Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Race Recap

I'm finally starting to come back to normal after my very emotional finish! You may already know that I had the most amazing race on Saturday - pretty much start to finish - and the icing on it all was a shiny, new PR.

I was pretty nervous the day before and the couple hours leading up to the race. Despite having a great plan laid out, I was having some issues that I really thought would derail that plan and prevent me from having the race I so desired.


My recap has to start with the day before the race because it helps set the scene of why I was so nervous about the race, and why I was so emotional at the end.

Friday

Even as I wrote up my Race Day Goals & Strategy, I had a feeling that the worst was likely to happen. Ladies, you know what I'm talking about! I wrote my goals hoping and hoping that my period and corresponding cramps would hold off until Sunday.

They did not. Much to my dismay my period arrived on Friday, which meant the cramps would hit just in time for the race Saturday morning. I kept trying to will them to stay away. Hence, my nerves the night before. I still wanted to have a great race, but I really didn't think it was in the cards.

Kristy, from Runaway Bridal Planner, picked me up to make the drive to Laughlin, NV. We'd never met in person before, but I was excited for a tiny little runcation with my blogging friend. Jeff walked me to her car to say good-bye, and I fretted about not having packed enough ibuprofen. He said to not worry about it and to just buy some more if I needed some. D'uh.

We arrived in Laughlin, checked into our room, dropped off our stuff, and headed to packet pick-up. It's a pretty small race, so there was no expo. It was literally just pick up your bib, pick up your shirt, and grab a small bag with a couple goodies in it.

We were hungry, so we googled "where locals eat" and decided on a restaurant based {almost} solely on pictures of the views of the Colorado river. Nope, not location or pics of the food. LOL The restaurant was a bit out of town, but we got there just as the sun was setting.

The sunset was totally worth the drive!

We each ordered the burger our waitress recommended. It. Was. Greasy! Delicious, but we both kind of worried that it might not have been the wisest of decisions.

After dinner, it was still pretty early, so we walked along the river a bit and then sat and listened to a band before heading back up to the room. While listening to the band, it occurred to me that I forgot a toothbrush. We stopped at a hotel shop and I bought a toothbrush/toothpaste and grabbed some Midol as well. Just in case.

It was still early, but for some reason, I was already exhausted. I was in bed before 9PM. I think.

Here's the thing. Laughlin is right on the Arizona border. Arizona doesn't do Daylight Savings, so they are in a different time zone this time of year. Our phones and watches kept randomly changing times on us! It was both amusing and annoying.

I'd like to say I slept well, but that would just be lying. I tossed. I turned. I got up to go to the bathroom. I fretted about the inevitable cramps. I had this terrible, pain isn't quite the right word, in my diaphragm. It was uncomfortable, but I kept falling back asleep. So, I was getting at least some rest.

Race Morning

Kristy's alarm went off at what her phone thought was 4:15. In reality, it was only 3:15, as confirmed by the clock in the hotel room, which wasn't randomly changing like our phones. We were both glad for the additional hour of sleep. 😌

When I was getting ready to catch the shuttle, I sent Jeff this message:


I was so uncomfortable! I took two Midol, hoping that it would make me feel better so to not completely derail the race.

I wasn't very optimistic on the shuttle to the start.
Nor for the hour+ waiting in the high school gym.


Kristy and Jeff were both very encouraging, though, so I tried to keep an open-mind.

By the time, we were lining up at the start, the Midol had definitely kicked in. The cramps had subsided and the excitement of the race had set in.

The Race

As I crossed the start line, I pushed the RACE screen on my Garmin. I kept glancing down at my watch to check my pace. Around 0.35 miles, I finally noticed that all the other fields were still showing zeros. Yep. I hadn't actually pressed the START button.

I had all kinds of alerts programmed into my Garmin, so I'd know when to change my pace. I decided to still go with those alerts - even though they were a bit off of the official distance.

Mile 1
In the first mile of the race, we ran from one parking lot at the high school to the track and did one lap around the track.


This was probably one of the most complicated parts of the race! Racers were entering and exiting at the same point, so it was a little tricky making sure you didn't bump into anyone.

