Archives for March 2015

Body After Baby: 6 Months

If you will remember in my 4 month update, I said I was skipping the 5 month update and would re-visit this at 6 months. Well, time sure is flying, I realized this weekend I was a week late with my post! So, here is what has been going on with me since I last checked in. (Side note, I know these types of posts are not loved by everyone and can be a trigger for some, so feel free to come back tomorrow if this isn’t your thing.).

When I found out I would be running the ASICS LA marathon, I was super excited about the opportunity, but also a little worried because I always gain 3-4 pounds when I train for a full marathon. One reason is because I spend all my time running and don’t cross train or lift weights because I have NO TIME (especially this go around with the baby!) and the other reason is because I admittedly eat all the things when I am training for a full. I expected this though, so it didn’t shock me when the scale went up instead of down. However, I am happy to report that two weeks post marathon,I have already lost 3 of the 4 pounds I gained while training for said race. So I am a pound or so away from the lowest I have been since the baby, and about 6-7 pounds from my pre pregnancy weight.

Honestly, all I have done differently is stop eating as much junk food. I have been drinking a lot of smoothies and have reigned in the night time snacking.

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The main difference I can still tell is in my stomach. I haven’t really been doing ab work so I’m not sure why this surprises me, but I still have this bulge that seems to be the last thing to go away. It seems most of the other spots have shrunk down except this one.

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Another big thing I have noticed is that my hair has FINALLY stopped coming out in huge clumps. This has a down side though…it has started to grow again and now all around my forehead I have these short little “sprouts” of hair coming up that are driving me insane. Mamas, please tell me I’m not the only one and that you know exactly what I am talking about!

I am still drinking Advocare Spark, and taking Fibo-trim before most dinners and Catalyst before I workout for extra endurance. FullSizeRender (16)

Since I ran the marathon, I have only run three times. I have a 10k this weekend and have just been trying to let me body recover from such a hot and difficult race, and I’m not concerning myself with my time at the 10k and am just going to have fun.

I have however started cross training again and weight lifting! I lifted twice last week, and hope to lift twice again this week. I am going super slow and taking it easy because I don’t want to be so sore all of the time that I don’t want to do it anymore. Easing back in has been good for me so far.

I am also still doing my PT exercises and stretches. Admittedly I am not doing them daily, but 3-4 times a week would be a safe bet. Knock on wood no knee or hip pain yet, and hopefully the addition of more lifting will further remedy the problem. That’s pretty much it, nothing too exciting I know, but hopefully I will have more good news in 2 month at my 8 month update!

QOTD: If you are a runner, are you diligent about cross training and strength training?

Timex Ironman One GPS+

 
I am a numbers nerd. I love knowing my times, paces, distances, and the like. I am also a tech nerd, and love checking out the latest and greatest technology. The Timex Ironman One GPS+ watch is definitely for a techy numbers girl like me. You had me at touch screen, my friend.

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This watch has so many cool features that it took me awhile of exploring and playing with it to learn everything, but I think I have a pretty good handle on it now. So, let’s start with the basics:

-Phone-free connectivity with AT&T (first year is free)

-Ability to track speed, distance and pace in real-time and instantaneously

-share performance metrics via apps like Run Keeper, Strava, etc.

-Always-on, sunlight readable Qualcomm® Mirasol™ display for easy reading

-Tracking capabilities that include a custom-built safety solution

-Built-in MP3 component that stores and plays music via your bluetooth headphones. It includes 4GB of storage right on your watch!

-Send messages to people in your contacts list, and have new messages displayed right on your device

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Did I mention it is water resistant up to 50 meters and can communicate your location to family and friends via an SOS if you are in trouble?

Without the GPS on the watch can last 72 hours as a stand alone watch, and up to eight hours with all of the cool functions being used.

