Run For Courage 5k

Yesterday was the Run For Courage 5k in Folsom. Good run for a good cause – end human trafficking. Here is their website: Run For Courage Please check them out, do their run or just donate to their cause! Their next race is around Lake Meritt in Oakland. If you’re in the Bay Area check it out, such a nice place to run!

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Here is the course from the race:

Run For Courage Folsom, Ca 5k by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

Annnndddd…I got a new 5k PR in this race! I was hoping for a 25 minute 5k, but I did it in 24:21 (official results)! I am so super proud of myself. Okay – so the race was 3.06 miles, not 3.1 which was a little crappy – but I’m still counting it as my best 5k time.

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Headed to the finish!!

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This was a fun race but there were some things I didn’t like about it. First the pros:

  1. Raising money & awareness for a great cause
  2. While waiting to race, they were telling us facts about human trafficking & what they have done to help – very cool
  3. Nice course
  4. Plenty of refreshments at the end
  5. The people involved with putting on the race did a great job!

Now the cons:

  1. Too many kids!!! Please don’t get me wrong, it is GREAT that kids participate and get active. My issue was having kids running back & forth along the path, stopping in the middle of the runners and overall just not paying attention. Parents – teach your kids proper race etiquette – and that goes to some adults as well!
  2. The beginning and end of the course was rocky and uneven – no bueno when you’re trying to sprint at the end

My sister & I. It was our first race together & her first ever! I hope to do more together in the future!

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Yay Kate! She finished in 27:09. F-ing awesome for her first 5k!

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It’s All In Your Head

I read a very interesting feature in this month’s Runner’s World Magazine.

I’m such a dork…

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In this featured story (written by Alex Hutchinson) he talks about research being done on athletes training their brain for better race/performance results. Here is an insert from the story:

“There’s been a revolution in running science in the last few years. For a century, researchers have focused on the role of the heart, legs, and lungs to explain the limits of human endurance, but they’ve ignored the brain. Turns out, that was a mistake. It’s not lactate levels in your blood or oxygen shortages in your muscles that force you to slow down, it’s how your brain interprets those signals. In other words, the effort of running is only as hard as your brain perceives it to be”  Hutchinson, A. (2013, October) How To Build Mental Muscle. Runner’s World p 72. 

Now to me, this is not new news. Interesting, yes. I however, have believed (since I began running in 2011) that endurance sports are so much more mental than physical. Most things in our life are, right? If you constantly have negative thoughts: “I can’t do this” “It is too hard” “Running isn’t fun” “I don’t have the ability to do this” of course you are going to fail! Or at least not perform your best.

The story talks about researcher Samuele Marcora. Marcora was doing a study to test “brain endurance”.  At a confrence Marcora said:

“If you could train the brain to become more accustomed to mental fatigue, then – just like the body – it would adapt and the task of staying on pace would feel easier.” Hutchinson, A. (2013, October)  How To Build Mental Muscle. Runner’s World p 74.

I found this so incredibly interesting! I am always telling anyone who will listen (mainly my boyfriend ;)) how much my body as improved with my training. I am faster, stronger, more fit, I can run longer…This idea of training your brain seems so obvious! You have to go out and get the October issue of Runner’s World, if only for this story.

Today was my long run of the week. 14 miles, but I ended up doing 16 because I underestimated the distance. I actually was expecting to do 16 miles but it turned out to really be 18.4. I walked the last 2.4 miles home. I was tired!

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During my run today the idea of training your brain and mental muscle was going through my head. It was a hard run today. Miles 10-12 I was pretty much walking the whole time because of cramping. At mile 13 when I could finally run again I was trying so hard to stay positive. Finally at mile 16 – which is how far I planned to run – I stopped. I wanted to keep going, physically I know I could have but mentally I didn’t have it in me. I felt like a quitter. As I was walking home I texted my boyfriend that I felt like a quitter and he texted me back, “You did quite a bit more than was scheduled. Don’t see how that’s quitting.” I don’t call 2 miles quite a bit more, but he was right.

My run started in Fair Oaks today. Here is the bridge crossing the American River.

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Beautiful day today!

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I wanted to run through these sprinklers so bad! There were people around so I didn’t, then I thought “who cares”. Next time!

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It was really nice to run along the river. It has been a while since I have. In a few weeks I have an 18 mile run to do, so I’m sure I’ll be headed to the trail along the river for that run.

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Hope everyone has a good week! Happy running/training!

Running In Sacramento – Cat Friends

What are cat friends? Let me explain it, since it is a word I came up with for all cats:

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And since the entire cat population is my best friend I call all cats “cat friends”. Am I a crazy cat lady? Is that supposed to be a negative thing? I have 3 cats kids of my own, I work in the veterinary field (ER/Specialty hospital now, before that I was at an all feline practice), and I am good at reading/handling cats – for work purposes. I’m just gonna put it out there – I don’t think it is weird or crazy to love cats. So there. 🙂

Obviously, I’m being silly (but also serious). Like I’ve said before I count cats on my runs. Just something I do to pass the time while I am running, and running in downtown/midtown Sacramento you see a lot of kitties. So I thought it would be funny to take pictures of the cats I see on my runs and post them for you all see & enjoy their cuteness.

I didn’t see any cats on my run today, maybe cause it was so early? Sacramento is supposed to get to 100 degrees today so I woke up at 5:30 am (yay me!!) to run. Today was my long run for the week; 12 miles. I decided to make it 13.1. My Garmin is currently being shipped to get replaced so I don’t have my course on Garmin Connect today, had to use Map My Run. Today’s run was pretty good though; even for cramping before mile 1 and having to walk because of that. I finished in 1:59:35, my second fastest half marathon time.

