2015 Road Races

Here’s what I have thus far:

January 1 – 1st Run 5k – 23:01 (7:25 min/mile pace) – RECAP

January 16 – Star Wars 5k – Untimed, but Garmin had 27:50 (8:58 min/mile pace) – RECAP

January 17 – Star Wars 10k – 1:01:34 (9:55 min/mile pace) – RECAP

January 18 – Star Wars Half Marathon – 2:55:11 (13:22 min/mile pace) – RECAP

January 25 – 20th Annual Boston Prep 16 Miler – 2:28:36 – RECAP

***

February 15 – 2nd Annual Stop Stroke Shuffle 5k – 26:42 (8:36 min/mile pace)

February 20 – Princess 5k – Untimed, but Garmin had 26:37 (8:35 min/mile pace) – RECAP Pending

February 21 – Enchanted 10k – 53:32 (8:41 min/mile pace) – RECAP Pending

February 22 – Princess Half Marathon – 2:00:33 (9:12 min/mile pace) – RECAP Pending

***

March 15 – Craicfest 5k – Starts at TBD

***

April 18 – B.A.A. 5k – Starts at 8:00 a.m. ET

April 20 – 119th Boston Marathon – Starts at TBD

***

May 8-9 – Ragnar Relay Cape Cod – Starts at TBD

May 10 – M.O.M.’s Run 5k Walk & Run for Cancer – Starts at 8:00 a.m. ET

May 24 – Boston’s Run To Remember Half – Starts at 7:00 a.m. ET

May 30 – Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego 5k – Starts at 7:00 a.m. PT

May 31 – Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon – Starts at 6:15 a.m. PT

***

June 7 – Freedom Run 5k – Starts at TBD

***

July 12 – Sasquatch Trail Run – Starts at TBD

***

September 26 – ZOOMA Women’s Half Marathon (Cape Cod) – Starts at 7:30 a.m. ET

***

October 4 – Oktoberfest 5k – Starts at 9:30 a.m. ET

***

November 7 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah Full Marathon – Starts at 7:00 a.m. ET

***

December 13 – Yulefest 5k – Starts at 9:30 a.m. ET

IMG_8260 (1)

Share

Half Marathon & Marathon Results

Half Marathons x 28

February 26, 2006 – Hyannis Half Marathon – 2:20:18 (10:43 min/mile pace)

August 14, 2011 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago – 2:12:15 (10:06 min/mile pace)

January 28, 2012 – F^3 Lake Half – 2:05:40 (9:36 min/mile pace)

July 22, 2012 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago – 1:51:43 (8:32 min/mile pace)

August 19, 2012 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Providence – 1:52:58 (8:37 min/mile pace)

October 7, 2012 – B.A.A. Half – 1:48:16 (8:16 min/mile pace)

January 12, 2013 – Walt Disney World Half – 1:48:09 (8:15 min/mile pace)

February 24, 2013 - *Virtual* Half At The Hamptons – 1:58:04 (9:01 min/mile pace)

May 5, 2013 – The Half Of Quincy – 1:44:30 (7:59 min/mile pace)

May 26, 2013 – Boston’s Run To Remember – 1:53:00 (8:38 min/mile pace)

September 15, 2013 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Philadelphia – 1:44:12 (7:57 min/mile pace) —> PR

September 28, 2103 – ZOOMA Cape Cod Half – 1:47:35 (8:13 min/mile pace)

September 29, 2013 – Rock ‘n’ Rock Providence – 1:54:22 (8:44 min/mile pace)

October 27, 2013 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Los Angeles – 1:53:19 (8:39 min/mile pace)

January 11, 2014 – Walt Disney World Half – 2:22:31 (10:53 min/mile pace)

February 2, 2014 – Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Half – 1:55:43 (8:50 min/mile pace)

May 25, 2014 - Boston’s Run To Remember Half – 1:50:58 (8:28 min/mile pace)

June 8, 2014 – Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half  – 2:08:52 (9:50 min/mile pace)

July 13, 2014 – Old Port Half – 1:57:44 (8:59 min/mile pace)

September 7, 2014 – Pumpkinman Half Ironman (Half Marathon Portion) – 1:59:22 (9:03 min/mile pace)

September 27, 2014 - ZOOMA Cape Cod Half – 1:54:17 (8:43 min/mile pace)

