Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Races to Support

All of a sudden it seems like my summer is full of races!  I hadn't signed up for much and then BAM! now I'm signed up for everything!  I always knew I was doing the Bradbury Trail Series in July, August and September, and then I got into the Beach to Beacon 10k in August and that was pretty much it.  Then I got an offer to fill in for the bike portion of the Tri for a Cure relay in July and now Boothbay Harbor is having it's very first half marathon in late August as part of Labor Day weekend's Harborfest!  Oh!  And I just won an entry into a 10-miler in June!  See?  BAM!  All of a sudden my race schedule is full.

I'm so glad I get a chance to relay in the Tri for a Cure.  I'm psyched to be doing the bike portion of the relay because the bike is usually my favorite part of the tri!  And and I won't have to do it all wet because I won't be doing the swim part! *bonus*  AND I can go hard, hard, hard because I won't have to save my legs for the run part! *double bonus!*

This race is a fundraising race and my goal is to raise $350 by July 17.  For every $5 that you donate to my fundraising page, I will give you one entry into the raffle for the great prizes that I have to give away.  Here is what I have so far:
~A Tough Chik brand Wonder Chik cycling jersey!  Thank you so much Shannon for donating this!  Size M and is a $55 value!!
~Tough Chik cap
~Nike Sunglasses
~an entry into the Boothbay Harbor Half Marathon--which I will pay for.

More items will be added as we go!

Here is the link to my fundraising page if you would like to donate.  Please help me reach my goal!  Once you donate, please comment to this post how many entries you get and if you want a specific item.

As you can see, one of the prizes is an entry into the Boothbay Harbor Half Marathon on August 31.  It is to coincide with Harborfest and is going to be fabulous!  It's the first half marathon in Boothbay Harbor ever and Master of Ceremonies is Gary Allen!!

As you may remember, Gary is the guy who ran 500 miles in 10 days this past January to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project.  He is also the founder and director of the Great Cranberry Island Ultra so you are definitely going to want to come to this race and hear him speak.  He might even be the one to give you your finishers medal!

Go HERE to sign up!  Hurry!  The fees to register will go up as we get closer to race day!

Here are some of the other things that are going on that weekend:
~Chili/Chowder Challenge
~Golf tournament
~Harbor Crawl
~Art on the Waterfront
~Fashion Show
~Live Music
~Treasure Hunt

Click the links to get more information.

In short, I now have a very busy race schedule for this summer and I would love for you all to join me at the Harborfest Half Marathon and please help me to reach my fundraising goal!  Thank you, thank you!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Marathon Monday, Patriots Day or the day of the Boston Marathon, whatever you want to call it,  was a day of work for me.  Although most of Maine and Massachusetts were enjoying a beautiful day off, I was heading to the office to see patients.  I had a couple of friends that were running the race and had the instant text message set up to update me at certain points along the route.  Two friends were running for charity and two others, Sara at Middle Aged Runner and Gary Allen were qualifiers and thus are super speedy.

All of these people have a story and all are inspiring on their own.  The two charity runners are older men, one is close to 60 and the other 74, both inspire me with their ability to continue to get out there and run.  Jim at 60, seems to run every race with a smile on his face and is a great guy, Bob at 74 is from my town and also trains for triathlons.  At 74 he trained to compete in Ironman Key West, but the race was downgraded to a 70.3 due to some issue, otherwise, he would be an Ironman.  I hope to be able to do half of what they are doing when I get to that point in my life.

Bob with his BAA medal

Sara and Gary are inspiring in a way that I am in awe of their abilities.  Gary, as you may remember, ran 500 miles in 10 days for the Wounded Warrior Project just before the Superbowl.  He's ran in 21 Boston Marathons (consecutive), and has run a sub 3 marathon in three different decades.  Oh, and he's 57, not that age matters when you are as fast as he is.  And ran a sub 3 at Boston this year too.  Sara is an elite equestrian who picked up running and is just speedy fast.  I tried keeping her pace for about a mile at the Mid Winter Classic in February and just couldn't do it.  It's so not fair that she's fantastic at two sports!  Share the wealth, Sara!!  Jeez.

Me, Gary and another Sarah, who is equally inspiring and fast.  Ugh--so many fast Sarahs!!

Me, Kristal, Danielle and Sarah--the pro equestrian/fast runner Sara.

And of course, the story of Shalane Flanagan maintaining the lead at Boston at a blistering pace for the first 20 miles only to be overtaken and eventually beaten by Rita Jeptoo who also broke the marathon course record by 2:00.  TWO MINUTES!

