Miami Marathon Weekend 2022

Disclaimer: I received an entry to the Tropical 5k 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!

Mid March 2020 everything shutdown due to the start of the covid 19 pandemic, I had just completed my 2020 Miami Marathon and all races went on hiatus till mid 2021. Miami Marathon 2021 had to be canceled due to the pandemic with options to defer and race your chosen race virtually. I took the option of deferral and the virtual option, Running a marathon a treadmill is not all the fun like running in person in a race atmosphere. Luckily I signed up with my deferral code as soon as the race opened in April 2021 and did not have to join the 5000 participants on the waiting list. They minimized the amount of runners to keep it from getting too crowded. It did help with crowding and overall enjoyment of the experience, especially with the pandemic still a problem.

My training over the summer/fall did not go always as planned, in August 2021 I got the covid-19 delta strain and was slow to come back to my running. My lungs were just not the same and I lost a lot of endurance during the weeks I was recovering. I knew I had a marathon to train for but I was not going to overextend myself to do it, I always remember my former coach saying “Its better to be undertrained than overtrained.” I got up to about 14 mile long runs in my fall training block but relied a bit on a 6 hr hilly ultra to help with some hill training in early January 2022.

Race Expo

This year the race expo was at the Miami Beach Convention Center again, it hadn’t been there since 2015! I felt like in the past years the expo was bigger but I heard through the grapevine that a lot of vendors dropped out last minute due to covid restrictions and such. Perhaps next year it will be bigger and better as we covid things get a little better. Anyways traffic into Miami beach was a bit more than typical beach traffic but once I got by the convention center, parking at the nearby parking garage was easy and quick. I got to the expo about 10 minutes after it opened, and it was packed! I guess everyone had the same idea as I did to get there early lol. Oh well, there were some long lines for specific bib numbers and the tropical 5k but overall the lines move pretty quickly for bib retrieval and there were no lines for shirt pick up. Thanks to Bibrave I got entry to the VIP Experience and compared to past years it was not quite the same, smaller area and not as much gym equipment as in the past and no massage boots :'(. That really was something I was looking forward to, but moving on, the swag for the VIPs was pretty good, We got a small messenger bag with Miami Marathon labeling and a soft bomber style jacket embroidered with Miami Marathon. I walked around the expo once and then returned to the VIP area where I ran into a friend of mine, one of the 20 year streakers, Tony Jones. I was interested in the new thing in the VIP lounge, last time there was nail art and this year it was fast braids. I chose the two french braids style and had a nice conversation with the stylist/salon owner about hair stuff and how she was not a runner but a yogi. After I got my fast braids I walked around the expo more and checked out the vendors. One that really stood out to me was the Sneaker Impact booth where I talked to the owner about his company and how they are saving our sneakers from landfills to send to other countries to provide shoes for adults and children to be able to attend work and school. I will be packing and shipping him some shoes this weekend! I tried some food samples from the eat street area of the expo and walked over to the Miami Marathon museum area where they had all the previous year medals on display and old flyers/articles of past years winners and original course. Also a wall to display the 20 year streakers, very cool, wish I would’ve been part of that but 20 years ago I was not a runner. The official merchandise area was bigger than in the past and it was very busy, I bought my daughter a Future Finisher shirt, as I have been doing since before she was born (It was actually the way I announced my pregnancy to my family, Miami Marathon onesie). Ran into a lot of runner friends who I had not seen in the 2 years or more since the pandemic began. I spent about 3 hours walking around and checking out the stuff before heading home to rest my legs a little before Saturday’s 5k.

