Sunday, October 30, 2011

Cheering on the runners at the Marine Corps Marathon!!

What a great day to cheer the runners who were running the Marine Corps Marathon.  Our friend Whiticar was also one of the runners.  We set ourselves up at mile 22/23.  Looked like we got there just before our friend was hitting mile 22.  Perfect timing.  We came prepared with signs and candy.  I didn't realize how excited people would be to get some candy.  We ended up running out rather quickly so Megan high tailed it to a Rite Aid for some back up supplies.  I believe we went through 10 to 11 bags of candy.  Crazy.  It was a great day to cheer on everyone!  We started cheering at 11 and stayed  until after 2 to cheer on the last few runners.  I always hated when I was towards the back, people were leaving and nobody was really cheering, well not this time.  We made sure to cheer extra loud for those back of the packers!!  Way to go.  I now leave you with pictures of our day.

Handing out candy made runners smile :)

We found Whiticar!  Great job!

He was super excited to see us and his sign too :)

free high fives

Santa was gettin' his run on!

We owned Mile 22 cheer section!

Marine Corps Marathon Cheering Section!

Wishing everyone who is running the Marine Corps Marathon good luck!  I will be there with some friends to cheer people on. :)  This is my first time cheering at MCM..I am super excited.  We are also going to buy some goodies to hand out too :)

I am hoping to get a spot somewhere around mile 22..but we will see how many people have decided to do the same too :)
Our running club friend, Whiticar is running MCM!  Go Whiticar!!

Good luck to everyone running a race today :)  And all of you MCM'ers..keep on running towards the beer :)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Great quote from Kelly - Loving the Run

I just read this on Kelly's blog Loving the Run and thought I would share

Remember –
You are not a runner because of the race you ran, whether it be good or bad.
You are a runner…
…because you run.
Nothing more. Nothing less.

I couldn't have said it any better :)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Brewfest and running some

Well I have not really been doing much running this week.  I figure I just ran a half so I can take a brief break.  I ran on Tuesday at running club (slow but it was a run) and that was about it for the week.  This coming week I will be back to running and visiting the gym.

Instead of running I went to Brewfest on Saturday.  Running or beer..hmm  I choose beer.

I ran into Sheen while we were enjoying some brew.  Nice to hang out with her outside of school.  It was my first time going to brewfest.  It was a pretty nice event.  Not a bunch of small breweries but just enough.  I enjoyed some pumpkin ales and a very yummy blueberry ale.  It was a perfect day to be outside enjoying some great fall weather.  Who wants to run when there is brew to be had!

I did finally head back to the gym this afternoon.  It wasn't the best day at the gym.  I didn't stay that long, but I guess I can say "at least I went."  I did a few miles on the treadmill and then headed over to the bike.  I only did about 15 minutes on the bike.  I didn't want to aggravate the plantar fasciitis and it was bothering me earlier today so I didn't want to take any chances.  I stretched out the foot before getting off the bike so at least I didn't look like an 80 year old walking away from the bike.  Tomorrow I will try and make it back to the gym or run around the hood.  We will see.  Mondays are usually super tiring. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


If you haven't read the book Run!  26.2 Stories of Blisters and Bliss.  By Dean Karnazes.  I read it this summer and loved the book!  I love that fact that each "chapter" is really short stories of Karnaze's running life.  It is amazing the miles he puts on his running shoes.  I will not be running any ultra's anytime soon, but it is always interesting reading about people who do. 

Here is the blurb about the book that I found online:

In his follow-up to the best-selling "Ultramarathon Man"--which "Sports Illustrated" called "fascinating" and the "New York Times" said was "full of euphoric highs"--world-renowned ultramarathoner Dean Karnazes chronicles his unbelievable exploits and explorations in gripping detail. Karnazes runs for days on end without rest, across some of the most exotic and inhospitable places on earth, including the Australian outback, Antarctica, and the Tenderloin District of San Francisco.From the downright hilarious to the truly profound, the linked stories in Run create an unforgettable tableau, providing readers with the ultimate escape and offering a rare glimpse into the mind-set and motivation of an extreme athlete. Karnazes addresses the pain and perseverance and also charts his emotional state as he pushes the edges of human achievement. The tales of the friendships he's cultivated on his many adventures around the world warm the heart and are sure to captivate and inspire readers whether they run great distances, modest distances, or not at all.

So if you enjoy reading running books and you have read this one yet, you have to run out and pick it up.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Heritage Half Marathon Race yeah I PR'd

So the morning started off really early.  You would think that considering the race is pretty local I could sleep in a bit..but no..4:45 am I am up and about..take the dog out, eat a bagel, get all the race gear on etc.  I head out the door to get to the race by 6:30 since the race starts at 7:00.  I hate feeling like I am late and even though it is a small race (400ish people ) you never know what you will run into.  For instance last year I took a left instead of a right for the turkey trot and ended up with very little time before the race because I was a bit lost. 

