Tag: desnews half

RACE #155: Deseret News Half Marathon

After racing on Saturday at the Handcart Days Half Marathon, I wasn’t sure what to expect on Monday for this race. Especially since I haven’t done much back to back long runs — outside of the Bear Lake Trifecta.

Plus, with my ankle lately, I just haven’t had many feel good successful runs. It’s been frustrating because about 6-7 miles into a run my ankle starts screaming. I’ve been going to Physical Therapy and doing daily exercises/stretches that have been helping some, but the biggest thing my doctor suggested was new runners. Specifically ones for overpronation.

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Now, I’m not going to get into all of that, but basically — I’m an overpronator which was not only the likely cause of the sprain, but why it wasn’t healing properly as well. Meaning, the overpronation didn’t give my ankle the time or structure it needed to heal. Truly a vicious cycle.

On Saturday after my race I bought some new runners, the Saucony Omni 15 to be specific. I debated whether or not I should break them out for this race, but after about two minutes I threw caution to the wind and decided to lace them up.

And, boy, was I glad I did!

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Ironically, the race started in the canyon (and about 100 yards down the road) where I first sprained the ankle in April. I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t on my mind. My two goals for the race were to sub-three and not sprain my ankle. I love Emigration Canyon, but it’s road condition isn’t the best — so it’s a real concern.

After hanging out for about an hour at the starting line the race started at 6am. As soon as I went out the chute I felt the heaviness of my legs. From past experiences I knew the first three miles were going to be spent basically loosening up — so I didn’t push TOO hard, especially know I’d need my energy for that later.

Once I was loosened up, I was surprised how well I felt. But, more than that — how well my ankle felt. I still felt it’s tenderness, but it wasn’t screaming at me. I knew the test would be in a few more miles, especially when I got down to the home stretch. But, I felt very optimistic with how I was feeling.

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With the ankle feeling rather neutral, I wanted to push myself a bit and between miles 5-8 I kept pushing myself. The ankle was holding up, especially after miles 6-7 where it usually starts cursing at me. So, I kept pushing.

I probably pushed a bit too hard, especially coming off a race on Saturday. But, I also haven’t been speed training much with the injury so my fitness level wasn’t where I’d like it to normally be. The only way to get back there is by … pushing and challenging yourself, so that’s what I did.

Once I got out of the canyon I was still feeling really good. This just encouraged me even more to keep going. It also helped seeing a lot of familiar friendly faces at the aid stations and on the course. It felt like a party.

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I knew the last five miles were going to be tough, especially around Mile 9 on 1300 East. It’s the slightest of hills, but after running Emigration Canyon and Foothill Blvd. it feels like a freaking mountain. Especially when you pass the 7 Eleven there on 13th. It was at this point that I wished I brought my monies for a Slurpee.

Bad planning on my part.

But, the last four miles were much better than I expected. It helped that I knew what to expect toward the finish line, but I was most encouraged by how my ankle felt. It felt GOOD. Not great, but good! I felt the improvement and might have made somewhat emotional around Mile 10. I will neither confirm nor deny that.

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But, the last three miles were good. They’re the fun miles of this race, that’s when you starting running toward the parade route. I smiled at the Mile 10 aid station that was staffed by a bunch of LDS missionaries. You want to talk about a happy bunch of volunteers.

After turning onto the parade route I turned off my music and just listened to the crowd. I love doing this. I heard my name yelled out a couple of times, but a lot of random strangers just cheering me on. I loved it.

Once I approached the finish line I noticed I got that sub-three hour time — 2:52:36 to be exact. But, before I could celebrate the accomplishment I was greeted by Wan who not only put my medal around my neck gave me one of his trademark hugs. Of all the people I could ask to hand me my medal — I couldn’t have asked for anyone more perfect than Wan.

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After gathering myself I just crashed with a couple water bottles in tow and just socialized for a while. By this time my body was feeling it. Luckily, not my ankle. Just my quads and everything else that didn’t want me running 48 hours after the last half.

But, after shuttling it back to the buses with Andrea and Dith, I made the slow drive home — with a detour to the 7 Eleven of course. I was dead, but at the same time I felt such a great sense of satisfaction for meeting my goal. Not to mention how grateful I felt that my ankle felt so great.

It’s a feeling that’s been a long time waiting.

And, I’ll take it.


