Tag Archive | marathon

My First NWM

Since 2012 is almost over, I figure I should catch up on my race posts :-)  Here’s my first Nike Women’s Marathon Experience:

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After I did my first two 5K’s last year, I made it a goal to do a half marathon this year. I specifically wanted to do the Nike Women’s Marathon half. I don’t really know why I wanted to do it. I guess the fact that it’s close to me was a big reason. But I also knew that it was a very challenging course, with lots of hills. It was a little intimidating but I looked forward to the challenge.

I started training for it, even though I didn’t even know if I would get into the race.  It’s such a popular race that unless you join Team in Training, you have to get in through the Random Drawing process. To make sure that I at least completed my goal of doing a half marathon, I also registered for the Disneyland Half Marathon that would happen before the NWM. I planned on doing both if I was lucky enough. I didn’t get into the NWM with the Random Drawing :-(  I was bummed but focused my attention on doing the Disney Half. I still kept a look out for extra opportunities to get into the NWM via their Facebook and Twitter. I tried anything that came up but never had any luck :-( I ran the Disneyland Half and figured I was done for the rest of the year.  A week later while I was recovering, they offered one last chance to get into the NWM for Nike+ members.  I was so excited! I was actually picking up my son from school when I saw the post and immediately filled out the registration via my phone!

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My Confirmation Email!!

I was absolutely thrilled to receive the confirmation email a few minutes later! I was going to be able to go after my original goal. I did pretty well with the Disney half so I you could say I was pretty confident :-) My biggest concern was that I only had a little over 4 weeks to get my mileage back up. I had also hurt my ankle after the Disney Half so I wasn’t sure how I would do.  I made my main goal to finish the race without stopping. Training was rough. I wore an ankle brace for most of my runs. Then a few days before the race, I got sick :-( Needless to say, I didn’t do any training those last few days and focused on getting better.

I picked up my race bib and packet on the first day it was available thinking that it wouldn’t be as crazy, but I was wrong. Union Square was crazy! After picking up my bright volt Nike bag that was filled with goodies, I met up with a friend of mine and we walked around the expo.  We tried out Luna bars and nuun water. I also picked up my pair of the NWM Nike Lunar Glide and found my name on the wall of  the Niketown store :-) It was the last day that I felt good enough to get up and walk.

In front of the NWM Expo

In front of the NWM Expo

 

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Human Hamster Wheel at the Safeway Booth

My Motivation to race even though I wasn't feeling well. No Excuses!

My Motivation to race even though I wasn’t feeling well. No Excuses!

NWM Lunar Glides

NWM Lunar Glides

Pic w/ a tall Fireman after picking up my NWM Lunar Glides :-)

Pic w/ a tall Fireman after picking up my NWM Lunar Glides :-)

 

Inside my Nike Volt Bag

Inside my Nike Volt Bag

Clothes and Gear prepped for Race Day.

Clothes and Gear prepped for Race Day.

I felt better on race day but still not 100%. I was up at 3a and had my chobani w/ almond butter, banana, and whole wheat bagel w/ almond butter for breakfast. I got to Union Square 2 hours before the race started. I checked my bag right away but regreted it because I was so cold the whole time I was waiting. It was a foggy morning in the bay area and my shorts and tank didn’t help keep me warm. The corrals were set up decently based on your mile time.  I was in the 7:30-8:30 group. It was pretty cold and I was so glad when the race finally started.

Breakfast :-)

Breakfast :-)

Ready for the race.

Ready for the race.

 

Star Spangled Banner at the Start Line

Star Spangled Banner at the Start Line

It was an overcast morning with fog. It cleared a little bit at Union Square when the race started but there was plenty of fog for the whole race.  I warmed up fairly quick.  Had one bathroom pit stop around the 10K mark. I knew there would be hills, but I definitely underestimated how steep and big a few of the hills were.  I just focused on keeping my feet moving.  The downhill parts were pretty rough on my knees. Being sick also took a toll on me. I was happy that I still managed to complete the race under 2 hours :-) I must have looked pretty sick when I crossed the finish line because the volunteers and fireman that I passed all asked if I was ok and needed help. I picked up my Tiffany Necklace Box and headed straight for the bathrooms since my stomach had been hurting badly for the last 3 miles of the race.

At the top of one of the first big hills.

At the top of one of the first big hills.

