Friday Five – Five things I need to Do

It’s been a little bit since I’ve done the Friday Five, but I thought I would jump in today with it.    I am joining in on the Friday Five with Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What and Mar at Mar on the Run.

For those that I know personally, know that I am a bit of an environmentalist and one of my favorite sayings regarding taking care of our planet is “there is no Plan B.”    Well I’ve realized or be reminded recently that the same thing applies to my body.   I can’t use it all up and not take care of it because again “there is no plan B.”


I’ve got to get better about taking care of myself.   I’m constantly aware as the “old mom” at the drop off line that I am not getting any younger.   Now granted, I am in much better aerobic shape than I was as a young mom, but I’ve got to start doing better.

Five things that I need to do

  1.  I really need to do more stretching.   This 2 minutes after a run just isn’t enough.   I haven’t been to yoga in forever.   I was never very good at it, but I need to get back to the practice of it.
  2.  Rolling, Rolling, Rolling.    I’ve been so bad about this I truly do not even know where my roller is and that’s a problem.   My right calf and hamstring have been so tight since my Tri and I’ve need to get that hurts so good rolling going.
  3. I went for a massage the other day and although not relaxing because it was a get in deep kind of work those muscles sports massage, but I need to do this more.   Even if I do one and two religiously, there is nothing better for tired muscles than a massage.
  4. Fueling better – I’ve got to get a better system for fueling my runs.   Some days I go out for a long run without even having eaten anything.   No good.   I’ve also got to get better and more consistent about fueling during my runs.
  5. Respecting my Rest Days – Now don’t get me wrong, I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE a good rest day.   The problem though is on a rest day, I tend to use it as the day to get everything done that needs to get done.   Not always the giving my body a break day.   But as the woman of the house, I have to do what I have to do to get things done.   I just need to start seeing if maybe I can do some of the heavy lifting things on a non rest day.

What are some things that you do to take care of yourself and keep you in tip top shape for running?



Friday Five – The Trail vs. The Road

Today I am joining in on the Friday Five with Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What and Mar at Mar on the Run.

5 Ways a Trail Race is SOOOO very different than a road race.

No matter the distance, running on the trails is so much different than running on Satan’s Tar as my friend refers to the road.   The only real similarity is that your feet are moving, but running trails has a whole different feel than running on the road besides the obvious surface area.  Some of these things may just apply to me too:)

The Vibe

Yes, road races can and often do have a “party” atmosphere but underneath it there is a different feel.   At the start line, most people are checking their Garmin, thinking race strategy, and just the underline tension of trying to meet a sub 2 half or goal.  For me,  I’ve experienced none of that at my trail races.   Now this may be on me as usually when I do a trail race, I take the wait and see approach.   My goal for the 50K was to finish and not to die while finishing.   Lofty goals, I know.    But I also know that trails are different and even the same trail on a different day will need to be run different.     Now if somehow I were to go back to the Dirty German again next year (ahem, just saying), I would still have the same goals but maybe with the added goal to be more consistent on the second loop.

The Aid Stations

Oh my God, the aid stations.   There is no comparison here.   None.   The aid station on a road race is all about efficiency.   Getting runners in and getting them out in a seemless move.   In a trail race, it is a smorgasbord of goodies.    Peanut M&M’s, Twizzlers, PBJ sandwiches, SODA, and so many other things.   I will say my favorites are soda and M&M’s.   Yummy!     I think I finished my 50K on sugar alone:):)


(Photo from Dirty German Website)

The Bathrooms

Ok, they are basically the same.   A line of Port-a-Potties.   The difference is on the course.   Now maybe I shouldn’t go here, but I will……    Yes, on any given race you will see a man run behind a tree or next to a bridge or what ever.    I always hate it because I think it is unfair to us woman who don’t have the luxury.    Well on more than one occasion on the first loop, I saw two different women running in front of me who veered to the side to squat behind a tree.   Don’t judge.


I’m not sure why but I often feel like walking is looked down upon in road races.   Not by me as I have yet to complete a marathon where I haven’t walked and I’ve had some half marathons where I’ve also needed to walk.  It happens.    It’s just not the “norm.”   That being said, walking is expected during parts of a trail race.   My coach even pointed out that there are some places on the trail that walking is really more efficient and ” everyone walks, except for the elite few.”   Going into every trail race/run I’ve done, I knew that there would be parts that I would walk.   It is the nature of the beast.   The only problem is to make sure to start running again!