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This year I did not park at Jungle Island, which I had been doing for the past few years due to the closeness of the start line, I parked in Miami Beach. They had shuttles from 2 nearby parking garages to the start line so I got to the parking garage early and met up with my friend, Caroline. Fun fact: We have been IG friends for a few years I’d say but I hadn’t met her till race morning. We walked to the buses and chatted till the race started. Plenty of port a potties at the starting line and remarkably no long lines when I went. Ran into JetSetSarah (local runner/travel writer/fashionista) as we walked around and a couple of others before we headed towards the front of the corral. We got there 45 minutes before start time and it was a good decision because it started getting crowded early, I did see a lot of masks before we started which was a good sign that everyone was keeping safe. I had mine on when it started getting crowded and put it in my pocket when we started. I tried to hold back but my first mile was obviously too quick and I had to force myself to slow down the next 2 miles, why is it that 5ks feel so much harder than longer distances? Is it because we have to run that much faster? Probably. I had an ok finish line for running the day before a marathon and collected my medal and bottle of water. Can I just say I love that the bottled water was in a recyclable bottle this year BUT those bottles were impossible to open with sweaty post run hands! I had to ask a very quick runner who was just spectating to open my bottle before I continued on towards the beach. I took a couple pics of my medal on the beach when I walked to the Nikki Beach area where the finish line party usually is and found it deserted. Found Carolina again and we found the tiny area where they were giving some post race snacks at and I collected some cookies/pretzels and a banana before we walked back to our cars in the parking garage. Fun race but I had to rush on home to take my daughter to swim class, #momlife. Later I took her to a nearby carnival and she rode some rides with a friend while I carb loaded with an elephant ear and took way too many steps.

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I woke up very early, 3:05am (haha) and gathered all my stuff that I laid out the night before. I had my waffle and water before I left. I know they say to never do anything new on race day but I will admit I wore some Oiselle pocket joggers that I had just got a few days before, so they were brand new, unwashed and unworn yet. I mean I have worn the style for a couple races now and knew they were going to work out well for me for this race as they do not ride up, the best! The only chaffing I got was from the line logo tag on the bottom of the shorts. I did use KT tape Chafe Safe on my body before I left the house also and that stuff really works! Got to the FTX arena (formerly AAA/Home of Miami Heat) by 4:15am and parked for $5. I am so glad that they give this as a parking option as all the other parking options around that area are $10-$20 on race morning, the only thing is that you have be parked before 5am since the starting corrals are right in front. Relaxed in the car for 15 minutes and then started over to the charity village/team tent area. Hit the port a potties and met up with my BibravePro teammate, Sarah, who is also part of 1k run club. We headed over to the 1k tent by the water, later when the sun was up, it was a great view of the bay. I dropped off my bag of extra clothes and car keys at the team tent and chatted with a couple of runner friends. Then Sarah and I walked over to the FTX arena to use a real toilet before the race started, the first bathroom we walked into had a bit of a line so we went to the next one where we had the whole bathroom to ourselves, we hurried to our B corral (another perk of the VIP experience) and found Phil, our BibRave teammate.

The excited energy in the corral was palpable and everyone started hopping up and down to warm up, and we were off soon after 6:10 or so. An earlier start is a great, because once that sun comes out, it really gets you. Luckily I was already at mile 5 or so before the sun really started coming out. That first mile and running over the McArthur is quite an experience, especially after many years of running this race I know to expect the bagpipe playing at the top of the bridge. Couple of friends said hi as they passed on the first few miles of the race. There were a couple of runners who took some spills, one right at the start, about 15 feet after crossing the starting line and another one on those armadillo bumps on the Venetian. I hope they were okay, I kept well away from those armadillo bumps while I was running. I started taking in water around mile 6 of the race, and hit every other water stop till the halfway point of the race. Around mile 12 when all the spectators are screaming “almost there” Umm nope, there were a couple of runners sprawled out on the sidewalks, I’m guessing heat related since the humidity was at 90% at the start. I really tried not to get that into my head as I rounded the corner at the course split and headed for the big bridge on Brickell. There used to be spectators who would bring ice pops in a cooler around the Fortune building, where Brickell Run Club meets but I haven’t seen them in a couple of years, if you are reading this, please come back and give us ice pops at that corner again!! Thankfully two years ago the course was changed up a little bit so we are not running into direct sunlight at mile 23 and under the Rickenbacker bridge but instead running under it at mile 16. At mile 17 I knew one of my 1k teammates and overall running angel, Betty would be out there supporting the FDC team and runners so I stopped by for a quick hug and some kind of sugar, she gave me a cup of coca cola (I never drink soda!) and a mini bag of skittles. Seems like the cola helped me, must’ve been that caffeine!

