Running/Training Reboot & New Races

Between a cold, dreary winter and my work schedule, I definitely fell off with my training. I still ran the races I signed up for in January, March and April AND finished, but they were rough!

Then, my “good foot” started getting pains, and for a while my podiatrist and I suspected a stress fracture (MRI was negative, thankfully!). In retrospect, there’s a good chance that that happened because I ran/walked several half marathons and a Ragnar Relay back-to-back without proper training before or in between.

So, I needed a REBOOT!

Running

I’m running short distances once a week in May just to “warm” myself up for the REBOOT that starts in June. In June, I’m starting a 13-week half marathon training plan. Realistically, I can only squeeze two runs in each week, so that will have to do for now — especially since I need to use the third day for cross-training (trying to learn from where I went wrong in my last training program).training

Strength

In addition the new training plan, I am also adding Orange Theory Fitness sessions to the mix starting June 1st. In the meantime, I’ve been doing total body barbell workouts at home 1-2 times a week in May.

Diet/Weight Loss

I’ve also put on about 50-60 pounds since I broke my foot 4 years ago, and I’m sure that that’s also hindering my running progress. I read in a few places that a runner cuts 2 seconds off of their mile time for every pound lost. That means, in theory, if I dropped 40 pounds, I’d shave 17+ minutes off of my total half marathon time (not including any improvement in time from training). So, I’m motivated to get this done.

LINK: Will I run faster if I lose weight?

Today makes day 10 of following a ketogenic diet – low carbs, moderate protein, high (good) fat. It has been interesting cooking  3 meals a day every day and experimenting with new recipes. I’ve been to the grocery store almost every other day to pick up new ingredients. But, I am trying to avoid eating out for the next 30 days while I’m home (I have some upcoming travel where that will be unavoidable).

Here are some of the low-carb meals I’ve prepared so far:

Races

Of course, what’s training without races?!

I canceled the races I had planned from mid-May until Labor Day so I can focus on training properly, getting stronger, getting lighter and coming back with a bang in September. I have to pay again, but the Popular Brooklyn Half will give me a guaranteed entry for next year. It was for the better.

I DID sign up for the Rock N Roll Half Marathons in both Virginia Beach (9/2/2018) and Los Angeles (10/28/2018). Wanna join me? Use Code RNRBRP2018 to get $15 OFF!

Disclaimer: I received free entries to the Rock N Roll Virginia Beach and Rock N Roll Los Angeles races as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I am amped about both locations (each beautiful at that time of year), and I can’t wait to make some progress with the new training and weight loss. Wish me luck, and follow the journey!

Race Recap: Ragnar Relay Cape Cod 2018

Last weekend, I completed a Ragnar Relay with 6 other docs from my Mama Docs Run This Facebook group and 2 of their husbands (also docs). 

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Talk about seeing what you’re made of! Almost 200 miles, 33+ hours, and in/out of a van with strangers (none of us met in-person before the race, but everyone was awesome!).

Thursday

We met on Thursday in Massachusetts, and attended the safety briefing (we had to bring our reflective vest and headlamp). Then it was back to the house to strategize, eat, and decorate the vans.

Friday

Van 1 (Runners 1-6) started at 5:15am, so us in Van 2 (Runners 7-12) got to sleep in with an 11am start. I was runner #11 — My first run was around 3pm (6.4 miles), and my second was around 2am (3.5 miles).

Saturday

After Runner 12 finished, we passed the bracelet on to Van 1, and headed to the second house for some rest. Then, we were up again to do our third legs. I ran 2.7 miles (with a few hills) at 11am, and passed on the bracelet to our anchor who finished strong with 8.1 miles!

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I would definitely do this again, and have actually started planning another Ragnar for November 2019 with a group of friends.

Race Recap: OhioHealth Capital City Half Marathon 2018

This is the second race recap I owed you guys…

April 28th, I ran the OhioHealth Capital City Half Marathon. I was already in Chicago for work, so I took the quick flight over to squeeze in my 4th Half Marathon and 3rd state (since DC technically doesn’t count).

