Run To Feed The Hungry 2014 – One of Sacramento’s Best Races!

Happy day after Thanksgiving everyone! How many of you raced? Maybe are a lot of you were here in Sacramento at Run To Feed The Hungry. It is the largest Thanskgiving Day run after all! I believe I heard there were about 30,000 people who came out. Craziness!

To me, this is one of the best races in Sacramento! I love the community, the excitement and the course. There are always people out cheering you on, handing out mimosas (hell yes) and playing music. It is so awesome! This is the 3rd year I have run this race, and I live close to the start that I decided to run there as a warm up.

Warm up for RTFTH:

RTFTH Warm Up by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

 When I got to the race I met up with the Kaia FIT Sunrise ladies. This was my first year on a team. If you haven’t joined a team before think about it for next year! You get an awesome running jacket, a designated place for teams only to eat some foodskies, drink coffee & use the potties. There was NO LINE. That is a huge plus!

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He doesn’t run…but he gets up early, takes pictures of me running & eats and drinks with me after. I think it would be fun 😉

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 My bf got some pictures of me running down Elvas. I know a few people who live on McKinley/Elvas (if you don’t live in Sac this won’t really mean sh** to you). It is always nice to hear people cheering your name as you run by!

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This is my friend’s cat Felicity. She was out too, watching all the runners. Cat Friend!!

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Done!

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RTFTH Course:

Run To Feed The Hungry 2014 by haleymg at Garmin Connect – Details.

I tried hard to really race this one. As you all know I have had some IT issues & I haven’t been sticking to my training as much as I would like. I have missed all of my speed & tempo workouts these past 2 months – so almost half of my training. Which really f-ing sucks. I was doing SO well! I was doing all my speed work, tempo runs were at my goal pace – which had been really hard for me with my last marathon training. I was feeling strong and confident that I would reach my goal and qualify for Boston at CIM this year. If that happens, great. If not, there is always next year. I have 3 marathons lined up for next year. All 3 are Boston qualifiers: SLO Marathon (speaking of, use code “GONZAMB” for a discount), OC Marathon and of course the California International Marathon .

With that being said, I did pretty well. I was damn tired after though.

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After the race I had to work for a bit (womp, womp) then had some Thanksgiving yummy food at my parents. As much as my family can drive me crazy, it is always nice to see everyone.

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 Best dogs in the whole world! I know how much I always talk about cats, but Chewy has been in the family for 12 years. She major old dogs but she as so much life in her…not that you can tell in this picture.

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Alright friends. It is almost time. 9 more days until my favorite race of the year! California International Marathon!!!

Winter Running Necessities

The rainy season is here! Does anyone else love running in the rain? At first it seems cold, wet and miserable, but once you get going it isn’t so bad. For me it is refreshing and energizing! BUT you have to have the right gear – or else you will be miserable. There is no such thing as perfect weather, just perfect clothes (did I get that right coach Amber?).

I have recently invested in a few winter running essentials. Well, some I got for free for being a super cool ambassador ;). I recently got this jacket from the OC Marathon. It is perfect for running in the colder weather! Very light, if I get too warm I can tie it around my waist and it is reflective. Ps check out my pug friend socks.

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I also love this pull over I got from  ZOOMA  for being an ambassador. It is also super light and I LOVE the thumb holes. Thumb holes are the best.

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The crappy thing about fall and winter (other than stupid football) are shorter days. If you’re an early bird like me the mornings are still super dark out so it really is a must to have reflective clothing, and a headlamp.

Another option if you don’t want a headlamp is to get a hat, which is great for when it is raining, and a clip on light. That is what I am wearing here.

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Finally, all the things that will keep you warm – uh, well, not freezing. Running pants, socks and gloves. I love my running pants! I have never heard of RBX before but I found these at TJ MAXX for around $20, which is a really great deal! Running clothes don’t have to break the bank.

