Imerman Angels

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Donut Dash 2014 recap

Twitter can be really great if used correctly. One of those ways it can be great came through on Saturday, November 22 when a group of runners met up for Donut Dash 2014.  I found out about the potential event via fellow bibchatter, Cass. She tweeted out a survey that the organizers(Cass, Julie and Kristen) used to plan the event.
Donut Dash Route
Usually waking up early to run is difficult for me, but running for donuts and meeting a lot of new people excited me. It being a cold, windy and rainy morning also made it a struggle to get out of bed. However, I committed the event and did not want to let them down. The group met at Montgomery Park on Saturday outside of Pete's coffee.

There were definitely nerves because I did not know anyone except Cass and we had only interacted via twitter. I enjoyed meeting her and the other runners who decided to brave the misty morning. They had coffee for all the runners who showed up. I had a cup even though I do not consider myself a coffee drinker because I needed something to warm me up. The organizers had the group sign waivers, discussed the plan and split the group into two waves. I jumped into wave one and we headed off to our first stop, Firecakes.

Firecakes would the shortest distance to run to out of all the shops we would go to. Once wave one got to Firecakes, they gave us three options of donuts. I forgot the other options they gave us, but I got the Honey Glazed donut pictured below. The other donuts were on the small-ish side, but not the Honey Glazed donut. We took our time to eat our donuts and I believe it took me the longest of group one to finish mine. I finished my donut and we started our "long" three mile journey to Stan's in Wicker Park.

Honey Glazed donut from Firecakes 
Prior to the event taking place, I kept telling people how fun I believed the event would be. Most responded with an answer like, "Running after eating a donut sounds like asking for trouble." The donut after Firecakes definitely lingered a bit on the trip to Stan's. This is the only time I worried a little that there might be some issues. Fortunately we made it to Stan's with no issues and were pleased to hear we could choose any donut.

Those who know me well know how much I love peanut butter flavored products. Even some of the runners in wave one knew that my next choice would involve peanut butter;the peanut butter chocolate donut would be my choice. A fellow wave one runner and I decided to split the donut because of the fact it looked so rich and we had one more stop left. We ate our split donut and decided we made a wise choice. It tasted great and we moved on to our last location. Glazed and Infused.

Peanut Pocket(very left) from Stan's 
Glazed and Infused had a very nice set up for the group of runners participating in the donut dash. They put aside a few tables for us and had boxes filled with a variety of donuts. Once I saw the options available, I knew my choice immediately.
Red Velvet 
As seen from the picture above, I went with the Red Velvet option (I promise that the donut sitting on the napkin in the picture is not mine). The cream cheese frosting made the donut. Despite me saying that the second donut pictured is not mine, I did have half of another Red Velvet. There were extras and I took a few of the other options home.

The overall event was a big success in my opinion. I had a lot of fun and it seems like everyone involved did as well. Thank you to Cass, Julie and Kristen for all the work they did in organizing the event. I would also like to thank Stan's, Firecakes and Glazed and Infused for providing donuts for the group.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Red River Gorge Part III

Day 4/night 5

I had a little bit of a rough start to the day by having no place to run. Not getting a run in kind of threw my morning off. By no means am I a morning runner, but I have enjoyed these morning runs in Kentucky. Secondly, we had a cold morning, had to take down our tents and realized we to kayak back to our first site. My hands were so cold and this made taking my tent a big struggle. The group got things taken down eventually and we got ready to kayak back. 

My first step into the water punched me in the face. I should mention how muddy our shoes and feet got before we reached the water. As soon as I realized I would not be able to feel my feet for a while, I got over that. It made things ten times better that I partnered with an experienced kayaker in a tandem kayak. The three boys and I were on a mission to get back to warmth. It felt like forever, but we finally made it back to our van and headed off to a new site. 

We got the site, ate lunch and set up our tents. Warm showers at the site cost $1for four minutes. Once I found out about this, I passed. Two more days without a shower would not hurt. Guess what I found time to do?

I thought I might be able to run in loops around our site, but that failed. I ventured off to the road and ran in a "bike lane." Things were good for the most part and it never really felt unsafe. The other positive of the night is that we got pizza. 
Miguel's is also known for their pizza

We are at a place called Miguel's. It is really well known in the climbing community. Tomorrow we will be climbing! I am a little nervous, but it should be fun. Hopefully I do not freeze tomorrow. 

Day 5/night 6

I did not freeze and I got another hilly run in. The hills and trails here have done a number on my quads. Running on streets and lakefront path in Chicago are going to be amazing. I got done with my morning run, we ate breakfast and we headed off to do some climbing. 

None of us were too thrilled to be climbing on a 35 degree day with no sun, but we made the most of it. There were two different climbs of varying difficulty. I forget what they are numbered, but the walls get their ratings from climbers who have climbed that wall first. It then gets confirmed or denied by fellow climbers.

The group got a short lesson on climbing and safety topics. The kids impressed me with how easy they made it look. Unfortunately, things did not work out so well for me. 

I tried to climb one wall and did not make it too far. My body kept wanting to use my upper body while letting my legs take a break. Most people can guess how that worked out. I went once and had to readjust my harness because it got real uncomfortable. I tried again after the readjustment and got a little further but bruised my knee pretty good. It bummed me out that I did not make it far, but I made the effort. I will have to try again another time. My body kept me pretty warm for the most part and that is a huge plus. 

The group vetoed climbing on Friday because it will be colder tomorrow. I would have loved to get to Lexington and visit a big city, but that will have to wait. Instead of climbing we are going to drive to the natural bridge and hike the trail there. It will be another battle to stay warm.

Pictures from the last day

View from the natural bridge

reflecting on the trip 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Red River Gorge part II

Day 2/night 3 

On my run today, I actually ran outside of our campsite and on some of the trail we hiked on Monday. It is not too hilly, but it is also not flat. I enjoyed changing up my run and not just doing laps. These rolling hills are killing me, but I am loving it at the same time. I wish I had a little more time to explore the national park. 

Once I got back from my run, we had breakfast and packed up to go to another camp site. We drove for about 25-30 minutes(maybe longer) and I finally had signal! It had been weird, but fun to go a few days with no phone. It has been really fun hanging out with this group. I tried my hardest to avoid the Bears game, but a couple of texts let me know the results were not pleasant. Thankfully this trip helped me avoid such a demoralizing loss. We set up camp and ate lunch in the parking lot of our site. That does not sound glamorous, but we had a great view and awesome weather. We got a kayaking lesson shortly after eating. 

Our view of Cave Run Lake
Kayaking is something I had not done before. I have canoed before and figured they would be the same;they are not. Needless to say, I struggled a little bit. Haha. I wish I had a good answer for him. Tomorrow should be interesting since we will be out there for much longer.

