Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Marathon Training Check -In

Where in the world did July go?   I cannot believe that it's over and tomorrow is August 1st! 

Marathon training is in full swing at this point. I just finished week 7.   Week 7?  Really?   I only recapped Week 1 here.  Instead of boring you to death, I'm just going to skip ahead to week 7.

I've completely changed my plan and I've decided to mesh Train Like a Mother with Ward's plan. As I was following TLAM's plan, I noticed Ward's plan still hanging by the calendar and thought "why not?". His plan was rather intense (for me) and called for several 50+ mile weeks. Eeek! I'm not there yet. I will be, but not right now. So I modified it to call for 40+ mile weeks. Let's just call it a happy medium. His plan also has 5, 20 milers in there. I am going to up the anti a little there and shoot for a few of those to be 21 or 22 milers.

This past Sunday I did run my first 20+ run and ended up with 21.5 miles! I was terribly nervous going into the run knowing my last two long runs, I've had some icky bowel issues and had to stop 3 times for each run to use the woods/porta-potties. Not fun and not how I want to spend my time at MDI. I've come to the conclusion that the reason behind those pottie trips were due fuel. Mostly because the need to go to the bathroom came on immediately after eating my shot bloks or sport beans.

On Sunday, I brought Honey Stingers. They worked for me before and I was hoping that they would work for me again. I would call it a success because I only went to the woods/porta-pottie 2 times (an improvement) and I didn't have to go immediately after eating the Honey Stingers. I was also nervous because I was running solo. Carrie had already done her 20 miler (actually did 20.5 miles) and Jill was away at her high school reunion.

To sum it up, the run was awesome! My pace was between an 8:50 and 9:08 pace for a majority of the run. I do admit that I did walk 1 hill. Now if you saw the hill, you would completely understand why. It's the same hill Carrie and I walked for our 18 miler. It's super steep and it's about a 1/4 of a mile long. It hurts to walk up the hill. So I chose to refuel and hydrate on the hill. That was my only walking break for the entire run.  Yay me. 

 
The best part of the entire run???  When I came into the driveaway and Ward was standing on the steps cheering me on.  He really is the best.  My legs were cramping up, I was tired.  I barely got out "please fill the pool for my ice bath" before he was taking care of me.  Yes, I soaked in Izzy's pool (what used to be a sandbox) again.  It felt heavenly.   

How's your training going?  I want to know!

Friday, July 27, 2012

(Wax) Bean Salad & An Inspired Recipe

The garden is begining to bust out the wax beans which means I get to try out some fun new recipes. Of course I turned to my favorite cookbook- Pinterest - for ideas.

I found this incredible recipe and I had almost everything with the exception of the green onions and parsley - so I just omitted them and I didn't have dijon mustard which I substituted regular yellow mustard. It was incredible! If you like tomatoes, goat cheese and wax beans, I think you should definitely make this. The best part - Ward is not a fan of goat cheese or tomatoes so it was ALL MINE!


Next up, I was inspired by Heather's Eggplant Mushroom Lentil Burgers the other day, but wasn't feeling  the burger part.  So I opted to make an Eggplant, Mushroom, Roasted Red Pepper Pizza instead.  I had two pizza crusts to use up so I made the kids a cheese one and made myself the delicious pizza.  Ward was missing, so he completely missed out. 




Ingredients:
- 1/2 of a baby eggplant, cut into strips
- 1/2 container of baby bella mushrooms
- 1/3 jar of roasted red pepper
- 1 tbsp of olive oil
- salt (to taste)
- cheddar cheese
- pizza crust of choice

Recipe:
1.  First I sauted the eggplant and mushrooms in the olive oil and sprinkled some salt on top.  This part took maybe 5 minutes. 
2.  Then I topped the eggplant/mushroom combination onto of the pizza crust, spread some roasted red peppers and sprinkled some cheddar cheese on top. 
3.  Then I baked it for about 10 minutes and then inhaled this pizza.  It was THAT good!