By the time I reached Coconut Grove I was incorporating my ultra race technique (run/walk) and stopping at all the water stops. At mile 22-23 one of the police officers must’ve been pretty bored by the time we passed through because he was joking that if we walked he would give us a ticket and said “I’m watching you [bib number]”. That kept me moving a little but I walked right after we got passed him, Ha! Once we got out of the neighborhoods and closer to the finish line, the buildings started blocking out the sun and it got cooler and shady. Just before my final mile I heard my name and looked over to see my friend Carolina waving at me. I waved and determinedly kept running through the looooooong finish chute. Saw Phil waving from the VIP stands before I finished too. It really is an experience at the end of the race when you are running around that final curve and all those strangers are cheering you on, you really get a little feeling of how it feels to be a rockstar at that moment. So much fun! Got my medal and continued walking to get a water from a friendly volunteer who kindly opened it for me when I mentioned how the bottled were hard to open. Afterwards I collected my vegetarian DeliverLean meal and headed to the 1k tent to celebrate. Dropped my Nuun tablet in the water bottle and kept walking around. Took some pics with my new medal and then walked over to the VIP tent area to check if I could get a leg massage. The line was long for the massages and talked to some others in the line who came up with a good suggestion, there should be a line for half marathoners and full marathoners. Definitely both groups need a good massage after, but marathoners more so because of that extra distance. Picked up a vegan meal from the tent and started walking to the FTX arena to my car, about 2 hrs after I finished the race. There were lots of people dancing along to the entertainers on the stage and the beer tent was looking full when I left around noon.

I’m already signed up for the 2023 Miami Marathon! Hurry and sign up soon before the 2500 early access spots are taken! The race is going to be capped at 18,000 and you definitely want to be Miami Famous!

It’s Not Miami Without YOU! Who’s in for Miami Marathon 2023? Drop me a comment below or just tell me I’m crazy for running 26.2 miles in this heat. LOL.

Ready.Set.Move subscription box – a Review

Disclaimer: I received two Ready Set Move boxes 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!”

If you are like me you have tried a couple of subscription boxes but have not been totally impressed with any of them so far. I have tried beauty boxes and even a fitness box series but none were super impressive. Till I received my Ready.Set.Move box and I am not just saying that. It has a ton of cool products that I would never have tried otherwise but now gotten the chance and now want to purchase more of said products. I will go over the goodies in each of the boxes that I received so you can see for yourself.

These boxes ship January, April, July and October, so 4x a year and a box filled with over $100+ worth of fitness/running gear to use right away! By using the code: BIBRAVE10 you will save $10 on a box when you first sign up. They have mini boxes for $20 and then limited edition seasonal boxes for $59 too in addition to the subscription box which you can choose a mens or womens box.

Now to the January box and it’s contents:

Bracoo Compression Leg Sleeves

Brooks neon yellow headband & sunglasses strap

Floyds of Leadville recovery protein in chocolate and vanilla flavors & Recovery balm

Honey Stinger fruit smoothie gel & strawberry waffle

KT Tape sample pack & Recovery + Pain relief gel roll on

La Colombe Coffee triple shot draft latte

Nuun hydration sport in Fruit Punch (one of my favorite flavors of Nuun)

Nathan HyperBrite Strobe light

SpiBelt original running belt & Spibelt beam led headwear hat

Triggerpoint Nano Lite foot massage roller

Here are a couple mini reviews on some of the products:

Floyd’s of Leadville protein shake powder: I had never tried any of their protein powders and in general I don’t like mixing the powders and prefer my protein shakes premade and cold. But this was actually pretty good tasting and not gritty like other protein powders can be, I felt more energized after taking this after a 30+ minute strength workout.

KT Tape Recovery + pain relief roll on – I haven’t actually had any pain lately from running so I let my mother who has arthritis give it a try when she started having some aches and she said it helped her. So it’s good for arthritis as well!

Nuun hydration sport has been my go to electrolytes for the past 8 years or so, almost since I started running! The fact that the flavor I got was one of my favorites was a big bonus.

SpiBelt original running belt: I had never tried a waist belt for holding my phone in during runs but now that I have tried it I really don’t want to deal with my armbands again. I have already been looking at some of the other color options I like it so much!

