Glass City Ambassador

Making good decisions

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This message from my fortune cookie really spoke to me.  At the time, I thought it had all of the wisdom in the world.  Flash back to 3 weeks ago when a conversation with my husband got me thinking more about running the Elyria Trail Marathon on Nov. 8th.  I’ve just come off of a successful training cycle which I BQ’d, but NOT BQ’d good enough to make Boston 2016.  The dream is still there.  And wanting to run the Boston marathon on a good day, which wasn’t raining.  I am still pretty ticked that I got cut for 2016 because my time wasn’t quite good enough.  So, what about running another marathon while I still have a good base from my last training cycle?  I used the Columbus half marathon to be a guideline, wondering if my foot would hold me back or continue to have any issues, and it didn’t.  AND I got a new PR!  That, coupled with this enlightening fortune cookie message, my plan started to come clear.  Inland Trail is a very small race with a super flat course, within driving distance… sounds perfect.

To quote one of my favorite songs:

I know I’ve never been the smartest or the wisest, but I realize what it takes.

It takes only 3 seconds less per mile in the marathon to have a really solid BQ which should hopefully get me into 2017.  Why not go for it?  And so I planned out my training to replicate the last few weeks of my normal training cycle.  I did my 18 mile long run.  Oh god, it was painful.  For days.  I did some more scheduled runs, and dusted off the PT exercises.  My Piriformis Syndrome had reared it’s ugly head again.  (reared.  get it??)  For those of you who aren’t familiar with PS, it’s a pain in the butt.  Literally.  For me, it gets to the point where it feels like someone is tightening a screw on my glute muscles deep inside.  Uncomfortable to say the least.  But I have seen the Dr. about it in the past and I have a full set of exercises and stretches that I need to do to help it out.

The next week I ran 12 miles for a long run.  My PS was getting a bit better, but still there.  And then finally this week, I had to make the decision that running another marathon right now is just not the best choice. Waa waa. I know getting the time I want (a PR too!) would require some great running conditions, and to be fit.  If you’ve never run a marathon before, the tough part is that so many things can happen over that 26.2 miles.  You could be having the best day ever for the first 24 miles, and end up walking the last 2, throwing off your whole race.

I figured there was a 50/50 chance that I could have the great race day I wanted, but I also knew there was a really good possibility I would run well for the first 18 miles and just suck it up for the last 8 miles.  I ran this course in the past, once again as a way to get a BQ after running the Columbus full marathon 5 weeks earlier, and ended up walking most of the last half of the race and finishing 30 mins later than expected.  UGH.  I did not want a repeat of that.

Well, here’s to making good decisions and keeping the bigger picture in mind!  Another chance will come.

Here’s some funnies to finish with…  first of all Pinterest really gets me!

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Inner thigh exercises maybe, but I don’t think scones is a word I have ever used!!

And this is the conversation I had with my husband the other day when he was laying in bed, when he should have been outside running, enjoying this beautiful weather we are having!

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What can I say, I’m the early bird in this house!

Speaking of early birds, lock in your plans to run the in Mercy Health Glass City Marathon, Owens Corning Half Marathon, or the Medical Mutual Glass City 5K by winning a free bib from Sarah, the ambassador with the giveaway this week.  She should have her contest going on this weekend!


Q:  If given the choice, would you be an early bird or late sleeper at your house?

Q:  Are you in the middle of a training cycle right now, or just resting up for the new year ?

Q:  Do you like scones?  They are good, yes?

Q:  Have you ever had a race that didn’t turn out as planned and you were a lot longer than your anticipated goal time?


Glass City Ambassadors, and a great reason to meet them!

As you may have heard, I’m an Ambassador for the Mercy Health Glass City Marathon!

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2016 will be the 40th Anniversary of the Glass City Marathon.  Wow, right?  Race prep is underway.  Just announced, the course has been modified slightly for 2016, mostly to provide a straight shot at the start line.  Take a look!:


The course for the Owens Corning Half Marathon has been modified too, since they run together at the start 🙂

We’d like to get you in on some of the race day fun a little early… starting November 6th, the Glass City Ambassadors will be having contests to give away free race entries to one of the distances in the Glass City marathon race dayMercy Health Glass City Marathon, the Owens Corning Half Marathon, or the Medical Mutual Glass City 5K.