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 If you’re new to running and you don’t have running socks yet, you will soon learn why they are needed. Especially if you are running in wet weather. And it won’t be a pretty or fun lesson. When I started running the thought of paying $10+ for a pair of socks seemed crazy to me. I was already paying at least $100 for shoes , now I have to get socks? Fuck yes you do.

Luckily I am an Ambassador for Feetures! Performance Socks (so I get a pretty nice discount and I get to share that with my friends). They are the BEST running socks! My new favorites are the Elite Merino+.

Here is some info about these socks from their website:

  • The Power Arch (Patent Pending) delivers targeted compression where it’s needed most.
  • Anatomical design enhances fit, delivering maximum comfort and protection by eliminating blisters.
  • Ultra thin construction takes up minimal room inside the shoe.
  • Merino+ fibers wick moisture to keep feet dry and odor-free.
  • Merino+ insulates when wet—keeping your feet warm in wet, cool conditions.
  • The Perfect Toe® (No irritating toe seam.)

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These are the only running gloves I have. Not the best for when it is raining but I love them. They are from my first marathon. CIM’s 30th year in 2012. The year of the CIM Monsoon.

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What are your must haves for the fall/winter weather?

California International Marathon Countdown! 15 more days!

 

 

Have You Started Planning For 2015 Yet?

Where does the time go? It is already November, CIM is less than a month away and I am already planning my 2015 races. The first marathon I ran (California International Marathon 2012) I swore I’d never run another. Then I decided I would run CIM 2013 and while I’m at it, why not every year? I live in Sac, I love this race so why not become a CIM Streaker? Done!

Then came 2014. And the Napa Valley Marathon in March. Then I found out that the San Francisco Marathon was on my 30th birthday this year, so obviously I would have to run that. 3 marathons in 1 year. It really isn’t that many. I know a lot of people who do waaay more. But for me, I guess I had it in my head that I would just do CIM from now on. Well, until I pay off my debt and am making more $$. Then I’ll travel more and run marathons in other cities & countries…but back to what I was saying. I figured I would be a 1 marathon a year person. I was wrong. Already on my schedule for next year is SLO Marathon in April, OC Marathon in May and of course CIM in December. Who knows if I will run more but for now I think that is a good start!

If you are interested in either race I am an Ambassador for both of these marathons (which also offer half marathon options!). So pick one or the other, or better yet both and come run with me! For the SLO Marathon use code “GONZAMB” for $10 off either distance and sign up with my team. Team name is SLO Racers. I didn’t realize until after I picked the name that it sounds/plays on the word “slow”. I am also NOT very creative and am sticking with this name. We will be SLO fast racers! 😉

Along with these 2 marathons I am also an Ambassador for ZOOMA . ZOOMA Napa Valley has a 10k and half marathon option. Use code “HALEY15” for 10% off either distance.

Recap for next year (so far): SLO Marathon, OC Marathon, ZOOMA Half Marathon and CIM. Shaping up to be a good year!

Finally, I have some exciting news! I took the Kaia FIT Coaching Certification course last weekend and I am happy to say I passed!! I received the good news Friday evening. Seriously though, I am an f-ing fitness coach! Who knew my life would go in this direction. I certainly didn’t but I am so happy it did. I haven’t started coaching classes on my own yet, but I am already feeling so proud of the girls I am co-coaching. Seeing them work hard at pull ups, running, box jumps…everything we do to become strong women – it is an amazing feeling. Next goal on my Kaia list is becoming a certified I Kan Run Coach. I might explode with happiness when that happens. I’m not kidding.

Muscle pic…I’m still working on building my muscles. It takes time, but I’m getting there!

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This weekend we had a Share The Love/Pain workout. Which means the no boys allowed rule didn’t apply. I was way too excited to bring my boyfriend! I was pretty proud of him – he isn’t one for working out but he did a good job. He even said it was fun. Obviously, it is a Kaia FIT workout.