The Spectators

If you are someone who feeds off the crowds at a road race to push through, running a trail race may not be for you.   I say this because outside of the start/finish line and the aid stations, there are no crowds.    You for the most part on on your own.   As you can see there are not lines of people there to cheer you on, but those there do!  Yes, you will start with a crowd of people but the further you run the more spread out the runners become.   I started with the crowd and by the time I was nearing the end of my first lap there were only a few people near me.    The second lap I was for the most part on my own.   Be prepared for some alone time which I tend to like.   If you don’t like that make sure to have a running buddy then.

I will say that I am a mixture of both.   I do love the trails, but I also like the road.  No matter if your a road runner, trail runner, or a bit of both there is enough roads and trails to make us all happy.

Which are you?

Friday Five – Five Days…


Today I am joining in on the Friday Five with Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What and Mar at Mar on the Run.

So First, I’m going to start with this five.   Hello, my name is Christine and it’s been 5 days since my last run.    I have a problem.   My problem isn’t my foot.   My problem is that it has been 5 days since my last run.   I’m not sure how much longer I should/can hold out.

For those wanting to know about my foot/ankle:  Overall the foot is getting better and only has discomfort now not pain.  Still tender to the touch and bruised but those are things that take the longest to get better anyway.   Not 100%, but I think it’s fine.  I may possibly try to run on a treadmill tomorrow just to test it out.   Yeah, that’s the story I’m going with.   That sounds reasonable.

It really is reasonable too, because my thought process is that if it does bother me to run I can just stop and not have to run home like I did the night I twisted my foot running.

So my Five today is 5 ways runners go crazy when they can’t run.

  1.   They see other runners on the street and feel pangs of jealousy.
  2.  They Google their problem that is keeping them from running not to make themselves better, but to get back into their running shoes.
  3. “It’s fine” becomes a catch phrase.its-fine-grumpy-cat
  4. Even though it has only been days, they feel like they are behind the eight ball and are loosing stamina by the minute.
  5. They keep track of how many days it has been since a run.

If none of these apply to you, then you are better at dealing with not running than me.

How do you cope?



Friday Five

It’s been a while since I jumped in on the Friday Five with Eat, Pray, Run DC, You Signed Up For What, and Mar on The Run, so I thought it was about time.   Today’s Friday Five….

My 5 Favorite Post Run Recovery Drinks

Now I will say what  grab will depend on where I’m running, how far, and what type of pace that I was running.    Sometimes it also depends what I’m in the mood for too.

Caramel Latte

Yup!   Hey milk is good for you after a run and a latte has a decent amount of milk.  I will also say that I am lucky enough to live within less than a half mile from a Dunkin Donuts.   When all possible,which is frequent, I will try to end my run there.    The slogan should be Christine Runs on Dunkin.    By now I no longer get a look when I walk in right after ending a run.   Not sure about you, but I don’t necessarily look my best after a run.    Anyway they know by now that it is a Iced Caramel Latte with whole milk and a banana from the counter.


Ooops,   I drank it before I got a picture of it!

One time during marathon training, I stopped and got a small one towards the end of a long run.   Problem was I still had 5 miles to go.   My coach couldn’t believe that I drank a latte and then went back running.


I love a good smoothie!   I change it up depending upon what I have in the house.   I usually put whole milk, dab of OJ, strawberries, banana, and some whey protein powder.   So good and refreshing.

Chocolate Milk

Sometimes a big glass of chocolate milk really hits the spot.  You can’t go wrong here.   I realized how refreshing this was after the Sandy Hook Sprint Tri when this was the drink given to you after crossing the finish line.   Though I would hate it, but it was perfect and hit the spot.


Then there are days where all you want is a big tall glass of ice cold water.   This is especially true in the summer when you feel like you are melting.    I will use it to wash down a protein bar or some other form of protein.

Hot Chocolate

Right now I feel like I am living in the frozen tundra and I really am looking for something more than just recovery.   I’m looking to warm up as well.   On these days, nothing is more refreshing than a warm cup of hot cocoa.

Hot Chocolate

I’m thinking I will need this tomorrow.

So what do you drink for recovery?


Friday Five – 5 Ways to Recover

Friday Five Link-up with

Eat, Pray, Run DC,   Mar on the Run, and You Signed Up for What?

For today’s theme,

5 Ways to recover from your Marathon


Running a marathon is tough.


