FFF: Upper Arm Exercises

It is tank top time of year. Either for running/racing or just hanging out.

Unfortunately if you have gained and then lost weight, you may find you have that unsightly upper arm flab. (I’ve heard it called “bingo wings.”)

Even if you’ve always been thin, as you age, your skin loses its elasticity.  Same result as above.

These are Bingo Wings. : funny

I’m not sure if there is really anything you can do about it besides wearing long sleeves lol

But here are FIVE exercises that have been recommended (by others) to improve the look of your upper arms:

1.Bicep Curls

Start with your arms by your sides. Hug your elbows in towards the side of your body, and then curl the weights up towards your shoulders.

5 exercises to tighten and tone your arms for summer

2. Tricep Kickbacks

Holding weights in both hands, lean forward with a flat back. Hug your elbows in towards your sides and pull them up towards the ceiling. Keeping your elbows still, kick the weight towards the back of the room by moving the lower half of your arm back and up towards the ceiling. Hold for a second, feeling the back of your arm tighten, and then release back to the starting position.

3. Hug a Tree

Hold the weights at shoulder height, parallel to the floor. Relax the shoulders down, and then hug the arms towards the front of your body as if you’re hugging a tree.

4. Serve the Platter.

Start with your arms at your side, bending your elbows at 90 degrees. Reach the arms forward, straightening them as if you’re serving a platter, then reach them out to the sides in a “T” position, back to center, and then pull them back in towards you.

5. V Exercises.

Hold your dumbbells down at your hips. Then reach the weights forward and up on an angle, drawing a V, and then release them back down towards your hips.

Try doing the exercises above three times a week with 3-5 pound weight. Do one set of 10 reps of each, and then repeat the whole circuit three times.

(FYI: I am not a coach, PT, chiro, medical professional or have any certifications in these areas.)

Photo Tip: your upper arms will look thinner if you bend your arm to your waist (Judy reminded me of this many years ago).

Happy Running! Anyone else self-conscious about their upper arms?  Do you do any of these exercises?  Any others to recommend? 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

and add your link below:

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Speed or Endurance?

Obviously you may want to be successful at both.

But which is more important to you? Speed or Endurance?

Which distance race do you prefer? 5k or Half Marathon/Marathon/Ultra?

I’ve struggled with this issue for years.

For a while, I think I preferred 5ks for the following reasons:

  • Minimal training required.
  • A myriad of 5k opportunities most weekends.
  • Race takes up little time in your schedule.
  • People of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities participate.
  • I got increasingly faster and often won age group awards.

Once I started running half marathons, I started to question my preference. I still ran both …

but I was enjoying the longer races more.

Why?

  • Long runs (and brunches) with friends.
  • Race-cations.
  • Bling.
  • Scenic courses.
  • Feeling of achievement.
  • No pressure of a specific finish time.

Maybe because I feel less successful at the 5k distance.  The pandemic or getting older???

Whatever the reason, currently I feel less motivated to sign up for 5ks.

to run o

That is the question.


I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner) 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.

Happy Running! Which do you train for – speed or endurance or both? Which type of race do you prefer – short or long or both? Please share.

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Weekly Run Down for 5.31.21-6.6.21: More rain and then a heat wave…

After last weekend’s cold rainy weather, it was nice to have more seasonal temps.

I celebrated

NATIONAL RUNNING DAY - First Wednesday in June - National Day Calendar

on June 2, 2021

with my virtual running friends,

                                    ❤ these bloggers

I went on my first group hike of 2021

                    at a new local park

I’d say that it was a pretty good week (even with all the rain and without a race.)

Last Week:

  • Monday – It was Memorial Day and so I had the day off from work. Normally we would be boating on Lake George. But the weather was cold and dreary and the sun didn’t come out until 4 pm.

I felt well enough to run but decided to rest the feet and do some exploring.

First I headed to see some local falls. Last time I saw them, the Viewing Park was not open. This time you could walk across and down and get a closer look.

Needing to stretch my legs more, I walked around town… lots of history here.

Since I wasn’t too far away, I was curious about Van Schaick Mansion so I drove there.

a little disappointing but the little library replica was cute

And then on my way home, I stopped to walk around the gardens at Ten Broeck Mansion.

I need to come back when more of the flowers are in bloom.

  • Tuesday – It was cool but the sun was shining so I had to get out and see how my feet felt.  They did ok for a quick lunch run in the neighborhood.

the sun went in but I misjudged how warm and humid it was (overdressed) at noon.

I always listen to podcasts when I run alone.  However, by the time I get home, I have forgotten what I learned. So I decided to stop and record a note.

