2015: Our Year in Running

Can you all believe that 2016 is basically here?? I don’t know where the time goes!

Happy New Years | 2 Generations RunningIn the spirit of a very attractive Leonardo DiCaprio, let’s toast to a new year and take a look back at all the awesome running that happened in 2015.

Some stats:

  • 956 total miles run (probably a bit more than that from runs I forgot to log)
  • 3 half marathons completed (2 for my mom)
  • 1 marathon run (Baystate for my mom)
  • A lot of 5ks run (from the Lowell Good Times Series over the summer)
  • 2 age group wins (for both my mom and me in the Good Times Series again!)
  • New PRs in the 5k, half marathon, and marathon for both me and my mom! My mom went sub-2 hours for the first time at the Providence Half.

2015 running mileage, Map My Run | 2 Generations RunningIt was a pretty awesome year. Winning the Good Times Series by one point is probably my all-time favorite running memory EVER, and I was insanely proud that I was able to shave 45 seconds off my 5K PR.

The Lowell Good Times SeriesThat win was a huge confidence boost for me, and I went into the Baystate Half Marathon ready to be more aggressive than I had ever been in a half marathon before. While I was nervous that I was going to crash and burn at the end of that race (I’m not used to starting out at 8:15/mile), I actually got stronger, running my fastest times for miles 10-13 for a 5-minute PR. Watching my mom finish the marathon and shave roughly 30 minutes off her previous time was icing on the cake.

Baystate Marathon 2015Here she is going into the finish, still looking strong after 26 miles!

Injury-wise, there was nothing too serious in 2015 (thank god). I seem to remember having some slight runner’s knee at one point, but it went away quickly with stretching. My mom remained strong throughout marathon training and was able to reach race day 100% healthy. We also started strength training on a more regular basis, especially after I discovered Fitnessblender videos!

2015 was also the year we got to meet one of our running idols, Meb!! This was after we won the lottery (for entry into the Falmouth Road Race).

2015 Falmouth Road RaceTaking selfies with Meb, like the pals we are.

In 2015, I walked in my graduation and symbolically entered the real world.

grad_2So far so good – I actually managed to get a job doing what I wanted to do (planning races), I moved out, and I completed 2 obstacle course races! I even managed to convince my mom and brother to join me for one!

Fenway Spartan Race | 2 Generations RunningWow, writing this post and just looking back at it all makes me realize just how fantastic 2015 really was. I am so excited to get started on 2016. Who knows what the Augusta Half and Delaware Marathon will hold for us, but I feel in my gut that it’s going to be good.

2 Generations RunningLet’s get running.

How was 2015 for you? Any big goals going into 2016 (fitness or otherwise?)

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

The Falmouth Road Race: Part 3 [The Expo]

Need to catch up? 

So Nora has filled everyone in a bit about our adventures at the 2015 Falmouth Road Race, but I thought I might add a few words about some of the highlights for me.

Because this race is so popular that people routinely book their hotel rooms the same day of the race, for the following year, it was impossible for us to find a place to stay in Falmouth. So if you are new to this race, and don’t have relatives or an existing connection with an inn in Falmouth, don’t be afraid to look for lodgings beyond the Falmouth area. We eventually found a cute B&B in Sandwich, called the Cranberry Manor which was very nice and convenient to Falmouth.

So going back to the expo…..Obviously, hearing Meb Keflezighi  and David McGillivray, director of the B.A.A. , speak was very exciting.

the Falmouth Road Race | Race RecapMeb spoke a bit about his early life in Eritrea and also gave some of us older runners some advice. Because Meb just turned forty, he is now officially in the “Masters” division, though that title is clearly not slowing him down! But he did stress that we older runners really need to take the time to stretch and to incorporate it into our routines, just like brushing our teeth. (I have actually been pretty religious about stretching since starting my training for the Bay State Marathon, so it felt good to get the “nod” from Meb.)

2015 Falmouth Road RaceTaking our selfie, and buying his book, Run to Overcome (which he autographed!!), was probably my favorite part of the expo.

The Falmouth Road RaceI’ve already read a good chunk, and it’s been so inspiring, especially with my current marathon training.