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As I mentioned before I had to consult the online user guide for a couple of things and get the hang of a touch screen GPS watch, but now I’m really liking it! My only two issues I have noticed so far is that the touch screen isn’t sensitive enough sometimes and I have to hit it a couple times before it reads my touch, and the watch itself is kind of big. I totally get why, I mean who would want an itty bitty touch screen, but just thought it was worth mentioning. Once I start running I hardly notice the size/weight though, and the pros by far outweigh these two minor things.

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If you are like me and you love geeking out over the latest and coolest gadgets, then this product is something you should check out. It is far more advanced than any GPS watch I have ever owned, and the safety features make me feel much better about running alone than with other watches I have. If you have any questions, I would love to try to answer them for you!

QOTD: what is your favorite feature in this watch? What is your favorite thing about GPS watches in general?

This post is sponsored by FitFluential.

Jeff Galloway Tips: Why We Get Injured

Here are some more great tips from Jeff Galloway about injury. I find these so interesting since I struggle with injury a lot. Hopefully they will help you to run injury free!

Why do we get injured?

1.  Be aware of irritation of weak links.

The Key Weak Links are body parts where my runners tend to experience injuries are these: Knees – Feet -Calf – Achilles -Hip – Glute/piriformis/sciaticia

But the body parts that YOU need to be aware of are the sites where you are injured or suffer more aches and pains.

So if you’re sensitive to the first indication of irritation in these areas and take immediate action it’s possible to avoid injury.

2.  Stress buildup due to the way we train.

  • Training schedule is too intense-not enough rest between stress.
  • Adverse Training Components-speed is too fast or has too much, too soon.
  • Running form-too long a stride, forward lean, bouncing too high off the ground.

So staying focused on the way one runs and following these guidelines, can often allow runners to maintain a manageable increase without injury

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Top 5 ways to avoid stress buildup-and avoid injuries

1.  Take walk breaks more frequently, and run shorter run segments

2.  Form: shorter stride, feet low to the ground

3.  Slower long runs, with more walk breaks

4.  Avoid Stretching

5.  Be careful when running speed sessions

 

 

Register now for the Jeff Galloway 13.1 with no risk!  The 2nd annual half marathon on Dec. 13, 2015 is currently $95. You can sign up with no risk! Take advantage of this low price, and if you can’t make it, you can roll into the virtual option with no extra charge!

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Jeff Galloway 13.1!

Disclosure: As a Jeff Galloway blogger I am provided with tips to share with my readers.

#NoExcuses to Stink

I am a heavy sweater. That, combined with living in a very hot and humid climate make for a hot mess after a run or race. No one likes to be in the car all gross after a run, and no one wants to hang out post race when they are stinky (no one would ever want to stand by me!) I think it is genius that ShowerPill created these awesome body wipes for people like me.

showerpill

These wipes come individually wrapped in a ten pack, and can be used on your whole body. They kill 99.9% of germs and have Aloe Vera and Vitamin E.

They are safe for sensitive skin, and have no alcohol. Also, they contain a quick dry solution so you don’t have to dry off afterwards.

I like to throw one in my gear check bag for races, or when I know I have to run and then go run some errands, I throw one in my purse to use in the car.

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A ten pack of wipes only costs $9.99, BUT, right now on their website, you can try a trial for only $1.00!! Totally worth the trial, and I’m sure you will love them as much as I do. I am running the Crescent City Classic 10k Easter weekend, and you can bet I will be bringing along a ShowerPill body wipe. It’s for the sake of my family and friends of course. Smile

Basically, it helps you to have #NoExcuses for not working out. No more can you say “oh, but I have to go get groceries, pick up the baby, and go to the post office so I can’t go to the gym”. Sorry, but yes you can!

QOTD: What do you do after a run or race to get rid of the “ick” when you can’t shower right away?

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post via Fit Approach and ShowerPill, however these wipes really are awesome and all opinions are my own.

Emma Kate: Month 6

Happy half birthday to my baby girl! This seems like such a huge milestone, and se is getting more and more fun every day. A lot has happened this month, so let’s jump right in!