Today’s nugget (as Nicole DeBoom calls it) is from AMR: Your body is an instrument not an ornament. Focus on what it can do, not what it looks like.

After work, I was back on the rail trail for a long walk with a friend. We chose a different direction and were happily surprised with this view.

  • Wednesday – National Running Day!  So of course, I had to run!! Again, I chose to do it at lunch in the neighborhood but a different route from Tuesday.

could feel the humidity for this one

Today’s nugget is again from AMR: A real runner doesn’t have to do anything, You should do whatever fires you up. And it’s different for each person.

I also celebrated the day with a purchase:

My favorite show ever. This is so me some days….

So after work, I was free to go hiking and hoping that the forecasted rain would hold off. It was just Jan and I and we chose a newly opened local trail called Normans Kill Ravines. Unfortunately as soon as we arrived, it started to rain and it continued raining hard the whole hike.  And the 3.5 mile loop (due to lack of trail markers) turned into almost 5 miles.

The trails were very pretty even with the mud but we ended up exiting the trail on the opposite side of the park and had to walk back through town to our cars.

  • Thursday – Not running on Monday always messes up my schedule. I hate to run three days in a row. And so it was a struggle but I got it done.

I get dressed before work but I need to check the weather before my lunch runs…so warm and humid. Though this was tough, I enjoyed all the roses and irises and a new walking trail.

Today’s nugget (from a guest on Run This World): I’m not a naturel athlete. I’ll never be fast. I do not train to to be a better runner. I go out to run because I want to get better at sucking at something. (Can anyone identify?)

I wasn’t sure if the thunderstorms would cancel my post work walk or not with my friend. But they did not and the rain arrived much later.

Afterward, I rushed to my friend’s for a charity Scrabble tournament.

We played as a team against 7 other teams. I think we did really well (over 800 pts in each of the 2 games.) Maybe we’ll win. Anyway, it was so much fun. (and yes I’m dressed in my walking clothes.)

  • Friday – Finally a rest day. It started out with rain but then it stopped and I actually took out my bike at lunch. Ugh! So hot and humid (what a change in the weather).  Still not a fan of biking but maybe if I left the neighborhood?

I was also happy to be back playing mah jongg on Friday nights.

  • Saturday – Reunited with my Sole Sisters (after a few weeks off) for a long run. We decided to meet at the Zim Smith bike path and run our usual individual distances and then meet after for brunch outside Leah’s.  I ran 1 mile before and then carpooled with Barbara. Then I met Sherry, Stan and Judy for 7 more. It was so nice to have the whole gang together again.

Just couldn’t muster up enough energy in the heat/humidity for 10 miles

  • Sunday – Summer arrived. What happened to spring? Hot Hot Hot.

Not sure what we’re planning…Boating? Gardening? Appliance shopping??

It turns out that it was hiking at Up Yonda Farms.

Near our boat…my 2nd time here but did ALL the trails this time.

Hope you are staying cool.

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday – DAY OFF, long hike with a friend in the Catskills
  • Tuesday – run, walk with friends
  • Wednesday – Ice Cream Run (with friends)
  • Thursday – run, walk with friends
  • Friday – rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday – Rabbit Ramble 4 mile race
  • Sunday – rest day, boating or hiking

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Speed or Endurance?
  • Friday – Upper Arm Exercises

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? Have you been experiencing summer temps where you live? Any vacations planned? Please share.

FFF: Ultimate Coffee Date for June ’21

It’s that time of the month…

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

I am very excited to go boating again on Lake George. If only the weather would be consistently warm on the weekends. (This weekend, it may happen!!)

1. Over coffee/wine… 

I’d tell you that I have run a few races this spring. But there seems to be a lag in available races this summer and then a cluster races for the fall.

It may be struggle to stay motivated to run with the heat and few races.

Will you be racing this summer? If not, does it affect your running mojo?

2.Over coffee/wine…

I’d tell you that I have been hiking every Sunday since last October.  I really enjoy my fire tower climbs and waterfall views.

But boating on Lake George is one activity that the hubby and I share. Sunday is the day we go boating (because I do long runs on Saturday.)

Do you have to compromise with your significant other or can you do what YOU prefer?

3.Over coffee/wine…

I’d tell you that I’m excited to have more opportunities to run with others. Until recently, I ran alone during the week and with others only on Saturdays.

In May, SOAR started group runs with women every other Wednesday.  Also on Wednesdays, there will be Ice Cream group runs scheduled (You run with others at different locations located near ice cream shops.)

back after a year off

In June, on Thursdays, there will be Trail group runs hosted by our local running organization.

how well do you know me? which shoe is mine?