However, we also attended a talk by Tatyana MacFadden – and that was awesome, too (Props to the Falmouth Road Race for knowing how to put on a great expo!)

The Falmouth Road Race 2015Tatyana (who was born with spina bifida) was born in an orphanage in St. Petersburg Russia, but adopted and brought to the U.S. Once here, she began her amazing career as a Paralympic athlete, with many, many victories in the wheelchair divisions of marathons all around the world. Her story is both heartwarming and inspiring and worth reading about! One reason I was so thrilled to meet her is because I have a niece who was adopted from an orphanage in China, who is also an athlete with a disability. Zoey, who is 13 years old now and has dwarfism came to the U.S in 2010. About two years ago, she began a swimming program through BlazeSports, the nationwide feeder organization for the U.S Paralympics.

The Falmouth Road Race

The Falmouth Road RaceThis is Zoey with her coach, Fred Lambeck, and assistant coach, Julie (Coach Fred’s daughter who is also an occupational therapist).

Though Zoey and all her teammates train with various physical disabilities, they learn not to let those disabilities slow them down – and they have fun and make lots of friends while doing it. So meeting a girl like Tatyana was a pretty special for us, and we wanted to share that with everyone.

If you’d like to learn more about the programs at Blaze, check them out at BlazeSports.org.

Hope you’re having a great week!

 


The Falmouth Road Race: Part 2 [Race Recap]

So, as promised I’m back to give a full rundown of the Falmouth Road Race! (See Part 1 here.) I’ll get into more specifics, but to start, here are the positives/negatives about the race:

Positives:

  • Very well-organized. There were PLENTY of shuttles, and porta-potties everywhere you looked from the shuttle pick-up point in Falmouth to the starting area in Woods Hole.
  • Tons of crowd support. I have to say, I don’t think I’ve ever run a race with this many cheering fans crowding the roads, and it really does give you a HUGE adrenaline boost. I’m glad that the locals don’t mind 10,000+ runners taking over their city for a few days because all the support really does make a big difference.
  • Beautiful course. It’s the Cape, so you know it’s going to be beautiful, but somehow, it still managed to surprise me.

Ok, now here are a few negatives:

  • The course is CROWDED. Even with staggered start times, the group never thinned out along the course, so my mom and I were doing a ton of weaving, which did get tiring.
  • You have to get to the shuttle pick-up point very early (my mom and I got there around 6:15 or so), but then you end up having HOURS to kill at the start in Woods Hole. Not a huge issue, but I do prefer races where you can sleep in a bit more, especially if it’s a 9 am start time.
  • It’s an expensive race for 7 miles. Yes, it’s a great experience. But at least for me and my mom, if we’re going to spend good money on a race, we’d rather it be a half or full marathon.

Ok, now for the specifics of the day!

Because the course is point-to-point, my mom and I took the shuttle from the finish in Falmouth to Woods Hole bright and early. The good news about being there 3-ish hours before the race was that we were able to grab a couple of iced coffees at a little local bakery while we walked around, checking out the views along the water.

The Falmouth Road Race |Race Recap2015 Falmouth Road Race Recap

Falmouth Road Race | Race RecapNot a great photo I know, but you can kind of see all the runners hanging out along the water!

Finally, when it was getting closer to 9 am, my mom and I found ourselves a spot in the middle of the 9:00 min./mile corral (it was self-seeded based on the honor system). This part was not the most fun. It was already hot and sunny, and we were packed in with other runners.

The Falmouth Road Race | Race RecapBut then, what REALLY annoyed me, was when a group of 4 or 5 girls jammed themselves in front of me and my mom a few minutes before the start, when there really was NO space. They then proceeded to talk loudly about their lives, take a bunch of group photos, and fix their hair (which was essentially right in the face of the runner they had jumped in front of). I’m not trying to be a stick in the mud, and I know running should be a fun, social activity, but they just really didn’t seem to follow any basic running etiquette, and it just rubbed me the wrong way.

From where my mom and I were in the pack of runners, it ended up taking 25-30 minutes for us to actually start after the first waves of runners began at 9 am. But FINALLY, we reached the start and were on our way.

