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Category: Race all 50 states

Tuesday Topics: Some of my best races

Happy Tuesday and welcome to another edition of Tuesday Topics!  Last week I wrote about some not-so-great things that have happened to me at races.   So today let’s discuss some of my best races whether it is because of a PR, the course, or some other reason.

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This week’s Tuesday Topic:  What was your best or worst race You can write about this topic or feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to link up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!

2016 Chicago Marathon – It it my marathon PR.  I simply love everything about this race.  I’ve run it a few times and also love spectating it.  

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2015 Live Grit 10 MilerI met Wendy and Marcia at this race.  It was warm in the beginning of the race but then the temperature dropped about 20 degrees.  I did not have a jacket and was COLD.

2019 Detroit Free Press/TCF Bank Half Marathon – I was undertrained but loved this race.  I was also dealing with plantar fasciitis but I made the best of it. It is an incredible experience running the bridge to Canada, in Canada, and then back to the U.S.  

2019 Delaware Marathon Running Festival – Hilly course but I met Kim!  What’s not to like about it?  Running in Brandywine Park felt peaceful and very relaxing.  It was just what I needed to deal with all of the hills.

2013 Community Bank of Elmhurst 4 on the 4thI don’t remember how I heard about this race but am so happy I did.  I love everything about it (distance, price, location, to name a few things) and continue to run it each year.  I am sad it is cancelled this year but understand the reason.

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2020 Publix Atlanta Half MarathonSo the race itself was not that great.  It was a VERY hilly course and I was undertrained.  What I loved about it was the Olympic Marathon Trials that took place the day before.  I got excited and goosebumps being so close to many elite runners – LOVED seeing Desi on the course!!

Utah Valley Half Marathon 2017 – A race meeting up with blogger friends!  The views were incredible.  It was the first time dealing with altitude and running a downhill race.  Not easy but I finished in 2:34:59 which is a whole lot better than I expected!!

Walt Disney World Half Marathon and Walt Disney World Marathon – Did this as part of the Goofy Challenge.  Seriously, I have no idea what I was thinking when I signed up.  I don’t think I was thinking AT ALL!  🙂  It was one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done.  No regrets at all.

The Great Alaskan Running Cruise 2017 – It was a fun week exploring and running in Alaska.  There were a total of 4 races:

5K Kick Off Run/Walk in Anchorage and Welcome Party
√ Glacier Half Marathon in Juneau
4-Mile Amazing Race in Skagway
5K on the trails in the Tongass National Forest in Ketchikan

♥ Chicago Lakefront 50K 2012 and 2014 – I don’t have a recap from my first race in 2012 but HERE is the second one I did in 2014.  As if running a marathon isn’t hard enough, I decided to run a race even longer than 26.2 miles.  I ran the RnR New Orleans Marathon early in March and then ran the 50k a few weeks later.  Why not, right?  🙂

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I enjoyed writing about this topic.  It was fun reading older posts (sometimes cringing because of what I wrote – Yikes!!), but overall remembering each one which made me smile.

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Weekly Run Down: Recovery week and not running happy

Happy Sunday!  I am so glad it is finally getting warmer here.  Yesterday it got as high as 50 degrees and today it went up to over 60 degrees.  It feels like Spring is around the corner.

I did not run one single day this week.  After my half marathon in Atlanta last week, it took me a few days to recover.  I was hurting a lot.  It hurt to walk and also when getting up in the morning.  I felt like I had just run a marathon.  The feeling was also similar to when I ran the Detroit Free Press Half Marathon in October.  Anyway, I knew I was going to be sore for a few days since I did train properly and the course was very hilly.  🙂

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My legs felt better by Thursday but my body wanted to sleep.  And that is what I did.  I was also more hungry than usual.  

I was off on Monday due to Casimir Pulaski Day.  I was glad to be off but honestly don’t understand why we are off.  I would rather work that day and get out of school one day earlier.  This year our last day is Friday, June 5th.  I went to get a haircut, did laundry, and finished some work.  My babies kept me company.

