Monday, May 5, 2014

Double Liebster Award

Happy Marvelous Monday! After we had many great performances at the A10 Championships in Amherst, MA. I am back in Philly with ONE exam left tomorrow. Luckily I had 6 hours on the bus ride back to relax a little.....but you know me, I cannot relax, instead I thought I would write a post :)

I had noticed many blogs have posted Liebster Awards. What are they you ask? A way for readers to discover new blogs, and find out more about the bloggers they follow. As much as I enjoy reading these, in secret I was hoping someone would nominate me as it seemed like fun! Last week I received not one, but two Liebster Awards, so here is a long post where you can learn more about yours truly. I will not be offended if you do not want to read it all, unfortunately one of my weaknesses is rambling....and there is a lot of it in here!

Thank you to Karla and Nancy for nominating me :) I nominate Lindsay, Amanda, Helen, and Angela

My Questions for my award-ees:
  1. What is your biggest strength?
  2. If you could meet any one person in the world, who would you meet?
  3. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
  4. What is your favorite time of day?
  5. If you could give one word to describe your life, what would it be?
  6. Which season do you like to run in the most?
  7. What are you trying to improve?
  8. What is your favorite post workout/race meal?
  9. What is your favorite quote?
  10. Tell me something I do not know about you
Here are the rules:
  • You must link back to the person who nominated you
  • You must answer the 10 Liebster questions given to you by the nominee before you
  • You must pick 10 bloggers to be nominated for the award
  • You must create 10 questions for your nominees
  • You must go to their blogs and notify the nominees 
Here we go......

Why did you start running?

Lets just say, at first, it wasn't by choice! Like most other school kids, I had to run cross country in PE lessons! It actually took quite a while before I enjoyed it. Believe it or not, I hid in the bathrooms when my school did trials for the cross country team as I did not want to run it! About a year later, I realized I was good at it, and ended up on the team. I joined a local running club, met a great coach, Brad Plummer, and the rest is history :)

What’s your favorite distance to race or to run in workouts?

I love my long runs! I think that shows I am destined for the marathon! I have only raced the one marathon, which did not go according to plan, but I know in my heart that the marathon is what I was made to do. My favorite type of long runs are progression runs, where you get faster as the run goes on. You can read more about my progression runs in my training updates :)

What’s your biggest running goal right now?

To represent Great Britain in an International Competition; to hold that Great Britain Jersey in my hands knowing I have finally earned it. It is what gets me out of bed in the morning, out the door for every run, and what allows me to dig down to another level to push myself when my body and mind are screaming to stop.

I also have some short term goals, to SMASH my 1:15 half marathon PR, and DESTROY my 2:49 marathon time. Last weeks Yasso workout gave me an indicator of the shape I am in, but I am not going to focus on a specific time until after the half.

What’s your power song?

I have two complete opposites....



Don't laugh, I know it is not exactly my "style", but I love the meaning behind it.

OR



I like the first one to give me confidence that I deserve to be where I am, and the second to make me excited and feeling good about the race!

What mantra works for you when you’re pushing hard?

"Keep Moving Forward".....as in this speech....



or this speech.....



I love that "All your strength, all your power, all your love, everything you got" part.

Can you tell I love Rocky? :P

What’s your favorite movie?

Uhhh see question above....Rocky Balboa, Rocky IV, and of course, Titanic....Leo will always be my first love:)

Who’s your running hero?

Lauren Fleshman always amazes me with her grit and determination, no matter how many injuries are sent her way. However, Paula (Radcliffe) will always hold a special place in my heart....especially as we are from the same club and she donated lots of wonderful training apparel to us over the years :)

What achievement are you most proud of? What is your proudest fitness accomplishment?

Oooh that a tough one; either finishing 5th in the 10k at the DII Outdoor Track Nationals in 2011 or the GB Trials. Although that Nationals was not my best result place wise, coming back after my calf strain with only six weeks of running was proof to me that you can do anything  you put your mind to.....and that pool running works!

Finishing 3rd in the Great Britain Olympic Trials in the 10k was a dream. Buuuuuttt, many of the best athletes did not run, so it is hard for me to truly consider myself 3rd in Great Britain at the 10k. I wish I could have raced them all to see where I really rank.


What’s your favorite vacation spot?

Hopefully I have not been to it yet....I hope to travel the world a lot more than I have. As of right now? Aliso Viejo (Orange County), California. I have many wonderful friends from when I lived out there who I do not get to see very often, and it is beautiful! I would not want to live there permanently, but I really enjoy visiting.



What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not running?

I think most of you know this already through my recipes, but cooking healthy meals, or baking unhealthy sweet treats. Again, polar opposites, but I enjoy the challenge of creating a healthy meal that is balanced, and tastes good.....and I just love sugar :P

Dogs or Cats?

Dogs :) I am sorry, but I just do not like cats....yet they always seem to chose me whenever I am in a room with a group of people. Its like they can sense that I do not like them, and come over to annoy me!

Alright, HALF TIME, here are my questions from Nancy!

What is a fitness item you’ve splurged on, and was it worth it?
    I am on my third Garmin, and I would definitely say they were money well spent. Garmin's are such an important tool for my training, especially while I am running everything alone.

    What do you think about when you run/workout?
      If it is just an easy/regular/recovery run, I usually think about how I would like the rest of the day to go; organizing my thoughts, and thinking about what I would like to accomplish that day. I am a huge believer in visualization (check out Jill's recent post on this), and I find my day usually follows that plan I set, meaning I lie in bed happy with the day.

      If it is a hard run, I try to tell myself that I am strong, I want to do this, and I can push through the pain.

