Archive | Races RSS feed for this section

Hospital Hill Race Recap

19 Jun

June 1st, I ran my second Hospital Hill Half Marathon.

Last year at this race, I had the most fun I’ve ever had running, and this year was almost as good.

Throughout my Boston training, I also served as a blogger for Hospital Hill. Due to some crazy life events, I couldn’t blog in the few weeks leading to the race, but luckily, I was able to contribute in other ways.

My friend Sally is the volunteer coordinator for Hospital Hill, and hooked me up with a job at packet pickup. I always thought it would be fun to work packet pickup, and the job did not disappoint. While handing out the bibs for the 10k race, I was able to talk to many people preparing for their first race, running their first 10k, trying to PR, and friends I had met online but never in real life (including Crystal, a KC native living in Cape Cod! Go visit her blog, she is so sweet!). It was such a fun experience and I can’t wait to work another race.

Our picture from last year made it up at the expo!!!

Our picture from last year made it up at the expo!!!

Another perk at packet pickup was that I switched out Ramsey’s 10k bib for a half marathon bib! I knew he wanted to run the half, but the race was already sold out when he registered. When a lady at packet pickup asked me if I knew anyone that would want to switch her half bib for a 10k bib, I quickly snatched up the offer!

Morning of the race, Ramsey and I were excited and ready to run!!

We have completely lucked out the last two years when it comes to weather. Humidity has been low and temps have been manageable. You seriously could not call for a better June race than we have had in ’12 and ’13!

At the starting line, I met Stacy, Kerri and Andrea at the 1:50 pace group. Ramsey started a little behind us (SO I THOUGHT!!!) at the 1:55 group. We were full of energy and ready to run.

40 and FAB!

40 and FAB! And fast too!

However, I cannot lie….I was a little bit nervous for this race since I hadn’t run a ton since Boston. I definitely did not train to be able to run this half…and if I made it the 13.1 miles, I knew it was because of two things: A. someone high up was on my side…OR..B. I had enough endurance from Boston to get me to the finish.

The gun went off and the girls and I continued to chit chat (I am sure Greg is shocked by that statement!!). The first few miles went by relatively fast, but as expected were pretty hilly. Andrea and I stuck together, and Stacy and Kerri also stuck together.

Andrea and I. You can see Kerri in the background too!

Andrea and I. You can see Kerri in the background too!

At the halfway point, I remember thinking to myself, “There were NOT this many hills last year!!!”

I am sure that feeling was due to the fact that I was in much better shape last year at the race than I was this year. (Note to self – always respect the distance you are about to run! You can’t”wing” it like you used to!! )

Andrea and I ran together for about 11 miles. It was so fun running with her because we always talk about running, but we have never actually ran together. She did awesome. Especially considering she had been sick the week before and I could tell she was still dealing with some respiratory crap (way to go, Andrea!!!).

The last two miles, I ran alone and soaked in the KC scenery. Although this race is hilly, it is still my favorite race in KC. You get to see some of the best places in this city and around every corner are more people cheering you on. And while there are some killer uphills, you get some of the best downhills you will experience in a race!!!

Hi :)

Hi 🙂

Focused to the finish!

Focused to the finish!

Speaking of downhills, the downhill finish is the best part. I let my legs pull me down the hill, and across the finish line. I believe my time was a 1:51 or 1:52….I never even looked. Sometimes you just need those races where you run how you feel, and not for the clock.

After I crossed, I immediately started to look for Ramsey, Stacy, Kerri and Andrea. However, I did not see any of them.

I made my way through the chute, and felt my phone ringing. It was Ramsey! I thought to myself, “oh good! he finished not too far behind me! Maybe he PR’ed”.

Yeah, Ramsey PR’ed. And somehow, he had managed to beat me!!!!!!

Yes, I am excited and proud, but I was not expecting him to beat me (he totally snuck by me at the start!!)! Sheesh, I have created a monster 😉

I am maybe still holing a grudge!

I am maybe still holing a grudge!

Overall, the race was great and I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day.

The crowds in KC were supportive, and the race organizers did a great job. You can bet that I will be back at Hospital Hill in 2014, and I urge you to be there as well.

