race report: ready. set. glow 5k {3.31.2017}

I received free registration to this event for myself and my family in exchange for my promotion of the race. All opinions are my own.

For the second year in a row, three neighborhood schools came together for one of the most fun races around: Ready. Set. Glow 5K!

Due to a prior commitment, I missed out on the fun last year, so I was incredibly excited. In fact, the only negative was the Mr. PugRunner had to go out of town, so we weren’t able to run as a family.

Packet pickup took place on Thursday, the day prior, outside of Willie Jewell’s BBQ. Pre-registered runners got bibs, glow-in-the-dark cotton t-shirts (in youth and adult sizes), and a glow stick. It was quick and easy, plus we were able to grab dinner while we were doing it.

The festivities started on Friday night at 6:00 PM. Participants were advised to arrive early , in order to get parking in the main lot. Overflow parking was also available, but it was a bit of a walk from the start line (as were the portapotties, but it was manageable).

Race day registration was also available, but those who signed up last minute would not receive a shirt. The registration table was hopping all the same.

The staging area was set up with sponsor and vendor booths: there was a DJ, an ice/ice cream truck and Chick-Fil-A sandwiches for sale; other sponsors offered face painting with glow-in-the-dark paint and all kinds of glow gear.

Little man and I brought some of our own glow sticks, but we also took a few extra from the offerings.

I also customized our running shirts with glow-in-the-dark paint. Hey. We’ve got spirit.

At around 7:15 PM, the one mile Fun Run started. We continued to walk around, meet up with friends and hang out until it got a little darker and it was time for the 5K.

The sun started to sink, night fell, and we kind of lost track of time, so we headed over to the start line…

Only to realize that people had already begun to run! Oops! It’s always been a fear of mine to miss the start of a race, so we hurried to catch up and got ourselves in with the other runners!

Little man was sporting his new shoes, which he proclaimed made him extra fast. We had chatted a little about strategy prior to the race, and I thought we decided to take things like Daytona: run for about a half mile or so, until we were out of the initial crowd, and then fall into our :30/:30 intervals.

We were not on the same page.

With his “fast shoes”, he darted ahead, and I was compelled to keep up. At this age, I’m ok with him being a little more independent, but it was quite dark and hard to see, so I didn’t want him out there alone. When I did catch up to him, we quickly discussed a meet up plan, just in case he crossed the finish line before me.

That being said, after the first mile, we slowed down considerably. Fortunately, we were out of the thick of the crowd, and I tried to keep us moving at a nice clip. Pacing is not in little man’s vocabulary quite yet.

The course was simple enough. It was one and a half loops along a stretch of road with a median in front of the RingPower facility. Since it’s dark, the scenery comes from all the participants in their glow gear, helped along by some black lights set up at one point on the course. There was one water stop set up in the median that served for both sides of the course, and seemed well supplied.

This was the best I could do with photos. Let’s just say we were so fast all you could see was a blur.

The chute to the finish line was full of cheering spectators, glow sticks and cow bells! We kicked it in and collected medals, bananas and water.

I have to say, last year’s glow-in-the-dark medal was fun, but this? This was incredible.

RSG medal

The best part? Little man PR’d! I was so incredibly proud!

The Ready. Set. Glow 5K is a growing event. It’s a really nice size, and I love the community involvement and local support. Most of all, I love  seeing all the kids and families come out to participate. Proceeds from this race go to improvements at three of the area’s neighborhood schools, which is definitely a great cause. I will always support any activity that gets people of all ages moving, and this is truly one of the most fun around!

Ever run a glow run?

Do you have any local events that go to support your community?

 

weekly wrap: 4.2 – 4.8 + publix savannah women’s half marathon race week

Happy Monday!  It’s time for the Weekly Wrap with HoHo Runs and MissSippi Piddlin!

WeeklyWrap

If you do a weekly recap post, this is a great way to check in with other active bloggers for extra support, sharing and accountability!

This week came with its share of ups and downs. I tried really hard to focus on the good (a weekend in Savannah for the Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon) over the rest of it, and managed to get through that way.

Sunday – rest

We slacked on Sunday. Big time. Little man and I had planned to run a race in Jacksonville, but it was early, and we would have had to get up and out the door by around 5:15AM. After all Mr PugRunner’s traveling and dealing with some not so great news, we were just really tired. I decided that if we woke up on our own, we would go. If not? Well… it’s ok to have some rest.

Turns out, we did not wake up on time. I felt a little guilty, but also decently rested, so I got over it quickly. We went food shopping and then I took little man to see Power Rangers, which he had been begging to see. Honestly, I usually dig these kinds of things, but I didn’t  love this one. The language was awful for a young adult movie (and we aren’t particularly strict about that), and it was just a bit more intense than it needed to be.

However, Mr PugRunner finally made it home from his trip! We were really happy to see him and spend the evening hanging out at home. Things finally started to feel settled again.

Monday – rest

Monday was just getting everything back on track. We had school and karate and all the regular things. Normalcy is much appreciated.

What wasn’t appreciated? This guy. It was tough removing him from our garage but we got it done.

