I ran…and I ran…and I ran.

On the running front, I had a pretty great summer, fall, and winter.  🙂

August 2015

In August, I had the wonderful opportunity to run Ragnar Colorado.  I had never been to Colorado and running 200 miles from Copper to Aspen with 11 amazing people = the best thing ever.


October 2015

Jeanette and I checked the Chicago Marathon off of the bucket list in October.  We went with one goal…have fun and enjoy the race!  We did just that and it was absolutely amazing.


September 2015

I ran the Via Marathon this past September and it was one of the worst races of my life.  I was trying for a BQ (sub 3:35) and I ended up with a 4 hour plus finish.  I had a much better race back in 2014.

October 2015

A fun little 5k pushing Annabelle in the jogging stroller.  Running with the stroller and a heavy toddler is no joke.

November 2015

This was definitely the highlight of my running in 2015.  I’m not sure how we did it, but my friends Woody, Pryce, and I completed our first 50 MILER.  Yes, 50 miles!  Woody and Pryce killed it and finished in the 10 hour range and I finished in 11 hours and 52 minutes.  To be an official finisher, you had to finish in under 12 hours.  I’m glad I gave myself a few minutes to spare.  😉

February 2016

Kate and I ran the Disney Princess Half Marathon and had a magical time.  This was Kate’s first half marathon and she did so great…and she loved it so much that she signed up for another one.


March 2016

I ran the HAT 50k and it was as fun and challenging as last year.  This was my friend Wendy’s first 50k and she did such an amazing job.

  

So, what’s next you ask?  

Coastal Delaware Marathon on April 24th!

The HAT 50k!

Also known as the time I ran/walked/climbed/slid for 8 hours straight.  🙂

The 28th Annual HAT Run took place on Saturday, March 21st at 9 am.  I was excited and VERY NERVOUS to be running my second 50k (you can read about my first 50k experience here).  Since the race didn’t start until 9 am, I got to sleep pretty late for a race morning.  Please note that the Ragnar Relay alarm remains ready to be used when needed.

Since I had all of my stuff laid out, it didn’t take me long to get ready and head out to my car.  I had totally forgotten about the fresh snow that had fallen the day before and I spent about 10 minutes scraping the ice and snow off of my car.  After a quick stop at the gas station (where my gas tank was frozen shut), I was on my way.  Seeing this sunrise was a great start to the day.

At 8 am I arrived at the race and found my training partner and BFF Jeanette.  We quickly picked up our packets, hit the porta potties, and suited up.  It was right around freezing at the start of the race and it was expected to reach 50 degrees by the afternoon.

The race started promptly at 9 am and I could not feel my ankles, feet, or toes.

From the race website…The course is mostly single track trail with a mix of open fields, dirt road and some paved road. The course features nearly 7,200 feet of climbing. There is a starting loop of 4 miles followed by two identical loops of 13.5 miles. There are 4 stream crossings that can be challenging depending on the water level – there is always the chance of getting wet feet.

At the end of the first 4 miles, we ran back through the pavilion that held our drop bags.  Many people took the opportunity to shed some clothing since the day was getting warmer and the temperature would continue to climb.  Since I am always cold, I kept everything on and headed out for the first 13.5 mile loop.  Sadly, I lost Jeanette soon after this point and I didn’t see her again until the end.  She is a really great trail runner.

After about an hour and a half, I had a Honey Stinger gel.  I didn’t feel like I wanted it yet, but I knew that my body needed the fuel and I felt it kick in soon after.  I was feeling good and finally starting to feel my feet…and then I came upon the first stream crossing.

Caption this photo however you would like, but I can tell you I was not a happy camper.  Since I saw there was no other option, I headed across the stream and just hoped I wouldn’t fall and get my entire body wet.  This actually happened to a number of people!  Luckily, this stream was only high enough to cover my ankles.  The second stream was up to my knees!

