resolution run mount trashmore
Resolution Run 5k (19:44)

I decided to make a quick trip down to my hometown area in Virginia for the New Year.  I’ve done the New Years Resolution Run before, and even when the Hair of the Dog was at Oceanfront.  A few years ago, I ran my second fastest 5k ever (18:22) while wearing a dress. I haven’t run the race since and I knew I’m not in the same shape.

My dad, husband, and I arrived at the race around 9 am and warmed up. It was unseasonably hot and humid (70 degrees!), as well as very windy. It wasn’t a fast day for racing, but I was happy it wasn’t pouring rain or 5 degrees like last year.

I warmed up around the lake loop of Mount Trashmore.  I didn’t feel good and just felt stiff.  Around the lake, you could easily feel the wind.  There was a tough headwind as well as a tailwind, depending on the direction.

At 9:50, I arrived at the start line and talked with several local friends.  By the time I knew it, we were off. The path is narrow, and I tried not to bump anyone or run through the puddles. By about half a mile, it spread out. I found myself as third place women.  I hit the first mile in 6:15 and my body hurt. I questioned how on earth I would survive two more miles, and we hadn’t even hit the headwind.

Between mile 1 and 2, I made my way into first women.  The others were close behind.  I hit the halfway, and we did a 180. I nearly slipped in a puddle but luckily caught myself.  As we turned around, the headwind came, and it was tough.  The second mile is usually the hardest mile anyway, but with a headwind, it’s 10X worse.  I was passed by a woman and found myself back in second.  I hit mile 2 in 6:30 which was slower than my personal 5k miles.

Around mile 2, we changed directions again, and got a tailwind. Thank goodness.  I just focused on getting to the end. My mind was blank, weaving around people not running the race as well as going the opposite direction. I passed the first place women and told myself I needed to go.  My legs didn’t have any speed, but I kept powering.  At the third mile marker, we hit the headwind again.  Running the last .1 into the wind was one of the hardest race finishes I’ve had in a while. It felt like I was standing still and the finish wasn’t getting any closer.

I crossed in 19:44, and as the first place women.  I was happy with my effort in the weather and not feeling the greatest.  It’s always nice to see friends from back home as well.

resolution run mount trashmore
Thanks Gene for the photo

I’m looking forward to getting back into 5k and shorter fitness shape, something that alluded me during the fall.  For those who asked, Mount Trashmore doesn’t smell, it’s a giant park. You would never guess the mountain is actually made of trash.  If you’re ever in the area, it’s a great park to run. 

Questions for you:

Did you race on New Years?

Would you rather race in torrential rain or 30 mph headwind? 

Bettering Yourself with a New Years Resolution
Bettering Yourself with a New Years Resolution

This isn’t the typical New Year’s Resolution post declaring my New Years Resolutions.  I have my own personal resolutions, goals, and dreams I want to achieve in 2017 but that is a post for another day.

This also isn’t the post to say that I don’t believe in New Years Resolutions.

Long term readers know New Year’s resolutions is a topic I’ve written about several times.  I feel strongly about them and believe it’s important to share, most, if not every year. It’s also a reminder for myself!


So What is this Post about?

Every year on January 1st many people begin a journey to better themselves.  They create New Year’s Resolutions that include anything from fitness goals, life goals, to work goals or chasing dreams.  The majority of the population makes a resolution or goal they are looking to achieve in the new year.

According to studies, only 8% of people keep with their New Year’s resolutions.  If you think about it, that is still 8% more than last year.  That is over 59 million people who better themselves each year. 

While people make many different resolutions, this post is more about running, fitness and gym related goals.

It is about the people that join a gym each year to achieve their goals. 

It is also about the people judging those that are new to a fitness program. 

Each year I see “in shape” or fitness oriented friends complain about their gyms are crowded on January 1st.  I have even seen posts about how dumb having a New Years Resolution is.  There is everything from how silly new people look at the gym or even photos of people working out for the first time.

