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

Boston Training Update

Hello friends,

Just back from Florida (my review of the Disney Princess Half Marathon coming soon) and yep, the snow is still here.  Shoveled the driveway twice this week already, a few inches of snow on Monday and Wednesday, just enough to be annoying.  Training for Boston is going pretty well.   I am following a new plan this race from a book, Run Less, Run Faster.  It prescribes 3 ‘quality runs’ per week where you focus on a specific pace or goal rather than just getting in mindless miles.  This appealed to me because with working and parenting, 3 runs a week sounds awesome.  I also wanted to take a step back from over training or the brink of over training, where I have been in the past.  The book:  http://www.runnersworld.com/race-training/run-less-run-faster

I’ve been running since January 1st on the treadmill with 2 exceptions, the 3M Half Marathon in Austin, TX and the Princess Half last month in Orlando, FL.   The snow is everywhere and roads are still dangerous– too narrow in spots, no visibility around snowbanks, ice, more snow.   I did run my first OUTSIDE run of 2015 on March 1st, and ran a 20 miler out and back down by the beach.   I find I have to go out and back, because once I am out there, I have to get back to my car.  That second half is where my motivation sometimes waivers.

Some things I’ve learned this training season or observations (so far):

1. The Walking Dead may not be the show to watch while on the treadmill.  Too many suspenseful zombie moments.  But I am looking for a new series since finishing LOST and Criminal Minds.
2.  As a runner, you should rotate your shoes.  Last month I got two new pairs to replace the pair that I have been wearing since summer of 2013 and through 3 marathons (Boston, Disney and Marine Corps).  Yes I know, I’m a bad runner.  I don’t follow some of the usual things one should do.  But I’m on the right track!
3. When you see it, buy more body glide.  You can never have too many of those travel sized sticks.  Not elaborating further for your benefit.
4. My iphone freezes at 8F despite being in an inside pocket.   On my 20 miler last weekend it died 3.5 miles in.  Ironically during a Morrissey song.  GU also semi-freezes.
5. Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses.  Or enjoy the sunrise, sunset or beauty of the season.  Yes, even in this wintery hell there can be some beauty.
6.  Wear my Dana-Farber Marathon Shirt to my next race.  I wore it in Texas and Disney and had a few cheers of “Go dana-farber” or people comment how Dana-Farber has helped them or a loved one.  Reminds me what the real goal is: a world without cancer.  And if I can help reach that goal, I will.
7.  This winter must end.   Forget Elsa, this winter is the work of the “White Witch’ of Narnia!  (currently my girls favorite movie, ironically they weren’t big Frozen fans).

witch-hogFundraising update!  For my local Seacoast friends, I will be holding a fundraiser at Flatbread in Portsmouth on April 7th!  A portion of pizza sales will go to my campaign and I will have prizes for raffle and silent auction.  This year you can throw down raffle tickets just for the prizes you want– a separate drawing for each item.   And a few items for silent auction so you can secure them right away.

Please mark your calendars for April 7th, from 4-9pm for benefit night.  You can join the event on Facebook for more updates on raffle & auction prizes.  So far a few items include gift certificates to Loco Coco’s Taco’s,  Cycle Fierce spin studio, Blue Mermaid Bar & Grill, Cinemagic movie tickets.  Just a preview of some of the awesome prizes!   Join the Facebook event click here

fundraiserFBjennsbostonrunPlease support my run and support cancer research!  Still time to donate at www.bit.ly/dfmcjenn2015   I’ll be updating the fundraising ‘thermometer’ soon.  So far I have raised about $1000 of my $10,000 goal.  Help me reach my goal!

thanks, run safely out there!
-Jenn

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

Running Again in 2015!

Hard to believe that it has been a little over six months since I finished the Boston Marathon with the Dana-Farber team! I’ve learned many things this past year, one of which is that I am not an avid blogger.  But on to the update!  It was a crazy and amazing race weekend!  First and most importantly, thank you to all who donated to my Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge campaign!  I received $1,700 in donations over marathon weekend alone which pushed me to  $13,700  raised for cancer research!  Thank you!    Overall the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge Team raised $8.2M dollars –our original team goal was $5.3M!   This was a record breaking year for DFMC and I am so proud to have been a part of it.

