Are You a Bottom Feeder?

You might be familiar with the concept of sandbagging, or when a runner falsely states she’s slower than she actually is so that she can blow away the competition during a race.  A good way to think of bottom feeding is the opposite of that; it’s deliberately finding a race with slow competition in order to get an award. I am an unabashed and proud bottom feeder.  It was my more » Read more

Dear Boston, It’s Not You, It’s Me.

Five. That’s how many times Meb stopped to lose his lunch before he reached the storied Boylston finish line. I suppose I should be grateful, then, that my stomach never followed through on its threats to hurl my Honey Stingers. I know that Boston is a privilege–one for which so many mid-packers like me fight tremendously hard. What I didn’t know was that my fight wasn’t over, that it would more » Read more

Basil’s Boston Marathon Playlist

With the Boston Marathon around the corner and taper in full swing, there’s only one thing left to do (besides panic and obsess about All The Things). That’s right! It’s time to tune up the playlist, to toss the songs that tempo runs have forever ruined, and add some fresh tracks to carry me from start to finish on marathon Monday. Now, I realize that some of us here at more » Read more

Death Valley Days = Badwater Training Gut Check

This past weekend was the LA Marathon, and since the Clif Bar Pace Team handles the pacing chores, DB and I were out west.  What better opportunity, we thought, to add in a visit to Death Valley, and re-visit the course we’ve now played on six different times. I’ve written before about what it’s like to run in Death Valley, specifically about the time that DB and I created our more » Read more

Runners Aren’t Invincible

On December 10, 2014, my motivation disappeared and I decided to stop running. That was exactly one month and one day after I ran a one hour marathon PR, that’s right one whole hour in the Soldiers marathon. No, I wasn’t tired of running, I wasn’t mentally exhausted, or any of the normal reasons people stop running. I just did not see the point anymore. I know, I know. I more » Read more

Dear Diary: Today I Ran Like a Boss!

Training journals: most of us keep one in some form or another, whether it’s electronic or old school pen and paper. In it, we log every thing we’ve accomplished during our training week. We document the miles logged, the reps completed, and even what we didn’t do on our rest days. But when is the last time you recorded how you felt about what happened during your day, not just more » Read more

Should You Use a Race as Your Long Run?

During the last weeks of 2014, without any goal races on the horizon, I started getting comfortable with 5-6 mile runs, and the thought of going longer seemed awful.  I found myself really struggling to do long runs!  But it’s a new year, and my first goal race of 2015 is the New Orleans 70.3, a half Ironman, so I know I have to somehow get out of my funk more » Read more

Winter Running Options: Our Winter Greatest Hits

Winter is not technically here, but for most of us it sure feels like it! Here in Ohio it was in the 60’s on Tuesday and now we’re down to 20’s and 30’s. Brrrrr! That means it’s time to get into winter training mode. And when I say winter training mode, I’m not just talking about breaking out the mittens and the tights. There’s so much more that goes into winter more » Read more

Running Next to Mom, Part II

In Running Next To Mom Part 1, I confessed to feeling somewhat inferior to all the runner-moms around me. As a 30-something woman who does not plan on having children,  I often fall into the trap of playing “mommies VS. me” comparison games, which are never good. It’s easy to feel left out and lost around runner-moms who juggle child-rearing and daily miles like it’s no big deal. How the heck more » Read more

Go Big or Go Home

They say, “Go big or go home.” Four days out from my goal marathon – the one I hope to go from a solid mid-packer to a sub-three marathoner, the one for which I ran multiple 80 mile weeks and way too many miles at 6:52 pace – it’s too late to go home. So, all I can do is go big.  Of course, when you go big, even when more » Read more

5 Marathon Videos to Get Your Heart Racing

Fall marathoners, it’s been tough staying motivated to get through the miles in the heat, let me tell ya.  But I’ve got just the thing to get you revved up for a strong long run this weekend; marathon videos! I know Americans often don’t think of running first when they think of exciting sports TV, but considering how hard we runners work toward our races and how much energy and more » Read more

5 Things I learned from Ernestine Sheperd

At 77 years old, Ernestine Shepherd holds the Guinness World Record as the World’s Oldest Performing Female Bodybuilder. I was lucky enough to meet Ms. Shepherd a few years ago and while my first impression was “Wow, is she gorgeous!” I was most struck that her inner beauty far surpasses her impressive physique.  If Sports Illustrated is looking for its next cover model, she’s got my vote! So inspired am I by more » Read more

The Smart Runner Girl’s Guide to SMART Goals

All of the World Cup craziness lately has me thinking about goals. In soccer, it’s easy to see whether or not you’ve achieved your goal: your team wins, the crowd goes crazy (or in the case of the U.S. your team loses to Germany and the crowd still goes crazy), and the commentators infamously scream, “GOOAAAAL!” But how can runners achieve that same sense of pride if we don’t win more » Read more

Pick Me up at Target, Please

Pick me up at Target, please. It’s what I should have said to someone as I was heading out for my morning 10.5 mile run. But honestly, I did not think it was going to be a problem. It was my final run of my 52nd year. All I expected was a lot of introspection, retrospection, and celebration of the end of another year. That is so NOT what happened. more » Read more

Five Maya Angelou Quotes to Inspire Your Training

I know that when Maya Angelou was writing she had no idea that I would use her elegant words to help a runner achieve her racing goals, but upon her death last week, I realized just how inspirational she was to my running life.  I have learned many lessons in the process of reading her work and now, to celebrate her life and her great contributions to this world, it more » Read more