FFF: Ultimate Coffee Date for Dec. ’21

It’s that time of the month…

Amazon.com: Ceramic Running Christmas Coffee Mug | Running's My Favorite : Home & Kitchen

time to join up with Coco & Deborah
for their ultimate coffee date.

1. Over coffee… 

I’d tell you that 2021 seems to have sped by.  But I think I’m on track (barring injury) to reach my 1000 mile running goal.

as of today, I’m up to 935!!!

2.Over coffee…

I’d tell you that I’m not into challenges and definitely not one related to ST but in November I actually completed one:

One 60 Second Plank each day for 30 days (through ZOOMA run club)

3.Over coffee…

I’d tell you that what I like about this Plank challenge was that it only took ONE minute a day… and it got easier rather than harder. Since I was working from home, I could do it any time of the day and even in my PJs or running clothes.

May be a closeup of text

Most plank challenges have you add time each day… so that you get stronger..

Hey, a one minute plank was a big enough deal for me. LOL

4.Over coffee…

I’d tell you that no, I was not tempted to continue my planks after November 30.

But due to the time change, I’ve had to do more of my 3 mile weekday runs at lunch time (or lighted UAlbany) and do my walks at the mall (both outdoor and indoor).

5.Over coffee…

I’d tell you that I only have one more race for 2021.  That makes 21 for the year. (That number was just an accident.)

I’m pretty excited about this fun one because it was canceled last year and I was injured in 2019.  And you get to dress up.  But more importantly is that this is the last year for the Holiday Lights in the Park so it will most likely be the last year for this race. Sigh.

Happy Running! What’s new with you? Any challenges completed?  Any holiday-themed runs or races planned? Please share.


 

 

 

 

 


It’s Friday so I’m also linking up with bloggers, Me (My First 5K and More), Running With AttitudeRun Laugh Eat PieRuns with Pugs, and Zenaida!

So Join in!

And don’t forget to link back to your hostesses and visit some other bloggers.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Troy Turkey Trot 10K Race Recap

Image result for troy turkey trot 2019

November 25, 2021 8 am

This was my 6th time running the Troy Turkey Trot 10K.

I really enjoyed this race my first time I ran it in 2014 (in spite of the snowstorm) and now I look forward to running it every year.

happy because it was and still is my 10K PR (check out all the snow!)

In 2018, it was FREEZING and I DNSed the race partly because of the weather but mostly because I was going to running a hilly Half Marathon 2 days later (which seemed more important.)

In 2020, the race went virtual and I did not run it.

In 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, I even ran both races – the 10K followed by the 5k.  Why not? I was already dressed and ready to run. This year, I was not as crazy. Just the10K as in my first year.

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

I had signed up for the Turkey Trot Challenge but after two group meetings, I quit.

too late, too dark, no real coaches… yada yada

So there was no training for this race.  I considered it just a fun event to get outdoors’ meet up with other runners and justify all the food that I would consume later in the day.

Previous Troy Turkey Trot 10K times:

  • 2014 – 57:03 (PR)
  • 2015 – 59:33
  • 2016 – 57:51
  • 2017 – 57:42
  • 20:18 – DNS
  • 2019 – 59:06
  • 2:20 – cancelled

However, I ran a hilly half marathon just four days before the race and did a short run two days prior. During that short run, my legs reminded me that they were in recovery mode.

So I guess my goal for this year’s 10k could be sub 1 hour but really just being out there and running with a smile would make me happy!

2015, my PW

I picked up my bib the previous Saturday so I didn’t have to rush on race morning. The pick-up location was different for the first time (Italian Community Center) and a drive through… Traffic back-up so not a good idea (but it is what it is.)

and a unisex shirt that’s too big

I carb loaded with pasta (instead of pizza) Wednesday evening and planned my Thanksgiving running outfit. I tried to be festive but also comfortable for the running weather that day:

2 shirts or one? capris or skirt or tights?

Race Day:

Things didn’t start out great.  I didn’t sleep well the night before and the my alarm did not go off. Luckily my cat woke me up at 6:15 am.  But I had planned to leave at 6:30 in order to arrive early to get parking. So I got quickly dressed, choked down my coffee and cream of wheat (instead of oatmeal). I checked the weather. Yikes! 25 degrees.  I grabbed a vest and sprinted out the door.

One advantage of leaving a little later than planned was the beautiful sunrise during my drive

There was no traffic and I found parking in a lot across from a bowling alley where I parked in previous years. I was still early so I waited in my car until I saw some runners that I knew.

obligatory pre-race photo

and together we walked a few blocks to the Atrium where we could wait indoors for the race to begin.

img_3225

pic from a previous year but it’s the same start

There was no bag check and you had to wear a mask as you waited indoors (due to COVID, of course). Still there were indoor rest rooms and lots of runners hanging out. I was nice to be able to bump into  runners that I had not seen in awhile.

Tom and I used to see each other at many races (and he is known for this “power’ pose)

This a very popular local race as I mentioned so I always bump into so many runners that I know. I chatted until it was time to brave the temps.

Participants gather in the Atrium for the 2016 Troy Turkey Trot in Troy, NY, on Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Michael P. Farrell/Times Union)

inside the Atrium (a previous year) – so many more runners that year and you were allowed to hang out on both floors

The 10K started at 8 am followed by the kid’s one mile race and a one mile walk and then at 10 am, the most popular event, the 5K.

The 10K course this year was the same as previous years.

Elevation:

according to my Garmin – I think it lost a signal going over the bridge

As someone was singing the national anthem, I squeezed into the crowd with the 10 minute pace group. You had to wear a mask until you crossed the start. And everyone was!!