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My FlatRunner from the night before.

The expo was pretty small, but it was quick to check in and pick up our bibs/swag.

I tried to meet up with some runners from my Mama Docs Run This group before the run, but we missed each other. So I took a solo shot at the start line!

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I stayed in one of the race hotels, so getting to the race was easy in the morning (just a few blocks). The course itself wasn’t too difficult (even for a novice runner like me), and I enjoyed running through the neighborhoods of Columbus.

I was able to run-walk with the 3:20 pacers (1-minute run, 1-minute walk) for 10 miles until my foot hurt too much. Then I walked much of the last 3 miles, which slowed me down of course.

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The post-race party was a nice touch — champagne for each runner, as well as pizza from Papa John’s! Since it was close to the end of the party when I finished, I got to take an entire cheese pie with me!

It was great to just walk a block back to the race hotel on these tired legs, and enjoy my pizza during a nice, long soak before heading to the airport to fly to Boston for a meeting.

Rutgers Unite Half Marathon Race Recap (April 2018)

I’m a little behind on posting (about one month and THREE races behind), so here goes…

April 15th I ran the Rutgers Unite Half Marathon. It was chilly and overcast, but we were out there!

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My FlatRunner from the night before!

The expo was nice, with massages and compression devices available with short wait times. The overall energy was high and the photo opps (background posters) were nice as well, with helpful staff. Parking was super convenient.

 

The race itself was fun and well-supported. Again, parking was close to the start line. It was also very well-organized. There were a lot of turns but it kept boredom from setting in, and I had never toured Rutgers’ campus before so it was an interesting run.

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I ran-walked this half (again), with pain in my “good foot” most of the way. But, I finished, slowly, at 3:28:38, just under the 3:30 time limit!

They gave us our medals (and space blankets) as we crossed the finish line which was a nice touch. But, the food at the end was a good walk from the finish without anyone to instruct us where to go. The goody bag had a banana and a pretzel inside. Maybe it was the cold weather, but the pretzel was pretty hard, but at that point, I’m not sure it mattered much.

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The shuttle from the finish line to the “start” left us sort of far from the actual start line (at least it felt that way after running 13.1). But, despite the shuttle fiasco, I would definitely recommend this race!

Race Recap: Rock N Roll Half Marathon Washington, DC 2018

I did it! Here’s a recap of my first Rock N Roll race, and my first half marathon post-injury…

I flew down this past Friday for the Rock N Roll DC Half Marathon. Registration was super easy, and despite the crowd of people, there wasn’t a line to pick up my bib. (Although, I was a bit annoyed that there was no mailing option for the bibs).

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The Expo itself was neat, and the cash registers for race gear moved pretty quickly. There were booths to help us figure out transportation issues on race day, which was helpful. Being a St. Jude Hero for this race, I also visited the St. Jude booth. But, despite being exhausted, with all of the cool vendors, it did what it was supposed to do — it got me hyped for the race the next day. I spent the rest of the day resting up for the race and “carb-loading” (as if I needed an excuse to eat carbs!).

On race day, I had a cinnamon-raisin bagel with cream cheese, a green tea and tons of water with Nuun in it. So, of course, by the time I got to the race I needed to find the port-o-potty lines, which were amazingly long!

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Then, we were off! Since my training lagged a bit during the winter months, I decided to run-walk this race. I used Runkeeper to set up a workout where it prompted me to run 0.5 mile then walk 0.5 mile, repeated 13 times, with a cool down for the last 0.1 mile. It worked well! I was able to play my own playlist on Amazon Music, but the Runkeeper prompts interrupted with updates when it was time to switch, and again at 30-minute intervals.

Miles 1-5 felt great, but around mile 6, there was a really steep hill, aka the Blue Mile, that was decorated with photos of military service men and women who lost their lives while serving. Near the middle of the mile, just as it got pretty steep, there were people holding flags cheering us on to push through. I must admit, I walked a little longer than 0.5 mile after that hill, but I didn’t fall too far behind.