October 12, 2014 – Boston Athletic Association Half – 1:52:58 (8:37 min/mile pace)

October 19, 2014 – Runner’s World Half – 2:10:35 (9:58 min/mile pace)

November 16, 2014 – South Shore Half – 1:54:00 (8:42 min/mile pace)

November 23, 2014 – Santa Hustle New England Half – 1:52:28 (8:36 min/mile pace)

December 6, 2014 – Jingle Bell Half – 1:51:37.2 (8:32 min/mile pace)

January 18, 2015 – Star Wars Half – 2:55:11 (13:22 min/mile pace)

February 22, 2015 – Princess Half – 2:00:33 (9:12 min/mile pace)

 

Marathons x 6

September 24, 2006 – Clarence De Mar Marathon – 5:59:27 (13:43 min/mile pace)

November 3, 2012 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah Marathon – 3:58:49 (9:07 min/mile pace) —> PR

April 15, 2013 – The 117th Boston Marathon – 4:04:08 (9:18 min/mile pace)

January 12, 2014 – Walt Disney World Marathon – 4:45:57 (10:55 min/mile pace)

April 21, 2014 – 118th Boston Marathon – 5:31:18 (12:39 min/mile pace)

April 26, 2014 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Marathon – 4:42:12 (10:46 min/mile pace)

Share

And My Fall 2015 Marathon Will Be…

… drum roll please?

C’mon folks! Someone give me a little National Lampoon Christmas Vacation drum roll action!

drum

Ahhh I crack myself up.

Aaannnyywwwhoo!

I will be proudly representing Team Chocolate Milk while tackling my ninth full marathon in…

Are you getting excited?

On the edge of your seat?

Wondering what I will say next?

Well without further adieu the location is…

savannah

Savannah!! 

That’s right! I am happily returning to the scene of my second full marathon (November 2012) and location where I set my current PR and recorded my (so far) only sub-4 marathon.

medal

At this point, I will be shooting to PR once again in Savannah as I feel like I am a stronger runner three years later.

splits

However I will say I was pretty proud of my decently even splits back in 2012. I know the end I lost steam, the weather turned hot (uncharacteristically warm that weekend) and I was in my own head.

finish

choc

***

NOW I am currently still in the lottery for NYC Marathon (November 1) so if I get in to that it may refocus my goals for Savannah, but for now I would like to focus on another sub-4 there.

The course is nice and flat!!

rock

PLUS Savannah was an amazing city to explore.

***

My marathons update:

1. September 24, 2006 – Clarence De Mar – 5:59:27

2. November 3, 2012 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah – 3:58:49

3. April 15, 2013 – 117th Boston Marathon – 4:04:08

4. January 12, 2014 – Walt Disney World Marathon – 4:45:57

5. April 21, 2014 – 118th Boston Marathon – 5:31:18

6. April 26, 2014 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville – 4:42:12

7. April 20, 2015 – 119th Boston Marathon – TBD

8. May 31, 2015 – Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego – TBD

9. November 7, 2015 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah – TBD

***

Have you rocked and rolled your way through Savannah?

 

Share

My First Run Disney Princess Weekend: #PrincessTweetup, Course Maps & Costume Sneak Peek

I am loving and hating that Princess weekend is mere days away.

IMG_0461

How could I be hating this amazing news as Boston is up to 85 inches of snow in the past three weeks?

Well it means my vacations and Run Disney races will already be over for 2015. :P

The wife and I traveled to Disneyland for the first time in January for the inaugural Star Wars race weekend. It was a BLAST!

disneyland_253

This would be stop 1 on our first Coast 2 Coast adventure.

Now we head to Disney on Thursday (!!!!!) for the Princess weekend.

IMG_0460

I will be completing all three races (shocking I know) – 5k, 10k and Half – while the wife will be going for the #GlassSlipperChallenge (10k and Half).

So on Sunday I will be able to take a pic with all 9 of my Run Disney medals from 2015! Hollah! Boy I cannot wait for that Castle pic. :)

But I am getting ahead of myself.

For those that don’t know the Princess race weekend will be our 4th Run Disney weekend. I know – many folks feel like I have done dozens of them, but I guess that means I just talk about them a lot? ;)

I did Disney Half 2013, Dopey Challenge 2014, Star Wars 2015 and now Princess 2015. I think we have our eyes set on Star Wars and Wine and Dine for 2016. Again getting ahead of myself.

