Friday Five – My Fall Race Calendar

With summer quickly coming to an end, that means that fall is right around the corner.  And one of the highlights for me every fall is the start of race season.

There are so many fun races held every fall.  Its not hard to find numerous races held every weekend.  There are so many races to choose from, and it is very easy to over schedule yourself with fall races.

I am incredibly excited about the races currently on my fall calendar.  I have registered for all but the last race on my calendar.

1.  Rock ‘n’ Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon – September 17th

It is no secret that I am a huge fan of the Rock ‘n’ Roll race series, and this will be my third time running Philly (I ran in 2015 at 32 weeks pregnant, and then again last year).  This year’s race is the same weekend as my planned 20 miler for marathon training, so my current plan is to run 7 miles before the start of the half marathon, and then use the race to help keep me motivated with what will be my most challenging marathon training run.

After completing Rock ‘n’ Roll Philly in 2015 at 32 weeks pregnant

2.  Dulles Day 10k on the Runway – September 23rd

This will be my fourth year running Dulles Day (I ran the inaugural 5k in 2013, the 10k in 2014, and the 5k in 2015).  I am excited to be returning to this race again this year after there being a scheduling conflict last year.  Running on an airport runway is incredibly exciting, and I cannot wait to share this experience with my little man since strollers are allowed on the course.

Running on the runway at Dulles Airport during the Dulles Day 10k in September 2014
Photo Credit: PR Races

3.  Clarendon Day Double (5k and 10k) – September 24th

Clarendon Day falls on the same weekend as my last double digit run for marathon training, so this race day will provide another great opportunity for extra motivation.  I’ve only previously run the 10k (in both 2014 and 2015), but by participating in the double, I’ll first run the 5k and then the 10k.  Oh, and in between races I have to make it back up the “hill of death” in Rosslyn.  I’m looking forward to this fun challenge!

At the Clarendon Day finish line in 2015

4.  Chicago Marathon – October 8th

To say I am excited about running my first marathon is an understatement.  For the most part, marathon training has been going well and I cannot wait to see how my hard work pays off in just six and a half short weeks.

5.  Jingle Bell Jog 5k – December 10th

Although I haven’t registered for this race yet, I am very seriously considering running this Christmas themed race.  I haven’t run a Christmas race since 2014, and would love to enjoy this race with my little man since strollers are allowed on the course.  There is also an Elf Dash that he can participate in.  If I sign him up, this will be his second race (his first being his diaper dash last November).

QOTD: What race(s) are you most looking forward to running this fall?

I’m linking up for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup.  Many thanks to the wonderful ladies at Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy for hosting!

I am also linking up with Deb for the Race Linkup.  Be sure to also check out her post for more race ideas.

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Weeks 10 and 11

On October 8th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

It seems like its been forever since I last blogged, when in reality its only been two weeks.  If you follow me on Instagram then you know that I’ve kept myself quite busy over the past two weeks, the highlight of which was the week that my husband and I spent in Antigua celebrating our wedding anniversary.  We had an incredible week away, during which I met two of my August goals – to stay active while on vacation and to not overindulge.

Week 10 Training:

Monday, August 7th

After completing a 16 mile run two days prior, my legs were still quite heavy and sore.  However, with us leaving very early the next morning for Antigua I knew that I couldn’t push my first run of the week back, and still forced myself out the door for my run.  It was a slow going five miles, but I was so happy when I was finished that I had resisted the temptation to skip my run, and celebrated by walking another mile after my run.

After completing my last run before vacation

Tuesday, August 8th

We had a very long travel day, which started with our alarm going off at 2:00 in the morning.  Thankfully, we had checked into an airport hotel the night before.  Our first flight of the day left Chicago at 5:30 a.m., we connected in Miami, and after a slight delay in Miami due to our plane arriving late, we landed in Antigua around 2:30 p.m.  By 4:30 we had checked into our hotel room, had changed into our bathing suits, and were getting drinks at the pool bar.

Wednesday, August 9th

In an effort to stay on track with marathon training while on vacation, I headed for the gym first thing when I woke up.  The excitement of being on vacation helped me to push myself as hard as I could on the treadmill, and I completed a 5 mile progression run in 48:08, with a sub 9 minute mile for my last mile!  I finished up my workout with a one mile walk.

