Saturday, September 24, 2011

Today only, there are two giveaways going on!

This post includes a picture of me in very tight shorts, so I am warning you, and also attempted to make up for assaulting your eyes with that, by providing these beautiful pictures of a rainbow that I took last night.

My camera also crapped out today, so all but the rainbow pics and one other are ipod pics, so they are even lower quality than usual.

 Thank so much for everyone's advice on my pacing question yesterday! I was so torn. Coach Kristy, plus a few others, recommended only doing the last 10 miles at marathon pace. I completely trust their expert advice, but Kara and Lily, who have actually met me and spent a ton of time running with me, said they had confidence that I could hold the 9:30 pace for the entire run.

When Casi gchatted me last night to tell me the humidity would be nearly 90%, and I remembered that we started up a huge ass hill, I decided to hold back at the beginning, and aim for marathon pace in the last ten, per Kristy's advice.

I met my friend Jill at a park downtown around 6:30 this morning, for the Baltimore Marathon course supported run.  They provided a link with route sheets you could print, bibs, several water stops, and even Powerbar Gels to the runners testing out the course. I highly recommend running on the course if it's at all possible before a target race. I run the portion of the marathon that's in the nice part of downtown all the time, but running through the ghetto with hundreds of other runners is a special treat.
This may be the last picture ever taken on my camera :(
I remembered starting uphill, but I forgot that the first five miles were entirely uphill. Jill and I powered up them and still kept under 10:00 miles for most of it. Bad news though. This run is out of order. During the actual marathon, those hills are mile 16-21. The hills feel much bigger then.

It was really fun to run on the course and get excited for the big day. The whole time we were reminiscing about the course run last year and especially the marathon itself. At times, one of us could remember exactly what had happened at a certain spot, and exactly how we felt. Other times, we were like "did we even run this street in the marathon?". Marathons play tricks on your mind, and I swear some parts are ingrained in my memory like they happened moments ago, and some parts I must have blacked out for.

Jill knew my plan, so when she started getting tired as we neared mile 13, she encouraged me to take off. I'm not going to lie, it was a bit hard to do. Running a nice easy pace while chatting with a friend vs. 9 + more miles gutting it out by myself. It seems like a lot of runners are able to overlook the pain and run at a really strenuous pace all the time, but it's a struggle for me mentally to push past my comfort zone. I'm really not one who likes to inconvenience myself in any way.

So, I left Jill, and the plan was to finish at marathon pace, but I felt really good, so I just ran what felt right. I rarely post splits because I know they are boring, even for others, but I'm pretty excited about these, so up they go, scroll past if you don't care. But if you do, tell me this was not a picture perfect negative split run.


 I mean, check out those last five miles - and the last one was an uphill mile at 8:15??  I do want to note that the beginning was nothing but uphill and the end was flat, but still. I felt really good on my own, and I wasn't constantly checking the Garmin or pushing for a certain pace.  Miles 21 and 22 were tough, but not grueling or I felt like I was going to die, like Thursday's tempo run or anything.

So, although I was only aiming for MP the last ten miles, I ended up doing 22 miles at an average pace of 9:25! On the race course! Now, I did stop the Garmin for water breaks, and for a porto-potty break, and unfortunately the marathon clock won't stop for those. But I was still pretty proud of that time.
Jill and I met up to take a sweaty post 22 mile pic afterwards
 While we were stretching with some other members of our running group, something truly amazing happened. I was recognized by a blog reader! Of course, my friends were all totally impressed, and Jill said it was like I was a celebrity. Hal found my  blog when I posted a link to last year's marathon recap on the Baltimore Running Festival facebook page, and read it because he is training for his first 50K. Here we are together!
 Part of my speediness I am attributing to my new Aspaeris Pivot compression shorts that I got in the mail last night. When I put them on, I was shocked at how soft the fabric was, they actually felt really good on my legs. Usually my hips/hamstrings are the first to get tight and sore on a long run like this, but not today.