Triggerpoint Nano Lite foot massage roller: I am notoriously bad at rolling my muscles out after running, and almost never stretch before or after runs, I am making a big effort to do this more now. Especially now since this foot roller is super easy to use and I can use it under my desk when working from home or at the office. I can multitask! Plus I am getting older and know that I need to stretch more in general.

Here is what was in the April box:

Bob’s Red Mill almond protein powder & peanut butter and oats Bob’s bar

Bracoo Simple Ankle Sleeve

Brooks notebook and pen

Earhoox attachments for earpods & airpods

Floyd’s of Leadville cbd soft gel & cbd gems

KT Tape Chafe Safe – anti chafing wipes

La Colombe coffee nitro cold brew

Nuun hydration energy in berry blast

Mueller Kold Towel

Spi belt beams reactors

I just got the April box but here are a few more mini reviews:

Brooks notebook and pen: Besides being cute, I always need a notebook to write random things down and training miles and info.

KT Tape Chafe Safe – anti chafing wipes : I have tried other anti chafing products in the past but never in a wipe form, which makes this one easier to carry with you on the go as well in a bag to pack before a race. Almost everyone deals with chafing at some point or another so it will definitely help everyone!

Mueller Kold Towel – I like this a lot and I will like it even more when it gets more into the heart of summer, even though it’s only spring here in Miami it already feels like summer! A towel to put around your shoulders in the middle of a run, even on the treadmill on my porch it will be a lifesaver.

Again, if you are a new subscriber for the Ready.Set.Go box you can get $10 off by using the code: BIBRAVE10

Have you tried out fitness and/or running subscription boxes in the past? What is something you liked about them and what is something that annoyed you about it? Let me know in the comments below.

Check out my fellow Bibrave Pros review of the Ready.Set.Move box below:

Meridith’s

JamieLee’s

Amanda’s

Lissa’s

Mai’s

And some pros made youtube videos here:

Ken’s

Lisha’s

Samantha’s

Shannon’s

Grandma’s Marathon Virtual 26.2 : Why I am running

Disclaimer: I received an entry to Grandma’s Marathon virtual marathon 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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This year I started the year hopeful and thinking maybe I could run a marathon a month, whether the race distance or during a race and I started at the beginning of January by running a 6 hr ultra marathon, completing the marathon distance and then almost hitting 30 miles as well. Things changed soon afterwards, my grandmother took a turn for the worst, she had been in the hospital since right before Thanksgiving. There would be good days and then bad days with her recovery/health and on January 10th, she lost the battle and passed away. Most may not know but this was the closest grandparent I had and my last living one. Sure we would argue sometimes but we did get along as well. I remember during my first marathon back in 2014 she called me when I was around mile 16 to tell me that she saw on the news that it would start raining soon. I said “Uh grandma, I’m still running, but I don’t have too much more to go, 10 miles” and got off the phone with her. I did put my phone away in my plastic baggie and just in time too, the rain started pouring down for the next 6 miles or so of that race. She only attended one of my races but that was due to her own transportation issues, it was a good race too, an inaugural race and I ended up winning 1st in my age group. She would always like to see the different medals I earned after races. She is the reason I am doing this race.

I ran a 5k the week after the ultra (not a great idea) I had dead legs. A few weeks later I ran Tropical 5k and Miami Marathon without any issues. February was uneventful till mid/late month and that’s when my daughter got Influenza B (the flu!) and a few days later I got it as well. Not a lot of running happened that month, 10 days later I ran the 305 half marathon and did fairly well for still recovering. Mid March brought my city into lock down due to Covid-19 and my only outing was restricted to grocery shopping. When the gyms closed the sidewalks became crowded and running outside became somewhat of an obstacle course. More treadmill running happened for me also because my daughter’s preschool closed and I started teaching her from home while also working a full time job. Running takes away a little of the stress I am experiencing now with extra work and more jobs than usual.


Training for this race has been mainly done on the treadmill and even though I haven’t ran any distances over 14 miles so far in this training block I am fairly certain I will survive the race. I used to train for marathons with multiple 20 milers but in the last few years I haven’t had as much time for such long distances and I have done okay during my marathons. I am planning on running this virtual marathon on the treadmill so that will be a new challenge for me. I have only ever ran a 22 miler on the treadmill once back in 2013 when I was training for my first marathon!

