St. George 1/2 Marathon Recap!

The St. George Marathon has been happening since 1977, but this was the first year they included a half-marathon option.  Since the first time I did this marathon in 2014, this race has been my favorite race, and the half is pretty incredible too.

Welcome to my 5,000th picture on my blog where you see my pain face.  

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I went to bed at 9 pm on Friday and didn’t move the entire night until my alarm went off.  It was the best night of pre-race sleep that I have ever experienced.  We had pasta and breadsticks the night before and then for breakfast I had a bagel with jam and one of those honey stinger waffles.  I woke up and fed Beck (still breastfeeding!), and then he went right back down, and my friend Kodi drove us to the busses.  

The things we do for racing…

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I met my friend Caroline (she was also running the half-marathon ((I refuse to call it the MINI Marathon haha… there is nothing mini about 13.1 miles)), and we sat around until about 5:45.  We used the restrooms and then did a mile warm-up before dropping off our bags with our sweats.  I switched into my Hyperion Elites (did the warm-up in the ghosts), and then we lined up.  

I do have a race complaint…  the race started at 6:15 (the marathon started at 7).  It was pitch dark outside.  I couldn’t see a thing on the road for the first 4 miles, and I almost tripped multiple times.  Hoping next year they can light up the streets, push back the starting time, tell us to bring a headlamp (there were one or two people with them on, but everyone else was in my same position), or give out tiny flashlights.  It was a new experience for me (and maybe I should have just known to bring one!), but I hope that is fixed for next year.  Oh, and I would have used my phone flashlight, but I ended up just bringing an old phone that doesn’t have a flashlight on it because I didn’t even think about it being dark!

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It was very cold and you know I hate cold hands so I used old socks and put hand warmers in them… this way I didn’t have to worry about tossing nice gloves when it got warmer.

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My friend Caroline and I planned on running the race together but made it clear that if someone was feeling good, they needed to zoom ahead.  

I wanted a 1:19:59, so we went out at a sub 1:20 pace.  My plantar felt amazing, and so did everything else (besides being in the dark).  We did a bit of chatting and focused on our splits and saying positive things to each other every few minutes.  I LOVE having somebody to run with.  It is a total game-changer for me, and I was so grateful to have her.  We averaged a pace on track for that 1:19 (some good downhills brought our average down).  

At mile 6ish we have a pretty good hill to climb, and that’s when my plantar flared up pretty hot.  I was SO SO bummed.  I felt like 1:19 was in my reach because overall, I was feeling so good.  I hung with Caroline until about mile 8.5, and then I just couldn’t take the plantar hurting at the pace we were going and dropped down my speed.  Once again, this is an injury that I’ve been told I’m okay to keep running through if I want, and I didn’t feel like I was making it worse by continuing to the finish, so it just turned into survival mode. 

I took one gel at mile 7 (I love the Citrus Clif gels so much) and water at most aid stations along the way.  I held fourth place until the final 200 meters, and a girl zoomed by me SO fast.  

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Now that the race (and the school race ha) is over, my full attention is directed at getting rid of this plantar problem because I miss that smooth feeling that you get when your body is feeling injury-free.   I am very grateful that I was able to run the race and not feel a thing for the first 6 miles!

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I was very happy with a 5th place finish and some prizes!  1:22:10 with some positive splits—> 6:16, 6:05, 5:59, 6:03, 6:08, 6:25, 6:05, 5:53, 6:26, 6:18, 6:25, 6:29 & 6:41.

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The highlight of the day was seeing my friend Kodi finish FIRST.  It was her first marathon, and she set a course record of 2:32.  We all stayed together for the weekend, and she treated my kids like gold, and she is so humble and good at cheering everyone else like they won first place.  My kids were so sad to say goodbye to her on Saturday!

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The Runner’s Corner crew did amazing!

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The post-race scene is my favorite.  I could (and do) stay there for hours talking to people.

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Another marathoner that crushed it.  

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Always a good day when you get to run a race!

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Shout out to Andrew for supporting me so much in everything I do. He made the whole weekend seamless for me, and I get so excited to see him at the finish line.  

PS the finish area has a huge park which makes it perfect for kids.

