Posts Tagged ‘running’

Walt Disney World Marathon 2017 Registration Opens

Walt Disney World Marathon 2017 Registration

Walt Disney World Marathon 2017 takes place in January. (Preston Mack/runDisney)

Registration for the Walt Disney World Marathon 2017 Weekend opens Tuesday, April 26 at 12 p.m. ET at runDisney.com. Disney’s original running event kicks off the new year from January 4-8 at Walt Disney World in Florida.

The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna is one of the largest running festivals in the U.S. with more than 65,000 finishers in five races and three race challenges: Walt Disney World Marathon, Walt Disney World Half Marathon, Walt Disney World 10K, Walt Disney World 5K, runDisney Kids Races, Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge, Dopey Challenge, and Disney Castaway Cay Challenge.

The Walt Disney World Marathon 2017 weekend also includes the free runDisney Health & Fitness Expo, ticketed Race Retreat for pre- and post-race pampering, and Runner’s World VIP race package, which includes race entry, coaching, welcome party, Race Retreat, and other perks.

Walt Disney World Marathon Registration Opens

Runners in Magic Kingdom (runDisney)

The Walt Disney World Marathon takes runners through all four theme parks and the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Walt Disney World Half Marathon, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2017, tours Magic Kingdom and Epcot. And the 10K and 5K run around Epcot and environs. Read the rest of this entry →

12 Days of Christmas Running Giveaway

12 Days of Christmas Giveaway

Giveaway time!

Why celebrate Christmas on one day when you can celebrate for 12 whole days? It’s time for my 12 Days of Christmas Running Giveaway! Sure the 12 Days of Christmas traditionally start on December 25 and conclude on January 5, otherwise known as Twelfth Night, but let’s get the party started early.

For the next 12 days, I’m giving away an array of running goodies that could fill Santa’s sleigh. I’ll feature one prize per day in social media. Enter via the widget below or on Instagram. Enter as many times as you like on as many days as you like; all entries are eligible for any prize. I’ll choose all 12 winners randomly at the end of the 12 days, which conclude Tuesday, January 5 at 12:00 a.m. Eastern time.

Check out these awesome prizes—some culled from my own personal cache and others generously gifted from the companies below. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

12 Days of Christmas Running Giveaway

1) On the first day of Christmas my run bud gave to me…

12 Days of Christmas Running Giveaway

Boston Marathoner Map by JHill Design

12 Days of Christmas Running Giveaway

NYC Marathoner Map by JHill Design

An 8 x 10 Marathoner Map by JHill Design.

These gorgeous maps have had me drooling all over their Instagram feed: @jhilldesign. One lucky winner will choose from 25 marathon and 13 half-marathon maps. Customize it with your name, time, bib and race date. Want to snag one yourself? Use code KARLARUN for 15% off jhilldesign.com through January 16, 2016.

2) On the second day of Christmas my run bud gave to me…

12 Days of Christmas Running Giveaway

Spartan Race

A Spartan Race entry.

Pick a race. Any race. This entry is good for any open heat (non-confirmed start time) in any Spartan Race in the continental U.S. That’s worth up to and upwards of $150. Tackle a Sprint (3+ miles, 20+ obstacles), Super (8+ miles, 24+ obstacles), or Beast (12+ miles, 30+ obstacles). With 40 races on the current schedule in the continental U.S., it’s up to you! Read the rest of this entry →

Running In Hawai’i From Kona To Kaua’i

Running in Hawai'i From Kona To Kaua'i

Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park (RunKarlaRun.com)

The Honolulu Marathon is Sunday! I’ve been having an incredible—and I mean incredible—time running in Hawai’i. Over the last eight days I’ve run, hiked, SUPed, sailed, swum, summited, star-gazed, and so much more on Hawai’i, the Big Island, and on Maui.

The Hawai’i Visitors and Convention Bureau at GoHawaii.com sponsored and helped me plan the trip so I can experience active Hawai’i at its best. Now I’m on O’ahu for the big race and headed to Kaua’i after that.

