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Training: Easy Runs and Windy 10ks

Training: Easy Runs and Windy 10ks

Last week was a blur.  I actually had a hard time remembering what I even ran last week!  Some weeks I’m on top of writing a training log, other weeks I’m not.  Thank goodness for looking back at Instagram I guess.

me running

Monday: 60 minutes easy
Tuesday: 8-mile hike at Hartshorne Park
Wednesday: 60 minutes easy
Thursday: Rest
Friday: 60 minutes easy
Saturday: Cape May 10k (41:07)
Sunday: 13 mile easy run

All of my easy runs were just that, easy.  To be honest, I felt good in the beginning of the week and then by Friday I felt like Broad Street hit me!  There wasn’t enough time to do any workouts between Broad Street and the Cape May 10k, so I didn’t.

Cape May 10k: 41:07

I’ll have a full recap of the race, but it wasn’t my day.  My legs were tired, it was windy, and to add to my list of issues, I accidentally ran in old trainers.  Around mile 5, my feet started burning.  Not in a broken bone way, but in a “something is weird way”.  After the race, I realized I never changed into my racing shoes and was wearing old trainers.  These were trainers I retired from running altogether but decided they could still be ok for walking around.  No wonder my feet hurt, I was basically running a 10k on concrete.

I ran the April Fools half marathon 10k split as well as Broad Street in low 38, so racing a 10k in 41 isn’t a great time for me right now.  A 41 minute 10k is fantastic for many people, but it’s not awesome for me right now. Not a big deal, and I still had a lot of fun down the shore.  Do bad races stink? Of course, we all do but I’m already over it.

On Sunday, I had planned to run about 10 but literally ran into a few friends during my run.  I ended up running about 5 miles with them, which caused me to be out longer than I anticipated.  I’m glad I decided to run with my friends, and I can’t remember the last time I ran 13 miles straight through at a relaxed, comfortable pace.  It was nice to change it up.

Thoughts from the Week:

In all, I had a good week. The 10k didn’t go as I had hoped (My “C” goal was to break 40), but running is funny like that.  You’ll never feel good at every race.  If you do, you are probably going to test positive for something…

My plan for the remainder of May is just to have fun.  I have a lot going on the next few weeks, and I’ll still run, but I’m not going crazy.  My races might slower than the Spring, but it’s okay.

Posts from the Week:

Broad Street 10 Miler (1:02.51)

Exploring Cattus Island Park in Toms River

Recovering with Collagen Protein

Questions for you:

Do you have any 10k wisdom?

How was your week of training?

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JJ’s Diner (Pleasantville

JJ’s Diner (Pleasantville

A few weeks ago, after the April Fools half marathon, I stopped at JJ’s diner on the way home.  When I arrived around lunchtime on a Sunday, it was crowded.  In fact, it’s one of the few diners I’ve had to wait for a table.  No big deal!

Atmosphere: B
JJ’s Diner is small but cute. The outside looks like a small trailer.  I like the old yellow sign that says JJ’s too.  It is one room, with several tables, booths, and a full-length bar.  It’s very compact.

JJ's Diner pleasentville nj 

Coffee: B
The coffee was brewed hot, but I could have used more.  It was the local Lacas brand.  I’ve actually been to several diners that have Lacas brew lately.  It was hot and after a cold, wet, rainy race, exactly what I needed.  I just wish I had more.

JJ's Diner pleasentville nj

Food: A
JJ’s Diner has many different options.  The diner itself is only open until 3 pm, so they don’t have big entrees, but they have all sorts of breakfast and lunch specials. I decided to order the chicken and waffles.JJ's Diner pleasentville nj

As I’ve mentioned a few times, since living in Alabama last year, I’ve wanted to find good chicken and waffles.  At JJ’s, the chicken and waffles were one of the best portions I’ve had.  The waffle itself was crisp, but the chicken portion was massive.  It was also topped with a homemade sauce which made for a delicious topping.  In fact, it didn’t need any additional syrup.  So far, it’s the best chicken and waffles I’ve found in the North. 

Service: A
The waitress was friendly and kind. Even being busy, she came to check on us several times.  The food also came out quickly. I think we waited long for a table than the food!

Cost: $
For the chicken and waffle, plus coffee the cost as $11.

Overall Thoughts/Would I Come Back?
I enjoyed JJ’s Diner, and it’s definitely a diner I would stop at again if I went down the shore.

Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Food: A
Service: A
Cost:$8-12
Overall: A 

This is Diner Review 183. You can see more diner reviews here.

Questions for you:
Have you had chicken and waffles?
What is your favorite post workout meal?

Broad Street 10 Miler (1:02.51)

Broad Street 10 Miler (1:02.51)

This year, Broad Street wasn’t about my running my fastest.  After PRing in the half marathon this February, I haven’t trained as consistently over the past few months.  Life has gotten away from me, and small things have popped up here and there.  I am still in shape, but am I in PRing shape?  No.  That’s okay, and you can’t be in peak performance all of the time.

Anyway, this year Broad Street was about my finishing happy.  I DNSed last year because I was burned out. I could have run, but I would have been miserable. I knew I had made the right decision when I spectated the end and had no sadness at all.

This year I was determined to finish healthy, happy, and with a smile.

I did all of that and even had a consistent and solid race.

Each year, both my dad and my father in law come up for Broad Street.  Both are avid runners, and my dad has been running far longer than I have.  Everything up to race day went without a hitch.  My dad got my bib at the Convention center.  We got to the stadiums around 6 and made it to the start line around 7.

broad street 10 miler

I was seeded bib F143.  I tried to use the “seeded bathrooms”, but the volunteer told me my bib was too high (I.E., I was too slow).  There wasn’t really a point for me to be seeded I guess. I started exactly where I did when I ran every other year in the red coral.

I didn’t have time to wait again to use the bathroom, and when you are surrounded by 40,000 other people, there isn’t anywhere to go.  I rarely start any race having to use the bathroom, but I didn’t have a choice. I respect that there were faster athletes, but it didn’t make it easier to start a race needing to use the bathroom.

The race started right at 8 am, and we were off.  I told myself 1,000 times to run my race.  Time didn’t matter, but finishing happy and strong did.  I wasn’t sure what I was capable of.  I thought faster than the 1:05s I ran a few years ago but slower than my PR of 1:01.59.

My plan was just run my own race. I saw many people I knew storm by me, but I was in my own world.  The first mile of Broad Street always gets out fast anyway.  I ran a 6:15 and I thought, I think that’s half marathon PR pace but I would not be able to sustain that.

I saw a couple of friends during the second mile that zoomed by me. I thought, dang I’ve run fast in races with them before, and they are just floating by.  No big deal though. The next few miles went without much excitement.  I ran a 6:15, 6:16, 6:15.

By the time I knew it, we were doing the one turn in the entire race, around City Hall.  That is when I saw a few people in front, I knew I was going to reel in.  The humidity had started to get to me. It was forecasted to rain during Broad Street but never did.  The weather had spiked over the week from 40 to 60 and humid.  I wasn’t as prepared for it.  It was by no means bad weather, but was it wasn’t whether we were accustomed too!

Around city hall, I saw my good friend and coworker (thanks TJ) which motivated me.  The small turn in the race makes mile 5 fly by.  I think it breaks up the course well and by the time you know it, you’re over halfway done.  I ran mile 5 in 6:19.

During the next few miles, I focused on reeling people in.  It gave me the motivation to keep plugging along. I hit mile 6 in 6:10 and mile 7 in 6:11. I didn’t purposely run faster, I just did.

The heat and humidity hit me during the next few miles.  I was still enjoying myself, high fiving kids, etc. but I did not feel “on top of the world”.  My stomach was in knots because of the heat.  I always take Gatorade/electrolyte aid on course for anything more than a 10k.  I had been taking the on-course aid.

The last three miles, I traded back and forth with local runner Bryan.  I recognized him from other races, and we later chatted afterward. Around mile 7, I told myself, my goal was to run under 63.  Not a race PR but still a strong race for me.  I just needed to hold on.

broad street 10 miler

The last 3 miles were a bit of a blur.  I ran as fast as my legs would take me.  My legs never felt great, or loose during the race but they didn’t feel awful either.  Finally, we hit the Navy Yard at 9.75, and I began smiling.  I knew I was almost home and almost done.

broad street 10 miler

I powered to the finish and actually passed someone!  (In case you don’t know, I have the world’s worst kick).  I crossed in 1:02.51 and 35th female overall.  Apparently, I was beaming after the race and don’t even remember this.

broad street 10 miler

Thoughts:

I’m happy with how Broad Street went. It wasn’t my fastest or my slowest, but I was able to run a strong and consistent race.  I smiled the entire way.  It was nice to see so many friends along the course as well as after.  Even in a 40,000 person race you always see someone! Both my father and father in law had great races as well.