In July, the Freihofer race training challenge will also begin group runs.

Do you have the opportunity to run with others? Or do you usually run alone? Which do you prefer?

4.Over coffee/wine…

I’d tell you that my fall race-cation weekend has been finalized.  We are returning to Hampton Beach, NH and will be running the (in-person) Smuttynose 5k or half marathon. (There will 10 of us running the race.)

after last year’s virtual race (missing our sherpa in the pic)

Unfortunately, I was not quick enough and last year’s perfect house was already rented. But instead we rented another with 5 bedrooms and 7 beds (not on the beach but .8 miles away.)

Do you have any race-cations or big races planned for the Fall? Anyone planning on running this race or have run it?

5.Over coffee/wine…

I’d tell you that the NYC Marathon will be held live in November. I know several runners who will be doing it. Yup, I’m having some FOMO.

I did time qualify for 2020 but did not want to run it two years in a row. Who knew that there would be a Pandemic and I could pick 2021, 2022 or 2023 to run it again.

Hey I’ll be 70 in 2023…so maybe things will be back to normal by 2024 and I’ll still be running half marathons?

Do you ever have second thoughts about a race that you did not sign up for?

Happy Running! What’s new with you?  Any trips, races or fun summer activities 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

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Miles on the Mohawk 10 Miler Race Recap

May 30, 2021 – 9:00 am

With most of the local races either cancelled or virtual, Albany Running Exchange has been scheduling COVID Safety Plan approved races.  I completed a half marathon in November and in April.

In March I ran their five mile race. For this race, ARE used the same course as the five miler but added a full marathon and also a point-to-point 10 miler.

during the Electric 5 Miler in March

I was tempted to repeat the 5 miler to see if I could improve my time but I decided to challenge myself and run a 10 mile race.

It was advertised as “a very fast, point-to-point course.”

As you can from the elevation chart below, it is not exactly what I would call fast (I see hills!!)

The logistics were also complicated for the 10 mile race. Either you parked at the start and got a ride back to your car after the race or you parked at the finish and got a ride to the start (or pay for the shuttle).

My preference was to park at the finish (even though that meant getting up earlier.)

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

I have run several 10 mile races but none lately. The last one was in 2017. My slowest was in 2014: (1:49:55), my first one, and my PR was my third in the same year (1:38:45). All the others were somewhere in between. That would be my expectation for this race but on the slower end (like 1:45:00).

Usually on the weekends, I do run 10 miles. But this month I skipped a few in favor of a vacation and racing.  It’s amazing how quickly the endurance that you built up leaves.

I picked up my race packet on Thursday evening.

very nice half-zip

and carb loaded on Saturday evening (pasta instead of pizza) and debated about what to wear the next day. I was hoping that for a race on May 30 I would be wearing a skirt and tank. But no, summer temps had decided to leave us and rain was in the forecast as well. I reluctantly picked a long sleeve shirt and hoped that I wouldn’t be too warm. I also packed a few throwaways for before and dry clothes for after.

added gloves, gaiter and skipped the sunglasses

Race Day:

I got up around 6:00 am on Sunday morning and was on the road by 7:00 for my 30 minute hour drive to race parking.

The 10 mile race started near Mabee farm and ended at Mohawk Harbor.

I parked my car at Mohawk Harbor, the finish for all races (but the start for the 5m & 26.2 m races.)  I had signed up for the shuttle so I wouldn’t have to worry about getting back to my car after the race.  However, my friend Sherry offered to drive to the start if I would drive her back to her car after.  I accepted so that I wouldn’t have deal with masking and walking to the shuttle.

I met Sherry and Jenn at 7:45, left my car in the Golub parking lot (1/4 mi from the race) and we drove to the start which was about 15 minutes away.

There was plenty of parking in the grassy lot.

It had rained all night, our shoes got soaked walking through the high grass.

It wasn’t raining yet…but it was COLD (in the 40s and very damp). We were shivering.

smiling because we thought that the rain would hold off until we finished the race….

We headed to bag check where one of our friends was volunteering. I reluctantly handed over my bag with dry warm clothing and waited under cover.

It started to rain but then stopped so I saved this beautiful outfit for after the race.

The COVID Safety plan was identical to all 7 live events ARE had held before this one: masks required throughout your time on-site. Once you started, you could lower your mask but did need to raise it unless within 6′ of others. The significantly staggered start (ie. 8 people every 10 seconds) allowed the race to spread out quickly.

I couldn’t wait to start. I was freezing.  I was also hungry. It had been 3 hours since I had eaten breakfast. I decided to eat a Honey Stinger Wafflle (I know never eat something new on race day but it did work well.)

