More Half-Marathon…Here Already?

Motivation after my marathon to do long runs has been low. Mind you, Chicago was in October but since then I have taken on a very demanding job and started planning my wedding. Running, something that was a huge priority last year, has fallen down on my list.

Now that I’m looking to fit into a wedding dress and look my best I’ve gotten my motivation back. It is now not about a race, or the goal just to finish but really to start a new chapter in my life. I want to on my wedding day feel 100% comfortable with how I look and feel and I know that getting back on a consistent training schedule will be huge in getting me to that goal.

I signed up for More a while ago, even though last year it wasn’t my favorite race. I thought it would keep me on track but instead I’ve been a bit sporadic with my training. I feel strong, however and I’ve done a few runs that have been great so I’m not too nervous but I know this will be nowhere near a PR.

So I’m taking it easy, starting out to my new goal, New York 2010. I’m happy I decided to do this at this point only for the AMAZING gift bag which is pictured above. I also met some great people with Team in Training and I think I’m going to run the Hamptons Half-Marathon in October for Charity!

Good luck to all of the runners tomorrow, stay dry! At least it won’t be 80 degrees like last year!!!

April 23, 2010 at 7:36 pm Leave a comment

Seriously…

I really wish I could keep this blog going like I did last year.

Totally didn’t even update the fact that I ran the Hati Run and rocked it out.

I’ve been doing a lot of cross training and speed work lately.

Oh, also an insane of amount of work. Hoping thatwhen I get more into my training for the MORE Half I’ll update this with a bit more frequency.

Ah, how one’s life gets in the way of blogging.

March 14, 2010 at 4:55 pm Leave a comment

NYRR Gridiron Classic

This being my first NYRR race after the Chicago Marathon I was a bit nervous to say the least. I am working hard on getting my fitness back after being a bit of a loaf for the last few months. I realize that unless I have races to look forward to, it is really hard to motivate myself to get out and run.

This is the beginning of my training for the More Half-Marathon April 25th, 2010. I had a nice filling dinner of whole wheat pasta last night and thankfully got to bed around 10:30pm. This morning I was dropping my dog off at Doggy Daycare (since I’m about to drive to Providence for the day to see a show of my friends) so I didn’t know really how cold it was.

It was freezing. I couldn’t feel my legs, or feet, or well face for the matter and any kind of jumping up and down pre-race was just not helping the situation. Looking at the freezing folks around me I had a moment of zen…”why do we do this to ourselves?” Well, we do it because it keeps us moving…gets us off our butts at 9am to push ourselves. In this case the goal was to get a solid run in before the Superbowl this evening.

To be honest I haven’t been running much. I started out strong, flew up Cat Hill and hit mile 1 running a 9:30. Cold weather always makes me fly in the beginning. Mile 2 I was at a solid 10 and pretty happy with myself considering that I was a bit out of shape.

I made a bad choice and stopped for water. Sadly at that point I also started feeling like I couldn’t breathe. The cold weather hit me hard in mile 3 so I stopped a few times which was a bummed since 4 felt fantastic! In the end I ran it at 11:09 which is about the same as last year (when I had just run a Half-Marathon).

It was cold but I’m so happy I ran the race! Next race is the Run For Haiti Goal for that race is to push myself a bit more and work to start getting my time down.

I’m back! Go Saints! (note that they also won the challenge today when runners got to choose their team at the 102 transverse)

Distance: 4.0 Miles, 6.4 Kilometers
Date/Time: Feb. 7, 2010, 9:00 a.m.
Location: Central Park, NYC
Weather: 17 Degrees, 50% Humidity, Wind 9 MPH, Clear.
Comments: Results from “Who will you root for?” split – SAINTS: 66% COLTS: 34%

February 7, 2010 at 5:54 pm 2 comments

Back to Running….New Goal NYC 2010!

I have been MIA for a while. I didn’t really feel like blogging due to the fact that after attempting to run after my marathon, I decided to take a break. This break included another trip to Chicago, a couple to Arizona and a wedding in Mexico. I drank and ate my weight in food and was super lazy…oops.

Right after the new year I decided to join a new gym, to focus on getting a bit more lean before my next big run. I am happy with my cardiovascular fitness but still am looking to drop a few pounds…

The exciting thing is that I now am back in the saddle when it comes to running. I have signed up for the 2010 NYC Marathon and am scared but really excited to be taking on another challenge. I also am going to slog through the More Half-Marathon again.

I’ve missed NYRR races! Even though its cold its great to have it back as part of a healthy weekend routine! I know that it is going to be a hard few months to get back into running form but I’m excited, sort of feel like 2010 is going to be a great year.