But this isn’t my first rodeo in Hawai’i. In 2013, I ran the Kaua’i Half Marathon and published a few stories at Shape.com, in Women’s Running magazine, and Canadian Running magazine about the race, Kaua’i, Hawai’i Island, and points beyond. Thought I’d share them here. Aloha!

Running in Hawai'i From Kona To Kaua'i

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (Phil Hospod)

Healthy Travel Guide: Kona, Hawai’i at Shape.com

Sure, Hawai’i invokes dreams of lazy days on sandy beaches sipping umbrella drinks. But every year, more than 2,300 triathletes trek to Kona on Hawai’i Island to make it big—Big Island big—at the Ironman World Championship.

But you don’t have to be an Ironman to swim, bike, run, or get your sweat on in Kailua-Kona, the triathlon mecca of the world. Hawai’i’s residents are the second most prolific runners in the U.S., with only Massachusetts logging more miles per capita on RunKeeper. The state also has the second lowest obesity levels in the U.S., behind only Colorado, according to Retale.

It’s no wonder. Running is Hawai’i is a dream come true. Just north of Kona, the rugged black lava fields give way to sunny, white sand beaches on the Kohala Coast, where water sports abound. The area came in seventh on our list of the healthiest beach towns in America, while the Kona District ranked 19th. (Find them all in The 35 Best Beaches in America For Fitness Lovers). Inland, Waimea is home to Hawai’i’s tallest mountain, the snowcapped Mauna Kea, which rises 13,796 feet and has hiking and horseback trails galore. And we can’t forget Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, with 150 miles of hiking trails around one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Yep, we said volcanoes.

Inspired to get your Ironman on? Hawai’i Island makes healthy travel easy with year round warm weather, world class sporting events, mountains and more. Say Aloha to Kona!

Find out where to sleep, stay in shape, fuel your trip, splurge, and play in Kona at Shape.com.

Running in Hawai'i From Kona To Kaua'i

Rainbow run in Kaua’i (Phil Hospod)

Kauai Is The Ultimate Vacation For Runners in Women’s Running

The least-visited of Hawaii’s major islands, Kauai is the Aloha State’s best-kept secret. Only 1.1 million of Hawaii’s 8.2 million visitors annually venture to Kauai. But runners in the know head to the Garden Isle for technical mountain trails between lushly green volcanic peaks, flat recreation paths with ocean views and one of America’s most scenic—and challenging—marathons. The island is best explored on foot (in fact, 90 percent of Kauai is inaccessible by vehicle!), so lace up your shoes and get ready to sweat. Read the rest of this entry →

TCS New York City Marathon By The Numbers

TCS New York City Marathon By The Numbers

Runners stream into Brooklyn in the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon. (Credit: Courtesy NYRR)

The TCS New York City Marathon is my favorite day of the year. I love it even more than I love my birthday. Amazingly, I get to spend the day cheering runners across the finish line as one of the race announcers. It’s truly an honor and a privilege.

Watching the 2006 race in Central Park is what inspired me to tackle it (and the marathon distance) for the first time. I’ve run, worked, or cheered at the race every year since then.

This year, I spent the last seven days emceeing at marathon events, and in the process learned a lot of trivia about the race. Did you know that 130 bands line the course, averaging 5 per mile? Here’s a look at the TCS New York City Marathon through all of its glorious stats.