I forgot to mention that the pizza was last night's dinner.  I still had a 1/2 of that eggplant and the 1/2 of bella mushrooms to use up, so I opted for a wrap for my dinner tonight. 



Ingredients:
- 1/2 of baby eggplant, diced
- 1/2 container of baby bella mushrooms
- 6 cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- handful of spinach
- goat cheese
- wrap

Recipe:
1.  Again, I sauted the eggplant and mushrooms but in coconut oil tonight.  Then I added in the spinach and tomatoes for the last couple of minutes. 
2.  Next I spread out some goat cheese on the wrap and then scooped out the mixture from the pan and put on the wrap. 

Again, wow!  This was incredibly easy and delicious!  I should have grown some eggplant in the garden.  Next year.  For sure. 


Thank you Heather or the inspiration!   Both of my dinners were delicious. 





Thursday, July 26, 2012

Thankful Thursday

Today I have plenty to be thankful for.

 My family
my little helpers, planting the corn


and who both love the water


my running hubby



My Chickens
These ladies are going to give us plenty of eggs (any day now!!!)




The Garden
Jill & I have grown a very successful garden and will be providing
our families with plenty of delicious vegetables.






What are you thankful for today?  (or anyday)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A Couple of Great Hydration Accessories

Water is something that we cannot deny our bodies.  We need it in order to function.  I could go on and on about the necessities of water and why we need it, but I'm pretty sure you know hydration is necessary. 

Hydration isn't only important in the summer.  It's important year round.  However, I will say that as the temperatures outside increase, keeping my body hydrated during runs becomes more challenging, to say the least.  Of course, I'm training for a fall marathon which means running during the summer months is unavoidable.  I could run inside on the treadmill - all summer long - but I really don't enjoy treadmill running that much.  Note: I'm not saying I'm against treadmill running.  I'm simply saying I prefer to run outside. 

I never would have considered running with something in my hands until that super hot day and my final leg at Reach the Beach, when I ran with a plastic water bottle for the first 3 miles, then grabbed another one for the remaining 4 miles.  It was during that run I decided that maybe I could run with something in my hands and be happy.  Maybe. 

This is where Nathan stepped in to help me out with this challenge.  I was sent a few items to review on my training runs this summer. 

First on deck is the Quick Shot.  This little guy is so light (1.6 oz) and will hold up to 10 oz. = a grand total of 11.6 oz if you choose to fill it up.  Not a lot of weight at all.  I've been taking him out on several runs lately - mostly my 3 - 6 milers.  I do like this one for the lightness and if I'm wearing something that has a spot for my keys, I definitely like to take this one.  I also really like the race cap.  There is no cap to pull up or push down. 


Not only is it incredibly light weight, it basically hangs onto my hand with zero effort.  I really could run with my fingers straight out and the Quick Shot would not fall off. 




Source

Next up is the Quick Draw Plus.  Out of the three items I was sent, I'd have to say this one was my favorite.  Again, this bottle is pretty light weight (4 oz) and will hold upto 22 oz.  I have not filled it up entirely (yet). I've gone out on several mid length runs (5 & 6 milers) and it's been perfect for me.





The pocket is a great feature and will hold a cell phone, keys, fuel and toilet paper.  (yes, I've rolled up a wad of tp and brought it along)  It's really amazing what I can cram into such small spaces.  With this one, I did notice some "sloshing" sounds, but it wasn't really that bad at all.  And when I was getting tired of it being on one hand, it is quite easily transferable to the other hand. 

The cap on the Quickdraw is one that needs to be pulled out before drinking.  I did notice that after I drank some water, I had to push it in (with a quick slap of my palm) or I'd have water sprinkling on me.  Which isn't necessarily a bad thing when the temps are rising.  