And Ramsey….it is ON in ’14!!!

xo!

Ali

Advertisements

Boston Marathon Race Recap

12 Jun

Almost two months since Boston, and it is still on my mind every single day.

Every time I run, I think about it. Every time I hear a “boom”, I fear what it could be. Every time I hear a siren, I get chills. And every time I read something or someone talks about it, I have to hold back tears. Boston continues to weigh heavy on my mind and in my heart, and I have a feeling it will continue to do so for a while. Just as it will for the many others out there that experienced this, some not nearly as lucky as I was.

For the past few weeks, I have been debating whether or not I would write a race recap for Boston. Partially because I didn’t know if it was appropriate, and partially because I didn’t know if I was ready. To be honest, it has taken me time to even remember things from the race.

Well, I have made the decision that I am READY to write this race recap and I will CELEBRATE the finish of that race. I must remember that before 2:50pm on April 15th, I was having one of the most amazing days of my life. And I had been experiencing an amazing weekend in Boston prior.

Everything I write in this recap will be prior to 2:50pm. While much of my experience is still a blur, I do believe I have enough memories to write a pretty good recap!

Morning of the Race

5:15am on the morning of the race, I sprung out of bed. I was so darn excited! My clothes had been laid out since the night before, and I was ready to run. I got dressed, did my hair, put on some makeup (yep, I wear makeup when I race, judge away!), and headed downstairs to meet my friends.

Lulu all the way.

Lulu all the way.

I had my Girls on the Run girls with me.

I had my Girls on the Run girls with me.

At 6:15am, I saw my friends in the lobby and we had one big group hug. We were nervous but excited for the adventure to come. We took some pre-race photos with our families (we have the most amazing support systems!) and headed to Boston Common to meet our bus.

So supportive.

So supportive.

Looking our best in throwaway clothes!

Looking our best in throwaway clothes!

Mom and Dad :)

Mom and Dad 🙂

When we got to Boston Common, I was stunned by the lines. I had seriously never seen a line that long, and we had to wait in it in order to get to the starting line in Hopkinton! At first I panicked a little bit thinking we should’ve arrived earlier. The “what ifs” of not making it on the bus were going round and round in my head. Thankfully I had Stacy with me, who calmed my nerves and assured me we would make it to the start on time.

The insane lines!

The insane lines!

Happy, excited and nervous as can be!

Happy, excited and nervous as can be!

At 7:45am, we FINALLY made it to the front of the line and got on the bus. Note to self the next time I run Boston: get to Boston Common earlier!! We were one of the last buses to load up for the 26.2 mile journey to the start line.

Breakfast on the bus.

Breakfast on the bus.

Hopkinton!!!

Hopkinton!!!

Runner's

No Stopping Monday!!!

Around 8:45am, we got off the bus in Athlete’s Village in Hopkinton, MA. The sight there was amazing. It was FULL of runners and porta potties – I had not ever seen so many porta potties in my life. Photographic proof below!

CRAZY!!!

CRAZY!!!

We decided that our first order of business would be a trip to the previously mentioned porta potties before we were in an emergency situation (pretty sure I drank at least one bottle of water on the bus). We got into line, and 20 minutes later, we were still in line. All those porta potties, and they could’ve used 100 more. As we got to the front of the line, a man approached us and offered us toilet paper if we let him cut in line. Pretty smart guy if you ask me….as almost every porta potty was out of toilet paper!!

He was awesome.

He was awesome.

Diana did not cooperate!

Diana did not cooperate!

Stacy and I eagerly accepted his offer, but Diana did not…girlfriend had to go BAD and no one was cutting in front of her!!

We didn’t get out of that porta potty line until 9:30am, and by then it was time to start walking to the infamous starting line.

Pre-race jitters were in full bloom. I am pretty sure that everything on my body was shaking I was so nervous and excited for the journey ahead! When we finally got down the start (it felt like it was at least a half mile from Athlete’s Village) we found a little spot to sit down.

Follow the arrows.

Follow the arrows.

BABY GUURLL!!!

