Funplanned Weekend

Like that? Fun + unplanned = funplanned weekend.

The more I have been running, the larger my circle of running contacts and friends has grown. For example, on Thursday, a friend who I know from coaching in Girls on the Run posted on my Facebook wall asking if I was running a local race called Brew to Brew, because she knew a team who needed more runners. A few messages, emails and texts later, Friday it was decided that I’d be joining a team to run the 44.4 mile relay from Kansas City to Lawrence on Sunday (yesterday)!

I knew of Brew to Brew because I had some other friends running it, but had no clue of what it would be like. The team that I was joining was also with people I had never met in my life. Old Kelsey would never have been down for this type of adventure, but new, more relaxed and fun-loving Kelsey was pretty pumped!

First, a little about the race. Like I said, Brew to Brew is a race to benefit cystic fibrosis and starts in Kansas City at the Boulevard Brewery and takes a 44.4 mile route of backroads, some highways, and dirt/gravel roads to the Free State Brewery in Lawrence, KS. It has 10 legs of the race, and composed of mostly teams of 2-10 runners, while yesterday there were 70 runners that took it on as a solo adventure! Each team is allowed a team vehicle (we saw vans, RVs, trucks) to carry supplies and runners. How it works is the team vehicle drops their runner at the first leg and drives to the second leg, then picks up the first runner while the second runner is going, then drives to the third leg, and so on. Each exchange had portapotties, fuel, and people drinking beer and playing frisbee while waiting for their runners. It was called Brew to Brew, after all!

We started the morning by meeting at the lovely Lara’s house at 7am (that was rough) to load up and head to the Boulevard Brewery to drop off our first runner

Our team was the Punky Brewsters!

Our ‘baton’ was the decorated bra, it was hilarious!

Then it was time to send off the first runners from KC

And hopped in the Expedition to head to the exchange!

Thankfully, our team was able to have 9 runners and everyone did a leg, and we skipped the 9th leg because it was hot and no one wanted or needed to run it. The ones who ran earlier in the day were lucky because it got HOT later in the morning and into the afternoon.

We would drop off a runner for their leg, hang around for a little bit, then load the truck up and drive to the next leg. Everyone was having fun and we weren’t doing the race for a time, so it really was just about enjoying the day.

My team was so much fun and I’m so happy I got to be with them, of all people! Yeah, it felt a little weird meeting them all at 7am not knowing a single one, except that they were a friend of a friend’s friend, but we bonded throughout the day and ended up having a blast.

I was assigned the final leg of the race– 4.7 miles along the levee to the finish line. There was no parking at this exchange so my team literally had to drop me and leave…off I went!

My portion of the race was flat, but I didn’t start running until 2:30pm and by then the temperature had reached 90 degrees. The 4.7 miles was along some farm land on a gravel road (which I loved, it wasn’t easy but I loved it) with the sun beating down on us due to no trees within 150 feet of the road. The scenery was a part of Kansas I hadn’t seen before, though it was hot, the bright colors of the farm and the blueness of the sky made me thankful for that moment because it was so beautiful. Here’s a picture from a blog I found that is along the exact trail I ran:

But it was so hot–that was the stinker! There were no mile markers, I had no idea how far I had ran or how long I had left to go, and the trail was a straightaway with no changing scenery until we came upon some houses and I knew I had to be getting closer to town. Hands down the hardest 4.7 miles of my life!

Eventually I saw a familiar face– one of my teammates! He had a beer in hand and told me the finish line was right around the corner, and he booked it with me, beer in hand, to the finish! A few other teammates joined for a few strides to cheer me to the finish line.

Oh and that skirt…that’s the first and last time I’ll ever be wearing that thing to run it. Yes it’s cute, but the WORST for running in; I wanted to rip it off no less than 5 times during my leg of the race.

That’s beside the point, but we finished! I have no idea how long it took, but I would do this race again in a heartbeat. I’m so glad I joined the Punky Brewsters, it reminded me how much fun it’s possible to have while doing a run, I loved it! I’m really already looking forward to next year–I’d love to make this race an annual thing!

