Jodi's Running Blog

Gotta keep going…

A P.R. in the Las Vegas Marathon – 20100

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Sunday February 6, 2011 at 1:22 pm)

It is difficult to believe that the marathon was two months ago and I am just now posting about the experience. I suppose things are delayed when two small children enter life. Open-mouthed smile

Evan, our good friend Matt, and I all participated in the Las Vegas race – Evan and Matt in the half, and my first full marathon in eight and a half years. The first half was terrific – I felt great, views of the Vegas Strip kept the mind occupied, and while I had thought the goal of qualifying for Boston was lofty at best when entering, during the first half of the race it felt very possible. The second half was run away from the main Strip, around warehouses, strip malls, and feeder highways with little to no crowd support. I hung in there until about mile 22, but then the final four miles felt like the longest I had ever endured. Coping mechanisms included removing my shoes for half of a mile to allow my feet to swell more comfortably, hobbling because I was unable to bend legs at the hips as all of my proximal flexors seemed to be in tetany at once… really difficult finish. Qualifying for Boston for a woman my age is 3 hours 40 minutes, and as I saw the 3:40 pacer pass me at mile 23, I knew I was not going to be able to make it. BUT – my previous P.R. eight years earlier was 4 hours 16 minutes 29 seconds, and when I crossed the finish line, I was well within PR range at 3 hours 52 minutes 26 seconds. I was very proud! And I was so proud of Evan and Matt for finishing their first half-marathon with smiles on their faces.

  • Splits were as follows:
    – 5k – 25:44
    – 10k – 50:41
    – 10 miles – 1:21:27
    – 13.8 miles – 1:54:49 (my split at the half-marathon mark was 1:46:50, a half-marathon PR, if that counts!)
    – 16.8 miles – 2:20:53
    – 20 miles – 2:47:06
    – 24 miles – 3:27:35
    – Overall 26.2 miles – 3:52:26 (8:52/mile pace)
  • We’ll see if I have another one in me – I swore I would never do this again, but this was after I had already entered my name in the lottery for the NYC Marathon this fall.

    In the meantime, I’ve discovered how much I really enjoy the half-marathon distance, and how it might be fun to push ahead with achieving better times in the race. Plus, the training runs are not as grueling.

  • This was a special race too, because for the first time I used the event to raise money for a great non-profit – Foundation Fighting Blindness. This organization supports research on degenerative retinal conditions, such as retinitis pigmentosa, Stargardt’s disease, and X-linked retinoschisis. Many thanks to those of you who donated. My page is still up, if anyone else wants to contribute.

Las Vegas Rock N Roll Marathon – December 5, 20100

Posted by jodi in Training Diary (Sunday October 3, 2010 at 6:48 pm)

I have formally registered for the Las Vegas Rock N Roll Marathon for December, and training is well underway (though I have been negligent of updating my blog to show any progress). After a pleasing experience in the Seattle Rock N Roll half-marathon in June, I decided to go for the full deal, and this time without over-training, but actually remaining motivated until race day. So far, so good. Today was an 11 mile run, and I managed an 8:26/mi average pace. I am now in Charlotte, NC, so training here has been different than the experience in Seattle, although I’m pleased to find more hills here than I was expecting. Perhaps it’s just my part of town, and they still aren’t as mean as those in Seattle, but the slopes are welcome on longer runs.

I am also running and fundraising simultaneously this time. I’ve never run for a charitable cause previously, so it’s an added motivation. My personal fundraising site is here.

My lofty goal is to qualify for the Boston Marathon, and I managed to keep up the pace through 11 miles today (and through 13.1 miles back in June), but that is still a very, very long way from maintaining that pace for 26.2 miles. I have some hope, but will honestly be very pleased if I can beat four hours. Anything is possible, though – even a marathon without injuries!

Running while in the process of moving2

Posted by jodi in Ramblings on Running,Random Runs (Monday July 5, 2010 at 7:38 pm)

I am typing this entry from our campground just outside of West Yellowstone, Montana. After five amazing years in Seattle, we are returning to the Carolinas now that my residency/fellowship has been completed. We are really trying to make an adventure out of this move too – we have stopped thus far near Crater Lake in Oregon (gorgeous), the Oregon/Idaho border (Fruitland, Idaho, to be precise, which seems to be a suburb of Ontario, Oregon), and then this is our second night near Yellowstone National Park.