BABY GUURLL!!!

At our spot, we put Diana’s pretty pink blanket to full use. The story of the blanket could be its own blog post….we had to force Diana to bring “baby girl” (quick back story: the blanket was originally meant for Di’s “baby girl”…but Di had two baby boys, therefore “baby girl” never served her true purpose) to the start line of the race and leave her behind. We needed baby girl to keep us warm and shield us just in case we needed an emergency impromptu bathroom break (no comment on whether or not it was used for that…)

Baby Girl ended up saving the morning for us, and she will be remembered dearly. (Diana, I hope you read this so you can see that I paid tribute to your blanket in this post!!!)

At 9:55am, we went to the starting line and waited to be lined up in our corral. We watched the first wave start their journey, then made our way into corral #9.

At 10:15am, I posed for a pre-race photo and uploaded it to all my social media outlets. I wanted all the positive energy I could get, and I knew my social media friends would take care of that for me. You all are the best!

"It's go time"

“It’s go time”

Stacy at the start too!

Stacy at the start too!

Race Time

10:20am, the journey from Hopkinton to Boston began. I had just crossed the starting line of the BOSTON MARATHON. Holy freaking cow. I was living a dream.

I think I ran with tears in my eyes for the first mile. I was so excited to be there, and what I was about to accomplish really hit me. In a few short hours, I would be crossing the most exciting and prestigious finish line in all of marathon world!

The first few miles flew by. The main thing I remember about these miles is how many pregnant women I saw! I ran by at least three obviously pregnant women, all with little signs attached to them that said “running for two”, or something of that nature. Seeing these pregnant women out there running a marathon reaffirmed what I always thought and knew – you cannot stop a woman on a mission!! Especially a woman-runner on a mission. If she qualified for Boston, she is running Boston and you can’t stop her!

Around mile 6 I met a girl that reminded me of myself. We were almost the same age, and had both qualified for Boston at rainy races in Dallas. We ran and chatted for about a mile, and then she pulled back because she was battling an injury and had promised she would take it easy. I still think about this girl and hope that she was able to get her finish and was safe.

Mile 9 we hit Natick and I loved how familiar it felt. I used to have a client in Natick and have been up there a few times, so I could recognize the streets. I am sad I wasn’t able to see my old clients along the course, but I understood why I didn’t. Natick had some of the most amazing crowds along the entire course. I remember running through an intersection and I couldn’t believe  how loud it was. People were screaming and cheering to a point that I couldn’t have ever imagined. I remember looking at Diana and making eye contact with her. We both had tears in our eyes because we could not believe the experience. It was incredible and I cannot wait to experience it again.

Another one of my favorite parts of this race was leaving Natick and heading towards Wellesley. Around mile 12, we passed through an extremely loud cheering section with gangham style blaring. I love that song, so I perked  up immediately when I heard it. Then I saw something that made it even better. Lined along the right side of the road were at least 15 kids jumping on mini trampolines doing the pony. I still laugh every time I think about that.

Wellesley College was everything I heard it would be. Screaming girls waving their signs throwing out their hands were everywhere. I now understand why people say to watch your pace through Wellesley, because it would be so easy to get excited and run too fast. The energy passing through Wellesley was incredible, and it was one of my top 5 moments of the day.

My favorite sign from a Wellesley girl: “Kiss ME! I’m in a long distance relationship!”

After Wellesley we hit the halfway mark. It was so fun to hit the race “milestones”, because we would make sure we ran over the tracking device at the exact same time. When we hit them we would say, “HI!” to our family and friends we knew were following us.

My brother was tracking us! Loved how it showed us as little runners!

My brother was tracking us! Loved how it showed us as little runners!

We knew if we hit them at the same time, our supporters would know our plan was working out and we were doing it all together. No matter what, we would finish this race together. That was always the plan.

Following the halfway, we started to hit our big hills. I remember thinking on one of them that it might not ever end. This is the first time in the race when I felt tired and questioned if my legs would be carrying me 26.2 miles that day.

