Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Brain mush

I admit it... I have the Pocatello Marathon on the brain! I am having trouble focusing on much else or thinking about much else.

I feel like a little kid waiting on Christmas... time is going SLOWLY and I am crazy excited and anxious and I just want it to get here already!!

I had a pretty short training period for this marathon specifically, but since I was training for Ragnar Wasatch Back and a half marathon that were in June and July, and I was already running 50+ miles a week when I started this training, I had a strong base to start with.

In 10 weeks and two days, I have run 520 miles in this training program. (I will run four easy miles tomorrow, take Thursday off and run three super easy miles on Friday). Considering I missed an entire week and had to scale things back a little for another week because of a sore achilles (caused by me doing two days of back to back speedwork... won't make that mistake again), I am very happy with that. I did three 20 mile runs, countless intervals on the track, and many tempo runs and marathon pace runs.

For this training my "easy" pace was 8:19-8:49.
My long run pace was 8:19-9:19
My tempo run pace was 7:07- 7:25
and my marathon goal pace is 7:49-7:50

The two workouts I am most proud of in this training schedule were:
- August 18 - Yasso repeats! 10x800m intervals at the track with a 400m rest interval in between. My times were 3:18, 3:18, 3:18, 3:18, 3:18, 3:13, 3:15, 3:19, 3:18, 3:14. This was TOUGH but I never felt better after a run when it was done.  It was a huge confidence booster, AND, after "tweeting" back and forth with Bart Yasso himself after the workout, I was interviewed by Runner's World Magazine (should be in the January edition). 

and

- August 14 - 20 miler! This was the last 20 miler of this training schedule, and I ran the last four miles at my marathon pace of 7:50. Again, it was TOUGH but was a big confidence booster.

I am also really proud that I did not gain any weight this marathon training. I lost about five pounds early on in the training, and I have been at 133lbs ever since. I did lose my period for a couple of months (but it came back just over a week ago) and so my doctor and I think that this is the right weight for me - where I am lean and strong, but not "too" thin. I have been eating well and fueling my body well and feel like I have a healthy relationship with food and eating now.

 My training plan was put together by the amazing Dorothy at Mile Posts. She is super busy with her own running and her beautiful family, but she did give me little bits of advice and encouragement to go along with it and I am so grateful! Originally I was training for the Top of Utah marathon on Sept. 17, but when I realized that to get to run the Boston Marathon I would need to qualify earlier than the 17th, I bumped the training up by two weeks so I could run Pocatello on Sept. 3 instead.

I do feel like I really stepped things up this training program. I went to the track every Tuesday and ran my guts out in one  track workout or another. I did a tempo or marathon pace run every Thursday and I did a long run every Sunday. I ran over 50 miles a week every week, pushed my paces and BELIEVED I could run the paces that my plan said I could. And I did! I have stretched and iced and rolled and strength trained religiously to take care of my body, and I am going into this race feeling strong and ready.

Ok, lets talk GOALS.

This will be my fourth marathon ever, and also my fourth marathon in nine months.  My PR (set in April in the Salt Lake City Marathon) is 3:57:18. My half marathon PR (set in July) is 1:38:18.

My big goal for this marathon is to qualify for the Boston Marathon. To do that, I have to run better than a 3:45.  I remember when I ran my sub 4 hour marathon in April and was SO thrilled... and I remembered thinking that qualifying for Boston wasn't something I would ever be able to do because shaving off another 15 minutes seemed impossible. My mindset sure has changed since then! I am believing I can BQ.

But my true goal for this race is to run it in under 3:30. At first it scared me to put that out there since a 30 minute marathon PR in less than five months is ambitious,  but I know it is possible. Since I know that I will lose anywhere from 2-6 minutes in the portapotties I have to actually run a 3:24 or so to get a time of 3:30 or better. So that's my plan. You never know what will happen on race day, and I know it will be crazy hard, but I know that I CAN run 26.2 miles at a 7:49 average pace. I know I have a sub 3:30 marathon in me and I feel like I am ready to run it. Whatever happens on Saturday, I have trained hard and more than put the work in, and I am excited to give it my all and see what I can do.

The icing on the cake is that I am getting to hang out and share a hotel room with the one and only EMZ and the amazing Racing Dawn(who is also going to BQ this race!) and we'll get to hang out and be cheered on by the incredible Cari. Hopefully some of their awesomeness will rub off on me. :) I am super excited to get some girl time!

On race day I will be sharing updates on Twitter and will post on here as soon as I can.

I am so ready to race! Now I just have to keep myself calm until Saturday morning. Easier said than done!

Business

 I forgot to mention when my YMX running T giveaway ends. I will take entries until Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 5) and will draw a winner using Random.org that day. It's a super cool (and expensive!) shirt, so go enter!

The next winner (who will get to choose two of the remaining prizes!) in my big ING NYC Marathon fundraising for Team MEB giveaway will be drawn tomorrow. If you donate here you will be automatically entered to win.

Winning is fun! But you can't win if you don't enter.  So go enter. :) Thanks for participating, and extra thanks to all of you who are helping me reach my goal of raising $3000 for Team MEB, and helping provide access to opportunities for health, education and fitness to kids in need in the U.S. and in Eastern Africa.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Win an awesome running shirt by YMX

A couple of weeks ago I was contacted by YMX (stands for YellowMan Expression) and was asked to review and giveaway one of their products. I had never heard of this company, but after checking out the YMX website I was really happy with what I saw!

YMX sent me one of their awesome Tribal Sea Running T's in blue and a matching set of the Tribal Sea Arm Warmers in blue.
I was really excited when I got the package and as soon as I opened the products I could see that they are a very high quality. The designs and colors on them are just beautiful and the fabric is really amazing. It is very light weight and soft. My kids (toddlers up to teens!) all agreed that the shirt was SUPER COOL looking.

I wore the shirt on a 20-mile run outside, then on a 8 mile track workout (with the armsleeves), and then again this morning on a 12-mile run on the treadmill. I love it! I think this is the lightest running shirt I have ever worn. I got a size small and it fit well, maybe even a little on the big side (so if you are in between sizes I would size down) and the small/medium arm sleeves fit well too.

The shirt was incredibly comfortable and light when I ran in it and I got a lot of compliments on how cool it looks. The length was slightly long which I like, and it did not move/ride/chafe in any way. The fabric is moisture-wicking, has UV protection, and is wrinkle resistant. I washed it in the washer and dryer and it came out perfectly three times now.

The only downside I can see of this shirt is the price. At $69, it is pretty pricey for a short-sleeved running shirt, even though the quality and beauty of the shirt does seem to make it worth the money. Also, the arm sleeves are not compression at all (just for warmth/protection) and I wish they had pockets on them.

All in all I love my Tribal Sea Running T and arm sleeves from YMX and these are going to get A LOT of wear from me. They have some long-sleeved hoodies that are just gorgeous too and lots of other great looking products for runners, cyclists and other athletes, as well as for casual wear on the YMX website. I didn't get a pic with the arm sleeves on because I was HOT once I got back in the house, but they were perfect for a chilly morning and Josh said they make my arms look buff. :)
sorry the color/quality of this pic isn't great! I need a new camera
So do you want to win a YMX Tribal Sea Running T of your own? Here's how!

Mandatory -
- Be a follower of my blog (leave a comment telling me you are a new follower or an existing follower. To become a follower just click "Join This Site" over there on the right hand side under "Followers").

