This year I completed two of my favorite Half Marathons yet! The Surf City Half Marathon and the OC Half Marathon.
Surf City was so completely gorgeous and always falls on Super Bowl Sunday, so you get the satisfaction of knowing you can eat pretty much anything you want during the big game. 😉 I did this race alone and I really was able to take in all my surroundings. Most of the view is the ocean and it was so sunny that the ocean glistened. It was perfect and I did eat everything I wanted afterward, including a burger, fries and shake at Ruby’s down the road. My favorite post race meal includes burgers!!
The OC Half was beautiful as well. It was overcast and the perfect temperature for running, in the mid 60’s. Unfortunately I wasn’t feeling myself during this race as I had just been in the hospital about two weeks prior with a kidney infection. This was no joke and had me bed ridden for two weeks so I had no good training runs and I really probably shouldn’t have been running, but I didn’t want to miss this race. I took this one very slow and easy not worrying about time and just getting through without any pain. I was surprised that I felt pretty good for most of the race and I probably could have went a little faster than I did but I was just so worried about my recovery from being sick. My two friends who I ran with PR’d and I was so happy for them!! I’m looking forward to crushing the next Half and getting a new PR! Its hard to go backwards, no matter what the reason is.
From the day I signed up for the Surf City Half, I have wanted to complete the Beach Cities Challenge! That is one of the biggest reasons why I did not want to give up racing the OC Half. I just signed up for the last race of the challenge which is the Long Beach Half Marathon and I cannot wait! I am trying to get my time to 2 hours or under for that race, and I think its definitely doable! Can’t wait to see you soon Long Beach!! This is the medal you get for completing all three races in a row, and it is super pretty! LOVE that BLING!! <3
Although this was my second Triathlon I consider it really as my first. My very first was in a pool and was done backwards, with Run, Bike, Swim. It was fun but it didn’t really challenge me. The LA Tri Events at Bonelli Park was a great race and it was super challenging. This was my very first time ever swimming in open water, and to top off the fear I had of swimming in unknown terrain, my friend tells me minutes before the race that most times when people get in open water for the first time they have a panic attack. GREAT!! WHY ARE YOU TELLING ME THIS?! I thought!! But I was already signed up, geared up, and ready to race so I wasn’t going to let fear overcome me. But, if I’m being totally honest here, I was terrified once I stepped into that water and the swim was not easy by any means. People around me were panicking and trying to grab onto me, and a girl next to me started yelling that she was drowning. Thank God for the lifeguards because I had no idea how to help her. Eeek! Thankfully I got through and as I walked out of that lake I felt dizzy and completely exhausted. I walked to the bike transition area and yanked off my wet suit. Problem was that I forgot to unzip the ankles and it took me forever to get it off my foot. Once I was free I was onto the bike and felt free as a bird as I rode away. The bike portion was super fun except for two steep hills that had me huffing and puffing, but the good thing about uphill is that downhill is right after. Downhill is my favorite!! After transitioning from bike to run I was pretty exhausted but the run is definitely my favorite part and I was excited that I was nearing the finish line. Crossing that finish line felt great and made me thirsty for more Triathlon! My next one will be the Long Beach Triathlon, and next year I’m planning on a Half IronMan. Excited for the future races!!
There are three necessities that I have to have while running! Not only three things overall, but three that I truly cannot live without and that have proven to be so freaking awesome!!
First, is my Supcase Armband for my iPhone 6. I’ve used tons of armbands and so many of them would slip off my arm, get all gross and sweaty, or my phone would get stuck and I couldn’t press anything on it because it was under plastic. Once I found the Supcase armband I fell in love! I bought mine on Amazon here.
Second, is my Garmin Vivoactive. I looked long and hard for the right watch and I knew I wanted Garmin, but which one to choose was a little more difficult. I wanted something that looked sleek and pretty, I also wanted something that was waterproof which this one is (yay) and it can track lap swimming. I love being able to see my pace on my wrist and that it vibrates to let me know when I’ve reached a goal and hit each mile. I bought mine on Amazon, here.
Last but definitely not least is my handheld water bottle. I never run without water. I don’t understand how some people can but I have to constantly stay hydrated. I also really don’t like waist bands, they bother me and I like to feel weightless when running. There is also a little zipper pouch on the bottle where I keep my key and my pepper spray (safety first). 🙂 I have a few different bottles but I love the Amphipod Hydrafoam Handheld Bottle, found on Amazon, here.
I’ll be honest and admit that I don’t always like to run with other people. Most of the time I like my running time to be my “me time” and I like to zone out with my music and just go. But, I really do love running with friends too! Here are my reasons why running with a buddy can help you be a better runner:
1. Run with friends who are faster than you and can push you! Sometimes when you run alone its easy to shorten your run, or run slower, or take a walk break… but when you have someone else with you, it forces you to perform at your best.
2. If you’re an early morning runner it is always better to run with others if its still dark out. I always believe in safety first! 🙂
3. Running with friends can break up monotony. If you’re stuck in a rut, ask your friends to run with you in a different area. Also, sometimes its fun to talk while you’re running and can make an hour feel like 15 minutes.
4. Races are always fun with buddies because you can cheer each other on! You don’t always have to stick together and run the same pace to know that you’re there for each other.
5. You always have someone to relate to. You never want to feel alone in the hours of training, blisters on your feet, toenails falling off, needs to eat a thousand carbs, and all the joy and excitement!!
One of my favorite times of the day to run is early in the morning! I love starting my day right and having the whole rest of the day free to do other things I need to do, or to do other workouts like swimming, biking, weight training…. Here are some tips for those not-so-early risers to get up and run!
1. Go to bed early! See my Dream Cream recipe if this is something that is hard for you. If I’m getting up before 6am I have to go to sleep before 10pm.
2. Set a few alarms just in case you snooze the first one. I set three within 10 minutes of each other.
3. Wake up at least 30 minutes before you are set to go for your run. Hydrate, eat a little something and stretch before heading out.
4. Plan to run with a friend. This will keep you accountable so you won’t skip out on your morning run. It is also so safer if you’re running before the sun comes up to have a friend with you.
5. Lay out your clothes, shoes, headphones, Garmin, and anything else you need in the morning the night before.
6. Make a great playlist and get out and go! There is nothing that will charge up your day like good music and a great run!