Friday, April 25, 2014

Packing for NWHM!

In twelve hours Ali and I will be on our way to the Nation's Capital to begin our fun filled weekend of Nike Women's Half Marathon! And since my procrastination skills lately have been top notch, here I am! Packing. Oh wait... maybe I 'm just typing a packing list and then blogging. I still actually have to pack. Crap. (Note to self: pack!) 

NWHM was honestly a pipe dream for me. I'm not one of the college students who automatically got entrance into the race, I was one of the common folk who put their name in the hat and was lucky enough to have it picked. 

Quick story about all that.. when I first started wondering if I should enter the lottery for NWHM this year I was extremely hesitant. I'm the girl that gets her hopes up for EVERYTHING. A friend casually mentioned that we should get together soon? I interpret that as "They want to see me right now!" and then get my hopes shattered when "Soon" turns into two months. So, the idea of entering lottery for a race that I really wanted and potentially not getting picked had me a bit nervous. Finally, one of the women at work told me I just needed to register, then try to forget about it. Put it out of my mind, and if it happens it happens. But it can't happen if I don't at least make the effort. And so I did. November 5th I went ahead and put all the information in that was necessary and tried my hardest to forget about it. December 2nd while I was at work, I got a text saying that my Visa had been charged by Nike Women's Half Marathon.. andddd I started crying. Legitimate sobs of happiness. 

But anyway, back to the point. Nike Women's Half Marathon Weekend is upon us! And with a weekend get away, one must pack all the things! Here's my pseudo "packing list".  I know tonight as I finally get all my things together I will realize that I forgot to list something or that I don't need something (I'm only going to be gone for one night, let's be real). But, it was a start. And it kept me from doing actual things like, you know, packing. And homework. And cleaning my house. 

There are some exciting things going on while I'm in DC aside from the half, but that will be a post for POSSIBLY tomorrow night! Tomorrow brings a day of driving, Expotique, brunch, exploring the city, and finally settling down for the night to rest. 

I'm getting so excited for the weekend! What are some of your "must haves" on race weekend? 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Thank You and Procrastination

I have to watch about four hours of lectures sometime soon. I foresee an all nighter tonight and maybe tomorrow. Who knows, homework can wait for a little bit because I'd like to take a minute to say:

This past week I hit 1000 page views on my little blog baby. And while there are some big blogs that get 1000 views in a week, or a day even, the fact that I did it in a month on a new blog means so much to me. I'm so thankful for every one of you, every page view, and the fact that you take time out of your day to connect with part of mine. 

So thank you, so much, for continuing to motivate Another Girl Runner. 

Coming up soon is going to be the "What's In My Bag" for Nike Women's Half Marathon Weekend in DC, and next week look forward to a review of Expotique and NWHM. Along with some DC travels. :) 

Thank you all. 

Sunday, April 20, 2014

A Sunday Morning Run and Selfies With My Dog

That face though, can we focus on that face? Let me explain that I don't always keep pictures where I look that awkward, just ones with my dog. She doesn't like to take pictures, so I have to make whistling noises to make her look at the camera and I loved her face in this one. So I kept it, despite my positively dreadful expression. My mother's reaction to this picture was "It looks like she ate the Easter Bunny!" I see her point, and it is something that the little terrier terror would do. She's a bit of an om nom nomivore. Anyway, onto the good stuff. A Sunday morning run was on the books since Nike Women's Half Marathon is just one week away from today! 

I opted for 7 miles today, a 3.5 out and back along State Street in Dover. By doing this route I was well aware that I wasn't working on time, given the amount of cross streets that I have on this route. But, the view is one that is pretty great, considering the area. And as luck may have it, some of the flowers are starting to bloom, even though we just had snow this week. Between stop lights and crosswalks my simple 7 mile run took me 1:34. I'm starting to get better working on my breathing technique, slowly but surely. But, it's happening! I have started working more with yoga that is supposed to help increase lung capacity. I've also started playing my clarinet more regularly to help with lung capacity and breathing as well.

Now to relax with the little dog, a bottle of wine, and some homework for the rest of our Easter Sunday.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Year Later

I remember this day last year, after I found out about the bombing in Boston, I immediately laced up my shoes and went out for a run. I was tired, I was cranky, and I honestly wanted to just stay inside and not do anything. But, for some reason, I felt like I had to run. I felt like I owed it to the community.
Three miles into my run I started crying. Running is a passion, I've met so many amazing people in this community, and for any of them to be harmed in such an ugly and aggressive way, I was left overwhelmed. 

I remember doing ten miles that day and then collapsing on the grass outside of my house when I got home. And I just sat there and cried, calling my friends that I knew lived near the area that I was unable to reach before. 

