5 Years Down

The last few weeks have been so busy that I totally forgot to post about my 5 year work anniversary. I looked back at last year’s post around this time and realized that I feel pretty much exactly the same.

I could have never in a million years imagined how crazy weird and awesome my life would be. In the last four five years, I’ve had the most amazing co-workers, participants and volunteers, I’ve run 4 5 marathons raising thousands of dollars and every morning (okay pretty much every morning. . .I’m human) I wake up super excited to go to work. This totally is not the life I had planned for myself but I’m pretty happy with the way it’s turned out so far.

With fall (yay fall) event season gearing up and Chicago Marathon just 32 days away, it’s about to get pretty busy around here. THANK YOU to everyone who has donated to my Team LUNGevity fundraising page and to all of the amazing humans who are running with me on October 8th and raising money. And super huge shout out to this little gopher who started her first day of COLLEGE today, they grow up so fast.

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Weekend Wrap Up

Runner’s stomach is a real thing (I mean, it’s on the Google at least) and it sucks. So the past few weekends I have been making small changes to my Friday night routine to make sure that I don’t waste my Saturday’s being miserable.

A few adjustments I have made (begrudgingly):

No coffee before long runs. What am I? A robot?

More electrolytes. Some of you may remember my wise decision to chase Skol Vodka with lemon lime Gatorade my freshman year of college, I actually do not. I am sure some people (you know who you are) told me it was a bad idea and I likely told them I would be fine.  I was in fact not fine and I came out of that experience alive, but with an aversion to all Gatorade. Unfortunately for me, it’s the Chicago Marathon’s drink of choice so I have decided that after 5 marathons, I am going to work on possibly, maybe, drinking a few sips. Gross.

Eating earlier. I’m a morning person. Like the rise and shine, do 3 loads of laundry before work, kind of morning person. But the thought of having to wake up to eat at 4 am for a 6:30 am run stinks (even to me). This means my bedtime on Friday night is roughly. . .basically when I get home from work.

No cheese. Just on Friday night though. . I’m not crazy. This is sadly the hardest adjustment I’ve had to make because the past several years of training I’ve looked forward to Friday night pizza or pasta. This past Friday I ate chicken (ugh) and vegetables (super boring ugh).

It’s hard to tell since this past weekend was a cut back week and *only* 8 miles BUT no issues after so I guess the next 12 weeks are going to be super boring.

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Because of thunderstorms, CES group runs were cancelled on Saturday morning which meant an extra hour of sleep for me (yay). Around 7:45 am, I headed out for an 8 mile swim. . . kidding, run. The first 4 miles were at long run pace and then last 4 miles were race pace (scary).

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Then afterward I taught Lola how to plank. She’s clearly a quick learner.

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Then today at lunch Deanne and I biked over to the Soldier Field Sled Hill to get in our hill repeats. Our plan was to do 8 hills until an old guy running near us challenged us to do 2 more. . . positive peer pressure I guess.

Since we worked out sans phones, no photos were taken (you’re welcome) so I will leave you with this.

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Two Things I Will Never Get Used To

I’m coming up on my 5th year with LUNGevity Foundation and losing someone to lung cancer does not come any easier as it did when I first started. In the past week we lost two amazing women, both who I have met through Breathe Deep events. Both of them had children around my age, which hits me particularly hard. I still cry in my office, it still seriously sucks and I am more and more motivated each time to fundraise more, raise more awareness and work toward a day where no one dies of lung cancer.

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The other thing that I will never get used to (or sick of) are the views running through Chicago. Fridays are ‘easy runs’ and they always seem to come at just the right time. You don’t have to focus on or worry about pace or mileage or other people, you can just run.

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A Few of My Favorite Things (and People)

In an attempt to ease my way back into blogging, I will post just a few things including a photo of my favorite (and cutest) running buddy. Here she is post 7-mile tempo run calculating how many treats I owe her.

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Shout out to these ladies who raised over $4000 at their Lemonade for LUNGevity stand, stepping up to make an impact and support their mom.

