Weekly Training Report: April 21st – 27th

April 21-27

First of all, you may notice it has been a while since I posted a weekly training report. Long story short, I didn’t run much in the middle of April. I will recap the BAA race with the rest of my Boston posts and I will go into more detail about my lack of running when I recap the month.

Monday – Boston Marathon Spectating!

Short version – It was AMAZING! Truly a memorable experience! Sorry, you will have to wait until I post the longer version… in a couple of weeks by the looks of things…

Tuesday – Rest

In my defense, I considered running several times. The weather was decent but I was exhausted. I was also STARVING when I got home. Running when that hungry just isn’t smart. Neither is running after wolfing down too much food. It was also REALLY nice to just be lazy on my couch.

Wednesday – 2.47 Miles

Since I hadn’t done much in the way of “Training” I decided to just get out there for a run. Pace and distance did not matter. I decided it would be nice to run my favorite route. I was pleasantly surprised when I got home and saw my pace. Most of the run I felt tired and sluggish. Pretty sure the lack of sleep while in Boston caught up with me.

Thursday – Rest

I didn’t feel like running. Plain and simple. The weather wasn’t the greatest either. So I just decided to bail on the plan of running. I am also going to point out that I crawled into bed close to 8 because I was pretty tired.

Friday – Rest

Yea ok – Again, just didn’t feel like running. Plus the wind was crazy. I toyed with the idea of doing my longer run but my heart wasn’t in it at all so I knew that would make for a rather unpleasant long run attempt. Instead, I enjoyed the nice weather by walking to/from packet pick-up and getting some frozen yogurt.

Saturday – 4.49Miles

I had such high hopes for this run. I needed at least 7 miles but wanted 8. I decided to run 3.50 miles north and assess how I was feeling and if I was still feeling good I would another half mile north before turning around. I also figured that if I wasn’t feeling the greatest at 3.50 mile I could turn around and still add if I was feeling decent when I got closer to home. About a half a mile into the run, I knew I was not going to get 8. About another half mile later I questioned whether I would even get 7. The wind was brutal… so brutal that I had tears streaming down my face. It was also COLD and though, I did eventually warm up, it took longer than normal. My stomach also didn’t feel right and I quickly figured out that it would have been smarter to wait another before heading out for the run to let my breakfast settle more. Needless to say when I stopped for water around 2.25 miles, I just couldn’t keep running north. But I can only go so far south before having to turn back around and it was NOT warm enough to run far enough south to get the mileage and then walk home. I made the decision to just run home and call it a day. I was a bit disappointed but it had also been a solid 3 weeks since I have done a longer run. Plus I had only done roughly 10 miles over the past 3 weeks. So really, all things considered it was not terrible.

Sunday – Ravenswood 5K

In case you missed it, you can read my full recap here. Overall, I really liked the race and it was a lot of fun running with Anne and Mo. Plus, I felt decent running… although I could have done without the strong headwind on Lawrence. My feet were also a bit raw from my attempted long run on Saturday… clearly I did not considered that ahead of time. I think what I really need are new running socks.


Yea, so training has kind of gone to hell in a hand-basket. This is why I don’t follow plans, because if I get sidelined then I find it cumbersome to get back on track. So after stressing about it a little bit I have decided to take a better approach to the next 3 or so weeks of training before SF10. I will work on maintaining my nice little solid base that I spent the winter working and I will throw in a longer run when I can but I won’t give myself any pressure to do so. My schedule is pretty hectic this week and next with some things that I can’t really fit in a run around. Plus with a solid week of expected rain… running long doesn’t look to feasible.

I KNOW I can finish SF10 and I actually think I can still run a pretty decent race. I am in better shape right now than I was at this time last year. I think as long as I still get in at least about 5 or 6 miler, I should be perfectly fine. My goal for SF10 isn’t lofty so I think I can still nail it. But the next couple of weeks will be telling. I really just need to work on getting back out there consistently.


Race Recap: Ravenswood 5K

1 Ravenswood 4-27-14

On Sunday I participated in the Ravenswood 5K for the first time. It is a race that has been on my radar for years but there was always another conflict, so I was never able to participate. I decided it wasn’t going to be a goal race and I would just run it for fun. After all, the Wurst Running Club Ever would be out in full force.