Well turns out when you drive at 5:30 you arrive much earlier than map quest tells you.  It should have taken an hour, but ended up around 45 minutes.  Megan arrived around 6:30.  I was hoping for mid 50's and it was mid 40's..brrr...

We were waiting around to start the race and it was announced that it would be 15 to 20 minutes later than the original start time until it started.  It seems that the water truck never showed up so the volunteers were all out buying water at any store that had water to be bought.  Talk about a race director's nightmare.  Well if we may have a water shortage I figured I might want to carry my handheld.  I wasn't going to carry it because they had water stops almost every 1 1/2 to 2 miles.  I wasn't sure if they were going to limit the water stops so the hand held it is.  I had some water in my car which filled the hand held half full (better than nothing I guess).

Also check out that nice running jacket.  Ah we had great times together..too bad I had to dump you before mile 2.  I thought we could reunite after the race, but it wasn't meant to be.  Someone else will experience how warm you can be when it is really really cold outside and they still want to run.  RIP Fila jacket.

Back to the beginning of the race.  We started out and I kept up with Megan for the first half mile to mile (which is pretty good because I usually drop back pretty quickly).  It was a bit cold but I quickly warmed up once I started running.  I wish I would have worn the ugly mustard color race shirt instead of my jacket.  I wasn't planning on running in the jacket, but it was really cold.  I should have put it in the car..oh well.  Next run I am taking the mustard shirt! 

I was running along at a pretty decent pace.  Hit a few water stops (we would have never known there was a water shortage..all water stops were well stocked).  The first turn around occurred at around mile 3.  I got to see that I was not the last of the group (although I was in the back of the pack).  I wasn't that worried about being last, but it is always nice to see that you are not the last one.

Around mile 4-5 I got to see the winner running back.  He had a little more than 1 1/2 miles left.  He was flying!  Turns out he ran a little over a 5 minute mile for the half.  That is just crazy! 

I was pleased with the limited amount of walking I was doing.  I was a bit worried for mile 8.  It seems I always feel horrible at mile 8.  Not so today.  I was feeling fine.  I wasn't running fast, but I was doing an pretty decent job of running a consistent pace. I think the cooler weather helped.  I didn't feel overheated but was very comfortable with the temps outside.    At the ten mile mark I Pr'd.  I hit ten miles at 2:01.  So close to a sub 2 hour ten.  So I was pretty hopeful of a pretty nice PR for the long as I kept the feet moving I should be fine.  The last 2 miles of the half were tough.  I did walk quite a bit. I made it the track and ran my slow pace around it to the finish.

I was so excited to PR!!  What a great day for a race!  I took 16 minutes off of my half marathon time!  I ran it in 2:45.  Slow but faster than last year's half. 

Look who I found at the finishline

Who knew that ZZ Top was a runner!  I also saw Rodney Dangerfield during the run. I guess he had someplace to go because I didn't see him after I crossed the finish line.  Who knew so many famous people were running this small race.

I thought I was going to hate the medal.  But turns out it is huge and I love it for being so huge!  It reminds of Mr. T's bling! The medal is bigger than the entire palm of my hand! 

I just signed up for the Kentucky Derby mini (a half marathon) for the end of April.  I guess I have to try and beat my new best time. :)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Heritage Half

So tomorrow morning I will be running my 4th half marathon!  Hard to believe last year at this time I had barely finished my first Half.  I'm feeling good about tomorrow.  I had a pretty good Army Ten Miler run last week so I am hoping that will carrying  through the half tomorrow. 

I picked up my packet yesterday.  Worlds ugliest long sleeved tech shirt ever!  Who chooses mustard as the color for the shirt??  I can picture it now:

Al:  What color should we make the shirts?
Bob:  How about Black?
Al:  Nah, everyone has a black shirt
Bob:  White?
Al:  How many white shirts do you own?
Bob:  I know mustard!!  It is great on a hot dog and I am sure it would look great on all the blond girls running the half.
Al:  Brilliant!  Mustard it is!

Yep that shirt will not make the light of day.  I will take a picture of it and post it for the race report. :)

I have done pretty much what I did last weekend before the ten miler (except I mowed the grass and pulled some weeds).  So hopefully that will work out tomorrow too. 

Goals for tomorrow:
A.  sub 3
B. just over 3
C.  Finish, enjoy the run and not hurt too bad.

