Decided Not to be Stupid

Filing this in: when things don’t go as planned.

I have a problem with letting things go.

I acknowledge this. I like when my life goes according to plan. Type A, 100%. When I say that I’m going to do something, I do. No questions asked.

Even if I’m struggling; even if it’s miserable. Even when I am miserable.

I’m supposed to be lining up to run the AC April Fools 1/2 marathon right at this very moment.

But I’m not.

The past week I’ve been dealing with a very sore neck and to be honest, my training hasn’t been what it should be for a half marathon.

In the past I would have pushed through and run anyway but recently, I’ve realized that sometimes – it’s just not worth it. I don’t have anything to prove and there’s no shame in making the smart decision.

The Type A part of me sheds a tear because I’ve run this race since its inception in 2012, on my 35th birthday.

2012 – Cam’s first half marathon

And the next year with wonderful college friends.

2013

And then this AMAZING crew came from all over the country in 2014.

Miss Demeanor, Miss Chief, Miss Print, Miss Behavin’, Miss Fit, Miss Creant, Miss Placed

It’s where these epic costumes happened, with these equally epic people.

 

It’s where Chrissy and I train for many of our races together, including this one in 2016, when the weather was so awful we weren’t sure we were going to make it to the finish.

Last year was the year that I gained an 8 minute PR at this race. It was also the first time I ever run the course completely alone, which is not usually how I operate when it comes it running.

When I tweeted about the possibility of a DNS earlier this week, Lisa (@runslikemud) said she’s heard it should stand for Decided Not to be Stupid.

This applies here.

I made the decision to pull myself from this event and it is absolutely for the best. For those who are out there today, getting it done – I hope that the miles are good to you, as is the weather.

I’ll be back in AC for the new 5 mile Bungalow Beach Run in June and I’m sure many more races. But for now, I’m going to rest, recuperate, and look ahead to the next.

(And stay off Facebook because many local friends are running and it still hurts my heart a little.)(Baby steps, okay?)

Race Recap: 2018 Philadelphia Allstate Hot Chocolate 5k

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Philadelphia Allstate Hot Chocolate 5k race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

In 2017 I ran the Philadelphia Hot Chocolate 15k on my 40th birthday. This year I had the opportunity to run the Philadelphia Hot Chocolate 5k representing BibRave and I jumped at the opportunity. The swag is incredible and HELLO, there is chocolate. What more could a girl want?

Well, how about a super cool friend to run with? That’s always a bonus and one of the reasons I love running so much – being with friends. Last year I ran the 15k with my dear friend Christina as a celebration for both of us turning 40. This year, novice runner Ana joined me for the 5k run around Philadelphia.

Originally when I signed up for this race, I had visions of 5k PRs danced in my head. However after a rough winter and a broken arm, my training was less than stellar. I settled into the “get it done” mentality and that worked out well because I was able to run with Ana at her first ever road race.

I chose to have my packet sent to me rather than going to the expo for an additional fee. My purple pullover and bib arrived a week and a half prior to the race. It was worth the additional cost for me to save time traveling into the city prior to race day. There was no race day pickup.

The weather this year as brisk but not uncomfortable. As I headed out the door I made a last minute decision to ditch my gloves. I later came to regret that decision but otherwise I was comfortable.

Ana and I took the train into the city from S. Jersey, which is usually my standard when it comes to Philly races. It’s easy, it’s quick, and I don’t have to worry about parking. It was packed with other Hot Chocolate runners. I don’t know the amount of people who run both races but in the 5k there were 3,406 runners. I think that the 15k is the bigger of the two races. Both races get the same pullover and finisher’s mug at the end of the race, but the 15k also gets a finishers medal, which I think is a big draw for many people.

Our quick walk from the train station to the start line served as a warm up and we made it to the Art Museum right around 7am for the 7:15am start. It was perfect timing and we even got to see a few friends before the race!

Representing BibRave with Joe!

We placed ourselves in the G corral = mullet crew, party in the back. Looking to have a good time with this, we set our timer to 1:1 intervals.

