Sunday, November 10, 2013

ING NYC Marathon (part 1)

What a whirlwind 5 days. It's hard to find a good place to begin.

Erik and I decided to take a red eye to NY to make up for the 3 hour time difference. 

We arrived in NYC early on Thursday morning at JFK airport. We hopped on our first of many subways we would ride throughout this trip. Our hotel was located just a half a block form Times Square. Although it's a great location for tourism, it's not a great location for subway accessibility. We still had to walk a few blocks to our hotel while pulling suitcases in a big city. It was daunting but we finally found our hotel. We checked our bags in and decided to explore the city.

Our first stop: Starbucks in Times Square! We needed caffeine for the long day ahead of us. We also went over to the discount Broadway tickets counter and scored some tickets to Wicked later that night!

Next stop: Jarvits Convention Center for the marathon packet pickup and expo. The one problem with New York is that the subways run North to South and not East to West. So that meant lots of walking or taxis whenever we headed that way. Once arriving at the convention center we were ushered through a long winding line to do security checks before even being allowed to enter. We were appreciative of the extra security so we didn't mind. It was a large expo where we scored some fun new gear, clothes, and back massager.

After walking around the expo for a couple hours the traveling had caught up to us and we needed to nap. Back to the hotel. That's the problem with red eye flights. Even if you sleep on them it's not quality sleep. After a 2 hour nap we were refreshed and ready to go out on the town for the evening. We had dinner at Guy American Kitchen and Bar. We ate some delicious mac and cheese then it was off to the Gershwin Theatre for Wicked! This was my first Broadway play and it was AMAZING! Alli Mauzey as Glinda was the highlight of the show. She was hysterical! Carla Stickler was Elphaba for the night and she was incredible! I am so happy that this was my first experience with broadway. Here is a clip (not taken by me) of one of my favorite scenes:

Day 2:

Erik and I began our day with a easy run through Central Park. It is beautiful there! Check that off the bucket list. We began our run at the finish line of the marathon. As we ran through Central Park we saw many runners out and about. There was a pair of elite men doing an "easy" run and making me look like a snail. They stopped and took pictures with people. I couldn't think of the name of the one runner but I knew he was a frontrunner for the race. Later we found out it was Mutai (who ended up winning for the men)! About a quarter mile behind them was unmistakably Jeptoo (the women's winner)! She has such a distinctive run that there was no mistaking her.  It was such a memorable experience to be able to say that I run with elite runners ;) As we ventured through the park we would periodically stop and take photos. Around mile 4 of our run the skies opened up into a torrential downpour. Erik and I took shelter in a subway entrance along with many others. We ended up running 6.5 miles that morning.

After the run we went back to the hotel to clean up and then head out for the day's adventure.  First stop the Staten Island Ferry.  We wanted to do a test run to see how long it would take to get there so we knew before race day.  Once we got there we found out that it was free to take the ferry and that you get incredible views of the Statue of Liberty.  We hopped on board and enjoyed the ride.  There were several other runners on the ferry doing the same thing we were.  We chatted with a couple from Minnesota there and back and did get some great photos.

After our adventure to Staten Island, Erik and I wanted to pay our respects to those lost in 9/11.  The Ground Zero memorial fountains are a beautiful tribute to those who lost their lives that day.  Every angel has their name engraved on the fountains where the towers stood. It was humbling and made me want to go home and squeeze my kids tight.  The tree we are standing by is the Survivor Tree.  The new Liberty Tower is also coming along and is a beautiful building.


