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Mt. Sneffels Half Marathon (1:33.58)

Mt. Sneffels Half Marathon (1:33.58)

Until a few weeks ago, I didn’t think I would be running the Mt. Sneffels Half Marathon. We didn’t travel to Ouray for the race, but the timing worked out so, we thought…why not? The start of the Mt. Sneffels Half Marathon starts at nearly 8000 feet of elevation. It runs from Ouray, Co to Ridgeway, Co. The Mt. Sneffels Marathon runs from Ridgway to Ouray, back to Ridgway. It was one of the most challenging and beautiful half marathons I’ve done. I’ve raced probably 500 times, and this is one of my favorites. The race is named after the beautiful Mt. Sneffels which is located in Ouray.

We stayed with family outside of Montrose and only 40 minutes from Ouray. We picked up our packets the night before, and it wasn’t until the night before I realized the race started at 7:30 am, not 6:30 (the Mt. Sneffels Marathon began at 6:30 am).

We arrived in Ouray around 6:30 and just relaxed. It was nice to take in the scenery. I knew the race would be tough, and my goal was to run smartly. I didn’t want to dry heave my way to the finish line and also didn’t want to do anything to jeopardize the Big Cottonwood Marathon coming up.

The race started promptly at 7:30. I ran the first mile with my husband. The first mile went through the town of Ouray, and I found myself out of breath by mile .5. Oh…this is going to be something I thought. I just relaxed and found myself finding a groove. I hit the first mile in 7:37.

During the next mile, we headed into a small park and then onto the gravel road. Most of the race was on a gravel road through the mountains. I was happy for the soft surface. I began to find my groove and hit the second mile in 7:16.

The next few miles, I ran alone. The mt. sneffels half marathon was a bigger race, but I found myself in a pocket of solitude, and I didn’t mind. I took in the gorgeous mountains around me and just focused on me. I ran a 7: 00-minute 3rd mile, followed by 6:54, and 7:04.

I was happy my miles seemed to have progressed. I wouldn’t have been mad if my overall pace was closer to my first mile, but I felt good I could settle into something faster.

The race course director had warned us that mile 5 would have some rougher terrain as they are fixing part of the road. It was hard to get a footing in the soft gravel mixed with rocks, but I didn’t think it was terrible.

By the time I knew it, it was mile 6. I saw the leaders for the Mt. Sneffels Marathon. It was awesome because the second place overall was female.

I passed a couple of people and kept running. I felt strong, but miles 6-9 can be challenging in any half marathon. You don’t want to get too cocky and surge, only to ride the pain train home. I ran a 6:58, 6:57, and 6:59. I was happy with it.

I crossed mile 10 in 1:11, which is a full minute faster than the Sea Legs Shuffle I ran last month. Completely different circumstances (it was sweltering there) but it was comical. Then at mile 10, I saw about .5 ahead, the most prominent hill I’ve seen in a road race. I thought, there is no way we would climb that…but I was wrong. I saw in the distance a few people climbing. So for about half a mile, I was starting at the hill. We started climbing, and my legs and breathing were on fire. I relaxed and focused. When we got to the top, the women asked Gatorade or water, and I was so out of breath I just pointed. I finished mile 10 in 7:21. I was happy with that effort.

It took me about 1.5 miles to feel comfortable with my breathing again. I ran a 7:18 12th mile. The final mile, I was focused on the end. I kept thinking if they are okay with throwing that mile 10, who knows if there are some crazy hills on mile 13. Luckily there wasn’t, and I just powered to the end.

I crossed the finish of the Mt. Sneffels Half Marathon in 1:33.58 and was second in my age group. It was a surprise because I was not expecting that.

Thoughts:

In all, I’m happy with my efforts at the Mount Sneffels Half Marathon. It was a beautiful race, and I hope to do it again sometime.

Questions for you:

What is the highest elevation you’ve run at? 

What is the most beautiful race you’ve run? 

 

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Asbury Park Sheehan Classic 5k (20:04)

Asbury Park Sheehan Classic 5k (20:04)

The morning of the Sheehan Classic Asbury 5k was chaotic. At 6, I was debating going to the race but decided I would go. I was tired and hadn’t got much sleep, and I’m not someone who functions on little sleep.

Asbury Park is around an hour from me, and I arrived around 7:30. The pickup line was long, so I only had time for about 10 minutes of warmup. Usually, I like to do about 2-3 miles before a 5k, but that wasn’t an option.

When we lined up, I was delighted to find out Governor Murphy was standing right near me. He gave a quick speech, and we were off. Our Governor is a runner, but I never seem to line up at the same races (For those curious, Governor Murphy ran around 28 minutes). I’m still working on trying to get him to come to a south jersey race.

Anyway, the first mile went out fast. The Asbury Park Sheehan Classic (and Belmar 5) races are notoriously competitive and fast. The last time I ran, it was a different course, but I knew the competition wouldn’t be much different.

