Race Recap: Norfolk Harbor 5K 2016

This is only the 3rd year they’ve held the Norfolk Harbor race series in downtown Norfolk (formerly called Harbor Lights).  I did the half marathon 2 years ago, and the 5k last year.

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Packet Pick-up/Expo

I opted for race-day pickup.  It was quick and efficient.  The shirts fit much better than the Wicked shirts from a few weeks ago!

Race Day Conditions/Attire

It was about 40 degrees at the start.  It was going to warm up to 70 during the day, but I knew that the wind would make me want long sleeves.

I opted for capris, a tank top, long sleeved shirt over, and my go-to hat.

Pre-Race

Since I did race day pickup, I just stayed at the building until about 20 minutes before the start when I headed outside.  There was a lot of great people watching.

Race Time

I was in corral 3 of 5, and I positioned myself toward the back, because I knew I planned to mostly walk with a little bit of running mixed in.  We got off fairly quickly.  The first half was pretty uneventful, a little walking and running all mixed together.  I saw a runner fall on one of the areas with cobblestones.  She did a somersault! There was a volunteer right there that scooped her up and helped her out.  She seemed ok, probably just a little embarrassed.

Michael went to a Starbucks to sit while I ran.  I actually saw him sitting in there and I waved at him as a ran by!

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The second half seemed to go pretty slow.  I thought I knew where we were in the city, but with all the turns, I was a bit turned around.  I saw where we were at mile 2 and couldn’t believe we had a whole mile to go.

I finished in 47:12 at 3:07 miles.  I guess I ran the tangents really well?

After Party

It was a beautiful day for an after party.  I got my beer and snacks and walked around a bit with Michael. We had some plans for the day, so we didn’t stay long, but it was a nice time.

Overall Reactions

Great weather for this race! I really enjoyed it! This is one of my favorites, and its part two of the Triple Jog challenge (Wicked was the first, and Surf N Santa is the last).

Have you every run a race that had cobblestones on the course? Do you think the course I ran was short, or is it possible that I just ran the tangents REALLY well? 🙂

 

2015 – A Year in Review

I wanted to take some time and look back at the last year and all of the things that happened in life.  While this year may not have been a banner year for running for me, it was such a huge year of change and growth.

January

January was relatively uneventful.  I continued working out, failed at committing to a training schedule for Shamrock, and started to write Stitch Fix reviews.

February

February was the month of snow.  I missed so many workouts due to bad weather and being snowed in or the gym being closed.  I also decided to defer Shamrock.

March

In March I got the cold from hell.  I also ran Shamrock 8k instead of the Dolphin Challenge.

April

In April, we moved Michael’s stuff into my townhouse, got diagnosed with plantar fasciitis, started PT, went to Florida for work, saw Jewel in concert, creeped on Wanda Sykes at an airport, got sick again, and turned 28!

May

In May, I got sick again, got a corneal abrasion from my contacts, did ALL the wedding stuff, had a wedding shower at work, cheated on my PT, had my bachelorette party, and did more wedding stuff!

June

In June, Michael and I got married!

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Also in June: Danny and Nicole decided to leave the gym, I changed my name, my cousin got married,  I watched Danny and Nicole(my trainers) get ENGAGED, I got to meet my nephew 🙂

July

I finally made it back to yoga in July, started doing protein shakes, and we went to Nags Head with my family.

August

In August I went to a casino for the first time, we visited my brother, and I started playing Fantasy football.

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September

I started really loving yoga, went to more casinos, started going to ODU football games and enjoyed the fall.

October

My church celebrated its 9 year anniversary, my husband ruined a pot, Crawlin Crab 5k was cancelled and rescheduled due to a hurricane, I took a training class and got a certification, I went on a work conference and took a fall vacation. I also did the Wicked 10k.

November

We bought a new car, we did some early Christmas shopping, I ran the Harbor Lights 5k, saw the new Hunger Games movie, enjoyed Thanksgiving with family, and went Black Friday shopping.

December

I got pampered at the Red Door Spa, cleaned out my closet, ran the Surf-N-Santa 5 miler, and celebrated Christmas with my family.

 How was 2015 for you? What are you looking forward to in 2016?

Race Recap: Harbor Lights 5k 2015

This is only the 2nd year they’ve held the Harbor Lights race series in downtown Norfolk.  I did the half marathon last year.

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Packet Pick-up/Expo

Packet pickup was fairly straightforward.  I didn’t spend a lot of time at the expo because I don’t need to be tempted to buy a bunch of stuff right before Christmas.