TCS New York City Marathon By The Numbers

Finishers
55 finishers in 1970, the first New York City Marathon
50,530 finishers in 2014, the largest marathon in history
49,617 finishers in 2015
1,074,404 finishers to date, including 2015
Runners
58% men
42% women
139 countries represented
62% of runners come from the U.S., the most represented country
5% of runners hail from France, the most represented foreign country
4% of runners travel from Italy, the second most represented foreign country
3% of runners come from each the U.K and Germany, which round out the top five countries
50 states represented
32% of runners live in New York, the most represented state
7% of runners hail from New Jersey, the second most represented state
3% of runners travel from California, which comes in third among states
2% of runners come from each Florida and Connecticut, which round out the top five states
History
1970 year of the first New York City Marathon
1976 year of the first five-borough marathon
2000 year of the first official wheelchair division
Records
2:05:06 male runner course record (Geoffrey Mutai, 2011)
2:22:31 female runner course record (Margaret Okayo, 2003)
1:29:22 male wheelchair course record (Kurt Fearnley, 2006)
1:43:04 female wheelchair course record (Tatyana McFadden, 2015)
Human Power
665 million households worldwide the broadcast reaches
1 million+ estimated spectators along the course
10,000 event volunteers
175 NYRR staff working year-round on the TCS New York City Marathon and other programs
The Start
24,100 runners take the Staten Island Ferry to the start
915 buses transport runners to the start on Staten Island
43 UPS trucks transport participants’ bags from start to finish
8 UPS trucks transport participants’ donated clothing from the start to Goodwill
60,000 8-oz. bottles and 1,200 16.9-oz. bottles of Poland Spring 100% Natural Spring Water
40,800 PowerBars
16,000 servings of Gatorade Endurance Carb Energy Drink
1,800 gallons of Gatorade Endurance Formula
663 pounds of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee (approximately 62,000 cups)
1,650 portable toilets
The Course
2,300,000 paper cups
1,500,000 participant photos captured by more than 150 official MarathonFoto photographers
62,370 gallons of Poland Spring Brand 100% Natural Spring Water
60,000 PowerGels at mile 18
32,040 gallons of Gatorade Endurance Formula
1,952 portable toilets at more than 35 locations, including every mile
106 official clocks
53 ChronoTrack timing systems
Entertainment
130+ bands and entertainment acts
5 average number of bands per mile (the most at any marathon)
10 number of hours of continuous music along the course
20 Official Partner and Charity Entertainment and Cheer Zones
35 years that the Bishop Loughlin High School band, “the original Marathon band,” has played
at the race. They will once again perform the Rocky theme (“Gonna Fly Now”) all day near the
Brooklyn Academy of Music.

Read the rest of this entry →

01

Nov 2015

How To Watch The TCS New York City Marathon 2015

How To Watch The TCS New York City Marathon 2015

The start of the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon. (Credit: PhotoRun/NYRR)

The TCS New York City Marathon 2015 is almost upon us. If you want to catch all the action from the world’s largest marathon, here’s how to tune-in on TV and online. If you’re looking for spectator tips, read this: Go Runners! A Spectator’s Marathon Guide.

TCS New York City Marathon 2015 Race Week

TCS New York City Marathon Pavilion
Yours truly is master of ceremonies for the week! Located near the finish line at 67th St. in Central Park next to Tavern on The Green, the TCS New York City Marathon Pavilion has a full schedule of free entertainment for runners, their families and friends, including course strategy sessions, athlete & celeb appearances, book signings, film screenings, bands, group runs, and more. You can also buy official finisher merchandise, store your gear in an Airbnb locker while you run Central Park, or grab a bite and sip some wine at the cafe & bar.

TCS New York City Marathon Opening Ceremony Presented by United Airlines
Friday, October 30
5:30 p.m. live on ABC7 in New York

Countdown to the Starting Line
Saturday, October 31
7:30 p.m. on ABC7 in New York
Also streaming on WatchABC and ESPN3, accessible on WatchESPN platforms

Get pumped for race day with “Countdown to the Starting Line,” a preview the 45th TCS New York City Marathon. I (yes, me!) pop-by to give a rundown on the top runners to watch.

TCS New York City Marathon 2015 Race Day

NYC Metro Area

Watch on ABC7, Sunday, November 1

Pre-Race Features
7:00 a.m.-9:00 a.m.

Live Race Broadcast
9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.

Live streaming will also be available on ABC7NY.com and via the WatchABC app from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Nationally

Watch on ESPN2 and WatchESPN, Sunday, November 1

Live Race Broadcast
9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EST.

Pre- and Post-Race Coverage
Watch ESPN3 from 7:00 to 9:00a.m. EST and 12:30 to 2:00 p.m. EST
Available on WatchESPN.com and WatchESPN app

Highlight Show
4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. on your local ABC affiliate

Online

Live Stream
7:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m on WatchABC in New York and WatchESPN nationwide
Download the app in the App Store or Google Play store Read the rest of this entry →

Tips & Tricks To #RunForFun

Tips & Tricks To #RunForFun

Make your next run fun! (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)

Want to put more fun in your run? I do! Check out Shape and Fitness Magazines30 Day #RunForFun Challenge, designed to get you moving each day and having fun.

