2018 belated recap / 2019 Goals

Hello, it’s been a minute since updating the blog but i’ll look to update more often going forward.  Last we left our heroine, she was off to the Marine Corps Marathon last October.  Spoiler alert:  She survived the 10th marathon and 4th MCM overall.  Now that I’ve run 4 MCMs, I feel like i should run a 5th to round out my Marine Corps marathon career.  But not in 2019.    I will post my highlights from the 2018 MCM in a separate blog.  In short, I traveled to DC solo as the family was sick that weekend, but I still had a pretty good race.  I felt really good up through mile 20 but my stats would show i wasn’t going as fast as I felt.  Finished in 4:34 and am pretty happy with that time.  Maybe MCM 2020 will be my 5th and final.

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2018.  Pretty great year for running following a not so good 2017.  I ran 2 marathons last year, MCM and the Austin Marathon.   I loved them both.  MCM is comfortable, my 4th time running it, had my plan and just got it done.  Austin was a great trip back to UT where i got my graduate degree.  Fun going to all the old places and some new ones and the marathon course was pretty good.  Damn hilly but good.

I ran more than 1000 miles in 2018 y’all!  I met my goal to run 1000 miles last year, hitting 1000 just before the MCM at the end of October.  Read more about it here 

I ran some halfs (halves?) but never broke 2 hours.  Almost did at the Maine Half marathon in Portland, ME.  This was a first time race for me and the course was pretty flat to a little rolling.  I ran it with a friend and just couldn’t keep up with her after mile 12 but I’m happy with a 2 hr 1 minute finish.  2019 I’m hoping to break 2 hours.

What’s up for 2019?

2019 is off to a great start. I’m making this all about #9.      Run 9 races, read 9 books (not a big reader and already behind the pace on books, ugh!)  Run a sub-2 (1:59) half marathon.   You get the idea.   I am in for the Chicago Marathon on October 13th so official training starts soon.  This is my first Chicago so it will be exciting.   I am hoping it’s as flat as they say it is, after Austin i’m done with hilly marathons!  I don’t have a time goal but considering going for under 4 1/2 hours so 4:29, you get the idea with 9 is my theme this year!   2019 and also i turn 49. 😐

I’ve already completed a few of my 2019 goals and challenges to-date including running a sub-2 hour half marathon!  I’ve run two so far in sub-2 so i’m pretty excited.  I credit my overall fitness to the Taji 100 Challenge (run 100 miles during February) and also Orange Theory Fitness. I’ve been hitting OTF pretty regularly, at least 3-4 times a week.  It’s the one thing that will get me up and out of bed in the wee hours — the $12 cancellation fee if i no-show for class.   I ran the Shamrock Half in 1:59 and the Portsmouth Half in 1:58:39!   The shamrock half was a fluke, i was running along and half way through i realized i was running at a pretty good pace, from then I started making a dozen mental calculations as to whether i could make a sub-2.   The last mile is mostly downhill to the finish but i stopped to walk for just a bit.  Then ran like hell to the finish because i would have kicked myself if that last walk put me over 2!

I also finished an accidental run streak of 100 days of running on the heals of the Taji100.  I had already run every day in Feb and decided to keep going!   I can get a little OCD /obsessed with things but it was so satisfying to see all my Apple watch fitness circles filled in! Ran everyday from last week of January through May 5th.

Next Up the Wallis Sands Half Marathon this coming weekend.   I am wondering if i can 3-peat my sub-2 performance.  Last 2 outings i ate mac’n’cheese the night before the race.  Perhaps this is my new go-to/ lucky/ pre-race meal that will propel me to the finish! That and coffee.

More to follow as i kick off official Chicago training. See you out there, -Jenn

 

Boost your mood, help a vet!

Ah, want to boost your mood?  Be charitable, be grateful, give to others.  I have a great opportunity for you to help military veterans and families of the fallen through the Travis Manion foundation (see what i did there?)

This Sunday, 10/28, I will be running the Marine Corps marathon in Washington, D.C. and I am raising funds for Travis Manion.   Consider a donation of any amount to my fundraiser here.       https://donate.travismanion.org/jenn 

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thank you for considering!

Follow my instagram for minute by minute marathon weekend updates.

– Jenn

5 days and $500 til MCM

This is it! Five days til the Marine Corps Marathon! In the past 2 weeks, I’ve been running a bit but also tapering a little more aggressively than maybe I should. And I’ve hit my 1000 miles in 2018 but first: 5 DAYS!!!!

