Bust A Rut

Happy Thanksgiving weekend, everyone!

It’s been a hectic, fun-filled couple of days, with so much more to come. I hope you are stuffed with yummy food, spending time with the ones you love. If you were ballsy enough to brave the Black Friday sales, I hope you scored some sweet presents for your friends and family. Plus, a few goodies for yourself 😉 Unless I’m the only one who plays the “one for you, one for me” game when I Christmas shop? 😉

I wasn’t brave enough to venture out for the sales today, but I have been online shopping up a storm. I’m kid-free today, as the little dude is whooping it up with his grandparents while Andy and me decorate, shop, and clean. Have I told you lately how fabulous my in-laws are?

As far as running goes, this week has been amazing. I’m on a 5-day “good run” streak. As I finished an easy 5-miler this morning, it occurred to me that I haven’t had one of those “I can’t wait to finish” runs in a while.

But, why? Is this happy streak a coincidence, or is it something I can replicate to avoid crappy runs in the future?

As I mentally flipped through this week’s runs, I realized why they have all been so successful. Variety. Each run was either somewhere I don’t normally run, was at a different time of the day than I’m used to training, or was a different workout than I usually do. Switching it up kept me interested and engaged in my runs, and I wanted to keep going.

I busted out of my running rut.

I am a notorious rut runner. I will find a route and do it again and again and again. When we first moved into our house, I mapped out a 6-mile route that I did almost every single day for a year. Seriously. I also ran it at almost the same pace every day. No wonder I wasn’t getting any faster!

If you’re a routine-loving person like me, then falling into a running rut is easy. But getting out of it can lead to big gains—happier runs, faster times and a refreshed love of running. Plus, if you’re not a runner, the same goes for whatever fitness activity you’re into.

Stop feeling like this about your workouts...
Stop feeling like this about your workouts…

So, how can you bust a rut and renew your run lovin’? These tips have worked for me and are definitely the reason why I’ve been having such a good time on the run lately.

Change Your Surface 

If you always run on the treadmill, GET OUTSIDE. If you’re a road warrior, find some trails! Switch up the surface you run on and you will become much more engaged in your training.

Switch Up Your Scenery

You won't see this when you're on the dreadmill.
You won’t see this when you’re on the treadmill.

If you’re a route loyalist like I am, find a new course. Run through different neighborhoods, find a new trail, run your usual route backwards—mix-it up and you will be forced to pay attention, instead of zoning out.

Mix-Up Your Pace

If you hop on the dreadmill, set the pace and don’t look at the screen again until you’re done: This one is for you! Try mixing up the pace, adding in bursts of speed or upping the incline for a few minutes—I promise it will be more interesting, and you’ll get a kick ass workout out of it. Check out three of my favorite treadmill workouts to add to your repertoire.

If you’re an outdoor runner, try Fartleks. Jog for a few minutes, sprint for a minute, jog for a minute, etc. until you’ve reached your desired distance. You’ll be focused on getting through each sprint and will relish the jogs. Before you know it, you’re run will be done!

Run At A Different Time

If you usually run in the morning, run at night. If you’re a nighttime runner, try a #runch. This obviously only works if you have some flexibility in your schedule, but if you can change this up even one day a week, you’ll be glad. When you’re not used to seeing the sunrise on your run, it adds a new layer of interest that will keep you from being bored. The same goes for seeing the sunset, or enjoying the empty trails at lunchtime.

Don’t Run

Seriously. I know it sounds counterintuitive, but doing a fitness activity other than running can really help you to hit reset on your running routine. Take a spin class, go to Cross Fit, do some ballet barre…whatever, just try something other than running. When you go back to it, you’ll feel invigorated and energized.

Running ruts can be a beast to bust, but once you do, you’ll be so much more motivated to run.

Now tell me, what are some ways you bust out of a running/fitness rut?

3 Boredom-Busting Treadmill Workouts

Happy Thanksgiving week! I’m eagerly anticipating a full day off Thursday, lots of yummy food and most importantly, spending time with the people I love!

Last week was not the best for running. I took 3 days in a row off, which I haven’t done since I gave birth. It was much needed and I’m feeling refreshed and ready to get back into my routine.