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Apple Hill Run 2014

Alright, so I am a little behind on my race recap of the Apple Hill Harvest Run. What can I say, I have been busy. I also have been taking some time off of running. Prior to this race I had only run 12 miles in 3 weeks.  And eating like crap, and gaining 5 lbs (which may not sound like a lot, but when I am running I can feel it!).  This was the first race in a long time that I was a bit nervous I wouldn’t do well.

Stephanie and I before the race. It looks sunny and warm but it was cold!

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 Beautiful views!

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 Here I am at the start of the race. Going UPHILL. If you want a hilly race sign up for this! The last couple of miles are all uphill. It was a challenge friends!

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I took this “race” and made it into a long easy training run. I really wanted to win some of the famous, amazing, yummy cider but I know better than to push myself when I am still trying to fully recover. I did pretty well though for not pushing myself. I came in 153rd of 514, 59th of 342 females, and 19th of  104 in my age group. Not bad!

Pace/Elevation chart:

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Okay…now that I am looking at the elevation chart it looks there was much more down hill. Paw to God there was some crazy long uphill too!

See! This was the end of the race. UPHILL.

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 Ready for some donuts! I am so sad I didn’t take any pictures of the Apple Hill Donuts. They are the BEST donuts of my life! I can never decide which I like more, the plain or cinnamon. So I got 2 of each 🙂

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If you live in the area, or the Sacramento area this is a race you need to run – it is only about 45 minutes from Sac. They have a 3.5 and an 8.5 mile option. Beautiful views, well-organized race, the best apples, cider and donuts ever. There is no reason not to be there!

 

 

Back To Back Marathons: SLO Marathon & OC Marathon 2015

Alright, let’s get right to it. My BIG goal for next  year: I am going to race back to back marathons!

On April 26th I will be running  the SLO Marathon.

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Then, on May 3rd I will be running the OC Marathon.

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I was chosen as an Ambassador for SLO Marathon and the OC Marathon. I have not run either race, and I am surprised, happy, excited, proud…to have been chosen by both of these races to represent them! My goal for 2015 was to run races outside of the Sacramento area (since I’ve run most of them) and so far I am getting that opportunity. It feels amazing! When I applied to be an Ambassador for these races I honestly did not pay much attention to the dates. I knew they were close to each other, but didn’t realize they were 1 week apart! But you know what? I am super excited for this challenge! I got this!

So here is some info on both of these races –

SLO Marathon

They have a full marathon, half marathon, 5k, Fun Run and Kids Quarter Mile. Something for everyone! Here is more info from their website:

Marathon

The SLO Marathon is a point-to-point course. The race starts at San Luis Obispo High School and finishes at the iconic Madonna Inn, in between highlighting the incredible beauty of our turn-of-the-century downtown, historic neighborhoods, the green hills and open spaces of the Edna Valley and wine country.

The course starts fast with a loop around the tree-lined downtown, passing the neoned Fremont Theater and City Courthouse, Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa and classic architecture before heading into the hills, vineyards and farmland of the Edna Valley with scenic Morro views.

Upon return, participants head back into the town center to the spectator friendly finish line at the basin of Cerro San Luis Obispo Morro, Madonna Inn and The SLO Life Expo. The Marathon race starts at 250 ft. above sea level then covers 2 to 3 hill climbs before hitting a rollers in the Edna Valley as high as 375 ft. above sea level and finishes flat and downhill at 175 ft. above sea level.

Check out our COURSE VIDEO.

Half Marathon

The SLO Half Marathon is a paved, point-to-point course that follows the Marathon route, starting at San Luis Obispo High School, a quick loop around the historic downtown, past the Fremont Theatre, Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, a Frank Lloyd Wright designed building, the Chinese Garden and out into the beautiful Edna Valley vineyards and farmland (yes there are a few hills).

At mile seven, the course heads back into the city center, thru the Railroad District, the Islay Street home stretch (with charming Victorians and bungalows) and finally, the spectator friendly, downhill finish line at the basin of the majestic Cerro San Luis Morro, the iconic Madonna Inn and The SLO Life Expo that will be in full swing! Check out our COURSE VIDEO.