Okay…now onto what we all care about more…cats.

This is Norm. He is a famous Sacramento Cat. There is a sign at the coffee shop down the street that says so, so it must be official. Update: just read this online, looks like he is famous 🙂 Norm Lopez – Famous Sacramento Cat

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He is a fatty, which makes me really sad. I want to steal him and put him on a diet. Apparently he is on a diet, lets hope he (his owners) continue to do well with it! I see him whenever I run by, and people are always stopping to pet him or take pictures.

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This is a handsome Bengal I came across at McKinley Park. I have a Bengal, they are not cheap. I was surprised to see him walking down the street.

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Cat friend at the Fremont Community Garden

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Night-time cat friend

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This old kitty is adorable!! I see him/her pretty often too.

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Cat across the street from my boyfriend’s place…he likes to follow us. I love cat meows!

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This place I run by always has TONS of cats around! It’s like you have to own a cat to live there. They are kinda hard to see in the picture so I pointed them out for you to make it more obvious where they are. You’re welcome.

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This cat friend is from the same place as above.

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I’ve gotta say, sometimes I feel weird stopping my run to take pictures of cats. I’m sure people have seen me and wonder what the hell I am doing. Oh well.

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Some cat friends are super friendly and like my pets…

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…and some LOVE my pets and rub against my legsies

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Some cat friends are too busy being cats to be bothered

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Some cat friends are scaredy cats

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And some aren’t too sure of me at first…

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…then they want pets and attention 🙂

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Running in Sacramento…you never know what I’m going to post! I still have more fun things about running in Sac so keep checking back. Have a good week all!

CIM Training: Day 91 of 182

Half way there! Only 3 more months until the California International Marathon. Training has been going great! I feel very strong, and it is showing in my runs. So exciting!! 🙂 My Garmin is in transit to being replaced so today I tracked my run with Map My Run. Check it out:

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I have really wanting to get up early to run and I managed to this morning. I say this every time…once you’re up it isn’t that bad. Early morning runs are actually quite nice.

I had to wear a hat today, my hair was craziness when I woke up.

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This is my best friend lately…

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Only 3 more months (tomorrow) until the CIM. Man, I can’t wait…I’m gonna kill it this year!

Rest Day = Beer Ride

Saturdays are rest days for me. Today was an awesome rest day! But before that, I did run this morning since I missed my short run from yesterday. It was a 4 mile easy & fun shrot run today – check it out:

CIM Training Short Run – 4 miles by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

Now, on to my fun rest day, which actually wasn’t quite a rest day but super fun. My boyfriend and I decided to ride to a few places this afternoon and have yummy beer. TADA…best day ever!! Simple as that.

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On our way to our first destination…The Shack in East Sacramento. Riding through the Fab 40’s. Nice ride.

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Made it! Had lunch and our first round of drinks here. Good food and good beer!!

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Trying to lock up our bikes. We’re new to this and it took a minute to get them situated.

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This is what my boyfriend ordered. It is from The Brewing Lair and it is a Citra Solo Pale Ale. Whatever you are doing right now stop, go get this beer and enjoy! (wait – finish reading my blog and then go get it). This beer smelled amazing – hoppy, floral, sweet,refreshing – and tasted just as good as it smelled. It is one of my new favorites and I’ll be seeking out their other beers when I want a drink so I can see how they compare.

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This is what I ordered. I didn’t know the bottle had a Monty Python label and I loved the label….sadly, that is pretty much all I loved about this beer. It was the Black Sheep Holy Grail Ale. It was pretty tasteless and boring.

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On to our next destination!

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Next stop was Pangaea Two Brews Cafe . We were here the other week and had some good beer & food (notice a pattern here…is eating and drinking all I do?). So a flight tasting here is interesting cause you get to pick 5 of the beers they offer on tap and that is your flight. Sorry to say that I don’t remember what we chose because they were out of some so we had to keep choosing different beer to try. Also sorry to say that I didn’t care much for anything we got. BUT they do offer good beer here, we just chose beer we haven’t had before cause we wanted to try something new.

The last beer on my left (your right) was awful!! It tasted syrupy and bitter. I wish I knew what it was so I could warn you to never drink it! The others were just okay.

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Our final stop was Track 7 Brewery . This was purposely the last stop because I have heard amazing things and wanted to end on a high note 🙂

These were our tastings:

Dirty Hobo Brown

Delta King Saison

Panic 1A IPA

Soulman Stout

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We were not disappointed by any of these beers. Even the Saison – which is not my kind of beer – had good flavor and is something I would drink if in the right mood. Their Panic IPA was AMAZING and their Soulman Stout was the best stout I have ever had! I am a stout girl, love them, and I don’t just throw out things like “best beer ever” without meaning it. Well, maybe I do, who knows. But this place is awesome and is my new favorite brewery.

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What I really loved is that we got this nice glass with our tastings. What I really, really loved is we got 4 – 3oz tastings, a glass and a pint of Soulman Stout to enjoy all for $14! The flight is $10 the beer was $4. 12oz of deliciousness for 4$?? I’ll take it.

Another thing I loved is this new dog friend we made 🙂

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If you’re in the Sacramento area and want some good beer head out to Track 7. You won’t be disappointed. While we were there (about 45 min or so) I saw lots of people come in and enjoy some beer and at least 7 people come to fill their growlers. Obviously people like this place. Keep it up Track 7!!

It is hard to see but this is the view from the brewery, headed back to the city.

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How do you know we like your beer? We take some coasters.

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