The 5k Zombie Run 2015

Guess what time it is if you’re in the Tampa area?  5K Zombie Run time! (every time I use the word time without numbers Hammer Time comes unbidden into my mind, which is both sad and awesome.)

I did this run last year and the year before, and both times the only thing I had to complain about was that I immediately wanted to do it again. Badly. February 28th the zombies will be coming back to the Tampa area, and you know I will be there!

This time is a little different, because this time I was given an entry to run and an entry to give away for the run.  Lucky me, lucky you! If you’re in the Tampa area anyways.

Enter to win a race giveaway here: Rafflecopter giveaway


Have you ever run a zombie run? Long story short, you can run as a human OR as a zombie, either way you know it’ll be fun.  Even if you DON’T live. Which I haven’t yet.

If you are a runner you get 3 flags (like in flag football) on a belt and the goal is to get to the end of the 5K with at least one flag left.  Lost all your flags? You can pick up extras in the safe zones. Even if you lose those too you go home with a t-shirt and an awesome medal so really it’s a win/win situation!

They’re also having a costume contest, spectators are free, and there will be free photos after the race as well. Yay! They even have free gear check, which I think ALL runs should have, but they don’t always. Oh, and don’t forget the “post-race Apocalypse party complete with music, food, great vendors and a fun atmosphere.”

Check out their web page for more info, and don’t forget to like their Facebook page for updates.

If you aren’t feeling particularly lucky or you need more than one ticket sign up on and be sure to use code 5ZEN for $5 off your run!

Spartan Time

So what happened was…

I’ve been wanting to to sign up for a Spartan Sprint for ages.  I’ve read Joe De Sena’s book Spartan UP! (it’s great, go read it), I’ve done giveaways on the blog, and I’ve stalked their web site trying to figure out how the heck those people do all that.  But I haven’t signed up.  Why? Because of that thing where I am not bad ass.  Good reason if you ask me.

I haven’t been running until about a week ago and really the only workouts I’ve done in ages are Tae Kwon Do three days a week. So I signed up for the next Spartan Sprint in Tampa – in 2 weeks.  What? What changed? Absolutely nothing. And nothing was going to change.  Go big or go home, right?

Wish me luck. I am so going to need it.  And also a bit of motivation to get moving and ready.  And I found a great source, Spartan Up! The podcast.  Why is this so great?  A couple of reasons actually.

First of all, since it’s a podcast I can listen to it on Stitcher while I’m running.  If you have an Apple phone you can subscribe on iTunes. It’s hard not to run a little bit faster and a little bit longer while listening to people talking about how it’s done.

Second of all, each episode involves interviewing different people in different fields about different subjects. In other words, it’s not all about the same subject or even about racing in particular. So far I’ve listened to two episodes – Allen Lim Says It’s Ok to Eat Cookies and Angela Duckworth What is Grit and How Do You Learn It? Of course I started with the cookie episode.

Both episodes were really fun and motivating to listen to.  I like running and all but sometimes it’s nice to let your mind go other places while you are running. I found them especially cool because Joe De Sena (founder and CEO of Spartan Race) doesn’t necessarily agree with everything the people being interviewed are saying, and his mystification of how someone who is obviously well disciplined and in excellent shape would consider a croissant and coffee an acceptable breakfast was great. I love hearing two people who are both obviously doing things right talk about how they are taking different paths.

So go listen to the podcast, go get  motivated, and go sign up for something that you are totally not ready for.  Then get ready!  🙂

Color Run Kaleidoscope Tour

The Color Run’s kaleidoscope tour is wrapping up.  The year 2015 will bring a whole new thing.  What thing? I don’t know but I bet it will be great.

The point is, you can still get in on the 2014 Kaleidoscope Tour in Clearwater, they will be here December 7th! Truth be told, I already ran in The Color Run Kaleidoscope Tour back in January.  But I had so much fun I’m doing it again.  In January I ran with my kids, this year I’m going to do a little more running and a little less fooling around (that last part was a was a lie) and run it with my sister. This is the same sister I talked in to doing a spontaneous mud run with me, I’m thinking we’ll have a blast.

Color at the color run JanThe Color Run is still the only run I’ve ever done that was on actual roads.  It was pretty neat just because it was different.  Yes, I know most races are probably done on streets but not the ones I do.  🙂

So the question of the day is should you run The Color Run too? Well obviously I think so because I only write about things I like.  But do YOU think so?

From the Color Run’s site:

“Less about your 10-minute-mile and more about having the time of your life, The Color Run is a five-kilometer, un-timed race in which thousands of participants, or “Color Runners”, are doused from head to toe in different colors at each kilometer. With only two rules, the idea is easy to follow:

  1. Wear white at the starting line
  2. Finish plastered in color!”

To be serious I’d kill for a 10 minute mile, but whatever.  Even if you have never run before in your life you can wear white and get plastered in color by the end of this run, trust me.  I’ve seen people walk the entire race with a double stroller and I’ve seen people actually race this thing but what I haven’t seen is someone not having a good time at The Color Run.  Oh ya, and I also saw a unicorn guy.  No, I’m not explaining that one.

