Ten

I’ve now completed 10 half marathons.  Each one has taught me very important things, about myself and about life…

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My first half marathon, April 12, 2014, Eisenhower Half Marathon.  I learned that 13.1 miles is a damn long way to run.

My second half marathon, October 18, 2014, Kansas City Half Marathon.  I learned that Kansas City is super hilly.  And beautiful.

My third half marathon, April 11, 2015, Rock the Parkway Half Marathon.  I learned that running with a sinus infection and bronchitis is not fun.

My fourth half marathon, May 16, 2015, Scout Strong Half Marathon.  I learned that not all half marathons are created equal. Some are never to be repeated.

My fifth half marathon, June 6, 2015, Hospital Hill Half Marathon.  I learned that I prefer fall half marathons to late spring/summer half marathons.

My sixth half marathon, October 17, 2015, Kansas City Half Marathon.  I learned that I can push past my comfort zone.

My seventh half marathon, November 15, 2015, Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon.  I learned that this race is overrated, and Vegas is smelly.

My eighth half marathon, April 9, 2016, Rock the Parkway Half Marathon.  I learned exactly how amazing the running community in KC is.  How amazing? SO VERY AMAZING!

My ninth half marathon, May 14, 2016, Running with the Cows Half Marathon.  I learned that having someone to look forward to on the course, my special people, can help get me through a rough race.

My tenth half marathon, June 4, 2016, Hospital Hill Half Marathon.  I learned that no matter what, relentless forward progress will get me through each and every race.

Be who you want to be

2015 Running Roundup

December is over today.  This YEAR is over today.  This is hard to believe.  Time to recap December, and the whole year, in running!  You can catch up on the rest of 2015 here: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, and November.  I set out in 2015 with a few goals related to running.  The first goal, that was updated in May, was to run 950 miles in 2015.  With tonight’s run, I will have 71 miles for December, and I will surpass my goal for 950 miles and end with 965 miles for 2015!

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My other running goals included PRing my 5k and 10k times, with under 30 minutes for the 5k, and under 62 minutes for the 10k, and running a half marathon with minimal walking.  I reached my 5k goal, and ran a PR of 29:29 at the Wild West 5k.  I missed my 10k goal by 1 minute, and ran 1:03:00 at the Plaza 10k, but I did finish the race hand in hand with my best friend Amy, which was a perfect way to PR the 10k!  During the KC Half Marathon, I ran over 10 miles before walking, and my body felt great, but I was dizzy, so I had to walk.  I ended up PRing my half marathon time by over 10 minutes, and only walked a little bit during mile 11.  I was very happy with all three of these races, and many other races (and PRs) in 2015 as well.

Overall, I’m extremely pleased at how my 2015 running year went.  I gained a lot of endurance, speed, and confidence in my running.  Though I had some setbacks with knee and hamstring pain, I am stronger, mentally and physically, than I’ve ever been going into 2016!

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I saw a fun little year end running questionnaire on a friends blog, and thought it would be a fun and different way to recap the year in running! I’d love for you to share your answers in the comments!

Best 2015 race experience – KC Half Marathon – I love this race, and I had a great race, a huge PR, and during the race, I decided to tackle the full marathon distance in 2016!

Best 2015 run – I had so many “best” runs… runs with Mom and Shay in Hays, runs with the Groupies, runs with my best friend Amy, runs in Milwaukee with my sister… so many memorable runs.  Some runs were great because the run was great, some were great because of the company  – one thing I know for sure, none of the runs in 2015 were regretted!

Best new piece of running gear in 2015 – Hoka Clifton shoes! I tried out Hokas about halfway through 2015, and haven’t looked back! I wear my Hokas almost exclusively, and I wear my Altras here and there also.

Best running advice you’ve received in 2015 – “I can do hard things.”