Life is short, when given an opportunity it is best to just go for it and enjoy every minute!

I also inadvertently got a head start on my summer tan…clearly not enough sunscreen could have saved me. Boo. Ya.

Have a good Monday my friends, also…here’s to hoping the Hawks win it all tonight!

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Dumping In

Yes, you read that right! I’m not dropping in, I’m dumping in because I haven’t posted in what seems like forever. Let’s see if I can remember what all has happened!

First, last Thursday was my awesome mom’s birthday!

Upon her return from vacation in Colorado, I made her a super delicious chocolate cake from scratch with cream cheese frosting (her request), and crushed up mint Oreos on the sides. Boxed chocolate cake will never stand a chance in my family again after this masterpiece!

It’s a good thing that I can bake because I am sure not a good photographer. It’s also a good thing that I run because if not, I would stay home baking and eating my life away.

My St. Patrick’s day began with a 12-mile run with my friend Jen, remember her from Tulsa?

She is like the sweetest girl ever and is running her first half marathon in 3.5 weeks! I would be lying if I said the run didn’t get my out of my comfort zone…for once I didn’t map out the course, didn’t know where we were going, and had no clue of what our course would be like, Jen did all the steering for this one! The hills made me a little mad and I think it’s just because I wasn’t mentally prepared for them, and where we ran was hillllllly. BUT it was good for me to have a challenge and take the backseat for a change.

After that I spent the rest of the day in downtown Kansas City with some awesome friends and Luke Bryan and Jason Aldean. Lots of people don’t know that I am huge country fan and needless to say I was in heaven at the concert. Sighhhhhh. Plus, Luke and Jason are two artists who sound better live than on recordings in my opinion, which is rare and totally great to find!

It was sold out, loud, and SO MUCH FUN!

Sunday was back to real life which included some rest, because Saturday night at the concert I was yawning at 10:30pm, and Sunday night was IN bed around 10pm, which is relatively early for me. Good thing I got some rest though because Monday I had the best run everrrrrr!

Well, best run to date everrrrrrr! I was up at 5:30am (unusual for me), and decided to hit the treadmill at the gym for a speed session. I wasn’t sure how my legs would do after two back to back double digit runs (again, unusual for me) but wanted to give it a go anyways! I didn’t have an exact plan for the run, except that I wanted to listen to my body and run at a slightly uncomfortable fast pace. I did a two mile warm-up at a 10:30 pace, then started creeping the speed up. I held miles 3-5 at a 9:30-9:40 pace, and ran the last half mile at an 8:34 pace which is something I have NEVER done before.

This is silly, but it bothered me a little that I could see the upper half of my reflection in the window because I was getting really self conscious about my stride and form, worrying that it looked bad or off, but just kept along. The last half mile I took out one of my earbuds from my iPod to listen to my breathing and I could really feel my heart rate being pushed, and my breathing was hard to control. I completed 5.5 miles, and after my cool down as I was leaving, a lady who had been lifting (and watching me apparently) asked how far I went. I told her, then she told me that I have an awesome gait and running form, and that she could tell I was a runner! I cannot express how stinking happy this made me, because that whole time I was worrying about looking stupid and have worked so hard on my form over time to make it the best I can. We talked for a while and I made a new friend! Leslie, you have no idea how stupidly happy your compliment made me!

I hope that you are having a great week of workouts so far! I’m looking forward to another weekend of back to back double digit runs and maybe even getting to run in the rain! The half marathon madness begins in 3.5 weeks and here’s to getting faster! Have a FANTASTIC week!

Little Rock Marathon

Let me preface this by saying you are in for a LONG post.

Friday night I did eventually get my stuff packed for the weekend and slept terribly. I woke up at 5:30am on Saturday to shower, finish packing and hit the road with my mom and aunt to Little Rock, Arkansas. We wanted to find a Cracker Barrel to have breakfast at, but unfortunately the route we took only lead us through countrysides of Missouri, even gas stations being hard to come by.

