Tag Archives: race recaps

One City Marathon + What’s Next

The 2017 One City Marathon is in the books.  I had a solid run and was happy with the results in an official finish time of 3:29.19.

I came out of the gate fresh and ready to go.  Too fast.  I settled in around a 7:45 pace and kept telling myself to slow down.  I couldn’t.  A lovely runner named Jim had settled in right one city marathonalong with me and we chatted our way through the first 14.

After hitting the half in 1:41, I knew I had to slow down or I would be in big trouble.  Of course, I also had it in my head that it was race day, I had tapered well and didn’t actually know what I was capable of.  I walked through a water stop at 14 very easily in an attempt to bring slow my body down.  As you can see from the splits, it worked a little bit.

I still felt good downing an extra GU at 18.5.  The fast half was starting to catch up with me and caffeine was just what I needed.  Of course, I also needed water.  Unfortunately the water stop at 20 was all the way on the other side of the road.  Across four lanes on the outside of a turn.  Hitting it would have added even more to my already extra long marathon.  I skipped it feeling confident I could make it to the stop at 22.

I made it to 22 and grabbed a cup of water as I walked by.  More attention would have been a good idea at that moment because that cup was barely full.  I got maybe 2 ounces of water before continuing on.  Not more than five minutes later I started to pay for it as my calves locked up.  I gave them a stretch and tried to slow my run down to a jog.  My pace inevitably crept back up and my calves responded with hostility.  I skipped the next water stop at 24 knowing if I walked I would struggle to run again.  Powering through the last two miles was one city marathontough but I did it, crossing the finish line with a smile on my face.

I had run 26.39 miles in 3:29.19.  While not exactly the race I wanted to run, I learned a lot and will be much better prepared for my next 26.2.  If there is one.

Next up is the Shamrock 8k.  Only five days after this marathon I’m not sure what to expect but it’s been a long time since I’ve run an 8k and would love to see a PR.  I’ll also have to decide if I really want to run the Boston Marathon.  There are 51 weeks a year I’m not that into the idea but when marathon weekend kicks off, I always wish I was there.  I’ll have more on that later because right now my focus is rocking 5 miles this Saturday.

Meredith

Did you run the One City Marathon?  Have you ever qualified for Boston?

**For more of the nitty gritty like parking and hotels, check out my review on BibRave**

 

2016 Joggin For Frogmen 5k

This past Saturday I ran the Virginia Beach edition of Joggin For Frogmen.  I participated last year when the 5k race was held on conjunction with Crossfit’s 31 Heroes workout and had a blast.  Exclusively benefiting the Navy SEAL Foundation, it’s a great cause I was happy to support again.  The 2016 event was slightly different, held later in the year and on its own but still fabulous.joggin for frogmen

The location and running surface were also different than in 2015.  The race took place at the Military Aviation Museum, a really amazing museum, and over a cross country course covered in grass.  I race on dirt/grass once a year and rarely train on it so I knew I’d be facing a challenge.  To make things even more fun, there was a little bit of rain Friday night to wet the grass and 20+ mile an hour winds to battle.

The turnout was great with roughly 500 runners supporting the Joggin for Frogmen cause on a chilly and windy morning.  After the opening ceremonies, including a rendition of the nation anthem during no one knelt, the race was off at 9am.  I planned to run hard without pushing too much since this was my first serious workout in three weeks.  Especially over the uncertain surface, injury was not tops on my list.  I settled into the headwind for the first half mile taking it easy at about a 7:30 pace.  The second half mile had a tailwind and I picked up to right around 7:10img_20161024_122623527 pace.  I was feeling good starting Mile 2 when I saw the very long stretch I’d be running into that 20mph wind.  I hunkered down, repeatedly pulling my visor back onto my head against gusts and just kept my feet moving.

My pace dropped to way over 8 minutes as I tried to take it easy fighting the wind.  I’d have that friendly tailwind back for the last 1200M and hoped to be able to take advantage of it.  As expected the tailwind wasn’t quite as helpful as the headwind was harmful but I did have a strong finish with the last 800M at 7:02 pace.  Crossing the line in 24:15 after loosing that minute fighting the wind was fine with me.  I got in a really good workout on strange turf in rough weather.  I also managed to finish 3rd in my age group.