Please remember if someone has not given you permission to include their photo on your blog or social media, you shouldn’t.  It is never a good idea.  It is never appropriate to take a photo of someone without their permission, especially to make fun of them. 

I’m indifferent towards people who want to begin a new life on January 1st.  I’m happy for them to make positive changes in their life.  If they want to do it January 1st, great!  If they want to do is June 23…also great! I don’t believe you need to wait until January 1st to make life changes and any calendar date will do but if you start your journey then, so be it!

As a member of a local gym, I can relate that sure, having more people can be an inconvenience because there are fewer machines available.  The reality is everyone at the gym is paying for the same membership.  No one is more entitled to a piece of equipment because you have been a gym member for 1 day or 1000. If a person “getting in your way” annoys you, purchase your own home gym equipment.

Every single person from an elite marathoner to a star quarterback started somewhere.  Who knows where someone started, maybe it was with a New Years Resolution?

Judging someone based on their fitness level is ridiculous.  When people first begin something, they are the most self-conscious.

Personally, I can remember the first time I went to the gym.  I was 18 years old and was nervous the rest of the patrons were judging me.  I tried every machine in the fitness center in 10 minutes.  I had no idea what I was doing.

Gradually I found things that worked for me.  The first few months I was hyper aware of everything and everyone.  I had several thoughts including:

Was that person laughing?  Must be at me…

Are those people chatting? They must be chatting about me…

When I go to a new class such as spin or strength training, I still have those thoughts.

So as you ring in the New Years, remember that a New Years resolution might not be your thing, but some people are trying to better themselves.  Sure, some people might fail, but many will succeed.  I encourage you to think about when you were first beginning your fitness journey and not be upset with others for attempting to begin their fitness journey.

Questions for you:

When did you start your fitness journey?

Do you have a New Years Resolution?

2016 Race Bucket List

As 2016 begins, I have started thinking about a race bucket list.  In a world where I stayed injury free and my schedule allowed I would be able to do all of the races I’ve had my eyes on. Who knows, I doubt I’ll get to all of them this year, but there are a few races I’ve had my eyes on!

2016 running race bucket list

The Carlsbad Half Marathon
I’ve heard this race is scenic and beautiful.  I was born in San Diego, and I’ve been dying to go back.  The half looks much flatter than the full marathon, plus San Diego weather beats the East Coast.

The Shamrock half marathon
2016 will (hopefully) be my fifth year running Shamrock.  I love the race series, and J&A does an excellent job putting the race together.  I recommend it to anyone!

It’s a flat, fast and crowd supported course and I would like to better my best Shamrock time of 1:25.14, if not just flat out PR.

At least I look jazzy right?
From last year

Shamrock Legacy: 
Year 1: 1:33.30
Year 2: 1:25.14
Year 3: 1:25.29
Year 4: 1:33:06 (two weeks post marathon and having hamstring/hip issues)

The April Fools half
The April Fools half marathon is where I set my PR 1.5 years ago.  The Atlantic City Race directors do an incredible job.  For being in such a large city, I love how low key the race is.  Plus it’s in a decent time of the year, and the only thing to worry about is how windy it is.

Air force half OR full
It scares me to put potentially another full marathon on the calendar. The fall is a very long time away.  My training has been going well, and if I can remain injury free, I would like to run either the Air Force half or full this year.  I’ve run two marathons and not enjoyed either but maybe the third time is a charm…or maybe not.

But hopefully I'll be more prepared than this if I choose that route.
But hopefully I’ll be more prepared than this if I choose that route.

I won’t run another full marathon until I have not only Pred in my shorter distances but am satisfied with my progress. Marathons are always there, and there is no reason to sign up until I’m ready to run another one.

Those are just a few races that come to mind.  I do plan to fill my schedule with plenty of 5ks, 10ks and halves, but these are a few I’ve had my eyes on!

There will be many races I’ll train and race untapered as a workout, and there are many races I’ll run after tapering and resting.

Questions for you:
Do you have a race bucket list? 
What is your all time favorite race?

