What’s Up 2014!

Looking back on this year, some pretty amazing things happened.  I will try to do a complete 2013 year in review! School is almost done for the semester so I should have time to actually write more. I had some races in mind for 2013 that  I did not run, but they are on my bucket list and will eventually get crossed off. NYC Marathon, Marine Corps Marathon, Chicago Marathon, Big Sur Marathon, Boston!, and Twin Cities Marathon are all on that bucket list! I would love to travel a little more in 2014, even if they are driveable distances. South Dakota has a late Spring marathon in the Black Hills in June that I would love to run! There are also a few races within MN that I would like to run. Aside from the small, local 5k’s and such, 2014 races on my calendar radar are still up in the air. 

So, what I have planned so far, just haven’t registered yet include Grandma’s Marathon in June! This marathon is my favorite. I  think just because it was my first half marathon race and my first full! You can read that recap here! Grandma’s Marathon is going to my goal race this year! I have yet to decide what training plan to follow. I would like to step up the training this time around so if you have any suggestions on good training plans, please let me know!

Poster made with love by my nieces!
Poster made with love by my nieces!

The other race I am 95% sure I will run (if I don’t run I will volunteer) is the Mankato Half Marathon. This is a local race and I have participated or volunteered every year it has been going on. 2014 will be it’s 5th year already! I’ve run the half marathon race three times and I absolutely love, love, love this race! My 2013 recap is here! 2012 recap here!

I will also be participating in the 2014 area triathlon. This is the same, local tri I did this year. It was also my first, and has me seriously considering longer distance triathlons! That recap is here! The only tricky part with this race is…it might be held the day AFTER Grandma’s…yep. You read that right. Call me crazy.

Tri transition area
Tri transition area

The next CRAZY thing I am 90% sure about is new to me, and includes a race on my bucket list. So, this fall when all the cool bloggers were running the Runner’s World hat trick, I was a little jealous…I thought, well, I could do that! 5k and 10k one day, and a half marathon the next? No big deal. Aaaaaaaaand then I read about the Twin Cities Marathon Ultra Loony Challenge. (Get it….the Loon is the MN State bird!). There are two challenges actually. The Loony Challenge is the 10k, followed by a 5k the day before the TC 10 miler.  The Ultra Loony Challenge is the 10k and 5k the day before the full marathon. Friends, I really really really want to do the Ultra Loony Challenge. I would not be running the full marathon for a time goal. I’ve heard amazing things about the entire course, and I want to soak it all up and enjoy the scenery.  I was > > close to signing up for it…and I need to do it soon because there are a limited amount of spots open. So, hopefully by this weekend I will be signed up for that crazy challenge!

Oh…and look what came in the mail today!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Courtesy of instagram
Courtesy of instagram

What races are on your running bucket list?

Are you registered for any 2014 races yet?


Taper Time and a whole lot of randomness.

Photo courtesy of Pro Compression's email to me :)
Photo courtesy of Pro Compression’s email to me 🙂

Happy May 2nd peeps! Guess what…we have snow. In May. I try not to crab about our weather. It’s moisture. We need it. Our farmers need it. Badly. HOWEVER…It’s MAY. May!!! Come on and give me spring already!!! I learned the other night at work that the last time we had snow in MAY happened to be the same year we had record snowfall and a blizzard on Halloween in 1991. IF that happens again this year, I’m heading to No Snow Diego. I’m still trying (really really really hard) to convince the hubs though. So far it is not working.

Anyhow…the photo above…let me explain my little obsession with Pro Compression socks…it has hit a new level. Since they instagrammed their new yellow socks from the Eugene Marathon last weekend I knew I had to have these socks. They have a feature called Sock of the Month. If you love socks, you need to sign up for their emails because they email you every month their sock of the month with a discount code so you get them for a little cheaper. Thing is, they usually sell out pretty fast. Since yellow is one of the colors for the Boston Marathon, I assume these socks will sell out fast. SO…since its a new month, I’ve been anxiously awaiting their email!! I woke up this morning to hit the snooze button on my FIRST alarm. Checked my email quick (says the girl who was anti-smart phone for a long time and now I cannot let it out of my sight), and woke up very quickly because I saw that long awaited email from Pro Compression. I almost jumped out of bed. Let me tell you, it is my day off. I also never ever roll out of bed on the first wake up alarm. I usually hit the snooze about 6 times. Not today! I had those socks ordered before I even made my morning java.