February 7, 2010 at 5:41 pm Leave a comment

Why I Love NYRR

I can’t believe it has been two weeks since I ran Chicago. I got my pictures in the mail today and they are fantastic. I am just starting to run again seriously and it is a bit rough after having two weeks of blissful laziness.

I saw this linked to and I really appreciated Mary Whittenberg’s statement... I am a “plodder” and proud of it. I went from not being able to run a mile to running a full marathon and it was a rough but amazing achievement. Her statements made me proud to be a member of New York Road Runners. I love that they embrace novice runners and help “plodders” like me hopefully become hard-core marathoners. Below is her statement concerning the latest running article in the New York Times.

I love that the New York Times covers running as much as it does. I also love that we can count on the Times to “be at the center of the debate.”

Let me share New York Road Runners’ side of the debate as to whether “plodders” have a place in the marathon. Our answer begins with this: Both the term “plodders” and the question posed miss the essence of the beauty and power of the marathon.

We at NYRR stress the strenuous, demanding nature of the marathon. We don’t say that it’s for everyone. We conduct over 50 events a year from the mile to the marathon, and clinics and classes that ensure we “have a place for every pace.” We promote the marathon as the Mt. Everest of running. In other words, the ultimate goal. One that takes careful and rigorous preparation. But we specifically don’t say – “you’ve got to be fast to do it.”

To us, it’s about conquering the distance and conquering self doubt. The marathon is about dreaming to achieve and putting in all the work to make that dream reality. That quest, and the runner’s ultimate success, routinely changes people’s lives in rich and meaningful ways. Our runners, no matter the pace, typically overcome all kinds of hurdles and challenges to reaching the marathon finish line. It is that ability to persevere that translates to other parts of their lives. Making them stronger and better for the pursuit – well beyond improved physical fitness.

We don’t encourage people to walk the marathon or to take 8 hours to complete it. It is a running event after all. But, it is 26.2 miles – a huge challenge – no matter how fast you are. Ask most marathoners – we’ve all been humbled by the distance at some point. It tends to make us appreciate the efforts of others. Most faster runners I know have a great deal of respect for slower runners (it is tough to be out there longer) and vice versa (it’s “incredible” how fast “they” run).

The marathon is not easy. I am a pretty serious runner. Though occasionally tempted, I haven’t run a marathon in 15 years. I know what it takes, and I know what it takes out of you. There is no debate about how hard it is. So it’s okay – you need to walk a little? Then walk a little. Do what it takes to accomplish the goal of finishing, and be smart about it too. In NYC, our roads reopen at a rolling 6½ hour marathon. We score at the finish until 8 hours, because sometimes folks have a really tough day. They don’t plan on 8 hours, but it happens. And, we are pleased to host the largest contingent of disabled athletes of any major marathon, and the extra time helps them too. We are fortunate – with our final miles largely inside Central Park rather than on the streets – that we can offer this possibility.

On Sunday, November 1, we’ll host 40,000 runners from around the world. We’ll celebrate our superhuman champions who cross the finish line first, stand in awe of all of those that break the coveted 3 hour mark, high five those who qualify for Boston and cheer those that crack the formidable 4 hour barrier. Then you can bet we’ll welcome – with open arms and a hard earned medal – each of our finishers who, despite the challenges, cross our rarified finish line.

A marathoner is a marathoner regardless of time. Virtually everyone who tries the marathon has put in training over months, and it is that exercise and that commitment, physical and mental, that gives meaning to the medal, not just the day’s effort, be it fast or slow. It’s all in conquering the challenge. Ask any marathoner you meet in NYC on Monday, November 2.

– Mary R. Wittenberg

You ask me… it is worth it.

October 27, 2009 at 3:51 am Leave a comment

PMD

I call it Post Marathon Depression. I need to start running again. I did a bit of a recovery run but I’ve been such a lazy sack this weekend. I have been so focused on “Chicago!” that now that it is done I’m left a bit overwhelmed with all of my projects coming up rather than geared up and focused.

I have two jobs, three if you count auditioning as a job. I am planning a bunch of wine events currently that start in a few weeks. I know that once they start happening and I successfully run an event on my own I’ll be a lot less stressed about the whole situation.

I’m also starting wine school tomorrow!!!! So really a lot of amazing things are happening right now. To be honest, I think the blues are mainly coming from the fact that the weather has just gotten so nasty all of a sudden. I thought the cold weather would stay in Chicago but it is here in New York…BOO! I wish I could say it more eloquently but BOO!

