Fitness Friday 12.20 – 10-Miler Virtual Race Recap

It’s been a minute since I’ve shared a dedicated race recap on the blog, but this one was special — so I wanted to share. If you’ve been reading along on monthly Fitness Friday posts, you may have recognized a pattern and my focus on one specific fitness goal: running 6 races in 2020. Which all came from 2019, where we only ran one race and we usually do a couple!

The one race that we did run in 2019, was our annual 10-Miler race we always run in April. This is always a no brainer that we like to sign-up for no matter what and we always make sure to sign-up early in the year. And 2020 was no different, we were registered and then the pandemic hit. As the April race day approached, we knew it would be pushed… we kept waiting, and waiting, nothing in the summer came up and then finally it was rescheduled for an October date. Woo! October came, and the date approached and the decision to push indefinitely to 2021 was made. Runners could opt to run virtual or defer to next year. For B and I, we had planned to run this in 2020 and we were going to run it in 2020, so we switched to virtual and waited for our packets.

Welp! Long story short, I got sick in early November, we got hit with a ton of snow and now it’s December and we have this 10-miler race to still run… in December in the Midwest. We knew we would have to keep an eye out on the weather and plan quickly — which didn’t really help for me, who hasn’t been running, training or working out. And a 10-miler run, isn’t such a breeze when you’re not doing anything. Needless to say, I was not looking forward to running this and anticipated a lot of walking/running. But I needed to finish it and mark it off the list.

Two-Days Before the Run. It was Wednesday night, B and I have both been watching the weather separately and saw that the temps and conditions Friday and Saturday would be a possibility — but Friday morning was looking like the better option and without rain. Thursday, we confirmed that we would have to plan for Friday AM and account for at least 2+ hours. This was not a lot of time to mentally prepare, except that it was going to happen.

Race Morning. We woke up early, got ready and hit the pavement by 6:45am. I told B that we needed to start slow — the weather was surprisingly perfect around 41-degrees. And we stayed at a steady pace, didn’t have to worry about traffic, people or icy sidewalks. We continued at a speed for the distance we had ahead of us and stuck around an 11-minute + pace. Mile 8, I was feeling good and we took about a minute off with our pace and continued at a slightly quicker pace for the last two miles. As we hit mile 9, I started to get a bit emotional, I couldn’t believe we were still running and feeling decent and the end was in sight!

We finished at 1:53:10, with plenty of time to walk a bit, cool down and get back to the house before we started our work days! And even better yet, although I ended limping a bit and hunched over, I still had a smile on my face. This 10-mile race, went better than planned and as good as it could’ve went — I’m so happy that I was able to accomplish this. Now, I just have one more race to run before the end of the year to officially complete this 2020 fitness goal.

Fitness Friday 11.20 – Turkey Trot Recap

Morning, bee readers! How was your Thanksgiving? Ours ended up being a well rounded day, which was in many thanks to us signing up to run our city’s virtual Turkey Trot! This was also my fourth race of the year, as I’m still cranking towards my goal of 6-runs in 2020 (more on that at the end).

In fact, the last two weekends we’ve checked off two of our virtual races — which for me, both have been a little more of a struggle than I’d like, but I have also not been working out! Usually my cross training saves me when I’m not able to run as much, because it keeps me in shape and toned — but when you’re not doing any of that, I can only expect it to not be as easy. Last weekend, we ran a 5k and for our Turkey Trot we opted to a little 5-miler, because why not?!

It’s a little funny, because all of the races have been hoping to be rescheduled for in-person — that a lot of these turned virtual last minute, so we’ve been waiting for race packets and more specifically, for our annual 10-miler (that is usually in April). Which we just received our race packets a week ago, so now we’re trying to get all of these runs in, right as the weather has turned and grown more unpredictable. We’ve also pushed some runs even more, because I was also sick for a few weeks, so running with a cough and congestion isn’t really ideal and knew I wouldn’t be helping myself out there either.

Long story short, my 10-miler is probably going to be my 5th and last race of the year, making me fall one short of my goal of 6. And it’s going to be the hardest, because I know I am not in shape to breeze through 10-miles as I’ve done in previous years, so I’m feeling a repeat of 2017 coming in.

Our Virtual 5k Race from the Previous Weekend

I wanted to push myself during our Turkey Trot to get through 5-miles, because I know I have this 10-mile race looming that I want to and will complete. I’m also not sure if I want to get one or two more mid-size mile runs in before going after 10. I’ve trained and not trained for a number of half-marathons and 10-milers, and especially without my cross training — and I know, I’m not helping myself out.

So! As we jump right into Christmas, I’ll definitely be sharing my 10-miler journey in all it’s pain and glory within the coming weeks once I finally check that off this list.

Fitness Friday 10.20

News flash! There are less than 3-months left of 2020. Mostly that is a good thing, because this year has mostly been a disaster — but if you’ve been working towards any goals, it’s go time, to crank that butt in gear to check off every single one of those goals! I just took a peak at my 2020 goals, and per usual, my fitness goals are always a constant roller coaster – and this year hasn’t been any different. But there is one goal, I am bound and determined to check off this year.

