Happy Friday!! Even though this week was a short one, I’m so happy its over! Waking up on a Friday sets my mood to “Happy”. 🙂 I’m linking up with my girls from the DC trifecta today, Courtney of Eat Pray Run DC, Mar of Mar on the Run and Cynthia of You Signed Up for What?!. We have a free Friday today (no theme), so I’m going to talk about the 5 things that get me to the finish line. Because I have been running a WIDE range of distances the last two weeks, some will be long distance specific, some will be shorter.
- My Garmin Forerunner 620 – I’ve only had my Garmin since May, and I’m pretty much obsessed. If I happen to forget to put it on after my shower, I feel completely naked. (even right now as its charging, my wrist feels… weird) This little watch is amazing! I’m not a fast runner by any stretch of the imagination. Being able to track my pace just by looking at my wrist makes me feel fast. Don’t laugh too hard at this, please… On Wednesday, my father and I ran the Ravens5K. My dad is quick, but I felt pretty strong, so I kept pace with him for a while. I looked down at my Garmin because I started to have some shin pain. We were running a 9:30 mile. (remember that part where I said I wasn’t fast!) I knew I could keep that pace for the remainder of the mile, but I also knew that if I did, my next two would suffer tremendously. I told my Dad to run ahead without me, and I slowed my pace about a minute. If I hadn’t had my trusty Garmin, that wouldn’t have been doable. Yes, I could have just guessed pace, but I like to see how fast/slow I’m running.
- My Brooks Ghost 7’s – I cant say enough about these shoes. After my huge fail at the Baltimore Marathon with shoes, it was imperative that I find a pair that not only fit correctly, but were comfortable! After a visit to Charm City Run, and a ton of choices laid out in front of me, I believe I’ve found my shoe “solemate”. I could (and have) fall(en) asleep in my Brooks. When I put these on, it feels like small pillows under the arches of your feet which as a person who has stupid sensitive feet to begin with, is a welcome feeling. Except for OCR’s and Fun runs (like the color run that is incredibly messy) you will always find me running/and walking in these. (side note, I also LOVE the “Run Happy” that goes along with Brooks.)
- Music – This is long run specific. I no longer run with headphones on my short runs because I’d rather use that time to think. Also, the sound of my feet, and the runners around me tend to give me the same push that my “power” songs do on long runs. I’ve also run two longer distances sans headphones. My half marathon training run on the NCR was without music, and I forgot my headphones for the Chuck12, soooooo that was also without music. However, I plan to use my tunes on my long run this weekend so I’m able to turn my mind off. (one headphone out of course!)
- Nuun – again, this is long run specific. I haven’t found anything comparable to Nuun as far as hydration on long runs. I never feel dehydrated, and Nuun doesn’t make my stomach hurt – both HUGE things!! I’ve gotten much better at hydrating after nearly passing out on one of my mid distance runs this summer. Holy humid batman! I realized as I finished that I was drenched in sweat, and I didn’t have to pee. I was also insanely dizzy and was getting a pretty fierce headache. These things (pre previous experience) could have been avoided had I better hydrated. I got back to my car and chugged an entire bottle of Nuun (watermelon – delicious!) that I had waiting for me. My go to flavors are fruit Punch, Watermelon, and the Cherry Limeade Energy. If you’re a Nuun virgin, I definitely recommend giving it a try.
- My thoughts – yea, that sounds weird. Especially because my brain can also be the reason I want to stop running. On short runs, I think about the people around me, the scenery, my IRUN4 buddy, and my son. On longer runs, I have a little game I play calls “how much is left?” On my 13.1 mile training run, I was not feeling it… at all. I knew I needed to complete the distance, but my feet had other plans. So, I began to think mathematically. I ran a 6.55 down and back. (again, thanks to the Garmin i was able to track this obscure distance) At mile 4(ish) I said to myself “you’re over half way to the turn around, just keep moving”. At mile 10, I told myself “only a 5k left!! That’s easy! DO.NOT.STOP”. I also like to keep track of my “kills” (Ragnar terminology) when I’m running alone. It doubles as motivation, and security because I know I’m not the only runner on the trail. It’s a bit more difficult to do this in a race setting (unless its small) because I’m passing people right and left (all while being passed myself!). Although, I’m guilty of the last minute kick, passing someone at the finish. Being that I will (most likely) NEVER place at an event, let alone WIN the thing… I don’t feel bad trying to shave a few seconds off my time by hauling towards the finish.
What powers you through a race?
Have you tried Nuun? Whats your favorite flavor?
Do you have a Garmin? what do you do to keep track of your distance and time if you don’t?