Here’s how last week panned out:

Weekly Running Re-Cap 11/17-11/23

Monday – Rest day
Tuesday – 0 miles , sick
Wednesday – 0 miles sick
Thursday – 3 easy miles, #runch
Friday – 6 miles easy, AM
Saturday – 5 miles, Afternoon—during Max’s nap, tempo
Sunday – 5 miles, PM

Saturday’s run was a naptime fail. I planned to run 7 or 8 miles while Max napped. Little man had other ideas. He woke up just as I finished the 5th mile, SCREAMING at the top of his lungs. Poor dude is working on four molars at once and it must have been too much for him. We spent the next hour cuddling while he dozed off and on in my arms.

Snuggles > extra miles
Snuggles > extra miles

Note to self: Never make plans when you have a baby/toddler. THEY KNOW. It’s like they have a sixth sense that alerts them whenever their mom is planning something around what they’re doing. And they are legally bound to mess those plans up by any means necessary.

Anyway, Saturday and Sunday’s runs were both on the treadmill. You know, the treadmill I’ve been gushing about for the last week and a half? I have a feeling I’m going to put a lot of miles on that thing this winter. It’s just so much easier to run in the morning or evening once Max is off in dreamland. With Andy gone most nights, it just makes sense.

My "new to me" treadmill. She's got some miles on her, but she's still running great!
My “new to me” treadmill. She’s got some miles on her, but she’s still running great!

Don’t get me wrong here. I prefer to run outside over the treadmill any day. Especially in the winter. Nothing makes me happier than frosty air and snowflakes falling as I run. I love the silence and the beauty of winter running.

But a running mama’s gotta do what she’s gotta do to get in a run and that means the garage treadmill is where I’ll be racking up the miles. With at least 3 months stretching ahead of me where half (or more) of my miles will be on the treadmill, I’ve been thinking about some of my favorite treadmill runs. Back in the day when I first started running distance—~11 years ago—I pretty much only ran on the treadmill. In order to break up the monotony, I made up various workouts. Here are 3 of my faves that I’ll be resurrecting on those cold, lonely nights on the dreadmill.

Max has found alternative uses for the treadmill.
Max has found alternative uses for the treadmill.

*Note: I am not a running coach or a personal trainer

Workout 1: “Ladders”

I think ladders is the name of a workout that we did on the high school track team, but I can barely remember what I had for lunch yesterday, let alone workouts from (gulp!) 11 or so years ago.

My version of ladders looks like this:

Warm-up: 10 minutes

Climb the ladder: 10:00-20:00

*Each “rung” is one minute long. Start at a comfortable pace. I start at 7.3. Each minute, increase your speed by .1. So the next minute I would be at 7.4, then 7.5 and so on until at 19:00 minutes you are running hard. Not a full out sprint, but a pace you can’t hang on to for an entire mile.

Jog 1 minute

Repeat the ladder as many times as you want until you reach your desired mileage or time.

Cool down with 1 easy mile.

I recommend standing up during t-mill workouts, but Max likes to do his own thang.
I recommend standing up during t-mill workouts, but Max likes to do his own thang.

Workout 2: Song Sprints

Warm up.

Next, use the song you’re listening to as a guide. Run an easy pace during slow songs. During fast songs, run comfortably hard during the verses and sprint the chorus.

Repeat until you reach your desired mileage or time.

*For this workout, you can either create a playlist where every other song is slow and every other song is fast, or you can set any playlist to shuffle. This will offer even more variety. It’s pretty nuts when you get 4 fast songs in a row!

Workout 3: Short sprints

Warm up.

Run 1 mile at marathon pace.

Sprint all out for 30 seconds, jog for 90 seconds. Repeat for 2 miles.

Run 1 mile at half marathon pace.

Repeat until you reach desired mileage or time.

Cool down 1 mile.

This workout is literally an ass kicker. To turn things up even more, bump your incline up during the half marathon pace mile. You’ll definitely feel it the next day!

Happy treadmilling!

Do you prefer running outside or on the treadmill?

What are some of your favorite treadmill workouts? I definitely need to add more to my list!

To Run Or Not To Run: Should You Train When You’re Sick?

Seen on my run last week. This sunset will cure what ails you.
Seen on my run last week. This sunset will cure what ails you.

My running this week has been non-existent. Weird, since I’ve been so gung ho about running lately. But, I woke up Monday not feeling so hot. Actually, I felt like I’d been hit by a bus. Not just any bus, either, but one of those massive pop-star tour busses that’s basically a luxury hotel room on wheels. I was exhausted.

I took a rest day. Then, Tuesday morning I woke up SIICK. Without going into the gory details, let’s just say running was the furthest thing from my mind.