The course is similar to others in Philadelphia. Starts at the Art Museum and then winds down along the river and back again. Boathouse Row is always fun to look at, the traffic on the other side: not as much.

We spent the first mile or so bobbing and weaving, as is usually the case with races this size, but we were having fun and enjoying the race and also the people around us.

On the course they handed out chocolate and marshmallows, along with water and Nuun.

This race went by fast! Soon enough we were turning around and headed back to the Art Museum.

Free race photos? YES PLEASE!

There is a small hill right near the finish line that is always there and yet, it always catches me off guard for some reason. We decided to walk up the hill (honestly, it’s not bad at all – just me whining) and then hit the gas for the end. So much fun!

Sure running is fun but let’s talk about chocolate-y goodness, shall we? There are huge tents where you can get your mug filled with all sorts of goodies: hot chocolate, chocolate dipping sauce, pretzels, cookies, banana, and Rice Krispy treat. Last year the ground around that area was muddy and gross due to recent rain. This year there was hay on the ground, which significantly improved that situation and was much appreciated.

The line to get our treats moved quickly and soon enough we were sitting in front of the Art Museum and enjoyed our treats.

And, of course, we ran up the Art Museum steps! How could we not?

Ana is already talking about signing up again next year so I think the running bug has bitten her. (Mwahaha, excellent, everything is going according to plan.)

Video: Greecie Girl Headbands Review and GIVEAWAY!

Hello everyone, hope you’re having a fabulous Friday! I’ve gotten a lot of good feedback on the videos we’ve posted lately so I figured that I’d make another one. Included are a few life updates and review a new-to-me product, Greecie Girl Headbands (pronounced Greece – I asked!). Enjoy!

Want to see a few pictures of Greecie Girl products in action? SURE YOU DO!

Dream Big

Treadmill run on a cold, snowy day (is it spring yet?)

If you’re interested, be sure to check out Mary’s sites. You can enter our giveaway down below but if you just can’t wait to order, the code 15off will save you 15% off orders over $24. WOOHOO!

Greecie Girl Headbands website

Greecie Girl Headbands on Etsy

 

Click the pic to enter!

One winner will win TWO headbands from Mary at Greecie Girl Headbands! Want to enter? Be sure to click on the picture above. Giveaway is running now until 3/20/2018 at 12am, est. Winner will be contacted via email for information. In the event that we do not hear back within 24 hours, a new winner will be chosen.

Are you a social media fan? You can find Greecie Girl here:

Twitter – ishlass
Instagram – greeciegirl

Race Recap: The Lucky Run 2018

Lucky me – I won the growler playing the spinning wheel at packet pickup!

Back in the day, when I first started working out in earnest, I did Stroller Strides three times a week at Washington Lake Park. With my older son strapped into his stroller I would briskly walk with a gaggle of other moms and babies. We’d stop for exercises like squats, walking lunges, resistance band exercises, and ab work. And when we’d stop, we sang children’s songs to entertain the kids… and probably the rest of the patrons in the park as well.

As time went on I became a certified instructor; I continued to teach through my pregnancy and then with my younger son in the stroller. It feels like a lifetime ago!

May 12, 2013 – a 5k held on Mother’s Day.

Quite simply, the park feels like home. When I found out that The Lucky Run was held there, it went on my bucket list. Through a series of fortunate events, I won a free entry to this year’s race!

In line with the theme, packet pickup was held at two breweries on the days leading up to the race, along with race day packet pickup for added convenience. Communication from Good Day for a Run and Mean Guy Running was stellar, as is their way. I opted to go to the closest brewery to me: Kelly Green Brewing Co. I (sadly) skipped the beer since I knew I’d be partaking in a post race beer or two the following day.

Race day weather was cool but dry. We’ve seen our share of snow and general yuckiness the last couple of weeks so we were all happy that the sun shining on the day of the race.

Thankfully I was wearing my Greecie Girl hat! Review coming soon.

Prior to running we learned a bit about the charity that the race supports, Collette Paying it Forward. We also got the chance to chat with a few of the charity’s volunteers while they were selling 50/50 raffle tickets. I like races that give back to the community.

