August 20 PGRC Fundraiser/Happy hour at Franklins

On Monday August 20, join PGRC for drinks, eats and good times! 20% of proceeds from all PGRC purchases of food, drinks, or at Franklin’s general store will go to our club.
When: Monday August 20. The fundraiser is all day, but we’ll reserve some tables from 6:30-9:30 pm.
Where: Franklins, 5121 Baltimore Ave, Hyattsville, MD 20781.
How: On the day of the Fundraiser, patrons must turn in their itemized receipts to the host and ask that their receipt be added to the fundraiser.  Franklins will tally the fundraiser receipts (before taxes) and donate 20% of the total to PGRC. Details at

Who: Club members, friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, etc. Please spread the word and encourage everyone you know to shop, eat-in, or order carry-out from Franklin’s on August 20th (and make sure they ask for their receipt to be added to the PGRC fundraiser). (No soliciting is allowed at the restaurant).

Why: Socialize with your fellow club members and raise funds for PGRC.

RSVP: Not required, but helpful for those coming at 6:30ish, so we can reserve some tables. If someone would like to organize a lunch PGRC crowd for the 20th, that would be great.

50k Are You Crazy!? Fun Run, Sunday May 20 7:00am

You trained hard all Winter and enjoyed a fabulous Spring racing season.  What now!?  PGRC has the answer – join us for the first-ever PGRC 50k Are You Crazy!? Fun Run
Some exciting details:
  • Sunday, May 20th starting at 7:00am
  • Run one leg (9.5-13 miles) or all 3 legs
  • Free!  Although it will cost some of personal fortitude & tenacity!
  • Course: Two loops followed by an out-and-back, mostly on paved, scenic, multi-use trails of the Anacostia Watershed.  See PGRC 50k course description.
  • Start & Finish (all legs): Atlanta Bread Company, 50 Cherrywood Lane, Greenbelt, MD. Leg start times are 7:00am, 10:00am, and noon.

Who’s in for the run?

On Sensibility

So here’s the update. I visited my PT on Thursday, and I’m thankful I did. She’s a pragmatic and supportive person, so it was good to work with her again. My back is doing well, it’s healing as it should. She’s happy with my range of motion, and despite some tight muscles in my lower back, she thinks I need to keep up my ice, core work, and standing at work, and it’ll be back to where it was soon.

My hip is tendinitis in my psoas muscle, and probably not related to my back issues. That’s a bit of a relief. This is a really deep muscle under the “six pack” muscles in your stomach. It starts at the top of your lumbar spine and connects on the front in your hip. I was feeling the pain in my hip, getting worse as I ran. She showed me an exercise to help loosen it, reminded me to ice, stretch, and cautioned me to be diligent with my efforts here. This kind of tightness can lead to a tear, so I need to be sensible. She said I could run, but I need to be ready to slow down or stop.

I don’t think I’ve been so relieved in quite some time, but I also need to remember I can’t get complacent. My strength exercises, ice, standing at work, I need to be sure I do these as much as I can. This is especially true with the strength work. I’m not a huge fan of strength work, but I know how much it helps. This needs to become a routine for me as long as I’m running.

Strength Workouts
I’m very partial to Jason Fitzgerald’s Strength Running. Jason’s blog resonates with me, and his focus on getting stronger has really helped me to realize its importance. I use a modified version of his Core and IT Band Rehab. I mostly focus on core right now, but the ITB routine is also very nice. Check out his core workout.

If you’re a beginner, be sure to moderate what he’s doing by not doing leg lifts on the planks or the bridge. You can also shorten each exercise to 30 or 45 seconds instead of a minute.

Year of the Half Marathon Update
So, I signed up for the Iron Girl Half Marathon at the end of April, just a week before my half in Frederick. There’s a Titanium Girl title for this kind of insanity and some extra medal or another. Me, I’m really interested in being able to brag about doing both well, which will require some serious focus on recovery during the intervening week.

What this means for my training right now is I need to be careful going forward. My hip will heal with time and care, so I will be doing that. My workouts will be more in flux than I’d like as I evaluate how I feel from day to day, but I’m confident I know what I need to do and know how to adjust my expectations if I’m limited. I’m okay with that, since the long term goal is to get faster over time, not tomorrow or next week.

Five weeks out from Rock and Roll USA, my first half of the year. I don’t think I’ll get under 2:00:00 here, but I’m holding out hope. Check back next week to see how it’s going.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

We’ve been in full Valentine mode at the nature center lately, with corny animal valentines to boot.  (Really, the corn snake’s says “Call me corny, but I love you!”)  So, in the spirit of sharing the love I created some running-themed valentines to share with you and your running loved ones.  Due to space concerns I only included a few ideas below, but feel free to make your own! Continue reading

On Being Busted…still

It’s been a few weeks since I blogged. The Year of the Half Marathon has become a bit of the Second February in a Row I’m Injured. I’ve taken off the last week after my hip flexor started to hurt and kept getting worse. My best guess is it’s my back that caused this, so I’m doing all I can to help both injuries. In order of efficacy, that is: standing at work, enzymes (Wobenzym, which acts as an anti-inflammatory), icing, squatting v. bending over, and doing strength exercises. And not running.

