Sylish and Functional Cross Training Gear

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I’ll be the first to admit that my running wardrobe is pretty awesome. I’ve been fortunate enough to participate in a couple of programs with two of the more well-known running companies and in the process received some Christmas-like deliveries of gear. But my pilates/yoga/barre/etc wardrobe has been lacking. I mostly wear running shorts or capris and a tank or sports bra when I do the workouts – which has been totally fine (it’s hard to justify spending $ on clothes that nobody except my husband and I will see). But I’ve begun going to the gym to do core and strength work a couple of times a week and I am beginning pilates and barre classes at a nearby studio (I just found out about this studio that is 1 mile away!). And so I’ve been on the lookout for affordable clothes that would fit the bill for these workouts. It was pretty fortuitous that Amazon Fashion reached out a couple of weeks ago to see if I was interested in teaming up and trying out some of their new gear from their #AmazonActive line. read more

Saucony Kinvara 5 Giveaway Winner

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Hope everyone had a great weekend! The winner of the Saucony Kinvara 5 Giveaway (on Instagram) is: Sauceyjill! Congratulations! Please email me at nycrunningmama@gmail.com and I’ll get the code over to you ASAP! =) Follow me on Instagram so you can stay in the loop with other giveaways! And, check out the Last Chance gear on Saucony.com – you can get 25% off all the shoes/gear that is already marked down (use code “EXTRA25″ at checkout! And, just a reminder: you can vote once/day for the Runner’s World Cover Contest – I would really appreciate your vote and any sharing of the link! Thank you! =) ———————- I don’t post here every day, but I post all of my workouts (and other happenings) on Instagram on a daily basis {NYCRunningMama}. For More NYC Running Mama training updates, pictures and ramblings, check out: Instagram:  NYCRunningMama Twitter: NYCRunningMama Facebook: NYCRunningMama Pinterest:  NYCRunningMama read more

26Strong + Saucony Shoe Giveaway!

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Don’t forget to enter the other giveaways I’m hosting this week in honor of Mother’s Day (Vitamix S30 Blender + Entry into in24 Philly Race). If you’ve been reading here for a bit, you may remember that I participated in the 2013 Saucony 26 Strong Campaign in the fall. I had a blast – and especially loved mentoring and coaching my “cadet”, Hallie, as she trained for her first marathon. So I was extremely excited when Saucony reached out to me this past winter to see if I would be interested in participating in the 2014 Campaign. Saucony and Competitor have teamed up to put together a team of 26 females – 13 “veteran” marathoners and 13 first-time marathoners. The coaches are some pretty amazing (and speedy!) women, many of whom I have the honor and privilege of calling my friends (Dorothy, Jess, Katherine, Jenny to name a few). Saucony left it up to the coaches to select our “cadet”. I knew I wanted to pick someone local – someone that I could train with occasionally and meet for coffee/dinner/training catchups whenever we wanted. Once I narrowed down what I was looking for, it became an easy decision. I’m excited Continue Reading →

Saucony 26 Strong Project Video #1

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As I I mentioned a few months ago, I was selected to be a member of the Saucony 26 Strong Project organized by Saucony, Competitor Group and Women’s Running. Over the last few months, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to mentor and know Hallie, my “cadet” for the Philadelphia Marathon.  Her whole story can be found here.  It’s been a wonderful experience and I am really grateful for the opportunity we have been given. More than the gear and cool perks, it’s been so inspiring to work with someone who is training for their first marathon. You only cross the finish line of your first marathon once and it’s a special, magical moment.  I am honored that I was able to work with Hallie to help get her to the start line physically and mentally ready. But as if that wasn’t cool enough, we found out that we were one of two teams that would be filmed as part of a mini-series documenting our journey. In September, a film crew from Competitor Group came out to NYC for a few days of filming with Hallie and I.  We spent some time in Central Park, by my home, on my favorite running Continue Reading →

Saucony Ride 6 (Toddler/Baby) Review

With the exception of my sons’ first few pairs of walking shoes, I don’t think I have paid more than $20 on a pair of shoes for them.  I do most of their shoe shopping at discounted stores (TJ Maxx, Target, zullily) and moderately priced stores during sales and when I have coupons (Gap).  I just cannot justify spending $$ on shoes that that they will wear for only a few months. However, their walking shoes were a different story. When both boys started walking, I was very intent on getting them good, supportive walking shoes.  Stride Rite was the store that was recommended to me by my mom and sister. Whether they’re running circles around you or taking their first steps, small feet require big care. We understand the significance of every step. Our entire collection, every single shoe, is created from an in-depth knowledge and understanding of how children walk and grow. stride rite studies have led to important breakthroughs and new technologies in children’s footwear. Every new material and component is rigorously tested. And with 30 to 40 tests per shoe to ensure proper fit and durability, you can trust that nobody knows more about growing feet than stride rite. Continue Reading →

