Saturday, June 28, 2008

Shoe Review: New Balance 1123's

"LOVE/hate. This is the new balance."

And I can tell you why this is the new balance - because New Balance simply does provide the best footwear and gear for runners.

I got a new pair of New Balance 1123 running shoes, and I am really impressed. Usually when I get a new pair of shoes, it feels like I'm running on clouds for a few runs, but then the support system breaks down fairly quickly and feel like I'm back to running in old shoes in a matter of days. However, I still feel like I'm running on clouds with the 1123's.

I'm very much a 'heel striker' and the 1123's are like little personal down comforters for my heels. In addition to being a 'heel striker,' I feel like my running style can also be described as 'toe jamming.' This has been a problem in the past with Asics and Mizuno models I've tried, but the 1123's are unique in that they fit my foot snugly, but still have a roomy toe box. I'm thinking that with these babies I'll be able to toe the line in Columbus on October 19th, with, well, all of my toenails!

They also offer maximum stability for the ankles - I am constantly rolling my ankles, but these have really helped. I was speaking with someone who actually broke their ankle a few years ago, and her doctor recommended the 1123's for their ankle support. (I'll add here that she wasn't wearing the 1123's when she broke her ankle!)

I also really like how they look - a clean and simple design on a shoe that will help you both to elevate your training, and to kick butt and take names.

If you are looking for a new pair of shoes to start your fall marathon training plans in, the New Balance 1123's get two thumbs up from me!

Friday, June 27, 2008

In Labor!

I'm in labor! Actually - no, but she is!

This is my friend Dru. Her water broke this morning at about 7:00am, and the birthing process appears to be slow going for her. It is now 3:10pm and still no baby - but we know that he is on his way.

Dru has been such a great friend to me for the past two years while we've been in Kentucky. She has always cheered me on with my running, and in fact was there with Chad and Amberly as I finished the Louisville Marathon. She actually was supposed to run a mile with me, but she found out that she was pregnant a few days before the marathon and didn't want to jostle the baby around! She is one tough cookie though, and I know she is going to get through labor like a champ.

You can follow her progress at her husband Adam's blog:

Adam and Dru - we are all thinking about you and can't wait to meet your baby boy!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

From Early Bird to Night Owl

While the transition hasn't yet come full circle, I feel like I am slowly turning into a night owl. And by night owl I mean being able to stay awake until 10:00pm.

I canceled my gym membership. I was only using it for the treadmill, and I didn't enjoy it. I realized that I was only going because I didn't want to feel like I was wasting the money we were paying for the membership. So I decided to drop the membership altogether (which was surprisingly very easy to get out of), save money and gas, and take to the roads for this marathon training season. Plus, it only makes sense to me that training on the road will translate to racing better on the road.

But back to my late nights. Since I don't have this obligation to wake up each morning and get ready, drive to the gym, do my run, then drive home - I have more freedom with my time. On Monday, I woke up at 6:00, ran 2 miles, took Emma for our 30 minute morning walk, and still had plenty of time to get ready for work. The taste of freedom was so sweet! I love waking up, getting dressed, walking out my back door and starting a run. There's something so refreshing in simplicity.

On Tuesday, I had to get in five miles. My plan was to get up at 5:15, start the run at 5:30, and be back home by 6:15. But, I overslept and didn't wake up until 6:15. As I was driving to work I was trying to figure out how I could get the five miles in and the thought occurred to me that I could run the five miles in the evening. In my year and a half of running seriously, I have run at night only twice. Both were pretty disastrous - I was so tired and weary during the runs and ended up cutting them short. But I decided I would give the night running thing another try. Since I knew that I was going to be running that night, I made sure to stay hydrated and eat well throughout the day on Tuesday.

I took to the road that evening about 8:30 and started on my way. I felt great through the run and finished in 46:08, with an average pace of 9:13/mile. The best part is that I was showered and snoozing by 10:00pm - a realistic bed time for me. I've got another 5 miles scheduled for today, and I am going to try another night run tonight. It's strange, but sleeping in a little later each weekday makes me feel like I am getting a summer break, too!

My ideal schedule would be to wake up every morning at 5:15 (except for weekends) and be running by 5:30. The sun is just starting to come up at this time, and its still cool out. I feel conflicted because I would like to get back into a consistent routine, but I also love the sense of freedom of not having a set schedule. I'm hoping to find a happy medium. And while I have enjoyed the night runs thus far, I am hesitant to take away from the time in the evenings that I have with Chad. Running in the morning has been perfect because he is usually asleep while I'm gone. So, maybe it is true that the early bird does get the worm...

Well, if you've stuck through this post this far, thank you for reading along as I think out loud. It is always a challenge to incorporate marathon training into a lifestyle, and I'm trying to find the best, most balanced way to do it.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


Things are crazy at work, so I haven't had much time to update the blog lately. Each summer, we host a huge, 1,000 person fund-raising event at a horse farm. It is always a beast to pull together, but it usually goes off without a hitch. Preparing for this event has been my life this past few weeks, and I really can't wait for it to be over! If you have been a faithful reader since the beginning, you may remember reading last June about how I got caught in the throes of addiction to Starbucks' Doubleshots. Well, I am happy to report that it is now one year later, and I'm still free from the juice. Even through this stressful week, I haven't given in. (If you didn't catch it last year - you can read about it here: here.)

Here are a few updates until I can get back to a normal posting schedule.

1. We got to celebrate this little guy's birthday this past weekend. It was so great to be with him and his family to celebrate his first birthday.

2. I ran the Skelter for the Shelter 5k on Saturday in 25:45 - winning first place in my age group!

3. I heard from my sister Megan that she got to see Whiplash, the rodeo monkey, live in person at the Irving Poochfest. Check him out - he is so cute!

That's it for now - sorry for the meager offerings. Things will get back to normal around here next week. And by "back to normal" I mean sporadic, shoddy posts!