Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Races

With today being the LAST DAY OF THE YEAR, I thought I would reflect back over my past year. 2013 was QUITE the year for races. This was my first full year as a ‘runner’. I wanted to do 13 races in 2013 and I am HAPPY to report that I kicked that goal’s booty - I did EIGHTEEN RACES this year!

Below are the races that I ran this past year (along with a link to the recap and a picture or two from the event).

[My first sub-2 hour half marathon]

WDW Royal Family 5K [February 23, 2013]

[My mom’s first race ever]

WDW Princess Half Marathon [February 24, 2013]

[Coast to Coast]

Hot Chocolate 15K [March 24, 2013]

Strawberry Festival 10K [May 26, 2013]

[Current PR]

Color Me Rad 5K [June 8, 2013]

[Very first triathlon - might have been my last ;)]

Disneyland 10K [August 31, 2013]

Disneyland Half Marathon [September 1, 2013]

[Ryan’s very first half marathon & a one year anniversary of my first]

Aloha 5K Run [September 7, 2013]

[Yep, I ran in a grass skirt]

The Color Run [October 12, 2013]

Escondido 5K Pumpkin Run [October 13, 2013]

Awesome 80s 5K Run [November 2, 2013]

Santa Mile [December 15, 2013]

[Walt the Wiener Dog’s first race]

San Diego Holiday Half Marathon [December 29, 2013]

Shoot, does that mean I shoot for AT LEAST 14 races for 2014?! Well, I already have 4 on the calendar between January 1st and March 23rd (one 10-miler, two half marathons and one 5K), so I guess I am well on my way. Upwards and onwards to next year! 

Monday, December 30, 2013

Dating ABCs: J

Much like our H date where we delayed it a week due to being back in Michigan visiting family for Thanksgiving, our J date was delayed a week since we were in Michigan again for Christmas.

I have a HUGE confession to make - this year I had very little to no Christmas Spirit. If you know me, this is a BIG deal (I normally start listening to Christmas music in September and want to put up my tree in October)! There were many reasons as to why my Christmas Spirit was at an all time low, but we are going to keep this post positive and as upbeat as possible, so I won't go into them now.

Well, when we were back in Michigan visiting our families, we normally would have gone to see LOTS of Christmas lights (there is a house by my parents' place that sync their lights to music and we could sit there for at least 20 minutes to watch them and then Ryan's sister lives in Rochester Hills where they COVER the entire downtown - check it out if you aren't familiar), but things continued to pop up and we didn't make it to see any. {Thankfully we were able to hit up the Toledo Zoo when we were back for Thanksgiving to see the Lights Before Christmas.}

Ryan suggested for our J date that we go to Jamba Juice and go check out some Christmas lights (which he called 'Jingle Bells'). We have always wanted to go to some of the nearby neighborhoods that get ALL DECKED OUT, but have never made the time. Sunday was the perfect excuse to make it happen. 

We stopped by Jamba Juice for smoothies (which were easy to drink while we drove around the lights) and then went to Christmas Card Lane. Now since Christmas had already passed we weren't sure if they would still be on (even though the website said most houses stay festive till the end of the month), but thankfully the majority of them were lit. I took a few pictures of my favorite cards (as you can tell, they were mostly Disney ones that I liked). 

Waiting for our smoothies

I had Berry UpBEET and Ryan had Protein Berry Workout

Ry told me to be a WALRUS

Love promoting healthy living and an active lifestyle

Drink up!

Mike and Sully!

Mickey and Crew :)

Pooh and The Hundred Acre Woods

Jack the Pumpkin King!
I would LOVE to say that Jamba Juice and Jingle Bells helped cure my low Christmas Spirit, but it didn't totally fix it. It was still a nice time with the hubby (and Walt the Wiener Dog was a stow-away in the car trip too) after a hectic week of travel. Oh well, there is always next year, right? 

How was your Christmas Spirit this year?

Just in case you have missed some of the recent Dating ABC Posts, make sure to check them out:

Christmas Gifts

My hubby spoils me. Okay, so maybe it is more that I buy myself things and say they are from him, but still he lets me do it :)

This Christmas I got a new tattoo:

Prior to the color being added

After taking the bandage off. Pretty swollen, but FIERCE!

A pair of Brooks running shoes:

And a Red Wings classic jersey:

And I got to wear it to the game we went to last week!

Like I said, I'm a lucky duck.

What did Santa get you this year (even if Santa is YOU)?

Sunday, December 29, 2013

San Diego Holiday Half Recap

Ryan and I ran the San Diego Holiday Half Marathon this morning. It was my SIXTH half marathon this year and it was Ryan's SECOND!


I saw that the course was supposed to be FAST (a point-to-point race with a 714 foot net drop from start to finish), so I was originally hoping this would be my sub-1:59 course, but when Ryan expressed interest in running alongside of me I decided this would be a TEAM race.



