Monday, April 25, 2011

Jelly Bean Race - Virtual 10K

There are just tons of 'virtual' races on various running blogs to sign up for. Some are designed to raise money for different causes and some, like this one, are just for fun! In general, for these types of races awards are given based on drawings from all participants and some offer some really cool prizes too! This one looked like fun so me and Mike signed up for the Jelly Bean virtual 10K...

Mike did his first and ran an extra mile too - show off...

I did mine in the morning and it was hot, hot hot :)

A new 10K PR for me and I won a prize too! (Winners Announcement). How cool is this? I love it!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

My first 15K!

I completed my very first 15K today at the gorgeous JB Starkey Wilderness Park in New Port Richey (JB Starkey Park website) at the Earth Day Relay For Life which benefits the American Cancer Society.  We dedicated this race to Mike's Dad who tragically loss his battle with cancer in 2005.

To prepare for this race, I have been doing my long runs at the same time each week (and the same time that the race was scheduled to start) to get better used to the Florida temperatures. Whenever I see that blood stain on my running shoe I remember how hard I've trained - gross I know but I'm so proud of that stain...

I felt ready but very nervous the night before and couldn't sleep until about 2 a.m. We got ready and hit the road at 6 a.m.

It was a really small and informal race which did wonders to calm me down :).

Great T-Shirts too!

I started out feeling prepared and strong :)

The race itself was really pretty with lots of wildlife to enjoy, but really hot! At the turnaround point they had left a cooler so I loaded up my sports bra with ice which really helped for the next mile or so! I had added some new tunes to my ipod and we chatted with some of the other runners on the course which was also a great distraction. I didn't really struggle too much until about mile 8 to be honest and at that point only a mad person stops running, right? I finished my 9.3 miles at 1:45:27 which I was totally thrilled with!

I love my new race bling and may wear it for the rest of my life...

I never thought I was capable of running a 15K and I may not have been if Mike hadn't been right by my side not only for today's race but for all of the long training runs (thank you Mike - you have no idea how much I love you...) And today...I really felt like PopPop was with us too...we miss you and we love you...

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Biking update

I haven't blogged about the bike at all lately so here's the latest and greatest on how it's going :). Overall, I am doing so much better since my difficult triathlon experience in January and have learned some key lessons that make the world of difference. First of all, a Gel Seat Cover is one of the finest inventions known to man (or woman). I got mine on ebay for $15 (with tags of course - I'm not about to sit on anything that's been that intimate with a complete stranger's crotch area)...

Unfortunately not everyone follows the same 'non-crotch-sharing' rule apparently and someone actually stole my wonder seat from my bike while I was having a swim in the gym last week :(. Now I'll have to order a new one...

I have also made some major progress with these sticks on the front of the bike which I am reliably told are the gears....

At the triathlon I was terrified of taking my hands off the handlebars to mess with them so I did the whole thing in the same gear:). I'm not quite sure about the one on the left yet but playing with the one on the right makes a massive difference to my riding experience. Baby steps...

Anyway, I'm managing to bike about twice a week at the moment anywhere from 8 to 12 miles and my times are improving steadily (OMG I love Mike's Garmin!). Here I am this morning first thing getting ready to go out for a spin and looking like a rockstar again :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

We ran for Japan!

The massive earthquake, the seventh largest recorded in history, that struck the east coast of Japan on Friday, 11th March, 2011 measured 9.0 on the Richter scale, and triggered a tsunami which hit the east coast of Japan with 7-metre-high waves, leaving a trail of massive destruction. With a death toll in the thousands, an economic cost in the billions, and the threat of nuclear meltdown imminent, the people of Japan face their greatest disaster for decades.

Run for Japan is an international fundraising campaign that is bringing together the worldwide running community to show their solidarity and support through dedicating runs around the World to the people of Japan. The cover 24,901 miles (right around the world) in 28 days with at least one run dedicated from every country. To achieve this runners around the globe are being asked to dedicate just one run to the people of Japan and donate at least one unit of their home currency per mile run.

Mike and I ran 9 miles this morning (which is my longest run to date:)) and dedicated our run to the cause by sending in a photo (in red and white), tribute message and making a donation!

So slow...but I did it!!

So, how can YOU Run for Japan?
•Choose which of your runs you will dedicate to the people of Japan
•Take a photo of yourself on that run (optional)
•Upload that photo (with a caption) here
•Donate the relevant amount via here
•Download your 'I ran for Japan' artwork from here
•Spread the word!

Further details about the fundraising challenge and how you can participate can be found at

Friday, April 1, 2011

"My Run" and my run :)

I went to see My Run, the inspirational story of a man who did 75 marathons in 75 days to raise awareness of the plight of single parents, last night with Mandy and Catherine :).

It's an amazing story if you get the chance to see it and reinforced what I have been thinking about a lot lately - how running is as much a mental challenge as a physical one. Like Henry Ford said: "whether you think you can or you can't - then you're right." In the movie Terry Hitchcock's son says that supporting his father throughout the journey was the most important thing he's ever done. It's really made me wonder what the most important thing that I will ever do is...something to think about while I'm running...

Anyway, I was feeling all inspired today and went out for a 4-miler this morning. Just me, Usher, Lil' Wayne, and the Black Eyed Peas. I felt great. Like a rockstar. I said 'hi' to all of the other runners/walkers/bikers who were out on this beautiful Florida morning. Anyway, it wasn't until I got back that I realized that I had forgotton to take off my liquid liner from last night and I looked like a rockstar too...not exactly the one I was hoping for unfortunately...

Which just goes to's not how you look but how you feel that really counts :)