Fitness reached out to me—along with 29 other runners—for a fave run-for-fun tip. I promise you’ll find a few new-to-you ideas that will refresh your next outing. I certainly did, like…

Day 9: Play ‘I Spy’
Day 11: Pick A Feel-Good Scent
Day 16: Let your S.O. or BFF make your playlist
Day 22: Wear a Sign
Day 23: Collect Coins

I’ve never done any of those! Some of the other tips are oldies but goldies that I keep in my arsenal, and seeing them again is a great reminder. 

My tip is Day 12 of the challenge. If you’ve ever read my blog before, you can probably guess it pretty easily. Did you guess right?

30-Day Running Challenge: 30 Ways to #RunForFun

But in addition to my tip in the 30-Day #RunForFun Challenge, here are five other tricks I use to keep me fleet of feet and young at heart.

RunKarlaRun’s #RunForFun Tricks

Tips & Tricks To #RunForRun

We can make believe… (Photo: Phil Hospod)

Play Mind Games:
Who says pretend is just for kids? You’re a great white shark chasing seals. You’re running to the end zone for the game-winning touchdown. Watch out, a velociraptor is chasing you! Ahhh! My favorite? I’m a lion hunting gazelles. I don’t sprint, I stalk. And I pick off runners in front of me slowly. One. By. One. Playing pretend while I run keeps me entertained for miles and miles.


Put Your Music On Shuffle:
When you have no idea what song might come next, every few minutes bring a pleasant surprise. I’ll put my entire MP3 player—all 700 songs—on shuffle to keep my music unpredictable. Sure, I have to skip a song here and there, but shuffle is one of my favorite ways to keep my run fresh.

Forgotten jams often inspire a fist pump. “I Got A Man” by Positive K anyone? Or “Wonder Woman” aka the ’70s TV show theme song? Or “Come Out and Play” by The Offspring? And sometimes I discover unexpected songs that are great for running like “Trying My Best To Love You” by Jenny Lewis. Would have never put that one on a running mix, but it really peps me when it pops up. I get lost in the lyrics and dig deep for those few minutes. Read the rest of this entry →

Calling All Runners: The Marathon Wants You!

Please welcome Jason Saltmarsh of SaltmarshRunning.com, who is contributing to RunKarlaRun.com for the first time! I met Jason as a fellow member of Team GORE at the 2014 GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon & Half Marathon. His site is a great resource for training tips and running inspiration. Hope you enjoy his first post here.

Calling All Runners, The Marathon Wants You

Karla finishes her seventh marathon. (Photo: Marathon-Photos.com)

Calling All Runners…

By Jason Saltmarsh

Like mariners drawn to a rocky shoreline by the song of the sirens, runners can’t resist the epic lure of the marathon. This fall, hundreds of thousands of runners will line up across the country for a chance to experience the agony and ecstasy of running’s premiere event. The marathon isn’t just a road race, it’s a chance to discover what it means to be a hero.

Life is easy these days. We sit too much, we eat too much, and most of us have never been truly tested. As wonderful as this sounds, it leaves us with a hollow feeling. We long to be warriors. The marathon gives us that chance—the chance to define ourselves.

The marathon strips away pretenses and reveals truth. It’s merciless and unforgiving. But, if you have the willpower and strength make it to the end, the marathon will reward you with glory, pride, and satisfaction.

Inspiration For Beginning Runners, New York City Marathon

Karla finishes her first marathon. (Photo: brightroom)

You’ll never run another race as profound and meaningful as your first marathon. You’ll learn what it means to run with your heart, and experience the inescapable humility of endurance running. Expect tears, laughter, and the most perfect feeling of contentment and stillness you’ve ever known after crossing the finish line. Expect to be inordinately thankful for small gestures of comfort, the love of family, and the kindness of strangers.

