NYCM Training: Workouts and 5ks

NYCM Training: Workouts and 5ks

This was the first week that the weather felt as though it broke. It’s been so hot the last few weeks, so it was nice for better weather. Unfortunately, towards the end of the week life, fatigue, and everything else caught up with me. I was left both exhausted and tired. No big deal and I was still able to get quality races and long runs in.

Monday: Easy 60 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: 6X800s with 800 jog between (total 12 miles)
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: Book It 5k (2.9-3 miles) average 6:30 pace (total 9 miles)
Sunday: Long Run (18 miles)
Total: 58.5 miles

As I mentioned last week, when I run easy runs for an hour, I just average them to be 6.5 miles. They might be 6.1 or 6.8, but it doesn’t really matter. I just run easy, and the pace isn’t that important to me.

Workout Wednesday: 6X800 with 800 jog in between

I wanted to switch it up from doing 400s so ran 800s.  I do all of my workouts on roads.  It was perfect weather, and while I didn’t feel great, I didn’t feel terrible either.  I was happy with the workout, and with a warmup and cooldown, I ended up with about 12 miles for the day.

Book It 5k:

The Book It 5k is out of the Cherry Hill Library. It’s a great cause, and I enjoyed it last year.

The course was short, and I didn’t feel great but was able to run about 6:30 miles. I think I would have probably finished around 20 minutes which untapered is where I thought I would be. It was my first 5k since June, and I have forgotten how painful they are.  It’s hard to get a good idea of where I am fitness wise with the 5k because that course was short, I felt like garbage, and it was a mix of terrain.

cherry hill book it 5k

I look forward to doing more 5ks under my belt. I probably won’t taper for many, if any, but they will be good workouts.

Long Run: 18 miles
2 miles easy.
4 miles (average 7:07).
4 miles easy.
4 miles (average 7:05).
4 miles easy.

I would have liked to have been closer to 7 for harder effort, however, I racing the day before that didn’t happen.  I’m happy with the long run and realistically, my goal is to stay healthy from start to finish of the race. It was raining but it felt a lot better than the heat.


In all, I’m happy with my week.  I’ll probably plan to have something similar next week.  I don’t plan to do a lot of 20+ mile runs as I don’t want to get injured.  I will do at least 2 more 20 mile runs but I have no plans to run much longer than that (if longer at all).

Posts from the Week:

Air Force Half Marathon (1:31.12)

I Have a Fall Goal Race

Vanilla Almond Recovery Protein Smoothie Recipe

Questions for you:

Do you prefer shorter races or longer?

How was your week of training?   


Boothbay Harborfest Half Marathon (1:29.50)

Boothbay Harborfest Half Marathon (1:29.50)

The Boothbay Harborfest Half Marathon was the toughest half marathon I’ve run for a lot of reasons.  There was no major event that made it tough but a lot of small things.  Before I dive into a recap this is what made the race tough for me personally:

  • The Elevation profile. Yes, I’ve climbed mountains, but there was not a section of the race that was flat.  It was either steep or downhill. Boothbay harborfest half marathon
  • There were sections of trails that I wasn’t expecting. With a minute to go, the race director announced: “Not sure if this is the map, but there is some trail to the course.  Watch out for loose rock”.  I can handle trail, but I wasn’t expecting it, and it was probably some sort of cross country course we ran on.
  • There was no Gatorade and minimal water stops (some not even manned). I don’t take gels during a half, but I do take Gatorade at every stop. In the heat, I needed Gatorade.
  • The roads were not closed (in either direction), and around mile 7 I was clipped by a car. I didn’t get hurt, or even fall, but it knocked the wind out of my sails. We also had to go around vehicles.  The roads are 35-50 mph roads and should be closed. Sure it makes the race more expensive, but it was dangerous.  I will pay more, knowing that I’m safer.

That being said it sounds negative and I’m not.  It’s just factors that affected me.  I would probably do the race again if I were in the area. I’m both happy and proud of my time. 

 So where to start?  If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I pretty much live videoed most of it.  From finding the start to after the finish.

The race started at 8 am.  We walked from the school to the start which was maybe about a quarter of a mile.  It wasn’t chipped timed, and the race director made sure to let us know! I lined up and noticed several people who seemed like they would be fast.  They were.

During the first mile, I ran with a few people including another female.  There was one female out ahead, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to catch her.  Even though it was only the “first mile” she was booking.  Around .5, we turned and went towards East Boothbay.  I had gotten dinner in East Boothbay the night before and had actually mentioned, wow it’s hilly here.  We climbed, and it was a very steep climb.  My legs were not happy.  I ran a 6:58 and thought I would be ecstatic if that was my overall pace.

The next mile was me running alone on the trails.  It was nice because they were narrow and I had no interest in running fast surrounded by others, through trails with lots of loose rocks.

Despite being on the trail, I ran a 6:35 and 6:46 mile.  I think it was because those were probably the flattest miles we had during the entire race. There were by no means flat, but they were flatter.

Around mile 4, I realized how much fluid I was losing through sweat.  I rely on Gatorade or on course drinks during races.  If I had known there was zero fuel with electrolytes and minimal stops, I think I would have brought a gel.

We turned a corner and headed the way we came and over the pedestrian walkway bridge.  The same bridge I had taken a photo with my race bib the day before. They didn’t close the bridge, and we were caught weaving in and out of people just enjoying the harbor.  The second water stop came, but there were no trashcans. The woman just said to hold onto the cup until I found a trashcan.

Luckily there was a trashcan shortly up the road. After the bridge came a steep incline onto the streets of Boothbay.  The roads were not closed and not flat either.  I ran the next couple of miles in 6:44 and 6:46. I was pleasantly surprised because they weren’t easy miles and I was already overheating.

Mile 6-7 is where everything happened.  There was a massive climb that I started very heavy breathing. I knew my body was beginning to overheat and at that point, I nearly mentally gave up. I know people say that, but if we close to start, I would have just called it a day.  Luckily at the top, we had about a tenth of a mile of flat.  I caught my breath, and it was all I needed.  I ran mile 6 in 7:20 and one of my slowest half marathon miles in a while.

Then between mile 7-8, a car mirror clipped my arm.  The roads weren’t closed, but I also wasn’t running in the middle of the road.  The road itself was going somewhere between 30-40 mph. Between the two miles, it was enough to knock the wind out of my sails. I didn’t fall or even stop, but mentally I was like: WTF am I even doing here.

Once I reached mile 8, I knew the race was over halfway done. That always mentally makes me feel better. I focused on making it to mile 10. The next two miles went by without anything significant.  There were rolling hills, weaving in out and cars, and hoping I was going the right way.  For being a small race and running about 7 miles alone, it was well marked, and I never found myself wondering: am I going the right way?

I reached mile 10 around 1:08 and told myself, okay Hollie, you might be able to break 1:30 if you work it.  I didn’t really know what kind of hills the next 5k would bring.

I grabbed water from an unmanned tabled and just trucked along. I ran mile 10 in 6:55 and began counting down the miles.  My body was tired.  I could feel the effects of the heat and lack of anything with substance.  I told myself I had 20 minutes left in me.

Mile 11 seemed to go by without any incident either and all of a sudden I found myself at mile 12.  I thought about racing the RnR VA Beach where you turn the corner at mile 12 and can see the finish line for nearly a mile. You are running in the humidity staring at the finish line. I pictured myself doing that.  I was a little dazed because when I actually paid attention to the race I was in, I realized we were climbing the longest hill of the entire race. Who designed that!?

After that, we turned onto a gravel trail and headed towards the finish line. By 12.75, I was just focused on me and finishing. I knew the finish line was on the wide open field and I began mentally preparing myself to watch my footing.  I would jog it in if it meant not hurting myself.

My husband was on the field cheering, and I finished up.  I probably had more left to “sprint it in” but it wasn’t worth it to me, and I focused on my footing in the field.

I saw the clock ticking away and my official time was 1:29.50.  I didn’t stop my watch until a few seconds later.


