Tag Archives: races

NYC Shape Half-Marathon Recap

So, I am a little late getting this out there to you all, but with a stomach bug, and recovery, and going away on a super fun weekend to Burlington, VT, and #BrunchWeek, well….I am late but not forgetting that I need to recap my race for you all!

half marathon

*This post contains affiliate links, where if you click on them and make a purchase, I make a small percentage. I include them so that you can find what I am referencing and loving!*

It was fun- Lots of firsts for this race:

  • The biggest race that I have ever done. There were 7, 000 women there, as it was a women-only race.
  • And it was my first ever time to Central Park. If you didn’t know, Central Park is so beautiful! And hilly. There are lots of hills. Well, not so many, but when you go around a couple of times they seem to keep going in the way that hills do. Crazy as I am, I actually like hills. Running on a flat plain seems to hurt my knees, but hills are where I always make up some speed and just enjoy myself a bit.
  • My first time running a race with a friend. Seriously. I have no idea why, but it seems I need more runner-friends! It was so nice to chat for the first few miles and have some company during and after the race. That has never happened before, and I think I want to make a point of doing it like this more often.

I have to say, I have done some low-entry very small races that still had good swag and nice medals…I was a bit disappointed with my medal. Sort of cheap looking:

Shape Half Marathon

Sort of cheesy right?

…and the swag was minimal. I hate to say anything negative about the race, since it was very organized, the water stops were great, and the course really fun…but I know we all like to keep our medals and when you have done a bunch, you would know what I mean! There were no goo-sticks either. Just Gatorade and water. So there’s that .

Overall, here is my take:

The 5 good things:

  • Central Park
  • Women Only
  • Well Organized
  • Did it with a friend
  • Beautiful running weather!
  • I actually had a great race, good pace

The 5-ish bad things:

  • No goo or energy sticks or gels
  • No Advocare Rehydrate, just Gatorade
  • Low-end Swag
  • Low-end medal
  • Umm. Not much else!

I brought my Advocare O2 Gold mixed with Rejuvenate and Biocharge for my run in my own bottle anyway, so I was feeling great right up to the end. I started the race, worrying about how I would do, since I had had a chest cold the week prior-  I felt really good and continue to feel motivated to run, which is great leading into summer, where I would love to sign up for some more fun races.

half marathon

Seriously. a little toothy right?!

What are you running this summer? Any  half-marathons? Do you run for bling? Do you get your mojo back after a race or lose it?

Linking with: 

Friday Five 2.0 with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness, and the Weekly wrap at HoHo Runs 

*This post contains affiliate links, where if you click on them and make a purchase, I make a small percentage. I include them so that you can find what I am referencing and loving!*


Running Training Plans: From Beginner to Expert


race training

Although I am just posting this, I have started to think about running a bit more over the past month, and cross training a little less to get ready for my upcoming marathon training schedule.  Saying “marathon training schedule” sounds super rigorous but it really isn’t any more than planned increases in distance and slowly building up to the long run.

I don’t want to take away from the accomplishment- because it does take dedication and time, but before you say that you could never do this, I am living proof that anyone can do this barring injury… so that is my goal this year: Not to just do it, but to do it so that I feel good after it’s over and not injured for the following months!

My outlook on life in general is “moderation in all things” as the best bet for healthy living and healthy mind, so this is no exeption.  The marathon training can push this a bit toward the “too much of a good thing” side of the scale, so I have to keep focused on keeping that balance by cross training and having active-rest days (read: PIYO!) to prevent both burn-out and injury.

My own plan is a major mix-up of several plans but I really just use them as a guide, and try to keep the week-long miles on target, instead of worrying about following it true to the day by day plan.

Here are a few that I know lots of runners follow and are from authorities in the area of running and race training:

Hal Higdon
(FREE) All levels of programs, easily adaptable. Has an app for your phone and an interactive site. I am still a novice runner with this plan, as I don’t like to add too many miles, as it seems to not work for me.  I like the flexibility and growth in these plans the best.