Should be fun to earn this medal not only because of who I am running this race for but also because this is a very well known race in the running community. I personally have never been to Minnesota but I plan on making a trip there one day when it is safe to travel again and hope to run this race in real life. Some friends of mine have ran this race before and have given me tips on the course and how to adjust the treadmill incline for more accurate running conditions.

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I plan on filling a couple of reusable water bottles with water and Nuun and putting my Honey Stinger chews within reach in case I need a boost of sugar during the race. I am not sure if I am going to watch movies/tv shows or read a book while running this race as that is how I have recently been training while running on the treadmill. With lots of miles with no scenery change I am going to need some sort of brain distraction, also I heard there is an app that will allow you to see the course as you run it, I might try that one too!

Do you have any tips on long long runs while on the treadmill? Please send them my way in the comments below.

ROADiD Review + Giveaway!

Disclaimer: I received a ROADiD 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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If you know me you already know that I am a longtime (since 2013) fan of ROADiDs. I actually got my first ROADiD right after I completed my first half marathon race, I had seen a few other runners wearing them at that point. But back then there was pretty much only one wrist option and now there is a ton of options including one to go on your watch band!

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One of the things I like about it is that it is so comfortable to wear that I never take mine off, I guess there are some people who also just put on a running watch to run but never wear it otherwise, but I am not that person. I keep my running watch on and my ROADiD always. One of the reason is because I am lazy and another because you never know when something might happen to you when you are alone in public and will need assistance. I have another friend who was diagnosed with MS who bought one to keep on in case of any medical emergencies she may have. It’s one of those things that started out as a good idea for athletes and then became a good idea for everyone, especially those with medical conditions.

Over the years I have reviewed other types of ROADiDs but continue to come back to the original silicone stretch band design that I started with, it’s just no fuss and simple in my opinion. It’s my favorite and it never gets snagged on anything since it really only has my information plate and no buckles or clasps. It’s easy to customize it to your personality too, they have different metal plate options (rose gold, slate and graphite) and a ton of colors to choose from for the bands, plus badges to add to it to show your sport of choice. When my daughter was around 1 I got her a ROADiD to wear in the stroller in case anything would happen to me while out on a run with her or at a race. I would want someone to call her contacts if I was injured and unable to keep her safe. She still wears it when I take her out on her bike now and it still fits. Lately she has taken to wearing it always now that she sees I have the same color band as her.

I hope that I never have to be in the situation where it will help the paramedics or strangers identify me in order to help me but I know that if something does happen my ROADiD has my back.

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Bibrave has so generously provided us a code to share with our friends & followers to use for 25% off your order at ROADiD.com : SAVE25BRP 

Or comment below with which ROADiD you would get for the chance to win a $10 off code for any iD! Winner will be chosen at random on June 1st!

Earth Day Running with Knockaround

Disclaimer: I received a pair of Knockaround sunglasses 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 a fan of Knockarounds for awhile, they are one of my favorite running/active sunglasses. Living in a tropical place means that I need lots of sunglasses, when I first started running I would run early in the morning before the sun came up but in the past few years, Phoebe has grown and early morning runs usually mean treadmill runs. Sunglasses are a necessity for my afternoon/early evening runs in South Florida. Even on the off chance I get in an early outdoor run on the weekend when the sun is still rising it can get pretty bright out. These are fantastic for not slipping down.

Ever heard of the term, plogging? It is a Swedish term for jogging while picking up litter coined back in 2016. It’s a great idea to help clean up the environment and get in some exercise, it should really be taking off at this time since there is a ton of trash out there at this time and lots of people walking/biking/jogging on the sidewalks/streets now.