-Go to the YMX website and look around, come back and leave a comment telling me a product you like the look of!

For extra entries -
- Like YMX on Facebook and tell them Erin from See Mom Run Far sent you (leave a comment telling me you did)

- Tweet about this contest on Twitter and mention @seemomrunfar and @WearYMX (leave a comment telling me you did)

- Post about this giveaway on your blog (leave a comment telling me you did)

- Donate to my big fundraising giveaway for the MEB Foundation and my Team MEB for the NYC Marathon! Every $10 you donate for the next week will earn you FIVE extra entries into this YMX shirt giveaway as well as FIVE extra entries into my big NYC fundraising giveaway (which still has lots of great prizes available). You can donate quickly and easily online by clicking here. 

Thanks and good luck!


***FTC requires that I tell you that these products were given to me free of charge for the purpose of review/giving away/fundraising by the awesome company mentioned above. That said, opinions shared on the products are mine and mine alone.***

Sunday Sunday

We survived our road trip on Friday, but it was a super long day. We left at 6:45am and were home just before midnight. If you listen carefully you can still hear the sounds of my Discover Card crying... school supplies for 11 kids in school, new shoes for 12 kids, new backpacks for 11, two very expensive hair appointments for the older girls, three meals out, two tanks of gas in the 15 passenger van... yup, it was quite the expensive day.

We did have a lot of fun though. It was HOT in Utah, so we stuck to the indoors. We got all of the school supplies and backpacks at Walmart, lunch at Carls Jr (under 500 calorie turkey burgers are pretty good!), shoes at Payless (YAY For BOGO and Champion and Airwalk brands that are cool enough for the big kids), and then we still had a few hours until the girls were going to be done with their hair (it took 8 hours for them both to get their extensions done).

I suggested going to Toys R Us just for fun. We hadn't been in a toy store in AGES. I told the kids we weren't buying ANYTHING and that there would be NO nagging... and if they nagged or asked me to buy one thing, then we would leave. Well, we had a TOTAL blast. Josh and I had as much fun as the kids did. We played with trains, cars, blocks, bikes, Nerf guns, hoola hoops, balls, electronic stuff, and a hockey game broke out that may or may not have been my fault. It really was loads of fun for all of us.

After that we went to my version of a toy store and went to the Salt Lake Running Company. I bought two pairs of socks and did a lot of looking and chatting with people in there. I could so work in a running store. :)

When the girls were done (and they both look beautiful!) we hit up Golden Corral. I am not a big fan of buffets, but the kids LOVE it, there is instant gratification (no waiting) and everyone can eat whatever they want. We definitely get our money's worth.

After that we had to pick up a few more things we had missed earlier in the day, and then we were finally on our way home. The kids were great the whole day and we had a lot of fun despite it being such a long day. And, we are officially ready for back to school now. (My high school kids start tomorrow and everyone else starts next Monday).

To celebrate the last full day of summer vacation today we had ice cream for breakfast. That boosted my mom popularity ratings a few points.

Friday was my running rest day. Yesterday I did 8 miles at an 8:11 average pace and today I did 12 miles on the treadmill. I hadn't run on the treadmill in a long time and didn't really want to today, but there were nasty thunderstorms when I got up and I don't run in thunder and lightning.  I did my first 10 miles today at an 8:40 pace and the last two miles at a 7:47 pace.

I don't want to jinx anything, but as of right now I would say the Achilles is probably 99-100% better. There hasn't been any swelling or creaking at all for a couple of days, and I don't feel it all  when I am running. Yay!

Only SIX days until the Pocatello Marathon. Nuts! I remember when it seemed so far away. I also remember worrying that I wouldn't be ready since I cut two weeks out of my training schedule by choosing to make Pocatello my A-race (because of the Boston registration schedule).  I feel really ready though! I have a post coming up that sums up my training and my goals for this race. I am really excited!

Happy Sunday everyone! I have my review of this awesome shirt coming later today or tomorrow, and a chance for you to win one too. It is a great running top!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Road trip!

It is just after 6am and we are about to hit the road for Salt Lake for the umpteenth time this summer (six+ hour road trip). My two older girls are getting their hair done for school at an African American salon (which will take 6-8 hours) and the rest of us will be getting the rest of the back to school supplies... backpacks, new sneakers, crayons, folder, pencils, pens, notebooks, glue, gluesticks, etc. etc. etc. (times 11 kids in school this year. Ikes!)

The kids are excited so it should be a fun (although insanely expensive) day.

And, a week from today I will be on the road to Pocatello!!!! 8 days until race day!!! More tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Life goals, Inspiration, and more questions answered

Hear are some more answers to the questions readers asked. Everything you ever wanted to know about Erin (and then some probably!) 

My buddy Terzah asked-
Same question you asked me: what would you change about your life if you could go back?
I try to live my life with no regrets. I got married young, I started having kids young, we moved from NY to WY, we built a big family. I have ZERO regrets on all of the big decisions Josh and I have made together and I love where my life is. I have made mistakes, but none of the BIG kind of mistakes that I would have regret about. I have treasured my husband since we fell in love, I have always done my best as a mom, I have tried to treat others with love and kindness and without judgement, I haven't broken any laws...

So I guess the one thing I would change about my life if I could back is that I would have figured out that I was a runner a lot earlier. I wish I had run in high school. I wish I had run in college. I wish I had run through my pregnancies and when my babies were younger and I SO needed a little me time (and to be healthier). I wish I hadn't wasted so many years being overweight and unhappy about it. I would love to know how fast I could be now if I had been running for years, and what I may have been able to accomplish. Most of all I know running would have helped me through the tough times and I know how much good it has brought into my life in the last two years. I wish I had figured out I was a runner a long time ago.

Are you going to do the Bolder Boulder next year? (You know you want to....:^) ) Any other races in CO look fun to you?
I would love to do the Bolder Boulder, but at this point I am only traveling and spending money on races that are marathons (or my beloved Ragnar). I can't really justify spending the money and time away from the kids to run a 10k (even a super awesome one!)


That said, I would LOVE to come run the Colorado Marathon in Fort Collins. It looks AWESOME!

We know you have lots of reasons for admiring Meb (don't we all!). Who are some of the other famous elites you admire and why?
Well obviously I am a big fan of Dean Karnazes since he ran with my husband and all. :) Also, I have always enjoyed Dean's books because he comes off as a very down-to-earth, humble family guy (and Josh said that is exactly how he was).


I am a big fan of Bart Yasso's too. I loved his book "My Life on the Run" and thought it was really inspirational. I love how running literally changed his life and became his life, and love his spirit of adventure. Reading his stories makes me want to try things I probably wouldn't normally and he comes across as someone I would love to hang out with.

I love Deena Kastor because she is super determined and dedicated and she is a fighter, and she loves the marathon (and is amazing at it!) She is a big inspiration to me. I also love and am inspired by Kara Goucher because she is an incredible athlete and is able to do so while being a mother.

Honestly, I am inspired by all runners... beginner runners struggling to finish a 5K and Olympic-caliber athletes. I think runners are the greatest and I find inspiration in all of their stories and so much support in the running community.

Lindsay asked-

Best vacation you ever went on (thus far)?
Disney World with 11 kids in 2009 (we didn't have Noah yet). Solomon got a trip to Disney World thanks to Make A Wish, and it was over the top. We stayed at Give Kids the World (an incredible resort just for wish families), we got tickets to all of the parks, and we had tons of food, spending money, a rental van, lots of gifts and perks... we were spoiled rotten for an entire week without a care in the world.  One of my best friends and her family were there and my Dad and Pam came at the end of the trip to see us too, which made it that much more special. We had SO MUCH FUN. It was pretty much the most perfect week ever.