It might not have been one of my fastest 5k times ever but it was one of the most fun.  I performed decently and did actually manage to enjoy the entire run.

Meredith

How do you get back into harder workouts after a break?

Wineglass Half Marathon Meltdown

Last weekend I ran my goal race.  My 2016 Wineglass Half Marathon race was a disaster.  I loved the event itself but my running featured a total meltdown that I’m actually glad I had.  For race day specifics, check out my review on BibRave!

The race day schedule did not really suit me but I succeeded at not letting it get to me.  I took a mandatory shuttle 15 minutes to the start then hung out for an hour in a gym before warming up.  I’m a get up and go type so this definitely put a cramp in my eating, sleeping, relaxing, game ready routine.  After gear check and potty, I warmed up and toed the line ready to rock 13.1 miles.meltdown

I had worked hard all summer and was looking forward to nailing this race.  I felt good.  My legs were fresh while my head was in the right place coming off my congestion.  I had an excellent first seven miles on pace to hit my PR goal but my body felt all wrong.  I was working much harder than I should have been and it felt way more difficult to maintain my desired pace than I had expected.  When I hit Mile 8 slightly behind my goal pace with already fried legs my head started to get the better of me.  The source of my pain turned out to be my shoes.  They were old and I hadn’t run in them in quite some time, saving them for this race.  Big mistake.  But I’m not going to blame a bad race on shoes.

What really pushed me over the edge was a gentleman I had been running with for a few miles saying “aren’t these views amazing?” just as I noticed I was behind goal pace.  My response: “What views?”  That’s when the meltdown began.  My entire body hurt with 8k to go.  There was some hip pain I had never had before bothering my left side.  So I quit.  I wasn’t having fun.  I was totally miserable.  Yes, I was disappointed to have a bad race, sad I was going to miss my goal but I was also in pain and pushing for no reason.  I took a deep breath, stopped and looked over to the mountains.  Actually stood still for 30 seconds.  Starting again, I jogged the rest of the race.  I spent time looking around, cheering for other runners and chatting with water stop volunteers.

No one is paying me to run these races (except when I’m a pacer).  It’s supposed to be fun.  Somewhere along the way this fall I lost that.  Turned out this race wasn’t about hitting or not hitting a PR for me.  It was a total reality check that I desperately needed.  Running is fun and I have to get back there.  I’m taking a week away from running, rewriting my upcoming months of marathon training, buying all new shoes (more on that later), backing off my aggressive run 50 states schedule and focusing on having fun.

Meredith

Have you ever had a meltdown during a race?  What did you learn from it?

My Not-So-Good 10k Race

Saturday morning I ran the Heart of Ghent 10k.  The first 10k I’d run since the same race in 2014 was not-so-good and far from the race I wanted.  After spending the better part of race week fighting stuffed up-ness, low quality sleep and less than idea nutrition, I had no idea what to expect.  I’d never run a race with congestion and completely stopped up sinuses before.not-so-good race

I had wanted to wake up race morning feeling 98%.  Instead my stuffed up-ness had moved load of mucus into my nose, throat and chest leaving me feeling 70%.  The warm (75ish) and humid morning would most certainly be not-so-good for my breathing.  After a breakfast I couldn’t taste and warm-up that felt decent, I lined up to start with positive thoughts circling in my head.

Miles 1 and 2 were right where I wanted to be, 6:55 and 6:54.  Then…things fell apart before 5k.  I had to stop around 3.5k to fix a right shoe issue.  Huge mistake.  My heart rate skyrocketed when I started running again.  Without the ability to breathe through my nose I couldn’t get it back down and started to feel the lactic acid.  Too early for that, I thought.  I managed to push through 6000M before my brain get the better of me.  With an uncomfortably high heart rate and nothing but snot in my nose it got really hard to find my happy place.  Every time I said I felt good I had to blow my nose into my sleeve.  Kind of kills the moment.