Passing another Mile Marker

Passing another Mile Marker

Mile 12

Mile 12

The last downhill stretch - Knees were aching!

The last downhill stretch – Knees were aching!

 

Crossing the Finish Line

Crossing the Finish Line

My Race Results :-)

My Race Results :-)

Finisher Tees - they are super bright!

Finisher Tees – they are super bright!

RUN.

RUN.

Family Meeting Area with Video Screen so you can see when your family member crosses the finish line.

Family Meeting Area with Video Screen so you can see when your family member crosses the finish line.

Photo Op with a Fireman

Photo Op with a Fireman

Finisher Goodies

Finisher Goodies

 

Bought these two tops as a reward for finishing :-)

Bought these two tops as a reward for finishing :-)

 

Tiffany Finisher Necklace :-)

Tiffany Finisher Necklace :-)

I didn’t have anyone come with me for this race so after picking up a couple tops and finisher goodies, I picked up my sweat bag.  I was a search to find the bus that had my bag. Every bus had a neat name with “Run” at the start. Mine was “Run Amazing.” Once I found my bus, I had to go to specific window. It was pretty organized and I didn’t have to wait long for my bag. I followed the signs to the shuttles back to Union Square.

Making my way through the buses.

Making my way through the buses.

Run Amazing!

Run Amazing!

On the Shuttle Back to Union Square. Tired!

On the Shuttle Back to Union Square. Tired!

I was tired and my stomach still hurt. I got lost trying to find my way back to the parking garage. But I was happy. I accomplished my goal for 2012!! Will I do it again next year? Yes!! It’s a great race, for a great cause, and it shows how amazingly strong we women are :-)

My 1st Half Marathon

It’s been a little over 6 weeks since I ran my first half marathon in “the Happiest Place on Earth.” As some might know, the Disneyland Half Marathon was not my first choice for my first half marathon.  The Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco was what I had my eye on a year ago when I set the goal of doing a half marathon this year. But when I learned that it was a hard race to get into – without joining Team in Training, I went to a plan B. Running a half marathon was my main goal so I looked for another race to do in case I couldn’t get into the NWM during the random drawing(which I didn’t). My good friend suggested that we do the Disneyland half together and I went for it.  The original plan was for a girls weekend where we’d meet in L.A, go to the parks, go to the beach, and do the race. Unfortunately, my friend had something come up right before the race and had to cancel.  It was slightly hectic getting last minute hotels and deciding if I was going to fly or drive myself. Ben came to my rescue and took time off work, got his dad to babysit, and rented a car so he could come with me. So it turned out to be a mini vacation for the two of us.

Moon over the San Luis Reservoir

We left early Saturday morning – before the sun was up.  We wanted to get there early enough to make sure we had enough time to get my race packet and beat any traffic. The people who set the date for the race are no fools.  Race weekend also happened to be Labor Day weekend.  Ben did all the driving. It was a very pretty drive seeing the sunrise.

Sunrise over I-5

Wish we could have stopped at 6 Flags.

Arriving in L.A.

He got us to L.A. in 4.5 hours. We were too early to check-in to the hotel so we went had an early lunch at his favorite restaraunt – Bubba Gumps. I usually have carbs at lunch time the day before the race so I enjoyed some shrimp and rice.

Shrimp Bucket Appetizer. Half Cajun and Half Garlic

My Lunch: Shrimp/Sausage/Veggie Kabobs

Indulged in a Bread Pudding Dessert

After checking in to our hotel, we headed towards to Fitness Expo. So… here is where I had a complete blonde moment.  The whole time I was preparing for the trip, I thought that the Expo was at the Anaheim Convention Center which was right next to our hotel. We walked over and saw a Christian convention but no sign of a fitness expo :-/ Ben was a little irritated because we were walking and it was a bit hot that day. When I looked again, I realized that it was the convention center inside the Disneyland Resort.  It wasn’t too much further of a walk and it gave us an idea about how far I would have to walk on race morning to the start line.