Caroline asked-
 how many sibblings do you have?
Two! I have a sister who is two years younger than I am and a brother who is four years younger than I am. Neither of them are married or have kids (yet) and neither of them run. :)

Jess@Blonde Ponytail asked -

Who do you admire and try to model yourself after?
I admire lots of people for all kinds of reasons, but I don't try to model myself after anyone. I try to be the best me that I can be, and hope every day that I am doing the things that my Heavenly Father put me here on the earth to do, that I am living to my fullest potential, and that I am making the most of the life and blessings I have been given.

How do you stay so sane and energized with 12 kiddos and a hubby?!!
I stay sane because I enjoy my life. Josh is my best friend, true love and soul mate, and the kids are awesome. I love them and I enjoy them. I am super organized (some "might" say a little anal even...) which helps with the "logistics". I know people picture chaos and madness when they picture a home and life with 12 kids but I promise it isn't like that at all.

As far as staying energized... well, obviously running helps a lot! I am naturally an energetic person and never sit still for long without something to do. I am an early riser by nature and have plenty of energy during the day, but to tell the truth I am pretty useless by 9pm. I have never been a night owl and never will be! I suppose running has made that worse with the 4am wake up calls. Most nights I fall asleep on the couch with Josh and the older kids watching a movie.

Stefanie asked -   do you have any help during the day? I have a 1 year old & a 3 year old (I am a SAHM) & feel absolutely swamped everyday.
No, I do not have any help during the day. Josh is the dad and I am the mom and we are raising our kids together. We don't even have any family nearby to help out (which would be nice once and a while!) We have four teens now and they can be super helpful, however we believe that kids need to be kids and we do not have our older kids responsible for caring for the younger kids, doing housework (outside of a regular chore), etc. Plus, our big kids are SO busy with school, sports, homework and church activities that they really don't have a whole lot of time to be around helping.

Lindsay asked - 
Have you considered home schooling?
Not really! We live in an excellent school district and all of our kids love school and are thriving in school. I am very involved in the kids' educations and think public school is working well for them. If for one reason or another one (or more) of our kids was unhappy in school or not reaching their full potential then homeschooling would definitely be an option, but for now we are all very happy with the way school is going and I have no plans to homeschool. The kids enjoy school, they are doing extremely well, they have lots of friends, they are involved in tons of activities, and they are getting a very good education.

Calico asked -
 What are some of your life goals now that you've "completed" your family at such a young age?
I have a lot of life goals. A lot of my kids are still quite young (my baby is two) so I have lots of kid-raising left to do, and I want to do a dang good job at that. I want to always be the wife that Josh deserves and always have our marriage as a top priority.  I want to stay in shape and continue running and seeing how far I can take that. I want to influence others to find the joy that comes with being healthy and in shape. I want to return to Africa (maybe for an extended period of time) and serve the people there. I want to make a difference in the world, touch as many lives as I can, and do good with the life I have and all that I have been given. And have some fun while I am doing it all.

Do you run on Sundays or do you take a sabbath?
Yes, and yes. I run on Sunday and I take a Sabbath. We do believe that Sunday should be a day of rest and Sundays are our quiet, church and family days. To me, running is a mental and spiritual rest. Sundays are my long runs and I usually go on them alone, and I don't run with music. Being able to go on a long run, knowing the kids are home and taken care of (Sunday is the only day Josh is always home), and just having my thoughts for a couple of hours is rejuvenating and refreshing and quite spiritual to me.  I am home by 9:30am and then I spend the rest of the day at church and relaxing with my family. Sundays are the best days of the week. I know some people don't run on Sunday and that is ok too. I think it's a personal decision, between a runner and God.


That's all for now! Hopefully this wasn't too boring. I still have some more questions to answer and will be finishing them up soon, so if you have anything you wanted to ask leave a comment.

PLEASE CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO MY TEAM MEB FUNDRAISING!

Wednesday Winner!

First off this morning,  here is a fun article about Josh's run with Dean for those who are interested. Josh is finally caught up on sleep and he is bummed he didn't get to stay longer and experience more of the race, but he is super grateful to Gore-Tex, Dean and Outside PR for the experience he got to have. I will get the pics off of his camera and post a few. BEAUTIFUL!

Thank you to everyone who has donated to my Team MEB fundraising efforts. I have just over $1000 left to raise. :)

This morning Random.org chose #123, and the lucky winner is

KATIE MURPHY!


Congrats Katie!! Check out this post to see what prizes are available, and then send me an email at fullhousemom @ g mail . com and let me know which TWO prizes you want. Congrats!!



I still have some questions from readers to answer and a great review and giveaway. Here is a preview pic. :)


Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tired!

We survived dentist day yesterday. 12 kids and only one cavity. Woo hoo!

And my wonderful Benjamin Bekalu is 11 years old today! We adopted Ben from Ethiopia when he was 5 1/2 years old and he is just the greatest kid. I can't believe he is 11!

Here is a pic of Ben running at the slip n slide party we had this weekend. I promise we do feed him. He actually eats more than most of the other kids! He runs like a natural but soccer is his true love. :)
Here he is with his other true love... chocolate. This is from last year's birthday and his Auntie did it, not me. He paced himself well and made it last!


I am TIRED. Between Josh being gone for the weekend, company coming on Saturday, a super busy day organizing and cleaning on Sunday (plus a 16 mile run), a very late night on Sunday,  an extra early morning run on Monday, dentist day, and then an 8 mile track workout this morning... I am beat! I have a bit of a sore throat too (and Noah has a cold so I am blaming him). I am going to start taking it easy, getting lots of rest and tapering more since race day is now just 11 days away!!

Tomorrow I will draw the next winner in my big fundraising giveaway. You can't win if you haven't entered, so please check out this post and consider a donation and the chance to win lots of great stuff.

All you have to do to enter is make a donation, but there are lots of ways in the post above to earn bonus entries.


PLEASE CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO MY TEAM MEB FUNDRAISING!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Cool

Ok, so this is pretty cool
Photos by Chris Hunter/http://hunterimagery.photoshelter.com
Courtesy GORE-TEX TransRockies Run

Josh said the whole thing was awesome. The run was great (despite some cramps) and they finished the 20.9 trail run (with 2500ft in elevation gain) in 4:26. He said that Dean was just like he seems in his books (lots of fun, super nice), and that everyone involved with Goretex, Outside PR, and the Transrockies Run were just over the top amazing. Oh, and the scenery was beyond beautiful and all of the other runners were just tons of fun to hang out with. I will try to get him to write up something in his own words with more details (and more pictures). He is on the plane now from Denver to Salt Lake and then has a three-hour drive home.

I am in the middle of a completely different kind of endurance event. I had a great 16 mile run this morning (even though I had to start an hour later than I wanted to because of thunder and lightning), and then after an ice bath, hot shower and breakfast, I tackled the dreaded job of going through ALL of the kids closets and dressers. I started with the youngest and pulled out everything that was too small and bagged it up to donate. Then it was on to the next kid, but instead of donating the too-small stuff, I moved it down to the younger sibling. And so on and so on and so on, etc. We got rid of A LOT, moved around a lot, and bagged up quite a bit for one kid or another to grow into at some point. We sorted through all of the clothes in all of the bedrooms and the laundry room and then I gave them some new school clothes to add. We still need a few things but everyone is in pretty dang good shape now (and it only took 7-8 hours).