Making our tinfoil dinners 
Day 3/night 4

I thought my hilly run would be the toughest part of the day until we started kayaking. 

We packed up our site and kayaked over to eat breakfast in the parking lot again. Once we finished that, we started our journey to our new site and I definitely struggled out there. I could not keep my kayak straight to save my life. Haha. Eventually we took a tiny little break to eat lunch on a small little "beach" before continuing. We were pretty tired form kayaking into the wind and the sun bearing down on us. Shortly after eating lunch, we our muddy backcountry site. 
Cooking up some Jambalaya 

I do not know how long we were officially out here, but I would guess around two hours. That is a really long time for someone who never kayaks, a.k.a, me. Despite my struggles, I still had a lot of fun out there. The weather could not have been any better. Hopefully I will be able to put pictures up once I get pictures developed off of my disposable camera.

Not only were we tired after our little venture over to our backcountry site, but now we had to walk through the mud to get to a spot where we would set up our tents. Then, for a short while, we could not find my tent poles: we were sure we packed it into one of our kayaks. The boys really wanted me to sleep in their tent. The adults searched for a good while to find these tent poles and we eventually found them under the girls tent. That is probably the toughest thing I really had to deal with until tomorrow.

We have a tough day ahead of us as we kayak back to our site (where we were on day 2) to leave for another. The bonus of tomorrow is that we should get a warm shower! 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Red River Gorge Part 1

Some of you may not have noticed, but I went on a camping trip with the high school I work at for a week. It is called interim week at the school. The short explanation for it is that the school shuts down for a week and everyone does something that can be a service or a fun trip like I went on. That is a somewhat poor explanation, but is close enough for now. The next few blog post will detail what we did on the trip that I went on. We spent some time on a camping trip on the Red River Gorge in Kentucky.

Night 1

We had a semi long ride down to our site from Winnetka. It really only felt long because we made a few stops to eat and run a few errands. Once we finally got down there, we set up shop and started cooking dinner. We had burgers and chips that were pretty good, some kids told "scary stories" and we relaxed. The two guides talked about goals for the week and students were selected as leaders of the day. 

This should be an interesting trip because I'll be doing a lot of things I have never done before and spending it mostly without technology. I can nor remember the last time I spent time in a tent. Two of the girls and I are planning on going for a run in the morning. I'm glad there are a couple of people on the trip that enjoy it. I know for a sure that my friends who know me well are very surprised that I would agree to go on a trip like this. Haha. 

Day 1/night 2
Compression tights for the win(hopefully you will understand why later)! Two girls and I on the trip on doing our best to stay in shape, so we got up and ran. Together, we ran 1.67 miles or so. They split off after that to do sprints and I ran for a total of 45 minutes. 

We finished our activities and joined the group for scrambled eggs and bacon. After breakfast we talked to our student and two group leaders about the plan for the day and what we would do for lunch. Once we got ourselves together, we headed out for our adventure.

Bacon and eggs cooked by two students

As a group, we followed out student leaders and they used a topographical map to help us find a natural arch on the Sheltowee trail. For some reason, I got it into my head that this would be a flat adventure;oops. I spent a lot of time trying not to get hurt(I ended up with a bruise on my shin, but it wasn't my fault). We got a little lost while trying to find the first arch, so we take a break and ate lunch.

On our way to finding the natural arch 

Shortly after finishing eating, we found the arch! It felt good to find it and hang out there for a little while. The next step in the plan had been to find another natural arch, but after hiking for a few for more miles, we decided to head back to our camp site. 
The view while eating lunch

I can not say for sure how long we hiked, but we did at least ten miles. My CW-x compression tights were a lifesaver. My legs probably would have felt a lot different if it were not for that. During our walk back to camp, I kept looking at places I could run. I did eventually find some places I could get a few miles in. It is funny how my mind has changed since I started running.

Hanging out under the natural arch 
We had time to kill after we got backed and I attempted to learn to play euchre. Hopefully I will understand it a few more times after playing it a couple more times. Once we stopped playing, we had spaghetti and meatballs for dinner and relaxed.

My home for the week

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Marathon Recap

I did not know quite sure how to do this race recap, so I decided to write a timeline of the day and some thoughts I had during the race.

Timeline for the day

4 a.m.-I wake up(thankfully) and kind of lounge around. Races make me paranoid and I never get much sleep. My high school reunion had been the night before and some of my classmates were wondering why I had not been in bed. I knew my body and knew I would not be in bed before midnight regardless of what time I got to bed. 

4:30 a.m.- I figured it would be ok to eat a Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich. I also had a 12 oz. glass of water. It would not be fun if I had to end up in the bathroom for either reason, so I ate and drank lightly. 

4:45 a.m.-Took a trip to the bathroom and showered. A shower always wakes me up a little, so I do it before every race. 

5:20 ish a.m.-Finally headed out to join the masses. It is time to get pumped up! 

6:30 a.m.- I finally arrived at Roosevelt College for the Chicago Endurance Sports (CES) Race Resort. It kind of felt a little overwhelming, so I made sure to use the bathroom and calm myself down a little. I got my warm-up in, chatted a little and checked my bags. Despite me saying it felt a little overwhelming, I highly recommend CES and the Race Resort. It felt awesome to not have to worry about using gear check at the marathon. 

7 a.m.- I finally left the race resort to head to corral D. In retrospect, this should have happened probably 15 minutes earlier, but I wanted to be on my own scheduled and not feel pressured. Either way, I got to my corral around 7:15 after waiting in a couple of long lines. It seems like they heightened security a little this year and that is fine with me. During the week, I had thoughts about sneaking into corral B because that corral fit my goal time. I ended up in corral D because at the time, who knew how well training would go and my predicted finish time matched that corral. I made the executive decision to stay in D because with the strict corral checks, it probably would not have happened anyways. 

7:20-I ran into a co-worker and we chatted about our goals. Being this far back worried me a little. I had questions like, Would I reach my goal? Should I try and catch the pace group in corral B? What if I get out too fast and kill chances of hitting my goal? Eventually, all those questions did not matter and I just had to do my best. 

7:38-This is slightly earlier than I anticipated;here we go! We are not even a mile into it and I am thinking, "I am running to slow." Trust the plan, I told myself. 18 weeks of training should not go to waste because you did not race smart. 

Somewhere between the start and 5k mark (8:02 a.m.)-The weaving in and around people drove me crazy. I hit the 5k mark with a time of 23:37 and trying to do the math in my head, I thought I had been around two minutes behind my goal pace. My split sheet says I had a pace of 7:36 at the time. 

8:25 a.m.-This, the 10k mark, is where I finally started to settle in a little bit and gain some space around me. Things felt smooth and the first GU Roctane just got eaten. My pace also picked up a little (to 7:30) between the 5K and 10k marks. It had not been enough to scare me, so I tried to to stay there for the next few miles. 

