13.6km Race Recap, wait what?!

Last week, my FitBit Semi de Paris half marathon training program required a 10km race. I could not find a local one, but did find a 13.6km race this past Sunday only 15 minutes away. The price was right (9€) along with the location, so I said close enough and signed up. It took me about a day or two to realize the odd distance but they advertised a ‘royal buffet’ at the end and thought, “yes, this is the race for me”!



La Ronde du Val Saint Pierre, I realized is a race in a series of races put on throughout the year with a high attendance of local running clubs. This meant fast runners, a lot faster than myself. With only 574 participants, my main goals were to try to test my speed for as long as I could and to not come in last. I’m proud to admit, I achieved both!

The 10am start began in a small village called Mécleuves, 15 minutes south of Metz, France. Parking was tight and you could see several of the neighbors looking out the windows trying to figure out where the mass of people were coming from. A small community center that even had coffee to start and bathrooms with no lines, made the bib pick up, which included a paper time tracker to attach to your shoe, quick and flawless. To my surprise, we even received a simple, black, cotton long sleeve shirt which I graciously offered to Julien for Valentine’s Day. Love ya babe 😂😍.

The morning was cold (32F/0C) with a light, wintry mix to start. Not terrible conditions but the winds were somewhat unwelcome with gusts up to 15mph/24kph. The race began on time as we started with a gradual uphill into headwinds, the first of many. Attempting to stay in the middle of the pack, I quickly realized I’d need to put my best foot forward as I was up against experienced racers.



The course moved along in and out of quiet neighborhoods and picturesque countryside of surrounding villages (Chesny, Peltre, Jury, Frontigny). However, the winds and rolling hills questioned my abilities to keep up. I tried not to think too much about that and focused on my breathing and rhythm. With little markers at almost every Km (there may have been a few I personally missed), the time was passing rather quickly when all of a sudden we hit our first of two water stops at 5km in (2nd at 10km). The station consisted of a couple of table with several volunteers handing out water cups plus additional options for juice and cola, and plenty of snacks including granola bars, oranges, bananas, crackers, cakes, and sugar cubes. I thought, “Sweet. If this is just the water stop, I can’t wait for the buffet”!

At the 11km point, you pass through a tiny, one person at a time, have to duck your head tunnel, which luckily at this point the crowd was spreading thin. The final push of the last 2 km seemed to be all uphill. This was tough. I had a girl riding my left shoulder with a neon pink hat that, unknowingly to her, pushed me to keep going because I easily wanted to slow my pace on this uphill but I did not want her to beat me, so I chose to push. At the top of the hill was the race photographer where he caught photos of you either completely exhausted or thrilled to have reached the top. My photo was a small combination of both.



Finally finishing the loop course back at the small community center, I was thrilled with my time of 1:13 as it was my first ever race finish with a sub-9 minute per mile pace (8:44mpm/5:24mpk). No medals but all the women received a rose at the end. Besides I was anticipating the ‘royal buffet’. My hangry side got the best of me as the buffet was exactly our water stops. No pizza, pasta or champagne or bagels as I had been envisioning. With a PR in my 5k and 10k times I tried not to think about my hunger pains and irrational buffet beliefs and grabbed a piece of cake and tea and made my way back home.



5 Things to Avoid if You Want to Run Faster

I’ve read hundreds of articles and blogs on ways to become a faster runner. While most include practical information on performing flexibility exercises, hill repeats, intervals and strides, I’ve come to realize these tips help no one if you’re doing things to negate the process.

I have to be the first to admit, I never wanted to be a faster runner. I claimed to run such long distances to eat and drink what I wanted. I had zero motivation to put further pain on myself in order to have a faster time. Being average was, and still is, perfectly pleasing for me at times, because I’m not in competition with anyone but me.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t change my mind at any point either. For 2018, some of my ambassador programs asked for my goals. First, to pick a race and second, for the time. Over the past 12 years of having participated in distance running, I’ve seen my marathon times get a little slower by 30 minutes, as well as my half marathon times getting slower by 15-20 minutes. The half is my favorite distance and I decided this year will be the year that just because I’m getting older, doesn’t mean I have to be getting slower.

I wanted to share some tips on what to avoid when wanting to improve your times, whether it’s 1 mile or 26.

