122nd Boston Marathon

The Girl's Got Sole - 2018 Boston Marathon Finish Line

(photo: Boston Marathon)

The 2018 Boston Marathon is on Monday, marking the 122nd year of the iconic marathon. As a runner, I will always have a dream of running the Boston Marathon. I always thought that the NYC Marathon was my dream race, and while it was, I admit I would love to one day run Boston.

This year, I’ve got a number of friends running the Boston Marathon, and I couldn’t be more proud of each and every one of them. Each one, no matter if they are a first-timer or repeat Boston runner, are all amazing. I love being able to track friends on race day from Hopkinton to Boston. It has to be a journey of 26.2 like no other.

In the elite field, this year, there’s 46 athletes from 13 countries running. American Galen Rupp, who took 2nd in Boston last year, along with the 2017 Boston Marathon Champion, Geoffrey Kirui of Kenya return. Lelisa Desisa and Lemi Berhanu, both from Ethiopia who recently finished 3rd and 4th in the 2017 TCS NYC Marathon. As well as Tamirat Tola (Ethiopia), Shadrick Biwott (American), and Wilson Chebet (Kenyan) are in the men’s field. For the women, Kenyan Edna Kiplagat leads the field, returning to defend her 2017 Boston Marathon win. Deena Kastor, Shalane Flanagan, Desiree Linden, and Jordan Hasay are representing the U.S. along with Molly Huddle.

Shalane Flanagan recently won the 2017 TCS NYC Marathon, and Desiree Linden missed winning Boston in 2011 by just two seconds. Both women have really wanted to win Boston. I would love to see Flanagan take it this year, especially after her amazing NYC Marathon performance. I also think that Galen Rupp will definitely give the Kenyans a run for their money this year.

The Girl's Got Sole - Boston Marathon

For all the information on TV coverage and live internet streaming, head to the event website. And, runner tracking is available through AT&T Athlete Alerts.

A Change in Plans

Unfortunately, I’ve had to cancel my trip to Nashville. I was very much looking forward to visiting Music City USA and running the Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Half Marathon on April 28th, so this disappoints me.

Late last week, I cracked a tooth. It’s a wisdom tooth and it needs to be extracted. I’ve still got my two top wisdom teeth, so both will be removed on Monday. This is going to require oral surgery and a couple of days off from work, the days off I had set for Nashville. I had planned on flying out Thursday night and coming back on Monday. As with most jobs these days, my PTO hours for vacation are also the days that I use for sick time. Thus my having to cancel Nashville.

The Girl's Got Sole - Change of Plans

Thankfully, I am a part of an amazing group of people within BibRave, and they understand my need to DNS the race. I hope to do another Rock ‘n’ Roll race soon, as I’ve been anxious to run the series. With an airline voucher credit from this canceled trip, maybe I can make that happen in the Fall. I admit, I’m considering Philadelphia, Savannah, Las Vegas and Dallas.

My surgery is set for early Monday morning. I’m actually not nervous about the surgery itself, just a little unsure how recovery might be. Not to mention that I will likely have to do a “replay” of the Boston Marathon since I doubt I will be awake a whole heck of a lot during it (ha yeah, I’m sure I will be sleeping). I’ve got a few friends running it, so hoping I can somehow be alert enough to track them on my phone.

The Girl's Got Sole - Wisdom tooth

I am out of running all next week, but fortunately, will be good to go for Sunday, April 22nd. Will be more than ready to get my running shoes on to pace the 2018 Star Wars Dark Side Half Marathon. It’s now the only race I’ve got on the calendar for the remainder of this month. With my birthday three days later, I’m going to consider it my birthday race for this year. Celebrating with a runDisney race sounds great to me!

For those hoping to meet me in Nashville, sorry about the change in plans! I wish you all the best running the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon, Half Marathon, and 5k races that weekend. I know you’re going to have a blast! Hopefully, we can meet up at another race soon.

Workout Recap W/E: 4/7

Last week was a bit difficult at the start, but by the end of the week, things were looking up. I ended up taking Sunday off, which I never do unless I did a long run the day before. I was just tired and took it easy instead. But, I made up for it later in the week.

The Girl's Got Sole - Saturday morning run group

Sunday, April 1st – REST DAY.

Monday, April 2nd – Bike workout before work. Felt okay, and knew since I hadn’t worked out the day before I had to get in some kind of cardio.

The Girl's Got Sole - Monday bike workout

Tuesday, April 3rd – Run after work. This was my really rough day, dealt with anxiety issues and a migraine that morning. Was glad to have gotten in a run later in the day with a friend after having to miss it that morning.

The Girl's Got Sole - Tuesday evening run

Wednesday, April 4th – Start of my better workouts with a morning sweaty bike workout at the gym.