Diana zoomed up these hills with grace, while Stacy and I brought up the back. Di was having her “A” day, I was about a “B”, and Stacy was probably a “C”. Having a B or C day on the Newton Hills was tough. But with the help of each other we would make it through ‘em.

Running by Dick Hoyt and his son. Don't know who they are? Google it NOW!

Running by Dick Hoyt and his son. Don’t know who they are? Google it NOW!

Mile 16ish.

Mile 16ish.

Heartbreak Hill was something I feared for months. Mile 20 is one of the hardest miles of a marathon, and knowing we had a huge hill to face at 20.5 was terrifying. But guess what? I ran up Heartbreak Hill and didn’t even know it! At the top of the hill I saw a sign that said “You just conquered Heartbreak Hill!”. I didn’t believe it. I had to ask the give girl running next to me (remember…Di was A, I was B, Stacy was C, so we weren’t together at the top!) if I really just ran up Heartbreak Hill! She confirmed that I did, and when I saw Diana I screamed “WE JUST RAN HEARTBREAK HILL!!!!!”.

The last few miles of this race were miles of survival and getting to the finish. The downhills started to hurt far worse than the uphills because of the pounding on our already sore hamstrings.

We knew our families planned to be between mile 24 – 25, so we were on the look out. By this time of the race, we were hurting BAD. We were hurting so bad, we weren’t even talking anymore (that means it was BAD!). It was really a moment of thinking, “every step is one step closer”.

Mile 25, we saw our families and it was so exciting!!! We heard them yell and saw their excitement for us. We ran to them and got our high fives and the last bit of encouragement we needed.

ahhhhh hi!!!!

ahhhhh hi!!!!

I love our faces here. You can tell we were so tired, but so excited.

I love our faces here. You can tell we were so tired, but so excited.

We love you!

We love you!

The best support group!

The best support group!

After passing our cheerleaders, we had our eyes and minds on the finish.

We approached Boylston Street, and knew we were so close. The volume of the cheering on Boylston was incredible and I soaked in every step.

As we got closer to the finish, we veered towards the right side of the street and embraced our hands. We threw them up high in the air, and celebrated the finish exactly as we had planned.

The happiest photo.

The happiest photo.

The entire race went as planned and was one of the best experiences ever. For the first time ever, my running buddies and I all three ran a race together. And it was the best race we could’ve possibly run together.

I will be proud of this finish and celebrate this finish. I will hang my finish line medal in my home, and reflect on the amazing time we had during those 26.2 miles.

And I will run Boston again.

Xo,

Ali

 

Top 5 Moments of the Race

  1. Passing the Starting Line
  2. Wellesley
  3. Seeing Our Families
  4. Running 26.2 side by side with Stacy and Diana
  5. Crossing the most exciting and famous finish line in the world of marathons

 Splits:

  1. 8:31
  2. 8:33
  3. 8:38
  4. 8:20
  5. 8:48
  6. 8:23
  7. 8:35
  8. 8:41
  9. 8:21
  10. 8:32
  11. 8:37
  12. 8:35
  13. 8:40
  14. 8:48
  15. 8:45
  16. 8:32
  17. 8:53
  18. 9:02
  19. 9:07
  20. 9:10
  21. 9:47
  22. 8:53
  23. 9:07
  24. 9:33
  25. 9:14
  26. 9:43

 

More photos from the weekend (before the bombings)

The finish line on Saturday. I cried when I was taking this photo. So excited to be there.

The finish line on Saturday. I cried when I was taking this photo. So excited to be there.

14445 - my new lucky number.

14445 – my new lucky number.

:)

🙂

Excited!

Excited!

Glad they talked me into a jacket!

Glad they talked me into a jacket!

Cheers to us.

Cheers to us.

The whole group.

The whole group.

laying on the finish line. Dirty, but fun :)

laying on the finish line. Dirty, but fun 🙂

We did it!

We did it!

Mom and Dad.

Mom and Dad.

Calling KC Area Runners to the Drumm Run!

19 Mar

3-19-2013 5-38-10 PMWhat are your plans this weekend? If the answer is, “not sure” or “no plans”, I now have a plan for you!

