Race Recap: Nike Women’s Half Marathon, DC

If you know me and/or if you read this blog, you know that I was honored to be chosen as a mentor for my 5th season with Team in Training and decided to fund raise for the inaugural Nike Women’s Half Marathon in Washington, DC. I raised the funds, and come April 26th, hopped on a plane from San Francisco and my next Adventure in Running began…

If you know me and/or if you read this blog, you also know I hate flying. Hate it. Last time I was on a plane was for the San Diego Rock n’ Roll marathon and that was just fine as it was short trip but SF to DC takes roughly 7-8 hours, one stopover included. Luckily, I attended a Bon Jovi concert the night before so equipped with one major hangover and 2 measly hours of sleep, I didn’t even have the energy to feel nervous and I think that may just be the key to flying for me!  Ha!

Thanks for a great time and hangover, Bon, baby! (Photo credit: BFF Amy)

Thanks for a great time and hangover, JBJ, baby! (Photo credit: BFF Amy)

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Technical Difficulties

If you can relate to the above picture, then you know what kind of “technical difficulties” I’m referring to: running clothes. They are EVERYWHERE and it’s becoming quite an issue for me, my closet, and my dresser drawers. I have so much technical gear that I broke 2 drawers right off my dresser trying to shove it all in!

I was stuck home with sick kids yesterday so I did some laundry and went ahead and laid out ALL of my work out clothing on the bed and counted- I’m up to 78 technical shirts and 25 bottoms. And that doesn’t even take into account all the shoes, socks, bras, jackets, hats and headbands I’ve been collecting over the past 6 years.

“Hello, my name is Laura and I’m an addict.” Anyone else care to join me at AAA? (Athletic Apparel Anonymous)  Continue reading

Today’s Reason: The Long Run

I was out with a friend for dinner last night and she asked me, “How did you figure out you loved running?” And I really had to pause to think about that… I told her it all began for me 6 years ago because of Oakland Adventure Boot Camp, or really, in the absence of it.  After I started going to the gym and stopped going to boot camp, I kept challenging myself to do what my boot camp trainers had challenged us to: run the entirety- all 3 miles- of Lake Merritt.  That seemed SO HARD to me back then!  “Justholdonasecondhere- you want me to run, without stopping, all the way around the whole entire lake? It’s so big! Who does that?! 3 miles?!?!?! No way!!!!”

Despite how daunting those 3 miles seemed to me at the time, I kept trying and trying and trying to propel my body around that lake 3 or 4 times a week, every week. I’ll never forget the moment I finally accomplished my goal of running the whole entire lake- I was elated and so proud of myself that I went ahead and signed up for my first 5K race in April 2009 and for about a year, that 3 miles was my long run.

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Today’s Reason: Accountability

Over the years, several people have said to me that they dislike it when people post each and every work out they do on Facebook.  And, a few years ago, I would have agreed with that! I used to think to myself, “Exercising is a necessity, it goes without saying that it’s something you have to do every day! I don’t update my status with ‘I breathed oxygen today, people, woo hoo!’ so pipe on down with all the ‘Hey, Internet, I worked out today yay me!’ posts. Geesh.”

I’ve since changed my mind.

I never used to really share my running endeavors on Facebook until I started racing and of course, social media just loves a hey-look-at-me-and-my-finisher’s-medal picture.  When I would share, I would do so somewhat sheepishly, unsure if Facebook friends would see it as a self-absorbed ego trip. In my want to post and write and talk about running without any judgement whatsoever, I went ahead and started this blog. Continue reading

Anya’s Ultramarathoning Awesomeness

Anya at the finish line of her very first ultra!

I already introduced you to my friend Kate and her Ultramarathoning Awesomeness, and now for part two, I would like you to meet Anya!

I met Anya during our first season with Team in Training but it really wasn’t until our second season together as mentors that we got really close, especially on those 6am, very dark, very cold, very wet buddy runs.  She is probably going to kill me for saying this but not only is Anya an amazing runner but is she such a sweetheart!  Don’t let the fact that she wears all black fool you- she is kind, funny as heck, and the type of person that will tell you what you need to hear even if you don’t want to hear it!  I LOVE THAT!

After completing 2 seasons of road running with TNT, Anya informed me that she was going to go Ultra.  And, honestly, I was very surprised! Knowing the struggles she had on the road, I was a little concerned for my friend that jumping from a road half to a trail ultra may just ruin Anya for life; but, knowing this team and these Coaches, she was in the best hands ever.  Within just a few runs on the trail, Anya was hooked!  And here is what she had to say about it…

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Race Recap: Big Sur Half Marathon

I’ll just be honest right up front: in my current state, I really had no business running the Big Sur Half Marathon on Monterey Bay this past Sunday, but having spent $125 to register for the sucker plus running it with Team in Training, I was committed no matter what shape I was in. I’m stupid like that.

Last week, I saw my doctor to figure out why my neck was in constant pain, 24-7 (feels like someone stabbed my right shoulder with a knife and left the blade behind, super duper ouchy, especially anytime I’m driving or upright) while the entire length of my right arm would get painfully tingly and go numb several times throughout the day, every day.  She ordered x-rays and discovered 3 pinched nerves in my neck.

That’s my neck and there are baaaaaaad things going on in there.

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Today’s Reason: Travis Dow

In memory of Travis Dow: November 3, 1971 – November 4, 2012

While I was well aware that my dear college friend, Travis Dow, had been diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma earlier this year, I am still shocked and heart broken to learn that he finally lost his battle.  Travis was a truly amazing person through and through, a generous soul, a stellar talent, his smile contagious- plainly put, a Good Man.

I joined Team in Training last May to raise money and awareness for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and upon learning of Travis’s diagnosis, added him to my personal list of honorees, sending him a very loud “shout out” and moment of silence before each and every run.  While he was never aware of that, he was certainly always on my mind whenever our coaches would talk to us about the pain and ridiculousness that is cancer- I would think of Travis, and hope and pray for a cure.
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