Just isn’t going to happen, 10 thoughts during my run + What sets YOU apart?

A little over 5 miles for my Tuesday morning.  It was 34 degrees this morning, it’s starting to hurt outside;)

I thought I would share with you 10 of my thoughts during my run yesterday because I’m very sure you are interested in that.

1.  I really need to learn to pick up my knees again with running… I barely lift them with my running at this point but I’m sure it will come back again right?!  Maybe I just need to attempt running up a hill again, “It’s the worst kept secret in running:  If you want to improve strength and speed, run hills…. Running up hills forces the knees to lift higher, one of the most desirable developments for any runner, because this governs stride speed and length.” (source)

2.  It’s my nephew’s birthday today… I thought about 15 years ago how my sister asked me to be in the room with her and how amazing (and terrifying;) that was for me.  Him with his brothers:

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3.  I thought a lot about if it is worth the investment to buy a hot chocolate machine like they have at the gas station for our house… it would be so nice to finish up with one of those each day.  Pic from last year:

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4.  How did I used to run so many miles in a row?  Sometimes pregnancy feels like it is going to be a lifelong condition and then I remember at some point I’ll be back to ’normal’ again:)

5.  What does ‘giving it your all’ or ‘everything you’ve got’ mean to you right now?  I think each season of life brings about a different answer for me and sometimes each day brings a different answer to that question.  Sometimes it is just getting out of bed and moving somehow that day and sometimes it is going out and hitting your speedwork splits with every ounce of energy that you have.  I think it’s important to recognize that the answer might change throughout your life and to not be hard on yourself for it changing with different times in your life… always a lesson I’m learning!

6. It’s really time to invest in one of those heated jackets that are battery operated or something.  I think it is also time today to go to Costco and buy a winter’s supply of hand warmers because frozen fingers are one of my least favorite feelings ever.

7.  What did I do with my life before listening to Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversation podcast on my runs… finished the end of the one with Phil Jackson yesterday and it was very interesting.

8.  I really like this quote.

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9.  I miss the peach/delicious fruit season with every fiber of my being right now.  I wish I could go back to my 3 peach a day habit.

10.  Something I have been thinking about during my runs a lot lately is the WHAT that made a training cycle/race day better for me compared to all of the others?  There have been training cycles where I was working with a coach, killing workouts, running my fastest work out times, injury free and really doing everything ‘right’ according to paper… BUT why then didn’t my race times reflect everything going so right on paper?  Yes, there are some races where temperatures definitely set us back a bit or we are just NOT HAVING a good day but what other factors make it so that I am just not performing the way I should be according to the workouts I have done.

A few of the things that I think have held me back even though I thought I was doing everything so right and my workouts told me I would succeed: stomach issues, anxiety, listening to my thoughts that I couldn’t do it, doing it for other people and not fully for myself, slacking on the strength training (not having the muscles I need to get the times I want) and letting fear hold me back!

Why do I want to list these things?  Because then the next time around that I am training for a race I can make sure that I am focusing on these things too rather than just my mile repeat times and long run fast finish workouts:)  There are SO many factors that play into the success of a race and I don’t think it is all just our training plan and checking off each week of runs.  I really believe that where we are at mentally plays such a big role on whether those training runs are going to produce something great on race day… not going to let those things hold me back ever again!

How’s that for a lot of random thoughts during a run?

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She is always amazed when I can flip a pancake that is nearly the size of her plate.  I’m also impressed if I’m going to be honest;)

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After school Brooke upgraded to her bigger bike.  The kids did a really good job learning how to ride without training wheels on a smaller bike and then the transition to the bigger one was a lot easier!

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Yesterday was a day where vegetables just weren’t going to happen.  That doesn’t happen as often anymore but when it does, it happens big time.  So I stuck to a smoothie (with superfood greens at least:) and cereal.  A Kodiak Cakes waffle and some hot chocolate were exactly what I wanted for lunch.