A Quick and Enjoyable New Years Trip

Last week I was able to go home and see my parents for New Years. It’s hard to believe I hadn’t been to my Virginia Beach hometown since the RnR Virginia Beach race in September.

I’m close with my family, so it was nice to spend a few days with them.  It was a great few days and we got to relax, enjoy New Years and run the Resolution Run.

My mom made the best Christmas gift.   When I was younger, I used to play with American Girl Dolls and had everything for those dolls. My mom has a small business and sews outfits for them (as well as other custom made items), so she made a LOLZ running outfit complete with runderwear and all.runner american girl doll

When I was much younger, my hair was dirty blonde, so this was me at about age 10.

You can go to her facebook page here if you are interested in her stuff.  She makes everything from American Girl doll clothing to baby blankets and bibs.  She ships too! 

My family, husband and I just spent time relaxing and hanging out.  Plus drinking coffee from one of my favorite coffee shops.

Jojacks Coffee
Is that enough whipped cream?

After running a 5k PR at the resolution run, we came back to enjoy family time.

An adorable photo of my 16 year old cat.
An adorable photo of my 16 year old cat.

One of my favorite desserts that mom makes is her Chocolate Ribbon Pie. It’s a pie made from cool whip, cream cheese as well as chocolate pudding. I’ve never attempted making it because I know I would be disappointed that it doesn’t taste like moms.

Chocolate ribbon pie
Chocolate ribbon pie

After a delicious and fun New Years lunch, we headed back north. I never realized how short the drive from Virginia to New Jersey is when you don’t stop ten thousand times along the way. It’s only 5.5 hours!

Questions for you:
How was your New Years?
Do you like pie?

Resolution Run 5k (18:22)

On New Years Day I ran the Resolution Run in Virginia Beach.  For the last several years the race was called Hair of the Dog.

5k pr

I’ve run it several times (2012, 2013, 2015), but the 2016 race changed race directors with a new name.  Dad and I decided to try to win the formal wear title.  Sadly we did not win.  The women who won was far more dressed up than us and deserved to win!  The dress I chose is actually from Wet Seal.

dad and I

The race started at 10 and honestly I was okay with the later start.  Normally that is a little late for me, but I was exhausted and preferred to catch up on an extra few hours of sleep.  I warmed up two laps around Mount Trashmore which was about 4 miles.  I saw several local friends which was nice.

I quickly changed into my dress and headed to the start.  The race went off at 10:02.  Even though it was an “inaugural race” it didn’t feel like it and everything went smoothly.  Immediately after the race started, I found myself as first women overall.  There was a pack of several males in front of me, including local legend Steve S.  I felt better than anticipated and hit my first mile in 5:47.  After I hit the first mile, the wheels began turning that I could possibly PR.  I was actually more shocked than anything.  My fastest mile in over two years (granted I really haven’t raced a mile all out).

The course was out and back, and I knew the second half would be windier.  I hit the turn around in 9:06.  While making the sharp 180, I lost traction and nearly wiped out.  One male took the turn much better and passed me.  After the turn around I focused on the two men directly in front.  I passed actually passed them and hit the second mile in 5:55.

The third mile consisted of riding the pain train home.  I wanted a PR, so badly.  By the third mile, I knew I was in contention to earn it.  We passed many people going the opposite direction who were cheering.  I zoned out and hit the third mile in 6:04.

Thank you Ally for this photo
Thank you, Ally, for this photo

As I saw the clock strike 18:00 during the last .1, I knew I was going to PR.  I had the last .1 to stare at the clock and relish in my personal victory. A complete course is important after my near miss of a PR with a short course at the Bone Run.  I crossed the line in 18:22 which is a 13-second lifetime PR and 26 second recent PR.

Resolution Run


I still cannot believe I Pred. It honestly feels surreal. I felt good, but the race didn’t seem effortless. I do think I have a faster race ahead sometime in 2016, but it feels awesome to start 2016 off with a solid race.

Questions for you:
Have you ever done a themed race?
How was your New Years Eve and New Years Day?

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