Irish for the day at the Shamrockin’ Run

I always like to throw in a “fun-festive” run to keep things interesting and what better race than the 4th Annual Shamrockin’ Run 8k in New Orleans?  With the heavy rain here the past few days at flood levels I was nervous that the morning would be a soggy mess at the Start of the race at the National WWII Museum and the Finish at Audubon Park but the skies broke through for a beautiful morning and the sun did its best to dry the area up quickly. My husband, daughter and I drove in the morning of the race. While he parked nearby Alaina and I got our race packets and blended in the crowd that was a sea of green.

packet pickup

Being that it was my first time at this event I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but everything ran pretty smoothly. Soon it was time to take our “before” picture and line up in our coral.I decided that I would run with my phone and my husband took a couple of pictures at the Start and Finish. (He did a great job!) I was looking forward to seeing the Bag Pipers at every mile and at the Finish line would be the 610 Stompers plus Cowboy Mouth playing for us at the Finish Festival. I couldn’t have picked a better festive race. To top everything we would see the elites from Kenya and Ethiopia attempt to set a world record after the main race with their laps around Audubon Park. Definitely an event not to be missed. See a few recap pictures below including my epic finish!!!

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Havent had enough 610 Stompers? Check out this quickie video I took from the Finish:

 

Don’t miss next years 5th Annual, Race registration will be open soon at: http://shamrockinrun.com/ 

shamrock

 

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A look back to look forward

2015 taught me you cant plan for everything. It was a tough year and at moments had me lost for words which is why my blog hasn’t been as filled with as much content. Sometimes writing can make you feel naked, to hit “publish” on a blog post or to add a picture can make you feel so vulnerable it makes me question what and what not to share. It can be tough for a woman at times. Working full time, raising a teenage daughter, marriage and juggling personal goals as well as running can leave you wanting a time out and not to feel guilty about it. That’s exactly what I have done. I have hit pause. Don’t get me wrong 2015 had some highlights. I didn’t do as many races but the ones I did participate in gave me some special memories that make me reflect with a smile.

2015 Completed <12>  (with links to my blog recaps):

Reflecting on these races again remind me why I do it, its not for the finish time but for the experience. Each one of these remind me of special times with my daughter that we shared or a good laugh with a friend.

The app #2015bestnine selected my most liked pics from Instagram and I have to say it hit it pretty close.

best 9

What’s on tap for 2016? I am not sure yet. Tomorrow I go to the doctor for a follow up from my spinal surgery, fingers crossed I am making good progress. I am scheduled to run Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans next month and I am currently planning my first trip to New York in June to run in Central Park at the Mini Oakley 10k which has been on my list for awhile. Whatever I do if I am adding special memories along the way I am happy.

Thanks for following along let’s see what 2016 offers…..

journey

 

 

 

 

 

Highlights from the Crescent City Classic 10k Weekend in New Orleans

Let’s start with the  CCC10k Expo which included: yoga, cycling, a fitness-wear fashion show, meet and greet with local running clubs, healthy cooking demos, Friday morning “shake-out” run with Dane Rauschenberg, ZULU Second Line parade, & a CCC pre-race pasta dinner!

Here is my short video clip from the ZULU Second Line. Can’t you just feel the energy? I love New Orleans!    http://youtu.be/b2dlJztEhJY

ccc10k IMG_2643

If your not familiar with the Crescent City Classic 10k here is a brief history from the website on this race: “The Classic is New Orleans’ (and the region’s) premier 10k road race, and one of the oldest 10k races in the nation. For 37 years, it has combined world class competition, amateur participation and great fun for all participants. Starting in 1979 with 902 participants, the Allstate Sugar Bowl Crescent City Classic has grown to become the preeminent fitness event in Louisiana. This Easter Weekend Tradition is now, along with Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest, one of New Orleans signature events. Each year, over 20,000 people gather in Downtown New Orleans for an event that attracts everyone from international Elite Athletes to those who walk the entire route carrying cocktails or wearing bunny suits. Young, old, fit and not so, the Crescent City Classic was the first 10k to be televised nationally, and is, to this day, perhaps the most fun you can have over 6.2 miles.  The Classic has been praised in every major running publication as “one of America’s fastest 10k’s”, “the originator of the party race”, “an Easter Weekend tradition that should never be missed”  a great race, on a beautiful course in America’s most unique city”.

