2ND PR OF 2016

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So, perhaps the title of this post gave away my big reveal, BUT I PR’ed in the half marathon this weekend! While this is normally a cause for celebration for me (and anyone else, duh), I can’t help but be a little disappointed in my performance. I didn’t reach my goal of breaking 1:40, which admittedly, has gotten me feeling pretty down in the dumps.

I know a PR is a PR, but I’m 100% certain that I could’ve run better than I did. I went in with a frustrated and disgruntled attitude, much of which was my own doing. I did not prepare for this race in a responsible way. I have a very long list of things I would do differently. Some of which include:

  1. I would not drink alcohol the night before the race, at all.
  2. I would’ve figured out breakfast the night before, because as it turns out, shockingly little is open in downtown LA at 5am.
  3. I would’ve given myself at least one more day to adjust to the time change.
  4. I would’ve checked a dang bag at the race start or I would’ve brought clothes to throw away before the race. I was absolutely freezing and spent a good hour of energy shivering before the race.
  5. I would’ve spent the hour before the race getting myself amped up instead of grumbling about everything that went wrong.

But aside from my own poor rookie mistakes, the race was great. The course was nice and open (unfortunately this meant flying and dying for me), and the water stops were well equipped. Some runners complained that there wasn’t quite enough Gatorade available, but since I’m not a big Gatorade drinker lately, this didn’t bother me.

The weather was also absolutely perfect. I didn’t even think about the weather conditions until someone asked me after the race how it was. There were a few times I dropped water over my head, but I never got uncomfortably warm or uncomfortably cold (once I started running—before the race I was certain I was going to come down with hypothermia).

There were a few hang ups with transportation—a lot of traffic, the shuttles got a little lost, etc, but otherwise I didn’t run into any glaring problems with the race.

Some other fun things from the weekend:

We stayed at the Biltmore in downtown LA which is a super famous hotel. Plus, it was kind of pretty.

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I had most of Saturday morning to myself while S worked and I waited for one of my friends to make her way to downtown. That’s when I stumbled across this delightful little crepe place. It was absolutely delicious, and I even made S go back there with me the morning before we left so I could get the Croque Madame for a second time.

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Later that day, I met up with my high school friend and her beau and they took me through Hollywood. I had never been so it was high on my to-do list this time. The highlight was without a doubt, Good Times at Davey Wayne’s. THIS was the door to the bar, and inside it was all 70’s themed. Plus, the cocktails were delicious.

Overall it was a pretty good trip, with a PR, excellent food and good company. Plus, we missed the first “real” snowstorm of the season, so I can’t complain about that. Next race I’ll just work on preparing a little better 🙂

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WINTER WEATHER HAS ARRIVED

And it’s really kind of horrible. Far too many of my runs this past week were done in less than ideal conditions. Here’s a glimpse of what my week looked like:

Monday: 6 morning miles, 8:33 pace

Tuesday: 4.62 miles, 9:07 pace

Hill Repeats (4) + warm up and cool down, on Heartbreak Hill, in a blizzard. Woof, this was a tough one. It definitely made me motivated to doing more hill work though. It was much harder than I ever anticipated, and the weather certainly didn’t help. While it was very pretty, the snow was falling so hard and fast that our tracks were covered between every repeat. S and I brought Riley and he seemed to enjoy himself quite a bit, which makes one of us. The rest of us were on struggle street the whole time.

Wednesday: Treadmill morning run, 5 miles at 8:42 pace

Thursday: Off. I really wasn’t feeling well. I had been battling a cold all week (I’m sure the hill repeats in the blizzard only helped me feel better…) and I just needed a break from everything.

Friday: 5 morning miles, 8:26 pace

Saturday: 13.14 miles, 7:51 pace

Another beautiful day. POURING rain to begin with, very chilly and rainy. By about mile 6 I couldn’t feel my fingers anymore and the rain hard turned into freezing rain, which then turned into snow shortly after that. It was really terrible, but it made me go extra fast. This run surprisingly felt great, aside from the bitter weather conditions.

Sunday: 6 miles, 8:19 pace

I’m pretty sure I was asleep for this entire run. S ran with me and we were both so exhausted we barely said 7 words to each other. I don’t think either of us would’ve done the run had we not had each other though.

Total: 39 miles

Now for some pictures:

Seriously, Tuesday was a blizzard.

I tried my new Nike Lunarglides this week and I absolutely love them. The toe box is way bigger than the 870v4s so they feel nice and roomy. They’re also about the same weight as my Pure Cadences (a little heavier) and have a pretty drastic heel to toe drop (10mm). And let’s face it, they look pretty cool.