My plan for the race was to not to start out too fast and to run at an even pace and to save some for the last mile. (I know. I say that for every race. LOL)

Obviously this race was a lot less crowded than past years (since there was also a virtual option). But for my pace, I was running with others the whole race. Though, it seemed that they all were passing me by.

Miles 1-3.1:

The course is fairly flat. You start running down Broadway and then over the Green Island bridge, turn around and run back into the city. I knew from my first few steps a\that the legs were still sore from those hilly 13.1 miles on Sunday. I tried to pick up speed but the legs were begging me not to try.

I enjoyed seeing the fastest runners sprint by, as well as, those behind me.  I tried cheer both groups on.

After the bridge, we took a left and ran along the city streets for few miles. The roads were closed to traffic which was nice. My face and hands were cold.  In fact, it took half the race before my hands warmed up.  Even though my hands and face were cold, I was getting warm with the extra layer. I guess  could have left the vest off.

I didn’t have to look at my watch to know that I was running too slow to PR. I wasn’t sure if I would even finish under one hour. Besides, timing clocks were placed at every mile showing the gun time so I couldn’t even ignore my pace if I wanted to.

Miles 3.1-6.2:

Around this point, we again turned around and headed back toward the start. There a water stop but they were giving out bottles (due to COVID), It seemed like such a waste since I wasn’t that thirsty so I skipped it.

There was decent crowd support even on this cold day. There were even tables passing out beer. LOL

And again since it was an out and back, you got to see both faster and slower runners.

I was running with other runners but as I mentioned above, most kept passing me by. Eventually my friend Elisa caught up to me.  I was surprised because I am always behind her trying to keep her in my sight.

We ran together for a short time but I was struggling to keep a decent pace and she was not. I guess it pays to start out slow. Then my friend Nancy (who is also much faster than I am) came up behind me.  She also seemed to have a lot of speed left in her legs.

I lost them both but finally I was warm enough to take the gloves off and unzip my vest.  With the Hudson river in view, I knew that I was getting toward the end.  I decided not to eat my GU and skip the next two water stops.  I also normally walk a few times during a race so that I can finish stronger. But today, I just wanted to finish even if it meant a PW.

Finally I could hear the finish in the distance. I wanted to at least sprint through the finish line.

My friend Holly was on the side line cheering me on but I had a hard mustering up any real speed.

I tried to cross under 1 hour but sadly, I did not. There was no zip left in this girl’s step.

Yup, a course PW for sure (but chip timed so my finish time would still be under 1 hour.)

GOAL ACHIEVED!

must have seen the photographer lol

Post Race Activities:

I grabbed a bottle of water and they gave you a medal wrapped in plastic.  The only refreshments were a Kind bar (again due to COVID).  No age group awards handed out either. They would be mailed if you won.

 I hung out for awhile chatting with more friends.

Carolyn on the right is my age and my competition.

I bumped into Elisa again and we decided to stop for coffee on our walk back to our cars.

I was used to hanging around to run the 5k so it was strange to be done running. And it was even too cold (without a coat) to stay and cheer on the 5k runners.

Additional Race Reflections:

No matter what my finish time was, I was glad that I decided to run this race.  I love the atmosphere of this race. I enjoy the challenge of a 10k as opposed to a 5k.

that is the back of my hat… I had many compliments on that as runners ran by me.

This may have been the first race that I did not walk at all.  Here’s what I learned:

  • Successful racing is not about running without walking. Hey, Jeff Galloway BQed by running intervals.
  • I am faster when I take walk breaks.
  • You can build endurance with longer runs not by skipping the walks during your run.

Positives:

  • The weather = chilly but no wind so still nice for racing
  • Race organization – considering COVID restrictions, it was very well organized.
  • Race location – place to stay warm indoors with indoor bathrooms
  • Mostly flat course
  • Two distance options – 5k and 10k
  • Virtual option.
  • Knowing lots of runners.  Racing is fun with friends.
  • Ample parking
  • Well marked course.
  • Varied scenery including river views
  • A lot of pre-race information.
  • Timing clocks at every mile.
  • Three water stops.
  • Enthusiastic spectators.
  • Cool medal.
  • Custom masks given to all participants
  • Lots of media coverage.
  • A real race.

Negatives:

  • Bottles instead of cups at water stops.
  • Unisex shirts
  • No bag check
  • Minimal post-race refreshments
  • No immediate results
  • You have to BUY the photos

Would I recommend this race?

Yes. Definitely.  It is well-organized and there’s a distance for everyone. Many runners are in costumes.

(However, if I run the half marathon the weekend before again, I may sign up for the 5k instead of the 10k. And there is also now a 5k right near my house.  We’ll see. I have a whole year to think about it.)

Usually 10,000 participate in these races. The attendance was still over 5,000 this year. A very fun way to start the holiday.

Final Stats:

Splits:

surprise, surprise…positive splits!! (and I started my watch a few seconds late)

NO WALKs but a lot of slowdowns

When I got home, I checked the results and guess what? I actually won an age group award for the first time in this race.

They are mailing them this year. I’ll let you know what I get. Hopefully not a medal.

even more interesting to look at the age graded results. wish more races published this.

Then later that afternoon, I ate back all the calories that I had burned off. LOL

Next Up:

A fun local 5k.

Albany Last Run 5K Race Reviews | Albany, New York

12/11/21

Then in February, I will be running a half marathon in Florida.

12th Florida Marathon and Half Marathon (Publix Florida Marathon & 1/2) 2021. Melbourne, Florida, USA. February 2021 | LetSportPeople.com

2/13/22

Happy Running! Did you run off that turkey? If so, how did it go? Please share.

runner-sig

 

 

 

 

 


There is a link-up organized by Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).

Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these ladies and you should too.


I’m also linking up here:

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

Weekly Run Down for 11.21.21-11.28.21: Turkey Trotting

Recovering from the half marathon with a Thanksgiving 10k, followed by a huge dinner with the family.

No Black Friday shopping as I had to work.

Winter arrived here on the weekend. 😦

Last Week:

  • Sunday – Upstate Classic Half Marathon. The 2nd time for this race and the 3rd time running this hilly course in Altamont, NY. As usual, 13.1 miles of hills were a challenge but a fun event.

age group award Woo Hoo!!

  • Monday – #nevremissamonday again was a recovery day.  Happy to report that the legs felt fine. I took a walk at lunch and then volunteered after work.

I have had a string of good luck lately: found $20 during a run, won 4x at Mah jongg, and….

I WON!!!! And I chose Amazon… Thanks so much Zenaida ❤

  • Tuesday  – I was able to squeeze in a chilly lunch run so I could meet friends for an after work walk.

although it was sunny, the wind made it seem colder than the temps and my legs reminded me that I had just run 13 miles of hills

  • Wednesday – Another rest day in preparation for the 10k the next day.

try to be as festive as possible…

  • Thursday – Race Day! Troy Turkey Trot 10k (and only one race today this year!). Always feels great to run on Thanksgiving Day and then eat back all the calories you burned off and more.

tired legs = a course PW (yet I won an age group award

Obviously I was not the only blogger to be trotting:

great minds…

  • Friday – Back to work.  No shopping for me! A nasty cold rainy weather day so just mah jongg in the evening.
  • SaturdayLong Run Day! Glad to return to Saturday runs with the gang. But the weather decided not to cooperate.

woke up to snow on the ground, 15 degree wind chill temps and an IG post alerting us that the trail where we planned to run was a sheet of ice.

Most of my friends decided either to wait until tomorrow or run on the treadmill.  I decided to go out on my own and run on the rail trail.

Nope! Way too icy. Plan C: run a few loops of the UAlbany campus.

I was able to run around most of the icy spots but the wind was unbearable.  Luckily my friend Heidi came to the rescue and got me through he 2nd loop (and the pond loop) before we headed to Starbucks so I could thaw out my face and hands!!

I hate winter already!! Not the LONG run I had planned. 6.5 miles will have to suffice.

  • Sunday – Hiking Sunday lately has become Racing Sunday. I was excited to not have a race or run to do and to head out for a hike.

I got a late start as it was snowing and I was tracking my friend who was running her first marathon (in Florida.)

I had been here before but not in a while… a little muddy and the leaves were slippery but still happy to be out in nature.

to all those who celebrate!!

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  run at lunch, volunteering after work, walk with BFF
  • Tuesday – run after work with a friend
  • Wednesday – rest day, hair appt.
  • Thursday – run at lunch, walk after work with  friends
  • Friday -rest day, dinner with a friend
  • Saturday Long Run
  • Sunday – rest day, hiking

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Troy Turkey Trot 10k Race Recap
  • Friday – Ultimate Coffee Date

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any in-person races planned?  Did you run a Turkey Trot?  Any Black Friday purchases? Please share.

FFF: Runfessions for Nov. ’21

First Runfessions of Fall

It’s that time again. Time to get things off my chest with Marcia’s Runfessions at Marcia’s Healthy Slice

1. I runfess…

I love to hike as you know. I also love artsy things.  So I decided to visit another Sculpture Park.  But it was closed when I got there.  I went around the gate and walked around…. Took pictures.  Glad I did not get arrested. lol.

re-opens May 2022 according to the sign

2. I runfess…

In Last month’s runfession, I talked about 2022 races.  My running friends and I plan a race-cation every fall. This year there are TEN of us!!

So I booked a house (8 bedrooms) on the ocean. The race is not even open for registration yet (and we can only get 50% back if we cancel.)

just have to look out the window for the ocean sunrise – 7 of the bedrooms have an ocean view

3.I runfess…

About the race mention above  – I did contact the RD and he stated that it was confirmed for Oct. 2. And my friends said that they didn’t care if we run an in-person race or just run on our own. But I do want to run a real half marathon.  Fingers crossed.

Maine Marathon | Maine Half Marathon | Maine Marathon Relay

4. I runfess…

For the first time in years, yesterday I did not run both the Troy Turkey Trot 10K AND 5K.  I only ran the 10K. I did have a little FOMO but since I had just run a half marathon, it was probably the smarter decision.

2019

5.I runfess…

I said many times that I was ONE and DONE when I ran the NYC Marathon in 2019. But with the perfect weather conditions, I had serious FOMO this year. And I had tears in my yes watching the winners and even more so when I watched those who struggled but finished in the late hours.

Unofficial final finisher Fredilyn Bangwa is all smiles during Sunday's NYC Marathon.

struggled with RA but finished in almost 11 hours (last 10 miles with a walker)

Even Chelsea Clinton ran it…

Chelsea Clinton with her parents, Hillary and Bill Clinton, after she finished the race.

Happy Running! Anything to runfess this month?  Have you signed up for any 2022 races yet? Have you ever gone around a barricade and entered a place that was closed.  Did you have FOMO when you watched or read about the NYCM? Any race-cations planned for 2022? Please share.

 

 

 

 

 

 


It’s Friday so I’m also linking up with bloggers, Me (My First 5K and More), Running With AttitudeRun Laugh Eat PieRuns with Pugs, and Zenaida!

So Join in!