MY NEXT THREE RACES


July 2017 Miles

Running Miles — 31.1 miles
Race Miles — 39.3 miles
Walking Miles — 85.63 miles
TOTAL MILES — 156.03 miles
Races in July — The Hobbler Half, Handcart Days & DesNews Half.

2017 Miles

Running Miles — 303.55 miles
Race Miles — 282.42 miles
Walking Miles — 749.4 miles
TOTAL MILES — 1335.37 miles
Races done in 2017 — New Year’s Half Marathon, Sweethearts 5K, Jackpot Running Festival, SL Tri Club Indoor Half, March Madness Half, Lucky 13 Half Marathon, Emigration Canyon Half Marathon, Riverton Half, Saltair Half, Provo City Half Marathon, Jordan River Half Marathon, Drop13 Half Marathon, Bear Lake Trifecta — Idaho, Wyoming & Utah, AF Canyon Race Against Cancer and The Hobbler Half.


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RACE #127: Deseret News Half Marathon

SALT LAKE CITY — It’s kinda hard to put into words about my experience running the Deseret News Half this past Monday. It was tough. It was draining. It was exhausting. But, all be damned — I pushed through all of that. All that this just 48 hours after running the Bountiful Handcart Days Half Marathon.

While I didn’t get my sub-2:30 time goal — I am proud of myself, my effort and resolve. I didn’t give up, even when I tried to give myself permission to do so. I had a couple of great pacers that kept me on track and going, especially when I thought I couldn’t give any more of myself.

I told myself going into the race that I would be disappointed if I didn’t get a sub-2:30 time (2:32:15). Am I still disappointed for not hitting the goal? Well, yes. I wanted to reach that goal. And, I didn’t get it. Of course I am going to be disappointed. But, that doesn’t mean I didn’t learn from the experience. Because, I most definitely did.

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Having not sub-2:30’d in nearly two years — it would probably be seen as kinda stupid to go into this race seeking such a goal. Especially after already racing 48 hours prior. And, that assessment may very well be right.

But, having lost nearly 30lbs. and gaining some of my speed back as of late — I knew I could push myself to that goal. Especially having ran the DesNews Half before and knowing where and when to push or hold back. It also helps having ran a sub-2:30 — or sub 2:10 for that matter (2:08:25 at Nebo in 2013) — so you know what it takes.

My game plan really wasn’t extraordinary. It was simply to stick with my friend Brook who was pacing the 2:30 group. I thought about running with my Garmin, but opted to bypass wearing it because there was no point if I was going to stick with Brook. PLUS — it’s kinda like running on the treadmill, you don’t want to constantly be looking at the time and distance. That’s torture.

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After being bussed up Emigration Canyon the 2:40 pacer, Sheri, joined us. Somehow her pacing stick was forgotten so she joined our party. It was great having her run alongside Brook and I. I love having two pacers, because one can focus staying on pace while the other can focus on the runners around them. That’s very much what Brook and Sheri did. It really helped me a lot.

The run down Emigration Canyon was beautiful (it always is) — and fast! The first six miles were down the canyon and past the zoo. And, even when we got out of the canyon the route was still pretty much downhill until around mile 10-11.

The hardest of that stretch was when we turned onto Foothill Blvd. and for probably — a half mile? — the course was flat. Recalibrating my legs between downhill and flat terrain has always been difficult for me. But, I just decided to dig in and keep pressing forward.

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When we turned onto 1300 E. towards 100 S. not only were my legs running out of juice, but I could feel the creation of a blister that I knew would be ugly once my shoes came off. It was painful. It was huge. And, it was very uncomfortable. But, I just kept trying to push through it.

I knew I was close I was close. I had about a 5K left. I was still with the pacers. So, I just tried to distract myself by anyways possible. Since I wasn’t running with music, I either sang whatever came to mind — or chanted mantras of “yes, I can” and “just keep running.”

It felt like the more tired and sore I got, the more determined I became to reach this goal. Especially when I was looking for excuses and reasons to slow down and let Brook and Sheri go ahead of me. I could have easily used Saturday’s race as an excuse, but I already told myself that wasn’t going to be an excuse.

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I also could have used my blister as an excuse. And, that one I fought through a lot — pretty much every half mile after mile 10. But, I just made up my mind that it was an all or nothing. If I didn’t give my ALL — I was sacrificing the gift (geez, where have I heard something like that before?).

