RSS Feed

Long Run Sunday and Travel Update

Last weeks long run was a cut back week, which meant I only had to run 14 miles. It still amazes me how much I look forward to ONLY having to run 14 miles. It seems so much shorter! I decided to head up to Boulder for something different this weekend. I ran the Teller Farms Trail/East Boulder Trail out and back. This is a fairly difficult route because it very hilly. The nice part is it has rolling hills instead of just one giant hill like so many other trails. I started at 7:30 to try and beat the heat, but this trail has little to no sun cover and I was out of water by mile 12. :( My legs were much more sore from this run than my 20 mile run last weekend. I hope those hills pay off in San Fran in 3 weeks.

Travel Upate

The hubs and I and two friends are headed here for the 4th of July weekend!

That's right, we are headed to the great city of Chicago. I am so excited to visit our friends out there. I have never been to Chicago so we have lots of touristy stuff planned. Here is the list so far:

  • Cubs game
  • Watch the fireworks at Navy Pier
  • Architecture boat tour
  • Shopping on Michigan Avenue (Must stop at H&M!)
  • Dinner at their favorite sushi restaurant
  • Visit Sears Tower, Millennium and Lincoln Park
  • Spend time along the beach

If you have any other must see suggesstions, send them my way!

La La's Wine Bar and Pizzeria

Last weekend, I met some of my best girl friends at a wine bar/pizzeria in town called Lala's Wine Bar and Pizzeria. We decided to meet at 6 pm since their happy hour goes until seven. To start off the night I ordered the Y3 Chardonnay from Napa. Since I will be in Napa in a month, I have been trying to order different wines from that region. It was delicious, but defintely full bodied and would have been probably better suited for my second glass and not my first. The other wine I tried was the King Estate Pinot Gris from Oregon. It was delicious, and I am definitely a fan of the sweeter wines!

For dinner I split the Lala’s Pollo Salad (Herb grilled chicken, seasonal apples, spring greens, candied walnuts, Gorgonzola Dolce and organic cider vinaigrette) and the Il David (Naked (of course) three cheeses, herb grilled chicken,artichokes, oven dried tomatoes, roasted garlic and Peppadew peppers) Both were absolutely fantastic! The manager on duty came over and asked if it was our first time here. When we said yes, she offered us FREE dessert. We decided on the Chocolate Giovanni (Housemade chocolate ganache with a Frangelico hazelnut anglaise and raspberry puree). It was a perfect dish to split and a great way to end the night!

Me, Kristin, Darcy, Pam, Becca

For those of you that just started a blog and for those that have had one for awhile. How long did it take you before you told your friends about it? I have told some people, but definitely not everyone. I am curious how people responded when you told them!

Peak Week and Long Run Sunday

This weekend wrapped up peak week for my San Francisco training schedule. I finished the weekend with over 47 miles total and a long run of 20 miles. I was very happy to get in all my runs this week. It feels so great to have a new record for mileage in one week. I still have one 20 miler to go the week of the 4th of July.

For this long run, I headed back to Highline Canal with my friend Pam. After the Rocky Mountain 1/2 Marathon Race, I had some pain in my shin splints and joints from pounding the roads and concrete. My plan is to do my next 20 miler on concrete so I get used to the pounding, but for this one soft gravel felt absolutely fantastic!

With the temps expected to be in the mid 80's, we decided a 6:30-7:00 start was necessary. I think I officially get up earlier on the weekends than I do during the week for work. I'm very glad we got started early because it did get very hot towards the end. Everything went really well on this run. Pam only had to do 19 and we run different paces, but we were able to get in around eight miles together which was really nice. i drank around seven waterbottles (re-filled 1/2 way) and ate a whole sleeve of Cherry Shot Blocks with Caffeine.

I wrapped up the weekend, with some much needed pool time and then a BBQ at my parent's house where we got to meet my newest nephew! He is only a 4 days old!

The Hubs is passed out in the background!

Dinner for Lunch

Everybody's heard of eating breakfast for lunch, but what about dinner for lunch? Sometimes the Hubs and I really don't feel like eating a big meal for dinner, but we still really want to cook. Enter dinner for lunch. Our most recent dinner for lunch was sesame crusted tilapia with steamed broccoli. I really enjoy eating a bigger meal for lunch because it helps me cut back on all the mindless snacking later in the afterrnoon.