Questions for you:

What is the biggest race you’ve run?

Have you ever raced a 10 miler?

Exploring Cattus Island Park in Toms River

Exploring Cattus Island Park in Toms River

Last week, I took a drive out to Cattus Island Park in Toms River.  Originally, I wanted to enjoy the shore while still doing something active.  While laying on the beach is fun for some, it isn’t all that fun to me. I get bored after a few minutes. One of the parks I’ve wanted to get too is Cattus Island in Toms River, so it worked out.

Cattus is an easy trail suitable for a leisurely walk, small kids, or pets.  You hike through the Pinelands, on a boardwalk, and along the beach.  There is even a massive Osprey nest! The hike itself is one of the easiest I’ve done, with a mix of sand, boardwalk, dirt, and pine needles.  If you combine all of the trails, it ends up being about 6.9 miles.

One thing I appreciated about Cattus Island Park was the map available at the front.  Obviously, everything is available online beforehand, but it’s nice to have a paper copy out.

I did hike most of the trails, but it got to be a bit windy along the shore, and I was getting cold.  Plus, I also wanted to beat the traffic on route 70.

Starting along the boardwalk

Cattus Island Park toms river
You can see the Osprey nest in the background.

Cattus Island Park toms river

Marsh and Wetlands

Cattus Island Park toms river

Then all of a sudden the trail went through the pines.

Cattus Island Park toms river

And along a small creek.

Cattus Island Park toms river

Then all of a sudden I was along the shore.

Cattus Island Park toms river

Cattus Island Park toms river

This is when things got windy.  It got cold quickly.  It’s hard to believe because the rest of the week has been so warm!

Windy day down the shore.

A post shared by Hollie (@fueledbylolz) on

Cattus Island Park toms river

Cattus Island Park toms river

In all, I had an excellent time hiking, and I’m glad I went out there.  Cattus Island Park is a beautiful, leisurely park and I highly suggest it.

Spring 2018 Hikes I’ve Done:

Cattus Island Park (Toms River)
Turkey Swamp Park (Freehold)

You can see all hikes here.

This Spring and Summer, I want to get to as many NJ parks as possible.  Now that the weather is nice, it’s been great to be outdoors!

Questions for you:
What was the last park you’ve been too?
Do you have any plans this spring and summer?

Recovering with Collagen Protein

Recovering with Collagen Protein

In February, I wrote a post about Vital Proteins and my experience with them.  At the time, I was not an ambassador.  Vital Proteins sent me samples to try, and I liked them so much I continued to buy them.

As I mentioned on Instagram on Friday, I was invited to become a Vital Proteins Ambassador.  I’ve already been using Vital Proteins for months now, and I find I genuinely recover faster and feel better than if I don’t.  Usually, I have one serving twice a day.  Before becoming an ambassador, I purchased the dark chocolate and blackberry peptides which is my current favorite!

As part of my partnership with Vital Proteins, I’ll write a couple of posts per month about different benefits or recipes I’m using. I’m not being paid to do so, but I do receive products.  Thinking out loud, since I use the products already, it’s a good fit for me.

So What is Collagen? 

Collagen is a protein found in the connective tissue in the body. Since it’s a structure protein, it’s an essential component of muscles, bones, tendons, and ligaments.  It was best explained to me as the glue that holds everything together.  Our bodies already produce collagen from amino acids, but it is beneficial to supplement.

What Makes Collagen Peptides Different?

Vital Protein Collagen Peptides have the added benefit of providing 18 g of collagen protein.  I’ve personally found my body recovers much better when I have protein after a run or workout.

How Can Collagen Help Running Performance? 

Since this is a “running focused” blog, the first post will focus on running and working out. New research shows collagen can help decrease joint pain that is often associated with high impact exercise.

Long-term strenuous exercise like running leads to collagen degradation in the body. We naturally lose collagen as we age but running and other high impact sports can quicken this.  It’s not an overnight occurrence and the degradation of collagen is a slow process.  It usually takes years.  Like a stress fracture, it takes time and isn’t an issue that just ‘pops up”.  That is why anyone running for years may have the same collagen issues.

Collagens Promotes a Healthy Response to Natural Inflammation:

Running stresses your body, which causes inflammation. Taking Collagen or any protein directly after a workout helps to promote inflammation and speed up the repair of connective tissues that are damaged.  I personally do feel and recover better on days I do have collagen within 30 minutes of working out.