Before the race began, I was able to meet up with a few local members of Team Shenanigans, Lynn and Erin! Although I’ve been a fan of the Team Shenanigans podcast for awhile, this was my first shenanigans encounter in person… and hopefully not the last – I don’t think I scared them away! We only had a few minutes prior to the race to talk, but we caught up at the after-party at The Village Pub.

After pictures and shenanigans (you see what I did there) we lined up for the start. We fed through the start line and then self-seeded where we thought we should be. I put myself toward the very back of the pack – in hindsight I might have wanted to find a place a bit further up. The park paths are narrow and it’s hard to maneuver in a large crowd. Lesson learned – I’ll keep it in mind for next time.

After the Star Spangled Banner, we were off to the sounds of a bagpiper!

Thanks to race photographer Chad for this picture!

There are a few areas of the park that tend to flood when there’s been a lot of rain. Knowing where to step for that portion definitely helped me out, but I could tell there were a few runners around me that ended up with wet socks.

The course had a double loop so the lead runners met up with the back of the pack around mile 2. No skin off my back but I could see that being a bit of a challenge for them.

The first mile was crowded but once we got past that, it spread out a bit. There was a water station around mile 1.25, which you passed again in the second mile. Neither my running buddy nor I needed to stop but it’s nice that they have the option! We joked that we were holding out for the beer at the after-party.

After the second loop we veered off to go through the flooded area again. This time is was less critical to know where to step because it wasn’t as dense with runners.

We looped by the amphitheater once again and went through what started at the start line and became the finish line. Results were immediately emailed to my phone.

I don’t know if you remember this if you’re not my mom (hi mom) but my goal for running in 2018 was to get faster at the 5k distance. I didn’t achieve that goal for this race but I’m going to cut myself some slack since my broken arm didn’t do me any favors in the training department. At this point, I’m really just happy to be out there and running. Everything else is just icing on the cake.

Knowing that we didn’t win any awards, we quickly headed over to the after-party at The Village Pub. Erin and Lynn arrived there a bit ahead of us and grabbed a table, which was absolutely awesome. We were able to chat there while snacking on our complimentary munchies and drinking our beer (also free with ticket on the bib). Then since we were there, we decided to grab more snacks… and more beer! Hey, why not?!

One of the things I love the most about running local is catching up with so many friends! It’s such a good time and this environment only lends to the experience. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Good Day for a Run and Mean Guy Running know what runners enjoy!

I hope I’m finding my 5k groove because I’ll be at the Haddonfield Adrenaline Run on Saturday and then I’ll be representing BibRave at the Allstate Hot Chocolate 5k in Philadelphia in early April so if you’re looking for me, look for the orange! If you haven’t signed up for that one yet, use code ““BRHCPHILLY18” to score a bonus Hot Chocolate cap.

What races do you have coming up? Will I see any of you at the Adrenaline Run or Philly Hot Chocolate? We can share snacks. Just kidding, I won’t share!

Get Up and Go! Healthy Kids Running Series

My kids really like playing outside with our neighbors.

They also really like their video games.

I can’t fault them for this and I can’t even say “kids these days” as I sit here at my computer, typing this blog entry. We all enjoy technology and when the winter months of the Northeast slowly drag along, the comforts of being inside far outweigh the dreary, frigid days.

However, we’ve been seeing hints of spring over the last week. We had two beautiful days when I wore a t-shirt and capris and got to soak in some much needed vitamin D.

On those days, as soon as homework was done my kids were out the door, running around and playing. I actually felt bad calling them in when we had to go to karate, piano, Scouts, or whatever else was on the agenda.

Which is why I am extremely excited for the Healthy Kids Running Series. And, I’m even more excited because I’m the new coordinator for our location here in New Jersey!

A friend of mine was the coordinator in the fall and thought that I would be a good match for taking over in the Spring… and here I am! Encouraging kids and making running fun is something that I try to do on a daily basis ANYWAY, so it’s a natural fit.

