Writers Block not Runners Block

The past few months have been a whirlwind of things happening in my life.

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Let’s start with end of March, I managed to fall on a sidewalk in a park, tearing off a big chunk of skin from my elbow and causing some hip pains for the next week.

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Then in April I managed to kill two treadmills in a week, well one was on its last leg after the thousand miles I had spent on it for the past 6 years or so. It was not such a shock but the replacement treadmill bought months before used also had major problems. From the first run on it till the whole belt folded and almost threw me off the thing! Trashed that one as well. I rely heavily on the treadmill certain times of year and during major training due to childcare things, I get in my early morning runs on the treadmill or late night runs while watching my kid sleep in her bed by baby monitor. I had to get a new treadmill ASAP so I got one from amazon, a Proform which is not the best as its had some rust issues after only a short time and not being exposed to the elements but it works and I can get my miles in! Then mid April my grandmother had a heart attack and almost died from it, major stress for the entire family. She ended up pulling through and is back to herself again.

May ended up being my 2nd highest mileage month for the year, which was surprising since I had to work early for half of the month. Also I turned the big 3-8! Ran the ALS 10k in Coconut Grove, it had been a few years since I had ran the race and ended up happy with my slower than usual time. Felt strong but steady in the race despite the high humidity and heat.

June and July were slow running months for me, probably in part due to the heat of the summer months and then planning Phoebe’s 4th birthday party and traveling to Seattle and Alaska. I hit 1000 miles for the year in June. I enjoyed running in Seattle, where the morning temps were 58 but I was not really feeling those huge hills! We stayed in the downtown area and I walked up more than one of the hills in the middle of the run. Luckily I was able to borrow a bob stroller so we could take Phoebe out for some runs as well while we were there, thanks to one of my Oiselle Volee teammates! It was a little more difficult to square away an hour while cruising through Alaska on a boat but I managed to run 4 of the 7 days we were onboard. July was my lowest mileage month for the year – just got in a little less than 100 miles.

August brought on a new challenge of getting back into a schedule again after being on vacation for 10 days! The first part of the month started off slowly as I tried to get back out of the running rut, then Phoebe got a cold and more things piled in front of miles. Also this was the month that I started my Space Coast Marathon training, slowly. Phoebe started VPK and I went to see Bush in concert, it had been awhile since I went to a concert and many years since I had seen them live.

September was the month that I started getting serious about my mileage goals again. I started extending my long runs past that 13 mile mark and hit 50 miles for 2 weeks in a row at the end of the month. Still trying to get back into being a morning runner but my evening road runs are getting faster and feeling easier and the weather hasn’t yet started to cool down yet. I look forward to cooler temps, but I don’t expect to see that happening for another few months. I took a hands only CPR class and learned some new things, feeling confident I can help someone out in an emergency situation.

October has just started but going to work hard this month with waking up early again to run. I don’t yet know what I can promise myself for accomplishing this goal but no doubt I can figure something out. Now I am in the middle of marathon training for Space Coast Marathon and at the beginning of training for Miami Marathon. Not so smart but what are you gonna do when you want to do both marathons and they just happen to be only 8 weeks apart? Simultaneously marathon training, fun times!

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At the beginning of the year I made a goal to read at least 12 books this year, I figured it would be extremely hard because ever since Phoebe was born I feel like there’s no time to read. I am happy to announce that I am currently only book #35 for the year so maybe I will adjust my reading goal to 52 instead?

Haven’t signed up for Miami Marathon yet and want a discount on your registration? Use this code for $5 off – BIBRAVEMIAMI

 

 

 

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Win Detergent FTW

Disclaimer: I received a bottle of Win sports detergent to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

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I have been on the lookout for a new sports detergent as the one I was using prior to Win was just not cutting it and my running clothes still had a sweat funk smell to them. Plus the other detergent was good but it was also not free and clear, it had a hint of fragrance that I was just not digging. There is also a fresh clean smelling one as well but I prefer fragrance free. The blue bottle is the fresh clean scented one and the green bottle is the free and clear, scent free, which is preferred by me as I have a daughter with extremely sensitive skin and prefer the one better for the environment.