I’ve been becoming a bit discouraged by my slowing pace due to the increasing mileage associated with marathon training, as well as the heat and humidity, so it felt really good to run faster. 5 mile progression run in the resort’s fitness center, with the last mile in 8:59!

Thursday, August 10th

When we booked our trip, one of the things that attracted us to the particular resort that we chose was the inclusion of water activities.  After breakfast on Thursday, we headed out to the beach and checked in for our snorkeling trip.  We had a blast swimming in the Caribbean while soaking in views of a beautiful reef and various fish.

Immediately after getting off of the boat, we arrived at the resort pool just in time for the start of water aerobics.  The resort’s trainer led us through a great 30 minute workout, and I was definitely feeling the burn by the end of the workout.  Working out in the water is much harder than it looks!

Friday, August 11th

After breakfast we took a short half mile walk on the beach before getting picked up for a private tour of the island.  During our day long tour we did quite a bit of walking, though I have no idea how far we actually walked.

At Shirley Heights overlooking the English Harbor in Antigua

Saturday, August 12th

When I first put my marathon training plan together, I penciled in 8-10 miles for my long run while in Antigua.  However, I knew that running that many miles on a treadmill while in the Caribbean was going to be quite the mental challenge.  So when we left for Antigua I told myself that I’d run as far as I wanted to, and would do this long run completely based on feel.  Up until this point, I’ve stayed on track with my long run mileage, so I figured that I had earned my mental and physical break from high mileage training.

I started my run outside, running laps around the resort.  With the resort being as compact as it was, with lots of winding sidewalks, running around the resort was far from easy.  Add in the Caribbean heat and humidity, and after three miles I was mentally and physically done with running outside.  So I headed for the gym and ran another three and a half miles on the treadmill.  By this point, I was done and just wanted to relax at the pool, so I called it a day.

3 miles outside followed by 3.5 miles on the treadmill. Its definitely hard to motivate yourself to run any further when you’re on vacation in the Caribbean.

Sunday, August 13th

I started the day with a 30 minute full body weight training session at the gym, and then after breakfast Preston and I walked just under one and a half miles on the beach.

Total Weekly Mileage – 20.93 miles (9.12 miles less than week 9)

Week 11 Training:

Monday, August 14th

Even though my legs were sore from my weight training the day before, I still headed to the gym and completed a 5 mile progression run on the treadmill.  It was almost two minutes slower than my progression run the Wednesday prior, but I still got it done.  And even though my body was quite tired, I still found the energy to do water aerobics again later that morning.  It was too much fun to sit on the sidelines and watch.

Can you tell how tired I was at the end of my run?

Tuesday, August 15th

Since we flew back to Illinois on Tuesday, I spent the time that I would have spent in the gym instead packing up.  After checking out of our room we spent a couple more hours at the beach and the pool, and after lunch had to leave for the airport to begin our long journey back.  We didn’t land in Chicago until around midnight.

Wednesday, August 16th

Despite not checking into our airport hotel and going to bed until almost 1:30 in the morning, I still pushed myself out the door that morning for my usual run.  I found a flat and shaded neighborhood near our hotel, and not only ran five miles but walked another two afterwards.

My last run in Chicago before the marathon was in a beautiful flat and shaded neighborhood near our hotel.

That afternoon, my parents and little man joined us in Chicago, and it was wonderful to finally be reunited with our little man.  We spent the afternoon giving him a couple of presents and taking him swimming in the hotel pool.

Thursday, August 17th

Thursday was our last and final travel day for the trip.  We had a midday flight back to D.C.  Although I could have spent some time in the hotel gym that morning, what I haven’t mentioned yet is that both Preston and I came down with colds overnight Monday into Tuesday.  Despite pushing myself to still complete my run on Wednesday, I was absolutely exhausted by the time Thursday came around.  Flying back with a toddler who didn’t want to sit still was anything but fun while also feeling miserable.

Friday, August 18th

On our first full day back at home I was mentally and physically exhausted.  I wound up napping for almost as long as little man did that afternoon.  Needless to say, working out was the furthest thing from my mind that day.

