Running and Reading: October 24 – 30, 2016

Two years ago, I posted a weekly reader of posts around the blogosphere and in the news that I thought were particularly interesting to me. Some of it had to do with running; some of it was just life in general. I have missed doing that because I read a lot of really cool articles, or at least I save them on Facebook or pin them to Pinterest enough to feel like I shouldn’t keep them all to myself.

So, it’s back! Every Thursday, I’ll start posting some of the things I am reading each week. Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it!

Photo Credit: HungryRunner.com
Photo Credit: HungryRunner.com

1) It’s Marine Corps Marathon week here in our nation’s capital! Be sure you have everything you need to know about start times and course changes or check out Run Washington’s spectator guide if you plan to watch. My tip: Let Mile 12 really soak in and make sure to have your camera selfie-ready when you get medaled by a Marine. Continue reading “Running and Reading: October 24 – 30, 2016”

Week Sixteen/Fifteen: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training

Did Hurricane Joaquin cancel your race this weekend? Sign up for the Annapolis Running Classic! Get 10% off with this code: SABREF15
Did Hurricane Joaquin cancel your race this weekend? Sign up for the Annapolis Running Classic! Get 10% off with this code: SABREF15

Fundraising Update: I’m at 100% of my goal with $600.20 raised for Team TAPS!  Thank you to my very generous donors. You can still make a donation to help the families of our fallen heroes through TAPS’ programs for grief counseling.

Ahhhhh, hello taper week. I know a lot of runners get freaked out by the “T” word, but I don’t. I love tapering time. Perhaps its the subconscious realization that I may never be an ultra-marathoner because running super long distances is, for me, very hard and borderline un-enjoyable, or perhaps it’s more that I know I need to rest and recover and allow myself the rejuvenation that comes with 3 weeks of fewer intense runs and less mileage and getting psyched for a big event that you’ve been preparing for. Think about it– not many big important events in life have a taper time. I certainly never see brides at their calmest the three weeks before their wedding. High schools and universities don’t schedule finals week three weeks before graduation. Marathons practically require tapering, so it’s definitely the best part of training for 26.2 miles. Some runners freak out and get cranky; I don’t. Continue reading “Week Sixteen/Fifteen: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training”

Week Fifteen/Fourteen: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training

WE DID IT!!!
WE DID IT!!!

Fundraising Update: I’m at 100% of my goal with $600.20 raised for Team TAPS!  Last week, at this time, I was at $330 and 55% of my goal. I cannot believe how much that increased in just a week! Thank you to my very generous donors. I can’t believe I met my goal, and all it took was a simple ask for help. THANK YOU, from the bottom of my heart.

It’s Peak Week. Week Fifteen. After this week, I have three weeks of tapering before the big day. My strategy for getting through Peak Week is this: Get through one run at a time; don’t think about tomorrow’s run. Get as much rest as I possibly can. Eat foods to recover. No ditching runs— if I have to wake up super early to get one in, I will get up super early to get my run in. No backing down when I am on the trails– if I am tired, I will power through. I will not let my problems off the trail interfere with my runs. I will foam roll and plank and foam roll some more to keep my achy leg issues at bay. I will not let my past successes scare me out of creating new successes. There will be no doubt in my mind that I am strong and that I have prepared well enough to do what I have set out to do. And I will treat my last long run of the training season as my dress rehearsal for the race. Overall, I will rise above and be amazing. Continue reading “Week Fifteen/Fourteen: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training”

Week Fourteen/Thirteen: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training

Photo Credit: Capitol Hill Style
Photo Credit: Capitol Hill Style

Fundraising Update: I’m at 55% of my goal with $330 raised for Team TAPS! Make a donation today and help the families of our nation’s fallen heroes. Last week, at this time, I was at $196 and 32% of my goal. I cannot believe how much that increased in just a week! Thank you to my very generous donors. Check out my post about why I am running for TAPS. I can’t do this without your generosity and support.

Also, my friend Sarah is hosting a Jamberry nail wraps party through September 28– ONE WEEK LEFT!! 10% of proceeds will go towards TAPS. Access the party here, or at tinyurl.com/TAPSJamberry to place an order by September 28!

I ran 35 miles last week. I’m ready to take that into 40 this week. I have a lighter long run to get through; it feels do-able to get over 40 miles done.

My Planned Training Schedule: September 14 – 20

  • Monday: 5 easy pace miles (Goal Pace: 10:37 – 11:00)
  • Tuesday: 9 medium effort miles (Goal Pace: 9:07 – 9:35)
  • Wednesday: Rest
  • Thursday: 8 pace miles (Goal Pace: 9:06)
  • Friday: Rest
  • Saturday: 12 long run miles (Goal Pace: 9:36 – 10:36)
  • Sunday: 6 easy miles (Goal Pace: 9:06)
  • Total Weekly Mileage: 40 miles

Part of setting yourself up for success is identifying potential pitfalls. That’s why Wednesday will be a rest day, unless by some stretch of fate and determination I wake up early enough to get in a decent run. This week’s long run will thankfully only be 12 miles. After having bumped up from 16 to 18 to 20 in the last three weeks, I am due for it. Continue reading “Week Fourteen/Thirteen: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training”

Week Eleven/Ten: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training

Fundraising Update: I’m at 25% of my goal with $150 raised for Team TAPS! Make a donation today and help the families of our nation’s fallen heroes. Check out my post about why I am running for TAPS. Thank you to all who have contributed! I can’t do this without your generosity and support.