As we were stretching, I told Jill that I could tell where the shorts ended because that's where my legs started hurting. Times like these I really wish I had a washer so I could be wearing them again now. I took an ice bath in them though, so by hanging them up to dry, I should be good to wear them after tomorrow's swim, bike, run, right?
Lame ipod mirror photo before my icebath
 While I'm not sure anyone is a huge fan of pictures of their legs in spandex type shorts (if you are, please send me your address so I can slap you), compared to my 8 million bike shorts pictures from my duathlon, my legs definitely look less frightening in these shorts, despite the absolutely amazing, wonderful professional photography by my peeps at that race.

Side note - remember how I discussed me folding all the laundry on Wednesday? Well, it's Saturday, and I'm not naming names, but someone else who lives with me still hasn't put his or hers away.

Between my phenomenal Handful bra not chafing me, and doing great at it's job, and the absolutely fabulous, fantastic Aspaeris Pivot shorts massaging my legs, it's no wonder I had a good run.

And for a limited time only, you have a chance to win BOTH on my very own blog. Eric is very excited to do a dramatic vlog choosing of the winner of the Handful bra later today (or tomorrow, if he runs out of time before work, he's out right now), AND Aspaeris is giving away a free pair of shorts to one of my wonderful, lucky readers. So if you haven't entered the Handful giveaway yet, do it! These bras are awesome! I'm not linking to it though. You have to really want it.

Here's some other stuff that is making me so happy today. I'm not giving it away, but you are free to go to the store and buy it. In fact, I recommend you do. You're welcome, Trader Joes.
I like my coffee the way I like my men

I don't know why I was fooling around with that little canister before

Me + figs = happiness

This has not made me happy yet, but it will soon
I have no idea if my no sweets challenge had anything to do with this run, but in my head it did, so I'm calling it a win. I'm only on my fifth day, but that's already significantly less dessert than usual for me.

So get going on liking Aspaeris on Facebook, following them on Twitter, and heading to their site to learn something to share for your entry. Ya, it's a lot of steps, but they are giving away free shorts, so just do it, it's totally worth it, plus I'm only requiring one comment about what you learned on their site. I am against bonus entries, but not as against as I am for dessert. I have yet to complete an essential part of my marathon training, which is choosing a unbelievably decadent dessert to eat afterwards. So if you link to something that makes my mouth water in a separate comment, bonus.


  1. I need these shorts in my life, preferably in RED! I follow and like Aspaeris!

  2. I like Aspaeris on fb. I really need these shorts to help with my IT band ;) Thanks for the giveaway!

  3. Nice job running those 22 miles BELOW marathon pace. Amazing! Also, I'll take the shorts, thanks. I'm definitely on the prowl for a pair of these, because my hamstrings are always what give me trouble. Done all the liking and visiting of sites. Question: people say they feel their form is better with these shorts, did you feel that at all?

  4. Great job on the run! Awesome pacing and way to go on those last miles! I heart my Aspaeris shorts. I am wearing them right now :) Of course now I think I need a red pair.

  5. I like them on FB and twitter! I learned that they were created specifically for female athletes.

    And I think you should have a PB cup sundae after your marathon. :)

  6. I liked them on Facebook and I learned that Aspaeris is made only for women. I could totally use these while running and playing soccer to help with my hamstring problems.

  7. Hi- I just found your blog through Asperis. I'm already following them, and would really love a pair of these shorts after hearing so many people rave about them!

    Mmm... dessert. I would go with cake and ice cream for sure.

  8. I like them on facebook. My legs would thank you for these!!

  9. I follow them on twitter & facebook!!

    & what I learnded is that 70% of ACL injuries are due to non-impact pulls, snaps, and tears!

    Come on pick me-I'm a poor college student & I am training for my first half (less then a month) & my first marathon in March!! Woohooo!! & I was your first follower :-)

    & for amazing desserts- cupcakes with cookie dough in the middle. Cake balls or Oreo balls. or basically anything with chocolate!

  10. I follow Aspaeris already on fb. I would love to try a pair of these short to see if they would help with my right hamstring.

  11. i learned that these short have a weave that helps keep you in "knees over toes" position. I really need these as I have been having a lot of hip, knee and calf problems.

