Last week of the Taper!

Monday: 7m combo tempo (2m warm up, 2 x 1m @ 6:11/pace, 2 x 400s @ 5:56/pace, 2m cool down)

Everything that supposed to happen during a taper has happened. I got way too emotional last week (i think i cried twice…ok 3x.), got into a dumb, unnecessary argument due to stress and hormones. All of the “easy” runs felt off, and not very easy at all. My shins were a little sore (where did that come from?) and i thought i was coming down with a cold.

I dumped water on my training plan which erased the computer ink, but kept all the notes I jotted in pen…was it a sign? Does it mean my training was all erased! Or I shouldn’t focus on reviewing every detail of every workout and trust the training? Am I a superstitious person now??

File_000 (132)

I talk about tapering a lot. I race a lot, so I taper a lot. Doesn’t make the process easier–but once I get past the irrational, emotional, stressed out crazy part, I do tend to focus on important stuff to get to the race.

Like the week before the race when I have one last drink. Full On is a place I visit often. Nothing like a good sandwich and cold sangria on a warm day ❤

File_000 (138)

Ok so the last adult beverage isn’t important. The important stuff is making lists for everything i have to do this week & everything I need to remember to bring. It’s doing laundry and cleaning the house with all the extra time, since i’m not running excess miles. It’s all about foam rolling the crap out of my legs each night and stretching like i’m in the Yoga Olympics. Well, not that hard, but you get the idea.

I focus on nutrition, hydration, getting in extra sleep & waking up earlier, so it’s easier to crawl out of bed on race day. I head to the chiropractor for an adjustment (and this week, a shin massage–it was as awful as it sounds). I double check last minute race information, expo information and watch the weather report. I review the course and memorize where the water stations are. I usually stare at my training log for workouts I nailed for reassurance and try to come up with a race day plan. On top of all the planning i’m just trying to stay sane and keep myself busy.

Which has led to a lot of midday walking. It works for me since i have so much energy building up in these legs. The last several days have actually been awesome. I ran a treadmill mile PR of 6:11. Not once, but twice! Woo!

File_000 (136)

I received my Zooma Ambassador singlet! It’s gorgeous and looks super official. And the Zooma girls all received support from New Balance and got new kicks! I can’t wait to start long running in these cushioned Fresh Foam 1080s. I’ll be sure to let you know how I like them when i get in some miles. (Also the Zooma Annapolis June 4th half marathon i’m running also has a 10k and 5k now, no excuses–get out and run in this cute town with me! Use code CORI16 for 10% off!)

OH and Lauren Fleshman liked & commented on my Picky Bar photo from a week ago–so, you know…we’re best friends now.

File_000 (3)

5 days left. A few more nights sleep. A trip or two to Target and Sports Authority and all the while trying not to forget to bring everything I need. Below is a list I complied years ago. I added to it, feel free to copy/paste it and use it for your next race!

RACE Checklist

__Garmin Watch/Charger                               __Ipod/armband/headphones/charger

__Laptop/Charger                                             __Sports Bra

__Shorts/Capri’s                                                __Singlet and Throwaway Shirt

__Socks/Compression Socks & Pants             __Running Shoes

__Anti-Chafe Cream/Chapstick                       __Sunscreen/Sunglasses/Hat

__Hair ties/headbands                                     __Gels or Sports Drinks/Water/Nuun

__Fuel Belt/ ZipLock bags                                 __Sandals & after race clothes

__Race Confirmation/Hotel Confirmation/Course Map (for your family or friends!)

__Aspirin/pain reliever (for after race)


Last Week

Monday: 6m easy 9:40/pace, 15 min myrtls 

Tuesday: 30 min trx legs/shoulders

Wednesday: 9m tempo (2m warm up, 4 x 1.5m @ 6:49/pace, 1/2m cool down)

Thursday: 5000m row

Friday: 6m easy 8:40/pace + 10min abs

Saturday: Rest + 2.5m walk

Sunday: 9m long 8:16/pace

Total Miles: 30

What else should I add to the Race Checklist?