We will be heading to Disney from February 19-24. It was actually cheaper for us to stay at Disney an extra night than try and take a flight home after the half (Sunday) or on Monday. Cheaper meaning hotel + park ticket + dogs in the Pooch hotel additional night < Flying home Sunday or Monday. Crazy! So yes spending the extra time in the warmth at Disney was a no-brainer. :)

Am I right?

We have our hotel (Saratoga Springs), magic bands, park hopper passes, dining reservations and Fastpasses locked and loaded!

IMG_0487

Dining Reservations (for dinner unless noted otherwise):

Thursday – Raglan Road Irish Pub (Downtown Disney)
Friday – Hollywood Brown Derby (Hollywood Studios)
Saturday – Sci-Fi Dine-In Theatre (Hollywood Studios)
Sunday – Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano (Hollywood Studios)
Monday – ‘Ohana (character breakfast – Polynesian Resort) & Coral Reef (Epcot)

***

EXPO

Pending flights we plan on hitting up the Expo on Thursday! I don’t have any “must-haves” this time around besides a Glass Slipper Challenge magnet for my fridge. I would love the jacket, but if Star Wars Expo was any indiction – it will be long gone by the time I get there.

***

#PrincessTweetup

Now in addition to checking out the parks and running 22.4 magical miles, I will also be co-hosting a meetup/tweetup. Complete with prizes.

PRINCESStweetup

My good friend Kat from KatrinaElle.com lives in the area and while she isn’t running she was more than happy to team up and share some hugs, high-fives and laughs with me anyway! Oh and everyone that attends as well. ;)

So be sure to join us Saturday, Feb 21 from 1-3 at the carousel at Downtown Disney.

Make sure you are there… or you won’t be there and you won’t be having as much fun! :P

Oh oh oh and you don’t HAVE to have twitter or be running the races to attend. This is an opportunity for all social media friends to meet in person.

***

Course Maps

While I am not one to normally look at course maps ahead of time (why take the surprise out of it ;)) I do like to check out what parks the races will go through.

5k/10k

5k-10k

Half

princes half

I am looking forward to seeing which characters they bring out for Princess. I know during Marathon weekend there was a whole variety of Disney characters, while Star Wars was solely Star Wars characters.

I’ve searched the web and stalked friends’ photos and it looks like they have princesses and villians, as well as staple Disney characters (Mickey, Minnie, etc) dressed up to match the theme.

Ahhhh yay!! Character stops are one of my favorite pars of the Disney races.

I am very excited to once again be in Corral A for all 3 races so I am once again charging myself with stopping at every character stop no matter the line. :)

***

Costume Sneak Peak

I think this is the portion everyone has been waiting for. We know my wife brings it when it comes to costume making. Now we are a tad behind on construction due to those pesky blizzards, but I have some sneak peeks for you all.

You know I love you guys.

Now I won’t say what the costumes are, but will let you leave comments with your guesses. :)

5k

IMG_0493

10k

IMG_0496

Half

IMG_0497

Anyone have any guesses???? :)

***

Ahh okay typing this all up has made me even MORE excited! I am thrilled to check out another Run Disney weekend.

Will you be at Run Disney Princess Weekend? Have you done it before? What can you share with this newbie Princess?

Share

The Refresh, Revive, Remix Celebration at Athleta Newbury Street

Running clothes… Snacks… Champagne… Massages…

You had me at – well – all of that!!

I had the honor of attending the Refresh, Revive, Remix Celebration Party at Athleta Newbury Street with my friend Susan from Lifestyle of a Fashionista.

FullSizeRender

Susan and I arrived at Athleta ready to get our shop on. Now I am not one to normally enjoy shopping – okay I rarely enjoy shopping – but with the entire Athleta store at my disposal… my attitude changed. It’s like Athleta After Dark.

FullSizeRender2

In addition to the amenities, Athleta would be giving us a sneak peek at their new arrivals.

FullSizeRender5

Before we started trying on clothes, we took a lap around to meet some of the great companies in attendance.

First up was a stop for some snacks from b.good and a little champagne.

IMG_0160

FullSizeRender4

Cocobeet is Boston’s original organic juice bar (online delivery available, store coming soon).

