Dopey Challenge – It Really Is A Challenge

This past month I started a new job. I really enjoy the new job and so far it hasn’t gotten in the way of my training for the Dopey Challenge. The challenge for me is that I was Dopey to sign up for this challenge when I never before even did the Goofy challenge! What have I gotten myself into?

My training has been going well, I will admit that. But I don’t feel as successful as I think I could feel. Maybe I just don’t know how I am supposed to feel. I do know that at times running does feel like work. Mike and Michelle talked about it on their podcast in a recent episode and it hit home with me. I do enjoy running still and I get out for my two short runs during the week and then my assigned run per Jeff Galloway. Typically if it isn’t a long run or race weekend then it is a 4 or 6 mile run. Again, I still enjoy those runs. It’s when I have the long run showing up closer on my calendar that I start to feel anxious.

I knew that next weekend I have a long run on the schedule and I can’t take a day off of work to fit it in. This means I will have to spend a weekend day running for 5 hours. It also means that I have to figure out when and how I will get out there because my husband is starting a new job and has to work on Saturday. I don’t want to spend my Sunday out running for half the day when it is the only day he will be home with the family.

So we discussed the plan over breakfast and since he will only be working 5-9 on Saturday I will head out when he gets home. This is similar to when I would go out for my long run after getting Kevin on the bus and dropping Adrienne off to preschool last year. So if I keep that mentality I will be ok.

However, the difference this time is that I have to do a 3, 5, 8 and 23 mile run in 4 consecutive days – The Dopey part. It’s getting dark out very early and it’s also dark early in the morning. I can’t run in the morning because my husband is starting his new job this week. So I’ll have to plan on doing my 3 miles Wednesday after work, 5 miles Thursday during lunch since I am taking online training at home, and I am not sure yet how I am going to get in my 8 miler on Friday. Here’s where the crazy juggling comes in.

I think what helps me not freak out too much is knowing that I only have 2 more groups of training runs like this in the next two months. One right before the Philadelphia Marathon and then before the WDW weekend the week before Christmas. I guess I’ll worry about how I’ll fit that all in when the time comes. I may have some accrued vacation time to squeeze in the long run on a Friday. I may have to fire up the treadmill in a few weeks and put in the miles indoors early in the morning. I don’t know how to get back into treadmill mode. I swore it off four years ago.

Do you have any advice on how to integrate the treadmill back into my training routine?


Why I Love Jeff Galloway (and the Lose It! App)

I am using Jeff Galloway as my training coach and he trains you for more than just running.  I gave him my recap for my week and the Heartbreak Hill Half Marathon and I mentioned to him about my goals for the summer.  One of my goals was not about running.  Despite all of the running I have been doing and the two marathons I did this Spring, I have slowly been gaining weight.  I have been getting frustrated about this and I have Jeff and Barbara’s book Fat Burning For Women.  I have been meaning to read it but just haven’t gotten to it.

In my weekly recap email I just told Jeff that I had a goal to lose some of that weight.  He simply stated to me the following information:

Fat Burning:  It’s about having a cognitive eating plan every day.  Write down everything you eat, and log it into your preferred website or app.  Then analyze it each day.  You will then start using your conscious brain to choose what and how much to eat.  Barbara’s material has helped thousands of women get the 10-15 pounds off without starving.  You can still have the glass of wine—just have put it in the “budget”.


This may sound like a “DUH” type of response, but it was an A-HA moment for me.  I had been “trying”, but I was never really trying to be conscious about my eating.  My friend Jindy has just lost 14+ pounds using the 21 Day Fix.  I was talking to her and she recommended the Lose It! App.  So I took Jeff’s advice and I downloaded the App and I have successfully lost 2.5 pounds so far in less than a week just because I started to keep track of what I put in my mouth and then I can plan my meals and snacks and treats/drinks accordingly so they are within my budget for the day and I don’t feel deprived!