Saturday, August 19th

Thankfully, I woke up feeling much better Saturday morning, so I still headed out for my planned long run.  The extra rest had done wonders for me, and I felt great for the majority of my 14 mile run, until I started running out of water about 12 miles in.  Thank goodness my husband and son were able to come meet me out on the road and bring me more water, but I struggled to regain my momentum after pushing through without water while waiting for them.  But given that I felt as strong as I did for as long as I did, I still consider this long run to be a very successful one.

After taking a much needed mental and physical break from marathon training while we were on vacation and cutting way back on my mileage while in Antigua, it felt great to get back on track on Saturday.

Sunday, August 20th

Sunday evening little man and I headed out for our last walk of summer break.  Sadly, my short summer break flew by, and today I head back to school and little man heads back to daycare.  We celebrated the end of our summer together with a long walk, and afterwards I did a 30 minutes of strength training.

Little man and I marked the end of our summer break together with one last walk.

Total Weekly Mileage – 29.61 miles (8.68 miles more than week 10)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 300.59 miles

QOTD: Have you ever done water aerobics before?  Did you find it easy or difficult?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin for the Weekly Wrap link up.  I’m also linking up with Courtney for the Training Recap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 9

On October 8th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

This past week was a physically challenging one.  Between the heat and humidity, and increasing the distance of my long run, my body was certainly put to the test of how much it can endure.  This past week also marked the halfway point of my training.  I am now officially halfway done with training for my first marathon!  Time has been flying by and I cannot believe that in just nine short weeks I will be able to call myself a marathoner!

Monday, July 31st

I kicked off the week with a run with my little man.  Since my legs were still quite sore from last Saturday’s 15 miler, it was very slow going.  Little man was also a tad fussy during the run, which created an extra challenge for me.  But the important thing is that I got my run done!

Smiling post run, despite how challenging of a run it was

Tuesday, August 1st

After Preston was done with work for the day I headed to the gym, where I spent 30 minutes on the elliptical and 35 minutes doing full body weight training.  Even though my muscles were still a tad sore, I decided to push through.  No pain, no gain, right?

Wednesday, August 2nd

Little man went to daycare for the day, which allowed me to complete my run on my own.  Even without having to push the stroller, the humidity really got to me and slowed me way down, especially during the last couple of miles.

I love summer, but the humidity has become quite brutal! Marathon training during the summer is most certainly a challenge, but I’m praying that pushing through when it’s hot and humid will make me that much stronger on race day.

Thursday, August 3rd

I had wanted to get to the gym but with us getting ready to head out of town I had plenty of chores, errands, and packing that dictated otherwise.  Instead, I did 35 minutes of strength training at home.

Friday, August 4th

We had a long day of travel to my parents’ house in Illinois, plus a rest day before a long run is usually a smart idea.

Saturday, August 5th

I had been looking forward to this run ever since looking at my training plan and realizing that I’d be doing a long run while in Illinois.  I always looking forward to running in flat Central Illinois, as I’m usually able to push my pace just a tad more due to fewer hills than are on some of my usual routes at home.  However, my 16 miler wound up being quite challenging, as my legs felt tired and heavy during much of my run.  The further that I ran, the slower that I became, but I pushed through, didn’t stop, and reached a new personal distance record!

Since I was in Illinois at my parents’ house this past weekend, I had the opportunity to run on the beautiful trail in my hometown. And it was an absolutely gorgeous morning for a run, 60 degrees when I started and 75 when I finished, with lowish humidity.  Marathon training is definitely slowing me down, especially since my legs were tired and heavy during much of my long run. But I’m still celebrating because I didn’t stop and reached another new PDR!

Sunday, August 6th

Unfortunately, I spent Saturday night and the first half of Sunday battling a migraine.  Thankfully I felt better after taking an early afternoon nap, but since we had plans to go to a baseball game late Sunday afternoon/evening I lost out on the opportunity to do any cross or strength training.

We had a blast at the baseball game, and we got to meet Corny the Corn Belter!

Total Weekly Mileage – 30.05 miles (2.21 miles more than week 8)

Total Chicago Mileage – 250.05 miles

QOTD: How is your summer training going?  Is the heat and humidity finally catching up with you?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin for the Weekly Wrap link up.  I’m also linking up with Courtney for the Training Recap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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August 2017 Goals

I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit sad that its already August.  Although my big vacation for the summer is this month, I’m sad to see my summer at home with little man rapidly coming to an end.  Due to being in school until almost the end of June, and going back to school a week earlier than usual this coming school year, my summer break has felt especially short this year.  Little man and I have been having a blast together, and when you take out my upcoming vacation, we only have a handful of days left before I go back to work and he goes back to school, aka daycare.