Tuesday – rest

I had planned to run, but when I woke up, we were in the midst of a crazy thunderstorm with tons of lightning. Obviously, I didn’t have much of a choice but to roll over and go back to sleep.

Little man had his first day of triathlon club, and it went really well. The coach will be working on something different each week and I am hoping to be able to pop into some practices.

We also attended a meeting for little man’s new school. We were able to meet his new principal and get some ideas as to when things will be ready. It’s bittersweet – we love his current school, but this one will be brand new, with a great administration and a smaller student body. Fingers crossed that it all goes well.

Wednesday – 3 miles running

I was able to slip in three miles before work. I cut it a little closer than I would have liked, but miles are miles.

It was a busy day and I was ready to turn my focus to my upcoming weekend in Savannah by the time the day was done.

Little man had a great karate session, despite some raging storms. When we got home, we hunkered down for the night, and hoped that everything would pass quickly.

Thursday – 2 miles running, 6 miles cycling, 2 miles running

Even though the storms left us, the winds were crazy all through the day.

I had planned on a two mile run – 10 mile ride – three mile run series, but when I got on the bike, I quickly found out that Mother Nature was not on my side. I ended up turning in six exhausting miles and cut my second run down to two miles. I wanted to do more, but I still had a half on Saturday and the wind was blowing my bike all over the place.

Little man had his final Honor Roll awards ceremony at school, and then we left there to have lunch with a friend.

While the boys went to Cub Scouts, I finished packing for my Savannah trip. I was in desperate need of this weekend.

Friday – rest

After sending the boys off to school and work, I packed the car and waited for Meghan. We were on the road by 10:00 AM, and made the drive to Savannah in record time.

I’ll recap the whole weekend in an upcoming post, so stay tuned for all the great details!

In the meantime, little man and Mr PugRunner put in some workouts for little man’s upcoming tri! One half mile run following 1.6 miles on the bike. Way to go, guys!

Meghan and I were pretty worn out from our drive, so we laid out our flat runners and got to bed early. It was almost go-time!

Saturday – Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon

Race day! Not to worry, full recap to come! I can’t wait to write it all out! I had the best time with some really awesome running friends, and celebrating the rest of the weekend in Savannah!

 

Workout wise, this was a great week! I still desperately need some swim time, and my friend has offered up her heated pool for some laps, so I’m going to try to take advantage of that. With the half behind me, it’s time to start focusing on the spring and summer 5Ks and shorter races, while building up my cross-training.

How was your week in training?

How do you supplement your running in the summer months?

race report: gate river run 15K {3.11.2017}

This has taken a while to write. I was waiting for the professional race photos, which are trickling in slowly. I can always add photos later.

2017 was the 40th anniversary of the Gate River Run 15K. That’s fairly exciting when you think about it. I should have been more pumped to run it, but I was dragging mentally. The bulk of my ennui was how quickly plans kept changing. I was invited to the Girls On The Run Solemates shindig, which was really exciting, but then my host got the flu (I still got to go and had other friends there, but I hated that my host missed out). I had a friend who was going to run with me, but then she had to bail due to other commitments, so another friend wanted to join me, but then SHE got really sick, and I was back on my own.

There was nothing to be done about that, so let’s get to it!

I arrived at around 6:30 AM and got my assigned parking spot at the FJCT building where the Solemates event was being held. We had been advised to be parked by 7AM because that’s when the road closures would start, and with so many people trying to get into the area, traffic builds quickly.

It was still pretty chilly out, so I was grateful to be able to stay warm inside. There were real restrooms (with no line), and a great spread of bagels, bananas, fruit, coffee and water. I met up with my other friends who were there and we grabbed a table. My stomach was being cranky, so I definitely took advantage of the restroom more than once.

Being inside and away from the bulk of the runners made it hard to gauge the crowd mood and when it was time to start getting into the corrals. I think we left with sufficient time (the Solemates also provided private gear check, so we could just leave our stuff while we were running), and I was able to make one final portapotty stop.

The Gate River Run starts a little later – 8:30AM. This means that things heat up quickly. It’s all part of the experience, and I was prepared with a handheld of Gatorade.

I crossed the start line close to 8:45. At this point, my strategy was just to run and see how I felt. It’s so crowded in the beginning that popping in and out of intervals is difficult, and I made it all the way to the Main Street Bridge (Mile 1) before I needed my first walk break. My fourth Gate River Run was off to a positive start.

Start – Mile 2

Things stayed pretty crowded all through the first bridge and into the San Marco area. I thought about how last year, I wasn’t able to run any of the Main Street Bridge because of my hip and felt extra motivated to push this year. My right glute was (and has been) annoyed with me, but I was able to work it out on my walk breaks. I felt pretty good, and although it was warm, the humidity didn’t seem as ridiculous as in the past.

Miles 3 – 6

This is the heart of the race. So many people are out in all the beautiful neighborhoods. They cheer, hold up signs and offer refreshments. There’s lots to see and with the live bands playing along the route, there is more than enough to keep one’s mind off the actual running.

