Uncategorized

I’m Back!

What am I back from? Vacation? Break? Blogging Regularly? Running?

I am back for being a Cleveland Marathon Ambassador for another year! Which should also mean I’ll be back to blogging regularly.

I am very excited to share with you my training, nutrition, injuries, race preparation and of course my pups!

img_9029

Right now, I am planning to run the full marathon again. (You can read last year’s recap here.) However, that could always change to the half due to injuries. I’ve been battling hamstring issues for the past year and just recently I had a random shoulder injury. It’s been a lot of fun. (insert sarcasm).

The past couple marathons, I used the Hanson’s training plan. Which I recommend for an experience marathoner (not necessarily fast, just someone who has a couple marathons under their belt.) This year I am using a variation of the Pfitzsinger Plan.

The new plan is kinda crazy and has some high mileage which sounds dumb for an injury prone runner. However, it has less speedwork and more tempo which I thought would help my hamstring injury.

pfitsinger-plan

To be honest, I am completely failing at this plan. Which is awesome so I can show you all the modifications I make throughout a plan and why. Most of my failing right now is due to shoulder pain. Who knew you needed your shoulders to run?

img_9024
Probably part of my injuries are due to poor form while exercising and dressing badly. At least I was warm though.

If you are looking at this plan, you will notice I have a goal marathon in April. I am hoping to run a marathon in early April to really test my legs out. I will post a followup training plan to the transition from the April Marathon to the May Marathon. The Pfitzsinger plan is really good at running multiple marathons.

If you have any questions please let me know but I am excited for another journey with the Cleveland Marathon Experience.

Now, with being back for another year of Cleveland Ambassador fun, I have a giveaway!

For the first time ever, I will not be doing the giveaway on my blog but rather on Instagram. So you will want to follow @thetamburarunner on instagram where the giveaway will take place. The giveaway will not start until this afternoon so you have plenty of time to follow me and stalk all my pictures 🙂

 

Uncategorized

Reindeer Run 5K 2016

Most years, the Reindeer Run 5K is my last race of the year. The weather is too unpredictable in December to plan to race in Cleveland. Also, I like to enjoy the holidays and take a break from racing. However, not only is the Reindeer Run my last race of the year, it is also the last race usually until March! It’s a crazy long time for me to not have any races.

With this race being the last of the year, I always hope to run a good time. That whole go out with a band kind of thing. Luckily, Ryan ran his last race of the year a day before mine so I had my own personal pacer for this race.

img_8738

It was a little chilly at the start and I felt like I was the only one in shorts. But I had these awesome penguin socks that were so festive, I had to show them off. Plus, I really like running in shorts.

Ryan and I had discussed the pace and finish time I wanted so we were all set. He let me start the race on my own and then jumped in a few meters later so the start line was less crowded. However, we didn’t quite come in on time for the first mile. And I think the first mile was a bit long. No worries, we had the second mile to tackle. However, my legs just didn’t have it.

With 1.5 miles to go, I think Ryan realized we weren’t going to hit the goal time and knew it just wasn’t there. With that in mind, he stayed positive and kept pushing me to keep running hard and pass people. It was really nice, especially with 1 mile to go when my legs wanted to slow down and felt like sludge.

reindeer-run-2016

I ended up running a 23:05, definitely not what I was aiming for. After running the Turkey Trot, I really thought I could pull off a good last race of the year. Oh well, I have a couple months off racing now and then the plan is to come back faster for 2017!

img_8737

Uncategorized

Turkey Trot 2016

I think the Turkey Trot might be my longest standing race that I have not missed. I am always in town for it, I always brave the winter for it and I am miraculously not injured for it. Looking back it looks like I’ve done the Turkey Trot every year since 2007, next year will be 10 years!

Luckily, last year and this year we have had pretty decent weather for this race. Last year, I easily wore shorts. This year, I also wore shorts but it was probably questionable on if I should have been wearing them as my legs turned bright red.

We started a new tradition last year where Ryan’s cousin comes with us. I love this because I hope it means she’s inspired to run. And she must like it if she came back again this year.

img_8658

Over the years the Turkey Trot course has changed a bit but always starts and ends in downtown Cleveland. This year was a new course and both the 5K and 5 mile started at the same time.

I was slowly chipping away at my race times so I had high hopes for this race but went in extra conservative and only wanted to run a 37:30. After listening to 3 patriotic songs the race started.

img_8656
Hanging out with The Healthsource of Avon crew.