We have had an absolute blast together this summer

July was a very active month, especially when it came to keeping up with my marathon training.  My July mileage was the highest monthly total ever, and for the first time I ran over 100 miles in a single month.

1.  Log at least 115 miles.

Grade: A

My July mileage total was 135.1 miles, 102.5 of which I ran.  To say that July was a productive month when it came to my running and cardio is an understatement.  I also made significant progress towards meeting my 2017 mileage goal.  My current mileage total for the year is 668.5 miles, which put me at 67% of the way towards meeting my goal of 1,000 miles.  Its clear that I need to reevaluate this goal for 2017.

July was quite a productive month, especially when it came to running and cross training

2.  Strength train at least three times per week.

Grade: B-

There were a couple of weeks in July when I only did strength training twice, not three times like my goal was.  The further into the month I got, the less time and focus I put into this goal.  I regret not having been more focused on my strength training.

3.  Cross train at least three times per week.

Grade: B-

Just like with my strength training, I lost energy and focus with my cross training, especially during the second half of the month.  Part of that was because of how hot and humid it was on many days last month, which resulted in little man and I doing a lot of indoor instead of outdoor activities together.

4.  Stop obsessing about my weight.

Grade: A

I stop weighing myself on an almost regular basis.  It feels good, and is a huge sigh of relief, to be going based on feel, not just what the number on the scale is.

5.  Enjoy the month’s social activities.

Grade: A

If you follow me on Instagram then you know that there was no shortage of enjoyment this past month.  From my friend’s wedding to celebrating my wedding anniversary to spending time with family, July was an absolutely amazing month.

Preston and I before the start of the wedding ceremony

Although July was a great month, I know that August will be an even better month, especially as I continue to progress with marathon training and reach new personal distance records.

1.  Log at least 145 miles.

I’m not going to lie, seeing my mileage goals increasing over the past couple of months is quite scary.  But now that I’m at the height of marathon training, and am running more miles per week than ever before, I know that setting these lofty goals is important.  After logging 135 miles last month, I’m slightly increasing the number for this month’s goal.

2.  Cross train and strength train at least two times per week.

Although this is a decrease from last month, I think that twice a week for cross training and strength training is more realistic, especially given that I will not only be out of town for part of the month, but that I am also going back to work later in the month.

3.  Stay active while on vacation.

There are so many things that I am looking forward to about going to Antigua with my husband next week, including running at the beach and taking walks on the beach.  We also plan to do some water sports, as well as to utilize the resort’s fitness center.  I’m also looking forward to giving pool aerobics a try, which is one of the many activities at the resort that we will be staying at.

Snorkeling in Hawaii during our honeymoon in 2011. We’re hoping that snorkeling will be one of the many ways that we can stay active while in Antigua.

4.  Don’t overindulge while on vacation.

Given that we are staying at an all inclusive resort, there will an abundance of food and alcohol available to us.  While I do intend to enjoy myself and have a good time, I also need to avoid the temptation to overdo it.  The last thing that I want to do is undo all of the hard work and effort that I have put into marathon training thus far.

QOTD: What are your goals for August?

I’m linking up with Ange and Carmy for the Monthly Goals linkup.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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Tunes Tuesday – End of Summer Jams

Since my husband and I are getting ready to head to Antigua next week to celebrate our anniversary, I’m thinking that I need to update my playlist so that I have some Caribbean tunes to listen to while running.  Even though we’ll be on vacation, I still need to keep up with my marathon training.  Our trip coincides perfectly with this month’s theme for the Tunes Tuesday Linkup: End of Summer Jams.

Some songs I’ll be sure to include on my playlist are:

Summer Breeze by Seals and Crofts (Philip Steir remix)

Summer of 69 by Bryan Adams

The Pineapple Song by Good Size

Kokomo by The Beach Boys

Hot Hot Hot by Buster Poindexter

QOTD: What other upbeat summer songs should I include on my playlist?