The Lose It! App is great!  You can scan the bar code of your foods you have and specify the serving size you are eating.  You can also search for foods in the program and add them to the daily log.  You also keep track of your weight and can connect with friends if they are also using the app.



You can also insert your exercise from the day in there and while you carry your phone around with you, it keeps track of how many steps you take during the day.


Sometimes you need someone to state the obvious to you in order for a light bulb to go off. Jeff did that for me and I am so glad that I am moving in a direction that I feel like I have been swimming against for months now.  Thanks Jeff!  And thanks Jindy for recommending this app!  I was going to use but when she told me about this, I downloaded it, tried it and loved it from the start.

Providence Here I Come!

providenceWhen I finished the Walt Disney World Marathon this January, I came home and the first thing I did was research where I can do another marathon.  I found the Providence marathon and thought that was a perfect location because it wasn’t far from home.  I was hoping I could fine one sooner than the date of May 4; however it gave me time to train some more.

I used Jeff Galloway as my coach during this training. And it was very effective.  My last long run was done two weeks ago on Good Friday.  Now I am wrapping my mind around it.  I usually do my very long run prior to the race as Jeff recommends, however, I am beginning to think that maybe I don’t want to pursue this approach anymore.  I am torn over it because when I finish it then mentally I feel like I’ve already run the race.  But if I don’t do it, then I’m going to struggle when I have to add the additional last 3 miles to the course on race day.  The training to the full distance gives my body what I needs to endure the entire distance.  The harder part, the less physical part.

My goal for this race is to get in at 5:30 or less.  It is a very aggressive goal and I’m going to be running it with Gail, so I’m hoping that she can push me at the end so that I can make it.  I can almost guarantee I’m going to be hurting when this one is over, but it’s okay it will be worth it.  My back up plan is to be in under 5:45.

I am also looking forward to spending the night with the girls and hanging out and having dinner before the race.  It’s always good to get together with race friends. When I first chose this race, I was only planning on going by myself.  But when I told the girls that I was signed up for it they decided to join me.  Always a win-win in my book when people join me or I join others for races!  I have other friends who are running the half so I am hoping to see Michael and Diana while I am there, too!

I have been working on picking out my wardrobe for the race, we are in that temperature swing where it is beginning to warm up. I t looks like it’s going to be 60° but on the water I’m not sure how breezy it is.

Stay tuned for updates on how the event went! Wish me luck!

Have you run this race before?  What is the weather like running near the water?

Boston Marathon World Run – A Success!

20140419-153342.jpgI ran my Boston Marathon World Run on Friday.  It was a perfect day for a marathon run. My dad watched my kids for me, which I am very grateful for!  I couldn’t do these races and training runs if not for the support of my husband and my family!  I can’t thank you enough for helping me make my dreams come true!  It means so much to me.

The day was a perfect temp, not too much sun and the roads weren’t very busy either! I mapped out my route ahead of time; but while I was out there, I made minor modifications to try to get in a few more mileage in the beginning closer to my house in a less hilly area so that I wouldn’t have to end the route on as many hills that I originally mapped out.  In the end that worked out nicely for me.  I had to end on a gradual hill on Route 17 but it was totally manageable and it was also the same road my husband drives home on so he was able to wait for me.  When he saw me I told him I had 1 mile to go and to pick me up there so I wouldn’t have to walk the last mile home and treck up our hill.  I just didn’t want to do it.  I was already out there over 6 hours and I wanted to be home with my family.

20140419-153408.jpgI felt great.  I did what Jeff Galloway recommended and set my intervals to 15/30 and walked the entire first mile.  When I was trying to go slow in the beginning my pace was coming up around 12 mins/mile.  Jeff recommended going no faster than 15 mins/mile.  I couldn’t slow down at first.  Eventually, I evened out around at 14 mins/mile pace. And when in a grove it would speed up to 13 mins/mile.