Source


And up last is the Trail Mix belt.  I had such high hopes for this belt.  I was hoping it would provide me with the fuel and water I needed on my long runs.  I was going to go for it and take it out on my 18 miler with Carrie a couple of  weeks ago.  I got it packed up, took a picture and even posted on facebook that I was going to take it out for the run.  Then, my voice of reason (Ward) suggested I try it out on a shorter run first.  He's so smart. 


What I like about this belt is that it has straps on the side to hold jackets/hats/etc if need be.  I've been known to have to take layers off.  It also has a huge pocket and then a smaller pocket in front of the larger pocket - leaving plenty of carry space.  It also carries quite a bit of water - each flask holds 10 oz, giving you a grand total of 20 oz on this specific belt.  And it is 100% hands free - well, until you need water.  When you do need water, grabbing the water bottle and putting it back in are incredibly easy. 




I tried it out on a 6 miler with Izzy in the jogger.  I put some snacks in the pocket for her and then gum for me.  This pocket can hold a lot!    Unfortunately, 4 miles into the run, I gave up running with it and tossed it in the basket of the jogger.  I vowed to try it again.  And I did, I went out for an 8 miler.   I fiddled with it some more and then ended up taking it off and running with it in my hands. 


However, I must report that the Trail Mix is not for me.  I took it out for 2 runs and ended up taking it off in the last 2 miles of each run because I couldn't handle it.  Finding the right spot for the belt was the most difficult part for me.  I tried for mid waist first and after stopping to adjust several times, it just moved around far too much.  Then I tried it on my hips.  This was better, but it still moved around and drove me crazy.  I'm bummed it didn't work for me.  I really had high hopes of spending my 20 milers with this belt. 

Source


If you are in the market for hydration accessories, I'd definitely check out what Nathan has to offer.  I am really enjoying the two handhelds I received.  I think they both offer up a lightweight option for running and hydrating during the runs.  They also come along with some other great features like the pouch on the Quickdraw and they both have the emergency ID cards.   As you know, the belt wasn't for me, but it doesn't mean it isn't for you.  If you are already a hydration belt lover and are in the market for another one, Nathan could be you place to go.  I did like the amount of water the belt could hold, the ease of getting the flasks and returning them to their spaces and the amount of storage the pockets offered.  You can visit Nathan at their online store to check out their products, like them on facebook or follow them on twitter


Disclaimer:  Nathan provided me the products to try out, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review for the product.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

9

Today marks a very special day in our life.  
Where have the years gone?  It seems like only yesterday he was this tiny little guy. 


Now he's growing up. 


This boy means the world to me. 


  
We'll be spending your special day at the cottage -
 jumping, splashing, and lounging in the water - just as you wanted. 

Happy Birthday, Tucker!  I love you.

Friday, July 20, 2012

I LOVE Chike (+Giveaway)

A few weeks ago I received a package in the mail.  I love it when UPS and FedEx come to my house with goodies for me - especially when the goodie in the box is delicious and coffee.  I do love my coffee. 

 

This package was filled with a Chike Shaker bottle and Chike Ice Coffee packets.  I have to say that I quite impressed with Chike. 





My thoughts on Chike Iced Coffee -
  • The taste is very similar to a Starbucks frappucino - but packed with vitamins and protein and far less calories. 
  • There is no aftertaste.
  • The taste is smooth, no clumps. 
  • Travels well with the premeasured packets.
  • Low calories makes it a great protein drink to drink in addition to food and doesn't have to be a meal replacement.  I know some people really enjoy meal replacement protein drinks - but I actually need to chew food. 
As you can tell, I am quite happy with Chike.  It really is not like any other protein drinks I've had before and I'm quite pleased with everything about it.  Sometimes I tend to share my protein drinks with others, but this time around I didn't really share with anyone (with the exception of my hopefully future step-mom).  I am trying to win her over and I think my sharing my Chike helped. 

Now, are you ready for the giveaway?  Chike has offered my incredible followers the chance to win a Chike Blender Bottle and 5 Iced Coffee Packets to not one of my readers but THREE of my readers!
 