I think I’ve decided to stop panicking and re-evaluate my training schedule. I’ve been panicking because I feel like I’ve missed some critical pace runs and have been running a little too easy too often. No, I don’t think that I can run a 4:00 marathon in Baltimore and then run Marine Corps a week later, but I would at least like to try for one or the other to break my 2013 Rock ‘n Roll DC Marathon PR of 4:38. That, I feel is possible. But I also can’t help but wonder what would happen if I practiced race pace a little more… Continue reading “Week Eleven/Ten: Baltimore and Marine Corps Marathon Training”

Week Eight/Seven: Baltimore/Marine Corps Marathon Training

Eight weeks down. Ten weeks to go.

Photo Courtesy: TAPS for America

Like the name change of my posts? I can’t believe I’m going to run two marathons within a week of each other.

By now, I realized that I was getting annoyed with myself. It seemed that I was missing too many weekly mileage goals. I missed some for a good reason, like last week’s open-and-shut injury cases, but others I missed because I was just having a bad day or I didn’t plan well enough. This week, I knew I really had no choice: it would be 30 miles a week from here on out. No excuses. Continue reading “Week Eight/Seven: Baltimore/Marine Corps Marathon Training”

Off the Beaten Path: Cherry Blossoms, the Flat Belly Diet, and a 30-Something Washingtonian’s Dilemma

March 30 – April 3

1) I received my first Stitch Fix over the weekend. It felt like Christmas, my birthday, and a mid-season sale all in one– absent the sore feet, crowd rage, and a sugar crash from the obligatory mall coffee drink. I’d asked my stylist to send spring dresses that could transition well from work to happy hour, and I got a long gray maxi dress (not a fan of maxis), a coral sheer blouse (too billowy), and an asymetrical navy stripe t-shirt dress (perfect but see-through). I also got these dresses: Continue reading “Off the Beaten Path: Cherry Blossoms, the Flat Belly Diet, and a 30-Something Washingtonian’s Dilemma”

Richmond Half-Marathon Training

The subtitle for this post could easily be “Or What I’ve Been Up To Since Chicago.” Following the Chicago Marathon, I took some time off from running. Truthfully, all I wanted was a break from the sometimes unrealistic training expectations that I put on myself when I know I have a big race coming up. I’d basically spent all year in training mode– first for the June 2014 Minneapolis Marathon that I backed out of in April because of burnout and injury that was ultimately cancelled due to severe weather, and then for the October 2014 Chicago Marathon that I started training for in June. Frankly, I wanted to just live how I wanted and not let a training schedule take over my life.

Photo Courtesy: memecentral.com
Photo Courtesy: memecentral.com

None of this means that I wanted to stop running, however. Actually, for the first time in my life as a runner, I am feeling motivated and appreciative for my sport. I feel like I rose to the challenge of running the entire course at Chicago, and I was hungry for more challenges like that. But right now, I only want to rise to the challenge of becoming strong overall so I don’t get injured again. I want to push myself when it gets hard and embrace the pain that comes with getting out of your comfort zone and getting stronger. Continue reading “Richmond Half-Marathon Training”

If Virginia is for Lovers, Count Me In!

Photo Credit: Virginia Tourism Corporation virginia.org
Photo Credit: Virginia Tourism Corporation virginia.org

Sandwiched in between marathon weekend in Chicago, Illinois and a work conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, I had a free weekend. Typically, I’m such an introvert that usually I really need two days to recoup after a busy week at work and another upcoming busy week at work to just be alone and do my thing, except maybe with the guy I’m dating or a close friend or the occasional group outing. I don’t make huge weekend plans that often; partially because it seems like I am always training for something so I need one of my two weekend evenings free so I can turn in early and wake up early to conquer the sunrise with a long run of some kind. But I left my office on Friday evening with a stark realization: I had a COMPLETELY free weekend and I didn’t really like it. I didn’t have a long training run planned, I wasn’t flying anywhere, my time was all my own. I might be an introvert or whatever, but two days free of social events spent holed up in my studio apartment without the excuse of a raging blizzard or hurricane to keep me indoors was even too much for me. Besides, I had all winter to hibernate– why start early when this weekend’s weather was expected to be nothing short of beautiful? So, I texted a friend to accompany me on a road trip two hours west of our nation’s capital to a world away: the Appalachian Mountains in the heart of Virginia. Time to check out some leaves. Continue reading “If Virginia is for Lovers, Count Me In!”

Rooftops, Air Mattresses, and Forced Minimalism

Empty apartment living is not the new lifestyle chic.
Empty apartment living is not the new lifestyle chic.

This week, I got back to a sense of normalcy. I have a job once again so that means I can’t sleep in until 9AM then wander off to 9:30AM yoga pretending not to be curious why so many other people are there on a weekday morning. Waking up in a strange apartment everyday has taken some getting used to. There’s the typical noises of air conditioners going and neighbors wandering down the hall, but in Arlington, Virginia, it seems like there’s literally always a fire to be put out somewhere. Distant sirens are so commonplace here I’m beginning to wonder if I’ll make my fortune by adding that sound to sleeping noise machine apps for “city” folk. I can’t be crazy with that idea…my sleep noise app has a distant train on it, which reminds me of the five years I went to college in a cow town that had trains going through it at all hours. Continue reading “Rooftops, Air Mattresses, and Forced Minimalism”