We spend literally months preparing for something that we hope we can finish in just a few hours with the fewer being the better.   Then the race is over and we are left wondering what to do now.   Well before we can decide on that, we need to recover from said marathon.    This really is an area most of us need to work on some.    So here is what I did this time and I think it’s been working out pretty goo.

  1.  Make sure to stretch afterwards.    Yes, we all want our metal and the festivities that go with it; but take some time to stretch too.   I, honestly, don’t stretch enough but do it throughout the festivities.  For example when I was waiting in line to purchase my Brooks finisher t-shirt, I stretched my calves.
  2. Go for a nice leisure walk the next day.  Take the dog.   Take a friend.  Walk for coffee, but just keep moving.   I know that you think you just want to sit, but I believe it’s better to move.
  3. Rest!   Yes, I know that I said to move, but you move some and then you rest some.  And I mean really rest.    You just put your body through a lot, so give it a break.   It needs time to recover, so take it easy.   Get extra sleep.  Curl up on the couch with that magazine you never had time to read during all your training.
  4. Get a massage and a good one!   I got the best and I do mean the best Sports massage which also included gentle stretching.  I’ve honestly never had one that incorporated the stretching into it, but I liked it.   I really, really liked it even if she had to tell me to relax in the beginning.  I really credit this with taking away so much of what was knotted up.
  5.   After a few days, go for a slow JOG.   I don’t mean run.   I mean jog!   No watch.   No pace.   Just move a little for a few miles.   Go with friends if possible and just enjoy the company.   If possible end said run with Dunkin Donuts coffee too!

What do you do to recover?

Friday Five – Five Ways Running Has Changed me

Friday Five Link-up with

Eat, Pray, Run DC,   Mar on the Run, and You Signed Up for What?

For today’s theme, I have decided to go rogue….

5 Ways Running Has changed me

I was talking with Dawn the other day on a therapy session run day.   Come on you know you have them sometimes too.   Anyway, I was saying how running has changed me.    I can no longer deny it.   I am not the same person that I was when I first laced up my running shoes.   It has changed me in ways that I never imagined that it would.   It is more than just physical changes too which have been major.

Lowered Stress Level


No, running has not made my life easier, but what it has done is given me an outlet to relieve stress in a healthy way.   Time to think things through if needed or time to get away from it all if needed.  Sometimes both of these at the same time!



  Running has shown me that I am capable of so much more than I ever thought.   I have gone from someone who couldn’t run around the block to someone literally running marathons!   That changes your mindset.    I have more than once said to myself that if I could run 26.2 miles, that I could do XYZ.    That confidence changes you or at least it changed me.   I became more assertive (in a good way).   I learned to stand a little taller.    I learned that I can stand on my own because ultimately in a race, you are the only one that can get you where you need to go just like in life.


Bathing Suit

I will say that I have always been a healthy person.   It’s really in my DNA.   I’ve been blessed with good blood pressure, cholesterol, and overall good health.  I have though had a weight “problem” although I hesitate to call it a problem as it didn’t bother me much except in pictures.    That being said, I have learned to accept the fact that the scale does lie.  I am the same weight as I was before I started on this running journey.   Maybe 5 pounds lighter, but things have shifted.   I stopped obsessing about the scale and realized it is just a number.   I may be the same weight, but I am not the same person.  My 3 sizes smaller jeans prove that.   I have realized that those who judge me by my size are wrong including myself.   The size of my jeans do not have bearing on who I am as a person.



   Running has given me friends that I never would have had.    It has brought people into my life that I am blessed to call friends.   When running the miles, you get to know a person.   You get to know them a lot because although we do talk about running a lot, when your out there for a long time other things do tend to come up:)   It has also brought people into my life that I haven’t even met yet, but hope to meet one day.   It has shown who my true friends are as they support me in my journey  even if they don’t truly understand it.

Role Model for my kids


As a mother of three boys, I like the fact that I am teaching them by actions that women are more than just being a Stay at Home Mom.   I am teaching them that a woman can and should be proud of their accomplishments.   That a woman can be strong and accomplished and that she can do anything she sets her mind too.  This is important to me, because when they go out into the world I want them to look at women as their equal.

I am also showing them that the things they want in life they need to work for and that setting goals is important part of that work.

How has running changed you?

Friday Five – Five Runs

Squeezing in under the wire for my Friday Five Link up with

Eat, Pray, Run DC,   Mar on the Run, and You Signed Up for What?