15k-7:24 pace

20k-7:29 pace

9:16 a.m.(13.1)-My second GU Roctane of the day just got eaten and I felt a little too good and my pace spiked up big time (7:29 to 7:07)!;oops. Time to slow it down and make sure my legs are good for the rest of this second half.  I hit the halfway point at 1:37:59;perfect! The remainder of the race got spent trying to do math in my head. 

Sometime after 25K-This is where things started to look like I could hit my goal. Now, I just had to mentally tell myself to race smart. I knew if I could make it to 18 and get my third GU in, I would start to feel even better about hitting my goal. Things were going well and that made me very happy. 

20 mile mark- The cramps always came shortly after this mile marker and that definitely made me nervous. I told myself, "Get to mile marker 23, take your GU, and things will be just fine." I just had to take things one mile at a time and not get too anxious or down. They always say running is largely mental and I made sure to make sure that my brain stuck with me. 

10:44 a.m.-10:53 a.m.(35K or 24.854 miles)-My final kick begin at 24 and gave it all I had on this stretch of 2.2 miles. I slowly started to gain speed and geared up to hit Roosevelt "hill". I put my head down and did not look up until got over it and turned on to the stretch run. It felt so good to see that finish line. At this point, my goal had been reached, but I had a chance to get it under 3:15 and I tried to pick it up a little;did not quite get there. It did not matter, because I felt great! My final time ended up being 3:15:12!

Looking back at this, it made realize that my hydrating plan is not mentioned. Going into things, I knew I would have a GU at miles 6, 12, 18 and one other time after that. The Hansons Marathon method plan emphasizes getting electrolytes and sugar in you when you are not taking GU and I did just that. While at each station (where I did not take a GU), I made sure to get one or two gatorade cups based on how filled they were. I had the same strategy when I took water and it seemed to work out really well. 

What is next?

I do not really know! The Hansons maraton method program gave me a lot of confidence during this training cycle and I will definitely use it again while training for whatever race is next. Qualifying for Boston may be next on the list, but I need to build a base and do a little strength training first. 

Hard work does pay off. If you want something, go out and get it. When I signed up for this in April, I did not know a 3:15 marathon would be possible, but I got there. It is possible to make time for a social life and training;a commitment just needs to made to both. Thanks for reading! 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Marathon Playlist

It took me a long time to decide if I would run with music during the Marathon last Sunday. The crowd support is so great, at points it's not even needed. I decided to come up with a Chicago themed playlist of songs that are on my iTunes. The playlist for ended up at 98 songs and I started it once I passed the start line. Another post going into detail about the actual race will come later this week.

The Dog and Everything-Superglue

R. Kelly and Jay Z-Big Chips


Mest-Dody Road

Fall Out Boy-Alone Together

Mest-Jaded(These Years)

R. Kelly and Jay Z-She's Coming Home With Me

Mest-Random Arrival

Mest-Long Days, Long Nights

The Academy Is...-Summer Hair = Forever Young

The Academy Is...-One More Weekend

Lucky Boys Confusion-Hey Driver

Fall Out Boy-The Pros and Cons of Breathing

Fall Out Boy-The Phoenix

The Academy Is...-Down and Out

Fall Out Boy-Grand Theft Autumn(Where Is YOur Boy)


Lucky Boys Confusion-Commitment

Fall Out Boy-The Mighty Fall (Ft. Big Sean)

Kanye West-Amazing (Ft. Young Jeezy)

Kanye West-We Major

The Academy Is...-Season

Lucky Boys Confusion-Fred Astaire

Ok Go-Get Over It

Jay Z & Kanye West-Otis

Fall Out Boy-Rat A Tat(Ft. Courtney Love)

The Academy Is...-Checkmars

Mest-R Ska Song

The Lawrence Arms-The First Eviction Notice

Ok Go-It's A Disaster

Kanye West-Bittersweet Poetry

Ok Go-This Too Shall Pass

Allister-A Lotta Nerve

Kanye West-Runaway

The Academy Is...-Attention

The Lawrence Arms-Your Gravest Words

Fall Out Boy-Tell That Mick He Just Made My LIst Of Things To Do Today

Ok Go-A Million Ways

Kanye West-Power

Jay Z & Kanye West-Gotta Have It

Ok Go-Louisiana Land

The Dog and Everything-The Book

Fall Out Boy-Hum Hallelujah

Kanye West-Can't Tell Me Nothing

Allister-Somewhere on Fullerton


Lupe Fiasco- Hip-Hop Saved My Life

Fall Out Boy-Sophomore Slump or Comeback of the Year

Lucky Boys Confusion-40/80

Monday, September 22, 2014

Mind games

Congrats to everyone to who completed their 20-miler over the weekend. 20 miles is no easy feat and those that completed it should be proud of that;no matter how they did it. My Saturday morning consisted of a 16-mile run because that is the longest run in the Hansons Marathon Method. The run went great, but that is not the run this blog is about. On September 18, 2014, a 10-mile tempo run made me feel marathon ready.

Week 15 of training had been going great, but a 10-mile tempo run lingered and made me nervous. All of my previous runs went really well. The runs included a eight mile easy run, 3x2 miles with an 800 recovery and off day on Wednesday. Maybe the tempo runs make me nervous because they are at race pace and it makes me wonder if I can hold that pace during the marathon. Thursday finally came and the run had to be done.

It started off very well. My legs felt pretty good during the first mile or two and tricked me into thinking that this would be the run that made me feel marathon ready. It had all the makings of a fairly easy tempo run and my splits were right around where they should have been. Things started to change a tiny bit at the end of mile two and the beginning of mile three.

My legs were pretty tired during the first two miles, which is a normal feeling during training. My legs suddenly started to feel heavy. This is where the mental battle begin and I had to talk my brain into thinking my legs were fine. Mile three ended up three seconds slower than mile two. That worried me because it had still be early, there were plenty of miles left to be run and no GU would not be consumed till mile six. It had me wondering how this tempo run would go.

Miles four and five were a struggle, but mile six came and that meant GU time! Hopefully this Chocolate Peanut Butter GU would be my savior;spoiler alert, my legs still were not happy. This is where I just had to suck it up, quit complaining and push through last four miles. The marathon is not going to be easy and it dawned on me this is the run that would get me mentally ready for those last six miles;or as Luke Humphrey says in the Hansons Marathon Method book, the last 16-miles of the race.

The last four miles went really well. Is it a coincidence that once I stopped feeling sorry for myself that my run got better? I can not answer that, but my body and body felt a lot better. Mile 10 ended up being my fastest and despite it being way too fast for my tempo run pace, it made me feel proud of myself.