Join other Kansas City area runners and myself on Saturday, 23 March at 9am for the Fifth Annual Drumm Run 5k and 10k!!

The Drumm Run is a 5k/10k event, for participants of all ages and athletic levels.

It is low key, relaxed, and most importantly – FUN!!!

The swag is great too – long sleeve shirts! – and the entry fee is pretty darn low at only $35 a pop (for either the 5k or 10k). You will also get to run through the grounds of Unity Village, which is one of my favorite places in the area.

Along with getting in a great run, you will also be helping an amazing cause.

3-19-2013 5-11-53 PM

I urge you to consider joining in for this event and helping with a cause very near and dear to my great friend and running buddy Stacy!

And if you can’t join the race, please consider donating to Stacy’s volunteer page – Caden4Kids. She is almost halfway to her goal of $500!!! And trust me….you want to click this link to see the cutest 5 year old in town.

Hope you’re having a great week!!

xo,

Ali

3-19-2013 5-11-09 PM

Pilgrim Run 5k

29 Nov

I got in the Thanksgiving mood by signing up for races, Thanksgiving races to be exact. On Sunday, I ran the Gobbler Grind Half Marathon, and Thursday I ran the Pilgrim Run 5k. My main purpose of running these races was to get in solid training runs, and have some company plus added motivation while doing so.

If you read my post on the Gobbler Grind, you know that one went well and I was very happy. For the Pilgrim Run I was determined for the same feeling.

In Kansas City, there are a TON of Turkey Trots on Thanksgiving. I reviewed many of them when making my decision, and decided that the Pilgrim Run was the one for me. Not only was the Pilgrim Run very close, but it was also a very small race. I’d be lying to you all if I said that winning the female division was not in the back of my mind 🙂

I went into the race with a goal of running under a 20:30. My last 5k in October was a 20:50, and I knew I could beat that time if I didn’t miss the start again (whoops). According to the Mcmillan pace calculator, I needed to run a 20:20 to match my other race distance equivalent times, and I knew that running a good time would add confidence for me going into the Marathon.

When we arrived to the race on Thursday, I did a mile warmup before getting in line. I was surveying my competition and decided I would finish in 3rd place. There were two other girls lined up that looks super serious and like they were ready to kick some ass. I was just standing there bopping around in my pleated skirt chatting with my boyfriend. I told myself that 3rd place was still really good, and I would just focus on my time.

Ready to run!!!

The race began, and I kept a steady pace. I was shocked that the girls I had placed in 1st and 2nd place in my mind were not too far ahead. I continued to check the good ole Garmin to make sure I wasn’t killing myself the first mile, but to my surprise, I was right on track.

You can barely see my in the background!

Right after Mile 1. I was so mad that my outfit didn’t match, but the weather was a lot warmer than I was planning so I had to compromise on the ensemble…

Right before mile 1, I began leading the women. Mile 2 got a little harder with a big hill, but I continued to run strong. Before I knew it, it was mile 3 and I was almost done (it is amazing to me how fast a 5k goes by!!!). I continued to push it and run as hard as I could. I crossed the finish line to cheers and the announcer saying I was the 1st female finisher. It was pretty damn exciting.

Mile 1: 6:26
Mile 2: 6:39
Mile 3: 6:28

Official Time: 19:51

After the race, I cheered for the other runners and then went into crazy girlfriend mode cheering for my boyfriend as he crossed the finish. We picked up some water, and then checked out the official results. I was very proud with what I saw!

It then became the best day ever when I discovered I got a trophy and HUGE pumpkin pie for my winnings!!!! I later made the trophy our Thanksgiving table centerpiece. 🙂

Holy cow!!!

Best winnings ever!

Posing with a turkey. He told us this was not a very comfortable outfit to wear in a 5k.

Found a friend at the race! Jenna makes me look very short!

More turkeys. Gotta love the Thanksgiving spirit!

———————————————————————

I am already excited for my next 5k, and the possibilities ahead for my 5k time. I never thought that a 5k PR would be possible after I ran a 19:40 in high school (11 years ago!!!), but now I see that it is definitely possible. And I spy many more 5k’s in the near future. After all, I am pretty PR hungry right now!

