Archive | March, 2018

BONUS–Run a Marathon

25 Mar

What?!? When I was 30 and first started writing this blog, one of the items was to run a 10K, so it’s pretty incredible that in a matter of 6 years, that goal has turned into a standard weekday morning occurrence. Now I can proudly say that I’ve done two half-Ironman races and run two marathons.

Running a marathon was never a goal of mine. It seemed pretty silly. Why would anyone want to run for 4ish hours? Half-marathon, no problem, but the full distance just seemed ridiculous.

That was until we decided to sponsor the 2016 New York City Marathon, the biggest and one of the most well-known marathons in the world. My colleague Reed said that we needed to run it because it is a “bucket-list race.” Wasn’t on my bucket list. Somehow though she convinced me this was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I shouldn’t pass up. So, I signed up.

I shocked the heck out of my family by taking this big jump. They were so supportive though. My mom even used her Photoshop skills to show me how great I would look running the race… (it’s like a marathon Where’s Waldo)

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I looked online for a training plan that wouldn’t be too aggressive, but would get me to the finish line in one piece. I found a beginner plan from Bart Yasso, former Runner’s World writer known as the “Mayor of Running.” I followed the plan religiously, not missing a day.

Physically I was ready to take on New York, but mentally was another story. I’m just a little bit Type-A (insert sarcasm here), so I did so much research and studying going into the race that I think I psyched myself out. My recommendation for anyone looking to run their first marathon is to be prepared, but don’t overdo it.

In the final days before the race, I was a ball of nerves, but SO excited!

And I had my coach in town to go on one last training run.

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When race day came, my goal was just to finish, that’s it. No lofty time goal. Just survive this thing.

You get to the start line several hours in advance due to road closures, so fortunately I had a bunch of friends from Fitbit to hang out with and help keep the nerves at bay (as much as possible). As unofficial team mom, I also made us matching shirts. 😉

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The time went by fast and before you knew it, we were off. I kept a steady pace and made my way through the 5 boroughs and 26.2 miles.

The crowd along the route was incredible. There were people along almost every inch. It was so inspiring. And best of all, I knew some of them! My mom, dad and Mychael jumped around the course to cheer me on at different points (thank goodness Mychael is an NYC subway expert navigator). My cousin’s even came out to cheer me on in Brooklyn and the Bronx. The signs my friends and family made were amazing and looking for them along the course was a great distraction. I’m so lucky to have such incredible support.

And I DID IT! I finished the race in 4:30:42.

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It was such an incredible experience. Personally, very fulfilling to accomplish such a lofty goal that only 6 years prior seemed outrageous, but also so inspiring to see all the different types of people out there doing the race, pushing through their own personal boundaries to show what they are capable of. 🙌

We spent a few days after the race hanging out in NY and celebrating. We got to see family…

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and as a sidenote, how cute are my parents? (This is the first time they used Snapchat.)

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I enjoyed the experience so much that I ran the race again in 2017. I followed a much more aggressive plan from Very Well to try and improve my time, now that I knew I could do it. I was on track to shave at least 15 minutes off my time from the year before. And as an added bonus, Mychael decided to run with me this year (I think he was having a bit of FOMO after how much fun I had the year before 😜).

Unfortunately, we both got sick in the weeks leading up to the race and our training was thrown off track.

When race day came we were still under the weather, but decided to just go for it any way. We altered our goal from getting a PR (personal record) to just having fun.

We had a bigger Fitbit crew to hang out with before the race.

2017 was MUCH colder than the previous year, but we had great outfits to keep warm at the start.

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We stopped in mile 1 to take a selfie on the Verrazano Bridge.

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Mychael stopped again around the 10-mile point to take a bourbon shot with this supportive fan.

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We stopped to take pics with our friend Jessica just past the halfway point.

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Needless to say, we were taking our time. But we did it. Between the weather (Mychael took off his shirt and rung it out at one point) and being sick, we were happy just to finish.

Even though we were forced to change our goal, we had a lot of fun running together and it was a different experience this year to take the time to enjoy all the different sights and sounds of each borough.

I don’t know if I’ll ever run New York again, but these experiences have awoken a new love for running. Chicago 2019, here I come!

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