Posts Tagged ‘training’

Healdsburg Half Training Begins (+ MCM10K Team Info!)

Hi friends! Happy Monday. ūüôā

Today happens to be week one of training for my next race¬†– the Healdsburg Half Marathon! It’s October 11th¬†up in¬†wine country (aka northern California).¬†I’m doing basically the same training plan as when I ran the San Diego half in March, except I’ll be doing Crossfit workouts 2-3 times a week instead of body pump.¬†¬†More on that Crossfit biz soon….

Of all the available half marathons in fall that I could have signed up, this one may seem sort of random. I chose it mainly because it reminded me a lot of my first half back in 2013, also in wine country (in nearby Santa Rosa), which had such a warm, community feel since it was smaller. And wine, duh.¬†¬†Large races are exciting, but I almost think that the smaller town halfs are more fun since spectators¬†tend to get super excited and the whole town’s involved.


(Photo from Santa Rosa Рstill my very favorite day ever.)

And that reminds me- the sweet folks over at the Organization for Autism Research (OAR) recently reached out to let me know about their involvement in the Marine Corps Marathon 10K, which is also this fall (October 25th).¬†OAR¬†funds autism research, educates teachers of students with autism, provides support to families, offers scholarships, and more.¬†I’m passionate about community outreach and supporting nonprofits¬†(both personally and professionally), so of course I was more than happy to share their info with you guys.

OAR is forming a charity team right now, and looking for runners to sign up!¬†If you’re on the hunt for a fun 10K race for the fall, I highly suggest this one.¬†The MCM 10K¬†was actually my VERY first race ever (here’s the¬†recap from 2012), and holds a¬†special¬†place in my heart.

The crowds are great (MORE COW BELL) and it winds through great areas in D.C. that make the miles fly by. Plus a Marine will place your medal on you when you cross the finish line, which is pretty rad. The only thing sort of stinky is the massive hill in the last tenth (?) of a mile or so, but it’s sort of a rite¬†of passage for all D.C. runners.

Some facts about Autism, via OAR:

  • 1 in 68 children in the US are diagnosed with Autism or Asperger‚Äôs Syndrome – that’s more children than are affected by diabetes, AIDS, cancer, cerebral palsy, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy and Down syndrome combined
  • There is still no cure for autism
  • OAR is the only autism organization that focuses solely on applied research

To join their team, just register for the 10K first, and then sign up with OAR’s team on their website.Picture5

(image c/o OAR)

Personally, I’ve never run a race as part of¬†a charity team, but¬†I would really love to. Ya’ll know I use the SD half to raise money for the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation, and although that was on my own, it felt really good to feel like I was running for someone other than myself and a medal, you know? And let’s be real – training for a race is overall excellent motivation for getting into the swing of running (or back in, if you’ve taken a ¬†break).

As part of OAR’s team,¬†you’ll be provided¬†with:

  • A specially designed singlet
  • Food and drink before and after the race
  • An exciting race-day team environment
  • A runner‚Äôs recognition dinner

Heck, I wish I could come join!

Anyways, I went to Crossfit this morning, and am trying to figure out how sore legs + training runs (and weekend long runs!) are going to mix from week to week… we shall see! It’ll be an experiment. ūüėČ

Have a good one, lovelies. xo


Anyone blend Crossfit in with half marathon/race training? Any tips?

San Diego Half, Here I Come


How’s everyone’s Thursday going?¬†I have part two of my first unit test in Anatomy tonight! Tuesday was the first part, and I think I did okay… I was totally that person that worked til the end and tried to double check all the questions I was unsure about after the exam ended.

Anyways…… SUNDAY! It’s only three days away, which means my fourth half marathon is almost here!


From a comment on my race fundraising site; thanks Kirby!

I I usually get ridiculously nervous leading up to races (and even long training runs), but I’m feeling okay right now. This entire training period – aka the last 12 weeks – have felt pretty low key; I almost forgot I was training for an actual event. My improved training¬†mindset has helped tremendously, but I’ve also been so bonkers¬†lately that I have gotten lost in to-do lists and haven’t had time to think¬†too much about¬†training or the race itself… well, other than planning like a crazy person to make sure I was able to get in all my scheduled training¬†runs.

