Friday, January 31, 2014

2013: Resolutions Results

I really try to make an effort when it comes to resolutions & write them down each year (even if I am a month behind this go-around, ha!) because it helps keep me accountable. If I write things down (and especially if I’m placing them on the internets) I’m more likely to follow through. I know they’re not everyone’s cup of tea but for the past few years it’s been neat for me to go back through the blog and see where I was and how I was thinking.

If you’re interested in my 2013 Resolutions in full, click here. I’ll recap a bit below along with how I fared.


  • Run faster. Goal: 12 min/mile pace or better and PR in the 5k.
    • BOOM, MOTHER BEEPING YES! I consistently ran in the 12 minute range (and had a few 11 minute miles in there!) over the course of the year. I did not; however, PR in the 5k. My official PR in the 5k was set back in 2010 well before I legit got into running with a 34 minute time so it’s what I’ve been chasing for the past two years. I did run a 36:11 time which is what I consider my unofficial 5k PR so, it was still a successful year with this goal.
  •  Lose weight. Goal: 30 lbs.
    • In short, no. I did not lose 30 lbs over 2013. I did lose 10. I’m hovering in the low 180s/high 170s and have been for the latter part of the year. Once I started really training for my marathon I kind of put losing weight on the back burner. I wanted to eat all of the carbs, so I ate all of the carbs. I’ve found that I’m much happier as a runner if I don’t limit myself as much with food (which is my problem when it comes to losing weight).


  • Save money. Goal: $$ More money.
    • Technically no, when 2013 ended we did not have the amount of money we had hoped to have in savings. However, that’s pretty much because we paid off my student loans. WINNING. Instead of hoarding our money we decided to go with the Dave Ramsey approach and roll that debt away. I still think though that this goal was met because we have more money than we typically would have. We also have less bills. The start of 2014 has been pretty great so far.


  • Become closer to God. Goal:
    • Yes. It’s hard to place a tangible object in this but yes, yes I have. I’m attending church more regularly, as well as a Bible Study. I’ve learned a lot but still have a lot to learn. It’s been a wonderful year becoming closer with the congregation and it’s been fantastic sharing myself and my daughter with them. We are truly blessed in our church home.
  • Read more. Goal: #13booksin13
    • Um, no. This didn’t happen. I read 7 books which is more than I did in 2012 but my extra time became preoccupied with my growing toddler and my increase in mileage. It was a lofty goal, we’ll see where 2014 brings us though. Let me know if you have any great book suggestions, I’ll write them down!

And that was my 2013 resolutions in a nutshell. Overall, it was a really good year. I really can’t complain about much – I have a wonderful husband who is supportive (even if he’s not always sure why I choose to run for 3+ hours for fun), an amazing little girl who keeps me on my toes and is growing into a beautiful young lady, fantastic friends and family who keep me laughing even when I don’t feel like it and I’m happy. Sure, things don’t always go how you want them, but I’ve been blessed to be able to witness & be grateful for what I do have. You can’t beat that.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Miracle Match Weekend Race Recap

This past weekend I double upped with a 5k on Saturday and a half-marathon on Sunday plus I added 5 miles after the half on Sunday to give me 18 miles for the day.

Sounds crazy, right? It is but I have only 4 weeks until I lace up my shoes and throw down 26.2 miles so it was a necessary evil. And one that just helped affirm that while my legs may be tired and the sweat may be flowing from my pits, my mind & heart are ready to tackle this.

And what’s the thing they say about running being mental? Yeah. That. Anyway, less about marathon madness and more about race shenanigans!

For the past 4 years, I’ve ran the 5k portion of this race. It’s actually the first 5k I ever participated in (before I was hit with the running bug) and has kind of been a tradition for me since. I considered running the half portion last year but had already registered for the Houston Half and since I was fairly new to running longer distances, I wasn’t sure if could handle it.

Besides Miracle Match boasts as being the Toughest Little Marathon in Texas, so it was a little scary as a newer runner. Below is the elevation change/hills for the half marathon course from my Garmin.


I knew after I finished the 5k in 2013 that I would sign up to run the half in 2014, just to see. And when an email showed up in my inbox with a discount code for signing up to do a double race weekend, I couldn’t say no.  Also, 100% of the proceeds of this race goes to Be The Match to help people who need marrow transplants.

Yeah, not 80% or 90% but 100 freaking percent. How amazing is that? It was also one of the most personable & personal races I’ve ever run. I would highly recommend this race to anyone – even out-of-staters. On to the recap.

January 25th, 2014 5k

The weather was cold. With wind chill in teens & upper 20s so I went with running tights, long sleeve shirt, pullover, gloves (touch screen that I scored from my MIL over Christmas!) and a headband.

bloOverall, good choices. I was definitely over the gloves by Mile 1 and considered chunking them at My Emilie (who was awesome and volunteered at the water station!) but didn’t want to seem like a drama queen so I powered through the finger sweat. I didn’t want to really push crazy hard for this simply because I knew I was planning on doing the half the next day and overall, these races were set up as part of my marathon training. Last thing I want is an injury.

Time: 38:25 with a 12:23 average per mile.

My 2013 time was 40:30 with a 13:03 average per mile, so maybe not a 5k PR but definitely a course PR! Since starting to run one of my favorite things has been to do the same race each year (if possible) just to be able to compare. It’s a great way to remind yourself of where you are and that the work you’ve put in isn’t in vain.