1. Lack of desire

As I mentioned before, I never claimed to be fast. When asked about running, I’d say I could run slow for a really long time. Completing 10 marathons and dozens of half marathons, are an accomplishment, regardless of time, and something to be proud of. However, I always knew where my comfort zone was and I stuck to it. I had no desire to push to be faster and I was ok with that thought process. But all of a sudden, my desire to step out of my comfort zone changed this year. And I thought, that’s ok too! No one is trapped into saying and doing one thing for the rest of her life. Getting faster isn’t a must, but choosing to self-develop isn’t a bad thing either.


Paris Marathon 2016: 4:49:59 compared to Boston Marathon 2006: 4:13:15


2. Not setting a goal

Marathon training comes with lots of questions from others. Usually the first question is why, then the next is usually what time do you want to finish. (Although, one of my favorites is if I plan to win). Each marathon is different and unique just like the individual running it. You can plan and prepare to your hearts content and still the race day can go as expected or not. Regardless of the unknown for a particular race, a goal needs to be set. Whether it’s your first or not, having no expectation can defeat the purpose and deflate your drive. For example, at a yearly review your boss asks for your objectives and you wrote down, “I come to work to get a pay check”. Hell, I know some of us do do that, but you’re decreasing your chances to advance or promote yourself. It’s a similar thought process with running. If you say you JUST want to finish the race, while it may be true, you let fear start to take control. Bringing me to my next point…



3. Fear of pain or the unknown

As a long distance runner, I know pain is inevitable. Whether it’s pain in my legs, lungs, gut, or mind, after a certain point in the game you may feel discomfort in one, if not all, of these areas. This is why only a small percentage of the world participates in a marathon. If it was easy, then everyone would do it. I think one of the greatest building blocks in life is doing something that scares you once in a while. Fear holds us back from doing a lot of things and then worrying makes us reflect poorly on ourselves and actions. What ifs, statistically, usually never happen and a mindset of I can will take us a much longer way then not trying at all.



4. Negative self talk & comparing yourself to others

Ahh, social media…I am truly passionate about and enjoy Instagram (IG), one may call it a slight addiction to be more specific. My boyfriend can confirm this. However, I use this platform as a way to motivate others to get moving along with finding my own inspiration to be a better athlete through others. Whether it’s an inspiring quote (@xpatrunner, @2xpa_, and @themarathonmaracus are really good at this), a scenic running view (@runjanji, @rundezvousralph, @livehardxlovehard are a couple of my favorites), or seeing hard-working moms hit a Boston Qualifying time in their first marathon attempt or doing it time and time again (check out @daniellehartruns, @clairerunsthere, @jennammchugh, @bettinarunswi to be simply inspired), there are literally thousands and thousands of amazing runners out there to find motivation. But the little square world can suck you in, if you aren’t careful. While I positively use IG to better myself in fitness, the ugly side of the coin is you could begin to compare yourself to these athletes and wonder why you aren’t as good, fast, lean, or strong-minded as them. We have to self-love and respect our own abilities first, then we can strive to become better, if that’s something we choose to do. But if we’re constantly putting ourselves down for where we are currently not, the cycle of pity and despair can override our thought processes. The lovely thing I admire most about running is that it can be an individual confidence builder, but in order for this to be achieved, the only person we should be competing against is ourself.



5. Doing it alone

Here is where 2018 has differed from any training cycle I’ve done in the past. I’ve joined a free weekly running group concentrating on interval training. The group is huge, I’m talking 200 people and the levels range from beginner to advanced. The intimidation factor is none (despite a foreign language barrier). The group is encouraging, kind, and helps you to push outside your comfort zone. My goals feel more attainable than when I’m pushing by myself, as my own thoughts and fears overtake me. Running with the group has been a real confidence booster in setting out to become a faster runner.


Photo credit: Sebastien Lauer


My goal for 2018 is to run a half marathon under 1:50 as a high aspiration, under 2 more realistically and to run a 4 hour marathon. What are some of the things you do to get faster? What are your 2018 goals?

The Boa System: Fit to go Further

I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve been selected to be part of #TeamBoa. If you aren’t aware, The Boa System has branched into the running world to combine their innovative technology with top brand shoes to enhance your running experience.

Best known in the cycling world with over 16 years experience and used by over 100 of the Tour de France cyclists, The Boa System has made a name for themselves. Their technology has also been widely used in golf shoes, snowboarding boots, utility boots and even in advancing medical bracing systems for preventative and post-operative care. Most recently while working closely with several top running brands, they’ve put their system to the test in the running world. They are a brand I am proud to stand by and run with.