Anyways — needless to say — I wasn’t going to quit. I was going to give it my everything. I was so appreciative of both Brook and Sheri for keeping me going. They both helped motivate me, kept me going and wouldn’t let me stop.

I got new life when we turned onto 200 E. and the parade route. Part of it was because of the energy of the crowd, but mostly because we got some downhill that made my legs happy. I wish I had brought candy to throw out to the crowd (maybe next year) because while some of them were cheering us runners on, most were bored out of their minds.

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Around this time I really felt like I had a chance to get this goal. We had less than a mile and a half left until the finish line and I knew I could just gut it out — especially once the course flattened out again. And, then we got stopped near the library because of a TRAX train. It killed a little bit of my mojo, but more than anything, just made me laugh. Plus, it only killed about 12 seconds.

But, still.

The last half mile was a beast though. I kept pushing and my legs just weren’t giving me ANYTHING. Sheri kept running with me while Brook ran ahead to keep on pace. I desperately wanted to keep up with Brook, but I had no spring left in my legs — at this point it was all guts. All guts.

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As I got closer to the finish line Brook came back to run me in. There was some confusion on time, because the course was a bit too long and there was a different time on the clocks, timer and Brook’s Garmin. The timer said I was still under 2:30 — I think like 2:28ish? But, Brook’s said I was 2:31 at like 13.4 miles (or so).

So I didn’t know which one to believe? Could I have come in under 2:30? Possibly.

But, when I went to check my time at the time kiosk it came in as 2:32:15. And, despite probably making a case that time was off, I just went with that time, because — well — it’s the official time. And, I’m not going to critique that despite the length of course.

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I got what I got and while I am disappointed that I didn’t reach my goal, I know I did my best. I beasted out some difficult miles. I created a monstrous blister. And, I gave everything I had to the end. If you can’t be satisfied with that, then you’re never going to truly appreciate anything in life. Destinations and goals are great, but the journey and pursuit is just as valuable. If not more.

So will I do something like this again? Meaning — a two race weekend? Of course. I think what made this different was going into my second race with an ambitious time goal. But, doing Whole30, losing weight and subsequently having more energy I felt like I could this.

Which I almost did.

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And, as I have said here and on social media — yes, I am disappointed that I didn’t reach my goal. But, all be damned, I almost did it — and — I am coming away from this race with more lessons learned than if I easily reached the goal. I will definitely remember this race highly amongst my 180 other races.

Besides my 50K — and a handful of other races — this was one of the toughest.

Yet, one of the most rewarding.

Now to just keep pressing forward. I’ve got a lot more to achieve and accomplish.


MY NEXT RACE

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After Monday’s race — I won’t lie — I kinda want to test myself again. I want that sub-2:30. Especially since I’ll have basically have a whole month until my next half (Run Elevated, Aug. 27).

Is it doable? Yes. Is it crazy? Possibly. But, I figure if I could do 2:32 at the DesNews Half just 48 hours after the Handcart Days Half — I can do a 2:30 at Timp with some rested legs on Saturday. Am I right on this assessment (just nod your heads in agreement)?

So the goal is once again to stick with the 2:30 pacers. Luckily for me I’ve got a couple of awesome friends pacing the group — Angie Pace and Karrie Middaugh! It’ll be a party. But, I know once again it won’t be easy. The first 7-8 miles (or so) are in AF Canyon — that leaves about 5-6 miles of rolling hills in the hot sun.

Again — it won’t be easy. But, I am going to do it. And, I am going to give it my all.

I’m going to do a shakeout run either tonight or Thursday morning. Nothing extreme, just to loosen up the legs. But, my focus this week has been weights and core anyways (I’ve got some Relief Society arms that need a little work). Plus, that core work is just as important as miles on my feet. I also have to remember I’ve done a lot of running, especially considering I will be doing three half marathons within a week.

So, I am not worried.

I just want to be ready for Saturday. Ready to stick with Karrie and Angie and give it everything. I want to build upon my time at Timp going into Run Elevated next month so I can push for 2:25 or faster. Especially considering that I had to drop Nebo in September. I want to fly at Run Elevated like I’ve never flown before.

Well, okay, not maybe fly faster than I have in a while. Though a PR would sure be nice. But, if that was the goal and case you might as well have an ambulance shadow me down Little Cottonwood Canyon.

Anyways.

