Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running

Marathon Mondays – Week 9 of Chicago Marathon Training

It’s 9 weeks into the program and honestly if you’re still reading these recaps, I applaud you. LOL. I worry that these recaps can be kind of redundant especially if the workouts are all the same, but this recap, I have a treat for you at my expense. LOL. I completely broke down during Tuesday’s interval workout. Keep reading to find out why. 🙂

(Scheduled mileage)Actual mileage

Monday (7 miles)7.5 miles

Two Mondays in a row where I didn’t feel sluggish. Hooray! My running group only runs from 3-6 miles so I headed over 20 minutes earlier and did 2 miles before the run started.

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Tuesday (4 x 1200 m with 1 mile WU and CD)3 x 1200 + 1 x 900 m with 1 mile WU and CD

And Tuesday is where I broke down. I had a really long day at work and got out a little later than expected. I was really stressed out, but I was still determined to get my interval done so I went out on the track and started. Most of the run went well, but on my last loop, my stomach just cramped up and I just hunched over and couldn’t run anymore. I started crying out of frustration and I just sat there for about 10 minutes trying to figure out if I should continue or not. I ended up not finishing the interval out of fear for my body and slowly jogged back to my office to grab my clothes and go home. Honestly, it was a really difficult moment for me. Running is something I know I can do. After a long day at work, it’s something I depend on to relieve tension so even a slight mishap like this one just broke me. I’m sure it also has to do with my impending defense Eek! Anyway, I finished the night with a pep talk to myself and decided that tomorrow was another day and it’d be fine. 🙂

Wednesday (Rest)9.5 easy miles

Thursday was going to be full of traveling and I knew I wouldn’t have the time to run before my flight so I made the decision to switch my usual rest day with my “tempo run.” The run ended up being an easy run because my tempo run would actually be race day. The 9.5 miles were difficult. I could feel my body needing the rest, but I was determined to put in the miles so I took it really easy. It was supposed to be 10 miles, but I also wasn’t feeling that well so I cut it short.

Thursday (8 mile tempo run with 1 mile WU and CD)Rest/Travel

Woohoo rest day! Made my way up to Vancouver.

Friday (5 easy miles)4.5 miles

Since Saturday was race day, I needed to do a shake out run. Hanson’s marathon method called for 5 miles so I upped and did an easy run. I was up in Vancouver with a friend and we ran part of the seawall together. It was a beautiful run and I honestly didn’t want it to end, but we got tired and decided to call it quits at 4.4 miles.

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Vancouver run time!

Saturday (8 miles)13.4 miles (tempo sort of)

Ran the SeaWheeze Half marathon, which I will recap sometime in the next two weeks. Trust me, it was amazing and you do not want to miss my recap.

Sunday (10 miles)3.7 miles

With all the sightseeing we had done in the previous two days, I could only manage a 3.7 mile recovery run instead of the 4.7 that I needed to finish the week’s scheduled mileage.

Total mileage (46 miles)45 miles

Considering that I was in another country for 3 of the days and had to move my running around quite a bit, I’m going to call this week a success. Hooray!

How do you rearrange your schedule when traveling? Do you run while on vacation?

 

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Posted in BibRave Reviews, Discount Codes, Running

Staying hydrated – Orange Mud P.F.V product review & a discount code

Disclaimer: I received an OrangeMud Phone.Flask.Vest..to review 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! All opinions are my own. 

I am in full swing of marathon training and with the summer heat, a hydration pack was something I desperately needed. I had been scouring the sites in hopes of finding one that wasn’t too heavy and wouldn’t chafe in the humid temperatures. Luckily, BibRave gave us the opportunity to try Orange Mud’s Phone. Flask.Vest (P.F.V.) and I jumped at the chance.

The basics of the P.F.V.

Like the name implies, it’s a vest that can hold both your phone and a hydration flask. On the front of the vest, there are two main pockets – one for your flask and one for your phone. The flask is a soft flask that can hold up to 450 (15 oz) or 600 mL (20 oz) of fluids (it comes witht he 450 mL one) and deflates the more you drink from it. On one side of the vest, there is a shoulder pocket that you can store gels/chews/whatever nutrition you may need. There’s also a key clip that you can use to store your key while running. On the other side of the vest is a dust cover for the bite valve in case you don’t want it to get dirty while running. No one likes biting onto a valve that’s covered with dirt. Gross. On the back of the vest, there’s another pocket for a light jacket. The vest also has adjustable straps to tighten or loosen to your liking. Its cost? $99.95.

