Five Foto Friday x3

I decided to bring back Foto Friday because I want to share just SOME of the statues that I saw last weekend in Trenton, NJ at Grounds for Sculpture. Seward Johnson is the sculptor of most of them and bases many of his works on French Impressionist paintings.  (My favorite as a former French teacher.)

Happy Halloween!

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Every Friday, three DC area bloggers Mary at Mar On the Run, Cynthia at You Signed Up For What?! and Courtney from Eat Pray Run, DC to host the Friday Five linkup.  Anyone can join with their own Friday Five post (yes, it must be a Friday Five!!)  They encourage you to visit other blogs on the linkup, comment, share and engage!

This week’s theme is Halloween, of course!

Happy Running! Have a nice weekend! Believe it or not, I do not have a race! Do you?

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Let the training begin…

Jan 17, 2015

So I have signed up for my 10th Half Marathon!!! Pretty exciting!

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Now I have to make sure that I run no matter what the weather is like.

This is a plan that I have used for my previous half marathons.  I’m pretty flexible with my weekday runs.  I just try to get the long runs done on the weekend.

One big difference for this year is that I just did a 10 mile race and I have a 9.3 mile (15K) race coming up so my long runs are ahead of schedule. I will probably just keep up the 6-8 mile long run and try to get more comfortable with the distance before I increase.

I also play tennis on Tuesdays instead of Mondays. So I may do some long runs on Saturdays and run 3-4 miles on Mondays.

As I said…I am very flexible with my training.

Maybe  this time, I’ll even try to do some speed workouts… (probably not!)

I have only signed up for 2 races (so far) — The Turkey Trot 10k on Nov. 27 and the Last Run 5K on Dec 6.  I may also do a 5k on Nov 29 and a free 15k on Dec 14.

My work is closed from Dec 20-Jan 4 which is great.  That way I can be flexible with my longest runs.

Let’s hope for a warm, dry winter.

Can’t wait! Running along the ocean is on my bucket list!!

 Happy Running! How do you train for a half marathon?

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The Perfect 10 Miler race recap

10-26-14 in NJ

I had been excited about this race since last March.

I coordinated it with a visit to a college friend, Andrea, who lives in NJ.

I drove to her house on Friday.  Then on Saturday, we took the ferry into NYC for a college reunion.

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on the ferry

A group of 7 of us who spent our junior year abroad in Nice, France (41 years ago!!) met for brunch at a French restaurant (of course) and we chatted and chatted.

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the group outside the restaurant

Since this was a French brunch, there was no pasta on the menu so I had crepes instead. I also had creme brulee for dessert but neither seemed to be substantial enough.

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After we left the restaurant, we walked around Washington Square Park and I bought a NYC pretzel (I had to carb load, right?)

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Then instead of taking the subway, we decided to walk to the High Line, walk it to end and then to the ferry. (Walking all afternoon the day before a race in uncomfortable shoes? What was I thinking???)

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I walked on the High Line last year but they have recently extended it.

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view from the High line

By the time we got back, the sun was setting.

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view on NJ from NYC

We decided to stop for pizza back in NJ (more carbs for me!!)

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our view of NYC from the restaurant in NJ

I paid extra to pick up my race packet on race day so I needed to leave earlier even earlier on Sunday.

I originally thought that my friend lived closer to the race than she did.  According to Google, it would take anywhere between 1 h 5 min and 1 h 20 min. Since the race started at 8 am and I wanted to be there at 7 am, I had to leave around 5:15 am (ouch!)

With maybe 5000 runners, I was nervous about how long it would take me to into in the park and that the park would close at 7:15 am.

So of course, I couldn’t sleep at all.

I got up at 4:30 am and had my hot cereal and tea and headed out.  At this hour, there was no traffic and thanks to my Garmin GPS, I had no problems finding Mercer County Park.

I arrived as one of the first cars in the parking lot.

I walked to the skating rink (still dark out!) and picked up my race packet.  There were indoor restrooms (but NO toilet paper).