Who else is running Timp this weekend? Anyone else want to join the 2:30 party? If you want to help motivate and keep me going I’ll get you some cattle prods! Ooooo … tempting I know!

YEAH TIMP!


MY NEXT THREE RACES

129 - Run Elevated Half Marathon 130 - Revel Big Cottonwood Marathon 131 - huntsville marathon


PHATGRAMS

They asked for honest feedback … so I gave it to them. #chilisnotapplebees

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2667in2016

RUNNING MILES

157.6 miles

RACE MILES

176.7 miles

WALKING MILES

891.86 miles

TOTAL MILES TO DATE

1226.16 miles

MILES TO GOAL

1440.84 miles



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InstaReplay: Deseret News Half Marathon

I’ve done some tough and difficult things over my five years of running — I’ve ran marathons, numerous 20 mile training runs, midnight Ragnar legs and a number of back-to-back and double race day races. But, today — was tough. It was very tough.

I came into the race having ran the Handcart Days Half 48 hours before. I wasn’t sore or extraordinarily tired. I took it easy on Saturday KNOWING I was going to be going for 2:30 on Monday.

I came close today. Very close.

I am not going into a lot of details, I’ll save that for my race recap on Wednesday. But, I pushed through a lot to keep up with my friends, and pacers, Sheri and Brook. I was fine for most of the race, but the last three miles I started to blister on my feet pretty bad and then the last mile was just gutting it out.

It was one of the toughest — yet rewarding — races I’ve done.

I am disappointed that I came in at 2:32:15, but looking at my performance having done a half 48 hours prior and gutting through the blisters, heat and dead legs — I am proud of that. I didn’t give up. I gave it my all. And, I can say affirmatively I left EVERYTHING out there on the course.

I am looking forward to Timp this weekend and Run Elevated next month to get that elusive sub-2:30 for the year. But, for now I’m tending to my blisters, jumping in an ice bath and taking it easy for a couple of days. I want my legs to be fresh for Timp.

Come back Wednesday for the full race report.


LET’S DO THIS! #desnewshalf #race127 #running @deseretnews @joshruns180 @fight4phat

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There was a little confusion with my time. The clock said one thing, the timer said another and the Garmin said something else. But, going with the official time I finalized in 2:32:15. I am disappointed I didn’t get my sub-2:30, but I gave it everything. Everything. I ran through a nasty blister, dead legs and a nagging conscience. But, I seriously couldn’t have gotten this far without Brook & Sheri pushing and motivating me. The last half mile was hell. I had no spring left in the legs. It was all guts at that point. Having Sheri push me and then Brook coming back to run me through was a great moment for me. I’m getting my speed back and I have no doubt I’ll get where I’m going — especially when I push myself and surround myself with others who help push me along! #desnewshalf #race127 #running @deseretnews @joshruns180 @fight4phat

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RACE #127 IS DONE! This was a tough race! Tough, tough, tough. I pushed myself beyond comfort, through some very dead legs and a blister the size of Asia. I didn’t get my sub-2:30, but I was close. I am disappointed I didn’t get it, but I can say I gave it EVERYTHING to give myself a fighting chance. The official time came in at 2:32:15. My last half mile was brutal. I had no spring left and I just gutted it out. It hurt. It was painful. But, I pushed through it. If it wasn’t for Brook & Sheri I KNOW I wouldn’t have survived for that long. They kept on pace and on track. They were great pacers! My goal now is to get that sub-2:30 at Run Elevated next month. I know I can do it, because I won’t be running a half 48 hours before either. It’s onto Timp this weekend before a few 20 milers in August to prep me for my marathons in September. BAM! #desnewshalf #race127 #running @deseretnews @joshruns180 @fight4phat

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RACE #127 IS DONE! This was a tough race! Tough, tough, tough. I pushed myself beyond comfort, through some very dead legs and a blister the size of Asia. I didn’t get my sub-2:30, but I was close. I am disappointed I didn’t get it, but I can say I gave it EVERYTHING to give myself a fighting chance. The official time came in at 2:32:15. My last half mile was brutal. I had no spring left and I just gutted it out. It hurt. It was painful. But, I pushed through it. If it wasn’t for Brook & Sheri I KNOW I wouldn’t have survived for that long. They kept on pace and on track. They were great pacers! My goal now is to get that sub-2:30 at Run Elevated next month. I know I can do it, because I won’t be running a half 48 hours before either. It’s onto Timp this weekend before a few 20 milers in August to prep me for my marathons in September. BAM! #desnewshalf #race127 #running #workout #halfmarathon #wellness #fitness #wod #exercise @deseretnews @joshruns180 @josherwalla