Right now I am at the beginning of a run streak and I am going to have even more sweaty running clothes than usual since I won’t be taking my one rest day each week anymore till the end of this month or perhaps even longer if I want to continue for the runner’s world streak also. Plus my boyfriend runs with me 3-4x a week and I have his sweaty running clothes to deal with also. One thing I have noticed in the past year or so with running laundry is that it is best to hang the clothes so that the sweat dries before putting them together in a laundry basket. But even with hanging the sweaty clothes I would not get all the sweat smell with the previous detergent. I was lost on where to look to find another sports detergent, till I got the notification that I could test this one out. Something else that I enjoy about this stuff is that I can order it on amazon.com and get it shipped along with my other amazon goodies! Very convenient! Even more convenient is that in my area with Prime I can get it in one day, I can have my detergent tomorrow for no extra fee! Right now there is a promo going on that you can get 20% off your order when you use the code: WIN4RAVE – I am actually buying some more right now while I can get the discount and if you are an athlete, workout a lot or sweat a lot this is the detergent for you!

For more technical reasons your running clothes smell from the sweat is because the oils from your sweat attract the wicking technical clothing and get trapped in the fibers causing the smell, unlike other fabrics like cotton. But who can run in cotton? So how Win works is that the active ingredients separate the oils from the synthetic fabric to get back to that clean smell. Other sports detergents that I have used in the past have possibly taken out some of the oils but not all which means my running clothes retain some smell. Which is basically not good enough so check out Win for truly clean clothing. Definitely living in Miami I sweat for every run because we only have 2 days of cold weather where we sweat a little less.

 

 

 

Orange Mud Transition & seat wrap -Version 2.0 – no more sweaty seats – a review

Disclaimer: I received an Orange Mud Transition seat wrap towel to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I don’t know about you but when I run long distances in training or short distance races I get very sweaty, this is Miami so pretty much everyone gets sweaty. Well, except for Phoebe who is cooled down in her running stroller while I do all the hard work of pushing her along for the race usually. So for almost as long as I have been running, I have kept a bath towel in my car for the post race/run drive home but now there is a product that is multi-use, the Orange Mud Transition Seat wrap towel. The problem that I always encounter with a regular bath towel over the seat is that it falls down constantly not protecting the back of your seat so you are constantly adjusting it while driving. This towel does not have this issue at all because it has a zippered headrest part that fits securely around the headrest to prevent all the slipping that normal towels will do. There are 10 colors to choose from, I choose red because it matched the exterior of my car but considered the black one as well since it would match my inte

I have been wanting to try out some Orange Mud products for awhile but just had not decided on which one to try, but this one is perfect for me and I can keep it in the back of my vehicle all the time (after being washed, of course). The other day we found another use for it when my toddler, Phoebe requested a blanket to keep warm while in her car seat, I threw her over the Orange Mud towel and she cuddled up in it. First way I used my new towel/seat wrap was after volunteering for a local 5k/10k I placed it on my car for the 40 minute drive home. That was a typical humid Miami race but with some sprinkles at the beginning, it was my first time volunteering at a race and it was a lot of fun, will definitely be doing it again in the near future!

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This weekend I did a short but very rainy at the start and humid 5k and the towel was much needed for the drive home. I even was able to change my soaked in sweat & rain shorts from under it in a parking lot before driving home (sorry, no pics of this!). So not only does it save your seat from your sweaty (butt) body but you can change underneath it discreetly without any issues. I haven’t attempted to change tops under it but I do not anticipate that there will be any issues with that either. It is definitely something you want to keep in your race day bag!

I think this seat wrap towel would be good for anyone really because you never know when you will need to protect your car seats or change quickly in a parking lot/in your car. From talking to running friends, they have sworn by this towel for years, I didn’t even know that it existed or I would’ve gotten one years ago when I first started running. Luckily I got a new car a year ago and haven’t sweated in these seats too much. Would’ve been very beneficial earlier this year when I was training the group in 5k distance and would have to drive home still a bit sweaty afterwards. But now I do not have to worry about that and am going to get another one for when my boyfriend runs races with me.