Things I’m Loving – Ironman Edition

Husband came home earlier than expected yesterday (yay!). Even though I was able to take a 45-min nap before dinner, I guess my body still needed sleep as I slept straight through my 4am this morning. I hate missing workouts but I know that sleep is more important and that missing one measly workout (which was an easy swim at that) won’t make or break me in 15 days.  So unplanned rest day for me! We are hanging out at home today and heading up to Lake Placid this evening at the boys bedtime.  Unless we left early this afternoon, we would hit a crapload of traffic which doesn’t bode well for a 9 1/2 month old who isn’t fond of the carseat.  Thankfully, I feel ahead of laundry and chores around the house – it helped having my wonderful in-laws here for a visit – I was able to do so many little projects around the house, including hanging these frames on our entry way wall. And have I mentioned that whenever my in-laws visit, they bring a cooler of freshly caught seafood? Last visit was Ophelia crab…this time it was Copper River Red salmon. Heaven on a plate: Continue Reading →

Scotland 10k Race Recap

Race outfit

I got up early Saturday AM (5am) and did my usual pre-race routine: Drank my coffee, nursed the little guy who had just woken up (and decided not to go back to sleep), ate a slice of whole wheat bread with peanut butter, drank some Nuun, packed my bag and was out of the house by 6:30am.   I picked up my friend, Leticia (and her friend), and we made our way to the UWS.  After leaving the car in a garage by my sister’s building, I ran to the park and continued doing short out and backs from the start corrals as part of my 2-mile warmup. I got into the start corrals by 7:45 (the race started at 8am) and tried to stay loose and warm. Despite beautiful weather this week, it was a chilly morning in NYC – with the windchill, it felt like it was in the upper 20s.  My race outfit changed about 10x during the previous 24 hours.  I went with Nike shorts, PRO Compression Socks, Saucony Guide 6s, Lululemon tank,

Two Weeks Off From Running + Scotland 10k this weekend

First ride in the wagon!

I loved reading all your comments on yesterday’s post – glad to know that my husband and I are not the only ones who struggle with both fitting in working out daily. Ever have a day where everything seems to go your way?  Yesterday was one of those days for me.  Started with an amazing ~20 miles of the Lake Placid Ironman Course  on the trainer. This DVD is amazing.  I am so thankful that Amanda recommended it to me.  My plan is to use parts of the DVD for at least one bike ride a week so that I can become intimately familiar with the course.  The bike course at LP is 2 56-mile loops.  This DVD takes you through one complete loop with Coach Troy with pointers and tips for the course along the way. Both boys slept later than usual (6am for the oldest and 8am for the youngest) AND had joint naps (for a little bit) which allowed me to shower, work on training plans, respond to some emails, do  laundry, and clean the house. Then I had a few deliveries.  First Fedex dropped two huge boxes off containing this: read more

Saucony Virrata Review

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Over the years, I have dabbled with zero-drop shoes on more occasions than I can remember.  I SO wanted to wear a lightweight, more natural shoe.  But each time I have had to sadly return to my previous training shoe because my foot felt too naked, too unsupported for anything more than a mile or two. They just didn’t feel right on my foot and I couldn’t get used to the feeling of having NO support from the pavement. So, understandably, I was intrigued when I heard about the new Saucony shoe – the Virrata. The Virrata is Saucony’s lightest and most flexible training shoe which allows your foot to move naturally.  But Saucony did something different with this shoe – something I hadn’t seen in other natural 0mm drop shoes. Rather than completely strip down the shoe and leave a 0mm drop shoe with no support or cushioning, they ADDED 18mm of cushion at the bottom. GENIUS.  I loved this concept because it addressed my biggest issue with lightweight, 0mm drop shoes – the lack of protection and support.  read more

Pre-NYC Half

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The NYC Half Race Recap will be up tomorrow but I’ll save the suspense…I PR’d by over 2 min!!! I didn’t get my sub-1:32 but I was darn close (1:32:23) and could NOT be happier with how the whole race went.  I don’t think the smile has left my face since I crossed the finish line. And want to know one of the best parts about the weekend?  I am not the only one who PR’d…SO many friends set massive PRs this weekend: Kristin ran the LA Marathon in 3:20 Ashley ran a 1:43 at the NYC Half -> PR by over 2 min Jess took 10 min off her half and ran the Rock N Roll Half in 1:33 Gia got her BQ at the LA Marathon after missing it by 10 sec in the fall – she ran a 3:32 Theodora ran a 5 min PR in 1:50 at the Rock N Roll DC Half Erica got her sub-2 half at the NYC Half Lindsey crushed her previous marathon PR with a 3:13 at the Shamrock Marathon Ashley ran a 2:05 to crush her PR that she’s had for 5 years at the NYC Half On the Run Interview I Continue Reading →