It’s hard not to do what you want to, so this is tough for me. I’m stubborn and driven, so I’m trying to channel those attributes toward getting better and getting stronger. I’ll be visiting my physical therapist tomorrow to see what’s going on. After that, my plan going forward should be clearer. I’ll post again then.

Big News!
I got into a coaching certification class in April! This is so very exciting to me, since I already inhale running knowledge like air. I’m formulating a few plans on how I can help the club. I’ll talk about them in another blog post because I’m still not 100% sure what I want to do.

So President Lydia and I are headed to Richmond to grace the class with our presence. And a healthy dose of … us. It’s going to be awesome! Does anyone know a really good place to eat nearby?

On Injuries and Their Origins

It was with the best of intentions. I signed up for Pilates with Elaine thinking that it would be a great way to make my core stronger. I’m trying to eat better, keep my miles up, and I really want to get stronger. That’s a lot of work, so I thought I’d outsource my strength routine to someone else.

And it turned out so wrong. I’ve had a Very Angry Back for almost two weeks now.

Continue reading

Life on the Sidelines

“Running shouldn’t hurt.” With that one statement, my running life changed. I was sitting in my RRCA coaching certification course and our instructor, an exercise physiologist and noted running coach, told us that running isn’t supposed to hurt. In that room sat seasoned ultra-marathoners, Iron Man triathletes and others who have run myriad races and none of us could believe it. She went on to explain that if one trains PROPERLY, one should not feel more than typical muscle discomfort. “Say what, now?” I was always of the opinion that running was supposed to hurt, which is one of the reasons I ignored the nagging pain in my groin for so long. I don’t even know when my pain started or what caused it. I just assumed it was from over-training, but it could have also been due to my over-zealousness in spin class or the weight room. I had been near the end of training for the Richmond Half Marathon when I took the coaching class and I had come to accept “the limp” as part of my life. Confounded by her statement, I pulled her aside to discuss my pain. After she told me how wrong my training had been, we discussed the possible causes and implications of my pain and she strongly suggested that I not run the race and let my INJURY heal. Wait…injury? I never thought of it as an injury. Annoying pain, yes, but an injury…?

Let me be clear, I am hardly a “soldier.” I don’t often “suck it up and move on” when it comes to illness, aches and pains. I will run to urgent care if my nose runs for more than two days. I wasn’t toughing the pain out, I was in serious denial. I kept telling myself that the pain was normal and that it would eventually go away. Well, it didn’t, and after that discussion I could no longer deny it. So the following week, I made an appointment with an orthopedic specialist and prayed for the best. The problem was I couldn’t get an appointment until after the race. What to do? (Incidentally, my instructor knew I wouldn’t listen to her suggestion of cease and desist so we discussed an action plan to get me through the race that was just two weeks away. ) Rather foolishly, I completed the Richmond Half Marathon, limping by mile 7 and hobbling in agony through mile 11. It was the first time I seriously considered a DNF, if only the sweeper truck would have driven by. Adrenaline, a long downhill at the end of the course, and the prospect of pancakes got me to the finish line. It was a truly painful experience and I promised myself that I would do whatever I needed to do to heal properly. That meant I had to stop running cold turkey. And with that, I began my life on the sidelines.

Next up – diagnosis and recovery.


On Relativity

You know that saying, “There is always someone better than you”? It’s so like that in running, too. And it’s true that there is always someone worse than you, too. My relative place in running kept coming up this week.

There was a discussion about increasing group participation, the Olympic Trials, my obsession with data, and an affirmation of why running is so great.

Continue reading

An Old Year, a New One, and New Runners

This past week was a busy one. I’m trying to run 30 miles in a week for the next month or so, and this was my first week trying to do it. I’ve found that I like it better to stay around a certain mileage until I adjust, and then jump up another 5 miles and stay there a while. So, this week was my first at the 30 mile level, and I hit it.

It’s a good time to do it. I’m back in the rhythm after the holidays and I know my first half will be here sooner than I think.
Continue reading

Kate and the Year of the Half Marathon

This year, I’m going to do half marathons.

Well, I’ll do other stuff too, but the focus is the half marathon. It’s a middle distance race that’s just out of my comfort zone. I have no interest in marathons. Too many variables, too much training time. 5Ks and 10Ks are great, but they don’t feel like the Monumental Accomplishment that I like my goals to be. So I settled on the half marathon.

Continue reading

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