And tomorrow is (insert ominous music here)... dentist day. Yes, the dentist office is literally open only to Henderson children tomorrow, and we are booked from 8am to 4pm. 12 kids. That's a lot of teeth. I often (sort of) joke that the only time I feel like we have too many kids is on dentist day, when the stomach flu goes around,  and when we have to buy them all new shoes (and shoe shopping is Friday so this is quite the week). Every year the kids do a "boys vs. girls" to see who can have the least # of cavities... I think my money is on the boys this year.

Ok, off to bed to get in an early run (8 miles) before the dentist appointments start. More soon!

I got a FUN package in the mail on Saturday with two awesome products from YMX by Yellowman AND I get to give away a SWEET shirt, so stay tuned.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Exciting stuff!

Happy Saturday!

Josh left at 5 o'clock this morning to head to Colorado to run with Dean Karnazes in the Transrockies Run thanks to Gore-tex! We are both still amazed he is really going and I hope that this weekend is full of fun, adventure, excitement and awesomeness for Josh.

Also in the REALLY EXCITING NEWS DEPARTMENT, I was interviewed by Runner's World Magazine yesterday!!! Apparently after tweeting back and forth about my awesome Yasso 800's, Bart Yasso checked out my blog and then sent my info to one of his columnists for consideration. She emailed me right away and then called for the interview yesterday!! Things still need approval by editors, but there is a good chance I will be in the "What it Takes" column of the January issue of Runner's World. It sounds like the angle will be that I am a mom of 12 running the Goofy Challenge at Disney (half marathon on Saturday, full marathon on Sunday).

I am a big fan of Bart's (just finished his book My Life on the Run and loved it!) and I read every issue of Runner's World cover to cover. I was interviewed by Runner's World Magazine! How crazy cool is THAT?

I am taking a rest day today, which means I will be fighting the urge to be cranky. All day. WHY IS IT that I can get up at 4:30am, run 8, 10 or 20 miles, and come home and feel great for the rest of the day and have tons of energy, BUT, if I sleep in until 7am and don't run, I have a slight headache and feel cranky and tired all day??? This happens every single rest day I take. Bleck. But I am tapering and trying to treat my body right, so I am taking the rest day. Tomorrow is 16 miles. Yay!

And one last exciting thing - two weeks from right now I will be in the middle of the Pocatello Marathon! Hopefully burning it up at a 7:50 pace and feeling strong. Can't wait!

Have a great weekend everybody! I will share updates on Josh's experience with Dean and the Transrockies run here and on Twitter (if you want to follow me on Twitter there is a little button on the right hand side of this blog page you can click, or you can look me up on Twitter... I am @seemomrunfar).


PLEASE CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO MY TEAM MEB FUNDRAISING!


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Rockin' the Yasso's

This morning I got up at 4:40am. I left my house at 5:40am to pick up my friend Alana and get us to the track by 6am. The plan for both of us was to run 10x800m repeats (Yasso repeats!!)  As of today I have 16 days until the Pocatello Marathon, and I read that to use Yasso repeats at an indicator of your marathon time ability, that doing this work out 14-17 days before your marathon was ideal.

I have not done track work for the last couple of weeks because I haven't wanted to push my achilles, but since I had run hard on it all last week (including a 20-miler with 4 miles at marathon pace of 7:50) and it is still getting better (I would say 95% better now), I decided to go for it.The PT also gave the green light this week as long as I backed off it it started bugging me.

Before I left the house I "tweeted" that I was on my way to the track to do 10 Yasso repeats, and Bart Yasso responded and said "Awesome, have a great workout. Ten yasso 800s, brutal workout, it will pay off in 16 days."

I started off feeling confident but knowing that it was going to be a long, tough workout. (And Bart's use of the word "brutal" didn't help!) I felt good for the first two, REALLY hated 3, 4 and 5 (and worried that I still had a lot to go!) and then felt pretty awesome for the rest, although I was definitely, definitely TIRED. When I got to the last one I yelled at the top of my lungs, "LAST ONE!!!" and when I finished that last repeat I literally cheered. It was a long, hard work out (9 miles total) and sooooooo many 800's. 10 is a lot!

After a cool down I checked my Garmin, anxious to see my times. My goal was to run the 800M repeats in 3:20, and I was hoping to be pretty consistent and not have any that were much slower. (For those that don't train for marathons, these Yasso repeats are supposed to be an indicator of your marathon time. If you can run 10 Yasso repeats in 3 mins and 20 seconds each, then you should be able to run a marathon in 3 hours and 20 minutes. There is a good article about this here.)

I saw my splits and just smiled!!!
3:18
3:18
3:18
3:18
3:18
3:13
3:15
3:19
3:18
3:14

HECK YEAH!!!

I was feeling pretty confident about running a sub 3:30 marathon in Pocatello before today, but this workout was a big confidence booster. I am believing! And as happy as I am with my times, I am equally if not more happy that my achilles felt awesome during and after the workout.

I got home and tweeted about my times and Bart Yasso responded with "Wow. You are fit!" THANKS BART! :)

Alana also did GREAT. We didn't run together but we encouraged and cheered for each other as we went around the track and celebrated together on the way home. She is running her first marathon (Top of Utah) on Sept. 17 and she would love to be under four hours. I think she can do it!!

Is there a feeling as awesome as finishing a really tough, but really great run??

How was your run today?? Have you ever done a Yasso workout?

PLEASE CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO MY TEAM MEB FUNDRAISING!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A few of my favorite things...

I am still working on answering all the great questions you asked. Here are two questions (with my answers!) that go together really well. It's way fun to talk about running gear!

Calico asked - How much would someone need to budget to become a runner? The shoes and marathons plus travel seem very expensive!
One of the best things about running is that you can do it just about anywhere and anytime, and all you really need is the right footwear (and ladies - a good bra). A good pair of running shoes should last you at least 300-350 miles or more, and for many runners, especially newer runners, that means one pair of shoes is going to last you quite a while.

That said, there is lots of running stuff that is helpful and/or fun to have (that can add up!), but none of it is necessary, especially if you are just starting off. I will detail the gear, etc. that I use below to answer the next question. Yes, it does add up, but I just continue to add to my collection of running clothes and gear one thing at a time (for birthdays, holidays, etc.)

And yes, racing can be expensive. I know people who run every day but never race, and then I know others who race almost every weekend. What it costs to race depends on where you live, if you travel, what races you are running, etc. With our limited budget, I definitely have to pick and choose which races I do (because I love racing and could happily do LOTS more races), and since I do spend my "me" money on races I don't spend money on nails, hair, tanning, shoes, expensive make up, eating out, expensive clothes, Starbucks, etc. etc. I am really low maintenance and low cost in all other areas. :)


So to answer the question, I would say the only amount of money you really NEED to budget to be a runner is about $100 for a good pair of running shoes every 300-500 miles (and for your first pair you should go to a good running store and be fitted and evaluated. After that you will know what you need and can look for good sales online).

Leah asked - I'm new to running at 31 years of age, and I find your blog inspirational. I'd like to know about your favorite running gear (ie shoes, attire, energy gels, etc.)

