Monday, April 29, 2013

TrainingTruths: Half Marathon #9 Week 7

It was Spring Break here in New Hampshire although for the first few days you wouldn't know it. It was freezing. It finally turned around mid-week and cooperated for our last training runs before tapering begins for the Flying Pig. It was a week filled with finding ways to be active beyond the run and try to turn the occasional into habit.

#TrainingTruth: Turn intentions into actions.

On Monday I ran two miles with a wonderful group of runners who came out to support Boston at the #BostonStrongGoffstown event. I was a nervous host all day, but was put at ease as soon as we started running. It felt really good to be back on the trail.

Tuesday was a regular run day. The cold, rainy weather made it difficult to get out the door initially, but once we did, we covered the five mile route easily. 

The sun came out on Wednesday and since it was a non-running day, I took advantage of the weather and hula hooped outside.

Blessed again with sunshine and comfortable temps, Thursday's run was a treat after the soggy mess on Tuesday. My wish to replace my winter gear with running shorts was granted and even the headwinds couldn't dampen my spirits.

Thursday afternoon we couldn't pass up an invitation from my step daughter to join her and her boyfriend for some games of tennis. We enjoyed a little girls versus boys and then kids versus adults

Since the dog is retired from running, I decided to take him on a 5K walk to our local beach on Friday. Definitely need to do more of this.

The timing of the Newport Ten Miler fit perfectly as our long training run on Sunday (recap coming soon). I knew my husband's training had been going well, but I was blown away by how awesome he did running these ten miles. He finished in 1:36:32 and his overall pace was 9:39!

Share your #TrainingTruths!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Just a Little Blog Award - from I Heart Running

A fellow runner and blogger picked me and my little blog to receive the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Caroline is the supportive voice of I Heart Running and the Running Bloggers network. Thank you, Caroline! 

The rules for these awards are:
1. Add the Very Inspiring Blogger Award photo on a blog post
2. Thank the person who presented you with the award and link back to him or her in your post
3. Share seven things about yourself
4. Pass the award along to up to 10 favorite bloggers
Contact the chosen bloggers to let them know about the award.

Instead of things about me, I thought I'd share what I'm loving right now:
1. My Athleta Pismo Pullover in Grey Heather. Sooo comfy!

2. The Newport Ten Miler - because it means we are heading to one of my favorite places. It means warm weather, sailing, and family time.
3. My new favorite fun core workout - hula hooping.
4. Training with my husband - It's not always easy, but running together is a fun way for us to bond.
5. Long runs - The fact that I can lace up my shoes and head out for 6, 8, 10 miles at a time still astounds me, but I love the time to reflect and find my zen.
6. Runners - the running community is an amazing force. Seeing the outpour of support and love following the Boston bombing is so inspiring.
7. Spring - after a very long winter, seeing the pops of color is a welcomed sight.

My nominations:
1. Janine @ The Purple Giraffe
2. Nancy @ Living the Dream
3. Dani @ Weight Off My Shoulders
4. Deb @ McBride Design
5. Krysten @ The Misadventures of a Darwinian Fail
6. Angela @ Happy Fit Mama
7. Michelle @ Running with Attitude

8. Sarah @ Run Far Girl
9. Katie @ Ms Fit Runner
10. Jen @ Running with the Girls

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Monday night, my wish to get together a group of runners and DO something to show Boston support from New Hampshire came true. Family, colleagues, students, and running friends (both old and new) showed up to demonstrate that we all stand as one. We are all runners. We are all in this together.

We started the evening with introductions while runners got ready to go and my step daughter and her friend helped hand out blue and yellow ribbons. After a moment of silence, my husband sent us on our way playing the Bostonian favorite Sweet Caroline.

While we were just one of over 100 #BostonStrong<city> events taking place all over the world, the two mile trail run allowed us to feel connected in a very powerful way. One of the best parts of the run was passing a young mother and her daughter who came out to cheer us on and ring their Boston Marathon cowbell. It was such a great moment and emphasized the role of spectators.