Thanks to Janelle, Kim, and Steff for hosting the Tunes Tuesday linkup.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

Posted in Miscellaneous | Tagged | 12 Comments

Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 8

On October 8th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Logistically, this past week was a difficult week.  Little man and I were out of town for five days, and travel in and of itself often makes keeping up with workouts difficult.  Although I did complete my three planned runs, I didn’t hit either my cross training or strength training goals for the week.  We were in northern New Jersey at my grandfather’s house, helping my parents work on cleaning it out (he passed away at the end of January).  Between spending time with them, and playing with little man in the backyard and taking him swimming in the pool in the backyard, my attention for working out was turned elsewhere.

Little man loved his play time in my grandfather’s pool

However, there’s also some things from last week to celebrate.  Runkeeper notified me that I reached a couple of milestones for running this past week.  I have now run the highest number of miles in a single month (my current total is at 98 miles, and I’m planning on running today).  I have also run the highest number of miles in a single week (this past week I ran 25 miles).

Monday, July 24th

Time wasn’t on my side on Monday, as I needed to pack up for little man and I to head north the next morning.  And since there was absolutely nothing for little man up at my grandfather’s house I had a lot to pack up (pack ‘n’ play, toys, pool float, the list was very long).  Since my time was limited I didn’t get any running or cross training in, but I did do 30 minutes of strength training.

Tuesday, July 25th

Before hitting the road, I was able to enjoy a beautiful summer morning during my run.  After my run, I packed up the car and started the drive north.

After almost a week of high heat and humidity, the 66 degrees and only 70% humidity was a welcome relief. And I got the chance to run solo on Monday. What a winning combo for this mother runner!

Wednesday, July 26th

Little man and I were able to enjoy another beautiful summer morning during a just over two mile walk around my grandfather’s neighborhood.

Thursday, July 27th

Thank goodness it was yet another beautiful summer morning with low temperatures and lowish humidity, because the hills of northern New Jersey were quite the challenge during my run.  I was so happy that despite the hills that I was able to maintain a sub ten minute average pace.

The hills of northern New Jersey made for quite the challenge during my run.

Friday, July 28th

After struggling during my long run last week, partly due to sore leg muscles, I decided that I needed to take a complete rest day in advance of my 15 miler.  I am so glad that I made this decision.

Saturday, July 29th

I was worried for several days that my long run wouldn’t happen.  Between driving back from New Jersey and arriving home in the early afternoon on Saturday, and there having been storms here for a couple of days, I questioned how I was going to be able to fit this run in, especially since I really didn’t want to run 15 miles on the treadmill.  Thankfully, there was a break in the storms and I was able to get outside for my run.  Yes, there were puddles that I had to dodge, some of which I successfully navigated around and some that I didn’t, but I got my run in and reached a new personal distance record!

Celebrating a new PDR!

Sunday, July 30th

Between recovering from my long run and celebrating my 6th wedding anniversary, I took another rest day.  Since my sister is in town, we were able to go out to a nice dinner thanks to her volunteering to babysit little man.

On our wedding day, and photos from each of our anniversary dinners, starting with our 1st anniversary on the bottom left going around to our 5th anniversary on the top right.

The restaurant gave us personalized menus in recognition of our anniversary

Total Weekly Mileage – 27.84 miles (1.96 miles less than week 7)

Total Chicago Mileage – 220.00 miles

QOTD: What milestones did you reach last week?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin for the Weekly Wrap link up.  I’m also linking up with Courtney for the Training Recap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

Today is the last day to enter the Sea to Shining Sea Virtual Race Giveaway.  Don’t forget to ente

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Friday Five – My Current Running Essentials

Disclaimer: I am not being sponsored or paid to promote any of the following products or brands.  I am simply sharing what I am currently loving.  As always, all opinions are my own.

Every runner needs shoes, clothes, and sports bras (if they’re a female).  But what else am I currently heavily relying on, especially while in the midst of marathon training?

1.  Body Glide.  Running in the summer, especially when its incredibly hot and humid, leads to a lot of sweating, which increases the potential for chafing.  I probably don’t need to tell you how much chafing hurts, especially when you get into the shower right after a run.  Ouch!

2.  KT Tape.  Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been getting some horrible chafing, even after lathering up with body glide before I head out for a run.  I read online a suggestion about putting KT Tape over the area that is prone to chafing, and tried this out for the first time during last Saturday’s long run.  When I arrived home after my run, I found that the KT Tape had worked, and that I hadn’t chafed!