It is a pretty small race.  I believe that they are expecting about 400 runners for the race.  That scares me a bit.  I could be the last one running across the mat!  That also screams "you will be running by your lonesome for a good portion of the race!"  Hopefully both of these last thoughts do not come true but if it does I am sure it will be fine. :)  Because I am anticipating few cheering people along the run I am definitely running with music.  I did enjoy the ten miles last week, but there were lots of people running with me and lots of cheering people for most of the race. 

Not sure what the running outfit is going to be.  I am tempted to just wear the same outfit as the ten miler..we will see.  Should be a beautiful day for a run (just hoping it is not as windy as today). 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Army Ten Miler race recap

So the Army 10 miler was this past Sunday.  What  a great race and what a beautiful day to run a race!  I woke up at 4:45 and took Riley out, made my bagel and got the running gear on.  I hate running around the morning of a race so I may wake up a tad earlier than needed..but I like starting my day off a bit slow.  I met Megan at the commuter lot at a little after 6.  We were supposed to meet at 6:15 but I forgot how little traffic is on the road so early on a Sunday morning.  We decided to park at the garage in Pentagon City and walk over to the Pentagon after we used the mall bathrooms.  Who knew we would be so excited over bathrooms with running water and sinks before a race!

When we get to the Pentagon we head over to the runners area.  I'm stopped by an Army guy while Megan with the backpack (which I don't think was allowed in the area) is waved into the area.  Turns out that music is not allowed so he asked me to hide my earphones.  I knew that the website said no music, but really I think all the races say not to bring music.  I checked some of the pictures from last year and saw some runners with music so I figured it must be ok.  Well turns out I was wrong.  I ended up checking my ipod along with my jacket.  I ran my first music free race. 

Well the start of the race reminded me of a RnR race because of the long walk to the start.  Took me over 20 minutes to reach the start mat.  Once I hit the mat I was off and running.  The run took us past Arlington Cemetery, The Martin Luther King Monument, Washington Monument, The Kennedy Center and the Jefferson Memorial.  Lots to see along with some bands along the way!  I loved the fact that their were so many places that people could cheer the runners as they ran by.  It was great! Water stops were plentiful too. 

The last two miles were horrible (as usual).  We were running on the 14th St. bridge and you could hear the announcer calling in the runners at the finish line, you just didn't know where the finish line was. As I rounded the corner at the end of the exit ramp I saw all these people cheering me on and telling me I'm almost there! (They are liars by the way).  Then I am running wondering where the finish is..more people tell me it is right around the corner (they too are liars).  I end up running up a hill and rounding a bend and see a few photographers which would surely mean it is the finish line.  I start to sprint thinking I am at the finish..nope still no finish line.  I keep going at a much slower pace and finally see the finish line.  I jog over the finish (I left my sprint a few yards back there).  Then the long trek to find water and get my finisher's coin.  Ugh..more walking!  My feet are now hurting..I don't want to walk, but I want water.  It was the longest walk ever!  I finally got my coin 

Met Megan at our assigned meeting spot.  I thought we would see some other friends who were running, but turned out we saw nobody.  Had a long long walk back to our car and ate some lunch along the river in Occoquan. 

I would definitely do this race again next year!  Here are some other pictures from the Army Ten Miler:

What do these next three pictures have in common??

 Yep everyone loves to look down at their garmin or watch to check their pace while they run. :)


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Army 10 MIler

The Army Ten Miler was great!  I am working on a race recap..hopefully it will be ready tomorrow :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

nothing says race ready like a new outfit!

So the Army Ten Miler is Sunday.  I am getting excited for this one.  It should be a great race day :)  I decided I needed a  new outfit for the run.  I tend to run in the lovely berry color clothing, this race I have a black and green shirt and some nice Nike black running shorts!  If a new outfit says that you are ready for a race, I am ready for the Army Ten Miler!  The only thing I have left is a 5 mile run tomorrow (pushed from today) and then run the race on Sunday. I normally do not tell my goals, but here goes...

Goal A :  Less than 2 hours (my best 10 miler was 2:04)
Goal B:  2:05
Goal C:  Finish feeling good :) 

Fingers crossed that I'm less than 2 hours.

After the Army Ten Miler I have the Heritage Half Marathon the following weekend.  All these races and then a few 5K's.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

one week until Army 10 miler

So I am one week out!  I think I will have a decent run next week.  I hope that the weather is good..and that I have a great run.  Today I was supposed to run 9, turned out it was 7..the wind was a killer so I ended the run...and it was sprinkling so I was frightened that  a downpour was going to come at any mintue!  I hate rain. :)  So 7 miles it was. 

After the run I did this:

Thats right I stomped some grapes at the local winery!  So much fun.  I was expecting something a' la Lucille Ball but I will take the small barrels and the chance to stomp some grapes!  It was lots of fun!  I got a my feet printed in paint to commemorate the occation. :)  It was a great fall day to go stomp grapes and have some wine tasting too.