Miles 1 - 3.5
This was the first uphill climb of the race. It was tough but I was pretty good at sticking to a sub-10'30" pace. There were definitely a few spots that my Garmin was beeping a bit crazily for me to speed up.

The first two aid stations were in these early miles. I skipped them both. I didn't start the race with a full water bottle, but I figured I'd easily be able to make it to the next stop. I was wrong.

Miles 3.5 - 7
This was supposed to be my speediest section. It was a solid, steady downhill. I set my slow alert for a 9'30" pace. I shouldn't have had a problem maintaining that pace, but obviously I kept slowing down because my Garmin kept telling me to go faster. While the views were incredible (when I remembered to look around)...


I think I got a little bored on the downhill. I was also concentrating on not tripping and falling.

I had a gel at 45min. My plan was to take a salt tablet at the same time; however, I was running low on water and wanted to conserve what little I had left. I decided to take the salt at the next aid station, which had to be coming up soon.

Turns out that next aid station wasn't for another mile and a half.

Miles 7-8.5
This was the 2nd uphill climb, but first, the aid station. Yes!

I unscrewed the lid of my handheld as I approached the water stop. I grabbed a cup from a volunteer and dumped it into my handheld. I handed him the empty cup and grabbed the 2nd cup in his hands. He looked at me so confused as to why I was handing him my empty cup! My bottle still wasn't full, so I handed him the 2nd empty cup while grabbing a 3rd cup from the guy next to him. By the time I handed my 3rd empty to the volunteer, he seemed less confused. LOL I still didn't take a salt tablet because I didn't want to waste any more time at the water stop.

Free photo courtesy of Run Laughlin


Since I started my Garmin late, it still thought I had 0.35 miles before hitting the hill. I tried to still speed my way up the hill, but quickly decided it wasn't worth it. I slowed down a bit but still tried to stay close to a 10'15" pace.

Turns out my goal for this section was a 10'25" pace. I was pleased to see that alert pop-up, because this uphill seemed a little relentless.

We crossed over the Davis Dam and into Arizona! And continued the uphill.

Free photo courtesy of Run Laughlin


Finally the turnaround was in sight!

Miles 8.5-10
The uphill was over! It was the final pace reset. 9'45" slow pace. This was when the real fun began. I didn't need to worry about conserving energy. I had run a great race so far and now I could really focus on getting to the finish.


Since this was an out-and-back portion, I wanted to look for Kristy on my way back down the hill. But, I got lost in my music and footsteps until I heard her call out Good Luck to me. I waved and continued on my way. I also waved to a couple Vegas runners I knew as I saw them making their way up the hill.

I was really starting to groove to my music and was having a great time! My head was bopping along and I kind of felt like I was dancing. I may or may not have accidentally sung out loud a few times, but I tried to control myself.

Miles 10-13.1
I was cruising along and fighting back tears. It was really starting to become real. I WAS GOING TO PR! There wasn't really anymore doubt. I felt so STRONG and I was having such a great time!

Free photo courtesy of Run Laughlin
I do not know this jumper, but she was having a great time, too.


I sucked down another gel and actually took a salt tablet this time.

And then Starships by Nicki Minaj came on.



MY FEET WERE FLYING! I couldn't slow down. At the end of the song, I restarted it. Yeah, it was moving me that much.

It was good song after good song right until the finish, though I don't remember what they were.

I do remember thinking, This is the strongest I've ever felt during the last few miles of a half marathon. I kept pushing and trying to build on that momentum.

The course met up with the 10k and 5k racers. Lots of runners commented, You're doing great! All I could do was say Thank you! I probably should have said You, too, but honestly, I was too focused on my own race to comment on anyone else's. Does that make me a bad racer?! 😬

Every time someone said something, it put just a little more pep in my step. It's hard to describe how I was feeling. I was just gliding along, but still pushing it. I was so incredibly happy and proud that I was fighting back tears of joy.