So now that I’ve completed my training, I need to focus on my fundraising. I am running this Sunday to benefit the Travis Manion Foundation which supports veterans and families of the fallen. This MCM will be especially meaningful running for TMF. I am about 500 from my goal of $700. Please consider making a donation of any amount to my campaign. You can donate here: https://donate.travismanion.org/Jenn

Ideally I’d put some photos of me running on my page but all the TMF pages have this guy! I wonder what his time was. I hope to beat Oprah, she famously ran Marine Corps in 4:29. I’ve beat her before on this event. Let’s see about Sunday. Please donate!

1000 miles!!

This past week I hit my goal of running 1000 miles in 2018! My daughter said in the beginning “just run 10 miles a day for 100 days.” Yes, that would work mathematically but… I kept to 100 miles a month for the most part and having a goal did keep me motivated to run when otherwise I wouldn’t have. I joined the challenge through I love 2 run and got a finisher medal (coz I do love race bling).

Training Highlights

Last week I hit orange theory 3 days, most fun was Friday at 5:30pm and afterward I went to the cantina across the street for margaritas and tacos.

Sunday I ran 8 miles as my last long run. Check out this video that I filmed afterwards.

See you out there,

Jenn

Watch this Space!

I’m a runner not a blogger, Jim!  That’s what I envision Bones yelling at Capt. Kirk.  It’s been almost a year since my last blog post.  So much has happened since then.  I ran the NYC Marathon in November, 2016.  I’ve run a few half marathons since then.  I’ve gotten out of shape, then back in shape (almost).   And I am training for a few halfs this fall and the Austin Marathon in February, 2018!    More to follow on all of this and perhaps a NYC Marathon race report.  Maybe on the 1 year anniversary I’ll do a throwback post!    I’m not running with a charity for Austin though I have dreams to run Boston again with Dana-Farber.    Perhaps in 2019.    More blogging soon!

-Jenn

30 days to go and Flatbread’s Fundraiser Oct. 11th!!!

30 days to go until I run the NYC Marathon with Team in Training!  Wow.  My training has been going ‘ok’, I have maintained much of the schedule and run two 20-mile runs so far.  I plan to run 20-22 one more time before the race.   I’ve booked my hotel and travel to NYC.  Just received my race day signature purple shirt.  Everything is falling into place!

Fundraising update!  I’ve raised close to $3500 of my goal of $5000.   I have until race weekend to meet my goal.   Thank you to all who donated to my 100 friends | 100 hours fund raising challenge!  Turns out I had 13 friends contribute, but they are the best 13 friends!  I know many more of you are ‘waiting in the wings’ until race day gets closer.  I understand.  I’ll send you a reminder, don’t worry!

Flatbreads Hampton, NH fundraiser on Tuesday, October 11th from 4-9pm!

This year we are running another fundraiser at Flatbreads, this time in Hampton.  There is plenty of free parking so come out and pick up or eat in on 10/11/16!   A portion of all pizzas sold (eat in or take out) will be donated to my campaign for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.   We will also have a raffle for some cool prizes *list to be posted this weekend*.

If you can’t make it,  you can still donate at www.bit.ly/jennsNYC2016    I greatly appreciate your support as does LLS!

Thank you for stopping by my blog.  I’ll post a list of raffle items this weekend for Tuesday’s fundraiser.  If you see me running around town, wave don’t honk!  (honking scares people 😉

-Jenn

Jenn’s Boston Run is Headed to NYC!

Hi All,
In exactly 4 months I will be running the TCS NYC Marathon on November 6th with Team in Training!  This will be my first time running NYC and it will be awesome!  I’ve joined Team in Training (TNT) and my goal is to raise $5,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).  I want to continue to support cancer research after successfully running the Boston Marathon with Dana-Farber in 2014 & 2015 and raising over $26K for cancer research!    I’m excited to make a difference and be part of such a great TEAM!  In a way, TNT got me into marathon running.  My husband first ran with TNT back in 2006 and he inspired me (or challenged me, not sure which) to get into running a half marathon.  The rest is history.   So it is great to be on the TNT Team 10 years after “we” first joined.

A bit more about LLS.  The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.

Please consider making a donation of any amount via my fundraising page at:
bit.ly/JennsNYC2016  and thank you in advance!

I’ve kicked off my training this past weekend and have a decent running “base” to build upon.  My goals this season are to complete at least two 20+ mile runs, maybe 3 and to lose some weight in the process–a goal that has alluded me in the past.  Running long distances makes me so hungry!  Stay tuned for progress updates.  I am also adding in strength training which i have never done before.  I typically just run and run, no cross training of any kind, so I am hoping that this will add to my overall fitness and marathon goals.  Finish time goal?  This will be my 8th marathon and I am hoping to finish in under 4h 30m.

