The Rock ‘n’ Roll 10K in Brooklyn (Competitor Group, Inc)
The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series announced they’re turning the Brooklyn Rock ‘n’ Roll 10K into a full-fledged half-marathon in October 2015.
The official date and course have yet to be released, but it will likely once again make use of Prospect Park with an expected field of 20,000 runners. Bands will line the course at every mile and runners can celebrate with beers at the finish line concert. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series puts on about 30 events every year, each with music as the main feature.
Runners at Grand Army Plaza (Competitor Group, Inc)
The headliner has yet to be announced, but Rock ‘n’ Roll events in 2014 saw performances by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Aloe Blacc, Chromeo, Phillip Phillips and the cast of ABC’s Nashville.
Two local race organizations—New York Road Runners and NYCRUNS (companies I have worked with as a freelancer)—already operate distance races in the borough.
Training in my Gore Running Gear (RunKarlaRun.com)
It’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted a GORE-Tex Philadelphia Marathon training update. I’m running the race with Team Gore, and training was going well. Gore helped me gear up for the race with Gore Running Wear and GORE-TEX Saucony shoes. The sky was blue and birds were singing. In other words, all was right in my world.
During my bi-annual skin check in September, my dermatologist found a mole she didn’t like. She immediately pulled out her scalpel and sliced it off to be biopsied.
A week later, the results were in: it was precancerous, a term used for atypical moles that are more likely than regular moles to develop into melanoma. This particular mole was classified as “severely” atypical, the worst it gets before possibly becoming cancer.
Though my doc had already removed the entire mole, both she and the pathologist were in agreement: an entire patch of skin surrounding the mole should go too. It’s standard procedure when a mole comes back that abnormal.
So the day after the Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco on October 19, I went under the knife. It was a simple procedure. My doctor used a local anesthesia to numb the area, remove the skin, and sew it all up with four sutures.
The skin was then sent back to the lab to check that all of the margins around the mole were clear of atypical cells, since it’s impossible to tell simply with a visual exam. Thankfully, all my margins were clear. After three weeks of bandages and healing cream, all I have to remember the incident by is an inch-long red scar.
At the Nike Women’s Half-Marathon San Francisco the day before my excision.
Doctor Demanded Downtime
There was just one problem: my doctor didn’t want me to run for two full weeks, lest I inadvertently rip open the stitches. The mole was on the right side of my back, over my latissimus dorsi, a muscle that plays a large role in your running gait.
I never realized how much the muscles and skin on my back move when I do, well, everything—putting away dishes, reaching in my closet, walking my dog, turning over in bed, you name it—until I had stitches. Give your skin a pat on the back—it works really hard.
So my doc told me one week of no activity at all. During week two I could add in the elliptical with no arms, leaving them dangling at my side, or ride a recumbent bike. Marathon training would have to wait. Read the rest of this entry →
Looking to change-up your racing calendar? Check out three of my recent stories at SHAPE.com. I picked 10 mile runs, 10 costume races and 10 night runs around the U.S. Many of them aren’t even single race weekends, but running series with multiple events all over the country and the world. So forget long runs, basic black tanks, and early morning alarms. Switch it up with a mile dash, costumed caper or run that finishes after twilight.
Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon & Half Marathon (Courtesy of Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series
Who hates early race morning alarms? I do! So make like Darth Vader and give yourself to the dark side at these runs that go bump in the night. From Disney to the desert, Los Angeles to Las Vegas, Energizer Night Run to Electric Run, glow powder to illuminations, these races—from 5K to 75K, trail and road events, fun runs and more—will keep you up at night. And yes, Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon is on the list—one of my all-time favorite races!
The Chiditarod in Chicago (Photo: Kirstie Shanley)
I loves me a running costume. So I picked 10 top costume races—some of them are multi-race series around the year and the country—where runners get their get-up on. From dashing Disney characters, galloping gorillas and sprinting Santas to centipedes, shopping carts, and barely there underwear, I want to run every single one of these. So many costume ideas… Read the rest of this entry →
The 2014 TCS New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 2 is here! I’ll be at the finish line in the announcer’s booth all day, cheering runners in. The race’s motto this year is “Get Your New York On.” You can, quite literally, with some of the running gear inspired by the town so nice, they named it twice.
ASICS NYC Marathon Map Long Sleeve
ASICS 2014 TCS New York City Marathon Collection
As the official running gear sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon, ASICS’ line of tanks, shirts, shorts, pants, socks, hats, shoes and more has the official marathon logo and seal of approval.