XO,

Ali

Gobbler Grind Half Marathon

19 Nov

Yesterday, I ran the Gobbler Grind half marathon. I have been trying to get creative with fitting in speed workouts and long runs these last few weeks of training (because I am getting a tad burnt out!), so I signed up for this half.

I wanted to use this race as a long run, and also as a trial run practicing the pace. All along I have been saying I wanted to break 3:30 for my next marathon. But lately I have been reevaluating my goal. Since I have been training so hard and so long, I decided that maybe a 3:25 could be doable.

The time goal for this race would be under 1:45, at a pace that felt comfortable and possible for 26.2.

This race was relatively small, but very well organized. The course was fun to run because it was in a very familiar area – right next to my office!! Parts of the run were on trails that I often use for my lunch time runs, so I knew what to expect. Although there were some big hills along the way, it wasn’t anything crazy. The water stops were well spread out and had a ton of volunteers helping at each. And even though 3/4 of the race was on the Indian Creek Trail, it never felt too congested.

Bundled up at the start! (I ended up being slightly overdressed….)

And they’re off!!

I tried to keep a 7:45 pace going for most of the race. I kept reminding myself that this race was a practice and that I had no reason to kill myself. When I would speed up to a pace that started feeling uncomfortable, I would quickly rein myself back in.

The goal was to be able to talk the entire time, which I practiced by telling all the runners “Good Job!” when I passed them. I also wanted to ensure I had minimal leg burn, so I knew I wasn’t pushing too hard. Sure, some of the hills hurt but nothing felt like something I couldn’t have continued after crossing the finish line.

It was a beautiful day out there!

Do I think I could’ve doubled this run yesterday and kept going at the same pace? No. But do I think I could with the proper taper and nutrition? Yep.

My splits for the race were as follows:

1. 7:48
2. 7:46
3. 7:48
4. 7:47
5. 7:52
6. 7:30
7. 7:37
8. 7:43
9. 7:40
10: 7:54 (HILLS)
11: 7:29
12: 7:55 (HILLS)
13: 7:39

Overall time: 1:41:11, ~7:42 pace
First place in my age group too!

This race was a great confidence boost for me. I had a really hard week of training last week, ate terrible the night before (mexican and margs!), but still felt great. It amazed me how easy this pace could feel, even though it sounds so scary.

After this trial run, I do believe that a 3:25 could be possible come race day 🙂

Any thoughts from the readers on what I could be capable of? I always love to hear ’em!

xoxo,

Ali

 

My Choice to Run the Dallas Marathon

14 Nov

As soon as I found out the NYC Marathon would not go on as planned, I began researching new races to run. I was not about to let 14 weeks of training go down the drain. I HAD to run a marathon and PR. Not doing so was NOT an option.

There were many considerations to make for my backup race, but it didn’t take long until I made my final decision.

Factors considered when choosing the backup marathon:

1. Easily accessible
-I am officially out of PTO at work until February (I like to travel a lot), so I could not run a race that would require time off.
-I could easily send myself into debt by paying for all these race entries and travel costs.
-My entourage of spectators would be there.

2. A semi-large race
-I need spectator support to get me to the finish and through those hard miles.
-I like running next to other people. Sure it can be annoying dodging them, but I like the company.

3. A PR worthy course
-Duh

4. The date had to work with my schedule
-I didn’t feel comfortable running a marathon the following weekend due to travel costs and prep time.
-The weekend of November 17th was out due to my Girls on the Run 5k (I would NEVER miss that!)

The Decision

After reviewing my requirements, it became quite clear what my race should be: I would run the Dallas Marathon.

If you have been an avid reader of my blog (THANK YOU!) or spent time getting caught up, you know that I ran Dallas last year. Dallas was my first marathon, and the best day of my life. I pretty much have nothing but amazing memories from that race, and I got excited when thinking about reliving that experience.

I almost feel like I was having a little ESP during training, because I kept saying, “If NYC doesn’t go as I planned, I will just run Dallas again. I know it is a great race, and I know it could give me a PR”. I swear I said this – if you don’t believe me, ask my boyfriend. He will tell you!