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These three are incredible cheerleaders.

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I was very happy that Andrew had the stroller because of my foot afterward.

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And really, the best post-race food ever… Great Harvest slices of bread with water.  It was exactly what I needed…

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Along with a soda;)  Already excited for next year.

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Tell me the best part of your weekend?

When you run in the dark… What sort of light do you use?

What do you do with your race medals, bibs and shirts?

What is your favorite time of day for a race to start?

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63 comments

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Great job!! You were only a couple minutes off your goal, even with plantar pain- that’s amazing!! I prefer earlier races- my half next week starts at 8:45 which feels sooooo late.

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Thank you friend! I can’t wait for your half next weekend but they definitely need to start a little earlier. Enjoy your taper!

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Congrats on your race, Janae!!! I’m sorry your plantar flared up (so frustrating) but super impressive time and finish nonetheless!!

Best part of my weekend – I raced the Hot Chocolate 15K here in Denver and finished first in my age group and 6th female overall!! Was super proud of myself because 1.) this past marathon training cycle has been AWFUL for me and 2.) I’ve also been dealing with a nagging running injury (good ol pirformis). Was happy to get out there and see that my speed still exists!!

Keep celebrating, rest up, and have a great week!!! Sending some healing vibes your way!!

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HEY ARTHI! Thank you so much:). Hot chocolate 15k… next year I am flying out for that. YOU CRUSHED IT! I am really sorry about your pirformis and about this training cycle for you. Keep me updated with how you are doing, you are amazing and that speed is still there!

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Yay! So happy for you that you got to run this race, and do so well. But I’m sorry about the foot- I definitely feel your frustration. I’m still dealing with mine as well. The thing I’ve learned about PF is that everyone has their own miracle cure, which only seems to work for them. But everyone figures it out eventually. I’m going to try a new doctor (a podiatrist who’s also a runner- I have a good feeling about this one!) and I’ll let you know anything I find out.
Hope you’re able to relax and enjoy your recovery. Have a great day!

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HEY JENNY! I am really sorry that you are still dealing with your PF too. That is what I am finding too about it… I’ve heard so many different things and I can’t wait for one to work for you and me. Good luck with your new doctor and thank you for letting me know what he says. We’ve got this and we are going to be so happy to get back to running when we can. Thanks friend, you too!

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Great race!!!!!!!!! That is an awesome time! I can’t believe how fast you are with an injury.

The best part of my weekend was my race. I did a 15K in 1:18:18. Before my training was interrupted by bronchitis and pulling a chest muscle, I was at a point where i believe I would have finished in 1:12. I reset my goal for 1:21 and beat it!! I’m so happy. It doesn’t hurt things that my dad was there cheering me on at the finish and I won the masters! Granted it was a small race but it meant a lot. I got a peanut butter cream filled doughnut at the finish line. Usually, i get sick at the finish line and my stomach hurts so bad i can’t stand up. This is the first time I had a doughnut right away. I think that’s the key. I’m stopping at the bakery on my way to every race from now on and getting a doughnut for the finish line. I won a $10 gift card to the local sporting goods store, $50, and a really nice camel back water bottle. The entry fee was only $55. I made a profit on this race!
Have a great day! Enjoy basking in the glory of the awesome race you ran!

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Hey Lee! Thank you so so much. YOU DID IT and you crushed your goal. You’ve been through a lot during this training cycle and you did so so well. I love that your dad was there and you WON MASTERS! That is a huge accomplishment and enjoy the prizes, you deserve them. So inspired by you and happy that you were able to get that doughnut in, your stomach cooperated. Happy Monday!

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Wow what a race! Looks like you had fun, well, at least for 8 miles. You’re so speedy. I hope your plantar heals up soon, usually mine dies down after a while but my worst bout, I had to go no running and minimal walking for about 3 weeks after my last race of the season. I hope yours is a little more mild, it is not fun to run and feel like you are stepping on a sharp boulder with each footstrike.

That looks like some pretty sweet post race food, at the race I did yesterday, they had fun size candy bars available because it’s Halloween season. I very much approved.

When I run in the dark, I like to use a chest lamp – it’s a little vest-like thing – because head lamps always have me tilting my head down to try to get light on the ground. Not so with the chest lamp! Plus I can pair it with a visor or hat without issue.