Cool Running
(FREE)All levels of training.  Authority on races, events around the country to participate in and work up to with their various programs.

Runner’s World Training Plans
These are pay-for plans…I am not into that, but if you are good with paying, they offer apps, daily emails to keep you on track, and lots of options, like “beat 5 hours for your first marathon” that are unique.

Jeff Galloway Plans
(FREE) Wonderful for a beginning runner, or someone who wants to avoid injury.  You can run/walk a marathon without injury according to his plans. Last year when I was fighting through injury, I loved his philosophy.

What to look for in a plan:

I know people who look for marathon training come from all levels, so I won’t pretend to know the best program out there- nor will I create one for you…everyone has to trial and error their own way through a given program and even then, adapt that one program to what is best for their own body.  I am a firm believer in listening to your own body and pushing it when you can and resting it to let it recover and build strength.

There is so much information out there (so much of it worthless but pretending to be the “one” best way to do something) that to give you just one recommendation would be just wrong! When you look for a plan, make sure it is from an expert, not an enthusiast.  The difference is that an expert is a fitness professional who is trained in the field and has some kind of  certification in coaching (like the RRCA- Road Runners Club of America or some other reputable association).  An enthusiast is someone like me, that loves to run, but doesn’t have the background in training.

You wouldn’t be a Librarian just because you like books, any more than a running expert just because you like to run…I have to emphasize this, because it is so important with Google just spitting out information. Ex. You search “running plans” and you get tons of garbage…just buyer-beware! Only follow a plan from an authority with the certifications. (*Also, you should always check with your health professional to make sure you are starting from a healthy place and able to train for a race.)

Whatever plan you follow, just enjoy the process and listen to your body.  Best of training and Happy Tuesday!

P.S. Don’t forget to enter the Giveaway for the BolderBand- my no-barrette hero! It is open to anyone over 18 years of age in the US, up until 11:59pm EST 6/17.  That is tomorrow!!! Get on it! Giveaway is Over.

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P.S.S. I added a Race Page to this blog to keep track of my upcoming and previous races- I like doing a race more than once, to see how I have improved over time, so I think this year I am repeating a half marathon that I did last year, and doing a new marathon this fall.  I love love love running with my friends, so if any of you are near the Boston or Providence areas for races, let me know because I am always up for adding another few races before mid-August!

The Color Run, Providence


If you have ever thought about doing a fun-run like a tough-mudder, inflateable 5k, or some other type of race that combines fun activities that challenge your mental toughness along with your physical toughness, then I would be wise to tell you I know nothing about that! 🙂

What I do know about, relates to the race that I did this weekend as a participant in the “happiest 5k” in the form of The Color Run in Providence, Rhode Island.  Now that I have done this, I can honestly say, it was so much fun and I was really happy to do it!  My friends, who are not avid runners, but are fun ladies, who like to exercise, decided we should do this, and I was so surprised by so many things:

#1:  you get a ton of swag (free stuff!)

Freebies after the race!

Freebies after the race!

#2:  you really could do this walking or running (we did both).

#3:  you get lots of chalk-paint in your mouth (and nose, and eyes!)


#3:  my kids could totally have done this with me, and would have LOVED it.

#4:  it was a unique an amazingly colorful spectacle that I enjoyed much more than expected.

Enter for Color!

Enter for Color!

#5:  I will definitely do it again, and now, we may do more races together again soon! It is so fun to run and race and do fun activities like this with friends.



If you get the chance to try this, you should jump at it- and it is a must to do with friends, as it is super social.  Tips: wear sunglasses- or get these cute ones for $5 at the run.  Also, feel free to wear tutus, cool socks, crazy hats, face tattoos or the like, to make yourself even more happy and silly as you run, and sing and dance for no reason really, except that it makes you smile.