Putting the “fun” in Fundraiser.  Stay tuned for announcement of some fun fundraiser events.  I am once again hoping to hold a benefit night at Flatbread’s as well as some other exciting fundraiser challenges!

See you out there,
– Jenn

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Austin 3M Half Marathon/Gluten-Free Austin

I ran the 3M Half Marathon on Jan 25th in Austin, Texas and it was a great run and really fun weekend.   I met up with a friend from grad school and we covered a lot of ground in addiiton to the 13.1 miles on Sunday.  Here are just some of the highlights of the weekend.

I arrived late morning on Friday to cold and rainy weather which I did not expect. I had a vision of sun and 70s, but no problem, anywhere without snow is good.   I met up with an Army buddy of mine at Hopdoddy burger joint on South Congress a.k.a. “SoCo” area.  The burgers here were delicious and they serve their own house-made gluten free buns!  Anytime I go to a new city I like to check out the GF options in town and treat myself to some great gluten free bakeries and restaurants.  www.hopdoddy.com was so good, i went back again on Sunday before leaving town.
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After lunch I picked up my friend at the airport and checked in at the hotel.  We stayed up by the Gateway shopping / Arboretum area north of the city because it was walking distance to the start of the race.   We went by the Texas Running Company and I ended up buying some Hoka Constant running shoes – the gal there gave me a whole run down on how they are great for marathon and half marathon.  I’m going to give them a try.    Dinner we tried Maudie’s Tex-Mex on W. 7th.  We had to wait about 20 minutes or so but the food and margaritas were worth it.    Then on to the Hole in the Wall for some live music.  Good music but it was literally a dark, semi-seedy hole in the wall bar.  But apparently a famous landmark of the Austin music scene.
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Saturday we covered a lot of ground.  Around 9am it was still in the upper 30s/ pushing 40F so we went by Target and got some cheap grey sweatshirts for the race.  “Team Hanes” was ready to rock.  We did a nice 3 mile loop on Town Lake, a runner’s paradise and the one thing that I miss most about the city.   We hit Joe’s for breakfast and it was delicious.  We were at the downtown location but drove across the river to the SoCo location for gluten free pop tarts.   I had a lavender-fig pop tart, and it was an out of body experience that I cannot even begin to describe.  Here’s a picture of the pop tart.   (Did I mention that I took a hundred pictures like a total tourist).
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We went by the capitol and Texas History Museum to pick up our race numbers.  Here’s our Capitol of Texas Selfie.
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Then on to the University of Texas Co-op for some UT swag.  I got a “hi, how are you” t-shirt and some post cards.  The main drag by campus has changed a lot.  Also if my current gig doesn’t work out, I can get a job at Jenn’s Copies–that’s Jenn with two N’s.  They are everywhere.  Back up to the hotel to kick up our heels for a bit before dinner.   For dinner we went with a gluten free and pre-race standby, P. F. Chang’s.   Then we had to see Interstellar at the movies, for our traditional pre-race movie night (to get off the feet and relax).    And in Austin, if Matthew McConaughey is playing at the theater, you simply have to go.   I give the film a thumbs up.   We laughed, we cried, I was stressed out about the ‘dramatic’ scenes. We cried some more.  Good movie in my opinion.
Enough about the food and around town, how was the race?  Chilly start, sweatshirts came in handy, it was only in the lows 30s.   The course is almost entirely downhill and billed as fast–and it was really fast.   It started up at the Arboretum/Gateway area and finished with a run through the UT Campus and finish line just steps from the capitol building.  I had a great run and didn’t realize that I was moving along at a pretty good pace (for me).  There was a slight hill around mile 9 but otherwise it was downhill as advertised.  The standout feature of this race is the ginormous goodie bag!  A huge sampling of 3M products, here’s a pic of everything included: Scotch tape, lint roller, scotch brand kitchen sponge, recovery drink mix, glass cleaner, Post-It notes of course!
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Post-race we went down to Snack Bar Austin for some brunch back South of Congress. Snack bar was very cool decor (if i may call it decor) and they serve gluten free french toast that was delicious!  (pictured above!)  We cleared out of the hotel and returned to SoCo for live music at the Capitol Club, and a final burger at Hopdoddy before heading to the Airport.
Great race in a fun place.  I would definitely recommend this race and may come again or in February for the Austin Marathon and half.  And this was my first time running outside since January 1st with all the snow in Boston!
– Jenn