Around mile 12.5, I did start to feel a bit tired, but I was SO close. I kept pushing myself. I saw the 6 mile marker for the 10k and thought only 0.2 miles to go. Then I saw the 3 mile and 13 mile signs for the 5k and Half. I forced myself to lengthen my stride and finish STRONG!

I crossed that finish line with pure determination on my face!! {and a LOT of salt}


Free photo courtesy of Run Laughlin


Post-Race

After getting my medal, I stopped and asked a guy where to get the official results. He pointed me to the tent, and I made a beeline to it - bypassing the tables of water and food. When a laptop freed up, I typed in my bib number and snapped a photo of my results.


I sent a message to Jeff on the way to the restroom.


I had been hoping to squeak out a PR with a 2:10:14 (previous was a 2:10:26), so I was blown away and so, so excited to see my official time!

I washed my face and went back to get some nourishment and free beer. I'm not a beer drinker, so I didn't even drink half of my small cup. It was a bit too bubbly. 😄

Still so emotional, I paced around the finish area trying to control myself. Waffling between smiling and crying. I was a mess inside!

I was hanging around the finish chute to see if I could see Kristy approaching when I overheard a trio of people talking about medals. It took me a minute to realize they were talking TO me! Apparently, they had run out of half marathon medals, and one girl was asking if she could borrow mine to take a picture. Of course, I said yes!

And then, I walked around some more. Trying to decide if I should head back up to the room to shower. I just wasn't ready yet. I couldn't bring myself to leave the finish area. I probably looked like a crazy person - pacing around the finish area, fighting back tears.

Finally, I saw Kristy approaching the finish line. I was doing something on my phone, so I couldn't snap a picture. I met her at the finish and then someone else asked if they could borrow my medal for a picture. I said sure and followed her to where she wanted to take the picture. Then she handed me her phone, Oh you want me to take the picture? LOL I snapped a few and then Kristy and I went to snap a few of our own.

Photo courtesy of Kristy

And that's the story of how I got my PR. A solid plan and a couple of Midol, without either of those, Run Laughlin definitely wouldn't have turned out so well.


After showering and relaxing a bit, Kristy and I did grab some lunch and do a little exploring before heading back to Vegas, but I'll leave that for another post.

I'm linking up today with Erika, Marcia and Patty for Tuesday's on the Run. This week's topic is Favorite Race in 2017, so I guess this post is pretty much perfect. :)

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 10

If you follow me on IG, then you already know how this ends. :-)

I had the best half marathon yesterday - and not just because I got that PR was I hoping for. It was a gorgeous course, and I was just having a great time for all of the miles. I'll have a full recap on Tuesday, but first, here's how the final week of training went down.

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 10: 11/27 - 12/03

Friday, December 1, 2017

November Report Card

Wow! November was such a great month!! I'm totally on track for my 2017 goals. I had some great running with half marathon training. I started the RW Run Streak. One more month of 2017, which seems kind of crazy.

November Report Card

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Run Laughlin Race Day Goals & Strategy

I don't know if it's because of half marathon training, or if it's flown by quickly for everyone, but man, have these past couple months have flown by! I can hardly believe that Run Laughlin is already this Saturday.

If you've been following along, I've been posting my training recaps each Sunday, and I think that's really helped me to stay motivated and on track. This is the first half marathon that I've actually trained for in quite sometime, and I'm proud of how well it's gone.


Time to set some Goals and Strategize for Saturday!

#1 Have fun!


Because otherwise, what is the point? Whether I'm running hard or taking it easy, if I'm not enjoying the race, then that's just not cool.


#2 PR, baby!


Despite Sunday's disappointing run, I'm still going to try for a PR on Saturday. Sure, I didn't do much (read: any) hill training, but I'm going to go into the race confident! It's 90% mental, right?!

Comparing the elevation map from Sunday's run and the one of the race, the hills on race day aren't as steep, so I really think I'll be OK.


That's it! I'm only setting 2 goals for this race. If I don't end up getting a PR, I'll be OK with just having fun. If my strategies start to fall apart, or if I crash into a wall like I did on Sunday, I'll just fall back on my # 1 goal of having fun.