Adventures in plogging recently has changed a bit due to the covid-19 virus, I used to be running and see a couple bottles or large piece of trash and a trash can nearby and would not hesitate to pick it up and trash it. But now with the virus being able to live on plastic and cardboard for sometimes days, plogging requires more preparations, like gloves. Also with social distancing you cannot run with others who are not living in your household so things can be a little slow in the clean up of neighborhoods. I decided to keep my plogging nearby my house in order to be able to have my gloves and garbage bag ready so I often ended my run with some plogging around the street next to my house. Living off a very busy avenue means lots of trash to pick up and now lots of discarded gloves and masks too. Instead of throwing out their masks/gloves at home or in a bag after their grocery shopping trips people have started throwing them out of their cars and damaging the trying to heal earth. I haven’t been able to take any pics of said plogging in action as I have to wear gloves and do not want to touch my phone to snap a pic before I am decontaminated. But I was able to get in some pics of the bags of trash that I found in less than half a mile from my house recently. Lots of people in cars gave puzzled looks because it’s odd to see people who are not forced to clean up the streets who are not in a community service program. I did get a few cheers.

We are currently in a very lax lockdown in Miami right now and people are venturing outside to exercise since all the gyms are closed and only some fitness classes are online right now. So I am seeing a lot more disposable water bottles strewn in the grass by the sidewalks and less litter free lawns now than a few months ago. I love running outside and now the rules are you have to stay at least 6 ft but preferably 10-12 ft away from  others when running as our heavier breathing causes virus particles to fly farther than those who are walking. I do not wear a mask while running but at any grocery stores or drive thru restaurants I do. I live in the suburbs so there is not a ton of people on the streets at any given time like if I were to live in downtown or Brickell area where there are many condos and lots of people living in a small area.

Also there is currently a contest going on currently through social media about hugging a tree for Earth day and tagging knockaround and bibrave with the hashtag #earthdayknocksbr in order to win a pair of Knockarounds, hurry, it ends tonight! Here’s my pic : IMG_7043

 

Right now to celebrate earth day Knockaround sunglasses gave us the code: BibRaveKnocks4 to get 20% off your entire order! I have the Special Release No Signal Fort Knocks ones, which come with the coolest tv guide printed sunglasses pouch and the box they came in has a printed old school tv remote. Reminds me back when I was a teenager and at midnight the tv would go fuzzy and then have these colorful lines until the channel started broadcasting again. Very fun and nostalgic!

Did you do anything special to celebrate Earth day? Do you think every day is Earth Day? Have you ever been plogging?

 

 

 

305 Half Marathon – March 1, 2020 – Race Review

I’m promoting 305 Half as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

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Going into this race I was probably really under trained, well I guess as under trained as one can be 3 weeks after running a marathon. But really I hadn’t been running much in the past few weeks – first was recovering from the marathon week and then taking care of Phoebe with the flu and then getting it myself – so in the time between races I only ran minimally for 2 weeks but not regularly. I ran my longest run since the marathon on the Friday before this race: 7 miles. Maybe there is something to running less and running better or maybe it was just my new shoes and the newness inspiring me. There are so many factors that could have been at play in how I actually did at the race. I really went into this race just trying to survive and if anything get under 2:10 since I was not feeling confident about my pace/endurance.

Packet pick up for this race was the best I have experienced in awhile and one of the locations was close to my house and job, no more racing to Dadeland station to pick up my race stuff a few days before the race. I like that lately more races are having multiple locations for packet pickup to help runners in different parts of Miami.

Race morning was chilly enough to wear my earband for at least half of the race and this year I got to wear my arm sleeves, that hardly ever happens for South Florida races, the last time I got to wear arm sleeves for a race was Miami Marathon 2017. The temps were around the low to mid 50s before the race began, I headed to the port o potties before the race, this year they were in the dark, unlike last year. Got to the start line an hour before the race began, talked to a couple of friends before getting into the corral, talked to my Bibrave teammate, Mike before the race also. I did have a giggle at some participants who were wearing puffy jackets in the corral, WOW! I started out fast, as usual and got in front of the 2 hr pacer early on. Then started the bridges, Julia Tuttle, usually I feel really terrible by the time I get to the top of the first bridge but this year for some reason I felt okay and not like I was going to die. By the time I was getting out of the Julia Tuttle bridge I was still feeling pretty decent and it was starting to heat up, I tucked my earband into the back of my shorts and felt the coolness refreshing my sweaty ears.