Promoting Joint Health:

In the running world, it’s not uncommon to hear runners and athletes talk about “bone on bone.”  This means they’ve lost the cartilage in their knees.  Losing all of the cartilage in your knees is from years of wear and tear on your body and joints.

How does Collagen Help Joints?
  • Increases lubrication around joints to make more mobile
  • Helps to increase bone density (A BIG ONE FOR RUNNERS!)
  • Reduces inflammation around joints and improves healing of connective tissues

Throughout the upcoming months, I’ll be sharing more about my experience with collagen I’ve personally had including benefits in my skin, nails, and hair.  I’ll also share recipes I have been using and my favorite products.  If you have questions feel free to ask!  I am so excited to be an ambassador for Vital Proteins because I stand behind each of their products and company. 

Questions for you:

Do you take any supplements?

Have you ever tried a collagen supplement?

Training Recap: Warm Weather and 10 Milers

Training Recap: Warm Weather and 10 Milers

Last weeks of training went well.  My goal was to run Broad Street, something I didn’t do last year.  I knew I wasn’t in the same shape as when I PRed at the Phoenix half and honestly that is okay.

Monday: 6-mile hike at Cattus Island Park
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes run
Wednesday: 12X400s 400 recovery average 87 seconds
Thursday: Easy 60 minutes run
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Easy 60 minutes
Sunday: Broad Street 10 miler 1:02.51

 

Wednesday: 12x400s average 87 seconds

My workout went well.  I do all of my workouts on the road right now because of the limited Availablity of local tracks.  I ran 400 and jogged 400.  I felt good during the entire workout and was pleasantly surprised with how fast I was able to run.

Broad Street 10 miler (1:02.51)

I’ve run faster Broad Streets and I’ve run slower.  I kept a very even pace the entire time.  All of my miles were between 6:10-6:19.  I smiled, I side fived kids, and truly enjoyed myself.  That was not something I could do last year and I’m proud of how I ran the race.  I’ll have a full recap later in the week.  Both my dad and father in law had great races as well and it’s been great having my entire family here.

Other then that, it was a good week.  While I’m not in the same shape as I was when I ran the Phoenix half marathon, I am in good shape.  I’m looking forward to just running shorter races from 5ks to 10 miles until the fall.

Posts of the Week:

April Training

Broad Street Last Minute Tips (I guess too late now LOL?)

Making Strides 5k (19:08)

Questions for you:

Have you ever run a 10-mile race?

What is your ideal running temperature?

The Point Diner (Fairview)

The Point Diner (Fairview)

Recently I went to the Point Diner in Fairview, NJ.  I was in the area, and it looked like a great diner. Not to be confused with the Point 40 Diner in Monroeville.

the point diner fairview nj

Atmosphere: B
When I arrived around noon, it wasn’t crowded, in fact, there were only a few other parties in the restaurant.  The hostess put me in the corner which was okay, but I felt as though it was kind of weird and isolating.

The Point Diner has an outdoor patio which makes it unique.  Inside there is a full-length bar, small dessert case, and plenty of booths and tables.

Coffee: B
The coffee was good, but I could have used more.  Being in the corner, I think the waitress forgot about my table often.  I liked the coffee, and it was hot and fresh.

the point diner fairview nj

Food: B
The Point Diner has everything you want or need in a diner.  They have a lot more breakfast specials that many diners including more omelets, eggs, and french toast.  The Nutella french toast sounded intriguing.  They also have plenty of lunch and dinner options too.

the point diner fairview nj

I decided to order the steak benedict which was good.  Often times diner steak is rubbery, but the steak at the Point Diner was good.  The meal came with hash browns which tasted like regular hashbrowns.

Dessert: A
I decided to get a split cookie to go.  The cookie was good. I ate it about halfway through my hike at the Palisades.  If the cookie tasted lousy midway through a hike, you know it was terrible to start with.

the point diner fairview nj

Service: B
While the waitress was friendly, I felt as though sitting in the back made her overlook our table frequently.  I could have used more drink refills.  I was surprised about the length of time it took for food to come with how quiet the restaurant was too.

Price: $
For my breakfast, coffee, and cookie the cost was $13.

Overall Thoughts/Summary:
I liked the Point Diner and would go back.  I thought I was a good diner and in the top half of diners I’ve been too.

Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Food: A
Dessert: A
Service: B
Cost: $10-23
Overall: B

Questions for you:
Where is the best restaurant steak you’ve had?

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