Here’s a few race pictures from the 5k. They turned out, in one word, glorious. I seriously couldn’t stop laughing at myself when I checked them out. (Yes, it’s true, I’m easily amused.)

Strutting Run Totally not planned but couldn’t have been more perfect. Leo + Tam = Running Love

RunnersJump Once I crossed the finish line, Emilie & I had a girls day where we went to Target and then carb-loaded on some Italian food at Johnny Carino’s. I thought about taking a picture of my Smoked Chicken & Jalapeno Ravioli to share with you but then I took one bite and pretty much shoveled the rest in my mouth at an epic speed. It was amazeballs and I have no regrets.

January 26th, 2014 Half-Marathon

The weather was warmer (in the 30s) and it really was a great weekend for a race. Based on my experience for the 5k, I opted to not wear gloves and a headband. I thought I might still need a pullover so I started the race with a newbie I picked up at Target during our Emilie & Tam day. I’m actually wearing it today as I type this and y’all, it’s wonderful. I love it. The brand is C9 and everyone should have one. I wore running capris instead of tights (Christmas present from My Emilie. Have I mentioned lately how much I love her? Because I totally do.) and I recently purchased a SpiBelt to try/use for my marathon. This was the first race I’ve used it with and it did wonderful. I’ll do a review on that in a later post.

IMG_3253I started the race telling myself I’ll run as I’m comfortable and try to focus on just getting to the 13 since I had planned on running 5 more miles afterwards (and I did!) to make my total for the day 18. Almost immediately I felt a presence right next to me, same pace, same relaxed mode for at least a quarter of mile before she turned to me and said, “ 12:30 pace?” and I turned back and said, “That’s the plan. Fingers crossed, right?”

We introduced ourselves (side note: runners are amazing and wonderful and crazy friendly) her name was Adrian and her dad/sister were also running. We ran the first 6 miles together before we hit the hills. Once we got to the hills my plan was to speed walk up them and run down, her plan was to run the entire race so for the rest of the race I was a minute or two behind her.

mile 5This was at Mile 5 right before I ditched my pullover (thanks Adrian for holding my watch!) and just tied it around my waist. She really helped pull me through and it was nice having someone to run with for a bit.

At Mile 8 I got bacon. Like, literally, I got bacon. We were running through a residential part of the race and there was a group of 5-6 college kids in front of their home cheering runners on with cowbells. One girl had a giant bowl and as I got closer, I heard someone yell, “We got bacon!” So as I ran by I grabbed a handful and yelled, “HELL YEAH”. They started jumping up and down screaming, “SOMEONE TOOK THE BACON!” I popped a piece in my mouth and immediately regretted it. Not that it wasn’t tasty but it was bacon and kind of dry and I had no water for the next half mile.

I’ve decided that at any point in my life when I think something is going to be great and it turns out to be a bad decision I’m going to call it “Got Bacon”.

Yo, I decided to run a marathon but then I got bacon when my legs fell off at mile 21.

The race split up based on the race you were running right after Mile 5 too – the half went straight, the full & relay turned left and the 10k turned right. The half & marathon courses met back up around mile 10 I believe.

At Mile 11, the lead racer for the full marathon passed me. So basically this dude ran 26 miles faster than I could run 13. Dude was in beastmode.

At about that time I met another running partner (didn’t grab her name but she was from the Dallas area and said she loved the course and it was better than the Austin 3M she ran the weekend before – winning!) and we talked for about a mile before I started getting eager to finish and decided to push it a bit.

By finishI know, I know, I run slow enough that it looks like I’m walking but I promise I was running. Also, the guy in the background is getting sassy about it, so don’t mind him.

I wasn’t expecting to run this (much harder) course any faster than my last race since I still had 5 miles to throw down but y’all, TOTALLY PR’ED ON THIS BITCH.

Time: 2:56:09 with a 13:26 average per mile.

When I crossed the finish line I was thrilled! I really think it helped that I had people to talk to during the race to keep my mind off the mileage.

finisherI picked up my extra swag (for running two races, I ended up getting 3 shirts!), my medal and seriously considered grabbing a free fajita & margarita but instead I booked it to my truck and then to the house to finish up my mileage for the day on the treadmill.

I was exhausted by the end of it but I didn’t sit down (I do have a kid/husband to tend to) and tried to keep myself busy in hopes that I wouldn’t be too crazy sore come Monday. I finally sat down at 7pm to watch a movie with the husband and I didn’t make it 15 minutes before I passed smooth out. I woke up around 9pm with stickers on me (thanks Lillie) and a husband telling me I’d be more comfortable in our bed.

I moved around a lot on Monday to ward off the soreness, and it wasn’t too terrible. Mostly if I sat for an extended period of time (desk job, woohoo) and then sat up and by Tuesday there wasn’t much soreness left in me. HOWEVER, I did manage to chafe fairly bad on thighs (even though I wore capris) so I busted out the Desitin and am now aware that for my marathon I should probably have some Vaseline I can get to incase I need it.

Overall, this was a beautiful course that you should totally do. It’s for a wonderful cause and they really do a great job at making it personal. There were signs along the course for motivation and the volunteer stations really out-did their selves.

Until we run again!