Walking down Katella

We headed to packet pick up which was at the lower level.  It was well organized. You picked up based on you bib number, showed your ID and got your packet. I went to Runners Relations to change my corral since I didn’t put a proof of time down when I registered. I was originally assigned to be in the second to last corral and I wanted to be closer to the front. I used my Big Sur 9miler time to get into corral A – the front :-) It’s not that I was expecting to win but I did have a time goal and I knew being closer to the front would help me. We decided to get one day park passes for after the race. We left the Expo and walked towards Downtown Disney.  We made reservations for dinner at the Rainforest Cafe since it’s such a long wait if you don’t. We were a little tired from the drive so we decided to relax and watch a movie. We saw Will Ferrel’s The Campaign. It was one of his better movies of late. Then we walked around Downtown Disney. I bought a neon pink Minnie Mouse shirt from one of the shops. We decided to try our luck at getting a table earlier than our reservation and got in.

Dinner: Roasted Chicken w/ double order of grilled veggies

Our table was right by the gorilla which we both knew our youngest son would have loved. I ordered roasted chicken with a double order of grilled veggies and Ben got some steak. We talked about our kids and how they were going to enjoy our vacation we had planned. Then we walked back to our hotel and it was time for me to get some rest for the race.  I set out my clothes and gear, set my alarm for 3:30a and was in bed by 9p.  Didn’t quite fall asleep until after the booming of the fireworks show ended though.

Lights on trees made for a romantic walk :-)

All ready for the race!

I got up at 3a and got ready. Breakfast was a banana and Chobani Champions w/ almond butter. I realized I didn’t have a spoon so I used my straw to stir and eat.

Pre-Race Breakfast.

Ben stayed asleep. The plan was he would meet me at the finish line around 7:30a. It was dark when I headed out the door. I walked to the intersection and followed the group of fellow runners to the start line. I arrived just as they opened the corrals.  I walked around to check things out and see where the bag check and restrooms were. I hung around until 5a then checked my bag, used the restroom, and headed to my corral. While I waited a nice man said he would take a picture of me at the start line.  He was an older man but a very seasoned runner and he talked to me about his experiences with the Disney marathons. Intimidating and Inspiring at the same time. Lol. The race started at exactly 5:45a.

Stage w/ DJ playing music

Wish I had taken advantage of this.

Getting to my corral.

At the Start Line.

What can I say? It was definitely a Disney race.  I think I saw pretty much every character along the way while running through the parks.  A few of the people in the group I ran with stopped for pictures but it was very quick and they were quickly back in the race. I did not stop for pictures because I focused on running. The music through the park was very loud so it was hard to hear my own music. I didn’t mind though. And it was magical to run through the castle.

Running through Cars Land

The Castle!

You cant help but smile. Even though there wasnt music outside the park, there was still quite a bit of entertainment on the streets on Anaheim for the runners. Bands, cheerleaders, and of course supporters/volunteers were all throughout the race.  I did have to make one pit stop for a bathroom break right around 10K. I really enjoyed running through Angels Stadiums.

In Angels Stadium

There were supporters as you came in cheering you as you ran around the stadium.  At the last mile, it was just non-stop cheering.  Ben didn’t get a front row spot but he saw me cross the finish line via the video screen they had.  I felt great crossing because I saw that I had come in under my 2 hour goal! I wasn’t sure after my pit stop of I would still make it.

Crossing the Finish Line.

I always push through the finish :-)

With my Finisher Medal.

I picked up my finisher goodies – the medal was heavier than I expected it to be, water, banana, and my checked bag then met up with Ben. I was really happy that he was there for me. I pulled out my chocolate Zico and Luna bar and enjoyed them on our walk back to our hotel.

Goodies inside the Finisher Box.

I showered and changed into the new Minnie Mouse tee I bought and we walked back to the park.  There were people still running the race when we got back. We headed into the park to be kids for the day. My right hip and glute were really sore but I did pretty good. We didnt have wait too long for any ride.

Walking down Main Street

Our first stop - for the Indiana Jones Ride

Star Tours

First time I saw this :-)

By 11a we were starving so we decided to have an early lunch. We decided to do the Big Thunder BBQ.

Loved that the water was served in these jars.

A bucket for each of us :-) Plus we ordered another bucket of chicken. I was hungry!

Love my Benny for supporting me.

It was an all you can eat kind of place. We both ate a bucket of chicken and ribs. I did not even touch the corn bread. We stayed a couple more hours then decided to head home.

We shared a candied apple on the way out of the park :-)

RunDisney banners on our way out.