Each year this race delivers. Quick tip if you want to “run” this race register for an earlier coral. If you want to enjoy the sights along the way and are there for a good time then line up according to your expected finish time and get ready to take it all in. This years race was no different, although the weather could have been a bit better (drizzly rain and breezy) it didn’t dampen the spirits of nearly 20k people that came to run, walk or dance at the Start on Poydras St. in Downtown, New Orleans right on through to the Finish at City Park.

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ccc2

After you cross the Finish line great food, drinks and live music await you at the Race Fest.

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Still not convinced to add this race to your radar? Check out this awesome drone footage from this year’s race filled with a marriage proposal and aerial sights from the Start to the Finish.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGzQ7MBDsM4

See you next year for the “38th Annual”  (Save the Date: March 26, 2016)

Laissez les bons temps rouler!

 

Great times with Great friends at CCC10k

I wasn’t planning on writing a recap for Crescent City Classic 10k before my vacation but it was such a great day that I wanted to share a few details.
I rode down with my frunner friend (fun-running-friend) Jennifer Zenuch and her family. we parked at Delgado and rode the shuttle in to the start right at 7:30am (race started at 8am). The weather was perfect. About 58 degrees and sunny but we knew it was going to warm up fast. We met up with fellow bloggers Heather Montgomery and Larisa Dixon who SUPRISE will be my relay part for “Team Tag Your It” at the Ironman 70.3 Relay on 9-28-14. I was thrilled to meet her though she reminded me we had met once before at the Woman’s Half race back in December of 2012. (Wow,some memory)

Lookie!! It's my relay partner for IM 70.3 Augusta. Woohoo Larisa!!!!!

Lookie!! It’s my relay partner for IM 70.3 Augusta. Woohoo Larisa!!!!!


My frunner friend Jen. I always have a good time with her 🙂 We are showing some Dirty South Running love with our shirts and of course some “Sparkle” with our skirts!.


We took a few pictures before the race start and headed to our corals. I had trouble finding the Red corral but found the flag right before the start. I noticed that a lot of runners of all different groups were mixed up which was warning sign #1. With a race estimated at 26k runners (the largest road race in Louisiana) it really is important to line up correctly by the time you estimate to finish the race. In my coral I noticed I was right next to Mindy Bobe another blogger friend whom I met before. This race drew everyone in. How fun!
Roadrunner Girl !!! It's been too long!!

Roadrunner Girl !!! It’s been too long!!


We would meet up for an after pic in the VIP area with Larisa. I crossed the Start line at about 8:12am and down Poydras we went for a spectacular 6.2 miles. The last time I ran these streets was Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans and it was so foggy you couldn’t see a thing so I was relieved for clear skies today. The streets was very congested as expected with all the runners. There was some road debris that you had to be careful of but the biggest hazards were the runners themselves. Some would stop immediately in front of you rather than going to the side of the race or would be talking on their phones. (Seriously, what the?!)
Again I am sorry but if it will be a casual stroll PLEASE line up to the back. I am not an elite or 7min mile runner by any means but this slowed me down tremendously. Next time I wont line up late to my coral and possibly re-evaluate to be closer up. None the less it was a great morning and the course was well marked with lots of New Orleans landmarks on the paths as well as plenty of water stations. Towards the end of mile 2 I got out my phone and decided to have fun and take a few pics along the way.
run
Of course I had to stop & take a pic with the Easter Bunny right past Mile 3 :)

Of course I had to stop & take a pic with the Easter Bunny right past Mile 3 🙂


Quick Selfie with Cesar the Race Director of Q50 at Mile4. Thanks Cesar, Suzanne & Stephen for spending your morning handing out water to the runners. You all are awesome. Volunteers Rock!

Quick Selfie with Cesar the Race Director of Q50 at Mile4. Thanks Cesar, Suzanne & Stephen for spending your morning handing out water to the runners. You all are awesome. Volunteers Rock!


Mile 5 with the Saints mascots and look its  George Melichar to the left. Marathoner, Team Refuel athlete for Got Chocolate Milk, and Rock ‘n’ Roll Ambassador.

Mile 5 with the Saints mascots and look its George Melichar to the left. Marathoner, Team Refuel athlete for Got Chocolate Milk, and Rock ‘n’ Roll Ambassador.