Chike likes to go to the gym with me & I like it that way

 

The giveaway starts today 7/20/12 and will run until 7/24/12.  I will choose my three winners via Rafflecopter and email the winners (so be sure I can contact you!) and I will post the winners on the blog on Wednesday. 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Hardest Run Yet

Sunday morning, Carrie and I met up bright and early for our 18 mile run adventure.   It's been rather hot and humid lately and we wanted to get the run done before it got too unbearable. 

I lured Carrie to my house with the promise of Ward making us scones and having coffee ready when we arrived...and it worked.   Carrie met me at my house and in a few short moments we were off.  I had planned for Carrie and I to run a route in the more rural sections of Gardiner and Richmond, away from our beloved rail trail, mostly to add variety to our running and maybe a little challenge or two.  However, less than a mile into the run, the deer flies were eating us alive (even after a pause to apply insect repellent) so we aborted the plan and just ran down to the rail trail.   It was going to be an out and back, but we knew the route (very well) with the addition of running from my house and back to it - which did mean adding in some hills. 

Here's some of the highlights:
- it was humid, the air quite thick
- we saw lots of runners, some whom we've never seen before, which was quite nice to see
- I had (lots) of tummy issues and visited the port-a-potties 2 times and hid behind some bushes another time
- I had great company
- we walked a hill that actually hurt to walk up the hill, there was no way were were running it! 
- we looked smoking hot in our Tommie Copper shorts





Finally, after 3+ hours, we rounded the corner by my house and saw my mailbox and Carrie took off in a spring.  Seriously?  She had that much energy left in her?  I wanted to crawl.   We headed in the house and devoured our share in some just-came-out-of-the-oven sconces made by the best husband in the world.  I made Carrie and I some CLICK protein drinks and she had to take off for a family fun day by the pool.



yummy scones, just wish my belly let me enjoy them



I on the other hand, could barely move.  My stomach was not cooperating or accepting any food I gave it, so I opted for an ice bath in Izzy's pool (which used to be a sandbox) and then had a relaxing day with my little girl. 

this is what happens when Ward's gone




and I'm left to using the tripod



it took me 3 takes, but finally I got to sit in the ice bath an enjoy
 (well, as much as one could possibly enjoy an ice bath)

I had some (well, okay, a lot) of serious doubts about me running this marathon in October if I struggled so much with this one.  But those were passing doubts.  I'm back on the positive bus and I'm ready for more tough runs.  So much that I'm revamping my plan.  It's never too late to change things up, right?

Sunday, July 15, 2012

CLICK winner

I hope you are all enjoying your Sunday!  We've had some gorgeous weather for the past week and I've been loving being outside with the kids. 

A congratulations goes out to ......



You are the winner of the CLICK giveaway!  Please email me at runningwiththegirls AT gmail DOT com so you can claim your prize.  

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Bond Brook 5k Series - Race #1 Recap

Last summer Ward, Wade and Joe started running the Bond Brook 5K Trail Series.  The races took place on a Thursday night on the trails by the airport in Augusta.  At first, I had zero interest in running the race and thought they were just plain old crazy for doing these races.  But then I took the kids with me one night to spectate and take pictures and my mind was forever changed.  Each week, it was usually the same group of runners.  Sometimes there were some who only came once or twice, but for the most part, the group remained the same.  Watching this group of runners take off into the woods and then crossing the finish line with a mix of exhilaration and pure exhaustion was amazing.  As a runner, it was difficult for me to stand there and watch runners cross the finish line while I stood there with the kids.  I thought that I could at least do my part and take pictures of the runners crossing the finish line and share those pictures online. 
This year I was bound and determined to do this 5k that Ward loved so much.  I thought that perhaps he would take the summer off and do kid duty so I could run.  It would only make sense, right?  When both parents run and the kids are still young, finding someone to watch the kids does become challenging.  It’s hard to always ask the same family members over and over again to take the kids.  I suppose we could find a babysitter, but we don’t know any local high schoolers/college kids in our area and I really need to know them and trust them in order to leave my favorite little people in their care.  Ward wasn't up for doing his share of kid duty, which then meant for this run, the kids hung out with their cousins and their Aunt Jill. 