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#FitnessFriday: Pioneer Runners sang as they ran and ran and ran …

What a week! It’s been kind of a rollercoaster week for me. Many ups and downs of emotions, etc., etc., etc. My anxiety was a little bit earlier this week — not fun. Not sure if it had anything to do with ending my second round of Whole30 and starting up a third — or with what’s been going on with the RNC in Cleveland? Maybe I’m already missing the ‘Runsmobile’ that officially got retired this week? Probably all of the above? But, more often than not — anxiety is just anxiety for no other reason than just being anxiety.

I don’t talk much about my anxiety. But, it’s something I’ve dealt with for years. It comes and goes as it pleases — and it differs from season to season. One of the worst days/weeks for my anxiety is when Daylight Savings ends in November. No joke. Usually that Sunday or Monday when it gets dark at like — 5pm, I get anxious. And, it lasts for about a week. Not fun.

I’ve found over the years that running has really helped sooth my anxiety. I’ve learned how to subdue it through running and even timing my runs to preempt a panic attack. That’s an art folks. No joke. Running works almost as good as any medication I’ve used.

I could really write a book about running and anxiety. But, the thought makes me anxious — so I’ll probably pass.

Anyways — the first part of the week — not fun. But, I got a really good run in yesterday morning that centered me — physically. mentally, emotionally, spiritually. I won’t lie — I could have used a day earlier, but I’ll take it. I feel good. I feel balanced. And, I am ready for the weekend.

I am running the Handcart Days Half Marathon here in Bountiful tomorrow followed by the Deseret News Half Marathon in Salt Lake on Monday. So lots and lots and lots of running this weekend. It’s Pioneer Day weekend here in Utah (where we celebrate pioneers or ‘pie and beer’ if you are not of the Mormon persuasion) so we have a number of community celebrations, parades (ugh, hate them), fireworks and of course races!

I wrote a bit more about my weekend races below.

But, since Pioneer Day is on Sunday this year the state holiday is being observed on Monday. Which means NO WORK on Monday. Besides racing and probably mowing the lawn — I am not sure what I am going to do with this glorious holiday? I might go see a movie (as long as it’s not the new Ghostbusters)? Or maybe swimming. I kinda want to do that. Or the possibilities are limitless.

Gosh, I love summer holidays. Can you tell?

Anyways, looking forward to a fun weekend of running, family, friends and holiday festivities (except for those dang parades).

What do you have planned for the weekend? Anything fun? Are you running either the Handcart Days or DesNews Half Marathons? Wanna party?

HAPPY PIONEER DAY! HAPPY WEEKEND! HAPPY RUNNING!


126 - bountiful handcart days.fw 127 - desnews half.fw

I love Pioneer Day weekend. Not only is it an extra July holiday for us Utahns, but there are LOTS of fun races associated with the weekend as well. And, the DesNews Marathon and Handcart Days Half Marathon, hold a special place in my heart. Mainly, because they were my first marathon and half marathon respectfully.

Normally both are held on Pioneer Day, so it’s usually a decision for me of “either/or.” But, when Pioneer Day falls on a Sunday (like this year), the Handcart Days Half be held on Saturday, while DesNews will be held on Monday (the state observed holiday). So — in years like this year — I get to run both! Because why give yourself the option of “either/or” when the Race Directors pretty much already made the decision for you?

So tomorrow I am running the Handcart Days Half Marathon — which was my first and 100th race. I am still debating whether I want to start at 6am or do the early 5:30am start. I may opt for the earlier start — but, I probably won’t make that decision until tomorrow morning (meaning, depends how much sleep I get tonight). But, after I am done with the race — I need to hop in the car and pick up my packet in Downtown SLC for the DesNews Half on Monday.

My goal for the races are simple. I am shooting for sub-3:00 for the Handcart Days Half. I don’t want to OVERDO it, because I want to save some energy and legs for the DesNews Half. The Handcart Days Half course is rather flat and hilly so I am not expecting much. But, the DesNews Half goal is to run a sub-2:30 — basically anything under 2:29:59 is my goal. Heck, even 2:29:59:9 would be acceptable.