Ok, this is a fun one. I am starting from the feet up and will share all my favorite running "stuff". :) For new runners, let me tell you now that COTTON IS NOT YOUR FRIEND when you run. Cotton holds on to moisture (sweat) and rubs, chafes, etc. You can get a pair of athletic shorts and an athletic shirt really cheap at places like Target. The Champion brand is super affordable and I like lots of their stuff.

Here are a few of my favorite things. :)

-On my feet, I have been running for almost a year exclusively in the Brooks Ravenna's (these are the Ravenna 2's now). LOVE THESE. They are on the lighter side yet hold up to tons of miles and hard training. They are good at fast paces and for slower runs and they are perfect for my mild overpronation (just enough support without TOO much support). After three full marathons in these my toenails have all remained happy and I have had zero aches, pains or injuries in my feet (or anywhere else besides this minor achilles thing but that was my fault not the shoes). ;)  That said, I have preordered a pair of the Brooks Pure Cadence (same support as Ravenna's, lower heel drop, lighter weight) that are coming out on Oct. 1 as part of the Brooks Pure Project. As a natural forefoot runner I think they will be a great shoe for me. Can't wait!
My trusty Ravenna 2's. I go through a lot of pairs of these suckers!

-For socks I am not super picky. I have a lot of brands that I wear and I grab running socks whenever I find a good sale. I like the low cut or no-show socks with a tab the very best. I don't like the toe socks (although Josh SWEARS by them) and I don't like to run in compression socks (although I do wear them for recovery).

- For my lower half, this time of year I almost always wear my Brooks 5 inch woven shorts. Seriously, in my opinion, there is no better running shorts. LOVE these. Not too short, super lightweight, do not bunch up or ride, and come in lots of cute colors.
I am a big fan of compression tights too. I have a pair of Sugoi and a pair of SKINS that I really like. So far I have run all of my marathons in compression tights (they were all in cooler weather, although the tights are not very warm and are very breathable). I am trying to decide for Pocatello if I will wear shorts or the tights. Hmmmmmm...

- Bras! For summer time, treadmill running in the winter, and for races, I love a good running tank with a built in bra. Here is the front and back of the North Face Eat My Dust Tank that I will be wearing in Pocatello (in 17 days!!!)
For outdoor running the rest of the year I like a good "pull-on/wrestle-off" compression bra. I have a Zensah one I like and a couple of Champion ones that are just as good. But I don't need a whole lot of "support" (because I have almost no boobs at all. Seriously, someone recently told me that I have the body of "a nine year old girl". Gee thanks!)

-If I am wearing a tank, especially at early start races, I start off with arm sleeves. Moeben are my favorite. They are super light and comfy, don't slide down and have really handy pockets that are the perfect size for a gel. Here I am at Disney in my compression tights, tank and arm sleeves. :)

-On my right wrist, I usually have on "Coach Bob" (affectionately known as just Bob), my Garmin 305. I love Bob. I think this is my most favorite piece of gear. Knowing my pace when I am training has really helped me to make the most of my runs. Whether I am doing a long run, tempo run, track work out or marathon pace run, I know that my paces are right where they need to be. I also love knowing how far I have gone and not always having to have a route planned out before I start running. Twice a week though I leave Bob at home and just run by feel (on my easy days). I didn't get Bob or start caring about pace until I was training for my first marathon.



-On my left wrist, if I am running outside, I have on my Road ID Elite in super awesome green color.

-If I am running "double digit" miles, or running in heat, I carry my Nathan 22 ounce handheld. I have tried belts that carry your water/drink around your waist and I hate them. The handheld doesn't bother me at all. Since I like to follow a careful hydrating/fueling plan when I race (and am picky about my drink) I even carry it when I am racing a half or full marathon. Plus, the pocket is a great size. I can easily stuff 4 gels in it.

-In my handheld I either have water, or my running drink of choice, Accelerade. I like the Lemonade and Fruit Punch flavors the best. During a marathon I will drink a full bottle of Accelerade plus water that I grab at aid stations. I also use the Accel Gels exclusively right now (usually in Vanilla flavor). I love that the Accel Gel is thinner than a lot of other gels and goes down easier (and is easier to get out of the packet) and these products do not bother my super-sensitive stomach. I generally take a gel ever five miles (if I am running more than 10 miles). Accelerade and Accel Gels have protein and carbs in them (where many sports drinks and gels just have carbs). It works for me.

-On my face, I love my Tifosi Logic sunglasses. They work well and are light, comfortable and stay put. And pretty cool looking. Nuff said.
-On my head I use a variety of headbands, beanies and buffs depending on the weather and my hair length. I never liked the Bondibands super much when my hair was long, but right now they are perfect with my short hair. I need a new running pic with my short hair because I don't have one yet. I will definitely get some in Pocatello!
-If I am running by myself, a lot of days I carry this-

Yup, it's a runner's mace. I live in a very (very) safe area, and I don't intend to ever use it, but better safe than sorry. And honestly, living in the country I worry just as much about loose dogs and wild animals as I do scary men.

-I very rarely run with an IPOD or music if I am outside. Every once and a while I do. When I do, the only earbuds that stay in my ears and don't make me crazy are Yurbuds.
-I don't have problems with chafing, but before a marathon I do "lube up" key spots with 2Toms SportShield.  I have tried a lot of other similar products and this is my favorite by far.

-I am very good about stretching after every run, and I also ROLL after every run. (On days that I have a really tough run, like a 20-miler or a big track workout, I roll and stretch again at night too). I am a HUGE FAN of the foam roller and I believe that using this religiously has really helped me stay healthy. When I started getting tight IT bands I started using a foam roller and as soon as I made it a regular part of my routine, all of my tightness and soreness went away. I even have a little travel size foam roller I take with me to races.


-And I guess I have to include on this list my NordicTrack T9 CI treadmill. I much prefer running outside, but the treadmill saves me during our ridiculous winter.

Ok there you go! Those are my favorite "running things".  What are some of your favorite pieces of running equipment, gear or supplies?

Winner #5!!!

Thank you to everyone who has donated to my Team MEB fundraising efforts. It was a bummer to have to put the fundraising on hold for a few weeks while they secured their own 501c3 status, but I am excited that things are moving again and ready to raise the last $1300! Please help spread the word about the giveaway/fundraising. Thanks so much!

This morning Random.org chose #12, and that lucky winner is

Jill at Jill Will Run!

Congrats Jill!! Check out this post to see what prizes are available, and then send me an email at fullhousemom @ g mail . com and let me know which TWO prizes you want. Congrats!!

Running is good. Yesterday I did an eight mile run with six miles at marathon pace (7:50) and then today I did  my strength training and six easy miles. My achilles feels almost all better and the PT came yesterday and thinks it looks really good. He agreed it is great that it continues to improve even now that I am running hard on it again. I am going to try a track workout in the morning although I am still being really careful about it and icing it lots, etc.

I will be answering some more of your questions in a post later today or tomorrow. I am literally drowning in back to school paperwork, therapists for Noah, doctor appointments, dentist appointments, ortho appointments, eye doctor appointments, back to school shopping, and running kids back and forth to soccer practices, soccer games, volleyball practices and football practices. Whew. We might as well be back in school being this busy!!

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Pretty please

I don't like asking for help with things, and I REALLY don't like asking people for money. But I keep reminding myself that I am raising money for a really incredible cause, and that this money is helping children in the U.S. and in Africa have opportunities they would not otherwise have.

So I am asking...