Yes, I slept for quite a bit of ride. I also drove for a couple hours but my legs got really tight while driving so after stopping for dinner, Ben got back to driving. We were home by 9:30p and it was not hard for me to climb into bed and fall back asleep :-)

My results :-)

Would I do it again? Yes! I will probably do it again next year :-) I have more friends that want to do it with me.  I think it’s a great race to do for a first half marathon.  It’s all pretty flat with just a couple overpasses that serve as “hills.” The energy is amazing and everyone is pretty happy to be there.  And of course, it’s prefect to plan a vacation around.  They even have a 5k and kids races the day before. Definitely something for the whole family. Disneyland and Disney World have several races they do throughout the year, so definitely check them out and do one! My goal is do the Coast to Coast challenge were you do a race in both Disneyland and Disney World in the same year :-)

In Love with Big Sur

BeachBody Day72 – Sunday – Big Sur International Marathon!!

Those that follow me on Twitter and Facebook know that Big Sur went well :-) I had a blast!! The weather was perfect and it was just an absolutely beautiful run. I was so happy to share the experience with my Aunt and Sister. We all did better than we had expected :-)

Our morning started early. My aunt’s 21miler had her up at 3a :-/ We did not envy her. She said that she didn’t sleep for more than a couple hours because she was nervous. And despite that she still beat her training time and came in under 4 hours! Way to go Aunt San!! My sister’s 5K and my 9miler started at the same time. We were up at 5a.  We got dressed and packed up because my aunt had already checked us out when she left for her race. At first I thought her race would start before mine. We were happy to be able to start together. My sister ran her whole 5K – which she hadn’t planned on doing because of her hip – and beat her expected time too. I am so proud of both of them.

I was separated from my sister early on. I tend to get very focused and just run.  Our courses split after a run on a trail by the water. It was just so beautiful. I wish I could have stopped to take pictures and just take it all in, but I had to keep running. It was 50 degrees and overcast when we started. I really couldn’t have asked for better weather. It’s what I’m use to running in. What I wasn’t use to were the hills :-/ I knew that there would be some hills, but I wasn’t expecting it to be hill after hill. lol. Not that they were all big hills, but it there wasn’t all that much flat areas. It would level off and then I was going either up or down again. I could definitely feel my booty getting worked! I didn’t run with music because I wanted to enjoy the course.  There was plenty of entertainment.  There was a Samba band, a flute player, a guy playing the bag pips, a band singing, and people cheering you on all through out the course. It also helped that there was just beautiful scenery throughout the course. The beginning took us through a really nice neighborhood in Carmel. I would love to live in one of those houses. There were several ocean views and the run through the park was wonderful. It felt like I was running through my grandfather’s property.

I had my phone in my belt so I didn’t see what my time or pace was. I had no concept of how time at all. There were only a couple mile markers that I could see.  The 1 mile point and the 25mile marker which marked the last mile for all the courses. I felt like I was running slower because of the hills and that I was getting passed up. When I could feel it in my legs I was hoping that I was getting close to the end.  During training, it was the last couple miles that my legs would start to feel tired and my knees got achy. This time, I could feel my booty and my calves too.  I loved that there were people all throughout the last half mile cheering you on. It was so cute to see the little kids cheering.  They also had cardboard cut outs that were funny.

I could hear the announcer as I got closer to the finish line. I used everything I had left to go faster at the end. I almost couldn’t believe that I was done when I crossed the finish line. It didn’t feel like I had been running for over an hour.  A girl came up to me and handed me a finisher medal and I wound up posing for photo. I was directed towards the tents and told to grab a brown paper bag and go. I took half a blueberry muffin that was offered to me and called my sister to find out where she was. She wasn’t expecting me for a while so she was a little shocked when I called her. We stretched out and went to starbucks for coffee and tea. We had a couple hours before my Aunt was expected to finish her race so we walked around the Finisher’s Village. There were tents for the special groups and sponsors. You couldn’t miss the Michelobe Ultra tent if you tried. lol.

We decided to go to finish line and watch the racers come in. I was very inspired by the marathoners crossing the finish line. Many had big smiles on their faces as they crossed that finish line. I loved how many of the spectators cheered all of the runners on at the end. There was just so much positive energy and excitement. I was impressed by those that did the Boston to Big Sur. I really can’t imagine running one marathon and then running a second one only 13 days later :-/ We were trying to catch our Aunt coming across the finish line. We watched for two hours and then we started to think we must have missed her. My sister got a call from a local number it was my Aunt calling from someone’s phone. She had finished an hour earlier. lol. We met her at the Info booth. Obviously we didn’t have a post race meet up plan set up. We asked a volunteer to take a picture of us then headed out to lunch. I was starving! I decided to have 1 slice of pesto pizza as a treat. Then it was time to drive home. I had to fight falling asleep O_o I was sooo tired all the way home.