Most inspirational runner in 2015 – My sister, Kristen. She’s so strong and always pushes me to go harder, longer, faster, and stronger than I ever thought.  She runs for her cousin Martilee, who has Rett Syndrome, and is raising awareness and money to help fight Rett Syndrome.  She has focus, positivity, and consistency that I strive for every day.

Favorite race picture of 2015 – This picture was taken at the Plaza 10k, about a half mile after I caught up to Amy, with about 2.5 miles left in the race.  I stayed right behind her, and about .15 from the finish line, I popped up beside her and we ran in together, and crossed the finish line hand in hand!

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Photo courtesy KC Running Co.

Race experience from 2015 you would repeat in a heartbeat – Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas 5k – HUGE fun party from start to finish!  The racecation was lots of fun, but unfortunately the half marathon weather was awful! The 5k though, definitely a fantastic experience!

Sum up 2015 in a couple of words – More than expected!

Here’s to a great 2016!

Monday Mentionings: November 23

Most of what I have to share this week is pictures of Jazzy! Best week in pictures ever! Last Monday was my last week in Las Vegas! My post about our time in Vegas is here, and my two race recaps are here: 5k and 13.1.

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Jazzy was super happy when I got home.  He tried to eat my glow stick from the 5k, and gave me lots of purrs and cuddles too.  I missed him lots, and I’m taking him home to Hays this week for Thanksgiving so he’s not alone again!

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With the cold temps, Jazzy has been a cuddle bug, cuddling up and sleeping on my pillow every night since I got back.  I get the tiniest little corner for my own head, and get to listen to kitty snores and purrs all night long.

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Wednesday, I started a new job!! I am now a Financial Account Representative for RTS Financial.  I’m learning a lot, and I’m really excited  to learn and grow and become part of this amazing company.  I got home and my brain was full, so I chilled on the couch with Jazzy.  I was cold, so I went ahead and covered him up too.  He wasn’t too excited about being covered up, but it made me happy.

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Saturday morning, Amy and I met up and ran a few miles.  My body is not ready for running in cold temperatures yet.  Especially my lungs, they are not happy with the cold and dry weather!  Just like in the summer, when it takes a few weeks for my body to adjust to the heat and humidity, it takes a few weeks in the winter to get used to the weather change on my body.

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I recently put my main cozy fleece blanket on my bed, and realized I did not have another cozy fleece blanket.  Now, there’s nothing wrong with the rest of my blankets, but I just love the big fleece blankets!  They are so warm and cozy and extra long, so I can wrap up like a burrito!  On Saturday afternoon, I went to the fabric store, which is so not in my comfort zone, by the way, and found some adorable fleece to make my blanket!

I went to Mockingjay Part 2, after I bought my fabric.  Mockingjay was good, and I lost it at one point… I may have to re-read the books again.   Anyway, after the movie, I went straight home and made my new blanket!  Not too much to make really, I just cut and tied it, and then sewed a bit in the middle to keep it together.  Nothing fancy!  Jasper was very helpful as a supervisor, and immediately took it over as his own.

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Oh Jasper, and his adorableness.  I typically eat dinner on my couch, and Jasper has gotten into this habit of sitting right next to me, looking at me with puppy dog eyes, and then he reaches up and touches my arm to ask for some.  He’s pretty relentless, though.

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After running yesterday morning, again in the cold, I cleaned up and put some stuff away after getting back from Vegas.  Jasper wasn’t really too pleased to be Majestic Sea Flapped, but he was pretty cute.  It only lasted about 20 seconds before he got up and ran away.

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Later on Sunday, when I was writing my race recaps, Jasper decided he wanted to be the center of attention… like always, and jumped up on the stool and plopped himself down.

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This week is going to be a lot of fun! I have 3 days of work at my new job, then I’m driving home with Jazzy, Kristen, and Thayne, for Thanksgiving!  I hope everyone has a fun and beautiful Thanksgiving with family and friends and loved ones.  If you’re traveling, please be safe!