I didn’t grab too much water and did not even use my Honey Stinger energy chews at all (crazy!) during this race but around mile 6 I got my first sip of water on the course. A few miles later the 2 hr pacer was gaining on me and getting to the water stop was a pain with a rude man cutting in front of me, nearly tripping me to get a water cup. After that water station drama and I got another sip of water I got the hell up that McArthur and away from the pace group and rude man. I didn’t see them again the rest of the race, luckily! But I was getting to the part of the race that I usually start fading but my Bibrave teammate, Mike passed me and that gave me the extra motivation to keep pushing. Mike was making it look easy as he ran ahead of me, wearing his aftershokz and not slowing his even pace, he did speed off a few miles later. At that point I was not going to slow down, I was a mile and a half to the finish line and on the final bridge was one of my favorite runners in South Florida and the mayor of Miami running, Harolyn, cheering us on and if you know her, you love her!

Probably the toughest part of this race for me was the final mile, when you are running on the beach serpentine (our boardwalk) and the sun is way up by then and it starts getting really toasty. I passed the time by watching a team of runners celebrating someone named Lisa’s 50th half? or 50th birthday? And being a Lisa, I took notice of the shirts and eventually I ran into the Lisa who’s own shirt stated : My 50th and congratulated her saying she must be the famous Lisa that I had been reading about along the course. She was happy to be recognized by her friend’s shirts and then I took off, feeding off the happy energy of the moment. In the past few years I have been less focused on my times and more on having fun while on the course, even if that means slowing down to help motivate my friends or cheering on the first place runners (in point to point races). Looking at my watch when I was about .30 from the finish line, a forever endless mile, that last one I was happy to see I would be finishing in less than 2 hrs! The year before I was a few minutes over 2 hrs and the first year of this 3 year series I was a minute under 2:00. I was happily surprise with my 1:58:25 finish time! I made sure to congratulate the girl closest to me after we crossed the line and she congratulated me too and mentioned how she was focusing on my bird shorts to motivate her to the finish line, lol. Love the randomness of that, finding something or someone to focus on to get you through the tough parts of a race. I walked around after and saw Mike after the finish line, unknowing that he had just had a huge PR! Congrats Mike on your first sub 2 half marathon finish!! I took some pics, collected my Florida Storm Series 4 medal and then headed back to the finish line to cheer on friends and strangers before I left. Plus I got to witness the bandits being pulled from the course just before the finish chute and people wearing their bibs on their back (cmon people, so much for those free race pics lol) getting offended when they were questioned about their bibs. I wish less runners had headphones on SO that they would actually hear us cheering them on!!

Overall another great experience at 305 Half and cannot wait till next year to start the 3 year series over again! If you are not signed up already, what are you waiting for? The prices are the lowest they will ever be but only until 3/10! Sign up for the only race that gives out cafecitos race morning! I signed up today on 305 day!

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Miami Marathon 2020

Disclaimer: I’m promoting Miami Marathon and received free entry to Tropical 5k as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

We are now a little less than a month away from race weekend. I will be starting the race weekend like I have the past few years with the Tropical 5k race. It’s a great way to involve the whole family in race weekend, I usually am joined by my boyfriend and daughter gets pushed in her stroller for a nice little warm up for race weekend. Last year the temps were cool but it did rain the entire night before and stopped just before to then again start up right as the race began. Hoping for some cool weather with no rain or wind this year!

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I am going into Miami Marathon with no real time goals, training has been up and down in the past few months due to a lot of things. I ran Space Coast Marathon in December and used it as a training run as well as Vista View 360 ultramarathon. It definitely has been a strange training cycle, who else runs an ultramarathon (and further than I have ever ran ever, 29 miles!) to train for a marathon? Overall I am going to have fun and love running through my hometown.

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This will be my 8th year taking part in Miami Marathon weekend, It all started when I ran Tropical 5k back in 2013, about 6 months after I began running. It was quite an experience and to end by the beach was a pretty cool finish line.

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I’m looking forward to the expo for race weekend as well and hope to plan a meet up with my Oiselle volee teammates for the race as well! The expo is always fun, lots to see, lots of friends to run into and the VIP experience is pretty amazing too. I will take more advantage of it this year and spend more time in the Normatec boots 😉 I will be taking off the day from work to attend and urge you to also, even if you aren’t running any of the races that weekend.