Eventually we were all getting hangry and pulled off a random road that looked civilized and ran into this little gem, Mary Dean’s Diner. I’m not usually one for ‘diner’ food, but we were all so hungry and the food was awesome. This was a small town diner for small town people, and it was adorable.

When was the last time you saw food this cheap? How about pretty close to never.

With full bellies, we hopped right back on the road en route to Little Rock. We made great time and actually got into town before we could even check into the hotel, so we made our way right to the expo.

The weather was absolutely perfect and after sitting in the car for 7+ hours it was great to be able to walk around. Most race expos are pretty much the same from what I’ve found, Little Rock’s was very organized, had great vendors, and I really liked that they had more unique event merchandise for sale than other races.

I ran into some local running friends, and it was nice to see familiar faces in an unfamiliar place! The expos are usually when I start to get excited about the race, but my nerves were surprisingly absent even at the expo.

After picking up my packet, I reunited with my mom and aunt who had been meandering, and I told them that Bart Yasso was at the expo and I really wanted a picture with him. He designed a workout that many runners and marathoners incorporate into their training plans called Yasso 800’s, he is the chief running officer at Runner’s World Magazine, an author and of course, a seasoned runner. Needless to say I totally geeked out and got to talk to him for a short while, and soaked in every bit of advice he gave me for Sunday’s race.

He also told us he was announcing names at the finish line of the race, and I think I was looking more forward to him announcing my name than finishing the actual marathon!

We got checked into our hotel and hung out for a little bit before we all agreed we were hungry for dinner at 5:30pm. Being the prepared person I am, I had researched restaurants in advance and we went to Big Orange for gourmet burgers. I am pretty cautious about what I eat the night before a race and ended up getting the blacked tilapia ‘burgerwich’ which was so delicious. My mom was just happy that she got to watch college basketball. Easy to please, I tell ya.

After dinner we went back to the hotel and I couldn’t stop yawning. Nerves had sort of set in for the race yet and road trips make me feel super greasy and gross, so I stood in the shower for about half an hour to help relax. I wasn’t near as nervous for this race as I was my first one, it was strange. I didn’t miss my stomach flopping around but my energy levels still weren’t ‘there.’ I hopped in bed and proceeded to watch college basketball which I think is a great way to spend the night before the race.

I didn’t even make it to half time. I can’t remember the last time I fell asleep before 10pm, but Saturday night was a new record for me. But because my body has gotten used to an average of 6 hours of sleep per night, I was up at 3:30am ready to race. Too bad we weren’t leaving the hotel until nearly three hours later! I was up and down until my alarm went off around 5:15am.

Generally, you’re not supposed to try anything new (food, clothes, etc.) the day of a race and I’m also not usually one for energy drinks, but I did do an 18 mile training run after two iced coffees and the run went great, so before the trip I picked up a low-carb Monster and drank about a third of it with my breakfast of egg whites, Ezekiel bread and water.

Finally, excitement hit me! Maybe a little of it was the caffeine too, but I skipped out of the bathroom just before 6am on Sunday and was ready to rock! ‘I’m gonna run a marathon today!!!’ I was excited to run 26.2 miles. What?? Crazy crazy crazy.

More than anything, I was excited and thankful to be able to run this marathon, because a couple of weeks ago I was sad and mopey, thinking that this marathon could potentially not happen for me this year.

We packed up all of our stuff because we weren’t coming back to the hotel, said our ritual pre-race group prayer, and were on our way to the race!

Little Rock greeted us with a perfectly beautiful and crisp race morning!

Before anything happened, I had to take care of business. Yet another pre-race ritual, visit the porta-potties at least two times before the race, even if you don’t have to go.

Then stand around and wait for the race to start

and talk to other runners and make new friends with them while standing around

Then get in your start corral and stand around and wait some more.

Okay, enough with the waiting. One of the things that blew me away with Arkansas and the community of Little Rock is how FRIENDLY and NICE people are!! Plus their accents, oh man did I love their accents. This race was bigger than Tulsa which I really liked, and the people we so awesome. I talked to probably seven or eight new people consistently before the race started, which doesn’t seem to happen frequently in races I’ve done.

