The Inaugural ZOOMA Run Napa Valley 2014

Yesterday was the ZOOMArun Napa Valley . It is the first race I have had the pleasure of being an ambassador for. Once again, thank you ZOOMA for choosing me! It was a great experience. I got some great running/fitness/nutrition products and met some really great people.

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Alright, so like I said, yesterday was the Inaugural ZOOMArun Napa Valley. When I heard about this race I knew I had to do it! I was born & grew up in Napa – well, until 2nd grade…then moved to the horribly boring Valley Springs…but no one wants to hear about that 😉 . This is the 2nd race I have run in my home town. It was an out and back course, which are not always my favorite but the course was through the vineyards and very pretty. There were also hot air balloons floating around…which again, reminded me of my childhood. That was nice!

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Here is the course from my Garmin Connect:

ZOOMArun Napa Valley Half Marathon by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

I personally wished the course was in the Rutherford area, along the St. Helena Highway. It was still very nice…and luckily there was shade when I needed it most!

Before the start of the  race us ambassadors got together for a photo-op 🙂 This is a great bunch of women! We had women who run races and place 1st (damn! that will be me some day!) to women who run more for fun and the experience rather than time. It was a great combination of runners and ZOOMA did a great job chosing who to represent them…if I do say so myself.

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This race had a 10k and half marathon option. Obviously I had to choose the half! It was a smaller race than I am used to, but this is the first year. They also sold out, so hopefully they will open it up to more runners next year. For being an inaugural race it was very well-organized! They had buses to shuttle runners to the race, then back to the hotel.

What I loved most about this race was running with (or by) people who I met during the course of being an ambassador. The first person I saw running by was fellow ambassador Erin . Who came in 11th overall and 2nd in her age group. She is awesome! I ran by my local Sacramento runners, they cheered me on and I cheered them on. It was so cool. I didn’t know it would mean so much to me to have people I trained with cheering me on and yelling words of encouragement. Thanks to you all – you know who you are 🙂

Headed to the finish!

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My goal was 1:45, but I finished in 1:51:13. I started out too slow.

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Overall this was a fun race. Running with girlfriends (guy friends too) a nice weekend in Napa, some yummy wine after if that is your thing – which usually would be my thing but I haven’t been in the drinking mood. It is a good course for a half marathon first timer. And I would definitely recommend applying to be a ZOOMA ambassador! The obvious perks are the products you get, but what I really loved was meeting other runners. Helping them, encouraging them and sharing our love of running.

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Team In Training – Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco

When I was approached  by Team In Training to help promote their training event for Nike Women’s Half Marathon I was honored they would ask me to help get the word out about their great training program. Of course I was very excited! The first time I learned of  Team In Training was when I did America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride around Lake Tahoe in 2011. Since then I have seen those purple shirts at multiple races.

In case you are not familiar with Team In Training is here is a little info from their website:

“In 1988, Bruce Cleland assembled a NYC Marathon team to raise money in honor of his daughter, a leukemia survivor. During the next 25 years, LLS’s Team In Training (TNT) has become the leader in endurance sports training for charity, funding significant therapies like chemotherapy and bone marrow transplants, which have a significant impact on blood cancer patients.

Today, LLS funds only the most promising advances; targeted therapies like Gleevec®, Velcade® and Dacogen® take aim at cancer cells, and destroy them. Immunotherapies use a patient’s own immune system to kill cancer. And the repurposing of existing drugs for arthritis and antifungals to fight specific leukemias are breakthroughs that allow patients to live their best life, today.

TNT and LLS fundraising efforts through marathons, triathlons, cycling and hiking really are making cures happen. Coaches will expand your fitness level with workouts, nutrition and hydration clinics. And you’ll have staff members to help with fundraising support.”

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You can have an impact on cancer. Join Team In Training (TNT) and run the Nike Women’s Half Marathon (NWHM) in San Francisco on October 19. You’ll be helping The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) fund research to advance lifesaving blood cancer treatments.

TNT is the flagship fundraising campaign for LLS, and the NWHM in San Francisco is always sold out. At its 25th anniversary last year, TNT has trained more than 600,000 participants and raised more than $1.4 billion.

With TNT, in exchange for raising funds, you’ll train for four months with world-class trainers, have access to clinics on nutrition and injury prevention and race through San Francisco’s iconic landmarks.

To learn More About Team in Training click here and help TNT harness the power of physical activity to help LLS find cures and improve the quality of life for patients with blood cancer. Help patients feel better while you achieve your personal best. Join TNT and help us get closer to a world without blood cancers.

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I also have a promo code for a FREE registration for one lucky reader! Leave a comment below on why you would like to join Team In Training for the NWHM, share this post on Facebook or Twitter and you may win!

Product Review: Feetures! Socks

I love being an ambassador. I get race entry, free products, and I get to promote my love of running!! I have been running in Feetures! socks lately instead of my usually Balega. I have only run in Balega since I began running in December 2011. That is what they put on my feet when I tried out my first pair of running shoes, I loved them so I stuck with them.

I had heard of Feetures! but for whatever reason never decided to try them. Once again I am so thankful to be a ZOOMArun ambassador. Thanks to them I got to try out all this awesome gear!

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The only thing I haven’t used yet is the sunblock. I wore the shirt today for my training run (see below) and I’ve been using the shit out of the chapstick! I LOOOVE chapstick so I was super excited cats that they included that in with the samples.

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I am usually not so colorful but their socks are super bright! The colorful socks have started to grow on me 🙂 I got 2 pair of their High Performance socks (pink and yellow. Pink is not pictured because I gave them to a friend. I don’t do pink) and a pair of the Elite (blue/green). I liked both socks.