Please, make a donation to my Team MEB fundraising. Any amount will be helpful and much appreciated.

I will draw the next winner in my huge giveaway tomorrow. Check out how many awesome prizes are still waiting to be claimed. You can't win if you don't enter. :)

Thank you!!!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Monday morning surprise - RUN WITH DEAN!

Mondays around here are crazy. Josh leaves before the sun is up, therapists come for Noah bright and early, the phone rings for work a bunch extra, and adding to the craziness today, my two oldest kids started two-a-day practices for high school sports (football and volleyball). I managed to get my six-mile recovery run done (EARLY) and was in the middle of all the craziness when the phone rang for about the tenth time.

Imagine my surprise/shock/excitement when it was WL Gore & Associates calling to tell me that I had been chosen in their contest to RUN WITH DEAN KARNAZES at the Gore-Tex Transrockies Run next Monday!!

Seriously??? Run with DEAN? Ultramarathon man Dean? #27 in Time Magazine's World's 100 Most Influential People? The guy who ran 50 marathons in 50 states in 50 days? And ran across the U.S.? And has countless over-the-top impressive running/ultra/endurance accomplishments? And writes inspiring books? And seems like he would be wicked cool to hang out with? Yeah... that Dean.

I was SO CRAZY EXCITED. For about a minute.

Because as soon as I looked at the calendar, I knew I couldn't do it. Next Monday we have 11 dentist appointments. The dentist literally reserves the whole office for our family months in advance. And we have soccer, football and volleyball and 4 million things going on for back to school. And it is Josh's busiest day of the week for work. None of it makes for a very good reason to say no to running with DEAN, but the bottom line is just that my family needs me here. And as much as I LOVE running, and as much as I am a HUGE fan of Dean, and as crazy excited as I was to win this awesome opportunity (and would so very much love to have that experience)... being mom has to come first. And add to that, this time of year we don't have $400 for a last minute plane ticket.

The awesome Kelly at Outside PR was not taking no for an answer though. She about bent over backwards to make it work, and made me feel very wanted (and humble!)

One of the things she offered was to have me run on Sunday instead of Monday (it is a six-day race). Technically I could leave on Saturday, run on Sunday morning and travel home on Sunday night. But Sunday's run would be over 20 miles (instead of 13 miles on Monday). Either day involves insane trail running with HUGE climbs. And 20.9 miles of tough trail running two weeks before the marathon I have been busting my butt to train for, wouldn't be smart. And while my Achilles is doing awesome, I am still avoiding uphill running and letting it heal 100%.  I know it could handle the Transrockies Run, but also know that I would not be in the best possible shape for the Pocatello Marathon. The 13 miles fit into the schedule pretty well, but 21 was more than I thought was smart. And I REALLY want that 3:30 marathon and have trained hard for it.

So between our kids, my mom obligations, our schedule, the Transrockies race schedule and my upcoming marathon, I knew that it just wasn't in the cards for me. But I had a stroke of genius and thought, "Hmmm. I wonder if they would take Josh instead!" Josh doesn't have any races on the calendar. He loves trail running. And let's face it... we all know having dad gone doesn't throw things out of whack like having mom gone does. :)  Truth be told, he is a lot more fun than me too.

Outside PR and Gore-Tex both thought it was a great idea, and JOSH IS RUNNING WITH DEAN in just SIX DAYS! CRAZY! He is beyond excited. He actually is in the middle of reading one of Dean's books right now. :)

He will get a night in a hotel (where Dean is staying), awesome swag, and an experience of a life time in one of the most beautiful places on Earth. How amazing is that??

Here is the link to the race legs. Josh is running Stage 1.

Sometimes you just never know what a Monday morning will bring. :)

THANK YOU to Gore-Tex and Outside PR for this incredible opportunity!


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Super great weekend

Ok, so this has been a really, really great weekend. Here are the highlights.

- This guy CALLED ME. On my phone. Seriously.

That's Meb Keflezighi. Olympic Silver Medalist. Winner of the 2009 ING NYC Marathon. Super inspiring athlete. Devoted family man. And, really, really nice guy!
I was sitting at my desk in the kitchen chatting with Josh on Friday afternoon and the phone rang. I looked at the caller ID and said, "Oh my gosh! It says Meb Keflezighi!!" Josh said, "You should probably answer it then!" I didn't completely believe that it would be him... I thought it would maybe be someone that works for him or represents him, but what did I hear? "Hi, is this Erin? This is Meb." AHHHHHHHHHHHHH! 

He asked about my family, my running, etc. and thanked me for running on Team MEB for the NYC marathon. He said that considering I had only been running for two years that my 1:38 half marathon was very impressive. Seriously?? I was on cloud nine. He was very nice and very easy to talk to.  A bunch of times throughout the rest of the day I would just blurt out, "Meb called me!!" He said to hold on to his number and call him any time. (I have restrained myself and not called him back... yet). :) I am so excited to be running on his team for NYC. (If you haven't entered my giveaway yet or made a donation, I would be SO GRATEFUL if you would. Every little bit helps and means a lot to me. And if you would post about it on your blog or Twitter or Facebook too that would be very helpful!!)

- Yesterday Josh and Jenny ran the El Vaquero Loco (the crazy cowboy) 25K in the mountains right next to our home. This is a TOUGH trail race with insane climbs and descents. They were on single track and ran on dirt, mud and rocks, they crossed water four times, and they had to go around a huge ice glacier/snow drift (in August!) Both of them had a blast and did really well. Josh was in the top 10 25K finishers (there is a 50k too) and his time was 3:32:13. (The 25K was a little long though... the course was 16 miles even instead of 15.5). 

I brought all of my little kids up (my four big ones were on a church trip) and we had fun cheering for the runners and especially for Daddy and Jenny. 

You can click on any of these pics to see them bigger. :)

Here is our cheering crew-

Here is Josh coming down the final stretch. 
Here is Josh coming across the finish/ (That red/blue ribbon was the finish point).
Here is Jenny coming into the final (treacherous) stretch -  
and here she is at the finish - 
And here they are all done. They rock!
After we got back home and got the kids some lunch, I left Josh and Noah home to rest and wait for the older kids to get home, and I took the other seven kids up to Jackson Hole to meet Miss Zippy and her family for dinner!

It was a really nice night. We had dinner, walked and got ice cream and then took the kids to the playground. Our kids hit it off instantly and had so much fun playing and Miss Zippy and her husband are super nice and fun. What a wonderful family! It was really great to meet them in person on their vacation and get to visit. The kids and I are all sad that they live so far away. 
Kids!

and the moms!
- And last but not least, I did my third and final 20 miler of this marathon training plan this morning!!! I was really, REALLY tired when I got up this morning. After standing in the sun a lot yesterday at Josh's race and then three hours of driving and a late night, I had a serious lack of motivation when I pulled myself out of bed at 5am. I was still a little nervous about my Achilles but not as much as I was last week since it held up for last week's 20 miler and improved this week. (Yesterday I did an eight-mile run with six miles at marathon pace run and it felt GREAT). 

The run today was HARD, but it was really good too. It was a lot warmer than it has been (although I can't complain to you in most places in the country!) and my legs definitely felt like they were at the end of a tough marathon training schedule, but I finished the 20-miler with an average pace of 8:32, and I did the last four miles at my marathon pace of 7:50. I was a little nervous about being able to hit that pace after 16 miles on tired legs, but it actually felt really good and the run was a great confidence booster. And, the Achilles felt pretty dang good. It isn't 100%, but it is getting close, and I have been able to run hard on it and it is still improving. Yay!
Now it's taper time! 20 days until the Pocatello Marathon. Woo hoo! :)

All of that, added to a nice, lazy Sunday now make for a pretty perfect weekend. Hope you all are having a great weekend too!