Sure, once is enough for many runners. But the fulfillment of running a marathon is intoxicating. If you’re fit and able, it’s hard to say no. The marathon offers us a chance to be extraordinary in an otherwise ordinary life. Read the rest of this entry →

17

Aug 2015

What I Learned From My Years As A Model & Runner

What I Learned From My Years As A Model & Runner

Me as a 22-year-old model

We all know that Women’s Running magazine made a splash for putting shapely model Erica Schenk on their magazine cover last month. I’ve written for Women’s Running (check out: Kauai Is The Ultimate Vacation For Runners), and praised their move on Twitter.

I’ve watched with interest how the fashion industry and the running world alike have started to—but not fully—address the normative images of beauty, health, and fitness. Most recently, France banned the use of models with a BMI of under 18 from working in the country. Israel, Italy and Spain have similar measures in place.

I used to be one of those models. That’s me 15 years ago. Thigh gap? I had it.

Then

Then

I rarely talk about my former life as a model. In fact, this is the first time I’ve written about it here. My brief stint in the fashion industry left a sour taste in my mouth. Working as a model made me susceptible to unhealthy habits that may have made me skinny, but certainly not fit. When I started running—12 years younger and 12 pounds lighter than I am now—I fit the stereotype of what a runner “looked” like. People used to assume I was fast because I was skinny. Nothing could have been farther from the truth.

All too often we equate fitness with thinness. And that’s why I was happy to see Schenk on the cover of Women’s Running. Because we all know that a runner doesn’t look like any one thing, doesn’t run at any one speed, and that fitness has little to do with weight. You see people of all shapes and sizes toward the front, in the middle, and in the back of the pack at races.

Now

Now

It’s taken time, but I’m more comfortable in my skin now than I was then. These photos (all un-retouched) were taken about 15 years apart. Don’t I even look happier?

I wrote about my experience as a model—and lessons learned—for Shape.com. It wasn’t even my idea. My editor twisted my arm into writing an essay after she learned about my past life. After some hesitation, I finally gave in. Here it is.

From Stilettos to Sneakers: How Quitting Modeling Made Me Healthier and Happier

Confession: I used to model. I was young, I was beautiful, and I didn’t know it. I stumbled into modeling as a lanky musical theater performer in New York City. After one model scout, then another, stopped me on the street, I found an agency. I figured it beat waiting tables. I was 22 years old and had an “underweight” BMI of 18.2. “Normal” starts at 18.5, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Then

Then

But I didn’t think of myself as a model. I was shocked every time someone hired me: major-market magazines, brands you see in Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s, boutiques, hair care companies, and morning talk shows. Showrooms—where I modeled a brand’s wares for buyers from Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and other big-name stores—were my bread and butter, but I did some print, TV, and runway too. I was never a top girl, but one of the nameless, sometimes faceless minions selling an image of beauty of which I didn’t believe myself worthy.

At go-sees (modeling lingo for auditions), I faced a barrage of physical critiques. I heard I was too short, too tall, too old, too young, too fat, or too thin. I was too everything and not enough of anything. Read the rest of this entry →

Runners Are Like Wine, Says Brooks Running Report

Runners Are Like Wine, Brooks Running Report Says

Brooks Run Happy Nation Report

We already knew that runners like wine. My roundup of 10 Wine-Themed Runs To Get Your Drink On at Shape.com has more than 11,000 Facebook likes. But a new report from Brooks Running found that runners are like wine. That’s right, 44% of runners say they get better with age, just like a good bottle of vino. While 24% of runners tied to say they’re more like beer, with a little hop in their step, or more like a cocktail, shaking up their routine.

That was just one of the fun tidbits unearthed in the third annual Brooks Run Happy Nation report, a survey of 1,000 runners in the U.S., Canada, and Germany, commissioned by Brooks Running. Here are some of the results.