Bringing fresh cold-pressed juices, superfood smoothies, raw vegan fare, and detox juice cleanses to the Boston community. Our ingredients reflect our healthy values: organic, raw, vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, non-HPP, and locally sourced.

Since I was already drinking my water, I opted to bring a couple of hint water bottles home with me. The watermelon water was tasty!

FullSizeRender6

Since I had to postpone my massage earlier in the week, I was happy to take advantage of the free chair massage from the Joint Venture physical therapists. Oh boy it was a treat. Yes 10 minutes was all my upper body needed. Okay it could’ve taken an hour if available, but I appreciated 10 minutes. :)

Finally we chatted with Cassie from Beautycounter.

IMG_0164

Beautycounter is an up-and-coming skincare line. Thankfully Susan is the fashion blogger so I let her take the lead with this convo. ;) I know nothing about makeup.

After making the rounds, it was time to try on some of the amazing clothes available.

FullSizeRender3

I wanted this entire ensemble… including the abs! Apparently abs sold separately? #Rude :P

While I wanted to try everything on, I tried to be realistic in what I brought into the dressing room.

IMG_0167

Up First? Floral Fade Sonar Capri ($74, size medium)

floral

FullSizeRender11

The super-sleek, wicking capri with compression fabric
to give you a flattering fit for every run and training session.

Oh boy did I immediately fall in love with these. I knew as soon as I put them on that they would be coming home with me. The wide waistband on the capris limit slipping or riding down while running – which I really appreciate.

Rear pocket to stash my key/ID. Machine washable AND dry!

I tried on the green tank as well, but wasn’t a fan. Style: Mesh Chi Tank ($44, size large)

Second Up? Gel Chaturanga™ Capri ($64, size medium)

FullSizeRender9

A spliced-in gel print adds flash to your
workouts in our favorite Chat style.

I really wanted to like these pants, but I didn’t feel “it” when I slipped them on. They felt fine, but not enough for me to bring them home.

I thought the design would make me feel wide or self-conscious, but that wasn’t it.

They had the wide waistband, hidden key pocket and are rated UPF 50+ – all amazing.

NOW if these were to randomly show up at my house, I would not send them away. ;)

Third Up? Sting Be Free Tight (on sale $59.99, size medium)

FullSizeRender8

FullSizeRender7

Now these pants are WAAAYYY out of my comfort zone! I’m not one to normally pick up such a bold-color pant.

But they had me at pockets!! Yes these pants offer pockets on the side that can hold my phone and fuel.

They are mid-rise, which is something I like in my running tights since they don’t tend to ride down like other pants. They are lightweight, sleek and stretchy – all pluses.

I also love that most Athleta pants also have the mesh inserts for ventilation.

Now when I first put these on I thought they were super baggy and was really confused why they were bunching at the end. Yeah I had put on a Large. Once I went down a size to the medium they fit like a glove and the bunching was gone.

Thanks to some convincing from Susan these also made it into my cart.

***

The last time I attended an Athleta After Hours event I walked away with three pairs of pants. Sooo going home with two was an improvement for my wallet. :P

I highly recommend that everyone check out their closest Athleta or Athleta.com. (They do have plus sizes available on their website) I really like the durability of their clothing AND their dedication to empowering women through their Power to the She movement.

Yes it is still a little pricey, but you get your money’s worth.

PLUS, if you feel good while running or working out, you perform better and are more apt to keep the movement going. So splurge! ;)

***

Have you tapped in to the #PowerToTheShe at Athleta?

Share

Dani Dishes: Changing My Mind

On this episode of #DaniDishes, I’m admitting I was wrong about run streaking. I changed my mind and watch why!

Previous Post mentioned in video!

Share

Weekend Wrap-Up: #FaceItFriday, Tedy’s Team 11-Miler & More Snow

Gah!! I was so busy having fun this weekend that I TOTALLY forgot to post about both #FaceItFriday and my Tedy’s Team group run. Soooo using today’s snow in Boston as an excuse to settle in and catch you all up.

Ya know if case you haven’t also been following my adventures of Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

Well let’s start at the beginning.

On a September afternoon in 1982, I was born…

Oh oops not THAT beginning. My bad all. My bad.