Lucky for me that I choose to not have it as a goal race because the wind was brutal. But I am getting ahead of myself…

Friday after work, I went home and changed and then walked down to Fleet Feet to get my race packet. It was a beautiful day out so I walked home as well. On the way home I decided I needed Frozen Yogurt… Carb loading right?

This race is known for a good shirt design and this year was definitely no disappointment. I really like the shirt. Of course with the icky weather we are to have this week, it might be a while before I can wear just a T-shirt to run in… sigh… will winter ever end?

Fast forward to Sunday morning and I was wide awake at least an hour before my alarm clock. But I got up, showered, and started drinking water. Eric and I had come up with a plan the night before so I headed out with a little bit of time before the bus was to be at the stop (according to bus tracker).  Eric and I tend to air on the side of early to a race since we have both had those races where we had to rush once getting to the race site (or in my case, sprint to the start line). But what we had not planned on was this particular bus driver going well over the speed limit down Clark. We arrived a mere 15 minutes or so after we got on the bus.

Talk about early…

We milled around a bit and both thought it was far cooler than either of us would like and the wind certainly was not helping. Eventually we went to gear check and then to the race start. We parted ways as Eric lined up with the speedy people and I headed back towards the 10:00 pace sign. I figured I would just run by feel but also didn’t want to be stuck behind a lot people.

While I was waiting, I spotted Mo and Anne and walked over to them. I knew Anne had a goal in mind for the race. Turns out Mo was planning to run with her so I decided to run with them as well. Racing is a lot more fun when you have people to chat with along the way.

We lined up right in front of the 11:00 pace sign and took a quick pic. (Pic compliments of Anne)

Ravenswood 4-27-14

We slowly moved to the start line. We had been forewarned that there were speed bumps on course and we would encounter 4 of them quickly. And that was certainly true. However, I was rather impressed by how well they were marked and that volunteers were giving us advance notice that they were coming up. As such, I never found the speed bumps to be an issue.

Before the one mile mark we saw Lynton spectating but there was an older gentleman standing right before him clapping and wishing us all good luck. I looked right at him and had a “where have I seen him before” moment. About two steps later I realized he was the mayor so of course I had seen him before. Leave it to me to have a delayed reaction when the MAYOR is clapping less than 3 feet away from me.

We kept running and I veered off for water at the water station and told Mo and Anne that I would catch up to them. Thank goodness for Mo’s blue hat which made her easy to spot in the crowd.

One thing I noticed about the course was a LOT of turns. It wasn’t really an issue but it has been a while since I ran a 5K race with that many turns.

Eventually we turned onto Lawrence and were running directly into a strong headwind. Have I ever mentioned how much I hate the Chicago wind?

Once we got up to the next turn we spotted Pete who hopped in to run with us toward the finish line. He spotted a co-worker so sprinted ahead to say hi to them. But by then the finish line was in sight so we ran on in and got Anne to a course PR! Congrats to Anne!

Afterwards, Mo and I headed to gear check to get out bags and quickly found the others. (Pic from Anne)

5 Ravenswood 4-27-14

We then headed to the bar right at the finish line, which I cannot pronounce… let alone spell. But it was a nice little Irish pub. We grabbed drinks, beer for my comrades and a Mimosa for me and then got seated and order food. The food was yummy and it was nice just sitting around chatting.

Eventually we parted ways… well… I sprinted off since I had 6 minutes to get to the bus stop (thank you bus tracker).

My Official Time – 34:48 for a Pace of 11:13

All in all it was an excellent way to spend a Sunday. I also am really glad that I finally got to take part in this race. If things work out scheduling wise, I see no reason why this race won’t make it back on the race calendar annually.

Ravenswood 5K 2014 Results

Bandit Running

I originally had a different post in mind for today but I pushed everything back. I am still planning to update everyone on my trip to Boston and I am breaking the trip up into multiple posts. In between all of that, I will recap races that I have run and my weekly training. But most of the other posts will be Boston related for quite a while.

I wanted to do a few posts last week about my trip but I was exhausted and busy and it took my too long to get my pictures in order so that I COULD post about the trip. Sometimes sleep or being lazy takes priority… I am human, what can I say.