After all of the waiting, it was finally time to start the race! I didn’t have a specific time goal in mind, but I situated myself right behind the 5:10 pacers. Honestly, I did much less mental preparation for this race than I have for any other race in the past. All I did was remind myself why I was running this race and to fully enjoy it, and with the sign on my back I hoped to encourage other runners as well.

Bart had told me that the first half of the race was deceivingly fast, and he was right. It was flat with a few rolling hills, and I did start out faster than I should have, but not so fast that I wouldn’t have enough energy for the tail end of the race. Since I almost always run by ‘feel’ anyways, that’s what I did. I set into a comfortable pace and just kept along. From mile one, people were reading and commenting on my shirt, I got many congratulations on the surgery, people telling me I was an inspiration, and others agreeing on how great God is.

At first, I wasn’t quite sure how to respond to some of the comments, but I just made sure that I encouraged every person who was encouraging me. Whether it be talking with them for portions of the race, to telling them that they were amazing for being out running a marathon, I made it a goal to consistently build others up.

The course started in downtown Little Rock, going over bridges and up and down baby hills, with great crowd support the whole entire time.

I loved running over the Arkansas River on that bridge, but maybe because it was a decline?

Before I knew it, we were already past five miles. I hadn’t run more than five miles in the past two weeks, and bad thoughts tried to creep in my head but I left those in the dust.

My mom and aunt were staked out between miles 8 and 9, which also happened to be the location of the first semi-vertical uphill of the race

I was also talking to my mom while running and she managed to capture this hilarious beauty of a photo. Apparently running hills makes your hamstrings stick out more than normal. Sigh.

Now is where I talk solely about the race. This point was be the last I saw my mom and aunt until the finish line, because the course was so spread out.

The first eight miles of the race truly did fly by, they felt like nothing which is quite unusual for me. I was still hanging close with the 5:10 pacers and met a couple of ladies in that group who were running their first marathon. It was so fun getting to cheer them on while we were running, all the way up to the finish line. After we ran through downtown, we hit more residential parts of Arkansas, and eventually the state capitol and the governor’s house, and the governor of Arkansas himself was out cheering on all the runners.

Oh, and for the first time ever, I hit up the porta-potty during a race. I couldn’t imagine running any further without stopping (especially with my kidney issue), and felt SO much better afterwards. I had always been nervous about having to go to the bathroom during a race, but I had to overcome my fear. It took less than a minute and I was back on the course, but by this time I was well separate from my pace group.

The area where the capitol is located was absolutely beautiful. We continued on residential areas and again, the course support was amazing. You could tell that the marathon is a big deal in Arkansas because many of the houses we passed had music playing out of speakers from their porch, and many families were out tailgating, I’m not kidding! There was one house with people who had tables set up of champagne and orange juice for mimosas, bloody mary mix and vodka for bloody mary’s, AND they were grilling right there on the side of the course. If you ask me that is just plain rude to be having a good time and grilling out while thousands of runners pass by with over ten miles to finish a race 🙂

For every group of tailgaters, there was also a group of church people! Many of them couldn’t have service Sunday morning because the course ran right along where their church was located and the roads were closed, so they still had their congregations our cheering us on with pom-poms, cowbells and gospel choirs. This was the south, after all!

The miles came, some seemed longer than others. Miles 11-15 really dragged on for some reason. Oh wait, I know why…this was probably the hilliest portion of the race. The race course had started to lead us into some winding back roads of Arkansas, and winding back roads in Arkansas means there are hills. None of the climbs were particularly steep, but they lasted forrrrreverrrrrr. I was also waiting for this ‘dreaded downhill’ I had been warned of on the course elevation chart and also by Mr. Yasso around mile 16. I took my first real walk break up the hill at mile 14 or 15, I can’t remember which one it was, but I needed to walk. That hill was kicking my butt.