Lady Liberty is the star of Brooks’ Adrenaline Freedom GTS NYC ($130) limited edition shoes, available in select stores and online. Inspired by Libertas, the Roman goddess of freedom, the shoe borrows the oxidized copper color of the Statue of Liberty with orange accents, representing her flame. Throw in black-and-white photos of the gal herself, and you’ve got one inspiring pair of shoes.
Brooks sent me a sample of these puppies; they’re even more beautiful in person. This New Yorker says, “It’s love!”
Available only in New York City stores while supplies last, lululemon’s NYC Marathon Capsule Collection says “been there, run that.” As a New Yorker and three-time New York City Marathon finisher, I love it!
lululemon gave me the Run: Inspire Crop ($96), which features the NYC skyline from the Statue of Liberty to the Empire State Building and beyond. The Home Stretch Crew ($198) in gold and black with a color contrast skyline and NYC2014 logo is also available. But hurry. This running gear will be gone in a New York minute.
New Balance Fresh Foam Zante NYC
New Balance Fresh Foam Zante NYC
New Balance releases a New York City-inspired shoe every year, but this time around they’re pre-releasing their newest line with the Fresh Foam Zante NYC. The city’s concrete sidewalks inspired the grey upper and the skyline graces the liner. Tie them up with the the state motto, Excelsior, written on the shoelaces. Read the rest of this entry →
Marathon Opening Ceremony Presented by United Airlines
Friday, October 31
5:25 p.m. at 7online.com
5:30 p.m. live on ABC7 in New York
Countdown to the Starting Line
Saturday, November 1
7:30 p.m. on ABC7 in New York
Get pumped for race day with “Countdown to the Starting Line,” live from the marathon finish line. “Eyewitness News” anchors Liz Cho and David Novarro preview the 44th TCS New York City Marathon. And I (yes, me!) pop-by to give a rundown on the top runners.
The Bermuda Marathon & Half Marathon (Photo: Bermuda Tourism Authority)
Three races in three days, in one of the most storied spots in North America. I’m taking on the Bermuda Triangle Challenge at the Bermuda Marathon Weekend from January 16-18, 2015! I’ll be attending the event courtesy of the race’s organizers. I’ve never been to Bermuda, but it’s long been on my travel bucket list. Pink sand beaches, colonial towns, and hiking trails, all just a 2-hour flight from New York City.
“You go to heaven if you want to,” Mark Twain wrote to a friend in 1910. “I’d rather stay here in Bermuda.”
The Atlantic island may have given its name to the infamous “Devil’s Triangle,” but it has also inspired writers like Twain and William Shakespeare, who scholars believe based his play The Tempest on a real-world shipwreck on the island’s shores.
But Bermuda has also inspired legions of runners. The Bermuda Marathon Weekend marks its 40th anniversary in 2015, and I can’t wait to be a part of the celebration.
The Bermuda Marathon & Half Marathon (Photo: Bermuda Tourism Authority)
Bermuda Marathon Weekend
At the Bermuda Marathon Weekend, runners have a buffet of races to choose from: marathon, half-marathon, 10K and two iterations of the Bermuda Triangle Challenge, which dares runners to survive three races over three days. Challengers can choose from the Bermuda Triangle Half Marathon Challenge or the Bermuda Triangle Marathon Challenge. The weekend’s events also include a Health & Fitness Boutique expo, Finish Festival and Victory Celebration.
The hotel headquarters for the 2015 Bermuda Marathon Weekend is the Fairmont Southampton, perched on a pink sand beach with a dive center, tennis courts, full-service spa, indoor and outdoor pools, and a championship golf course. It’s also family friendly with day and evening kids camps.
The hotel offers free round-trip ferry services to the Fairmont Hamilton Princess in the capital city of Hamilton, where most of the race events start and finish.
I feel like pulling aHarold Zidler from Moulin Rouge! and screaming, ‘Everything’s going so well!’ But I know that training can change as quickly as the wind. So instead, I’m simply grateful that I’m motivated and on track. That certainly isn’t always the case.
Um, yerp. Of course, as Yeats wrote: “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold.” Hold it did not. The train fell off the tracks.
A week later, I missed my long run for no good reason whatsoever—life simply got in the way. The following week, I set out on Saturday for my long run of 12 miles, only to eke out 6. I wasn’t feeling well at all—a sore throat and general tiredness soon gave way to a full-blown cold with fever and chills. It was ill-timed. My husband, Phil, and I were on our way to Peru and Panama the next day for a two-week running vacation.