I have, of course, looked at the course map and elevation already, and there’s one mega beast of a hill coming around mile 9 (San Diegans, it’s Washington Street!). It doesn’t look too fierce on the map, but word on the street is it’s intense. Apparently you climb for a whole mile……….. PARTY TIME.¬†The last couple miles are completely downhill, so hopefully that equals¬†it all out. I didn’t do much hill training for this race¬†(at least not for as¬†steep of a hill as in the race), to include zero attempts¬†to run this actual section of the course.¬†I’m just going to go with the flow and see what happens race day….. Any and all hills can¬†be a fun surprise. ūüėČ

Reminder – I’m definitely not a running coach or expert…. in case that wasn’t abundantly clear.

I’m onto the main prep¬†I usually do the last couple days before a¬†half. Things¬†like charging my Garmin, updating my iPod….


New jams = critical.

Making motivating running playlists is an art, and I take it far more seriously than any grown woman probably should.

Also on my to-do list: hydrating more than usual, and carbing up.

luna grill

You can’t tell from the photo, but there is an extra large¬†serving¬†of rice on this plate. Thanks Luna Grill.

My life is pretty much a giant carb party 24/7, but¬†I’m actually taking carbloading far¬†more seriously this time around than in the past. At my last half (the Long Beach Half Marathon – race recap here), I was hungry almost immediately into starting the run. <– Never a good sign. I’m not sure what happened because I thought I had prepared myself appropriately, but I don’t want to risk history repeating itself. BRING ON THE PANCAKES AND BAGELS!

I am hitting Pure Barre today, and then I have nothing but rest and some walking on the docket before the big day Sunday! Fingers crossed I have a positive experience to share with you guys on Monday!



Super important question — what is your favorite food to eat for carbing up (before a race or, uh, life)? Mine is a big stack of pancakes!

Under the Weather


In place of a usual Monday post, instead I bring you this. YAY.

The San Diego Half is this Sunday, and I seem to have gotten sick juuuuust in time. It’s either a cold or some nasty allergies, but my nose is a mess and I’m darn tired.Granted the tiredness could also be from being a ¬†raging party planner this weekend/secretly the past couple months, as I threw my boyfriend a surprise 30th birthday (he was SO shocked!), but either way. Apparently I just can’t hang like I used to. ūüėČ

I’m not panicked yet, but I will be pounding water and chicken broth, and every other random homeopathic type cure I can recall (like garlic and ginger and spiciness up the wazoo).

I feel like before EVERY half marathon I’ve ever done – with maybe the exception of my first – I’ve gotten some sort of weird ailment one week out… either a cold or ache/pain/injury flare-up.

I took today off of work to try and recup more quickly before this becomes something nastier, so if you need me, I’ll be on the sofa watching the rain (!!) and studying Anatomy. ¬†I’m not sure if I should hit the gym or not, but I do need to run a couple times this week before the race weekend…

By the way, regarding the birthday festivities, sadly I have only a couple of photos of the actual event, and none of the birthday boy except when he was passed out on the couch after the celebrating had finally ended. The weekend was filled with House of Cards marathon-ing,¬†a delicious dinner at True Food Kitchen¬†prior to the party (I didn’t like this place when I first tried it a few months ago, but now I’m such a fan), and of course the massive surprise party, which was¬†a themed fiesta complete with ice cream cake and a Moscow Mule bar. It was a blast!

OH, and this pretty amazing burger yesterday during brunch at The Hub in Costa Mesa:


“The Hangover” burger, with two fried eggs, bacon (which I took off), and lots o’ ketchup on a brioche bun.

I was definitely not hungover – just carbloading.

Happy Monday, friends! xo



If you have any “get well quick” secrets (like what to eat/drink), please let me know!

Listening to Your Body

Good morning! I hope your Tuesday’s off to a good start!

Flashback to yesterday morning’s breakfast with my cousin at Hash House a Go Go San Diego.

hash house bfast

Talk about mega portions! This was sooooo good, and I wish my frozen waffles this morning were round two of this breakfast instead. ūüėČ

Last night, I helped plan and manage an event for work at Tom Ham’s Lighthouse on Harbor Island.

paul ham viewI’d never been to this venue (it’s a restaurant and party space)¬†before, and gosh did it have some magnificent views of the San Diego harbor and downtown skyline! I wish I’d snapped a shot after the sun went down – you could see the lights from downtown perfectly!