Even with all the stops my official time was 1:04 which wasn’t bad considering I didn’t train for this race and signed up just a week ago with my free entry thanks to Eat Fit NOLA. I knew it wasn’t going to be a PR day. There is always next year. Top 500 for the coveted race posters has some pretty stiff competition I have to admit. Based on this years numbers for the Women you have to run it under a 8:40 pace/53 min and the Men under a 7:05pace/43min. Amazing!

The 2014 Michelob Ultra RaceFest was held just a short walk from the Finish at the Practice Track in City Park. Lot’s of vendors but I have to say my favorite was the Louisiana Marathon tent.

A Race Director that can serve up a mean bloody mary? SCORE!! Thanks Craig Sweeney

A Race Director that can serve up a mean bloody mary? SCORE!! Thanks Craig Sweeney


and let’s not forget the Costumes!!
costumes
My friend Tara. Race Director/Founder for Dirty South Running

My friend Tara. Race Director for Dirty South Running


After pic with the blogger group. Melanie, Jewel, Larisa, Jennifer, Mindy, Heather, Holly. Don't tick off these ladies lol!

After pic with the blogger group. Melanie, Jewel, Larisa, Jennifer, Mindy, Heather, Holly. Don’t tick off these ladies lol!

Next year I may have a chance to be part of the Social Media team for Crescent City Classic 10k which would be fun. We shall see.

Can you spy me?

Can you spy me?! More Memories Made which always makes race day more special. PR’s aren’t everything. Great times with Great friends. Thank you all!!!!!!


For more Race Details on Crescent City Classic 10k check out there website and Facebook page: http://www.ccc10k.com/ https://www.facebook.com/ccc10k?fref=photo

Until then I must pack for my trip to Tennessee and let’s not forgot about the Boston Marathon tomorrow. I am sure I will be on Facebook checking updates from people I know running it during my 10 hour drive. #BostonStrong

Dont think, Just Go!

MondayMotivation

As I am just getting settled back from vacation. I look at my countdown app for my upcoming races. My heart skips a beat and I tense up with anxiety. Just breathe I tell myself. It’s going to be ok.
This Saturday morning I have my ‘9th’ Half Marathon the Baton Rouge Beach Half. In 47 days I have my ’10th’ the Louisiana Half Marathon and then just two weeks after my first Full. The Rock’n’Roll New Orleans FULL Marathon. That’s in just 61 short days!!
We all know the month of December FLIES by so this makes me even more tense.
I just have to remember WHY I am doing this? BECAUSE I CAN!!!!
So I am keeping it short and sweet today as I ramp back up my training from vacation.
Its time to get busy and stay focused. What motivates you around the holidays?
How do you stay focused?

5th Annual Middendorf’s Manchac 10 Mile Recap

As Francine and I parked we saw a glimpse of the bridge by the Start/Finish sign. “We are supposed to run up ‘THAT’, we thought to ourselves”. It was a foggy morning and it almost made it look like once you get up there you drop off.

A foggy start to our race morning.

A foggy start to our race morning.


We got there right before 7am when packet pickup opened which went super quick. There were no Finisher medals for the race but you did get a nice red, dry wick shirt and complimentary catfish dinners were to be served to all of the runners. There was beer on tap (Bud Light and Michelob Ultra) which always draws a line and today this was no exception, even though most of the apprx 650 runners finished the race before 10am.
I 'personally' did not care for the catfish but The coleslaw was quite good.

I ‘personally’ did not care for the catfish but the coleslaw was quite good.


A "before" shot since I knew we would be a sweaty mess after the race.

A “before” shot since I knew we would be a sweaty mess after the race.


Before the 8am start a few friends and I did a light jog up the incline and back. (Partially to conquer our fear. Ok “my” fear.) The 10 mile course was an out and back on US Highway 51. There was very little race support on the streets only manned water stations which there were plenty and very appreciated. The sun never came out during the race and since it was a humid morning that was probably for the best. This was a Louisiana RRCA 10 Mile State Championship race so the fast runners were gone before we were even halfway up the bridge at the Start. I kept a steady pace for the majority of the race and finished with a time of 1hr: 37min per my Garmin (I may or may not had Britney Spears song “Work #” on repeat during miles 7 & 8 to get me through lol!!). This race was great to fit into my training and since I have ran the Goldenfliers race in Baton Rouge for the past two years in a row it was a welcome change. The roads were smooth and the bridge was more of a struggle at the Finish but I felt more confident that I conquered it with my IT Band intact!
All smiles! We did it!!