Read on to find out my race day strategies.


Pace Strategy

My previous PR is a 2:10:26 half marathon, which is a 9'57" pace.

Based on the elevation map and crunching some numbers, here's how I plan to break it down:

Mile 1    Set alerts for 10'15" slow and 9'30" fast.
It's a slight downhill, but I still don't want to start off too fast. Plus, it usually takes a bit for my legs to warm-up.

Miles 1-3.5    Set alert for 10'30" slow; turn off the fast alert.
This is the first uphill climb, so I'll slow down a bit to conserve some energy.

Miles 3.5-7    Set alert for 9'30" slow; no fast alert.
This is mostly downhill, so I'll speed up to make up some time lost on the first hill.

Miles 7-8.5    Set alert for 10'25" slow; no fast alert.
This is the 2nd uphill climb. Not as daunting as the first, but also rated a Cat 5 (the least difficult category). By this point in the race, hopefully, I'll be nice a warmed up, so I can conquer this hill a bit easier than the first.

Miles 8.5-Finish    Set alert for 9'45" slow; no fast alert.
There are some uphills sprinkled throughout the last few miles, but I'm hoping they won't be so bad since they are relatively short hills.

I crunched the numbers. 
If I can manage these paces, I'll barely squeak out a PR.
But a PR is a PR, right? Even if it is only a few seconds. 😂


Fuel and Hydration Strategy


I haven't really talked about it much throughout my training, but I'll continue with the same strategy on race day that I've done on all my long runs.

Hydration - I have an alert on my Garmin to drink every half mile. Just a sip or two. I find this really helps avoid sloshing and keeps me hydrated throughout the race. I'll carry my handheld and refill it at water stations as needed. There are 6 along the course, so I should be able to refill adequately.

Fuel - I'm all about the Garmin alerts! My Eat alert goes off every 45 minutes. I'll suck down a gel and swallow a salt tablet. I only started using salt tablets a few weeks ago but have found them helpful in training.

Music Strategy


I'm torn on using music. I usually skip music during a race, but I haven't done a long run without music in quite some time. I think I'll create a playlist just in case and decide on race morning if I want to listen to it while I run.

I feel like I have a pretty good strategy. Probably better than I've ever gone into a race. It feels good.

Who knows exactly what race day will bring, but I'm going to go into it with a positive mind and spirit. And a good plan.

At this point, that's really all I can do.


What kind of goals do you do set for a race?
Do you ever strategize to this extent?
Music or no music?


I'm linking up today with Erika, Marcia and Patty for Tuesday's on the Run.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 9

After today's long run, I'm not quite as confident about Run Laughlin next weekend as I was after last weekend's long run. I'll go into more details down below, but I hit a wall today. HARD. I specifically chose a route today that started with a good sized hill, because Run Laughlin has some hills at the start. It became pretty evident that I didn't do enough hill training during this training cycle. :-(

Not all hope is lost, though. I know I'll still have a good race on Saturday. Come back on Tuesday to read about my race day strategy and goals.

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 9: 11/20 - 11/26

Monday, November 20, 2017

Two Pumpkin Recipes. Great for Thanksgiving Week.

I know, I know. Pumpkin season is nearly over for the year. Thanksgiving is the last hurrah for this winter squash, so I wanted to share not one, but two easy pumpkin recipes for your breakfasts this week.

Pumpkin Pie French Toast


Last weekend, I experimented with pumpkin french toast. It turned out so good! The pumpkin pie flavor is pretty subtle, so it's perfect for those who aren't super crazy about all things pumpkin spice.



Pumpkin Pie French Toast

Serves 4.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 8 slices of bread

Instructions

  1. Preheat skillet or griddle to 375.
  2. In a small bowl combine almond milk, pumpkin, vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, and flour until well combined. Transfer to a shallow dish that's big enough for a slice of bread.
  3. Dip both sides of a bread slice in the pumpkin mixture. Shake off any excess batter.
  4. Place coated bread on the hot skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side.
  5. Enjoy with a dusting of powdered sugar and/or maple syrup.
I made this with sourdough bread, which was a bit overbearing. I would recommend a more subtle bread.



Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats


Overnight oats are one of my favorite things! I wanted to try my hand at some pumpkin pie overnight oats for easy breakfasts this week.

Another winner! I would highly recommend heating this before eating. I know a lot of overnight oats recipes can be eaten cold right out of the fridge, but I think this is much better warmed up a bit.



Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats

Serves 2-3.

Ingredients

  • 1 very ripe banana
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • Almond milk
  • 1 1/2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar (optional)

Instructions

  1. Mix banana, pumpkin, and oats together in a medium bowl.
  2. Add enough almond milk to make it a soupy consistency. I didn't measure but probably 1-1 1/2 cups.
  3. Stir in the chia seeds, pumpkin pie spice, and brown sugar (optional)./li>
  4. Pour into 2-3 mason jars, cover, and store in the fridge overnight.
  5. Warm in the microwave about 2 minutes before enjoying.

This made two servings for me, but could easily make 3 smaller servings. Making it into 2 is a pretty hearty breakfast.


What are you eating for breakfast this week?
Do you have a special breakfast on Thanksgiving or save room for a big meal later in the day?

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 8

I had a really fantastic week of training this week! Plus that pesky scale actually went down a tiny bit. Yay for the small victories, right?!

In addition to what I share below, I also did a bit of foam rolling before and after a few of my runs. I think that helped a lot. I did have a little knee/shin tweakiness, but I'm just chalking it up to the point in training when it's getting a little more intense and it manifests in my legs.

Less than two weeks until race day...

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 8: 11/13 - 11/19

Friday, November 17, 2017

Staying Safe out on the Trails

Hey running friends! Do you know what November is? It's National Running Safety Month, of course!

Let's talk safety when hitting the trails.


I still very much describe myself as a newbie trail runner, so I turned to the experts in my local trail running group to get their best safety tips.


5 Safety Tips for Hitting the Trails

1. Skip the Headphones

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

How to Make the Perfect Mix for Your Thanksgiving Day Run

Thanksgiving is right around the corner! Does the big day include running for you? Perhaps you're running a Turkey Trot or just going for a run around your neighborhood.

Whatever your plans, here's how to create the perfect playlist for your Thanksgiving Day Run in 3 easy steps.


Step One: Make a list of things you're thankful for this year.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 7

Another week. Another 1.5 lb jump on the scale. :-( I know I said I was going to do better with my eating last week, but I didn't. I need to get it under control! Other than that, it was a pretty great week of training. I did have a few motivation issues, but I was able to get in all my workouts plus a few extras.

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 7: 11/06 - 11/12

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

October Report Card

If you stopped by on Saturday for the Ultimate Coffee Date, you already know that October was a busy month for me. We managed to cram a whole lot of fun into the month. I also managed to stay pretty on-track with my goals.

October Report Card

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 6

As far as workouts go, I had a great week! So, it was a little disappointing to step on the scale this morning to find a 2lb weight gain. :-( I wasn't so good in the eating department and it showed on the scale. I really hope to be better this week. I'm not letting it get me down though, it was still a great week!

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 6: 10/30 - 11/05

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Ultimate Coffee Date - November 2017

I feel like I say this every. single. month, but didn't October simply fly by?! I can hardly believe we are already in November. It's just crazy, but it is the first Saturday in November, which means it's time to catch up over coffee at the Ultimate Coffee Date! So, grab a cup of your favorite beverage and let's chat. I'm sipping on some Starbucks pumpkin spice coffee that I brewed at home. It's pretty good.