2015 Falmouth Road RaceThe course had more rolling hills than we had expected with it being so close to the water, but luckily, my mom has been doing a lot of hills as part of her marathon training and I’ve joined her for a bunch of those workouts, so we had no problem coasting up and down the small hills, maintaining a pace right around 9 min/mile. Unfortunately, it seemed a lot of people were much less prepared for the hills, so getting around people taking walk breaks was a little challenging.

By this point, it was also really hot – 80s, humid, with absolutely ZERO seabreeze. Thankfully, many of the spectators were out in their front yards with hoses, spraying down runners as needed. My mom and I took advantage of this a bunch of times, and it made all the difference.

At mile 5, my mom encouraged me to take off. She wanted to slow the pace a bit, and I was feeling good so I decided to go for it for the last 2 miles.

Mile 6 split – 8:19, not too shabby for already having 5 sweaty miles under my belt! Mile 7 had a brutal hill into the finish, but the last street into the finish was INSANE – the crowd of spectators was at least 3 people deep, all of them cheering like it was the end of the Boston Marathon. I loved it, and ended up running my fastest split of the day, 8:00/mile, to finish. My final time ended up as 1:03, with an 8:55/mile pace, which I was pretty pleased with, given that I wasn’t really trying to race it, but rather just enjoy the whole experience.

The end was a little confusing. I saw tents along the beach, and automatically assumed that was where the post-race party was, so I hopped out of the finish chute. A few minutes later, my mom called me, trying to figure out where I was. Well after a lot of confusion, I finally realized I was supposed to stay in the finisher chute, and walk about another half mile around a corner – that’s where all the food, porta-potties, and awards were! It didn’t help that by this point, the heat had really caught up to me and I desperately wanted to sit down. But eventually, I caught up to my mom and found out she had only finished a minute behind me! We gladly grabbed food from the awesome spread they had laid out for runners – bananas, bagels, Cape Cod potato chips, cranberry juice, chia bars, and my personal fave – Yasso frozen Greek Yogurt bars.

The Falmouth Road RaceWe also got to see the awards ceremony, where our new buddy Meb got first in the Masters division (for ages 40+), and tenth overall. Woo, Meb! A local woman who is a regular at the Good Times Series 5k my mom and I have been running this summer took first place in the Masters for the women, so that was pretty cool too.

The Falmouth Road Race | Race RecapAfter hanging out for a bit, my mom and I headed out to check out the rest of Falmouth and grab some lunch. We ate outside at a cute little Mexican restaurant that had been taken over by sweaty runners! After seeing some of the other runners enjoying some delicious looking drinks, I decided to order a margarita! It was totally delicious, but I’m not sure my stomach really appreciated tequila after the 7-mile run. 😉

The Falmouth Road Race Race RecapAfter that, my mom and I headed out to beat the Cape traffic heading home. Overall, it was another successful race weekend and I’m already looking forward to the next one!

*Note: I realized I made a mistake in my Part 1 post of the Falmouth Road Race – with the detailed results chart, I was passed by 10 runners during the last mile of the race (not the whole thing), and I passed 246 runners during that last mile.

Have a great day!


The 2015 Falmouth Road Race: Part 1

Hello again!
YES, I’m still alive! Sorry about the little blogging hiatus lately. Life suddenly got crazy busy (in a good way) and my blogging duties had to go on the back burner.
BUT NOW I’M BACK!
First, some quick updates to bring you up to speed on the Good Times Series 5k:

  • 2 weeks ago, I beat my 5k PR and placed second in my age group! Woo! This past week was insanely hot (again), but despite the ridiculous weather, I was only a couple seconds off my PR time again. This week was also the infamous bikini 5k (although the number of runners brave enough to actually run in full bikinis is pretty limited- neither me nor my mom took the challenge).
  • This week, my mom placed third in her age group, and she’s still holding onto her first place position in the overall age group standings. I am ONE POINT out of first place in my age group as well, which I am completely psyched about because I never expected to be this high in the leader board with such a competitive age group!