So, if you are in Tampa come on out and run with me, if you are not in Tampa check out their site to see if The Color Run 2014 Kaleidoscope Tour will be coming your way.  Here is where you can see if they are coming to you and sign up if you’d like.

Don’t tell me this doesn’t look fun!  Come out and play…


Also, check out this DIY t-shirt weaving tutorial they have on their blog. I didn’t even know The Color Run had a blog, there is some pretty cool stuff over there.

Disclosure: I have received two free race entries in exchange for posting about The Color Run. As is the usual all opinions are my own.

Oh, I almost forgot. You can use promo code COLOR5OFF to get $5 off a registration to ANY city. Important: code must be entered at time of registration, cannot be retro-applied. Also please type the code in, do not copy/paste. Not valid with other discounts or promotions.



The Starting Line

Today’s Writing 101 writing assignment:

We’re all drawn to certain places. If you had the power to get somewhere — anywhere — where would you go right now? For your twist, focus on building a setting description.


Two of my favorite places are the start and the finish of a run.  These two places can be very, very close to each other in space but they are really very, very far apart in every way that matters.

The starting line of my first mud run (which was also my first race of any kind) was a pretty terrifying and exhilarating place.  There was a group of perfect, could have been model girls off to the right all in matching running outfits all doing pushups and lunges and other warm up type stuff in unison that seemed pretty official and intimidating to someone who had never even run a 5K before.  Was I supposed to be warming up or something?

There were big, muscly guys also warming up and yelling encouragement to each other.  Um, I’m barely over 5 foot and way too little and un-muscled to be doing this.  What was I thinking?

The starting line was like a holding pen, lots of people standing close together, all of them kind of bouncing and moving in place somehow while waiting for the cannon to signal them to start running.  Looking past the starting line all I could see was dirt and mud.  No obstacles in sight, how far was I going to have to run before I could stop and climb something?

There was a couple standing next to me in t-shirts and work out pants like me.  I asked them how many of these they had done, none.   Yay, I wasn’t the only one!

Just like anywhere else I found that the more I talked to people the more people talked to me and come to find out there were a lot of first timers there.  I think you could literally feel the nervousness in the air.  But as we talked we started to feel like old friends pretty quick and to relax.

And the people who had done a mud run before all had the same thing to say.  You’re going to love it!  Just wait, you’ll want to sign up for another one as soon as you’re done, don’t worry people will help you if you need it, on and on not a negative word from anyone.

You could smell dirt, sweat, and tension in the air.  Don’t ask me what that smells like, but you’ll know it when you smell it.

Then the count down began.


Why did I sign up for this?


What was I thinking?


Didn’t they say there would be barb wire and electricity?


How cold is water with ice in it anyways?


I better move up to the front so I at least don’t start off last


Should I have worn shorts?


Should I have worn longer pants?


I can actually feel the excitement in the air like the electricity after a lightning strike


This is going to be awesome





Check out Spartan Race – From Home (and a giveaway!)

Have you run a Spartan Race yet?  If not are you trying to decide whether you’d like to?  Well, here’s your chance to see exactly what the races are like – from your own living room.  Kind of feels like cheating, but in this case it’ll work.

They’re televising races about once a month, leading up to the Spartan World Championship airing November 16th, which is being run is being run in Killington, VT. September 20th. That sounds like an excuse to have some friends over to get psyched up for running your own Spartan! (I don’t know if televising is really a word, but if turducken is in the dictionary then in my opinion anything goes)

Here’s the schedule of televised events:

Reebok Spartan Race Television Schedule: (All times ET)
DATE                            RACE LOCATION     NETWORK     TIME

Tues., August 19           Palmerton, Pa.            NBCSN         9 p.m.
Sat., September 13       Washougal, Wash.     NBCSN         2 p.m.
Tues., September 23     Amesbury, Mass.       NBCSN        10 p.m.
Sat., October 25            Wintergreen, Va.        NBCSN         12:30 p.m.
Sun., November 16        Killington, Vt.              NBC              3 p.m.

I’m not much of a TV person, I don’t even have cable, but I’d love to watch these races!

I have to say, there is a whole lot going on in the Spartan world right about now.  On top of televising races and the Spartan World Championship in Vermont they are putting together a Spartan Race Cruise in March.  Yes, I said cruise.  You go out and race on Saturday, and then Sunday they provide you with entertainment, food, drink and celebration. Talk about an after race party!

They’ve put together a giveaway for 2 for the Spartan Cruise including airfare and the cruise out of Miami (US residents only). Enter for a chance to win here, I did!

Has all of that got you ready to run a race yourself?  Well as luck has it I was given an entry to give to a reader for any open heat (non-confirmed start time) in any 2014 Spartan Race in the continental US., all you have to do to win is enter here: a Rafflecopter giveawayThe contest goes through Thursday morning, I’ll email the winner the code Friday, the 29th.

If you don’t win or if you need a ticket for a friend, use the code SPARTANBLOGGER for 10% off any race.

Disclosure: I have received a free race entry in exchange for posting a giveaway.

So here’s an interesting question for any experienced OCR fans out there. How do you prepare for things like climbing a rope or scaling a wall if you don’t have a rope hanging around anywhere or a wall to practice climbing? Somehow I don’t think burpees will prepare a person for such things…



Easing Back In

I’ve finally started feeling better (yay!) and ready to get back to running.  Only a mile at a time, but tonight will make it three times a week so I’m pretty happy with that.  I switched back to running outside which is HOT but also fun. I’m really surprised that after running on the treadmill for a couple of months and then not running at all for over a month running barefoot is just as comfortable as it was before.  I don’t know why but I thought my feet would get un-used to it.

Before I started running again I started doing yoga again.  It’s amazing how hard everything is the first time after doing very little but sitting or laying around for too long. But I found two yoga practices that are perfect for when you don’t have the energy to go all out but you want to do SOMETHING.  And the cool thing is after you do something you naturally want to do something else.  A body in motion and all.

This yoga practice is from Yoga Journal.  It’s nice and mellow but still leaves you feeling great when you’re done.

Here’s one for digestion.  It’s also gentle and relaxing.

My colitis isn’t completely back in remission but it’s close enough that I feel confident that if I keep up the meds and the aloe juice and keep down the stress and the bad attitude it’ll be gone in no time.   All in all it’s been a great week.

What do you do to keep your energy up when you aren’t feeling it or to ease back into working out when you’ve been off the wagon for a while?  If you know of any other great, mellow yoga practices I’d love to hear about them!




My Race Ragz – Review and Giveaway!

What would you put on a running shirt if you were inventing your own?  Turns out mine would be vaguely sarcastic.  Imagine that.


My Race Ragz lets you choose from about a ton of pictures and sayings, or you can create your own. They have motivational, funny, and even some for barefoot runners!

20140715_180408I haven’t been able to try my shirt out on a run since I haven’t been feeling well (and as you can see I used that excuse to not hang up my laundry too…) but I wore it around anyways and I absolutely love it.  Their shirts are really comfortable and shaped to fit nicely.  I ordered a size up and I’m glad I did – I would definitely recommend you do the same if you order one of their shirts!

I believe they only have white colored shirts, but the graphics can be most any color you’d like.  I actually chose black. I know, how boring I must be. But I like it!

I  know you want to create one of these, and here’s your chance!  My Race Ragz was kind enough to give me a performance shirt to review AND one to giveaway!  (US shipping only, sorry everyone else)

Enter below to win, and go ahead and make your shirt all kinds of colorful and you! You have until 7/25/2014 to enter; the winner will be emailed the following weekend.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I am DETERMINED to get out for a run this week, if only on the treadmill and I’ll try my shirt out then, it’s moisture wicking as well as cool looking.  Fortunately I finally realized that it would be best to post my review without waiting around for all that.  🙂

Oh, and since you can personalize these with your own saying you don’t have to run to love one of these shirts!


10K Update 4 AKA Summer Time…

About that 10K goal.  Ya, I still have it.  But how do you take anything too seriously when it’s summer time and you are living in Tampa? If you know don’t tell me, I don’t want to know.


Ya, huge Sublime fan here.

Summer is always a little bittersweet if you ask me.  The possibilities are endless, except for that whole gotta feed the kids 9-5 thing.  My 9-5 is as a technical analyst. Bet you didn’t see that one coming, I actually have to think 8-10 hours a day.  Nerd that I am I enjoy it, but when I’m done I’m done, and this is what’s left.  🙂

Anyways, back to my 10K goal.   I have been following the plan minus the cross training. I do yoga after every run, sometimes quite a bit, but that’s a much cross training as I’ve done since starting the 10K plan.  Until this week, when summer time hit.

First, I started the Kinetic Revolution 30 Day Challenge which, as all things do that look super easy at first, kicked my butt by the second week and reminded me that people who do not cross train are weaker than people who do. So ya, my legs are a wee bit more tired than they should be.

Then, to celebrate and make official summer I went paddleboarding AND kayaking.  I paddleboarded out, switched with my boyfriend and kayaked back in.  Best of both worlds!  You want some excellent cross training, try anything with a paddle.

Then, to also celebrate and make summer official I went for an hour swim.  It was both hella fun and hella exhausting.

And then I realized.  I have the choice of continuing to try to up my distance running each week, jumping into all kinds of other crazy exhausting but fun other summer activities, or trying to do it all.  I choose a lazy combination of all of the above.  I’m going to stick to running 4 miles on the weekend for a while and swim, paddle, hike, and other summer stuff my heart out.  I still intend to gradually add distance to my ‘long runs’, but not every week until I get used to all the extra stuff I’ve been doing.

I had my eye on a cool sounding 10K in July, but it specifically said it was NOT for run/walkers. That’s intimidating since it would be my first 10K and I’ve never done a 5K that wasn’t a mud run or fun run. Plus some people said that it was not only extremely hot in spite of being a night run, it was extremely dark in some parts which would make me nervous running by myself barefoot or not.

I’m thinking I will let summer be summer, gradually continue with my plan but repeat weeks as much as I want for a while, and look for a 10K when it starts to cool off a wee bit, maybe in September. I feel pretty good about this since paddleboarding and swimming are WAY more exhausting than running so they can only help my running in the long run (no pun intended).

So, what is my current goal? Paddle a lot, run 3 days a week consistently (hopefully including trails but not ticks, a whole ‘nother post)  listen to a while lot of Sublime, Weezer, Slipknot and such, appreciate the local bars, wineries and breweries, visit some aquariums and generally live like a tourist because I DO live in vacation land after all.

These guys agree with me, I’m pretty sure.


I’ll leave you with an entirely inappropriate but yet completely my favorite Sublime song because it’s summer and so I can.


How about you, do you change your plans for summertime even if you are an adult who doesn’t get the benefit of being off for the summer? You should!

I am. After all, I wouldn’t even be kinda zennish if I didn’t.


10K Update 3 – My Biggest Running Nerd Moment to Date

My last update I fessed up and said I had skipped a week’s running and was therefore going to do a ‘do-over’ week.  This week I didn’t do much better and started to plan on re-doing the week again, but with more running.  Then I decided forget that, time to move on, excuses are starting to stack up around here again…

Sunday night out of nowhere motivation hit and I decided that I would just run my 4 miles and move on to the next week.  Never mind that I hadn’t run hardly at all in two weeks and I’ve never run that far without taking walk breaks. That’s all good and determined and all that other good stuff.  It’s how I got it done that made this my nerdiest run ever.

First, I dropped the air conditioning 4 degrees.  I made myself an ice cold water with Endurolytes Fizz in it, which I had never tried before because seriously, it’s not like I”m running all that far. (It was grapefruit and delicious)  I put Spirit of the Marathon on Netflix and proceeded to run my miles while watching it.

Heck ya it worked!  Between the motivating movie and the fact that I wasn’t dying of the heat I not only ran the miles but could have ran more.  I think that it was the iced drink more than the air conditioner that helped with the heat, I don’t usually drink anything at all when I am running but I have of course run in the cold.

So cha-ching, on to the next week and I’m only 1 week behind from my original plan.

Do you ever use any jedi-mind tricks on yourself to get things done?  Whatever works, right? Right??

Color Us Rad!

Saturday morning me and mine and my sister and hers all got up at the you-know-what of dawn and went to Color Me Rad. Our (8 between us) kids ranged from her 3 year old twins to my 20 year old, we were quite the rag tag assortment.

We were a little late (we have a rep to keep up) and it was a wee bit warm but there was a nice breeze, they were handing out plenty of water, and we had a blast.  I think the kids favorite part is that they were not only allowed to get dirty, they were allowed to get OTHER people dirty.  The twins were rubbing their hands in the colored powder on the ground and then on peoples shirts, pre-school heaven.

Here’s our running crew.  AfterColorMeRadNeedless to say we did a whole lot of walking and trading the wee ones back and forth; they walked, ran and hitched rides  at will.  The run was on the fairgrounds so we didn’t feel uncomfortable letting the older ones run ahead of us. No cars and nowhere to get lost!

As much as I’d love for these fun runs to instill a love of running in the kids you really can’t say what will happen.  But I can say that events like this are a great way to spend the day as a family, get away from computers, and make great memories.  And my kids have all of their race bibs pinned to their wall.  I didn’t suggest it, so it makes me happy to see that they are proud of them.

And seriously, who couldn’t use a little more boom, a little more rad, and a little more color in their day?

The boysTo top it all off I had the added benefit of a build in chauffeur.  I still don’t get why people don’t love having teenagers around.  Well, OK, it depends on the day.

My DriverMy family’s other favorite thing to do together is eat, the family is Italian so we can get 40 people and 10 pounds of pasta together in a heartbeat. Like magic!

The family that plays together… probably bickers all the way there and back, but whatever.  How about you, what do you and your family like to do together?

Disclosure: I received race entries in exchange for posting about Color Me Rad.