Run Doodle Run

The long road to 26.2

1 Comment

Midweek Recap

So it’s been a fun week ๐Ÿ™‚

Sunday they announced what the finishers’ medals will look like at Baltimore this year


Monday night our moonflowers bloomed – they only bloom after dark and last only one day, but they’re totally worth it.

IMG_1312 IMG_1331

Tuesday I went back to The Hill with my group, but had an asthma attack during the warm up (damn you, recently cut field) and missed all but the last 20 minutes – at least I got to walk up the hill a few times. Honestly, my walk wasn’t all that much slower than most people’s run, the hill is just that brutal).

And I got to see a field of sunflowers ๐Ÿ™‚

IMG_1341Yesterday my GMBA classmates and Iย had a little mini reunion – almost exactly 5 years to the date from when we all first met at orientation ๐Ÿ™‚ The best part? I got to see my friend Annie, who has been living and working in Nigeria, for the first time in two years. ๐Ÿ™‚

11218754_10106024734700229_1578607887126787706_n 11781890_10106023033833779_7516250121748814150_nAnd today I got to down to DC for a friend’s Ambassadorial nomination hearing. How cool is that??


1 Comment

Weekend Wrap up

It’s been a pretty low-key week training-wise for me. I managed to get in about 25 miles, but most of it was indoors due to weather. Typically I crosstrain on Mondays and Wednesdays, doing about an hour of cardio but really focusing on strength training. Our track session Tuesday night was cancelled due to 4 inch wide (yep) hail and a tornado warning. Although I still contend that potential tornado breathing down our necks could’ve motivated us all to our fastest time trials ever ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thursday’s run ended up being moved indoors because of more storms. I need to get better at getting up super early on Thursdays to get some miles in before work (I’m the only person in the office on Thursday mornings, which makes it even more difficult to get the miles in and get showered before we open). Thursdays are so crucial to my training yet somehow always get the short end of the stick.

Saturday was my second long run with my group – we set out for 10 miles on a flat trail. A few weeks ago I ran on this trail, which I really do love, by myself for a much shorter run and it had never felt longer or more torturous; it’s amazing what a difference a few good training partners can make! It seemed to take no time at all this week. It was raining a bit, but the tree canopy mostly protected us from the worst of the rain. We set off at a nice, easy pace, just after 7:00am, and before I knew it we were at the turn around! I nearly forgot about my gel at mile 5 until one of the other people I was running with said they were taking theirs. I know I can do 8 miles without gel, but I’m not sure about 10, so it’s a good thing he said something! It must’ve rained harder than I realized because the trail was much muddier on the return trip than on the outbound trip.


The best thing about rainy, sweaty runs? The insides of wet socks make surprisingly good rags for wiping the mud off of your legs… Kinda gross, but it worked! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Sunday was the 40th annual Baltimore Women’s Classic. I’ve run it several times in the past (here, here, and here), but decided against it this year as the 5k just doesn’t fit in with my marathon training schedule. In hindsight, my legs felt good enough that I probably could’ve run, but I don’t see any benefit (but more than a few risks) in truly racing aย 5k at this point. So instead I played sherpa for my mom and a friend of my parents. ๐Ÿ™‚

The morning air was pleasantly chilly and it was overcast before the race, but the sun ended up coming out just in time for the start. Having run this race in some miserable weather, I know just how much of a difference sun vs. clouds can make.

IMG_0865 IMG_0872

If I had been thinking (you know, something that’s just not on the menu when I wake up at 5:00am two weekend-days in a row), I should’ve brought my DSLR camera, but the iPhone was the best I could do on sleepy brain cells.


Just after the race started, my dad and I planed ourselves down at the finish line area. It’s so amazing to see the first finishers of the race. I wish that I could know what that feels like just once (hell, I’d even take running their pace for 100m!). The top 20 women ran the gamut of age and size, but they – and all of the finishers – were awesome. It was hot standing there cheering, so I can only imaging how hot it must’ve been out on the course.

My parents’ friend came in just under 31 minutes and won her age group! Did I mention she just had a pacemaker installed, a double mastectomy, and chemo 6 weeks ago? Seriously – what’s your excuse?


My mom beat her 5k PR by 19 seconds and set a new personal course record by over 3 minutes! Woohoo!! *happy dance*

IMG_0949Later on Sunday, after a good, long nap, my dad and I went to check out a condo for me. I had been hoping to move this summer (I’ve been living with my parents for the last two years), but it’s looking less and less likely. All winter and spring there were gobs of really great condos on the market; now that I’m ready to plunk down some cash for a place, they’ve all taken their balls and decided to play somewhere else. The condo we looked at was the ideal layout and neighborhood, but the location of it wasn’t greatย (right next to a pool and a main road). It was the second time I looked at this unit, knowing it probably wasn’t going to be right for me because of the location, but I was hoping something would’ve won me over. Instead, we just found more dings against it. *sigh* Back to square one.