Ok, now that you’re all caught up on the 5k stuff, we can talk about the Falmouth Road Race! It was our first time running it this year, and my mom and I headed up to the Cape this past weekend for a little R&R (running and relaxation). I will have a detailed post about the expo/race coming out soon, but here are some of the highlights:

  • Meb Keflezighi gave a Q&A at the expo and then was signing copies of his book after. (For my non-runner friends, Meb is an elite marathoner who won silver at the Olympics for the event in 2004 and just as importantly, won the Boston Marathon in 2014.)

2015 New Balance Falmouth Road Race

  • MY MOM AND I GOT A SELFIE WITH HIM!! Excuse me, while I freak out.
  • 2015 Falmouth Road RaceI bought a pair of compression sleeves at the expo and I’m in love with them.
  • 2015 New Balance Falmouth Road RaceThe race:
    Wow, do I love spectator support. You never realize how much it helps until you run a race like this where there is TONS of it! There was hardly a stretch of this 7-mile course that didn’t have a crowd lining the edge of the course, cheering you on or offering to spray you down with a hose (which was much needed with temps in the 80s and humidity at 1000%).

Falmouth Road Race Recap

  • This race has a LOT of people in it. I looked it up afterwards, and there were 10,692 runners. This meant the pack never really thinned out much on the run, so my mom and I were doing a lot of weaving around, even though we were running the pace of the corral we had lined up with. Not a huge deal, but it means that there were clearly people who had lined up in the corrals ahead of us to run a faster pace, who could not actually run that speed.
  • 2015 Falmouth Road RaceAlong those lines, check out this stat from my detailed results –
  • Falmouth Road RaceI’m pretty psyched that only TEN runners passed me during the race! I ended up finishing in 1:03 and my mom was only a minute behind me at 1:04.

It was an awesome weekend filled with lots of running fun, and I’m nowhere near done talking about it, but I need the upcoming weekend to catch up on posts, so stay tuned next week for more details on this fantastic and extremely fun race! 🙂 Have a great weekend!

2015 New Balance Falmouth Road RaceHave you ever run the Falmouth Road Race? Would you be as excited as I am about a selfie with Meb?!


We Won the Lottery and Other Updates

Happy Memorial Day!

"A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself"I hope you are all enjoying the long weekend! Don’t forget to think about the incredible service men and women who have served our country this Memorial Day.

This week, was a great week workout-wise, but before I dive into that, I have some good news!

My mom and I got into the New Balance Falmouth Road Race!

New Balance Falmouth road RaceThis is a 7-mile road race (random distance I know) that has soared in popularity over the years, hence the lottery to get in. This year will be the 43rd running of the race and more than 11,000 runners will compete, including many elites (Meb was there last year!!!!) We heard about this race through a friend who told us how tough it was to get in these days. We decided to give the lottery a shot, registering as a team (Team 2 Generations Running!), so that way either both of us would get in or neither of us would. So we were pretty pumped late last week when we got this email. 🙂 So we have a fun racecation on the summer calendar now!

After a fun week of doing senior activities at my college and graduating (and doing ZERO running), it was nice getting back into my workout routine this week.

Monday – Dumbbell Strength Class followed by a 2-miler on the treadmill.

Tuesday – My speed workout at the track, that I talked about in this post. It was a doozy, but one that I think I will continue to put myself through. 🙂

Wednesday – 4 miles at an average speed, not too fast, not too slow. My legs were feeling a little tired from Tuesday’s workout.

Thursday – I did this FitnessBlender Upper Body Tabata Workout – Intense 60-Minute Back, Shoulders, and Arms Workout. Because if my legs are sore, why not kill my upper-body too?

Friday – 6 miles with my mom. It was a gorgeous (although slightly warm) day and I wore my Ragnar shirt, which has catapulted into my heart as quite possibly my new favorite running shirt.

2 Generations RunningI had my mom take this picture of me afterwards, mostly because I was curious to see if I could get a halfway decent leaping up in the air and clicking my heels pic. It turned out pretty good! 🙂

On Sunday, my mom and I did a nice 7-miler with our running club, several miles of which were trail running. Some of the more seasoned trail runners of the club offered my mom and I a few pointers on trail running that I am thinking of sharing in an upcoming post.

Overall a pretty great week!

How was your long weekend? Did you do anything special?