The 10 mile race started at 9 am. I was in wave 5 and before I knew it, it was time to move into the staging area.

Miles 1-3:

My wave started around 9:11 am.

As soon as I crossed the start line, I pulled down by gaiter.

The race began near Mabee Farm Historical site. The first mile headed west, mostly on Route 5S. We ran along the road and fairly soon connected with the Erie Canal Bike Path. In other words, the canal was on our right and most of the race was run on the path with water views.

During the first few miles, the rain was only a drizzle. In fact, I took off my gloves and actually got a little warm.

That didn’t last. Close to mile 3, it started to rain. And rain hard and harder. It never stopped.

My legs were feeling good. The scenery was pretty. The Mohawk river changed to being on the left.

The first water stop was a little after mile 3 at Kiwanis Park.  This was my first walk break.  I used my paper cup (as I did in my previous in-person cupless races).  That waffle kept me going and so I decided to wait on my Gu,

Miles 4-6

Most of the race is a blur. It was raining hard. There were lots of puddles. I was feeling pretty strong.

someone (not me) smiling in the rain

In fact, a guy pulled up next to me and said “Your cadence is killing me.”  Not sure what he meant. I do try to lift my feet and have a decent cadence, but he passed me by and left me in the dust!?

Around mile 5, I finally got hungry so I stopped to eat my Gu (trying to eat and run slowly) and walked again at the second water stop little before mile 6 at Lock 8 Park.

Miles 7-10

The course was pretty flat until the last mile or so. The path was narrow and you had to be careful because the lead marathoners needed to pass on the left. (They had started an hour earlier than the 10 milers.)

this is what it would have looked like on a blue sky day

The third and last water stop was around mile 8 at the SCCC Bike Path Parking Area. I walked again and took one more GU.

at mile 8.1

Around mile 9, some annoying hills appeared and during the last mile as well. Maybe there weren’t big hills and I was just getting tired. I tried to run up them but it was more like a slog. And the puddles were getting bigger (more like lakes). It didn’t really matter. I couldn’t get any wetter.

not me…but this is the view heading to Mohawk Harbor

We finished at Mohawk Harbor (the start and finish of the 5 mile and Marathon races).

I was so happy to have finished. Of course, at that point I ran as fast as I could.

two inspiring guys on this Memorial Day weekend.

Unfortunately once you stopped running, you were freezing and by the time I finished, they had run out of foil blankets.

So I grabbed my medal and headed to bag check to retrieve some clothes.

I found Jenn and Sherry. Both did well (Jenn had a big PR).

We grabbed our lunches and headed in the pouring rain to my car.

There was a band, beer, food, etc. So much planning goes into a race especially one during the Pandemic. Such a shame to have such awful weather conditions.

Well, I turned on the heated seats in my car and drove Sherry back to her car at the race start.

Then I spent a lot of time in a hot shower and then eating my race lunch (sandwich, chips, brownie, apple) in front of my fire place.

Ugh! On May 30? Can you believe it?

Additional Race Reflections:

This was a first annual race.  Most of the other local races are still cancelled so this racing company has been trying to hold a few races. I am so glad they are. It was so fun to be out there and soak up the racing atmosphere again (even in the rain).

I wasn’t expecting to feel as good as I did.  Maybe it was the cold temps.

Positives:

  • Safety restrictions in place (staggered starts).
  • Ample parking at the start and finish.
  • Several distances: 10 mile, 5 mile, marathon
  • Real restrooms at Mabee Farm
  • Bag check for 10 milers
  • Well marked course.
  • Varied scenery including river views
  • Lots of course marshals (even in the rain).
  • Shuttle to the start (if needed).
  • A real race.
  • Well organized.
  • A lot of pre-race information.
  • Familiar faces (under the masks)
  • Decent Post-race food.
  • Nice half-zip shirt as swag.
  • Cool medal.
  • Free Beer (in Druthers)
  • Free photos (start, mile 8.1 and finish)
  • A real race.

the middle turns and shows your distance

Negatives:

  • Cupless water stops
  • Cold temps
  • Rain!

Would I recommend this race?

Yes. Yes.

It was super well-organized. Special attention was paid to EVERY detail. It will be even more fun when there are no COVID restrictions and the weather conditions are nicer.

Final Stats:

633 in the 10 mile race

No age group award. (even if I had a PR)

Splits:

Garmin= 1:39:20

Walking definitely slowed down my pace:

water stop, Gu, water stop, water stop/Gu, hills – lol

All in all, I was very happy with how I ran the race. I probably ran the first 3 miles too fast but that’s how I usually race. lol

Not expecting a PR and faster than I thought I would do. Happy Camper!