Machu Picchu! (RunKarlaRun.com)
Sick on Vacation
We left on Sunday morning and got to the base town for Machu Picchu on Monday afternoon. I spent three flights and one train ride to Machu Picchu and the first full day on the ground in Peru incredibly sick. As Phil walked around town, I laid in bed shivering and desperately trying to get warm and healthy. We had tickets to tour Machu Picchu, the impetus for our trip, on Tuesday, the next day. There was no way I was missing that.
The classic Machu Picchu shot (RunKarlaRun.com)
Thankfully, my fever finally broke on Monday night after almost three full days. We bussed to Machu Picchu early Tuesday morning, toured the ruins, and hiked Montana Machu Picchu, the mountain that gives the site its name. It was a big push for me, and I was incredibly tired, but I really didn’t want to miss it. All told, we were on our feet for 10 hours and hiked 5,560 ft of elevation change, topping out at 10,112 ft.Read the rest of this entry →
Rocky cheers on runners at the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon. (Photo: Philadelphia Marathon)
The 2014 GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon on Sunday, November 23 is a little over 10 weeks away. I’m running as a guest of GORE-TEX, my second tango in City of Brotherly Love. The 2012 race is where I ran my current marathon personal best of 4:28. I’m looking to put a huge dent in that number. So far, all my training and racing points to “Yes!”
It wouldn’t be a proper Philadelphia playlist without some Will Smith. For more comic effect The Fresh Prince of Bel Aire theme song would work in a pinch. But I’ve always liked the laid back vibe of Smith’s ode to hot summer days in West Philly.
Yes, The Boss’s version is the original and I’m sure many will disagree with me, but I prefer The Fray’s rendition. It feels a little more raw and running friendly. Either way, lyrics like “I walked the avenue, ’til my legs felt like stone,” don’t get any better for marathon training.
Recently, someone asked me: What’s your running mantra? I didn’t always have one. But this summer I’ve been using two mantras that have really been working for me. When I’m struggling and need to dig deep, I turn to these two phrase that somehow spur me on.
1) Just keep pushing
Pushing is easy when the run is this beautiful. (RunKarlaRun.com)
This is my go-to racing mantra. My husband thinks it’s too simple. “There’s no magic to it, no poetry to it,” he says. He prefers mantras like, “Pain is weakness leaving the body,” and, “Pain is temporary, glory is forever.” Yes, he actually says those to himself. Perhaps that’s why he is a Boston Qualifier and I am not.
But that’s the funny thing about mantras. What works for one person does not always work for someone else. Anytime he’s tried to encourage me during a run with one of his mantras, I just get annoyed. I don’t know why, but waxing poetic about pain seems to make me angry. And not in a good, “Yeah, I’m going to crush this run!” sort of way. But in a “Shut your face, you’re not helping!” sort of way. Read the rest of this entry →
A few weeks ago, I announced that I’m running the Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco on October 19 as part of a Nike media group. I was waiting for Nike to release the course map before I decide if the race will be the scene of my sub-2 hour half marathon attempt.
Well, the course map is finally here! For the 11th edition of the race, Nike has drawn a completely new route through San Francisco.
Like years of yore, the Nike Women’s Half Marathon starts in San Francisco’s Union Square.
But instead of heading north to the Marina and Presidio, the first three miles take runners through the city streets, including the iconic Alamo Square neighborhood with its rows of Victorian houses.
San Francisco’s Alamo Square neighborhood. (Nike)
Miles 4 through 8 tour the bucolic 1,017-acre Golden Gate Park before another mile through the often-foggy Richmond District. Read the rest of this entry →
Coming out of the water at the Wild Dog Triathlon. (Phil Hospod)
As I stare down my sixth triathlon— Triathlon Valleyfield in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec on Sunday, August 24—I realize that I have fully fallen down the multi-sport rabbit hole. In that hole is an assortment of athletic equipment that I’ve accumulated to help me swim, bike and run my heart out. Before every race, I write out a triathlon gear list to be sure to pack for race day.
Biking my second triathlon. (Capstone Photography)
Unlike running, triathlon is incredibly gear intensive. All that “stuff” is the main barrier to entry for runners who are interested in dabbling their toes in the open waters of the sport. Buying everything at once can be intimidating and expensive. I’ve staggered my purchases over the course of three years, reached out to sponsors, and still don’t have all the gear a truly competitive triathlete calls their own, like a tri-specific bike, areobars and the like. But that hasn’t stopped me from getting into the sport and it shouldn’t stop you either.