Not-so-good race’s second half wasn’t much better.  The humidity had decreased but the temperature had risen and my oxygen depleted muscles were getting grumpy.  Over the final 4k I took several walking breaks just to get a deep breath.  Forget the PR, let’s not puke!  I grabbed water at 7k to little avail.  I choked badly as the slobber in my throat tried to block it and spent the next few meters hacking up nothing.  Really pleasant.  With 2k to go I settled into a jog and begged for the finish line.  I walked across the line at 50:58 (8:15).  Far from the run I had wanted and worked for all summer, I was pretty neutral about it.  Stuff happens. There’s always another race.

On the bright side, my not-so-good race could have been worse.  I’m not injured and it was definitely a learning experience (take it easy when you feel crappy).  In addition to being the first time I raced with congestion, it was the first time I kept my Garmin in kilometers instead of miles.  I really liked it for the distance and am definitely going to do it again at my next 5k.  For now, I’m quickly putting this behind me.  My goal half marathon is a few short days away and I’m really focusing on a strong performance.

Meredith

Have you raced sick or recovering?

RnRVB Win + Missed Goal

Rock n Roll Virginia Beach is in the can.  It wasn’t the race I was hoping for but I did finish as first female and get a solid workout in.  Even though I missed my goal of hitting a new PR, I did accomplish one thing I had set out to do: get an RnRVB win!rnrvb win

Race morning was cool, humid and windy.  Still feeling not so great about the chance to PR, I ran a solid warm up and felt decent heading into my corral.  It seemed like I stood there for a long time feeling my body slow back down when we ended up going off four minutes late.  Starting with a crosswind I felt good.  I was on pace through the first 1200M and into the first corner.  Turning into the headwind I kept pushing to maintain my goal pace.

I rolled my ankle on some broken pavement shortly after a mile and it definitely took my mind off track.  While I knew I wasn’t injured it distracted me enough to lose my rhythm.  The course turned back south at 1.5 miles but the next 1.4 miles of tailwind weren’t enough.  I couldn’t find my pace again and slowed.  I kept fighting until I saw the final turn ahead and tried to rnrvb winaccelerate.  There was nothing.  I definitely gave the course all I had and hoped for the best as I headed for the Finish.

After rounding the final turn I wasn’t sure if there was another woman in front of me.  Since the 5k breaks off from the half at a u-turn around a building in the opposite direction with roughly 500M to go there definitely could have been someone up there.  Coming out of that turn onto the boardwalk I got a nasty face full of wind and a calf cramp.  I also didn’t see any women running in front me of.  I tried to kick again but it didn’t happen.   When race staff stretched a Rock n Roll Finish line tape rnrvb winout I cruised through the final meters to break it for the first time.  Having never run through a finish line tape, it was a fun way to wrap up a difficult run.

While I didn’t get the PR I wanted or a big fat trophy and giant check, my RnRVB win did get me in the paper with this photo.  Goober alert!

Meredith

Do you have multiple goals for races?  How do you choose them?

*If you want to know more about the actual race, check out my review on BibRave*

Memorial Scholarship 5k

Race recap on a Wednesday?  Yup!  The Tidewater Strider’s Memorial Scholarship 5k is held on the fourth Tuesday of July at 6:30pm.  It was in 2016 and has been each year in 1982.  Since this would be my second workout of the day there wasn’t any sort of goal.  I planned on having some fun and supporting a great organization while getting my legs moving again after a tough morning on the track.

The Memorial Scholarship 5k course runs through the gorgeous Norfolk Botanical Garden to complete the group’s Summer Series.  The series is a group run at the garden each Tuesday evening in Julymemorial scholarship 5k featuring a poker run, a relay and a guess your finish outing.  On this year’s very hot and very humid evening over 200 people came out to run the annual event, including a bunch of my Team RWB buddies.  It was great to catch up with them as the sky clouded up (yay!) and it started to feel like rain.  Everyone was rooting for some to cool things off.  Unfortunately, we never got it.