A HUGE bonus of running the Dallas marathon is that my parents and boyfriend get to join in on the fun. My Dad has not been able to see me run a marathon yet, so it’s a really big deal to me that he gets to watch this one. He is my coach after all!

—————————————————

I am now fully submerged and committed to training for Dallas. I will use these extra 5 weeks as additional training time to help me meet my goal. I used to think that people who trained for 18+ week for a marathon were crazy…well now I am one of them!

Thank you as always for your continued support! Updates to my training schedule are on their way!

xo

Ali

I will say that I better not be in a damn poncho this year or have to run the race in a plastic bag.

Running 26.2 in the Rain (It’s not as bad as you may think)

26 Oct

Happy Friday, everyone! And happy race weekend to all those running Saturday or Sunday!

Yesterday, I received a text from a friend who is running the Marine Corp Marathon Sunday. She was looking for some tips on running a marathon in the rain, due to the fact that Hurricane Sandy is most likely going to have an impact on their racing weather. I have experience running 26.2 in the rain (read about that experience here and here), so Andrea knew I would have some ideas on ways to salvage her race.

Although you might freak out about the thought of running a marathon in the rain (been there, done that!!), it really isn’t that bad. And it isn’t going to totally mess up your race. My first marathon experience was in the pouring down rain and 40 degrees. And I still look back at that day as being one of the best days of my life. I also got a BQ 🙂

So now let’s talk strategy about preparing for a run in the rain…We will start with at the bottom and work our way up.

Feet
Your feet are going to get wet no matter what, and your shoes are going to get super soggy and annoying. Make sure you put plenty of aquafor/vaseline/deodorant (deodorant is my favorite way to prevent chaffing and blisters) on your feet before putting on your socks. This will prevent friction and blisters from wreaking havoc during the race. I also suggest investing in a pair of dry fit socks. Those will deal with the rain much better than cotton.

Hands
Luckily for the MCM people, it won’t be nearly as cold as it was for my marathon in the rain. I made sure I had back up gloves for the race and switched them out halfway through. Dry fit gloves were my saving grace for the second 13.1.

Core
Wearing the proper clothing will be very important on race day. I tried on every potential outfit I brought for the race the night before, and threw water on each one. This way I could see what instantly absorbed water, and what didn’t.

I also got pretty crafty and made a waterproof vest out of my expo bag. The reason why I didn’t just buy a vest was because I knew I would want to shed this thing at some point of the race. And I didn’t have someone there to throw things to at designated spots. I swear that everyone running that race commented on how smart we were for making our own vests. This kept our core warm and dry, and I ended up wearing it for 24 miles!

Another must do is wearing a poncho as long as you can up until the race start. This will help you stay dry before the race starts.

Running in the bag!

Those ponchos were a life saver.

Head
A hat is a must on race day. This will keep the water from hitting your face and driving you insane. It will also help you not look like a wet dog with sopping wet hair in every photo (the race photos matter, people!). I put an earband over my headband so I could toss it off if I wanted to and not have to remove my entire hat. It also helped hold the hat down because it was windy (which it will be for the MCM people as well).

———————————

I believe I have covered all areas of the body to prep for this race.

As I said early…running a marathon in rain isn’t as tragic as you may think it is. You can do it, and you can still have a great race!!

Good luck everyone, and let me know if you have any questions! I am happy to help out my fellow runners!

XO,

Ali

The proudest moment of my life – crossing that finish line in 3:32!!

NYC Marathon Training – Week Seven

2 Oct

(OK, so I am like, really really really far behind on the blogging thing. Please don’t think I haven’t been running, because I have been.)

So here goes week seven of training…..
Monday – 6 miles at 8:50 pace. Sore legs from my race the prior Saturday.
Evening Yoga to relieve some stress.

Tuesday – 9 miles, Yasso 800 day!! 1 mile warm up, then 10 x 800’s (with a recovery lap between each): 3:14, 3:16, 3:17, 3:16, 3:13, 3:11, 3:12, 3:09, 3:13, 3:12. 1/2 mile cool down bc I ran out of time. This workout was a KILLER, but I am so proud of myself for toughing it out and making it to 10. According to my pace on these, I should be able to break 3:30 at nyc.