It is taper run time for most of those training for marathons the weekend of October 10, 2014,  but finish these last couple of weeks strong. There are going to be days where you are sick of running, do not want to run and just feel terrible during your run, but keep fighting. Tell your brain, body and legs you are going to complete this run and they will just have to deal with it. The last half of the marathon will be a mental battle and these struggle bus runs will make you tougher.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Random thoughts

These are just a few things that are on my mind. It is tough to keep this going with marathon training and my various other activities, but I need to make an effort to update this a little more often.

Running with your music

Running with or without music will always be a topic within the running community. More often than not I will run with music myself, so I will not be leading the charge against running with music. One of the issues that I see while running is that people's iPods or whatever they use to lists to music is compromising their form. It makes running look harder than it already is.

The most common issue I see is with runners who have an iPod in one hand that is not moving while the free hand is. It is almost inpressive that a lot of people can do this regardless of how far they are going. I assume this is happening because they are trying to eliminate the cord bouncing as much so the ear bud will not come out. There are a couple of solutions that are worth looking into:

     1) One thing that works for me that I learned from others is to slip the cord inbetween  your body and  the shirt. There is not as much bounce and  the cord buds stay in my ear easier.

    2) Buying new headphones is always an option. I have never used wireless headphones or yurbuds, but those are two suggestions I hear quite a bit. Buying an armband or pouch that goes around your. waist is also an  option.

   3)  This is probably the least popular option,;run without music.  It is nice to zone out every once in a while  and listen to your body.

Obviously, nobody has to take any of these suggestions. These are just thoughts that hopefully will make running with music a little easier. Hopefully the last two will  cause people to think twice about replaying to a text while running.

Bouncing at stoplights

This is something I see runners do and never got. It seems counterintuitive to getting a little rest and would appear to cause the runner to  expend more energy.  I suggest walking around a little bit to allow other muscles to recover. It is also less strenuous on the body  and keeps the legs moving.


Therast two bibchat twitter chats have had two good topics. Last week we talked about having a run life balance. Here are the questions from last week to get more of an in-depth look at  what they asked us:

Marathon update!

Training is continuing to go great! I can not say enough good things about the Hanson's method. I competed a 66 mile week and had three of better runs onwards the end of  last week. The only thing that is bothering me is a nagging shin issue that comes and goes. I keep telling my body to just get me through the marathon in one piece and I promise that I will take a break from running;hopefully it is listening.

Ten things you may not know about me

I recently got tagged in a post by Heather in a post to list 10 things people may not know about me and I am finally responding.

1-I am what I call a selective eater. Food is great and I love to eat;however, if I do but like how it smells or looks, I probably will not try it.

2-Keeping up with the food topic, I have a small allergy to pecans and walnuts

3-I love music and concerts. I attended 33 live music events last year. Free events are a good way to check out new bands

4-My friends do not believe me, but I consider myself a shy person

5-My family loves to call me old man

6-Non-fiction books are my book of choice, but I do love John Grisham

7-If it involves peanut butter, I will eat it(notice I am talking about food a lot)

8-Running use to terrify me and I never really stuck with it until a friend asked me to run a half with me. I thank her often for suggesting I do that half. I had never run more than five miles in my life, so I still wonder why I agreed to run that race.

9-I have seen Bring It On more than I am willing to admit

10-Seinfeld and The Cosby Show are my favorite tv shows

11*-I have some funny stories about strangers that love to talk to me. Here is an example from yesterday:

Some guy just came up to me out of nowhere in Wilmette:

What sports team do you play for?

Me:I don't play for one.



Guy-how far can you run?

Me-it depends on the day

Guy-tell me about it. How far did you run today?

I tell him and he just nods his head and goes sweet... Sweet.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The halfway point

Welcome back(for those of you that read this)! I have been away from this for a while and just wanted to share a few thoughts on how marathon training is going;hence the title of this blog. For any new readers reading this blog, I am using the Hansons Marathon Method.

It is hard to believe that I am nine weeks through training. Training has gone pretty well so far, but week nine is the week I thought would get me. Here is what the week looked liked:

M-easy 8(at 8:30 pace)
T-6x800(3:09 pace)
W-Off day(my favorite!)
Th-8 mile tempo at 7:25 with 1.5 WU/CD
F-easy 7
S-long 15 at 8:05 pace
Su-easy 8

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday were great. The workouts went as planned and I had no worries about anything. My foot is having some issu that made me worries about my tempo run, but it did not hurt during my run at all. Saturday, Sunday and the two workouts after that did worry me.

Normally I would have gotten my long run in early on Saturday, but I had to be up early to get to work. I worked till 3:30 and needed to eat. That meant I wouldn't get my run in till around 5 p.m. During my run, I took a Strawberry-Kiwi GU Roctane at mile five and felt great for the duration of the workout. When that got finished, I stretched, ate, showered and tried to get to bed early because it would be another early morning.

The long run and a lack of sleep did not help me during work or my run. I got home around 12:30 p.m. and slept till about 4:30.  My legs, body and brain were exhausted. Everything about the day screamed a run sometime around 8 p.m., but the weather looked dicey and forced me outside. What happened after that is probably going to be the most memorable run of my training session.

The Hansons method allows for easy runs to be 1-2 minutes slower than marathon pace; my run would be close to a nine minute mile. Every inch of that eight mile run hurt. I finally understood what they meant by cumulative fatigue. It seemed crazy that an eight mile run at this pace would hurt so much. It is a run I will certainly not forget for a very long time. It made me tougher and I definitely appreciate that part of it, but I just wanted to be in bed the whole time.  My legs probably wondered how long they would be tired for.

Week 10 got started with a six mile run that hurt just as much as the run on Sunday, but I willed my way through it. The track workout(3x1600) went slower than expected, but it got done. Even though it did not go as planned, it is probably the best I felt mentally after any of my workouts; my mood had been really high. With the workouts starting to get marathon specific, things will get harder, but I will be ready for it.

How is training going for you?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Trying to be patient

Last week on a local radio station, I heard an interview with former Braves pitching coach, Leo Mazzone. During the interview, he described his method for pitchers and keeping them healhy. Paraphrasing what he said, it basically went like this;throw a lot, but regulate the effort. I said that sounds a lot like the Hanson Method.

The Hanson Method calls for a lot of their runs to be what they call "easy" runs. The advanced program calls for runners to run six days a week and the mileage can look intimidating. It looks  difficult for any runner who who has not run that much in a week ever. Now, the easy runs are supposed to be one-to-two minutes slower than marathon pace for a variety of reasons. My running has been  pretty good this  year and running slower than my typical pace did not sound ideal. Putting  Leo  Mazzone's pitching philosophy and the Hanson method would require patience.

