November Rewind

Good things for the month:
  • PR’d the Chilly Half Marathon – I went 3 for 3 in PRs for my races this fall and I couldn’t be happier! 
  • I’m working with a chiropractor and after just a handful of sessions my ITB is noticeably improved.
  • Started the Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge which has definitely helped keep my motivation level up post-race. 
  • Enjoying just running how far I want, when I want — everyone needs time off from a training plan
Things I could do without:
  • Raynaud’s Disease– with the drop in temperatures in the last couple of weeks, the annual battle with Raynaud’s begins. Hand warmers and mittens become constant running companions now until Spring.

What’s up for December:

  • I’m running with my brother in his first 5K – cannot wait!
  • The Holiday Challenge has highlighted for me that I really need to do a better job getting enough fruits & veggies on a daily basis, so I’m going to focus on better meal planning.
  • Meditation – I was trying to follow the Chopra Center’s latest 21-day challenge last month, but I didn’t make it a priority and I missed a bunch of days. So I downloaded the Challenge and will start again on December 1, seems like a good way to go into the holiday season, don’t ya think?
  • Finish the year healthy and strong — continue the yoga classes, chiro visits and strength training. I would have loved to hit 1,000 miles for this year but with 137 miles left to go I’m not sure I’ll make it. Right now I think it is doing my body a lot of good to have back off the mileage so I don’t want to jeopardize that for a random goal.
 How’s your year wrapping up? Any goals you’re still working towards?



Chilly Half Marathon Race Recap

All last week I had been agonizing over the hilly route, imaginary aches and pains, the weather & what to wear, my less than stellar final long run….you get the picture.

On Friday, I had a final call with Coach Bennett to discuss race strategy. Then Saturday morning I found this email from Bennett in my inbox:

Have a great run on Sunday.
 Be confident that you have trained well and
that you are well prepared to reach your goal.
I’ll be cheering for you (virtually).
“Run hard, be strong, think big!”
Percy Cerutty, legendary running coach

I read and re-read that email several times on Saturday and once more before heading to the start. Surprisingly, for all my angst all week, I was very calm Sunday driving to the race. Timing worked perfectly and I snagged a parking space with about a half hour before the race started. I ate a banana, took a short warm up run, and since I had time I opted for the indoor bathrooms. Then I headed to the starting area and chatted with a few other runners.  One runner, who had run the race before, warned me where the hills were and in particular to be prepared for one last climb at mile 12…seriously!?!? But despite what I was hearing, I was surprised at how calm I was.

The start was a bit of a mess as there were no corrals to self-seed and it was quickly clear that some people were not where they should have been. The lack of seeding plus the narrow streets made it pretty hectic. Adrenaline definitely kicked in because I went out too fast! I kept checking my Garmin and knew I should reel it in, but I was feeling really good. I decided I’d just keep going for the first 5 miles, knowing that the hills were coming. I saw J and the boys just around the first mile marker. I settled in, enjoyed my tunes and the first 5 miles seem to fly by. I’d see my family again, this time my dad and brother were there too. I don’t know how they managed it but my family seem to be everywhere on the course! (Other runners even commented on how great it was that they were out there, especially since in many spots they were the only spectators!)

As I got into the hills, I let go of looking at my Garmin and ran by feel as Bennett had advised. The water stops weren’t where I expected them so I didn’t take a GU until around mile 6. Almost instantly my stomach was not happy. Hills and an unhappy stomach?!? I took a couple of short walk breaks, hoping things would settle and just willing myself to the 8 mile marker, as I knew there would finally be a big down hill coming. As we came out on to Comm Ave I got the biggest smile on my face — the downhill 🙂 I fell in step with another runner and we chatted a little and just soaked in being able to open it up again.

The course was open to traffic and the police were doing an amazing job of keeping runners and cars moving — until we reached a large intersection where Beacon St and Comm Ave meet. All of the sudden we had a police officer telling us to stop for the traffic. He apologized but said that some local area groups (including a church) had complained that they were holding up people in traffic too long because of the race. So there a group of us stood on a corner, trying to keep our legs going… waiting. I didn’t even want to look at my Garmin and see the seconds ticking by. When we started again, my legs were not happy but at least I was running again.

No bling?! Finishers’ Gloves

Around 10 1/2 miles I spotted my oldest son running down the sidewalk towards me. He ran with me and told me he and J were leaving for his lacrosse tournament. So we wished each other good luck and I thanked him for sticking around for so long. (He did make it in time for the 2nd half of his first game!) The 12 mile marker appeared and I thought, ok one more hill. As I got to the top, I felt a little light-headed (despite having taken another GU at mile 10), I started to walk for a second and I heard a woman behind me say “Oh don’t stop. I’ve been pacing off of you for the last couple of miles.” I told her how I was feeling and she encouraged me to pace off of her. I promised her I’d catch up and that she should keep going; and soon I started to run again. There was one final uphill before the finish so I just tried to focus on picking off each runner in front of me. Then I came up on the woman who’d been pacing off me. I ran up beside her and urged her to push with me to the finish – and we came across the line together!

2:26 and a 3 minute PR! I was ecstatic!
I have lots of thought swirling in my head regarding this training cycle, but this post is long enough, so I will save those for another day.

Monday Recovery


 I’m still basking in the glow of yesterday’s race – a 3 minute PR! Race report to come later.

Yesterday’s soreness seems to be subsiding. All-in-all I feel pretty good today, apart from one serious blister, I’m just a little tired. So today is about getting some rest…well as much rest as is possible with the boys home with a day off from school today. And, a much needed massage is on the schedule for tomorrow!