Wednesday – 3.5 miles at 9:40 pace, pre-TRX run.
TRX class for 50 minutes.
Evening 3 mile run at an easy pace.

Thursday – Off

Friday – 20 miles at 8:30 pace. I was VERY proud of this run!!

Saturday – 3 miles at 9:39 pace.

Sunday – 6.2 miles at 8:53 pace. Ran the plaza 10k. Not an easy task the day after being in my friends wedding!

Total Miles: 44.7 miles

 

Lee’s Summit 10k – A NEW PR (and a WIN)!!

11 Sep

This last Saturday, I FINALLY PR’ed a race, and I had not PR’ed a race since I was 16 years old (your time running a new distance you had not ever run does not count).

The race I ran was the Heart of the Summit 10k in Lee’s Summit, MO. This race is really small, but a lot of fun. I love the small town vibe it holds, and the simplicity of it. Last year I was the 2nd place female finisher (to my dear friend Stacy!), so this year I was in it to win it! Last year was also my first 10k experience, completed in 44:39.

Last years first and second place finishers!

I knew that I wanted to push myself as hard as I could, and that I would be using this as a speed workout for my NYC training. My goal was to just go out there and run it as hard as I could, and PR the thing.

My alarm went off WAY too early on Saturday morning. I was at a black tie event the night before, and stayed a bit longer than I had intended. Once I got to the start of the race, my running buddies and I ran a quick 4 miles to get in some miles. Following our warm up we stretched, and lined up!

Sparkling it up at Treads ‘n Threads

As soon as I lined up at the start, I measured up my competition. And I felt pretty good about it. In fact, it looked like my girlfriends would be my strongest competition!

The race began, and I took the lead. I tried not to go out too fast, but judging my pace was really hard since I was in the lead! I pushed it hard the first 5k, then hit the turnaround point (did I mention this was a two loop 10k with 3 out and back portions????). Around mile 4 I started thinking, “ok, this is getting kind of hard, but somehow I am still leading the thing. Where are all the fast men?!”.

Around mile 5, I got passed by a guy running in board shorts holding a liter sized water bottle (two faux pas if you ask me!). I tried my hardest to hang on, but he just kept creeping past me. I ended up finishing the race in 2nd place overall, 1st place among the females. Although I was sad and let down I didn’t win the entire thing, I was still very excited I won the women’s….and PR’ed!!!!!

Splits: 6:39, 6:48, 6:52, 6:59, 6:55, 7:01 (I hate it when my last mile is my slowest mile!)

My finish time was a 42:49 (6:5oish pace), almost 2 minutes faster than the year before. And to me, that was something worth celebrating.

The 1st place – 4th place female finishers. My friends are so fast!

Way to go, Ramsey!!!!!

We made a podium!

Gettin all fancy with my iphone!

Thanks for all of the kind words following the race, and the encouragement leading up to it!!!

xo,

Ali

NYC Marathon Training – Week Four

27 Aug

This week was supposed to be a recovery week. I think it was still pretty damn hard….but hey – another week down!!!!

Monday – 6 miles easy, 8:23 pace. Ran during my lunch break at work. Made for a beautiful looking Ali the rest of the day.

Tuesday – 7 miles with tempo, 8:11 pace. 2 mile warm up, 3 mi tempo: 7:19, 6:57, 6:45, 2 mile cool down. Tired morning but a good run overall.

Wednesday – 4 miles easy, pre-TRX run. 9:00 pace. Then did TRX interval training for 50 minutes.

Thursday – 8 miles with mile repeats on the track. 1 mile warm up, 4 x 1 mile repeats: 6:47, 6:28, 6:25, 6:21. 3 mile cool down. Felt great on this run and totally on fire.

Friday – OFF

Saturday – 16 miles, 8:45 pace. Legs were feeling heavy through the run, and the weather was mighty humid.

Sunday – 3.5 miles, easy run and didn’t think about pace.

Total miles for the week: 44.5

%d bloggers like this: