NYC Marathon Lululemon Giveaway | Team MR8 Fundraising

Lululemon released a limited-edition NYC Marathon collection that you can only buy in NYC stores starting today. This line is expected to completely sell-out! I stood in line for over an hour today, and snagged this gorgeous #BeenThereRunThat sweatshirt featuring the NYC skyline and it could be YOURS! I am running 26.2 miles on Sunday for the amazing Team MR8 in honor of Martin Richards, the 8 year old boy who was killed in the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013. 

front + back

front + back

Every donation starting today of $26.20 will be entered in a raffle to win this exclusive sweatshirt than any Lulu addict will LOVE! The winner can choose a size 8 or size 6. 

To win? Click here, donate $26.20, and receive an email confirmation from me, and you’re in. 

The winner will be announced on Saturday morning, and the sweatshirt will be shipped out early next week (as soon as my legs are recovered enough to walk to the post office). 

Thanks so much for your support, and GOOD LUCK! May the #LuluBeWithYou, and GO #TEAMMR8

Race Recap | BAA Half Marathon

Ever since I finished the Boston Marathon this year, I was excited to run another BAA.org race. This year, the BAA Half boasted a crowd of 8,000 runners, and covered 13.1 miles of the Emerald Necklace park starting in Franklin Park. Since Roo just moved into the sickest apartment ever in Dorchester, we had a sleepover there the night before, complete with the best. dinner. ever.

all ready for 13.1!

all ready for 13.1!

We woke up at 6am, and munched on bagels, pb and bananas. We opted to drive to Bayside Expo Center and take the shuttle buses from there, which was only about 5 minutes away. There was absolutely no parking available at Franklin Park, but they did offer two different shuttle options. We got on our shuttle at about 7:30, and made it up to Franklin Park just before 8:00am. It was chilly, and I totally wished I had more than just one layer of throw-away shirt, but the weather report said it was supposed to get to 60 degrees, so I didn’t want to overdress. Ah, #runnerprobz.

waiting in line

waiting in line

We got in line around the 10:00 min mile marker, and tried to take our minds off the chill. Training for Boston in the SNOW was colder than this, so we sucked it up. At 8:30, the starting gun went off, and off we went. Not! The starting line corrals had a really tight turn, and it was almost like tip-toeing up to the start line. It took us about 22 minutes to get to the start, and it was slow goings for the first half a mile for sure. I stuck to the sides and tried to stay with a nice even pace of about 9:50/10:00 while my body warmed up. Roo and I fist bumped and picked a spot to meet after the race.

starting line crowd!

starting line crowd!

I absolutely loved the first uphill which was across the William Casey overpass. There were amazing views of Boston, and we were up higher than the trees. It was a climb for sure, but it didn’t bother me too much and I even got the courage to take off my long sleeve and drop it on the side. The weather was warming up!

Around mile 4, I felt a tap on my shoulder and it was my work friend/client, Jess! We have done Flywheel together a couple times and I should have known she would be running today. It was about the time that I saw her that we took a turn back towards the start line. I’ve never been in a race that had such tight 180 degree turns. You really had to watch your step so you wouldn’t get trampled from behind or from the front. I picked it up for miles 5-9 and felt really good, really strong. I was probably hitting just under a 9 minute mile. At mile 6, I decided to go for my Gu Chomps. I always (always, always) open the bag up before I start running, but for some reason I totally forgot. I tried to rip into the bag while running, and I couldn’t get it open. My hands were sweaty, and this thing WAS NOT opening. I was expending too much energy and getting frustrated, so I just pocketed the Gu Chomps and welcomed the PowerGels that they were handing out at mile 7. I got vanilla and it was actually really delicious. Thanks for handing those out! I totally needed something, and I’ll never not open my GuChomps in advance again. Jeesh.

So they weren’t joking when they said this course has rolling hills. Its all either up hill or down hill all the time. Like the whole time. And the last 3 miles especially, weren’t even on concrete the whole time. It was like a 10 mile road race with a 3 mile trail race to finish up. I felt good the whole time, and I knew coming into the final 800 meters that was I close to the two hour mark. I knew I wasn’t going to be close to my half marathon PR from NYC, but this wasn’t a course to PR on at all. Not even close. I was PSYCHED to be close to 2:00, and finished with an official time of 2:03. I got my awesome BAA medal, and meandered through the bagels, bananas and PowerBar line. I was hungry, but I didn’t want to eat too quickly so I just had a quarter of a bagel and waited to get a text from Roo. She finished at 2:25 and we met up at the family meeting area.

yeeeeeehaw, all done!

yeeeeeehaw, all done!

sisters + 13.1

sisters + 13.1

I will definitely keep this on my race calendar for 2015, as it was well-run, and the shirts were AWESOME. It was a lot of ppl and course was tight and hilly, but I absolutely love the half marathon distance so much. See ya next year, Franklin Park!

Race Recap | NYRR Bronx 10 Miler

Let it be known that its never a wise idea to sign up for a race the day after arriving home from a week long beach vacation. However, if you HAVE to do it, this was one great race to tackle on a beautiful, warm day in September. Since I was away the week prior to the race, I didn’t have time to get my bib or shirt ahead of time. Astrid (my CrossFit bestie turned NYC Marathon training partner) was kind enough to do the driving, and I took the LIRR to Douglaston where she picked me up (6:30am, woof!). We got to the Bronx by 7:00, and within 15 minutes we had picked up our bibs and shirts, checked our bags, and used the bathrooms. NYRR, I gotta hand it to you, this was THE most organized race (apart from a marathon distance). Huge props for making 10,000 runners really happy with a smooth check-in system.

As I was pinning on my bib to my brand new, bright yellow Team MR8 shirt, a man approached me and gave me a huge high-five. “TeamMR8! I love you guys!” Turns out he is in charge of the charity programs that get bibs for the New York City Marathon, and he had personally been involved in the decision to get TeamMR8 representation this year. I felt so grateful, and it made me even more proud to be part of such an amazing organization. We CAN make TeamMR8 bigger than ever this year!

Astrid and me, ready to run!

Astrid and me, ready to run!

Astrid and I  had been discussing our game plan all morning. We wanted to pretend like these are the first 10 miles of the marathon. Don’t go out fast. Don’t even try to PR. Go annoyingly slow for the first few miles, and then just go into cruise control for the remainder. Our plan was to feel like we had some gas in the tank at the end, and run a controlled race. The problem is, its actually HARD to go annoyingly slow, especially if other runners are passing you (we are so competitive)! We managed to make it work though, and our first four miles were 9:41/9:29/9:21/9:12. Ehhh. Not even CLOSE to annoyingly slow. Try, “well under my marathon goal pace.” Still, we felt good, and I felt like I could maintain that pace for the rest of the run.

At mile 5, we got to the top of the out-and-back route and had some quick turns through a little green park. We clearly picked it up there, and mile 5 was 8:58. At mile 6, I lost Astrid in the crowd. One of these days I’ll actually stick with her the entire race! I had a tri-berry Gu (which tastes exactly like my favorite ice cream flavor) and chugged some water to wash it down.

My last few miles were 9:05/9:28/9:14/9:07/9:18. I was surprised that I stayed in the same range even in miles 8-10, as they were a slight (but long) incline. When I was tired, especially in the final mile, I thought a lot about Martin Richard, and why I was running. I pretended he was running right alongside me, and I picked up my pace. I am sure that on November 2nd (and every run in-between), I will be channeling Martin’s positive outlook, boundless energy, and happiness. Martin was truly Boston Strong.

My official time was 1:33, which was a 2+ minute PR since my last 10 miler, only a month ago. Not bad for a little 10 miler after a vacation, after all!

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 8.52.36 PM

 

NYC Marathon Training | Week 5

I am on Week 7 of the 17 week CrossFit Endurance War Horse Marathon Training plan, and here is what my week looked like:

Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 12.09.05 PM

 

 

 

Monday – Rest because I did the Brooklyn 10 Miler the day before.

Tuesday – Interval workout: 1 minute ladder: 1 min on, 1 off, 50 sec on, 50 off . . . down to 10 sec on 10 sec off, back up to 1 minute. This was pretty rough, especially building back up to the 1 minute on. When I was “on” I tried to stay 7:30/8:00 min mile pace, and then “off” was more like 9:45/10:00 min mile pace and I attempted to recover my breathing.

Wednesday – Rest

Thursday – CrossFit516 partner WOD with Kim and Astrid. 1.5 miles of running, a lot of box jumps, and wall balls to cap it off.

Friday – Track workout: 16 Rounds of: 20 sec on, 10 sec off. I used the same pacing from Tuesday, and it felt pretty good. It was about 3 miles of running, with 1 mile warm up and 1 mile cool down.

have I mentioned how much I love these sneakers?

have I mentioned how much I love these sneakers?

Saturday – 7 mile “long” run, even though the training plan called for a 5k time trial. I had just ran (and PR’d) my 5K a few weeks back, so I am going to use that time to set some tempo runs this week. 10:00 min/mile pace.

Port Washington, NY

Port Washington, NY

Sunday – Rest

Mileage: About 15 miles between all the temp and speed work this week.

NYC Marathon Training | Week 4

Can’t believe I have one more week of “real” training under my belt. I’m following the CrossFit WarHorse/CrossFit Endurance Marathon Training Plan pretty much exactly, with the exception of the long run on the weekend. I do tend to make it a little bit longer than CFE calls for in some weeks. Here is how last week shaped up:

MondayCrossFit516 WOD -
For time, 3 Rounds of:
400 m run
15 Deadlifts (185/125)

At the 15 min mark do:

For time:
21 Toes to bar
21 Burpees
50 Double unders
15 Toes to bar
15 Burpees
40 Double unders
9 Toes to bar
9 Burpees
30 Double unders

The 400’s and deadlifts were my kind of workout, and the second half of the workout was just rough. I substituted singles for DUs, but did 3 times the amount of them to make up for it.

Tuesday – CFE Track Workout: 3 Rounds of (200, 400,  600).

CFE: Week 6 Plan

CFE: Week 6 Plan

Wednesday – REST

13 minutes of hell

13 minutes of hell

Thursday – CFE Interval Workout: Death by 10 meters. Do a 10 meter run on minute 1. On minute two, do two 10 meter sprints. Minute three, three sprints. I made it up to 13 minutes before I was DONE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FridayCrossFit516 WOD: “Open workout 14.4″

AMRAP in 14 min of:
60 Calorie row
50 Toes to bar
40 Wall balls (20/15)
30 Cleans (135/95)
20 Muscle-ups

I only made it through 10 cleans! Woof! Reminder of why I don’t sign up to do the Open in the winter.

Saturday – REST (and beach!)

Sunday – My CFE plan called for a 60 minute Tempo run @75%, but instead, I did the Battle of Brooklyn 10 Miler + 2 Extra Training Miles (and beach again!) for a total of 12 miles.

Totals: Around 15 or 16 running miles, including two CFE WODS, and two CrossFit516 WODS.

Race Recap | Battle of Brooklyn 10 Miler

For me, signing up for races is the best way to stay motivated while marathon training. I only found out that I would be running the NYC Marathon two weeks ago, so I’ve been scrambling a little bit trying to fill in some weekends with training runs. I find it so much easier to do 13.1 miles as part of an official half-marathon, rather than attempt to run a solo 13 miles. Yes, there is the obvious cost of running races, but (in most cases) the entry fee is easily justified with the amount of water stops, support and camaraderie from other runners.
The first NYCRuns race that I ran was back in February for the Brr-ooklyn Half. Even though it was FREEZING, Roo and I really loved that race. The post-race hot chocoloate, yummm….. I was psyched when I saw last week after buying my new sneaks, that NYCRuns was partnering with JackRabbit Sports for a Battle of Brooklyn 10-Miler in Prospect Park. I signed up as soon as I got back to my desk (and prayed for relatively cool weather!). There were a couple of really appealing things about this race off the bat:
1) The packet pick-up on Thursday was at JackRabbit Sports in Union Square, just a couple blocks from my office. Easy, breezy.
2) Instead of another random race shirt that I’ll never wear again, they gave us pint glasses and really cool re-usable bags. I’ve already had a nice beer in my pint glass (spoiler alert: I finished the race and had a beer).
3) The start time was 8am. I have two little kids, and the weekends are totally all about family time. The earlier the race begins (and the faster I run), the more time I get to spend with my family. Not to mention, it was pretty cool and overcast that early in the morning, which is key for summer marathon training.
outfit all ready the night before

