your treadmill, your body isn’t getting any exposure to natural things that you can’t plan for via the treadmill. And you know what they say: “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.” I don’t necessarily think that’s true about ALL types of weather (like a blizzard it a hurricane), but most weather situations are only going to strengthen your running and help you adapt to any situation.

SO in short: I hate wind, but it makes me stronger. I like to experiment with different fuels, maybe Honey Stinger is not the one for me and I should stick with GU. Transitioning back to running outside makes me feel more tired/sore! It is awesome to know that I am able to handle paces outside that I have been forced to hold only on the dreadmill!

Some pics for you:

Boston’s elevation:
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I found this comparison chart of the five world major marathons to be fascinating!
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Some Do’s And Don’t’s for Boston … (its the same as last year)

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Yoga Pants, and cool new sweatshirts are really my favorite thing in the world right now…I am obsessed with this wrap sweatshirt!
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When you find your favorite wine has a NEW limited release–> YOu must buy at least 2 bottles! (and plan to go and stock up on more cause this one is yummy!
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Do you notice changes in your running when you start to transition back outside?

Not letting the “long run” take over my life

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SIL and I were talking on Saturday night about our mutual long runs-SIL ran 12, I ran 20. I grilled her for EVERY single detail. It’s been a long time since I’ve been a new runner hitting those new distances, and hearing how she feels about each and every run is one of my favorite things. I literally asked her 85 questions because i was so curious!

SIL did her long run with her team- The Dana Farber runners. Next week she starts training along the actual Boston course!! I’m really excited for her! When i think back to my first marathons, I really wish that i had done the long runs with my own team-I think its a fantastic way to stay motivated and make new running friends! (When I started running for my Children’s Hospital team, i had to work every Saturday…which was when they did their long runs, so i used to do mine on Sundays. )

Anyway, we obviously were talking about our different sore muscles, foam rolling, stretching, etc. We talked about how she felt a lot better and more confident on this team run than she did on her first. She really is learning mind over matter-it’s SO exciting to hear about all of her advancements! She also said how she thinks of her own 20 miler (Which won’t be until March) and the distance just seems SO far compared to what she is running now.

One thing I’ve learned in all of my years of running is not to let the long run take over my life/weekend. If you let it rule you-it will. I’ve learned the balance between handling the long run and life. Some days, its a fine line between “I’m exhausted” and “Yeah, I can push myself some more today.”

OF COURSE I am sore when I’m done my long run. I an remember, quite a few years ago, when i would do my longer – long runs (like 17-20 miles) and I wouldn’t make plans the rest of the day. I would mostly just veg out on the couch. You know the drill..finish run..shower…put on clothes…eat all the food…collapse on couch….and stay there til bed! 

THAT gets old. FAST. And that makes life BORING! Now, i LOVE running, but i love “LIFE” just as much. I don’t care HOW tired I am–> I do not let a long run rule my life. When we threw our Christmas party a few weeks ago, I did my long run that morning. Yesterday, I did a long run before my family came over. There were times over this past summer where I ran a half marathon race and then went about my day like nothing had happened that morning! I went to baby showers, weddings, birthday parties..all post long run. Its kind of not even a “big deal” to my friends anymore. They all just think I’m a weirdo it’s funny and are thoughtful in asking “Did you run today? And how many? 20?” And then they laugh, and move on. My BFF likes to tell people how i ran 13 on my wedding day (i did! I would’ve been a bundle of nerves had I not!)

I’m not telling you all that so you think I’m a bad ass because I’m really not. I’m telling you this because I know what its like…to just want to sleep or sit in a hot tub until tomorrow and not really do anything at all. I made the decision not to let myself be “too tired for fun” after a long run. You just can’t! If you find yourself too exhausted to move, week after week, then its time to reevaluate something in your plan, or your running! I completely understand being “tired” but being “too tired to move or do things” every week isn’t healthy either. Running and life are a balance act. One that you have to work at..but you shouldn’t let “running” get in the way of things like spending time with your family, or missing out on something really awesome.
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SIL is doing fantastic at the balancing thing. She is a mom/wife/teacher/photography genius—> so she kind of already had a pretty sweet juggling routine going on before she added “marathoner in training” to that list. She’s great at taking her kiddos places on weekends, even with those tired legs, because she doesn’t want to miss “the moments” that life presents.

These are my tips for making the rest of your day, post- long run a little bit easier:

-Have a plan for your long run! Make it a routine. Knowing that i want to be done my run before my husband gets home from work motivates me to get going early in the day!

-Have food ready for you when you get home. I can’t cook for myself immediately following a long run..I’m wayy too HANGRY. So i usually think about what I’m going to have immediately after, and have it ready. Sometimes its leftovers from the night before, sometimes its soup from my daddio…i just know that i will *NEED* food, and having a post run food plan makes me and my belly so happy!

-Get out cha compression socks. Wear them. it is winter time-NOBODY WILL KNOW they are on under your clothes because lets be serious, you need 8 layers to be outside functioning anyway!!

-If your thing is an epsom salt bath, or an ice bath…get your ice BEFORE you run. Nobody wants to go to the store after finishing a long run!

-Do a little stretching IMMEDIATELY after finishing while your muscles are still loose and warm. This helps sooooo much. And, added bonus: when you are in the shower and drop the soap..you will actually be ABLE to bend over and pick it up.

-this is a night before the long run tip, but make sure your toenails are clipped. Nobody likes having, or even SEEING a black toe. Nobody.

I hope these tips help you out!

What’s your post long run routine?

Have you ever felt like the long run was taking over your whole day?