What do you do to keep your mind off of tapering?


Mental Training

Monday: 6m easy 9:40/pace, 15 min myrtls 

Tuesday: 30 min trx legs/shoulders

Wednesday: 9m tempo (2m warm up, 4 x 1.5m @ 6:49/pace, 1/2m cool down)

I’ve mentioned plenty of times that i feel like my mental game has been spot on the last couple training cycles. I think it comes with age, experience, lots of advice from other runners & of course, practice. I’m not perfect at mental training, but i’ve come so far and recent breakthroughs have made me a much happier runner.

Let’s start by all the things i used to do wrong. If i stopped running to take a walk break I would get discouraged and have an internal, negative self-talk. If i was “slow” I would tell myself I’ll never hit ____ goal. If i even hinted at being tired or hurting during a race I would kind of give up. I’d tell myself I couldn’t make it the whole distance at the pace and again battled negativity. I was too slow, not good enough, etc until I crossed the finish line. I gave up before even attempting giving it my all. I was already writing the “I didn’t PR” blog post in my head..as i was still running mid-race. Sad, but those negative feelings have crossed my mind way too often.

Except over the last year. I finally defeated that negative jerk. Here’s how:

Being positive. It seems so simple, but it does take a lot of motivational, happy self-talk to run positive. Always remember, running should be fun! Fake a smile and remember why you’re doing your training run. For me, even though my time goal is daunting, reminding myself i’m shooting for the stars, makes me smile a little. A nervous smile, sure, but a smile goes a long way with running. Seriously, try smiling. It relaxes me and makes me feel so happy.

File_000 (130)

I’ve learned to take the good runs with the bad. You can’t be a great runner without the challenge of a run that doesn’t go well. When i’m having a “bad run” I determine what’s bad about the run and adjust. I don’t let the tired legs or weather or hills consume me anymore. I greet it as a challenge. I welcome it as a training partner.  I’ve been so much more flexible on pace, listening to my body and not stressing out when things don’t go perfect. When the watch isn’t reflecting my effort I hide it and focus on effort and running strong. Being adaptable was a huge difference this cycle than previous years.

Envision the race. During many tough runs i’ve pictured the finish line, crossing it, smiling, jumping, seeing friends at the end. It’s super motivating not only to visualize meeting your goals, but having a fun race and crossing the line a very happy runner!

Practice gratitude. I do this often, on sunny days when running is easy and when its tough and my body is tired. I take a few deep breaths and remind myself how grateful I am to be able to run. How extremely grateful and lucky i am to have all of my limbs and be healthy.

When your mind is screaming at you to stop, try focusing on body parts that feel good. Shoulders? Back? Calves? I don’t care what random part feels good just focus, it will distract you from the racing pain because it forces you to focus on a positive thing.


well said.

And when focusing on the body doesn’t help it’s time to call in your motivational mantras! Mantras are so important for endurance sports. There will be many times where it gets tough and you’ll want to quit, use your mantras to stay alert and focused on the task at hand. I have three i’ve been using during this training cycle. “Relax & Breathe” This one helps me check in with breathing and form (relax the shoulders, run tall, arms swinging forward, not across the chest). “I am a Machine” – Something about the word machine, helps me feel strong and rhythmic. And lastly, this has been an oldie but a goodie, “I’m a Big Brave Dog” Yes it’s from Rugrats, yes it’s a little goofy, but it works like a charm every time, making me feel like a fearless little kid.


I read this quote recently and it hits home. I’m not meant to be in harbor. I’m meant to deal with the changes in tide, the unpredictable weather. I am a ship. I am a machine. I am a big brave dog.

Be patient with the process. Be patient with your goals. Be patient with your body.

And most importantly, be patient with yourself. 


It’s Finally Spring!

I had to stop a few times last week to take pictures of the bright green view! Seems like spring is finally here which means, more running in less clothes which actually means less laundry. (just remember to replace less clothing with more sunscreen!!)