Since I was running pretty much alone, I made some friends along the way and would run with people from time to time.  It never lasted long as one of us would pull ahead and leave the other behind.  I mentally split the course by the aid stations, but I honestly can’t tell you how many miles were in between each station.  There were two main stations and one smaller one that seemed like it was in the middle of the woods.  At each main station I ate one quarter of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a few pretzels, and a cup of Gatorade.  Towards the end I substituted the pretzels for salty french fries (man these were good) and I added in a cookie here and there.  Why not right?  I stuck with water while I was out on the trail.

I finished the first 17.5 miles in about 4 hours and headed back out for the last 13.5.  Since it was about 1 pm when I started my second loop, the temperature was climbing and the trails were in BAD shape.  I have never seen so much mud in my life. Many parts were so slippery that you really couldn’t run if you tried.  I tried to keep up the pace and keep moving forward, but I had some very slow miles thrown in there.  There were a few miles on the road and I was so happy to hit dry land. I made up some time and rocked 9 minutes miles on the pavement.

After running/walking/sliding and probably staggering to the finish line, I crossed in about 8 hours and 4 minutes.  Man was I happy to receive my hat and umbrella.  Everyone got a tshirt for signing up, but you only got the hat and umbrella after finishing.  🙂

Jeanette finished in just under 7 hours and look how good she looks at the finish line!

  Here is my finish line picture…not too bad right?

Jeanette was all clean and dry in comfy clothes when I finished and I was so grateful to see her standing at the finish line.  I was so happy that we both finished, but that was not the best thing about that day.  Jeanette’s family dog had been missing since that Thursday and he was found while we were out running.  I was so so happy to hear the good news.  🙂

My thoughts about the race:

1. I LOVED it and I can’t wait to sign up for next year.
2. I really do love trail running.
3. French fries are awesome.
4. I have never been so sore in my life.
5. Why stop at 50k? I think it’s time for a 50 miler.

🙂

Happy Thanksgiving and my mom’s first 5k!!!

Hi everyone! I hope that you had a great Thanksgiving (if you celebrate :-)) with family and friends and I hope you ate lots of great good! We had a super fun time over here with my family.

We had a mini snow storm on Wednesday, so I decided to stay home from work and use my extra time to prep for Thanksgiving. This was my first year actually cooking, so it was nice to get a head start.

I made sweet potato casserole, a chocolate mousse trifle, cookie bars, and dressing. It was so nice to have all of this done prior to Thursday.

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A white Thanksgiving Eve.

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My parents flew in on Wednesday evening and I was SO HAPPY to see them. By the time we got home and got Annabelle settled down, it was after 1 am and we were exhausted.

We didn’t let sleep deprivation and freezing temps keep us from the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. My mom and I woke up and headed down the road to run a chilly 5k. The original plan was for me to run it and then back track to find my mom (who would be walking) once I finished. Well, she sure surprised me! I finished in about 24 minutes and headed back out to find her. It didn’t take long before I found her. She had decided to run instead of walk and she was already in her third mile! Since she had planned on walking, she was wearing a big winter hat and a long down coat AND carrying our packets! Even with all of that weighing her down, she ran her first 5k and finished in about 41 minutes. I am beyond proud. 🙂

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After a stop for Starbucks and donuts, we headed home to shower and get the turkey in the oven. The day was made extra special because my Aunt Janice and Uncle Gren came over for a visit and it was sooo nice to see them. 🙂

We finally ate around 5 pm and it turned out very well for my first attempt at cooking. The menu included:

-Turkey and gravy
-Sweet potato casserole with marshmallows
-Corn
-Mashed potatoes
-Dressing
-Croissants
-Cranberry Sauce

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After letting our dinner settle, we dug into dessert (my favorite part of most meals)!

-Pumpkin Pie
-Chocolate Mousse Trifle (French vanilla cake layered with a cool whip and pudding mixture and topped with crushed Oreos…and repeat)
-Cookie bars

I made enough food for an army, so I’ve been eating leftovers everyday. I think I’ve had enough now.