Wednesday, I felt marginally better. I was able to drag my ass to work, but other than that, I was pretty worthless. Try explaining that to a toddler, though. Oh sorry Max, we have to lay on the couch all night because mommy’s sick. Nope, not happening. That kid ran me ragged all evening long. Needless to say, I went another day without running.

This little dude rests for no one...even his under the weather mama.
This little dude rests for no one…even his under the weather mama.

Today, I felt almost good, but a little weak. Which is when the question came up. Should I try for a run today? I wasn’t actively sick anymore, but I definitely wasn’t 100%. I wanted to run though. Three full days of no running had me going a little crazy. I needed some endorphins, dammit. So at lunch, I headed to the trails to see what I could do.

giphy
Endorphins cure the common stomach bug, right?

That was a total waste of time. I felt like crap from the first minute all the way through the last one. I slogged through 3 miles and for what? A crappy run that surely would do nothing for my fitness. In fact, it might have even done more harm than good, because right now, I’m exhausted.

So, should you run when you’re sick? Or even when you’re getting over being sick, like I was today?

In the past, I would have said HELL YES. I would run 24/7. I once had a nasty chest cold. My cough could move mountains. But, at that point in my life I wouldn’t have dreamed of taking a day off just for a little sickness. I popped a couple of cold pills and pushed on through. Let me tell you, running on Sudafed chock-full of Psuedoephedrine is quite the experience. You feel like the energizer bunny – you can keep going and going and going.  Later, of course, you crash. It took me more than two weeks to get over that particular illness. No doubt because I was pushing my body to exert itself when it was busy fighting off pesky germs.

According to Runner’s World, the general rule for running when you’re sick is that if your symptoms are from the chest down, skip it. If they’re above the chest, you can run, just shorter and less intense than usual.

I agree with this, but I’m thinking that even when you just have a nasty sinus infection, it might be wise to take the day off. Are you really going to be negatively affected by missing  a few runs? Are you going to lose your fitness? Or, will you make yourself even more sick, so that you’re sidelined even longer?

Definitely some things to think about. When it comes down to it, your health is far more important than a run. Treat your body right and give it rest when it is in need, so that you can come back stronger.

I don’t always follow my own advice :), but I’m trying every single day to be nicer to my body….in turn, I hope it gives me a BQ next Spring 😉

Have you ever run when you were sick? Did it make your illness worse?

I Bought A Treadmill + Weekly Running ReCap

I bought a treadmill!

I found one on Craigslist—a site that I am actually deathly afraid of—on Friday night, contacted the seller immediately, saw it on Saturday and bought it. After enlisting the help of my amazing brother-in-law and father-in-law for the heavy lifting because Andy was working, I became the owner of a shiny—OK kind of dingy, but in good working condition—new-to-me treadmill.

I’m so excited about this. OK, in all seriousness, running on the treadmill is not my number one choice. I love to run outside, get fresh air and actually see anything other than a machine screen while I run. But beggars can’t be choosers, and there are many days when an outdoor run isn’t possible. Andy works nights and weekends, so if I can’t squeeze in a run in the morning or at lunchtime, or with Max in the jogging stroller after work, then I often don’t get to run. With daylight time dwindling, it is often too dark when I get home to take Max out in the stroller, and it’s pretty darn cold, too. On the couple of weeknights that Andy is home, it’s not really fair to say “Hey, I know you’ve been home all day with Max while I got to enjoy the adult world, but will you hang with him for another hour so I can run?” And more importantly, I want to spend that time with Max while I can! I’d much rather run while he’s sleeping.

This treadmill has changed my running game. Now, I’m able to run after Max goes to bed while Andy is at work. Plus, I can run on the weekends while Max is napping. I feel like all my running problems are solved—melodramatic much?

Of course, I’m still going to *try* to drag my exhausted butt out of bed before Max gets up in the morning and run outside, and then I’ll *try* to run at lunchtime if I have any time at all. If all else fails, however, I have a plan “C.”

On that note, here’s my weekly running/workout recap for last week:

Monday: Rest day

Tuesday: 4.5 miles @ lunch

Wednesday: 3.5 miles @ lunch + This little workout circuit at night after Max went to bed:

30 jumping jacks
20 high knees
30 squats
15 burpees
20 jumping jacks
30 high knees
30 crunches
20 squats
20 burpees
10 pushups
60 sec plank

Repeat 2-3x (I repeated 3x)

I was sore until Saturday after this. Definitely a sign I need to do more strength training!