And don’t forget to link back to your hostesses and visit some other blog

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Upstate Classic Half Marathon Race Recap

yes, that’s me!

My fifth and final half marathon for 2021.

I signed up for the Upstate Classic Half Marathon for several reasons:

  • I had run the course twice before so I was familiar with the hills.
  • It was local and I could sleep in my own bed the night before.
  • It was local so I would know a lot of the runners.
  • I had run a half in September and October so I was sorta already trained.

Half Marathon Training:

If you follow my posts, you also know that I am not strict about following a training plan. For 2020, I had the ambitious goal of running 12 Half Marathons – one each month. The pandemic wrecked those plans.  For 2021, it was just race whatever half marathons were available.  As a result, I was lucky to have already run FOUR this year.

The difference in the training cycle for the race this year was that I didn’t have to run all my long runs solo.

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

I did some short runs during the week prior to the race: Tues, Wed, Friday:

Packet pick up was easy peasy.  I just went to the race headquarters on Friday, drove in, gave them my bib # and they handed me a hoodie and a bib.  All was done outdoors.

I skipped my long run on Saturday and walked with friends and then after, I met those who ran for brunch.

My usual carb loading dinner was pizza, of course and then I tried to figure out what to wear.  It was forecast to be cold and cloudy. Similar to the weather in my last race but we would be at a higher altitude. I hate being overdressed (and was tempted to even wear a skirt) but I reluctantly chose a beanie, 2 long sleeved shirts, DIY arm sleeves, capris/skirt, compression calf sleeves and gloves.

last year’s shirt and beanie

My biggest dilemma was what to do about water.  I hate to carry my water bottle but there would be no cups of water provided on the course, only table to fill up your own bottle. In the end, I grabbed a paper cup, flattened it and put that in my pocket, as I have done in other post-COVID races.

Race Day:

I woke up early and looked outside and it was SNOWING!!  It did not stick but I re-thought the race outfit and switched from a skirt and compression socks to tights (under a skirt).

I had my usual pre-race breakfast of oatmeal and coffee. The race didn’t start until 8:30 am but I was ready so I left at 7am. I thought about my race plan on the ride …

So what was the plan???

  • HM PR – 2:06:52 – no way!
  • Last HM – 2:16:05 – doubtful!
  • H2H April 2021 – 2:22:51 (same course)
  • Upstate Classic Nov. 2020 – 2:23:37 (same course but no watch)

Just finish.  No time goal!! But I would love to have improved my time on this course (so under 2:22:51).

The course:

A loop starting and ending in the same location.

and not flat… at all:

I got there an hour early and parked in a muddy parking lot and then sat in my car.  It was in the low 30’s and I wanted to stay warm until the last moment especially since there was no bag check.

Around 8am, I dragged myself out of my warm car toward the race start.

Brrrrr! I shivered but I got to connect with many runners that I knew. I was especially glad to see Alyssa whom I used run and race with all the time.

There was no staggered starts this time.  They called runners to the start line by pace.  We waited until they said “Everyone else” since it was chip timed anyway.

we seem to run all the same races

Anyway, here’s how the race went:

(Some pictures are from a previous race since the course was identical.)

Miles 1-3:

I started running with Alyssa so we could chat and catch up on things. I was familiar with this course since this was my 3rd time but obviously since we were running on roads, there were cars. You were supposed to run on the shoulder but it was slanted and I found it awkward. So I ran toward the middle of the road until a car came by.  I was more comfortable that way. But the negative was not running the tangents. 😦

the familiar dinosaur

I lost Alyssa (whose asthma was bothering her) but continued to run with some other friends.  So far the hills weren’t too bad. I could even run up them.

Miles 3- 6.2:

I skipped the first water stop. I had a paper cup in my pocket but it was a pain to get it out and I wasn’t hungry or thirsty yet.

Around mile 4, we passed by Indian Ladder Farms and the smell of fresh cider donuts filled the air.

I started to get hungry about that time and ate a GU but boy was I wishing I had some water.

The rolling hills continued.

The hills ceased to roll and started to become steep hills.  Those type of hills where it was even hard to walk up them.  But walk I did and trying to pick up the pace on the downhill.

As soon as the big hills started, I lost my friends. And they continued to get farther and farther ahead.

I kept repeating to myself “Run your own race.” and “One foot in front of the other.”

Miles 6.2-8.75

Every now and then I would glance at my watch.  My pace was by no means fast but considering all the walking, it was not as bad as I feared.

The second water stop was around the 10k point and this time, I did stop and had my paper cup filled.

The big hills seems to more frequent the second half of the race.

mile 6.3

Miles 8.75 – 11.1

It think there was another water stop around mile 8.75. I’m sure that I stopped and refilled my cup. I also ate another GU.  I never really felt hungry during the race but knew I should fuel.

The race continued the same way.  The amazing thing was that my feet did not hurt.  (I had decided for the first time not to tape them and to risk getting blisters.)  My quads were getting achy from all the hills.  It’s always something. So I focused on the scenery which was very pretty…farms, mountain views, etc.

The course marshals were very enthusiastic. I knew many of them.  There were some families camped out in their driveways.  But for the most part, we were running on the roads in the country… no place for spectators.

But surprisingly around mile 10.5, there was table of guys giving out bottles of water and alcohol.  It was one of our boating friends. He asked me if I was coming back around.  I yelled “Hell no!”  (This race had a marathon too…two loops of this insanely hilly course.)

Miles 11.1-13.3

mile 11.1

More hills. They never seemed to end.  And one last water stop.  I just wanted to finish but I decided to fill my cup one last time.

