Happy Marathon Eve!

By this time tomorrow, I’ll be celebrating the finish of my second marathon!

I am proud to report that my massage therapist may actually be a life saver.  I saw him on Wednesday and we did 90 minutes of just leg work and my pesky right hammie is nowhere to be seen for 2 days now! (Knock on wood!)  He told me I had at least 9 trigger points in the back of my right upper leg, alone! I will say, it was the most unpleasant 90 minutes I have had in awhile (I’m talking some tears and verbal, um we’ll call it “feedback,” to poor Franklin), but he told me to suck it up and I’m glad I did!  It didn’t feel amazing that same night so I was a little skeptical this had made any difference, but the last couple of days I have not felt any pain.  It had gotten to the point that even sitting was uncomfortable and while I ran 11 miles feeling that was last weekend, it certainly was not pleasant.  Fortunately, at least at this point, I’ll at least be starting my race feeling in good shape and that’s really all I was hoping for, to not feel defeated before I even started.

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Fun fact, my home and work are in the bottom right of this pic!

I met my parents at the airport in DC yesterday morning and after checking into our hotel we hit up the Expo.  I’m very glad we did this on Friday because we waited almost 90 minutes just to wind our way through one of the craziest lines I’ve ever been a part of to purchase my marathon gear!  Getting my bib took 90 seconds; buying my jacket, 90 minutes. Crazy!  People were generally in good spirits, though, and we did make some line friends.  I also got THE LAST VIP Port-a-Potty pass!  Apparently this is a special pre-race area to use actual climate controlled bathrooms with running water. Um, yes please!  I’ll be sure to check this out and report back. This might be more important than the actual updates from my run! 😉

Clearly took a few photo-ops at the Expo.

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I was literally exhausted after exploring the expo.  Not because it was large, because it wasn’t all that huge, but I was functioning on 3 hours of sleep and there was a lot of standing in that damn line.  (So you all know, if I can’t finish tomorrow for some reason, my fall back excuse is that it’s Brooks’ fault as they had poor checkout line management and my legs were just too exhausted from standing so long.  Sounds reasonable, right?)

My parents and I are staying in Old Town Alexandria in Virginia.  It’s so cute.  Has been super easy to navigate around so far as we’ve been taking the Metro or walking everywhere.  Today I slept in (no alarm was amazing, I got like 10 hours of sleep!!) and then we walked around King Street which had lots of fun little shops to explore.  We walked down to the waterfront on the Potomac River and then back.  A little over 2 miles, with many store stops and a stop for lunch.

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Look down King Street in Old Town Alexandria
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With the Headless Horseman
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At lunch at Columbia Firehouse

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Tonight I’m keeping it low key, but I am sending my parents out to a celebration dinner for their anniversary to Restaurant Eve.  Their anniversary was in June, but because they are so hard to shop for, I figured this was a great opportunity to send the to a fancy and delicious dinner (and selfishly give me a little alone time at the hotel tonight 🙂  ).

So I’m definitely getting really excited and will be prepping my marathon outfit and other stuff later.  I have really awesome plans for a soaking bath tonight, hopefully some bad TV or a movie, and then a whole lot of sleep (if I can even fall asleep!)  I have a ton of cheers through the Motigo app and I can’t wait to have my family and friends along with me on the course tomorrow!

You can be certain there is an awesome post to come with all the race pics you can handle, so stay tuned!

Until then, happy running!

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One Week to Go!

I can’t believe it! By this time next week, I’ll have finished my second marathon! (At least I hope I’m not still on the course come 8 p.m :-P!)

Overall I reflect back on this summer of training with mostly fond memories.  It hasn’t always been easy, but I’ve been very fortunate to have an exceptionally awesome support system of run buddies who got me out for my training runs consistently.  I can’t believe that when I ran Boston I had trained primarily solo.  Don’t get me wrong, there is a time and a place for solo runs, even longer distance solo runs, but I have really found a love for running with friends.