How was your weekend? What have you got planned for the week?

Monday randomness & a winner

Another un-caffeinated post on a Monday morning….

  • I’d really like someone to explain to me why my son’s hockey games must all start at 7 on a Sunday morning?!?!? It’s going to be a very long season….
  • So race week craziness has returned as I count down the days to this Sunday’s race. As I mentioned HERE I don’t fare well during these weeks!
    • Big goal this week is to try to get enough sleep – something I’ve been sorely lacking of late.
    • While I am looking forward to taking a break from a training plan, I’m already eyeing 6 – 8 races for next year. Haven’t pulled the trigger on any of them yet…oh my poor credit card!

    Yurbuds Winner!

    Thanks to all of you who entered the Yurbuds giveaway — the playlist suggestions were great! And, with the help of, the winner is lucky #7 Jen from Hello Fitness We Meet Again. Jen, please email me at Congrats!

    Anyone else started shopping 2013 races yet?

    October Rewind

    Good things for the month:
    Things I could do without:
    • No complaints – it’s all good.

    What’s up for November:

    • Chilly Half Marathon is next weekend! 
    • Running without a training plan. I haven’t been without a training plan since I started working with Coach Bennett in July. And, while I have really enjoyed training, I’m looking forward to having a break and just running whatever and when ever I want.
    • Continue focusing on making my left ITB happy again. With some down time coming, I need to get this ITB beyond just the “manageable” stage.
    • Once again I’ll be participating in the Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge organized by Amanda at Run To The Finish. The Challenge starts November 19 and is an awesome way to stay motivated during the holidays. Amanda does an amazing job pulling this Challenge together and there are some great prizes for added incentive. There’s still time to register, so come join me  — and if you do sign up, please tell her I sent you 🙂
    How’d your October go? What have you got planned for this month?


    Monday Morning in Bullet Points

    It’s Monday, I haven’t had coffee and I started my morning in a school gym with 40 very energetic kids…it’s a bullets kind of morning!

    • Saturday’s 12 miler was my last double digit run before the Chilly Half Marathon. Just 3 weeks to go!
    • I did go and check out the race route yesterday…let’s just say, sometimes ignorance is bliss! The good news is the course winds through some lovely neighborhoods in the picturesque town of Newton, MA. The bad news…I’ll be rolling through the hills once again.  Could someone please remind me to check the course elevation before registering for another half 🙂

    • I’ll be running the Canton Fall Classic on Sunday. This is a great local race that I’ve run the last couple of years. I haven’t run a 5k since the Jingle Bell Run last December and I haven’t “raced” a 5k since this race last year when I PR’d! This race is always a good time so I can’t wait!
    Saucony Triumph 10
    • These lovelies showed up on my doorstep at the end of last week – Yes those are the new Saucony Triumph 10s (due out in November)! It took great restraint to not deviate from my training plan and go run in them immediately! But I’m off to take them for a spin now….review to come!
    Happy Monday!

    Thursday Thoughts (aka 3 Things)

    1.   If someone sees my zen, could you please return it to me!  It’s almost hard to imagine that last week this time I was getting ready to head out of town with J for a weekend away to celebrate our anniversary. (By the way, thanks you for all the good wishes!)  We had a great time! But a few days back into the grind of the daily routine, kids’ school work & sports, etc. and that weekend away seems like a million years ago! As a friend pointed out, “The zen disappears the moment you pull into your drive way.”

    2.  It’s Thursday so that means I hit the track this morning which always makes me happy (despite not being a fan of 1000 meter repeats!) There’s always something about finishing a track workout that leaves me feeling a little badass — gotta work on translating that feeling to the road more often! Just a little more than 3 weeks until the Chilly Half Marathon — I think I may try to go check out the course this weekend to see what I’m in for.

    3.  I participated in a great Twitter chat on Tuesday hosted by FitFluential and Commitment Day. What is Commitment Day? It’s a movement to get 300,000 people in over 30 cities to participate in a nationwide 5k on January 1st, and more importantly to set the tone to commit to a healthier lifestyle in 2013. You can run, walk, skip if you want but the point is to get out there. I especially love that they are encouraging families to come out and participate together (in fact children register for free with an adult!) I’m planning to participate in the Boston event with J and our boys and encourage you to check out the event in your city — check the Commitment Day website for more information.



    September Rewind

    Good things for the month:
    Yes Dimity is very tall…and I’m so very not 🙂
    • PR at ZOOMA Cape Cod! 
    • Managed to cut off an ITB issue before it turned into an injury.
    • Lots of fun blogger meet-ups thanks to a great ZOOMA race weekend – plus I got to meet and chat with Dimity & Sarah from Another Mother Runner!
    Things I could do without:
    • Cranky ITB that resulted in decreasing my miles – just 78 for the month.

    What’s up for October:

    • Returning to speedwork to get ready for November’s Chilly Half Marathon.
    • Continue to build on the strength training (3x’s/week) so any ITB issues don’t flare up and I can complete all of my training runs.
    • Focusing on better post-run care — consistently using the foam roller after runs and Epsom salt baths after long runs.
    • Cleaning up my eating – which definitely got a little sloppy as I was adjusting to the new schedule of the kids back at school and all the after-school activities.
    • Running the Canton Fall Classic – a fun local race. I’ll be looking to shave some time off my 5k time, though I’m toying with running the 10k to make up for missing the Tufts 10k for Women (I’ll be cheering my son at his lacrosse tournament instead!)

    What have you got planned for October?