The Girl's Got Sole - Wednesday bike

Thursday, April 5th – Morning run with some of my group. A lot better of a run than I had on Tuesday. I felt like I had more energy in the tank.

The Girl's Got Sole - Thursday morning run

Friday, April 6th – REST DAY.

Saturday, April 7th – Long run day. Got in 10 miles in preparation for my two half marathons later this month. Did 4 miles with my friend, Jenny before we met up with the rest of the group for 6 more miles.

The Girl's Got Sole - Saturday long run

How were your workouts last week?

Ultimate Coffee Date – April 2018

The Girl's Got Sole - Ultimate Coffee Date

It’s time for another Ultimate Coffee Date sponsored by Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner and Coco at Got2Run4Me. It’s a virtual coffee (or tea or whatever your favorite beverage is) date with fellow bloggers. Be sure to check out the link-up!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you… it’s been a bit of a rough start to the month. I thought my parakeet, Toby was sick on Tuesday and almost had to take him to the vet. He wasn’t acting like himself at all, being quiet and sleeping a lot. Then, I realized with the help of a friend the issue was with the food I had given him. I got a slightly different size and he refused to eat it. Apparently, starving himself was better than trying it? So, for about 24 hours, he hadn’t eaten. While I was figuring all this out, he gave me an anxiety attack. He’s my baby, and I couldn’t fathom losing him. Pets can be so fussy! I’m thankful he is okay and just a brat. :p

The Girl's Got Sole - Toby bird

My silly baby bird, Toby

If we were having coffee, I would tell you… I just lost a filling in my far back top tooth yesterday. No clue how exactly it happened, but I now have a dentist appointment on Monday. I’m awful about going to the dentist like I should, so I am sure I’ve got some other work to be done. Guess I’ll get to know this new dentist soon.

The Girl's Got Sole - Weight loss journey

If we were having coffee, I would tell you… I’ve lost a pound and a half! I’m so happy that I’m finally getting somewhere with dropping some weight. I’m now about 8lbs from my goal weight, where I was in 2015 when I was training for the NYC Marathon. I felt my best then, and I just want to get back to that. While it’s not all about the number on the scale, I would be kidding you if I didn’t say I have a number I’m trying to get back down to. I also know that my clothes feel better when I’m about a certain weight.

The Girl's Got Sole - Ultimate Coffee Date

How about you, what would you tell me if we were having coffee?
Have a great weekend! πŸ™‚

Pacing the Dark Side

I’m excited to again be a pacer at the Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side. This year, I will be pacing the 3:30 finish time in corral F. I have usually paced the 3:15 finish time, but I’m looking forward to the slower time. With Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville the weekend after Star Wars, my body will appreciate that. πŸ™‚

The Star Wars Dark Side Half Marathon was a blast last year, I really enjoyed the race. runDisney always puts on great events. If you are running this year, consider using a pacer. All pacers at runDisney events use the Jeff Galloway run/walk/run method. Pacers are all veteran Galloway training program members.

If you would like to try out a pace group at the Dark Side, just find us and join the fun. We all wear bright yellow shirts and have pacer flags. I guarantee you will have a great time if you join our pace groups!

The Girl's Got Sole - 2018 Star Wars Dark Side Half Marathon pacers


Disclaimer: I received a complimentary entry to the 2018 RNR Nashville Half Marathon 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!

The Girl's Got Sole - Rock 'n' Roll Nashville

With less than 24 days until the 2018 Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville race weekend, it’s a good time to check out the event perks. The Music City has an incredible amount of stuff for runners to enjoy between Thursday, April 26th through Sunday, April 29th. All you have to do is show your bib or finisher medal.

You can check out the complete list here, but highlights include $3 off general admission to the Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum, a free appetizer with purchase of an appetizer of equal of greater value and $4 Bloody Marys all day on Sunday, 4/29 at Honky Tonk Central, Rippy’s Bar & Grill and Tootsie Orchid Lounge. Get a $3 discount on the Old Town Trolley Tour for any of their daytime hop on/hop off tours on Saturday or Sunday. As well as 2 for 1 beer all day and night on Sunday at Mafiaoza’s Pizzeria & Neighborhood Pub.

The Girl's Got Sole - RNR Nashville Marathon & Half Marathon medals

And, if you haven’t seen the course for the RNR Nashville 26.2, 13.1 or 5k, you can check them out now. This year, the course is improved with more road width and less turning at the start of the half and full marathons. Half Marathon runners pass through Bicentennial State Park before crossing the Woodland Street bridge into the finish line at Nissan Stadium. Marathoners experience additional highlights through historic Germantown, MetroCenter, East Nashville, and Shelby Park. The top highlight of the 26.2 course is the opportunity to run on the field at First Tennessee Park. Everyone gets to enjoy an awesome finisher party with Michelob ULTRA, food from local food trucks and the Finish Line Festival concert.