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YES, those first miles all felt like heaven! ‘Sharp boulder with each footstrike’… you couldn’t describe it better than that. Way to go on your race yesterday and you know I approve of that post-race treat too. Time to get a chest lamp… that sounds perfect. Happy Monday friend!

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Congrats on your face!! Even with your plantar problems that you have been having thats very impressive time! I hope they fix the lighting for the future races.
A question about the Madewell jeans you shared on Friday – did you size down 1 or 2 sizes from your usually Jean size?

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Not face…RACE haha but think you know what I meant;)

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Hahaha I think my pain face deserves a congrats too! I went down a size but they are still loose which I love but I was thinking of getting another pair two sizes down too. Have the best day and let me know what you think of them!

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Congrats on an amazing time in your half marathon!

The best part of my weekend was running the virtual London Marathon! On Saturday I bent down for something and my back went – it was so painful and I didn’t know whether I’d be able to run at all on Sunday. Thought I’d try, the first mile was very painful and slow and then it eased and got better and better. I think my relief that I was able to run, along with the sunshine and lovely route made it possibly my most enjoyable marathon ever.

The only downside was that I ran so much faster than I expected to, that I made it to the finish before any of the friends I had arranged to meet me!

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Thank you Helen! CONGRATS on your virtual London Marathon. You are amazing and I love that you ran it way faster than you were planning on… you are so fit. So happy you were able to get out for some sunshine on Sunday too, just the best. Congrats and have the best Monday.

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Acupuncture totally cured my plantar fasciitis several years ago!

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I’m going to try that this week… thank you! I AM DESPERATE. I had to hobble straight to the hot tub this morning because it was so bad. I hope your day is a beautiful one and that plantar never comes your way again. Thanks Julie!

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Have you looked into a steroid injection?
It can provide several weeks of relief even though it’s not a cure.
PS Im an MD who loves reading your blog ever since I was in med school and Brooke wasn’t even born!

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Melly, I have been wondering about that. I’m craving some relief at this point and maybe with that I can get in more stretching that my body is just not allowing?! THANK YOU for reading over the years… that means a lot. I might come to you for more questions if that is okay. Congrats to you and what you have accomplished!

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Yes – any questions you have I will answer!
And thank YOU for the years of uplifting content! Your blog is always my happy place no matter what stressful situation I dealing with in life.
If you can see my email you are welcome to email me directly.

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Great job at your half marathon – you’re right, there’s nothing “mini” about it! You inspire me with your drive and determination to always do better, even if you’re struggling with an injury.

I ran a half marathon with one of my friends on Saturday. This is the 6th one I’ve done and really wanted to focus less on the time and more on running the race together. My friend was running really slow, especially as it got hotter later in the morning, so she gave me the green light to speed ahead. During the race I vowed to never do this again, but I’m already looking at future half’s lol….and maybe a marathon. :)

Have a great day and congrats again!

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I don’t think the word mini should be associated with any race no matter what the length haha. CONGRATS ON YOUR HALF this last Saturday! SIXTH! Hahaha we all do that don’t we… I’m never doing this again and then we sign up for the next one right away. Keep me updated with what is next for you. Thanks Terese and have the best day!

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Congratulations on the race and I hope your plantar will start feeling better soon! That’s so frustrating- I’ve been there too when you think something will be fine for a race and it just starts to ache non stop :( always makes me so sad but there’s always another race to run in the future (or so I tell myself in those dark moments)! Those medals are so beautiful too!!

Best part of the weekend was going on a long bike ride with my husband! There’s a trail call the American Tobacco Trail that goes from my town of Apex all the way to Durham, and my goal is to bike the whole thing this year! We keep doing sections of it and I think pretty soon we’ll be able to give the whole thing a go!

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Thanks Gretchen! ALWAYS another race in the future, thank you for reminding me of that. I am so happy you two got out for that long bike ride together, sounds perfect and I can’t wait to hear about you two doing the whole thing together. Keep me updated and have a beautiful day!