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I’m trying to get some one-on-one time in with the kids before this baby comes (I still have 9.2 weeks but the holidays are going to make this time fly by)!  Brooke wanted to go see My Little Pony in the theaters.

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Thank you recliner chairs for making this movie more enjoyable… Brooke loved it and I really had to power through this one:)

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Later on we went over to my parents’ house and Andrew put together our old treadmill for them in their basement.  My parents are both walking at least 5 miles a day and with the temperatures dropping, they needed a treadmill.  They do a lot of hill walking each day too so my mom is thrilled to have the incline option now (they have a treadmill that is 20+ years old that doesn’t do incline and it is barely turning on:).

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I jumped on my dad’s exercise bike too… I’m thinking this one is older than I am.  It is pretty sweet that the wheel creates a nice little fan for you while you work out.

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Brooke got to bouncing!  They’ve got their own home gym now.  Brooke and I both agree that matching socks is overrated.

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Dinner was another thing that sounded really good to me yesterday.  Spaghetti with ground turkey and some garlic bread on the side.  It was delicious.

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Post-dinner and more bike riding.  Our kids are really going to struggle when the snow comes and they can’t ride their bikes outside anymore.  Maybe we should get them kid spin bikes or something?

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Andrew just can’t wait to get these kids on mountain bikes with him:)

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I would love to know some of your thoughts from your last run… share away, however random they might be!!!

What has set the AMAZING races/prs apart for you?  Besides the training plan… what were the things that either held you back or brought out the best for you on race day?

If you could eat anything in the entire world right this second, what would it be?  

-The most beautiful fruit salad there ever was and fresh homemade bread with a thick layer of butter and homemade jam:)

How often do you include hills on your runs?

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52 comments

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I turned 33 on Monday, so yesterday I was thinking about how much my life has changed over the years and how quickly life really does go by. How did I get this old this fast?! And I still feel like I have so many things I need to do in life (I still have yet to go on a real date), so I had a lot on my mind.

I think fear and anxiety have sometimes held me back in races, but sometimes you simply have to trust that you CAN go those faster paces the entire time and just go for it!

If I could eat anything right this second, it would be cake batter and salted caramel froyo from my favorite place back in Texas with Wheat Thins and granola (and probably gummy bears, too). I miss that place SO much!

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY THIS WEEK NATALIE!! I totally think about that too… how in the world did life go by so fast already!?! Yes, I am just like you… fear and anxiety has definitely held me back! I wish I could send you a big thing of froyo right this second!

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Thank you!! Yes, it’s definitely crazy! And I need to come to Utah soon so we can go get froyo together!

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Thoughts during my last run—I’m glad to be out here. I’m pretty sure my calf feels pretty good. Dang, those cross country runners are tough (I was running by the school I teach at–a cross country meet was taking place)–if they can run in this heat and humidity, I can do it, too! It’s been HOT and HUMID here in PA still for mid-October. I give those kids major kudos for running races during meets at 4 pm, when it is so dang hot!

Amazing races—not putting pressure on myself and looking at a “race” as more of a “workout” than a big race type “thing.” The races where I just smiled and ran happy, free, and strong are my favorite race memories.

Oh my. So many choices for food I’d eat right now! I’d have to say fancy birthday cake with lots of frosting flowers, even though it’s 8:10 am! ha ha

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My only thought during my last run was “pain is temporary” — I was trying to PR my mile time and I DID! I really have a hard time settling into the pain place — that dark space that happens when you push yourself for longer than you’re used to.

Weather either helps or holds back — If it’s hot and muggy, I feel like a slug. If it’s cool and crisp — I feel like I can FLY!

I’d totally demolish a freshly baked croissant… with jam and butter. MMMmm

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Thoughts from my last run “oh my gosh, I have missed this so much, I am so glad to be running again!” because there is just something about that feeling when you really want to run and haven’t been able to for awhile, and you finally get to!
Best thing for me for good racing = SLEEP! I’ve been focusing on that a lot the past year or so, and it makes a serious difference.
I would love just one more piece of my great grandma’s lemon meringue pie… I’ve had pie since she passed away, and I’ve even made her recipe, but it doesn’t taste the same. Best pie ever!
I don’t really have much of a choice where I live, so hills are pretty much included in any run for me.