***

On Friday I woke early to get myself ready for my weekly weigh-in. I had a great week and hoped the scale reflected that, but I know the scale can be a fickle beast. I stepped on cautiously.

weigh

Woah! Down 2 lbs and under goal for the first time in ages. It was my lowest weight on the scale since August 2013. Hollah!

I righted the ship after 2 weeks of small gains. With marathon training tracking keeps me fueled, focused & not giving in to the Rungry Horrors that can attack after a long run or intense cross-training workout!

Also didn’t give in to emotional eating this week. I’m asked all the time if I eat my APs (activity points) & you can see I use WPs & APs.

The morning continued with a special delivery: My 2nd Annual Stop Stroke Shuffle 5k medals.

medals

How awesome did they turn out???? They even glow in the dark. Oh snap they do!

After leading my final Weight Watchers meeting of the week and finishing up the WW paperwork, I headed out for my #FridayFive run. I headed to Assembly Row (Somerville) to test out alternative routes for our Happy Soles 5k Run/Walk on the Sunday.

With over 60 inches of snow in the Boston area over the last 30 days, we’ve had to get creative when it comes to running routes.

friday

Splits: 8:12, 8:10, 8:25, 7:59, 7:55

I slipped and slided my way around the Assembly Row area until I had four possible routes. I celebrated with a delicious Slumbrew Porter Square Porter and some arts and crafts. I had to dress up my koozie.

IMG_0281

Further confirmation why the wife is in charge of my running costumes. Oof.

The wife and I had a nice relaxing Friday night watching some Big Bang Theory with my parents. We had some bad news delivered that one of our pups, Laney, will have to go in for surgery March 6 to remove four tumors from her knees. :/ Poor pup.

Saturday means Tedy’s Team long run day. On the schedule this week? Another Riverside run. This means we take the T (train) from Kenmore Square to the Riverside stop in Newton and run our butts back to Kenmore. It comes out to just over 10 miles and you get to tackle the entire 3+ mile span that is Heartbreak Hill.

FullSizeRender FullSizeRender2

It happened to be a balmy 20 degrees (real feel 12) and the hill was a buzz with runners also training. I love the feeling when out there with hundreds of other folks putting in the work for the Big Show. Plus most of the folks are also charity runners.

I also love seeing the Newton Firehouse, which marks the start of Heartbreak. On this day, two firefighters were out cheering on runners and offering up some much-needed water, Gatorade and snacks! :)

FullSizeRender3 FullSizeRender4

While the true reason for the long runs is to train and prep for the race, I love seeing familiar faces especially when they are my Tedy’s Team crew. It is truly the highlight of my week.

IMG_0301

Lisa – my triathlon training guru

IMG_0303

Margaret – the best cheerleader and water stop volunteer ever!

My thoughts on my 11-miler (I extended it so I could end right in front of Dunkin Donuts): Best run EVER on Heartbreak Hill in the three years of training for the Boston Marathon!! Woo hoo!

IMG_0302

After a shower and a foam rolling session, the wife and I opted to go out to lunch. PF Changs won since we had a $50 gift card. We both chose the lunch portion, which really helped with portion control.

lunch

I ate my peppers for the first time. Yes yes I am a picky eater who is trying to branch out little by little.

IMG_0305

But that fortune?!?! LOVE!

We had a pretty low-key evening as I did some work from home and tried to snuggle the pups as much as possible. Snuggling pups is good for the soul!

Sunday morning called for more puppy snuggling before embarking on a pre-Slumbrew run. With additional snowfall, I needed to get out to make sure at least 1 of my 4 alternative routes would be safe enough for our participants. Thankfully the main roads around the outlets were decent enough that we could do loops around. I let folks choose 1, 2 or 3 loops since each loop was roughly 1 mile.

slum

I was so proud to see 12 folks – half new – brave the weather for a fun morning run. Oh and belgian waffles and beer! Mmm…

While I wanted to stay and play with everyone all day, adult duties were calling. We had to head to the grocery store to make sure we had enough healthy food in the house for the impending 10-24 inches of snow. Ummm yay?

After tackling the grocery store, putting food away, cleaning the house, starting some laundry and knocking out 1.5 mile walk on the treadmill, it was time to call it a night… but not before I shared this awesome news!

in

Ahhh all official! Yay! Wicked pumped to be running my 3rd Boston Marathon with Tedy’s Team in 2015.