PLEASE CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO my TEAM MEB!!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Big Apple Dreaming!

If you are here because of the New York Road Runners Newsletter's profile on me, welcome and thanks for stopping by!!! Running the ING NYC Marathon is going to be a dream come true and I cannot wait.

I am super happy to announce that Team MEB (who I am running the NYC marathon with) got their own 501c3 status and fundraising is back up and running. Below I am reposting all of the great prizes that are still available in my giveaway and all of the details. Everyone that previously donated/entered will remain in the drawing each week (unless you win!) and I will draw a new winner each Wednesday and remember, each winner gets their choice of any two available prizes. PLEASE help me reach my goal and raise money for a wonderful cause.

All you need to do to enter is to make a donation here of at least $10 (and there are lots of ways to earn bonus entries below if you are interested).

I am so, so, humbled and grateful for the amazing companies and people in the running community and the insane mount of support, encouragement and generosity I have been shown in putting this together. I am overwhelmed and EXCITED with all that I have to give away and am hoping and praying that the kindness I have been shown leads to raising some big money for a great cause.

The prizes are worth over $650 total and there is so much good stuff!! A lot of it is for runners, cyclists or triathletes, but there are prizes that just about anyone would be happy to have.

The cause - I am running the NYC Marathon as part of TEAM Meb. Meb Keflezighi is a U.S. Olympic Silver Medalist in the marathon and won the NYC Marathon in 2009. He has many other impressive achievements in running and in life. His story is truly one of "the American Dream", and I love how Meb stands for family, being your best, faith, balance, friends, dedication, hard work, education and other values and morals I believe in.

The MEB Foundation stands for Health, Education, Fitness and Balance and helps youth have the opportunities they need to succeed in life by providing access to health, education and fitness to children in the U.S. and in Eastern Africa. As a mom of 12 and as one who works with kids in need, this is a cause near and dear to my heart.

The goal - to raise at least $3,000 for the MEB Foundation before the NYC Marathon in November.

The details - I want to keep this as simple as possible. There are tons of awesome prizes. They are all listed below, and reviews of many of them will be coming in the next couple of weeks.

To enter - You must make at least a $10 donation to my MEB Foundation fundraiser here. You will earn one entry for every $10 donated.

IF YOU HAVE ALREADY DONATED prior to today you can leave a comment telling me so, and that will be good for one entry (per prior donation) into this giveaway.

If you have already donated prior to today and you donate again (at least $10), I will double your total entries. If you have already donated twice prior to today and you donate again (at least $10) I will triple your total entries.

You can earn extra entries by -
- posting about this giveaway on your blog and/or on Facebook (leave a comment for each additional entry you earn this way).

- visiting any of the Facebook pages of the companies that have donated items and leaving a comment on their wall that "Erin from See Mom Run Far" sent you. Facebook pages are linked below. (Leave a comment for each additional entry you earn this way).

- visit any of the websites for the awesome companies that have donated items and look around. Websites are linked below. (Leave a comment for each additional entry you earn this way.)

And remember - I will DOUBLE your total entries (including the bonus entries) if you have already donated and make a second donation and I will TRIPLE your total entries if you have already donated twice and make a third donation.

I will draw a winner every Wednesday using Random.org, and the winner will get THEIR CHOICE of any TWO prizes/prize packs and we will just keep going until everything is given away. As of right now there are 18 amazing prizes to choose from and there may be some more prizes added as we go too. :)

Now for the fun stuff!! As of now, the available prize list is - (drum roll please)

- BOTH OF THESE HAVE BEEN GIVEN AWAY!!! I have TWO pairs of Ironman Performance Raising Earphones (these sell for $50 each!) AND two Ironman Series Armbands from Yurbuds! These will be given away as two prize packs, each with one set of Yurbuds and one armband. These are MY earbuds and are the only ones I have found that stay in my ears and don't bug me when I run. They are the only ones I use.  I LOVE these earphones.

You can find the Yurbuds facebook page here.

- A combo back of two great books! A copy of Family Feasts for $75 a Week and a copy of Sane Woman's Guide to Raising a Large Family by Mary Ostyn. This prize pack is worth over $20 (and much more if you consider the money saving and sanity saving tips you will get!) :)


Mary is a fellow adoptive mom and runner (just did her first 5K ever and rocked it!!!) and she is also a very talented writer and all around wonderful person. For a bonus entry, visit Mary's incredible blog at Owlhaven and leave a comment that I sent you.

- THIS PRIZE HAS BEEN WON and is NO LONGER AVAILABLE. An autographed copy of Meb Keflezighi's book "Run To Overcome".  This book is a really great read and a very motivational story for runners and non-runners alike. I enjoyed it so much I read it twice. :) If you are looking for inspiration, search no further!
 You can find Meb's facebook page here.

- ONE OF THESE HAS BEEN GIVEN AWAY and one is still AVAILABLE TO WIN! Gotein! I have TWO prize packs from Gotein.  Gotein is a protein supplement that you add to your water that helps refuel  and improve lean muscle mass. It is easy to mix (just shake), low in calories and fat, and high in protein, vitamins and minerals.  I have a full review coming, but I tried out Gotein during my Ragnar Relay and I loved the flavors and found it a great, easy and tasty way to get extra protein in after a hard run. Love it!


The first prize pack is of two boxes of Gotein, 12 packets each box,  (your choice of chocolate, vanilla or strawberry) and a Gotein t-shirt.
The second prize pack is of one box of Gotein (12 packets) and a Gotein t-shirt.
You can find the Gotein facebook page here.

- - THIS PRIZE HAS BEEN CLAIMED!A totally awesome skirt from Running Skirts! The skirt donated fits women who wear a size 8 in women's pants, and they said that is their number one best selling size. The skirt I have looks like the one below but is a sky blue color with yellow sides. SO CUTE!



You can find the Running Skirts facebook page here.


- (ONE OF THESE SHIRTS HAS BEEN ONE ALREADY- THREE ARE LEFT)  I have FOUR awesome shirts to give away from Tri It Wear!!! (Each one is a separate prize). Winners who get a Tri It Wear shirt get their choice of shirt style and size.
They have men's and women's tops and all are very cool! Here is just one example of the many cute women's tops they have. (I love the 26.2 style!)
and one of their cool men's tops


You can find the Tri It Wear facebook page here.

- BOTH of these have been won!!! Winner's choice of any of the super cool Allied Medal Displays!! These medal displays are so great. I have the one shown below and I love it! It is super well made and my medals look awesome on them.

You can find the Allied Medal Display facebook page here.

- A beautiful black and pink flowered headband from Active Bands! I have tried lots (and lots) of headbands and I am really impressed with how well the Active Bands are made, how well they work, and how pretty they are! My best friend Jenny tried one out during Ragnar, and really really liked it (review coming soon).


You can find the Active Bands facebook page here.