Thursday: 4.5 miles PM (squeezed in post-work before my in-laws dropped Max off

Friday: 5 miles AM

Saturday: 6.5 miles PM *on my new treadmill*

Sunday: 2.5 miles AM outside, 4 miles PM on the treadmill

Not too bad. I intended to do 3 strength workouts like I said in my Off-Season Goals post, and only did 1…oops. I’d also like to be running a few more miles, but last week was pretty hectic. Hoping to squeeze some more in this week!

How was your training last week? Did you hit your goals?

Do you have a treadmill at home?

Balancing Acts

My loves.
My loves.

I’m struggling with some serious balancing issues right now.

I want to run races, but even more than that, I want to spend time with my son. He is only going to be little once, and this time is going by SO FAST. He was born. I blinked, and then he was 18 months.

Soon he’ll be going to school, playing sports or doing other activities, and he won’t want to spend as much time with his mommy. And that will be a sad, sad time for me. I need and want to soak up every moment I can with him.

But, I’m also a person with wants and needs. I’m not just Max’s mommy. And I want to do activities that make me happy. Training and racing are those activities, but as I think all runners know, there has to be some balance.

I want to run alloftheraces and allofthemiles, but I have a family, friends, a job, and daily responsibilities that have to take some of my time, too. So I’m struggling every day to do as much as I can, to be a good mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend, employee and runner. Pretty much every single day, I’m failing at something. I’m forgetting to send a birthday card, or distracted by my email on my phone while I’m with Max at the park, or giving up some time with my husband so I can run.

I feel so guilty when I do these things, but there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything right. Sometimes they have to overlap. Sometimes, I have to leave work and not check my email until I return to work the next day (oh the horror!). Sometimes, I have to skip a run or cut it short. Sometimes, I have to skip folding laundry and just pull my clothes straight out of the basket and go—ok, that’s all the time. My life these days is a constant trade-off between what I have to do, what I want to do, and what I need to do.

And that’s OK. Life is messy. Life is hard. We’re all just doing the best we can. I’ll continue to try to balance everything, and most likely continue to fail.

It's all worth it for this little dude.
It’s all worth it for this little dude.

In the end, all that matters is that my little guy is happy and knows how much he’s loved. I’ll do my best at all the other stuff, but he is priority number one forever.

Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco Re-Cap Part 2

We left off right after the shakeout run and brunch at Dirty Habit. See Part 1 for the full beginning of the weekend recap.

The rest of the day was full of eating, sight-seeing and eating again.

alcatraz
That’s Alcratraz, also known as “The Rock” – a Rotten Tomato-worthy action movie starring Nicholas Cage
And and I at Fisherman's Wharf
Love him.
Just call me squinty...I really could've used some sunglasses
Just call me squinty…I really could’ve used some sunglasses

Then it was off to bed before our 5:15 AM wake-up. The race started at 6:30 AM, which is the earliest I’ve ever started a race before. It felt like about 5 minutes after my head hit the pillow, my alarm was going off.

I debated what to wear forever for this race. I ended up selecting the Nike Women’s Half tank, black Nike shorts and Nike women’s half compression socks. I had just bought the shorts the day before, but I figured they would be fine. Rule number one of racing: Don’t do anything new or wear anything new on race day. Breaking this runner’s commandment was NOT a good idea. More on that later.

Andy and I headed down to the race area around 6:00. It was PACKED! In the still dark early morning hours, the Union Square area was an explosion of color, light and women. So many women. It was awesome and overwhelming all at the same time.

The Nike Women's Half Marathon San Francisco 2014. Photo courtesy of Nike
The Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco 2014. Photo courtesy of Nike

We met up with some of my Finish Line ladies near our corrals. There were so many people in the corral that we had to stand off to the side. Once the race began, we squeezed onto the course and we were off.

Crazy eyes pre-race
Crazy eyes pre-race

The first few miles were, like most races, bursting with people. It was hard for our little group to stay together. My plan for this race was to take it easy, because I had the Monumental Marathon coming up in just two weeks, but this plan was hard to stick to. I was so energized by all of the racers around me that I just wanted to RACE. I tried to focus on holding back and sticking to the plan; plus, I knew that killer hills loomed on the horizon.

Around mile 2, the first of the real hills began. Our group quickly fell apart and I didn’t see anyone else until after the race. As the rolling hills continued, I focused on pumping my arms. A local runner had told me the day before that the key to the hills was to pump your arms. She also said that walking the hills can be harder on your body and take more energy that running. With that in mind, I had a plan to not walk at all.

