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Marathoning | Not for Me

Marathoning | Not for Me

I don’t love the marathon distance.

I wrote this post almost a week before running the New York City Marathon. About 2 weeks beforehand, I realized I just didn’t “love” marathoning. Before New York in 2018, I thought maybe I didn’t like marathons because I hadn’t run enough. Maybe I just needed practice. So in 2018, I decided to run another. I did well and ran a PR of 3:07.

The truth is, marathons never swept me off my feet. I never felt like I “needed” to run marathons to be a runner. New York has been 3 out of 4 of my marathons. I’ve enjoyed those steps crossing bridges, through Midtown, First Avenue, and all of it. I liked the race, but I don’t enjoy the training, the exhaustion, and 20 miles run.  I don’t “love the grind” of runs more than 15 miles.

I like to run. I don’t need anyone to motivate me to run, but I don’t like to run 20 miles. I don’t go to bed thinking about a long run the next morning. I go to bed, get up, run, and move on with my day. I like the rush of finishing a half marathon or 5k, knowing that I may or may not puke at the end. I don’t quite get that rush from marathons. I finish the marathon, half delusional from exhaustion, and think about what happened.

A few years ago, I decided after my second marathon (Pheonix); I was done with marathons for a while. It was before “Instagram running” was a big thing and not everyone was training for a sub-3-hour marathon or even 2:45.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for anyone going after those goals, but it’s not for me. Neither has ever been a bucket list or goal of mine.

After Phoenix, it took me about 3 years to want to run another marathon. Maybe it will take me three more years, maybe 5, maybe 20, I don’t know. I’m not into it and that’s okay.

Anyone who I’ve talked to in 2019 (about running), knows it has not been my year of running. I’m running 1:30+ half marathons when my PR is 1:22.  sub 20 minute 5ks are working hard, when my goal used to be breaking 18 mins.

It hasn’t been because I don’t work hard, but things haven’t clicked. I’ve had outside stress and I attempted to start marathon training when I should have stuck to shorter stuff and gained speed back.

My goal from Big Cottonwood Marathon was to start and finish the marathon healthy. That didn’t happen. When the opportunity presented itself to run New York City for the third time, I jumped on it. I was beyond grateful from New Balance.

My goal from Big Cottonwood transferred to New York: Start and Finish healthy. It was never to “secretly PR” or to run X time. I simply wanted to finish a training cycle healthy. I was able to do that. The 1:36 a few weeks ago at the Atlantic City half or the 3:27 at NYCM is slower than I’ve run in a long time, I was beyond happy to finish my slowest marathon yet.

After some rest and recovery, my goal is to regain speed something I’ve lost since early 2018. I want to run fast. Gone are the days that a sub 20 minute 5k seems “easy” to me and it’s something I need to work hard to get back too.

I’m ready to start training for shorter things and gain speed back. I am ready for the rush of “feeling fast” and the feeling of a 5k. There aren’t a lot of winter fast 5ks so I’m hoping to get quality mileage, a base, and speed workouts and find some shorter races this spring.

I’m looking forward to shorter distances and a challenge that excites me. Running another marathon to finish or even PR, doesn’t.

Questions for you:

What’s your favorite racing distance?

Are you currently training for anything? 

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New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

The New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review:

The New Balance 1400 is a consistent and established racing flat for many runners. There is enough cushion to race a marathon, but it’s also light enough to race a hard mile. In my quest to find a marathon racing shoe for the New York City Marathon, I tried the New Balance 1400v6. Ultimately, I think the New Balance Fuelcell Rebel will be my marathon choice, but I like the ride of the NB 1400 too.

New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

New Balance 1400v6 Quick Facts:

Heel to Toe Drop: 10 mm

Weight: 7.2 oz

New Balance 1400v6 Fit:

For the most part, the updates of the New Balance 1400 updates are in the upper and the fit. Like many brands and shoes, the New Balance 1400v6 now has an engineered mesh upper with no seams. The breathable mesh package helps to fit more feet (especially if your forefront is wider), but also, the New Balance 1400v6 is about an ounce lighter and a more airy feel.

New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

A brand new update to the upper of the New Balance 1400v6 is also the internal “FantomFit support cage.”  What is that? The FantomFit support cage is designed to hold the foot securely in place. I did run in the previous version of the New Balance 1400, and I find the NB 1400v6 to hug my feet more and slip less.

Lastly, New Balance did update the tongue of the NB 1400.  A common complaint to the New Balance 1400 series is the paper-thin tongue. Many people struggled with it causing irritation or cutting the top of the foot. It’s been updated to lay flat on the foot.

New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

New Balance 1400v6 Ride:

The NB 1400v6 has minimal changes with the ride in the 6th version. The New Balance 1400v6 continues to the New Balance foam “revlite.” What is a Revlite midsole? The Revlite midsole is a durable, lightweight foam and smooth. Since New Balance is such a large company, they have many different foams, including “fresh foam,” “Revlite,” and “Fuelcell.” I appreciate how firm the New Balance 1400v6 is and that it responds well when racing hard.