I missed Arizona this weekend a lot. I missed my dad and my mom. I know that I’ll get used to this fall weather and start running again and feel a lot better. I also realized last night, after some heavy drinking and late-night eating, that I am not that party animal anymore and I am ok with it. As “adult” as it sounds I’d rather have a couple drinks with friends, go home and watch a movie with my dog so I can have a productive weekend rather than blizting my brains out and eating a lamb gyro at 2am. (not that that happened…oh wait…it did).

I’m so excited for the next few weeks. Starting school, a couple of wine events (that i’m leading ahhhhh!), trip to Chicago for the Northwestern 5 Year Reunion, NU Football, and cheering on my friends at the New York Marathon.

Oh wait. Feeling better already. Debbie downer needs to go put on her puffy coat to go see her running buddy David and tell him all about her race 1 week ago!

October 18, 2009 at 10:38 pm Leave a comment

Chicago Marathon Finisher!

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Well, ladies and gentlemen I did it. Photo above is from Mile 3. I was VERY excited to be running. Actually, even though I did have some rough parts…I pretty much had this goofy smile on my face the whole time.

It wasn’t easy. I woke up at 5am to get out the nerves and get some food in my tummy. I looked at the weather and realized that not only was it cold, it was below freezing. Thankfully I put all of my layers on which were a bit aggressive and left my boyfriends place at 6:20. It was crazy to see so many runners, walking around in strange amounts of layers, trying to stay warm and get themselves pumped up for the big race.

Here is my “stay warm before the race outfit.” Note the disposable jacket, old sweatpants, gator and fleece hat over my running baseball cap. IMG_1135

I found the porta potties which thankfully didn’t have the crazy lines I experienced at the PF Chang’s Half-Marathon and got into my corral at 7am. I was a bit early but I made some friends and realized I was in the wrong pace group but I thought I could easily slow down as the race started. Bad idea.

The race began and I flew for the first mile. Seeing the crowds was amazing and I was so cold that I couldn’t feel my body. By the time I hit mile 3 I was running way faster than I should have been. About at 11m/m and I should have calmed myself down but alas, I did not. I got to see my mom and boyfriend though soon after and got jazzed up to run the north “loop” partially because I heard that the crowds were great and Boystown was super festive. It was awesome, I was staying on a solid pace but knew the first few miles were going to get me at one point.

I saw my mom and boyfriend again after a great 12 miles and then went west. Mentally I was doing great and I kept thinking that this whole marathon thing as going to be a breeze. I kept thinking that I should walk…just for a little bit. Problem was after seeing my mom, boyfriend and two of my best girlfriends from college I started to freak out a bit.
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We were running west, and I had no idea where we were going. I told myself I’d take a break at 18, sadly though after 30 seconds of walking through a water stop I couldn’t get my legs moving very fast. Then started a bit of a crazy time of me being wildly confused but still motivated. IMG_1145

Then 22 hit me like a ton of bricks, my lungs hurt my feet hurt and I had never run this far before. I looked at my watch at realized 11m/m had gone to 14m/m and I was pushing it. I started to doubt myself and broke down into tears, partially out of pain and partially because I realized I was so close to making my goal. So I walked a bit, ran a bit and kept motivating myself to run just to the water stations where I could collect myself and keep going.

Finally we turned onto Michigan after what seemed like an eternity of being lost to what our direction was. Once I saw the Michigan Ave sign all of my pain and self-doubt went away. I got my big smile back on my face and just took off. So many people had cheered for my “Run Tiffy Run” shirt along the way and once when I started to slow down one lone lady who was out there cheering got in my face and said “Tiffy, run, it is right there.”

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IMG_1153The “hill” everyone warned me of at 26 was nothing. I ran up it turned left and saw my boyfriend and friends cheering…obviously relieved that I had made it. When I crossed the finish line it was surreal. I was done! I got my 312 beer, some gatorade and took, what will most likely be, the worst finisher photo ever because I had warm clothes shoved down my top and pants.

All together it was amazing. The cold weather was a bit much, but better than 80s and the crowds were…well…just thrilling. Thank you to everyone that screamed my name. The lady at 22 who gave me a banana, the little kids that gave me high 5’s and to my friends, mom and boyfriend. I also got flowers from my high school girlfriends two days before the race which were so beautiful.

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All in all I did it. It was a year in the making but it was so worth it. I’m going to take a week off but then start up again. I have NYC 2010 to work towards!

Pictures below are from the party my boyfriend threw for University of Chicago Booth runners and me, Chicago Marathon t-shirt personalized today at the Nike Store, and some awesome photos he captured of the day (including the amazing elites at the start of the race!).

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October 13, 2009 at 12:54 am 4 comments

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