Now – onto the REAL reason I decided to postpone my original post for today.


There have been two stories floating around about Fake bibs running the Boston Marathon. This infuriates me!

Bandit running is a common issue in a lot of races but most bandit runners will just hop onto the course and run without a bib. But what these people did with Boston is actually create a FAKE bib (that was a duplicate of an actual legit runners bib) and run the race.

I know of two specific stories of this having been done. I would not be surprised to see more come out over the coming days.

I do NOT support bandit running in any form.

It is one thing for a friend to jump onto a course to help another friend who is legit running the race because they need help for a mile or two. And I have also seen lots of instances where a child will run the last tenth of a mile (or whatever) with their parent to cross the finish line. I really don’t have any issue with either of those cases. The person jumping in is not running the whole race and they are not trying to collect the medal at the end of the race either. And though I don’t really have an issue with this, a LOT of races are cracking down on this from a safety/security perspective. After Boston last year, really, added security is not a bad a thing

But what these people did with Boston was actually create (or buy… there is no clear information on this) FAKE bibs. They then lined up in the corral and ran the race. Not only did they use the resources that were there for the runners who legally (not the best word choice but lets go with it) were running the race but from a security standpoint.  These fake runners (yes, I do think that is an appropriate term) also collected a medal at the end of the race but they didn’t truly pay for that medal. They also put the BAA and others at risk.

See when you register for a race, you sign a waiver that you know what you are doing (more or less) and you will not hold the race responsible if something should happen to you. I know this is done for a half and full but I believe that it is done for smaller distance races as well. If you do not sign up for the race legit then you do not sign that waiver and therefore become a HUGE liability for the race.

And from another security standpoint, a person trying to do harm could use this method to do so. I really HATE that this thought even crossed my mind but unfortunately, that is the world we now live in.

I am now going to point out that this is not the BAA’s fault. They took every precaution with the marathon and everyone said that they felt safe the entire time. They did everything in their power to make sure everyone had a good safe race. And really, as a spectator, I have to say that the feeling at the race was all positive. I also felt safe the ENTIRE time.

Which is partially why I am now so furious about these fake runners.

Boston is the most prestigious Marathon. Runners spend most of their (running) lives dreaming of running this race. They spend YEARS trying to BQ (Qualify for Boston).

Printing a fake bib is like slapping the most prestigious race in the face and saying f$ck you to the whole running community.

What’s worse, is one couple actually seemed PROUD of what they did. Which angers me so much more. What you did is NOT proud! What you did is WRONG. I don’t care who you are and I don’t care how much you wanted to run with your spouse. IT. WAS. WRONG!!!!

I fully understand how everyone wanted to be a part of THIS year’s marathon. And really, I cannot fault you for WANTING to be a part of it this year. You are amongst those that wanted to take back the finish line and show that evil won’t prevail. I get that, but if you were NOT able to get into the race in legitimate fashion then you should have chosen to be part of the race the way I did, as a spectator, cheering for every runner that was on that course. I knew I couldn’t be a part of the actual race itself, but I also knew that I could be amongst the spectators showing that I was not afraid to be there cheering on the runners… most of whom are fulfilling their dream.

The BAA has already stated that they are looking into the matter. I am not sure what will be done to the fake runners. But I hope they are punished.

As for how to prevent this in the future… well… that is difficult, I am sure. Races have timing chips which is how you get your official time. They are connected to the bib (or it’s a separate chip for the shoe) and that runner is known by that “chip”. There has been no mention of whether these fake bibs had the timing chip or not… though I suspect they did not. And it is difficult to glance at a bib and know if it is fake or not. But my assumption is that going forward, you will need to scan your bib before being allowed into the start corral.

If you would like to read the two stories that I know of, you can click on the following links.

Story # 1

Story # 2

Picture Friday


SpringI would say this is pretty accurate…

Boston Magazine Cover
I have loved this image since it came out and I think it is a good representation of the running community in regards to this tragedy

And the back cover – which I equally love

Boston StrongAnother good depiction

A year in the making but we DID finish the race. Spectating this year was just such an incredible experience.


I have lots of posts and pictures for you all from my Boston trip but have needed some time to put everything together. Will start posting about the trip next week. Until then, have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Boston Bound!