I kept on chugging. For the next six miles, the rollers kept, um rolling. I tried to focus, but all I could really think about were my damn shorts. It became very clear that they were way too big. They were slipping down and probably showing my butt crack. I would hike ‘em up, only for the to slip down a few minutes later. Note to self: NEVER WEAR ANYTHING YOU HAVEN’T TRAINED IN ON RACE DAY. Duh.

Waving in between hiking my shorts up
Waving in between hiking my shorts up

Around mile 10, I completely forgot about my shorts. And everything else for that matter, because I was staring down a hill so steep, I thought I might fall over. It just kept going and going and going. I felt like I was barely moving. I’m not sure I was. Just when I thought that beast was over, the road curved and more hill loomed before us. My legs were in agony. My heart was thudding. I was convinced I wouldn’t make it to the top.

After an eternity or so, I made it to the top. There were tons of fans there, screaming and cheering us on. Telling us it was all downhill from here. I had never heard more beautiful words than those. THANK GOD.

Ecstatic to no longer be running uphill!
Woohoo! I’m NOT running uphill anymore!

At this point, I was so ecstatic to be done with the MFing hill that I just started running as fast as I could. Up until that point I had been running somewhere around 8:45 – 9 minute miles. Now I was clocking in the 7:00s. I didn’t care about holding back anymore. I only cared about being free from the hills.

Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy! And yes, that is a Ren and Stimpy reference #90skid
Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy! And yes, that is a Ren and Stimpy reference #90skid

We ran through a gorgeous park area. I was told afterwards that we could see the Golden Gate Bridge, but I never saw it. I was too focused on finishing.

The last few miles ticked by until finally, I crossed the finish line. I got my Tiffany necklace (!) and made my way out of the finishers chute.

So. Worth. It.
So. Worth. It.

I called Andy to find out where he was and he was PISSED. He had ridden the spectators’ bus to see me at the finish line, but they were stuck a few miles back, so he had not seen me finish. He wasn’t sure if he should stay on the bus or not and before we could make some kind of plan, his phone died. Fabulous.

Sometime later, Marissa and I found each other! Then we miraculously found Shelby and Heather. And then, Andy found us! He had gotten off the bus and walked the 2 or so miles to where we were.

Finishers!
Finishers! A little sweatier, a lot more tired, but no more crazy eyes.

It turns out that the bus drivers were not given special routes to get around road closures, so they kept getting stuck as they transported the spectators. Andy was tracking me on his phone, so he knew where I was and had ridden one bus to see me at mile 7. He missed me and got on another bus to take him to the finish. This bus drove him around for awhile and then took him back to mile 10. He boarded another bus, which took him in circles and back to mile 10. That’s right around the time I finished. He gave up on the bus and ended up getting to us long before anyone else from the spectator’s bus made it.

The bus debacle was really the only not so good part about this race. Hopefully, they will work this out next year. I’m guessing a lot of people complained.

Other than that, this race kicked ass. The course was beautiful. It wound us through Downtown San Francisco and took us through Golden Gate Park. There were lots of cool photo ops on the course if you wanted to stop and take pics (things like giant WE RUN SF signs) and there was great entertainment. There was one point on the course where we ran by a big sign with our names on it. Just as you ran by, your name came up on the screen and an announcer called it out. Very cool.

The tracking was also amazing. My father-in-law said he got to watch my dot move through the course, which was sweet. Most races just give you a time update at certain checkpoints on the course, but he actually got to feel like he was watching me race the course.

Even the results page looks cool. Well done Nike, well done
Even the results page looks cool. Well done Nike, well done

And probably one of the best things about the race was that we got all of our pictures for free afterwards. That’s right, FREE. Most of the time, you have to pay your arm and your leg for one measly race pic. I got to keep all my limbs and got all of my pictures for free 🙂

Anyway, we took the shuttle back to our hotel—even though Andy was not happy to get on another bus!—and spent the rest of the day eating and relaxing. We headed out at the crack of dawn the next day and after a long day of traveling, made it home to Max around 5 PM.

Reunited and it feels so good!
Reunited and it feels so good!

I have such great memories of this race and I highly recommend it. Grab a group of friends and make it a girls’ weekend next year!

Are there any other fun races you would recommend?

Have you ever worn anything new on race day? Did you regret it?

Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco Re-Cap Part 1

Photo courtesy of Nike Women's Half Marathon.
Photo courtesy of Nike Women’s Half Marathon.