Marathon Monday was a chilly morning but I can’t say enough about the DFMC Team indoor retreat near the starting line.  We gathered at a local church and were able to wait indoors for the morning until our 11:30am start time.   Boston is the first marathon that I have run that didn’t start before dawn, but you still get up in the wee hours to travel to the starting line and wait for several more hours.  I was up by 4am for the journey out to Hopkinton to “hurry up and wait” as they say.   At the Retreat, we got to socialize with the team, take photos, apply our running “flair”, eat, stretch, eat more, stretch more and start all of our pre-race rituals.   At the Starting Line, there was so much excitement in the air.   I had packed my phone and some GUs in my Spibelt.  I planned for 5 GUs over the course of the race and decided to toss the 6th one at the starting line.  For some crazy reason I thought to take only what I need and ‘travel light’.  Of course when I went to grab my first GU, it fell to the ground and was gone in a sea of legs and sneakers.  Lesson learned–bring one extra GU above what you think you need. 😉
At the starting line, ready to run.

At the starting line, ready to run.

The first 10-15 miles went well, i consciously tried to keep a slower pace and not ‘burn out’ in the first ten miles.   Then came Heartbreak Hill.  It does in fact suck as most Boston runners will tell you!   Despite my training runs on the hill, it was like I had never run it before.  I forgot where the “top” was and all my plans went out the window.   Does that house or cross street look familiar?  I think the top was by that house under construction?  I struggled to get up Heartbreak and down shifted to a run/walk.  I did catch up to my teammate Kerrie on the Hill and we ran together for a while and then leap frogged a bit with Kerrie running a head, then I caught up and ran ahead, etc..  At one point Kerrie caught up and pinched my bum which made me laugh out loud and did give me a boost!    The crowds were amazing from about mile 15 onwards, there was a wall of people all the way to the finish.  With my name on the front of my shirt, I was glad for some “Go Jenn”s going up Heartbreak hill.   Finally we found the real ‘top’ of Heartbreak and had a nice downhill bit near Boston College.    My goal was to get over Heartbreak Hill and the rest would be “gravy”, but I still struggled from mile 21 to the end.   This is where my cheering section and the crowds helped me finish.   I stopped to chat with my parent around mile 22, this was the first time they came to watch me run a marathon.   My husband was at the “1 Mile to go” sign.  The crowds were 20 people deep behind the barriers.   He got everyone around him to yell my name which was great because I was stressed that I might have miss him.   Then there was still 1 mile to go.  Then there was just 1 kilometer to go!

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past the 1 mile to go, now just 1K!

I ran the last mile and when I turned on Boylston, I felt so many emotions but mainly pride and relief.   I’m not a big crier but I had to hold the back tears, it was very emotional.  I was so proud to have finished and represented all of you who supported my run and supported the Dana-Farber mission.  And the post-race support by the DFMC was amazing.  I met up with a volunteer who walked me back to Dana-Farber headquarters at the Marriott Copley.  She held my water bottle and was fine with not talking for a stretch while I regained my composure.  Back at the Marriott, the runner’s reception area had food, drinks, support folks ready to help.  I have never been one to get a post-race sports massage but it was so worth it!!!   I forgot that my husband was at the family reception area waiting for me.  After a shower, I had the best victory dinner at Abe & Louie’s on Boylston, runners were still finishing and trickling across the finish line right out front of the restaurant.  We could still hear occasional cheers of runners coming into the finish line and then the street sweepers started.  This was my 5th marathon but by far my best marathon experience!