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Before our long run on Saturday we had a yoga instructor take us through some poses. I (far left) think I look like a natural yogi. Or, as one of our TEAMmates pointed out, a sorority girl posing for a picture.

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After our long run on Saturday, S made the best damn scramble I’ve ever had. He will be held to this standard for every breakfast moving forward. It was incredible and the perfect meal to make up for such a hellishly cold run.

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And for dinner that night, the best fueling I could muster up.

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Lastly, these two favorites of mine.

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Happy Tuesday and hope everyone enjoys their SHORT WEEK. I’m headed to LA on Friday to run the Run To Remember Half Marathon on Sunday. Next post will probably be on Tuesday again, along with a race recap. Looking forward to some warmer weather and drier conditions.

 

 

NEW YEAR, ALL THE NEW SHOES

Here I am again! Second Monday in a row. I’m totally killin’ this New Years resolution 11 days in.

So last week was a pretty good running week for me, and once again my highest mileage since my injury. Plus, it was my first double-digit long run! Here’s what the week looked like:

Monday: 6 miles, 8:36 pace

Tuesday: Tempo Run! 1 mile warm up, 4 miles at 7:09 average pace, 1 mile cool down. Average pace: 7:41.

P.S. I was SUPER happy with this run, even though I raced at close to this pace less than a week ago. It just felt MUCH easier this time around. Let’s ignore the fact that it was on a treadmill versus the hills of Western Mass, I’m still very proud it and I’m taking it as a good sign for the rest of my training cycle.

Wednesday: Shake out run. REALLLLY felt that tempo run. My legs were crying to me all day long. 5 miles at 8:38 average pace.

Thursday: 7 miles at 8:26 pace. This was the first running during training where I did not look at my watch ONCE during the run. I was wearing a difficult shirt that was covering my watch so I didn’t really have the opportunity. I think it was very good for my soul to run by feel for once.

Friday: 3 miles, 8:17 pace

Saturday: 10 miles, 7:58 pace. I have no idea what was going on with this run, but I felt like a billion bucks. It was pouring rain, pretty chilly, and the TEAM ran the Newton Hills for the first time. I shouldn’t have felt as good as I did. I love when that happens.

Sunday: Rest

I didn’t cross train this week, which was a bad habit to break. Don’t follow my example. Cross training is important and I’m just dumb. I’ll try to do better this week.

In other news, it was a beautiful week for new shoes. This is what my cubicle looked like on Wednesday:

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I ordered the 870v4s (I trained exclusively in the v3s last year for my marathon and was obsessed) and I was pretty disappointed. New Balance changed the toe box so it rubs a little bit, and overall I just don’t feel like the v4s fit as well. I’ve given them three chances and I’m still pretty unhappy. Unfortunately, New Balance doesn’t have the same policy as Brooks (you can return any of your gear for up to 90 days no matter how much you’ve worn it). So I’m stuck with them and will try to incorporate them occasionally into my training.

I also got the 1500v1s for tempo runs and track workouts. I did a little trial run on Friday in them and I like them! Plus they look pretty badass if I do say so myself (they’re those blindingly orange shoes)

I’m also getting these beauties in the mail tomorrow. It’s my first attempt to run in Nikes, so fingers crossed.

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And if that goes well, I’ll be buying up all the colors because they’re pretty amazing.

 

And completely unrelated to running, I had a gift exchange with some friends this week and made out pretty well. LOOK AT THESE LESLIE KNOPE EARRINGS.

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Also, I’m pretty pleased at the resemblance between me and this fox.

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And finally I rounded out the week “baking” some Oreo balls and with a delicious swordfish dinner (brought to you by S…definitely not me).

Hope you all have a great week!

NEW YEAR, NEW POST (FINALLY)

I’m back…again. After all, it’s a new year and that means new resolutions to break, like getting back into blogging. Looking back, I realized that posting every day might’ve been a bit ambitious for the long-term. So for now I’m going to make a solid effort to post at least once a week— hopefully on Mondays (see, by writing it here I’m trying to make myself accountable).

So what’s been going on in the last 2 months? Here’s a quick recap told in pictures.

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I went home a few times and bought my parents snowshoes for Christmas. We’ve been getting a lot of use out of them so far.

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S bought me a new fancy camera for Christmas and I’ve since then become a wildlife photographer.

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Also a pet photographer. Riley is THRILLED about my new hobby.

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Team in Training started. We did a holiday themed run back in December and I personally think S and I looked great.

And I brought in the New Year with a new PR in the 5 mile! 36:31, not exactly the time I was hoping for, but since it was my first race post-injury and a personal best I’ll take it.

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So far, 2016 is off to a good start.