This past weekend was full of festive activities to kickoff the first weekend of December! Our Saturday started with a trip downtown with the extended family for the A Christmas Story Run 5k/10k. With it’s sixth year in, this has always been on our wish list of races to-do, but never seems to workout, we finally signed up so we could partake in the little tradition that our extended family has been doing the last few years!
With following along with the tradition came evil elf hats from the movie and walking the length of the 5k… which for B and I wasn’t ideal, but we wanted to partake in the all the fun and experience! On top of walking that meant, stopping to take pictures at the mile markers, Cleveland sign and seeing everyone’s costumes! We finally made it to the house, which by the time we’d gotten there from walking, it was madness in the little A Christmas Story village in Tremont. So we shuffled past the house with the crowd. B and I ended up getting our run in, while the rest of the family waited for a bus to get back downtown – we decided to run back to complete the circle and get our actual 5k run in!
After taking some photos in picturesque downtown CLE – we did a little shopping before stopping at our go-to post race spot, Brewnuts for A Christmas Story themed donuts to go and then grabbed brunch at XYZ Tavern in Gordon Square! It was a fun little adventure with the family, while feeling a little silly in our hats (because they had to be worn everywhere) – but it was all in good fun and a great way to kickoff the holiday season.
This past weekend we checked off another race for our 2018 running season – number 3 of 4. The cool thing about this race was it offered three running distances and was the perfect offering for all types of runners. We stumbled upon this race when I was helping my friend K look for a 10k to run this year, she set a goal for herself to run and train for one! So after signing up for the Northcoast Harbor 15k a few months ago, I helped K set-up a training schedule so she could start training and get ready for the race!
What I love about running is that it’s a completely individualized ‘sport’ especially in this arena as adults, it doesn’t matter if you’re a faster runner, someone working towards a PR/qualifying for big race, 60-year-old walking, or running 11:00-minute miles. And this race was very much about that. B signed up to run the 15k, K & I were running the 10k and K’s fiance was running the 5k. We picked races based on our comfort level and what we wanted to accomplish. For me my goal was to help K reach her goal, so I signed up the 10k and I told her I was in it for the long road or as she would put it “my slow mile times.”
The race got started just as the sun was rising, we had lake views to our left and cities views to our right, it was the perfect mix of what I love about this city and why I love a good downtown race. We stuck close to the shoreline running in front of the airport, looping back around the Brown’s stadium to finish right where we started at Voinovich Park. Voinovich Park at Northcoast Harbor has always been my favorite views of the city, so it was a great starting and ending spot – plus great for our post-race metal pics.
The sun was shining just as we all crossed the finish line and turned into a pretty nice Saturday morning for late October. I stuck with K the whole way and we all came out of the race meeting our goals and feeling super accomplished! We went and celebrated with our new post-race place, a local doughnut shop, Brewnuts for an adult beverage and some tasty treats!
B and I have a 5k coming up in December that we’re doing more as a group/fun activity and less about the running… although we will see how much we can really stick to that! But we’re excited, as it’s been a race we’ve had on our list for a few years just have never gotten around to doing it! This was a nice accomplishment and another metal to hang up in our home office.
This past weekend marked our 7th half marathon and it’s incredible what a difference a year makes. We… or I should say, I struggled through out last half marathon, the Mighty Niagara last September, and this year seemed like a breeze, well… mostly.
Let’s rewind a bit – we signed up for this race a little over 2-months ago, I saw the price was about to increase and thought, why not? I easily convinced B and a little while later our registration was secured. I took a difference approach to half training this year, and it seemed to work out, as I definitely got a few more mid-size runs than I had anticipated. We ran 10-miles last weekend – so we were feeling as ready as we’d ever be going into the half on Sunday morning.
The start time for the race was 7am, which was good since it was going to warm up quickly and be pretty toasty by 9am, which would be just about finish time. We started out at a good pace and keep in sync with each other, slowed down a little around mile 5 but then were cruising and feeling really good after mile 6, moving into miles 9 and 10. The last three miles, were the longest and of course were straight pavement with the sun beating down on our backs. Thankfully the first 10-miles were relatively covered, which helped immensely, or we definitely would’ve been screwed! But those last three were giving us flashbacks of last year’s struggle, but we didn’t stop, we kept running and we crossed that finish line together! I finished 12th out of 32 in my age division, (woah!) and we had a respectable time of 2:08:51 – it was a good run.