Like the previous versions of the New Balance 1400, there is a plastic shank from the midfoot to the forefoot. The shank acts as a spring, which helps for a smooth transition from midfoot to the forefront.

New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

One thing that is unique about the NB 1400 series is the stack height. The stack height of the New Balance 1400v6 is 25 mm in the heel and 15 mm in the forefront. The 10mm drop is almost unheard of in a racing flat. (Most racing lats are anywhere between 0-4 mm). It seems to work well, especially if you are using more traditional running shoes for the bulk of your training.

One thing I can appreciate with the New Balance 1400 v6, is the amount of blown rubber and traction in the NB 1400. It consistently performs well in the rain. If New York is rainy, the New Balance 1400 will most likely be my shoe of choice. There is plenty of traction and I won’t worry about sliding down the course on race day.

New Balance 1400v6 Shoe Review

New Balance 1400v6 Conclusion:

The New Balance 1400 is a classic shoe and it’s an excellent option for 5ks to marathons. The NB 1400 is a staple racing flat that I believe will be around in the running industry for a long time. There aren’t many speed workouts this shoe can’t handle. For me, it’s the best choice in a rainy race or marathon.

Current Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs: Hoka Bondi 6,  Brooks Ghost 12

Speed Work: New Balance FuelCell RebelReebok Float Ride Run fast ProHoka RinconNike Pegasus Turbo 2

Long Runs: New Balance FuelCell RebelMizuno R2Hoka Cavu 2

Races: New Balance Fuelcell 5280Nike Next%,  Reebok Run fast Pro, 

You Can See All Current Shoe Reviews Here.

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.

Questions for you:

Have you run in the New Balance 1400v6?

What is your go-to race day shoe? 

Nike Zoom Fly 3 Shoe Review

Nike Zoom Fly 3 Shoe Review

The Nike Zoom Fly has been a staple since the Nike Fast Shoes like the Vaporfly and Nike Zoom Pegasus Turbo came out. Of the three Nike Shoes, the Nike Zoom Fly 3 is the “most affordable.” After enjoying the original Nike Zoom Fly, I wasn’t sure if I would ever get around to doing a Nike Zoom Fly 3 Review.

I choose to get the “Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise” which is a different color of the Nike Zoom Fly 3.

I skipped running in the second generation of the Nike Zoom Fly but was in the minority of people who liked and appreciated the original Zoom Fly.

Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise Shoe Review

The Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise Fit:

The most significant change to the Nike Zoom Fly comes in the upper. If you’ve run in previous versions of the Nike Zoom Fly, you’ll notice the new VaporWeave Upper (like the Nike Pegasus Turbo 2)

What is Vaporweave?

VaporWeave is the engineered mesh upper material which is made of plastics, specifically TPU and TPE. (TPE is also used in Yoga mats…neat!) Compared to the previous Flyknit upper material, Vaporweave is much more breathable, lightweight, and doesn’t absorb as much rain or moisture. If you run in a torrential downpour, your feet are less likely to be soggy. The lacing system makes you feel secure in place, and your feet aren’t sliding around.

Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise Shoe Review

The Nike Fly 3 Rise Ride:

The original Nike Zoom Fly was a staple workout shoe for me in 2017 and a good portion of 2018. I did a lot of workouts in the Zoom Fly.

The midsole of the Nike Zoom Fly 3 has gone through a few changes with the update. Nike has added more React foam with a higher stack height. What do more React Foam and higher stack height mean?  The Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise is now slightly heavier but also has a low heel to toe drop (from 10 mm to 8 mm).

Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise Shoe Review

The difference between the Nike Pegasus Turbo 2 and the Zoom Fly 3 is the lack of carbon plate in the Pegasus Turbo. The full-length Carbon Fiber plate is still there in the Zoom Fly 3 Rise. Together with the Nike React foam, the Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise feels faster and more responsive. My favorite addition to the Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise is the rubber traction. You are far less likely to slide around than previous versions.

Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise Shoe Review

It’s a great workout shoe, racing shoe, or even a full marathon racing shoe. I could see myself doing any of the three. I’ve run a few hard runs in the Zoom Fly 3 Rise and enjoyed the ride.

Nike Fly 3 Rise Conclusions:

Of the Nike Vaporfly (Next%), Nike Pegasus Turbo 2, and the Nike Zoom Fly 3, the Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise is the cheapest and most durable. It’s designed to either race or train hard. If you are looking for a faster workout shoe, the Nike Zoom Fly 3 Rise is a great option. From the durability to the fit, it is definitely an improvement over the previous versions.

Current Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs: Hoka Bondi 6,  Brooks Ghost 12

Speed Work: New Balance FuelCell RebelReebok Float Ride Run fast ProHoka Rincon, Nike Pegasus Turbo 2

Long Runs: New Balance FuelCell RebelMizuno R2Hoka Cavu 2

Races:  Reebok Run fast Pro

You Can See All Current Shoe Reviews Here.

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. 

Questions for you:

What is your go-to fast shoe?

