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Category: Brooks Running

Dear Running: I do love you!

No matter how much I complain about running, I will always love it!  When I started running in 2005, I couldn’t run a mile.  Heck, I couldn’t run 5 minutes.  It took me years to get to where I am now (I ran mostly for fun and never paid attention to speed).  I focused more on endurance and can proudly say that I’ve run over 150 races ranging from ultra marathons, marathons, half marathons, and over shorter distances.

Why do I love to run?

• I know it sounds cliche, but I run because I can.  I am healthy with no medical condition that stops me from running.  Basically, I have no excuse.  I am the one with the excuses – too hot, too cold, too tired, or just lazy.  🙂  I’ve found that getting out there is hard but once I’m done with a run, I always feel GREAT.

• I like to see how much I can push myself.  I signed up for my first marathon in 2006.  With less than a year of running, a friend convinced me that I could run a marathon (glad I believed her).  I had NO idea what I was getting myself into and didn’t know the distance of a marathon.  I didn’t stop there, I’ve run a few more marathons and 2 ultra marathons.

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• The challenges.  Let’s mix them up.  Do a race one day and then another one the next day.  No big deal, right?  The most difficult one I have done is Goofy Challenge (half marathon on Saturday and marathon on Sunday).  Oh man, that was tough but definitely memorable.

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• I love buying running clothes.  Pretty much all of my tops and shorts are from Oiselle.  I always get excited when my order arrives and I wear it on my run.

• Let’s not forget the shoes!  Brooks shoes are the best!

• Support and encouragement from running friends.  I belong to several Facebook groups and my feed is always full of motivation and advice from friends.  Or sometimes I have a question about hydration, socks, gels, etc. and can count on someone to answer it for me.

What do you love most about running?

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

TuesdaysOnTheRun

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Shoes, shoes and more shoes!

It’s no secret that I am a fan of Brooks running shoes.  In the past I’ve worn the Ghost, Ravenna, Adrenaline, Pure Flow, Pure Connect, and Pure Cadence.

Lately my all time favorite is the Launch.  I remember my first pair of the Launch 2.  They hurt my feet and I sent them back.  Months later I decided to give them another chance.  Cannot remember the reason.  I mean, they hurt my feet so why would I try them again?  I am very glad I did because those were GREAT.  I was upset when they weren’t available anymore.  Then the Launch 3 came out and they felt different.  I trained one summer in them and then sent them back to Brooks (they have a wonderful 90 day return policy).  They just didn’t feel as good as the Launch 2.  Then the 4 came out and they are just as good as the 2.  

They are so good that I am stocking up.  I have 3 pairs in rotation and have 10 new pairs in boxes.  They’re still on sale at Running Warehouse and I am tempted to get more pairs.  That’s how much I love them!  I know the Launch 5 is available but I am going to wait a few months before trying them out.

I don’t just own running shoes.  🙂  I teach 2nd grade and am on my feet all day long so I need comfortable shoes.  Last summer I invested in a pair of Tieks by Gavrieli ballet flat.  I’ve been wearing them almost everyday and like them a lot.  They’re comfortable but I am not too crazy about the price (the cheapest is $175 and the most expensive is $265).

Each pair comes neatly packed in a blue box with a cute bow.  Tieks are sold in whole sizes only.  Tieks typically suggests going down if you’re a half size unless you have a wide foot or sometimes size up.  I’m an 8.5 but I have wide feet but ordered an 8 and a 9.  Included in the box is a black pouch to store your Tieks and a small tote bag.  There was also a handwritten personalized note which I loved.

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I tried both pairs and kept the size 9.  I love that they have FREE shipping.  And if you want to return or exchange them, they also have free return shipping.

You’re probably wondering if they’re worth the price.  For me they are.  I’ve worn shoes from Aerosoles and Naturalizer but after a while my feet hurt.  Plus, they don’t last long.  I will admit that when I first started wearing them, when I went back to work in August, my feet did hurt.  I thought about sending them back.  I couldn’t so I kept wearing them and after a few more days they were comfortable enough to wear all day.  Now, I am very pleased and happy with them.

I know they’re expensive but the next pair I want to get is the Chestnut.  Black and brown are shoe colors that go with pretty much every outfit.  But check how pretty the red, purple, and blue shoes!!  

 

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What is your favorite brand of running shoes?  How many pairs do you have?

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

TuesdaysOnTheRun

Illinois Marathon Training Recap, Week 8

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Week #8, January 15-21

M OFF
T Ran 3.09 miles
W Did not run
TH Ran 3.17 miles
F OFF
Ran 100 minutes for 8.45 miles
S Ran 3.35 miles

Even with a 4 day work week, it felt like a LONG and exhausting week.  Two tests (MAP) were given this week and my kids were all tired from them.  

We got more snow on Monday so there was plenty of it still on Tuesday.  I took it slow because I did not want to fall and actually enjoyed it.  The sunset was beautiful!!

I had to do a quality session run on Wednesday (1.5 warm up and cooldown and 8×2 minute intervals at 10:02 pace).  I changed clothes at school and made my way to the airport.  I started running and then all of a sudden I got really cold and simply gave up.  I did not want to deal with the cold weather.  I did try to convince myself that it would get better and to just run.  Nope, didn’t work.  I went home.

Lola wondered why I was home early.  She was not pleased with my decision.

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By Thursday most of the snow had melted.  It made the run a little easier.  I have a Nathan headlamp but cannot find it.  I have an old one I used during Ragnar a few years ago but don’t like it too much because it isn’t as bright like my other one.

I was supposed to do my long run on Sunday but asked my coach if I could do it on Saturday because it was supposed to rain on Sunday.  It was GORGEOUS on Saturday!  I wore my Oiselle Wazzie Wool top and a vest.  I was a little afraid because I thought I was going to be cold but I was actually comfortable.  The sun helped too.  

I wore shorts for Sunday’s run!  It wasn’t as warm as yesterday and cloudy but it still felt really good.  Can you tell I love my Brooks Launch 4?  🙂

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Another great week of marathon training.  The warmer weather makes me happy and made my runs more pleasant.  I am enjoying my easy runs and have managed to stay on pace.  Just less than 14 weeks to go till the Illinois Marathon!

Total mileage for the week: 18.06
Total mileage for this training cycle: 139.28
Total mileage for the year: 60.50

How was YOUR week?  Any suggestions for a headlamp?

Link back to the host and let’s support other bloggers linking up as they train for a marathon,  half marathon, or any other event.


Illinois Marathon Training Recap, Week 2

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Illinois Marathon training has begun.  Now it feels like winter in Chicago.  It was nice and warm on Monday and then dropped 30-40 degrees for the rest of the week.  As mentioned in this post, I’m training with Mary from Lift | Run | Perform for a few weeks before I start my “official” training with a few other women that are training for the Boston Marathon.    

Week #2, December 4-December 10

Ran 45 minutes for 3.76 miles
T Ran 45 minutes and 4 strides for 4.16 miles
Cross Training 45 minutes using bike
TH OFF
F OFF
Ran 10.25 Miles
S Ran 45 minutes and 4 strides for 4.22 miles

I love seeing the holiday decorations.  It was nice and warm on Monday and I could have worn shorts but opted to wear a new to me pair of Oiselle Aero Tights.  Oh, and another new pair of Brooks Launch 4.  They’re on sale on Running Warehouse and at the Brooks site.  Have I told you how much I love my Oiselle Lightning Layer?  Seriously, the BEST reflective piece of gear you need when running in the dark.

Tuesday workout was the same as Monday but I added 4 strides (20 seconds) and 60 seconds recovery.  Easy.  But I was cold.  It was 31 degrees.  Lola didn’t care.

The elliptical machine bores me so this week Mary had me use the bike.  Much better.  I did get tired of sitting down and found myself moving around a little to get comfortable.  I know, I complain too much.  If it isn’t one thing, it is another.

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Saturday’s run was tough.  Another cold but also WINDY day.   The first 5 miles were fine but struggled the last 5.  Well, we ran nonstop for a little over 3 miles and then I told the group that I needed to walk a little.  Not surprisingly, the last two miles were my slowest.  Overall, my average pace was 11:28 which made me very happy.  

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I missed my workout on Friday because I was cold and tired.  I came home from a long day of meetings and just wanted to stay in bed.  I sent an email to Mary explaining the situation and she responded saying to get some rest and to do the workout on Sunday.  I thought for sure she was going to tell me to just skip it.  Nope.  It wasn’t as cold as on Saturday and luckily it was 45 minutes instead of 10 miles.  🙂  I think I did pretty good!

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Another week of training for the Illinois Marathon.  It was colder than I wanted it to be but that is expected for December.  🙂

Total mileage for the week: 22.40
Total mileage for this training cycle: 42.31
Total mileage for the year: 736.69

How was YOUR week?

Link back to the host and let’s support other bloggers linking up as they train for a marathon,  half marathon, or any other event.

Illinois Marathon Training Recap, Week 1

Illinois Marathon-2

Illinois Marathon training has begun.  It doesn’t feel like winter here in Chicago so it has been awesome to run outside.  As mentioned in this post, I’m training with Mary from Lift | Run | Perform for a few weeks before I start my “official” training with a few other women that are training for the Boston Marathon.    

Week #1, November 27-December 3

Ran 45 minutes for 3.74 miles
T Cross Training 45 minutes using elliptical machine
W Ran 45 minutes for 3.79 miles
TH OFF
F Ran 40 minutes for 3.33 miles
Ran 9.05 Miles
S OFF

New shoes, socks, and Oiselle spandos to start off my week and my training.

Illinois Marathon-3The two 45 minute runs were actually fun!  I asked Mary what pace I should do these runs and she told me “easy, very easy pace”.  No problem at all.

Tuesday workout bore me.  I detest the elliptical machine.  I did get to watch 45 minutes of the “Sex and the City” movie.  I still think Carrie should have married Aidan.

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December started off with running 3.33 miles in 40 minutes.  Again, easy pace.  I had planned to go in the morning but woke up very cold.  It turned out that the heat was off.  I did text the owner to let him know and it was working again later on in the day.  He didn’t explain what had happened and I did not ask.

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How is it that 62 degrees feels great outside but inside a house it is very cold?

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Saturday mornings I help pace the 11:00 group out of Fleet Feet.  The past couple of weeks I’ve struggled to maintain that pace.  The 11:30 group didn’t have a pacer on Saturday and I offered to pace it.  It was awesome!  I felt great!  It could have been the weather, pace or some new to me energy chews.  I requested to be moved to the 11:30 and from now on that will be my group to pace.

My first week went well.  I did all of my workouts and am pleased with my results.  Next week I have 3 days of easy run, cross training on the bike on Wednesday, and 10 miles on Saturday.

Total mileage for the week: 19.91
Total mileage for this training cycle: 19.91
Total mileage for the year: 714.30

How was YOUR week?

Link back to the host and let’s support other bloggers linking up as they train for a marathon,  half marathon, or any other event.