Recent Running Things

Hi everyone!  As I get closer and closer to my next half marathon on July 20, I’m starting to finally get in the swing of training.  Thank god, because I’ve only got a few more weeks left!  After hiking Mt. Marathon a few weeks ago I’ve been toning down my hikes which gives me more energy for running and training.  So what’s been going on with my running recently?

  • Remember how I bought myself those new Brooks PureCadence 2s for my birthday?  I’ve been dreading trying them out because I know that transitioning to minimalist running shoes can be difficult.  The first time I wore them out for a run I was about to give up by mile 1 because they were so tight and uncomfortable!  Luckily I had the brilliant idea to loosen the laces and it made such a huge difference!  They are very narrow shoes and I think the pre-set lacing was way too tight for my feet, which is surprising because I have narrow feet to begin with.  Anyways, once I finished that run I had a better idea of how to lace the shoes and how to land so that my feet felt the least discomfort. I did like running in them (and not gonna lie, looking at the bright color as I ran around town made me smile!) so I’m keeping them and will hopefully be 100% comfortable in them soon!

20140702-163607.jpgMy view from the bench where I loosened my laces

  • On that note, I decided to wear my new shoes out for my birthday run on Sunday.  I ran 2.7 miles in honor of my 27th birthday and it was a really great run!  I ran some of the neighborhoods behind the bunkhouse where I live and it was so peaceful – I didn’t see another person throughout my entire run!  I discovered the high school (and their track!  Speed workouts may need to happen there now!), the middle school, and a trail that lead down to the elementary school.  I guess I’m getting into accidental trail running?  My new shoes felt awesome and I was so happy that my feet are adjusting!  As I finished my run I ran into 3 different people that I knew – Seward is just too small of a town!  I also saw a reindeer and her baby being towed around town in a trailer.  Alaska is a pretty strange place  🙂

20140702-163643.jpgThe site of my accidental trail run!

20140702-163655.jpgOh how I’ve missed running in bright shoes!

20140702-164857.jpgReindeer in the trailer behind that red SUV

  • On Tuesday my friends and I decided to drive to Soldotna, a town almost 2 hours away that has real fast food places!  We got amazing donuts at The Moose Is Loose, ate at Taco Bell, and did some shopping at Walmart.  The things you start to take for granted when you live in a small town!  We also enjoyed spending time in Kenai, which is where the Kenai River runs into Cook Inlet.  It looked just like the ocean!  We hung out on the beach for a bit and enjoyed the sunshine and warm weather.  We even saw a caribou on our way out of town!  The reason that this is somewhat running related is that they have a series of trail races in Soldotna this summer on Wednesday nights and I was trying to justify driving all the way out there just for a race.  Now I realize that I can totally make a day of it out there and eat donuts after the race!  I will make any excuse to get those donuts again!  Also, it was surprisingly flat on that side of the Kenai Peninsula, which should make for an easier first trail race for me.

20140702-163720.jpgToo many donuts?  Nope.


20140702-164041.jpgThe first wild caribou I’ve seen this year!  I felt kind of guilty for eating so many caribou burgers recently…

20140702-164105.jpgI swear we could have been in Delaware or something except for those white mountains in the distance!

  • And how the above story is also running related…we got home from Soldotna at 10:30 pm and I was feeling lazy and fat from all the food we ate, plus I was sad about not getting my 8 miler done.  Andrew suggested that I just go out and do it even though it was so late.  At first I thought it was a silly idea, but the more I thought about it the more excited I got.  Running at midnight in Alaska has been on my bucket list since I moved here and with the mild temps and endless sun I knew it would be a comfortable run.  I started out a slow pace and just enjoyed the view, which was good because the first half of the run was pretty tough!  Why are all long runs like that?  Along the way I saw salmon in the lagoon and sea otters in the bay, along with the most gorgeous sunset!  As it got closer to midnight I started to get a little creeped out about being alone, but I actually saw a surprising amount of people driving around and I knew I was safe.  Even so, my pace picked up with each mile because I didn’t want to be out there in the “dark” (which kind of starts happening at 1:00 am) and I not only finished with a pace per mile lower than my race goal pace, I also finished with nearly perfect negative splits AND I didn’t feel like I was dying afterwards!  I was so excited!  I don’t think I’ll ever do a long run at midnight again, but I might try to do a few shorter ones in town while we still get midnight sun!

20140702-164117.jpgHard to see, but the black lines in the water are salmon!

20140702-164133.jpgThe beginnings of an Alaskan sunset at 11:30 pm

20140702-164158.jpgSo bright out!

20140702-164218.jpgRunning back towards Seward at midnight!

20140702-164224.jpgExcept for mile 2 (which was uphill) these are perfect negative splits!  So happy!

  • I’m looking forward to running the next few days because we are getting sunshine and temps in the mid 70s!  It’s almost like being back home in the spring minus the humidity.  I love it, mostly because it will still be nice and warm when I get off work to go running.  Tank top running weather all week!
  • In other running news, tonight I will be volunteering at the Mt. Marathon Race bib pickup, and tomorrow I will be watching the race take place from my office (you can see the race course on top of the mountain, especially with binoculars!).  I am so excited to watch the craziness from sea level  🙂  Stay tuned for a post about the race and the 4th of July in Seward next week!
  • And finally, I’d like to announce the winner of my BAMR Bands giveaway:  Jennifer from Run Jenny Run!  Congrats!

Have you ever ran in minimalist shoes?  How did you train yourself to do it?  And what is the latest time of day when you’ve gone running?


16 thoughts on “Recent Running Things

  1. Love the running catch up! That is so nice you can run at midnight and its still light out! Your mile 8 split was amazing! Yayy for BAMR bands!

    1. Thanks! I still can’t believe I ran mile #8 that fast! I’m hoping that’s a good sign for my half marathon in a few weeks. And seriously, yay to BAMR Bands! Congrats on winning!

  2. Cute shoes! I run in something that’s a cross between a minimalist shoe. I started out with small distances and on trails. Now I love them and can run on pavement with them

    1. That’s awesome! These shoes are semi-minimalist (they have the most cushioning on the Brooks Pure line) but I’m excited to try them out. I’m definitely sticking to small distances for now!

    1. Sweet, I’m sticking to short distances too! And yay for Anchorage! I’ll be moving there in October and I’m so excited! Were the winters really as bad as they sound?

  3. Awesome midnight run! I love all your pictures of Alaska. The latest I’ve ever run was midnight. Last winter I was doing the holiday running streak and I bent the rules a little by going at 11:45 pm so I could finish up after midnight and count two days with only one run. 🙂

    1. Haha that is genius! I did that same run streak and I think I did a few near-midnight 1 milers on my treadmill, but I never thought about making it count for both days! I’ll have to try that next time 🙂

  4. I love this catch up! It’s great to see how you are exploring your town during your run and taking us along for the journey too :0)
    Great pictures as always!

    1. Thanks! Yeah I rarely took pics while running in my old neighborhood, but Seward is just so pretty that I take pictures every day. I may need to do a “tour of Seward” run like I did right before I moved from Philly next!

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