- THREE pairs of Flex Sport Buds (pink, green and blue!) from h2o Audio! (Three separate prizes). THE GREEN and PINK ONES HAVE BEEN WON, BLUE ARE STILL AVAILABLE! These sport buds are sweatproof and waterproof and they STAY IN your ears. They come with three sizes of silicone ear plugs so you can find your perfect fit and they are perfect for running, swimming, just hanging out or whatever activity you enjoy.  Josh used a pair of these for his marathon a couple of weeks ago and he thinks they are great. These are his favorite and go-to earbuds for everything. He loves that he can just rinse them off when he is done sweating. :)

You can find the h20 Audio webpage here.

- (THIS PRIZE HAS BEEN WON)  A medium knee sleeve from 110% Play Harder. Have you checked out their products? They have some great stuff!!! This knee sleeve offers compression and cold therapy for the entire knee and surrounding area and is great for any type of athlete.
 You can find the 110% Play Harder Facebook page here.

- A gift pack of products from 2Toms! I have a pack of Butt Shield, Blister Shield and Sports Shield. If you haven't tried 2Toms products yet, these are superior products for athletes and active people that prevent blisters, friction burns, saddle sores and all sorts of other uncomforts that can plague us! These are great for runners, cyclists, hikers, triathletes, etc. I have a full review of these products coming up soon. These products last all day, are non-staining, non-toxic, non-greasy, unscented, waterproof and go on easily.

You can find the 2Toms Facebook page here and make sure you check out their 2nd annual Worst Blister Contest for a chance to win more great 2Toms products.

- THIS BEAUTIFUL PRIZE HAS BEEN WON!  a $40 gift certificate to SILVER MAPLE!!! Your biggest problem if you win this is going to be deciding what to use your gift certificate for! There are so many beautiful things.  Here is one of my favorites.

Here is what Jacquelyn from Silver Maple says about her jewelry, "At The Silver Maple, we work hard to create uniquely special, hand-stamped, vintage-inspired, pieces that channel happy thoughts. Whether it’s your child’s name, a memorable date, a special place, or an inspiring phrase, the idea is to smile and reflect each and every time you look at your piece."
You can find the Silver Maple on Facebook here.

- A friend who is an ambassador for Snickers Marathon Bars has donated TWO boxes (one box of Snickers Marathon energy bars, one box of  Snickers Marathon Protein Bars). Can you say yum??? Check them out here!!!

Please, please help spread the word about this fundraising giveaway. THANK YOU again to all of the amazing companies who have showed such generosity and support by donating their great products and thanks to all of YOU for helping me raise money for such a great cause. Good luck to everybody!!

CLICK HERE TO DONATE!!!!!

***FTC requires that I tell you that these products were given to me free of charge for the purpose of review/giving away/fundraising by the awesome companies mentioned above. That said, opinions shared on the products are mine and mine alone.***

On the road again...

We are on the road again today to head to Utah for appointments at the children's hospital and then to pick up my oldest son and his best friend from the airport tonight (they have been having an awesome week in NY getting spoiled rotten). :)

I am NOT looking forward to another long day in the car or another day of tests and appointments for Noah, but at least after today we will be DONE for two months.

I got up super early and was out the door by 5:30am today to get my 10 miler in. I did five miles to warm up, four miles at tempo pace (7:16, 7:17, 7:24, 7:13) and then one mile to cool down. My achilles felt pretty dang good and I was really happy with this run. :)

Ok, off to get kids into the van. I will have more answers to your questions tomorrow

Oh, and if you get the New York Road Runner's newsletter, check out the featured runner for the ING NYC Marathon in the edition of the newsletter that comes out tomorrow. You will probably recognize her. :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I am...

I love the Runner's World "Quote of the Day". Today's quote, from the amazing Joan Benoit Samuelson, really stuck with me.

"As every runner knows, running is about more than just putting one foot in front of the other; it is about a lifestyle and who we are." 

Is that true for you? Is running just something that you "do", or is it a part of who you are?

I have said many times on here that running is something I love and is also a big part of who I am... a part I was very excited to discover two years ago. And as the quote above says, I think that is something that runners "get", and that non-runners don't usually. People who don't run often just see running as an activity or hobby, not as a life-style or something bigger.

Here is a quick list of things that have changed in my life style and in my life since I became a runner.

- I eat SO much more healthily. I enjoy food, and yet I see food as fuel for my body, and I want to fuel my body well so it will perform well. I no longer eat because I feel excited, stressed, happy, sad, lonely, tired, nervous, or anything else. I eat when I am hungry.

- Along with caring for my family, being the best wife I can be, and putting effort and energy into many other responsibilities and relationships, I think about myself and take care of myself too, instead of being at the very bottom of the priority list every day.

- I am A LOT more confident in a lot of areas. I believe in myself, which I haven't always done.

- My self esteem is up by about 12 million points. ;)

- I am 75 pounds smaller.

- I am a lot more patient.

- I have a spark, a fire, a glow... an awesome inner feeling that comes with having dreams, goals, ambitions and a passion that are mine. And with that, I have a joy that has come from achieving some of the goals I have set, and doing things I never imagined I could do.

- I am calmer and more peaceful.

- My life is a lot better balanced.

- I watch a lot less TV.

- I spend my "me money" on running shoes, running clothes and race entry fees.

- I see myself as an athlete and FEEL like an athlete.

I am sure there are other things I am missing, but the important thing is that running is not just something that I do. It is a lifestyle, and it is a big part of who I am. I am a lot of things... I am a daughter of God, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a friend, an adoption coordinator, a sister, a niece, a granddaughter... and I am a runner.
What about you? When did you become a runner? What changed in your life?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

20 success!

YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!

I ran 20 miles this morning. (INSERT GIANT SMILEY FACE HERE)

I was supposed to run 20 miles last Sunday, but half a mile into the run I went home and called it a day because my Achilles was hurting and I knew 20 miles wasn't happening and it would be stupid to try.

After four full days off followed by three days of short and slow (for me) mileage and TONS of icing, stretching, and praying, the Achilles was MUCH improved. I wasn't sure if it was up for 20 miles though, and I am so determined not to be the stupid girl who ran a minor injury into a major one.

I have only 27 days until the Pocatello Marathon though, and I really wanted to get in two more 20 milers. I was feeling so good after yesterday's run that I decided to go for it cautiously this morning. I prepped myself like I was going 20 miles (had three gels, a full bottle of Accelerade and an IPOD since Jenny had other plans) and then I planned a route that had me running two out and backs of 10 miles each from my house, so I was never more than five miles from home and I would have to go past the house at mile 10. Mentally that is no fun, but I figured it was smart because if I was hurting after 10 miles I could call it good, and if I was hurting anywhere in between, I was never too far from the house. (And I was 100% committed to stopping if it felt any worse at all during the run).

I was really nervous for most of the run! I so wanted to be able to run the full 20 miles and I was worried I wouldn't be able to, and I was worried that I was going to make my Achilles mad... I am not usually a worrier but I was worried!

That said, it was a really great run! I was aware of the Achilles (probably extra so since I was so focused on it) but it was not painful and it did not get any worse as the run went on. My form and stride aren't altered at all and everything else felt awesome. The pace actually came really easily, which surprised me since half of the run was uphill. I average an 8:40 pace for the run (my long run pace is 8:19-9:19).

I finished feeling tired of course, but strong and REALLY REALLY happy. Yesterday's run did a lot for my confidence and today's run did even more. I am going to be SO ready for Pocatello and am so excited to see what I can do.

I said it before and I will say it again... running makes me really happy. :)

Now back to icing and watching triathlon on TV.

Happy Sunday and good luck/congrats to everyone racing today!!!