Posts tagged ‘The More/Fitness Magazine Half-Marathon’

April 16, 2013

A Running Battle

Earlier, I was eager to settle in with my laptop and give you the rundown of yesterday’s kick-ass race but after today’s tragic event, I don’t really know what to do or say. I’m still speechless with a permanent knot in my throat from an afternoon of choking back tears, haunted by the news that hit a little too close to home. The sense of accomplishment I experienced as I crossed the More/FITNESS Half finish line has been stripped and the strength I felt as my legs seemed to float across the hillier-than-I-remember Central Park has been depleted. I’m stunned, disgusted, sick to my stomach and angry because a selfless act of terror has forever changed the sport’s arguably most iconic event.

_DSC1015_DSC1018 My running partner-in-crime _DSC1019

I, like so many fellow athletes, run for that sense of freedom you feel when you reach your “happy pace.” It’s a rhythmic escape from both the good and the bad with a healing power unlike anything else. After the Boston Marathon bombing, that haven has been altered…challenged. The finish line is where our family members band together to cheer us on. It’s where we truly turn on the jets to test our body. It is there where we learn if the blood, sweat and tears we endured in training really paid off before setting goals for the next–a hopeful end to a new beginning. I felt better than ever yesterday, pushing myself to shatter my 2:03:18 Vegas race for a new PR of 1:47:23 but today’s frantic texts to friends and family put everything into perspective. My heart goes out to those in Beantown. I pray for the running community’s strength and perseverance. God knows, it’s one group that doesn’t and won’t give up without a fight.

Sprinkled with Love,
Lauren

April 16, 2012

I Did It!

It’s still sinking in that I accomplished the 13.1 mile goal I set for myself months ago. Long cold runs in the snow and rain, healthy eating, hard work and dedication all l lead up to one race. 2 hours and 10 minutes through Central Park. Amanda came in early Saturday afternoon and after dropping off her stuff at Mike’s apartment, the three of us headed toward the More/Fitness Magazine Health & Wellness Expo to gather our race numbers and gear. A hot pink SPIbelt and matching Sparkly Soul headbands were purchased before we wandered along the High Line, where we casually bumped into (Amanda literally sort of did…) Cameron Diaz. No big deal. Love her! We worked up an appetite after a few hours of exploring so grabbed salads, alongside some groceries (all for $10.49 somehow!) for dinner later on before heading back to sit out on Mike’s balcony and relax. Countless Nalgenes-full of water later, we got started with our night-before-the-race feast, an energizing spread of grilled chicken, eggplant, peppers and broccoli with roasted parsnips and sweet potato. We were hungry. Before we knew it, it was time to catch some z’s in preparation for the big day. 5:30 a.m. came too soon. I didn’t feel right and had barely slept. Coffee, scrambled eggs and an apple with soy nut butter were consumed but still something was off. I chalked it up to nerves. Amanda and I caught a cab to Columbus Circle and we walked to the starting area where we met up with Em. We worried about a few raindrops, were corralled into place and before I could blink (although in reality it was over an hour later…), the race started.

 It wasn’t easy and I hate to use the word “disappointed” because for goodness sake I ran 13.1 miles, what’s there to complain about? But what got me down on myself was the fact that after doing everything right from eating, stretching and hydrating days prior to the hours of training I had endured in preparation, I never would have guessed a stomach issue would prop up. The first three miles were all smiles. I had goosebumps, soaking in the sunshine and aroma of everything in bloom while my adrenaline rushed with each stride. Things were fine and I felt strong, in fact, all the way until mile 7, when my churning stomach hit. It wasn’t nerves, something else was wrong. A full 24+ hours later, I’m still not back to my normal self. Regardless, I’m proud that I had the mental toughness to push through those “uncontrollables” to cross that finish line. I feel accomplished running farther than ever before and strength-wise, I could have kept going! Moreover, I’m positive that I would have reached my under 2 hour goal if it wasn’t for this bug (or whatever it is). It was tough to have been moping at the finish line, though, especially with my crew of cheerleaders there. I can’t even put into words what it meant to have had my parents, boyfriend and best friend waiting for me. Seeing my dad poking his head out, urging me to push it the last few strides made my eyes tear up and my legs fly. I’m honestly still a whirlwind of emotions and cannot get over the amount of love, support, encouraging texts, tweets and sweaty hugs I have received. I’m truly one of the luckiest people in the world and cannot thank everyone enough for celebrating this with me. The popular question has been, “So now what?” Well, I’m nuts, stubborn (in a competitive way) and always looking toward the future with some goal in mind so naturally I have my eye on the next race. I have about 2 months to recover and prove to myself I can hit that 2 hour mark without tummy troubles. Wish me luck!
Have you ever been frustrated after a race? 