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Amazing job!! Planter troubles and all! The race itself looks like so much fun. Now you can have some downtime, and rest, yay.
I run in the dark often, but don’t have a headlamp or anything. So, I stick to well lit streets until the sky gets lighter. I also love when races start early, but maybe not when it’s still so dark.
Congratulations again!! Hope your Monday is fantastic! 😊

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I really need you to come do St. George one year:). Wouldn’t that be fun?! Well lit streets are so helpful for early morning runners! I hope your day is a beautiful one, thanks Wendy!

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You are so amazing!!! I’m doing virtual Boston this Saturday and I am ready for it to be here already. So much training to get to this point. I’m not fast by any means so this is the only
way I could get to do “Boston”. I’m proud of determination and my training….2020 was a strange year for everyone plus I had arthroscopic hip surgery to repair a torn left hip labrum so I was on crutches for 6 weeks and didn’t run from Feb 8 until July 29……then I trained and did a virtual half marathon in Nov and now here I am doing a full. Proud of myself!!!

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Hey Peggi! AHHH I am cheering so loud for you. You are incredible. YOU ARE DOING BOSTON and you are doing this after hip surgery?! You inspire me. Keep being proud of yourself, you are incredible.

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You are amazing!! Congrats!

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Thanks Jen! I hope your day is a beautiful one:)

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Congrats Janae!! I was thinking about you Saturday and channeling your speed during my race! You are so motivating!
I finished/slayed my first Half Ironman in a monsoon in Memphis! Finished with a 6:26! And chafed beyond belief while still being bummed I completely missed the field of bison I ran last twice apparently.

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YOU DID IT! CONGRATULATIONS on your first Half Ironman. YOU ARE AMAZING. Seriously, so impressed. I hope your chafing heals up soon. I have ran past moose without noticing haha. Thanks for letting me know how it went… recover well!

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Congrats on a great race!! SO speedy!! I hope you are able to resolve your plantar issues soon. And congrats to your friend Kodi ! That is an incredible marathon debut.

Best part of my weekend was running and biking and spending quality time with my loves..partner and dog lol. And movie nights :)

Have a great day Janae!

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Thank you Kristine, I have a good feeling that things will heal up quickly. Your weekend sounds perfect, I am so happy for you! Thanks friend, you too!

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Hi Janae,
Great job on your run! So sorry about the plantar-I am sure you will get it under control!

Headlamps are my jam! I used to run with a really lightweight Petzl-but I recently discovered the Quokka.

https://www.amazon.com/KNOG-Quokka-Run-LED-Headlamp/dp/B07YNX9X4F/ref=mp_s_a_1_4?dchild=1&keywords=quokka+headlamp&qid=1633356934&sr=8-4

No joke, it is super light, very bright, and rechargeable with a USB port. Best running purchase I made this summer!
Have a great day.

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PURCHASING!! That looks amazing and for such a great price. Thank you so much!

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Congrats!! A fifth is amazing! And with your foot and all.
I raced it too (my first race after 3 years) and thought the same thing with the dark! I had enough people around me that I could make my way, but those rumble strips in the dark… risky!

I ran with a friend and we made our way with run 9 minutes, walk one, and that worked out well for us. Until the last mile- I was really beat! But my friend stayed with me. We weren’t out for time, so it was very sweet that she did. Now my quads are very sore and going down stairs is quite the sight, Ha ha .

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Amazing time Janae! I’m sad that I was too beat up after the St. George marathon in 2019 to enjoy the food because that bread looks so good :)

The Phoenix/Mesa Marathon is really dark too!

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Congratulations on a great race, Janae!

Weekend highlight = teaching the minister’s wives from our church. Our pastor’s wife is the only one older than me, so being able to share with younger women is very fulfilling (and exhausting!)

I have 2 things I use for running/walking/cycling in the dark – these USB rechargeable lights (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07QW8Y6C9/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1) and this vest (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08BX51MCL/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1) I clip the lights on the vest – 2 solid clear on the front, 1 blinking red on the back. I prefer this vest because it doesn’t add an extra layer so I don’t mind wearing it in Hawaii.

My medals are scattered here and there, I don’t usually keep my race bibs, and I wear the shirts for working out.