I am heading to the airport to fly off to Boston. Despite my insanely early flight time (which I choose), I am looking forward to the flight. Why, you may ask. Because my father was nice enough to not only treat me to the flight as a Birthday Present but also treated me to First Class. Yes, Folks, my father is awesome!

The first class seat, I am sure, will be far more comfortable to sleep in too. Luckily I sleep well on planes. Hopefully my excitement will subside enough to LET me sleep though.

This trip has been a year in the making. It was less than a week after the bombings that I decided I wanted to do this trip. Lucky for me, my parents are joining me so the trip really will be awesome. Plus I get to see at least one (possibly two) awesome lady while I am out there.

Words really cannot explain how much this trip means to me. What happened last year was emotional… to say the least. And I have no doubt that this year will also be emotional. But it is one year later and we are stronger.

I am excited to explore a city that I have never been to. Even more, I am excited to see Fenway Park… even if I am a die hard Yankee Fan… I will just have to stay a tad quiet about that this weekend. I also get to participate in a 5K.

I have always known that I would never qualify for Boston. I am just not that fast and what’s more, Marathon running is not in my running future. This 5K is the closest I will ever get to the experience of THIS marathon. And though it is a goal race for me, it is more than that.

This is my dedication to the events of last year and to all the victims. It is my thanks to all of the people that helped on that day and the days after. My true goal is to run the best race that I am capable of running Saturday.

It is possible that a non-runner won’t understand why I want to run this race for the victims and all those that have helped… But I know that there will be people who understand this.

I know emotions will be high over the next week. They already have been with the one year anniversary already behind us. But I will be amongst friends and family. And I don’t just don’t mean that in the literal sense. I will be amongst runners and loved ones supporting their runners. That is a family. It is a family that I am so very honored to be a part of.

There won’t be any posts until I get back. But you can count on a lot of posts about this trip when I do get back. Until then…

#weallrunboston #weruntogether #bostonstrong

Weekly Training Report: April 7 – 13

Apr 7-13

Monday & Tuesday – Rest

After my run on Sunday, I was really worried that I was on the verge of injury so I decided I was going to take an extra rest day for the week and then attempt the longer run on Wednesday. Monday and Tuesday seemed like a good place to add in the extra rest days because the weather was really rather icky.

Wednesday – 3.40 Miles

This was a long run fail. I laced up and headed out for my 7 mile run. The first few blocks were rather painful but then things seemed to loosen up quite a bit so I thought I was all clear. But after about a mile and a half I started to feel pain again. It wasn’t excruciating but it was worrisome. When I stopped for water and then started back up again… let’s just say YOWZA. That hurt. After that the pain wouldn’t really go away. I knew I wasn’t running 7 miles. I considered running home and debated doing just that for about half a mile but I knew the smarter decision was to stop running and walk. Luckily for me, the weather was nice and walking home would not mean freezing… which also added to my decision to walk home. Had it been cold out, I would have run home.

Thursday & Friday – Rest

I wasn’t completely convinced that the pain I was feeling was an injury. Part of me wondered if the pain was caused by my shoes being at mileage. I was near 300 miles but had also done a LOT of walking in them as well. But I decided to air on the side of caution because I really didn’t to risk it. I would rather take the extra time off then keep running and have it be an injury which would sideline me for much longer. I did, however, walk about 4 miles total on Friday when I went to get my race packet. It was really nice out so I decided to walk to packet pick-up and home.

Saturday – Race to Wrigley 5K

The weather was wonderful on Saturday morning and I was excited about the race. I decided to run in the shoes that I plan to take to Boston with me. I figured if I didn’t have the pain while running in the race that the issue was, in fact, caused by shoes being at mileage. My theory was confirmed when I didn’t have any pain. I ran the race at a very leisurely pace though. It wasn’t a goal race and I was still a bit paranoid so I figured it would be better to run slower. You can read my full recap here.

Sunday – Rest

Because it was so warm on Saturday and all the buildings in Chicago are still blasting the heat like it is winter, I really didn’t sleep well at all. I was going to try to get a run in but I was just too tired. So instead I stayed on the couch and tried to sleep most of the day. I ended up not sleeping much because I was still too hot.