Next Up:

No photo description available.

Rabbit Ramble – June 12. 2021

A 4 miler in two weeks and then ???

There are not many races scheduled before the fall.


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.

Happy Running! Have run a real race yet? If so, how did go? Are you planning to run one? Please share.

 

runner-sig

 

Weekly Run Down for 5.24.21-5.30.21: Back to Normal?

By back to normal, I mean that for the second weekend in a row, I had a RACE on my schedule.

I also got my hair cut and my nails done 🙂

And I played mah jongg with my friends for the first time since March 2020.

In addition, NYS removed the mask mandate for indoors and outdoors (as long as you are vaccinated.)

Last Week:

  • Monday – After a steamy few days, a front came through and cooled things down. I waited until lunch time to run so it was sunny and warm but at least there was a breeze.

lilacs are gone but now it’s iris time!

  • Tuesday – It was a busy work day with a hair appt scheduled for after work. Just a rest day! I have taken up weeding my garden as cross training.
  • Wednesday – After work, we had our second SOAR run scheduled at UAlbany. A fun run with new and old running friends.

But with the threat of thunderstorms, in case it was canceled, I decided to run at lunch (in the heat of the day!!)

And I was right, it did rain. The run was not cancelled but I decided to skip it.

  • Thursday – Today I squeezed in a quick run during lunch. I ran to a fairly new trail and then back to my car.

After work, I picked up my race packet for Sunday’s race

nice 1/2 zip

and then went for a walk with two friends on the rail trail.

haven’t found one in a long time so this was nice

  • Friday – Rest Day. It was supposed to rain all day so I didn’t plan much outside activity. I played mah jongg for the first time since last March!! Happy to be re-united with these wonderful women. And I remembered how to play!!

National Mah Jongg League 2021 Standard Size Scorecard - Mah Jongg Card: Toys & Games - Amazon.com

  • Saturday – Rest Day #2. I know I should rest but the trails were calling. Unfortunately the rain postponed my walk until later in the day. I tried to decide what to wear for my race which I thought since it was on Memorial Day weekend, I could wear a skirt and a tank… Forecast was for 40 degrees and rain!!!

went back n forth but eventually settled on the skirt with compression calf sleeves and a LONG sleeve shirt.

  • Sunday – Race Day! Miles on the Mohawk 10 miler. As I mentioned, summer had seemed to have come and gone. And it was freezing (in the 40s) and it poured for 8 of the 10 miles.  Still had fun and glad to have done another in-person race.

I think I spent the rest of the day warming up in front of the fireplace (Is it really May 30??)

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  HOLIDAY – DAY OFF – hiking
  • Tuesday – run, walk with friends
  • Wednesday – run
  • Thursday – run, walk with friends, Scrabble night for charity
  • Friday – rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday – Long Run or 5K
  • Sunday – rest day, boating/hiking

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Miles on the Mohawk 10 Mile 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? Have you been experiencing summer temps where you live? Any vacations planned? Please share.

FFF: Runfessions for May ’21

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 usually enjoy not wearing my Garmin during a race because I feel no pressure.  So for the Prospect Mountain Road Race, I left it home and used my Apple Watch instead.  But I didn’t start the Strava app.  Obviously I don’t use the Apple app often.  It showed the time and splits for the run.  However, I was disappointed that it didn’t show an elevation map.

you would never know that there was over 1600 ft of elevation gain

I guess I need to wear my Garmin again for races (at least hilly ones.)

Do you like to see the elevation for your runs and/or races?

2. I runfess…

I used to love 5k races. I ran them a lot!  I enjoyed them. I used to win my age group. Yadda Yadda.

Smiling – June 2019

Whether it’s due to age or the Pandemic, but any speed that I once had has disappeared.

They are now HARD!  It’s such a struggle.

there was a frown under that mask lol – Dec 2020

I think I may want to only run longer races…..

Do you enjoy short races?  Does your finish time matter?

3.I runfess…

I was complaining during the Pandemic that all events were cancelled so I had hike or run alone every evening.

Now things have opened up. Activities have been scheduled.

First on Thursday evenings, I started walking with two former co-workers. And I still do every week.

Soon, Thursday Trail group runs will be starting up again (after a year off).

Also the Freihofer Training Challenge is scheduled (after a year off).  Instead of big groups, this year, there will be many small groups. So far, the Advanced group was been scheduled… You guess it. On Thursday!

Choices. Choices.

Anyone else now have scheduling conflicts?

4. I runfess…

My feet still hurt.  They have not stopped me from running (just slowed me down,)

I thought zero drop shoes were the answer.

TOPOS Magnifly

No miracle cure.