It is easy to see why the program(I am doing the advanced version if I did not mention that) requires so many easy runs/patience. My last few runs have been ones where I have had to exercise that patience and stick to the training program. Saturday, I had a long run ( at 8:05 pace) that ended up with me getting soaked. There were moments where I went slower than I wanted to, but I told myself, "stick to the plan" and  stay close to my pace. The rain on the second half of the 12-mile run sucked; there is no other way to say it. I could have sped up to get the run done, but what good would that have done for the long term goal?  This is probably something I would have done while training last year. On Monday, my first my mile went horrible.  I literally yelled out loud and got pretty upset.  Telling myself to stick to the plan helped me keep it together.

Five and a half weeks of training have passed  and the benefits are showing. I would love to run fast all the time, but there is a method to the madness. A couple of friends have asked me how I got faster; the answer is putting in the miles and being patient.  A lot of people want to be fast, but they do not want to put in the work. For some people, it comes naturally; for most, work needs to be put in. I think that is the best part of the Hanson method program; it requires both.

The moral of the story is that marathon training and running in general requires patience no matter what program you are using. As runners, we all have to remember that patience, hard work and sticking to the plan is a huge part of reaching your goal. Not every run will be perfect. Marathons are a different beast and we need to respect the distance.

I hope training for everyone who reads this is going great! How do you stay patient during the training season?

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Mid-year Review

It is hard to imagine, but we are halfway through the year already. Somehow, despite that rough winter, time did not slow down.  I thought it would be fun to take a quick look at some of my goals that I set for myself at the beginning of the year. Here we go:

Run more races/beat my goal times from last year

This is a tough one because it all depends on how I am doing financially. I have lucky enough to participate in two Ragnars (Cape Cod and Chicago) and run the Original 5K. Hopefully things are good for me and I will be able to run the B1G 10k and Rock 'N' Roll Chicago. The B1G 10k looks like a fun race and RNR is one of my favorite half-marathons because of the course and the after party. Training plans also make it difficult to run races. I am keeping my eye on the prize; the Chicago Marathon in October.

The goal times coincides with having money to do races. Rock 'N' Roll and the Chicago Marathon are the only races that I have a chance to beat. Maybe there will be some new races on the calendar for me where I can set new goals to bet.

Run with people more

I would say this goal has been accomplished. The majority of my runs have been solo, but more than once, I have had friends accompany on a long run or a speed workout. It also helped that I worked out a lot with the track team that I helped coach. Running with others mixes things up and keeps you motivated. It also challenges you in ways that makes reaching your goals attainable. This is something that will I keep pursuing.

Staying healthy

So far, so good on this end. There have been minor issues, but nothing that has kept me out of training. Stretching, recovery runs and my addaday stick have been my best friends so far. I set a goal of running at least 1,000 miles and it looks like that will happen easily. Currently, I am at 740 miles! Marathon training will get me over that easily. I will keep doing the things necessary to get to 1,000 and above.

Sidenote: I forgot the six weeks I had to take off after the marathon with a bruised kneecap. My knee connected with something at work and walking hurt for eight weeks; it hurt to straighten my knee out! Thankfully, that is the worst thing that has happened to me so far.

Read more blogs

I am working on this! I am thankful that I can connect with others through outlets like #bibchat and #runchat. It is always fun to hear from others and hear how their training is going.

How are your goals looking so far?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Marathon training

Hello! It has been an extremely busy month with traveling and work, so this has gotten neglected. An update on a few of things will be coming at some point, but the most recent thing that is going on is marathon training! Lets go back to May and run through some things that had been on my mind.

One of the first things that came to mind is what marathon training plan I would use?


I really had no rhyme or reason for choosing this book. The only thing that I really knew about the plan is that the longest training run is 16 miles. A friend and I ended up at a book store one day and I decided to purchase it. This is not to say that the Hal Higdon plans have not worked, but trying new things is never a bad thing. The book taught me a lot and it has not left my side since it came into my hands.  I even got a few friends to do the program with me! 

Could I handle an increase in mileage and running six times a week?

A-We are finding that out right now! As I have gotten to know other runners, increased mileage is part of training, so I knew that it had to happen. Running six days a week also seemed challenging, but after reading the book, it is not as much hard mileage that it sounds like. A lot of the miles are spent are what the trio calls "easy miles (a minute or two less than goal marathon pace). That's another thing that is important about the Hanson Method;it really stresses proper pacing and hitting those numbers consistently. Commitment is also a huge part of the program because workouts are placed in order for a reason.

View from the Ann and Roy Butler Trail in Austin, TX

What I looked like after my first run in Austin.
That's commitment, right?

The next question that had to be answered is what were some realistic goals for the marathon?

A- Reading the book and training with the team I coached allowed me to set some goals that are very reachable. Last year I had a time of 3:47:40 and definitely thought that could be improved up and came up with a goal of 3:20. There are charts in the book that help you determine what paces you should be hitting during your runs, speed workouts and strength workouts. Below are some of the numbers that I should be hitting on some of the runs: 

Goal Time: 3:20
Easy runs-8:38
Tempo (marathon pace):7:38

Even though speed and strength workouts (i.e. mile repeats) are not listed above, I am and will be doing them. Speed work is new to my training plan and so far it has been a lot of fun doing them. 

What shoe will take me across the finish line?

A- Probably the New Balance 870 or Brooks Ravenna 5. Both shoes have been good to my feet and will make a great choice. If I were forced to make a choice today, it would be the 870. It is definitely one of my favorite shoes that I run in right now.

How is training going so far?

A-My body is tired, but I am loving it. My first tempo run is tomorrow and it will be interesting to see how it goes. Wednesdays are my new favorite day of the week thanks to the scheduled days off. 

That's all I have for now! How is marathon training going for you?

Monday, June 2, 2014

Ragnar Tips

How do you get over fear of missing out on the next upcoming Ragnar after doing your first one? Answer: Get convinced by one of your Cape Cod Ragnar teammates to do the Chicago Ragnar. I did not expect to be back in the saddle so soon, but here we go again.

Back in the day (a.k.a-three weeks ago), the thought of doing my first Ragnar scared me. I did not know what to bring, if I would get lost, how to dress and so on. The more tips I read, the more comfortable it made me feel. Here are some of my tips on how to handle your first Ragnar. These tips are in no order of importance.

Tip 1: Don't over pack

This is an important tip because it is important to remember because, there are other people who bringing their things and there will not be a lot of space in the vehicle. I felt like I packed pretty light  for my Ragnar, but I ended up not using a lot of things.

List of things I suggest bringing:

Dri-fit gear or gear that is anti-microbial

Shoes (your running shoes and comfortable shoes like flip flops or sandles)- If there is a strong
chance of it raining, you could bring two pairs of running shoes.