If you are still interested in registering for one of the races, there is still time! Online registration cut-off is Sunday, April 22nd at 11:59pm PST. There is no race day registration, so sign up before race weekend. Use code RNRBRP2018 to save $15 on the marathon and half marathon!

Hope to see some of you in Nashville later this month!

Workout Recap W/E: 3/31

Wow, kind of hard to believe that March is over. The month seems to have flew by. Last week’s workouts were good. I ended up spending more time in the gym than usual due to my plantar fasciitis flaring up. At least I was able to get in workouts. πŸ™‚

The Girl's Got Sole - Workout Recap 3/31

Sunday, March 25th – Bike workout at the gym. After Saturday’s 10k, my PF flared up. Took it easy the rest of the weekend, but made sure I got in a workout.

The Girl's Got Sole - March 25th bike

Monday, March 26th – Back in the gym before work in the morning. My foot was still unhappy, but got in just over 7 miles on the bike.

The Girl's Got Sole - March 26th bike

Tuesday, March 27th – Was disappointed having to sit out from the morning’s scheduled run, so I slept in. Then, after work I hit the gym for another bike workout. Lots of cross-training happening.

The Girl's Got Sole - March 27th bike

Wednesday, March 28th – Typically a rest day, but I decided to get in a workout. Back in the gym for 8 1/2 miles of cross-training on the bike.

The Girl's Got Sole - March 28th bike

Thursday, March 29th – My foot was a lot calmer, so I was able to lace up and get in a run! It was also my first run with my new Garmin watch. Happy to be able to see my running friends.

The Girl's Got Sole - March 29th run

Friday, March 30th – REST DAY!

Saturday, March 31st – 6 miles of running in Winter Park with my group. Was feeling a bit tired, and by the end my PF was bugging me a bit. Still, I was glad to have gotten in a run.

The Girl's Got Sole - March 31st Sat run

How were your workouts last week?

Five on Friday 3/30/18

The Girl's Got Sole - Good Friday

I hope everyone is having a blessed Good Friday. Jesus was crucified on the cross and sacrificed himself for our sins on this day. He gave it all for us when he was beaten and nailed upon the cross. Jesus gave his life to save you and me.

1. Family time. I’m looking forward to going to spend time with my family this weekend. I will also be finally seeing the movie, ‘I Can Only Imagine’ with my mom and one of my best friends. It should be a wonderful Easter weekend, as family is very important to me.

The Girl's Got Sole - New Garmin

2. New Garmin. Last Saturday, I bought myself a new GPS watch. I’ve been wanting a new Garmin for awhile, and getting my tax return was a good time to get it. It’s the one thing I bought for myself (the rest is going to bills), and I’m liking it so far. It’s the Garmin 35 and while it’s no Fenix (way out of my price range), it’s a great watch. It will be nice to have my runs on Garmin Connect.

The Girl's Got Sole - CTM Band

3. CTM Band. Speaking of new things, I’ve also got a new recovery tool. As a BibRave Pro, we get the opportunity to review products, and I’m excited to check out the CTM Band. It was created by a fellow runner, who wants us to change the way we rehab our muscles and joints. It’s definitely a different kind of tool, and I’m excited to have the chance to review it!

4. Plantar Fasciitis woes. After last weekend’s local 10k, my PF flared up. Taking most of the week off from running helped as well as some TLC of my left foot. I was feeling so blessed to be able to get back out on Thursday morning for a 3 mile run, and am happy it seems a lot better now.

The Girl's Got Sole - Vegan Halo Top

5. Vegan Halo Top. I’m becoming quite obsessed with the vegan Halo Top ice cream lately. Each pint is 360 calories or under, and I’ve been able to work it into my daily caloric goal. It is a great end of the day treat! My favorites right now are Candy Bar and Peanut Butter Cup.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Race Recap: First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon

Disclaimer: I received an entry to the 2018 First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon 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!

The Girl's Got Sole - Sarasota Half Marathon

On March 18th, I ran in the 2018 First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon. This was actually my second time participating in this race, as I ran it back in 2013. I don’t recall much from that year, as it was one of my early half marathons. I did go out there and run it with some of my Orlando Galloway group.

This year’s race experience was different. I felt very prepared going into race week, as I had done a long 13 mile training run a couple of weeks prior. Unfortunately, my grandmother passed away the Saturday morning the weekend before the race. I ended up attending the wake on Friday night, then the funeral the day before the race. This put me in a completely different state of mind. Not to mention the long drive from Orlando to Sarasota (which took an hour longer than it should have due to horrible traffic).