Mile 13 seemed like a full marathon.   My legs just died. To make matters worse, there was one hill after another.  I walked most of this mile so that I could sprint across the finish line and not embarrass myself.

We were also running in a more trafficked area. It was annoying to keep moving over.

But eventually we turned into the fair grounds  And like that I was done.

I sprinted through the finish line and RD who was the announcer said a lot of cool things about me as I crossed the finish line.

Post Race Activities:

I immediately got my food – a boxed lunch but there was also a table of refreshments that looked more appealing – pastries, quiche, bread, etc.

That I went to see my results and found out that I came in 2nd in my age group.

gloves

Alyssa had also finished so we hung out at a picnic table and ate.  The sun had come out and it was a perfect Fall weather day.

Additional Race Reflections:

It seems that my recap above was a bunch of complaints.  But on the whole, the race was a really good experience. I have zero regrets in running it. And if you never run on hills, they are HARD. I walked them so I wouldn’t get injured. And I felt fine after the race.

In fact, my time was a lot better than I expected. In fact it was course PR – more than 3 minutes faster than in April on the same course.

It gives me hope that I could improve upon it on a flatter course. (It was more than 3 minutes slower than my last half marathon. lol)

The Good:

  • A Live Race!!!
  • Connecting with local runners.
  • Felt safe with the provided restrictions.
  • Decent post race food. (box lunch of pre-ordered sandwich, apple, brownie) and a table of other refreshments (quiche, bead, pastries)
  • Well organized.
  • Lots of pre-race information
  • Easy packet pick up
  • Ample parking
  • Enthusiastic volunteers (even with the cold weather)
  • Live tracking for others to follow runners and runners to get immediate results
  • Free photos
  • A live race!!!

The Bad:

  • Hilly Course.
  • No water provided (unless you carried your own bottle).
  • Most of my running group did not participate.
  • Not trained for hills or racing (my fault).
  • Traffic during the last mile or so.

The Ugly:

  • Nothing really

Final Stats:

well, I had a decent first half of the race!!

Splits:

did I walk 15 times?? They were ALL the uphills. lol

Would I recommend this race?

Sure.  Pretty scenery and the perks mentioned above. But TRAIN ON HILLS before you run it!!

Next Up:

A Thanksgiving 10K

A fun local 5k.

Albany Last Run 5K Race Reviews | Albany, New York

Dec 11, 2022

Then in February, I will be running a half marathon in Florida.

12th Florida Marathon and Half Marathon (Publix Florida Marathon & 1/2) 2021. Melbourne, Florida, USA. February 2021 | LetSportPeople.com

Feb. 13, 2022

Happy Running! Run any big races in 2021? How did it go?  Did you set and meet your goals? Any planned for 2022? Please share.

runner-sig

 

 

 

 

 


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).


I’m also linking up here:

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

 

Weekly Run Down for 11.14.21-11.21.21: 5th Half Marathon of 2021

Race Week!  Half Marathon #53 and my last one (and 5th) for 2021.

It was local and one of the few half marathons that was a repeat performance. At least this time, the hills were no surprise.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

my Christmas Cacti have bloomed and I had my first red cup.

Last Week:

  • Sunday – Today I ran the Stockade-athon 15k for the 8th time. Who doesn’t love a challenging race?

  • Monday – A rest day to recover from the previous day’s hills. A chilly cloudy one (with periods of rain) but I did have to go to the office so I got in a rainy lunch/Starbucks walk there.

After work, I did my first volunteer assignment with a 12 yr old girl from the Congo who only speaks French.

the classrooms are behind this building in an old church

  • Tuesday  – I was able to squeeze in a lunch run and the legs felt fine.

pretty in pink? chose to run on the water line trail for a change of pace…

After work, I met my friends for a walk and then met my BFF for another walk.

  • Wednesday – Too busy to run at lunch so I drove to UAlbany to run there after work. I was hoping to have Heidi as company.

dark, chilly, windy…glad to have company

  • Thursday – I had planned to squeeze in a run during lunchtime since I was busy after work.

Then at the last minute, I decided against running three days in a row and skipped it.

I did not qualify so I have to wait until Dec 8 to see if I got in. I had to work so didn’t get to apply until 3:30 pm (and it’s first come first serve)

My monthly tennis gathering tonight was a visit to a museum exhibit and then dinner after.

the exhibit was on women’s clothes from the 1920’s (Downton Abbey style)

Friday – Resting up for the big race. But I decided to take a quick run at lunch. It was windy, chilly and I even got rained on.  It was a profitable run. lol

After work, I picked up my bib for Sunday’s race and then played mah jongg in the evening,

  • Saturday – Long Run Day again this week was a walk in preparation for the next day’s race. We chose the Corning bike path followed by brunch, of course.

beautiful morning…hoping more of the same for the next day.

Afterward, I picked up my bib for Thursday’s Turkey Trot.

I spent the evening organizing my #flatme and carb loading on pizza.

  • Sunday – Race Day! Upstate Classic Half Marathon. The 2nd time for this race and the 3rd time running this hilly course in Altamont, NY.

boy, this was HARD!!!!

No rest for the weary. I plan to go out to dinner with a bunch of wonderful ladies to celebrate 13 years of playing mah jongg together.

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday – rest day, volunteering
  • Tuesday –  run, walk with friends
  • Wednesday – rest day, walk with friends
  • Thursday – Troy Turkey Trot 10K Race, dinner with the fam
  • Friday -rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday Long Run (8 miles)
  • Sunday – rest day, hiking

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Upstate Classic Half Marathon Race Recap
  • Friday – Runfessions

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any in-person races planned? Please share.