My run near Crater Lake served as a very tranquil start to an otherwise hectic day of traveling. A morning 5k in the upper-30s at the start of July while enjoying a pristine sunrise was quite invigorating.

This afternoon’s run was quite special, though. It was just another 5k run from our campsite, but I chose to run along a horse path abutting Hwy-20 in western Montana. Running in this part of Montana is not a new thing. I lived in Hamilton, Montana during the summer in 2000 while working in a research internship with the NIH/NIAID, and enjoyed many a run through the Bitterroot Valley/Blodgett Canyon. It was during that summer that I made the decision to train for a marathon, endured a nasty forest fire, slept in my green Saturn SL at Glacier National Park, and swam down the Black Foot River. No real obligations or responsibilities; just to learn and have fun. Then, I returned to western Montana in 2006, now as a married young physician (an intern) rather than a college student, and again ran to the views of mountains, ranches, and big skies. Here I am again, in 2010, now the mother of two children and a physician finished with training. The scenery is just as beautiful. The mountains appear the same, yet my life is so different. Over ten years everything has changed, but the views remain steadfast. I found myself reflecting on my own mortality, and thought about how life will continue shift for me, but the mountains will be here. And long after I am gone, they will still stand.


Running at 6800 feet elevation proved a bit of a challenge. Breathing was rougher at the end than I recalled. Despite running on Seattle’s hilly surface, I have definitely not been training for this. 🙂 Still a worthwhile experience, nonetheless!

A Personal Best in the Seattle Rock N Roll Half-Marathon1

Posted by jodi in Races (Monday June 28, 2010 at 8:28 pm)

After a five and a half year hiatus from any sort of race with the word “marathon” in the title, I completed Seattle’s second annual Rock N Roll half-marathon this past Saturday. Overall, it was a terrific experience! The course was such an appropriate tribute to the many times I have run in Seattle during my time here; while I have never begun as far south as Tukwila, I have spent many hours along Lake Washington’s western shore near Seward Park. As I ran this stretch, I savored the water, beautiful homes, overcast sky, and realized how much I truly am going to miss Seattle once I have moved. I also must have returned high-fives from at least 100 members of a very supportive crowd!

Evan even noticed that my running experience was captured on the KIRO-7 news – I am the runner over the reporter’s right shoulder (wearing a yellow top and dark pants).


This was about 11.5 miles into the race, when some nasty acid reflux had taken hold of me. 🙁 Lesson learned: no more carbohydrate gel packets in the middle of races for me. It definitely hurt my final two miles, but I cannot complain too much – the full experience, only nine months after having a baby, was an exhilarating one!

Perhaps the best part of all was cutting nearly three and a half minutes off of my previous personal best for this distance. In 2002, while in the midst of training for Grandma’s Marathon, a friend and I ran the Charlotte South End Half-Marathon in 1:53:20. Here were the splits for the race this past weekend:

  • – 8:27, 8:02, 8:18, 7:51, 8:37, 7:34, 7:48, 8:02, 8:17, 8:30, 8:22, 8:29, 9:50 (wasn’t feeling too great during that last mile) + 0.1 miles; total – 1:49:57 (8:26/mile)
    – 5k: 25:47; 10k: 51:08
  • Now it’s time to plan for the next race to keep up the motivation. I’m feeling so much more committed to this than I have previously. I like the way I feel right now – running rocks!

One Week Until the Seattle Rock N Roll Half-Marathon0

Posted by jodi in Training Diary (Sunday June 20, 2010 at 9:29 pm)

I’m still geared up to run the Seattle Rock N Roll half this Saturday, June 26th. I’m a little nervous, as my longest training run totaled 10 miles, and it’s been about five and a half years since I’ve covered the 13.1 mile distance. It feels right, though – I’m in as good of shape as can be expected while finishing my residency/fellowship training with two little kids, and it seems an appropriate way to bid farewell to Seattle after having spent an amazing five years here.