  12. I love the way my legs look in spandex type shorts. Go on. Try to slap me. Let's rumble.

    I need another pair of these shorts, they are heaven.

    You are so much faster than you give yourself credit for!!

  13. Already like them on fb and follow them on twitter (I'm Suz4AU0608). I had no idea Aspaeris was formed for women playing competitive sports!

  14. I already liked them on FB and Twitter - it's how I found your blog! Congrats on your run and your marathon pace. I am hoping I can pull off 9:30 for my 1st marathon next Sunday. Here's hoping!!! I have read tons about Aspairis & would totally love to get a pair to help me out with my IT band. LOVE you blog!

  15. Now that is the perfect way to end a 22-miler!!!!! You had enough gas in the tank to KILL those last 5 miles. MP is your bitch ;)

  16. I have a pair of these and love them! They DO help with your form!!!!

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  18. I like them on Facebook, that's how I found your blog! I learned from their site that over 200,000 females athletes injure their ACL each year!

    As for dessert, I tried a new recipe for "Black Bottom Cupcakes" the other day that were to die for!

  19. I already liked them on FB - it's how I found your blog! I really need these shorts to help with my IT band!

  20. I like them on fb. Who knew shorts could help you align your feet and legs properly? Awesome! Anything to keep me in top top running shape!

  21. Also, if you like a pb/chocolate combo, try these bad boys out sometime in the week after your race. Don't forget a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. Delectable!

  22. Like A-P on FB, follow them on Twitter and have been looking at their web site... love the shorts and am sure they will help me run better!

  23. Here is a little something you might like...

  24. I liked AP :) I think you should do something seasonal

  25. i think its awesome that they have technology to help prevent knee injuries, i didn't know (remember) that

  26. GREAT run this morning! You can post your splits any day. Very impressive, and that ending is even more impressive knowing you had 5 miles of hills at the start! It's so cool that you could do a supported long run on the marathon course. What's your goal pace for the big day??

    Liked A-P on FB, following on twitter, I'd like a pair in black! What kind of skirt did you wear over the shorts? I learned on fb that bloggers from several blogs I read have already tried these shorts!

  27. Nice pace!!! You are a BEAST! :) Splits are totally not boring to me. You really rocked that run.

    I follow the company on Facebook.

  28. I learned on the company's site that those shorts sell for $60, which puts them out of my price range. Sure would be nice to win a pair!

  29. I like them on Facebook! I learned these shorts were designed specifically for female athletes! I would love to have a pair to help with my half-marathon training!

  30. Oh and I follow them on twitter!

  31. I like them on FB and follow on twitter. But their site seems to have been hacked so I can't tell you anything specific right now. But I have been to their site to read about the pivot shorts plenty of times in the past! I would love to have a pair of the shorts to help the fatigue and ache I get in my upper quads and hip flexors :)

  32. I know looking at these makes MY mouth water!

  33. great giveaway! i like ASP on FB, follow them on Twitter, and learned about their female focus and their attention to ACL injuries. Fingers are crossed! (erica)

  34. ps ice cream is a great dessert reward! (erica)

  35. I like them on Facebook. I'm dying for a pair of these shorts!

  36. Oh and as a reward I would recommend a brownie sundae with mint chocolate chip ice cream (yup... I'm drooling)

  37. i learned that not only are the shorts so cute, but also they actually guide you into the correct position! wow! I like 'em on fb too. runner_girl5k(at)yahoo(dot)com

  38. I found your blog through their fb page! I need these shorts to help improve my running and help me in recovering from squats at cross fit. I learned that these shorts help keep you in a correct position for running and recovery.

  39. I liked them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. I hope I win so I can run with the proper "knees over toes" position which these shorts claim to help with :)

  40. I saw Alyssa coming back on Key Highway while I was still heading out, and she was really running fast! She's way faster than me. She's also probably half my age. :-)

  41. Wow! Over 200,000 US females athletes injure their ACL each year!


Thanks for commenting! Comments make me probably more happy than they should.