Ultimate Coffee Date - November 2017

If we were having coffee, I'd start by telling you that I was a few days late to October's coffee date, so I missed linking up with all of you. I tried to pop over to most of your posts, but in case you missed mine, you can read it here.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 5

I would say this was a good week of training! But, I really struggled to wake up too many of the days. I miss the days when I could just pop right out of bed when my 5AM alarm went off. I want to get back to those days. Part of it is actually getting to bed on time, which I have been slacking on a bit. :-(

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 5: 10/23 - 10/29

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 4

Week 4 was pretty much a success! I got all my runs in plus a couple yoga sessions. I need to get back in the habit of early to bed, early to rise, though. The mornings were tough this week. :-(

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 4: 10/16 - 10/22

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 3

Week 3 of training wasn't much better than week 2. Unfortunately. :-( My toe was still hurting, plus my road trip was still happening. Since my toe was hurting, I didn't even pack running clothes for my trip. It turned out OK because I didn't really have time to run. Plus, it was quite chilly in central WA. I did manage to get in 10k steps each day, though many of those steps were upper body only. I did manage 2 runs this week, so I think I'll be able to get back on the training track for Week 4.

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 3: 10/09 - 10/15

Friday, October 13, 2017

5 Tips For Your Next Road Trip

We love going for road trips and have gone for quite a few pretty lengthy trips. There is nothing like the beauty of the open road whizzing by. Plus, we solve all the world's problems while we're out for a long drive. :-)

This post is sponsored by EatSmart Products. All content and opinions are my own.

Here are some of our favorite tips for a successful road trip.


Pack Snacks

Pack healthy snacks to bring with you in the car. Dried fruits are great for a sweet snack. Nuts for some protein. If you have room in your cooler, cut up some veggies for the beginning of your trip for some crunch. Granola is good, too. Or make your own trail mix to get a variety of sweet, salty, and crunchy.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Ultimate Coffee Date - October 2017

I'm a little late to the party, but is it ever really too late to catch up over coffee? The Ultimate Coffee Date is one of my favorite times of the month. So, grab a cup of coffee or tea or hot cocoa. Or warm apple cider! Let's catch up!!

Ultimate Coffee Date - October 2017

If we were having coffee, I'd probably tell you about our road trip. We weren't really looking forward to it because it was more of an obligatory trip instead of one just for fun. We hadn't been up to the PNW in 5 years since stopping through on our way to Las Vegas. Jeff's mom wanted us to come up for a visit since it had been so long. It was just the excuse we needed to make the drive up to Jeff's brother's, too. We left a tote with them and it was beyond time to retrieve it.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 2

After last Sunday's fall, week 2 of training was pretty much a flop! My right big toe was all bruised and I am still limping a bit. I'm hopeful that I'll be back to training soon, though. I'm almost back to walking pretty normally, so I'll likely try running again once I get back home after our road trip.

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 2: 10/02 - 10/08

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

September Report Card

Good morning! I'm trying to get life back to normal after the devastating tragic mass shooting that happened in Las Vegas late Sunday night. While I wasn't personally affected, it happened less than 5 miles from my home. I'm still a bit numb that it happened. It still feels a bit surreal. And I imagine it will for awhile. There is still so much we do not know.

But this post is about my September!

September Report Card

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 1

As I mentioned in last week's Week in Review post I've decided to actually train for Run Laughlin - instead of just showing up on race day and winging it. I'm excited for the race but also excited to follow a training plan! It's been awhile.

I'm doing a Nike+ training program, which is a mix of recovery runs, speed, tempo, and long runs. There are a few NTC workouts sprinkled in as well, but I plan on adding in additional strength workouts and some yoga (of course). The Nike+ programs adapt to you. As you do your runs, it uses the run data to suggest paces, etc, for the rest of the training program. I've never followed one of their programs to get ready for a race but I have done one of their other plans and really liked it.

Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Recap

Training Recap Week 1: 9/25 - 10/01

Friday, September 29, 2017

7 Easy Ways to Get More Steps

Do you have a daily step goal? Is it a struggle to get all your steps in? I have no problems on my run days, but those non-run days? Yeah, they can be problematic.

So, I thought I'd share 7 easy ways to increase your steps each day without adding in extra workouts. Achieving your step goal will get easier by making these simple changes to your daily life. No additional trips to the gym necessary.