Sprinkled with Sweat (er, I mean Love),
Lauren

April 13, 2012

Fitspiration Friday

At this time in two days I will have completed my first half-marthon. The journey hasn’t been easy. Early alarms could have easily been snoozed, the dreadful commute from school to New York City ever week could have easily prevented me from sticking to my routine but all in all, I powered through it. My diet has never been cleaner, my legs are stronger than ever and I have honestly never been as proud of myself. This race has come at a pivotal moment in my life, as I can hear Pomp and Circumstance play faintly in the distance and prepare to conclude this chapter to start anew. Besides the incredibly supportive and encouraging individuals I have in my life, I’ve had a few mantras that have catapulted me forward in pursuit of my goal. Here are some words that helped me get my butt in gear 

“Racing teaches us to challenge ourselves. It teaches us to push beyond where we thought we could go.” Patti Sue Plummer
“Running is the greatest metaphor for life because you get out of it what you put into it.” Oprah Winfrey
“Ask yourself: ‘Can I give more?’ The answer is usually: ‘Yes.'” Paul Tergat
“The most powerful lesson you can learn in running? You’re capable of much more than you think.” Runners World
“I run because it’s so symbolic of life. You have to drive yourself to overcome the obstacles. You might feel that you can’t. But then you find your inner strength and realize you’re capable of so much more than you thought.” Arthur Blank
“He who conquers others is strong, he who conquers himself is mighty.” Lao Tsu
“Failure’s not an option. It’s a step.” Nike
“Run hard, be strong, think big!” Percy Cerutty
“I tell our runners to divide the race into thirds. Run the first part with your head, the middle part with your personality and the last part with your heart.” Mike Fanelli
“Anything is possible, but you have to believe and you have to fight.” Lance Armstrong 

Tomorrow afternoon Amanda will be headed into the city so we can go to the Health & Wellness Expo and check in. I have to pick up a new running top (I’ve had my eyes set on this) and finally invest in a SPIbelt, too, along the way. Come on, I have to LOOK the part, too, right? Walking around will be a nice way to loosen up and a lot of stretching will be a must. Amanda and I already have a big, protein-powered dinner planned alongside an early bedtime, of course. I can’t wait and still get get over the fact that this weekend is already here! So surreal. T-minus 2 days. Let’s do this thing!
Any last minute half-marathon tips? How about fitspiring beats for my race playlist? 

Sprinkled with Love,
Lauren

January 22, 2012

Here Goes Nothing!

Drum roll please…last night I signed up for my first half-marathon, The More/Fitness Magazine race through Central Park, to be exact. Let the 12 week training begin! Luckily, to keep me going and on track for the upcoming event, I have three amazing running buddies who will be competing with me: Emily, Brynne and Amanda. Now, this was not a spur of the moment decision whatsoever. Completing a half-marathon has been a goal of mine for quite some time now, but one of those things that I have let fall by the wayside with the chaos of school, work and internships. By signing up and forking out the $85, though, there will be not backing out this time. Plus, now that I have announced the news on the blog, I have YOU to cheer me on every step of the way.

I stay in pretty good shape with a mix of weight training, cardio and my new found love of yoga (Power Vinyasa is my favorite!), but I needed a concrete training guide to help track my progress. After a lot of research, I decided to create my own plan, based on what I personally have seen results from alongside what fits within my unusual spring schedule. I basically used a combination of Shape Magazine’s Half-Marathon training with Women’s Health cross training and P90x moves. I know things will change and there will be lots of rest days sprinkled in but I wanted to aim high. I plan to keep a fitness journal of reps/weight. Get ready for a lot more fitness-related posts over here on SWL! Anywho, after a tough week of workouts, I decided to take rest day today and celebrate Mike’s 24th birthday the best way we know how: lots of football and a new chili recipe (post coming soon!), which is currently simmering on the stove. I hope you had an incredible weekend!
Half/full marathon completers: any training advice? How do you stay inspired and on track? 

Sprinkled with Love,
Lauren