This year I had the pleasure of serving as a race ambassador for the J&A Racing series based out of Virginia Beach. Here’s a link to my profile. Throughout the year, I will do three races hosted by J&A, the Harbor Lights was my first. I did a 5k on a Saturday and the half marathon on the following Sunday. The fast, flat course gave me personal bests in both. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect race weekend experience. We arrived in Norfolk the morning of the 5k and at the finish line they had delicious chili and Blue Moon. The host hotel was within walking distance of the expo and the finish line. We took a short two mile drive down the road to the zoo and saw the animals. In the afternoon, we walked over to Joe’s Crab Shack and had a nice meal. In the evening, Norfolk put on a Holiday Illuminations parade and lit up the skyline. The race the next morning went along flawlessly with a lovely tart stop at mile 10 and a snack stop at mile 12. At the finish line they served the delicious chili and Blue Moon again.
Tracy suggested I make a post about my running streak just to bring all of my readers up to speed. Readers, are you there? Anyways… The local running store Bull City Running Company, where I recommend everyone buys their running gear, hosted a contest in 2012 to see who could run the longest number of consecutive days in 2012. The challenge started on January 1st. There was no set distance, and I figured the most I would have to do to win was get through half of the year. At the beginning of the year there were a bunch of people on board, mostly local, but a few out of towners as well. Since there was no set distance, the only thing you HAD to do was run a little and post on twitter with the hashtag #BullCityRunningStreak every day with an update on what you ran that day. A few days into it, I looked up running streaks an came across the United States Running Streak Association webpage. They had a one mile a day minimum, so I figured I should set that as well for my streak. So on January 3rd (my third day of the BCRC streak) I ran at least a mile and have kept it up ever since.
My 2012 running resolution ended up being to keep the running streak alive long enough to win. At the end of the year (having run through only a couple of running related injuries — a little IT Band, a little achilles, a little calf muscle stuff) I found myself alongside six other runners with a full year under our belts. The store awarded us a pair of Saucony shoes each for our efforts. At that point three of the streak runners dropped out and left me, Adrien, Kevin, and a guy in PA. Adrien has had to stop his streak a couple of times due to more serious injuries, but Kevin, the guy in PA, and I are still going strong. Kevin has a personal two mile a day minimum. 2012 ended in 1515 miles.
To mix it up a bit in 2013, I took on a buddies goal of running 13 months in 2013. The rules for me were that I had to do 30 days of doubles with each run being at least 5k in length and four hours apart. So if I ran a 5k in the morning, I could run another 5k at lunch or in the evening and it would count as one of my thirty days. I was still finishing that goal up in December 2013 so that ended up being another excellent year long resolution. It also brought my year end mileage up to 1810.4 miles.
In 2014, my overarching goal was to run 2014 miles. To date I have run 2078.1 surpassing my goal by 3%. I hit my goal December 20th, so again I think that ended up being a good year long goal. I definitely don’t want something that I can achieve too early leaving me with a bunch of a year and no long term goal.
For 2015, I was having difficulty coming up with a cool goal that would take me the entire year. You can tell from this blog how many races I do in a year, so running 15 races wouldn’t be a good goal. I also didn’t want anything as challenging as the year in miles again — it was achievable, but it definitely took a great deal of focus for me. I crowd sourced my goal and eventually came across one that got me pretty excited. My sports massage therapist — John Stiner suggested I go for 15+ mile runs 15 times in 2015. Looking back over my 2014 data, there were several days where my daily total crossed the 15 mile threshold, but only five runs that were 15 or more in length. I think it’s safe to say it will take me most of the year to meet this goal. If you want to join me in my 2015 quest, join my facebook group.
The day after we came back from the Tuna Relay, Bull City Running Company was hosting one of my favorite races from 2013. Martha, Dana, Tracy, Vickie, and I all participated in the Ales for Rail Trails 5k along the 5k route for the Fullsteam Ahead Run Club. I had the opportunity to run the course earlier in the month to celebrate Kim Page’s birthday and I ran into Amy along the course. It was interesting to see the drop off between pre-tuna and post-tuna in my pace for the same course. Surprisingly it wasn’t too bad! Another highlight from the month was running Logan’s goal race for the Mini Milers program — the Pumpkin Run 4k. He did a great job! At the end they had pumpkin pie and apple cider. He loved getting to wear his costume.
For the half and full training program there are two goal races: Bull City Race Fest and Richmond Half and Full Marathon. I wasn’t doing either. I was using the training program to prep me for the Tuna Relay in October and the Harbor Lights 5k/half marathon hat trick in November. I signed up to volunteer at the Bull City Race Fest and got to direct runners at the 11 mile mark along the course. It was great to see so many fellow runners out there and I took over 50 pictures of just the people I knew through running. Everyone did an amazing job. When my shift was over I was able to catch up to Dana and run the remaining couple of miles with her. Then I got to celebrate with everyone at the finish line.
Also pictured on this page are the photos from the Carrboro 10k which I used as a run within a run for my training program. I did a warm up before the race, ran the race with Christina at a decent clip, and then did another mile when I parked in my lot at home with my boys to cool down. It was a fun race and is the second in Le Tour de Carrboro which I am excited brought the jacket back for the 2014 finishers of all three races.
I was TOTALLY excited to celebrate 1000 days of my running streak in September. I had it on my calendar for weeks just so I wouldn’t miss it. I hardly ever know what day I am on. I made it an all day affair. There was a morning run followed by bagels etc. at Bean Traders and at the end of the day there was you guessed it, ANOTHER run followed by margaronas etc. at Los Portales.
In addition to celebrating 1000 days of my streak, I also got the chance to celebrate Cecilia’s half marathon in Raleigh with some chicken and waffles and I got to go on a beer flight with Gloria at a new place called the Glass Jug. I was also thrilled that our shirts for the Tuna race came in from Spiral Graphics and started wearing them on a bunch of my training runs. For the month of September, in preparation for Tuna, I ran twice a day on Saturday and Sundays hence my super mileage weeks.
In September, Robin joined me a few times at Bull City Crossfit. We went there on Labor day and on holidays, Jack likes to program special workouts and today was no exception. We did something called Rankel. Later in the month I successfully box jumped for the first time since starting Crossfit in June. Apparently in September I also managed to do 45 burpees AND 48 slamballs in eight minutes. Just the other day it took me almost eight minutes to do 50 burpees. I must have been motivated that day… Towards the end of September I bench pressed 95# — have I mentioned I like crossfit? *things I thought I would NEVER say
Lululemon Run Club continued to meet throughout September and October. As more of the RunBuds got into their half and full marathon training, we saw some drop off in our numbers coming out for Monday nights, but the group continued to meet and we often ran at least four miles. For the most part we run North or South on the trail, but on occasion we mix it up and we also did a run through Rollingwood and another one through the neighborhood across the street from Target. Never a dull moment at Run Club.
I squeezed in every ounce of fun I could into the last bit of summer. I gave blood since we hadn’t gotten too far underway with the training program. I continued to meet runners on Thursdays for an evening run and I also enjoyed some post-run treats like Nantinis with Dana and hot chocolate with the training group on a couple of different Saturdays. I managed to surpass my summer goal of 500 miles by 61.81 and by the end of August was 71% of the way towards my 2014 mileage goal.