My three-year fundraising total has combined to raise $21,528 to #FightStroke! Absolutely amazing and inspiring!! :)

***

Wow! I look back at that weekend and saw DAMN I am one lucky person to have such motivating people in my life.

What was the highlight of your weekend?

Share

#MotivationMonday: Succeeding After Struggling

For those that don’t know, I have lost 80 pounds (60+ with Weight Watchers).

then-new

I hit goal with WW in January 2012 and successfully kept the weight off for about 2 years.

okto3

Until…

motivation

(Left pic) In June 2014 I faced the scale after a bad winter/Spring and saw 178.6! I had hidden away from the scale and lied to myself about the weight gain. But at that moment I reclaimed my mojo and got back to basics. So while I trained for my first Half Ironman I lost weight. I tracked, attended my weekly Weight Watchers mtg, focused on portions and fueling my body.

(Right pic) January 2015 and back at goal (155). I’m in a much better space mentally and still tracking, watching portions and refueling my body while I train for the Boston Marathon.

Many said they didn’t notice my 23 pound weight gain, but I did. I felt it as I trained and completed two marathons in a week in April 2014. I felt it as my tracker sat empty. I felt like a fraud to my WW members. I felt it in my soul.

While I never wanted to have a gain of that magnitude after hitting goal, I’m glad I did as it made me a stronger and more resolved in my journey to maintain my weight loss.

Now I can say I am back to being a person who shed 80-pounds.

Can I say with 100% certainty that this won’t happen again? No! But I am in a better place to recognize the warning signs of struggle, depression and general BLAH feelings that lead me to emotionally eat.

So if you have had a backslide, you are not alone. Start with one small change to help right the ship.

Share

*RECAP* The “Moderately Challenging” Boston Prep 16-Miler

You know a race is going to kick your butt when it is humorously called “moderately challenging.”

16a

The Great Derry Track Club (New Hampshire) has put on the Boston Prep 16-Miler for the past 20 years.

My friend and Tedy’s Team teammate Page brought the race up to me late in 2014 as a great “confidence boosting run” in prep for Boston.

Read as: It is wicked hilly. You will hate me while it is happening, but will feel better about yourself and Heartbreak Hill afterwards.

Spoiler Alert: She was 100% right!

Since I am a race pusher ;) I convinced my friend Lori to also sign up for the race. Lori is running her first Boston Marathon so I thought this would be a great race for her too. It would be her longest distance to date. Might as well go big, right? :P

I made sure to get the knees ready for a tough run with my trusty KT Tape!

IMG_0113

Page, Lori and I took the drive from Boston to Derry, NH to tackle the hills. It was great to have some built-in support.

bp162

We easily parked at a local school and took the quick 2-minute walk to race HQ – aka West Running Brook Middle School.

IMG_0085 IMG_0086

The gym was a buzz with excitement, while my stomach was a buzz with nerves.

Now I know that I can stop running and walk at any point in a race, but for some reason I was freakin’ out on this particular morning. I think I had built the challenge up in my head that I was psyching myself out.

I tried to distract myself by chatting with Lynn the race director and meeting some new friends. Okay “meeting new friends” isn’t the right term. I basically went over and talked to two people that I had recognized from a handful of previous races I had done in the NH/Maine area over the last few months. Not sure where my confidence came from to go introduce myself, but I had to do it. I had seen them so many times I felt like I knew them. Sooo thanks Beth for at least not calling me a creeper to my face. ;)

We opted to toss our sweet swag – long-sleeved tech t-shirt and fleece neck warmer – in the car before heading to the Start. The Start was actually around the corner from the school on Humphrey Street. You could totally tell the folks that drove up from Boston since we all oohhed and ahhhed over the horse next to the Start. Oh city folk.

IMG_0087

The field had 350 runners, which seemed to be smaller than year’s past, but we did have poor weather that weekend so a lower turnout was expected.

IMG_0089

Lori, Page and I were as ready as we could be for the run. There was a group of runners near us proclaiming loudly about how charity runners don’t believe in Boston. As three charity runners, we scowled at him, but didn’t let him steal our thunder.