This week we did several fun activities to celebrate Dr. Seuss!  He is one of our favorite authors.  We colored, watched a movie, and made some hats.  I realized I did not take pictures of the activities.  🙁

I don’t know if I mentioned this but last month I applied to be on the Brooks Run Happy team.  Sad news but I was not selected.  Am I sad and disappointed?  Yes!  It was on my running wish list from last year.  I was so happy to find out that Brooks opened up the application process and anyone could apply to be on the team.  I know thousands applied but don’t know how many were selected.  Notification emails were sent on Monday and I know of two girls that were selected.  Since I didn’t receive a rejection email, a little part of me thought that maybe I was on the “backup” list.  Nope.  I found out on Friday that I wasn’t selected.  Apparently there was a problem with Brooks’ email notification system and that is why many people were not notified.  I found out from someone at BibRave.  

Anyway, moving on.  Life still goes on.  🙂  I still like their shoes and will continue to buy them.

My next half marathon is the Garmin Oz Half Marathon in Olathe, KS on April 18.  It will be state #44.  After that race I will be going to Boston to spectate the marathon.  I am looking forward to it!  However, I’ve read that there is a possibility that it could be cancelled?  NO!  After running in Kansas, I will be going to Fargo, ND for state #45.

Have you run either of those marathons?  I know KS is hilly and ND is flat but that is all I know.  What to join me on either or both races?

Linking up with Kim and Deborah for the Weekly Run Down.

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Tuesday Topics: Publix Atlanta Half Marathon Race Recap

This weekend went by so fast.  I am back home recoverating from my race on Sunday.  If you missed my recap of the Olympic Marathon Trials, click HERE to read about it.

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This week’s Tuesday Topic:  Have you ever taken a break from running?  Why?  You can write about this topic or feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to link up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!

I’m deviating from this week’s topic to write my recap of the Publix Atlanta Half Marathon.  I ran this race the day after the Olympic Marathon Trials.  Did you watch it?  It was INCREDIBLE.  I have no idea where it will take place in 4 years but for sure I want to be there again.

I signed up for this race in April of last year.  I paid $50 plus fees.  Pretty great deal!

I didn’t sleep well on Saturday night.  I even took a melatonin.  I think I finally went to sleep around 10:30 pm.  The race started at 7 am but I always like to get there early and use the port-a-potty.  Plus, I knew it was going to be cold in the morning and I was planning on wearing sweatpants and sweatshirt, so I also needed plenty of time to check in a gear bag.

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I woke up at 4:40 am but didn’t get up till 15 minutes later.  I quickly got ready and went to the lobby to get a coffee from Starbucks.  Then I walked to the start line at the Olympic Centennial Park.  I had 3 layers so I did not feel cold at all.  🙂

I used the port-a-potty, took some pictures, then I checked in my gear bag.  I got in line about 6:30.  Then I waited.  And waited.  I asked myself why I had gotten there so early.  It was chilly but I wasn’t THAT cold.  I wore a Oiselle flyout long sleeve underneath my singlet and that helped.  

When it was almost start time, the race announcer introduced Meb.  He was pacing the 1:40 group.  I was in Corral C and I am assuming he was in either A or B.  I wanted to leave my corral and find him.  I didn’t.  Then she mentioned that the Olympic Marathon Trials winners were there as well.  Neat way to start off the race.

Then it was time to run.  My goals were to finish the race and to have fun.  I did finish it and made the best of it.  I was tired and in pain.  I knew it was a hilly course.  I underestimated how hilly it was.  The plan was to walk up the hills and run the downhills.  Good plan, right?  Well, in this race I was either going up or down.  There were very few flat areas.

Here is the elevation map from my Garmin.

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I felt good for about 3 miles then I got really tired.  I decided to just walk and run whenever I felt like it.  I don’t remember too many details because I was so focused on running and walking.  By then it had warmed up a little and the sun was out.  I was never hot nor cold.  In reality it was just perfect weather.

While running I saw Kim and we ran together for a few minutes.  I could not keep up with her.  🙂  I also saw Vanessa and ran with her but also could not keep up with her.  I saw Jessica pacing the 5:30 team but also could not keep up.  I was really struggling but I still wanted to finish.  I didn’t care about my finish time.  I just wanted to finish.