All smiles! We did it!!


A funny pic at the dock with a view of the bridge in the background!

A fun pic at the dock with a view of the bridge in the background!

It was a great morning with friends with a race thrown in.
I would definetly do it again with this group!

Since I mentioned the race shirt thought I would thrown in a pic. My post race tradition is always to wear it the afternoon of a race after I get cleaned up and today was no different!
shirt

I may not have PR’d today but I did cross off a personal goal for 2013 early. Last year I ran 299.5 miles so this year I made the goal to run 500 miles. With today’s race I completed it at 505 miles and it felt great! The next day I still had gas in the tank so I went for a 4.5 mile recovery run at the LSU Lakes. I hope to keep pushing farther and stronger. #roadto26.2

For race stats and others in the area check out http://www.nolarunning.com/

How are you coming along on your 2013 goals?

Full training is like learning how to run all over again

Not that I am complaining don’t get me wrong. Fortunately I like learning new things and researching which #roadto26.2 is just that. I’ll break it down for you.

Compression: Due to added mileage your body swells. For faster recovery and injury prevention compression wear is highly recommended. You must measure your calfs and go to the store and try a few different brands on to see what you like. Zensahs are a bit thin but great for a warm day. If its a bit cooler out and you like a more snug fit I have found the CEP brand work great. Compression Calf sleeves are good for during your run or while your walking around afterwards. Compression “socks” are great to sleep in after your long run. Dont make the mistake of sleeping in Calf “sleeves” or you will wake up with swollen feet. (I may or may not have done this. ummmm. Trial & error is all I am saying)
cep-compression-socks-sleeves1
Shoes & socks: Go get re-checked! Make sure your gait has not changed. Make sure the sizing of your shoes line up with the amount of running you are doing since you may have swelling in your feet. Go back twice if you have to. Me it was three times! After going up a half size in shoes, learning a new lacing technique and getting thinner socks. (Swiftwick since it has added compression) I am hoping the formula will be right. Time will tell.

ICE: Ice is not my friend but it needs to be. I want nothing more to go soak in a hot tub after a run but from what I hear this is a NO-NO. Heat does nothing for the swelling and inflammation for your body. Ice takes the swelling down. I have to get better at using ice as soon as I am done with my long runs. This is a must for recovery and aids with injuries.

I am not a polar bear!

I am not a polar bear!

Nutrition: I have not yet gotten to the 20 mile mark on my running so Gu, beans etc I am still experimenting with but the key is not to wait til there is no gas left in the tank. Take an aid about 20 minutes before you need it and make sure you are hydrating along the way with a mix of water and Gatorade. You will be more hungry when you are increasing your mileage. Try to eat as healthy as possible. What you are eating and drinking is FUEL for your engine. Thinking of it that way. I am personally bad about this. When I first started running I dropped a dress size easy. Now I seem to be eating the calories I burn and the scale is not budging. (womp..womp) You know what they say: “Burn more than you eat to create a deficit”. You know this but that extra slice of pizza seems to be calling your name “EAT ME!” and you think to yourself “well, I did run 8 miles today”. You have to walk away and grab some veggies or fruit instead. Case Closed.

I have the "Rungry's"!!!

I have the “Rungry’s”!!!

Time: Marathon training is a huge commitment. With 81 days to go I just received my suggested training schedule from a friend and since I bumped up my run last weekend to 15 miles in 2hrs:33min I am doing ok at this point. BUT I realized I must increase my mileage during the week which means an extra hour of running on a week night. You have to build weekly mileage. This makes your legs stronger and builds endurance overall.

Lastly “stretch-roll-repeat”: This is a daily regimen that you must not skip. Look up some strengthening excersizes and work them in daily. It will help you in the long run. (pun intended!)
roll

You learn by doing and finding what works for you. Your feet, your hips, your body mechanics. How it all works together. The elites have numerous coaches to help them but if you are like me your aids are the internet and running buddies. Record what you are doing and eventually the pieces of the puzzle will fit. Learning how to adapt to the longer runs is a journey but it will pay off.

marathon

Do you have thoughts to add or suggestions to make? Let me hear them 🙂