To everyone who came out for the #BostonStrongGofftown event, THANK YOU! My goal was for all of us to come together to show our love and support for all those affected by the Boston Marathon bombings, and we did.

Monday, April 22, 2013

TrainingTruths: Half Marathon #9 Week 6

What an emotional week!

It started Monday morning with excitement for the Boston Marathon and ended after a marathon week for law enforcement who worked non-stop chasing and capturing the suspects involved in the finish line bombings.

#TrainingTruth: "If you are trying to defeat the human spirit, marathoners are the wrong group to target"

#RunforBoston - With a heavy heart, I put on my BAA 5K race shirt Tuesday morning to show my support and love for the running community. After school my running partner and I logged a quick 4 miles before the rain came. It felt good to briefly zone out mentally, but also to be running for Boston.

It was not an easy run on Thursday. The sunshine disappeared not 20 minutes prior to heading out leaving only wind gusts behind and all through the five mile run my stomach was aching. The running world was still plagued with anxiety, but planning a #BostonStrong<city> event (details below) helped because I was doing something. The good part of the run was my shoes.

I woke on Saturday morning with a huge sense of relief and gratitude knowing that they had captured the second suspect. Maybe the weight off my mind was just what I needed to finally get in my first plank workout of the week.

Hoping for better weather, we moved our long run to Sunday. Although it was still way too chilly to be considered Spring, the sun was out and smiled down on us most of the 10 miles. My husband had an awesome run and is easily ready for the Newport 10 Miler next weekend. As for me, my legs felt good but I struggled with tight abs. It felt like a stitch at first, but even a rest break didn't completely alleviate the tension. Without meaning to, we donned Boston Marathon colors and hummed Sweet Caroline spontaneously throughout the run.

Here are the details for tonight's Boston tribute run in my area:

Location: Meet at Barnard Park -> Run Goffstown Rail Trail
Date: Monday, April 22, 2013
Time: 6PM
Distance: 3 - 4 miles
Facebook Event Page: RSVP here

Wear a race shirt, or Boston Marathon colors (blue & yellow). Bring a friend.

Are you participating in an event to support Boston? Feel free to link it in the comments.

#TrainingTruths is not just about me. We all like to see what everyone else is doing and use that information to assess ourselves. It's not judgement. It's a way to share and learn and make changes when necessary.

To participate all you have to do is share your #TrainingTruths:
  1. Tag a Twitter post with the hashtag #TrainingTruths
  2. Comment on the Running Escapades Facebook page 
  3. Leave a link to your own blog post in the comments
I look forward to reading your #TrainingTruths! 

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Run for Boston: #BostonStrongGoffstown

While I wait for news that they have arrested the person(s) responsible for the finish line bombings, I continue to feel an array of emotions. Initially I was shocked that something so horrific could happen. It scared me when I thought about how we were just there the day before for a much smaller race, but a race nonetheless, that crossed the iconic finish line. I was worried for my friends in the running community that were there running, spectating, or volunteering. My heart hurts each time I learn more about a victim. 

Like many runners, I felt the need to do something after the tragic events at the Boston Marathon on Monday. I wore a race tee on Tuesday and ran some miles with my running partner who has run Boston twice. But it was the call from fellow runner and blogger, Brian @PavementRunner, that spurred me to action.

So, if you are in my area, I am inviting you to join me for a group run to honor the victims. 

Here are the details:

Location: Meet at Barnard Park -> Run Goffstown Rail Trail
Date: Monday, April 22, 2013
Time: 6PM
Distance: 3 - 4 miles
Facebook Event Page: RSVP here

Wear a race shirt, or Boston Marathon colors (blue & yellow). Bring a friend.

If you can't join us, consider organizing your own group run or joining one near you. 

We might run with heavy hearts, but we won't stop running.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

BAA Distance Medley: 5K Weekend

Edited: I wrote this post on Sunday following my trip to Boston. On Monday afternoon I watched the news of the Boston Marathon finish line bombing in horror with my husband. It it very hard to process our emotions knowing that we were right there having the best time just the day before. It breaks our hearts to see the celebration of the Boston Marathon turn into pain and tragedy.