In between patients I was rushing in to my office to watch Boston being streamed live on my computer.  Cheering like crazy when Shalane was leading.  And still leading.  And still leading.  Then to come back and not see her at all.  so sad, almost tears for a moment

Then to watch Rita as she is coming down the finish line.
With a two minute record.  I was literally yelling at my desk, "GO GIRL! YOU GOT IT!"  WOO!!!

And then Meb.  Oh my, what to say about Meb.  Again, more screaming at my desk.

Seriously, so inspired.

But in a way that is unattainable to me.  I will never be able to run 5:00 minute miles.  Not even one 5:00 mile.  And certainly not 26 5:00 miles.

Fast forward to this past weekend.  My friend Danielle, was running the Maine Coast Marathon.  She is a regular gal like myself, who works, is a mom, and just happens to run.  A lot.  Danielle is not new to marathons, and she has completed 8 marathons prior to this race.  Her first half marathon finish was almost exactly what my first half marathon finish was. She has since taken around 24 minutes off that half marathon time for a new PR of 1:40:11.  She has seriously grown wings since having her baby and just this year has blasted 4 new PR's at the 5K, 10K, 10 mile and half marathon distances.  She is focused and determined and works really hard to balance running, work and her life.

This weekend's marathon meant so much more to her than just a new PR.  She has been busting her ass for the last 4 months training in incredibly horrible weather for this marathon.  Rain, snow, treadmills at 4:30 a.m., she has done it all.  I've followed her progress and watched her blast away old times and get PR after PR after PR.  This was her race.

She got that PR.  A 22 fucking minute PR!!  TWENTY TWO MINUTES! 8:17 mile for 26.2 of them.
Danielle in white, one of the fast Sarah's in multicolor.  Her crazy-ass-fast time in the background.

equestrian Sara and Danielle post race

Everyone in this blog post inspires me to want to do things.  Everyone above gives me that push to continue on.  Even though I'll never win a marathon, I can try my best.  Even though I may never finish an Ironman, I can swim, bike and run in that sprint tri.

But Danielle inspires me the most.  Danielle makes me feel that I can do it.  She makes me think twice about saying no to doing a marathon.  I'm not quite there yet, to say yes and sign up.  But if I get to that point and reach that starting line, it's because she inspired me to do it.  It's because through her actions and her words, she changed my mind.

PS. I stole borrowed all these pictures from your collective facebook pages.  Except for two of them, they were mine.  Thanks and sorry.  If you didn't want them stolen borrowed then don't post on FB.  :D Plus, I'm telling you how wonderful you all are, so I didn't think you'd mind. muah!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Workout-Less Wednesday

So today is beginning less-than-stellar as I forgot all my stuff at home.  "All my stuff" includes, my lunch, sneakers, workout gear, snacks, water bottle etc.  Basically everything I need.  <sad panda face> I really needed a workout today since I have basically done nothing since Saturday.

the only shoes I have today

This is the week of dance recital/basketball/kids' sports hell and thus, my time to workout is severely limited.  So this missed opportunity to get it done at lunch time really sucks.

Strangely enough, I am so sore.  Sunday I did the p90x core blaster with my daughter which is a quick 16 minute workout.  Monday I found this "How Fit Are You?" challenge so I did that before playing tennis for an hour.  Well, I'm not sure which one (or both!) of those kicked my ass but yesterday I could barely walk.  My hamstrings, glutes and the top part of my quads were killing me!  Oh, and it hurt to laugh.

I thought it might not be wise to run when I could barely walk so I took yesterday off.  And now today is looking like a rest day as well.  sigh.

Here's how I fared with the 6 challenges:

The Challenges:

Endurance Challenge: Leg Matrix
You'll do each of these four moves back to back without resting. The moves:
1. Squat
2. Squat Jump
3. Lunge (right leg, then left leg)
4. Lunge Jump (right leg, then left leg)
Do the correct form of each move and immediately move on to the next one without resting. See how many you can do with proper form before you have to take a break. The number or reps you can do with correct form without resting will tell you how fit your endurance is.

Excellent 24
Good 10-15
Below Average less than 10

My Results: I was able to do 36+ of these without stopping.  I say 36+ because I chose to stop at 36 once I was so far past the Excellent rating of 24.  I guess I should have kept going to see how many I could do.  Perhaps this is the reason for my hamstrings screaming yesterday.  hmmmm.

Agility Challenge: Four-Point Touch
To do this test, you'll set up four cones in a square, five yards apart. You'll start in the center of the cones with your knees bent and your hips slightly forward. Set a timer to 15 seconds, and then move as quickly as possible to the front left cone, touch it, and move back to the center. Then move to the front right cone, touch it, and move back to the center. Continue running to each of the four cones in order. You're trying to see how many times you touch the cones in the 15 seconds.