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This year I will be running my 8th marathon, my 6th Miami Marathon! One day I may get that BQ there but this won’t be that year, eventually my goals and the stars will align to get me there!

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Still haven’t signed up? Use the code BIBRAVEMIAMI to get a discount when you register for the half or marathon distance! Hope to see you there! And check back here for a post race review also! Bet you didn’t know Miami Marathon is on the Bibrave 100 list of best races in America!

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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

 

 

 

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.

 

 

 

305 Half Marathon 2019

I’m promoting 305 Half as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

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Let me start by saying I have ran this race/course for the past 7 years and every year it still feels as challenging. Some years I have sub two hour finishes, some years I’m a few minutes behind, some years I just want to finish alive. This was my first half marathon back in 2013 and even though those bridges are challenging, I continue to sign up year after year.

Last year the race was more Miami than usual with a pots and pans PR station because everyone in Miami goes out in the streets with their pots and pans for the home team victories. This year was much like last years with the 305 feel with cafecito by the starting line and lots of great food vendors afterwards. There was a major hiccup that happened a few days before the race, the race medals were on a train for California and not Florida so the race management hustled and put together a temp medal till we can get the official 0 medal to complete our 3 year challenge. Also due to the UPS mistake they gave out $5 Starbucks gift cards as well as a code for free UPS my choice premium membership for a year. I look forward to getting my 0 medal in the mail in the next couple weeks.

Now back to the changes and things that were really helpful. Usually the port a potties are lined up at the end of the starting corral but this time they were actually put into the hard packed sand across from where the finish line was and there were huge lights to illuminate them. That is perfect, well almost lol, some sand got into my sock which was kind of annoying BUT I did like the fact that it was out of the starting corral area which really clogs up the area for runners.

The iRun pacers were great as usual, I tucked in behind the 2:00 finish time pacers and managed to stick with them for 8 miles, the pace was a little faster than I expected. But after the brief rain shower at mile 7 the humidity was getting very thick. The sun burning the rain off the pavement was just a bit much for me when I had to trek up one of the final bridges back to Miami Beach, the MacArthur and so I decided to take a little walk break up it or risk fainting from the humidity. After that the flat running was working well for me and I stopped slacking a little. I got to see my favorite running buddy, Harolyn at the mile 10.5 water stop, she ran over to cheer on her friends and ended up helping out at the water stop.

I got caught by a few photographers this year which doesn’t always happen when I am running with a pace group. One caught me when I was ascending the 2nd bridge of the course, caught the grit on my face haha. I really do not like hills/bridges because I am used to training in my very flat Miami neighborhood and don’t get to make it out to Key Biscayne for tackling the large bridge anymore with a toddler. Training is a lot different now than it used to be.

I hope that next year I will be getting a course PR during this race, that is the plan at least! Possibly a new half PR that is if I can get in some bridge training this year.

Onward to the finish line, where cold water, cold towels and temporary medals were handed out. After that you head into the post race party zone after getting some fruit/protein bars from the athlete food tent. At the back of the food tent was a chicken and rice food area, but I did not stop and try out that. I actually did not want to smell any food after finishing the rest.  In that tent I prepared my Nuun so that I could hydrate back to human. Tucked a banana securely into the pocket of my Oiselle pocket jogger shorts and my water bottle in the other pocket.  That is where we picked up our Starbucks card and letter from UPS about the medal mishap. I went immediately to the Florida Storm Series tent and picked up my category 4 medal, that didn’t take long at all and then walked around to see the different vendors. I ran into my Oiselle teammate Daniela’s parents who ran the 5k/half marathon at the Air Relax booth. I walked around and got some shaved ice from the Kona Ice truck and then went to the Yasso truck and had a greek froyo bar in my favorite Yasso bar flavor, chocolate chip cookie dough. After saying hi to a few more friends in the finisher area I walked back to my car and headed up. Everywhere in Miami seems to be under construction lately and Miami Beach was no different but luckily the traffic was not too terrible when I left at 9am.

I will be signing up for the 2020 race to complete my 3 year challenge, but I know that I will continue signing up for this race as long as I am able to run it. Claimed my results on athlinks right after the race and then by that evening the FREE race photos were available on the app! Sign up now for the best rates for next year’s 305 Half Marathon!

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