I’m starting to think there is something about running half marathons in the Lehigh Valley that does my hamstrings in – barely finished this one and in a ton of pain due to cramping. Crossed the finish line at 15 seconds over 3 hours, fell on the ground and needed medical support to get the cramping to stop. Not my best run by any means, but I wasn’t stopping until I crossed the finish. The weather wasn’t bad, and it was a picturesque race down the D&L Heritage Trail. Starting up at Northern Lehigh High School in Slatington, we headed out for the first two miles through the town, including a pretty brutal hill at Mile 2. The rest of the race took us on the trail by the Lehigh River all the way back to Northampton.
2017 D&L Half Marathon complete – and I had a welcoming crew at the finish!
Last year, I decided to walk home as a way to get some extra miles in preparation for Dopey. This time, I had the rest of the family including our dog Holly waiting for me at the finish. After picking up some food at the post-race buffet, it was a nice relaxing car ride home. Now to figure out the cramping issues so this doesn’t happen in 2017… or for that little Dopey Challenge coming up in 2 more months!
Grand Slam COMPLETE! 4 days – 4 races – 26.2 miles! This is nowhere near what I’ll be doing at WDW in January (Dopey Challenge) but it’s a nice warm-up. The half marathon is the finale of the Runner’s World weekend. Today the back-to-back days of running finally caught up to me, and I was stiff and sore at the start. I’ve been through this race before, so I knew what to expect, even with some minor course changes. There are some monster hills, so I figured why not walk those and not burn out too much. Overall, my time was right around the 3 hour mark, pretty much what I expected. The trail run from Friday night is what really caught up with me, and I could tell from the new sore muscles I had. Race temps were a little chilly, but warm enough that a long-sleeve tech shirt was all I needed.
Runner’s World Half Marathon Complete!
Looking back at this weekend, I am almost 99% sure I will do this again in 2017. Free race pictures doesn’t hurt either. While the back-to-back-to-back running caught up with me, it was a good challenge and warm-up for Dopey. I also had the chance to try out some new pacing strategies, which should come in handy over the next few months. My only gripe is that I wish the medals were a little bigger – the half medal is the biggest of the bunch. Memo to Runner’s World – a little variety wouldn’t hurt next year!
4 Races – 4 Medals – 26.2 GRAND SLAM Miles!
Today was the Runner’s World Five and Dime, or the 5K and 10K back to back. Of course, being that I was doing the Grand Slam (still not sure why I am doing it) that meant running these two races with a short break in between. The 5K starts at 8:00am with the 10K starting at 9:30am – the real trick is not cooling down and getting stiff in between the runs. I ran a pretty decent 5K, taking it easy and trying not to burn out. My 10K time was considerably slower, as it has been the last two years. Races temperatures weren’t too bad, but when the wind picks up over the one big bridge that we cross, it makes things a little less fun. Two races – two medals – 9.3 miles! My friend Tom ran the 10K, and pulled off a respectable time of his own. After the race, it was back to the car, home for a shower and some serious rolling to get ready for the half tomorrow morning.
10K Finished! (Can you tell I look tired from the back to back races?)
Tom (10K) and Nick (5K/10K) – RW Finishers!
Earlier today, I completed my first timed trail run as part of the Runner’s World Half and Festival Weekend in Bethlehem. The trail run kicked off the weekend with a 3.4 mile “jog” around South Mountain. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but figured it couldn’t be that bad given that the festival is geared to runners of all abilities. Suffice it to say, this was a tough, technical course. There were a few spots where I actually slowed down to a crawl because of unstable footing. We took a shuttle bus to the starting line, where one of the RW staff discussed how trail running is different than street running. Of course, some of the prep items he suggested many of us didn’t have.
Trail Running – 3.4 miles of the Grand Slam weekend!
Elaina and Alex – 2016 Runner’s World Kids’ Race Finishers!
The run itself was pretty fun and challenging, although I will forever hate the 200+ ft. climb right at the end of the run. Not the way I ever want to have to finish a race. I’m still amazed at how quickly the seasoned trail runners completed the course, but I still think I ended with a respectable time. The best part – pizza and snacks at the finish. Later in the evening, my kids both completed the RW Kids’ Race and earned their medals. Next up – the 5K and 10K tomorrow morning back-to-back and then the half on Sunday. Here’s hoping my body survives! (Dopey 2017 is on the horizon is less than three months, so it has to survive!)
It wasn’t pretty by any means – 85 degrees and 75% humidity at the race start. 6.2 miles of running in a thick soup, not much shade for the second half of the race, and a nasty monster hill at Mile 2. Suffice it to say, my overall times suffered (1:25 10K), but I survived and crossed the finish line. I felt like I ran through a monsoon with the amount of sweat dripping off my clothes. The Run Wild event at the Lehigh Valley Zoo is a great time no matter what, and it benefits all the animals that the zoo brings in to protect and help them live out the rest of their lives in a safe, secure environment.
2016 Run Wild at LV Zoo 10K COMPLETE!
Week 1 of 22 Minute Hard Corp completed! Actually, I started Wednesday of the week before, so I got a bit of a head start and duplication of that first week, but it turned out to be a good move. After a week of these intense workouts, I’m shocked to see some rapid progress. I’m not a bit fan of burpees or pull-ups, but the routines have you do both throughout. With the short duration of the workouts, it’s pedal to the floor from the start, and by the end, I am soaking wet with sweat. It gets the heart pumping, and burns a bunch of calories in a short period of time.
I haven’t ran much during this week, mostly due to the higher intensity of the workouts. I’ll give it one more week, and get back into some lighter runs. Hopefully, the muscle and strength/conditioning gains form 22MHC translate over into better and more efficient running.
Not much more needs to be said than that… hopefully today is a day that everyone relaxes but also remembers why it exists in the first place. There’s too much hatred throughout our world and even within our own nation. Also, let’s not forget our furry friends who might be scared when the fireworks go off. Today is the day when the highest number of pets go missing – let’s take some time to comfort them since they may be thinking the world is coming to an end. Celebrate safe everyone!
Happy Birthday America!
Decided to start a new workout program… as a past user of the Beachbody P90X series, Tony Horton introduced a military bootcamp-style workout called 22 Minute Hard Corp. Each of the workouts is 22 minutes, but they are pretty much continuous circuit-training style rounds. After Day 1, which included the Cardio 1 workout followed by a 10-minute Core 1 workout, I’m feeling it already. Never thought I would get that hard of a workout in just a short time. We’ll see how the rest of the week goes with this program… but it’s a nice opportunity to take a few days break from running to give my knees a chance to rest, while still putting in quality workout time. More to come as I progress through the program.
22 Minute Hard Corp Banner
WARNING – graphic/painful photo below. You’ve been warned!
I can’t seem to catch a break, first illness creeps in to curtail my training, and now I manage to bust up my toe trying to navigate my daughter’s Home Alone-style bedroom. Stepping on little plastic things is not good, but especially for any type of running. Now my little toe is all sorts of colors, and the big question #Broken or #NotBroken? Can’t really put much pressure on it, but if it is broken doctors probably won’t do much more than tape it anyway. So back to the drawing board I go waiting for this thing to heal. Luckily, I got some quality runs in this past week.
So, you be the judge, #Broken or #NotBroken? Either way, it’s #NoRunning for me!
#Broken or #NotBroken
With a nice easy 3.1 mile run to try and get back into training a regular summer training program. Kinda scary to think that Dopey is only a little over six months away, and this time, I need to be in better shape physically and mentally. 4 days, 48.6 miles, finishing with the 2017 WDW Marathon!