1. Brush your teeth


Walk in place while brushing your teeth. If you brush the recommended 2 minute minimum, you can get in quite a few steps every time you brush. This is easier to do with an electric tooth brush, but can probably be done with any kind.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Week in Review - 9/24

This week was even more stressful/hectic than the week before! Next week will hopefully be better with my co-worker's return on Monday. I'm her backup, so it's been double duty for me while she's been out. I'll definitely be glad to see her tomorrow. :)

I took it pretty easy this weekend. Rest day yesterday. Light yoga today. I just needed to recharge before beginning half marathon training tomorrow. Yep, that's right. I've decided to actually train for my Run Laughlin half marathon in Dec. It's 10 weeks away, so a pretty doable training cycle. If you're looking to add a fall race (Dec 2nd is technically still fall and will still feel like fall in southern Nevada), you can save 15% off registration using code VegasCD.

Week in Review 9/24

Week in Review 9/18 - 9/24

Friday, September 22, 2017

5 Things on My Fall Bucket List

This post is sponsored by prAna in partnership with FitApproach. 
All opinions and images are my own.

Happy first day of Fall!


Growing up, spring was always my favorite season. It brought new life after the harsh Minnesota winter. It was a sign that summer was just around the corner. You could feel the excitement as the days grew longer and the end of the school year drew nearer.

Now that I am living in Las Vegas, I still love spring, but fall is quickly becoming one of my favorite seasons. I love the summer heat, but I also love the crisp, cool fall mornings. The flavors of pumpkin and apple are in abundance. The return of sweaters and long pants. It's all so comforting, like a hug from an old friend.

Fall Bucket List

It's no secret that I've been looking forward to fall for several weeks now, so it's about time I came up with a short list of things I want to be sure to do now that fall is here.


My Fall Bucket List

Jeff and I are heading out for a long road trip in the beginning of October. We're heading up to the PNW to visit his family and to pick up a tote we left with his brother when we moved here 5 years ago. I'm pretty excited for the road trip and to cross the first two items off my list. :-)

Golden Gate State Park

We've been to San Francisco before and even walked halfway across the Golden Gate bridge, but it was Christmastime and cold and dark. We're planning this stop in the early morning. Perhaps we'll be able to catch the sunrise.


Cathedral Gorge State Park

I've been wanting to visit this NV state park for a few years now. It's less than 2 hours from Vegas, but we've never made the time. It's a short detour along our route back from Washington, so it seems perfect to include it as a stop on this road trip.


Bellagio Conservatory

One of the things I love most in Las Vegas is the Bellagio Conservatory. They change the display with the seasons, and it's always fun to see the new theme. This summer it was a tour of Italy and the fall theme is Proud as a Peacock. I'm excited to see all the beautiful flowers.

@EnjoytheCourse is ready for fall! What's on your fall bucket list? #prAnaFallStyle17 #sweatpink

Las Vegas Balloon Festival

A few years ago, I stopped at this festival before heading out for an 18-mile run. It was fascinating to watch the balloons take off. They have an evening Glow Show which sounds fascinating. There are lots of other activities as well, and I hope to spend a bit more time at the festival rather than just a few minutes before a long run.


Gilcrease Orchard

A Vegas gem that I've not yet experienced! They have a variety of fruits and veggies to pick yourself, but I'm most excited to try their apple cider. It's their signature item and perfect for a fall day, right? The pumpkin patch opens Sept 30, and I've read that apple picking starts sometime in Oct. I'm excited to get up early one Saturday morning to check it out.


In addition to these bigger items, I also plan on taking more walks with Sallie and maybe even Jeff. We also really want to get back on our bikes because it's been months since we've gone for a bike ride.

And, of course, there will be plenty of Starbucks fall treats.


Be sure to follow me on Instagram or Twitter so I can share my adventures with you!

Many thanks to prAna for the amazing Harlene Top and the comfy London Jean from their new fall collection. These will be perfect for my road trip and many of my other fall activities.

No matter what's on your list for the fall, you'll find something to love at prana.com.
Use code FACD15 to save 15% off your order now through Nov 22.


What are you looking forward to this fall?
Any local events that are unique to where you live?

I'm linking up today with Running on HappyFairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five 2.0. This week's theme is Fall Activities.