My experience

Weight – This vest is extremely lightweight. It may look like a lot to wear, but it’s actually not. Even after runs, I would just keep it on when I ran my errands.

Bounce – When I first tried this vest on, I found that it bounced a bit. After playing with it a bit, I found that if I tightened the straps enough, the bounce was very minimal and I had no problem with it. I ran a half marathon with it on and the vest didn’t bother me at all. I will note that other people that I’ve talked to have experienced more of a bounce. I am a bit more flat chested (I’m a B cup), which might be beneficial to me in this situation.

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Wearing the PFV during the Craft Classic Half marathon

Breathability – Even with the addition of the vest, my body didn’t seem to heat up. The material (mesh) that the vest is made out of makes it very breathable.

Chafe – This was such a big concern for me. With summer comes heat, humidity, and the high probability of chafing. I am super happy to report that I didn’t experience any chafing even after running a half marathon. I will note that I put bodyglide on my neck during that race because it was my first time running 13.1 miles with that vest on and I didn’t want to take any chances. I have run 6 miles in a sports bra with no bodyglide and the vest didn’t rub on me at all. Hooray! I will mention that I did wear a necklace once on a run and the vest rubbed the necklace against my collar bone. So just don’t wear necklaces while running and you’ll be good to go.

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On SportsBraSquad day!

Hydration and fuel – I do wish that the flask was a little larger so I could take it with me on longer runs. I usually finish up the water by mile 6 or 7. However, I can easily solve this issue by running by places that have water fountains. I can just refill the flask and continue on my run. On my half marathon, I stopped by 3 aid stations in addition to sipping water from my vest and that was just the perfect amount of water for me. I love using the pockets to hide my gels. This will definitely come in handy when I start running longer distances. 🙂

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Stay hydrated everyone!

Other – There was one thing I didn’t like about the vest, which was the fact that my flask initially leaks when I first use it. Although I don’t really feel the leak, it does soak part of the pocket, making it difficult to put my phone in the front pocket. (I have never put my phone in the front pocket since I have a flipbelt and use that instead; I also don’t want to overload the front of the vest). It doesn’t seem to leak at all after the initial leak and it might have to do with me adding too much water to the flask.

So there you have it, my review on the newest Orange Mud product, the Phone. Flask. Vest. You can bet that I’ll be wearing it a lot more often as the heat increases. If you are interested in any of their products, you can use the code “BRPPFV” for 10% off all their stuff. And if you have any questions, please feel free to ask me about it or check out any of the other BRPs’ reviews below. You can also join us on Tuesday, July 25th for our #bibchat on Twitter for a chance to win 1 of 2 P.F.V.s!

Fallon – Casey – Bradley – Heather – Angie

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running, Thoughts, Training

Marathon Mondays – Week 4 of Chicago marathon training

After 3 weeks of base training, I finally started increasing my weekly mileage. This week, I was scheduled for 24 miles. Let’s see how I did, shall we?

Monday (Rest) – Soooooo I wasn’t going to actually rest on Monday. I had plans to go to kickboxing again, but once I got there, they were closed. Womp womp. Turns out that they had closed in preparation for the 4th of July. Oops. I should probably check their schedule in advance next time.

Tuesday (5 miles) – The group I run with at Movin Shoes had an organized 10k fun run up to Mt. Soledad. For those of you who don’t know, the trek up Mt. Soledad is STEEP! There’s a gain of 676 ft in elevation over the course of 3.1 miles. I ran up this hill in May and must have forgotten how steep it was because I ran up it again on Tuesday and boy was it killer. I am proud to say that I ran up that entire hill without stopping though. 🙂 When I ran it in May, I had to walk a portion of it so I think I’m improving. Yay!img_0778

Wednesday (Rest) – Since I didn’t do kickboxing Monday, I caught Wednesday’s kickboxing class instead. I, once again, pulled my butt muscle. LOL. I honestly don’t know how I keep doing this to myself. Sigh.

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Thursday (4 miles) – Ran an easy 4 miles.

Friday (5 miles) – It started heating up a bit so I grabbed my OrangeMud Phone. (hydration) Flask. Vest. and made it through the 5 miles. The run was a little slower than I wanted, but it still fell within the pace range my program suggested.