Around Mile 9 or 10, I met a woman who was running her first half marathon. We began chatting and pushed each other through to the end. I couldn’t believe it when I saw the 20K sign (“That’s 0.7 more miles to go!”). I felt so good when we ran across the finish line, high-fived and hugged. I MADE IT!

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My longtime friend Rashonda came and met me near the finish line. Of course, we went to eat afterwards and I replenished my carbs burned with a nice Apple Tartini and a glass of wine!

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I got super stiff after the race, but it only lasted for 2 days this time… better than after the 10K... and a 2-hour massage on Monday took the last of the soreness away. Next up: Rutgers Half!

36 hours in Phoenix (for a race, of course)

Mom, kiddo and I ventured out to Phoenix on Friday to take part in the Phoenix Women’s 10K (me running, them spectating). With only a short time in town, we tried to get in as much as we could.

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Friday

We landed late into Phoenix and stayed with Marriott points at Towne Place Suites in a nice 2-bedroom suite with a sofa pull out.

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Saturday

We took a Lyft to Butterfield’s Pancake House in Scottsdale for breakfast because I read about their oven-baked pancakes (which apparently take 30 minutes to prepare — at least the menu warns you!). It was super yummy, but way too big. Thankfully, I had only ordered 2 eggs to go with it for some protein.

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Next stop: The OdySea Aquarium. This was kiddo’s vote, and we obliged. It was a cute aquarium, not as much to see inside as you would expect from how massive the external building is. But, it was still nice. My favorite was the jellyfish.

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We took another Lyft to the Arizona Fine Art Expo which had the most amazing pieces. We watched a glassblower make paperweights, and I bought one of his glass pumpkins to bring him.

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We ended the day at Buca di Beppo near the race, to meet up with another member of the Fifty States Half Marathon Club for dinner. Then it was off to bed.

Sunday – Race Day!

The race recap is here: https://runtraveldream.com/2018/01/28/phoenix-womens-10k-race-recap/.

Not much else went down on Sunday except a hot soak in the tub, a flight from Phoenix to Denver, then one from Denver to Newark.

Next time we return to Arizona, we hope to hit up Grand Canyon!

Phoenix Women’s 10K Race Recap

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The 10K started at 8:30am, so we (me, mom and kiddo) got there at 7:30am for packet pickup and to warm up. I chose priority pickup, so my bib was mailed to me, and all I had to pick up was my Dri-Fit tech jacket.

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It was a nice turnout with a Zumba warm up before the Half marathon and again before the 10K. The half started at 8am and the 5K at 8:45am.

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And then we were off!

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This race was a hard one for me. I felt every bit of my decrease in training over the past month. I walked through the last three water breaks (there were four total) and up the last incline. My calves cramped and my right foot was numb. I also think I started out way too fast (for me). You can see my mile-splits here.

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The course had a few minor inclines, which were manageable. I could’ve done without dodging the splatterings of large poop along the trail, but otherwise, it was OK. The turnarounds for the 5K and 10K felt a little strange, but there was someone standing at the 10K turnaround which helped.

Speaking of people along the course, there really weren’t any… not a lot of people telling us where to go at the turns and not a lot cheering us on. One of the race volunteers mentioned that it would be hard for spectators to cheer us on because we ran most of the race inside of the Historic Preservation.

The starting line and finish line were at the same place for all 3 races.

I was so happy to be done, and happy to get my medal  — I earned it!

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I finished with a chip time of 1:20:28.

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We hung around for a while to cheer on a fellow member of the Fifty States Half Marathon Club who ran the half marathon today, then we headed back so I could squeeze in a hot soak before the flight.

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Today was definitely humbling and reminded me that I need to get back onto my training grind PRONTO! My 1st half post-injury, the Rock N Roll Half Marathon DC is only 40 days away! EEK!