Race Day Conditions/Attire

The race started in the high 40s, and it was to warm up to the 50s and 60s pretty fast.  I know that Norfolk is pretty windy and I remembered my experience from last year’s half.  I still opted for a short sleeved shirt and capris. I was a little cold at the start, but warmed up very quickly.

Pre-Race

Michael and I hung out around the park right near the start.  They had food trucks there this year and he found some coffee.  My boss was doing the half the next day, and he came to see me off at the start (he lives just down the street from the race start).  It was nice to have a send off like that!

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I’m not actually awake at this point

I was in corral 3 of 5.  I found my place in the start and started trying to stretch and warm up.  My low back was hurting from Christmas decorating the day before and I wanted to make sure that I was as warm as possible so I didn’t make it worse.

 

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You can see me in orange waving!

 

Race Time

They sent the corrals off pretty fast, I don’t think I started more than a few minutes after the race start.  The first mile was spend just letting everyone thin out.  They sent corral 4 out so fast, that the speedy people in that corral started catching up to us.  I ran the first half mile, then I walked/ran intervals of .25 miles.

I had finished a mile before I knew it.  I don’t even recall hitting the halfway point, I was too busy navigating all the turns.  This course had SO many turns.  I focused on not weaving through people and running/walking the tangents better.

I hit the end of mile 2 and was pleasantly surprised that we were already heading back toward the area of the finish (the last mile is basically out and back from the finish line…just on the other side of the park).

I felt really strong into the finish, not barely hanging on like some of my other fall races.  I finished in 44:09.

Interestingly, at the Crawlin Crab, I had a 44:37 5k finish. At the halfway mark for the Wicked 10k, I was at 44:48.  Pretty consistent, huh?  Consistently slow, but consistent.

After Party

The after party was in Town Point Park.  The weather had warmed up and the sun was shining.  I got my Blue Moon beer (not repeating the horrible 10k where I didn’t get my beer).  I didn’t like the stew that they were serving, but they had these awesome food trucks there.

Michael got me a bacon, egg and cheese calzone at one of the food trucks.  It was DIVINE.

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Overall Reactions

I loved doing the 5k of this race series.  The half marathon last year was a little rough – especially with weather being so cold.  This year the poor half marathoners had pouring rain and cold.

Have you ever run a race in a city? Have you ever had food trucks at a race?

Weekly Update – 11/16/15

This week was a pretty good one.  I made it to a few yoga classes and did a night of weights.  I also had a 5k this past weekend, and had a lot of fun life things going on.  Work has still been crazy, but I’m in a much better place emotionally about it.

Monday

Yoga was good.  It was a pretty full class.  I had a breakthrough with my balancing half moon pose.  We usually enter it from a lunge position, which has my hip flexor “bent” and then when I straighten the leg I’m balancing on, my hip flexor hurts when I straighten it (my hip flexors are VERY weak).  But, we had our legs straight when we entered it this time (like your legs are in triangle) and because my hip flexor was already  in the position it was going to be in when I move into balancing half moon, it didn’t hurt! Miracle.

Tuesday

Omg, a normal gym night.  I didn’t do anything too crazy, especially since I really haven’t been hitting the gym very hard recently.  Gotta ease back into it!

Warmup: foam roll, 10 minutes on elliptical

Three Rounds:

  1.  Split kneel overhead press (10 each side)
  2. Dumb bell rows from push up position (10 each side)

Three Rounds:

  1. 1o Goblet squats (20lbs)
  2. 10 TRX back rows

Wednesday

Yoga was good.  It was a pretty small class.  I spent most of the class being extremely mindful of being very accurate in my postures.  I’ve gotten complacent of late, simply going through the motions, and not really focusing on form.  I really enjoyed class.

Thursday

Skipped the gym because it was opening night for the Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2!!!! I’m a little obsessed. No spoilers here – it was good and I was very happy that it was pretty consistent to the book.

Friday

I’ve hoarded a bunch of my vacation days, so I took the day off to relax and to get some Christmas decorating done.  I did a ton of laundry and felt extremely productive.

After Michael got home from work, we went to get my race packet for Saturday.

Saturday

Saturday was the Harbor Lights 5k.  Recap to come!

After the race we went up to the new Whole Foods.  There was a new Steinmart in the shopping center too, so I had some fun.  I was starving so we stopped for some chickfila.  I was eating it and realized the chickfila sauce didn’t taste right.  I had a bit of a sour stomach after that, so we just had a relaxed night in and watched some Netflix.

Sunday

We had church on Sunday, then headed down to NC to see Michael’s parents.  They built a fire and we were nice and cozy on such a rainy, cold day!

Did you race this weekend? How do you like to spend cold, rainy days?