After logging our long run on Saturday morning, we headed to Boston. It was Marathon weekend and the kickoff to the 2nd annual BAA Distance Medley Series. The 5K race is the first in the series and happens to be held the day before the marathon. 

The first thing we did was check into the hotel. I love that my husband can accumulate points for stays through all his work travel. The hotel was nice and the best part was the view!

Oh, hey Wave Creations! How'd you get there? More on that coming soon...

We made our way via the T to the Boston Marathon Expo being held at the Hynes Convention Center to pick up my bib and tee, and of course browse around. Although I thought the expo was smaller than last year, there was still a ton of inspiration to be found. We spotted Katherine Switzer, the first female to ever run the Boston Marathon wearing a number and Team Hoyt, the father and son duo who have been competing in marathons and triathlons since 1977.

This year's expo location put visitors right at the finish line of the marathon. A few years ago we spectated the start of the marathon in Hopkinton, so I have seen the beginning and this weekend I was able to see the end. I love that the BAA closes off this part of the street so running enthusiasts can get such an up close and personal view of things.

We milled around for a bit, had dinner at the Cactus Club, and then made our way back to the hotel to get organized for our early morning trek back to Boylston Street. And, I had to figure out what I would be wearing when I passed under the marathon photo bridge.

We arrived about one hour prior to the race start and found some warmth in a large white bib distribution tent. The weather report predicted sunny and 45 degrees, but I could see that wasn't going to happen. Fortunately I brought along my MPG capris and found a friendly restaurant that let me use their large restroom to change. Thanks Boloco! A last minute long sleeve tee purchase finished off my new outfit for the day.

After properly layering my outfit, we made our way to the corral where hubs said he would hang with me until the start. We missed meeting up with a group of runner-blogger-FitFluential friends on Saturday and I didn't think I would ever find anyone in the crowd, but then there was Michelle! She was hanging out with her cheering section too.

This 5K was a crowded race. More than 5000 runners participated and in the short 3.1 miles, it was hard to find an "opening" to settle into a regular pace. This is not the kind of race that I attempt to PR. There's just no room to move when you're in the middle of the pack. A glimpse of the finish looks a lot like the crowd at the start.

After crossing THE finish line, I made my way through the finish coral, received a 5K medal, a bag of snacks, and an energetic congratulations. I'm happy with my finish time of 28:34, but even happier to get negative splits (939, 905, 841)! I'll be back in June for the BAA 10K.

Congrats to all the finishers of the 5K!


Edited: The events at the Boston Marathon finish line are heartbreaking, but the running community will not let it diminish what the runners accomplished that day and the world will never forget the acts of heroism that followed. 

“If you are losing faith in human nature, go out and watch a marathon” Kathrine Switzer

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Boston Marathon: All In For Boston

I'm horrified by the tragic events of the Boston Marathon finish line bombings yesterday.

Today I will run for Boston. I will run for the running community. I will run for me.

Join me.

Monday, April 15, 2013

TrainingTruths: Half Marathon #9 Week 5

Another week of half marathon training is in the books. 

We've been progressively adding miles to my husband's weekly long runs and gearing up for the Newport Ten Miler that will be a little test of his fitness level. Two years ago I ran my first ten mile run ever in Newport while training with hubs for my first half marathon, so it seemed perfect for us to run this race together.

#TrainingTruth: Good running means getting comfortable with the uncomfortable

Solo Tuesday - It was a good, yet solo out and back run after school while waiting to pick up my step daughter from tennis practice. (Hubs had the morning off, so he got in his miles earlier.) It was windy on the way out, but I think it helped me keep my pace in check. Felt heavy at the end, but got a negative split! (846, 912, 912, 845, 853) Did I mention it was a gorgeous Spring day?

Core Workout Wednesday: I did my standard three pose plank routine (front forearm and both sides) before school for 45 seconds each. After school I strapped on my Polar heart rate monitor and spent 30 minutes doing basic hula-hooping. I didn't burn as many calories as I expected, but I like the high percentage being fat!