Rocky Mountain Half Marathon Race Report

On Sunday, I ran the fifth annual Rocky Mountain Half Marathon. This was my very first half marathon race so it is very special to me, and a race I hope to run every year. I was really skeptical Saturday night about my ability to really run fast at this race. Andrew's Grandparents celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on Friday and Saturday night so we had been going non-stop all weekend and of course, eating really delicious food (aka not good for running).

I woke up Sunday morning still feeling apprehensive. I went through my usual pre-race routine (oatmeal, water, check the weather, stretch, peppermint pill, etc.) Dave, Pam and I met at 6:30 to walk over to the race start. We made a few porti-poty stops and did a lot of stretching and warming up. Finally, the race was ready to begin. We lined up in our corrals, and then proceeded to stand for another ten minutes! The race was suppose to start at 7:30, but the gun didn't go off until after 7:35.

I went out way too fast, but this was part of my strategy. I knew the latter miles were going to be really HOT and really HILLY so I decided to make up some time in the beginning while it was still cool. Dave and I stuck together for the first 3-4 miles. We tackled the first big hill and then winded our way back through Downtown Denver and onto the Cherry Creek Bike Path. After about mile 5, I knew I was starting to slow down into a more comfortable race pace. The weather was very hot for racing and I think I stopped at 8 out of the 10 water stations. Usually, I run right through them but this race I decided to let myself stop and walk to really get a lot of water down. I took some Cherry Blossom Honey Stinger Chews at mile 5 and again at mile 10. The worst hill of this race is between mile 5 and 6. I try to train here regularly, but it still gets me every time!!!

Andrew found me a few times between miles 7 through 10 and then again at 12.5. This year they changed the course around so the last 3/4 of a mile is ALL uphill! I knew I was close so I charged as fast as I could up that damn hill.

With the finish line in sight, the clock was at 1:46:30 so I sprinted to get in under 1:47. Final stats are:

1:46:41/AP 8:08
196/1497 Overall
51/912 Overall Women
6/111 Age Division

Pam, Me

Me, Andrew

I can't believe I was sixth in my age division! This is closest I have ever been to receiving an award! What is even more exciting for me is I was able to shave 17 minutes off my time last year which was 2:03:30. It is absolutely amazing what your body can do with a lot of hard work in a short amount of time.

My mom and Pam's mom joined us at the finish line to cheer us on. It it always so great to have their support! After loading up on samples of Granola and Lara Bars, we headed to Dixon's for a post-race breakfast celebration. I ordered the Eggs Mazatlan( Three scrambled eggs and guacamole rolled into a warm flour tortilla. Topped with green chile and white cheddar cheese. I changed it up a little by adding in spinach.)

Pam and I also ordered a peach blossom (champagne, peach schnapps and orange juice).

Pam, Dave, Me, Andrew

This was such a fantastic race for me. It still had some challenging parts and it really made me question how I should approach "racing" San Fran.

Long Run Sunday - 20 miles

Last Sunday was the longest distance I have run to date...20 miles. Dave and I had planned on meeting at 7:30 to drive down to the Highline Canal in Denver. As I was heading down to meet Dave out front, I get a text message "Just locked keys in car." My building has a five minute loading zone circle that people can use, and sure enough Dave's car is there with his house and car keys locked in. Lucky for us, his building is next door so we walked over to see if his neighbor was home. Nope, no neighbor. We asked the front office attendant if we could leave the car for a few hours. Nope, they suggested we pay $60 for a locksmith to come out and open it. I asked the hubby if he had any suggestions, and he said what about using the ladder.

We hauled our little 4 foot ladder over to Dave's place and both of the guys were able to jump to the balcony from the ladder. Fun stuff, but no way was I going to give it a try!! I would need a little more upper body strength for that trick. Needless to say, our 8:00 start became a 10:00 start. I was really nervous and wanted to bail on the run, but Dave suggested we just knock it out.

I knew the weather would be a big factor for this run, so we parked in the middle of the trail. We ran the first 12 miles out and back one direction. Re-filled our water bottles at 12 and headed out the opposite direction for the last 8. The weather was definitely a factor, but we took things slow and miles started to go by faster. The hardest part of this run for me was between 14-16. It felt like those last 6 would take forever. I pushed through, and mile 19 and 20 were actually my fastest miles of the run. By mile 18, I felt like I had mentally checked out from my body which was nice, but a feeling I had never experienced before.

By the time we got done, it was almost 80 degrees out. I am very happy to be DONE with my first 20 miler. Only two more to go till San Fran!!

Root Down and Red Trolley - TGIF!