5k

The SLO Marathon’s 5K Run / Walk sponsored by Mo’s Smokehouse BBQ is a two loop course that starts near the Marathon + Half Marathon Finish Line arch at the Madonna Inn. 5K participants will be on the paved bike path and on roadway within the Madonna Inn property where they will get the opportunity to “Chase The Pig” to win a certificate and chance to winner dinner at Mo’s. There will be one aid station with water and sports drinks on the course. This spectator friendly finish line is at the base of the majestic Cerro San Luis Morro and the iconic Madonna Inn. Celebrate your victory at the SLO Life Expo within walking distance of your finish line.

The 5K race starts at 8:00 a.m. Walkers, joggers and strollers are welcome but must line up at the back of the race and stay to the right on the course to allow competitive runners clearance.

This race is going to be beautiful!

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 OC Marathon

The OC Marathon has a full marathon, half marathon and 5k as well. Info about the OC races from their website:

Marathon

The first mile of the Marathon course includes a breathtaking panorama of the Pacific Ocean before winding through the seaside village of Corona del Mar including the spectacular Ocean Blvd. with cliff side views of Big Corona del Mar State Beach. It traverses down Bayside Drive, past the Newport Harbor Yacht Clubs and homes and boats of Newport Harbor. Exceptional views await runners at the bluffs overlooking the Upper Newport Bay Estuary Reserve as are the supportive cheers of neighborhood residents. Marathoners continue into the heart of Orange County, Costa Mesa, passing by the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, around South Coast Plaza. New for this year, runners hear the cheers from students as you go past one of our largest participating schools in our kids program with over 400 kids, then run through the campus of Segerstrom High School. One more mile in Santa Ana before turning onto the Santa Ana River Trail for 1.5 miles before exiting at Gisler foot-bridge. Also new this year, runners will go through beautiful Mesa Verde neighborhoods and then the “Bird Streets”, providing you with that much-needed support on the home stretch towards the OC Fair & Event Center. The Full Marathon course is net downhill in elevation from start to finish. The first 6.5 miles will be extremely fast with only minor inclines. Mile 6.5 to 7.0 is the only significant hill on the course taking the runners from 15 feet to 75 feet. The course is then mostly flat through mile 10.5 with a couple of rolling hills to 11.5. There is another 45′ incline at mile 14.5 over the 405 overpass and a 40′ incline slightly over 1/4 of a mile in length at mile 23 after. These are all relatively small hills.

Half Marathon

The first mile of the Half Marathon course includes a breathtaking panorama of the Pacific Ocean before winding through the seaside village of Corona del Mar including the spectacular Ocean Blvd. with cliff side views of Big Corona del Mar State Beach. It traverses down Bayside Drive, past the Newport Harbor Yacht Clubs and homes and boats of Newport Harbor. Exceptional views await runners at the bluffs overlooking the Upper Newport Bay Estuary Reserve as are the supportive cheers of neighborhood residents.

The Half Marathon course is net downhill in elevation from start to finish. The first 6.5 miles will be extremely fast with only minor inclines. Mile 6.5 to 7.0 is the only significant hill on the course taking the runners from 15 feet to 75 feet. The course is then mostly flat through mile 10.5, a couple rolling hills to 11.5 with a flat and fast final stretch into the OC Fair & Event Center. 

5k

The 2015 Wahoo’s OC 5K Run/Walk offers runners who prefer shorter distances a great way to participate in the Marathon Day experience.  The 5K course start line is just west of the marathon and half marathon finish line inside the OC Fair and Event Center.  The course circles through the fairgrounds and crosses Fairview Drive and on to Merrimac Way.  The runners loop around the Orange Coast College campus and enter the marathon course on Merrimac Way.  The runners will re-enter the OC Fair and Event Center before heading to the finish line.

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2 great races for you all to choose from for next Spring. Or better yet, why don’t you challenge yourself and join me for both!