What is The Boa System?

It’s a patented system combining 3 integral parts…

1. A micro-adjustable dial

2. Super-strong lightweight laces

3. Low friction lace guides

The system couldn’t be easier to use. You push to engage, turn to tighten, and pull up for quick release.

The system provides a noticeable comfort across the front of the foot that isn’t found with typical laces. That is a nice feeling to run without worrying about irritation or your laces coming untied. The Boa System provides peace of mind to really let you focus your attention to the purpose of why you put the shoes on in the first place: running.

The best part about this company is how they back their product up. The Boa System dials and laces are guaranteed for lifetime on the product they are featured on. That’s customer service at their finest!

Combined with The Boa System, I’ve been fortunate enough to also receive the most comfortable, highest quality running kit from Outdoor Voices, sports underwear from Invisii, and a classic duffel bag from Topo Designs to carry it all in. Outdoor Voices materials are the softest I’ve ever felt while providing long lasting materials for performance enhancement and durability. I could live in my Outdoor Voices joggers, no joke.

While looking good on the outside, Invisii underwear works undercover. Providing hygienic, breathable and comfortable underwear, Invisii allows you to workout without thinking about panty lines or scrunching up in uncomfortable places while trying to perform at the top of your game.

My Topo Designs Classic Duffel Bag got me and my gear to Budapest, Hungary last week to celebrate my birthday (future blog on my trip there to come)! The durable bag is large enough to get me through the weekend with day, night, and workout outfits, but also compact enough to get me on my flight with just a carry-on. Thanks to Topo Designs, I was ready for my destination. Being a tourist is no excuse to not get a workout done!

I can’t wait to sign up for 2018 races now and begin training with Team Boa!

What are your thoughts on The Boa System gear? Have you heard about them or tried them out? Let me know!

How It Feels to Run My Tenth Marathon (and the 44th BMW Berlin Marathon Review)

On September 24, 2017 I ran and surpassed my finish expectations for my tenth full marathon by completing the 44th BMW Berlin Marathon in 4:19:58.

Berlin Marathon Finisher

Berlin Marathon Finisher

My marathon “career”, hobby, passion, self torture began in 2006. Here’s a running list (while mind you there have been dozens of half marathons, 10km, mud runs, and fun runs and thousands of miles from training,  also in between):

• Boston Marathon x3: 4:13:15, 4:24:43, 4:30:45 • Cape Cod Marathon 4:15:54 • Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon 4:21:07 • Walt Disney World Marathon 4:19:12 • Chicago Marathon 4:36:30 • Paris Marathon 4:49:59 • Rome Marathon 4:38:05 • Berlin Marathon 4:19:58

While my times stay somewhat, relatively consistent within 30ish Minutes, I’ve definitely become slower over the course of time. I’m ok with that and had started labeling myself as a 4:30 marathon runner. 

I don’t like sprint work, I don’t like the feeling of my heart pulsating out of my chest, and I don’t like not having a fun time, being able to talk to others and take in the atmosphere and experience of my runcation. These are the main reasons I’ve never felt to push myself to obtain a personal record with each of my races.

Running for me, personally, is something I do for relaxing my constantly running mind (if that even makes sense) and a way to stay healthy. No more, no less. For some running is about being the best they can be every time and for others it’s learning how to complete the impossible. Running is a personal sport that can make some feel self love or self hate. The gigantic community of runners can make you feel big and small at the same time. Everyone is allowed their own reasons of why or how they run and no one has the right to judge or criticize someone’s journey. 

Berlin, particularly for me, was a huge goal to knock off my bucket list. It would be my 3rd Abbot World Major and the lottery or qualifying system to get into one of the 6 majors (Boston, Chicago, Berlin, NYC, London, Tokyo) is a huge long shot. So when I applied last November for this race, I assumed I wouldn’t get into it as I’ve been rejected from NYC and London several times in the past. I even signed up for the Rome marathon at the same time for April because I figured I wouldn’t get into Berlin. Well, luck was on my side and I made it! But I then realized I had to run 2 full marathons in 2017.