Thursday: Finally teamed up with my running partner for the first time since the New York City Half Marathon. We did an out and back at a pretty good pace (845, 855, 1008, 833, 840) and even stopped for a brief stretch break at the turn around. The chilly weather returned so I was back in capris and a long sleeve, but I enjoyed matching up with my Cincinnati themed SweatyBands.

Saturday: It was long slow distance day for my husband, so I led him on a 9 mile out and back. This was the same route from last weekend, just extended. Not only is the route long, but it also has a challenging hill (166' climb in .50 mile) that is helping get our legs ready for the Flying Pig

*On a side note, it was still a little chilly, so I wore my MPG capris for the first time on a run (because they are really yoga capris that I lounge around in) and they were awesome. They were so warm and snug. I don't know why I haven't tried them on runs before.

Strength Training: I am proving to myself that if you want something bad enough, you will work for it. This week I completed my plank workout 5/7 days. Considering that the workout takes about 3 minutes to complete, I should be able to do it every day. Nevertheless, I'll take it because it is a huge improvement.  

What improvements are you making?

#TrainingTruths is not just about me. We all like to see what everyone else is doing and use that information to assess ourselves. It's not judgement. It's a way to share and learn and make changes when necessary.

To participate all you have to do is share your #TrainingTruths:
  1. Tag a Twitter post with the hashtag #TrainingTruths
  2. Comment on the Running Escapades Facebook page 
  3. Leave a link to your own blog post in the comments
I look forward to reading your #TrainingTruths! 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Fitness Friday: April Races

I'm so happy that Spring weather seems to have arrived. Even though I like running in cold weather, I was getting tired of bundling up for each run. I'm also looking forward to my Spring races, including two this month. 

I signed up for the BAA Distance Medley Series and the first race is the 5K on Sunday during Boston Marathon weekend. Last year I attended the Boston Marathon expo just as a spectator, so I'm looking forward to picking up my bib this year.

I'm also running the Newport 10 Miler at the end of month. I've only run one other race in Newport, back in 2011 with my husband. We ran across the Newport Pell Bridge and it is one of my best memories. I'm excited for this race because Newport has become one of my favorite places and I am hoping to better my ten mile time. 

Are you racing this weekend?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

My #Bestrun: NYC Half Marathon

I'm a little late to the party, but I couldn't resist the chance to join in with Miss Zippy and share my #bestrun!

Every time I lace up my running shoes, I am hoping to produce that #magicmilefairy type of run that leaves you wondering, how did that happen? what did I do? wasn't that awesome? 

Like most runners, I have had more than one of these (thank goodness), but the one that stands out the most to me is my recent half marathon in NYC.

Here's why:

1) The scenery: I've always wanted to run in New York City, so getting into the half marathon in March was a dream come true. Running with thousands of other runners while cheering and screaming spectators lined the city streets and Times Square flashed all around me was A - MAZ - ING! Central Park, Times Square, the South Street Seaport, to Battery Park, I ran all over New York City.

2) The weather: Although it was freezing before and after the race, during was perfect. I love when the temperature is cold, but the sun is shining and that is exactly what Mother Nature served up on race day.

3) The company: My running partner and I have been training together for over a year now, so I was thrilled when we both got into this race. Even better, she was up for making a weekend trip out of it. Lucky for me, she likes to drive and is an expert at getting around NYC. 

4) The PR!: When I found out that I beat my previous best half marathon time in NYC, I was dumbstruck! I went into this race with the intention of just running for fun and taking pictures along the way. The first 9 miles did feel amazing and flew by, but the last 4 were a little tougher so I wasn't thinking PR at all. I love having my PR in NYC!

What was your recent #bestrun?

Monday, April 8, 2013

#TrainingTruths: Flying Pig Week 4

We made it through Flying Pig Training week 4. 

I say made it through because the weather tossed some challenges our way and teased us a little in the process. So despite some crazy windy and cold days, we were able to get in all of our scheduled runs and miles.