What’s even better is that I have a code for you to use to get 15% off of this towel or any Orange Mud product on their website: OMTRX” Transition Seat Wrap Towel 

Keep your car seats sweat free and change clothing ANYWHERE!

Want more info and to chat with other bibravepros? Joins us on twitter for Bibchat next Tuesday at 9pm est and use hashtag #bibchat

An Ode to Oiselle Roga Shorts

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Disclaimer – I was not gifted these shorts to review,  I have bought every pair of these shorts shown in the post. They are my favorite kind of shorts and I will continue to buy more as long as they keep making them (please never stop!) 😉

I have been thinking of making this post for years now!

My introduction to roga shorts started in the summer of 2014, I had heard of Oiselle for a few months at that point. It must’ve been when Kara Goucher joined Oiselle that I really took note of the company, run by a women, only women’s running/performance clothing. So thank you, Kara, for being the introduction I needed to this obsession. I remember subscribing to the emails and wondering if I would ever have the guts to run in shorts because the roga shorts looked really comfy and cool.  A few months before I joined the Oiselle Volee team I went on vacation to Washington DC and went to a running store that had some rogas on sale! I don’t remember the other colors they had but I grabbed a pair of burgen (burgundy color) ones and bought them immediately. I would be lying to say that I wore them to run on that trip, I didn’t but I did bring them along with me on a side trip to Philly that same vacation and used them to hang out and sleep in even! They were so comfy I figured if I never had the guts to wear them out to run I would be living in these shorts for hanging out at home.

Fast forward to a few months later and I had bought a couple more pairs, I started wearing them for walks with my boyfriend and out in public and it had been years really since I had owned a pair of shorts. My confidence was starting to grow with these shorts, who would’ve thought that would happen? Not me, for sure! A couple months later I started running in these shorts, starting with treadmill runs and then later on for evening runs (one memorably disaster of a run when I tripped and hit my head I was wearing these shorts even!).  When I found out that I was pregnant, the roga shorts became my go to short to run in, the capri tights I ran in were starting to constrict the belly too much and summer was hitting early and I was suffocating outside. I did buy one pair in a larger size but realized after one run that they were too loose and I could stick with my regular size throughout the pregnancy since they were low slung and the waistband was not tight under the belly. I ran a couple half marathons and some shorter race distances in 2015 wearing them. After that I never wore  capris/tights again unless it was freezing outside and even when it was 45 degrees for a 5k once I wore my rogas lol.

In 2017 I wore my rogas for the marathon distance at Miami Marathon, the cold rainy year and also the year I got my marathon PR. Was it the rogas or the weather that helped me PR by 40 minutes? Who knows? Maybe equal? I have worn other Oiselle shorts for races but I swear by the roga shorts.

I used to worry about chafing with shorts but that rarely has ever happened to me while wearing these magical shorts. They have performed through extreme downpours and major heat. I have even extended my love to other variations of the roga short family in the recent years: toolbelt rogas (for all the pockets), mac rogas (for all the shortness & air) , summer rogas (lightweight & airy), and recently OG rogas (like a go tank for your booty) . They also make a longer roga short that would work really well for hiking or running if you want more length to your shorts but I haven’t really tried them. And if you aren’t into shorts, they even have a couple different kinds of roga skirts (with short or with a brief under)! A year or so ago they even released a roga dress, basically a dress made out of the stretch woven fabric they make the rogas of! Is there any end to the awesomeness of roga material?  I hope that Oiselle never discontinues this awesome short/fabric and makes more awesome prints and more colors. You can never have too many rogas!

In daily life I get home from work and immediately change into roga shorts even if I am not going for a run after work, rare but it happens at times. I wear these shorts when taking my toddler to swim class and grocery/Target shopping days. They are comfy and don’t look like running shorts so you can definitely get away with wearing them nearly everywhere. In the 4 years I have been wearing my original burgen roga shorts and would you believe they still look as new as the day I bought them. Through the washer/dryer every time and still as awesome and stretchy as ever.