Then there were more hills, again, not steep, but winding and long and I was convinced I would never see a downhill. Turns out the real downhill didn’t happen until mile 17, and Bart warned me to not go down it too fast because it would kill my quads and I would be hurting for the rest of the race. I did exactly what he advised in adjusting my form, but still, halfway down, I felt every step in my quads. Man oh man, did I feel it.

Despite this challenge, this was a very enjoyable section of the course. We were on winding roads lined with tall pines, it reminded me of Oregon. I was also by myself for a small section which reminded me of the trails I run on here at home and I loved it, the beauty and serenity were perfect.

From the course map, I was prepared for a long out and back section from about mile 19-22 and good grief, those were the longest three miles of my LIFE! It was some flat, back country Arkansas road, and pain was really setting in. I don’t feel that I ever quite ‘hit the wall’ but this was definitely a challenging part of the race. Seeing all the people that were on the back portion, at miles 21-22 wasn’t encouraging either because they were closer to being done than I was. Then there was the headwind, that was just fantastic. Actually, it was kind of nice because the road was shaded from the hill and the wind was keeping me cool, but the back portion was the exact opposite.

We hit the mile 20 marker which thankfully had a DJ playing great tunes and were coming up on the actual turn around, shortly followed by an aid station. The back portion of this loop was hard. The sun was really getting to me at this point, my face was sun burnt and wind burnt, and my lips were raw. Being mentally tough at this portion of the race was crucial, and after we passed mile 21, I began to feel encouraged. One of my favorite distances to run is five miles, it’s just perfect for me. A lady who I was taking turns passing since mile 17 met up with me and we hung together until near the end of the race.

We shared running chatter, walk breaks, and encouragement. She was wanting to run a sub-5:18 but wasn’t sure if she would be able to make it. Misery really does love company, especially during a marathon. At this point, a lady was talking to me about the surgery and we passed an older man who yelled out, asking about my surgery. I slowed down to talk with him and he snarkily said, “So why are you running?” and all I could think of, was, “To see if I could do it.” His comment hit me, not in a bad way, but I’ll elaborate on that later.

The lady I had been running, walking, and talking with was walking more than I wanted to. I knew I needed to run and get to the finish line, especially with just four miles left, so I wished her luck and continued on. She told me to “Get after it girl!” and that was just the push of motivation I needed.

At this point, I was surprised I was still moving forward. My face and arms were burning, my body ached, and I couldn’t feel my legs. With three-ish miles left we encountered another hill. How cruel! I ran up 85% of it, walked to the crest, then picked up my pace again. To see another hill. We couldn’t catch a break!

One lady who I passed was reading my shirt and said, “You had surgery 18 days ago…but you’re running too fast we can’t read the rest!” This made me smile and pushed me up that last, painful hill with a mile left to go. There were more aid stations in the last 4 miles than in the first 8 miles but I flew by them all because I wanted to get to the finish and to hear Bart Yasso say my name. On the way to the finish I passed a lady who I had been running with in the pace group and I shouted, “You’re about to finish your first marathon!!!!!!” There is nothing like that feeling of finishing your first.

I knew I was going to beat my time in Tulsa and pumped my not-little legs all the way until the end. I almost teared up a little bit, but that feeling was overcome with sheer joy and happiness.

I think I gave my mom this thumbs up as a sign that I wasn’t going to totally pass out.

The only way to describe how I was feeling at this point was that my heart was completely full. I was so stinking happy, and still am.

To me, running this race was completely about being thankful that I serve a God who can overcome anything and everything, every challenge, adversity, whatever it may be. God seriously proved himself to me and I know the overwhelming joy I am experiencing is all from Him.

I faced a lot of questions and criticism leading up to this race, people not sure that I could do it, not sure that it would be safe, and doubting my ability to complete this. I had really felt down and about about my decision to try and finish the marathon. However, I knew that if I didn’t at least go to Little Rock and try, there’s no way I would have been able to live with myself. Not trying and having that faith is worse than trying and not finishing.

