Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Downhill at Dawn Half Marathon ~ May 26, 2018 ~ Race Recap

On Saturday I completed the Downhill at Dawn Half Marathon. I had been so amped leading up to this race. 

After the Carolina Donut Festival Half Marathon I just KNEW this race would be another PR for me! That of course was until the weekend before this race. I set out for a long run and seriously struggled to move. I wasn't quite sure what was happening but guessed I was just having an off day. 

After this past weekend I think I am having an off month...

I started the Whole 30 challenge on May 20th (with about a week before hand beginning some elimination of things from my diet) and Saturday was my seventh day. 

If you have ready anything about the Whole 30 you will see this disclaimer regarding the sixth and seventh day:

"Days 6-7: I just want a nap…
Okay, so its day 6 and you made it through the last phase without smiting anyone. The thing is, today you don’t feel like you could smite anyone if your life depended on it! It’s 10 am and all you can think about is crawling under your desk for a catnap. As the day drags on, the surface of your desk is morphing, from hard wooden surface to snuggly warm pillow, right before your eyes. You hit the gym, but only halfheartedly, unable to face the barbell with any kind of conviction. You crawl into bed at 8 p.m. only to drag yourself out eleven hours later feeling no more rested than you did the night before.

So what’s the deal?! Isn’t eating like this supposed to increase energy levels? Yes…in the long run. Right now, your body is learning that it can’t rely on all those easy access energy sources it used to know and love. Gone are the days of cinnamon crunch muffins and Frappuccinos. Now your body is learning to efficiently burn fat and protein as its fuel sources, and that takes more effort – and some time. If you can hold out just a bit longer, you’ll definitely reap the benefits. (Besides, you could probably use a day off from the gym anyway, right?)" ~ Whole 30 Timeline

I naturally did not carb load the night before, nor did I take along with me the Cliff Shots and Nuun that I typically carry. That said I still felt pretty good the morning of the race. I did bring my water with some elete Electrolytes and I had goji berries and salt packs in case I needed them. 

The race starts at 6:01am and we had to pick up our race packets by 5:45am. They encouraged runners to be there by 5:00am. That required us to leave town at 4:00am to make the 45 minute drive and that required a 3:30am at the latest wake up call! I got up, got dressed, had a cup of coffee and was out the door!

Kathleen and I drove up together and met Kim and her husband when we got there. I also ran in to several other friends there too!

The packet was our bib, a sticker and the shirt. I am struggling with shirt sizes right now! Normally I get a small but lately the race shirts have been sooooo small so I have gotten Medium. This one is soooo big I wish I had gotten a small. It's like a night gown! We asked if we could exchange and they said after the race. After the race however we couldn't find anyone to exchange them. 

We took our stuff to the car and lined up at the start. 

I took off too fast and ran my first mile at 8:49!

The second mile I was still feeling pretty good and ran it at 9:28.

At mile three I started not feeling so great and I started having leg cramps. At some point between miles three and four there is a pretty big hill and I slowed down quite a bit and began walking. 

At around the four mile mark I thought about stopping but I decided to press on. It was super humid. The weather data says it was 73 degrees with 81% humidity. Super muggy!!

Even with the mostly downhill elevation of this race I could not get going. The leg cramps became severe, rolling up not only my calves but also through my front left quad! I don't think that has happened to me before! I decided that even if I had to walk the rest of the course I was going to finish! I walked a lot, I ran some. I decided I would just enjoy the beautiful scenery and appreciate the ability to be out in this beautiful place!

There were aid stations every two miles which was great! Each time I stopped and filled up my water bottle. I drank SO MUCH WATER on this run! Way more than normal!

At about mile 9, still on the struggle bus thinking I needed to pull out a feather suddenly appeared in my path and stopped me in my tracks!

"When a feather appears an angel is near"

I felt like I could push on. 

Even though I was walking a lot I had trouble catching my breath miles 10 - 13. I felt like I was breathing through a straw! 

As I was walking a lady came by and said "you're doing great!" I had to do a double take, she reminded me so much of a young version of my Nana Mayer and her voice sounded so much like her too! 