Five Runs I’m doing to train for the Marine Corps Marathon


The Cut-Down

Now it seems like there are several different ways to run these, but I run them the way my coach tells me to and I like them even if they are the bane of my existence!    Example of my last cut-down assignment.    Warm up mile at 11 minute pace.   Next mile at 9:45.  Next mile at 9:25.  Two miles at 9:20 and a mile cool down for a total of 6 miles.    The miles and the pace fluctuate.  Yes, they are hard.   No, I don’t always hit the pace.   Yes, these are the runs that I love to hate.   That being said they are effective.

long run

The Long Run

We all do them.   Most dread them.   These are another hard run, but this run is harder mentally.    As we all know, running a marathon is just as mental as physical.   So as it trains the legs to run the miles, it also is training the brain to deal with it.


The Recovery Run

I love these.   They are short and sweet and slow!!    Who doesn’t love a recovery run with their friends.


Aerobic Runs

These are runs at a given pace usually on days after a hard run.    These runs are designed to help me learn to run on tired legs.  It takes a while for it to happen, but eventually your legs know just what to do even when your mind thinks it can’t.   I had such a run this week.  This run was the day after a brutally hot cut-down run of 6 miles.   My coach warned me that this run would be hard and just to run which I did.   I went into this run thinking how much it would suck and it did in the beginning.   My legs were heavy.   My legs were tired and I just didn’t know how I would do it.   Then a funny thing happened.   My legs just did what I’ve been trying to train them to do.  They almost were on auto pilot.  I started to just concentrate on my legs turning over pushing me forward and the feel of them turning over.  Even on tired legs, I was consciously slowing my pace down.  It was a run that I was sad to see end because I felt like these were the legs I’ve been waiting for and these are the legs that I want the day of my marathon I decided. These were legs that kept moving even when my mind was thinking they wouldn’t be able to go.


Rest Days

No, this is not a run; but it is equally important.   Our body needs it.    Without it, we may be more prone to injury.    I embrace my rest days!    I can’t do it every week,but I love to get a massage on a rest day.   Yes, it is a luxury.   No, I don’t go as often as my legs would like, but when I do go I enjoy it!

Friday Five – 5 Fall Races!

Friday Five Link-up with

Eat, Pray, Run DC,   Mar on the Run, and You Signed Up for What?

Today’s Theme

5 Fall Races!

Well I’ve actually got only 5 Fall races on my schedule and then I’m going to call it a day!

No, I’m not going to hang up my running shoes, but I might let them collect a little more dust than they have right now which is zip,



I’m ending hopefully on a high note with the Marine Corps Marathon and then going to dial it back


At least as far back as I dial things back.

I will cross that bridge when I get there, but here are my 5 Fall Races

  1. September 13, 2015   Iron Girl Sandy Hook Sprint Triathlon –  Yup, this one is right around the corner.   Nope, I’m really not prepared for it.   Ok, I am ready for the run, but not much else.   I haven’t really been on my bike in a while.   I’ve been swimming off and on.   That being said and I quote my coach said, “You can do this one in your sleep.”   HA HA HA!!!!   Actually, I am not worried as I am doing this one for fun.  I just love this even.   I’ve done it twice before and it is just such a great day.   So as unprepared as I am, I’m going for it.   I’ll keep you posted.?????????
  2. September 27, 2015  NYRR Bronx 10 miles – This one will be number 8 NYRR race for my required 9.   I’ve done another Bronx run and it was fun.   The best part is that I will be going in with my fellow Mama runners and I’m sure it will be a great day.
  3. October 4, 2015        Paine to Pain Trail HM – This one Dawn did last year and talked me into doing.   I signed up eons ago.   I love running trails and I’ve been missing my running buddy, so this should be another great event.
  4. October 11, 2015     NYRR Staten Island Five Borough Series Half –   Hooray!!   This will be my final check required in my 9+1 which will guarantee me entry to the NYCM for 2016!!!!!!
  5. October 25, 2015      Marine Corp Marathon – This is the race that I will end my year on (maybe).   This was the race that by some luck I was picked in the lottery to run.   Still amazed at that.    The more I read about this race, the more I know that it will be an amazing experience that I will never forget.   I can’t wait to run it (which will mean marathon training is over!!!!).    Being as I have always wanted to go to Washington DC and never have, I think that this will be an amazing way to see the “sights.”   I know I will need to remind myself more than once that I need to run and not stop for photos.   Can’t wait!


What 5 Races are you doing this fall?