On the bright side, I did get to warm up on some nicely shaded paths.  With five miles to rack up between a warm up, the race and a cool down I was happy to jog a bit extra before racing to enjoy the scenery.  The start lined up around 6:25 and we took off right on time.  Things were a bit crowded for the first half mile then loosened up nicely.  My legs were grumpy grumpy from a hard morning workout and the humidity didn’t help but I felt surprisingly good past Mile 1.  Not concerned about my time, I was running all of the curves wide to pick up as much mileage as possible to credit towards my five mile goal.

There were a few non-racers strolling through the beautiful gardens along with Pokemon Go hunters sharing the paths with us as the course wove through the park’s paved trails.  Two bridge crossing and one teeny tiny hill greeted us on the otherwise flat course and before I knew it I had passed the Mile 2 marker.  My legs were moving decently but lacked the power and turnover I had left on the track.  I took the final 1000M on cruise with plenty of running room, crossing the finish line in 22:32.  Not a great time for me but decent considering it was a second workout of the day on a hot and muggy one with my heavy shoes on.  I did win my Memorial Scholarship 5k age group!  Post race there were tons of raffles, pizzas, watermelons and beers.  I won zero raffles.  I did enjoy the food and drink while hanging out with a ton of run buddies to make up for it.

Racing in the evening was tough for me, especially after working out hard in the morning, but definitely effective.  It left me feeling positive about my training and made me realize I can push harder than I think I can.  I might even be figuring out how to race the 5k distance!

Meredith

Have you ever raced in the evening?  Did you like it?

Red White and Boom Half Marathon

I checked off State #20, Minnesota, with July 4th’s Red White and Boom Half Marathon in Minneapolis.  It was my first visit to the city and I really had a good time.  This was a check-in race with no goal other than to push it a little bit here and there while having a good time.  After receiving an email with a heat warning Doug, who was running the 5k, and I were greatly relieved to see it was issued for a morning expected to be 64 degrees and 75% humid.  Temperatures 10-25 degrees below our current normal running weather were a welcome sight.  The humidity would be easy to handle and I knew I could stick with my plan.red white and boom half marathon

We arrived mid-morning on Sunday and went straight to the hotel gym for a shakeout session before checking out the Twins at Target Field.  The city was quiet, clean, friendly and had a park full of fun red white and boom half marathoncharacters to hang with.  After the game we had dinner at the hotel and hit the hay early.  Race start was 6:30 local time so it was nice to get up at what felt like a regular weekend time (7:30) to go for a run.  I downed a plain bagel and water breakfast then walked the short distance to race day packet pick-up.

The cool-ish morning was indeed humid but nothing unmanageable.  I quickly and easily nabbed my packet, checked my gear and set off for a warm up.  After my mile, I knew Red White and Boom would be the big improvement over last year’s summer half in Chicago I expected.  The weather was better, my training was more on track and I felt positive about it.

The start corrals were fairly crowded on a narrow road but after a solid national anthem for America’s birthday we were off right on time.  Things stayed traffic filled for a few minutes and around the 2k mark I started wondering when it would loosen up.  The course started to loosen in to the Mile 3 mark and by 8k there was plenty of running room for the rest of the race.  At that point I was glad to be able to take tangents and play with my pacing more after walking through a water stop around Mile 5.

I expected a climb before Mile 6 that had been on the course map but I didn’t notice anything too serious before 10k.  There were a few short, steep climbs and some longer slow ones but as a whole the race didn’t feel very hilly when I was on it.  Apparently it was because my Garmin told me I picked up 300 feet of elevation gain over the Red White and Boom Half Marathon.  In spite of the hills a large portion of the course was covered with shade and very peaceful.  I spent most of the race’s first half telling myself to slow down without actually doing it.  I tired to use uphills to really back off and was somewhat successful at doing that.  I wanted to come in somewhere between 1:40 and 1:45, more towards the latter, without leaving too much out red white and boom half marathonthere.  I hit the Mile 10 timer at 1:18+ knowing I was about a minute behind the official clock.  Perfect!