Saturday (4 miles) – The weekend runs got a little tricky. It was expected to heat up to the 80s and when it gets hot, I don’t want to run. Luckily, I do group runs on Saturday and I’m a bit more motivated to run on Saturdays so I ran a bit more than suggested. Ran 7 miles at an “easy” pace along the beach. 🙂 In reality, it wasn’t easy. It was hot and humid and chafing was definitely a thing during that run.

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The Fall half marathon/full marathon training group

Sunday (6 miles) – HAH! Yeah, right. Six miles was not going to happen. I had anticipated this, which is why I ran more miles on Saturday. Go past me. 🙂 Anyway, I scheduled a free spin class at SparkCycle in the morning courtesy of Yelp (elite). The class was intense, but I survived thanks to Krystin, my instructor for the class. On a scale of 1-10 for energy, Krystin was an 11. LOL. After finishing class, I went to work and ran an easy 3 miles to finish off the week.

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Krystin, the instructor for the class

Weekly mileage – I ran 26 miles. 🙂 Hooray!

Thought for the week – This upcoming week will be kind of crazy. My boyfriend will be visiting for a week and so I will be trying to run most of my miles in the morning. I’m also deviating from the Hanson marathon method quite a bit since I’m racing on Sunday. Eek. Not sure how this will pan out, but I’ll have my fingers crossed. 🙂 How do you deal with deviations in training? 

Posted in Running, Thoughts, Training

Half #14 here I come

Yes, it’s that time again: the week leading up to a half marathon, the San Diego Rock N Roll Half marathon to be exact. I’m not going to lie; I’m pretty excited about it. I didn’t race at all this month and I’ve been missing the racing atmosphere terribly. Maybe that’s why I’ve been doing more social runs lately; so that I can be around people when I run. LOL. I’ll also be meeting some online bloggers for the first time so I’m pretty stoked about that too.

Anyway, today’s post is a bit of a ramble. I’ve been feeling more confident with running as the months go by. I’ve managed to maintain my average of 21 miles a week and this past weekend, I logged almost 24 miles! I also ran every day this week, not because I was obligated to, but because I genuinely wanted to. Every day this past week, I woke up wanting to run. I didn’t necessarily run in the morning, but the feeling was there. At night before I fell asleep, I thought about how many miles I could feasibly run the next day. It’s kind of crazy. I might be enthusiastic to run because I’ve been so stressed out about my pre-thesis committee meeting that I’m using running to keep my stress level in check.

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Running around
Or maybe it’s because I’ve run for 3 years now and running has now become a part of me. And you know what? I love it. I love talking to people about running (probably a little too much) and I love encouraging others to run. 🙂

Speaking of which, if you are visiting the health and fitness expo on Saturday, let me know! I’ll be volunteering at the HoneyStinger booth from 1 – 3 pm and we’re giving out free samples. 🙂 Come say hi! 

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My personal HoneyStinger collection – can you tell I love them? 

 

Posted in Running

Summer racing – San Diego Craft Classic edition

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the San Diego – Craft Classic 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! All opinions are my own. 

I run year round, but summer is probably my least favorite season to run. It is, however, the best season to be out and about and enjoying the sunshine. It’s so conflicting sometimes being a runner. As a runner, you have to wake up early to beat the heat and get your long run in. During the summer, sometimes you have to wake up at 5 am to get up to run especially if it’s a 20 miler and it’ll take you 3+ hours to complete. And the weather is unpredictable sometimes. A few years ago, I ran the America’s Finest City (AFC) half, which is the last race in the Triple Crown Challenge series, and I MELTED. I think the race started before 7 am and by 9 am, it was already 70+F. It was so hot and humid that day that I chafed in places I didn’t think I could chafe.

So why am I telling you all this? Well, because I want you to see how crazy I am. I, yours truly, signed up for another summer race, the San Diego Craft Classic, because seriously, I never learn and honestly, why not? LOL. I am a racing fiend and FOMO is so real. I sometimes will avoid social media on Sunday mornings because I get super jealous of seeing other runners with their shiny new medals. I mean, I’m super happy for them because they accomplished their goal, whatever that may have been, but I also wanted to run the race too. Hah.

Here’s the run down on the San Diego Craft Classic.