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I ran three easy miles yesterday (it was 86 degrees ughhh) and I kept thinking about my cadence! When I checked my stats my average cadence ended up 173 which isn’t too shabby!
The bugs were also terrible because it was so hot/humid and somehow I ended up with dead gnats all over my neck/chest and even one in my eye :/
My race prs are super dependent on the weather! I always better in cooler temps/lower humidity. (Although everyone probably does!)
I would love a smoothie right now! (or a milkshake)

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Your mom is looking quite trim! Please let her know :)

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I totally will:) PLUS she reads the comments everyday so thank you!!! I hope you have a great day Michelle!

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I should include hills in my workouts more… i can do speed work all day long but hills just kill me lol. I know it’s important for strength and speed so i should really run more hills. I’m pretty impressed with your pancake flipping skills! I have some bisquick in the pantry and this makes me want to whip up a batch!

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Neeed that black floral sweater!!! Can you share?

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I’d love to know as well! :)

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Hey girls!! So I actually bought it about 4 years ago at this place:

https://soelboutique.com

They have the cutest stuff!

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I ran outside yesterday while my baby napped at my parents house and my girls were in school. Having my mom close by is the best for so many reasons! It was the perfect running temperature for me.

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I have a bit of a cold so some spicy Chinese food would be something i would want to eat right now.

I ran in new sneakers yesterday and my thought was I think I need to exchange them for a half size up :)

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Your mom is adorable, and sounds like my parents that walk 5 miles a day too:) That is so awesome that you can give them a treadmill! My parents don’t have a treadmill, but in Tx you don’t have snow to contend with;) Although they go very early morning before the sun is up and it gets COLD;) hummmm…. any meal right now….donut holes from our very favorite shop, where they literally melt in your mouth!

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OH I love hearing that your parents are big walkers too… the best! Good for them to go out when it is cold in the early morning. I hope you get some donut holes asap… that sounds good to me too!

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I’m going to be a rebel and comment, but answer none of your questions ;) I just have to say… I have the same exercise bike that your Dad has! (Only mine is white and silver, it looks like it has the same timer/speed dials)When my Dad asked if I wanted it, I thought, why not? But I actually ended up LOVING IT! I call it my old school bada** airdyne bike! LOL! :)

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AHHHH NO WAY!!! That is awesome! After doing it for about a minute I told my mom my glutes were burning ha… it was awesome! I love it… have an awesome day Alyssa!

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My thoughts on my last run were 1) how much I truly enjoy running early in the morning 2) wow, I thought this run was going to be much harder after the half marathon on Sunday and a rest day on Monday 3)I need to start doing more strength training and yoga/pilates 4)I can’t wait for avocado toast for breakfast :)
I think that my best races came when I just let myself enjoy the run. There were definitely parts of the race that I was super focused, but when I could “relax” (which sounds funny during a marathon or half marathon) and not worry about pace or how much further I had to go, those were my best times!
If I could have any food right now, it would have to be sushi! Yes, even at 6am…ha! I really love sushi :)
Luckily for me, we live near lots of great hills, so I run hills a few times a week :) It really is a love/hate relationship with hills, but they’re so good for you ;)
Have a great Wednesday!

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Oh my word, I agree with you on the thoughts while running. I definitely think A LOT about random stuff. I go through my chores for the deal. I list out my meals so I know what to pack for work. Wondering how other runners manager to run so quickly. Wondering if I’m still partly asleep lol.