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glad I got this photo – never saw them again – where are their speedos?

Then, I walked back to my car.  I decided since there was a bag check and it was a long walk, I would get my clothes to change into for after the race.

At this point, the parking lot was filling up and there was a long line of traffic getting into the park.  I was glad that I had arrived early.

I walked back to the rink, checked my bag and used the restroom. (There were single porta potties everywhere but the lines were LONG.)

Soon it was time to walk to the start (which was quite a long walk.) There were lots and lots of porta potties there …who knew?

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started with my DIY arm warmers on

The weather was perfect for racing…in the 50s and sunny.  It was breezy and  it was supposed to get very windy later.

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I lined up near the 9 min/mile pacer.  I planned to stay there as long as I could.

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It was very crowded at the start and I had a hard time moving.  I weaved in and out through the crowd for quite a while.

As per my usual plan, I started out fast and walked through the water stops.  I expected them at least every 2 miles but the first two weren’t until mile 2.5 and mile 5 and I regretted not carrying water… I was so thirsty.  After that, the stops seemed to be every mile.

I was warm & ditched my cheap DIY arm warmers.  It was warm enough to have worn a tank top but I was fine with what I wore.

Around mile 4, I took a Gu and then realized that I had lost my other Gu.  No problem since they were giving out energy gels at one of the water stops later.

Luckily I grabbed some red licorice around mile 6 because I missed the gels around mile 8.

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To sum up the race, my pace was decent for the first five miles.  Then I developed blisters and they got more and more painful.  As they got painful, I ran slower and walked more.

I never saw the 10 min/mi pacer which really surprised me.

The course was nice…you ran around the park and then around a college campus and back…nothing really scenic but not very hilly which made me happy.

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The last mile seemed to go on forever. The wind had picked up and we were running into it.

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I definitely didn’t have the energy to sprint like I usually do through the finish line but I was so glad to be done and take off my shoes!

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I crossed at 1:38:45 (chip time).

As soon as you were done, you could go to a computer and check your time.

Then I limped to the food tent where they boasted of having “Healthy Clean Eats” …pretzels, grilled zucchini, peppers, asparagus and chicken.

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I wanted a bagel, cookies or donuts and chocolate milk…wah! wah!

But I ate the pretzel and went to change my clothes. (There was supposed to be beer and mimosas but I didn’t see any.)

done with my not so perfect 10 miles

They gave out awards early.  I didn’t need to stay, I was 8th in my age group.  The winner ran a 7 min. miles!! At age 60!

Believe it or not,  this was a PR for me (by almost 6 minutes)!! My previous 10 mile times were 1:44:39 and 1:49:55.

Race Stats:

finished 770 out of 1977
finished 8 out of 36 in my age group

Splits:

mile 1- 9:39
mile 2- 9:12
mile 3 -9:23
mile 4- 9:25
mile 5 – 10:16
mile 6 – 10:17
mile 7 – 10:27
mile 8 – 10:41
mile 9 – 10:27
mile 10 – 10:07

love the hoodie

I was happy with my time and I enjoyed racing but on the whole, the race was just so-so.

It seemed to be more hype than anything.  Maybe it was because this was the first race that I have done alone…no friends or family running or watching…or that my feet hurt and I didn’t run well the second half.

When I was done, I met my friend at Grounds for Sculpture which was about 10 minutes away. We had lunch (crepes again) and walked the gardens for 5 hours (my poor footsies) looking at Seward Johnson‘s sculptures. It was wonderful.

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I am wearing my race shirt.

The next day, I stopped off to visit a boating friend who also lives in NJ.

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still eating to recover from my race :)

I had a great time visiting my NJ friends, seeing my college friends, walking around NYC and Grounds for Sculpture and for the first time ever, my destination race was not the highlight of my weekend.

Happy Running! How was your weekend? Ever run a race that didn’t meet your expectations?