Shortly after that , still struggling, I saw another feather and just a moment later a woman ran by and said "Remember we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us".

I was feeling so bad, by now my stomach was bothering me, my breathing was still and issue and my leg cramps made me want to cry! Regardless I would finish! No matter how bad I felt!

I managed to make it to the finish STRUGGLING! 

My legs were so cramped up so I just kept walking around a bit. 

I finally grabbed some more water, fruit and sat down for a bit. 

We then peeled ourselves off the pavement and walked across the street to catch the bus back to our car. The race is a point to point with shuttle service! Next time we may split park though. It's not a ton of fun to ride on a school bus 13 miles with a ton of sweaty stinky runners back to the start when you are not feeling well.

I think that a combination of being early into the Whole 30 with my body is transitioning out of using sugars and carbs as fuel and instead learning how to become fat adapted using fat as fuel and the heat and humidity where the main culprits to my very off day, my horrible cramping and breathing issues!

Needless to say I did not PR this race but even still I really enjoyed the course!

I don't think I will run this race again, I don't love downhill running (my quads still hurt) nor do I love racing in the heat and humidity but I totally recommend it!

I have since decided that I need to take a break. I have been training for big races since last summer! I trained for Detroit and then went straight into to training for my marathon and I have not stopped since! This is sooooooo super hard for me to do! Last year I ran twelve races over the year and I love having a race on the calendar to keep me motivated so having a plan is kind of my thing! I am also signed up for a 6 Hour Race next weekend but I know that I am just not able to pull anymore out of my tank right now. I am spent. I am in need of some rest! I need to fill back up my tank and re-charge. I of course will keep running but I am going to scale way back on miles and take the summer off races!

I am registered for a 40K race in October so I will work on coming back through the fall! We will see! 

When our bodies try to tell us something we need to listen and I feel like my body is telling me it needs a minute to rest and recover without being pushed to do the next thing. 

Here is to a summer of fun and relaxing as I look forward to the fall!

Monday, May 28, 2018

My Mercury Mile

I received a Mercury Mile Box to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. I am seriously loving getting back into gear review and running gear is totally my favorite right now!!

Let me know if you'd like to become a BibRave Pro (ambassador), I'd love to refer you! Also check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

Mercury Mile is like StitchFix for athletes! 

You will set up a profile on their website and then when you are ready reserve your box!

You can give as much or as little detail as possible! You can even include any items that you specifically wish NOT to receive. 

I said no socks because I am pretty particular with socks but otherwise I said no preference on almost everything else. 

My box arrive in a matter of days! Super quick! 

I love getting pretty packages in the mail and I love suprises!!

I could not wait to open and see what was inside!!

I received the following gear in my box:

Brooks Run Through Hat

Brooks Stealth Tank

Brooks Distance Tank

Saucony Gait Tank

Body Glove Get Shorty Shorts

Asics Lite Show Shorts

I also got a free sample of SweatX

Love at first sight for sure!!

With Mercury Mile you only pay for the items you decide to keep! After trying everything on I decided to keep everything except the hat and the Distance/grey tank. 

The grey tank just kind of looked blah on me and I prefer trucker style hats to run in!

I decided to keep the Asics shorts. I don't have a ton of shorts and I though these would be great for my early morning runs! I have already given them a test run this week and they were great!

I also kept the Body Glove Shorts. They are a little too booty shorts for me but I may wear them with the Gait Tank. Tess really loved them so they may end up never to be seen by me again lol! 

I love the other two tanks sooooo much! They are absolutely perfect! I actually also wore the Gait tank already too!

I was so delighted to find my box full of fun finds for the summer weather! My stylist really did a great job despite me not giving her much to work with. I selected no preference on most things and maybe I should have given more details about what I like and don't like. My stylist Helen said she reference my instagram account to help her with my style out which was perfect! 

I did look up the items I got online to see how the pricing compares and it is spot on! The items I got in my box were all name brand and all right on the price you would pay if you ordered. I didn't have to spend any time in a store searching through racks to find a few things or maybe nothing...