My legs were feeling good and my time was right around where I wanted to be, if not a bit fast.  My skin, however, was not so hot.  Around Mile 9 I had started to notice a less than lovely feeling around the chest band of my sports bra.  By the time I found medical at Mile 10, I was having some serious chaffing action and since I wasn’t in any kind of hurry stopped to get some tape.  After struggling to find the end of the roll, I stuck on a big strip and took off for the final Red, White and Boom 5k about 90 seconds later.  A few more slightly rolling hills sent me through the final water stop past Mile 11 then into an easy long down hill finish across Stone Arch Bridge.

I finished in 1:43.37 feeling good.  I ran for the most part right on plan and hit my goal range in spite of walking through three water stops and taking a 90 second break to tape myself up.  The race had great red white and boom half marathonswag including logoed pint glasses and Brooks brand tech t-shirts at packet pick-up for all runners then nice Red, White and Boom finisher medals along with red, white and blue ice pops, bottled water, chocolate milk, snacks and Cliff Bars in the finisher chute.

The race left me feeling really good about where my training is heading into the end of my base phase.  It was a solid run at a great event on a humid morning with more hills than I’ll face for a while.  If you have the chance to tackle the Red White and Boom Half Marathon, I’d take it!

Meredith

Rock the Parkway 2016

Rock the Parkway was the second race in my Month of Racing.  With it I knocked off Missouri for state #19 and officially started my new training cycle.  I flew out with plenty of time to adjust afterwards feeling ready to rock this first long training run.  My plan was to run easy, maybe hang with the 1:45 pacer and have some fun.

After visiting the excellent World War I museum on Thursday, I picked up my number, timing chip and tech shirt at the small expo.  I really liked not having a bunch of things I didn’t want thrust upon me by a well meaning sponsor.  Friday was a day of relaxing except for hunting down morerock the parkway clothing.  My race plan before leaving home was good.  My packing was not.  The weather forecast prior to flying out claimed temperatures would be in the low 50s for race time.  Friday morning the report had changed to let me know Rock the Parkway would be starting with temps closer to 25.  That sent me on a hunt for long tights that ended in picky shopper failure.  I opted for some stockings even though it would be the first time I ever wore them with capri tights and my compression socks.

After the shopping I might have enjoyed a few too many cocktails with my big dinner but slept decently until my race day wake up call.  I felt pretty good pulling on layers, lashing my timing chip to my shoe, downing a bunch of water and a buttered bagel before heading out into the cold.  A short drive away was plenty of free race parking where I stayed on the heated front seat for about 15 minutes.  At 7am it was an easy walk to the staging area for the race’s 7:30 start time.  A good band was playing and there were lots of Port-a-Potties lined up.  The people lined up, however, were a mess.  It was it was pretty much the most polite free-for-all I’d ever been a part of and somehow I managed to get in and out quickly.

I stretched out a little, planning to use the first mile as my warm up, then weaseled my way into the packed corral for Wave A.  We went off right on time when I noticed no national anthem had been played.  Oh, well.  That first warm-up mile was a bit crowded and after it I had to stop to tighten my shoe laces.  Running room increased after that as the roads went from two lanes wide to four.  It was after climbing the first of many gentle hills through Mile 2 I realized I had definitely had too many cocktails Friday evening.  My legs felt great after my off season.  The rest of me, mediocre at best.

Essentially an out-and-back affair, Rock the Parkway covers a scenic course that climbs for the first few miles, levels out in the middle (mostly) and finishes downhill.  We definitely climbed through the first 5k but the rolling hills didn’t seem too bad.  Things leveled out a bit around Mile 3 as I walked through each of the well stocked, well staffed water stops knowing I needed the fluid.  Mile 5 was my favorite because the whole neighborhood got involved.  There was a beer stop (I skipped), music blasting and some great signs that definitely made me smile.  With crowd support scattered, this was the perfect place for an almost middle of the race pick-me-up.  After cruising uphill through a few turns and Miles 5, 6 and 7 the course began to head back home.  At Mile 8 I grabbed a GU then rolled on through the next two miles that included a repeat of those gentle hills in 4 and 5.