I’m not sure what distance I will be running quite yet.  You can find my 2016 Glass City Marathon Ambassador Profile on the website here.  Here are the other Ambassadors who you should meet…

Amanda Schwartz (Lead Ambassador)

Jes Taylor

Tom Silva

Sarah Olvera Speer

Dean Whitmire

You’ll want to check out these Ambassadors because….

You  have multiple opportunities to win a free entry for either the full, half or 5K!  Each person will be giving away two free race entries.  Here’s the schedule:

Sarah – Nov. 6 – 12                     

Dean – Nov. 13 – 19                    

Me!! – Nov. 20 – 26     

Jes – Nov. 27 – Dec. 3           

Tom – Dec. 4-10                        

Amanda – D​ec. 11-17     

Don’t worry, if you don’t win with Sarah’s giveaway, just head over to Dean’s giveaway and try again.  You’ll have six opportunities to win if you visit each Ambassador!


Q: If you could win a free race bib (any race), what distance would it be?

For free, I’d probably go for the marathon!  More bang for the buck, right?

Q: Do you typically enter contests?

Well heck ya!  And so should you… so make sure you come back and enter here!!


Columbus half marathon recap 2015


Columbus race weekend started out on Saturday with a quick zip through the expo to pick up our bibs.  I did protest the speed at which we were cruising through there and I made Alan get a picture at the “finish line” with me.

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At bib pickup, I was super excited that my name was on the box for the bibs!  The volunteer was amazed that I knew my bib was the last in the box.  I felt it only fair to tell him that we weren’t psychic, just highly observant.

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After the expo we met friends at Bravo for our pre-race pasta dinner.  My lasagna was huge, and I ate a ton of bread.  Carb loading done, check!

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After falling asleep at 10pm at our hotel, the 4:45 am wakeup alarm was actually tolerable!  I didn’t feel tired, but excited about the upcoming race.  We were on the road at 5:45 am to our downtown parking spot and didn’t run into any traffic.  Note to self, do this again next year!!  We were even the first people at our prerace meeting spot at the YMCA, which was open to all runners.  A nice warm place to meet up, complete with clean, flushing toilets!!  I dressed for the weather – which as 29 degrees at the start.  Brrr!  I planned on keeping my arm warmers on for the whole race, so I wore a nice Brooks pair.  We also both had some warm throw away items –  a hat, sweatpants and sweat shirt.

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With that headband I look like I could tell your future!!

After bag check we headed into the corrals.  It was super well organized and I didn’t feel rushed like I have in years past.  Ironically I ended up standing next to a guy who had a Glass City Marathon Ambassador shirt on!  Technically he wasn’t an ambassador, but he had been helping out at the expo for GCM which was why he had the shirt.  He took our picture!

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Would have been a great picture… if that shadow wasn’t in my face!! #shortpeopleproblems

I positioned myself near the 3:35 marathon pace group, but before the 1:50 half pace group.  Soon the AC/DC music cranked (Thunderstruck natch.  Followed by some Springsteen,  Born to Run), and the race started at 7:30 as the fireworks went off.  I only inhaled a little bit of smoke and firework residue!!

Miles 1 – 2, 8:23, 8:13

Columbus isn’t “hilly” but it does have a few long uphills and downhills.  My first two miles were a bit slower than my goal pace for sure.  It was crowded and I wasn’t up to speed quite yet.  So here’s the thing that threw me off a little.  My official pace last year was 8:16, which seemed highly do-able.  However, looking at my Garmin data the race was actually 13.2 miles, which translated into a 8:11 pace. Sure, 5 seconds a mile doesn’t sound like much, but really, it is!  To get a new PR I figured I would just try to keep my paces with 8:0x per mile.  So far, race paces not looking so good!

Miles 3-6 7:57, 8:02, 8:01, 8:02

Yahoo, we’re hitting the downhills now!  Not all downhill, but some downhill and just getting into my race groove now.  Enjoyed seeing these paces on my watch.

Mile 7 –  8:26

This mile had the double whammy of an uphill, and I was taking a GU.  I hate taking GU when I run.  I loose track of my focus (running fast!).