I still have one question mark of a race lingering on my summer calendar – the Dreaded Druid Hills. I know I really want to run it, but I’m trying to figure out where it fits in with training. I know we’ll be taking a cutback week the following week (for the Charles St. 12 Miler), which leads me to believe we’ll have a big long run the week of the DDH. Training for a longer race is really forcing me to reevaluate all of my usual races! But I think that’s a good problem to have ๐Ÿ˜‰



I’ve been a bad blogger

I know, I know, it’s been weeks since I last posted…

It just didn’t seem like my running was going anywhere worth your time. I don’t like posting about monotony, and it seems like there’s been a lot of that.

So what’d you miss over the last 2-3 weeks?

Well, I got sick the week of my birthday.

But luckily felt good enough for my birthday ๐Ÿ˜Š

Screenshot 2015-04-26 20.17.07

I went to an Orioles opening weekend game and saw them kick the Blue Jays’ butt (and score a grand slam!)


The sun setting behind the Roundhouse at the B&O Museum


Ravens Stadium all lit up in orange for the O’s game

IMG_0059 IMG_0061 Spring finally happened

IMG_0164 IMG_0173 IMG_0024

Went to a networking event in DC but didn’t see a single cherry blossom (major bummer). Bigger bummer – I haven’t seen any pictures from the event.

I had a couple good long runs – including my FIRST 14 MILER!!!!! And it felt AMAZING!! Talk about a runner’s high!


7.5 miles on the trail


9.85 VERY hilly miles

FullSizeRender 8

14 MILES!!!! The first time I’ve ever gone past the HM distance!

And had a nice shakeout walk today


IMG_0237I’m hoping now that things are looking up in several aspects of my life, I’ll be more motivated to post. We all have down days/weeks/months, and I know blogging shouldn’t be all rainbows and buttercups, but I also don’t want to just post workout stats or complain about x, y, or z. I like to feel like I have something to offer or something to contribute to the running conversation before I blog.

Having a few good runs in my log and looking forward to Brooklyn and summer marathon training, I think my running will become less monotonous.

For some reason I’ve been more active in posting my workouts on instagram, so you can always follow me there (@studek).


So I know I’ve been a really sucky blogger lately. I’m not sure what my issue is, but I just haven’t been motivated to write anything – I feel like my life right now just isn’t interesting enough for others to want to read about it. I promise I’m working on making it more interesting and writing about it more.

But, in the mean time, my mom and I have joined a training group for the Baltimore Women’s Classic 5k, which takes place this June! I hadn’t planned on running this race again, but when my mom was excited at the idea of joining the training group, I decided it would be good for me, too ๐Ÿ™‚ Our first group meeting was three weeks ago tonight – it was 44 degrees and raining! The weather was so nasty that night that the O’s cancelled their game. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ


Last week was considerably nicer. My mom is in the intermediate walker group, where they’re focusing on walking intervals of different paces. I’m in the intermediate runner group, where we do repeats on the track. Last week we did 200m hard w/ 400m recovery – I did so much better than I thought I would! My average pace for the whole evening was around 10:29, which is super fast for me. That gave me hope going into DDH training (which I seriously need to get moving on).

Unfortunately we both skipped this week’s training session – my father is hosting a garden club tomorrow morning (they’re coming all the way out here just to see his gardens!), so we’ve been getting everything spotless all day and were just too zonked to head down to the track. Hopefully tomorrow or Thursday night we’ll make up for it.

In other news, I am now a Sweat Pink Ambassador! Yay! Super excited about this – and planning on using it as motivation to actually keep up with my blog again!

1 Comment

When life hands you lemons…

…apparently the bastards squirt you in the eyes.

lemonsI’m sorry I’ve been MIA these last two weeks. I did so many fun things that I wanted to tell you about, and thenย things got unfun.ย Life is throwing lemons and mangoes and turnips at me right now and I need to get the piles of unwanted vegetation taken care of before life sends me ants, too.

Hopefully after this weekend I’ll get back to it. I promise I’m not ignoring y’all…. ๐Ÿ™‚

Leave a comment

Life is short but sweet for certain

Today I found out that a former teacher of mine has cancer and only weeks to live. We all have lots of teachers throughout our lives (and someone who has as many degrees as I do has even more), but I consider myself lucky to have had someone like him who made such an impression on my life.

James “Pax” Paxton was my high school band teacher for four years. But he was so much more than that to me and so many of my classmates. He knew how to work with high schoolers better than anyone I know, he knew how to earn our respect, how to joke with us, and how to push us to work our hardest, for whatever we wanted.

He took hundreds, if not thousands, of us to Europe for three weeks during the summer with American Music Abroad – I was lucky enough to go twice. Those of us who were fortunate enough to go on AMA really got to know him and his wife on a completely different level. They were teachers and leaders but they were also friends. His students would do anything for him. For whom else would high schoolers get up even earlier than normal before early morning summer band camp to decorate the road leading to school for his 50th birthday?

He taught us leadership, he taught us life skills, and occasionally he taught us music, too. He taught me how to come out of my shell. A girl who was so shy that her 6th grade science teacher once asked her mother if she knew how to speak, I am so much more confident as an adult because of Pax. My leadership style has largely been influenced by his leadership style.

At 65, his card has been drawn far too early, but his influence has been huge. A facebook group of his former students was started this afternoon and already has over 500 members. I hope the doctors are wrong. I hope his weeks turn into months and years, but whether he goes tomorrow or in ten years, his legacy will live on. He’s one of the great people of the world.