Plus, as I’m sure many of you know, I’m a Type A planner. Being a HKRS coordinator is a planner’s dream. I get to have lists and deadlines! Being that it is a non-profit I get to work with sponsors for the location and meet people within my community. But best of all, I get to spread the love of running to children. While it’s a 5 week race series, the emphasis is on FUN.

The adult running community in our area is a great one, full of inspiration and motivation. Run856 encourages all of its members, the focus isn’t on a pace but rather the community aspect. It took me until adulthood to enjoy running and see its benefits. I’d like the kids to find the fun sooner rather than later!

My goal is to show the kids the running community includes them and that together we can win OUR races. It might not as the first person to cross the finish line but by showing up, bettering ourselves, and cheering for our friends we all excel.

I’m sure I’ll have stories along the way and I can’t wait to experience my first event when I’m actually working with the kids and parents on April 8th. Stay tuned!

Road Tested: pjuractive 2skin anti-chafing gel

Disclaimer: I received pjuractive 2skin to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

One of my least favorite things about running? Chafing.

I’m not sure how it’s possible but I feel like I might chafe more than the average runner. (Or maybe it just hurts that much?)

Places I’ve chafed:

  1. back bra line
  2. front bra line
  3. on my arm – where my shirt sleeve has rubbed
  4. underwear line
  5. thighs

Basically anywhere you can possible think of chafing, and some places I didn’t even considered I might chafe… I have.

Originally I thought chafing was only a warm weather occasion. However, I now know that I was sadly mistaken. I’ve chafed every season, hot weather, freezing weather, and of course, the rain does a runner no favors when it comes to skin irritation!

Which is why when BibRave put out the call to the BibRave Pros to try pjuractive 2skin anti-chafing gel, I jumped at the opportunity! Unfortunately, soon after I did that, I fell on the ice and broke my arm.

But has that stopped me from running? Nah. I haven’t been doing long runs but I’ve tested pjuractive 2skin anti-chafing gel during the rainy Chili Run and training runs on the treadmill.

My husband helped me apply the 2skin anti-chafing gel to my back and remarked that it’s a silicone-based gel (something he would notice whereas I would not) and that’s how it is able to prevent friction. It has no scent and it’s breathable, water and sweat resistant. It’s a clear gel and left no marks on my skin or my clothing.

In addition to applying it to the usual high chafing areas, I also used some gel along the edge of my soft cast. While only 2 miles, the Chili Run was in the rain and one that I considered a good test for pjuractive 2skin anti-chafing gel and it worked very well! No chafing at all, anywhere.

One of the things that slows me down during a long run or race is when I’m feeling pain from chafing – it’s bad when you get in the shower and feel the water hit the chafed spot but I think it’s even worse when you’re already able to feel it while running. I’ll be using 2skin from now on and hopefully it will no longer be an issue!

I’ve tried other products and always manage to miss a spot but because this is a gel, rather than a solid, it’s easier to spread and the coverage is better. Having the option to bring a small packet with me on a longer run so if I feel skin irritation happening, I can pull off to the side for a quick fix is a game changer.

Interested in learning more? You can follow pjuractive on social media:

T: @pjuractive
IG: @pjuractive
FB: https://www.facebook.com/pjuractive/

And if you want more personal stories regarding pjuractive, be sure to swing by my fellow BibRave Pros blogs:

Lindsey
Andrea
Alastair
Corey
Amy
Karen

Finally, join us at the Twitter #BibChat on February 27th at 9pm est. I’ll be there on the scootadoot account!

 

Road Tested: Detach Coconut+ (with Tropical Smoothie recipe!)

Disclaimer: I received Detach Coconut+ to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Hydration has always been a tricky thing for me when it comes to workouts.

When I first began with longer workouts, I stuck with water. I was nervous to branch out and try something other than what I knew worked for me. However, as time evolves, I have as well. I began looking for drinks that would provide something more.

If you ask any of my close running friends, they’ll tell you that I’ve never been a fan of coconut water. However, Detach intrigued me because it’s not just coconut water but rather a coconut water base with naturally added lemon/lime and sea salt.