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Emma Kate loves:

making any and all noises

watching the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse

petting Bella

playing with her feet

eating her bib/chewing on her clothing

when I dance, do jumping jacks, hop around, or act silly

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Emma Kate does not like:

sleeping in her crib

naptime

When she can’t reach something

being woken up from naps

taking her medicine

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We now have two teeth! One popped up soon after she turned five months, and the other came just a few days later. She was a little fussy but took it like a champ. We have been consistently walking with her the correct way in the jogging stroller (no car seat) but not running that way just yet.

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At her 6 month appointment, we got EK’s stats. She is 18 pounds two ounces (84%), and is in the 97% for height (no surprises there!) and 92% for head circumference.

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Emma Kate is in size 3 diapers, and is busting out of her 6 month onesies. She is in 9 month sleepers full time, and most of her pants are 9 months. She is eating about 34/35 ounces of formula a day, and the new thing that was “big” this month, was starting solid food! It took her about a week to get used to and figure out the spoon, but home girl really loves her some bananas!

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She is now officially in her bed full time. We had a bit of a setback when we came back from staying at my parents for a week where she slept in the swing, but we powered through and after a few rough days, she is accepting the crib (still taking SHORT naps) but she slept all night in the crib last night without waking up, hooray!

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We are having a great time learning more and more about Emma Kate and can’t wait to see what the next 6 months bring. She is such a sweet smiley girl.

QOTD: When did your baby get their first tooth? Who thinks EK needs to do a diaper dash?

Something Sweet and $100 Visa Gift Card Giveaway

I have always loved the taste of sugar, candy, and delicious treats. As I am now 6 months post baby, I am really trying to focus on making more healthy choices and small changes that can add up to help me on my health an fitness journey. A big weakness of mine is flavored coffees and creamers. I can’t stand to drink coffee black, but as a new mom I am throwing back way more calories than necessary because I need something sweet in my cup… or multiple cups a day. Please tell me I’m not the only sweet coffee addict?!? IMG_3343 (2)
I recently realized this was an issue, so I was excited to learn about Born Sweet™ Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener. This stuff has been a lifesaver because it tastes good and is better for my post baby weight loss efforts by not adding a ton of extra calories to my multiple cups of coffee. (One packet is equal to the sweetness of two teaspoons of sugar). IMG_3339 (2) Zing™ is made with only real ingredients, extracting the sweetness found in Mother Nature’s stevia plant.  It has zero calories, and is easy to sprinkle in your coffee.  Or, you can sprinkle it on some fruit, even in a smoothie or in some tea. (You all know how much I love sweet tea!) I have always ALWAYS had a serious sweet tooth, and while I know it can lead to major temptations, it’s just something I have always struggled with. I can work out all day long, but when it comes to sweets I tend to overdo it. But as I’m trying to make small changes like this one, it will help me cut back on calories and still enjoy the sweet flavor I love.

Want try new Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener for yourself? Visit www.zingstevia.com to request a Free Sample of Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener, plus a $1.50 Coupon. You can find Zing™ in the sweetener aisle at mass merchandiser and grocery stores nationwide.
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Now for the fun part! Answer the following question below in the comments for a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card:
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ASICS LA Marathon Weekend: Race Recap

Here it is finally, my race recap from the ASICS LA marathon. I can’t believe it was over a week ago, and I still honestly can’t believe I ran a marathon after having a baby five months prior. I was definitely undertrained with a 16 miler as my longest run (not advisable by the way), but I still am so happy I did it and so proud of myself!

Crystal and I woke up at 3:15. We got about four hours of sleep so I like to say we took a long nap.

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We jumped up, got dressed and packed to head down to the shuttle.

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But not before a quick picture of course!

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I met up with the other TeamASICSLAM members in the lobby, and the girls took a picture before we got on the bus.

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Megan from Self Magazine, Kelly from According to Kelly, Leta from Pop Sugar Fitness, and Jessie from Women’s Running Magazine.

We arrived at Dodger stadium and made our way to the VIP area where we had food, a private gear check, and real bathrooms (the best part!) I had already eaten in the room so I just grabbed a bottle of water.