FFF: Why I am Thankful For Running

In these often stressful times, it is important to reflect on why we are thankful for running:

Here are FIVE+ reasons why I AM:

  1. I am HEALTHIER.

an energetic run in Central Park after a hard day’s work

I hardly even get sick. It’s very rare that I even get a cold. (knock on wood) If I ever feel rundown or tired, I just go for a run and that feeling disappears.

Running is my Energy/Vitamin source.

2. I feel YOUNGER.

hanging out after a 5k with thirty somethings

This may sound corny but I sometimes forget that I am 68 years old when I am running.  I often run faster than runners half my age.  And often slower than runners older than me. So I guess 

Running is my fountain of youth.

3. I have MET so many awesome PEOPLE since I started running.

I have met them by joining running groups, at races, through social networking and through other runners.

In other words, Running has become part of my Social Life.

4. Running has made me feel more CONFIDENT.

I am not athletic.  I never played a sport growing up.  In fact, I am very clumsy.  Imagine my surprise when I won my first age group.  I tell people that I am not fast but it depends who shows up at a race.  My speed is not bad “for my age.”

Running has filled my empty Trophy Case.

5. Running has given me STRENGTH.

I have done things that I never thought possible.  Run 13.1 miles? Who me?

first half marathon

Run a marathon? Now way, Jose!

first marathon

I have been able to push through pain and not give up on things that seemed too hard. Yes to running through injuries, hills, running in the rain, heat and sub zero temps.

Running is my Kryptonite.

6. Running has taken me to new PLACES.

Yes, all my vacations involve races.  As a result, I have traveled to Philly, Palm Springs, Las Vegas, Montreal, Bermuda, Paris and more!!

Running is actually my Travel Agent.

7. Running gets me OUTDOORS

I am sure that if I weren’t a runner, I would read more, watch TV more maybe even cook or clean more often.

But it’s running that drives me out of my house early on the weekend mornings and out of my office at the end of a long work day.

Running is my Vitamin D.

Image result for thanksgiving is for giving thanks"

and

Image result for thanks to running

Happy Running! Why are you thankful for running? Please share.

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Welcome to Fit Friday Five! Please join the hosts Me (My First 5K and More), Running With AttitudeRun Laugh Eat PieRuns with Pugs, and Zenaida

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Stockade-athon 15K Race Recap

Stockade-athon logo on RaceRaves

November 14, 2021 8:30 am

This is my 8th time running this popular local 15k race.

I ran it for the first time in 2011 and it was my FIRST 15k race ever. I was glad to just finish and I did in 1:36:08. I was injured in 2012 and then I ran it again in 2013.

stockafeathon13a

“fake” happy in 2013

With 1500-2000 runners in this race, they were forced to make some changes to the course.

It no longer starts and ends in Central Park. It also starts earlier – 8:30 am

Well, I loved the new course and my finish times improved for the most part (except for 2019 since the race was held a week after my first FULL marathon):

2014 – 1:33:23
2015 – 1:31:23
2016 – 1:32:49
2018 – 1:30:15 PR
2019 – 1:36:37 PW
2020 – cancelled

In 2019, they modified the course slightly. They eliminated the bike path at the beginning of the race (which I did like because you ran along the Mohawk River and it was dirt so easy on the feet).)

Pre-Race Preparations and Activities:

My last long run was really hard… That did not make me feel super confident for this race.

During the week before the race, I just ran my easy short runs…

This race was supposed to be a taper for a half marathon that was scheduled for the next weekend. I even skipped my long run with my running friends and just walked with Sherry (who was also running the race) and then met the others for brunch.

beautiful morning but that ended and the rest of the rest of the day was miserable and rainy.

So I didn’t expect to race this 15k. I just wanted some exercise and to hang out with 1000 of my running friends.

I picked up my bib and race shirt at Fleet Feet the day before (although it really wasn’t necessary.) As I mentioned above, it rained the rest of the day so I was forced to rest my legs.

long sleeved women’s tech shirt

I ate my usual pre-race pizza that night and got together my #flatme.

with the cold temps predicted, it was risky to wear a skirt and no jacket…but I hate to be too warm when running

Race Day:

The temps were in the 30s when I got up on race morning and it was forecast to only warm up to high 40s and be cloudy. I hate this time of year. It’s so difficult to dress correctly. There used to be (before COVID) a bag check and I could bring extra clothes for after and in case I changed my mind.

Even though I’ve been to this race several times before, I still left extra early.  Barbara and I had planned to carpool.  But she got sick and was not able to run. I got there and again found a spot on the street a few blocks from the start of the race. It would have been nice to wait indoors at the YWCA and chat with the other runners.  I was cold but I knew that if I dressed warmer, I would be too warm.

I texted Sherry when I got there and we met in the YWCA where race day bib pick-up was being held.  You had to wear a mask but even though you were not supposed to stay inside, no one seemed to care.  So we stayed there to keep warm until the race start.

Eventually we made our way to start area. It was organized and marked by bib number (which corresponded to your finish time.)

I recognized a few runners so I lined up with them.  Sherry moved further back.  We agreed to meet after at the refreshments area.

The 2019 course map:

I believe that it didn’t change for this year.