I’ve been in training since November 2016 meaning I was running 5-6 times a week, including 2x a week doing speed and hill workouts because in the back of my mind I was thinking maybe I could get a personal best on this acclaimed flat and fast course. But after Rome in April and two half marathons this summer, my body was beat. The training cycle for Berlin, specifically, was brutal. I was tired, sore, mentally drained. I wasn’t hitting all my distance targets nor completing most of the sprint work. Personally for me, more than one marathon a year tends to shut my brain and body down. I honestly was not looking forward to running Berlin about 10 weeks into my training. But then I had a mental shift to remember that having fun is more important to me than a time goal and I learned to forgive myself for having a legitimate reason to feel tired. Then the mental game clicked and I was super excited to get to Berlin.

The atmosphere of a world major marathon is one of the best experiences. The city is swarming with people from all over the world to each take on the same task. The Expo always gets you ramped up when you grab your number and buy a souvenir or two. One disappointment was that finisher shirts were not included in the entry fee. If you wanted any piece of memorabilia besides a medal, you had to spend at least 45€ and the cool jackets were closer to 90€ but that’s a rant for another day. That evening, btw my dad and most loyal spectating supporter had flown in for the marathon as well, we made our way over to Checkpoint Charlie and saw some pieces and read about the history of the Berlin Wall.

Berlin Marathon Expo

Berlin Marathon Expo

Checkpoint Charlie

Checkpoint Charlie

Dad and the Berlin Wall

Dad and the Berlin Wall

 

Any disappointment from the overpriced merchandise at the Expo was quickly wiped away with the free Saturday morning breakfast run. The laid back 6km run started at the Charlottenburg Palace and ended on a lap around the track of the 1936 Olympic Stadium with a breakfast included. One of the best parts of the weekend plus I got to meet up with a fellow Run Janji ambassador and my favorite British couple that I met at the Virgin Sport British 10km in July. 

Lauren and Jonathan from U.K.

Lauren and Jonathan from U.K.

Run Janji Corps Ambassadors

Run Janji Corps Ambassadors

Jennifer and I running around the Olympic Stadium

Jennifer and I running around the Olympic Stadium

Olympic Stadium Olympic Stadium
Olympian in the Making

Olympian in the Making


Saturday afternoon we did a 3 hour Bike Tour of Berlin. It was leisurely and educational plus we got to spectate a little of the inline skating marathon that was taking place. After our bike tour we made our way to the sombering Holocaust Memorial and Museum.

Bike Tour

Bike Tour

Brandenburg Gate

Brandenburg Gate

Holocaust Memorial

Holocaust Memorial

Holocaust Memorial

Holocaust Memorial

 

Sunday I was scheduled for the 3rd wave slot that had a 10am start, with an elite start time of 9:15. Easy subway transportation allowed me to sleep til 7am and head over around 8am. I chose not to bring a drop off bag but the organization at Tiergeten Park was well defined, although you did have to walk about a mile and a half from the closest metro stop to get towards the start. Plenty of porta potties, lots of musical and video entertainment on several big screens helped the 40 thousand of us stay occupied til the gun. 

The race went off without a hitch, The temps were cool (10C/50F) with a little rain to start. The race was crowded, honestly, in its entirety. The crowd support was awesome with live bands every so often along the way. Because Berlin is built on mostly water, there aren’t many skyscrapers and the buildings are all about the same height making everything look the same with little standing out, so it was nice to have the entertainment as a distraction. The course itself is exactly as they say, fast and flat, and my starting times were, for me, quicker than I was planning. But I felt good, so I held onto the 9:15-9:30 pace up until the half way point when I was looking for my dad. I thought to myself, “if you go fast now that means you can slow down later”. Which, btw, is opposite of what pros would tell you to do. After seeing my dad I maybe had a mile at about 11 min pace but felt good enough to go back to my original pace. The volunteers and aide stations were fantastic and I really felt energized by the crowd and cool temps. So I pushed on at this pace comfortably through the second half. Upon hitting the Brandenburg Gate, I was sprinting and smiling towards the finish knowing I would have one of my best times since 2009!

The Start of the Berlin Marathon

The Start of the Berlin Marathon

Some Motivation

Some Motivation

My new Baby

My new Baby

All Smiles

All Smiles

#10 in the books

#10 in the books

 

I’m so elated and proud to have completed my 10th marathon with my 4th best time after having a crappy training cycle. My enthusiasm is renewed and my goal will be to push forward and complete all the world majors! But first a break from racing for the rest of 2017 😉.