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And a big thank you to everyone who has donated to my Chicago Marathon fundraising page this year. I’m so grateful to have friends, family and co-workers who support all of the crazy things that I do.

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Most importantly, Happy Birthday to this old man. Thanks for cheering me on for the last 29ish years and always having my back.

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And So It Begins

To say we refreshed the browser a few times waiting for our training plans would be a serious understatement. When this email finally came, we were pretty excited.

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And that excitement quickly turned into a constant state of tiredness. The week started off with a tempo run on Monday and boot camp Tuesday morning. Wednesday was Global Running Day which meant Deanne and I went to work representing! Not pictured here: our accidental twinning the day after.

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It also meant that I had to mad dash from the Bank of America Chicago Marathon charity kick off near Grant Park (thankfully we were supposed to wear our gear)

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to Fleet Feet for CES speed work (here we are finishing up with some stretch and strength).

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Thursday was boot camp again and then Friday morning was an easy run with my new favorite running buddy (she’s so cute right?)

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This weekend kicked off with dinner at a new seafood place nearby with Meghan and Laura and then a slumber party with these two (and a pretty early bed time).

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They hung out in bed when I headed out for my long run Saturday where I met these fellow Team LUNGevity runners and Meghan for 7 miles. It was awesome connecting with Katie, one of our new runners! While talking we learned that her mom, a survivor, lives near the Cleveland event this weekend and is able to join us!

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Then went with me to my sisters grad party (photo taken before prom last week).

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Sunday we ‘rested’ which to me means dog beach, errands, and a nice stroll (okay maybe more than a stroll) around town.

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This week is going to be busy. It starts off with a hill run tonight (and some dog beach time squeezed in there).

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Then I am heading to Cleveland Thursday morning for a Breathe Deep event this weekend!

This week I am thankful for coffee

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banana and egg pancakes (seriously. . .only two ingredients and so good)

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and motivational signs in our kitchen (courtesy of LP).

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And as always, THANK YOU to everyone who has generously donated to my fundraising page! With 117 days to go until marathon time (not counting or anything), I am feeling pretty great about my fundraising. To donate or learn more about LUNGevity click HERE.

Internet, Meet Lola

Meet Lola. She loves shoes, gazing out the windows, snuggling and lucky for me: running.

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I was a little hesitant to give up any of my ‘me time’ because most days my run seems to be the only time I have to myself but last week I had a late start so I took her out for a morning run and we fell in love. Little does she know she just signed herself up for the next 23 weeks of training (she’s a natural) — so stay tuned to see her sporting a Team LUNGevity shirt soon! To donate and support my (and Lola’s) fundraising efforts click HERE. This will be my last year run for a charity so I plan on making it count!

Our Breathe Deep Events have kicked off and it has been super busy over here. Between Toledo and North Shore just passed and we have a ton of events coming up!

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Outside of work, I am running the Chicago Spring Half Marathon on May 21 (my first half in years) and planning a 90’s themed Celebration event for YNPN May 18th. This is basically how I feel all of the time:

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Big shout out to my sister for finishing her first half marathon for Paws! It was in the 90’s AND hilly and I’m pretty impressed.

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Okay Maybe One More. . .

It’s official: I am returning to Team LUNGevity for one last year. I plan to PR in marathon time and fundraising (should be easy right?) and then go back to running just for fun.

Each year that I have run for Team LUNGevity, I have been motivated by my amazing coordinators, volunteers, and co-workers who work hard to kick lung cancer’s butt. This year though is a little closer to my heart. One of my very first volunteer coordinators passed away recently and I plan to run the 2017 marathon in her honor. So here’s to one more year of sweat, early Friday nights and relentless fundraising! To donate: http://lungevity.donordrive.com/participant/heather

Also super cool stuff happening over here! As we head into Lung Cancer Awareness Month (oh hey November) we have events on events on events  (read: so much coffee and excitement)!

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