#TrainingTruth: You either find a way or you find an excuse

Treadmill TuesdayI underestimated the windchill factor when I packed my running bag on Tuesday morning, so when I saw flurries flying out my classroom window, I knew I would be heading home. I missed my husband by 15 minutes, so I hit the treadmill until he got back from his run. It wasn't as fun as running together, but it was nice & easy. 

Solo Thursday: This was my first run without a partner in a long time. When I found out that I would be running solo, I'll admit, I got a little nervous. I thought I would be uncomfortable running alone through town and I might struggle with my pace. I don't know if it was because the weather was gorgeous or that I got to wear shorts, but it was a great run and I was speedier than I expected.

Fun Friday Hula-Hooping! After reviewing my goals for the year and seeing how poorly I have been doing at adding strength training to my workouts, I remembered that I have a sports hoop. This thing gets your heart pumping and gives your core a good workout while burning calories. You can read about the benefits here. My goal is to hula at least 4x/week on my non-running days.

Long Run Saturday: We normally do our long runs in the morning, but we woke up to cold temps and 20+ mph winds, so instead we postponed our 8 miles to the afternoon (which is not my preference, but what can you do?). I was worried that we would feel sluggish after running errands all day and hitting up our favorite smoothie spot, but it turned out to be an awesome run. My husband is really working hard to improve his miles and overall fitness. 

How was your week?

#TrainingTruths is not just about me. We all like to see what everyone else is doing and use that information to assess ourselves. It's not judgement. It's a way to share and learn and make changes when necessary.

To participate all you have to do is share your #TrainingTruths:
  1. Tag a Twitter post with the hashtag #TrainingTruths
  2. Comment on the Running Escapades Facebook page 
  3. Leave a link to your own blog post in the comments
I look forward to reading your #TrainingTruths!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Fitness Friday: #GoalGetter2013 March Update

It seemed like good time to stop and look at how I'm doing on my goals for the year. With the help of the #GoalGetter2013 challenge I can find extra motivation to stay on track.

Goal #1- PR Half marathon - done

Goal #2 - Run in NYC - done

Goal #3 - Host a fun run - I had hoped to pull my running friends together for a nice 5K in honor of the Sandy Hook families, but it just didn't happen. 

Goal #4 - Run 1000 miles - 257.36 through March! Only 742.64 to go. That's about 82 miles a month, eek!

Goal #5 - Do strength exercises consistently - total fail. Not even a picture to share. April will be my turn around month. Pinky promise!

Tell me about your goal successes/failures.

Monday, April 1, 2013

#TrainingTruths: Finding Your Zen

It was week 3 of training with my husband for our next half marathon. Because he has an unconventional work schedule, he has not run consistently since last August when we ran the Rock 'n Roll Providence together.

#TrainingTruth: Running can help you find your zen!

Monday: We ran a 4 mile route out and back from the house. It gives us a pretty good hill workout even though it's a shorter distance. I'm working on being a better pacer, while my husband works on getting his fitness back. After running, he asked, do we have to run first to get this great feeling? The loyal hound is always happy to see us return. 

Thursday: I chose a new route that kept us mostly off the main road, but took us on some side streets with rolling hills. We met our goal to keep moving on the hills and coast down the other side. During the run, I found myself concentrating on my husband's breathing to help gage our pace. It was surprisingly relaxing.

Sunday: After an evening spent with family having Easter dinner and attending Mass, we eased into this mid-morning run feeling very blessed. The weather was beautiful for our
 7 mile hilly out and back. We used the same route from Tuesday, just extended it a mile and followed the muddy road along the river. Despite the muddy-season, our surroundings were very peaceful.

And here's a little Pinterest zen-spiration from The Arty Runnerchick that sums how we felt during each run!

Do your thoughts ping-pong when you run, 
or do you zone out?

#TrainingTruths is not just about me. We all like to see what everyone else is doing and use that information to assess ourselves. It's not judgement. It's a way to share and learn and make changes when necessary.

To participate all you have to do is share your #TrainingTruths:
  1. Tag a Twitter post with the hashtag #TrainingTruths
  2. Comment on the Running Escapades Facebook page 
  3. Leave a link to your own blog post in the comments
I look forward to reading your #TrainingTruths!