So I decided to go back and try a higher drop shoe.

BROOKS Ghost

Now I am really confused, my feet felt the same.  Still not a fair assessment since it wasn’t a half marathon.

Does anyone wear BOTH high drop and low drop running shoes?

5.I runfess…

As you know I love to race. So I’ve already signed up for fall races.

Malta 5k in-person this year – 9/11/2021

and for a fall race-cation:

Oct 3, 2021 – in-person half marathon!!

Have you signed up for any fall races or race-cations?

Happy Running! Anything to runfess this month? 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

https://fresh.inlinkz.com/js/widget/load.js?id=a8b40ada7693d64e5923

Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k Race Recap

                 May 22, 2021 – 10:00 am

Every year, I plan to sign up for the 10k and then I chicken out.

10K

I know that the hills would be good training but… the 5k is an out and back and mostly flat.

5k – but not as flat as it looks (some rolling hills)

This year, due to COVID, the 10K race was only virtual. So I had no choice and registered for the 5k. I planned to run 7 hilly miles after (to prepare for a 10 mile race the week after).

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

This small race in the country has always been one of my favorite races. I have run it for the five years straight (2013-18) and enjoyed it each time. (I was out of town in 2019 and it was cancelled in 2020). It was always well-organized and had great food – the usual food but also chili and homemade muffins & cookies (including gluten free ones).

20140412-163900.jpg

And there was chocolate milk, fresh from the dairy. (You know how I LOVE chocolate milk post-race.)

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Plus, I also have won a homemade pie as first in my age group for the past five years. 28:56, 28:01, 27:54, 27:32, 27:01. Yes, it seems that I was getting faster but I haven’t run this race since 2018.

Lately I don’t feel very fast. In fact, I was highly doubtful that I could finish under 30 minutes.

my most recent 5k – 30:36 (Dec. 2020)

The in-person version of the race was only open to a limited number of participants due to COVID restrictions. To keep the number of people on site down for safety reasons, no spectators were able to join this year. The in-person 5k had a staggered, socially-distanced start to the race.

Packet pick-up was a drive by the night before. But since I lived so far away, I planned to pick mine up the morning of the race.

Again the weather was tricky. What to wear? I was brave the first two years and wore a skirt, a baseball cap and no gloves. It was April, right? Then the next three years, it was cold and I resorted to capris.

This year since the race was later in the year, the weather was more summer-like. In fact maybe too warm.  I decided to wear:

one of my oldest tanks and skirts.

Of course, I had pizza for my race carb loading (yes I carb load even for 5ks. lol)

Race Day:

The race started at 10 am which was great since it would be an hour drive from my house.

After my race breakfast of oatmeal and coffee, I left my house around 8 am. It was already 75 degrees and humid. Uh oh!

I got to the race early (around 9 am) and found a parking spot in a grassy field next to the church. The race started at the church in the town of Bacon Hill, a small farming town with awesome scenery. (It reminded me of Vermont.)

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these pics are from other years…everything still looked the same)

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So as soon as I arrived, I picked up my shirt and bib and then went back to my car to drop off my shirt.

I wasn’t sure that I would know anyone at this race since most of the runners that I usually run this race with were not coming.

I stopped by the timing truck to say hello to my former FTC coach who usually asks me if I was going to PR.  But he wasn’t there. No pressure 🙂

I walked around a bit scouting out the logistics (and fighting off the bugs).

But I did bump into a few runners that I knew and we hung out chatting. Luckily there was bug spray available since the bugs were pretty annoying.

There was music playing and a little over 100 runners. Much fewer than usual because there was a virtual option for both the 5k and 10k.

Eventually at 9:45, they directed us to our corrals. There were labelled by finish time. I think I headed to corral 4 (25-27 minutes). That was very optimistic but in that corral, I noticed some very fast runners and some slower ones. Obviously it didn’t matter since there were no awards and the race was chip timed.

Did I mention that it was HOT and humid? Usually this race is held in April hence the late start time.

I was sweating already and couldn’t wait to get rid of my mask.

Miles 1-1.5

The pastor read a prayer, the church bells rang and we were off.

I threw my mask in a trash can (since they would giving us another mask as we finished).

The 5k was an out and back.

I decided to go out fast. I always have positive splits so why try not to. Unfortunately my fast now is not what it used to be (to some I was never fast and to  others, I still am fast. Remember pace is so individual.)

I laughed. They meant the turtles in the pond on the left, I was thinking “slower runners.”

The course wasn’t as flat as the map showed. The hills were rolling throughout but not that bad. Even I could run up them.

I loved all the signs along the route. Many of them were riddles.  I wish I could remember them but they were a nice distraction.