While out on the run, I enjoyed my favorite podcasts, Mickey Miles Podcast plays first, then Laugh or Go Crazy, followed by Two Gomers.  I had several saved up so I couldn’t listen to the rest of my favorite podcasts.  I will save them for my weekly shorter runs now and to listen to while at work!  I enjoyed laughing while running.  The Laugh or Go Crazy podcast really had me chuckling at one point and so did the Two Gomers.  I shared this with them via Twitter.  I think it is important to let them know that their podcast does impact our lives.  It’s great entertainment for me while out for 6 hours training!

The Mickey Miles podcast taught me so much about nutrition.  I also learned so much listening to Tara Gidus on the mickey Miles podcast that I am going to write a summary of what I took away from it and may consider hiring her as a nutrition consultant for my training.  She is VERY knowledgeable on the subject of nutrition and training, supplements, vitamins and much more.  Of course she should be, she’s the official nutritionist of runDisney!

The Laugh or Go Crazy podcast topic was about Living the Dream.  Are you living your life as if it were a dream and you are doing all that you dreamed of doing.  Are you handling the good and the bad as best as you can?  Life won’t always be perfect, there will be hard time and then there are the good times.  Are you making the best of your life?

The Two Gomers are on a quest to do the St. Anthony’s triathlon in St. Petersburgh,FL on April 28.  I am so proud of them.  They are way ahead of me in terms of stepping out of their comfort zone. They have talked for years about stretching out there and wondering if they would ever do a triathlon.  Their podcast has giving me the nudge to get on my bike more and I’m also working towards trying a new race this year.  I hope I fulfill my New Year’s one word resolution  and GROW towards that.  If anything, I am cross training with my bike which I hope helps with my running.

I’m very glad my training run was so successful.  I am not sore at all.  I did as Jeff recommended and didn’t have to rush home to pick up Adrienne from school so I was able to slow down my pace like Jeff said and it really makes a difference.  I haven’t run this weekend because I was busy with the kids, sports and the Easter holiday, but I could have easily gotten in a 4 mile run with hardly any leg issues if necessary.  I am heading up to Boston Monday for the marathon and hope to run in the evening or I’ll have save it for Tuesday.  I’m looking forward to watching the race and soaking in the excitement and using that as the fuel towards my quest to qualify for Boston one day!  If I can’t get there on my own within 5 years I will try to go on a charity bib.  But I want to earn it ON MY OWN!  It’s going to be the hardest thing I ever try to do.


Providence is two weeks away and I’m looking forward to getting a PR for my marathon time and growing towards my next goals for this summer!



I Am Doing it! I’m Registering for the 2015 Dopey Challenge – YIKES!

dopey medalsSo after much thought, I have decided to do the Dopey Challenge this year.  After running the full marathon with Kimberly, Gail and Alison and seeing all the bling they were given at the end, I felt left out.  I also didn’t wake up 4 days in a row and run all of the races, but I am prepared to do that in 2015.  For those who don’t know what the Dopey Challenge it, it is 4 runDisney races in 4 days. The first day is the 5K, the second is the 10K, the third is the half marathon and the fourth is the marathon.  Yea it’s crazy!

I am also comfortable with my decision to do Dopey because I have a plan in my head of how I will accomplish it, when my family will arrive and how I will train.  I am using Jeff Galloway as an e-coach right now and it was the best decision I have made in my running career so far.  I will continue to work with him towards my goal of Dopey.

This week I was watching Ali Vincent’s video recap of the Inaugural Dopey challenge and even though she was scared sick about doing the 4 races, she did it and she lived to tell about it.  I had the chance to meet her at the starting line of the race this year!  She is so nice and very down to earth. Not only did she run the races, but she was also busy at the expo and then was visiting the parks with her mother!

I do not intend to spend a lot of time in the parks before the race.  My goal is to save the days after the marathon to enjoy the parks with my family.  So I’d like for them to arrive on Friday night or Saturday morning and then cheer me on for Sunday and spend time in Florida for the days after the races.  This may mean that they can’t run a kid race this year and I am not so sure I want them to miss out on that chance again.  It’s a minor decision to think about at this point.  Since registration will fill up quickly I have to be 100% sure I am doing Dopey and right now I am.