I took two Huma gels (mile 4 and 8) and stopped at every water station.  I think it was around mile 11 or 12 that I had some Powerade.  I needed something to get me through the final miles of the race.  I don’t remember being thirsty but that drink tasted really good!

I enjoyed running in Piedmont Park.  It was lovely and a great place for running.  I didn’t see other runners except those running the race.  I thought that was strange.

The last 4 miles is when I was cursing a little bit.  I was tired of the hills.  I was struggling more than ever.  But I was almost done and I just needed to hang in there.  

I was so happy to hear the race announcer.  I was almost done and could stop running.  🙂

After the race I got my medal and was handed a bottle of water and chocolate milk.  There was a tent with some food but I didn’t get anything.  I got my bag from gear check and went to take some pictures.  I just wanted to get back to the hotel to eat something.  I was so hungry.

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I showered, packed my suitcase, and my friends and I went to Hard Rock Cafe for lunch.  We then went back to Olympic Centennial Park to walk around for a bit before going to The National Center for Civil and Human Rights.

I loved that they offered FREE race photos.  I like the long sleeve shirt.  It is soft, comfortable, and perfect as a pajama top.  I don’t like the medal.  So plain.  🙁

There weren’t too many people on the course.  The volunteers were friendly and encouraging.  There were also plenty of water stations.  I was looking for a medical tent and did not see one at all.  I was disappointed because I wanted some Vaseline or something to apply to where I had chafed.

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This was state #43 for me.  Next is the Garmin Oz Half Marathon in April (#44) and the Fargo Half Marathon in May (#45).  Then I will need 6 more to go!  Total will be 51 because I am counting Washington DC as a state.

Have you run this race before?  Would you run a race knowing that it was a hilly course?

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Tuesday Topics: My goals for 2020

How is it that it is almost the end of December and the end of this decade?!  Honestly, how did 10 years go by so fast?  Or did it go that fast?  I have no idea what I was doing December 31, 2009 but I do know I wrote my first blog post a year later on January 2, 2011.  🙂

This week’s Tuesday Topic: What are your goals for 2020?  You can write about this topic or feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to Link-up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!

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I have a new coach and am excited to be working with him.  I love the personalized plan and the constant communication with Dan.  We have a weekly call on Monday at 5pm in which we discuss my upcoming runs, concerns, and anything else I want to talk about.

When I signed up with Dan I told him my goals.  I think there were too many.  One can dream, right?  🙂  Well, I didn’t say I wanted to achieve them in 2020 but sometime in the future.  Now that I’ve had a chance to think about it some more, I want to focus on a few of them.  I am also including some personal ones.  Ready to find out?

⇒ Be injury free.  Please go away plantar fasciitis.

⇒ PR in the following distances: 5k, 4 miles, 8k, 10k, 10 miles, and 13.1.

⇒ Get a sub 2 half marathon.

⇒ Run a marathon.  I am hoping either the MCM in October or the NYC in November.

⇒ Buy a house.  

⇒ Travel to Mexico.  It’s been years since I’ve been there and really hope I can make it next year.

⇒ Run a couple more half marathons in new states.  I am registered for GA and KS but still need HI, NM, ID, ND, SD, SC, and WY.  

⇒ Be more patience at work and at home.  

⇒ Do more fun things with friends.  I realized that I always use the same excuse “I am too tired” with them and don’t do enough fun things with them.

⇒ Find joy in everything that is possible.  Life is short to not find joy in it.  

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My mother will be making mole today.  My sister and nephew are coming over and it should be fun.  One of my cousins invited us over to her house on Christmas Day so that will be fun too.  Happy Holidays to everyone!  Enjoy this special time with loved ones!!

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Tuesday Topics: Detroit Free Press/TCF Bank Half Marathon Race Recap

Disclaimer:  I received a free entry to the Detroit Free Press/TCF Bank Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!  

This week’s Tuesday Topic is a FREE topic.  Feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to Link-up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!