Date: July 16, 2017

Distance: Half marathon or 5k

Time: 6:30 am for the half, 6:45 for the 5k

Cost: $85+ for the half and $50+ for the 5k (Price increase is dependent on how many participants are registered so register early!)

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Why: If you like beer, more specifically Green Flash Brewery beer, THIS IS THE RACE FOR YOU. Both distances end up at Green Flash Brewery where all participants will received a commemorative pint glass, an event shirt, a medal, and obviously TWO FREE BEERS from Green Flash. For you ultra fast runners out there, the prize for the top male and female finisher is their WEIGHT IN BEER. LOL.

Okay, I’ll be honest with you. I’m not running this race for the beer. I’m running it for the medals obviously. I’m a collector of bling. LOL. This race, when run in the same calendar year as the San Diego Holiday Half marathon, gives you a 3rd medal – the route 56 medal! Both races are run along parts of route 56 so it’s fitting that this medal is of the route 56 sign. I ran the Holiday Half last year and it was fantastic.

Free Social Run Series – Another thing I really like about this race is that if you’re in San Diego, you can train for the race with other people that also like beer! They have free social runs happening at the Green Flash Tasting Room on May 17 and June 28! You can RSVP here. The first 75 attendees of each of the runs gets a free beer and there is also a raffle at the end. You have to get your raffle ticket at the bottom of the hill though. The organizers said you have to earn it. LOL There’s always a catch isn’t there? 🙂

If you’re into beer and want to run this race, use the code “BIBRAVEHALF” for $10 off the half marathon and “BIBRAVE5k” for $5 off the 5k.

Now that I’ve told you what I run for. What do you run for? Medals? Beer? Fun? Speaking of beer and fun, have a great weekend everyone! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Daily happenings, Running, Thoughts

Adios April, it’s May Time!

Another month has gone by and holy smokes, it’s May! That means it’s another monthly recap. This is my probably my favorite part about the end of the month. I get to look at my calendar and see all the things I did. It makes me feel productive. 🙂 Without further adieu, my recap of the month below. Disclaimer: This month was very running focused. You have been warned!

Races – This was probably a record breaking month for me in terms of races. I kicked off April with the Carlsbad5000, in which I broke a personal record.IMG_8513 I hadn’t PRed in the 5k distance in 3 years so this was a total shock to me and honestly, I’ll probably still be riding the PR wave for a few months. 🙂 The following weekend, I ran another 5k the Triton 5k at the university I attend. Then two weekends after, I ran my 13th half marathon at the La Jolla Half where I crushed my course PR and ran another sub 2 hour half marathon. Thats 3 sub 2 hour halfs now. Yay! Maybe I can qualify for the Boston marathon one day. A girl can dream, right? 

Group Runs – I’m typically a solo runner. My schedule is just too unpredictable to schedule runs with friends, but this month, I made an effort to go out and run with others. I participated in two group runs this month and I had so much fun that you can bet I’ll be doing more in the future.

Adventure Runs, a scavenger hunt-like run held by Road Runner Sports, was the first group run I attended this month. These runs are held once a month and start at their store. At the start of the run, they unveil a map with locations you can run to in order to get raffle tickets. You have one hour to run so the faster you run, the more raffle tickets you can get. Once the hour is up, everyone returns to the start and Road Runner Sports raffles off prizes. If you’re over 21, they also have a beer garden. The best part? Everything is free. You don’t have to pay to run and the beer is free. What more could you want from a run? LOL.

My second group run was for a course preview of the San Diego Rock N Roll races that will be occurring in June. Movin’ Shoes, a local shoe store, organized this course preview and I thought it’d be a fantastic thing to try out. I’m running the half marathon in June and even though I had run it in previous years, I thought that it wouldn’t hurt to run part of the course again in preparation for the race. Plus, it would push me to get my ass out of bed early and log 9 miles before 9 am. (The full marathon course preview was 15 miles and that was just not happening for me. LOL).

I went into this run not knowing anyone and finished it with a few new friends. I also finished that run feeling like a champ and super grateful I didn’t opt for the full course preview. LOL. I also found out that Movin’ Shoes has weekly groups runs so I’ll be trying to make it out to a few more long runs in preparation for my upcoming races. Woohoo!