Here is the story of how the roga shorts came to be! Basically these shorts are a hybrid between a yoga pant and a running short, comfy like a yoga pant with the wide waistband but with the performance stretch and fit of a running short without all the bulk. I am glad the first running short I tried was a non poofy roga short instead of diaper butt  running shorts, I was lucky! But it’s never too late to change it up and try the roga shorts. These ultra stretch woven shorts dry super quickly after you stop running, I have even known some women who wear them to paddle board. Overall these are my favorite shorts and I hope to continue wearing them and setting PRs in all distances.

Get to shopping – here is the link the best running shorts : Oiselle

 

UnderArmour HOVR Sonic NC

“Disclaimer: I received a pair of UnderArmour HOVR Sonics NC shoes to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”

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So first thing is first, I really did not expect to ever own a pair of white running shoes but here we are and they are very white! The color aside I was not sure how I would like them. It did take a few runs before they felt broken in for me, which wasn’t too bad but I have been spoiled by some other running shoes that felt broken in out of the box. I think also it might have been my feet had to get used to the higher drop on these shoes. I am used to a 4 mm drop and these are 8 mm drop but after a couple of runs in these I didn’t even notice it.

These shoes are made with a lightweight fabric upper and lots of ventilation holes on the sides so they are perfect for warm climates like Miami. I have never felt my feet heating up in these shoes like other running shoes I sometimes wear. I do not like feeling sweat in the bottom of my shoes after a long humid run, worst feeling and good way to get some feet blisters, something I have definitely never encountered while wearing these shoes!

Responsive ride and neutral shoe so perfect for those who do not over pronate and are looking for something with some bounce but still want a firm running shoe. I will admit they felt heavy the first few runs in them, but that may have also been that sometimes I wear them for my 2nd run of the day and at that point my legs are pretty tired from early morning runs and working all day.

I would have brought them on my recent vacation but decided against in so that I could keep them white as long as possible. When running in Aruba white does not stay white for more than a few seconds, half of the roads I ran on were dirt so basically trail running most of the time. Dust is everywhere so I didn’t bring them with me but I did miss them which surprised me a bit.

At this point I have put in between 50-100 miles in these shoes and they are still remarkably clean but maybe that’s because I tend to not wear them on rainy days. Either way these shoes really have changed my mind about UnderArmour running shoes. So if you are looking for a quality running shoe with a low break in period of time, snatch these up.

Also there is a connect version of this shoe, which basically means you can track your steps, pace, stride length, distance and cadence with the connect version using the map my run app. Pretty cool and that version of the shoe only costs $10 more dollars if you are into all the tech and like to run watch less but want to know all the stats.

 

Run for cover

The last 3 weeks have been a whirlwind of activities, tragedies and low mileage. About 3 weeks ago I ran over to the neighborhood nearby mine to see the FIU bridge be brought over and placed over the road, 5 days after it collapsed taking 6 lives. I traveled under that bridge 4 of those days, each morning with my toddler in the backseat of my car. It could have been us kept going through my head when I heard the news, it was a bridge to connecting my work place to the city of Sweetwater. For a few days I really had a hard time sleeping and I think that my stress from it was affecting my toddler. I know the miles could’ve helped but I required more sleep and no long run that weekend. The following week started out okay and was able to start my week full of running but by that Thursday I just wanted to rest. I was starting to get a sinus infection and did not run at all that weekend, the next week brought on all new challenges. Phoebe ended up getting a very high fever last Tuesday night and my next couple of days were spent trying to get it down and a mix of urgent care/children’s hospital visits. Now she is doing better and I have a little less stress about her health this week and starting to ramp up my mileage again.

Life sometimes gets in the way of your plans, fitness goals, workouts and as hard as it is to wake up early after slacking off for a few weeks due to a lot of stressful situations I am happy that I am feeling better and getting back to my mileage goals. I started out the year hoping to run 40+ miles each week to be able to hit 2018 miles before 12/31/2018 and even though I sort of see that goal slipping away I know it’s still possible with some determination. I also wanted to run the Keys 100 50k this year but I’m not really sure that I want to this year. Maybe next year I will be ready for it, I don’t want to slack off this summer or anything, in fact I want to work harder and work on my speed for the fall season of races. I plan on doing the Space Coast Marathon this year and that means that marathon training would be starting again in July! Summertime marathon training, that should be fun, I know this humid/hot hot heat running will make me stronger when the weather gets a little better. I plan on getting serious too about my strength training too which I have not been serious about in a very long time, probably contributing to my slowing paces.

