Sunday, February 14, 2016

Track...In a Parking Garage

Our training group has track on Tuesday nights at the local high school. Over the past few years, we've had bad weather fall disproportionately on Tuesdays...snow and ice in the winter, lightning in the summer. I guess Mother Nature isn't a fan of speed-work.

Last week the track was closed by the public school system in anticipation of icy weather that didn't actually materialize. Since it was safe for people to drive, we moved our track workout to a parking garage. Here's how we did it.

  • Go to the top. We went to the top of a nine-level parking garage, where there aren't any cars.

No traffic up here!

  • Measure. We used "the wheel" to measure the course. Coach Adam measured a 600 meter course, putting cones at 200 meter intervals.

Coach Mike and "the wheel"

  • Station the coaches. We had four coaches, one at each marker. Adam manned the start, I was at 200 meters, Jeff held down the fort at 400 meters, and Mike had the loneliest post - 600 meters. We cheered for the runners to keep morale high, served as reference points for distance, played music, and Mike allegedly did push-ups to try to lure more runners to his post.

My "post" (get it?) - 200 meter mark

While the garage has its drawbacks - it's not very scenic, the concrete is a challenging running surface, and the ramp can't be completely avoided (resulting in a tough hill), it's far better than a cancelled workout. Kudos to the runners who toughed it out in the parking garage! Building mental toughness is an important part of training.

Way to persevere!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Cherry Blossom Luck in a Box

After having "snowzilla" wipe out our first long run, first track workout, and any possibility of running on the W&OD trail for our next long run, our Cherry Blossom training group was due for some good luck. Fortunately for us, Good Luck Box came to our run to bring us just that.

Our first stroke of luck was identifying a solid back-up running plan - a mile loop around Reston Town Center. It was a little repetitive for those running longer distances, but it was clear of snow and (second stroke of luck) the weather was gorgeous. Before our group of 60 headed out for our first official run, Good Luck Box shared a sample box with us and raffled it off to one lucky runner (third stroke of luck).

The Lucky =PR= Reston Cherry Blossom Training Group
photo courtesy of Laurentina Photography

For most of us, this was our first peek at a Good Luck Box. There was a lot of curiosity, as we knew there was a special cherry blossom-themed box designed specifically for our race. The Cherry Blossom box can be ordered at any time, and it will arrive the week before the Cherry Blossom race with a selection of specially-chosen items to support you before, during, and after the race.

The box we previewed was NOT the Cherry Blossom box - the contents of that box will remain top-secret until race week! So, what did our sample box contain?

The shoelaces say "Good Luck" on the tips

The Roadster Tiger Tail
A great travel-size companion for those sore muscles

Pasta shaped like lucky clovers for pre-race carb loading,
with a recipe for kale pesto

Knockaround sunglasses, a drink koozie, and a card full of race tips

For your fueling needs, Honey Stinger Waffle & Picky Bar (gluten-free!)

Mini Body Glide, Action Wipes for post-race freshening,
Sweat X Detergent for race clothes freshening

For the night before the race - dinner tips and Yogi Bedtime tea

Our lucky raffle winner was Cassie - and she was given a choice: take the sample box, or receive the Cherry Blossom Good Luck Box the week before the race. What did Cassie choose? She chose to wait for the Cherry Blossom Box. A little bird told me some secret tidbits about the Cherry Blossom Box, and I have to say that I think Cassie will be very happy with her choice. What would you have chosen?

Sunday, February 7, 2016

2015 Race Recaps

It's already February and I still haven't updated my race calendar to 2016. I'm finally archiving the 2015 Calendar - here are links to all the race recaps for 2015.

04/12: Cherry Blossom 10-Miler