As far as what sets races apart, I would have to say weather is a huge factor for me. I live in Texas so it’s hot 99% of the time. I’m actually okay with that and train accordingly. What I don’t like is when there’s a sudden heat wave or cold front that comes through right before race day and my plan just goes to the trash. I’ve actually had both happen to me. I ran a marathon in 80 degree humid weather in JANUARY and had a half marathon that was windy 45 degree in APRIL. It was rough but I got through it!

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Yesterday I had mile repeats and I was frustrated that not only could I not hold the paces, but I had to continue to stop. The humidity here in Boston has been brutal and I had a week long stretch of what I deem as “failed” workouts. I was feeling disheartened and frustrated yesterday, as I am trying for my first BQ attempt this November in Philly. #Getoverit!

Nevertheless, last year I ran Philly after a 8 year hiatus from marathon running. I ran Boston twice with charities years ago and never took it seriously. While I was training seriously with my coach, my goal for Philly last year was to just run and enjoy the day; with 40 degrees and 40mph winds, I PRed by 20 minutes (3:52) and honestly I wasn’t even trying! I was so happy when I finished, I was bawling and even said I could keep running :) That’s what made me want to gun for a BQ this year!

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Oh I am so sorry Kim that you are still dealing with humidity. I promise I have had this happen to me a million times during a marathon training cycle, a REALLY BAD WORKOUT and I still had a great race day. Please keep me updated with how Philly training and the race goes. I love how your race went last year (even with the crazy weather)… huge PR and you enjoyed it! You’ve got this!

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I’ve just been getting back into running after having a baby this past summer. I’m breastfeeding him so I don’t have the freedom to run as long as I want to anymore so yesterday I spent a lot of my run dreaming about when I can run a half marathon again and a marathon! :) I miss training and racing! It was really hard to spectate at our local marathon–my heart wanted to jump in and run it, but I know I would have died! ;) I just have to keep reminding myself that I will get back to long runs and long races someday and just to be in the moment and enjoy my run.

Training through summer heat and then fall races in cool temps, lots of sleep, and good nutrition are when I had my best training cycles and race times.

If I could eat anything right now, I’d have scrambled eggs, toast with butter and jam, and a freshly squeezed orange juice.

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Congrats on your new little one this last summer Kelly! I totally get what you are saying about missing your normal training/racing! Your season for racing is going to be here soon! Okay, now you have me needing orange juice big time! Have a great day!

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Thanks for the reply, Janae! I have wished that you had your baby first so I could copy you with ways to get more runs and miles in since I’m sure you’ll figure out how to do it if you want to. I know some breastfeeding moms swing back home to towel off and feed baby before finishing up their run, but I haven’t tried this. The days go so quickly that I don’t want to be gone for too long! I’d rather go for shorter runs and have more time with my baby at this point. I’m sure stay-at-home moms with many kids might feel differently! ;)

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On my run yesterday I was thinking, I better finish my run before my son finish his karate class. So I ran my fastest avg pace! All my PR’s were times that I relaxed and did not look at my pace, just run and enjoy. I will eat a seafood platter any time of the day. I live in a very flat part of South Africa and being a Comrades runner (a VERY hilly ultra marathon) it’s no joke. I have to run on the treadmill if I want to do hills, which I hate and seldom do.

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Oh that is awesome Almarie! I totally do that sometimes too… the kid’s schedule gets me running faster than anything ha. I want a seafood platter. So cool to hear from you in South Africa and wow, COMRADES…. you are amazing!

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Your mom looks SO happy. What a fun gift to pass on! Health and happiness are going to sweating out of them!

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She really does!! Thanks Marnie and I hope you are having a beautiful day!

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Thought on my last run – why did I think this was a good idea?! This was last weekend during the Chicago Marathon…2 weeks after I ran the Berlin Marathon 🤷🏽‍♀️

On that note, as far as amazing races, Berlin went really well for me (got a solid 10 min PR!) and I was just actually thinking to myself this morning about my training and race day experience. I think I was very mentally prepared for the inevitable challenges of the race and I was confident in my training that day despite the humid and drizzly conditions. Chicago..not so much, haha. I think Marathon training plans should require mental prep exercises!!