We were covered in sweat when we crossed the finish line, and were happy to see the end. The after party at Hofbrauhaus was a great atmosphere and the definition of a race-after party. In addition to the awesome metal all runners also got a beer and a brat, it was the perfect treat! Live music was playing in the biergarten and there was a Starbucks truck sharing samples of their new coffee smoothies made with almond milk, yum! It was an accomplishing start to our Sunday and good to check off another half. As B said; “First half of 2018 and first one as a married couple. My run or die chick.” ❤
Image Source: Finish Line photo from Hermes Road Racing Cleveland
This weekend marked a mini milestone already this year; we finished our first race! And boy, is March the perfect month to get outside and run. *smiles*
I’d always wanted to run the St. Malachi race, because it’s always in March right around my birthday plus it’s Irish themed! Well this year we finally signed up, and although there was no finishers medal as a consolation prize, we thought it’d be the perfect jump-start to our 2017 running year.
The morning of, I was laying in bed checking the weather, while I knew it was going to be cold, I didn’t think it would “feel like 4” … my comforter seemed that much bigger and warmer than it already was. But we got out of bed and started bundling. When you run in a cold weather race it’s always that fine line of what’s too much and what’s not enough, clothing wise. And standing at the start waiting to go, it definitely felt like not enough especially with the big gusts of wind, but as we ran my outfit choice seemed to be alright and plenty warm with my layers.
B and I stuck together most of the race and for running 5-miles in “feels like 4” weather it went relatively quickly and before you knew it we were crossing the finish line together! We then, awkwardly posed for a photo and immediately wanted more clothes and shelter! We ended up brunching with B’s brother and some of their friends afterwards at a nearby spot, the food was excellent plus lots of hot coffee! We were home early enough and able to relax the rest of the afternoon.
It was nice to get a race in the books so early in the year! Our next race is the 10-miler in April, so we are looking forward to that and seeing how we can improve in our 3rd year running it!
October has been a blast so far, but it’s also moving way too quickly. This past weekend was a busy one, but so much fun!
The weekend started off with a big home win for the Indians against Toronto Blue Jays and they got their second win Saturday afternoon. Two more wins and we will be in the World Series! Saturday morning we ran our 3rd annual Browns 5k, finally the weather was perfect for it. The race is pretty easy, non competitive (except for this year, B was a man on a mission) plus you get a pretty sweet medal. This year we finished the race on the field, which was pretty awesome!! We were done by 10AM and finished with a beer, it was a beautiful start to our Saturday.
Saturday night was the Cleveland Magazine’s annual Best of Cleveland Party at the Public Auditorium. The theme was our NBA Championship and the land of champions! It was another fun night full of delicious food, tasty drinks, good music and good company. Here were the nights standout’s and links for you to check them out yourself!
- FruitVibe Juice Co. – The guys at FruitVibe had a few of there drinks available to test including the Pumpkin Cider (yum!) FruitVibe has a wide offering of cold pressed juices; they offer cleanses, personal delivery and a fresh raw perspective on the juice phenomenon!
- Banyan Tree – This quaint shop in Tremont is perfect for unique gifts or if you’re looking to spoil yourself with some unique sweaters, scarves, jewelry and other cute accessories. Shop online too!
- Spa West – A VIP treat at the Best of CLE, they offered chair massages, hand and arm massages and facial consultations, you can always expect the best with Spa West. I am also a VIP member at Spa West, and their monthly membership is the perfect way to pamper yourself!
- CLE Clothing Co. – As another VIP perk, we went home with a Land of Champions t-shirt, which was perfect for the nights theme. I’ve bragged and loved on CLE Clothing Co. before and I will continue – the shirts and materials are seriously the best.
