2019 Races

It’s that time of year. The time when runners eagerly start planning out their race schedules for the year. Obviously, I’m no exception. I didn’t run a single race in 2018 due to pregnancy and having a newborn, so I’m itching to get back out there. Some shiny new PRs would be great, but I mostly just want to have some goals to work toward now that I’m not working.

Because I’m a full-time mom and we are now living on a single income, I have to be a lot more selective about races. These days, location and price are paramount. Gone are the days when I could wake up at 3:30 am and drive to upstate New York and back in a single day just for a race. If it’s further than an hour’s drive, it’s not happening. And the price-to-swag ratio has to work out. I’m not paying $50 for a race with no medal, ya dig?

The pickings in my area are rather slim, but there are a few good races that I’m pretty excited about, including some repeats. Obviously, it’s early days, and I’m not 100% sure that these races will all work for me, but I think one-ish race per month from May through November is realistic from a training and expense standpoint.

Behold, my tentative race schedule:

May
Right now, I have three races that I’d like to do in May, but will likely only run one or two. First, the Respite House Jiggety Jog 5k, which I’ve run every year since we moved back from Boston except last year. They haven’t actually posted the date yet, but it’s an annual event, and usually takes place in early May.

Next up is the GMAA Pump it Up 5 Miler on May 4. I ran this race back in 2015 and really enjoyed it. With a $15 registration fee, it’s a deal, and it’s also very close to home. There are no frills–no medals, no shirts, but there are bagels at the finish line and VERY good raffle and age group prizes. Unfortunately, the Jiggety Jog and Pump it Up 5 Miler have a history of being held on the same day. Fingers crossed that doesn’t happen this year!

Lastly is the Vermont City Marathon Relay. I’m definitely not ready to train for another full, but I’d love to run a leg of the relay. I have some friends who usually put a team together, so we’ll see what happens there.

July 
I’ve put the Stowe 8 Miler on my race wish list many times, but I’ve never actually gone ahead and done the thing. It’s a unique distance, it’s close to home, and finishers get a medal, a shirt, and a craft beer. This is my kind of race!

August
Another race I’ve heard great things about but never gotten around to running is the Fairfax Egg Run. They offer a 5k and 10k in addition to a kids’ race. I haven’t run a 10k race in ages, and they serve breakfast at the finish. This race is also super close to our house, which is a big bonus.

October
I got my current half marathon PR at the Leaf Peepers Half in 2017, and while it was a VERY challenging course, it was also lots of fun. Registration is cheap, and while you don’t get a medal, you can get a shirt for an extra $5. Post-race food is good, and again, it’s fairly close to home. I’m not sure I want to train for a half this year, but if I do, this will be it.

IMG_4540

Aaaah, memories

November
Another unique distance and fairly new race on the scene would be the Vermont 10 Miler. Last year was the inaugural race, and from what I saw on social media, it was very popular. The registration fee is very reasonable, and finishers get a medal and a shirt. Stowe is also just a hop, skip and a jump away, which makes it all the more appealing.

What are some criteria that help you decide which races to run?

 

Manic Monday Training Recap – 01/14/19

Manic Monday

Monday 01/07/19: 2.25 miles
I played with speed a bit on this run to get my legs used to running faster paces again. This was my longest and fastest run in quite a while.

Tuesday 01/08/19: 1 mile + Yoga
Kept it short and easy after Monday’s harder, longer run. I was craving a good stretch, so I pulled up a Yoga with Adriene “Yoga for Flexibility” video. It wasn’t quite what I was looking for, but it still felt good.

Wednesday 01/09/19: 2 miles + stretching
Ben ended up with a snow day, so I was able to take my time running and stretching. It felt great!

Thursday 01/10/19: 1 mile + core
I threw some incline on the treadmill for this mile, and finished off with about 10 minutes of core work including planks, clamshells, side leg lifts, and glute bridges.

Friday 01/11/19: 2 miles + plank + rolling
My girlfriend Nikki came over, and we took turns watching the kids and running on the treadmill. I got two miles in 21 minutes, which felt great. I also did my plank for the day.

Saturday 01/12/19: 1 mile + plank
I squeezed in a quick mile before a day out and about dress shopping.

Sunday 01/13/19: 1 mile + plank
This run was much later than usual, but I still got it done.

Weekly Mileage: 10.25

Total 2019 Mileage: 18.25

Woohoo! Almost two weeks of run streaking down, and I’m still feeling great. If I complete two more runs, I will beat my run streak from 2015. At this point, I honestly feel like streaking through all of January is doable, barring any major illness or injury. Aaaaand now I’m knocking on wood like a crazy person!