 What happened since the marathon?  Subject for my next blog but in short, I ran some races over summer and took a bit of a hiatus from running.   But now I am back!  With some distance, rest and reflection since the marathon, I’ve decided to run again with Dana-Farber in 2015!   There is still cancer research to be done, the mission continues.  While I am able, I plan to do what I can to support DFMC and the vital work that we fund.   Many of my DFMC teammates run every year and we have one team member who has run 25 marathons in a row, since the team was founded.   Wow.   I’m proud to have been picked for the 2015 team for my second season and I am so inspired by those who have come before me!
Please subscribe to my blog &  facebook page and tune in for my next update.
Please consider supporting my run and making a donation to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.  You can donate Here via my fundraising page.  Email me if you would prefer to send a check by mail.
Thank you and see you out there,
-Jenn
dfmcfinishline

One Week!

ONE WEEK! 7 days til the 118th Boston Marathon!  Well it has been a while since I updated the blog, but the last two months have flown by (I think we have established that I am not an avid blogger).  Between work, parenting, traveling, and marathon training–there is little time to blog.   Here are some highlights from my marathon journey.

The two most important updates:

  1. Have you donated to my campaign? There is still time, donate here:   www.tinyurl.com/dfmcjenn
  2. Sign up to track me on race day! Choose your level of stalking:
    1. Follow me on Twitter, @kenzington11 My phone will send out a tweet ever 5 miles and also read me your replies in my ear (I run with the music playing)
    2. Text “26333” to 345678 or subscribe on www.baa.org and receive text updates of my progress on race day. http://www.baa.org/races/boston-marathon/participant-information/att-athlete-alert.aspx
    3. Follow me on facebook.   www.facebook.com/jennsbostonrun

Marathon Training.  I’ve been suffering with Plantar fasciitis that started up at the end of January.  I had it before in my left foot 3 years ago, now it is in my right foot.  I laid off running for about 3 weeks in February and beginning of March, which put me behind on my training.  Luckily, I am seeing a physical therapist who has really helped.  I tape it before my runs and see the PT twice a week.  My PT sessions are really painful but as of this week I have no pain when I run!   I got back on the training schedule in March with long runs of 16, 15, 20 and then my last 20 on March 29th the day thousands of Boston runners are out on the course from Hopkinton to Heartbreak Hill. This was a great run and the excitement of so many runners on the course gave it the feel of a real marathon.  The Dana-Farber team ran from BC out to Wellesley and then back for 20-22 miles total.  I ran 20 which was a great simulation of running up to Heartbreak Hill having run 16 miles prior.  It is intimidating due to all of the marathon ‘lore’ and it’s also a really long hill.  I did some walking, some running, asked a traffic cop where was the “top”of Heartbreak.  Mt. Alvernia St.  He was right.  This is my first time running the Boston marathon but I got a great ‘preview’ of the course which will help me on race day.

Fundraising update. Goal achieved, almost to my “Stretch Goal”!  Thank you to all who came out to my fundraiser at Flatbreads and Orange Leaf on March 4th!  I raised $1765 for Dana-Farber from FB, Orange Leaf, silent auction and the raffle.   This was a huge success!   My original goal was to raise $10,000 and I am just over $11,000 today.  I am not hoping to reach $13,100 (13.1 miles is the distance of a half marathon) which would put me at the next Dana-Farber Pacesetter level!  For bragging rights but also to raise that much more for cancer research!  I attended our last Dana-Farber team meeting two weeks ago and I’m on the board as an 8K pacesetter. Help me reach 13.1K!

7 Days of Rest and Anxiety! We have entered the period of marathon training called the Taper, where runners cut back on all the training runs and relax. From what I have learned, few are good at taking this advice, myself included. I will be running a few shorter runs this week—nothing more than 6 miles and starting to think about carbo-loading starting Thursday. Contrary to popular belief you want to carbo-load well before the night before the race.   What else to do during the taper period? Try not to freak out that the marathon is in 7 days!  Plan my outfit.  Lay out my race day stuff.  Re-plan my outfit.  Check the weather.  Decide on my back-up outfit.  Repeat.   You get the idea.