      What is your cool-down routine?
        Depending on the distance of the race/workout, but most of the time I workout for 7-9 miles, and my warm up/cool down is 3.5 miles each way; unfortunately the way to Kelly Drive is downhill......which means the way back is usually a painful uphill. Once I ran into a light post about 1/4 mile from my apartment as I was so tired!

        What has been your favorite race to date?
          Probably the Philadelphia Half Marathon; I loved running through the city I had recently fallen in love with, and my athletes came to watch and cheer me on, which was so special!


          What are you looking forward to, fitness-wise, in 2014?
            Hopefully two sparkly new PRs, see running goals above :)

            What is your favorite sports bra?
              My Saucony Ignite Bras, they are tight and supportive, but come in such cute colors! I also love the cutout at the back :)

              How do you fuel before a race?
                My go-to is a banana, bagel, and animal crackers 3 hours prior to the race. I hydrate with water and Body Armor, and I am currently in the process of testing out gels/fuel for during races.

                What is your biggest fitness worry?
                  Training at a high level means you are constantly dancing over the injury line, so I guess for me, my biggest worry is pushing my body over its limit, which would force me to take time off.

                  Top 3 workout songs? (Note that I will totally judge you by your answer…jk.)
                    I rarely listen to music during my runs, but for inspirational songs; see above for the first 2, and.....this one is another favorite



                    Now it is your turn, pick a few of the questions and tell me about you!

                    Would love you to follow me:

                    36 comments:

                    1. It was fun learning more about you! Uh and duh, I think you can totally smash the 2:49 -- you just need the right day!

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                      1. Thanks so much Jennifer :) I hope so! We will see if that right day can find its way to Chicago marathon day!

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                    2. Thanks for the nomination! I love things like this. AND I loved getting to know you better!

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                      1. Thanks Angela, I look forward to reading your answers :)

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                    3. Fort Minor "Remember the Name" is one of the best pump up songs ever. I have put it one for that very purpose many a time :D And I, too, love my long runs. I'm hoping to be back on the straight and narrow so enough so that I can enjoy them. I'm so happy Amhearst was a success! And good luck on your exam! SO CLOSE

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                      1. It definitely is! Makes you feel invincible! Glad you enjoy the best run there is! Thanks so much for all your support, now it is DONE :D

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                    4. I am suddenly craving animal crackers. lol for real.

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                      1. Did you get some? I have an endless supply :)

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                    5. Thanks for answering! Progression runs are my absolute favorite too. They make me feel so strong when I nail those final paces at the end of a run. And you'll definitely SMASH those two PR's!

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                      1. Thanks for the nomination Karla, it was fun :) Glad you enjoy those also! Lets hope, we will find out one of them in a few weeks!

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                    6. I would love to see you crush those goals! So excited that you are tracking to do just that. And 3rd at the Oly trials for 10k--amazing no matter how you slice it!

                      Well, for a Rocky fan, you certainly picked the right city!!

                      Thanks for the nomination and thanks for the kind words today on my site.

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                      1. Thank you Amanda! You are so sweet :) And yes, I love my Rocky! You know I am here for you anytime, just give me an email :)

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                    7. I just HAD to watch that Rocky video from 2006. LOVED it and so needed to hear it right now. I also loved reading this and getting to know you better. You are truly an amazing athlete!

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                      1. Glad to hear that Allie, I watch that video a lot....it is good for running/training/competing, and LIFE! Thanks so much for your support :) Hope you are doing well!

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                    8. It was so great to find out more about you! I love the choice of songs to power you through - I like both of them and they would get me moving (and that is saying something)!

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                      1. Thanks Molly :) They are good ones, anyone that they do not get moving cannot be human :P You of course know the Take That one too right?

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                    9. thanks for choosing me! and i love learning about you. I know you will some day represent GB!!!

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                      1. Thank you my friend, I sure hope so!

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                    10. I love learning things about you!! I have some Liebster nominations but I am being lazy about filling them out haha :) You are totally going to get those new PR's this year!!

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                      1. Thanks Leigha :) You should do them, would be great to learn more about you too! Thanks so much for your support!

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                    11. Loved reading these! You will definitely hit those running goals!

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                    12. Hhaa the Rocky songs.. I love it. I also do notttt like cats and they always come over to me and I'm like GET AWAYYYYY. Oh, and I love sugar :) But you already knew that.

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                      1. Haha I am a cheeseball right? YES! That is exactly what they do to me! And yes, I think we are similar in our sugar addictions :)

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                    13. Congrats Tina! That's so awesome and your current PRs are so impressive. I:15?? What an all star. I do hope you smash them though and get that jersey.

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                      1. Thanks Ursula :) I appreciate your support!

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                    14. Fun! Excellent goals, amazing workouts..and Rocky? Oh YES.

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                      1. Thanks Amy! Glad you are a Rocky lover too :)

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                    15. Holy Crap! Fort Minor brings me BACKKKKKK!!!! ha ha. This song totally just put a smile on my face, much needed!

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                      1. Glad to hear it, you put a smile on my face a lot with your goofiness, so glad I could return the favor :) Its a good'un!

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                    16. I don't know any of the songs...or the runner you mentioned. I guess I'm just out of the loop! I am glad to see that I'm not the only person who likes to mix yummy baked goods with some healthy food. :)

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                      1. They are a few years old, but not that well known I guess. Yes, I love having the best of both worlds :)

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                    17. Wow I can’t believe you don’t listen to music as you run. That is extra hardcore in my book.

                      Your PRs for your half marathon and full one I can only dream of let alone beating that.

                      I love all your answers to these questions and love how running focussed the questions were :)

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                      1. Haha, I cannot even imagine listening to music. I only really do it when I am really feeling crappy and need to take my mind off it! Thanks so much Jan :)

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                    18. Always enjoy reading Q&A post, I feel I get to know the person better. Thanks for sharing.

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                      1. Thank you :) They are fun to answer too!

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