Category Archives: Half Marathon

2nd Auction for a Cure: Rules & Logistics

Thank you to these generous and philanthropic companies for the sweet product donations!

My online auction kicks off on Monday, March 20th at 9am PST, but I want to give everyone a heads up regarding the rules and logistics in advance so you can be ready to bid!  All proceeds from this auction go directly to my Team in Training efforts for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Every donation supports a great cause, helps to extend blood cancer research, and improves the lives of patients and their families.

On Monday, March 20th at 9am PST the auction will go live- to date, over $2300 worth of running and sporting goods have been donated! And, as you can see above, I’ve really got some FABULOUS support this time around! Continue reading

Wine-ing Allowed

Told ya.

The above photo is of me and my two besties (Amy on the left, Andrea on the right) after crossing the finish line of my very first half marathon through Livermore, California on October 10, 2010. And on March 26, 2017 I will complete it again.

I recall thinking, “10/10/10 has just got to be good luck for my first half!” And it was! I loved running through the lush rolling hills of wine country, passing by the vineyards of all the wineries I have yet to visit, and enjoying all the post-race grapey libations the race had to offer. In just 18 days, I will complete the Livermore Half Marathon, my first half marathon since October 2015. That’s crazy!

And I am again, just like that very first 13.1 ever, nervous! I haven’t run a half in over year and am just getting back to running after a 6 month hiatus… but then there’s the wine. I love running, yes, and I love wine, oh yes. That’s actually the reason why I chose the Livermore Half as my first- The Wine! Livermore is, by far, one of my favorite places to go wine tasting here in the Bay Area. Everyone has heard of Napa, everyone has heard of Sonoma (and they are awesome too!) but I sure love the sleepy, peaceful, temperate, laid back demeanor of Livermore.

I was lucky enough to get a bib for this race via BibRave so am also lucky enough to also share a coupon code with you if you want to join me on March 26th in beautiful Livermore Valley. Read on for more perks to look forward to…

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Damn You and Thank You, Nike

Last December, the Nike women’s race series announced that it was dropping its San Francisco half marathon, so this is not new news to the running world by any means. I’ve had nearly 7 months to get used to the idea, but that doesn’t mean I’m not still angry at Nike because I AM still angry and after running that race for 5 consecutive years in a row (plus Nike DC its inaugural year so 6 times total), I expected a little more explanation from Nike as to why they made that decision and took away my lucky #7 and what they were going to do to replace the race here in California, but noooooooo… no reasons, no future plans for a U.S. race, no more tuxedo-ed firemen, no more running for Tiffany’s… grrrrrr!!! <shakes fist in air>

In my 41 years of life I have learned that all things, especially the good things, do come to an end. I get that. Doesn’t make it any less annoying knowing that truth but I also realize the other side of the coin- be sure to enjoy while it lasts.

And when it comes to the Nike Women’s Marathon, I certainly did just that…

My first Nike finish line and my first 26.2.

My first Nike finish line and my first 26.2.

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Berkeley Bound!

Happy to announce that I am a proud race ambassador for the very awesome Berkeley Half Marathon in November!  YIPEE!!! This is the third running of this race and it has been on my “To Do” list since 2013. As a Bay Area native, I always thought Berkeley really needed a good road half- Oakland has a couple, SF has sundry and this is the One And Only in Berkeley- how cool is that?!

Yes, I am Berkeley Bound however, to be honest, I am actually always in Berkeley!  In fact, the course traverses the streets I grew up exploring and currently train through- from the urban jungle of the UC Berkeley campus, to the lusciously scrumptious Gourmet Ghetto, and the breezily peaceful Bay Trail… Oakland is where I live and work, but Berkeley is where I go to train and play!

The Berkeley Half Marathon offers not only the 13.1 distance but also a 13.1 relay, 10K, and 5K so pick your distance and join me in my City By The City By The Bay on November 22- not only can I promise excellent racing weather but I can also give you a sweet registration discount: $10 off with code BHM2015Laura (follow this link to register).