The one fitness goal, I’ve been really focused on is getting six races in — which pre-pandemic was going to be a piece of cake, but all of our races have been postponed, rescheduled or turned virtual. So with a few races, JUST NOW turning virtual — our Q4 of running is quickly becoming jammed packed. As of today, two runs have been completed and two runs are queued up. Which means, I need to still sign-up for two more and just plan for virtual. I was really hoping to have a half-marathon included in my six runs, but our 10-miler will just have to do.

This past month I just finished my second race, which happened to also be our first virtual race! Have you run a virtual race yet? There were a lot of things I liked about running a virtual race, like we could plan and run on our schedule – pick your own location/route – we got the race packet and medal at the same time! Not to mention, this race was benefitting a organization that is near and dear to us, so that made it extra special. Some things I missed from a traditional race, was the crowd and team mentality — you sort of get amped up to run a bit faster than you might if it’s just yourself running through the park. We did make sure that we woke up early to run our race, because what would race day be without an early morning wake up call?

As I mentioned and you may see — our virtual run was a quick 5k, which helped raise money to support Friends of City Dogs Cleveland, which provides financial assistance to City Dogs is the adoption division of Cleveland Animal Care and Control which is an open intake facility – meaning they don’t turn dogs away. This nonprofit steps in and provides additional resources to support medical expenses like HW+, torn AC surgery, general enrichment and training. B and I also happen to volunteer for City Dogs and walk dogs – so we love this organization a little extra – but more on that, another day!

So as I work my way towards finishing 6 races, I encourage you to continue to work towards your fitness goal(s) to make a small part of your year a success!

Mighty Niagara Half Recap

ICYMI (here and here) B and I were training for a half marathon! After 12-weeks of training and knocking off a majority of our long runs together we were feeling good going into the race. In addition we knew the race course was fairly flat, with little surprises, so we were ready to conquer it! Plus, it was a completely new race for us, it was on a Saturday, we were excited! We headed to the area Thursday to grab our race packets and made a quick stop to explore Niagara Falls, after all we were running the Mighty Niagara, so it only made sense to visit the mighty falls.

Fast Forward Race Morning: A race morning wouldn’t be a race morning if you didn’t have to wake up before the sun. With an hour-plus drive we had to leave by 6:30am to have plenty of time to figure out parking and get to the start line! With a start time at 9:15 – the sun was in full force, but luckily the first part of the course was nicely covered, and navigated us through the adorable town of Lewiston, we were off to a good start, and sticking to our pace.
Mighty Niagara Half Recap - the bee life
By the time we hit mile 4/5 we were in straight sun down a lonngg straight road. The mental game set in. By mile 7, I couldn’t handle the heat – I had to stop and take off my tank top and pour some water on my head, this would become the trend for the next 5-water stations.  By mile 8/9, the heat had really gotten to me, and I was in bad shape – but B stuck by my side. The remaining 5 miles were slow, hot and miserable, the mental and physical game was strong.

I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to finish a race before. I was defeated, mad at myself, mad at our time and overheated, but we finished and we finished together! My parents and Moz were waiting for us at the finish line, so it was good to see them and be done with the race.  And at the end of the day, we accomplished a difficult feat and didn’t give up!

The after race festivities were impressive and the scenery throughout the race was beautiful, running along the Niagara River was stunning! We would definitely run the Mighty Niagara Half Marathon again, but would hope for much cooler weather.  This being the first half in almost 3-years, it definitely wasn’t a walk in the park, but I can’t say I’ve completely hung up my half-running sneaks just yet!

5-Miler Race Recap

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!

Happy Running!

Weekend Recap – Everything CLE

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!

10 miles on a Saturday

This past weekend we ran the 10-miler Hermes race. A new race for us, so we did not know what to expect. I didn’t have high expectations for myself, simply because I haven’t been training/running… at all! I just wanted to finish.

B’s brother came up to run this with us, so I knew they would blast ahead of me at some point, mainly because I wanted to stick to my pace. And they did… eventually I couldn’t see them. Between mile 8 and 9 I ran into B’s brother, but kept running.  I did not stop at all! I definitely lost a lot of momentum in my last few miles – especially when this woman just stopped completely in front of me at a water station. But I kicked it up into the finish.

It felt great to run this entire race, and beat my target finish time AND to run the whole thing without stopping. My ending time was 1:36:38.14 – B finished 11 minutes ahead of me! And his brother finished right after me.  The weather was perfect conditions for me; cool 40’s overcast with a little bit of sun.  I’m definitely ready to find another race, although I know any sort of training is going to be tough, so I want to stay on the shorter end of miles.

It was a productive start to our Saturday! We were all finished well before 10:30AM – the rest of the weekend was pretty relaxing and low key so it was the perfect balance of both.