3.  Camelbak Hydration Vest.  I received my Camelbak for Christmas from my father-in-law, and have used it for every run over 6 miles (unless I’m running with the stroller) since I received it.  I love that it holds enough water for a double digit run, even on hot and humid days, and that there’s enough pockets to also hold other essentials, including my fuel, phone, and key.

4.  Gu Energy Gels and Clif Bloks.  These are my go to fuel for my long runs.  I alternate between taking a gel or eating a couple of energy chews, and this system seems to work well for me.

5.  Eagle Creek Pack-It Sport Kit.  As a Rock ‘n’ Blogger, I received this as a complimentary gift from Eagle Creek, and have found it to be the perfect solution to traveling with sweaty running shoes and clothes.  I always hesitate to bag up my running clothes post run with my other dirty laundry while traveling, but have found Eagle Creek to be the perfect solution to keeping the sweaty shoes and clothes separate from my other clothes.  And the best part?  The bag is machine washable, so I can throw it in the laundry with all of my dirty clothes to get the sweat stink out.

QOTD: What running essentials are you currently loving?

I’m linking up for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup.  Many thanks to the wonderful ladies at Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy for hosting!

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Sea to Shining Sea Virtual Race Giveaway

Disclaimer: I am not being financially compensated for this post.  All opinions are my own.

I’ve participated in a handful of virtual races.  There are a number of reasons that I like participating in them, some of which include:

  • They serve as a source of motivation to get out the door and run or walk
  • They are a great way to bring like minded people together from across the country, and sometimes the world, to participate in the same event
  • Unlike a traditional race that takes place on a set date, at a set time, and on a set course, virtual races allow for time and location flexibility
  • Like you would at a traditional race, you’ll often receive a set of swag for participating, which can include a participant shirt, finisher’s medal and/or a race bib

Personally, I like to use virtual races as training runs as I prepare to run a goal race.  They offer me the extra motivation that I need to push myself just a tad harder during a training run, and are a great way to test where I am with my pace and endurance as I prepare for my goal race.

Fellow runner and blogger Kristy has put together a virtual race as part of her college thesis project.  (She is using this virtual race as a way to assess the validity of influencer based advertising.  You can read more about the project here.)  The “Sea to Shining Sea” Virtual Race will take place from September 17th-23rd, and offers participants three race distances to choose from: half marathon, 10k, and 5k.  As a part of registering, participants will receive a race bib, a shirt, and a finisher’s medal.

Unlike other virtual races, participants in the “Sea to Shining Sea” Virtual Race will be:

  • Helping support the small businesses that are working with Kristy to help with the production of race materials
  • Helping support a college student with their research for the thesis

Although I received a free entry into the “Sea to Shining Sea” Virtual Race I have decided (with the approval to do so) to give my race entry to one From Dancing to Running reader.  Be sure to enter my Rafflecopter giveaway for your chance to win an entry into this virtual race.  Don’t delay, as the giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on Monday, July 31st.

Eager to join the virtual race fun?  You can also register now for the race, and use code “FUNRUN15” to save 15% on your race registration.  This code is valid from now until August 5th.  Don’t delay with registering though, as the registration price will increase from its current price of $28 to $35 after August 1st.

QOTD: What is your motivation for participating in virtual races?

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 7

On October 8th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Boy am I glad that this past week was a cut back week.  We were under Heat Advisories here in the D.C. area multiple days in a row, including during the weekend, which made for an incredibly challenging week of working out.

Monday, July 17th

My body was still tired, and my feet and calves were still incredibly sore, from last Saturday’s 14 miler and my friend’s wedding.  So instead of doing my first run of the week, I decided to take another rest day from running, and opted for an easier workout at the gym instead, where I spent 30 minutes on the elliptical and 30 minutes doing weight training.

Tuesday, July 18th

My body was finally feeling a bit better Tuesday morning when I headed out for my run with little man.  The heat and humidity were already in full force at 8:00 in the morning when we headed out, and the difficult stroller run unfortunately set the tone for the rest of my running last week.  After completing my 5 mile run I walked another 1.76 miles, which was a welcome workout after completing a mentally and physically challenging run.

Running with the stroller is never easy, but it’s during the difficult runs that I keep reminding myself that the stroller is making me stronger with each mile that I run with it.