Our next stop of the day was the Empire State Building.  More lines, more security checks, more amazing views.  Our legs were already sore from the 2 days of nonstop sightseeing.  We didn't stay as long as most people do but we got to see the amazing skyline of NYC including the Verrazano Narrows Bridge where the marathon would start.  It looked SO far away from where we were.
I found myself with almost no appetite the entire trip which was disappointing because of all the restaurants at our disposal.  Dinner was at Hard Rock that night because I needed to make myself eat something.  I did have a sweet tooth later that night where we found a yummy creperie. 
Day 3:
Erik and I wanted to take it easy since it was the day before the marathon.  We had bought a NYC City Pass so we did a little sightseeing again.  We tried to keep it to places that were easily accessible to the subway so we could save our legs from walking so much.  We underestimated how much walking we would really do that day.
Our first stop was the Museum of Natural History.  Let me start by saying it really is nothing like the museum on Night at the Museum.  Most of their exhibits were like walking through a still zoo.  Lots of taxidermy (not really my cup of tea).  However, their collection of dinosaur fossils was quite impressive.

Next up, a trek through Central Park to what we thought was Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).  I should have looked closer at the map because we actually went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art...oops.  Neither one of us had the energy to walk this huge museum so we hopped a cab to MoMA to go see some Van Gogh's, Monet's, Picasso's, Pollack's and Worhol's.  We didn't go through the whole museum (we were trying to save our legs) but saw the exhibits we were wanting to see.
A brief stop at Rockefeller Center and then it was time to go meet up with fellow Marathon Maniacs for a group picture in Times Square.  Marilyn happened to be in town at the same time as the marathon.  How great is that!  It's always fun to see a familiar face when on vacation.

Did I mention that we were trying to save our legs today?!?  No such luck.  Go, go, go...that's how we do vacation.  Afterwards, we went to Little Italy for pizza and beer.  We both loved it there!  Delicious food with lots of personality in that neighborhood.  On our way home from Little Italy you could see the Empire State Building all lit up in honor of the marathon the next day.  It was beautiful!
We had a little energy left to spare so we decided to view the city at night.  We went to Rockefeller Center and got some spectacular views.


It was almost 11pm and we had an early day ahead of us.  Time to force ourselves to get some sleep... stay tuned....


Saturday, October 19, 2013

Uh oh!

I am the WORST blogger! I made a resolution to blog more and it seemed to be just that...a resolution.

I need to make it a reality.

So many wonderful things have happened to me this year and I am sad that I haven't blogged about it until now. I have managed to complete 1 5K, 1 10K, 8 half marathons, 1 marathon, 1 ultra, and a Ragnar Relay. I also got invited to do the running portion of a relay team for the Irongirl Triathlon. I set new PRs in the 10K, half marathon, and ultra too!

Overall it's been a good year.

Now for the upcoming events in my life:

Erik and I got invited to run our dream race...the ING New York City Marathon!!! We have 15 days to go. Training has been off and on for various reasons but my heart is in it. We plan to enjoy the race rather than race the race. I look forward to just being a part of the experience.

I was asked to be a Ragnar Relay Ambassador! I love this race and can't wait to represent them for the next year (and hopefully many more years to come).

Westsound Triathlon has also asked me, and my friend Ginger, to host speed workouts in our town for the people who live in the South end. We are heading into week 3 and are gaining momentum. The first week we only had 4 of us, the second week we had 7! I hope it continues to grow. Running is so much more fun with friends :)

So that's it for me right now. I have a few more races planned and I promise to keep you more updated with my blog.

Run happy!

Monday, January 21, 2013


Friends, buddies, confidants, amigos, besties...whatever you call them, they will be there when you need them. This week was a week full of buddies for me.

I started my week off with some Biggest Loser Yoga with my 5 year old, Bryce. He is a harder coach than Bob Harper! He critiques my posture, tells me I didn't do a pose long enough, and doesn't let me take breaks...I love it! He actually refers to himself as Coach Bryce :)

On Tuesday, I did a hill workout on my treadmill. I dialed in a local golf course on my iFit program and ran it slow and easy.

I had to take the next 2 days off because of a crazy work schedule.