Socially the last few weeks have been pretty busy, Phoebe has met and took pics with 3 different Easter bunnies and did an egg hunt and even rode down a large slide ride with my sister and her cousin, Logan. Despite my exhaustion and our rounds of illnesses in the past few weeks it hasn’t been too bad lately in gaining lots of experiences and adventures.

Also something that I have been involved with lately is helping train some of my workplace’s employees in running a 5k race. I jumped at the opportunity to help with pacing duties for the program and have really enjoyed helping others conquer their goals. We are about halfway through the program right now and they are training for the Corporate run 5k at the end of this month and most of the runners are doing very well. Most of them also are not new to running but a few are very new to run, a couple are just getting back into it and want the accountability of a group run session to help them stick with it. Just 6 years ago I was training using a c25k training app on my phone, it would’ve been more helpful if I would’ve had a group to train with. I have been running/pacing with the group 2 days a week now and get in a few miles beforehand because driving home to change and back would take at least 30/40 minutes. It’s a nice and easy way to give back to the running community by helping others become better runners.

Fitbit Miami Marathon 2018 weekend – Expo & Race Review

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Over the years this race expo has been held in 3 different locations, well that’s since I have been running this race in the past 5 years. 6 years if you count the year that I did the Tropical 5k only. Mana Convention Center is actually my favorite expo location for this race. The parking might be a pain somewhat as you  have to find street parking and use a meter/parking app but its way less crowded to get to than the Miami Beach Convention Center with all that traffic to get there and not as confusing as the Marlins Park one was. The first Miami Marathon expo I went to here I remember it being a very windy day and surprise, again it was a very windy afternoon as I walked to the expo from parking a few blocks away. I brought my toddler again this year to pick up 4 race bibs between my boyfriend and I. Upon walking into the convention there is all the typical vendors for shoes (I hope you already have your shoes for your race before going!) and Geico, running store booths, massage booths and the food trying booths (yum!) I walked past them quickly in order to pick up the packets because even though it was still only about an hour into the expos start I knew that the longer I waited the longer the line would be. Before leaving work I had printed out copies of our bib numbers so it would be easy to pick up the packets but then promptly forgot them in the car and remembered when I got into Mana (mommy brain is real, people!) Luckily there is a convenient computer bib look up zone with very helpful volunteers so I was able to look up all 4 bib numbers quickly and head to the bib number pick up line. I went to the marathon line first because I know those get busy and was able to get my bib in like 2 minutes of waiting. The line was quick and went over to the Tropical 5k line to get my bibs there and that line was pretty quick too but longer because that race was the next day. In less than 5 minutes after entering the expo, with a stroller, I was able to pick up all the bibs I needed for the weekend of racing.

I then walked around the expo, saying hi to running friends and running store friends. My toddler got to take a pic with the Geico Gecko and I was able to find my name on the Miami Marathon letters for a quick selfie. The one thing that I ended up buying was a toddler shirt saying Future Finisher, it’s kind of a thing since I found out I was pregnant  and bought the first future finisher baby onesie secretly. Of course I stupidly gave the bag with the shirt to my toddler, who quickly lost it without me realizing till I was home and she was napping (AAHHH!) So someone went to the expo and got a free toddler shirt that they found. That was the only negative to the Miami Marathon expo and it had nothing to do with organization on their part at least. It was pretty cool that this year they had a few areas where you could do fitness classes or lift weights while hanging out at the expo. I don’t know if I would want to try a new exercise out a few days before running a marathon but I’m sure it was popular with a lot of people. Outside there was a bag check area for the runners coming directly from the airport to the expo (very helpful and there were quite a lot of bags there) and a bike valet zone in case you wanted to ride to the expo and wondered where to park your bike. Also there were 3 food trucks incase you were in the mood for trying a fun new food, I do have to say that the Jamaica food truck’s wraps looked pretty tasty! I stopped by the Athlinks booth and asked them about the race day app, which they told me works with runners carrying phones but that the regular Athlinks app would help me track runners without their phones gps. I looked at the features and learned that you can also see/download your FREE finisher pics on the app too! I have had an Athlinks account for years now and love that now I can use the app and claim and find my results even faster than using a regular pc.  Anyhow after I left there after having some Harmless Harvest coconut water (the best coconut water, IMO) and getting a sample of Hemp Hearts (love these!) We walked back to the car while taking pics with some of the Wynwood art on the walls and sidewalks, my toddler really enjoyed this part of the trip. I actually saw a ton of runners taking selfies and pics with the art walls. Quickly drove home, as quick as traffic would allow and got in a short nap with the toddler.