This past Thursday was my first go at trail runner.  Ever.  I know, I write all of the time about running on my favorite Kennebec River Rail Trail, but it’s not a trail, at all.  The rail trail is really a nicely paved, mostly flat course that follows the rail road tracks and the Kennebec River from Gardiner to Augusta. The race directors did offer some trail previews the past few weeks, but I wasn’t available on those nights and really couldn’t make it work.  I was hoping that I would be just fine winging it.  And I was.  I did get a little lost, but it seems as though quite a few others did as well.  No big deal.  I’m thinking (hoping) that getting lost (sometimes) is just part of trail running and adds to the experience.  

Ward had tweaked his hamstring the night before at a soccer game and I was really hoping that he would take this race really easy and run with me.  But he wasn’t having that.  Darn.  At least he warmed up with me for about a ¼ mile prior to the run.  I didn’t have to really warm up.  The race was at 6 pm and it was probably 80 F at the start of the race.  My legs were plenty warmed up. 

At the start of the race, I saw Harold from A Veteran Runnah, my college friend Dan, Jess and Kim (two of my running buddies), and Tara from Always Under Construction and of course, Joe, Ward and Wade.  The course started off in a different location this year which I loved.   Karen, the race director gave us our directions and rules about the course – mostly watch for the pink markers and that the miles were marked.  Just a few moments later, the race started and I started my Garmin.  I know.  Silly.  Why would I think that my Garmin would do me any good in the woods with all of those sharp turns.  I knew the Garmin wasn’t going to help me with pace or mileage, but at least I would be able to see my time.  At that point, I should have just brought along my old sports watch, but I have no idea where it is.  I started off quite slow and relaxed.  I was going into this “race” with really only one goal – completion.  This was a whole new running experience and I couldn’t (shouldn’t) compare my 5k road race times to this time. 

As the runners spread out and found their paces, I started following a group of women.  I kept up with them for some time, then the course got rather windy and I completely lost them.  Apparently I wasn’t paying attention to the pink markers either because I soon found myself on a paved road.  Ugh!  I ran back toward where I thought the course was, but I have zero sense of direction and I was really getting nervous I wasn’t going to find the course again.  Great.  I kept running to where I thought I had lost the trail – thinking this is just awesome.  They will have to send out a search team for me.  How freaking awesome is that.  Soon enough I found some runners who I had passed earlier in the race.  Then I saw Jess and another group of runners bushwacking through the woods because they had gotten lost too!  Jess and I stuck together for the rest of the race.  We passed the runners we had passed earlier and just did our best to survive for the rest of the race.  My finish time was 32:16. (a little more than 10 minutes added on to my 5k pr on a flat, paved road.  I lived to tell about it and I’m going to do it again. 
After the race, I went out for a cool down with Ward and Wade because they (like every single race they run) decided to toss their hats and sunglasses during the race. 

My overall impression of the course – it was a challenge for sure and that’s what I wanted.  There were lots of roots, trees, rocks, narrow paths.  I really don’t remember looking up a lot.  My focus was really on the course trying to make sure I didn’t fall and really injure myself. Next time I’ll add paying better attention to the pink markers as well.  That should have probably been my priority the first time around.    That would definitely put a huge kink into my marathon training.   I need hills in my training (since I will be running up a mountain), so this will provide me with part of that training.



this is what I get when I ask Wade to take a picture of Ward and I


If you live in the Augusta, Maine area, and are up for a challenging run, I think you really should come out to the series.  Each race only costs $5 and it benefits the Augusta Trails.  You can like them on facebook,(by the way I LOVE their cover page, especially that hottie in the yellow shirt) or check out their website. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Let's Sweat Pink, Shall We?