Training Partners
  • 32% of Americans say they choose a friend as their go-to training partner
  • 24% pick a digital fitness tracker
  • 20% would rather hoof it with their dog
Business Time (Flight of the Conchords fans, you know what I’m talkin’ about)
  • 48% percent of Americans under 40 like to get it on pre-run
  • 41% of Americans reveal they feel “frisky” after hitting the pavement
  • 35% say a pre-race horizontal rhumba improves running performance
Runder Wear
  • 62% of American women prefer briefs, compared to 72% of German women
  • 8% of American women go full commando, versus 11% of Canadians
  • 47% of runners prefer racerback sports bras
  • 39% like crossback sports bras
  • 14% prefer front closure sports bras 
Movie Time
  • 32% of respondents say Forrest Gump inspires them the most among running movies
  • 26% connect with Rocky‘s eye of the tiger
  • 18% love Silver Linings Playbook’s wackier take on running
Running Locales
  • 47% of respondents say trails are their favorite place to run
  • 27% of respondents pick running around the Grand Canyon as their dream runcation destination
  • 24% choose the Romantic Road of Germany
  • 23% dream about running the Great Wall of China

Read the rest of this entry →

RnR SD Half Marathon Training Program Weeks 5 + 6

Half Marathon Training Program Weeks 5 + 6

Running San Diego (Photo: Ashley Mateo)

I have good news and bad news.

The good news: I successfully met my half marathon training program goal of two strength training sessions per week! I also hit the trail! Yay!

The bad news: There’s trouble in paradise. After 10 years as a runner, it looks like I might finally have my first running injury. Oh sure, I’ve been sideline before, but by non-running related maladies—like that time I fell off a horse and hurt my hip or that time I found out I have arthritis, which I’ve actually managed through running. (And yes, my ortho told me it’s probably genetic and encouraged me to keep running. She was so right. It rarely bothers me any more.)

After five solid weeks of training, I noticed a niggle in my left foot. Not pain, but a slight discomfort under the ball of my foot while I run. I followed the old adage: if it hurts for two days, take two days off. When I resumed running, the discomfort returned. Booooo. It’s especially frustrating since I’ve been strength training to avoid precisely this type of thing. What does this mean for my race calendar? I don’t know!!!

Goal Half Marathon Time—1:59:59
Current Half Marathon PR—2:00:30
Goal Race: Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Half Marathon, May 31
Tune-Up Race: The North Face Endurance Challenge NY 10K, May 3
Half Marathon Training Plan Weeks 1 + 2
Half Marathon Training Plan Weeks 3 + 4

WEEK 5

Easy: 3 miles outside

Progression: 5.15 miles on the treadmill

Strength: 1 hour strength-interval session at Westin Wellness Escapes in San Diego. This was the first time I felt the mysterious foot niggle.

Easy: 3.2 miles outside along the water in San Diego with my Shape.com editor, Ashley. Could still run totally fine, but my foot felt funky. But who cares when your run looks like this?

Half Marathon Training Program Weeks 5 + 6

California Dreaming! (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)

Strength: 1 hour strength-interval session at Westin Wellness Escapes in San Diego.

Long: None. After feeling the foot ache two days in a row, I decided to skip the long run in my half marathon training program and take two days off. I was pretty bummed about it because I had two more days in California and had another gorgeous run planned. Read the rest of this entry →

22

Apr 2015

Getting Over The Boston Marathon’s Heartbreak Hill

Race Report: Runner's World Heartbreak Hill Half

Taking the Heartbreak Hill Half seriously. (Photo: @myEPevents, Inc)

The 119th Boston Marathon gets underway Monday, April 20. The race is the stuff of legend and many a runner’s dream. I’m no exception, though I’m far from qualifying. So when I had the chance to run the Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half in Boston and Newton, Massachusetts last year, I leapt. This would be my big chance to run those infamous Newton Hills including the monster of titular fame.

But while I envisioned showing Heartbreak Hill what’s what, the incline ended up getting the best of me. I wrote about it in my race report after the fact. But I knew there was something more to my epic breakdown that day, something I didn’t quite pinpoint in that post. After mulling it over, I was finally able to put it into words.

Shape.com published the resulting essay, and I thought the eve of the Boston Marathon was the perfect time to share it.