It’s always hard when both the 5K and 5 mile start at the same time because you have to really pay attention to your pace and not get caught up with the 5K paces. I have no idea how I managed to actually go out at a decent pace and not go too crazy.

Luckily, the 5K split off early on so it was easier for me to guide my pace. I am awful at pacing myself by the way. With 2 hills, my pace was extra crazy and I was pretty sure I wouldn’t hit my goal time.

Eventually, the 5K and the 5 mile merge and chaos ensued. Okay, not complete chaos but it was definitely less than ideal. Basically, the 5K runners took up the whole course and the 5 milers were running single file or weaving through the 5K runners. This definitely slowed me down and caused a little frustration. However, I tried to remember a couple things.

One, I was not going to win or even place in my age group for this race. Two, the 5K runners do not realize what is happening and the problem they are causing. Three, it’s the Turkey Trot and it’s supposed to be FUN!

Somehow, I think being slowed down actually helped me out. I felt like I had so much energy for the last mile of the race. I was picking it up like crazy for the last mile and was completely shocked when I crossed the line with 36:56. WAY WAY WAY better than I expected.

img_8657

Uncategorized

Flash Back 16 Years

Does anyone else just want to jump into Stars Hollow and live there?

Oh and Stars Hollow is an actual place you can visit. Kind of.

starshollow

Yeah, that’s right, I started watching Gilmore Girls. From the very beginning but why now?

Honestly, I’ve never really been interested in the show until they came out with the follow up “A Day in the Life.” This show came out when I was a sophomore in high school so it’s a fun little flash back in time. Fun Fact: I’ve never watched Dawson’s Creek or My So Called Life either.

I can’t believe how well this show aged! I have a crush on Luke but wonder if that is because I am watching the show while I am in my 30’s. Would I have a crush on Dean or Tristan if I watched this when I was 16?

chadmichael

Oh who am I kidding, I’ve had a crush on Chad Michael Murray since I started watching One Tree Hill. I was late to the One Tree Hill party as well but only by about 2 years so I only had a couple seasons to catch up on.

So no spoilers, I’m only on Season 1 and only watched a couple episodes but I have been completely hooked after 1 episode.

 

Uncategorized

Dead Sprint 5K 2016

Quick name the best way to spend a runners Birthday?????

Running a race of course!

Luckily, there are plenty to choose from since my birthday is so close to Halloween.

This race takes place in my neighborhood so it makes it easy to run every year as I cannot pass up the chance to run on familiar territory.

After having a couple rough races this fall, I was finally getting excited to run as I was seeing results finally. My goal for this race was to run just a little faster than my previous 5K. No PR, just running a little faster with every race.

The start for this race is always tricky as there are a lot of kids who want to line up at the front of the line.I lined up fairly close to the start since it is a smaller race and I wanted to get space right away without trampling anyone over. That plan worked perfectly and I eased right into a comfortable pace early on.

There were A LOT of people who went out way too fast. Both kids, adults and seasoned runners. While it might have sucked for them because they died out within the first half mile to a mile. It was great for me because I had lots of people to pick off and pass for the rest of the race.

The first mile came and went and I felt pretty strong. I kept a pretty similar pace for the second mile which is extremely rare for me. Usually the second mile I slow down significantly.

I was pretty confident that I was in 2nd place overall female by this point. I could only see the other girl on the long straightaways so I knew I wasn’t going to catch her. However, as I started to close in on the person in front of me, I noticed they had a bun, short shorts and shaved legs. OMG, how did I not know about this other girl! Shoot.

However, this other girl was slowing down so I knew I could catch her. Hopefully, she didn’t try to come with me as I passed her.

As I got closer, I realized this girl had a beard! And a man bun! It wasn’t a girl at all. Phew.

Knowing the neighborhood was awesome because I knew where I was the whole time and how far the finish was. I know my Garmin would tell me the actual distance but sometimes it helps to be able to visualize it.

As I was coming down the main street, Rocky River drive, I was reaching that pukey phase where I knew I couldn’t push any harder. I saw Ryan on the side of the street and asked if there was anyone behind me and thankfully he said no.

img_8401

I crossed the line as the second overall female and first in my age group with a time of 22:41. A slight improvement on the last race so I was perfectly happy with that.

img_8394

Huge congratulations to Ryan who was the overall winner for the second year in a row. My goal is to get fast enough that I can also be the overall female winner with him.

img_8400

Bodhi and Bandit did not race but they did discover how to lay on the heating pad when it is on. Sadly, there are no medals for this.

