24th Mar 2014
#26550.  Something about getting your race number puts all the anticipation into reality. 
4 weeks.

#26550.  Something about getting your race number puts all the anticipation into reality. 

4 weeks.

21st Mar 2014

Been a few weeks since I’ve updated, but certainly not due to a lack of activity.  Training is kicking into high gear and thankfully, I’m still in one piece, injury free (knock on wood), and pushing on.  

I’ve now got a couple of 18 mile runs under my belt.  Unfortunately, two weeks ago, a nasty cough/cold kept me from getting in my first 20 miler. The rest ended up being much welcomed and thinking about it now, it was probably a blessing in disguise.

Last weekend, Karen and I made our way down to Washington DC to run the Rock N Roll USA Half Marathon.  We definitely lucked out with the weather for race day - 50 degrees and sunny.  With a 7:30 AM start, I was figuring it would be a relatively quiet race, with maybe a few spectators along the way because of the nice weather.  Man, was I wrong.   

People came out in masses.  There was so much positive energy along the course - people outside enjoying the nice weather, and seriously, some of the best signs I’ve seen at any race.  A personal favorite, and very topical for a race in DC, was “Run faster - the NSA is following you.”

I ran the race at my expected marathon pace, and it was a huge confidence boost - I felt awesome at the end and had confidence that I could have gone much further.  Karen had a great race too, and beat her PR by almost 2 minutes.  

This weekend, it’s back to the long run, 18-20 miles along the hills.  Officially one month to go until race day.

24th Feb 2014

After the winter we’ve had so far, we seriously could not have asked for a better day in Hyannis for the race - sunny and mid-40’s.  The conditions were perfect for a PR, and PR we did.  

To get the mileage in, I kicked the weekend off with a 6 mile easy run on the Newton Hills on Saturday.  It was just enough to get the legs moving and warmed up for the race.  Karen and I made out way down to Chatham later Saturday afternoon to spend time and enjoy a pasta dinner at casa de Murphy.

A 10 AM start meant a much welcomed chance to sleep in a bit.  Arrived in Hyannis and had a few minutes to catch up with the gang, as well as meet a few other DFMC team members who were running the race. 

It was a bit of a mob to start off, so the first few miles were at a moderate, steady pace.  After 4 miles or so, I kicked it into gear and didn’t turn back.  It was tough to keep the increased pace up, but a lot of little things kept me going - running by Craigville beach, seeing friends cheering on the sidelines, and seeing the occasional DFMC shirt.  At one point, I spotted someone wearing a Pete Frates shirt, and that gave me a huge boost of inspiration to keep going (if you don’t know Pete’s story, you can learn more about it here).

Once I crossed the finish line, I was surprised how good everything felt, and I even felt like I left a bit more out there (albeit, not much - I was perfectly ok with the race being over).  With an official time of 1:55:07, I beat my previous PR by almost a minute, and got a confidence boost going into the back half of training season.

21st Feb 2014

Running solo

Last night, for the first time in a while, I ran solo.  7 miles from the Arc to BC and back (throwing in a couple repeats up Summit Ave, because why not?)

I’ve been doing 2-3 miles solo, and I’ve spent quite a bit of time on the arc trainer, but last night was the first time I’ve run any long-ish distance solo since before training season began.  And I realized, it was exactly what I needed at this point in my training. 

Don’t get me wrong, I love running with other people.  In fact, as I talked about in my last post, a lot of my long runs hinge around having other people there to keep me going.  But something about a good solo run gets you going mentally and saying, “Yes, I can do this.”

Off to the cape for the Hyannis half this weekend, fingers crossed for a PR (although it’s going to be hard to beat my last PR in Hyannis last Memorial Day)

16th Feb 2014

Another weekend, another snowstorm, another cancelled group run.  I really hope the superstition is true, that the worse the weather during training, the better the weather on race day.  With the training season we’ve had this year, we’re looking at 50 degrees and sunny on April 21st.  But I digress…

So far this year, my long runs have been a lot easier than I expected. Maybe because the second time around, the distance isn’t as intimidating - but over the past few weeks, I’ve done 14-16 mile runs with relative ease.  That is, until this week.

No dancing around it - this week was rough.  The pace and distance was consistent with what I’ve been doing lately, but it felt like so much more of a chore this week.  Good thing I had a couple running buddies, two of my DFMC teammates Justin and Elise, otherwise there’s no way I would have gotten through 16 miles.  

