Shamrock Marathon 2017 Race Recap

If you like wordy race recaps, way-too-deep running thoughts, and/or teary finish lines, then man, do I have a post for you!


If you've been around for a while, you probably know that Shamrock weekend is one of my favorite weekends of the whole year, and has been ever since it became my first half marathon in 2012. Running it every year since then has become a little tradition of mine, and I've now run the half and the full 3 times each (and the 8k once). I signed up to run the Shamrock Marathon for the 3rd time last November, during a post-Ironman high/what-do-I-do-now episode?! Truthfully, I hadn't really planned on running the Shamrock full again anytime soon and was avidly searching for a new spring marathon to try out, but when I found out my friend Carl and I both had the same current PR and the same lofty goal, to take almost 20 minutes off that PR and break 4 hours, it seemed meant to be. I started training in mid-November and on Sunday, 18 weeks later, I crossed the finish line.

This Shamrock charm was on my very first medal from 2012. I put it on a necklace and have worn it for every important race since (and added the 26.2 after my first marathon, obviously)

Shamrock Marathon Training: Week 15

This was a good week! I think it helped me to know that this was the last big week of training before taper!

Training for:
Shamrock Marathon
Virginia Beach, VA
March 19

Goal: 
sub-4:00


Week 15
(2/20-2/26)

Shamrock Marathon Training: Weeks 12-14

I have fallen really behind on my Shamrock training recaps, and I have gone back and forth on whether I even want to post them or not, but I think that I do. Rather than breaking up the 3 weeks I've missed in separate posts, they're all rolled together here. In the last 3 weeks I've:
  • run two 20-milers;
  • run almost 100 miles (97.3);
  • gotten sick;
  • skipped a run for the first time during this training cycle (8 miles);
  • run my longest weekday run (10+ miles after work!);
  • joined a tri club; 
  • registered for two races (Kinetic Half Ironman and Mountains of Misery century ride - more on my races this year soon!); and
  • ridden my bike outside! For fun! 
Maybe I'll get back on track and post them regularly, or maybe I won't, but for now I'm caught up!

Training for:
Shamrock Marathon
Virginia Beach, VA
March 19

Goal: 
sub-4:00


Shamrock Marathon Training: Week 11

This week was my first "race" of this year, and I put that in quotes because it was a timed run but not billed as a race, per se, so I'm never exactly sure what to call it. I really should have treated it more like the training run that it was rather than a race, and I learned the hard way how important pacing is!

Training for:
Shamrock Marathon
Virginia Beach, VA
March 19

Goal: 
sub-4:00

Week 11
(1/23-1/29)



Shamrock Marathon Training: Week 10

This was a really off week for me - being in DC, Obama's last days in office and the impending inauguration really hung over like a dark cloud, and it was hard not to feel sad and anxious this week. I stuck to my running this week, which is good considering that's my priority right now, but I really slacked on swimming and biking. I swam once, and I didn't get on the bike at all. I just wasn't in the mood to push myself this week, and there was a lot going on. Not the week I intended to have, but it's not every week that my favorite president leaves office and I have a weekend visitor and I march through DC with hundreds of thousands of people, so I think it's okay that it wasn't the most normal of weeks workout-wise either. I've been on track before and I'll get on track again.

Training for:
Shamrock Marathon
Virginia Beach, VA
March 19

Goal: 
sub-4:00




2017 Finances Check-In #2

One of my big goals for this year is to really focus on my finances - not because they're in shambles but simply because, I think like for most people, they could be better. I could spend less here, save more there, and so on. I outlined my goals here and checked in after the first week here. Now that it's been a month, I think I'd like to continue monthly progress reports, so here is the month of January:


Friday Favorites - 1/27/17

I don't know about you, but I could definitely use a reminder of all the things that did not suck this week. Here are a few of my favorite things:

Free Lululemon
I've joined Strava a few different times (I ultimately end up deleting my account when randos start giving me kudos on my runs or whatever and I get paranoid that people can see when and were I run), most recently a couple weeks ago. If you don't use or know about Strava, it's kind of like Garmin meets Twitter - the data and analysis for runs and bikes and swims is crazy amazing, but there is a big social component to it as well. Anyway,  there are all sorts of challenges and I joined one that was co-sponsored by Lululemon, to run either 40k (25 miles) or 80k (50 miles) in a specified 2-week period. The challenges I usually join aren't really "challenges", per se, since they're usually things I'm planning to do anyway (I'm training for marathon and an Ironman, I don't need any extra challenges!). To be honest I had kind of forgotten about it and ended up deleting my account the other night (see: aforementioned paranoia) when I was on r/running on Reddit and saw a PSA that if you had completed the challenge, you got a free shirt and shorts from Lululemon - say what?! I had deleted my account *literally* ten minutes before reading the post, but I looked at my emails from Strava and found the one that they had sent me about completing the challenge. I had deleted it thinking it was just junk mail, but sure enough, I scrolled to the bottom and saw that if I brought the email into the store I could get free stuff. I was still a little incredulous (and not sure they'd give it to me since technically the account I'd completed the challenge under was no longer active), but I pass by a Lulu every day on my way home from work, so I stopped in because I figured it wouldn't hurt to ask about it, and I walked out with a completely free short sleeve Swiftly shirt (I'm a recent Lululemon convert and have fallen in love with these shirts) and pair of Speed shorts.