Next morning I headed to the Tropical 5k, which I recapped right here.

Now Miami Marathon morning, woke up at the early hour of 3am! Way earlier than any of my early morning training run wake ups have been and left my house by 3:45am. Early enough to be in the race area and parked in the American Airlines parking lot (only $5) before 5am. Walked over to the 1k booth and hung out with friends with some porta potty stops along the way. Pro tip: there is no line for the porta potties in the charity village area and you can get a nice warm up walk to get there and back to the finish line after. First thought: it is quite windy, looking at the skies all I can see is grey clouds, unsure if they are rain clouds or regular pre dawn clouds. Just making sure my phone didn’t get damaged I put it in a plastic sandwich bag in my armband before starting.

As usual the first 12.5 miles were crowded and the first 5 were almost nonstop elbow smashingly close. At mile 3.1 I missed the 5k timing mat and had to run back to cross it to not miss any splits on tracking, the mat did not stretch all the way across the bridge in that area. All the other timing mats were right in my way and no way I could have missed them, I don’t understand how anyone could have missed any of the others on the course. The first part of the race has you running over the MacArthur Causeway and in that 20 mph winds, it was very rough. Nothing like being battered by winds in the first 2 miles of a marathon, only 24 more to go, right? The next couple of miles are through South Beach, which was nice as it was around the time that the sun was rising. Around mile 9 I saw a fallen runner being taken care of by paramedics, I’m guess it was dehydration as the temps were starting to heat up by that point in the race. Later they raced by in a mule with said runner in the back, scary to see but glad all the runners in that lane got out of the way, I may have yelled to get their attention to get out of the way of the incoming ambulance. Lots of great views  and then we were heading across the Venetian bridge. It was there that I saw the Every Mother Counts crew cheering at mile 11 and that helped give me a little bit of a boost to get through the next couple of crowded miles before the split. A few miles later was cheered on by Doug, owner of GoRun, always nice to see a familiar face that knows your name out there. Something that is never cool and always happens just before the half/full split is the bystanders who think they are helping but unfortunately not for the full marathoners, start screaming “Almost There!!” I did make sure to yell out “You mean, almost HALF way there” as I finally made it into the full marathon chute. After that you can stretch your arms out and shake off all that crowding and you are in a quieter zone. You have a bridge soon after the split which is expected but what you may not realize is that you have to cross that same bridge again just before you finish.

The course was changed a bit from the past when we would run down Brickell and cross the short but steep Brickell bridge. Strangely in the past marathons I would speed up around this point, I guess the freedom of less crowding but this year I started to slow. I believe the slowing down was not really due to my terrible marathon training this year but rather the humidity started to get pretty high around this time. Around the Brickell area there was a corner stop with ice pops and I made sure to grab one, it was the best ice pop I had ever tasted, I could tell I was starting to dehydrate at that point. It was still pretty cloudy through most of this race but there were some times when I felt the sun, one of those times was while coming back from under the Rickenbacker bridge area. I started to really slow in the Coconut Grove area and it was strange because I wasn’t having any aches at all, but rather the heat was starting to get to me. I have trained in the temps this whole time but maybe less in the elements as a lot of my long runs were done on a treadmill. Something I will not be doing the next time around but rather more long runs on the street, even if it means bringing the BOB running stroller & toddler along for the miles. It was around mile 17 or 18 I saw another runner friend who was being the guide for a visually impaired runner and ended up running almost the rest of the remaining miles with them. They took walking breaks and usually some walking breaks through the water stops which really helped me. Since the heat was getting pretty crazy there, I started stopping for water at all water stops after mile 15. I was not taking a chance of getting dehydrated and having to be rushed away on the back of an ambulance and there were plenty racing by us as we ran up Bayshore drive. Along the way it was nice to zone out a bit about the running part and just chat with others while the miles slowly passed by.