Recently I was selected to be one of the newest Sweat Pink Fit Approach Ambassadors.  Fit Approach was founded by cousins, Alyse and Jamie.  The Fit Approach Mission is simple:

source
I am more than excited to be part of this outstanding group of exercise enthusiasts!  Not only am I part of a supportive community of women around the United States (and beyond), I also received some fun swag.  First of all - my most favorite tank in the world. 



I wear this tank just about everywhere - running on the trail, doing yoga, hanging out at home, working in the garden, running errands, and working at the gym. 



And PINK shoelaces.  Spreading the Sweat Pink love with PINK shoelaces is such a clever idea. I'll be spreading the Sweat Pink love locally. First I'm starting with my girls. Then I'm going to start passing them out at local events, on the rail trail and when I work at the KVHC. 




Check out how Sweat Pink shoelaces make my men's shoes prettier and faster!



 
You should definitely check out Fit Approaches Ambassador pages and to check out my story

You can also join the #sweatpink race program.  Check out the details here, but to make it quick and easy - you can do your fall race(s) sweating pink with an Sweat Pink t-shirt or tank and pink shoe laces, then celebrate afterwards with a Sweat Pink wine glass.  You'll also get some pins to wear or sport wherever you so choose. 



I'll be running MDI in my #racepink.  If you are interested in racing pink, register today!
Are you interested in applying to be a Sweat Pink Amabassador?  Apply here today! 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Are YOU the lucky winner?

And the winner for the Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil is......







Congratulations!  I will be emailing you shortly. 

Have you entered my CLICK giveaway yet?

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Bike Riding Big Girl Style

I have BIG news!  Izzy is riding a big girl bike. 


Our friends gave us their daughter’s old princess bike with training wheels and Izzy wanted to ride it immediately.  The protective momma in me didn’t think she was ready for it.  I didn’t want her to fall and get any more boo boos (believe me, she has plenty!).  We have a rocky driveway that really isn’t the best for a beginner bike rider.  Then there’s the hill.  I don’t know why, but the kids are naturally drawn to it and insist on going down the hill.  Even on the first go of riding a bike. 








 
Nervous momma here had her hand ready to steady this big girl going down the hill.  I know someday she’ll take a digger going down the hill, but it wasn’t going to be today! 


Saturday, July 7, 2012

CLICK with Summer (+Giveaway)

Awhile back I reviewed Mocha CLICK.  CLICK can be enjoyed hot or cold and I did just that.  It can be enjoyed for pre-workout/post-workout or a mid-day pick-me-up.  Anyway you drink CLICK, it is just enjoyable. 





Recently, I was sent the Vanilla Latte CLICK package - complete with canister, blender bottle and CLICK Bondi band.  I wasn’t sure if I’d be a fan of this flavor, but it is absolutely delicious.  Because it’s summer, I’ve only been enjoying it cold. 

After my solo 15 miler, I joined the girls for some beach time and brought along an Iced Vanilla Latte.  

CLICK is quick to make.  I just add water, a scoop (or two) of CLICK, some ice cubes, screw on the cap and shake.  In addition to being quick, it’s a refreshing drink as well. 
You can get creative and try out different combinations.  One of my favorites was:

If you'd like to try out CLICK, you can go here to try out a buy one get one free sample pack. 

By now, I’m sure you are ready for me to move onto the giveaway part of this post.  CLICK has offered one lucky winner your choice of CLICK canister, a CLICK shaker, and a CLICKed Out Bondi Band.  The giveaway is only open to US Residents (sorry!). The giveaway will begin on 7/7/12 and end on 7/13/12.  The winner will be contacted via email and will have 72 hours to respond. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway





Disclaimer:  CLICK provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a giveaway in return for the free product.