Cheering Section.  I hope to see a few friends and family along the course but you can still watch and cheer me on from wherever you are in the world!  There are a few ways to track me along the course and send me cheers and encouragement.   I’ll be running with my phone and an app called Runmeter.  Runmeter will tweet my progress every 5 miles and read me your tweets.  This is very cool and I love to hear your voices out on the run.  Runmeter will also post on Facebook and read your comments and “likes”.   BAA also offers runner tracking by text and email from their site at baa.org.   I hope to hear some cheers while I’m on the run!   See the links at the top to follow or sign up for text tracking.

Thank you for reading and if you haven’t, please donate to my campaign at www.tinyurl.com/dfmcjenn   I really appreciate your support.

best,
– Jenn

HBB
One of my training runs at Heartbreak Hill
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my race day “singlet” for Dana-Farber!

Cancer Research Benefit @ Flatbreads/Orange Leaf March 4th, 2014

hello friends,  I am so excited to hold a benefit nite at Flatbreads and Orange Leaf in Portsmouth, NH on Tuesday, March 4th!  We will be holding a drawing (raffle) for some awesome prizes at the door @ Flatbreads. And a silent auction!  You can buy raffle tickets by donating online to my campaign at www.tinyurl.com/dfmcjenn.   Flatbreads and Orange Leaf will donate a portion sales to my Dana-Farber campaign so please come out support my run!    Here are the details:

UPDATE Silent Auction Added: We had such a great response for donated items, we will auction some via silent action at the benefit night.

UPDATE: Raffle Tickets on Sale Now, Drawing will be 8:30pm March 4th.
We will hold a drawing (raffle) for some great prizes, more prizes being added up until March 4th.  Buy raffle tickets in advance by donating to DFMC online and shoot me an email with your phone # and how many tickets.
1 ) Donate here:    tinyurl.com/dfmcjenn.
2)  Email me at:  jenn.h@comcast.net
Ticket prices  1 – $5, 5 for $10, 10 for $20 and 20 for $26.20 (a marathon is 26.2 miles!).
*You need not be present to win, but you need to answer the phone on raffle night to claim your prize!

When:  Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

Where:    Flatbreads from 5-9pm @ 138 Congress Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801
Orange Leaf from 4-9pm @ 218 State Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801

Links:
Portsmouth Patch Event:  http://alturl.com/2838u
Facebook Event:  http://alturl.com/qgbt3

Raffle Prizes –We will draw the winners and each will have a choice of available prizes until all are claimed. Here’s what we’ve got for you:

  1. Book & Bar $30 gift certificate.  www.bookandbar.com
  2. Orange Leaf Portsmouth gift card
  3. Loco Coco’s Tacos $25 gift card www.locococos.com
  4. Ava Anderson w/ Lorrie B gift certificate – personal care products without chemicals
  5. Taylor River Farm horseback riding gift certificate 1/2 hour ride
  6. G. Williker’s $10 gift certificate   www.gwillikers.com 
  7. Cinemagic Portsmouth movie passes.  www.cinemagicmovies.com
  8. Pearsall Clean gift certificate.  www.pearsallclean.com
  9. Moxy $20 gift certificate  www.moxyrestaurant.com
  10. Vida Cantina $20 gift certificate www.vidacantinanh.com
  11. Popover’s on the Square $25 gift certificate!  popoversonthesquare.com
  12. more to come!

Silent Auction–Bid or “buy now” and don’t leave it to chance
We’ve decided to put a few items up for silent auction. There will be a minimum bid and a ‘buy it now’ price if you are like me and just want to win it!  Here’s what we’ve got for you:

  1. Loco Coco’s Tacos $25 gift card
  2. Ava Anderson avaBody 10-piece set ($98 value) click to view the set.
  3. Taylor River Farm horseback riding gift certificate for 1/2 hour ride
  4. SORT personal organizing – 2 hours of organizing http://www.sortnh.com
  5. Rumble Tumble 5 play days gift certificate
  6. Jumpin’ Jay’s Fish Cafe $20 gift certificate
  7. NEWLY ADDED  5 Rides at Cycle Fierce http://www.cyclefierce.com

See you there!

– Jenn

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