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Berlin sounds AMAZING… I want to come do it! Congrats on your 10 minute PR too! Brilliant idea that the training plans should include the mental work too! CONGRATS on Chicago and Berlin… you are amazing!

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yesterday’s run was a scheduled 4 M that turned into 8 M! The weather was just too good not to change training days real quick as I was out there. I’m running with a friend that’s doing her first 1/2 so all during my run I was thinking about everything I need to tell her to be ready for race day!

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Rachelle, that is AWESOME!! Don’t you love days like that? Tell your friend GOOD LUCK on her first half and I’m so glad you are enjoying the weather. Have a great day Rachelle!

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I love her big bike!! Yay Brooke!! I adore seeing the littles out on the mountain bike trails. They are so much braver than I am!

If I run outside, there are hills. They joys of living in the mountains. It is more unusual for me to NOT run on hills. :)

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I’m so impressed with your pancake skills!! I cannot get Kodiak Cakes right no matter how much I try. I just do waffles now lol
I love your random thoughts and I LOVE the Phil Jackson quote!!
It’s been months, but I did a hill workout last night. I forgot how much I love hill workouts!! I was very happy to read your #1 thought.
My most amazing race happened when everything just flowed…from my training, the weather, the people I trained with, my diet, my lack of injuries and discomfort, my ability to recover, etc. I went into the race pretty confident I would do well and meet my A or B goal. I’m never totally sure about my ability at a race, but I do my best when I know the POSSIBILTY is within my grasp. That is when I run better than I thought I could.
I think we all chase this as runners. Maybe every 6-7th run is fun and amazing. All the others are testing us and helping us grow. So when you do have that great workout or awesome race, you know it’s all worth it.
Thanks Janae!! Great post!

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That’s an awesome exercising bike!! I remember using a “stepper” in my parents basement in the early 2000s. You basically stand on two foot pedals and alternate a tip-toeing action. Super simple and looks a little silly looking back on it. :)

I’m impressed by your pancake flipping as well! I sometimes still get scrambled pancakes…

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Not a runner, but dealt with some stressful things the past couple of weeks and what I read in my parenting daily devotional really helped, so I thought I would pass it on. “Trials are not to be dodged or avoided, as much as they are to be endured for the sake of a lesson.” Instead of asking God how do I get out of this situation, we should be asking what am I going to get out of this? So true! Have a great day, Janae!

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What a beautiful quote. Thank you Marie for sharing, I completely agree with what you said. I hope you are doing well and keep me updated! Thanks!

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My last run was pretty awful. I was supposed to run a half-marathon but I had pulled a muscle in my hamstring and it wasn’t fully healed. I gave it a shot but nope, 3 miles in I had to stop. It started pouring and the effort of not sliding in oil rising up out of the street was too much for my leg. So my focus was please don’t fall and feeling badly because I was running with a friend. (who was completely fine with stopping, even though I told her to go on). There will be other races and I will be ready. (My injury was not from running but my xtraining).

Hills definitely make me strong/faster, more so than speed training. I live in a hilly neighborhood so not running hills is a trick. But there are a few especially steep ones that I like to run during training. When I do that and train the smaller stabilizing muscles as well I’m at my strongest.

I’d really like my mom’s lasagna or ziti right now. :)

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NOOOOO I am so so sorry about your pulled hamstring and having to drop out of the race (but you are so right, there is always another race)!. I hope that it heals ASAP and that you are back running again! Thinking about you!

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Happy Wednesday!!
I FINALLY ran my first post-stress fracture 5k this past weekend… my thoughts went a little like “they want me to run up and back town this ski mountain 4 times?” and “why is my GPS watch saying I ran 4 miles, not three?” It was a little disorganized but a lot of fun!
Running with a (slightly faster) friend helped me PR in a few races! Also, lining up with people a little faster than me and staying suuuuuuper positive.
Hills are a part of nearly all of my outdoor runs, as I live in a very hilly area. If I need a flat, easy run in my week, I gotta hit the treadmill. Hills are my strength as a runner, although I don’t love them that much!