From the Feetures! Website (click to enlarge and read about the awesomeness of their socks):

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This is the High Performance sock. These socks are designed to hug the foot in a comfortable supportive way. They have iWick fibers that keep your feet cool and dry, and a mesh top to provide ventilation and added breathability.

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Here is my favorite of the two, the Elite. They are anatomically constructed using their “sock-lock” technology to provide targeted support. With the Elite line there are a Left and a Right sock, just like compression socks. My feet felt very supported while running in these socks. They never fall below your heel and do everything you would want a running sock to do. I LOVE them!

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I wore the High Performance socks during my half marathon this past weekend.

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Huge thank you to Feetures! Performance Socks for the great gear (including the chapstick) and to ZOOMArun for choosing me as an ambassador. I really can’t thank you enough. The race I am an ambassador for, ZOOMA Napa Valley, is in 2 weeks and I am super excited to wear my gear from our sponsors – Altra running shoes, Feetures! socks & chapstick and I’ll be replenishing with Ultima Replenisher drinks at the finish!!

Finally, my training run for today…because you know you want to see it 😉

SF Marathon Training Easy Run – 8 miles by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

 

Women’s Fitness Festival 2014

I don’t even know where to start. Today was hot. Hot as fuck. Even though my Garmin said the race weather was 66 degrees it felt like 100! Especially since a lot of the course was in the sun. With all that being said, I still set a new PR of 1:51:39 (I was aiming for a 1:45). The Women’s Fitness Festival  is an all woman’s race that I have participated in for the past 3 years. This was the first year they had a half marathon option. Obviously I had to sign up for that.

I do have to say, I am disappointed that the medal doesn’t say “Inaugural” half marathon. It’s a big deal! At least I think so.

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Here is the course from today’s race:

Womens Fitness Festival Inaugural Half Marathon by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

Representing November Project Sacramento !

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The race started downtown near the Capitol and took us through midtown and East Sac. It is similar to a lot of races in the Sacramento/East Sac area. Which is good and bad. I always love running here, but lately have been wanting something else. And by something else I mean the beach…I have been really wanting to run along the beach – I think its time for a camping trip to Santa Cruz!

But back to the race. It was super well-organized (thank you Capital Road Race Management – you always do an AMAZING job). The spectators were awesome too! Especially those of you with your hoses and sprinklers out cooling us off. HUGE thank you to them! From the start I was pretty confident this would be a great race for me. Around mile 5 however, I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. A lot of the course was in the sun and that was tough. I wanted to stop a few times and walk but I knew I couldn’t let myself. Most of the race I was in front of the 1:50 pacer, but around mile 10 I heard him behind me and I was a little sad and upset. Then he ran up next to me and asked me if I knew Chris . Uh, yeah…who doesn’t know Chris? 😉 He said he reads my  blog and recognized me from my shoes. I thought that was awesome!  Him and I talked for a few miles. It was really nice to have some one to distract me for a while. If I was smart I would have stuck with him but instead around mile 11 I wanted to try to make my 1:45 goal so I took off. Around mile 12.5 he passed me, but gave me some encouragement along the way. Another example of how awesome the running community is! (ps if you’re reading this I am SO sorry I don’t remember your name…I was a little distracted with the heat).

Finally I made it to L street which is the last part of the race. By this point I am usually sprinting to the finish but I could barely run an 8:30 pace.

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But at least I look good in my NP Sacramento gear! And my Altra running shoesis that I LOVE…oh, and my Feetures! socks I got for being an ambassador for ZOOMA Napa Valley (review on those to come).

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Overall I had a really good time. I didn’t meet my goal, but I never gave up either. It is just running and I am happy I can do it!

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Me and the “Mayor of Midtown” Mr. Norm Lopez. I am trying to convince him to run and lose a bit of his cat chubbs.

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A new medal to add to my collection!

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And finally, here are my results. See, not bad! But look out ZOOMA run! I am wanting that 1:45 and that is my next half marathon to get it!

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San Francisco Marathon Training: Day 70 of 126

If you have ever trained for a race, or you currently are you know that there are good days and bad days. Today wasn’t a good day. BUT I am not upset about it. My training schedule had me running 16 miles today. My plan was to run 8 this morning before a meeting at work, then 8 more after my meeting. Here is this morning’s run:

SF Marathon Training Long Run – 3.5 miles (run 1 of 2) by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

Here is my run after the meeting:

SF Marathon Training Long Run – 6.5 miles (run 2 0f 2) by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

As you can see my runs totaled 10 miles. But like I said, I am  not upset about it. Why? Because I know when I need to rest my legs (a lesson I learned the hard way). I have been stretching & rolling like crazy. I took an ice bath today too…my first time! It really made a difference. I foresee a lot of those in my future.

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I put on my bathing suit, then a sweater and suffered through a 15 minute FREEZING bath.

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Another reason I am not upset is because I know I can run a marathon. I’ve run 3 – not that 3 is a lot – but I have also run 20 mile races, half marathons and lots of long runs that were 14+ miles. The distance isn’t going to be a problem for me. I am using a new training plan, Hansons Marathon Method, that is having me run a lot more than I ever have before! My mileage last month was 157.52. With previous training plans my monthly mileage was closer to 110. It’s quite a difference and I am just now getting into my higher volume runs. I’ve realized I will have to switch up my training schedule, but I won’t be stopped! There are 56 more days until the San Francisco Marathon and I want this to be my best marathon yet! (Also, in case I haven’t mentioned it enough, that will be my 30th birthday too…I can post a list of things I’d like if anyone is interested 😉 ).

So tomorrow was supposed to be my first strength run, but I am doing an easy 5 miles instead and changing my strength run to Friday. I also have a half marathon this Sunday – Women’s Fitness Festival my first half this year!! – so that will be my tempo run for the week. Wish me luck, I plan on setting a new PR at that race!