outfit all ready the night before

I set my alarm for 6am on race day, and gave myself 45 minutes to get everything together at home. Breakfast was toast with peanut butter and a banana, and I chugged some coffee. I had packed my bag the night before, so there wasn’t too much to do other than pin on my number and lace up my sneaks. It takes about 35 minutes to get from Manhasset to Prospect Park, and I knew I wanted to park on Prospect Park West so that I could get 2 extra training miles in (one mile to the start, one mile back to my car from the finish). There were a ton of open spots, so I threw my GuChomps in my back pocket, and ran a nice, easy 10:00 mile to the start line.
NYCRuns had signs up in the park pointing us in the right direction, so it was really easy to find them. I wanted to bag check my car keys and iPhone, but I forgot to bring a bag. No worries, someone at NYCRuns just gave me an extra yellow re-usable bag to use, and bag check was a breeze. I ran 3 or 4 minutes, stretched while I was in line for the bathrooms, and then it was time to start.
The first 3 miles I used as warm-up miles. I really wanted to NOT go out too fast, which is usually my demise in any type of race. If anyone has run Prospect Park before, you’ll know that there is really just one long-ish hill. We hit that hill around mile 2, so I was pretty warm and powered up it for the first lap of the park. Miles 3-6 felt pretty strong, especially coming off the downhill side of the park, and at mile 5.5, I had two GuChomps and some water.
The last lap felt tougher than it probably should have, but I just kept my feet moving and thought about all the fun things I would get to do after the race (eat a bagel, enjoy ShakeShack custard courtesy of JackRabbit Sports, and then spend a beach day with the fam). Anything to keep the time passing! At mile 8 I finished my last two GuChomps and turned my focus to finishing the race. I really loved that the last two miles didn’t really have any hills. Nothing better than finishing a race fast!
finished!

finished!

The race volunteers were helping people head in to the finish line (versus heading out on one more lap), so I was so thankful to finally be getting the wave in to the finish line! 10 miles in the books! My official time was 1:35:58 (9:36 pace). This was actually my first time doing a 10 miler, so hello PR! ;)
NYCRuns had tons of water available, along with bagels and bananas and ShakeShack was set up giving out custards and water. I didn’t really feel like waiting in line for the custard, but gladly grabbed a water, and found a spot on the grass to stretch it out. I ran my one mile (very slowly) back to my car, and headed on home to Manhasset.
Overall, this was a fantastic race, and I continue to be a huge fan of NYCRuns!
12 miles of running + beach day = a pretty damn good Sunday

12 miles of running + beach day = a pretty damn good Sunday

 

NYC Marathon Training | Week 3

I got the official news last week that I was chosen to run the NYC Marathon as part of Team MR8! I couldn’t be more proud, or humbled to run 26.2 in honor of Martin. 81 days to go!

Here is what I knocked out last week:

MondayCrossFit516 WOD
AMRAP in 10 min of:

15 Kettlebell swings (35 lbs)
15 Burpees
15 Pull-ups

Rest 5 mins, then do:

AMRAP in 10 min of:
5 Handstand push-ups
10 In place KB lunges (35 lbs)
30 Double unders

TuesdayCrossFit Endurance War Horse Marathon Training Week 5 Interval Workout: 1 mile warm-up, 8 Rounds of 30 sec on, 20 sec off. 1 mile cool-down.

Wednesday – Rest

ThursdayBeverly Homecoming 5K + 3 miles added on as a “cool-down”, 6.1 miles. CFEndurance Warhorse Marathon Plan called for 10K time trail, so I thought this was pretty close!

finishers

Friday – CrossFit Variance Dawn Patrol (5:30AM WOD) – SUP WOD. This was the highlight of my week. It was a gorgeous morning, and the water was warmer than I expected! We paired up, and while one person was paddling out to a buoy and back (around 6-7 minutes of paddling), the other person was running in the sand with a sand bag. BevHud and I did three rounds.

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 2.56.09 PM

 

Saturday – 7 HOT miles on the Rail Trail, 9:57/mile pace

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 2.55.59 PM

Sunday – 6 hour drive from Boston — > Manhasset. “Rest”

Totals: 2 CrossFit WODs, 1 CF Endurance Track Workout, 16 running miles.