To say last week was not a stellar week would be an understatement. I still think I made the right decision in taking the time to rest instead of risking it. But it is a small wrench in the plan. I still have plenty of time before SF10 and really there wasn’t anything else I could do to prepare for the BAA 5K. So the timing was right.

This week has not been stellar yet either… the weather has turned back to icky… very icky… we got snow on Monday. I am sick of winter.

Heading off to Boston tomorrow and cannot wait!

Race Recap: Race to Wrigley 5K


1 Race to Wrigley 4-12-14The Front of the Shirt

2 Race to Wrigley 4-12-14
The Back of the Shirt

Saturday was the Race to Wrigley 5K. I like this race a lot because it isn’t your typical race course on the Lakefront Trail. Instead, you get to run through Wrigleyville and then through the lower concourse of the stadium.

The weather magically turned to spring last week and so on Friday, I took advantage and decided to walk to/from packet pick-up. Wrigley Field is about 2 miles from my place so it was about a 4 mile round trip that didn’t take too long. The wind was insane though and there was a lot of dirt and debris flying around. I then had pizza for dinner and went to bed early.

There were fewer friends running this one this year, but that’s ok. We kept it close and personal. Eric wasn’t running but said he would go with me and cheer me and our friends on, which is was really nice since it meant getting up early (for him) without actually running. He was also nice enough to be my personal bag check.

We met up with our friend Kurt about 20 minutes before the race started. Vijay was running late and apparently the red line skipped the stop so he ended up being real late for the race.

Given my leg issues last week, I was a bit anxious about the race. I really don’t want an injury right now and I was trying out a different pair of running shoes in hopes that it would solve the knee issues. But this was never a goal race so I had mentally decided to just run it a leisurely pace.

I lined up a few minutes before the race and was off. I was actually feeling pretty good but was getting thirsty pretty quickly. It was far warmer than it had been and in hindsight, a t-shirt or tank top might have been a smarter choice instead of the long sleeve I wore but oh well.

I was VERY happy to see that the race actually added an additional water station on the course. Typically (and in past years) there has only been about half way through the race but this year there was one at about the one mile mark and then again at the two mile mark. Awesome job race organizers! Although, I will admit, when I came to the first water stop, I was nervous that they just set up in the wrong spot and I would be going the last two miles without water. Thank goodness that fear wasn’t reality.

After the second water station I picked up a little bit of speed but I could tell that my heart wasn’t in this race. It was never a goal race and I was starting to get a blister on my right instep… which is hardly ideal…

I sprinted to the finish but my conservative start was evident by the finish time on the clock. Meh. Like I said, I went with a leisurely pace.

Afterwards, I got my Water, bagel and Iced Tea Juice thing (Argo tea was giving out tea in glass bottles… I didn’t really want the tea but an extra glass drinking bottle is pretty good) and looked for Eric.

And I quickly realized that not choosing an EXACT meeting spot wasn’t all that smart… especially since I did not run with my phone. Whoops… It took me about 20 minutes of walking around to find him.

But luckily by then, we had very little time to wait for Kurt and Vijay to finish the race. We didn’t stick around too much after that and instead, headed over to Clark’s for Breakfast. We sat around and chatted for quite a bit before parting ways.

My Official Time – 33:54 for a 10:57 Pace

Race to Wrigley 2014 Results

Picture Friday

Good Morning

Sunrise 4-11-14
This was my view at the bus stop this morning.

1 Night Out 4-5-14
My best friend and I went out on Saturday for drinks. She snapped this picture of me

2 Night Out 4-5-14
And a picture of the two of us

I Can and I will Watch Me
I have had a small set-back this week. I hope it is nothing serious but I WILL get back out there and I WILL eventually hit my goals. Just a tiny bump in the road…

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

New Winner!

Alright – This particular post will be VERY short and sweet. I have selected a new winner for the Michelob Ultra 13.1 & 5K.

Lucky Number 7 – Jim who left the comment “I’d love to try their half marathon. My first half is scheduled for May, so this would give me enough time to rest and train for a second. Thanks for hosting the competition!”

Jim – Please email me at NeverGetsEasierJustGetBetter@gmail.com to claim your prize