The race had a small horn to signify the Start and we were off. We wished Lori a good run and Page and I headed off. I love finding someone that I can easily run with. Page is exactly that way. We fall into an easy rhythm and don’t have to worry about pace. Especially on this day. It wasn’t a race, but a really hilly training run. ;)

If you are going to have a tough training run, it’s awesome when it is scenic… and New Hampshire does NOT disappoint.

Mile 1: 9:47
Mile 2: 8:32

IMG_0090

While enjoying a few rolling hills in New Hampshire, we ran into our friend Julia!

IMG_0091

She is prepping for the LA Marathon, which goes down March 15.

IMG_0092

Mile 3: 8:35
Mile 4: 8:32

The roads were open to the traffic and with a recent snowfall the roads were tight. I can tell you there were quite a few cars taking the turns waaayyy too fast for the conditions and the amount of runners on the road. You would think with this being the 20th time this race was put on that the residents would be used to it. I guess not everyone was.

At least the hills were always visible so you could mentally prep for the next while coming off the current one. ;)

IMG_0093

 

As much as I mention how almost every race in New England is compiled of “rolling hills,” they create some glorious views.

IMG_0094

Mile 5: 9:06
Mile 6: 8:39

I was really encouraged with how strong I was feeling on the run. The hills weren’t putting up as much of a fight as I expected. Well I was being cautious since the rumor was the worst hill was near the end.

IMG_0095 IMG_0096

Prior to the race, my goal was to not walk up any of the hills. I didn’t care how slow I jogged/ran up the hill I wanted to keep running/jogging. It was a much-needed pact with myself since many folks around us started walking. When I see others walking there is something in my brain saying that it’s okay for me to do that too – even if I don’t want to or feel amazing.

IMG_0098

So this picture captures how awesome I felt after each hill was conquered. Grrrrr-eat!!

IMG_0100

Mile 7: 9:48
Mile 8: 8:42

IMG_0101

After we reached the halfway mark, I wanted to tell myself it was all downhill from there… but I’d be lying to myself. Oh I crack me up. :P

I couldn’t believe we were halfway through the race already. It hadn’t felt like 8 miles had come and gone. That is a good thing, right? It must mean all this training is paying off.

Mile 9: 8:46

Just after the Mile 9 water stop, we took a second to stretch, re-tie the shoes and have snack break (GU for Page and KIND bar for me). It was a nice little break before the rougher part of the course started.

Mile 10: 10:26

During the run, we started chatting with a local woman, who kindly let me know the worst inclines would be during Miles 10 and 12-13. Oh joy! I kind of liked living in the world of the unknowing and just waiting to see when the worst would hit.

But I was mentally prepped.

Page opted to listen to music during this stretch as her way to “get pumped.” I opted to quietly curse while plugging along. I thought of good things like beer and my amazing Stroke Heroes to try and make the hill a little less daunting.

In reality? It was tough. I kept repeating: “Just F&*#kin’ Move Forward.” I am not one to wax poetically during a run so I kept it simple. :P

Plus the sun was shining and I was healthy. I really couldn’t complain.

Mile 11: 8:55

IMG_0102 IMG_0103 IMG_0104

Mile 12: 10:36
Mile 13: 10:25

Hellz yeah!! I did it! I was wicked proud of myself for tackling and owning Warner Hill Road. I may or may not have done a fist pump when I finally reached the top. :)

My left hamstring was sore, but no sorer than any other run I have done since injuring it in May. I do believe the strength training is finally working it’s magic.

I’m not going to lie when we hit the half marathon mark I wanted to be done. Haha. I was ready to be in post-race mode. But Page and I agreed it was a good chance to get in a nice 3-mile recovery run. ;)

Page was having some side stitch and hamstring issues of her own so we opted for a little run/walk during the next 2 miles to stretch it out. She told me to go ahead. Ummm gurl I wasn’t winning the race NOR would I leave her after rocking 14 miles together. I don’t play that way. She was stuck with me.

Mile 14: 9:07
Mile 15: 9:27

I started talking about my possible Run Disney Princess weekend costumes to try and distract her from the pain. And you know what? It worked for almost 3/4 of a mile before she realized I was distracting her. Go me!

IMG_0105

She was ready to finish strong and we did. We hustled our way up that final incline to the Finish!

Mile 16: 8:39

There wasn’t a huge crowd at the Finish, but the announcer did announce our names and where we were from when we crossed. Yay! I liked the personal touch.