How was your weekend? Ours was a good mix of busy and not 🙂

Friday Free-For-All – 01/11/19

Friday Free-For-All

The #rbdrunstreak2019 is still going strong! I’m now 11 days in and feeling really good. I’m focusing on doing plenty of stretching and rolling, and trying to alternate “longer” runs with single mile days. I definitely feel like my stamina is improving, and I’m starting to feel like a runner again. I like it!

I did a couple of small car “maintenance” projects that have been on my list FOREVER. First, I changed the bulb in the overhead light. You know, the one that turns on when you open the car door? Ours blew a while ago, and it’s crazy how much you actually need that little light during dark winter nights, especially with a baby and all the attendant crap in the car. I also changed the auto-unlock settings. Since we bought our car, the settings have been that when we turn the car off, ONLY the driver’s door automatically unlocks, which is not a big deal, but can be inconvenient, especially, again, with a baby. Nothing is more annoying than trying to open the door to put the car seat in and having the door still be locked. I’m SO HAPPY to have done these two things. The last thing on my list is to get the battery in my fob replaced so I can use the lock/unlock buttons again. That’s another one of those things that becomes kind of important when you’re juggling a car seat, diaper bag, purse, and shopping bags.

Instagram targeted ads totally got me. I ordered a SheFit Apparel Ultimate Sports Bra last week after seeing them advertised. As has been covered pretty much ad nauseum on this blog, I am a busty runner, and have a hard time finding sports bras that cover the nexus of affordability, comfort, and support. The SheFit has pretty awesome fit and support, and a decent price, but I’m having some chafing issues at the moment. Stay tuned for a full review later.

I was cast in a show this week! It’s a Disney princesses and villains cabaret for kids. I am super rusty, so I just went in with zero expectations, more to get the feel for auditioning again and see my friends than with any thought that I might be cast. But lo, and behold, I got it! And I’m singing Let it Go from Frozen and Mother Knows Best from Tangled. No pressure, right? I can’t wait for rehearsals to start!

Have you ever changed the settings on your car or changed a bulb yourself?

Postpartum Fitness: Six Months In

Wow. I had a baby six months ago. This has been simultaneously the longest and shortest six month period of my life, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I figured now would be a good time to check in on the whole postpartum fitness thing, since it’s been half a year (!!!). When last we left it, I was determined to do my best and not put too much pressure on myself to “bounce back” and lose the baby weight. I started pretty strongly back in the fall, running distances up to four miles and generally feeling pretty good. But then between illness, sleep deprivation, and an early-onset winter, I fell off the bandwagon.

The good news is, even though exercise hasn’t really been happening, I’m already within five pounds of my pre-baby weight. The bad news is, my body composition is still very far away from where I’d like it to be. My endurance is shot and I’m nowhere near as strong as I was before I got pregnant. Taking nine months off of exercise and growing a human will do that to you.

Now that sleep is back on the menu (thank you, Ferber method sleep training!) and I have a treadmill literally in my house, I’m hopeful that things will pick up again. I already started my New Year run streak, which I’m excited about, and I’m trying very hard to find consistency with yoga and strength training as well.

As of this writing, Vera is taking 2-3 naps per day that are anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and a half. My goal is to just put on my workout clothes and do whatever I can during her first nap of the day, which tends to be her longest nap. If all I can manage is a 1 mile run, that’s better than nothing. But I think, as her nap schedule evens out and I get my running legs under me again, I’ll be able to hopefully start covering longer distances and getting my speed back.

My main fitness goal at this point is to simply feel more like myself. I currently feel like a bit of a stranger in my own body, and I miss feeling strong and confident. Also, we are still planning to have at least one more baby, and I’d like to be as fit as possible before putting my body through another pregnancy. I fully attribute my healthy pregnancy and uncomplicated delivery to how fit I was before I got pregnant with Vera, and while I know it’s no guarantee that next time will be the same, I’d like to at least give myself and the next baby the same head start.

Mamas, what was your favorite form of exercise after your little ones arrived?

Manic Monday Training Recap – 01/07/19

Manic Monday

Woohoo, bringing back the Manic Monday posts! I’m not actually in training for anything at the moment, but since I’m actually running now thanks to my run streak, I figure I might as well document it officially. After all, that’s what this blog is for, right? Right!