Slowing Down the Treadmill

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Do you ever feel like you are on a treadmill and it just seems to be getting faster and faster…and that you will fall off if you hesitate for even a second? This is how I have felt the last few weeks.  Overwhelmed. Like I was holding down the fast forward button and couldn’t pick up my hand.  Like I didn’t have control. Don’t get me wrong.  Certain aspects have been positive.  I’ve nailed all of my tough runs and I’ve been blogging much more frequently (pretty much every day lately). But other aspects of my life seem to be running away from me. For the last month I have been a zombie.  I’ve been staying up entirely too late for the time I’ve been getting up…My to-do list is only getting longer and with later bedtimes for the boys (some nights around 830), I don’t start doing things until close to 9.  An 11pm bedtime with a 5am wakeup is not easy.  And on top of that, the sleep I have been getting is completely broken.  My youngest is going through a sleep regression so gone are the 10-12 hr nights.  We have been dealing with 2-4 wakeups a night. Continue Reading →

Race Report: Cold Feet 10k

Cold Feet 10k

Saturday morning was the Cold Feet 10k, a local trail race through the Greenbelt on Staten Island.  Even though I’ve lived on Staten Island a good part of my life, I always seem to forget how expansive the trail network is here – there’s over 2800 acres of trails, parks, and natural areas.  It’s amazing! It was the first trail race I’ve done since this 25k last year and only the second time I’ve been on the trails in over a year.  For a long time, I was only focused on big(ger) races – mostly those organized by NYRR.  I don’t really know why I was shying away from smaller races for so long – the last two I have run have been smaller (with under 200 runners) and I have LOVED them. I woke up to huge snowflakes falling outside.  Not exactly the weather conditions I was hoping for…but snow is 100x better than freezing rain.  With a 10am start time and the race only being about 15 minutes away, I was able to stay home until 9:15! No early wakeups or leaving in the dark. Score. read more

What I’m Loving

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Happy Valentine’s Day!!!  Hope you all indulge in a little chocolate / sweet treats today =) Workout yesterday: 700 yd swim (following the 0to1650 plan) + 5 mile progression run on gym’s treadmill.  My arms felt tired from the first stroke in the pool yesterday…I have one more pool workout on Friday and then off until Monday (yay!).  The progression run was totally unplanned – intention was 4-5 miles at an easy pace but everything felt too good to go slow.  Ordinarily, I would have followed the training plan, but since I haven’t done any long or hard runs this week, I decided a few miles at a good pace wasn’t the worst thing in the world. Splits: Mile 1: 8:20 Mile 2: 7:44 Mile 3: 7:16 Mile 4: 6:56 Mile 5: 6:28 I didn’t get up early this AM to run.  The last few days of swimming coupled with my youngest son’s recent sleeping habits (he has reverted to waking up 2-4x / night to nurse) made for one tired mama this morning.  But I got the BEST present from both boys today.  Little guy woke up only once (3am) to nurse and both boys slept til almost 630am! Continue Reading →

Intervals

Please keep my beautiful friend, Sarah, and her family in your prayers.  Her adorable 4 month old son, Jack, is undergoing surgery today.  You can read about her son and what he’s going through here. ——————————————————- If you look at my marathon training plan, it’s a mix between being extremely detailed and very vague.  The long runs, types of workouts each week, and target weekly mileage is pretty black and white.  I know what I want to get done each week and I try hard not to deviate from that.  I run six days a week with three of those being quality days – long, 2x speed (either intervals, tempo, SS, LT) – and the other three being easy/recovery days. The workouts for the speed days are left blank. I don’t believe that I have to do the same speed workout every single week.  It’s boring.  I like the variety of changing it up every week (or every few weeks). Intervals and tempo one week.  Intervals and steady state another week.  I typically decide what my plan is for the week after my long run (based on how I’m feeling) but have changed my mind the night before or even the morning of the Continue Reading →

Hot Chocolate 10k Race Recap

Awesome coffee mug!

As I said yesterday, I’m not going to sit here and blame the freezing temperatures or the ice / slush on the ground as the reason I did not reach my goal.  I signed up for a race in the winter in NYC, so ice/snow/freezing temperature kind of goes along with the territory.  Do I think the conditions caused me to go a bit slower than I would have if things were warmer/drier?  Yes. Definitely.  Do I think they caused me to run 94 seconds slower (~15 sec/mile) than I needed to?  That may be a stretch.  And I can’t sit here today and “blame” the elements for that substantial of a time difference. At the end of the day,  I’ll really never know.  There’s no way to rewind that race, that one moment in time and do it again with better conditions.  So rather than dwell on what I didn’t accomplish and be pissed off at the external factors, I’m going to chalk it up as a great training run (and lesson) for my bigger goal this spring – sub-3:10 at the NJ Marathon. read more

Thanks, Mother Nature!