So here is my triathlon gear list. Some of these items are essential, some merely nice to have. But once you know that the sport of triathlon will be part of your regular racing routine, you’ll want each of these items in your gear bag.
I’ve listed the full price for each item, but in many cases I found them on sale or got them for free, and have indicated where that was the case. Where gender specificity is a factor, I’ve listed the women’s gear. But most items are available in men’s options too.
Triathlon Gear For The Entire Race
Your tri kit is the outfit that takes you through all three events. Ideally, you can swim, bike and run in it. You don’t have to buy a fancy tri kit. I certainly didn’t. Here’s what I use to race and train. Both of my kits have two things in common: 1) They’re designed and tested by female triathletes for female triathletes, and 2) They’re from American companies that manufacture the majority of their products in the U.S. Read the rest of this entry →
Irina Mashkantceva wins the 2012 Philadelphia Marathon. (Philadelphia Marathon)
It’s official. I’m running the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon 2014 on Sunday, November 23! I’d been debating which marathon, if any, to run this fall and I’ve finally committed to running Philly as a guest of sponsor GORE-TEX.
While I considered—and was invited to—a few other marathons in the U.S. and Canada, I decided on Philly for a few reasons.
Pausing for a photo just before a PR finish at the 2012 Philadelphia Marathon. (RunKarlaRun.com)
2) Redemption: I feel like I have unfinished business in Philadelphia. Back in 2012, I’d been zipping along on target for a 4:14 finish when a quad cramp struck after the 20-mile mark and decided to linger. I lost 14 minutes in the last 10K, as I stopped to stretch the cramp a few times, jogging slowly in between. While I was ecstatic about my finish time, a new personal best, I knew I had even more in me. I want to return to Philly and run the time I should have two years ago: 4:15. Read the rest of this entry →
What the what? Competitor Group announced Tuesday that the headliner for the 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon and Half Marathon on November 16 is none other than Snoop Dogg.
The iconic rap superstar will play the pre-race concert at 3:00 p.m. just before the start of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon & Half Marathon to benefit the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (yes, that’s the entire name) at 4:30 p.m.
Is there any chance Jason Derulo will pop in for a cameo and performance of “Wiggle”? I have no idea, but that would be amazing. I’m not going to lie: I kind of love that song. Put it in the “Baby Got Back” and “Thong Song” category. What can I say? I like rap and R&B songs about derrieres.
Meb Keflezighi runs the 2014 Boston Marathon to victory. (Gr5/Wikimedia via CC-BY-SA-3.0)
I told you about chances to run with Meb Keflezighi in both New York and San Diego earlier this year. Here’s another.
Meb Keflezighi will be back in New York on November 2, 2014. The 2009 New York City Marathon champion and 2014 Boston Marathon champion is running the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon as a Team for Kids Ambassador. (I’ll be covering the race once again as host of NYRR On The Run.)
You may not be able to run with him, but you can join Team for Kids, along with pro tennis player Caroline Wozniacki, the 2014 Istanbul Cup winner who ranked first worldwide in 2010 and 2011.
“Meb will highlight a world-class field of athletes competing for the marathon title, while Caroline will join thousands of runners raising critical funds for worthy charities,” said Mary Wittenberg, president and CEO of New York Road Runners, in a press release. “They’ll serve as inspirations to the 50,000 runners and millions of fans lining the streets of the city’s five boroughs and watching the race broadcast around the world.”
As Team for Kids Ambassadors, Keflezighi and Wozniacki will take part in Team for Kids activities during race week and help raise money for New York Road Runners’ youth running programs. Money raised by Team for Kids participants goes toward free and low-cost health and fitness programs for kids who would otherwise have limited access to regular exercise. NYRR’s programs reach more than 200,000 children each year in more than 800 schools and community centers in New York City, the U.S., and the world. More than 1,700 Team for Kids runners will raise an estimated $4.5 million this year. Keflezighi will also be raising money for his own The MEB Foundation, which promotes youth health, education and fitness. Read the rest of this entry →
I’m not the fastest runner and I’m not the slowest, but I am a running nerd. A journalist by trade, I love to research, read, learn and cogitate. So stick with me. Like all good nerds, I’ll do the homework and share it. But the running is up to you!