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RnR SD course preview done and a vanilla chai latte earned!
Mileage and Motivation – Last month, I missed my monthly mileage goal. This month, I hit it right on target. I logged 83 miles for April! I am still on track for 1000 miles in 2017! Hooray!IMG_9119I’m extremely happy at my progress this year. I was starting to struggle midway through March and was really doubting whether I could have hit all of my running goals for the year. Then, at the beginning of April, I got this pin along with a letter from a friend.

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A pin with my instagram/twitter handle on it
In her letter, she thanked me for being a constant source of inspiration for her and honestly, I was shocked. When I started running, I did it for me. I still do, but I’m glad that I can also inspire my friends to reach for their goals too. 🙂

Yelp Elite Event and another Clothing Swap – It may be hard to believe, but yes, yes, I do other things that isn’t running. Shocking, right? I have been a yelp elite member for several years now and I love going to their events. This month, I was lucky enough to get into their Flower Fields event. At the event, we got to taste delicious food and also frolick around the flower fields.

View More: http://actionbooth.pass.us/yelptbt
My friend Lindy and I
I also attended another clothing swap and got some new articles of clothing, two of which I’m wearing in the above photo. I love leggings and a cropped leather jacket suits me just fine. 🙂 Clothing swaps are the best way to donate clothes and get some new clothes in exchange AND it’s free! I mean, how awesome is that? This is especially awesome if you have a stylish friend you want to exchange clothes with. 😉

So there you have it, my jam packed April. There were other things I did, but didn’t want to bore you with the details. 🙂 How was your April? Do anything fun? What’s in store for May? 

Posted in Running, Thoughts

Ahhhh! It’s Taper Time for the La Jolla Half.

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the La Jolla Half Marathon 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! All opinions are my own. 

Yes, that time has come again. Tapering. Some people love it. Some people hate it. I personally LOVE it. A week where you can decrease your mileage in preparation for a race. Woohoo! My tapering strategy has changed over the years and I just wanted to say that I am in no way telling anyone how to taper. I’m still figuring it out and it’s a lot of trial and error.

When I first started out, I was doing cardio kickboxing three to four times a week with short 3 mile runs in between. My kickboxing trainer told me to start resting on Wednesdays for a Sunday half. That sounded good to me. Less running? Hell yeah. LOL. Nowadays, my taper week goes a little something like this. I run the bulk of my miles on Monday and Tuesday. This usually ranges from three to six miles depending on how I feel. On Wednesday and Thursday, I try for shorter mile runs and on Friday, I rest. On Saturday, I do a three mile run to shake out my legs and on Sunday, I’m ready to go. I usually average 21 miles a week. The week leading up to a half, I average maybe 8 to 9 miles. *Edit* I know the total taper week plus the race equals 21 or 22 miles. LOL. Maybe it’s not a taper week at all? I’m still new at this! Only three years running. I’ll figure it out soon enough. 🙂 

Now my training for the La Jolla Half hasn’t been too bad. With all the races I’ve signed up for this year, I don’t really have a structured training plan for halfs. (The only structured training plans I’ll have for this year is for the Chicago marathon and for the Dopey Challenge too.) As mentioned earlier, I try to average 21 miles a week and some weeks, I go over and some weeks, I miss my target mileage by a lot. The last week of March and the first week of April wasn’t too kind to me mileage wise. I blame a lack of motivation, injury, and life. LOL.

All of that changed last week. Can you guess why?

A strava challenge started. Haha. I’m definitely the competitor type and the Runner’s World Boston Challenge was just what I needed to kick my butt back into gear. From April 8 to 17, I had to run 26.2 miles. Here was my initial thought process:

Run 26.2 miles in 9 days? Sure. Why not? Totally doable.

*2 days later*

Hmm. When did that challenge start again?

*Looks at challenge*

Oh crap. It started 4 days ago. I’ve skipped two days of running already. Hmm, should I still try for it? You at least ran 3.1 miles on Sunday. That’s still something. You got 23.1 miles to go and 6 days to do it. That’s 4 miles a day. That’s doable…I think. 

It is now April 18 and I’m proud to tell you that I finished that challenge two days ago! Woohoo! IMG_8848

Although I haven’t done any long runs in a month, I’m hopeful that my mileage the past few weeks will get me through the La Jolla Half Marathon this weekend. 🙂 Wish me luck!

If you still haven’t registered for the La Jolla Half marathon and would like to run it Sunday, April 23, use the code “BIBRAVE20” for $20 off their registration fee!