Boston is my unattainable goal, I know I'll likely never meet the time qualifications for it, but whenever I run that city is in my mind. Today, in spite of the rain and overall miserable weather, I went for a short run. It may have been rest day but it needed to happen. 

The playlist was Boston themed. Starting with Tessie by Dropkick Murphys and ending with a cool down of Boston by Augustana. I don't think it matters what is going on in my life, April 15 I'll always run for Boston. And I'll always be Boston strong. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Finding My Stride, and Slowly Learning To Deal

As you may recall, last week I posted about how I have sports induced asthma and I did a number on my ankle. This week I took it slow and took to the streets, and I ended up hitting a peak of 9 miles this week on a run, slow, but 9 miles is 9 miles. And given my lung problems as of late, I was happy to take it. I'm still a bit nervous about NWHM two weeks from now, but at the same time, I need to remember that it is what it is and things don't always work out how we would like. If Nike doesn't go as well as I want it to, there is always Zooma Annapolis in May. The ultimate goal is to be doing sub 2:30 by October when I have Monster Mash. 

Other than that, it's been a slow week! Working, running, homework. Next week the plan is to meet with Ali sometime to start figuring the game plan for DC. Yep, we are taking on yet another race together, and another Expo! This time though, I'll be toting a camera to come back and show you all the lovely details of Nike! 

It's supposed to be a nice week here in Delaware, so I'm excited to get some miles in this week in anticipation of Nike at the end of the month. 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Playlists and Their Power

I'm a playlist junky. I am talking in the aspect that I will make an over abundance of them and become overly obsessed with them. And even in the digital age of Spotify, iPhones, Androids, etc, I still rock an iPod mini at times when I run. Because it's cute and little and will fit comfortably anywhere. And I was a girl of the past who would buy CDs and load them onto their computer and spend an overabundance of time in iTunes intricately lacing songs together to make the PERFECT playlist.

Anyway, now the time has come where I decided that I would make my playlists on Spotify, as a "backup" of sorts. And... I most recently ended up with this beauty:

Yes, the first song I listen to every single time I start on a running expedition lately has been "Let It Go". I've been having a hard time adapting to some of the issues I've been having with my health (breathing and knee problems), and I start each run with the lovely mindset of "This is my time, this is me time, this is it, everything else LET. IT. GO."

So, this is what has gotten me through some runs. :) What songs are your go-to for a run?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Sunday Recap: Asthma, swollen ankles, and gel mishaps.

So, it turns as out luck would have it, all signs are pointing to me having sports induced asthma. It sucks, and I'm struggling a lot with running without having a major issue breathing and sounding like I have been a pack a day smoker since I was ten years old. I don't want to be reliant on an inhaler, so I have started on more of an herbal blend. I started taking Clam Breath by HerbPharm twice a day and am taking mullein as well to help with respiratory support. I'm still having issues, but it's gotten better. I can't lie though, I'm worried about this hindering my ability to perform at Nike Women's Half Marathon in DC at the end of the month. And I'm worried about getting swept. I know I can't be negative, but this is turning into a serious concern of mine.

I also rolled my ankle on a run this week, yep, I typically hit on the outer part of my foot, then roll in (what is the term for this? I'm totally blanking). Anyway, I ran and hit on my ankle pretty hard and it's been swollen for a while. I'm doing stretching for it, and it's helping it heal but I've still been hesitant on doing distance on it. But, my heart wants to.

The same run that I rolled my ankle I had a thing of Gu come open and go all over everything I own. Cell phone, keys, ID, yeah, it was a mess. A key stabbed my Gu and it caused a hot mess. I still love my Gels/Gu but it just caused a damper on an already horrid day and run.

So this all comes down to the following: I am terrified of not being able to do NWHM. I know I can go the distance, I just don't know if I can do it in the time that I want to and that Nike and the beautiful city of DC want me to. Anyone else having any sort of life crisis that might prevent them from doing their best on their next race?

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

I'm going to be a cheerleader!

Yes, that's right! For the first time ever I'm going to be cheering on the sidelines! The other day a friend of mine posted on Facebook that she was going to be running in her first 10k the weekend of the 12th and was looking for people to come up to Hershey, PA for the weekend, hit Hershey Park and then go watch her run on Sunday. As soon as I was able to check that my schedule was clear, I was in!

Surprised? You shouldn't be! Amusement parks and races? Two of my favorite things. And my friend running is someone I've known since I was three, we go back almost 24 years (oh wow), so of course I have to go cheer on a fellow runner and friend. I'm actually pretty excited about just cheering, but if I am being COMPLETELY honest, I did look to see if there was still open registration (there's not). I know that the cheerleaders have been a major reason why I finished my races, especially Glass Slipper Challenge when I was sick and wishing I would die. So now that I have the opportunity to cheer on someone else, I'm crazy excited!

I also can't wait to put together a cute cheerleader sign. :)