Paris Marathon 2016 Recap

After 125 days of preparation, April 3rd, 2016 finally approached and it was my time, amongst 57,000 other runners from across the globe, to trek 26.2 miles along the scenic Paris course. Prior to race day I had my fair share of stresses with an International move, one too many injuries and illnesses, and events outside my control including a neighboring terrorist attack on Belgium. Compared to my other marathons, my mind affected me more than my physical ailments resulting in my hardest and longest duration of completion, going 19 min beyond my goal time, but I completed it!

Luckily I had a strong support system. My dad and sister flew in from Boston and for their first time in France, ever. Dorothy visited from London with her friend from Rotterdam. Julien’s sister, her partner, and their almost 8 month old daughter watched along several points on the route as well. I also received many texts and messages from friends far and wide. And of course I have to give the biggest thanks to my finish to Julien. Without his ongoing support and encouragement during the last 6km, I know I would have walked the rest and called it a day. He was right there beside me even though he could have finished long before me. And you have to give this guy props, he shaved almost 30 minutes off from his previous marathon 2 years ago. This guy rocks and I love him so much!

The day before we went to the Expo and received our neon green goodie bags with hardly nothing in it (sample of Tiger Balm, candy, and a whistle?!). Asics sponsored the race, but going on the last day you are left with either XS or L merchandise, so I didn’t end up purchasing anything. I did meet up with the kinesiotape people to get a roll to try to calm my newly onset sciatica that came about a week before the race (which I do think helped). We did lose my dad for a good 30 minutes but eventually found him at the only exit in the building and promptly discussed it’s time for him to upgrade to a smartphone instead of a flip phone, just in case of emergency. We enjoyed an Italian dinner that evening and a beer or two to calm the nerves and went to bed around 10pm for a 8am wake up.

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The elite started at 8:45am while the last wave went off at 10:15am. We were in the last wave. The day was anticipated to be warm and sunny and it was. The hottest finish I did was in Chicago in 2011 at 72F in which I experienced dizziness for the first time during the last two miles. This time was around 66F and not a cloud in the sky. It wasn’t terrible as we were taking two water bottles at each 5k water stop. I felt great leaving L’Arc de Triomphe with only minimal left hamstring/sciatic irritation that numbed out through the first 5k and where we saw my family before Bastille. We continued to cover solid ground but had to break my rhythm for my first ever pee stop during a run and there were no porta potties or restrooms available so a side walk, small barricade and a family helped to provide some coverage. We picked back up our stride into to the first park with a magnificent view of Chateau De Vincennes, but unfortunately it was being renovated. At this point I realized I won’t need my music which I wasn’t using due to the sights and people watching around me. We made our way out of the park and enjoyed bands playing every so often. Crowd support is light on the route but not barren. We felt good going into the half way mark and then running back toward Bastille where I saw Dorothy and her friend amongst the bigger crowd support on the route before the finish. At this point we start to see the bigger monuments like Notre Dame, Musee D’Orsay and Eiffel Tower as you go in and out of tunnels for a good 5k (from 25km to 30km). The tunnels started to bring about a challenge as you got a break from the sun but you lost spectators and you had to deal with continuous rolling hills into and out of each tunnel. Also, having started in the last wave we were starting to have to weave around slower packs of runners or at this point a lot of walkers. I think the hills, weaving, and heat started to catch up with me and I felt my wall around 35km right when we saw our family again before heading into the second park. In this park is when I crashed hard at 40km. There was only one stop with sports drink and I think this was part of my problem. I had no real replenishments of electrolytes and I was flushing my system with a lot of water, which I also needed due to the temps. I’m happy to say I had no real cramping or GI issues but the mental process worked in overdrive to get me through the last 30-45 minutes. Finally, we crossed the finish line which always brings me happy tears of joy because 1) I completed another goal and 2) I don’t have to run anymore. Finishing always brings about an bursting emotion of relief and pride. Here we received our finishers shirt (at this time they had also already run out of some sizes) and our medal. We received water and a few snacks like apple or banana but the finish, just like the expo bag, was little to be desired. We met up with my dad and sister for a finish picture back in front of L’Arc de Triomphe and tried to go out for a beer in the area but wasn’t having a ton of success due to most bars being closed. We decided to take the metro back (which was free) to our Airbnb at the Republique and go out around there.

Unfortunately, for the first time ever following a marathon, my heart rate was through the roof. Up to an hour following the finish my heart rate was fluctuating between 88-110 bpm with increased capillary refill times and feeling faint. For the first time ever, I had to self treat and lay on the floor for 25 minutes with my feet elevated and downed two Powerades which I think seriously saved me from an ER visit. Once I got my HR down, capillary refill returned to normal and I wasn’t feeling faint, you can bet I was at the bar celebrating with a couple of pints with everyone.