In all, I’m happy with my race and my effort.  It was a tough day on a tough course, and I couldn’t be more pleased.  As I mentioned, I have typically run RnR Va Beach at the end of the summer anywhere between 1:28-1:31 and I strongly believe my effort on this course was a little quicker than that range.

tim and i

Questions for you:

What is your favorite half marathon?

How did you celebrate Labor Day Weekend? 

August Training

August Training

August flew by.

The summer flew by, but I’ll have a post about that another day.

August was a great month, and I enjoyed my life both training and not training.  Even staying healthy, I raced less than I have most Augusts.  In fact, I didn’t do a road race in almost 2 months!  I’ll have a summer recap post in the next few weeks, but August capped off one of the best summers I’ve had in a very long time.  Why?  Because I chose to make it the best.  Instead of doing the same things, I chose to experience things I never have.

Miles Run: Around 215
Range of Paces: 6:05-18:00-untimed
Underarmour Killington 25k
Rest Days: 8
Shortest Run: 30 minutes
Longest Run: 17 miles (longest time on my feet Killington 25k)


It still feels surreal that August is now over.   To be honest, August didn’t really go as I had planned at all.  I was hoping to do more races, specifically 5ks but I didn’t do any.  Every Friday I went to bed thinking, this will be the weekend I race but every weekend something popped up.  It’s not a big deal, but I have no idea where my speed is right now.  I would like to hope for around 20 minutes or so. Now that I’ve run a hard half marathon in about 1:30, the internet tells me I’m more like in 19:24 shape (I just plugged it into the McMillian Calculator).

I was happy, I was able to fit the Killington 25k into my life.  It was a quick but nice breath of fresh air.  This past August was the healthiest I’ve been for several Augusts so I can’t complain too much.  It’s been difficult for me to juggle personal life (military life), with my own running but I’ve come to terms with that is ok.

I’m currently in the process of adding several races to my fall schedule.  Some of my favorite and several new races too.  I don’t know how long we will live on the East Coast for (I love New Jersey) so I would like to enjoy a few new to me races, and get back to a few, this fall.  I’ve slowly started to accommodate getting back to running longer road races.  Running a 3-hour trail race “just to finish” is very different than racing a road race to aim for a PR. To get back there, I have to put the time, effort, and of course the mental drive too.

Posts from the Month:


Underarmour Horizon BPF Trail Running Shoe Review
Hoka Clifton 5 Shoe Review
UnderArmour Sonic HOVR Shoe Review
New Balance 1080v8 Shoe Review


Hiking Shark River Park
Walk Out a Mile and It Down Pours


Running Isn’t Everything
Why You Need to Be Fitted for Running Shoes
Factors You Never Knew Played a Role in Running Shoes

Questions for you:

How was your training in August?

Are you training for anything in the fall? 

Training: Down Week and half marathon

Training: Down Week and half marathon

We all need a rest week.  It’s a week easier said than done but one of the most important weeks for training.  From Sunday-Saturday was mine.  I fully rested Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Coming off Killington trail 25k, I knew I needed it. Secondly, I ran the Boothbay half marathon just 8 days later which is a relatively high injury risk due to lack of time.  More about that in a bit.

Monday: Rest+ ART with Dr. Craig of Dr. Kemonosh
Tuesday: Easy 30 minutes
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Easy 60 minutes
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Easy 60 minutes
Sunday: Boothbay Half Marathon+ 7 mile for a total of 20 miles


The easy runs were just that, easy.  They were uneventful, and the humidity made it tough to get any sort of speed.  I was happy to plan a rest day last week because the weather was so hot.
I took water with me for the 60-minute runs, and I’m glad I did. I was never a NUUN fan until this year, but I find if I add twice the amount suggested, they taste ok…just don’t do that with the caffeine ones ha!

I’ve posted about ART and getting Graston before.  Usually, when I’m in the thick of training for something but my good friend Dr. Craig was able to fit me into an appointment (I’m not sponsored and pay full price like everyone else…they do take some insurances if you’re local though). 

Boothbay Half: (1:29.50)

Typically I go down and run the RnR half marathon in my hometown of Virginia Beach, but this year my husband and I decided to go to Maine.  I don’t know how long we will live on the east coast for, maybe several years maybe not, and Maine has always been on my bucket list. (He gets to fly to Bangor on occasion).  So we decided to drive up to Maine while stopping in Massachusetts and New Hampshire too.

The Boothbay Harborfest Half Marathon was a no-frills race.  It was $55, and they didn’t close down roads plus there were parts on trail.  The race director says at the start of the race: “Not sure if this is mentioned on the course map but there are parts on trail so please watch out for loose rock.”  I was not expecting that at all!  There weren’t t-shirts but I was surprised to see medals!

Boothbay harborfest half marathon

I didn’t know how I would recover if we would even get to Maine, but I did want to get a good gauge of my fitness.  I knew of the race, but didn’t really make any commitment to thinking of running until just a few days out.  The course itself is very hilly and I found it to be the hardest half marathon I’ve done.  It was almost never flat.

I am extremely pleased with the race and I finished with another 7 miles to make it 20 miles of hills, a distance on terrain I never get where I live in NJ.  (There are sections of NJ that are hilly but they are further away).


The week was what I needed both mentally and physically.  The recovery in the middle kept me from not hurting myself.  I do believe if I jumped right back into training, I would have injured myself.  A lesson it’s taken me a few injuries and years to learn.

Posts from the Week:

 Underarmour Killington 25k Race Recap

Underarmour Horizon BPF Trail Running Shoe Review

Questions for you:

Have you ever been to Maine?

What did you do over Labor Day? 

Training: Cranking Along and Another Trail Race

Training: Cranking Along and Another Trail Race

Another week of summer down. It’s hard to believe we are now entering “late August” and the fall looms right around the corner.  Anyway, last week was similar to the previous few.  I rested, I ran, and running was once again not a priority.  That being said, I had two of my best workouts of the summer.  Even though I haven’t been my racing, my fitness is coming back.

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: 12X400s
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: Easy 60 minutes
Sunday: 17 miles


The humidity has wiped me out!  Yes, it’s summer so it’s hot but I’ve found myself wanting more rest days than usual.

Wednesday: 12X400s (average 5:58 pace) with 400 recovery

I have been trying to do workouts more over the last few months.  Some weeks, it works out and some it does not, but I am trying to be as consistent as both my body and schedule allow.  I pleasantly surprised myself and had a great workout.  I felt strong the entire time, and it’s by far my fastest workout since early Spring.

Sunday: 17 miles Progression

I’ve been enjoying runs that start off easier and I slowly pick it up.  The first half was around 8-8:15 pace and I slowly worked down with my last mile at 6:42.  I felt good the entire time.  I haven’t run 17 miles in almost 2 years (I’ve run a total of 17 miles but not 17 miles).


Next Week I’m going up to Killington, Vermont to run the Underarmour 25k.  It’s part of the race series that I ran Colorado last month.  Even though the elevation is much lower, I’ve heard this is the hardest and most steep, technical of the races, so my goal is to finish.

I’m looking forward to skipping town for the weekend (although it looks like I might do that for a few weekends coming up).

This summer has been great and I’ve given myself the freedom to do whatever I’ve wanted.

Rest for no other reason than I don’t want to run?

Run a trail race?

Workout when I feel like it?

I am looking forward to the busyness and routine that the fall brings but the Summer has been one to remember.

Posts from the Week:

Why you Need to Be Fitted for Running Shoes
Hoka Clifton 5 Shoe Review
Walk a Mile and it Down Pours

Questions for you:
Have you ever done a trail race?
Are you training for anything?

Training: Another Week Down…

Training: Another Week Down…

August has continued the trend of boring running.  It seems the weeks are going by quicker and I’m just moving along. The first two weeks have been busy with life and I know the second two will be similar, but that’s okay!  You can’t be full out training all of the time.

Many people have asked, but I haven’t picked out any goal races for the fall and won’t until mid-September.  Yes, later than probably appropriate but that is really my only option right now.  I know I have a decent base that I’m nowhere near “starting from scratch” training for a new race.  Until then, I’ll just keep cranking away at mileage.