Since it was a point-to-point race (meaning it starts in a different place than it finishes), we decided that we would park at the finish line and take a bus to the start. We thought we would prefer to be able to just leave after we finished the race, rather than having to wait around for a bus to take us back to our car at the starting line. **One funny note about the buses - I think they just sub the job out to the lowest bidder, and the bus Ryan and I ended up on was a "party bus". I mean, so much so that it had glitter all over the ground, bench seating, blacked out windows, and even a "pole" in the middle. I think everyone was surprised when we got on and had to go through the black curtain ;).

The race started in the parking lot of an Albertsons grocery store. The NICE thing about this was that we were all able to stand inside to stay warm while waiting for the race to start. (This was ESPECIALLY nice since the temperatures were in the 30s when we got there.)

Ryan trying to stay warm in the front of Albertsons

Temps were chilly but was very comfortable once we started running

Us waiting for the coral to be released [YES, I was wearing mittens]

Ryan was hoping that he would be able to beat his previous half marathon time (which was 2:22:52). His IT band had been bothering him lately, but we still wanted to try and get him another PR (since the Disneyland Half Marathon was his first half it was an automatic Personal Record, anything faster than his previous time would be another PR).

The goals I had for this race for us were: A. 2:15 or faster, B. 2:20 or faster, C. 2:30 or faster, and D. finish the race together.

We started off on pace for a BIG PR, but quickly Ryan's IT band started acting up. I think the biggest culprit were all of the rolling hills. If you have ever dealt with IT band issues, you know going downhill is EXCRUCIATING. I could tell by about mile 3 that this race was not going to be a fun one for Ry. I tried to keep him upbeat and not focusing on the pain, but that only went so far.

The course itself was nice. The majority of it was on a bike path, which was well taken care of. I was worried that it might be too congested, but thankfully we didn't have to do much weaving. Most of the bike path was alongside of an expressway, which was sort of strange since we had speeding cars on one side of us, but it wasn't too bad. The weather was perfect (started in the 30s and was around 65* by the time we finished).

This was the first year of the race, which you could tell in some of the unorganized aspects. For example, the water stations weren't very well manned (one of them only had about 4 kids at it - and by kids I mean like 12-year-olds, so there was no water on the table) and there were very limited port-o-potties throughout the course. I normally don't need to use the restroom during a race, so it wasn't a big deal for me, but I did see quite a few guys heading as far off the bike path as they could to relieve themselves and the maybe 5 port-o-potties throughout the race had SUPER LONG lines.

We ended up crossing the finish line together (although Ryan told me many times throughout the race to just leave him behind) and still hit our C goal. We finished with a time of 2:28, which was only 6 minutes slower than Ryan's last half (and with his IT band, that was an AMAZING time).

Official time had us at 2:28:03

Quite a few people commented on my festive outfit today :) A lot of the volunteers were wearing Santa hats, so I would tell them 'Thank You Santa' and they would say 'You're Welcome Elf' {it was like we had rehearsed it or something :) }. I had a handful of ladies comment on my skirt - normally used in my Minnie Mouse outfit, but worked perfectly with today's race garb. I also had a runner or two tell me they liked my holiday attire, especially my socks.

All-in-all I think if Ryan's IT band wouldn't have been aggravated we would have had a great time. I think I would still sign up for it again in the future. It was a cheap, local race that is worth a second shot!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Workout Recap - Week 52

Sunday, December 22nd – Treadmill for 60 minutes & 185 squats (part of the Squat Challenge I am participating in)

Monday, December 23rd – Rest Day

Tuesday, December 24th –  Treadmill for 60 minutes & 190 squats (part of the Squat Challenge I am participating in)

Wednesday, December 25th – Stationary bike for 60 minutes (26.5 miles) & 220 squats (part of the Squat Challenge I am participating in)

Thursday, December 26th – Skiing for 2.5-3 hours225 squats (part of the Squat Challenge I am participating in)

Friday, December 27th – Travel Day & 230 squats (part of the Squat Challenge I am participating in)

Saturday, December 28th – 1 mile run (until Ryan's IT band started acting up), 1 mile walk,  Foam Rolled & Stretched

Tomorrow is my FINAL RACE of 2013. A little taper time and a little travel time and I think my legs will be well rested for my SIXTH HALF of the year! [I will be running it with my hubby, which will be his SECOND half marathon, so I will be trying to help pace him to a BIG PR - if his IT band cooperates that is.]

This past week we were traveling, as I am sure most others were as well. We were at my parents' for the beginning of the week, Ryan's sister's house for the middle of the week, and flew back home last night. THANK GOODNESS FOR TREADMILLS AND INDOOR EQUIPMENT (since I was lacking major motivation to go outside for workouts in the 20-30 degree weather - either raining or snowing). We were still able to get in quite a few workouts - along with CONSTANT play time with a 6 week old, 3 year old and 5 year old. 

Can you believe it is the FINAL FULL week of 2013?! Can you believe that I stuck with posting my Workout Recaps EVERY WEEK this year?! 

How were your workouts this past week? What about for the year in general?