As soon as I tried it, I was immediately a fan! It’s a great way to fuel for a workout and get the right mix of hydration and energy. It was created because the company’s founders were looking for a way to stay hydrated, focused, and supported their training.

The company recommends that you drink one bottle before a workout and then one bottle during exercise. I’d planned to bring it to the gym with me but with my broken arm, my gym workouts have come to a halt for the past 3 weeks.

Thankfully, I was cleared by my doctor to continue running. I drank one bottle with a light breakfast a half an hour before my run and then set up on my treadmill with my Detach (and pjuractive 2skin Anti-Chafing gel, which I’ll be reviewing next week), watched the Bachelor and did a ladder workout. It was refreshing and worked great for the hour long run.

I also got creative with my Detach and made a tropical smoothie!

You want to know what’s in there, don’t you? It’s super simple and what’s more, it’s super delicious!

TROPICAL SMOOTHIE

1 cup of Detach Coconut+
1 cup of plain Greek yogurt
1 small banana
1/2 cup of pineapple
1/2 cup of ice

Blend to combine and enjoy!

The combination of the Detach flavors with everything else made me feel like I was sitting on a beach in tropical weather rather than in 20 degree weather in New Jersey. So lovely!

I know my fellow BibRave Pros have also made smoothies, adding greens and other assorted goodies to Detach and I’ve heard only great things.

Overall, I highly recommend Detach if you’re looking to pump up your hydration and your activity level during your workouts.

Swing by and check out my fellow BRPs reviews:

Lindsey
Amy
Corey

 Want to connect with Detach?

Scoot a Doot’s 5th Blogaversary (with a BOCO Gear giveaway!)

Exciting news in the video! We have a new Scoot a Doot Chick joining Kyle, Jenn, and myself, a new giveaway, and a new cast! Well, okay, that last one might only be exciting to me – but it is purple!

Watch me ramble and then click down below for the giveaway.

 

Click the pic to enter – now through 2/5 at 12am est

You can meet Ash here! Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and subscribe (right over in the side bar!) so you can get blog post updates sent directly to your email!

ETA: I am such a dolt. ASHLEY IS A RAVENCLAW, not a Hufflepuff. I have no good excuse. At least I know I’m a Gryffindor?

Race Recap: 2018 Chili Run

Last year’s Chili Run was a great one: great weather, great running with my buddy, Rachel. All around GREAT.

This year? 50 degrees and RAIN was in the forecast for the January Chili Run. Additionally, this race had an extra challenge because… I can’t get my arm wet.

It sounds so silly but yep, it’s true. You can learn more about my injury here and here. It’s been 3 weeks since I initially fell. I finally had the MRI last week because the X-Rays didn’t show enough; it’s a fracture of my radius. I’m going back to the doctor later today and we’ll see what they have to say.

Anyway, what was I saying? Oh yes, I’m dealing with an injury, it was raining, and my reluctant runner husband, Jay, was signed up to run this race after he agreed to it after drinking a few beers. (If you want to get Jay to agree to something, that’s usually the best time to ask.)

All signs pointed toward a DNS – Did Not Start.

But c’mon. Is that me? No. No, it is not.

That’ll do! I even was able to put my thumb through my jacket’s thumb hole. BONUS!

Before I was injured, my goal was to try to hit the 22:00 minute mark for this two mile race. That would have been fast for me and a course PR. Honestly, even before I was injured, it would have been a bit of a stretch.

But given that I haven’t run for the past 3 weeks and I’ve been babying my arm because it hurts, my main goal was just to RUN. I was nervous going into this so I decided that I would stick with Jay, in case I needed to stop for any reason.

This year’s swag: The Chili Run beanie hat! Additionally you get a bowl of chili and a beer after the run!

The convenience of this race couldn’t be better for us. The start and finish is located at Carolina Blue, a local restaurant that is 2 miles from our home. With a start time of 10am, we rolled out of the house at 9:30am and were there minutes later.

We had friends running and I messaged with a few but we decided rather than going inside, we’d stay warm and dry in our car until the last possible minute.