Even if you aren’t from the Bay Area, sign up for this race and get a fabulous tour of Berkeley’s hippest and iconic spots- from the most unique and diverse neighborhoods in all of NoCal, all the way to the waterfront, you’ll quickly learn why Berkeley isn’t a place but truly a way of life. You can go everywhere in the world and never find a place like Berkeley.

I am really looking forward to 13.1 miles along such familiar turf but I’m also looking forward to a DOUBLE MEDAL DAY thanks to the SF Marathon to Berkeley challenge! If you ran the 1st or 2nd half of the SF Marathon in July then complete the Berkeley Half in November, you get 2 medals when you cross the finish line!  And I know you know I’ll do pretty much anything for a medal… or two…

Smack dab in the middle of the Bay Area, Berkeley offers mild weather, natural beauty, proximity to the ocean, lush greenery, and beautiful coastal views all backdropped by a hilly upland- what’s not to love?  Register today with code BHM2015Laura and let me know what distance you’re running- I’ll see you there!!!

How to Race Without Training

To be clear, I’m not promoting running a race withOUT training but I think it truly IS a reality for those of us who love running and love living so I just gotta admit that often, life gets in the way of training and takes the front seat! Since I started racing in 2009, I commit to at least one race every month and sometimes I’m ready, sometimes I’m not. While I completely and totally respect the process and preparation that goes into the umpteen weeks of training, focus, and sacrifice towards Race Day, I often take it for granted and this year so far, I admit, I have definitely slacked off…  and guess what? I have the first half of the San Francisco Marathon, a very challenging 13.1, in 2 days.

Some people, including my coaches, husband, and non-running friends say, “You don’t have to do the race, right?  Why even put yourself through that? Just DON’T do it!” Sure that’s an option for normal people but I’m not normal and it’s not me NOT to show up. I said I would so I’m gonna and that’s just that. Stubborn runner, that’s me.

To get ready for the imminent pain and suffering that goes along with attempting to run a road race without training, I am trying my best to keep my mind right while prepping for Race Day as well as I possibly can…  Continue reading

Summer Sabbatical

Well, it’s summer- the kids are out of school, schedules are out the window, and relaxing has taken over… for the very first time, I am totally okay with that!  I love sleeping in and staying up late, and- to be completely honest- I also love taking this short break from road running.  I’ve been spending a ton of time with my kids, enjoying the outdoors, and reading lots of great books- often, the simpler life is, the happier I feel. Not to say that I can’t incorporate running into all this good summertime ju ju too, it’s just… I need a break.

However, I do have a fairly challenging half marathon this Sunday, the (very hilly) first half of The San Francisco Marathon. I just re-read my recap of this race from 2013 and now I’m officially worried. I tried to run while spending the past 3 weeks at our cabin but the elevation killed me and after every run I would fall sick for the next 36 hours so I gave up even attempting to train while there. And since we’ve been back home, here at sea level, my motivation is still seemingly on break too…

See, I ran that one time this summer!

See, I ran that one time this summer!

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Journey to 26.2, Part 3: The Reality

If you know me in real life or if you have read this blog for any period of time, you know that I aim to always be honest with myself. While I am elated that I finally overcame the 2014 Year of Injury and am back to successfully running the road, I know that I’m just not where I used to be nor where I need to be to tackle a full marathon right now. For these reasons, I decided to downgrade from the full to the half at this weekend’s SLO Marathon. I’m not at all bummed about this, however, I am happy that I am not allowing my ego to overrule good judgement and I know that I am making the right decision.

I started training for this full in January and got up to 16 miles, the longest distance I’ve run since training for my last marathon nearly 3 years ago.  The 16 was great!  I felt good, my injuries were just fine, it was slow (took just over 3 hours) but it was accomplished nevertheless- I was proud of my effort and ecstatic that I was mentally and physically able to finish a 16 mile run after all I went through, physically, last year. Totally planned on 18 miles the following week. I swear I did. The day-of-the-18 came and I just couldn’t wrap my head around 18 nor the impending 20 mile runs. I refused to give running all that time, I simply didn’t want to do it, so I didn’t. I ran 10 instead and thought, “Half marathons are awesome too, darn it.”  Continue reading