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On October 20th, I ran the Detroit Free Press/TCF Half Marathon.  It was my 73rd half marathon.  It was also state #42 in my goal to run a half marathon in each state.

I left Saturday morning and arrived in Detroit at 1:00.  Once there I took an Uber to the hotel to check in and left for the expo.  I stayed at the Rivertown Inn and Suites on Jefferson and Rivard.  It was an OK place to stay.  What I liked about it is that the expo and start line were less than a mile away.

The expo was fun with lots of vendors.  I signed up for the International race so I had to show my passport in order to get my bib.  

I tried on some shoes but didn’t buy any.  🙂  Although these felt more comfortable than another pair of Ghost 12 that I had but sent back.

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I bought 3 pairs of Balega socks (it was buy 3 pairs and get one free) and an R3 foot roller. 

Race morning I woke up tired.  My neighbors next door were loud and it took me a while to go to sleep.  I got ready and made some UCAN gel for before the race and during the race.  Then I went to the lobby because the clerk told me when I checked in on Saturday that there would be breakfast for the runners.  I ate a waffle as big as my face with coffee.  I walked with another girl to the start line while eating my UCAN.  It took us about 15 minutes to get there.

One bathroom break and it was time to run.  I was happy and excited.  I almost skipped the race because my left foot had been bothering me so much that it hurt to walk.  I blamed it on my inserts.  I have two different pairs – one in my shoes for running and another in the ones for running.  I switched them and hoped that I made the right decision.

The race began at 7am.  It was dark.  I didn’t worry about it too much and concentrated on my run.  I was feeling good.  The beginning of the race was in downtown Detroit.  I couldn’t really see my watch but knew that I was going faster than I was supposed to.  Still I kept running.  I was determined to enjoy and finish the race no matter what.  

Then came the incline to the Ambassador Bridge.  It was long.  I was beginning to feel tired.  I stopped to take a few pictures because the view was gorgeous.

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Running in Canada was so much fun!  Lots of spectators cheering for us.  I was running in Windsor, Canada while on the left was the Detroit River and left to it was Detroit.  How awesome is that?!?!

My foot began to bother me.  My longest training run was 6 miles so I was beginning to feel more tired.  I didn’t want to remember this race as one in which I was in pain.  Instead, I wanted to remember it as the race where I ran in two different countries.  I soaked it all in.  The weather was perfect and I loved seeing the Canadians cheering for us.  So I kept going. 

My time in Canada was coming to an end as I entered the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel which is under the Detroit River.  Someone warned me that it would be hot in there.  It wasn’t too hot but I did warm up a little bit.  Love the middle picture with both flags!

Towards the end of the tunnel is another slight incline.  

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You know what I am going to say now, right?  I was hurting.  I felt even more tired.  I wanted the race to be over.  I still had about 4 miles to go.  I kept going.  I began to wonder if I had made a mistake in running the race.  Well, at that point there wasn’t anything to do but to keep going.  I am smiling in my pictures but pictures can be deceiving, right?  🙂

I ran and walked the last 4 miles.  We were back downtown and I remember thinking that I was going be done soon.  I could see more people lined up on the sidewalk.  I could hear the announcer and knew I was close to the finish line.  I kept running till I finally finished.

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I enjoyed this race and would love to do it again.  And this time hopefully not be dealing with an injury.  It took me a few days to recover from the race but I don’t regret running it.  My quads hurt a lot.  I felt like I had run a marathon.  The weather was perfect, there were a lot of water stations (there were signs letting you know how far the next water station was), and the volunteers were wonderful.  Every runner also gets free race photos (low resolution but still free).  Oh and the best part was running in CANADA!!!!

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The swag bag had a long sleeve shirt, a pair of gloves, and a race wrap.

I am pleased with how I did.  I enjoyed the race and finished it.  That is all I wanted.  Oh, and I got mostly positive splits.  Isn’t that the way to do it?  🙂  And yes I did run with my passport and no a border patrol agent didn’t stop me to check it.

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If you are planning to do this race, I hope I convinced you to do it.  Save the date as next year it will be on October 18.  There is also a marathon if you want to run more than 13.1 miles.  

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