Yesterday’s 10k race didn’t go as planned…partially due to Mother Nature.  She decided to give us about an inch or so of snow Friday night.  It wouldn’t have been a problem had it not been well below freezing overnight and all day yesterday.  The race started at 8am and despite an amazing job by the NYCRuns crew, there were still large areas along the course that were extremely slushy and some areas that had bits of ice. Lots of ice/snow/slush/yuckiness: I finished in 43:34 (7:02 pace) with some very uneven splits (full recap to come tomorrow) – it’s really obvious those areas that were clear (and in the sun) and the ones that I had to slow down.  I don’t really know if I could have been able to run sub-42 if the conditions were better.  I’d like to think I could have, but I’m not going to blame the weather for not reaching my goal.  Just will use it as a learning point for my next wintry-mix race (maybe wear shoes with better traction?). read more

It’s Racing Time

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This Saturday is my first race (where I’ll actually be racing for time) since I found out I was pregnant a year ago. I’m getting anxious, nervous, excited to race again.  I’m running the Hot Chocolate 10k in Prospect Park.  If I run a sub-42, I can apply for the Saucony Hurricane Team.  I haven’t raced a 10k in years – the last one was in 2008 when I was deployed to Iraq.  I’ve never trained for a 10k.  So I’m not totally familiar with how I should be running this week, tapering (if, at all), and resting. Love this quote: I reached out to my friend, Mike, late last week to get his opinion on what type of run I should do this past Saturday.  My marathon training plan called for 16 miles.  I wasn’t sure if that would be too much on me before this weekend’s race and whether I should switch the workout to a longer tempo or progression run instead.  Mike recommended that I stick to the training plan and then focus on shorter distances during my speed workout this week. read more

Cold Weather Running

My pre-run ritual in the winter

Wednesday’s Workout – 5 easy recovery miles (8:27 pace) on the treadmill: 3.8 miles while both boys napped and another 1.2 after I went to get little guy from his crib (he sleeps 9-10 hours straight at night but only likes 30 minute cat naps during the day).  This was my view for the second part of the run – my own cheering section =) Thursday’s Workout: 3 mi at half-marathon GP and 2 mi at 10k GP (with a 2 min rest in between).  Note: These are my goal paces – these are certainly NOT the pace that I can currently run a half marathon OR 10k. Mile 1: Warm-up (8:47 pace) Mile 2: 7:05 Mile 3: 7:00 Mile 4: 6:55 Mile 5: 6:40 Mile 6: 6:28 I love workouts like this – I get lots of speedy miles in without pushing myself for 5 straight miles. —————————————– After a couple of brutal summers in Iraq and Texas (think blowdryer hot), I learned to deal with super high temperatures.  My first winter back in NYC was a HUGE wake-up call for me.  I avoided the cold weather at all costs – and when I had to run – my hatred for the Continue Reading →

The Wind Against My Wings

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I’ll run in the heat, rain, cold, or snow with no very little complaining.  The one element that I despise and will avoid at all costs is the wind.  I hate it.  For me, there’s nothing as depressing as pushing yourself and feeling like you are barely moving. I always check wind speed before a run – and especially before a long run.  If the wind is anything close to 20 mph, I always choose the treadmill. The forecast for Saturday’s long run called for chilly temps (28) with winds sustained around 17-18 mph (and gusts up to 30 mph).  It was going to feel like 15 degrees with the windchill. If I were further along in my marathon training, I easily would have chosen the treadmill.  I’ve done distances up to 20 miles before on it.  But I felt that I wasn’t mentally prepared enough for 14 miles on the treadmill yet – I hadn’t run that distance since late spring (about 9 months) and was worried that I would wimp out and hit “stop” when I got tired the last few miles.  The only option was to run outside. read more

When do you throw in the towel?

  Race for Recovery Update Photos post will be up tomorrow or Friday (taking me A LOT longer to compile them all then I had anticipated!) Results can be found here Giveaway Winners can be found here ———————————————– As you are probably aware, I was set to race the Hot Chocolate 10k on Sunday.  I had really big goals for the race: running sub-42 which would allow me to apply for the Saucony Hurricane Team. I spent the last 5 weeks following a training plan – cutting back on my mileage and focusing on regaining the speed I had lost during pregnancy. I reacquainted myself with the uncomfortableness of speed workouts and hard runs. I saw HUGE gains in just a few weeks.  My 5k time went from 21:36 to 20:50 in one week. I had successful tempo runs.  My last one included 4 miles at a 7:05 pace.  I finished feeling strong and anxious to run more. I was starting to believe in myself. Last Monday I planned to do a practice 10k.  My goal was sub-43 (~ 6:55 pace).  I jogged a mile warmup, stretched and began the 10k time trial.  I barely made it a mile. Something didn’t seem Continue Reading →