Monday 12/31/19: Rest
I ran around doing errands during the day, and then we were in bed before the New Year officially rolled around. #parentlife

Tuesday 01/01/19: 2 Mile Run
First official run of my New Year Run Streak!

Wednesday 01/02/19: 1 Mile Run + Core
While Vera napped, I zipped down to the treadmill for a quick mile, then did 10 minutes of core work.

Thursday 01/03/19: 2 Mile Run + 30 Squats
Another couple of treadmill miles plus some squats. I had hoped to do a few resistance band exercises, but it looks like the cats got after my last surviving band, and I had to throw it out. Boo!

Friday 01/04/19: 1 Mile Run + Stretch and Roll
I actually ran closer to 1.5 miles because the treadmill flipped a breaker during my first attempt and shut off. I had no idea what my actual distance or time were, so I just started over. I made sure to stretch and roll well to keep injury at bay.

Saturday 01/05/19: 30 Minute Barre3 Workout +1 Mile Run
My friend Penelope came over and we did a Barre3 total body workout video in my living room. That was my first time ever doing a barre workout and holy ow, Batman! It was tough! Then after she left I hit the treadmill for a quick mile to keep the streak alive.

Sunday 01/06/19: 1 Mile Run
I was feeling embarrassingly sore after Saturday’s Barre3 workout, so I just did a slow, easy mile for my streak.

One week of streaking down! I have to say, I feel pretty good. A bit tired and hungrier than usual, but very good. It feels nice to move my body regularly. I’m excited to see where streaking will take me!

How did the first week of the new year go for you?

January 2019 Goals

Well, it’s been a hot second since I made any real goals. The last time I posted any goals on this blog was for the Rollercoaster Race back in 2016. And the last time I made any yearly goals was for 2015. I’ve written before about how goals can kind of backfire on me and cause me to freak out and feel pressured and not do stuff, but I feel like now is a good time to set some simple, realistic goals to help me get back on the running bandwagon. Now that I’m not working, I need some stuff to work toward so I feel like less of a waste of space. I plan to set out goals on a monthly basis so that I can regularly re-evaluate and see how I’m doing.

January Goals

Keep up with the run streak
In case you missed it, I started a run streak on January first, with the goal of making running a regular part of my life again. But I know that streaking isn’t for everyone, and can result in over-training and injury, so I’ll be taking it day by day.

Do yoga once a week
Whether it’s a free class on YouTube or actually going to the studio, I’m a happier person when I do yoga. It’s also a great compliment to running, so it’s a win-win scenario.

Strength train once a week
While I miss CrossFit and wish I could go back, we simply can’t afford to pay for it on a single income. That means strength training is up to me. There are plenty of free videos on YouTube, and I know enough from CF to be fairly effective at home.

Meal plan and prep
I feel like ever since Vera was born, our diet has been poor. Convenience has been paramount, and I know we haven’t been eating enough fruit and veg. By planning our meals and doing some light meal prep each week, I know we can feel better about what we’re eating.

Blog once per week
I’ve been waaaaay off the wagon with blogging pretty much since Vera was born. I guess I’m still struggling with where I want this blog to go. But I hope that by checking in at least once a week, I’ll figure it out.

Be more interactive with blogs I follow
You’d never know it, but I still read blogs every day. I just rarely take the time to comment anymore. I’m usually reading blogs on my phone, and it’s harder to comment while typing one-handed as I’m juggling the kiddo. But it’s kind of crappy of me to want more engagement on my blog without giving any engagement to the blogs I follow. So there.

So there you have it. Some January goals. I have plenty of other stuff that could be added, but let’s start small and see how it goes, shall we?

Do you have any goals for the new month/new year?

 

New Year Run Streak

As an attempt to get back into regular running, I’ve decided to start a run streak today, January 1, 2019, and just go as long as I can. Most runs will not be fast, and they won’t be far, because they will mostly have to be on my basement treadmill during Vera’s notoriously short naps. But I figure a mile a day is better than nothing, and will hopefully get my running legs under me again.

If you’ve been reading for a while, you’ll remember that back in 2015, I decided to attempt the Runner’s World holiday run streak: run at least one mile every day between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. You’ll also remember I made it two weeks before calling it quits. At the time, I declared that streaking was not for me, simply because I was too busy. But that was back when I was working full time, and before I had a treadmill at my disposal. We’ll see how it goes!

I’ll be posting my streaking adventures on IG, so check it out. I’m using the hashtag #rbdrunstreak2019, so if you’d like to join me, use the tag so I can follow along! OK, off to feed the baby and hop on the ‘mill!

What’s your longest run streak?