The best part about Mercury Mile is that it is NOT and automatic subscription! No need to worry about cancelling like some others. With Mercury Mile you decide when you want a box and you reserve it and schedule it!! I can't wait to reserve my next Mercury Mile!

Reserve your Mercery Mile box today and use code BibRave10 for $10 off styling fee!

#MercuryMileBR #BibChat #BibRavePro

Friday, May 25, 2018

High Five for Friday ~ May 25, 2018

Well this week has yet again flown by!! I started off with a rough run on Saturday but that's ok. It happens. The best thing to do is not let it affect the rest of the week or other upcoming runs and the rest of my week was pretty great!


I celebrated the Morganton Service Leagues 50th Anniversary. I have been in the league for four or five years now and have served three years on the Board.


Anytime I have the chance to dress up I love to wear my Nana's old jewelry. She was so stylish and glamorous and I am so honored to be able to keep and wear many of her things <3 I know she would love seeing these pieces continue to be loved all these years later!


Next week this might be a low (ha~ha)... I started the Whole 30 on Sunday! So far so good but I have joked that it might end up being a Whole 10 or 15, we will see! Where is the Cheese and Wine???


Despite having a really really really bad run on Saturday I had a few great runs this week!


Through my BibRave Pro Ambassadorship I received a Mercury Mile Box!! There was so much awesomeness wrapped up in this @mercurymile box!!! My stylist did a great job considering I had trouble deciding my preferences in the profile...
All name brand gear from @brooksrunning @saucony @bodyglove and @asics ❤️
All perfect for my spring and summer miles!! ☀️
I can’t wait to give these goodies a run!! 
Order you Mercury Mile Box today using "BibRave10" for $10 off your styling fee! 
#MercuryMileBR #bibchat #bibravepro #runinstyle #runninggear #mercurymile #instarunners #runstyle #brooks #saucony #asics #bodyglove

How was your week?

BLOGGERS: Link Up!! Add up to 3 of your blog post from your week or your own High Five for Friday!!

Friday, May 18, 2018

High Five for Friday - May 18, 2018

It's getting hot out there...

Whew it went from winter to summer in a flash! This will be an interesting adjustment! 

Don't get me wrong I love summer but I just needed a minute (like spring) to get acclimated.

It's Friday again and a great time to sum up all the good stuff from the week!!


Saturday I had a great reunion run with a few of my girls from my weekend running group! Marathon training shook up my weekend running and I didn't run with everyone from my usual weekend crew for a while! Several of us ran on Saturday which was pretty awesome! Kathleen, Kim and I ran eight miles then met up with Alisha and Bridget for another 5 miles and then Kim and I finished another mile or so back to our cars! We still were missing a few girls but it was great to be out on the run together again. 


Mother's Day was lovely! My brothers and I and our families met out for Breakfast with our mom in the morning. My mom, my girls and I greeted at Church and the we went out for lunch after church with my husbands family for my mother-in-law. I love these special moments with family!


Monday night I got to see Madie again! Tess and I drove down to have dinner with Madie. 


A few good morning runs (although tough this week, maybe because of the heat)


These two.... 

As crazy as they make me sometimes I can't help but smile. I love their little relationship with each other!

BLOGGERS: Link Up!! Add up to 3 of your blog post from your week or your own High Five for  Friday!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

My Marathon VIP (Very Important Product)

When I find something that works well for me I love to share it with others. Maybe it would also work well for you! In the midst of my marathon training I found a pair of running tights that I just could not have done without!!

When marathon training weather turned cold and it became time to break out the running tights I realized that I only had five pair. Before marathon training that was fine. I only ran 5 out of 7 days usually and I do laundry once a week (on Sunday's). During Marathon training for the most part I ran some variation of the following schedule:

Monday Run 4 miles
Tuesday Run 3 miles
Wednesday Walk 3 miles
Thursday Run 4 miles
Friday Run 3 miles
Saturday Long Run up to 20 Miles

Now in all transparency there were plenty of times I missed one of these runs but this was the plan.