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We had a great view of the field which was really neat.

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We hung out, stretched, and I checked my bag before we headed out to the start line which was just outside. The corrals were a bit confusing, so Crystal and I just tried to squeeze in wherever we could find space. It was jam packed!

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The sun began to rise, and after a few minutes the elite women were off, followed by the elite men and the seeded corrals.

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Then it was just a giant free for all, everyone else going at once. It was VERY crowded in the beginning because of this, but it ended up evening out as the race went on, but we  had to walk the first couple of tenths because we just couldn’t move.

The first few miles were pretty uneventful. I asked Crystal where we were about a million times and we just kept on going. We decided to do a 2:1 run/walk interval that way we wouldn’t end up pushing too hard the first half with nothing left to give in the second. I did a few of my training runs this way and it really worked well for me. I push hard on the run portions knowing I get a walk break. Crystal had an interval timer on her garmin so she would let us know when it was time to run or walk.

Also, I was video recording my experience for ASICS, so I was carrying my phone in one hand and the camera in the other so I could record easily. The walk breaks made it much easier for me to talk into the camera and record my surroundings.

We made it to Chinatown!

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The sun was coming up but it wasn’t in our eyes yet so I had no need for sunglasses. It was already getting very warm but luckily wasn’t humid.

Crystal is used to running on hills and I am not, so I would lag behind on the small hills then catch up with her at the walk breaks.

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I knew there was a big hill somewhere around mile five, and boy were they not joking! This thing was a beast to climb. I know it doesn’t look that steep, but it went on forever.

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This is a good shot to show you all the people running:

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I tired to take pictures when I could, but it was hard switching back and forth between my camera and the video camera.

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There were a bunch of rolling hills that really slowed me down, but none as big as the one at mile 5.

We made it to the 10k marker and we were tracking ourselves, so we saw our estimated time was 5:23. I was impressed. I knew that would change in the later miles, but since my PR was 5:56, I was thinking I could make it. Crystal’s PR was a couple minutes faster than mine, so we were a good match to run together. We made it around a corner and I could see the hollywood sign off in the distance. It kept hiding behind buildings but finally I got a shot of it!

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ooookkkk….

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Crystal kept telling me certain things were famous landmarks so I took pictures of them but didn’t know what most of them were haha.

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The sun was out but there was a sheer layer of clouds covering it so it didn’t seem so hot…yet

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We passed more landmarks (I was told this one was where the Disney movie premieres were held so of course I needed a picture)

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We were feeling good, and having someone to chat with made the miles go a lot faster.

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I was getting a slight twinge in my IT band so I decided to be proactive and take some tylenol at a med tent. My hip felt surprisingly fine, so off we went. We hit the first of two CLIF stations and I grabbed some fuel. I had taken two so far and so I held off on taking another and saved it for later.

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I couldn’t believe it, we made it halfway! On one hand it was great knowing we had conquered half the race, but it was also very daunting knowing we still had ANOTHER 13.1 miles to run!

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Off we went, through Hollywood and into Beverly Hills.

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We were still feeling good, and I was still taking a cup of gatorade and a cup of water at every stop, which was every mile. It was about this time I started taking fuel from spectators. Yall, the spectators were AMAZING. They had SO much food! I grabbed some pretzels and the salt tasted so good to me. That’s when I knew I needed to eat more solid food so I grabbed half a banana from someone else.

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It was a beautiful place to run with very few hills so I was happy. Smile

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Next we turned onto Rodeo drive. I ooed and aahheed over all the stores I would never be able to afford to even walk into. Then I saw one of my favorite race signs:

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So fun! I love Pretty Woman.

oohhhhh

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aahhhhh

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oohhhh

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aahhh

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Ok I’ll stop now.

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We made a turn, and the 5:30 pace team passed us. I was ok with that, and we were still on track for a big PR! However, I realized our pace was naturally slowing a bit, so I took a popsicle and an orange slice from someone, as well as some coconut water. I was getting tired of the syrupy taste of my fuel so real food was amazing.