I finally visited Mount Saint Helens this weekend, a trip I have been meaning to take for years. I promised myself I would run there before leaving the area, so I ran my 5k yesterday evening – 23:45 (7:40/mile). I am going to break through that 23 minute mark someday (hopefully soon – it continues to tease me!).

I never even saw the mountain this weekend, though – the clouds/fog/rain completely obscured any possibility of a view. Ahhh, western Washington June weather. Who can complain when so much is right, though? I suppose that is just all the more reason to return someday.

Continuing Toward A Half-Marathon0

Posted by jodi in Races,Training Diary (Sunday May 16, 2010 at 8:34 pm)

The Seattle Rock N Roll half-marathon looms on the horizon for Saturday, June 26th. I am excitedly anticipating the event, but know there is still a long way to go for me to comfortably run 13.1 miles. This week was terrific for training. I’m still facing the challenges of only really being able to run early in the morning (as in, finishing the run and the shower that ensues by 7AM when the kids wake up), although I broke down this week and ran my “long run” on a treadmill on Friday night after the kids were down for the evening.

I also participated in the Beat the Bridge to Beat Diabetes 8k run this morning, my first organized road race since October 2008. I definitely felt the burn during the last mile and a half or so, but it was such an incredible feeling to cross the finish line on the field of Husky Stadium in Seattle’s University District. Such a great cause too – as of 9AM over $1 million had been raised for juvenile diabetes research. Many enthusiastic teams of walkers and runners participated to raise money in honor of loved ones afflicted with the disease. I excitedly achieved what I thought was a far-fetched goal (but turned out to be achievable) – to average less than 8:00/mile. Overall time was 39:00, giving me a 7:51/mile pace. Yay!!

But focusing on this week’s mileage:

5/9/2010: 7 miles outdoors (9:19/mile)
5/12/2010: 4 miles on treadmill (8:16/mile)
5/14/2010: 8 miles on treadmill (8:57/mile)

Total for week: 19 miles

I’m only managing about 3-4 times/week with everything else going on, but things are feeling great! I’m looking forward to June 26th and the half-marathon that awaits.

Seattle Rock N Roll Marathon and Half-Marathon: SOLD OUT!0

Posted by jodi in Ramblings on Running (Sunday April 18, 2010 at 7:47 pm)

Ahhhhhh!!!!!!!! It’s sold out. No worries – I had already registered. The $85 entry fee for the half (plus $6 for online registration – but hey, it’s to benefit the American Cancer Society) is paid. Now that I know it is sold out, though, the hugeness of it is sinking in quickly. 15,682 finished the half-marathon last year (plus 5,646 who finished the marathon), so it is definitely a sizeable event!

Seattle Rock N Roll Half-Marathon – 10 weeks to go0

Posted by jodi in Training Diary (Sunday April 18, 2010 at 7:08 pm)

I actually managed to fit four workouts in this week, my minimum for race training. The week was a pretty good one! And on my “off” days I’ve still been walking to and from work (2.6 miles roundtrip).

Anyway, here are my stats from the past week:

4/11/10: 5.0 miles outdoors (gorgeous day!); 8/10 intensity; 43:01 (8:36/mi)
4/12/10: 4.0 miles on treadmill; 5/10 intensity; 37:52 (9:28/mi)
4/14/10: 1.5 miles on treadmill plus core strengthening exercises/weights; 5/10 intensity
4/17/10: 3.1 miles on treadmill; 8/10 intensity; 27:01 (8:43/mi)

Total Mileage this week: 13.6 miles running + 7.8 miles walking (commuting to work)

The long run last Sunday of 5.0 miles was the lengthiest of my workouts since December 2008, so that was a satisfying one. The warm, sunny weather made the experience that much more exhilarating. I just returned from today’s long run, but that’s for next week’s post.

My almost-seven month old daughter, Caroline, is playing on the floor next to me as I write this and keeps looking up at me with those huge blue eyes. I love her smile at this age – a big gaping mouth with two white teeth bottom and center. She does not know it yet, but we are about to take her for her first walk around Green Lake Park. I challenge any other city to prove it’s a more pleasant place to live on this day than Seattle.