I don’t like starting a race in the dark, but I do prefer as early as possible. The Honolulu Marathon starts at 5:00 a.m. and it’s dark for the first 90 minutes.

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Hi Janae! Congratulations on an awesome race! I can totally relate how something flares up (nothing major I mean)during a race and you might need to slow down but your body just pushes through. When I ran the Disney Princess half marathon a few years ago all of a sudden my hamstring cried out at mile 8, but I just slowed down and I was fine. Just made sure I did lots of stretching afterward. This is the race I thought of when you talked about running in the dark. That race is in February and has to start super early to be done by the time the parks open. Even that I knew all of this, I just didn’t think about it being so dark!. Those roads between the Disney parks can get quite dark. They have lots of entertainment during the race but there are stretches with NOTHING. Luckily the race is so large and I am not fast so there were plenty of people around me with lights! Phew! Have a great day and enjoy your recovery!

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You did so great, congrats!!!!!

I prefer a 7 am start…..not too early, but with a half you are done before it’s too hot. Maybe a 6 am start for a marathon would be good.

This morning I ran before work (I don’t do this, like not even once a week, but occasionally it is the only time I have to run) and while it’s not my favorite because my paces are slower and I don’t like the dark, it was nice. I did realize though that I almost stepped on roadkill……no street lights…….I think I would have puked if that happened, luckily I saw it in time!

I keep my race shirts, but mostly for sleeping in, not running in. I have my bibs in a notebook with dates and times, and I have my medals on a rack by my treadmill.

I am jealous of that Great Harvest bread…….yum!!!

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I love my flip belt lite! I don’t like the idea of headlamps for numerous reasons. The flip lite is super brite and was reasonable priced.

Great race!!! You are always an inspiration!

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That is an AMAZING finish for spending literally over half of your run with a plantars flare-up. And what a way to get back to racing after such a long break (made longer because of COVID)–hard things, a great push, self-awareness, community, family, and your favorite race at the distance that is best for you for right now. Maybe not 1:19, but still SO AMAZING!!!

What a tough thing to start your run in the dark. I hope next year that there IS more visibility!!!!!

And now–the road to healing that PF! :) And another day, another chance to see what the next goal is, to listen for the next challenge to take on. I hope today is a really great one!!

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Hi Janae! Awesome recap and congratulations on placing and not giving up because of plantar issues! What an inspiration! Have a good recovery!

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Congrats on your amazing finish. Here’s to working towards that next goal … I love that your family is so supportive of your dreams, those cheerleaders are the cutest!

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Janae! You are so incredible. I was SO hoping to see you at the finish. :( Maybe one of these days. You make me want to move to Utah so I can run with you and all your fast friends. How amazing that your friend won the marathon and set a course record! SO FLIPPIN’ COOL! Ahh!

St George is truly such a spectacular race. I didn’t realize this was the first year they did the half. Running in the dark sounds pretty tough – good job not tripping! I am still on cloud 9 over here. And I still hang onto the mantra you gave me in my last race – BE STUBBORN WITH YOUR GOALS. :) Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d run a 2:53 on Saturday – but I did! Gotta love that course!

Huge hugs to you! xx

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You are beyond incredible. I am just so amazed by you. I would be so happy to train with you… so please move to utah! Please. Please. 2:53!!!!!!!!!!

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Hi Janae! Congrats on your race!! Which watch do you run with? I’m in the market for a new one and trying to decide between Garmin or coros!

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HEY MEGAN! I have never tried Coros because I just love Garmin so so much. I have the Garmin Fenix Pro 6 and absolutely love it… it does everything I need! Here is my full review. I hope it helps… here is the link:

https://hungryrunnergirl.com/2019/11/garmin-fenix-6-review.html

Have a beautiful day and let me know if you have any questions!

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Awesome job, congrats!!!
I also don’t like the “mini marathon” name, I know it’s a small thing but it does annoy me for the same reason you explained. Oh well, not a big deal, right?
I didn’t get to run either distance this year and watching everyone else had a great time made me a bit sad but so inspired by so many amazing runners.
I did go with my husband to the Michael Buble concert so at least I wasn’t a home feeling sorry for myself ! 😜🤣

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Way to go girl!! Idk if you mentioned it already but can you share which sunglasses you ran the race in? I love them!