Monday: Easy 60 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 45 minutes + 5 mile hike
Wednesday: 12X400s averaging 6:01
Thursday: Rest
Friday: 45 minute run+3 mile rainy hike
Saturday: 60 minutes easy
Sunday: 15 miles with last 7 averaging 7:03

My easy runs were just that, easy.  I say that every week but for the most part, there isn’t anything thrilling about them.  I don’t use a Garmin for pace, I either use a route I know the mileage (IE this is 5 miles) or just use a start/stopwatch for 45 minutes (or whatever).  I could go 8-minute miles…or 10…but the world will never know, including me.

I did quite a bit of hiking this week as well.  On Tuesday, I had only meant to go about 20-30 minutes in a new park but got lost and ended up going 5 miles.  As I said on Instagram, it was my own fault because I chose to “trust my gut” versus look at the park map.

Then on Friday, I needed to be up near Allentown.  I arrived with a few hour hours to spare (mostly to avoid rush hour Philadelphia traffic) and so I decided to do a short hike in Hickory Run Park.  It started downpouring quickly into the hike, so it was nothing but an adventure.  It was fun, and I look forward to going back when it’s not pouring rain and flooded out.

Wednesday: 12X400s at 6:01 pace with 400 rest

I do my workouts on the roads since that is where I race.  To be honest, I felt much better than I anticipated.  That workout went much better than I thought and I have zero complaints.

Sunday: 15 miles with last 7 at 7:03

As I mentioned on Instagram, long runs have become one of my more favorite runs.  I enjoy getting out there and having a short workout in them.  My favorite are fast finishes, and I try and do the second half faster than the first.  It gives me something to “look forward too” as well as keep it interesting.  Sunday’s pace surprised me.  It was humid in the northeast and the due point high, so I wasn’t expecting to be able to work into some sub 7-minute miles.


In all, I’m happy with the week.  My summer has been awesome regarding life.  It has been uneventful regarding running.  Yes, I’m running, but I’m not actively training for anything.

Posts from the Week:

 Top Benefits of Collagen

Factors You Never Knew That Play a Role in Your Running Shoes

New Balance 1080v8 Shoe Review

Questions for you:

Are you training for anything?

Do you have a fall goal race picked out?

July Training Recap

Can you believe it’s already August?  No, ok me either.

July was one of the best months I’ve had in a while.  Not running wise, but life wise.  I had a kickass month. I got to travel to multiple states and celebrate my birthday running the hardest race I’ve ever done.  It’s hard to top that (literally because Copper Mountain was 12000 feet high).

under armour copper mountain race me running

This summer I’ve opted to just bee-bop around and not take myself too seriously.  To be honest, I don’t take myself that seriously anyway but I’m not training for anything.  My primary goal is to stay healthy and have fun while running.  It’s hard to PR when it’s 99% humidity so instead of forcing myself to train hard, I’m just relaxing.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m 100% still running but I’m not worried about pace, time, or distance.  I do workouts, much slower, and that is fine!  If you train hard year round, you’ll get hurt, a lesson I know far too well.

Miles Run: Around 200 but I haven’t been keeping great track

Range of Paces: 6:07-15:10-untimed (75% of my miles I didn’t time)

Rest Days: 6


Irish Festival 5k (20:25)

Copper Mountain 25k (2:58)


As I mentioned, this summer is all about enjoying myself.  If you had asked me 3 months ago if I thought I would successfully run a 25k that went to 12,000 altitude, I would have laughed.  I have enjoyed not having anything on the radar but still enjoying the moments.

August is going to be a busy month. In fact, in the last 2 days it already has been. Life is going to get a bit chaotic but nothing I can’t handle.  I’m still hoping to go run the Underarmour Killington Race (either the 10k or 25k) but I’ll make the decision as my schedule gets ironed out.

Posts from the Month: 


Vital Proteins Berry Blast Smoothie
Recovering from Workouts

What to Do When You’re Not Motivated
Brooks Glycerin 16 Shoe Review

Hiking High Mountain with a View of NYCHiking Indian Wells State Park
Walking around Belleplain State Forest

Questions for you:

How is your summer going?

Do you have any plans for August? 

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