Baby wipes (may be most important item)

Nutrition items like Gu or Cliff Bars

Big sandwich bags to put wet or smelly clothes in.

Comfortable clothing to wear when you are not running

Something that can help with over packing is communicating with your teammates on who is bringing what. My Madison to Chicago team met recently and we ironed out some important details on what to bring and who will bring it. If everyone brought a lot of the same things, there would too much of it and it would go to waste.

Tip 2: Don't expect too sleep much

Sleep is something that really, just will not happen a lot. Any sleep that you get during a Ragnar is a bonus. I am not someone who can fall asleep anywhere, so this is something I expected and handled pretty well. There are a lot of people out there who really like their sleep and I do not blame them for that. They will just have to prepare to catch up on that after the weekend. Personally, it probably took two to three days to get back on a normal sleeping schedule.

Tip 3: Get out of the van as much as you can

It is exteremely important to stay loose to keep your body ready for the next leg. I had a little routine I did before every run to try and keep myself loose. If you are a runner who has a routine like this, do it before each run. Ragnar is not a normal running event and it is important to try and keep it as normal as possible. I am not saying that doing these things will completely eliminate soreness, but they definitely will help. With that being said, bring a stick (I suggest the Type A or C roller from Addaday) or foam roller to use before or after runs.

Tip 4: Now is not the time to be anti-social and have fun

This is not the event for anyone who is anti-social. Or I should say, someone who is not ready to break out of their shell. There is a lot of time in the van with your teammates and sometimes, it will be with people who we may not know very well. Get to know your teammates and have a good time. It really is a great event and one that is meant to bring people closer and learn more about them. On the last Ragnar (Cape Cod) and on this Ragnar (Madison to Chcago), I did not really know many of the people on my team. They were not complete strangers, but over the course of the weekend, I got to know them a little more.

There are a ton of other things that could be said, but these are the most important to me. If you are reading this and doing Madison to Chicago, have fun!

What are your Ragnar tips?

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Ragnar short #3

What a weekend! Our team is currently heading back to drop off our vans right now.  There are a lot of beat-up, determined runners in this van right now; most of which are sleeping while I am updating a short blog post.

Unofficially, the team finished in the neighborhood of 28 hours. We thought we were way behind our projected time, but it ended up being real close. It is real interesting to be on a team for once when running a race. Many think running can be is strictly an individual place; running a Ragnar is not one of those times. Each runner needs each of his teammates to get through the legs.  There comes a time when those legs do not want to work and the words of twitter friends and your teammates keep you going. It has been a really fun experience.

I did not really know what to expect when going into this thing except a lot of running in a short time period.  A lot of my friends tolde a lot of fun things and it really lived up to expectations. My. Friend friend Brittany is the only person I really knew going into this., but I feel like I made new group of running friends.  Running this race made love the experience of running even more. It is hard to put into words, but I have an example.

During the first leg, which is one of the hardest things I have done in a long time, a lady nearly caught up to me. Kills(passing a runner) are really popular during relay races and  sometime during the last  three miles of my leg, I nearly got passed. I really tried not to let this runner change the way I raced this leg, but it definitely motivated me during a tough stretch. At one point we both stopped for water, wished each other good luck, and then continued running. She never caught me(whoo!), but we found each other after our leg and thanked each othe for motivating each other. I never saw her again and I will probably never meet her, but I probably will not forget that moment because of how cool it felt.

I will leave it at this for now. Once I am not tired and busy from the weekend, I will upload a recap or two and some pictures.  Thank you to everyone who cheered me on from afar. I guess I can say I am a ragnarian now.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Leg 10 playlist for Ragnar Cape Cod

Leg 10 is probably the hilliest run I have ever run in life. These songs and GU Peanut Butter got me through it.

Ragnar leg 1 music in reverse order:

Foster the People-Houdini

Luke Bryan-rain is a good thing

Jack's Mannequin-people running

Cold War Kids-Saint John

The Mowgli's-San Francisco

Fall Out Boy-young volcanoes

Dr. Dre-bitches ain't shit

Timbalad-give it to me remix

Foster the people-pumped up kicks

Little Big Town-pontoon

Walk the Moon-drunk in the woods

Vampire Weekend-giving up the gun

Jack's Mannequin-Dark Blue

Walk the Moon-Anna Sun

Good Charlotte-like it's her birthday

The Mowgli's-hi, hey there, hello

B.o.B-I am the man

Punchline-I am the man

Tony! Toni! Tonè-feels good

Sleigh Bells-Rill Rill

Fitz & the Tantrums- 6 am

soulDecision-Ooh it's kind of crazy

Fall Out Boy-The Phoenix

A couple of Houndmourh songs I forgot about

Ragnar shorts

*Pictures will come once I am back to my computer

I am up early for my race, so I figured I would update  my blog with a short post from my phone.

Part of the  Chi Squad team got up bright and early and headed to Midway for an early trip to Boston. It had been over 10 years since I last visited Boston. The flight went pretty smoothly, and we finally arrived in Boston for our highly anticipated trip to Boston for Ragnar Cape Cod.  One of my teammates brothers picked us up and we headed into the city to find down breakfast.

We found a good little place to eat (Trident Booksellers & Cafe) and then walked around the area for a bit. I definitely enjoyed finding the Boston Marathon finish line on Boylston. Hopefully someday that is a finish line that I will be crossing someday. The morning continued with a little more sightseeing as we headed towards the Bunker Hill Memorial. We climbed 294 steps to get to the top and see a great view of Boston from the top.  My legs were sore and I felt like I did some hill training for my long run today. Harpoon Brewery would be the next stop on our mini your of Boston.

Part of the team hung out at Harpoon for a while and the rat of our team eventually met up with is. I had only met a couple of them, so I enjoyed meeting the majority of them. Eventually, the team left Harpoon and headed into Plymouth.  The Ragnar finally felt like it would really  be happening.

Thankfully some of the team members have done this before and have been a big help  to is. We decorated the vans with a Chicago themed  decor.  Once that got finished, part of the team headed  to dinner. We went to a Hibachi place and the chef put on a fun show. We headed back to our rooms and van 2 wished good luck to van 1; they had to be up early to get started!
I'll try to get up another post before or after my run!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Hoka Conquest Notes

Hoka notes

Specs from

Natural Performance Cushion Shoe
4mm offset
Weights-11.8 oz.

A couple of weeks ago, I got a pair of Hoka Conquest to test out. Here are some of my thoughts after runs in them:

Day 1

Did a 1.47 run in them and they felt good.

After the run, I did 3x3x3x400

Now if I had expected to do a speed workout, I am not sure that these would have been the shoes that I picked it. I am glad I did because I really got to test them. They held up better than I thought they would. I had a little shin pain, but that didn't last very long. It probably would have gone better if I had pulled the no-tie laces a little tighter.