The Girl's Got Sole - Flat runner

Flat runner for the race

I headed out to Sarasota with an Orlando Galloway friend that Saturday afternoon. We called the running store, Fit2Run during the drive over, and were extremely thankful that they agreed to hold our race packets beyond the 5pm pickup time. While we could have done race morning pickup, being able to get them the evening before made a big difference. It was very helpful and relieved some stress off of me.

After easily getting our race packets, dinner and checking into the hotel, my friend and I were finally able to relax. It had been a long day for me, and having a friend there with me meant a lot. We shared some laughs as we ate dinner and watched TV. Once we set up our flat runners and all for the next morning, off to bed we went.

While I wouldn’t again stay at the hotel we booked, it was conveniently located less than 15 minutes from the race start. Once we were ready to go, the only snag during race morning was a traffic backup when it came to parking. I’m not sure why it took so long to park, but it can and does happen on race morning. It wasn’t my first, nor while it be my last having to wait in a traffic backup to park.

The Girl's Got Sole - Sarasota Half Marathon

Pre-race with runner friend, Michelle.

Once parked, I was able to use the port-o-lets and walk over to the race corrals with a few minutes to spare. I felt okay, and fairly energized after drinking my Generation UCAN during the wait to park. My friend and I discussed starting together, as we are in the same pace group, but once we crossed that start line, I lost her in the crowd within minutes. No matter, I planned for that to happen since I knew she would be chasing a PR. I rarely wear headphones when I run anymore, but I did bring my ipod nano and headphones this time. I put on some music and got moving.

It didn’t take long for me to have an issue however. The sock on my left foot felt as though it was bunching up in the heel of my shoe. What the heck was going on? I ended up stopping and trying to fix it, realizing that running for 13 miles like that wouldn’t happen. It took me stopping briefly like 3-4 times before I got it in a position that I could tolerate. Having never, or not that I can recall having trouble with a sock like that during a run, I could not fathom what happened. All I knew was, it was annoying and I disliked my sock during that time period.

After the sock fiasco, I began to feel as though I had lost steam somehow, and was moving at a snail’s pace. My mind played games with me causing me to wonder if I’d be finishing last or almost last. This bugged me, and I questioned myself. I’m nowhere near a fast runner, but I was feeling as though my pace was worse than what it should have been.

The Girl's Got Sole - Sarasota Half sunrise

I also became emotional a few times, and had to stop myself from crying. Thoughts of my Nana being gone kept crossing my mind as I ran. Constantly, I had to remind myself that she was in a happier place, that she was up in heaven. There was definitely a regular mental and emotional battle within myself the entire race.

What was a memorable moment for me was coming back over the bridge, the John Ringling Causeway as the sun was coming up. It was between miles 3-5, and there is nothing like the beauty of a sunrise. I feel like it’s always a highlight and gift for getting up so early as a runner. I love it.

Other highlights for me were seeing my two other fellow BibRavePros on course. Both are faster than me, so I was able to see one of them twice, and our fastie, once during the out-and-back portion. Getting those high-fives gave me motivation and helped me push through. I love seeing runner friends when a race is an out-and-back event. I think those are really my favorite.

The Girl's Got Sole - Sarasota Half signs

There were also some fun motivational signs during the last half of the race. Some were food-related (after all, First Watch is the sponsor), and others were just great running sayings. I’m a sucker for great motivational signs on a race course. If nothing else, they can put a bit of a smile on your face.

Finishing this race, I was proud of myself. Not all races are going to be a PR, or one that you were able to perform your best. I finished in 3:09, and I felt good about that time. The race was an emotional and mentally challenging one, so the finish line signified a success. And, it was a better time than I thought I would be doing. πŸ™‚

The Girl's Got Sole - Sarasota Half Marathon

The First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon requires that participates maintain an 18 minute mile pace. The course was open for 3 hours and 30 minutes. This makes it a great race for a variety of paces. The support was still out there when I passed through each mile marker, so that was awesome.

The post-race finish festival was in full swing when I arrived. There was a great variety of snacks and food for everyone. There looked to be plenty for everyone. The Beer Garden was definitely popular. Personally, I’m not a drinker, but for those who appreciate a beer after a race, they have it covered.

The Girl's Got Sole - Sarasota Half Marathon

I really did enjoy the First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon. The water support stations and volunteers on course were amazing. Always smiling and ready to go with water. The route is fairly flat, so it’s not hilly (less for the bridge). Beautiful course, especially that bridge with the sunrise coming up as you come back over. Would run it again for sure.

If you would like to sign up for the 2019 First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon, early registration is now open! The date is set for March 24, 2019. Snag your spot, and best pricing here.