Fall Races

I have a bunch of fall races coming up. Normally I’d be super excited about that, except I haven’t run since like….April.  I’m still dealing with some plantar fasciitis issues.  I know that the structure and anatomy of my feet is such that I’ll probably continue to be plagued with issues for awhile.  I haven’t been even walking a lot due to the stress and pain it puts on my feet, much less running.

Here’s my fall schedule:

October 3, 2015 – Crawlin Crab 5k (Virginia Beach, VA)

October 31, 2015 – Wicked 10k (Virginia Beach, VA)

November 21, 2015 – Harbor Lights 5k (Virginia Beach, VA)

December 19, 2015 – Surf N Santa 5 Miler (Virginia Beach, VA)

I don’t have anything longer than a 10k.  Quite frankly, I could walk all of these, no problem (until the next day when my feet kill me!) But I’d really like to run them.  My first race just over a month away.  I’m going to focus on going back to yoga, getting my mobility and strength back and finding ways to get conditioning in without killing my feet.

The awesome thing about these races is that they are a ton of fun and I always know a bunch of people doing them.  I’m at a place where I want running to be fun again, so I’m not gonna worry about anything but having fun! Here’s to a stress free fall schedule!

 

What does your fall schedule look like?  What race are you most looking forward to?

2014 – First Half Marathon, Engagement and Life Lessons!

2014 was a fantastic year for me! I hope all of you feel the same way.  I think its really important to reflect on the year and focus on the positive!

January

I hadn’t started this blog yet, but it was brewing in my mind!  I started my training for my first half marathon!

February

I began this blog! It was one of the best decisions I’ve made.  I have loved the community that I’ve found with you guys! Its nearly impossible to articulate how encouraging each one of you is!

Michael and I celebrated our first Valentine’s Day together and he spoiled me rotten.

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Its so beautiful!

 

March

I ran my first half marathon – Shamrock! Not only did I run my first half, but I completed the Dolphin Challenge by doing the 8k and Half Marathon in the same weekend. It was such a rewarding experience.

Celebratory beer and 8k medal

Celebratory beer and 8k medal

My race bling!

My race bling!

Michael and I celebrated our 6 month anniversary.

We know we are obnoxiously in love and we don't care! :)

We know we are obnoxiously in love and we don’t care! 🙂

Pretty roses!

Pretty roses!

We also went to see comedian Gabriel Iglesias!

At the Gabriel Iglesias show!

April

April was my favorite month this year!

Michael and I went to Florida and I got to go to Key West for the first time!

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Sunset Cruise in Key West

 

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Key West Sunset

 

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Sunset Cruise in Key West

 

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Pool in Orlando

 

Beautiful flowers from Michael!

Beautiful flowers from Michael!

Hotel in Orlando

Hotel in Orlando

The water was so clear and warm

The water was so clear and warm

On April 19th, Michael proposed!

Happy!

Happy!

The ring!

The ring!

On April 21st, I celebrated my 27th birthday.

Michael's parents

May

In May, I ran the Chickfila 5k and logged my worst 5k time ever due to major sinus issues! But the Chickfila sandwich at the end totally made up for it.

June

I bought my wedding dress in June and did lots of other wedding things!

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I said yes to the dress!

 

July

In July, I fell out of love with running, then made a re-commitment to get my act together for my fall races.

August

I started to focus a lot on a balance of different types of workouts and came up with a killer workout schedule that I kinda kept to….

September

September brought a lot of anxiety and stress, but also brought things like my 1 year anniversary and a great anniversary trip.

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cape charles

October

October was a busy month.

I ran my second half marathon – Crawlin Crab.  I did both the 5k and the half marathon for the Shell Yeah Challenge.  I learned a hard lesson about proper fueling when I bonked early.

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Allyson and I after the 5k

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After the half!

 

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Shell Yeah Challenge bling!

Michael and I took a mini vacation to the mountains and got our engagement pictures taken.

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Later in the month, I ran the Wicked 10k.

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Wicked 10k 2014

 

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I’m such a cheeseball.

 

November

In November, I ran my third half marathon – Harbor Lights.  I was very pleased with my mental fortitude during this race as well as my fueling plan!

My AWESOME friend Diane who totally kicked butt!

My AWESOME friend Diane who totally kicked butt!

 

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Harbor Lights!

 

 

Hollie is a pro at taking pics!

Hollie is a pro at taking pics!

December

Who doesn’t love December?!

I ran my first 5-miler at the Surfin Santa. It was also my first twilight race.

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Then of course, Christmas with my dear family and friends.

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Engaged ornament

 

2014 was a great year and 2015 promises to be ever more incredible!  Happy New Year everyone!