What is your favorite running shoe? 

 

February Running Recap

February Running Recap

It feels like January was 11 months long, and February was 11 minutes. I’m not complaining because I won’t say it was my favorite month. Has February even ever been close to my favorite? No. Like the month, this recap will be short because there isn’t a heck of a lot to say!

Luckily, compared to many winters we’ve had recently, it wasn’t all that hard to get outside. It’s been much milder.

Miles Run: Around 200

Rest Days: 4

Workouts: 8 Including Lonely 5ks

Races: Cupids Chase 5k (20:32)

Thoughts:

I wanted and hoped to race more than I did. I signed up for another race but things popped up the night before, and I couldn’t go. I bummed but made the best of it. I’ve told myself if I can’t find a race I’ll run a hard 5k alone. I’ve been doing well sticking to that.  The 5k I actually did race, was my slowest but we also ran against a headwind, and I pretty much ran that race alone as well.

Cupids chase 5k race moorestown

I’m slowly coming to terms that this season, while working hard, might not be a “fast” season for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for anyone running a 20 minute 5k, but I want to get back to 18:XX. My body is just not there right now.

me running

February was at least much more consistent than January. In January, I couldn’t get any rhyme in training and often found myself taking at least two if not more days off from running due to things popping up. The goal for March is to be as consistent with running. I am already signed up for a few races including Shamrock Half. At this point, something under 1:30 and close to Carlsbad seems like a dream, but that is the goal.

Posts from the Month:

Hiking:

Hiking Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve (California)
Hiking Anderson Lake County Park
Hiking Los Robles Trail and Open Space
Hiking Marin Headlands (San Francisco)

Product Reviews:

Coros Apex GPS Watch Review
New Balance 1080v9 Shoe Review

Running:

Steps to Increase Mileage and Stay Healthy
How to Run with your Significant Other
Tools to Recover

Finally, as most people know by now I created a newsletter with all things running related including shoe and industry trends. It’s free and if you want to subscribe you can do so here.

Questions for you:

How was your February training?

What are your goals for March? 

How to Beat Race Day Nerves

How to Beat Race Day Nerves

It’s not a secret that I like to race a lot.  In fact, I’ve written posts about how to “race well,” or even “racing my way to fitness.”  It works well for me as I typically train very easy throughout the week.

Since I race so frequently, racing doesn’t make me as nervous anymore.  I get more nervous before a workout than I do before a race.  I suppose that has come with both time and just racing a lot.

A few weeks ago, a reader asked me how I beat race nerves as well as race anxiety and if I would be open to writing a post about it. Big races and goal races can cause more pre-race anxiety and nerves than tune-up races. I’ve learned that training your mind and mental game is just as important as following your mileage training plan.

The short answer is race until you’re not as nervous anymore. 

I’m sure you wanted the long answer, though.

Here are a few strategies I use to Beat Race Day Nerves:

Before the Race:

Visualize:

This is more something to do before the actual race.  The day leading up to the race (if I plan too), I like to visualize goals and success.  It’s actually something I picked up in collegiate swimming. Running is 90% mental, and if you believe you’ll do well, you’ve already won most of the battle. You have to be ready to race.

Look Back at Your Training Logs:

The night before a race, look at those workouts you didn’t think you would crush, but you did.  This is motivational for bigger races when you are tapering, or bored.  There is always “that run” during a training cycle that you didn’t think you’d make it through, but you did.  Remember that one, versus the ones that you didn’t feel great during.

At the Race:

Stay Distracted:

To minimize prerace jitters, stay distracted. For some people that is listening to music, for others (like me), that is talking nonstop until the race starts.  If we meet at a race, know that I am 100% cool with chatting up until the gun goes off.  Stay distracted and relaxed on race morning. It helps to alleviate pre-race anxiety and pre-race jitters.

Get Away from the Start Line:

During shorter races such as a 5k, this is easy because I need to warm up.  I don’t warm up before half marathons (my top 5 half marathons have had zero warmup…maybe some walking).  Getting away from the start line allows you to stay relaxed and not think about running the race as much.

Remember This:

Races are typically the morning of your day.  It’s not more than a few hours of your morning, and when you cross the finish line, you move on.  You are still the same person whether you PR or PW (personal worst).  Your family, friends, and everyone else still loves you.  Sometimes we get too wrapped up in the sport that we don’t think about the big picture.  Before every race, I just think: good or bad, whatever happens…happens and there is no need to stress about it.

You are still the same person whether you PR or PW (personal worst).  Your family, friends, and everyone else still loves you and don’t care about your finish time.  Sometimes we get too wrapped up in the sport that we don’t think about the big picture.  Before every race, I just think: good or bad, whatever happens…happens and there is no need to stress about it.

Racing is supposed to be exciting and fun.  You should look forward to it, not dread it.  If you dread it, there is no point in doing it right?

Related Posts:

Who Cares Where You Run?

Care Free Training

How to Bounce Back from a Bad Race

Questions for you:

Do you get race day anxiety? 

How do you beat race day (or any day) nerves?

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