After the event, I actually drove my booty back up to Orange County (where I was over the weekend). Driving on the I-5 in pitch black darkness is not necessarily my idea of a good time, but it was great in terms of traffic, because I totally bypassed rush hour! I have some appointments going on this week up here (including today), so driving straight from my event last night seemed like the best plan given my work schedule.

Today I had 3-4 miles on my training plan, but you know what? I’m pooooooooooped. My body is begging for some rest, so I decided to actually listen to it. I’m not always awesome at doing this, particularly when I’m on a ¬†training plan for a race, but I have definitely gotten a lot better from the old Joelle who would run in pain until a minor ache turned into a ¬†full blown “where are my crutches” sort of injury. Your body is really, really smart, and sometimes it just needs a break……. even if that doesn’t match with your calendar.

SO, I figured it was smarter to rest now than risk becoming burnt out or hurt later, given the race is creeping up soon. I’ll just run tomorrow morning instead and shuffle my training plan¬†for this week a bit…no biggie.

Also, my schedule is sort of bananas lately, so I think that’s adding to my tiredness. I’ll get into more of this soon, but here’s a partial glimpse…flashcards

To be continued!

Now to get more coffee….



Do you ever have trouble listening to your body and taking extra rest days?

Focused February and the Running Motivation Blackhole

Hiya! How’s your week going so far?

So far I’ve eaten a lot of meatballs, and gotten in a nice and sweaty Body Pump workout. I’d say that’s a solid start, yes?

Now since my first 10 miler of this half training is looming (Saturday, holler) and I’m one month out from the SD half, I’m kicking training into high gear.IMG_5813

That’s my version of high gear. ūüėČ

I’m going to do all those things, and yes, that’s taped onto my bathroom mirror. Because I want to be faster, and I know¬†I need to take training a teensy bit more seriously if I want to see a sparkly new PR.

And on that note, I thought today would be¬†a good time to talk about the mystery of running motivation. Or actually, lack there of! We’ve all been there, right?¬†Where you know you should run (like because of your race training or due to a lack of time to workout another day, etc.), but you just can’t seem to find even the hint of motivation to actually step foot outside. Like just putting on your running shoes feels like a chore, and it seems like a way, way better idea to pull on stretchy¬†pants and sit on your sofa with a snack.

[Raises hand.]

Let’s back up to this past weekend…¬†I’ve been doing this thang in training where I intersperse a shorter amount of miles every other weekend in place of¬†my long run. (I did that for my last two half marathons¬†too, and it worked out just fine.) So¬†this last Saturday, I did five miles, whereas the week before was eight. Get it? Now considering I’d just done a lot longer mileage and I’ve done plenty of *long* runs¬†–¬†which in my mind are seven miles and above – you’d think that the idea of running five miles on Saturday would have seemed like a breeze.

Not so, friends.

I was exhausted from work + the¬†late hours the previous few days, so running at all, never mind ¬†the 10K on my plan, sounded daunting. I also didn’t feel like getting in the car and driving myself to any of my fav running paths, and I don’t really enjoy running in my immediate neighborhood after my lovely run-in with a car a few weeks back.

After hemming and hawing, I finally bargained with myself to run on the treadmill at my apartment’s gym, and that I had to do at least three¬†miles, but could stop after that if I really felt like trash.


It worked!

Like magic, I had a nice little five mile run! Not super fast by any means or the prescribed 10K, but also not stopping every five seconds to stretch or overall hating life. I’ll take it!

But my question is, what the heck happens that makes that little internal switch turn even the most diehard running lover into Procrastination Polly on a random run day? I mean, once I got my legs moving on the treadmill, I felt great and was so glad I was doing it, but before……. it was like you were asking me to go jump off a bridge¬†the way I was looking for excuses to do anything but¬†get outside onto the pavement. Pure dread.

It feels like¬†a total blackhole!¬†Just sucks in all your motivation on those days when you’re extra pooped or super lazy or whaaaatever. Maybe that’s the same mysterious black hole that also eats one sock in the dryer?

How anyone else experienced this? Please tell me I’m not the only one.

The only real remedy I know is reminding myself that I’ll unfailingly feel so glad I’ve done it (the run, workout, whatever) once¬†it’s over, so I might as well just do the darn thing…oh, and remembering I’m running because I can.

…..although that still doesn’t always make motivation automatic. ūüėČ



Experienced this too? Got any tips on willing some motivation on those blackhole days?

1 2 3 7