Running Through Heartbreak: How Running Healed Me

Just keep pushing, I muttered to myself as I shuffled toward the 12-mile marker of the Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half in Newton, Massachusetts, named for the Boston Marathon’s most notorious climb. I’d reached the slope in the final stretch of the half-marathon conceived for one sole purpose: conquering Heartbreak Hill.

Race Report: Runner's World Heartbreak Hill Half

Happy to be finished! (Photo: @myEPevents, Inc)

It’s a moment many runners dream about—myself included. I’d envisioned confidently cresting the incline, my lungs bellowing in rhythm to my stride as I finally broke two hours. But what was supposed to be my fastest half-marathon quickly became my slowest. A cloudless, 80-degree day forced me to slacken my pace. And so I came face-to-face with the famed Heartbreak Hill, humbled and defeated.

As I approached the incline, heartbreak was all around me. A sign signaled its start: Heartbreak. A man in a gorilla suit wore a T-shirt emblazoned with the word: Heartbreak. Spectators shouted: “Heartbreak Hill up ahead!”

Suddenly, it wasn’t only a physical obstacle. Out of nowhere, the major heartaches of my own life washed over me. Exhausted, dehydrated, and staring down failure, I couldn’t shake the experiences I associate with that word…

Read the entire essay at SHAPE.com.

I learned a lot about myself that day, and it’s a moment I think about often while running. I hope that Heartbreak Hill and I will meet again someday. When we do, I’ll be ready.

Good luck to everyone running the Boston Marathon tomorrow! I’ll be watching on TV, tweeting along, and cheering you on from New York City. Go out and show Heartbreak Hill who’s boss! Read the rest of this entry →

19

Apr 2015

Run TCS New York City Marathon 2015 For Charity

Run the TCS New York City Marathon 2015 For Charity

Runners enter the Queensboro Bridge en route to Manhattan at the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon. (Credit: Courtesy NYRR)

Didn’t get into the TCS New York City Marathon 2015 through the random draw that took place Tuesday, March 3? You can still be among the 50,000 runners on November 1, 2015 at the world’s largest 26.2-mile race. NYRR—who I work for as a race announcer—has opened entries to their Charity Running Program for 2015. The race will celebrate its 45th running.

Of the 80,080 drawing applicants, 14,326 runners gained entry into the race. That’s a 56 percent increase over 2014. If you missed your chance, you can get a guaranteed entry through one of the 300 official charity partners this year. Some 8,500 runners raised a record $34.5 million for charities at the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon.

Actress Natalie Dormer of Game of Thrones, Hunger Games, and Tudors fame will be running the marathon as an NYRR Team for Kids Ambassador. As the race’s largest charity, the group raises money for NYRR’s free youth running programs serving 200,000 students locally and nationally who otherwise have little access to physical activity. Dormer last ran the 2014 Virgin Money London Marathon in 3:50.57. Find out more about running with Dormer and Team For Kids at runwithtfk.org.

The 2014 TCS New York City Marathon was the largest marathon in history with 50,530 finishers from 130 countries running the Big Apple’s five boroughs. This year, nearly 130,000 runners will apply to run race through guaranteed and non-guaranteed entries, like the random draw, time qualifications, charity entries, and travel partners.

TCS New York City Marathon 2015 Charity Partners

Runners will be asked to raised a set amount of money in exchange for guaranteed entry into the race. Contact each group individually for more information or to register with them. More charities may be added throughout the spring. Find more info about the race’s charity program at nycmarathon.org.

Gold Charities

Gold level charities provide runners with race day perks and a VIP experience.

When Did You Start Calling Yourself A Runner?

When Did You Start Calling Yourself A Runner?

Running in New England on May 11, 2014. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)

This year marks the 10th anniversary of my life as a runner—my runiversary, if you will. It was late 2004 and early 2005 when I first laced up an old pair of sneakers unearthed from the depths of my closet and went for a run. Then, for some inexplicable reason, I did it again, and again, and again until it became a habit.

But I certainly didn’t call myself “a runner.” That didn’t happen for a few more years. But looking back, I wish I had staked a claim to the word “runner” a lot earlier.

I wrote about it in an essay at SHAPE.