This past Friday, Pam and Jen met up with hubby and I to grab some drinks and food at a new restaurant in Denver called Root Down. When we got there at 6:00, the place was packed. Luckily, we found a table on the happy hour patio and sat down to some delicious mojitos, veggie burgers and sweet potatoe fries. I really enjoyed this place because the restaurant was retrofitted in an old car garage shop, and the restaurant follows many sustainable business practices and recycles EVERYTHING! It also has three large patio areas.

Pam, Me, Jen

Jen, Pam, Me, Hubby

We decided to end the evening by grabbing ice cream at Red Trolley a few blocks away. I tried the saltwater caramel and chocolate gelato. It was delicious but really really rich.

We made it home just in time to make a mad dash into our place before getting pelted wtih hail. We curled up, stuffed and ready to watch Benjamin Button. All in all a great evening with great company!

We've been published!

Andrew and I were married September 6, 2008. Our fabulous wedding photographer Susan Pacek Photography informed us a few weeks ago that one of local Denver Wedding Magazines found our wedding images on her blog and wanted to use one on the FRONT PAGE of their magazine!!! Our one and only chance of modeling. Our wedding day is definitely one we will never forget!

For those of you in the Denver area, I highly recommend Susan. She is fabulous to work with and our wedding photos are absolutely FANTASTIC! She does travel for weddings quite frequently for those of you out of state.

Race Report: Bolder Boulder 10K

This past Monday, I ran the 31st annual Bolder Boulder 10k. This race is a lot of fun because it is the largest 10k in the country. 50-60,000 people run it every year.

The only negative about this race is that it is the Monday after a holiday weekend. To recap this race, let's start with Saturday and Sundays events. Saturday I had a 12 mile run scheduled for marathon training. I decided to stick with the number even though I would be racing on Monday. Saturday night I got talked into going out with some friends and danced the night away at a bar downtown. After waking up Sunday very hungover and dehydrated, I had to get ready for a make-up tennis match. Normally, my tennis league plays Thursday nights but we got rained out this week. My match was really fun and very tough. Even though I didn't win, I knew my legs would be hurting the next morning.

Brandon, Dave, Jess, Zach, Me, Hubby

When I woke up Monday, my legs felt like they weighed 100 pounds each. I knew I would be sore, but not THIS SORE! Apparently, I can run 17 miles without any pain, but a 2 hour tennis match and my legs throw in the towel. I decided to take the race easy, and not have a real goal in mind. Ultimately, I did want to come in under 50 minutes.

Dave and Brandon were also running the race with me, so hubby dropped us off at the start line and wished me luck! We jogged a warm up mile to the start of the race. Due to our procrastination and our desire for more sleep, we decided to start in the VERY last running wave. When the gun went off, Dave and Brand sprinted ahead as I waved goodbye. I took the first few miles a little too fast, and my legs screamed in pain. I allowed myself to stop and walk when they really started to ache. Because we started so late, it was really difficult to pass people.

I focused on the crowd support and listened to the bands playing along the streets. I knew I would hit my goal if I kept my mind off the pain. Soon enough, I started the last hill climb into Folsom Stadium. I tried my best to sprint the last 1/4 mile inside the stadium.

Final Time

6.2/49:08/AP 7:54

I was ECSTASTIC about achieving my goal. My time for this race last year was 59:15. I shaved over 10 minutes off my 10k PR in one year, SWEET!

So, I think I am going to run a marthon...

When I tell people I am going to run the San Francisco marathon, the next question is always the same, "why San Francisco, what about the hills?"

This always makes me laugh a little because it doesn't surprise people that I would choose to run a marathon, but they can't believe I would choose to run the first one in San Francisco. Frankly, I don't blame them! I can't believe my first marathon will involve 26.2 miles of hills.

Photo Courtesy of

So, how did San Francisco get selected? I'll start off by saying this was not my decision. One of my best friends, Jess, ran the San Diego marathon in 2008. As soon as she started talking about running another one, San Francisco was at the top of her list. Running buddy, Dave, jumped on bard the San Fran bandwagon, and the next thing I know I am signing up to run my FIRST MARATHON in San Francisco.

The one thing that really concerns me about this marathon are the infamous hills. I have incorporated some hill training, but probably not enough (My relationship with hills will have to be another post). The thing that most excites me about this marathon is that the course runs along almost every main site and attraction in San Francisco. The way I look at it at I am getting a 26.2 mile self-guided tour! I just won't be able to snap as many photos along the way.