Other highlights of the night was reliving the game highlights on the big screen from our last game, which led us to breaking history and winning our first championship! Another VIP perk was the two specialty drinks they made inspired by the Cavs win, “The Block” and “The Shot” they were delicious. There was live music, a DJ, the Cavs scream team and cheerleaders also made an appearance and were tossing tees throughout the night. It was a lot of fun especially once the music really got going. The venue and lighting were epic and quite a statement it was a great night!
Sunday was more fun and socializing, we had friends over to watch the Brown’s game out on the big screen! The weather this weekend was amazing for mid-late October so we really got to enjoy the day. We had a great spread of yummy food and a plethora of beers.
It was a great weekend, but definitely need another weekend to recover now!
Yesterday was the 10-Miler race I attempted to start training for back in February, but if you’ve been reading along on my fitness journey it’s been an up and down struggle for the last year… or two… so getting into a consistent workout routine has been the primary goal, and struggle. Long story short – it was ambitious, I didn’t do well with training, but I have gotten into a consistent workout routine with boot camp and am starting to incorporate other workouts, like running! So how did the 10-Miler go… well I hadn’t trained last year and impressed myself, and I did it again this year.
Approaching Mile 8
I beat my time from last year by 2-minutes, didn’t stop, and finished strong! It was a chilly morning, especially starting right next to the lake, but luckily as we got deeper into the course was able to hide from the wind a bit. Of course B left me in the dust before we even hit mile one! But he was waiting at the finish line for me, and jumped out and finish with me! He ended up beating his time from last year and kicked butt, too.
Finishing any race is always an awesome accomplishment but when it’s an significant mileage it always feels that much more awesome. We are looking to sign up for a half marathon before the year is over to keep pushing ourselves and getting back into our old running habits. We were done with our race by 10AM and had the rest of the day to brunch, soak up the sun, and socialize with family and friends!
One of my goals is to get back into a consistent workout routine, back to how I used to be when if I missed a workout it was the end of the world! The high of working out is addicting and I’ve told friends who’re trying to workout more, to stay consistent enough because once you get to that point you’ll know – I also warn it’s far to easy to break that habit (much easier than it was to create) … and here we are.
One thing that had always helped me stay on track was training for half marathons, I would run at least one a year sometimes even two when I was feeling a little extra crazy. Granted that was pre-Moz, pre-house, and still early into my job (yes I will always blame work) – yes those are excuses. B and I have signed up for a 10-Miler this April, so let the training ensue!
With races I like to be able to make my own schedule, this way I can switch up days when I know I’ll be able to take a long run or only squeeze in a quick cross-training session. Since I know I have some busy weekends that’ll interfere with training I’ve taken the initiative to star* the days that are a conflict or an opportunity. For example, President’s day I can squeeze in some extra miles that I normally wouldn’t on a Monday and I have a weekend I’ll be traveling so that’ll throw some things off, but only if I let it. Being able to plan ahead for these is smart, I can game plan and accommodate ahead of time because all I need is a few days of procrastination to break everything I’ve been working towards. I also like to track during the week my distance and time, and then tally up my total distance for the EOW, it’s just another way to track progress or be honest where improvements may need to be made.
Beware of Burnout. I am always cautious about this I am planning or starting to train for any long race. B always got burnout a lot quicker than I, but a training program that is longer than it needs to be (depending on your skill) can be exhausting by week 6 out of 12. So I wanted to keep this manageable but also a decent amount of time, since I could use a little extra discipline.
As you can see training officially starts next weekend, but I am going to try and get some miles in this weekend as a preempt since it takes mental and physical prep to be all in for training!
What’re your training tricks? Are you getting ready to train for a race?
The end of this training week will mark the halfway point, exactly 6 more weeks until the Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon! The last few weeks have unfortunately been very sparse with the training aspect, so time for a harsh reality check.
Week 3 – I literally did nothing
Week 4 – I got a short 2.65 mile run and my long 5 miles in – for a grand total of 7.65 miles
Week 5 – One 4-mile run
Week 6 – Still in progress
I have 4 days left in week 6 to get some additional miles in. I really hate writing and publishing this for the world to see, but I have been severely lacking motivation…. major runners block.
How do you push through your long days to get those miles in?