Since this post is sooo long –even after breaking it up into two parts—here’s what you need to know if you’re interested in running this race next year:

DO THIS RACE. It is beautiful, fun and full of girl-power.

BE PREPARED FOR CROWDS. Something like 25,000 people ran this race. It’s kind of a cluster from start to finish.

THIS ISN’T A PR COURSE. Though I did meet a girl on the plane who PR’d, I think it’s pretty rare at this race. Tons of people + Crazy hills = Just have fun.

POST-RACE SWAG IS AWESOME. Not only do you get a Tiffany necklace, you also get free massages, crazy expensive juices (I can’t remember the brand, but someone told me they were like $7 a bottle) and tons of food and drink.

STAY IN UNION SQUARE/DOWNTOWN. If the race is still in Union Square next year, this is the perfect place to stay. The start line was like a 4 minute walk from my hotel. Everywhere we wanted to go outside of the immediate area was a quick Uber ride away.

If you’re still with me, let’s get this recap started!

Nike and the company I work for were hosting some amazing fitness and health bloggers/social media mavens, so I got to go to SF to help out. Perk of the job—I also got to run the race.

Such a fabulous, inspiring group of ladies!
Such a fabulous, inspiring group of ladies!

We arrived in San Francisco on Friday afternoon, but to us Midwesterners, it felt like evening. We landed, said Bon Voyage to the nice dude who sat next to us on the plane, and headed to catch the BART—Bay Area Rapid Transit—to downtown SF. We high-fived about a million times when we got off the train at THE RIGHT STOP. As newbies to public transit, we were sure we had gotten on the wrong train and would end up in LA.

After checking into our hotel, The King George—kinda kitschy-cool with a British royalty theme (obviously)—we headed to the expo. We were tired, hungry, and starting to get cranky, but I really wanted to check it out. The expo was held in Union Square park in the heart of Union Square, which was described to me as “shopper’s paradise,” also known as “Molly’s paradise.” 🙂

We skipped the packet pick-up, as I would be getting mine the next morning at a brunch with Nike and the girls. It looked like a crazy long line though. We dove right in to the expo. The music was LOUD. It was literally thumping in there.

There were tons of things to do inside. Quite a few photo-op areas, as well as a treadmill station where you could get a free running shoe assessment, and a video of the course. I tried to ignore that one, as I did NOT want to know what I was in for.

Posing outside of Nike Union Square
Posing outside of Nike Union Square

Other cool things included a Paul Mitchell hair station and a manicure booth. You could also swing by the usual swag booths and buy Gu chomps and other fuel.

Next, we hit up the Nike store across the street. The music was so deafening, I could barely hear Andy when he was standing right next to me. We checked out the wall with every runner’s name on it—which was really cool—snapped a pic and hightailed it outta there.

BOOM. There it is.
BOOM. There it is.

After we enjoyed dinner at the AARP special hour of 4:30, we headed to the hotel and crashed.

The next morning, I headed to Nike Union Square for the shakeout run with the girls. We ran about 2 miles through the streets of downtown at an easy pace. We talked, dodged street signs and random poles, and got our taste of what the hills would be like the next day—brutal.

Post-run, we headed with some fabulous ladies from Nike and the kick-ass bloggers group to brunch at Dirty Habit Restaurant at the Hotel Palmoar.

Nike+FL ladies+Bloggers
Nike Track Club Ladies

We were lead out onto the terrace for brunch al fresco and it was absolutely stunning.

Beautiful table and swag bags at Dirty Habit. Thanks Nike!
Beautiful table and swag bags at Dirty Habit. Thanks Nike!

The elaborately decorated table featured a bag of goodies for everyone there and our race packets. As we squealed over all the great stuff, a waiter came by with Mimosas. Champagne and free stuff? My race weekend was complete and I hadn’t even set foot on the course.

My seat at the table...and the first of many mimosas!
My seat at the table…and the first of many mimosas!

We took LOTS of pics, enjoyed our fabulous food and drank a bit too much bubbly for the day before a race! I got to meet so many inspiring ladies, and that truly was the best part of the weekend.

With some of my favorite co-workers
With some of my favorite co-workers
Nike and FL Ladies rockin' our new Tech Fleece Hoodies.
Nike and FL Ladies rockin’ our new Tech Fleece Hoodies.

Part 2 coming soon. Stay Tuned!

Have you ever run a Nike Women’s Race Series event? Would you do it again?

Do you drink the day before a race? Does it affect your performance?