The course starts near Veterans Park in downtown Schenectady. The course travels west on State Street for 1K before entering the historic Stockade District and proceeding on a scenic bike path in Riverside Park along the Mohawk River. The course exits the Stockade District after crossing Erie Blvd. The course then proceeds east on Nott Street past Union College before entering the historic GE Plot residential neighborhood via Lenox Ave, Douglas Rd and Rugby Rd. The course exits Rugby Road and proceeds north on Waverly Place near the 5K mark. The course turns east off Waverly and follows Grand Blvd to the city boundary with Niskayuna, then proceeds south on Dean Street to Central Parkway past 8k. After a 1K residential loop on Central Parkway, the course enters beautiful Central Park and follows a bike path around Iroquois Lake and Duck Pond before reaching its highest elevation near 12K. The final 3k is mostly downhill or flat as the course exits Central Park and proceeds west through historic Vale Cemetery and Vale Park before a final downhill section on Franklin Street to the finish at City Hall.

the elevation according to my Garmin.

Mile 1-3.1:

The race started running down commercial State Street. It was fairly flat but very crowded (with over 1,000 runners).

pic from The Gazette

I quickly lost my friends and just weaved my way through the crowd.

pic from The Gazette

Soon, we turned and entered the Stockade (oldest) section of town.

Although it was chilly, I instantly warmed up and even felt overdressed.  I eventually took off my gloves and rolled up my DIY arm warmers.

photo by David Giacalone (2015)

After the Stockade area, we ran past Union College and around various residential neighborhoods. I also stopped at the first water stop even though I was not thirsty at all. (Yay for a walk break).

photo by David Giacalone (2015)

The hills were relentless. Why do I not remember them from previous years? Not rolling hills, just running up, it seemed.

I knew a lot of runners in this race. They kept catching up to me, we’d chat and then they would go on ahead. That was ok with me. I was determined to run at my own pace and have a stress-free race.

There was clock at the 5k point and I was surprised that I was under a 10 minute pace. However, I doubted that it would last.

Mile 3.1-6.2:

By mile 4, I was getting hungry. We were still circling the neighborhoods. There were lots of course marshals directing throughout the course and many enthusiastic spectators.

Images: Sunday's Stockade-athon 15k in Schenectady (44 photos) - The Daily Gazette

Eventually there was a second water stop.  No more cups!!!! They ran out!?  I almost brought a cup but we were told that we didn’t need to… grrrr!

Around mile 5, I finally decided to choke down my Gu (without any water).

pic from 2019

Around mile 6, we entered Central Park with its rolling hills, lake, and pretty foliage. More hills, of course, but not too bad.  The worst was yet to come.

Images: Sunday's Stockade-athon 15k in Schenectady (44 photos) - The Daily Gazette

pic from The Gazette

There was another clock at the 10K point.  I had slowed down but I was still happy with my conservative pace.

Mile 6.2-9.4:

Between mile 7 and 8 is where the BIG hills were. I walked up them for the most part. They were steep but at least short.

I believe there was a third water stop but I don’t remember exactly where.  And there were cups. Hooray!

We proceeded to run through the cemetery and then through a park before heading DOWNHILL to the finish line at city hall. At this point, Renee (who I ran this race with two years ago) caught up to me.  We chatted and then she zoomed ahead.  My legs were shot by now.

One of reasons I love this race is that finish.

Images: Sunday's Stockade-athon 15k in Schenectady (44 photos) - The Daily Gazette

pic from The Gazette

I ran as fast as I could but I had lost quite a bit of time at the water stops and the hills.

That’s Renee…I’m the green speck in the distance

photo by Bill Meehan

I crossed the finish line at 1:35:XX.

I admit that initially I was disappointed…5 minutes off a PR and one of my slowest times for this race.

But hey, I didn’t train and I wasn’t trying for a PR.  It was supposed to just be taper run for next Sunday’s half marathon.  (I know you all get it…)

Post Race Activities:

This year, instead of the food being inside at the YWCA, the same area as bag check and where we waited before the race, it was outside (another COVID restriction) and I was COLD!!  The sun had gone in and the wind had picked up. Brrrr.

One of my running friends was volunteering and she handed me a bag of goodies.

I also grabbed some chocolate milk and a cider donut. I checked the results (you just scanned a QR code with your phone). Awards would be mailed, I guess but I was not expecting one.

I was 7th in my AG

So I walked back toward the finish line to wait for Sherry. I watched many of my friends finish. Everyone was happy and especially grateful for the weather and to be racing again.

with El, fellow Skirt Sports ambassador

Sherry and I headed back to our cars. The others in our group did not run the race so we decided to skip brunch this year.

this would have to do as my post-race meal

Additional Race Reflections:

Sure, I’d love to have those speedier legs return. I’m not sure they ever will but I do not plan to stop racing because my finish times are slower. I loved seeing all those runners that I only chat with at races.  I love the racing atmosphere and the challenge it always brings.

Positives:

  • Safety restrictions in place
  • Ample parking.
  • Well marked course.
  • Great running weather.
  • Lots of familiar faces.
  • Interesting course (through the historic part of the city, neighborhoods, park, cemetery).
  • Downhill finish.
  • Friendly and abundant number of volunteers.
  • Chocolate Milk.
  • Crowd support
  • Three real water stops
  • The electric atmosphere.
  • Virtual option.
  • Instant results
  • Free photos
  • Gender-specific shirt
  • A real race.

Negatives:

  • Hills during miles 7-8
  • Ran out of cups at 2nd water stop
  • Outdoor refreshments
  • No bag check

Would I recommend this race?

Yes. It’s a great way to see this city…a little bit of everything.  And if COVID ever goes away, it will be even more enjoyable. I would recommend that you train on hills. lol

Final Stats:

positive splits!!!

My Splits:

water stop, Gu stop 2 hills, another water stop = my walks

I really enjoyed this race. The course was so varied that it also took your mind off the hills. With the large number of runners (1000+), I felt like I was always running with others and it kept me going.

Yes, it was hilly. The first half had a lot more hills but they were manageable. The second half had fewer hills but they were steeper.