As I continue through the summer with my races and my Dopey training I will keep you informed of my progress!  It’s not going to be an easy task but I am willing to give it my all!

e-coaching with Jeff Galloway

I had been considering hiring a running coach for about 6 months now but didn’t do it.  I wanted to do it last August after pulling my hamstring and needing physical therapy.  Then after the therapy worked and I wasn’t hurting anymore I decided I didn’t need to.

After the WDW marathon I came home and wanted to do another marathon sooner rather than later.  I didn’t want to wait until the fall and because I had the mileage base under my belt I wanted to get one done in the spring.  I found the Providence Marathon.  This was perfect!  It’s a short drive from home, the course looks nice, the price was good and several other friends of mine decided to run it.

When I went to the Princess Half marathon a little over a month after the WDW full marathon, I wasn’t happy with my training.  I was struggling with hip flexor pain and my running was very, very slow.  I was hoping to talk to Jeff Galloway at the expo, but didn’t get the chance.  When I got home I made the decision.  I was going to do e-coaching with Jeff Galloway!  Why wouldn’t I?  I follow his training plans, I met him twice and I love his training method.  I already read several of his books and I believe in his method of run/walk/run.  Because I was planning on running another marathon within 6 months of my last, I wanted to do it in a way where I wouldn’t hurt myself, since I seem to be prone to injury.  I also wanted to use it as a method to prepare me for a decision to do Dopey in 2015.


What comes with ecoaching?

  • Individual Training Program to the goal of your choice by Jeff Galloway
  • A copy of one of Jeff’s books (Galloway Training Program, Galloway’s Book on Running–2nd Ed. or Year Round Plan)
  • Direct email access to Jeff, for questions and clarifications, with priority
  • Free Monthly E Newsletter
  • Opportunity to ride on the Galloway Bus for the New York City Marathon start
  • Discounts on Fitness Vacations at Lake Tahoe Meet and run with other Galloway Members at races around the world

I am  three weeks into the training plan now and I have been very happy with it.  I was surprised with the intervals Jeff recommended and the pace for my long runs, but I can see now why they are recommended.  I also liked the other workouts he prescribed from cadence runs to hill repeats.  I never took those workouts seriously before, but now I see how they are effective for the whole process of building other muscles and to help with speed.  My recover on my 2 last long runs were very quick and just this past Friday with my 20-miler I was able to hike Sunday and ran and rode my bike on Monday and didn’t even feel like I ran 20 miles just days ago.

On April 6, Jeff will be at the Harvard Pilgrim Middletown Half & Legends 4-mile run.  I hope I get the chance to run with him during the 4-mile run.  Every time runDisney had a meetup the guests had the chance to run with Jeff.  I never had the chance.  If not, I will be sure to get another picture with Jeff!  I am also looking forward to participating in his Jeff Galloway 13.1 Inaugural race in Atlanta in December.

2014 Race Calendar

While it is already the middle of March, I sat down with my pencil and race calendar to map out what races I am planning on attending for the upcoming year.  This needs to align with the training plan Jeff Galloway has set up for me for this spring and then what we will plan for the summer months.

racecalendarOne of the races that I didn’t plan on doing but decided to last minute is the Harvard Pilgrim Middletown Half & Legends 4-Miler.  The reason why I wasn’t planning on doing it was because I am doing a 23 mile run days prior to the event so I can’t do the half marathon.  However, I realized there is a 4-mile run with the event so I can do that as my shake off run.

I also chose to do this run because like the name of it says, there are Legends attending this run, and one of those legends is my trainer, Jeff Galloway.  Amby Burfoot and Bill Rodgers will also be attending this event.  Once I heard Jeff was going to be there I HAD to register!

I am looking forward to seeing Jeff again, meeting Amby and Bill, and looking forward to this inaugural race!