My friend Brook is pacing the 2:30 group and my goal is to keep up with her and their group. Which I feel is doable, especially considering I am nearly 30lbs. lighter since the Provo City Half in May — and the course is an awesome gradual downhill. One of my favorite courses and canyons.

So, I am putting that out there. And, if I don’t hit that mark on Monday — I will be disappointed. Sure, I’ll be happy to have ran, but this is a goal that I CAN do and achieve. Anything less will be a disappointment for me.

Anyways — it’ll be a fun weekend!



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Runcast - Podbash Banner

Last weekend Jim and I recorded LIVE from the Utah Midnight Run. Well, okay, it wasn’t broadcasted live, but we recorded in front of other people. Needless to say it was an adventure. Not only did we get to chat with a few runners, we also got confused for the registration booth — while on the air. It was pretty funny.

Jimbo and I touch on a number of topics — including our one year anniversary! It’s crazy to think we’ve been doing this now for over a year! Oh how time flies.

Anyways — you’ll hear plenty from Jim about making sure you stay hydrated and why you shouldn’t get lost on race from me. Give the episode a listen here …


PHATGRAMS

I might have been late to the sunset, but I still got a great show. #utahsunset #lovethem

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fight4phat-4

I am just wrapping up my first week of my third round of Whole30 (geez, that kinda reads like a biblical genealogy) and things are — going. I won’t lie — it’s been a bit of a tough week for me to get in the right frame of mind. Not with my diet — but working out and running. And, I am not exactly sure why?

I just feel semi-stuck in a funk?

I think part of that is the culmination of my second round of Whole30. It’s kinda like finishing a marathon you’ve been training for, for weeks. You get to the finish line, given the medal and you’re left feeling like — “sooooo, what’s next?” It’s that kind of “funk” feeling. Nothing major. I just need some of my mojo back.

But, like I said — the diet is fine. I did a good run in this past week and a couple of weight training sessions — two workout sessions less than I’d like. It’s probably best I didn’t do another long run because of my two half marathons this weekend. But, I know I can do better and luckily Monday is a new week. So, I am not too worried.

Anyways — I still feel great. I really seeing how my body is getting slimmer, I was able to put on some XL shirts this past week that I wasn’t able to wear earlier this year. If that’s not motivating I don’t know what is?

Earlier this week I blogged about my Whole30 experience and my Round 2 numbers from this past round. Make sure to check them out. But, everything’s going good. I just need to get back mentally a bit and finish the last 23 or so days off strong. I want to hit the 230s by my birthday.

I think I found that motivation.



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RACE RECAP #70: DesNews Half Marathon

DesNews

If I have learned anything this year, it’s that races come in many different ways. Some are for speed, some are fun, some are for you, some are for others and some are just for the challenge. I’m sure that there are others I could add that list. But, this run was just perfect. It was sublime. It was a challenge. I felt like it was a great push towards Nebo as well.

It was just perfect.

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I won’t lie, I was kind of bummed that they didn’t use an actual newspaper for the race bib.

The Deseret News Marathon will always hold a special place in my heart because it was my first marathon two years ago. What that signifies in my weight-loss running journey has been HUGE. It will always be a hallmark race for me. It will always hold a special place in my heart. There is so much I could say about that experience, but this isn’t the place for it. Just know, I really don’t have plans on missing it anytime soon.

Besides the personal significance behind this race, I also really love this course. Like, really, really love this course. The half marathon starts up Emigration Canyon (one of my favorite places to run), past the zoo, down Sunnyside, right onto Foothill, past the football stadium before meandering onto 1300 East and onto South Temple where you then take a left onto the Days of ’47 Parade route towards Liberty Park.

(GASP)

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My new favorite friend group selfie (a new one is always made each week).

It’s a mouthful, but really, one of my favorite race routes. Especially when you turn onto the parade route and have thousands of people cheering you on (or jeering you on, because they want the parade to start). It’s an awesome experience. And, next year I am totally bringing candy out to throw to the kids. I just feel like that needs to happen. It really does.

My original plans for running the race were actually quite simple. I didn’t have any plans on running with anyone. I had a few friends running it, but no plans on pacing anyone or running with them. I was going to run, linger a bit at the finish line before heading home and getting ready to head up to Wyoming for the weekend. Nothing fancy. Just a really good run to kickoff Pioneer Day weekend for me.

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Running the parade route on 200 East in Downtown SLC!