We went up a small hill, and I hit the first mile in 6:17. I thought I could maybe break 20 minutes. My legs didn’t feel great, but I was moving fast enough; I thought it could be a possibility.

During the second mile; I realized how much my legs don’t have the turnover. My breathing didn’t feel difficult, but my legs just couldn’t move faster. We went up a small hill, and I hit the second mile in 6:26.

During the third mile, I knew it would be close to 20 minutes. I tried to move my legs faster, but they weren’t doing it. When we entered the boardwalk, I saw my watch at 19:20, but I hadn’t quite reached the third mile.

The finish line felt like it wasn’t getting any closer. They told women to stay left and men to stay right. I thought it was unusual for finishing. I crossed in 20:04. I was disappointed that I wasn’t able to break 20 but happy for my effort the day, considering I almost didn’t go.

After crossing, they gave me a number, number 18, which I realized meant 18th female. I didn’t understand why but then they gave the top 50 finishers a cool mug.  In all, I’m happy with my race and performance at the Sheehan Classic Asbury Park 5k. From almost not going to running my fastest 5k in a while, I don’t have any complaints.

Questions for you:

Have you ever gotten a coffee mug at a race?

Have you seen your Governor before? (Let’s say the last Governor wasn’t doing road races LOL)

Big Cottonwood Week 10: Long Weeks in the Heat

Big Cottonwood Week 10: Long Weeks in the Heat

The goal of training last week was keeping my mileage high.  I struggled a lot throughout the week with motivation, but I was able to get quality mileage in. Right now, my goal is to start and finish the Big Cottonwood Marathon healthy.

Training through the summer has humbled me more than any other training cycle. There have been a lot of days I questioned whether I wanted to run Big Cottonwood. I do, but ask me if it’s more enjoyable to run 17 miles in 60 degrees or 85…the answer is easy.

Anyway-

Monday: Easy 30 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: AM: 5X1000 with 90 seconds recovery (total mileage 11)
PM:  5 Easy downhill miles on the treadmill (elevation drop 650)
Thursday: 3000 Meter swim
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: Personal 5k: 20:43 Total mileage: 8
Sunday: 17 mile Long Run

Week 1: Hello Humidity
Week 2: Half Marathons and Workouts 57 mpw
Week 3: Travel and More Travel 53 MPW
Week 4: Training: Beach Runs and Long Runs 52 MPW
Week 5: Training: Workouts and 10ks 46.5 MPW
Week 6: Firecracker 5ks 47 MPW
Week 7: Swim Races and Running for Toilets 56 MPW
Week 8: It’s Very Hot 58 MPW
Week 9: Tetris Runner 56 MPW

Week 10: Long Week and Personal 5ks 54 MPW

Thoughts:

As I mentioned, training the last week has humbled me. I’m in the part of training where I seem to question myself and wonder my “why.” My goal is to start and finish healthy. I’ve got a strong enough base for that.  I don’t have a time goal for the marathon because it’s downhill, and I can’t compare the weather here in NJ to weather in UT. I will be happy to finish healthy and strong.

Workout Wednesday: 5X1000 with 90 seconds jog

I averaged about 6:45 pace for the 1000s which is not where I would like to be. I was happy to accomplish the workout and felt heavy the entire time. When I checked the weather (after the fact), the dew point was 74. I did 5 miles downhill on my treadmill in the afternoon. Since Big Cottonwood is a downhill marathon, I know I need to work more on that. During the Pheonix marathon, the downhill shredded up my quads.

Swimming:

It was my first time getting in the pool in two weeks, so I was happy to get back to it.  Not much else to say,I’m happy to get back into the pool again.

Personal 5k (20:43, 6:51, 6:40, 6:34)

Life got busy last week, and on Saturday, I wasn’t able to make it my 5k. Instead, I decided to run a solo 5k. When I hit the first mile in 6:51, I was somewhat defeated but was able to pick it up and negative split. I’m happy with my effort and making the best of the situation.

Sunday Long Run: 17 miles averaging 8:14

I decided to take a field trip into Philadelphia (to be fair, it’s 10 minutes away). I like running around the Schykill because it’s 8.4 miles around and I know I have bathrooms, water, etc. I also do better with “loop” or “out and back” runs. Despite the heat, I was able to negative split and my last 2 miles were my fastest (7:46,7:47).

In all, I’m happy with the week. I did what I wanted despite hiccups.

Posts from the Week:

July Training

Sea Legs Shuffle 10 Miler (1:13.03)

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. This week is all about recovery+a giveaway. 

Questions for you:

How was your week of training?

When is your favorite time to train? 

June Training: Building Fitness

June Training: Building Fitness

Last month was all about getting my mileage up for marathon training. t didn’t come easy either. Together with the heat, I’ve been much more tired. I haven’t run this “high” of mileage in a while. I am enjoying the process and training. Somedays are harder than others but I’m excited to have a goal to work towards.