I had Gu with me, but I was more than happy to accept a cold orange slice and a popsicle along the way – the sweetness of the fruit and the sugar of the popsicle were everything. In the past, I’ve snagged sausage and beer, but this time, I didn’t want to stop.

Mile 7 – 9.3

The end of this race is pretty brutal. There is a long stretch of highway leading to the Green Monster. And then it’s just the interminable climb to the top of the Hart Bridge. This year, the wind was, indeed a factor. After the summit, the last mile of the race is a winding downhill, which can be treacherous on tired legs and failing form.

I put my head down and focused on my music for the whole of Atlantic Boulevard. It seemed a little shorter this year, and soon I made the left and started the climb to the bridge.

My buddy Mike was out in a sombrero, cheering on all the runners on the ascent. I didn’t realize how tired I was until he started yelling my name and taking selfies (it’s what he does). He gave me a hug and asked if I needed water or Gatorade and I realized I just needed to be done. He told me to get over that bridge and sent me off.

At the start of the metal grating (again, treacherous for tired feet), a runner wiped out. It’s really hard watching people fall, either by tripping or from exhaustion – I got a thumbs up from her and kept going.

Finally, I reached the 1600m timing mat (there is a contest for fastest downhill mile). I was just about to open it up, when a runner saw the photographer a few yards ahead of me, cut across most of the course and attempted to get a pro photo of her leaping in the air. The whole thing seemed to happen in slow motion: she ran, launched herself…. and crashed flat on her face directly in front of me. I had to brake hard to keep from tripping and falling over her. I stopped to try to help, but she would not get up. Two women came back (maybe they were with her?) and created a road block so other runners wouldn’t trip. She finally sat up and seemed to be ok, short of some road rash, so I ran off.

My groove had been interrupted, but I got back in stride and finished pretty strong.

I met up with a girlfriend and we went to grab a free beer (the event is all you can drink) before heading back to the SoleMates event. We were both pretty happy with our performances.

We enjoyed the outdoor festivities for a little, but we were both starving, so we returned to the FJCT building to get some food. There were burgers with all the toppings, salads, chips and cupcakes. And drinks. Everything was delicious and it was nice to chill in the air conditioning and enjoy.

It wasn’t until I got home that afternoon that I realized I had, in fact, PR’d. Which was just huge and unexpected. I was fairly sure my PR days were over, but maybe there is still gas in the old tank.

I say it every year, but it bears repeating. The Gate River Run 15K is really one of the best races in Jacksonville. Not only is it an amazing running event, but it’s just a wonderful all around experience. The community and crowd support is second to none, the course is always a challenge, and the atmosphere is always incredible.

Even though I wasn’t feeling motivated at the start of the race, things worked out. I was sufficiently trained, and even though I was a little discouraged at having to run 9.3 miles alone, I found a good place in my head and ended up reaping the benefits with a personal best on this course. I didn’t stop for selfies or photos, passed on most of the treats being handed out and took advantage of feeling good. I hope more races can go this way in the future.

What’s the local race that stands out as representative of your running community?

Have you ever had someone in a photo-gone-wrong situation during a race?

 

race report: y not tri indoor triathlon {3.26.2017}

About a month ago, I talked myself into registering for my first sprint triathlon. I am still not entirely convinced it was a great idea (because I’m anxious like that), but, like it or not, it’s happening.

I am kind of excited to be trying something new.

I had a rough outline of how to train worked out in my head. Obviously, I had the running part down, and it was easy enough to add in cycling, but I planned to get in the pool over Spring Break. Our community has a pool with a span of 25 yards to swim laps. It’s not fancy but it serves its purpose. However, Spring Break roared in with high winds, lows in the 30s and highs in the 50s and 60s, so I took a hard pass on that.

In the meantime, I happened to see a Facebook ad for the Y Not Tri Indoor Tri at one of Jacksonville’s YMCAs.

We are not members of a Y, but the event was open to everyone (non-members just had to pay a little extra). I mulled it over for a few days and then registered. I figured even it was indoors, it would be a great way to get a feel for switching from the pool to the bike to the road.

What’s an Indoor Tri, you ask? Well, it’s a multi-sport (swim/bike/run) event where participants execute the activities indoors, completing as much as they can within certain time parameters, rather than having to achieve specified distances.

There are also transitions (10 minutes between the swim and the bike and 5 minutes between the bike and the run) to allow for changing and switching shoes.

Basically, it sounded like a great introduction to the sport, and maybe make things a little less anxiety-inducing come April 23.

Athletes would report to the YMCA on Friday or Saturday to pick up their packets (including a bib and event shirt). We were free to look around the facility and acquaint ourselves with the location of the pool, bikes, treadmills and locker rooms, so that we would know where to go on Sunday. Our instruction email said that volunteers could help us write down our settings for the bike, but it was pretty busy when I was there, and I didn’t want to trouble anyone. It was always easy enough to set up my bike at spin class, so figured this shouldn’t be hard.

