Thank You, Teresa!

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Teresa and I at the 2016 Super Sunday 5K – a (still current) PR for me!

Thank you to my very first donor, my former colleague and now friend, Teresa! She and I worked together at Dana-Farber the whole time I was there, and she trained me on so many of the high level responsibilities that I had for our SVP and the Board of Directors. She was one of the most supportive colleagues I’ve had – especially during the challenging times. We’ve both since moved on but we stay in touch and have even run a couple of races together. Any by together, I mean Teresa waits for me at the finish line because she’s a cheetah!

Teresa is the one who gave me the half marathon training plan I’ve been following for the past few months and is so excited for and supportive of my marathon run. And hey T – who would’ve thought I’d be running a marathon before you, right?!

You can’t be the  first, but you could be my second donor: www.rundfmc.org/2017/kellyp

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I’m Running the 2017 Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber

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It’s true! I’m running the 2017 Boston Marathon as part of the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge. I made up my mind to apply when a pediatric patient I met on one of my first days working at Dana-Farber died over the summer, and just two weeks after applications were made available, I applied, and then received word a few days later that I’d been accepted to the team!

I’ve committed to raising $10,000 for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute on top of the 26.2 miles I’m going to run. $10,000 is a lot of money so I’m going to have to get creative, but if you’re feeling generous, you can support me at www.rundfmc.org/2017/kellyp. Expect to hear a lot more about my training and why I’ve chosen to support Dana-Farber in the coming weeks and months.

In the meantime, I’m focused on the task at hand – finishing my first half marathon on October 9. I also expect to need a few weeks off afterward to let this injury heal (and/or get diagnosed), but the official team training program kicks off on December 12 so I’m not going to worry about that yet.

So excited and honored to be part of this!

Motivation on My First 10-Miler

The coolest thing happened during my run on Saturday. Well, OK two cool things. The first, that I almost forgot to mention, is that I ran 10 miles! That’s the longest/farthest I’ve ever run. The weather couldn’t have been better. It was in the 60s when I started out and the sun still wasn’t too high, so there was plenty of shade as I headed into Newton and down Heartbreak Hill (yes, down it). I ran deeper into Newton than I ever have, and was not expecting the hills coming up Beacon St heading back toward Brighton. I was surprised by how little I sweat (compared to normal, so still a good amount) and how little water I needed – my two 10-ounce bottles were actually enough.

20160924_112123Here’s the cool thing: at the last sucky hill, I noticed an older gentleman running on the other side of the street (on the sidewalk, like me). I guessed he was in his 60s but given how fit he was, he could very well have been in his 70s and just looked really good. He didn’t stop running up the hill so I didn’t either. In fact, I didn’t walk/stop on ANY of the hills during my whole run. Go me!

My route took me to the Chestnut Hill Reservoir for 2.5 loops around/4 miles. After the first loop, I stopped for a Gu – my second of the run. I took one at the 4-mile and 8-mile marks. As I was throwing away the package, I saw the guy. He was still moving and said, “You didn’t stop coming up that hill!” in a really congratulatory tone. I said, “Yeah, I was watching YOU!” He replied (still jogging), “I said to myself, “She is NOT stopping!”” So I said, “Thanks!” He seemed proud of me, and impressed. I was proud of me and impressed, too!

It’s not often I hear positive encouragement during my runs. Because I run alone, it’s really only during races that I hear it. This exchange made me think that running with others could be more motivating. I just need to find someone who runs at my tortoise pace. Continue reading

All The Races I’ve Run

I forgot to mention in my latest post that I ran another 5K recently. I signed up for the Race for the Horses 5K in Saratoga, NY. It was an official run/walk event, so I invited my dad to join – he doesn’t run. Personally, I am terrified of horses but I know race horses can have pretty sh*tty lives, especially once they can no longer race. And let’s face it – I was looking for another race, and I love running in new places. I did the Firecracker 4 in downtown Saratoga on July 4th, but this one was held at Saratoga Spa State Park.

My knee/hamstring pain was still pretty new then, and I had a miserable 4-mile run the day before on the backroads of good ol’ Providence, NY. So when the pain set in right around the 2-mile mark, I knew I was in trouble. I had been doing pretty OK for the first 2 miles, but then there was an uphill in the sun with no shade and my knee was hurting and I just kinda gave up and started walking. I picked back up again but had to walk another short stretch. I crossed the finish line at a pathetic 32:14 and immediately worked out when we got back to the cottage – trying to strengthen my glutes and the rest of my legs and take some of the pressure off my poor knee. Continue reading

New Shoes: Before or After the Half?

In less than a month, I will turn 32. Two days later, I will run my first half marathon (I contemplated writing “I will attempt to…” but ain’t nobody got time for negative thoughts). I have always asked for the latest model of my beloved Mizuno Wave Riders for Christmas, but I have logged a lot of miles this year and planned to reward myself after the half with a new pair, even if that meant buying the same model I have now. So I’m super excited to learn that the Wave Rider 20s will be released on my birthday! I gave myself the day off from work, and “The Girl on the Train” movie is released that day, so it sounds like I will have a lot to do on what is otherwise a pretty boring milestone. I will not wear them for the half , though. That’d be nuts.

According to runningwarehouse.com, “A U4icX foam cartridge puts a softer foam below the Wave, in the heel of the shoe, for a softer landing. The strobel last of the shoe will utilize a softer foam for a more comfortable underfoot feel. All of these changes should result in the shoe having more give under foot, while still allowing for a quick response.” That makes me happy, because I’m heavy-footed and have been struggling a lot with numb feet and left knee pain – both after a few miles. I do really hope they have some toned-down color schemes to pick from. I’ve had silvery blue & orange, pink & yellow, and now royal blue & magenta, and I’m just ready for something a little less loud.

Speaking of running, I logged my longest run to date on Saturday while visiting Juls in Marietta, Georgia. I knew a track would be better for my knee so I planned to run to the nearest high school. But Juls was not kidding when she said there aren’t many sidewalks around her. I ran on a busy, somewhat hilly, somewhat windy road with no shoulder, and had to dive into the grass every time a truck came toward me. I found the school and the lovely rubber-ish track and ran 2 miles (8 laps) before I A. got bored and B. realized high school football practice was starting soon. My knee started hurting on cue right around 4.75 miles, but fortunately I had no numb feet. I tried new compression ankle socks but they really provided no compression even though I bought the smallest size. Instead, I loosened my shoes a bit.

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Running past Commonwealth Ave in Marietta, GA – not the Commonwealth Ave I live on in Boston.

Continue reading