This weekend was my last long run and I ended up putting in 11 miles with myIMG_0257 friend Scott.  I had no complaints in regards to the weather or our route. I can’t remember the last time I was able to comfortably run in a long sleeve shirt!  If anything, it was a little too windy at times, but that was mostly when we made it to Castle Island in Southie (where I made Scott take our photo stop!) .  The leaves are turning and running through the city was a nice change of scenery.

The only thing getting me nervous as of late is that I am struggling with some right hamstring pain.  I’ve gotten so much action from my foam roller I think it’s time he proposed!  I’m basically in a regimen of rolling, stretching, icing and taking anti-inflammatories.  I’m struggling with how much to do in the week leading up to the big run, but I am planning to get in at least one or two days of some easy miles.

At this point I’ve done what I can do and what happens on the day will be what it is.  I’m ok with that. I am so fortunate to be able to run at all I have no pressure on myself for any other goal than to cross that finish loud proudly knowing I worked hard to be able to get to this point.

I’ll admit I took this picture after running, when I had gone in to the city later in the afternoon, but nonetheless the beautiful fall-meets-Boston sights were plentiful throughout my run and I wanted to end with this beautiful shot.

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I’m willing to bet I’ll be a bit antsy the day/night prior to my marathon so I’m thinking you all might hear from me again before I head to the start line 🙂  I’ll at least post some info about following me on my run, for those who are interested, and there’s even a cool app I’m going to use while I run because it allows friends to pre-record cheers and choose where along the course I hear them!  Seeing as I’ve become admittedly so reliant on my run buddies, that’s sounding quite amazing to me and worth running with an ear bud (something I haven’t done in forever!)

Until then, happy running!

Time to Taper? Tackle a Half!

And what’s better than the B.A.A. Half Marathon?!
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It certainly wasn’t my best run, but it wasn’t my worst.  I’d be lying if I said I was happy with how I felt during this race, but that’s ok.  I actually feel like regardless of overall not feeling on my game, it was a great decision to have a race during my taper time. It helped me step away from all of the pressure I’ve been putting on myself. I know that sounds weird because a race venue for many comes with pressure, but for me it was a beautiful fall morning in Boston that I got to spend with friends and it just so happens I got in 13.1 miles that is helping me keep on my game for my upcoming marathon.  Race bling is always fun, too 🙂

I have had a lot going on which has unfortunately coincided with the final month and a half of my marathon training.  It’s been distracting and I’ve been carrying a lot of life stress and anxiety into all of my training runs. I am positive that has not been helping me feel at the top of my game.  Nonetheless, I’m really trying to take things one day at a time and low and behold those days are slowly ticking away and it’s almost the big day!

So in the spirit of trying to keep things positive and find the fun in every run, here are my pics from this weekend!

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Some pics with friends before the start and in the starting line.

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Running through the Franklin Park Zoo  gave me the awesome opportunity to snap a selfie with a Zebra!!!  I look at this a sign and as practice for The Big Five Marathon , which I hope to tackle one day!

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It was great running with some fellow Race for Rehab alums !

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Lastly, having completed the B.A.A. 5K, 10K and Half Marathon races this year, I got some extra sweet bling with the Distance Medley Medal!

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So I’m heading into this weekend and my FINAL long run (eek!) before Marathon day!  I’m going for another easy 12-13 miles and really looking forward to all of my shorter midweek runs.

I apologize that my posting has been a little off schedule, and fairy uninspired.  In addition to marathon training, I’ve had some additional work projects and I’m in the process of buying a new place and moving.  Everything is coming to an end at the end of October so I’ve been a real test of prioritizing and productivity lately, neither of which I feel like I’m doing all that awesomely!  Nonetheless, I’ll get through it and I really cannot wait to share my experiences of my time in D.C.  Fortunately I’m off from work for over a week and it will be a wonderful end to a long training and couple of eventful life months!

Lots more excitement to come! And until then, Happy Running!