I have since run 10k for the first time yesterday, 9 days following the marathon, without any pain! I’m very excited to have my weekends back and start a new workout regime of weight training and yoga with still a couple runs a week. I think my next race will be a half marathon but nothing definitive yet. Send me your race suggestions!

I’m proud of my finish and enjoyed my break from running and exercise as my family stayed in town for 12 days and we traveled a shit ton from Paris to Amsterdam to Champagne region to Germany. I’ll cover these trips next blog!

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RE-FOCUS

Needless to say this month has been exhausting. Battling sinuses, rib fractures, and fevers left me feeling depleted and frustrated. The first time ever in my marathon training I thought, “What if I can’t run”? It brought on a whole new level of anxiety and I wanted to get to the bottom of why I was questioning myself and succumbing to fear.

I’ve heard of professional athletes receiving not only physical therapy but psychological therapy as well when they are out from an injury. I can understand this as the sport is their professional livelihood and when one feels like they can’t provide, he can fall into emotional turmoil. But what about the rest of us? I’m certainly no professional and barely fit into amateur status, where in reality I’m a hobbyist. I do sports for the health aspects and for the fun of it. Yes, I enjoy tormenting myself physically to a certain threshold of sweat and pain. I like competing, not for the sake of winning or achieving a personal best each time, but to give myself a pat on the back for once again setting and pursuing a goal I set and I’m pretty damn proud when I achieve it. So when I felt the feelings that I may in fact fail, my whole being physically and emotionally went off track. I even contribute this irrational fear as a reason to why my body’s immune system became weakened.

Here’s what stress physically does to the body:

  • Low energy
  • Headaches
  • Upset stomach, including diarrhea, constipation and nausea
  • Aches, pains, and tense muscles
  • Chest pain and rapid heartbeat
  • Insomnia
  • Frequent colds and infections
  • Loss of sexual desire and/or ability
  • Nervousness and shaking, ringing in the ear
  • Cold or sweaty hands and feet
  • Excess sweating
  • Dry mouth and difficulty swallowing
  • Clenched jaw and grinding teeth

And here are some emotional reactions to stress:

  • Becoming easily agitated, frustrated and moody
  • Feeling overwhelmed, like you are losing control or need to take control
  • Having difficulty relaxing and quieting your mind
  • Feeling bad about yourself (low self-esteem), lonely, worthless
  • Avoiding others

NO FREAKING WONDER I FELT LOUSEY!

Here are some action steps that helped me reduce stress:

  • Keeping a positive attitude.
  • Accepting that there are events that I cannot control.
  • Practicing relaxation techniques daily through meditation, breathing exercises, and yoga.
  • Eating healthy, well-balanced meals.
  • Learning to manage my time more effectively.
  • Getting enough rest and sleep.
  • Identifying the sources of stress.In my opinion, I had one too many commitments (moving, learning new environment, establishing new career, trying to make new friends, parties, traveling, training for a marathon and cross-training, etc) and felt fatigued and irritable.
  • Talking it out. Ahem, my blog 🙂
  • Taking time for myself. Unfortunately, I didn’t recognize the symptoms before my breaking point in which point I was forced to take time to nurture myself. In hindsight, rest days are OK and ESSENTIAL for self-recovery and optimal physical and emotional function.

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After I “allowed” myself a full week’s recovery (also while enjoying a fabulous Valentine’s weekend in Paris), I’ve decided to put my rebuilding energy into re-focusing my purpose and recognizing my accomplishments to date!

Here are my steps to re-focus my goals:

1.    Go back to my original marathon goal and either recommit or alter to make it more realistic. The biggest reason for failure is setting a lofty goal that is not measurable. My marathon finish goal time is 4:30.

2.    Schedule my workouts for the remainder of training over the next 7 weeks. Physically putting my workouts into my calendar will help me stay committed and focused.

3.    Be sure to get enough sleep and integrating a bedtime ritual each evening. For example, I will begin to commit to not using my cell phone at least 1 hour before I go to bed.

4.    Reassess my social commitments. See where I can ask for help, and where I can start to say No.

5.    Am I still loving it? If I’m not loving what I’m doing, then I won’t follow through.

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Do you recognize your symptoms of stress? What are some of your tactics to treat it?