If he looks less than impressed it’s because he is.

I knew my husband planned to listen to his music rather than chatting with me, so I brought along my AfterShokz and paired them with my phone.

About five minutes before the start of the race, all of the runners came out from the warmth of their cars and the patio to line up for the start. It was steadily raining but thankfully it wasn’t freezing cold.

My outfit consisted of capris, Bib Rave tank, running jacket, Momentum hat, and plastic bag.

There are no pictures from the race but if you’re really curious, feel free to visit last year’s post from the same race. My phone was safely tucked away in a plastic bag!

Something to note is this race doesn’t have a timing mat to cross when you begin. Therefore your time begins as soon as the race starts. Jay and I crossed the finishing timing mat at 24:49. To give you an idea of the speed of some of the runners, the top male finished in 11:13 and the top female was smoking fast at 13:19. Wowza!

After crossing the finish we cheered as a few friends crossed the finish and then we quickly jumped in the chili line. The line snaked outside into the rain so I kept my plastic bag firmly in place! We saw even more friends while waiting in the line and that’s another reason why I love this run so much, it’s got a great community vibe.

I just realized i didn’t have a picture of this year’s chili so last year’s will have to do!

Overall, despite the rain and in spite of my arm, this is always a fun race and well worth the $40 entry fee. A few spots just opened for the February race but I know they’ll go fast!

Have you ever done a 2 mile race? What’s something you look forward to eating/drinking after a run?

Athlinks: Race Results, Friends, Rivals

Disclaimer: I am promoting Athlinks as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!

Oh hello there! I’m giving the blogging/typing forum a go because I now have a soft cast on my arm. Hooray!

I’m waiting to get an MRI for my wrist and hopefully get some more answers on how we’re going to proceed from there from my doctor. It seems like a big waiting game at this point and while I’m usually a fairly patient person, it’s difficult for me to be so in this situation because:

  1. I’m in pain.
  2. I’m really bored.
  3. That’s mainly it. I’m in pain, so it’s hard to be patient when I’m hurting.

With all this free time on my hands (*cymbal crash*) I’ve had more than ample time to play on my computer and long for the days of working out and normalcy. I have my old standbys that I’ve been visiting but thanks to BibRave alerting me to Athlinks, now I have a new-to-me site in the rotation!

Athlinks is an all encompassing site for runners, cyclists, swimming and more. Users are able to create accounts, claim their race results (they had 49 listed races for me!), join upcoming events, follow their friends, and even see who their “rivals” are among their friends (those who have raced the same race as you). Spoiler: if we are rivals, you’ve probably won!

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not a competitive racer, in fact, I’m more than happy just to be out there and getting it done by any means possible.

However, prior to the arm injury, I did set the goal of a faster 5k time for 2018. Once I’m able to get back to training, I do still want to accomplish that goal. You’re able to share goal times for upcoming events; these were set before I was hurt.

The 22 minute race is a two miler, for the record. I don’t want anyone thinking that I’m getting overly ambitious!

The gang over at Athlinks is very responsive, which is always appreciated. I was having an issue adding myself to the Start List (aka participant) for the 2018 Philadelphia Hot Chocolate 5k, which I’m running representing the BibRave team, because I was only able to find the 15k distance. After shooting them a quick note, less than 20 minutes later I heard back with an answer to my request for help.

I love being able to access all of my races in one spot. While I claimed my races, it was a walk down memory lane with races dating all the way back to when I first started running in 2011. It’s interesting to see how my races been, especially when looking at times on the same course and whether I was using the race for proof of time or just having a good time with friends.

This was one of my favorite days/races! 2017 AC April Fools half

Athlinks has an app too, however I’m trying not to add more apps to my phone so I haven’t used it. Sticking with the website on the computer for now but I’ve read fellow BibRave Pro reviews that say it’s easy to use and comprehensive.

I’m looking forward to adding more results throughout 2018 and checking back to see if I’m able to hit the goals I’ve set. Fingers crossed!

Are you on Athlinks? If you’d like to hook up over there, here’s the link to my profile.