Wednesday, July 19th

Sore muscles + lots of playtime with little man = an unplanned rest day.  I took him to an indoor play place on Wednesday, and his smiles while we played together were well worth taking a rest day.

Thursday, July 20th

Little man and I kicked off the day with a walk to the grocery store.  Our round trip mileage was 2.63 miles.  Because of the high heat and humidity, and the heat advisory, I opted to complete my run on the treadmill Thursday evening as opposed to running outside.  I attempted to do a 5 mile progression run, but around the end of the 4th mile I started to feel dizzy, so I decided to cut my run short.  Better safe than sorry, especially with the heat outside.

I was so happy to be done with that run!
Around 4 miles I started feeling lightheaded and dizzy, and since I couldn’t shake it off I cut my run short. Its much better to be safe than sorry!

Friday, July 21st

Preston was off from work on Friday, so we decided to kick off the day with a family walk.  We walked just under 3 miles, and afterwards I did a 35 minute full body strength training workout.

Saturday, July 22nd

I had been looking forward to a slightly shorter long run, and had 10 miles on tap for the day.  Unfortunately from the moment that I started my run, my legs felt heavy and I struggled with the effects of the heat and humidity.  Although I chose to run on a fairly shaded route, it was also quite hilly, which made dealing with the heat and humidity extra challenging.  There were several times when I wanted to give up, but I wouldn’t let myself stop.  I did wind up taking some extra walk breaks during the last four miles, but the important thing is that I didn’t cut my run short, and still ran all 10 miles that were on my training plan.

After a challenging and difficult week of training, I’m not surprised that Saturday’s long run was an extremely hard one for me. My legs felt heavy from the moment I started, and I wound up having to take extra walk breaks during the last four miles.

Sunday, July 23rd

Between being exhausted from my long run and battling a migraine for most of the day, my body had been screaming for complete rest, which is exactly what I gave it.

Total Weekly Mileage – 29.80 miles (1.39 miles less than week 6)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 192.16 miles

QOTD: How do you adjust your workouts to accommodate for high heat and/or humidity?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin for the Weekly Wrap link up.  I’m also linking up with Courtney for the Training Recap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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My Love/Hate Relationship with Summer Running

There’s no nice way to say it: summer running is hard!  I’ve trained for half marathons over the summer before, but with me being in the midst of training for my first full marathon this summer, I have found running this summer to be more challenging than in the past.

Nice and sweaty after a long run

Summer is one of my favorite months of the entire year.  My least favorite is winter.  I hate layering up, especially when I head out for a run.  I hate dealing with snow, ice, wind, the cold, pretty much anything and everything associated with winter.  Even though summer means I can wear shorts and tank tops, especially when I’m out running, it also means that I’m sweating much more than in the winter.  And what often comes with sweat?  Chafing, which is so incredibly painful!

While in the winter you get to battle conditions like cold and wind, in the summer you get to battle heat and humidity.  Although I would much rather be hot over cold, the summer weather conditions do make it difficult to run sometimes.  There are plenty of times over the summer when I question my sanity about running outside, but I’ll take being hot and sweaty over not being able to feel my face, hands, and toes any day.

I’d much rather be hot and sweaty than shivering like I was during much of this year Rock ‘n’ Roll DC Half Marathon

One of the many reasons that I love summer is the longer days and greater number of hours of sunshine.  I hate how dark and dreary the mornings and evenings are in the winter, especially when I find myself at work for the majority of the daylight hours.  It is often a race against the clock to beat the sunset so that I can run after work, but during the summer that is far from the case.  During the summer, especially on days of long runs, its often the opposite, trying to beat the clock to get outside for that long run before it gets too hot and humid.

Summer running is also more scenic.  Many of the flowers and trees that bloomed during the Spring are still retaining their color.  During the winter, the scene more sparse and far less colorful.  I love the way that the sun shines through the trees and creates picturesque backdrops while I am out running.

One of the many beautiful scenes that I have been able to capture this summer while out on a run.

So while there are pros and cons to summer running, and I do have a love/hate relationship with it, I would take running on a hot, humid, sunny day over a cold and snowy winter day.

QOTD: Which do you prefer: summer or winter running?  Why?

Today I’m linking up with PattyErika, and Marcia for the Tuesdays on the Run linkup.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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