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We were on mile 19, and all of the sudden the clouds parted and the sun was out in FULL FORCE. I was actually feeling pretty good and ready to pick the pace back up for a bit.

Let’s backtrack for a minute. At the beginning of the race, Crystal and I agreed if one of us wanted to leave the other, no hard feelings. As I was saying this, I was saying it for HER benefit because I was so undertrained I assumed she would be the one leaving me in the dust! Poor girl, about this time I realized she had slowed a good bit and she said she had a bad headache. I was feeling good but also ready to get out of the sun, so after a few minutes of deliberating, I asked her if it would be ok if I went on ahead. I was getting hotter by the minute and the bottoms of my feet were hurting and I was ready to be done at that point. She told me to go, but I asked her at least a dozen times if she was sure. I told her I still thought she could PR, and that if she got sick or needed me she MUST call me an di would come back and get her. She promised, so off I went.

I didn’t have the interval timer set on my Garmin, so I just decided to play it by ear. I ran for about four or five minutes, passed mile 20, and realized, oh my goodness, the sun was zapping all my energy and there was NO SHADE. I made it to the VA hospital area, and realized all of the sudden I couldn’t run anymore. I looked around me and realized 90% of the people were walking. it was like a death march. I was lightheaded and seriously concerned about my ability to finish the race. I still had 6 miles to go, and I sent out a text to my husband that simply said “pray”. It was all I could manage to type. I have never felt this bad and depleted during a race before and it scared me. I knew my chance of a PR was gone, and I assumed I would be walking six miles which made me want to cry.

I made it where we were running under an overpass, and son many people were just stopping there in the shade, and sitting down to rest. I have never seen anything like this at a race. To give you an idea of how dehydrated I was, I went to the bathroom at Dodger stadium before the race. I drank a cup of water and Gatorade at every stop (every mile) plus water, popsicles, ice, and oranges from spectators all on the course. I didn’t have to pee until TWO HOURS after the race, even with all the fluids I was dumping into my body. It was nuts, yall. I may or may not have had a little breakdown somewhere around this time, and there may or may not have been some tears shed.

An amazing person on the side of the road had these tubes of salt, and I immediately took one. I have never taken straight salt during a race before, but I figured my body could really use it. She showed me how to flip the top, lick my thumb, and get the salt on it, and I was so delirious I was holding it backwards and couldn’t get the tube open! I finally figured it out and downed half the tube. It was disgusting but I was willing to do anything at that point. I kept walking, running when I could, but it didn’t last long. There were wonderful spectators that had misting bottles, hoses, and bags of ice. Normally I would think it was gross to stick my hand in a bucket of ice then put it in my mouth, but at that point I. did. not. care. I also ate another orange and another popsicle. Starting at mile 20, I started dumping a cup of water on my head at every mile to cool off. I trudged along miles 20-22, and then finally, finally made it to a street with some shade.

Someone had opened up a fire hydrant which felt amazing. All of the sudden, I felt a little better. I had some energy, and felt like I could run again, so I did, and I just kept going. I looked at my pace and it was actually decent, I was shocked. I pretty much just kept my head down, and put one foot in front of the other. People were cheering for us all along this portion which was very encouraging. Soon I made made it to mile 23, then 24. I didn’t have much more to go! I kept saying to myself “you are stronger than you think” and “finish strong”. I also kept praying that God would give me strength to finish.

In case you hadn’t noticed, I took no photos during this portion. However, I did celebrate when I made it to mile 25! At mile 25 I also looked at my total time on my Garmin for the first time. I was at 5:30! I could still PR! This put a little pep in my step but I didn’t want to overdo it.

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I knew soon I would be making a left hand turn onto Ocean Avenue, and while there would be no shade there, it would mean I was almost done! I made the turn and I could SEE the finish line way off in the distance. Some people started picking up the pace but I knew better. I have run races in the past where you “see’ the finish, kick it in, then realize you kicked too early and have nothing left for the last couple of tenths. I kept my slow and steady run, and kept my head down so I wouldn’t see the finish.