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the pics are from a previous year but the signs were similar

This one was my favorite:

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My legs really protested my attempt for speed. I felt my 5k racing lay-off.

There were no volunteers on the course calling out times.  There were mile markers and a few scattered volunteers cheering on the runners.

A little past the one mile marker, there was a water stop. A real one with volunteers handing out water. I walked for a while (too long) here since I was very hot and thirsty.

Mile 1.5-3.1:

Eventually we turned around and headed back…. I realized quickly that I had gone out too fast.  I could not keep up that pace (I was wearing my Garmin but I never looked at it until the race was over.)

I did get a breather since my left shoe got untied (yes, I double knotted it.)

I continued running at what seemed a much slower pace.  Now I felt a blister forming on my right foot (or maybe both feet!?)

And then the other shoe got untied. Grrr.

Finally there was one mile to go and I couldn’t wait to finish and get that chocolate milk.

the finish line is right next to the cemetery – obviously not from this year (look at the clothes!

As I approached the finish line, I sprinted as fast as I could (and stopped my watch.)

The clock said: 30:xx but my watch said 28:20! I was happily surprised at my time.

I immediately grabbed a mask and made a bee line for the chocolate milk.

nope. this year, they gave you a bottle.

A volunteer handed everyone a bag of home baked cookies. Not the same selection of refreshment as in pre-Pandemic years.

Hey, a in-person race!! Not complaining!!

both the milk and the cookies were yummy!

I never checked the results since there were no age group awards.

I changed my shoes and shirt and waited for some friends to finish.

Then I decided to try to run 7 additional miles to be prepared the next week’s 20 mile race.

I headed out on the 10K course (which was marked for the virtual race.) Pretty scenery but tough.  It was hot and still humid plus those blisters! I threw in the towel after 3 miles.

Instead of torturing myself, I opted to explore some local trails to get in the miles.

Dionondahowa Falls

Hudson Crossings Park Trails

Ten miles on the legs for the day….even though most were not done by running.

As they say “The hay is in the barn.”

Additional Race Reflections:

Positives:

  • Safety restrictions in place (staggered starts).
  • Ample parking.
  • Well marked course.
  • Beautiful countryside scenerym
  • Chocolate milk and homemade cookies as post-race refreshments.
  • Super friendly volunteers
  • Virtual option.
  • A real race.

Negatives:

  • No Spectators (due to COVID).
  • No 10K option (due to COVID).
  • Few food options (due to COVID).
  • No age group awards.
  • Cotton race shirt.
  • Late start time.
  • Warm and humid temps.
  • Untied shoes (2x)
  • Lack of speed work (my fault).
  • Bib chip didn’t register.

Would I recommend this race?

Yes.

It was super well-organized. Special attention was paid to EVERY detail. It will be even more fun when there are no COVID restrictions and it is scheduled in April when the weather is cooler.

Final Stats:

this was probably a PW for this race but I was happy to show a little speed especially with the humidity

you can see that water stop and shoe tying stops

But I was thrilled with my time.  I wasn’t expecting much.  I did exactly what I had planned.  Just run. I wasn’t ever tired so I definitely think I could have run faster.  But there didn’t seem to be a reason to.  No age group award. I was just running for me and because it makes me feel good to race.

All in all, I loved this race. I will definitely do it again…maybe even the 10K someday.

On a side note:

My chip never recorded my time. This has happened before with this type of chip (due to hanging the bib from my belt.) I contacted the timing company. No biggie since there were no awards. They added my Garmin time to the results the next day (I’m pretty sure my finish time was after this …)

and a virtual pie to the AG winner lol

Next Up:

A local 10 mile race.

May 30, 2021


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.

Happy Running! Did you run or race this past weekend? Did you experience a heat wave? Any in-person races on your schedule yet? Please share.

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Weekly Run Down for 5.17.21-5.23.21: More Birthday Celebrations and a 5k

Due to the amount of dessert consumption this week, I should have walked, run or hiked much more!!

I ran a race on Saturday. Normally a 5k would be nothing to sweat about. I have already done in-person races this year – two half marathons, a 5 miler and a 5.67 miler up a mountain. But this 5k seemed daunting. I don’t remember how to run fast lol.

Last Week:

  • Monday – I had to squeeze in my run during lunch since my BFF was taking me out to diner as a belated birthday gift.

Note to self: running on a very warm sunny day at NOON is not a great idea

I picked a restaurant where we could walk afterwards.

that is Cannoli cake – and yes we walked for 2 hours after eating half of that!!

