Holy cow! Talk about post-race follow up

Oh, hey! So this is what the future feels like a million years after my race. I apologize for the lack of updates. 

This past May, I completed The North Face Endurance Challenge Half Marathon trail race in Bear Mountain, New York. It was pretty epic to say the least. And my toughest trail race to date. 

Here's a brief summary of my achievement:

1.) I came.

3.) I ran.

3.) I conquered.

But in all seriousness, there's not much to talk about. I did fairly well for someone who hasn't done a trail race since 2012, and I'm feeling quite accomplished. As much as most people would imagine New York to be flat or "hilly", it's really quite challenging. I should have known this area would kick my ass because almost 2 years ago we did a backpacking trip around that area and it did just that. I've done a lot of backpacking in my days, but that one absolutely took the cake in difficulty. That's another story on it's own. 

I'm pumped and ready for my next Endurance Challenge race, which I'm hoping to do in Utah in a few months. For now, I'll play it by ear. :)

Gear list for ECSNY Half Marathon Race 2015

I'm a huge believer that having quality gear makes any sport experience a lot more enjoyable. Here's a short list of some of the things I plan to bring if you're mildly curious:

1.) My trusty Salomon Speedcross 3 trail running shoes. These are new pair that I just broke in to less than a week ago, and I have used once during a field hockey game. The grip and foot protection on rocks really matter when it comes to deciding which shoe I need for technical terrain. It was a hard decision between my Hoka One One Challenger ATR  and the Speed Cross 3. It's still a hard decision. And I may switch last minute on which shoe I race in. I've swapped out the cushiony Ortholite insoles for Superfeet insoles because I don't like too much bend on my shoe when I run. I like my shoes stiff but forgiving. It gives the Speedcross 3 a more of snug fit, which I loved about my Challenger ATR. See! You can't have everything.

2.) I've ended my quest for darn good socks with these Darn Tough Vermont endurance wool socks. I no longer wear non-wool socks, except for when I play field hockey. I love these socks to death. And I love the fact that buying these always makes me happy about supporting Made-In-America brands from NEW ENGLAND. 

3.) Ah, yes. I need something to strap the girls in tightly to my body, and I've chosen the Moving Comfort Rebound Racer bra just to do that. What I love about this sports bra is that it actually has an adjusting strap in the back. Not like most sport bra that you pull over your head. The shoulder adjustments loop through the bra using velcro.

4.) Ultimate Direction Ultra Vesta hydration vest. This is my second race vest and has easily become my favorite. If I ever do a mix of hike and long distance trail running, I can easily latch my trekking poles onto the cords. It also fits a small hydration bladder in the back. I can also store all my energy chews and shots into the front pockets. Not to mention, the fit is awesome and attractive.

5.) Race attire by The North Face. This is a TNF race afterall! I'm also using leg compression sleeves.

6.) Energy chews and shots. I've never been on a race where I never had thoughts about food. As a matter of fact, most of my thoughts while running involve food even if food wasn't the protagonist of my thoughts. So to combat any hunger thoughts or even pangs, it's good to carry these around: Clif Shot, GU Chomps, and Honey Stinger chews. I'm likely not bringing all three, but I'm choosing either one or two to take with me.

So there you have it. That's some of the stuff I'm bringing/wearing on the trail tomorrow. Should be a good one since this is my longest trail race thus far. Planning to do a marathon length next year for the Endurance Challenge in Utah. I'm already looking forward to it.

If you want more information on the Endurance Challenge Series Race by The North Face, here's a link. Obviously, a very great organization. :)

Trail Running Agenda for April 26th, 2015

This is a day late but I thought I would post it anyway. 

My agenda was to run the 7 miles of the Skyline Trail in Middlesex Fells Reservation. I wasn't alone on my run this time because Marius decided he would join me, which was great. However, instead of running the entire loop, we did hike some parts of it because Marius had a blister on his foot and he's not a fan of the uphill running. I don't blame him. Sunday was suppose to be my "easier day" anyway, so I didn't mind just walking/hiking some. It was definitely a great and surprisingly warm day for it. 

I'll post a follow-up of what happened this weekend with some photos. All I have to really say right now is that I'm feeling really good and confident that I'll do decent in the race. Can't wait!

Trail Running Agenda for April 25th, 2015

Today, I'll be running a shorter distance of 9 miles at the Blue Hills, Skyline Trail right outside Boston. It should be hilly and technical enough for practice for next weekend, minus the 5 miles. It has 500 feel of elevation gain which is not a lot when you compare it to Bear Mountain, NY. 

Healthwise: feeling a slight pain on the left knee, but I think it should be fine. Overall, I'm feeling pretty healthy and awake this morning.

I'll be getting dropped off and starting at the Shea Rink (east) and making my way to Houghton's Pond parking lot (west). I haven't set a goal time to finish because it's really hard to say on trail but it should be no longer than 2 hours.

Happy trails!