It’s runs like this where you have to dig deep and remember why you are out there.  Often times, the focus is on the running, and you forget why you decided to do this in the first place.  Days like today humble you and remind you that, even when you want to quit, there’s a reason much bigger than yourself why you do this.  I’ve got a full post about my reasons for running coming up, so more on that later…

Race day is creeping up, just over 2 months to go.  Off to Hyannis next week for the half marathon.

13th Feb 2014
Had myself convinced I was going to run tonight no matter what the conditions looked like outside.  As much as I love the snow, I think this calls for heading indoors tonight instead of to the Arc.  It’s a lot less likely that I’ll get hit by a snowplow at BSC than along Comm Ave.

Had myself convinced I was going to run tonight no matter what the conditions looked like outside.  As much as I love the snow, I think this calls for heading indoors tonight instead of to the Arc.  It’s a lot less likely that I’ll get hit by a snowplow at BSC than along Comm Ave.

9th Feb 2014

This week, with the snow banks along Washington St. making it tough to run in a big group, our originally planned run from BSC Wellesley turned into repeats on the hills in Newton.  Bagel Club came a day early this week, and we began our run in Cleveland Circle.

First off, and most importantly, the theme of the week on the mixtape was One Hit Wonders, as suggested by one of my DFMC teammates, Justin. And it turned out to be a big hit (pun very much intended).

This was the first time this year that I can say I felt great on the hills. We started with a 12 mile out and back from Cleveland Circle (of course, with the necessary stop for our first photo op of the season with Heartbreak Bill). Then, as if once wasn’t enough, we ran back out to Heartbreak to take it on a second time. Finished strong for the last two miles with Justin.

So far this year, I’ve found myself slowing down for the last few miles - but this week we finished strong with mile 16 being the fastest of the day at an 8:43 split.  It’s a good sign that training is working.

Next week we’ll be back out to the hills on Sunday for another 16-18. 10 more weeks until race day.

4th Feb 2014

Been a busy few weeks so I’m behind in my blogging…but now for a quick update on my training!

Training season has been going great so far.  I have to say, the second time around, training is MUCH easier to manage - you know what to expect, you’ve run the distances before, and it’s all about consistency and execution.  

The so called “polar vortex” has made me push a lot of my mid-week workouts indoors.  The silver lining to that is, I’ve had the chance to spend some quality time with the Bluth family and catch up on Arrested Development.  

As for the weekly long runs, they’ve been as fun, challenging, rewarding, and ridiculous as ever.  This past week, we did 15 hilly miles through Lincoln/Waltham and while it was tough during the run, I felt great afterwards.  

The team is HUGE this year so it’s been a nice mix of spending time with friends from last year and meeting new people.  Those of you who know me know of my love for music, and I’ve always been known to play music during group runs.  This year, I’ve added a RoadNoise speaker vest to my repertoire (an awesome Christmas gift from the in-laws!).  Needless to say, the weekly mixtapes are back and more obscure than ever.

Thursdays are also back in full swing, this year at the Arc on Beacon St.  Nothing better than a Thursday night run followed by beers and pizza (and maybe some Cards Against Humanity if I can ever remember to bring it). Thursdays are open to anyone, so any of you runners out there, definitely let me know if you’re interested in joining!

10th Jan 2014
Officially confirmed as an entrant.  No turning back now.  14 weeks until race day.

Officially confirmed as an entrant.  No turning back now.  14 weeks until race day.

5th Jan 2014

For the first weekend of the new year, it was back to the routine.  One of the best parts about running the Boston Marathon is that training starts right after the new year - and it makes it easy to keep those new years resolutions of exercising more often.  The problem is, a lot of the training is done outdoors in New England (I think that speaks for itself).

A Thursday/Friday snowstorm created some slippery, wet conditions out on the roads, and temperatures plunged into the low single digits.  However, that did not stop over 600 people from participating in the annual Resolution Run to Kick Cancer in Lexington.  The temperature at the start was a balmy 1 degree, but we got out there anyway to support the cause.

A little warmer on Sunday, it was out to the Newton hills for the first long run of the season.  A little slippery on the carriage road, as some parts hadn’t been fully plowed, but we finished 11 miles and got the training back on track.  

15 weeks to go and many miles ahead.