IMG_0107

The official time would be slower than my Garmin as the race was a GUN time not a Chip time.

IMG_0108

In my mind I am taking the Garmin time as official since it did take us at least 30+ seconds to actually cross the Start line.

Once over the Finish Line, we shot right in to the School cafeteria to get food. The race offered Domino’s Pizza, sandwich wraps, Dunkin Donuts munchkins, bananas, chili and soup. Lots of food. Sadly no beer, but I didn’t expect it in a middle school. The only thing that looked mildly appealing was the pizza and we both went for that before taking some laps around the cafeteria to keep the legs moving.

We decided to walk to the car to get Lori’s clothes so she could change before the ride back. Man the little incline back from the parking lot felt a lot worse post-run. :P

Lori did an awesome job coming in right around 2 hours and 51 minutes. I was so proud of her.

We watched a little of the awards ceremony before making our way back home to get a celebratory beer at Slumbrew! :)

bp

***

Overall, the race had a great fun local feel and it was cool to chat with a bunch of other runners training for the same race. Many around us were also charity runners so it was great swapping fundraising ideas and tips.

I was also happy to hear race proceeds benefited the Greater Derry Track Club Kids Summer Fun Run Program.

I do wish the roads were a little more closed or additional precautions were taken to ensure runner safety. I know it is par for the course in smaller local races, but there were some occasions where the cars were a little too close for comfort. Thankfully cops and volunteers were stationed at major intersections and turns.

I was surprised to not see any EMTs on bikes. Now I don’t know if they were in any of the cars passing us or not, but I didn’t notice any medical personnel along the course.

There were four water stops and 2 GU spots during the 16-mile course, which felt like enough on that day.

***

So the big question is: would I recommend this race to someone else running Boston? AB-so-lutely!! It really was the confidence booster that Page claimed it would be. So yes if you are ever training for Boston, I highly recommend signing up for this run AND supporting a local running club. Just be sure to bring your phone with you!!

Share

Who wants to virtually run a mile of the 2015 Boston Marathon with me?

Did you know: 1 in 3 Americans don’t know how to recognize a stroke? When you don’t know what to look for, you can’t save a life. Tedy’s Team and I want to change that and you can help us!

Download and share American Stroke Association’s stroke warning signs.

F.A.S.T. is an easy way to remember the sudden signs of stroke. When you can spot the signs, you’ll know that you need to call 9-1-1 for help right away. F.A.S.T. is:

F.A.S.T. Letter F Face Drooping – Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person’s smile uneven?
F.A.S.T. Letter A Arm Weakness – Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
F.A.S.T. Letter S Speech Difficulty – Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
F.A.S.T. Letter T Time to call 9-1-1 – If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get the person to the hospital immediately. Check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared.

Today, approximately 1,300 Americans will lose their life to, or become severely debilitated by a stroke.

THINK YOU ARE HAVING A STROKE? CALL 9-1-1 IMMEDIATELY!

***

I will be lacing up my sneakers to run the Boston Marathon in 2015 with Tedy’s Team in honor of my Stroke Heroes – my grandparents and my wife’s father – in addition to all of the others affected by Stroke. This will be my third Boston Marathon with Tedy’s Team and I am excited to take on the challenge and hit my fundraising goal of a combined $21k raised to #FightStroke!

If you would like to help me reach my goal AND virtually share a mile with me on that day, a $20 donation to Tedy’s Team would make any mile you want yours!! Sound like a fun plan?

Let’s Do It!

Click here to donate today

Leave a blog comment letting me know which mile you would like to sponsor

Miles Available

1- Melissa K
2- Ryan F
3- Kathianne L
4- Mary R & Dusty H
5- Jim & Lynne K
6- Elizabeth D
7- Gregg B
8- Jamie M
9- Thea R
10- Dan F & Family
11- Carrie B
12- Chris S
13- Samantha A
14- Kelly K-C
15- Mary Ellen V
16- Frank F & Family
17- Megan A & Family
18- Sarah M
19- Neil F & Family
20- Dan F
21- John & Diane F
22- Barry G
23- Laura L
24- Dacia R
25- Angela G
26- Mom & Dad
26.2 For My Stroke Heroes :)

***

Thank you all for your support and remember F.A.S.T!!!!

Share