Turbo Fire Day 70 – I did not get a chance to rest once I did get home. Ben went to run some errands which meant I had the boys to take care of and it was almost dinner time. I forced myself to do my Turbo Fire workout for the day. I kept it low impact on the fire drills for Fire30 but I gave the workout everything I had left. Stretch10 was great. My sore muscles enjoyed the extended stretch.

I have to Thank my boys for being extremely good that night.  They saw that I was extremely tired and didn’t make things hard for me. They ate their dinner and went to bed without any trouble.  They also gave me Big Hugs to make me feel better :-)

I know that I didn’t have to do a plank for the night, but I told myself that I could do anything for 1min so I did a one minute plank on my elbows :-)

Meals –

M1: Whole Wheat Bagel Thin w/ Almond Butter and a banana. Zico to drink.

Carried a 20 oz. bottle with Zico for my run. Stopped at the last 2 aid stations for water.

M2: Half of a blueberry muffin and Starbucks Iced Green Tea/ Luna bar and Chocolate Zico.

M3: 1 Slice of Pest Pizza from Pizza My Heart and a Chicken Walnut Salad.

Chicken Walnut Salad w/ Balsamic Vinegar Dressing

My slice of pesto pizza :-)

M4: Almond Coconut Kind bar – on the ride home.

M5: Quinoa w/ turkey spinach red sauce.

Love quinoa and red sauce.

60 oz. water and 3 Zicos.

My Goal for this Year!

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My Big Goal for this year is to run my First Half Marathon!

I would really love to do the Nike Women’s Marathon/Half Marathon this October. It is a Huge race with over 20,000 people expected. Eeeeeks! It’s gotten so popular that they do a lottery for individual spots. There hasn’t been an official date on when registration starts but the date for the race is:
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Even registering early right doesn’t guarantee you a spot. I plan on signing up on the first day but just in case I don’t get a spot I’ve signed up to do the Disney Half Marathon in September :-)
I’m doing it with a friend of mine and making it a Girls’ Weekend. If I happen to get a spot in the Nike Women’s event, I will still do it :-) It’ll be about a month and half after the Disney race so I should be ok.

I am so excited and nervous about doing a half marathon. The distance seems so intimidating right now. I have already started training for it. I plan on doing a few smaller races leading up to it to help prep for it :-)

2012 is going to a great year!!!

A Very Fit February

Well after my December Goals got derailed because of getting sick, I was able to get back to normal through Tone It Up‘s Tonedin12 Challenge that started at the beginning of the year. I was disappointed that I couldn’t follow through with my  goals, but I brushed it off. Couldn’t do anything about being sick and taking care of 3 other sick people.

My goal for January was to get back on track. The Tonedin12 Challenge really helped get me back into my routine. It took me a little while to get back to my intensity level I was at before I got sick. It was really hard to get back into doing bootycall workouts.  That and eating 5 meals a day. Fortunately, I only gained a few months over the holiday season – the one perk of being sick. lol.  This last week has been the best week for me. I’ve been able to kick my workouts up a notch.

And now I’m ready to keep on pushing! February is going to be a Very Fit month for me. I will be following through with the end of the Tonedin12 Challenge – ends on Valentine’s Day. I have no doubt that Karena and Katrina have something great for us after the end of the challenge.  Even if it’s not right after the challenge ends, there’s still their February Calendar filled with challenges that I always try to do :-)

TIU February Calendar

My big Fitness goal will be starting the Beach Body  TurboFire series. I signed up to do a fitness challenge through Beach Body coach April Anaya. We start on the 6th. It’s a 30 day challenge and there is a small group of us doing it together. I am really excited. I’ve always wanted to try TurboFire out. I think that this challenge will help keep me on track with it.

I will also be training for my first half marathon coming up in September. Today I officially registered to do the Disney Half Marathon with a friend. Even though it’s still a long way away, I want to get started on training. I was hoping to do a 10K this month but it looks like I’ll have to wait until March. I’m really excited about this month and this year. So many exciting things coming up.

September 2, 2012