What Makes You A Runner?

More than 65 million Americans went for a run last year. More than 19 million ran a race. But many of those people are hesitant to call themselves “runners.” I would know—I used to be one of them…

Sound familiar? I hear “Oh, I’m not a real runner” constantly—at races, parties, in social media, and everywhere else I encounter people who regularly put one foot in front of the other.

So what exactly makes you a runner? The short answer is simple: If you run, you’re a runner.

But the long answer is much more complicated—and it has nothing to do with how fast you are… One three-hour marathoner I know who has qualified for the prestigious Boston Marathon—a feat only 10 percent of marathoners achieve—says he still has a hard time calling himself a runner. It’s an epidemic that extends far and wide, from the fastest to the slowest among us. Why?

You can read the whole thing at SHAPE.com.

What About You?

I take a liberal view: if you run, you’re a runner. Plain and simple. But I’d love to hear your thoughts. When did you start calling yourself a runner? When do you think you should have? What, exactly, makes someone a runner? Read the rest of this entry →

Run Sold-Out Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend Races

Register For 2015 Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend Through Charity

Nick Arciniaga wins the 2014 Disneyland Half Marathon. (Photo: Jimmy DeFlippo/runDisney)

The 2015 Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend in Anaheim, California from September 3-6 sold out in a matter of hours. But you can still register for the Disneyland Half Marathon, Dumbo Double Dare, the Disneyland 10K, and Disneyland 5K through charity and tour groups.

The Dumbo Double Dare, Disneyland 10K, runDisney Kids Races, and Disneyland 5K all broke their sell-out records from 2014. The Dumbo Double Dare and Disneyland 10k closed in approximately 30 minutes in 2015. The runDisney Kids races filled up in about 90 minutes and the 5K followed in roughly 3 hours and 15 minutes. The Disneyland Half Marathon sold-out the next day. Tickets for the Pasta in the Park Party, 10th Anniversary Party, and ChEAR Squad remain.

But if you really want to be a part of the sold-out Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend, you still can if you register through a charity or tour group. Contact the following groups directly to find out how to register for the race through them. Charities will ask runners to raise a certain amount of money for participating in the race, and tour groups may require purchase of a travel package. Read the rest of this entry →

How To Stay Fit This Winter & All Year Long

How To Stay Fit This Winter And All Year Long

Trail Running in Quebec. (Photo: Phil Hospod)

Happy Super Bowl Sunday! February is a great time to check in with the running and fitness goals you made for 2015. The weather is frightful and the sofa is so delightful. How to stay fit when you just want to hibernate? Set some goals, stick with them, and mix up your workouts when things start to sour.

How To Stay Fit

Step 1: Set SMART goals—specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely.

How To Stay Fit This Winter and All Year Long

A winter run through Central Park in New York City (Photo: Phil Hospod)

Still looking to make or tweak your running resolutions for 2015? I’ve got 10 ideas meant to make you a happier, healthier runner:

10 Running Goals You Should Make for 2015

Revamp your 2015 planning with goals meant to make you a more well-rounded runner. Set the right goals and you’ll run faster, train smarter, and have more fun hitting the pavement in the new year.

Resolutions that merely focus on going faster may set you up for frustration down the road. Sure, speed can be part of your resolutions, but goals that also focus on training, friends, and having fun will make your 2015 more successful—and enjoyable. Check them out at SHAPE.com.

Step 2: Stick to your goals and fitness routine.

How To Stay Fit This Winter and All Year Long

Pro women race the Front Street Mile in Bermuda. (Photo: Phil Hospod)

Falling off the wagon already? Here’s something to motivate you: how quickly your fitness fades when you stop exercising completely.

But you can still dial back when need be and fight the fade with a few, short workouts:

Skipping Workouts? Your Fitness Fades Faster Than You Think

You can lose up to 50 percent of your hard-earned fitness gains in a single week of complete inactivity.

Now, I’m not talking about tapering; dialing back workouts before a big race puts you in peak performance shape.

But with every week that you don’t exercise at all, you chip away at any fitness you’ve built up in weeks or months prior. Read the rest of this entry →

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