Miles 8, 9, 10 –  8:02, 8:08, 8:07

Back on track again!  I was enjoying this race for the most part and was super pleased these fast miles were comfortably hard for me.  But right about now I was actually thinking it would be good to stop.  For some reason I always want to stop when there’s only 3 miles left!!

Miles 11, 12 – 8:25, 8:25

Uh oh, pace slipping a bit here.  Some uphill to blame, but also taking another GU righ.  Curses!  Not sure if I’m making a PR at this point, but knowing for sure I’m not hitting a super PR of 1:45.

Mile 13… 13.1  7:52, 7:44

Dang – one more mile to go!  Good thing it’s mostly downhill at this point.  Pedal to the medal!!  Now is not really the time to pick up a minute or two, but hey, worth a try!  Flying into the finish (but really, to the spectators, I’m sure it wasn’t flying!!).

Finish:  1:47:50  A new PR!  woohoo!!

After getting my medal and food, and posing for pictures, I went and hit the PR gong.  That’s another good thing about finishing the half early – no lines at the PR gong!  I was 15th place out of 545 runners in my age group.  I’m pretty excited about that accomplishment.

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Here comes Alan (on the left), cruising in from the marathon.

While waiting for Alan to finish, I met up with a friend and we cheered all of the runners in at mile 13 (almost mile 26).  Since you could personalize your bib, we yelled out people’s names as they passed us.  I’d like to think it was encouraging since some of them actually went faster or started running at that point.  Others just gave us wild confused looks and tried to pretend they knew who we were!  Good times!!  Alan came in at 3:07… not quite the sub 3 hr that he was hoping for.  But he had a really good effort until around mile 18 when he had some bad GI issues.  😦  Ugh.  Still, with all of that misery, this was his 2nd fastest marathon, so that’s reason for celebration!

I would say the scariest part of the race was afterwards when I couldn’t find Alan!  I waited for him at the Athlete’s exit, but we missed each other.  We never discussed a meeting plan, and I walked all over the place looking for him.  I was starting to wonder if he was in the medical tent, and I found out he was worrying the same about me!  Turns out he went to the family meeting area and I never thought of that.  Duh.  So happy to finally find him after an hour or so of looking!!

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Yes we did wear our medals to lunch! Hey, you gotta get some use out of them.

We met our friends again post race for burgers and beers.  It was a lot of fun, but maybe the best part was being able to wear my “Boston gear” and fitting in with the rest of the group since they are all Boston veterans.


Q: How do you pace yourself for a race?  Do you use the pacer on your watch or find a pace group?

I tried to keep the 3:35 pace group in my sight, but eventually I lost them.  Funny how they stay on consistent pace like that….

Q: Do you believe in Race Day Magic?

Oh yes I do!!

Q: Do you ever wear your medal after a race?

I typically take mine to work and let everyone check it out.  If they want to or not.  haha!

Glass City Marathon Ambassador

I’ve got big news….


I’m proud to announce that I will be an ambassador for the 2016 Glass City Marathon in my hometown of Toledo Ohio!

Here’s my profile, and you can check out the other ambassadors here:



As an ambassador, I’m joining a group of runners and bloggers that are excited about the marathon.  We hope to educate, inspire, entertain, and motivate you to achieve your goals!

These races take place in April, 2016, so I have a few months to plan, but as I go through my training I’ll keep you informed and engaged.  And you’ll probably get to hear a little bit of my whining too 🙂

The Glass City half marathon was my first half in 2010.  I remember it well.  Even back then my husband was able to enjoy a beer on the course while I gave it my all!  (no fair)


I’ve run a Glass City race almost every year since.  It’s a great course, with a great group of people!

And beer… did I mention the beer?  Little known fact: in 2013 they had a contest to name the beer which is served at the finish line of the race.  I WON!  So when you raise a mug at the end of the race with “Glass City Glory” in it, think of me 🙂

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Glass City Glory tastes great in ALL of these mugs!


Q:  Is anyone planning ahead and registering early for the Glass City Marathon?

I almost always take advantage of early registration.  The cheaper the better!  And it gets me to commit.

Q: What is your favorite race swag?

These mugs have been perfect because they get used all of the time.  I am also a sucker for a great race shirt!  We also use a bottle opener from the Boston marathon.  Geez, you’d think we drink a lot of beer in this house….