Day 2

Did a solid 45 minute run and felt really good. I only had minor shin pain after the run. The shoes never really felt too heavy. It is hard to believe that they weight as much as the Hoka website says they do.

Day 3

3.2 mile run with the track kids and it felt nice and soft. We ended the run with 6x100 striders. My legs definitely started to feel real sore. Originally, I could not figure why. Eventually, I figured out that it is probably because of the 4mm drop in the shoe and my legs are just getting use to that. My legs have not been that tired in a while.

Day 4

1.15 warm up jog before a tough speed workout. This is a workout that I did not know if I would get through due to tired legs and tight calves. With the help of an extended warm-up, I made it through the workout just fine. I tightened the laces and the shoes felt better. I never felt like they were holding me back. The workout went very well and I felt like the shoes were working with me.

Day 6
* I forgot to note how I felt after my fifth run in them.

Today I completed an easy three mile run and they felt really good. The shoes seem to be getting lighter, while the fit of the shoe is improving. The extra cushioning is nice and can make a runner forget about the heel-to-toe offset. Working through tight calves and sore leg days were tough, but I have gotten use to the lower drop and do not notice it anymore. No-Tie laces are something that is still new to me, but it is fun not having to deal with tying my shoes at any point doing a run. Do not be afraid to try on the shoe. It is very comfortable and works well for a variety of running styles.

Monday, April 21, 2014

It's been a while/runchat 4/20

It has been far too long since this blog has been updated. A lot of that is due to the fact that I have been busy and just generally tired lately. I really need to be better about updating this blog for myself and the others that read it. Here are my runchat answers from last night (another fun thing that I have not done in a while).

Runchat 4/20

Q1-How will you watch the Boston Marathon?

A1-As I type this, the marathon is on my television and I am following updates on twitter. It is pretty funny that I am watching a marathon; a few years ago, this would have never shown up on my television at all. This is much I have come to love talking about running in any form.

Q2-Who or what is your biggest inspiration to keep running?

A2-Staying healthy and fit is my biggest inspiration. I definitely always think about where I would be if I were not running. I definitely have my ups and downs, but I feel like I am a happier now compared to when I started running.  Helping others out who ask me for help and want to get better at running is also inspiring. It is hard to believe that people are asking me for help at all with running. I definitely want to do my best to help anyone who wants help. 

Q3: What's a big lesson you've learned through running that you've applied to other aspects of life

A3-You can do just about anything if you push yourself. I have two marathons and the biggest challenge is finding that mental edge to keep yourself going. Marathons are painful, but if you just tell yourself that you can get through it, you truly believe that anything can be done with hard work. I think people start believing in themselves more after completing things (5K's, half-marathons, marathons, etc...) they never thought could be possible. 

Q4: If a non-running friend came to you for running advice today, what would be the first words out of your mouth?

A4-Get fitted for proper shoes and do not give up if you struggle. 

Q5: Which races have the best spectators? Why?

A5-Out of all the races I have done, marathons have the best spectators. I have the Chicago Marathon twice and the crowds have been amazing both times. The people make all the runners feel like celebrities. It feels great to get cheered on by a lot of people you will probably never meet. 

Q6: Finish this: I run for ______.

A6-Food, confidence and my health. 

Brooks Pure Project Shorts review

Front of shorts
The Shorts are semi-fitted, soft and very light weight. It fits very well around the waist without slipping.The liner is snug around the hip flexor area and takes some getting use to;it eventually goes unnoticed.The four-watch stretch material is nice for me because my pants, tights and jeans have all split in the crotch area. I feel like the stretch material will allow the shorts to not do that or as early.

Back of shorts

I think it functions as advertised. I really like the antracite color because I think it looks good on me. The DNA fabric liner is nice because while I have run it, I do not notice it at all. Originally when this post got written, it had been cold and I did not know if it could serve as a lifestyle piece; that of course has changed. I have worn it to work and when I am out and about. It definitely is something I would wear on a spring or summer night out with friends or even if I ventured to te beach. The pockets are also surprisingly deep.

The DNA fabric liner and two-way use as a lifestyle/running piece will be one of the shorts selling points. Some people might be worried about the fact that it is gray(anthracite if we are getting specific) and that others will see how much they sweat in it after a workout. I have worn it several times and that will be minimal at best.
The liner
The Pure Project shorts are comparable to 2-in-1 shorts. I personally like that the liner fits around the hip flexor and not wrapped around the quad. With the 2-in-1 shorts, you probably could wear underwear under it, but I would not do that with the Pure Project Shorts.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

currexSole runPro sole review

Recently at work, we met with a rep from currexSole to learn about the run specific insole, RunPro. Once we learned about the product, we got a pair to keep and test out. My review follows below.

The first thing that people should know about the insert is that it is a run specific insert. That means it is meant to be used while running. This does not mean that you could not use it while walking around, but the benefits will really come while running.

It is also not really going to correct any injuries. It is something that will help prevent injuries. Our store buyer said there have been recent correlations that comfort equals better performances.

The insert is also a zero drop insert. That means it will not change the heel-to-toe ratio of the shoe that it is worn in. It is definitely an improvement over the standard running insole because it helps customize the shoe to your foot.

It definitely functions as advertised. I love that the insole does not alter the shoe and feels really comfortable. I immediately took it out for a five mile run after I got it and did not even notice it. Running is difficult enough so I do not want to have to think about an insole if I use one.

The picture above shows the what the bottom the insole looks like. The blue pad is a heel padding, while the orange pad is the pad under the forefoot. The silver pad is the arch cradle. The cradle takes energy it stores and returns it to ou when your foot hits the ground and pushes off. The currexSole rep told us that the insert is designed to get more comfortable the more you use it.  I am looking forward to that because I already love it. It will be used throughout my four running shoes.

The price of the insert is $50. I truly believe that anyone skeptical of the insert will love them after giving it a try.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Asics GEL DS-Trainer 19 review

Recently I got a pair of the Asics GEL DS-Trainers 19  from  Asics. Here is my review of them after getting a few runs in them.


It is definitely more narrow than the 18's. I originally tried on the 19 in an 11.5 and the shoe absolutely did not fit my foot (I have kind of a rectangular foot with a wide flat arch). My arches spilled over and my pinky toes wanted to escape the shoe. I moved up a half size to a 12 and the shoes fit a lot better. The length of the shoe in the size 12 is great. I have enough room in the toe box and it does not feel to big on me. The cushioning on the shoe is nice and soft. It has a great first feel and easy to break in. People who like heel support will enjoy how that feels in the shoe.

