Archive of ‘Marathon’ category

10 Bullet Points, 5 Updates, 2 Marathons

1. I already wrote most of my very first Bellingham Bay Marathon Training: Week 1 post! Since I’m still in the middle of week 1, I have a few more workouts to do, but I’m so excited that I actually couldn’t wait to blog about it. This has never once happened in the history of this blog. I’m in full-on can’t stop staring at my training plan mode, and I have to say – it’s nice to be back.

2. On Monday I went to my first Refine class since February. This is because of my asshole neck injury. I’m finally doing better and I can take Refine as long as Brynn (the founder) is right there making sure I’m not doing anything that seems dumb. I know some things not to do – anything overhead, pick up a kettlebell – but she can spot the others. She stopped me from climbing planks (which I was about to stop on my own, I think. It didn’t feel right) and sprinting in place, because my neck was like ‘HA bitch!’

3. The thing about not going to Refine for 3+ months after going consistently for 3+ years is this: I lost all my thigh muscles so at first my clothes fit better and I was all “YEAH I’M HOT I DON’T NEED TO WORK OUT” but then a month later my middle area got soft and all spread out and not only did I not like the way I looked, but my clothes started getting tight again. Just in a new way. A worse way. Also, I probably should have been wearing a full size bigger in the first place considering how much better the jeans felt when I lost the muscles. TL;DR: I’m out of shape and now that I am not so injured, I will get back into shape.

4. I’m trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.  I was on an awesome track and after two companies in a row got bought out by other companies, I found myself on a broken track. And that was four years ago. It’s time to get back on the awesome track once again, if only I can figure out what exactly that is. On that note, how the hell has it been 10 YEARS since I graduated college?! I still feel like I am in high school.

dale

In memory of my Aunt Dale (far right)

5. One month after my goal marathon, I am running the NYC Marathon with Team AOL to raise money for the American Cancer Society DetermiNation. This is my fundraising page – know everyone asks for money, but I really appreciate ANY donation at any amount. Deciding to do this was tough – I agonized for weeks. In the end, I decided to sign up for the $3,400 fundraising commitment for the following reasons:

  • I am running in memory of my Aunt Dale. My aunt died in August 2012 after a long battle with kidney cancer. My grandma and cousin also had kidney cancer, by the way, so this really hits close to home. My Aunt Dale fought so hard and remained positive the entire time. Her positivity during her ordeal is inspires me and motivates me to raise money for ACS, and I will be proud to wear her name on my shirt on race day.
  • I have some unfinished business with NYCM! I didn’t realize how much I wanted to not only finish what I started in 2011, but actually experience the miles I was too sick to remember at the time. I’d like to get the real NYCM experience. I’m not running with any goal time – this is purely to enjoy the experience and have fun while keeping it meaningful and close to my heart.
  • The main reason I didn’t want to do NYCM again – waiting in the cold for hours before the start – is not an issue when you raise money for charity because you get to hang out in the heated VIP tent.
  • Networking/making friends – Not only do I want to meet more people at AOL to network with and become friendly with, but I’ll be meeting a lot more people who are also on the ACS DetermiNation team at team runs and events.
  • Team support – There are group runs twice a week, and additional events. While I likely won’t make it to most of the Tuesday night runs because my weekday runs are generally interval-focused, I will go to the weekend long runs. I like the idea of a built-in network of people to run with, including a coach, and getting to know people as the miles fly by.

I’m working on some fundraising ideas both on and off the blog. If anyone works at/has connections to brands that would be willing to help by donating an item for an auction or raffle, please let me know! I’m excited to get started – I welcome your advice on fundraising ideas and of course any donations.

 

How I Chose My Next Fall Marathon

I’m sadly not running the Eugene Marathon this year.

This is tough. I was so excited about it, I signed up when the price was low, I couldn’t wait to train in the spring when I’m all fast and race in the Pacific Northwest summer during a celebration of running in Tracktown USA. I was going to stay in an adorable rented house with my family (including baby nephew) and it was going to be an amazing weekend.