Finally we were out of the Grove/Key Biscayne area and heading up Brickell to move onward to the last 2 miles. Those were some very very long miles, but when I got over that last bridge, the one we crossed twice, and I walked up/ran down, the buildings were blocking the sun a bit and helped with the overheated feelings. At the final mile was a group of iRun runners who had completed the half marathon and were back out there to cheer and Hector, one of the owners of iRun cheering me on as I ran through that final mile. They said I was looking strong but I was just chugging along just trying to get to the end in one piece. I never felt like I was going to collapse through the whole race or anything, just exhausted from the heat and ready for it to be over already. Since the race weaves through the downtown area and not a straight shot as it was in the past it was getting kind of overwhelming as I would turn another corner and still be like where is the finish line. Finally in the last stretch, there was a 1k running friend who had a megaphone and was calling out “Go Running Mama!” as I passed by for that final boost before the finish line. When I saw the finish line I just tried to run as fast as possible, that was my idea of a sprint at the moment and so elated when I finally had crossed over and my finish line pics show just that, haha!

I wasn’t sure if I had my 2nd best time of 2nd slowest time until I checked the official time on the Athlinks app but that was later on when I finally sat down. I picked up my new medal, making sure that all parts spun (issue earlier in the weekend about that) and headed to the food tent. Last year the food tent was a mess and I had to juggle all my food in the cold freezing rain but this year it was much better and (yay!) no cold freezing rain either! They had boxes of DeliverLean meals ready to pick up, at first I looked at it and it said something like Turkey sandwich and I guess one of the volunteers could see my face “oh damn, meat” and asked if I was vegetarian they had meals for us too. Finally, a meal option for vegetarians at a race! Best news ever! I got my pasta meal box and some pretzels and oatmeal cinnamon cookies and quickly went to another tent where they had cold water. I got a cold water bottle and went in search of  a place to put all my stuff down to better organize it for carrying back to the 1k tent to eat. I dropped my Nuun tablet into the cold water bottle also and was happy I didn’t have to wait long before getting re-hydrated. They also had Gatorade bottles available but I almost never drink Gatorade so I passed on it. Then I walked sorely back to the 1k tent where I could put my stuff down on a table and start snacking on some cookies. I stayed standing for a long time while I gave my body time to slow down a bit and get readjusted to not running. I know better than to sit down right after a long distance race, one thing I learned really quickly after my first half marathon. After about 25 minutes or so I decided it was time to sit and rest a little, it was at that time that I looked up my boyfriend’s splits and could see that he was nearing the finish line. I continued to watch the app while I ate my cookies and drank my cold Nuun infused water until he finished and came to the 1k tent to find me. After that I got my gear bag and was trying to debate whether I should change clothing or not, I ended up not choosing to change clothing as it wasn’t cold and I really didn’t want to see what would happen if I tried bending to change, haha! Took a porta potty break and then went to the Florida Storm Series tent to collect my Cat 3 medal of the series. At the 305 Half I will be collecting my Cat 4 medal so in about a month I will have 2 more medals.

Another reason to park or not park at the American Airlines Arena is the walk back is a good cool down, re stretch your muscles walk before the drive home but can be terrible if you can barely walk. Luckily it was a good cool down walk for me and not the latter, also it makes it easier to leave the downtown area also. All in all this was not my best marathon and not my worst. The conditions were brutal but I endured the wind and heat and conquered my 4th marathon to date! Miami Marathon 2019, I am coming for you and will hopefully be PR ready. Now I just need the weather to cooperate and I will be good. If you haven’t signed up for next year’s race, what are you waiting for? Right now the prices are the lowest they will EVER be, so sign up now!