Seattle Rock N Roll Half-Marathon Training – Week 20

Posted by jodi in Training Diary (Sunday March 7, 2010 at 10:19 am)

This week went – not so well. I began working as a fellow in the neurological ICU, and days start between 6:30 and 7:15AM, which means in order to run, shower, and get to work (and pump, since I have a five month old daughter), the days would start much earlier than I find tolerable. I can start at 5:30, or even 5 for a longer run, but there is something psychologically disturbing when I see that it is 4-something and the day is already upon me.

Briefly, my running this week can be summarized in this manner: Sunday, February 28th – 4 miles outdoors with Caroline in the Bob Revolution stroller. It was, again, a day of perfect weather and a bonding experience with my baby. The hills still pose quite the challenge when pushing a stroller, but I think of them as good mechanisms for conditioning.

What was interesting, though, is that I walked to work every day this past week and home four of those days, totaling 14.3 miles (including up and down a significant hill on which the hospital sits). I now keep dress shoes and a pair of dress pants in my office at the hospital, and wear sweat pants with my running shoes during my trip to work and on my way home. When I ran my four miles this morning it was not difficult, though I had expected it would be after not running for a week. I think the frequent walking as a means for commuting to work has helped significantly.

Here is to hoping I can squeeze a few workouts into the upcoming week, even if it does mean crawling out of bed at four-something. 🙂

Also, I would like to publicly commend my brother, Tim, on his recent re-initiation into running. He possessed talent both as a distance runner (frequently running on the varsity cross country team as a seventh grader) and as a hurdler while in high school. He has now become motivated to return to sprinting in hopes of achieving a competitive age group time in the 400m run. We are holding one another accountable to ensure better running compliance.

Seattle Rock N Roll Half-marathon – The Training Begins0

Posted by jodi in Training Diary (Saturday February 27, 2010 at 10:52 am)

I formally registered for the Seattle Rock N Roll Half-Marathon several weeks ago, knowing I needed to have a race of a significant distance on the calendar to motivate me to run at 5:30AM. A 5k or 10k was not going to be far enough, but a half-marathon is a distance great enough to take me down if I do not train adequately for it. So $91 later ($85 entry plus $6 online registration fee) I found myself ready to go.


  • Sunday, 2/21/10: 4.0 miles outside on a gorgeous Seattle day – 60 degrees and full of sunshine. Is it really February? It was also my first time running with Caroline, my beautiful baby girl, in the Bob Revolution, so we enjoyed a wonderful bonding experience as well. She thoroughly enjoyed herself!
  • Monday, 2/22/10: 3.1 miles on the treadmill, and also my first run in my new Brooks Adrenaline shoes. I really hope Brooks continues to make this shoe throughout the duration of my running existence.
  • Tuesday, 2/23/10: break, flying to San Antonio for medical conference
  • Wednesday, 2/24/10: 4.0 miles on treadmill in the fitness center at the hotel. I also found $0.03 along the way. I read an article in the December issue of Runner’s World about a guy who has found a total of >$8,500 while running over the years. Intriguing. Anyway, this was a terrific run at a moderate intensity – very invigorating.
  • Thursday, 2/25/10: 3.1 miles on treadmill in the fitness center at the hotel. Another good run. No pennies in the hallway this time. 🙂
  • Friday, 2/26/10: break, flying back to Seattle and playing with the kids
  • Saturday, 2/27/10: 5.0 miles on treadmill in fitness center back in Seattle. About 4/10 intensity.
  • Total Mileage for Week 1: 19.2 miles
  • To date, the knees are cooperating. I’m incorporating a lot of stretching before and after workouts, beginning workouts slowly and building speed as my muscles indicate they can handle it, and including some light weight training for strengthening. Here’s to hoping for no injuries and a fun race experience in June.
  • I can feel myself growing more fit again after recovering from the delivery. It’s so nice when that physique returns. Here is my newest little running partner.
  • DSC_8606
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