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Thank you for this post. I have been really discouraged since the Chicago Marathon this past weekend. I did not get the race time that I wanted, and that I thought that I had trained for. It’s good to put things in perspective and know that there’s always next time, and even great runners have bad days. It’s hard to realize that when everyone is posting about their PR‘s and great race moments. Thanks as always for your encouragement

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Laura.. you are NOT ALONE!! Social media makes racing tough… it seems like we scroll through and see that everyone had an incredible race and we are like what the heck is wrong with me? Not the case… just the people that had a great race are posting! I haven’t had a marathon PR in 8 years!! Those good races will come and thank goodness we love the training along the way! You are amazing and congrats on Chicago!

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Happy Birthday to your nephew! 15 is a big one! And I really like your big bike, Brooke. How perfect that your parents will have a treadmill for winter. I have an elliptical machine and it’s a lifesaver when it’s icy out.

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I was in the room when my 1st nephew was born too! I was 8 and now he’s 28!! So weird. I cannot believe that he’s a grown man. He will always be a baby in my mind.

I ran hills in the dark this morning with my husband and 3 other guys. My hubby and one guy made a turn while I and the 2 other guys kept running. They did 4.5 and we did 6 and they thought we were lost and were starting to get worried. I was more worried that we lost them.

My best PR was ran 2 years ago (I had one this year but it was downhill so I don’t really count that) and it was the only 1/2 I did that year. I was running tons of shorter speed with my high school cross country kids in the heat of the afternoon and I swear that made the difference!

If I could anything right this second, it would probably be hot chocolate with marshmallows.

I typically try and run hills at least twice a week.

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Oh 34 sounds nice right now…..going for a long run this pm and it is 80…..eek!
My run thoughts range from what I need to do this week to what I want to drink after my run to how it could ever be cold in Tennessee because it is so freakin hot.
My prs have always come from good cool temps and positive thoughts……..over thinking the race never helps.
I would eat really cheesy doughy pizza with pineapple and avocado….sounds so good!
I run hills probably once a week.

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I would love to know some of your thoughts from your last run… share away, however random they might be!!!
“agghh my legs are so dead (speed workout day after a tempo work). spin legs, spin! go go go! – – – did i make a negative split (cool i did! boo i didn’t)”

What has set the AMAZING races/prs apart for you? Besides the training plan… what were the things that either held you back or brought out the best for you on race day?
uh have yet to accomplish that? things that held me back are negative thoughts that i can’t push and that i shouldn’t. brought out the best? mostly just keep pushing, enjoy the scenery a bit, ok now PUSH.

If you could eat anything in the entire world right this second, what would it be?
nutella and a butter biscuit

How often do you include hills on your runs?
all the time. 100 ft typically, sometimes 50 ft.

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I used to have a kiddie spin bike!! My dad fixed the wheels of my regular bike on wooden blocks, and I would spin next to my Mom! I absolutely loved it.

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I am not even pregnant and there are days when vegetables just don’t happen LOL!

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Interesting. I was listening to a podcast the other day saying that if your race times aren’t reflecting your workout times, it may have to do with your aerobic base. They suggested Heart Rate training (or the MAF method)….I’m not a huge fan of that personally – more #’s to gage, but interesting.

I need to check out that podcast.

Your Mom is looking lean!

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I am so jealous of your temperatures right now!! My last thought was this morning how it felt great that it was 69* at 4:30 in the morning instead of 78* which it was yesterday–and of course it was my short run day because I had to go in to work early!
I do hills only once a week in my treadmill class because we have no hills here in Florida–just bridges by the beach! I wish I knew what was different when I PR’d because I can’t seem to get close anymore! Oh and my dad went to college with Phil Jackson–played basketball together! Have a great day!

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