 

 

Harbor Lights Half Marathon Recap

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Harbor Lights!

 

The Harbor Lights Half Marathon was held in Norfolk, VA. With this race series was a 5k, Half Marathon, and Get Lit Challenge for those who want to run both!

I opted for the half-marathon only. My fantastic fiance was kind enough to drive me to the race, see me off at the start, and wait for me at the finish line.  I don’t know how I got so lucky.  The race started at 7:30am, so we got on the road at around 6am.  After staying warm in the car for awhile, Michael and I headed out to the start area.  I went to do gear check and they didn’t have a spot for my bib number…odd.  I had a minor freakout that I accidentally registered for the wrong race, but I didn’t.  Michael put my stuff in the car and waited out most of the race in starbucks 🙂  I even found Hollie there!

Hollie is a pro at taking pics!

Hollie is a pro at taking pics!

So cold!

So cold!

 

I'm not awake at this point...

I’m not awake at this point…

I had been obsessively checking the weather and while it was going to be in the 40s at the start, it was going to be in the 50s by the time I finished.  I opted for short capris and a shortsleeved t-shirt.  BAD CHOICE.

I found my friend Diane at the start with the 2:45 pace group.  This was her first half and we were gonna stick together the best we could.

Miles 1-2

I was able to stay with the 2:45 pace group.  They were a little fast at the start, but I wanted to stay with them. I was pretty cold at the start, it took me a little while to warm up.  I watched Diane pull ahead of the group a little and was excited for her.

Miles 3-4

Diane left me in the dust (which is totally a good thing). The 2:45 pace group started pulling away but were still in sight.  I struggled keeping up with them during all the millions of turns on the course.  I ate a few Gatorade chews.  I learned my lesson at Crawlin Crab, not getting enough fuel early on.

Miles 5-6

Had a few more chews.  Energy levels felt good and my mental attitude was good.  I tried as much as I could to smile at the spectators and thank the many police officers on the course.  I realized that even though I had worn my shirt before during a race, for some reason it started chafing my arms.  The ONE time I didn’t have glide with me.  I rolled up my sleeves in hopes that it would help with the chafing.

Miles 7-8

These were a little tougher mentally.  I took a few walk breaks and tried to just dig in and push through until the 10 mile mark.  More chews! I didn’t thank any police officers.  I was too focused.

Miles 9-10

My left quad/hip flexor started seizing up.  I tried to push through it but had to take a few walk breaks. I think I realized at this point how cold I really was.  The temperatures were not where they should be, and it was overcast, so no warmth from the sun. I was regretting not wearing my long sleeved shirt. And holy chafing.  I seriously contemplating ditching my shirt, but that wouldn’t help with the fact that I was cold. More chews!

This was also a time to thank all the police officers.  It was a good distraction from the pain train.  I got kind of emotional because a lot of them responded to my thank you with a “you are doing a great job, keep it up!”

Miles 11-13.1

I was ready to be done. I was trying to finish under 3 hours, but I couldn’t seem to get my legs to cooperate.  It was really hard seeing the finish line and all the runners that had already finished.  My feet hurt, my quad/hip flexor hurt and I just couldn’t seem to move as fast as my brain wanted me to! I saw my friend Catherine and stopped for a hug because I just couldn’t resist an extra little boost!  I hit the 13.1 mile mark at exactly 3 hours.  However, because of all the turns on the course, it was actually longer.  I hit the finish line at 13.24 miles and 3:01:51.

I gathered a few high fives from Diane and her family right before I crossed the finish line.

I found Michael at the finish line.  I got my medal, water, gatorade, pretzels and awesome space blanket thingie to keep me warm.  Did I mention I was cold? We found Diane and her family.  She ROCKED it! Finished in 2:44:xx! I’m so proud of her.  SO PROUD.

My AWESOME friend Diane who totally kicked butt!

My AWESOME friend Diane who totally kicked butt!

 

Michael and I stayed around for awhile and got a beer.  I was too cold to enjoy myself so we headed home for a day of relaxation and recovery!

I’m ok with my time.  It was about 5 minutes slower than my fastest (Shamrock) but about 13 minutes faster than my slowest (Crawlin Crab).  I’m pretty proud of myself for pushing through a lot of mental blocks.  I think this was absolutely my best race mentally.  Victory!

My overall thoughts:

1. Next time, wear the long sleeves.

2. My fueling was MUCH better.

3. Say thanks to more volunteers…they have a hard job.

4. Train better!

5. One word: GLIDE.

Did you race this weekend? Have you ever made poor wardrobe choices for a race?