The best part of the race was that I didn’t put it all out there and I just enjoyed myself treating it like a taper run. And nothing really hurt during and after!!

This race is definitely on my must-do list. It was very well organized. Maybe all the stars will be aligned next year and I’ll get a faster finish time … or maybe not.

Next Up:

A Half Marathon on Nov. 21!!!

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Happy Running! Did you race this past weekend or do any other running? Do you ever run 15ks? Do you like them? 

 

 

 

 

 


There is a link-up organized by Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).

Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these ladies and you should too.

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

Weekly Run Down for 11.7.21-11.14.21: A Taper 15k Race

One week until my half marathon!  That meant that I was in taper mode.

What not run 9.3 miles in a race??

Yes, that’s what I did.

Happy to report that the temps last week were not as cold as the previous week. But turning back the clocks was a real downer!! I am one of those runners that usually runs and walks after work. 😦

Last Week:

  • Sunday – While nervously tracking my friends running the NYC Marathon, I went on two hikes (Falling Waters Preserve and Opus40).  The weather was absolutely perfect for us all.
  • Monday – #nevermissamonday.  I was able to get my run done on the rail tail during my lunch break.

yes, the weather was as beautiful as it looked… I could have worn a skirt and short sleeves

After work, I had an appt to see if I could volunteer my time helping immigrant kids with their homework (I know I complain that I have no time to work out but it’s important for me to help others besides myself)

  • Tuesday  – Another opportunity to run in my ‘hood during lunch. I wanted to be able to walk after work with two friends. Unfortunately with the lack of light, we have to walk around the outdoor mall.

warmer but not as sunny as the day before…still a nice day for a run

  • Wednesday – Rest day. It rained early but it was a busy work day and I was only able to get outside for a walk after work with a friend.
  • Thursday – Day off from work for Veteran’s Day.  It was so nice to be able to linger over breakfast and then drive somewhere for my weekday run. I decided on the Colonie Town Park Bike Path since I hadn’t been there in awhile.

some cute kids were giving away their books for free and if you took one, you got candy…so cute. I couldn’t carry the book but got a kit kat anyway lol

I hung around after and did some exploring on the trails…

it clouded up up but the fall colors were still so pretty

  • Friday – Another rest day.  And a miserable rainy day it was. I walked at lunch and then played mah jongg (at my house) in the evening.
  • Saturday – Normally this is my long run day but instead I walked with my friends and then went out for brunch.

it was a beautiful morning but as soon as we were done with brunch, it started to rain and it rained ALL day.

I also picked up my bib for the next day’s race at our local Fleet Feet store and did some errands (in the rain).

Then I relaxed and carb loaded with pizza and tried to figure out what to wear for the race the next day.

30s – would I be too cold in a skirt an no jacket???

  • Sunday – Race Day! Stockade-athon 15K. It was my 8th time running this race, I always enjoy the varied course scenery, downhill finish and all the familiar faces.  It was harder than I remembered but the weather was great. Now that’s it’s over, I’m glad that I ran it. lol

positive splits per usual… not my worst 15k time but close

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  rest day, volunteering
  • Tuesday –  run at lunch, walk with friends
  • Wednesday – run after work, walk with BFF
  • Thursday – run at lunch, museum and dinner out with tennis friends
  • Friday -rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday – rest day, walk with friends
  • Sunday – Upstate Classic Half Marathon, pick up Turkey Trot bib, anniversary mah jongg dinner

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Stockade-athon 15k Race Recap
  • Friday – Why I am Thankful for Running

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any in-person races planned? How is the time change affecting your running? Please share.

FFF: How to Pick Your Next Big Race

Now that races are happening again…

What is your next big race? How did you decide which one to choose?

Here are some things to consider:

1. Size

Sure there are more logistics to deal with when running a large race.

But there is more crowd support.

You are never running alone. The atmosphere is electric.

Both of these factors are important to me.  I would never run a small marathon!!

2. Location

How will you get to the race – plane, train, bus, car?

Is it easy to get to the start – shuttle, walk, public transportation?

If you have to drive, is there ample parking?

shuttle to the start? yes, please

If I drive, I love when there is nearby parking. Otherwise, I hope there is public transportation or I take an Uber. Best case scenario is staying in a hotel near the race start (if you can afford that…)

3. Deferral Policies

If the race is canceled, what happens? If you are injured, can you defer to another year?  Do either of these matter?

The half marathon that I am planning to run in February was deferred (free) from 2020. I am glad with COVID that many races offered that option.  Many just went virtual (not happy about that) but who knew a pandemic would happen in 2020?

4. Cost

The cost of registration? What swag does it include? Do you have to spend additional money on transportation and hotel?

$$ but worth it!!

Neither one is really a dealer breaker for me. But enough with the shirts!! A hat, hoodie, gloves, something more practical, please.  I do, however, enjoy good food and drink after a big race!

5. Course

Is road or trails?

Is it point-to-point or a loop?

Is it scenic or boring?

Is it flat or hilly?

Steel Rail Half = perfect

My preference would be point-to-point, scenic and mostly flat.   But obviously I’m not picky. I love to race!!

I would also add: who else is running it? A friend, another blogger? It’s much more fun to run a race with someone else.

Happy Running! How do you pick a marathon or big race? What is your next ‘big’ race? Please share.

runner-sig

 

 

 

 

 


Welcome to Fit Friday Five! Please join the hosts Me (My First 5K and More), Running With AttitudeRun Laugh Eat PieRuns with Pugs, and Zenaida

and add your link below:https://fresh.inlinkz.com/js/widget/load.js?id=a8b40ada7693d64e5923

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter