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Mar 25

My Place In The Pace – The Mid-Packer

Happy Hump Day! Today is the last installment of this series and I’m ending on a high note with one of my favorite blogger/runners – Christine of Love, Life, Surf.

MY PLACE

I love the mid-pack runner because she is every runner. The middle-of-the-packers are those who lead a balanced life. They train, but not insanely like those at the front, but are more seasoned then the back of the pack. The mid-packers are the heart of the race and I especially love this one.

I’ve met up with Christine several times and even roomed with her at Ragnar, and I can tell you that we work and play very well together. If you haven’t read Christine’s blog, you’re missing out. But, before you jump over there, check out what she has to say about racing and why 8 seconds pisses her off so much:

I'm the one you can barely see, huddled under the blanket with Melissa Burton, at the end of Ragnar. It was freezing and we were on a beach. In the rain.

I’m the one you can barely see, huddled under the blanket with Melissa Burton, at the end of Ragnar. It was freezing and we were on a beach. In the rain. Christine is the only one smiling. I think she’s laughing at me.

 

  1. Name and favorite race distance

Just looking back at my year last year, it looks like the half marathon is my favorite distance. It’s long enough to be challenging but it’s not a marathon.

 

Finished! Philly half-marathon.

Finished! Philly half-marathon.

  1. Pace for that distance/ PR if you want to share

Over the course of the year, I lowered my half marathon time by nine minutes – a two-minute PR at the San Francisco Half in July and a seven-minute PR at the Philadelphia Half Marathon in November. My PR is 2:00:08 – so so close to breaking the two-hour mark, which is my goal! Damn 8 seconds.

 

  1. Do you have a pre-race ritual? Do you plan your outfit, meal, sleep, etc the night before or the morning of?

I don’t have a pre-race ritual (I don’t race enough to have one) but I do plan out my outfit, fuel, transportation and logistics beforehand. I do not like to be stressed or worried on race morning. I can’t imagine winging it on the day of the race!

My go-to breakfast is overnight oats. I know. I didn’t think that this would work for me since there’s a bit of dairy in it but amazingly, it does. It doesn’t upset my stomach and it gives me good, sustained energy. If it works, don’t fix it, right? Oh, and coffee of course. In terms of outfit, I tend to gravitate towards the clothes that I’ve worn on recent runs where I’ve felt good and strong.

Christine takes the most amazing pictures on Instagram, like this one of her running though one of the many snow days in NYC.

Christine takes the most amazing pictures on Instagram, like this one of her running though one of the many snow days in NYC.

 

  1. Where do you line up at the start? Front, back or somewhere in the middle?

I actually line up in my assigned corral. Am I the only one? Sometimes it feels like it as everyone tries to inch up closer to the start, no matter what their corral or pace. I generally prefer to start towards the side of the road since I don’t like feeling like I’m in a herd of cattle.

 

  1. What happens during the race? Is the vibe relaxed, tense, do people run the whole time or walk? Is there crowd interaction? Do you hear a lot of GPS watches beeping? Do people text or take pictures? Do you fuel?

I usually listen to music when I run so I don’t hear a lot of watches beeping or crowd noises. It helps me focus on running my race and not get distracted by everything that’s going on around me. Generally, people are running the whole time although some do stop to take pictures (please move to the side and don’t stop in the middle of the road!). I take some fuel around 4-5 minutes and again around 9-10. Depending on how I feel, I may take a little extra as I near the end of the race.

Running a race that your family is spectating adds another dimension to it all – a slightly stressful one! There’s nothing like seeing the disappointed faces of your little ones at the finish line because they missed seeing Mommy along the route.

During Broad Street Run in 2013, my family was out to cheer for me. We had our meeting points mapped out and I knew which side of the street they would be on…until I started receiving texts from my husband while running saying that plans had changed. I don’t know how I managed to continue to text him while running without falling on my face. I missed them at the first meeting point and managed to see them emerge from the metro (faces sulking) just as I was running by. Like a good Mom, I doubled back around to give them all a quick hug.

They look happy with their mama!

They look happy with their mama!

 

  1. What happens at the finish? Gasping for air? Hugging friends, family? Is it crowded? Do you head for the food tent? Take selfies?

I’m usually gasping for air when I cross the finish line and it takes a few moments to catch my breath. I don’t linger in the finish area because I’m usually focused on finding my family or meeting up with them. I grab my medal and space blanket, maybe take a photo and find food and water.

 

  1. What do you do when you get home? Ice bath? Massage? Foam roll? Wine? Cheeseburger? Sleep?

When I get home, I may foam roll right away depending on how I feel but I’m most concerned with getting into the shower and cleaning up. Sometimes I move through some of my favorite yoga poses for runners. Then it’s all about refueling and eating all the food.

 

Now that you know all about the amazing Christine, you should see her do yoga. Seriousuly. Check her out:

Facebook: Love, Life, Surf

Instagram: @cyu888

Twitter: @cyu888

Are you a mid-pack runner?

What is your go-to breakfast before a race or an important day?

 

28 comments

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  1. Janine Huldie

    Loved getting to know Christine here a bit better and you are right Instagram photo above is pretty awesome and when I check her blog out now, I am going to see if I can follow her over there. Thanks to both of you for sharing today 😉
    Janine Huldie recently posted…Confused Musings on Kid’s Birthday PartiesMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      Thank you Janine! I think that it’s about time that I follow your blog too! I always see your wonderfully supportive comments everywhere!
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  2. Hollie

    I really enjoy Christine’s blog so it was great to read more about her here. Thank you for sharing all of this! I’m usually gasping for air as well when I finish a race…it’s nice to know I’m not alone LOL.
    Hollie recently posted…Shamrock Half Marathon (1:33.06) My Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      Thanks Hollie! Phew! Happy to hear that I’m not alone is gasping for air too although I think you’re just a wee but speedier than me 😉
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  3. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

    Thank you so much Allie for having me here today! It’s so fun to share a bit more about my running over here. I miss it right now! Haha. I’m not laughing at you at Ragnar I swear! xo
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  4. Nellie @ Brooklyn Active Mama

    Um yes Christine is awesome!! I just love running into her at NYC events she has a fantastic spirit. Must be all that yoga! I loved that you doubled back to give your family a hug, such a great mommy! I think I will try overnight oats, I think my tummy might actually like that!!
    Nellie @ Brooklyn Active Mama recently posted…Weekly Wednesday Workout: Upright Super Crunch Abs ExerciseMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      Awww thanks Nellie! I love running into you at events too!
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  5. Britt@MyOwnBalance

    Christine is awesome! I just tried overnight oats for the first time and I really love them!
    Britt@MyOwnBalance recently posted…Thoughts on MeditationMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      I think that you’re pretty great too Brittany! 🙂 Overnight oats save me all the time since I have my breakfast ready and waiting for me in the morning and I don’t have to worry about making something.
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  6. misszippy

    Yes, Christine, you are pretty much the only one who does the assigned corral, along with me. It drives me insane!

    That pesky little 8 seconds is going away this year, I’m sure of it. And you are too good post race, doing all the right things! ; )
    misszippy recently posted…Why run speed work on the roads?My Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      haha. We’re such rule followers! 🙂
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  7. Kristina Walters @ Kris On Fitness

    I will have to go and check out her blog now. Thank you for introducing her to us!
    Kristina Walters @ Kris On Fitness recently posted…Shamrock 8K Run ReviewMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      Nice to “meet” you Kristina!
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  8. Jen@milesandblessings

    I love Christine and her blog :). You have some awesome ladies on here :)!!!!! She can do some pretty amazing yoga poses too!!!!
    I am not sure what I am…I guess it depends on the race. I am not super fast, elite status, but I am not really a middle of the packer either. It is kinda like my size in clothes I am ALWAYS in between sizes….I am kinda an in between runner! 🙂
    My go to breakfast before a half or a full marathon is a bagel and usually 1/2 a banana. If it is shorter than a half I don’t worry too much about it.
    Jen@milesandblessings recently posted…March Madness!!!! and why I do my easy runs with my GarminMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      Thanks Jen! I’m honored that Allie asked me over here today. I love how you describe yourself as “between sizes” 🙂
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  9. Angela @ Happy Fit Mama

    It’s so great to see another familiar, beautiful face again this week. Love Christine! She’s even more lovely in person. I love that she goes to her assisted corral. I think I’ve only done 3 races that had those. Can you tell I mostly run small town races?
    Angela @ Happy Fit Mama recently posted…Timex Ironman One GPS+My Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      I’m totally a rule follower. It never really occurs to me to not go to my assigned corral because I don’t want to mess things up for other people ha! The races in NYC are so big. I would love to run some small town races.
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  10. Kim

    Fun to see Christine here!!! This has been a fun series – love all the runners you featured!
    Kim recently posted…Sometimes a Race Ends up Not Being a RaceMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      I was totally surprised and honored when Allie asked me to be a part of this series! But it’s been run to learn more about everyone and their racing.
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  11. Tamara

    I love that I’ve met you both.
    I didn’t know people didn’t usually do dairy before a big race? Well Christine does anyway! Overnight oats sound great.
    I like to read about what people say about the post race. At least no one says, “I’m generally vomiting in public.”
    Tamara recently posted…Let’s All Snuggle And Be Merry.My Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      Yes, some people like to eat dairy before running and especially races because it can upset the stomach. And that’s no fun. But it is delicious!
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  12. Carly @ Fine Fit Day

    LOVE seeing Christine here! It’s been so fun watching/reading her running progress in the past year or so, too. I know she’s going to take that 8 seconds off (and a few to spare) when she recovers from her surgery. Also, I am just realizing it is difficult writing a comment about someone when you know they’re going to read it. 🙂 HI CHRISTINE!
    Carly @ Fine Fit Day recently posted…The Quest to Lose 10 Pounds in 6 Weeks – Week FourMy Profile

    1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf

      haha HI CARLY!
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…About That Shoulder Surgery…My Profile

  13. Natalie

    I loved this and one thing that I love about Christine’s photos are the awesome yoga poses in amazing locations! The ones you took in San Francisco were beautiful.
    Allie, this is such a great series!
    I usually have a bagel, banana and energy bar before a marathon. I think I’m in between sizes too 🙂
    Natalie recently posted…Marathon Experiences X 2My Profile

  14. Michelle @ A Dish of Daily Life

    I’m a rule follower too, so I start where I think I should. I wonder if anyone actually lines up in the right corral too. It seems like I always have to dodge people that started in a corral that clearly was not where they should have. For that reason I start on the sides too! This was fun to read Christine!
    Michelle @ A Dish of Daily Life recently posted…7 Ways to Rock Your Disney Princess Race ExperienceMy Profile

  15. Sandra Laflamme

    I looove Christine’s blog! She will definitely get that sub 2 hour half once the shoulder surgery is behind her. I am always inspired by her gorgeous yoga photos!
    Sandra Laflamme recently posted…Fueling for endurance sports with healthy foods.My Profile

  16. jill conyers

    Great choice for your series! I read anything and everything Christine shares about yoga 🙂
    jill conyers recently posted…Flavors of Spring Green SmoothieMy Profile

  17. Jesica @rUnladylike

    Christine’s blog is one of my favs. She is a wonderful writer and her yoga moves on Instagram are absolutely amazing. Thanks to you both for sharing her race/run from her perspective. xo
    Jesica @rUnladylike recently posted…Run Happy Springtime SmoothieMy Profile

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