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Finally, I was close enough to get excited and give everything I had. I wanted nothing more than to finish strong. I saw Rudy up to the right announcing the race. I gave him a quick wave and crossed that glorious finish line. I did it! not only did I do it, I PR’ed by over 13 minutes! 5:43:04 was my official time. Considering the heat and my lack of training I was pretty pleased with this.

I collected my medal and made my way to the VIP Bungalow, happy to not have to walk down the long finishers shoot. I’m not sure if I could at that point! I grabbed some champagne and lasagna, and sat down for the first time. it felt amazing.

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I was completely covered in salt, but so happy to be out of the sun! Soon after I sat down, I got a text alert that Crystal had finished! She ended up with a 2 minute PR herself, I was so happy for us both! After I got some food I headed upstairs to meet Crystal and take a shower. That’s when I realized I made it through the whole race with ZERO hip pain! The only pain I had was the bottoms of my feet, and some chafing (oowww!!!)

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Yes, those are people who just finished the race in the background, walking through the shoot. It was well over 1.5 hours after I crossed and they were still pouring in. I felt so bad for everyone still out in this heat!

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But, that’s a story for another day and another post.

I had a wonderful ASICS LA marathon experience and am so fortunate to be asked to participate by ASICS. The race went so smoothly, I never noticed any major problems. There were plenty of volunteers, water stops, race personnel, and the like. The only thing I would change would be to have the start more spread out with time between waves of people, but other than that it was a blast! I hope to do this race in the future. Thanks so much ASICS!

QOTD: have you ever run a race you weren’t sure you could finish? Have you ever run a really hot race?

Disclosure: I was provided with flight, hotel, race entry, food, and gear for this race weekend by ASICS. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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ASICS LA Marathon Weekend: Relaxing Afternoon

Saturday after the shake out run and brunch, we had boxed lunches in the hospitality suite, and some amazing folks from ALTUS were there to stretch us out and work out any kinks we had before race day. I was really excited about this because I was worried about how my hip and knee were going to hold up. I explained everything and he did some active release therapy on me and some stretching as well and while it was pretty painful at times, it ended up helping SO much, they are miracle workers! While I was eating my lunch, I noticed ASICS turned a quote I had given them into a cool photo and posted it on Twitter. Love it!

ASICS

After lunch I decided to go down to the pool and relax in the shade. The only problem was I couldn’t find an empty chair! I ended up chatting with a guy who was also running the marathon and when the two ladies next to him got up to leave he came and got me and helped me carry my stuff over so I could have the extra chairs. Super nice of him!

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We ended up chatting about running and the race while I waited for my buddy Linzie to arrive to hang out with me. See, I promise I stayed in the shade and chugged water the whole time!

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I hadn’t seen Linzie in awhile so it was great to do some catching up while I was in town.

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Time flew by and soon he had to go. I needed to go get ready for dinner anyway so we said our goodbyes and I got ready for dinner in Venice with the rest of the #TeamASICSLAM crew. We ended up walking part of the way to the restaurant because the traffic was so bad so we jumped out of the bus to make our reservations!

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Dinner was delicious (pasta, chicken, etc.) but I was so exhausted and ready to get back and get to bed. My friend Crystal who was running the race was on her way to the hotel to spend the night with me and I couldn’t wait to see her either! We ended up staying up too late chatting, and 3:15 came all too quickly. Time to get up, it was LA marathon day!

QOTD: What do you eat the night before a race?

ASICS LA Marathon Weekend: Shake Out Run and Brunch with the Elites

So as if the ASICS LA Marathon VIP party wasn’t enough epic-ness, the next morning we got to have even more fun. Good morning Santa Monica!

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I have gotten a lot of nice comments on Instagram about the below photo. This makes me laugh because what it does NOT show is that I was exhausted after four hours of sleep, severely dehydrated, had a serious headache, and well, the sun was blinding me. But hey, it’s for the sake of Instagram, right?