I also must say that I did not finish this race by my own ability. I even told other people on the course this, when they told me I was amazing, I told them, “No, God is amazing. I’m not the one doing this,” and that’s how I want my life to be. It’s not by my strength, might, or power, but by His.

This post cannot justify or describe the feelings I have. Like I said, my heart is so full, it’s just bursting! Never did I imagine that it’s possible to feel this strongly about something in my life. Just by running this marathon, my faith has grown past what I thought it could be, my heart has grown, and I have no doubt that the sky is the limit when it comes to anything.

No words…that’s the best way to describe it! I cannot fully express in words the immense joy I am experiencing from this!

As soon as we got in the car to start heading home, I said, “I wanna do that again!” No joke. I’m wishing there was another marathon I could do sooner than later! This was just another step in my journey and I cannot wait to see what lies ahead!

As long as I can have Cracker Barrel wherever this journey takes me. Ha!

Coping Mechanisms

How does a runner cope with not being able to run? By doing absolutely whatever she can that has the tiniest relation to running. That’s what I’ve been doing at least. I never realized how ‘go-go-go’ I am until I was slapped in the face with not being able to do anything. Well anything as compared with my  typical schedule.

Everyone has been reminding me to not rush my recovery which I have found surprisingly difficult, and each day is different. Some days are up ( like today) but some are down, yesterday was a pretty down day. Not being able to do what is normal for me such as spending a lot of time working out, running, and being around people I love just about got the best of me.

Instead of letting the debbie downers drag me down, I spent today thinking of all of the great things I have been able to do, without hardly doing anything. Does that make sense? Basically, here is how this runner has been coping with not being able to run.

1. I bought more running skirts. Send help. Thank goodness that I should be able to get back to life soon, otherwise my bank account would be depleted in about three weeks due to excessive running apparel purchases.

I hope I love this Adidas skirt as much as I love the other ones that I have!

I like that this one is a different color and all flouncy 🙂

2. I’m also waiting on the neon green compression socks that I decided to order…yes I did it. There’s a 98% chance that they will be involved in my outfit for Little Rock–and considering it looks as though there is a chance for rain that weekend, the black shirt may definitely be IN. I have no plans in letting people see my sports bra, especially in a marathon.

3. Moving! I can’t drive because of the medicine I’m taking, but that doesn’t mean I can’t use my feet, though I’m still needing to take it easy. Yesterday I went walking for 40 minutes but was sore afterwards. This is not normal for me. Today I took the Schwinn for a spin, and it was SO much fun. I couldn’t tell you the last time I was on a bike before today and was surprised I didn’t fall, though I came close.

You better believe if I can fall while running then I will come thisclose to falling off a bike. This bike ride caused me to realized two things, 1) I miss running. I would rather run up a hill than ride up one. 2) Cyclists are smart because you can cover more miles in less time than running, and you typically go a lot faster riding than running. But I will stick with running, thanks.

4. Reading about running! From other blogs, books, Runner’s World, the Facebook page for Little Rock…basically if I have done anything to have running on my mind.

5. Wearing running shirts/clothes/shoes around the house. You probably think this is weird, and it probably is. But deep down I feel like if I’m wearing running my running clothes and shoes, I will heal faster. Right? Right…?

6. Watching my hair grow. Okay I haven’t been THAT bored, but I thought it was funny. Though I am actually trying to grow my hair as long as I can because in December I’m hoping to have enough to donate to Locks of Love! I have plans to run the Dallas White Rock Marathon at the end of the year and Locks of Love is one of the big charity partners this year, so I’ll be chopping my hair off so lots of wigs can be made for some amazing people!

Until I can run again, every morning when I wake up I have been doing the ‘jump test.’ If I can jump up and down without it hurting, that is the day that I will run. I haven’t had that day yet, but am hoping it is SOON.

This break period has been a true test of character, as I was thinking on my ride today. I didn’t expect things/this month/training to happen this way, but when do things ever happen as we expect them? In my case: never.

Still staying positive though and tomorrow is Friday!!!! Happy almost weekend to us!