  • Tuesday – A busy work day gave only enough time to take a walk after work with friends. We decided to switch it up and walk near my friend’s apartment rather than on the rail trail.  Then we stopped in for munchies and wine after.  What I didn’t know was that it was a surprise birthday party.

food and flowers….I am so lucky! (on the right is one of the trees in my friend’s neighborhood.)

  • Wednesday – Another busy work day so I ran after work. I headed to the rail trail since I was nearby picking up my car (air conditioning fixed $$).

At the last minute I decided on the other end of the rail trail for varied scenery. Boy this was a struggle (hot and humid).

I am glad that I decided to run there rather than in my neighborhood.

a black bear was spotted at the same time…yikes!

  • Thursday – Today I squeezed in a quick run during lunch.

hot and humid again and it was garbage day… had to veer off and run some on the water line (no bear sighting)

After work again, I met a friend for a walk on the rail trail.

we found a cool resting spot under the bridge and along the creek

  • Friday – A rest day. And my hubby’s birthday!! No big celebration. Just some pizza and ice cream cake for dessert.

But before dinner, I met a friend for a walk at the Pine Hollow Arboretum for a change of pace since she had never been there.

she loved so we’ll be going back

  • Saturday – Race Day – Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k. It used to be one of my favorite (and most successful) 5ks.  But it’s been a while since I raced a 5k or even ran fast. I gave it my best shot and had lots of fun. That is what really matters not finish times or awards.

chocolate milk and home baked cookies = great race… despite a long water stop and 2 stops for untied shoelaces, my finish time was way better than expected.

Afterward, I reluctantly added on some more torturous miles.  Hot and Humid!!  I had hoped for 7 more miles but I barely made it to 3!

Then I stopped by some local trails. The first one was had waterfalls and it was lovely.

The second one was along the Hudson River.

And so I had to hurry home to get ready to go out to dinner to celebrate my hubby’s birthday.

  • Sunday – My running friends were doing a local 5k.  FOMO.

But I had to go up and help my hubby get our boat ready for the summer.

last year’s first weekend boating pic

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  run
  • Tuesday – rest day, hair appt
  • Wednesday – SOAR run
  • Thursday – rest day, bib pick-up, walk with friends
  • Fridayrun
  • Saturday – rest day, boating?
  • Sunday – Miles Along the Mohawk 10 mile race

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k 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? Have you been experiencing summer temps where you live? Any vacations planned? Please share.

FFF: Tips for Hiking Alone

Of course when I first starting hiking, I was nervous to go alone. What if I got lost?  What if I got hurt?  Would it be boring with no one to talk to?

But I conquered my fears and now I actually enjoy it.

I am a SLOW hiker and I also love to stop and take lots of pictures.  It is so much easier when I am alone (instead of pulling up the rear in a group or listening to my hubby’s groans.)

Here’s FIVE Tips to use if you are gong to hike solo:

1.Do the Research. Read the Reviews

Like when a RD says the route is flat and it isn’t.  The same with trails.  A “easy” trail is often not.  Read what others have said about the hike.  Make sure you read in the reviews from the season that you are hiking in.  The Trails change with the weather.

an easy hike??

moderate??? No way- death defying steep slopes and river crossings!

2. Bring Your Phone and a Portable Charger.

You can call for help if you need it.  You can track your location.  You will feel safer and more relaxed. The ALLTrails app is an app that I depend on. But make sure you have back up power for your phone.

3. Save a copy of the Map on your Phone.

Even if you bring your phone, on trails, service will be spotty.  Just go to the site when you do have a connection and save the map.  If you have a printer, you can print the map at home (I do not.)  I also recommend you do the same with directions to the site.  Do not depend on your GPS connecting to a satellite to get you there or back home.

4. Wear the Right Clothes and Bring the Necessary Supplies.

Always bring water, food, a flashlight, Band-Aids. insect repellent, extra jacket and socks, etc.  If it is dry, regular trail running shoes are fine. If the terrain is rugged, hiking boots are better. Of course, if the trail is snowy or icy, micro spikes are essential. (You can put screws in your shoes instead).  For all my hikes that are not flat, I use hiking poles.

5. Relax. Take it all in. Enjoy the Experience.

In other words, if you are worried about getting lost, you will miss out on the peace and tranquility of being on the trail.  If you think you may fall, you may skip the most beautiful parts of the trail.

getting to this view was not not easy…

I was very nervous crossing that ravine on a log…

Bonus Tip: Bring your dog.

They are great company.

But make sure that your pet is healthy enough for the altitude and the distance.

a young dog with a dog pack on, staring up at its hiking companion

Happy Running! Do you hike alone? Why or why not? Do you think that you may in the future? Any other tips to share? 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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