We were also emailed our wave times for Sunday (wave 1 started at 9:00 AM, wave 2 at 9:35 AM and wave 3 at 10:10 AM), and requested to show up about 30 minutes in advance to be marked, set up our transition area, and be ready to report to the pool five minutes prior to the wave start. I found myself in Wave 3. On the one hand, I am all about getting up and out for fitness related stuff, but on the other, I didn’t have to wake up too early, and could still arrive ahead of my wave in case I had any last minute questions.

I confess. I was really nervous. I kind of didn’t want to go by myself, but sometimes, you just have to put on your big girl pants and go for it.

I arrived at the Y in advance of the first wave, and had plenty of time to orient myself.

I got marked

and one of the staff members escorted me to the locker room to show me how to operate the locks and where I could find the back entrance of the pool. I don’t think I’ve been in a locker room since high school, so it was a little disconcerting. K told me there were private rooms if I wasn’t comfortable changing in public, but I realized I probably wasn’t going to care that much in the moment.

She also took me up to the bikes and helped me figure out my settings. They were a little more complicated than what I have used, so I was grateful for that assistance. I noted all the numbers in my phone and hoped I would be able to make the adjustments when my ride time arrived.

After that, I returned to the lockers and set up my transition as best I could.

And then it was time to wait. I camped out on a window seat near the pool to watch some of the action. It was actually pretty calming to watch the two previous waves complete their swim. Finally, it was time for one last trip to the restroom, to put on my cap and goggles and head out to the pool.

Swim – 10 minutes, 415 yards (8+ laps)

I managed to get the end lane to myself – some people doubled up in their other lanes, but I was glad I didn’t have to worry about running into anyone. I was a little nervous – I hadn’t been in a pool in about a year, and although I know how to swim and consider myself reasonably decent at it, I’ve never been in an actual timed situation. There were several volunteers stationed at the end of the pool, keeping track of time, recording laps and calling out encouragement.

When the whistle sounded, I started pretty strong. Forgetting to actually start my Garmin in the process. Good job. I wasn’t particularly skilled at pacing myself or being too consistent, so I just did what felt good: I managed three good laps of nice freestyle, and then switched between breast stroke and freestyle for the remainder of the ten minutes. I didn’t ever have to stop or take an actual break, but I did get a little panicky at some of the chop from other lanes slapping at my face. On the plus side, I know to expect it now, which will keep me calmer during the real thing.

At the final whistle, everyone returned to the shallow end of the pool, got their official completed laps (I swam 8 laps plus about 1/4 more, but only the full lengths counted), and retreated to their respective locker rooms.

Transition 1 – 10 minutes

Ten minutes ended up being a lot of time. I used my towel as a bit of a shield, dried and changed my top (I brought a sports bra with an actual hook closure so I didn’t get stuck if I wasn’t completely dry), then my bottom. I was able to get my socks and shoes on, grab my phone, headphones, ArmPocket and water bottle of Nuun, and make it upstairs in plenty of time to choose a bike.

A volunteer made the appropriate adjustments for me, which was really nice. Everyone hopped on their bikes, the volunteers zeroed out everyone’s computers, and the bike segment began.

Ride – 30 minutes, 8.2 miles

I felt pretty good going from the pool to the ride. It took a few minutes to kind of settle into a groove and find the tension that felt best, but I figured it out.

I confess, it was boring, just sitting in one place and staring ahead. Way different than being out on the road. People were very much in their zones, so it felt weird trying to start a conversation, although the volunteers were really helpful coming around and seeing how we were doing. One of them even picked up my phone for me after I dropped trying to change my music. That wouldn’t happen on the road, for sure!

I did notice that some people were mixing up their routines (increasing their tension and then peddling in a standing position or doing really crazy sprint intervals). Me? I just did my thing and worked to get in as many miles as possible.

Transition 2: 5 minutes

Getting off that bike was somewhat unpleasant. Everything felt kind of tight and unresponsive. Boo.

Treadmills were located only a few feet away and I quickly selected one. For some reason, the five minutes passed really quickly. I (made a mistake and) didn’t bring a different pair of shoes for running: I had my Catalysts, which are great for cycling and for speedwork, so I assumed they would be ok for twenty minutes on the treadmill.

Once again, volunteers checked us and made sure our machines were zeroed out. I didn’t feel like I was ready when they said “go” but I certainly wasn’t going to waste any time.

Run: 20 minutes, 1.78 miles

Treadmill running isn’t my jam. In a crunch, I’ll endure it, but I would really rather not.

This was no different, and I had a hard time getting comfortable. Even one of the volunteers commented that I looked stressed.

We really had a beautiful view, so I tried to focus on my music and the river.

After a while, my right leg started to feel a bit achy. It has been bugging me rather regularly, but the treadmill was just exacerbating the feeling. My strategy was “slow and steady” and, since run/walk intervals are pretty complicated to manage on the treadmill, I ran all but one minute of the 20. Granted, it was nothing epic, but it was an accomplishment for me, nonetheless.

I felt really good when it was all done. I was incredibly pleased with my swim, happy with my run, and while my run wasn’t great on this day, I am confident enough that I can get it done.

This was a fantastic opportunity and the perfect way to get my feet wet (literally) in the sport of triathlon. I still have a little work to do in advance of the big day, but I think I have a pretty solid handle on everything.

My plan is continue to work on ride/run bricks throughout the week, and hit a few more targeted workouts in the pool. On no training at all, my swim felt good, so it shouldn’t take me too long to achieve a bit more strength and endurance. The swimsuit worked out great and while I hate the idea of being wet while I ride and run, that’s just part of the sport. I have to add a sports bra under the suit for a little extra support, but that won’t be a big deal.

Let’s keep our fingers crossed that all goes well.

Have you ever done an indoor triathlon?

What’s your strongest discipline: swimming, cycling or running?

weekly wrap: 3.26 – 4.1 + publix savannah women’s half marathon training week 8

Happy Monday!  It’s time for the Weekly Wrap with HoHo Runs and MissSippi Piddlin!

WeeklyWrap

If you do a weekly recap post, this is a great way to check in with other active bloggers for extra support, sharing and accountability!

Here we are. Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon week! The weather reports are in, and it looks like everything is on track for an amazing weekend. I am really looking forward to visiting with some wonderful running friends, and visiting a city I love.

How did the past week shape up? Pretty decently, considering.

Sunday – Y Not Tri Indoor Triathlon (415 yards swimming, 8.2 miles cycling, 1.72 miles running)

Recap on this coming soon! I promise! It was a great preview to the triathlon world, and I was actually pretty proud of myself.

Unfortunately, the rest of the day was spent helping Mr PugRunner get packed for two trips (one personal and unexpected, the other for business). We took a break to check out a new restaurant that opened recently.

Monday – rest

Mr PugRunner headed out early Monday, and so I got little man off to school for his FSA tests. We haven’t really made a big deal out of the tests, so the plan was to make sure he had a good night’s sleep and a solid breakfast.

It ended up being a great day – little man got his report card and made honor roll again! We opted to stay home from karate because it was a later class and he had another test on Tuesday. It was a great idea in theory, but he ended up shredding both his knees when he tripped while running in flip flops. Ugh.

Tuesday – 4 miles running

I had a pair of new shoes that I was eager to try, so I headed out for a four mile spin in these Adidas Supernova STs.

Honestly, I was quite impressed. While I don’t know if I would wear them for longer than five or six miles, they felt great for the shorter distance and I am happy to add them to my rotation.

Work ended up being insanely busy, which was probably for the best. However, I was really, really glad to get home. Little man skipped his last session of running club because of his cut up knees, and I was just really happy to have a quiet night with him.

Wednesday – 8.5 miles cycling, 3 miles running

I went out for another brick on Wednesday morning. The wind was still a factor, but I felt strong and quite pleased with the results. That being said, my Garmin was almost dead and I managed to finish up right before it pooped out. Yay, me!

My parents came over that afternoon, and Mr PugRunner arrived home earlier than planned (yay!) so we all went out to a nice family dinner. It was much needed and I was so happy to have our little family together.

Thursday – rest

The day started incredibly early as Mr PugRunner had  5:30 AM flight. I didn’t get back to sleep, so I just started my day.

That being said, I had a hair appointment! It has been a LONG time since I treated myself, and I was so happy to have F take care of my grays and dead ends. She layered everything so my hair is much lighter for summer.

After school, little man and I picked up our race packets for the Ready. Set. Glow 5K and grabbed a bite to eat before Cub Scouts. I confess, we spent a lot of time eating out this week. It was just easier with everything going on.

Friday – 5 miles running + Ready. Set. Glow 5K

With the way the week was going, I knew I wasn’t going to get in any kind of a long run, so I split it up into a morning five miler, saving the last three miles for our evening 5K.

Little man had complained that his shoes were getting too small, so I made a trip to the New Balance outlet to get him another pair in the next size up. Holy moly, his feet are getting so big!

The race was wonderful. I wish it had been a little cooler, but we toughed it out. Little man did an amazing job. I can’t wait to share all about it!

Saturday – rest

Saturday was a day of errands and getting things done. Little man helped me take some photos for another blog post I had to write,

we went to the grocery store and Target. We had a late night, enjoying snacks and cocktails with neighbors while the kids played in the culdesac. It was a very welcome break.

 

The month of March did end on a high note: 74.2 miles running and 24.5 miles cycling. I feel back to myself in a lot of ways, and am looking forward to the month ahead.

On Saturday, I’ll be running the Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon! If you still haven’t signed up, online registration closes on Wednesday night at 11:59 PM ET.

How was your week in training? 

What’s next up for you?

 

new looks from new balance + new balance fashion fitness expo

I was gifted the following items from New Balance in association with my partnership with Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon and 5K. All opinions are my own.

It’s almost time!

In less than a week, runners will be arriving in Savannah and heading to the New Balance Fashion Fitness Expo to pick up their race packets,

and then to shop at booths manned by some of Savannah’s favorite local purveyors. From there, athletes will find themselves at the New Balance area, which will be fully stocked with the latest in running gear, race logo apparel and a full complement of New Balance running shoes.

Over the last year, I have become a huge fan of New Balance’s running clothes. I love the light and airy fabrics, the flattering cuts and draping, and the attention to detail. The colors and styles are both fashionable and functional, and they stand up well to washing.

In the meantime, I had the opportunity to try out a new look!

Check this out!

All in all, I found the ensemble well-suited to me. It was light enough for a warm Florida day, and comfortable for both running and yoga.

Heathered Short Sleeve Tee (alpha violet heather)

While we don’t have too much call for t-shirts in Florida, this heathered short sleeve fits the bill. It is so light and the material skims the body without clinging.

Since I am on the taller side (just under 5’10”) with a long torso, I appreciated that the tee hit at a good point on my hip, and didn’t ride up if I moved or extended my arms.

The moisture wicking was on point, too, and I really liked how the flat seams were totally unnoticeable.

Accelerate Capris (black)

I was really impressed by these capris. The material felt really thin, but once I had them on, they fit smoothly and flattered my curves. I loved the length, and while I initially thought the waistband would be too narrow, it fit nicely and the drawstring was easy to adjust.

There is also an inner, back pocket, which is perfect for a gel or key.

They didn’t ride down while I was running, either, which is a huge factor in my capri purchases.

I liked the reflective details on the legs, as well.

(Please note – these pants do run a little large, so please take that into account when purchasing).

Fresh Foam Zante v3 (Black with Thunder)

I was really excited to try out the shoes. I confess, my go-to shoes are stability models, so I know that these neutrals would be more for work and walking around than for running, but they are incredibly comfortable.

For one thing, they are super light and flexible. I also loved the feel of the Fresh Foam. It’s soft, but also responsive. The 6mm offset is a little lower than what I normally wear, but I didn’t feel like I was positioned too low to the ground.

While my overpronation would prevent me from wearing the Zantes for anything longer than short bursts of running, I loved the feel of the Fresh Foam cushion and would absolutely purchase a stability model in the future.

I am definitely looking forward to treating myself to a new outfit this year!

Don’t forget, online registration for the Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon & 5K ends on Wednesday, April 5 at 11:59PM Eastern. That means there’s still time to take advantage of this great savings!

Do you have a favorite piece of New Balance gear?

race into spring with run 13.1 + tropical smoothie cafe

This is a sponsored post. I have been compensated for my promotion of Run 13.1 and Tropical Smoothie Cafe. All opinions are my own.

April showers and May flowers are right around the corner! That’s right: spring has sprung! And what better way to celebrate than with the Run 13.1 and 5K on April 2?

Runners can choose from two distances (either 13.1 or 3.1 miles) in this race that starts and finishes at 7:00 AM at the iconic Jacksonville Landing.

The half marathon course offers a route through downtown Jacksonville, through the Springfield neighborhood, makes a loop around the Evergreen Cemetery and then returns to the Jacksonville Landing. The 5K starts with the 13.1ers, heading out for about 1.5 miles before turning to head back to the finish line.

Participants in both distances will receive gender-specific, moisture-wicking, technical shirts and a beautiful custom medal, and everyone is welcome at the post-race party to celebrate with music, food and beer!

Register at any 1st Place Sports retail location or online (online registration closes on Thursday, March 30).

You can also celebrate the new season with some of the Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s latest “boosted” offerings.

Try the Chia Banana Boost with Strawberries (coconut, almonds, dates, cinnamon, whole grain oats, chia seeds, roasted banana and strawberries), the Chia Banana Boost with Peanut Butter (coconut, almonds, dates, cinnamon, whole grain oats, chia seeds, roasted banana and peanut butter) or the Acai Berry Boost (acai, pomegrante, banana, blueberries and strawberries.

Which one will you try first?

See you at the Jacksonville Landing, ready to run!

 

 

weekly wrap: 3.19 – 3.25 + publix savannah women’s half marathon training week 7

Happy Monday!  It’s time for the Weekly Wrap with HoHo Runs and MissSippi Piddlin!

WeeklyWrap

If you do a weekly recap post, this is a great way to check in with other active bloggers for extra support, sharing and accountability!

Things went fairly well this week. There was a lot going on, but even with that, I managed to get in some nice runs and some decent cycling. After all, I had my first Indoor Tri yesterday (more on that later), so it was more than time to start dealing with training bricks.

Sunday – 10 miles cycling, 1.5 miles running

I wanted to build on Saturday’s run success, so I decided to try out the concept of riding, then hopping off and running. I set up a little transition area in the driveway, and set out.

It was far more windy than I needed, so my legs were aching by the time I finished 10 miles. Turning my feet over to run was harder than I would have thought, but once I got going, things went fairly smoothly. I didn’t have tons of time, so I did a quick 1.5 miler, just to get used to the feeling.

It went decently well. I was not disappointed.

Monday – 7 miles cycling

Little man had his last official day of Spring Break, so when I got home from work, the boys were still out and about. It was way too hot to run, so I got on the bike for another (too-windy) seven miles. The positive is that I am playing more with my gears to compensate for the resistance.

Tuesday – 5.1 miles, running

I had time for about four miles in the morning.

Then it was off to a fairly busy day at work, a very short (one mile) and hot run at little man’s run club

and finally, dinner with a girlfriend, who I haven’t seen in years. Literally.

Wednesday – rest

Nothing to report on Wednesday. Work was uneventful and the evening was quiet. Little man had his karate class, and did very well.

Thursday – 6 miles running

I had a bit of a late start, but I still managed six miles. Several of which were in the rain. Because I’m hardcore like that.

I was hoping to get out again when the boys went to Cub Scouts, but it was still drizzly, so I bailed and watched a movie at home instead.

Friday – rest

I met one of my running friends for a super yummy breakfast,

and then I had to go to one of our city’s YMCA’s to pick up my packet for Sunday’s Y Not Tri Indoor Triathlon.

Also on my list? Picking up an “athletic” swimsuit for said tri (and my upcoming one in April). I am not ready to commit to a full tri kit, but a suit for laps seemed like a decent investment. I figure I can wear a sports bra underneath it for extra support and then just slap my tank and running shorts over it when I get out of the pool and hit transition.

To date, I still don’t ride in cycling shorts. I haven’t had any issues with saddle pain, and I despise how spandex shorts look on me. I know that’s really vain, but I just don’t think I would be comfortable. For the time being, I think this will work fine.

That evening, we got dressed up for a nice dinner out to celebrate the homecoming of one of our deployed friends. It was a lovely evening, and look! Evidence that I do wear real clothes and makeup!

Saturday – rest

I was on the fence about running or riding. However, I had the Y Not Tri Indoor Tri planned for Sunday and really, really wanted to rest my legs. Especially since I hadn’t been in the in the pool in…. well… in a year. Oops.

We had a bit of a family day with karate photos for little man, a trip to the hardware store for some new pots and plants for the front porch, and a delicious dinner that Mr PugRunner cooked up on the Big Green Egg (honey glazed salmon and roasted beets with goat cheese).

I laid out my outfits and packed my bag for the morning. I was nervous, but I figured I would get to the Y well in advance of my 10:10 AM start to get settled.

 

So, 17 miles on the bike and 12.6 miles running are my totals for the week. While I am hating the windy weather, I’m glad for the extra challenge. I can’t wait to share about the Indoor Tri! Two weeks until the Publix Savannah Women’s Half Marathon and I am incredibly excited about that, too!

How was your week in training?

Any recommendations for solid triathlon gear?

tuesdays on the run: jacksonville race love

It’s Tuesday, so I’ll be joining up with My No-Guilt LifeMarcia’s Healthy Slice and MCM Mama Runs for “Tuesdays on The Run”!

Tuesdays on the Run

The lovely TOTR ladies are sharing all about their favorite local races, and I’ve got plenty to say on the matter!

When we moved to the Northeast Florida area almost a decade ago, neither Mr PugRunner nor myself had running on our minds. It was only in the last few years that we discovered our little hobby was supported by what I would consider one of the best running communities ever.

Here are some of my favorites:

Gate River Run 15K

Touted as the largest 15K in the entire country, the Gate River Run just celebrated its 40th anniversary. Over 20,000 runners come from all over the world to participate in the morning’s events (in addition to the 15K, there is a 5K, a Junior River Run of one mile and a Brooks Rehab Mile).

The course takes runners on a scenic tour of Jacksonville: through the city, over the Main Street Bridge,

through some of the beautiful neighborhoods on the other side of the river, back over the Hart Bridge with a finish line right outside Everbank Field, home of the Jacksonville Jaguars. Course support is outrageous: residents and fans set up camp in the streets, with signs and high fives, in addition to mimosas, bloody mary’s, extra beer, and even sausage, donuts and popsicles! It’s definitely worth experiencing, at least once.

Run 26.2 with DONNA

Created in 2008 by local news personality and three-time breast cancer survivor Donna Deegan, Run 26.2 with DONNA is amazing as both a race and a charity. The DONNA takes over the entire second weekend of February, with a 5K and 10K held on Saturday, and the half marathon, full marathon and marathon relay on Sunday.

All proceeds from the race go to both the DONNA Foundation (which provides financial assistance for the critical needs of men and women diagnosed with breast cancer) and the Mayo Clinic Breast Cancer Translational Genomics Program for breast cancer research, awareness and care.

I ran the Sunday event for the first time in February, and I have been missing out. It is the most inspirational, beautiful race I have ever had the honor of running, and I intend to be back for years to come. From the streets lined with pink, to the nonstop cheering crowds, to the teams supporting each other – it’s really unlike anything else.

Tour De Pain

You know I am all about a good race challenge, and Tour De Pain is one of the coolest. The race takes place over two days with a four-mile beach run on Friday night, a morning 5K road race, and then a late afternoon mile “sizzler.” It’s pretty exhausting, both mentally and physically. There’s enough downtime to psych yourself out, but not enough to really get some good rest. Oh, and did I mention it takes place in August?

Thanksgiving Distance Classic

With half marathon and 6K options, the Thanksgiving Distance Classic has just become part of the holiday. I can’t imagine starting to work on a turkey without a race under my belt.

There’s a nice, early start, and the course is through some pretty, shaded Mandarin neighborhoods. For some reason, it’s almost always one of my faster runs, so I always try to make time for it in my race calendar.

Ready. Set. Glow 5K

I’m a sucker for a good cause, so Ready. Set. Glow 5K is certainly up there on my list. In its second year, Ready. Set. Glow benefits three neighborhood schools with it’s nighttime, glowrific 5K (and a one mile fun run for those who aren’t up to 3.1 miles). It’s a great way to get families out and running, which is always a wonderful thing in my book.

 

What are some of your favorite local races?

weekly wrap: 3.12.2017 – 3.18.2017 + publix savannah women’s half marathon training week 6

Happy Monday!  It’s time for the Weekly Wrap with HoHo Runs and MissSippi Piddlin!

WeeklyWrap

If you do a weekly recap post, this is a great way to check in with other active bloggers for extra support, sharing and accountability!

Obviously, when blogging, I prefer to share the positives and the highlights. I don’t like to dwell on the negatives or focus on the bad times. I mention when I have a bad run or training session, or when I don’t feel like I’m accomplishing my goals, but that’s about all the time I like to devote to it.

This week, however, was bad. I’m almost embarrassed to admit how bad it was. There was a perfect storm of causes: the time change, a sudden plummet in temperature, a really awful interaction that left me shaken and off-kilter. I couldn’t get myself together. I barely wanted to get out of bed, let alone run or workout. I was hoping to start boot camp this week, but I didn’t. I didn’t eat well (or much), and I certainly didn’t hydrate properly. I didn’t want to socialize, blog, or even go outside.

It was ugly.

I had two opportunities to race this weekend, and I skipped both of them. I didn’t feel like getting up. I can argue that maybe my body needed the rest time, but I can also argue that I was deep (DEEP) in the throes of some blahs (the conditions are perfect for a bout of seasonal depression) and needed a big ol’ kick in the booty to get back to right.

So. Here we are.

Today, I am feeling better and stronger, and more hopeful. Waking up in the dark is still very much not my favorite, but it has to be overcome.

Sunday – rest

After the Gate River Run, a date and the time change, we were all pretty happy to stay in bed and lay low. It was freezing and even a little dreary, and no one was much motivated to do anything.

We met my parents for a late lunch – we had planned for little man to spend a few days with them until I closed out my work week.

Monday – rest

I had a very long day of work, and by the time I got home, I was spent. Mr PugRunner had come home early and made a really delicious lasagna, but I could barely eat it. I went to bed early, couldn’t fall asleep and laid awake most of the night.

Tuesday –  rest

I had promised myself that I would get up for boot camp or running or both, but I didn’t. In fact, I probably didn’t get out of bed until about 30 minute before I had to leave for work. It’s very unlike me and I felt awful about it.

My parents dropped little man off when I got home. We didn’t have any special plans for the night, but were looking forward to doing a few fun things on my days off.

Wednesday – 4.2 miles, running

It wasn’t an early morning, but I did manage to get in 4.2 miles. Even though it was cold out (in the 30s), I wasn’t feeling it much at all. Plus, I missed having a buddy, but since it was Spring Break, not many people were around.

Once I got showered, we went to our local trampoline gym to meet up with some friends. The kids bounced for a while and we had lunch, before we had to leave for some errands. Little man apparently has discovered a new love of wings (no sauce).

Mr PugRunner didn’t get home until later in the evening, after meeting with our accountant (yay tax time), so I didn’t get to the gym then either.

Thursday – rest

Mr PugRunner got invited to Orlando to go watch some of the NCAA games in a suite, so he left pretty early in the morning. Little man and I met up with another friend for a day of laser tag, bowling and arcade games. The kids had so much fun and the other mom and I were able to chat while they played.

Friday – rest

When I woke up, I felt dizzy and a little nauseous. It wasn’t pleasant, and while I wasn’t really sick, my body just wasn’t happy.

I had told little man we would go to the movies, but I asked him if we could postpone to Saturday until I was feeling better. He was ok with that, and I focused on feeling better so we could help Mr PugRunner celebrate St. Patrick’s Day (it’s his favorite), first with lunch at an Irish pub and then a traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner at a friend’s house.

Saturday – 5 miles, running

I had been thinking about getting up early to do a last minute 5K at the Vilano Bridge, but when 5AM rolled around, I was more than happy to roll back over and go back to sleep until a little later, when I completed a pretty nice five miles.

In the afternoon, we finally went to see Beauty and the Beast. The boys enjoyed it, but I was really disappointed. I am fairly certain I am the only one who felt there was so much missed potential, and while it was artistically beautiful, I was just left feeling flat.

Lunch and our first frozen custard of the season helped make up for it.

 

I guess we can just call it a lazy, cutback kind of week. I know I haven’t lost much in terms of fitness, but motivation is a little harder to reclaim. I can tell you that I came back in a big way yesterday and I am vowing to work onward from there. I have too many goals and plans to give up.

 

How was your week in training?

Do you ever just find yourself unable to get yourself out of a funk?

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