I’m sad that I didn’t take a full family photo, but I did get a few good ones.

AB just couldn’t hang. 🙂 (Don’t worry, she was not really drinking beer or wine)

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Grandses, Annabelle, and Me ❤

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It was a great day and I’m now looking forward to a whole lot of Christmas fun.

Sweatshirts and running.

Well, we made it through Monday and tomorrow is a federal holiday. Yay for being a federal employee! A BIG thank you to all of our past and present members of the military.

We had a pretty good weekend over here. When I got home from work on Thursday, I had FOUR great surprises waiting for me.

1. A very nice note from Chris.
2. My favorite Starbucks drink in the fridge.
3. A Reebok yoga sweatshirt.

AND

4. A Nike sweatshirt.

He’s kinda the best. 🙂 PS I have failed to take a picture of the sweatshirts even though I have lived in the Nike one for the last 4 days.

Annabelle got new boots and a new coat this weekend. She didn’t want to take it off.

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I decided to randomly make these on Friday afternoon and it was one of my better decisions.

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Sunday morning was spent running a 10k over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and it was awesome! I’ll have a full recap up soon.

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Sunday afternoon was spent running another 8 miles with the jogging stroller. Why would I so such a thing? Because I thought it was a great idea to sign up for a marathon happening at the end of this month. More on that later. 🙂

Do you have an obsession with sweats? Yes!

Chocolate chip cookie or brownie? Tough decision…

The VIA Marathon: Boston here I come!

On Sunday, September 7th, I ran the VIA Marathon hoping to run a Boston qualifying marathon.  This was my second and final shot for this year…my first attempt did not go as planned.

Jeanette, my training partner and great friend, picked me up on Saturday afternoon and we headed to Bethlehem for packet pick-up.  FYI, this is the site of the Runner’s World Half which was an absolute blast last year.

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After we checked into our hotel, we headed to dinner with some friends.  I made sure to load up on carbs with shrimp risotto and plenty of warm bread.  I really wanted some chocolate after dinner, so I bought peanut M&Ms from the vending machine and I was a happy girl.  Once we got back to the room, we got ready for the morning by setting everything out.  My outfit included shorts, shirt, and sports bra from Fabletics, socks from Pro Compression, and shoes from Brooks (I am still wearing the Pure Flow 2s).

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We went to bed early and tried to get some quality sleep…4:30 am came rather quickly.

The weather for race day was pretty wonderful.  It was sooo hot and humid on Saturday, but thanks to some severe thunderstorms that evening, Sunday’s weather had low humiditiy and cooler temps.  The race started promptly at 7:10 am and I was a bundle of nerves.

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I started pretty close to the front of the pack because it is really hard to start too far back and have to bob and weave past people.  Mile 1 clocked in at 7:51 and mile 2 clocked in at 7:49.  I really wanted to stick to an 8 minute mile pace, but the race day jitters and adrenaline got me going out fast.  I found a few ladies that seemed to be keeping the 8 minute pace and I hung with them for a while.  I also found my buddy Bart Yasso twice along the course…he is my hero.  🙂  I finished the first half averaging right under an 8 minute pace.  This was a good thing (I had some wiggle room for the second half) and a bad thing (I was tired already).  I also spent lots of time trying to get sport beans out of my teeth…I’m so glad they caught this on camera.  LOL.

VIA Marathon

Jeanette hopped in around mile 12 and she is a LIFE SAVER.  By mile 16, I started to question my ability to keep pace and my legs and feet were getting very mad at me.  I doubted my ability to keep going at that pace and to keep going at all.  The thought of having 10 more miles to go was daunting and I started losing hope.  Jeanette helped to keep my confidence up, kept reminding me that I could average slower miles from there on out and still make my goal.  She gave me food and water when I requested it and she kept my legs moving when I wanted to slow down and walk.  When I reached mile 25, I had about 10 minutes to run 1.2 miles.  If I just held it together for 1 more mile, I would actually do it.  After a slight uphill, the course flattened out and I could see the finish line.  I crossed the finish line in 3:34:12 and it took a lot of strength to not just collapse right there.