File_000 (123)

It also means having a weekend beer outdoors! I went up to Denizens in Silver Spring over the weekend. They have fantastic craft beer and an outdoor patio where you can bring dogs 🙂

File_000 (125)

I normally do my long runs on Saturday- but I chose to sleep in and enjoy the spring day at Denizens. Needless to say, Sunday’s 11 miler was a little rough. It was my last 10+ run until the half marathon in 12 days! I’m trying to stay calm and not get ahead of myself. I’ll be focusing on sleep, nutrition and mental prep leading up to the race.

And I voted over the weekend! LE got her own sticker, but wouldn’t share who she supported.

File_000 (128)

I also took a few walks this weekend because it was so beautiful out and had to try out the harness on LE.

File_000 (127)

File_000 (129)

she’s pacing me haha

Alright–It’s Marathon Monday!! Good Luck to all the Bahston runnahs!

Last Week

Monday: Rest

Tuesday: 9m interval 8 x 1000s (2m warm up, 8 x 1000s all @ 6:22/pace, 1m cool down) + 2.3m walk

Wednesday: 30 min handstand skill work + 2m walk

Thursday: 6m easy 9:22/pace + 2m walk

Friday: 11m tempo (2m warm up, 3 x 2.5m 6:49, 6:43, 6:40/pace, 1m cool down) 

Saturday: Rest

Sunday: 11.4m  easy/long 9:14/pace + 2m walk

Total Miles: 37.4

What do you look forward to as the weather gets warmer?


Wednesday Afternoon Catch Up

Monday: Rest

Tuesday: 9m interval 8 x 1000s (2m warm up, 8 x 1000s all @ 6:22/pace, 1m cool down) + 2.3m walk

Wednesday: 30 min handstand skill work + 2m walk

I just realized I haven’t written a “real” post in over 22 days. Usually when I’m not posting weekly it’s because I’m injured and not ready to share or I’m a little depressed and have nothing great to write about. That’s actually not the case this time around! haha I’m in the work/run/eat/sleep grind right now. I finished up Hell Week (thank you Inverted Sneakers) or Peak Week as most of you know it as. The hardest part–high mileage and fast paces– of training is over. Several more workouts and it will be April 30th before I know it.

File_000 (114)

In between all the running and recovery I’ve been working on being more involved in the running community (outside of the internet.)  I got to work the Zooma table at the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler Expo with Zooma’s Founder & Director! Brae was so much fun and I can seriously talk about running for hours so it was easy to help out. I can’t believe I’ll be running the Zooma Annapolis 1/2 in just 6 weeks! OH and they added a 5k! If you wanted to run the race, but didn’t want to run a 10k or half you can sign up for the 5k. (use CORI16 for 10% off races).

File_000 (116)

I’m going to switch subjects a bit in the post, but these “catch up posts” tend to do that so just roll with me.

I won coffee. 🙂 My heart burst a little when I saw I won. Coffee AAAAaaaaand Honey Stinger Waffles! Just a quick note, the coffee is Marley Coffee & it is excellent. I haven’t tried the espresso coffee just yet, but i’m sure it’s fantastic too. The Honey Stinger waffles were the new gluten free maple waffles. I had the assumption that I wouldn’t like the gluten-free, but honestly i like them more than the regular. The waffle holds together better with rice than wheat and it ends up being less crumbly.

File_000 (120)

My Garmin broke. It was a gift 3+ years ago…and last week it just didn’t turn on. I tried all the resets, new chargers etc, but it hit the dust. I just wanted to share that I bought a refurbished Forerunner 10 off of Amazon (for about $70 + 1 year warranty) and the watch looks brand new. If it weren’t for the warranty I don’t know if i’d buy a used watch, but it’s a cheap fix since I don’t need all the bells and whistles of a more expensive watch.