Uncategorized

Race To A Million 5K

After racing bad many times and wanting to give up on running all together, I signed up for another race. Why? Because I love torture.

Actually, I signed up because it was a money race and I actually had a shot. For whatever reason this race has a small turnout. Probably because there are so many other races the same weekend as this race and the weekend before so everyone is recovering.

Before the race, I only saw 1-2 people that might beat me which I was ok with. The top 3 overall all got cash money. Like a good amount too. Ryan was also racing and his chances were the same as mine.

The morning of the race was cold and crazy windy. It felt like a winter day and I bet it kept runners at home that thought they would sign up when they got there.

The race started and I went out pretty conservatively. It had been awhile since I had done a speed race so no idea what to expect.

For the first time in forever, I felt really good and my legs actually felt like they knew how to run fast. My turnover had returned! As I glanced at my watch, I could see I wasn’t quite at the paces I wanted but as I neared the first mile I was in 4th place and the next person was in reach.

I wish I could say I sat back and waited to pass her but instead she was just barely faster than me. At the second mile, I looked at my watch and I could see that we both had slowed down. However, I felt great and my legs still had something left so I hoped the woman in front of me would continue to slow.

With a half mile to go I picked up the pace as she had gained a little bit of a lead on me. I was slowly closing in on the lead but not quite fast enough. As we made the last turn toward the finish line, she had just enough space and she got me. She took third while I took fourth.She took home cash while I took home a pumpkin. For real, they gave out mini pumpkins after the race.

As I tried to catch my breath, Ryan came over and I thought to myself, “well at least one of us brought home prize money.” However, Ryan informed me that he too came in fourth! He was recovering from just completing a marathon weeks prior and wasn’t quite ready to race.

image1
Ryan loves the crying MJ meme so he thought it was perfect for the occasion.

 

I knew the race was close for third and I ran a time of 22:49. However, I found out I missed 3rd by 4 seconds! 4 SECONDS!

Oh well, I ran my best that day and that was all I was ready for.

img_8326
Bandit thinks us racing is exhausting. I agree.
Uncategorized

Towpath Half Marathon

When picking out races for the year, I had decided I was going to run the Presque Isle Erie Marathon as my fall full marathon. After some health issues over the summer, I decided it would be best if I picked a different fall marathon instead and decided I would run the Towpath Marathon. The Erie Marathon and Towpath Marathon are only a few weeks apart so I am not sure why I thought this would really make a difference. It should be no surprise that I ended up changing to the Half Marathon as I saw how poorly I was running this year.

However, for this race I went into it knowing that I would likely run very poorly and was hoping that I could go sub 1:50 for this race.

Race morning it was very cold for early October. I ended up wearing shorts and a tank top anyways but it was very chilly.

Exactly like the other half marathon I ran, my pace dropped significantly by the time I got to the 3rd mile. Unlike past races, I didn’t feel completely like I wanted to quit. Maybe I had just come to terms with my new slower paces. Maybe I just really love running on the Towpath.

In the past, I remember more fall colors during this race but there was actually a lot of green left on the trees. It was still really pretty to run through though. I think my only complaint would be that the path gets narrow in a few places and you have to go single file in both directions. For me it really wasn’t frustrating since I knew I wasn’t going to be running a PR and was already off my goal pace.

A lot of people will tell you that it is slower to run on the Towpath. I disagree with this statement, I feel like I run really well on the Towpath…normally. It’s softer on the body than running on asphalt.

not-hating-running-towpath-2016

The course is extremely flat and mostly out and backish. On the way back though I felt like it was taking forever to get to the Boston Store. Even with half a mile to go I was like where is it. It pops up so quickly once you get to it but i felt like I couldn’t even hear any spectators up ahead.

I ended up not running my goal time and finished with a time of 1:50:03. Officially hung up the running shoes on long distance races for the year after this one. Don’t get me wrong, I will be back and am still running long now. Just the racing long thing hasn’t been going so well. I did buy a giant bag of kettle corn after the race so I have that going for me.

img_8269

Racing has gone extremely well for Ryan and he PR’d in the marathon at this race! Ended up finishing 5th overall.

img_8264