I ran in it with two different socks (Nike Elite Cushioned socks and Icebreaker ski socks) and it affected how the shoes fit a little. The first couple of times I ran in them, I ran with the Nike socks. The shoes felt a little tight to walk around in, but I did not notice that when I ran. With the Icebreaker socks, which are thinner, the shoes felt looser and lighter, but still comfortable. The seamless soft upper is also something that is nice. It feels like there is a soft pad right above my toes.

The stability feels great. I can tell it is there without making the shoe feel too heavy. The new Dynamic DuoMax system works really well with the shoe.The shoes felt great while running. They are so lightweight that I hardly even notice them when I ran in them. It is definitely a shoe I can consistently enjoy. They say comfort equals better performance and I have gotten in some of my best runs of the winter in while running them.

I think one of the key selling points will be its weight. Those looking for mild stability at a lighter weight will enjoy the shoe (Ravenna 4 and New Balance 860v4 weigh 10.8 oz; Saucony guide 10oz). The narrowness of the shoe will be one of its best selling points, but it will also frustrate others. I definitely understand why they went in the narrower direction.


I love the way the shoe feels on my feet. It made me a little nervous that I tried on an 11.5 and it did not fit. Thankfully I could try on the size 12 and they fit great.

Does anybody else run in this shoe? What do you think of it?

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

#runchat 2/23 and a rough running week

I had a rough running week last week. I got one run in my new Asics Gel DS-Trainer 19 (review coming soon) and I had to shut it down. The temperature changes in Chicago really messed with my sinuses and knocked me on my butt. It is pretty ironic for someone that has been running all winter and I have to miss out on two of the nicest days of the year. It really sucked, but I had to listen to my body and let myself heal. I finally felt good enough to run yesterday and got a great run in!

My run today is one of the more adventurous runs I have been on this winter;ice everywhere! I am just thankful that I did not fall on my butt.

Runchat answers

P.S.- I currently run in the Brooks Ravenna 4, Saucony Guide 7, New Balance 860v4 and now the Asics Gel DS-Trainer 19.

Q1-Where do you do your shopping for running gear? Locally?Online? Chain stores? A mix?

A1-I mostly get my gear in person at a running store. Getting my gear online is something that I have never felt comfortable with because I can not try it on. It would be much easier to go into a store and try it on, rather than ordering it and realizing it does not fit.

Q2-What running gear have you purchased that you later discovered you didn't need?

A2-Honestly, I am pretty particular about what I buy. That means, if I buy it, I am going to use it. Money is not something that I can be free with.

Q3-What are 2-3 pieces of running gear you really would like to have? What do you need to replace soon?

I would not mind owning some compression gear (tights or socks) and some more running shorts. Running shorts use to scare me because of how short they were. Until someone suggested I really purchase running shorts, I never realized how comfortable they are.

With winter ending soon, I will need to replace my tights, my Ravenna 4's and shorts. The tights and the shorts both have holes in the crotch area; really annoying.

Q4-When packing for a race trip, what are the first items you put in your suitcase?

My shoes-Obvious answer for most important item.

Next up on the list is my Garmin now that I own one.

Whatever running clothes I plan on using. I try to bring something that dries quickly so I can use it more than once. Packing heavy is not something that I enjoy.

Q5-I never go for a run without my __________

My Garmin. I love using it!

Monday, February 17, 2014

#Runchat 2/16/14

Q1: What aspects of recovery confuse you? Ice baths? Food? How long to rest?

I could always learn a little more about how food can help recovery and running. I am not one to change my diet during training for a race but I know that it can be beneficial. It is definitely something that I need to look into more.

Q2: What's the first thing you do to begin recovering after a long run or race?

Before I discovered the addaday type c roller, I just ate the food given to me after a race and stretched. Now after long runs, I use my type c roller. It is my favorite recovery tool and it keeps my legs feeling great. It comes highly recommended it.

Q3: How much strength training, stretching or massage do you do?

Right now, I can not do much strength training because I am participating in research study on hip strengthening. I am in the control group and got orders to not to any hip strengthening workouts for eight weeks! It is killing me right now. Typically, I like to cross train three to four times a week. I usually just do legs and abs. Upper body workouts will also be added into the mix shortly.

I use my addaday roller every single day. I like to roll out before a run and before I got to bed. It is a tool that comes highly recommended. Personally, I like it better than the stick or a foam roller because I feel like I get more out of it.

Q4: How long do you take between training cycles before you jump back into training?

This is a question that I definitely could use more knowledge on. Typically, it usually is a week for me. How much time should I take off? Should I be doing recovery runs? I guess I could have put this as my answer for question one.

Q5: What are your favorite recovery foods/drinks? Share your secret ingredients!

I just drink chocolate milk or have something with peanut butter in it.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

#runchat 2/2

Q1-@RockMyRun is creating a new #RunChat mix. What's your favorite workout song right now?

Workout songs that I am loving right now are Take Back the Night by Justin Timberlake and Coming of Age by Foster the People. Foster the People is one of my favorite groups and I can not wait for their new cd to come out. I loving having songs I can sing along to on a run. 
From time to time, I definitely get caught singing out loud.

Playlist from my run on Monday:
Rick Ross-stay schemin
Fun.-be calm
Fun.-all the pretty girls
Daft punk-get lucky
Matt & Kim-Yea Yeah
The Mowgli's- the great divide
Fitz and the Tantrums-L.O.V
Matt & Kim-let's go
Fitz and the Tantrums- out of my league
Kanye & Jay Z- Paris
Lucky Boys Confusion- Breaking Rules

Q2- On a scale of 1-10 (1 being awful, 10 being awesome), how was your January? Any adjustments to 2014 goals? #RunChat

I would rate it an eight. I ran a total 121.52 and felt strong. There were some minor shin splints issues, but they did not prevent me from running. Some co-workers and I also completed Active's 30-day push-up challenge. It felt good to do upper body work consistently. It is something that I hope I stick with on a consistent basis.No new adjustments, yet. I wanted to run a total of a 1,000 miles and it looks like I am track to do that right now.

Q3-Switching gears, if you could pick just one race distance to do for every event, what would it be? Why?It would definitely be half-marathons. It is not an easy distance, but I think it is definitely a race I could master. I have had fun running marathons, but I do not know if it is a distance that can really be mastered.

Q4-If you had an hour with anyone in the running world to go running with, who would you chose? What would be the No. 1 question?I just finished Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, so my answer is Louis Zamperini. I would ask him How did he get through what he did? It would have been so easy for him to just throw in the towel and just give up on life. His story is an example of toughness and perseverance. It would be great to run with an Olympian and WWII vet. It is a book that I highly suggest to all who like to read. He is currently 97!

Q5- The best thing about running is ________

That it is so relaxing. It always calms me down and I feel so much better after doing it. I have also met a lot of god people through running.