The tights I had were also all very different. Two pair are big name brands that I picked up at the sporting goods store, one of these rides down a lot so I rarely wore them and one pair has a zipper at the ankle. I honestly love those tights but the zipper is a problem for my long runs. I wear Compression Socks and under the tights is too tight but over these tights in particular ends up pressing the zipper a little too uncomfortably into my lower leg and ankle. Another pair of my tights came from TJ Maxx and they are fine tights but they have a rushing also on the lower leg/ankle area which makes wearing them with my compression (aka long run) a no go. My fourth pair of tights came from an online store and they are fine and then I had one Skirt Sports pair. The Wrapsody which I loved. All this to say I really only had two pair of tights I would wear on a long run and with five pair of tights and six days I needed tights I needed to order another pair. 

As a Skirt Sports Ambassador I naturally went there first to look. I LOVE my skirts, I LOVE my Wrapsody Tights, so I thought I would see what they had to offer.

I also did my research. I needed the next pair of tights to be a long run pair. I was hesitant about ordering on-line because I was worried about fit. I did more research and considered a pair. I then went back to the local stores to try on some in store options of various brands. Still feeling drawn to the Skirt Sports pair in January I placed my order.

Within a few days my black Go the Distance Tights were here and I couldn't wait to wear them. I ordered a size small and they fit like a glove! These tights quickly became my all-time favorite running tights!! I wore them every long run after that until the Marathon. I even wore them under my running skirts!

The fit is perfect. The rise hits just right, the material is smooth and stays right where it is supposed to. 

By Marathon morning the weather was looking warmer than it had been for most of my training runs and I had packed other clothes to wear just in case. I decided on a skirt (which I also love) and had gotten dressed and was ready to go that morning. As soon as I left the hotel room I turned around and went back in. I needed my tights. This was my first marathon and the skirt had not logged those miles with me in preparation for the race while the tights had.

I needed the familiar feeling of the tights on my legs for this race. I had no idea what to expect from the race but I knew exactly what to expect from those tights! I wanted to limit surprises that day and I am so glad I did. 

They were perfect and even though it did get warm by the end of the race my legs felt great! These tights not only supported me (pun intended) through all the training runs but also for the big day!!

I am so glad I ordered these and had them for all the training and all the miles. Now that it is getting warmer I will start looking for the next best thing since tights will get a little hot in the summer lol!

If you don't have these tights I highly highly highly recommend them. They are awesome!!

Use my offer code 37Aver for 15% OFF  coupon code for Skirt Sports. 

See all the great gear at https://www.skirtsports.com/ 

#realwomenmove #skirtsports #skirtsportsambassador #gothedistancedights

Friday, May 11, 2018

High Five for Friday ~ May 11, 2018


The weather is getting warmer here and the mornings are getting brighter!! I love Spring!!

1. I enjoyed a gorgeous, hot and only a little scary, 9 mile run last weekend in the South Mountains 💕
We joked but it really was up hill both ways with 1,413 feet of elevation gain!
We ran up to the little white church I grew up going to with my dad and Nana ❤️ and the views all around were incredible as always!

2. I am re-gaining some speed after having been in marathon training mode for quite some time. I can either run for pace or time/distance. I can not do both so it's fun to hit some old familiar paces again on those shorter runs! I ran 3 miles with a friend on Tuesday at a 9:30 average pace!

3. With the weather warming up I feel comfortable taking my puppy with me for my Wednesday Morning walks. On Wednesday’s we walk!! These cute puppies had so much fun this morning!! One of my running buddies brought her puppy and these two were fast friends! They were the guard dogs protecting baby Ivey who also joined us for her first 5am walk 💕 Her momma is on her way back into running after baby and I can not wait to have her back with me for our morning runs!

4. With the mornings becoming brighter my views on my early morning runs are much more spectacular!!

5. I am super excited to join the #bibravepro @bibrave family!! I can not wait to see where this journey leads!!! Stay tuned for some great discounts and special offers!!

This weekend I have a long run planned with friends and am looking forward to a special Mothers Day! To all my mother runner friends I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day Weekend!

Be sure to link up with your favorite blog post for the week!! I look forward to seeing what everyone has been up to!

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