Here's where the fun begins...
Friday, I met Ginger at the Bremerton YMCA for my first attempt at aqua jogging. I have to say, it was a lot of fun and I got quite a workout in. 1.5 hours to be exact! We subbed in some swimming in between the laps of jogging to give the leg muscles a break and work on arms. I have to admit...I was sore for 2 straight days following this workout! This was the most water time I've done in forever!!! I'm not usually a big fan of swimming but we will talk about that another time.

Saturday, I met up with Melissa and Diana for some interval running in Silverdale. I love that I can post online that I need a running buddy and people always come through for me. I really loved that we all happened to show up in the same hat for our run! That's one way to run happy. Another highlight of the day is that a fellow running buddy drove by us on his way to work and took our picture, honked, and cheered for us. It was like our own personal race day. Thanks again Chad for the support!

Sunday: I got up early to hit my favorite spin class but had some technical difficulties. The first bike I grabbed had the wrong pedals and the second bike I chose had a broken seat. The class was beyond full so I didn't have any other options. I put the bike away and hit the treadmill. After that, I went back to the spin room for Amy's muscle toning class. She kicked my butt!!!

Monday, I was fortunate enough to have another running buddy answer my call. Back to Silverdale I went to run with LaRee.

Running is amazing on its own. It gives me time to reflect, to find clarity, to think uninterrupted. However, running with my gives me a chance to laugh, to bond, and to know that I am not the only crazy person who loves running.

Thank you to all my amazing buddies out there. You continue to inspire me constantly!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Week 1

Phew! Week 1 of marathon training is in the books. I am following the Runners World Smart Coach plan. Tacoma City Marathon is the race that I am training for and since the plan I am following is only 16 weeks long I have time to ease into it.

Monday: Rest Day/Cross Train
Yep, you read that right. My plan began with a rest day! What the heck?!? I decided to take matters in my own hands and hit the spin bike. It was my first time on the bike in several months. I'm happy to report I was still able to walk comfortably the next day. 30 minutes on the bike followed by 10 minutes on the rowing machines and a short core workout.

Tuesday: Run - Easy Run
The schedule called for 6 miles but as I stated above I am easing into training. The hubby and I hit the YMCA for 4 miles around the track. Followed up the run with a short arm workout.

Wednesday: Rest/Cross Train
I had full intentions of working out today but I got called into work so it turned into a rest day.

Thursday: Run - Tempo
I hit the treadmill for 5 miles at a tempo pace. It felt good to run the legs at a faster pace.

Friday: Run
I once again had to bypass my plan for the day to be a mom. Oh well...being a mommy is what comes first.

Saturday: Rest/Cross Train
I decided to make up the miles I missed on Friday. My focus was 4 miles of hills while maintaining a steady pace. Mission accomplished! Then it was off to the pool for an hour with the kiddos.

Sunday: Run - Long Run
It wasn't quite the long run I had hoped for distance wise but after watching the Seahawks game and being so tense for the entire second half of the get what you get. Seriously, did you watch the game? You know what I mean then! The hubby and I hit McCormick Woods trails for a nice, cold 6.5 mile run. I have decided the best way for me to slow down and focus on my long run is to add some trail work in.

This was my run happy moment of the week.

So that's it. My first week of marathon training. It may sound boring to most but to me it's pure bliss.

Total running miles: 19.5
Total bike miles: 14

Sunday, January 6, 2013

My goals

Okay folks, I have a few goals that I have established for this year. I will continue to update more throughout the year as well.
Here it goes:

1) Blog at least once a week.

I am notorious for starting a blog then stopping shortly after. I intend to keep up with this one.

2) Run a minimum of 2013 kilometers this year (1251 miles)

I hope to achieve more than that but it is still a goal of 100 miles more than 2012. I hope to remain healthy and motivated.

3) Run a 4:15 marathon or better.

This will require lots of training and it will also mean 18 minutes off my current PR. I would really love to get a 4hr marathon but I want to be realistic when setting this goal so I will aim for achievable and set it where it is still going to take work to get it.

So...there you have it. Goals have been set. Now if only I can get over this nasty cold and begin my training. Wish me luck!