File_000 (115)

Plus i just got a Microsoft 2 Band from my job (yes Gold’s Gym is actually a great company to work for!) I’ll do a full review soon when i play around with all the features, but as of now it counts steps/mileage, does heart rate via the wrist, i get texts/call/email alerts, and it has gps so it was a big help when my Garmin died.File_000 (122)

The salon I got my hair done at wanted to take pictures for their Instagram so I spent another afternoon in the chair for them.

File_000 (2)

and then I went online and bought the same Nume curling iron they used, because i love the beachy look. They have really good flash sales & discounts, so don’t spend the money until a sale comes up! I got this one for $35, they are normally $139.

I think that’s it. Running has been excellent. My legs are feeling the exhaustion from 9 weeks of training, but my mind is in the right place. Again–i’ll come back to this and go in depth with the mental stuff that i’ve been doing to help me run faster!

Last Week

Monday: 1500m row, 100 bosu burpees w/pushups, 50 bw squats, 50 hanging leg raises

Tuesday: 8.5m combo tempo (3m @ 6:49, 6:49, 6:44 -3:00 rest- 2 x 1m @ 6:22, 6:18)

Wednesday: 20min triceps/back

Thursday: 6m easy 9:15/pace

Friday: 8m MP easy 8:10/pace

Saturday: 3m easy 9:45/pace

Sunday: 15m long/easy 8:38/pace

Total Miles: 40.6 The Peak!

Tell me something random!

Do you own an activity tracker? Do you like it?



Monday: 1500m row, 100 bosu burpees w/pushups, 50 bw squats, 50 hanging leg raises

Tuesday: 8.5m combo tempo (3m @ 6:49, 6:49, 6:44 -3:00 rest- 2 x 1m @ 6:22, 6:18)

I’m 4 weeks out from the OC 1/2 and 5 weeks away from my very first Spartan Beast. I know i’ve mentioned i’m afraid of the half marathon i’ve been prepping for, but there is a different fear that happens when I think about the Spartan obstacle course race i’m training for.

File_000 (112)

That fear is for the new, uncharted territory. I never thought i would be taking on an obstacle course race, let alone a tough one. I’m excited that this race is gonna be horrible/fun/terrible/awesome. I’m excited to see what my body can do, but definitely nervous for what I’m going to be put through physically and mentally. I know i’m going to cross the finish line in Ohio feeling like a different person. That’s the exciting part, now I just gotta get there.

File_000 (113)

Training for a Spartan has been a different experience, but they have so many tools to help prepare for the demands of the course which have helped me out.

1) Watch a Spartan on tv – Once in a while I catch something fun on espn or whatever sports channel… I watched an hour special about Spartan Elites a few months back and it was super motivating. (This is what really pushed me to participate!) Plus it gave me a good idea of the type of obstacles I would eventually tackle.

2) Spartan.com You can sign up for a spartan WOD (workout of the day) and they email you or your weekly workouts. Even if you aren’t training for an obstacle course race, I seriously recommend this to vary your workouts and put something fun & different in your routine. Most of the workouts include running so it’s perfect for runners trying to incorporate strength!

File_000 (111)

results from all the rope pulling in preparation for the Spartan!

3) The books! Spartan has several books to help you train and get mentally prepared for the demands of the course. They have a new book coming out called Spartan Fit! which has a 31 day diet & workout plan (that doesn’t require a gym) and motivational Spartan stories.

Oh and did I mention the somewhat famous ultramarathoner, Dean Karnazes likes these books?

Last Week

Monday: 6m easy 9:20/pace

Tuesday: 7.5m interval (8 x 800s @ 6:27/pace w/200m recovery at 10:00/p)

Wednesday: 1500m row, 30 min legs

Thursday: 9m easy 8:45/pace

Friday: Rest day-  2.3m walk w/LE

Saturday: 14m long 9:00/pace

Sunday: Rest day- 3m walk w/LE

Total Mileage: 36.5

Tips for doing a Spartan?

What type of race/activity gets you out of your comfort zone?