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I chugged coffee and met my crew in the lobby where we headed over to where we would be having brunch for some instructions and schedule chat.

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Coach Kastor explained that we would be running down towards the finish line to where our final turn onto Ocean Avenue was, then running back and having brunch. It was about 2.5 miles total.

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Yup, that’s Deena Kastor in front of me in the pink. I totally kept up with her the whole time. Kidding.

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I did however end up running with Alysia Montano, She’s freaking awesome yall, and not to mention HILARIOUS. I could just listen to her talk and tell jokes all day. She has a 7 month old so we mostly chatted babies which was fun!

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We made it to where our turn was and stopped to listen to coach Kastor for a minute who was telling us how far we would have to the finish at this point, etc. It was crazy I would be making that final turn the next day at the end of my marathon!

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We made our way back to the hotel and I snapped a shot of the pier before we headed in for brunch.

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Our brunch location is part of the hotel, but it’s right on Ocean Avenue and kind of open, it’s hard to explain. it had a cool bohemian vibe and since the weather was so nice it made it even better! They had a beautiful spread of food waiting for us, and we were told to eat….so I was first in line. Don’t judge, my body thought it was two hours later than it really was.

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I made my way outside to a set of sofas and began to chow down. I felt kind of like I was in high school and didn’t know what table I belonged at, so I sat alone and just hoped someone would come sit by me. WELL, in a few minutes I would feel like a super cool kid because some awesome ladies one by one came over and sat by me. I felt like I was dreaming. First Deena Kastor and Alysia joined me. We all started chatting about random things, just moms talking about our kids. Then Queen Harrison joined us. Then about midway through the meal, Sara Hall walks in and sits down RIGHT NEXT TO ME. NBD. I suddenly couldn’t even eat. I was afraid to say something stupid. I really DID feel like I was in an awkward high school situation, it was hilarious and surreal at the same time.

Soon, coach Kastor stood up to give some final words of advice on our race the next day. We were going to be experiencing record high heat, so he had a lot to say about hydrating and taking it easy. Sadly I don’t remember all of it, I was too busy geeking out and secretly taking and posting pictures of my “new friends.”

Alysia and Queen (and Andrew Kastor)

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Sara and Deena and you can see Shadrack Biwott (he has run a 2:12 marathon and a 1:01:24 half!)

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All of the elite athletes went around and shared one piece of advice for everyone running which I thought was really fun. I recorded some of what Ryan Hall said, but not all because I was running out of camera space (foreshadowing….) He is so chill and laid back when he talks, he cracks me up.

After the talk was over, I had one mission, and that was to meet Ryan Hall. I have always looked up to him for his work ethic, attitude, and for being an outspoken Christian who stands behind his faith. I had rehearsed what I wanted to say to him, but of course my mind went blank when I introduced myself. I told him I really admired him for his faith and beliefs AND THEN I STARTED CRYING. How embarrassing. I’m just so thankful to have good Christian athletes to look up to, that it just came out. Ug. I die. Anyway, I pulled myself together and told him I had a baby five months ago and this was my first race back. He told me I looked great for recently giving birth, so now he is my new favorite person. So I didn’t want to take up his time and asked if we could take a selfie, I went to take the picture, AND MY MEMORY WAS FULL!!!! You have GOT TO BE KIDDING ME! Of ALL times! I panicked and started flipping out (on the inside) and random started deleting apps. I think I deleted Twitter and WordPress, I just didn’t care, I NEEDED space! I FINALLY got it to work and got my picture. Whew. Crisis averted. But OMG what luck.

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It was a great run and brunch, and I can’t believe I got to hang out with so many amazing people. My greatest takeaway is that these are folks just like you and me (except they are really freaking fast!) Other than the tips they all gave at the end, we didn’t even really talk about running at all! I had such a fun time, a huge thank you to ASICS and their athletes for coming out to run and hang out with us the day before such a big race!

QOTD: Do you do a shake out run before a big race?