The Philadelphia Half Marathon

Last weekend I met up with my bestest friend from college, A.Jay, in her new hometown for a little run.  Aje and I had initially signed up for the full marathon, but we both dropped down to the half as training went on.  It was my first time in Philadelphia, and Aje sure made sure I fell in love with it! 

Our weekend together included tons of shopping at our favorite stores: West Elm, J.Crew, Anthropologie, and the local farmer’s market.  I even tried on some super awesome PJ’s at J.Crew!

IMG_2870 And lots of awesome food!  My favorite place we went to was Pure Fare, which is a cafe that was started by a nutritionist.  The entire place is gluten free, and it has tons of vegetarian, vegan, and allergy friendly food.  But mostly the whole place is crazy delicious and nutritious.  I fell in love with the Quinoa cranberry muffin and the Kale-Apple smoothie!!

IMG_2888 IMG_2884The race was AMAZING… It was super well organized, especially for a big race: 30,000 people!  The expo was big and overwhelming as expected.  We picked up our packets, bought some matching sweaty bands (pictured above), and got out of there!  The start was less than a mile from A.Jay’s apartment, so we enjoyed a nice walk to the start while we drank our coffee.  We decided to wear matching race outfits AND matching pre-race outfits!  

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The porta-potty lines were long, but they were just the right length because they gave me time to do my pre-race potty dance.

IMG_2873If you’ve ever run a race with me before, you know this is an important part of the process!

The race was well-supported with lots of bathrooms, water, gatorade, and Cliff Shots (eww).  I brought sharkies!  It was chilly, but the temperature ended up feeling great during the race.  What really made this a great race was the AMAZING crowd support.  MILES of this course were lined with people.  Lots and lots of people.  I have never experienced that much enthusiasm at a race.  It made me realize how much I really want to do one of the famous races… mostly I really want to do NYC, which is famous for the crazy crowd support all along the course.

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We had lots of fun!  And we finished in a great time!! I really couldn’t have done this without Aje.  I was really hurting, but she was FULL of energy and speed.  At mile 11, she asked me if I wanted to pick it up for the last stretch.  I was like, “I am picking it up!!!”  I am so glad I held on. 

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This was also the first time I’ve raced in my Vibram Five Fingers.  It went great!  My toes were a little chilly, but not too bad.  I thought about my form quite a bit because I still struggle with heel striking when I get tired, and that really hurts when you aren’t wearing shoes!

IMG_2886 This was my last distance race before my jaw surgery, so I was happy to end the year with a strong half.  Here’s to a healthy resting period, so my leg can repair itself!!  Thanks for a super fun weekend, Aje… and thanks for being my photographer!!


Happy birthday to me!

I love self-gifting!  We’ll see where these babies will take me… after my race this weekend!

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Speaking of places to work…

Braedon and I met Emily for lunch yesterday at Café Yumm, and she just happened to casually invite us to pretend to be her kids at the Nike Employee Store!!! What!!?? Really!? This is like an event that I should have prepared for.  Emily is only 9 years older than me, but she just walked in like she owned the place and said that she was bringing her kids in with her!  lol  FYI Emily is a tiny blonde innocent religious super good girl.  The guy just stopped making eye contact with any of us after she said that, and in we went!

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Dear Nike, some day in the future you will let me into this store without question.  Thanks.

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Well… guess what I snagged half price!?

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No.  I am not in pain.  I am not crying.  I am not barfing.  I was trying to impersonate Vector from Despicable Me saying “Oh Yeah!” Fail…

The Oh yeah was for my new shoes!!!

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LUNARGLIDE + 3!!! Yes… 3!  So far, I love them.  That was after 5 miles in the weird humidity we had today in Portland.

Braed tried to explain to me how dumb I looked in the picture…

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Unfortunately, I didn’t believe him until I just uploaded the pic onto my blog.

My mom was having nothing to do with us…

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I had a fun day with these lovely people, but it is now time for me to head on home to this lovely man…

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He is a QT!!! and I miss him lots… How could you not!!??  I’m flying to the Bay from Portland for the last time in the foreseeable future… CRAZY!


Love/hate with Nike Running

I LOVE Nike.  Sometimes as I get dressed for a run I think about the fact that I look like I’m sponsored by Nike… but I pay them!  (or my mom does)

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WE ARE NIKE!!!

My love for Nike didn’t happen overnight.  Rather, I think it is a result of tons of smaller influences that Nike marketing strategies have had on my life. 

1. My first real soccer team’s uniform was all Nike, so I had to buy Nike stuff to match it, and I got used to the feel and fit of the Nike products.  Soccer socks vary a LOT by brand, and it is so annoying to have your shoe fit differently.  Plus, Mia Hamm was wearing Nike.  

2. Oregon=Nike.  Visiting the Nike campus (athlete heaven) and the 50% off everything employee store would make you want to work at Nike, too.  Plus, you end up with a lot of Nike stuff when it is 50% off! 

3.  Nike products are super fun, colorful and edgy, but they are also really consistent.  There is no way I am going to buy and wear some mystery shorts for a race, but I will buy a new pair of the shorts I already have… in a new color!  The small changes in product design either seriously annoy me or send me head over heels thinking the designers are geniuses. 

Ex.  Tempo shorts… a look at their recent history and evolution.

-Addition of little fabric flap over inner pocket so that your keys don’t fall out! +

-Recent change positioning inner pocket in back rather than in front so that my keys clink-clink on my rear the whole run?  WTF        

It is only recently that I started to wear Nike shoes.  I went through a lot of hip/foot problems with lots of other shoes until I found the Lunarglide+.  Actually, I only tried them on because my mom owned a pair for wearing to the gym (not running), but I didn’t want to wear my running shoes in the pouring rain on a short run the day before a long run.  I tried them and… I loved them! 

Now I still wear my babies (stolen from my mom) every few weeks, but they are pretty beat up from marathon training, and no longer available in stores OR online.  I don’t really like the lunarglide 2.  I have weird foot pains sometimes and shin splints more than ever.  Curse you, Nike… until today, when I got this email…

Introducing the Nike LunarGlide+ 3

To be continued…