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I beat my previous time by 55 seconds and I qualified for Boston.  A few years ago, I thought qualifying for Boston was a dream and something I might be able to do one day…dream realized.  🙂

This picture was taken about an 1 1/2 hours after I finished and this smile is very fake.  I had some extreme “runner’s flu” and felt TERRIBLE.  It was so worth it though.  🙂

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The race wasn’t just giving out medals to finishers…It also gave me a few of these babies.  I know it’s gross, I’m sorry.

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Best running day of my life.  Boston 2015 here I come!  The best part…Jeanette qualified back in May and we are going to rock Boston together.  🙂

 

That time I ran my first 50k!

On July 20, 2014 I turned 32 years old. What’s the best way to celebrate a birthday? Running a 50k trail race and becoming an ultra runner. 🙂

Jeanette (my partner in crime) and I decided that since we were already trained for the marathon distance, we might as well go to the next step and try a 50k. FYI: trail running is so beautiful but very different from road running. Our pace is significantly slower on the trails and our goal for this race was simply to finish.
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My alarm went off at 3:20 am and it was a little rough getting out of my nice warm bed when the rest of the world was sound asleep. I hit up the local gas station for some much needed caffeine and drove to Jeanette’s house. We then drove an hour to Upper Marlboro, MD to run the Rosaryville 50k. It was a beautiful morning…way cooler than our usual late July temperatures.

The before picture. Frank and Meg joined in on the fun and rocked the 10 miler.

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The 50k was three 10 mile loops and the course was great. It was fun to run in a new place and challenge my body in a way it had never been challenged before.

The Ups and the Downs:

1. The scenery was beautiful.

2. The first 10 miles felt SO LONG and I got really scared that I wouldn’t be able to finish.

3. Animal crackers are my new favorite “fuel”. Stauffer’s brand all the way.

4. The volunteers were awesome and the aid stations were stocked with supplies and food. They were so nice and refilled our water bottles at each stop.

5. Jeanette is an awesome running partner and she keeps me going when I want to stop.

6. Jeanette had an entire aid station sing me happy birthday as I ran in. I really needed a pick me up and it made my day. 🙂

7. I fell 3 times… Fall #1: not too bad, just some dirt. Fall #2: bad, so bad, blood, bruises, confidence crushed. Fall #3: rubbed more dirt in my wounds and my right knee was screaming.

8. At around mile 25 I took a cup of what I thought was Gatorade and chugged it. It tasted so wonderful and sugary…because it was Mountain Dew. I loved it.

9. Once Jeanette saw that we could make it under 6 hours, she made it our mission.

10. We finished in 5:55:06 and it felt amazing to be done.

Will we do another one? We might just have one planned for November. 🙂

The medal!

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Happy, pretty dry, and still clean after loop 1. 🙂

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Before and after pictures.

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Dirty, bloody, bruised, and patched up with Sesame Street Bandaids. 🙂

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I spent the rest of my bday heading on vacation, eating McDonalds fries, and enjoying a huge Dairy Queen blizzard. 🙂

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50k, we will see you again soon!

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Three things…

1. I’m running my first 50k tomorrow! Here’s hoping to becoming an Ultra runner tomorrow!

2. I had my first Stitch Fix today and I LOVED everything!

3. I’m turning 32 tomorrow (Sunday)!

See you from the finish line!

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Random Pictures/Nonsense

Since my normal work, run, eat dinner, and go to bed thing isn’t all that exciting day in and day out, here is a bunch of random thoughts/pictures from the past few days.

