Sign of Spring

February 24, 2008 at 8:57 pm | Posted in Marathon training, spring racing season, winter racing season | 5 Comments

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One of the signs of spring (for me, anyway) is the completion of our local winter running series, the Freezeroos. This is the second year I ran the series and I’m always glad I did. Although, last year I placed second in my age group, whereas this year I was 4th. Oh well!

My sights are now set on the Buffalo Marathon on May 25. This time, I’m going to include some cross training , i.e., spin class and yoga, a couple of times each week. I think I’m also going to learn to swim. I’ll keep you updated on my progress.

So, goodbye winter racing season.  Hello spring!

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Florida Memories

February 22, 2008 at 6:59 am | Posted in Breast Cancer Marathon, Florida runs | 2 Comments

Florida was great but I did miss my mom.  This is the first time in my almost 43 years that I traveled alone for as long as 1 week and I must say, it wasn’t bad!

As I reflect on my time in Florida, especially my runs, I think I will always remember a few things:

1.)  Teams of ladies at the marathon wearing pink tutus and running caps with a plethora of pink feathers glued all over them.

2.)  Seeing Darlene positioned next to the 3:40 pacer at the starting line.

3.) The clip that attaches my ipod to my running shorts breaking just as the race was going to start.  I messed with that stupid thing for at least a quarter mile before finally putting it in my little zipper pouch.  As a result, my first mile clocked in at 8:50 – RIDICULOUS!

4.) Running along the beach while looking out at the ocean and thinking that I was the luckiest woman alive.

5.) Seeing a little dead frog each day as I ran from my hotel.  Poor little guy!

6.) Stopping to use the restroom at a nursing home one morning while out for an easy 8 miler.  The poor old folks were shocked when they saw me come in all sweaty wearing nothing more than shorts and a sports bra.  In fact, one lady asked, “Isn’t it a bit cool for that outfit, dear?”

7.) Admiring the palm trees, pansies, marigolds, and impatiens that seemed to smile at me each morning on my runs.

8.) The shriek I let out when a snake slithered across my path on AC Skinner!

9.) Realizing that I could run all day, every day if I felt like it.  Traveling alone does have its benefits!

10.) Soaking in the pool after a longish run and finally understanding what all the hype is about the benefits of cool water to the legs.

It’s Like a Heatwave!

February 18, 2008 at 7:29 am | Posted in Breast Cancer Marathon, Half Marathon, Racing | 2 Comments

Today’s half marathon was AWESOME but hot, Hot, HOT!  Especially for this NY gal who’s used to 20 – 35 degree running weather. 

Approximately 8,000 runners lined up at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida for the 8:30 a.m. start.  Imagine my surprise when I ran into a fellow hill runner from Fleet Feet in Rochester!  Darlene and I both commented on the heat and agreed that we may need to adjust our goals for the day. Jeff Galloway spoke to the crowd and warned us to run slowly as the temp was already in the mid 70s and was expected to climb into the low to mid 80s by 12:00.  Thankfully, I knew I’d be finished well before then but still my heart went out to my fellow marathoners who would endure the hot, hot sun. 

The course was mainly flat with only a few insignificant climbs, two of which were in the last 4 miles.  However, there was no relief from the sun along the course and the long sections run along the highway were like running in a furnace.  Although I was initially petrified to run the 2.5 miles in the sand along the ocean, this proved to be my favorite part of the run.  Yes, the sand slowed me down but the ocean breeze was delightful.

 Many thanks to the organizers for an outstanding job with water stations.  I’ve never run a race with as many!  Also, if you’re looking for a mid-sized marathon with outstanding crowd support, this race is for you. 

Out of the 3,856 finishers of today’s half, I placed 210 overall.  My time was 1:51:23 and I placed 14th out of 444 women in my age group.  Not bad!  Okay, now I’ll share my goal time.  It was 1:45 (that would’ve qualified me for NY) but, hey, you can’t control the weather, can you?

My girlfriend, Karin, ran a fantastic race at the A1A Marathon in Fort Lauderdale and placed 5th in the 40 – 44 age group with a time of 3:56ish.  Way to go, Girlfriend!  What I want to know is how Matt (her husband) ran a 3:15?  Outstanding!

All in all, it was a very successful day for NYers running in the HOT Sunshine State!

Alone in Florida

February 17, 2008 at 2:45 am | Posted in Half Marathon, Mom, spirit | Leave a comment

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Diagnosed with a very bad case of the flu, my mom found herself too sick to travel with me to Florida this weekend.  Poor thing!  She’s so disappointed to miss her first half marathon. 

So, I find myself alone in Florida anxiously awaiting tomorrow’s Breast Cancer Half Marathon.  My girlfriend and I have decided to use our races this weekend as an opportunity to clean our spiritual houses.  This afternoon I began making a list of negative thoughts and fears that I will silently voice and leave behind on this course. Nagging self-doubt and indecision are two bedfellows I plan to rid myself of tomorrow.  Perhaps I’ll share more of my list at a later date.

I’m not going to curse my run by voicing any time goal I may have.  Instead, let me say that I’m going to start out easy and attempt to increase my pace as I go.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

Today’s expo was fantastic, if you’re a woman, that is!  Vendors gave away pink slipper socks, bandannas, Crabtree and Evelyn lotion (full-size bottles!), pens, chocolate, carry on bags, etc.  Everywhere you looked you saw pink.  Archways of pink balloons, pink shirts, pink shorts, pink socks, pink, pink, pink!  For a first-time marathon, I thought the organizers did an outstanding job with the expo.  I’ll let you know about marathon tomorrow.

Look Out Florida, Here I Come!

February 13, 2008 at 11:32 pm | Posted in Half Marathon, Mom | 1 Comment

Woo Hoo! Tomorrow Mom and I leave for the sunshine, white sands, palm trees, ocean breezes of Florida.  I can’t wait to get the heck out of blustery Rochester, NY and run in warmth.

Sunday’s weather looks a bit warm (high of 76) for the half marathon.  No, I’m not complaining, just acknowledging that my body is used to running in cold temps and hoping that I’ll make a seamless transition to the warmer ones. 

In 27 hours and 32 minutes I’ll be leavin’ on a jet plane.  I’m so excited!! 🙂

Girlfriends

February 11, 2008 at 6:32 pm | Posted in friends, Goal setting, friends, Tempo Runs | 1 Comment

pre-valentine-race.jpgIt’s It’s been a while since I’ve posted.  Life has been hectic; running has been terrific! 

This past Saturday, February 9, 2008, I ran an 8 mile race in Greece, NY with my girlfriend, Karin.  Prior to the race, Karin and I agreed that for once we would make a race a training run and enjoy each other’s company.  Our goal was to do a tempo run at an 8:20 pace in an effort to conserve our energy for our big races next week.  Karin is running the A1A Marathon in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and I’m running the Breast Cancer Half Marathon in Jacksonville, Florida.

What a fantastic run we shared!  I wore my Garmin GPS, which tells me my exact pace at any given moment, and it really helped to keep us from running faster than we should.  Karin is known for her ability to run a very steady, consistent pace.  So, she frequently reeled me in and made me check my Garmin.

We chatted the entire run.  I must say, there’s nothing like a girlfriend with whom you share so many similarities.  It’s only been the past couple of years that Karin and I have gotten to know each other, but I’m so grateful for her friendship. 

This was the first time in a long time that I just ran a race to be with my friends and it was absolutely wonderful.  No, we didn’t place, nor did we care.  We accomplished our goal and kept a pace of 8:24 for the 8 miles.  Holding back and running easy will help us both next week as we run our big races.

Thank you, Karin, for a great, great run!

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