Friday 5 – Vacation Running Tips

Friday Five Link-up with by Eat, Pray, Run DC,   Mar on the Run, and You Signed Up for What?

Today’s Theme

Running Tips

Since I just came back from vacation, I’m going to go with

5 ways to stay on track while on Vacation

Scout an Area to run ahead of time

Since I was going camping by a lake in an area that I never have run in it was important for me to figure out a place that I could actually run.   Yes, I could have run around the campground, but I really didn’t want to do that especially because most of my runs were 5 to 8 miles.   The internet makes it so easy to find local parks or tails and this is how I found the beautiful trail that I ran on!


Bring your Running Gear

Yes, this seems like a no brainer but if your like me you have tons of running gear.   Think ahead of time what you will need and pack a small running bag with the things that you will need.  Gels, water bottles, headbands, Garmin, ect.   The things that you know you can’t run without so don’t forget your favorite running shoes!


Build Time in Your Schedule to Run

Now we really weren’t on any schedule but I still needed to build it into my day.   I had balance out my husbands fishing, time with family, and such with my running .  This made it fairly easy for me to just say, “I’m going for a run.”    If your not doing such a relaxed vacation you might need to juggle a little more.


Adjust your Schedule and expectations

While on vacation, I knew ahead of time that my training would need to take a step back.   Although I also knew that I didn’t totally put on the breaks as the Marine Corps Marathon is just months away, I also knew that I would not be able to follow my full training schedule.   You know what, that’s ok too!   Running is not my job.   Running should not ad stress to my life, but take it away.   That being said, my coach adjusted my schedule to make this a set back week for my training therefore it wasn’t so bad.    I did miss my long run (17 miles) that week.  Did I wish that I could have done it?   Yes.   In the whole scheme of things is it going to effect my ability to run the MCM?   No.

Just Do it!

Nike is so right.   Just get out there and get it done.  It may not always be easy and you may have to give up sleep or something else, but it is so worth it.   I know that not only did i feel better about getting my runs in, but it also took away the guilt of sitting by the fire eating Smores!

How do you get it done while on Vacation?


Friday Five – 5 Fitness trends I’ll NEVER do!

Friday Five Link-up with by Eat, Pray, Run DC,   Mar on the Run, and You Signed Up for What?

Today’s Theme

5 Fitness Trends I”ll Never Try

Now, I will admit that I’m pretty open to most forms of excercise (who said that!?).   I’ve done many of the mainstream – Yoga, Body Pump, Spinning, Bootcamp, personal trainiers, weight lifting, Bikram Yoga, kickboxing, swimming and such.    My problem really has been that I like them all, but don’t have time to do them all or they don’t play well with my running goals (cossfit)

So, I really am open minded when it comes to what I will do.   That being said, there are really just some “fitness” trends that do not hold any appeal or interest to me.  Such as…..

1.  Pole Dancing Exercise classes – Um, no thank you.   Whose idea was this?    A man’s idea I bet.   Hmmmm, how can I get my wife to want a pole in our bedroom.   Oh, I know, I will tell her it’s a new exercise trend.    No thank you.   If I wanted to be a pole dancer, I would have chosen a different path.   Now, don’t get me wrong I do believe they have to have abs of steal and stellar control to do it right.   That being said, I will keep my smushy abs.

2.  The Cleanse –   Sorry to those of you who swear by it.   No thank you.  First, I don’t really think that they are a great thing for your body.   Really our bodies were designed for actual food not liquid goop.   Plus what happens when you start to eat food again?   Your body is going to be like hold onto this because we don’t know where our next meal is coming from.  To me this is not a sensible way to kick start your diet because I don’t believe that there is any real scientific evidence that this actually “cleanses” your body just your wallet.  Plus I’m old enough where I’ve had a medical cleanse called a colonoscopy and I didn’t loose any weight that way either:)

3.  Zumba – Now, I do remember back in the day what a workout dancing can be.   I’m not disputing that.   I, honestly, just think that I would embarrass myself in a Zumba class as I don’t think I’ve got enough rhythm to pull it off.  That’s the truth to this one:)

4.  Colon Hydration Therapy – I came across this bad boy on Groupons once and have never been the same since.   As I said above, I’ve already gone through a medical supervised colonoscopy.   Why the Hell would I pay to have this done if not medically necessary?   What is wrong with people?   Just go for a run.   Don’t do this.   Really.

5.  Shake Weights – Enough said:)

What are the 5 Fitness Trends you would never be caught doing?