Friday, July 6, 2012

LL Bean 10K Recap

A few years ago, we took the leap from 5ks to 10ks with the LL Bean 10K.  The deal breaker for us to make the leap was the promise of free shoes.  For a few years, LL Bean offered a pair of New Balance running shoes if you were one first 400 lucky ones to register.  This year the race director changed the shoe policy and changed it to a lottery system if you signed up by a certain date.  To be honest, I’ve never been a huge fan of the New Balance model we given, but Ward always liked his.  It seems like the LL Bean gods were listening, because I did not win the shoe lottery, but Ward did.  Lucky guy! 

If you ever make it to the area, you should definitely try out this race.  The course is challenging yet it takes you through some beautiful areas of Freeport.  Crowd support is also a bonus here.  I love seeing the families sitting at the end of their driveways, sipping away at their coffee (or mimosa), cheering on the runners.  I thoroughly enjoy the person always has their hose spraying over the road to offer the runners a quick cool off.  The volunteers are incredible as well.  Constantly offering support and cheering on the runners the entire way. 

In addition to the shoes, the other bonus is a pretty nice shirt.  It’s a New Balance tech  t-shirt for the guys and a New Balance tech tank for the women. 


This year, the girls and I decided to make this a sparkly kind of race and we ventured out to make our own sparkle skirts.  Carrie at Maine Mom on the Run was the super sweet one to pick up the fabric, elastic, and thread.  She wanted to go with a red sparkle skirt and Stacy and I wanted blue. 




Last Saturday, I borrowed Jill’s sewing machine (since both of my ancient hand-me-down sewing machines were not cooperating with me) and challenged myself with the making of 5 blue sparkle skirts:  one for myself, Stacy, Jess, Jill (even though she ditched us and went to Florida with her mom), and our friend Darcy.  Now, I just need to mention that Darcy just ran her 1st 5k ever a few weeks back and then took on her 1st 10k with the LL Bean 10k.  Isn’t that impressive? 



I went into this race just hoping for my best.  In my opinion, this course if more challenging than the Beach to Beacon 10K course (which is where I scored my 10K PR last summer), so I wasn’t really aiming for an overall 10K pr, I was just looking to improve upon my course time.  My time last year was 50:29.  I knew I had it in me to do well, I just needed to keep my mind focused on the hills and the mind game that they play on me.  The first half of the race is mostly downhill and the second half is uphill.  My problem is that there are 1500 people crowded on the streets of Freeport and maneuvering through the crowd to get to my comfortable pace is a huge challenge.  There’s a lot of dodging people and hoping no one plows me over for the first 1 – 1.5 miles. 
 

At the 3 mile mark, I was cruising.  My time was 23:00.  If only there weren't those crazy hills for the last half, I would have crushed my 10K time!  This tells me for sure I need to focus on hill training. 







Finish time – 49:18!  1 MINUTE, 11 SECOND COURSE PR! 

I think I owe this excellent race to having an incredible cheering squad at this race - my aunt and uncle are up from Pennsylvania and came down with my dad to watch the race (and take pictures)  Love you guys!

My 10K pr is 49:11 at Beach to Beacon last August.  I wasn’t too far off the mark. 

Such a HUGE improvement over my 1st LL Bean 10k when I sucked on an inhaler and walked EVERY SINGLE HILL.   Heck, I have no idea where my inhaler is.  Now that just feels freakin’ awesome! 

 Next 10K goal – break into the 48’s.  I know I have it in me.  I just have to find the right course for it.   And no, I’m not doing Beach to Beacon this year.  I didn't even try to get into the race this year.  This year I’m heading down to the race to cheer on everyone we know running the race and to watch the elite runners cross the finish line.  I’m going to love being a spectator for that race. 
photo courtesy of Maine Running Photos

Back to LL Bean for a quick moment - Ward did quite well in his race as well. He placed 1st in the LL Bean employee division (because the race is an LL Bean race, of course there is an employee division).  His prize was a day hiking backpack.  Way to go, hubby!  

photo courtesy of Maine Running Photos