I enjoyed the out-and-back course because it didn’t feel like it.  You ran on both sides of a road that has a massive grassy median and got to see lots of the peaceful neighborhoods.  Volunteers blocking streets and police officers preventing runners from being crashed into did an excellent job of keeping the course clear while providing a good cheer every now and then.  rock the parkwayWalking through a water stop at Mile 10 my legs started to remind me this was the first hard workout I’d had in a while.  The first half’s rolling hills had caught up to me and I took it easy for the last 5k.  A nice downhill for Miles 11 and 12 was exactly what my out of race shape body needed.  I crossed the line in 1:49.15 feeling good about my Rock the Parkway training run.  It was cold, hillier than expected and I had been dehydrated until taking those leisurely strolls through all seven water stops.  I grabbed a bottled water, had my timing chip cut off by a volunteer and received a massive medal.  Because of the cooler temperatures and needing to catch a flight, I skipped the post race party and used a line-less Port-a-Potty before quickly heading back to my heated seat in the car.

Back at my hotel, I was surprised looking at my Garmin report.  There had definitely been hills to cover but I didn’t really think much of them.  Expecting to see around 300 feet of elevation gained the computer screen showed me just under 500!  The last time I picked that much it had been a beat down.  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised since I’d just taken close to a month of an off season and was running without any pressure.  All in all Rock the Parkway was a fun race with a challenging but manageable course that provided the workout I needed.  Up this weekend is Race #3 of my Month of Racing, the ODU Big Blue 5k.  I’ll be better hydrated for this shorter, flatter race and seeing what I’ve got with little training to back it up.

Meredith

Have you ever raced dehydrated?  How do you tackle training races?

One City Marathon + Blisters and Knee Pain

My first marathon is complete!  My 2016 One City Marathon was not the race I wish it had been but it’s over and that’s music to my ears.  I could turn my 26.38 mile journey into quite the saga except we’ve all had bad races and know the routine so I’ll break it up into the important parts.  one city marathonThe first half, the second half and some race review points.  If you want more on the race itself, check out my BibRave review here!

Race morning kicked off around 5:30 for a 7:00 start.  I had gotten a reasonable amount of sleep considering it was the night before my first marathon and the beginning of daylight savings time.  I ate a nice big cereal breakfast with two glasses of water, packed three energy gels in my pockets, slid on my shoes and was out the door.  It was a beautiful day with temps in the high 50s to low 60s with no rain, a light breeze and some mild humidity.  I felt good after a tiny jog and lots of hip mobility then entered the 8 minute corral.

We went off right on time and the first half of my One City Marathon was good.  Those first miles were the hillier of the two sections and I might have paid for going out a hair fast to get away from some start traffic.  After the first kilometer, I had tons of running room and did a good job of staying hydrated by walking through water stations at 4 and 8 miles after downing my first CarbBoom around Mile 7.5.  It was around Mile 11 I started to notice some pain on the balls of my feet.  Blisters!  I didn’t think much of them beyond ‘that’ll hurt when I take my socks off’ and ran on.

I hit the halfway mark at 1:43+ feeling nervous.  I knew I had gone out a tiny bit faster than planned but my legs felt good except for whatever was happening in my socks.  At 13.5 I downed my second energy gel then walked through a water station at 14 where I grabbed an extra gel from course support.  At some point between Mile 14 and Mile 16, things with my feet went from questionable to horrible.  To compensate for the blisters I must have started running on the outside my feet.  Something I’ve never done, it had to be the cause of the severe pain I had behind both knees that I’ve also never experienced before for Miles 16-20.

I fought through those miles with walk breaks and race pace running.  By Mile 23 I was almost in tears.  Muscles that had never talked to me in my groin were screaming.  My quads, hamstrings and calves felt like they should.  Tired but willing to work.  I just couldn’t push through the knee pain.  It was scary.  I scrapped any goal I had and focused on the fact that things felt OK when I walked.  Unfortunately I’m not a walker.  I’m a runner.  After a few run/walk miles that at least didn’t make me want to cry, I finally settled into a ginger but steady jog that involved misaligned feet and some serious left side heel striking for the final 2 miles.

With possibly one of the most positive splits in One City Marathon’s short history, I set my one city marathonmarathon PR at 3:58.23.  Exactly 26.5 minutes slower than I had wished.  I got my medal, a Gatorade and plopped to the ground with my gear bag.  I was scared to remove my socks but figured it was a good time since I had both flip flops and dry socks in my bag.  Off they went and I was actually happy to not see blood.  Massive goo filled blisters were popping between my big toe and second toe on both sides (forget the flops), and popped ones graced the balls of both feet.  I’d share a picture but you really don’t want to see.  Barefoot heel walking out of the finish area I grabbed a light weight race jacket that was exactly what I needed.  Better than a heat sheet for sure.

I sat down for a few minutes to give my beat up feet a break, eat a one city marathonprotein bar and drink a bottle of water.  Eventually, I did slide on the flops for my awkward, it hurts, flat footed march to the car.  One there, I finally remembered to snap a finisher photo.  My first marathon was over and that was good news.  All in all, my One City Marathon experience was not a bad one.  The race itself was well done with a wide open course and good swag.  Running 26.38 miles was hard and I absolutely wish I had been able to perform better.  I also wish I could pinpoint what exactly went wrong.  My very aggressive training plan?  A two week taper?  Maybe going out too two seconds per mile too fast?  Of all the choices, I’m blaming the socks, blisters and funky running knee pain.  Will I go back?  I’ve changed my mind each day but it’s looking probable.  For now, my fall schedule is full and I can’t wait to get back to business on PRing the half marathon.

Meredith

How do you deal with blisters?  Ever had pain behind your knees?

2014 Year in Racing Review

The holidays are going strong, the end of 2014 is approaching and that means it’s time for my 2014 Year in Racing Review!  It was an exciting twelve months with both successes and failures teaching me a lot.  I laid out my goals for this year in a Happy New Year post while doing a good job of keeping the lessons of 2013 in mind.

I haven’t reflected on my 2014 yearly goals in a while and now that I am, I’m proud of what I accomplished.  I did a much better job of trusting my training during 2014’s year in racing than I have in the past, managed to stay away from mile adding traffic as much as possible during races and had some serious fun on a few race courses.  You can check out all of my reviews and 2014 year in racingrecaps here and find slightly edited versions on this wonderful race research site but here’s a quick summary:

  • I ran 11 races in 2014: One 5k, one 8k, one 10k and eight half marathons earning some massive medals.
  • I PR’ed at the half marathon distance three times, hitting my 2014 goal of breaking 1:40.00 before the summer with 1:39.08 (March), 1:38.42 (April) and 1:37.24 (October).  I also PR’ed at the 10k distance, 43:27 (September).
  • I won my age group for the first and second times, went back-to-back second at the EquiKids 5k and was first overall female once on a hot, humid morning.
  • I checked five states off my list: New Jersey, Delaware, Tennessee, South Carolina and Nevada, leaving 41 and DC to go.
  • I paced my first half marathon in September.

It’s really hard to choose a favorite from my 2014 Year in Racing because I had fun at so many.  My first pacing experience is close to the top but it’s hard to have more fun than hitting a PR.  I’d say my top three were RnR VB, Rehoboth and Nashville.  Las Vegas was definitely my worst racing moment but it also taught me a few things about flying to race that I’m glad I learned early on in my travels.

I haven’t nailed down my goals for 2015’s Year in Racing quite yet but can say for certain I’ll be going after a sub-1:37.00 in Phoenix next month.  I’ll be putting some thought into the upcoming twelve months of running over the next few weeks and can’t wait to share my 2015 targets with you!

Meredith

How was your 2014 Year in Racing?  What was your biggest highlight?