Excellent 9
Good 6-8
Poor <6

My Results:  I was able to touch 8 cones in the 15 seconds.  Guess I could be faster.

Balance Challenge: Single-Leg Balance and Touch
You'll measure both legs separately. Perform the Single-Leg Balance and Touch, doing it in perfect form on one leg over and over for 60 seconds. See how many you can do in that time, and then repeat the test on the other side.

Excellent  21
Good  10-20
Poor <10

My Results:  I was able to touch my left toe 27 times and my right toe 28 times in the 60 seconds.  Yay me.

Lower-Body Strength Challenge: Three-Rep Single-Leg Squat
You'll test both legs individually, starting with the right leg. You'll perform the the single-leg squat with proper form, where the move gets progressively harder.

The first challenge was to one legged squat until you sit on the bench.  Then stand up.  If you can do that, move on.
Next, same leg, squat but just barely touch the bench with your bum and stand right back up.
Then, same leg, you stand on the bench and squat until the other leg is parallel with the bench and then stand back up.  Repeat on the other leg.

Excellent--doing all three.
Good--doing the first two.
Poor--doing none.

My Results:  I was able to do the first one with much difficulty.  I don't know if this was because I had already done all those squats or because I was using a standard chair instead of a bench.  Maybe the bench is higher than a chair?  I tried it later at home using my coffee table and was able to do the second challenge, but it was difficult.  Guess I need to work on this.

Hip Flexor Flexibility Challenge: The Thomas Test
The Thomas Test is done by laying on a lifting bench and pulling one leg in as close to your body as possible while trying to keep the other leg straight.  Do on both legs.

Excellent--if your leg drops below your hips
Good--your leg is parallel to your hips
Poor--your leg is above your hips

My Results:  I was good on this one in that I did it on the floor since I didn't have a bench.  I was able to keep my leg straight and parallel to my hips.  I will try this again when I can use a bench.

Core Stability Challenge: The Walk Out
Get down on hands and knees, walk your hands out as far as you are able.  Hold that pose for 20 seconds, then walk back in with your hands.

Excellent: your thighs are nearly parallel to the ground.
Good:  your thighs are less than 45 degrees to the ground.
Poor:  your thighs are more than 45 degrees to the ground.

My Results:  I was somewhere between Good and Excellent.

Here's the video if you want to watch the moves and give the challenge a try.

I am also still keeping up with the 30 day Arm Challenge.  I did get behind a day so I'm still on day 6 instead of 7, but at least I'm still doing it.  That is getting harder and harder.  Today is 15 push-ups, 20 dips and 40 bicep curls!  And that's only day 6!  I should have some fantastic pipes by day 30!

Are you having a better week than I am?

If you take the fitness challenge, share below how you did.  I'm wondering if it should be age adjusted.  After all, I am old.....

Thursday, May 1, 2014

April Review and a Spartan Winner!

April Review

Run--52.74 miles.  Yay me!  Of course, that little bump in mileage comes at the expense of other things like spinning and swimming.  I only have so many hours in the day so if running mileage is more, then swimming is less.  That's just how it goes.  Meeting new online friends helped to get me over that 50 mark.
 And running with local buddies is always a good thing.

I wish more people would have my exact same schedule.  It would make my running life a lot easier.  Damn you people with your own lives!

Swim--4000 yards.  Not much on the swimming this month.  I guess it's a good thing I'm not focused on triathlons this year.

Spinning--180 minutes. Similar to last month.  The kids' activities are getting to be a little less crazy now, with just lacrosse remaining after next week.  I hope to be able to get out on the road for a real bike ride very soon.  Weather please cooperate.  Rain is not satisfactory.  Neither is 40*.

Weights--70 minutes.  I am starting the 30 day Arm Challenge today in hopes of fantastic pipes for June.  Does anyone care to join me?

I'm not so sure about 50 push-ups and 120 arm dips on day 30 but we'll give it a go.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congratulations!!  Email me at bouchard at midcoast dot com and I'll send along your coupon code!  Thank you to everyone who entered.

I need your help now!  I'm helping organize a race in our area and we need to design a unique race medal for the finishers and also awards for the winners--overall and age group.  Please share your favorite race medal and why you liked it and any unique awards you received or have seen for winners.  Trophies are not what we are looking for, unless they are unique and different.   Tweet your pics to @ltlindian so I can see what you love!  Help me come up with a fabulous finishers medal for this new race!!  Thanks in advance!

Are you in for the 30 Arm Challenge?

Have you ever helped organize a race?