My post-race meal from Saturday…sweet tea and a chicken and veggie wrap. My stomach did not feel well and the sweet tea helped to settle it some.

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Father’s Day Cards for my Dad and Chris 🙂

 

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I got a Misto shake from Rita’s last night.  I wasn’t really in the mood for it, so I didn’t finish it…it is very unlike me to not finish a dessert.

 

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Annabelle got to sit in a real fire truck last night!  She wasn’t quite sure how to feel about it.

 

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Great picture of my friend Lisa during the Baltimore 10 Miler.

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Here is a not so great picture of me and Jeanette’s butts running to the finish line.  LOL.

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Nothing better than a good lunch time sweat session.  (From my Instagram:  lindarunning4two)

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One of the best snacks ever…graham crackers and peanut butter.

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Running in 90 plus degree heat makes for a hard run…

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Tell me something random about your day, weekend, life!

Baltimore 10 Miler 2014: Race Recap

This past Saturday, I ran the Baltimore 10 Miler. I went into the race with no expectations, but I of course wanted to do well and give it my all. I drastically cut my mileage to recover and let my knee heal, so I wasn’t quite sure how running 10 challenging miles would go.
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The race was scheduled to start at 7:30 am, but it ended up starting about 15 minutes late. The reason they gave was “due to the traffic in the surrounding area”…people were running late I suppose.

Start line selfies!

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Barefoot runner…

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We lined up with the 1:20 pace group and started off at an easy pace. We settled into a nice, sub-8 minute pace for the first few miles. Right before we reached the half way point (slightly under 39 minutes), we passed the 1:20 pace group.

Our goal was to try and keep pace for the second half, but the second half is HILLY. It was definitely challenging and I thought I was going to have to walk during a hill at mile 8. The last two miles were brutal for me and I gave everything I had to keep up with Jeanette. I finished right next to Jeanette in 1:18:14.

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I am very happy with my time. My knee felt great the whole time (3 Advil did the trick :-)) and I beat my time from last year (1:22 ish).

The after party is always a great time. Running, free beer, and good friends. Such a great way to spend a Saturday morning.

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And the best way to spend a Saturday evening…

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Race weekend, a great snack, and bath time.

I’m running the Baltimore 10 Miler this Saturday and to be honest, I’m a little nervous.  I haven’t done a lot of running since my marathon back in May and my knee is still being bothersome.  The course is a bit challenging (read hilly!) and the weather has turned hot and humid…I have not adapted to the humidity yet this year.  However, the race was a blast last year and I’m running with a bunch of friends and I am just going to hope for the best.  🙂

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I decided it would be a great idea to take a new class during my lunch break today.  What class did I take?  Kick It.  This class was a high intensity kick-boxing class and I left nice and sweaty.  I have a feeling I’m going to wake up pretty sore tomorrow…

Once I got back to my desk, I couldn’t wait to eat my lunch.  I had leftover grilled chicken (cooked on a charcoal grill=so good) and pasta salad (from a box=so good).  I also chopped up the Mini Babybel cheese and mixed it in.

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A few hours later, I was starving and reached for this Kashi bar.  For someone with a ginormous sweet tooth, this really hits the spot.  Best of all, it’s healthy and tastes great!

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After a long day at work and a long commute home, I didn’t have much energy to cook dinner.  The solution…Eat Fresh!  Yup, Subway for the win.  Just in case you were wondering, I had turkey and ham on wheat with spinach, tomatoes, and onions.

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Annabelle didn’t really seem like she needed a bath tonight, but when her normal bath time rolled around she kept pointing to the stairs and crying.  I finally understood what she wanted and she started giggling as soon as we reached the stairs.  I think the real reason she likes to take a bath is so that she can run around nude afterwards.  😉

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She definitely keeps us on our toes, but I love her to the moon and back.

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Charcoal or gas grill?

What does your perfect running weather look like?

How do you get a toddler to properly brush her teeth?