June was a decent month of training and my best race was the first weekend of the month at the Scott Coffee 8k or the She Power Half Marathon.

The rest of the month wasn’t bad, but there was minimal excitement.

Total Miles: About 220
Longest Run: 16.8 miles
Shortest Run: 2 miles
Range of Paces: 6:20-11:12-untimed
Workouts: 4
Rest Days: 3 complete (several days I only swam)
Swimming: 7X (3000 meters each)

Races:
Scott Coffee 8k (33:03)
She Power Half (1:29.27)
Red Bank Classic 5k Recap
Bungalow Beach 5 Miler (34:14)
Pineland Striders 10k

Thoughts:

As I up my mileage, I’m not surprised I’m more tired and my racing times are getting slower.  I know my body is adjusting to multiple things including the increase of mileage as well as heat. I’ve run more personal worsts then bests in the last year but that’s okay.

I’m happy with how my running is going for where I’m at right now. I’ve gotten better about comparing myself to previous fitness levels. I’m just plugging along in the heat.

There wasn’t anything too exciting this month, although winning the Indianapolis Half was fun.

Next Month:

Next month is starting the nitty gritty of marathon training. The plan is to get a 20 miler in the last week of July which scares me.  I’ve run 20 miles before but never in the middle of the summer.

Blog Posts From the Month: 

Running Podcasts to Keep you Entertained

Does Collagen Help Post Workout Recovery?

Shoe Reviews:

Hoka Carbon X Shoe Review

Topo Fli-Lyte 3 Shoe Review

Mizuno Waveknit R2 Shoe Review

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. This week I talked about dealing with heat and humidity. PLUS AN ENTIRE OUTFIT GIVEAWAY FROM RUNNERS LOVE YOGA. 

In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. There are often giveaways as well as discount codes.

Questions for you:

How was your month of training?

What was your best run? 

 

 

 

Running Podcasts to Keep you Entertained

Running Podcasts to Keep you Entertained

Over 16 months ago, I blogged about running podcasts that keep me entertained.  Since then, some have come and gone. The podcast world has only gotten bigger since early 2018.  These days you can find topics ranging from weight loss to marathon running to interviewing professional runners, whatever your interest.

I’m by no means an expert (and you will not see a LOLZ Podcasts anytime soon) but here is an updated list of podcasts I’ve been listening to.  I’ve listened to at least an episode of each podcast, but not every single episode of everyone. I prefer light hearted podcasts. Most of these podcasts are hosted by runners for runners.

For me, I listen to podcasts when I’m working or even cleaning. I struggle with listening when I’m running because I can’t focus and run. Although some of my long runs that are a couple of hours long I’ve listened to podcasts.

I use wireless Aftershokz headphones which I wrote a review about here. 

Running Podcasts to Keep You Entertained

Here is a bigger list of more Running Podcasts:

1609 Podcast (focuses on all things running from training tips to endurance running)
Ali on the Run (weekly podcast, funny, interviews distance runners of all skills)
Another Mother Runner Podcast (Hosted by Sarah Bowen Shea: Everything from nutrition to race day training)
BibRave (race related and everything running related)
Citius Mag Podcast (Interviews elite and professional athletes)
C Tolle Run (Informative and interviews many elite runners, Carrie was an Olympian herself)
Diz Runs Radio (Interviews everyone from the first runner to the last, the trail runner to the marathoner.)
Endurance Planet (performance and health-based running advice)
For the Long Run Pod (Informative with guests not on other shows)
I’ll Have Another (funny, informative, and interviews runners of all levels)
Keeping up with Kelsey Cansler (informative and fitness related)
Man Bun Run (informative, interviewing many ultra runners)
Marathon Training Academy (everything distance runner and marathon-related)
Marathon Talk (Based out of the UK, everything running related)
Morning Shakeout (interviews with well-known runners and people of the sport)
No Meat Athlete Radio (200+ episodes of plant-based information and interviews)
Ordinary Marathon (Running based podcast for runners and interviews a bit of everything)
Strength Running (Running and Training Tips. Nothing is time sensitive so you can listen in whatever order)
Rambling Runner (interviews distance runners of all abilities and levels)
Rich Roll Podcast (a plant-based podcast about running and endurance athletes)
Road to Olympic Trials (Follows 8 athletes on their quest to the 2020 Olympic Trials)
Running for Real by Tina Muir (informative and about everything for runners including nutrition, training tips, and well being)
Running Rogue(training tips and information on the current running world)
Trail Runner Nation(All things trail running and endurance running)
The Extra Mile Podcast (Follows runners training for anything from a 5k-full marathon).
Ultra Runner Pod (all things ultra running and endurance running!)

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. This weeks newsletter is my favorite and all about coaching and if it’s right for you!

Questions for you:

Do you have a favorite podcast? What is it?

What’s your favorite podcast episode? 

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