As for PF, I’ve struggled with it since last October/November. I’d say I’m about 95% right now which I’ll take! My advice to you is to cut wayyyy back, eliminate speed work, run every other day( I’m talking like 3-4 miles) ice, heat, and PT. I worked with a coach who helped me hold back and recover. I also went to PT and was diligent about my exercise. Unfortunately it’s a long road to full recovery but I can attest it’s worth it. I was an emotional roller coaster when I couldn’t run, but it was a really good learning experience for me. I realized I was holding running way too high in my list and using it as a way to handle other areas of my life that needed attention! Hope this helps you in some way!! Happy Monday :-)

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HEY JESSICA! I should have included them! Here they are, https://shopstyle.it/l/byrhh

I am SO sorry you have struggled with PF for so long but so good to hear that you are 95% better. Thank you SO much for all of those tips, I’m definitely going to do that. I miss running already but want to be running happy. Thanks for the help and I might need you to encourage me along the way haha. Thanks friend, you too!

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Hi Janae,
I’ve been reading your blog since before Brooke was born so I feel like I know you! My daughter and I ran the St George mini marathon on Saturday. We were both dealing with foot injuries so our training was sub par. We decided to walk it with one minute of running every half mile. It worked out great even though it took us over 3 hours. As I was coming into the finish I noticed a cute girl that looked familiar. I realized it was Brooke along with your whole family! I was in the finishers chute and saw you hugging the women’s marathon winner. I thought all the cameras were for me, haha! Congratulations on your awesome finish. By the way, I swear by Hoka shoes to help with plantar.

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BETSY!! AHHHH congrats to you and your daughter. I am so sorry about the feet problems but happy you were able to be there on Saturday taking in the amazing course. Oh i wish I could have given you a hug. That was a special moment when I first saw my friend and hugged her:). Off to get some Hokas (do you wear them just for running or all day to help?)

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Both my husband and I have suffered with plantar problems. I wear them just for running. My husband also swears by Good Feet inserts and Hokas. Good luck finding a solution. Looks like you are getting lots of suggestions.

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Why are those races so early? Usually races I do are 8 am start! That’s wild!

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Also, so your plantar didn’t hurt as bad when you backed off the pace a bit?

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Hey Mary! It did seem to lessen the pain a bit but I just was hurting so bad that I couldn’t even get my legs to get back up to speed if that makes sense. Have the best rest of your day and I really have no idea why they start so early!

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Congratulations! Amazing time!
I start running by 430am/5am so I know what you mean about running in dark. I noticed my time is slower because I’m trying to make sure I don’t trip. Last year I tripped and got all scratched up so I try to avoid sidewalks. I do have a headlight but I hate wearing it, but it works. And wear the noxgear light vest or reflective vest.

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Janae!! You are so fast! Congratulations on a great race. And no offense to whomever told you to continue running on your PF, but I recommend bagging that advice as quick as you can and rest that puppy up so you can get your 1:19 next time! It’s one of those tricky injuries that feels better once you start running, but then you pay for it big time once you stop. I hope you can rest up and heal up quickly. I am absolutely in awe of how far you’ve come in running! <3

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You are amazing!
So I ran the Denver Hot Chocolate 5K & the 15K. I PRd both races with an 8:47/mile in the 5 and a 9:48 in the 15!! Who says we get slower with age?! I beat my 2016 time in the 15k by 5 minutes.
I run with Knuckle Lights and I love them more than any headlamp I’ve ever tried.
Favorite time for a race start – within 20 minutes after sunrise.
PS I bought my very first pair of Brooks tonight! Hyperion Tempo. Excited to run in the morning!

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Wow, major congratulations to you! I am so proud of you for such an inspiring race! Loved reading your recap. Thanks for sharing your journey with us!

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Congrats on your 5th place finish! That is wicked fast!

I also ran the St George half this weekend! It was my first race after having my first baby. He turns 1 this week 🥺 My goal was to break 2 hours, and I ended up finishing 1:47 and negative splitting! I am so happy with the results! The downhills definitely helped. I also hated how dark it was at the start. Hopefully next year they start the race later so we can see the gorgeous scenery!

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