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Tuesdays on the Run: Favorite Running Product/Gear

Erika @ MCM Mama Runs hosts Tuesdays on the Run with April @ Run the great wide somewhere and Patty @ My no-guilt life!

This week’s topic is: Favorite Running Product/Gear

Mine is my Garmin 205.

I ran with the Nike Plus sensor on my shoe and my iPod for the first first years.  I even trained with it for my first half marathon.

Then I bought my Garmin 205 right before the day of my first Half.

I know it is BIG but I love it. I don’t even feel it on my wrist.  Someday, it will break and I will have to get a new/smaller model :(

Why do I love it?

1. It was affordable.  I paid less than $100 for and I have had NO problems with it  in 4 years.)

2. The screen can be split in four so I can see everything I need on one screen – race time, clock time, race pace, race distance (or whatever I choose) without touching a button.

3. It has a very reliable and accurate. I sometimes use my iPhone and many of its apps and none are exact.  They ALL measure less than the actual distance.

4. It can be set to beep for intervals.  It can also beep if you are running too fast or too slow.

5.  The current lap pace pops pops intermittently as you run and at the end of each lap.

6.  It is easy to see your stats after you are done – lap splits, best speed for each lap, calories, etc.

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this was my recent 5K PR – walked 3x!

7. You can also connect it to your computer so you can sync it and see even more of your stats.

I know that there are many more features that I don’t use such as the maps and I don’t use it for intervals or any kind of timed training runs (because I don’t do them) but I couldn’t race without it.

Happy Running!  What is your favorite running product/gear?

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Monday Running Update

img_3641Last Week:

  • Monday – 2 walks at work, chili cook off at work, 3 mile group run
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AM walk

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PM walk to walk off the chili

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  • Tuesday – walk at work, rest, tennis
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raining today

  • Wednesday – STEM group run + more (4 miles)
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.5 miles, 1.5 group run/walk, 2 miles

  • Thursday – walk at work, 4 3 mile run on the TM (rain), mall walk with BFF
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raining today

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watched Nashville but it was still torture

  • Friday-OFF from work, rest, drive to NJ
  • Saturday – rest, ferry to NYC, reunion lunch in NYC, walking around Washington Square Park & the High Line

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  • Sunday – 10 mile race! walking around Grounds for Statues

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This Week: (Week 1 of HM training)

  • Monday – OFF from work, rest , visit to a boating friend on the way home, (4 mile group run if I get home in time)
  • Tuesday – walk at work, rest,gym
  • Wednesday – walk at work, 3 mile run at lunch, bowling with tennis friends
  • Thursday – walk at work, hair appt
  • Friday-walk at work, STEM group run + (4 miles)
  • Saturday – proctor MPREs at work, rest, gym
  • Sunday - 8 mile run,

Happy Running! How is your running going?  Any races ?

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Pick Me!!

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March 15, 2015

I signed up for the lottery for the NYC Half Marathon!

I wish I was good enough to gain entry with my speed but there’s no way I am going to run a sub 2 hour half marathon.

The entries available to non-guaranteed applicants are filled through three drawings this year on December 9, 2014, one in each of the following applicant pools :

1.     “NYC-metro area” applicants (i.e., residents in and within 60 miles of New York City);

2.     “National” applicants (i.e., U.S. residents outside of the  NYC-metro area);

3.     “International” applicants (i.e., non-U.S. residents, including Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories).

Fingers crossed that I will be picked!!

 Happy Running! Have you ever run the NYC half marathon?

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WIA Pumpkin

It’s no secret that I love everything pumpkin! Here are some of my recent purchases:

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And I’ve lost count of how many of these, I’ve drank:

So when my work announced its annual chili cook-off…

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I decided to make Pumpkin Chili, of course:

Pumpkin Chili Recipe

Unfortunately, I had to run with my running group that day so I couldn’t eat as much of the different chilis as I would have liked.

I didn’t win the cook-off but I have lots of chili left to bring home and eat tomorrow.

Happy Running!  What is your favorite fall food?

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