Of course, things often don’t work out as planned and with my neck injury coming in January, I’m just not ready to start training for a July marathon.

Naturally my thoughts went to a fall marathon. I started researching every fall race on the east coast, and finding fault with them all. Wineglass Marathon, the frontrunner because wine, just didn’t excite me. (And Ellen didn’t love it/didn’t think I’d love it and I trust her opinion). Every mid-late November race was out (which includes my beloved Richmond and Philly) because I didn’t enjoy the last few weeks of cold weather training last year. A few races that sounded interesting (Newport RISteamtown and Chicago) were the same day as Ashley Runningbun‘s wedding, so those were out.

Dori PDX marathon

This is what I look like when I see my family during a marathon

I liked that Lehigh Valley was in early September but I wanted a little more time to heal my neck and get back into running shape. Cape Cod seemed too hilly for a PR attempt. My friend Miranda loved Baystate and it’s near my husband’s parents’ house, but the course is two loops and I just wasn’t feeling it. No one I know liked Hartford much.  I didn’t want to deal with logistics, waiting for a long time in the cold and the hills of NYCMBaltimore was hilly. Marine Corps was too big. I wanted smaller but not too small. I want crowd support without hoopla.

After being frustrated with not loving any of my east coast options, I opened the Marathon Guide list of races and just started reading through each one, thinking maybe I’d find something in the Seattle area where my family lives. I came across two races in Washington state – Bellingham Bay Marathon and Leavenworth Oktoberfest Marathon. I researched both and really, Bellingham Bay seemed perfect.

A gorgeous course that runs along the water, a time of year the weather is usually ideal, not too hilly especially considering the location, an inexpensive price tag (for the next few days, more on that in a minute) and did I mention just how gorgeous it is? I mean, look at the course map! Apparently it is unofficially called “the most beautiful marathon in the Pacific Northwest.”

I also really liked the date – September 28. No cold weather training and also the good chance for a nice race day. I looked up flight prices and they were totally doable (unlike Eugene flights, which was driving me crazy).  And really, I just felt excited about this race. I didn’t feel this way about any of the east coast races I looked up. I was tempted to register on the spot. Bellingham Bay Marathon felt right.

I emailed my brother and sister in law to see if they were free for a trip to Bellingham that weekend and they were up for it. I asked on Twitter if anyone’s run this race, and every response I received was overwhelmingly positive. I was convinced!

Bellingham Bay Marathon

Photo: http://www.bellinghambaymarathon.org/%5B/caption%5D

And then I started to really think about whether this was a good decision. I’m first recovering from injury, but I’m getting better each week. This morning I ran 3 miles without pain. I’m getting there. Plus, I figured that even if I can’t run this race for whatever reason, I’d still go to Seattle and see my nephew (who will be 21 months at that time) which I’d need to do anyway!

Also, the price of the race was about to go up on April 1. Tempting! Pressure!

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="360"]Dori with Harrison nephew Showing Harrison my bling in PDX

I consulted with Coach Abby and she advised me to wait, and only register if I can run 8 miles pain-free and comfortably by the end of May. That made sense – better to wait and pay more than register now to save money and then not be able to run. Although I really hated the idea of paying more later on . . .

When I went to the registration page and began the process (you see where this is going), it gave me the option for buying race insurance. RACE INSURANCE. For $7 (less than the cost of the price increase April 1) I could get a full refund if I can’t run the race.

That was the sign I needed. I had nothing to lose by registering. So I signed up.

And that, my friends, is how I chose my next fall marathon. My fourth marathon. Another marathon where my nephew Harrison will cheer for his Aunt Dori. Another marathon combined with a family visit. And if all goes well with my healing, my PR attempt.

For now, it’s back to resting my neck, doing all my PT exercises (some for neck, some for hip which my physical therapist thinks is contributing to my neck), doing my leg and hip strengthening from Coach Abby and (semi) patiently waiting to get back to Refine and run more miles.

But all of this is so much sweeter now that I have another training season and a great goal race to look forward to.

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