Happy Weekend

How was your week? Was it crazy like mine? Hence the lack in entries! I was so busy that I didn’t even get to write about my week 12 of torture marathon training. Don’t worry, I wasn’t blogging about it because I was out running. Running in the cold.

We went from having an unusually warm fall to SMACK! Here’s-a-side-of-frost-and-28-degrees-on-Thursday-morning-have-fun-on-your-long-run-sucker! I was afraid I was going to freeze my boobies off. Thankfully my parents lovingly gave me a gift certificate to my favorite running store for my birthday and I was able to buy Zensah compression sleeves for my legs and those amazing Nike arm warmers. They totally did the trick.

Also, being too matchy matchy is not my thing, obviously. I figured that if any point during my run I got discouraged, I could just look down at my outfit and laugh. It worked.

Here are some ideas of fun things you can do this weekend…

Decorate a pumpkin! Because decorating is much safer than carving.

Make some Crayola art...or off brand crayon art if you don’t want to spend $4 extra on something just to melt it…

Be a good dog mom…unlike me

Make s’more cobbler. This is too easy and too good. Hands down the strangest recipe I am glad I have ever followed.

Make a tutu and spend time with your best friend. Then make her model it. I need to make a tutu-tutorial for you guys…

You could go run 18 miles. Wait, don’t do that. That’s a terrible idea.

How about looking ridiculous running a half marathon? That sounds fun.

Whatever you do this weekend, have FUN. And sorry these pictures are basically all iPhone pictures. Regular blogging will hopefully resume tomorrow or Monday. Along with my sanity.

 

10 Things in October

Happy October! Though I am a summer girl at heart, I love this time of year! October is one of my favorite months, and here are ten things I am looking forward to this fall!

1. Cooler weather, obviously! I love not sweating the minute I step outside the door, and cooler temps = faster running!

2. The beautiful scenery

3. Waddell and Reed Kansas City Half Marathon. This was my first half marathon that I ran last year and I am SO excited to be running it again this year! It’s my half marathonaversary 😉

4. Carving pumpkins!

Except my pumpkins end up looking like this:

Red-dic.

5. Sweater, boots and scarves, oh my! I am seriously trying, seriously trying, to get better at dressing myself. To look like a woman/female/girl. This includes: limiting wearing running/workout clothes only when in the act of running/working out. You don’t understand how hard this is for me; but deep down I really do believe that I have a speck of fashion comprehension hiding somewhere under my running tights.

6. The last of my long runs and beginning my marathon taper! I am so excited to finally be saying to myself that I’m running a marathon next month! This month’s long runs will consist of two 18 milers, 13 (KC half marathon), and a biggun at the end of the month. I’ll spill more details later once I convince myself of the last long run.

7. Vegetables of fall…yes I look forward to these kinds of things

8. Getting creative with some DIY home/art projects

9. Baking these for my birthday

10. Living and loving life; yes, I’m making that high on my list of priorities this month

What are you looking forward to in October??

when in doubt, shop it out

Earlier this week, I had been having quite a fiasco with marathon training.

So what’s a girl in trouble to do but shop?

  • Accel Gel, ShotBloks and Honey Stingers to experiment with on my long runs. Tomorrow I think I’ll be trying the Accel Gel and Stingers, with ShotBloks as extra in case I feel I need them

  • New running shoes! I was way past overdue for a new pair, and this is the third generation of this shoe that I have bought, the only shoe I have worn since running long distances. I took them on a test spin earlier this week and I was running on clouds…hopefully I can say they feel the same during my 20 miler tomorrow
  • I also bought this skirt. I used to think skirts for running were so lame, until after my 16 miler where my shorts were dripping in sweat, creating chub rub and riding right up into my lady parts. Rude, shorts, rude. This skirt has nice little spankies inside and I’m hoping it works as well as I am imagining. Good thing it will get here on time for my half marathon in Texas next weekend where I will hopefully not melt.
Now if only I was as good at shopping for real clothes as I am running clothes…