But, then things changed the day before. One of my running friends got injured and decided to bow out of the race, so she gave Becky her bib. It was then that Becky and I decided to pace each other throughout the race. We are both planning on sub-two’ing at Nebo in September so training together has helped a lot. Our group does speed training on Wednesday at Liberty Park so that helps, but getting to run a race with each other is always a treat because we always have a blast running together. Always.

We’ve both been treating a few nagging injuries so we just really wanted to be consistent and push it, while not giving into the nagging little aches here and there. My foot had been bugging me (bunion!) and it had been bugging me since Timp. I knew the BIGGEST enemy wouldn’t be the stupid bunion, but the stupid heat. When I ran my marathon I practically died once I got out of the canyon. Why people (including myself) run in the middle of July is beyond me? I’ve done it now four times this month. It doesn’t get any easier.

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Meeting Ruthie at the finish line!

So my plan was that during the race I would walk every aid-station and drink at least three things of water or a combination of water and Powerade. And, if I needed to, I’d just park myself there at the aid station and make hay with the volunteers. Luckily it never got to that point.

Even with a little nagging bunion the race was actually quite sublime. I have ran Emigration dozens of times and with that coupled with what this race meant for me really helped make this race sublime. Plus, I ran the whole race with Becky. Which made it even doubly sublime. It was just a perfect race.

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These were sublime.

Physically, I did great during the race. My legs felt great and really the only pain was my stupid bunion. But, I found out fairly early in the run that if I ran just a TAD faster while on downhill the pain was fairly nonexistent. Which I loved and somewhat hated. But, it worked for me.

Becky and I kept a good pace, but knew we would slow down during some stretches of the race because of my foot and Becky’s calves. We kept up with our friend Katheryn who was pacing the 2:30 group and we tried to keep ourselves around her as much as we could. We knew about half way through the race that we’d probably end anywhere between 2:30-2:40 because of our pace and the fact that we started several minutes after gun time.

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Just lingering at the finish line. FUN, FUN, FUN!

One of the best parts of the race was the aid station on Foothill near the U. Becky was originally going to volunteer at this aid station with Christy and others, but traded with Meridith after her injury. Regardless, it was a great pit stop and of course we celebrated it with a selfie (naturally). It was the boost that we needed to carry us the rest of the way.

My favorite part of the race was running from South Temple onto 200 East which also happens to be a part of the parade route. All the way from South Temple down to 900 South you get nothing but people cheering you from both sides of the street. It was fun and exhilarating. I even saw a couple people in the crowd that I knew which made it even more fun. When I run this again next year I want to throw candy to the crowd. It just seems like the right thing to do. Sure, I might not PR during that race, but it’s the right thing to do. Plus, it’d be fun.

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Becky and I two medals away from making a wagon.

Once Becky and I crossed the finish line we were immediately greeted by friends. I got to meet my new friend Ruthie in person for the first time when she was the one to give me my medal. Then we just kind of lingered around the finish line and watched runners come in one by one. It was really rewarding watching many of the marathoners come in, especially the first time marathoners. Just knowing what it takes to get there you can’t help but honor that.

Additionally, it really inspired me to spend more time at finish lines. One thing I want to next year is just camp out at one of the major races and take pictures at the finish line of runners crossing or about to cross the finish line. There’s so much emotion, determination and sense of accomplishment that I’d want to capture and share. Honestly, I just think it would be awesome. It’d also make a great coffee table book.

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My awesome crazy running friends.

Anyways, in retrospect this race was sublime. It was a great way to start the Pioneer Day weekend, but also a great way to keep my training on course for Nebo. Plus, spending time with Becky and others at the finish line was perfect. It was a perfect race and morning. It was a perfect way to celebrate the runniversary of my first half and full marathons.

Perfect, perfect, perfect.

Oh, and then after the race I hurried home and went and did this in Wyoming.

You can view more pictures of my running adventures during the DesNews Half Marathon here.


Total Mileage Breakdown for 2014

2014 Training Miles – 444.55 miles
2014 Walking Miles – 47.2 miles
2014 Race Miles – 238.1 miles
2014 Total Miles – 729.85 miles
 
Monthly Total Miles for 2014
January – 100.0 miles
February – 100.0 miles
March – 130.0 miles
April – 140.5 miles
May – 108.65 miles
June – 83.3 miles
July – 83.4 miles