And…it’s TAPER time!!!! I have almost 2 weeks until my 2nd full marathon begins. I wasn’t nervous at all until I just typed that. Yikes. I ran my last 20 miler last Saturday morning. I wasn’t sure how I wanted to run it. I had 2 options in my head. Since I had a nice PR the week before I thought about trying to run most of these 20 miles at marathon goal pace (mgp) OR…just take them nice and easy. I figured I would decide when I started the run. It was the best day for weather we have had this spring!! I started with arm warmers, tank, and shorts. I ditched the arm warmers, forgot the sunscreen (I usually don’t forget this!!), had plenty of fuel, stopped at DQ for a water refill and bathroom stop, and thankfully saw my friends on their bikes when I need a little break due to a nasty side ache at mile 17 and 18. Funny thing…I dropped off a water bottle about halfway to my drop off site and saw this sign…

Really hoped that wasn't a premonition for my 20 miler!
Really hoped that wasn’t a premonition for my 20 miler!

Thankfully it was not a premonition, and all things went well! Within the first mile I picked up a stray that almost made me crap my shorts…I noticed him because I saw a shadow running next to me. I screamed. Jumped. Said a few explicit words, and then thanked the Man Upstairs when I saw his happy face, tail wagging, and tongue hanging out and not snarly teeth or ferocious bark…

Picked up another stray...
Picked up another stray…

We ran together for about 3.5 miles. I would’ve taken the poor pup for the whole 20 miles except he was about to cause an accident by running across the road in front of cars…I saw motorcycles too and thankfully he stayed in the ditch when they went by. SO…Mr. Big Black Lab went buh-bye in a squad car. For his own good. Here is proof that we had a couple days of Spring…

Mid 20 miles...
Mid 20 miles…

Here is yesterday after I got off work…

Not cool MN. Not cool.
Not cool MN. Not cool.

And….I took this pic to congratulate my sis for running her best 5K time yet!!!

Congrats Lynn!!
Congrats Lynn!!

I had a pretty good run. I ran at my own pace. Walked a little here and there. Drank plenty of water (so I thought but still lost almost 6 lbs from that run), had my fuel Clif Shot Bloks in the tropical punch and margarita flavors, and did what any girl would do on a nice day after a 20 miler…went shopping 🙂 Here is what that run looked like…

Avg Pace
Summary 2:55:32.9 20.02 8:46
1 8:25.6 1.00 8:26
2 8:11.8 1.00 8:11
3 8:12.2 1.00 8:12
4 8:12.8 1.00 8:12
5 8:28.1 1.00 8:28
6 9:13.7 1.00 9:14
7 9:09.0 1.00 9:09
8 8:57.7 1.00 8:57
9 8:28.1 1.00 8:28
10 8:50.2 1.00 8:50
11 8:32.9 1.00 8:32
12 9:03.2 1.00 9:03
13 8:43.3 1.00 8:43
14 8:34.7 1.00 8:34
15 8:47.6 1.00 8:47
16 8:49.8 1.00 8:49
17 8:38.7 1.00 8:38
18 9:41.3 1.00 9:41
19 9:50.7 1.00 9:50
20 8:28.5 1.00 8:28

The mile splits were really all over the place. I didn’t really care to be honest. I just wanted to log the miles. I felt like I could’ve kept going. I almost did. I decided that I wanted to take it easy and go easy on my legs. It honestly didn’t feel like an easy run. I felt winded early on. I mentally broke it down mile by mile. That helped me a ton. I got dropped off in BFE and ran back into town and planned to run the bike path around the lake and around town which brought me to my exact mileage needed. I told the hubs that I thought about just running it out and back so he didn’t have to drop me off, but I decided to ask him to drop me off because he hasn’t gotten the pleasure of dropping me off yet (he loves dropping me off, finds it entertaining I guess). He chuckled and said to me, “Yet you always manage to find your way home!” Real nice 🙂 That’s true love kids 😉

With taper time I have a 12 miler on schedule for tomorrow morning and an 8 miler the following weekend and then I’m done!! I have two marathon goals in mind. I will be going over them in my head for the next couple of weeks. I am probably going to drive myself (and hubs) a little crazy. Oh well…then it’s time to find the next marathon…hopefully it’s this one…

Please pray for a lottery draw!
Please pray for a lottery draw!

I sure hope I see a big fat entry fee charged to my credit card at the end of this month…

Does anyone have any randomness you’d like to share??!!