Shamrocks & Unicorns

If you had asked me 10 days ago if I was going to be running the Boston Marathon, I would have replied with  a “maybe”. While my running life is going really well, because of a minor 3-4 week set back with my calf, I am not near where I had planned to be at this point, and with the end goal being a 2:43 marathon, “going well” is not going to cut it. I need to knock it out of the park. Then last Friday the below pictured email popped up in my inbox and I reread it about ten times while mumbling “Do they have the right Kristen Lawrence?”

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If you are friends with me on social media, (Instagram) then you’ll know I mentioned this was the best running related email I’ve ever received. That wasn’t an exaggeration. I have dreamed about standing in the Boston Marathon elite field, listening to the Star Spangled Banner, seeing Shalane Flanagan & Desi Linden take off, then later watch Meb and the rest of the elite men fly by me at low 5 minutes pace. (Elite Women start 30 minutes earlier than the Men). I really want this experience, I’ve worked so hard for it and I’ve earned it. So barring any unforeseen incidents in the next 38 days, I’ll be on that Boston Marathon starting line wearing a Running Etc. top, bib # F32, and a HUGE smile on my face. I may not be the speediest one there but I could argue that I might be the happiest. I can’t wait to take it all in, earn my third medal with a unicorn on it, and leave Boston with a better experience than I did in 2013.

Obviously that means I better be fit or get fit.  As I mentioned, running is going well. I think I have finally kicked this calf issue. I’m not running nearly as much as I was or as I wish I was, but I’m running. The majority of my time is spent cross-training and while I miss my miles, I’ve loved something different! I’ve always enjoyed indoor cycling, but the rower and elliptical have been keeping me busy too, plus strength work; which just destroys me, like I can’t finish the reps or have to adjust the weight/size/etc. There is some sort of strength every single day of training. One day will be squats, lunges, step-ups, and the following will be upper body focused. Tons of core work is thrown in there as well.  If I ever get a bit more organized I will write about it.

The additional strength work leads to one of the goals we have for 2015; to make me a better overall athlete instead of just a better runner, with the hopes that it will translate to a better marathon time through less injuries, additional strength, & speed. I’m putting my trust in this new program and will be patient that it takes time to get the results I want. Also, for the friend  that asked; for the first time in my life I can do 2 pull-ups! Four weeks ago I could only do 1/2 a pull up.  We haven’t been doing pull up specific stuff at all, just regular strength but we have a pull up bar that my kids love to play on and  I can get a little competitive with my 7 year old. <-He busts out 6-7 pull-ups in a row!

My next race will be the Shamrock Half Marathon.  This won’t be a “race” for me. We are still being conservative so it will be a quick long run to see where my fitness is at. I really can’t afford to take recovery time off and risk injury to race right now but Shamrock is a favorite of mine so a great workout in then cheering for friends during the full marathon is a perfect plan. I hope to see many of you there!!  This is a short blog post so I will leave you with some of my running photos from the past few weeks.

New gear from Running, Etc.

New gear from Running, Etc.

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Easy run, gorgeous view!

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Searching and analyzing bib numbers is one of my talents.

Thank you everyone for reading and for all your support lately. I appreciate it more than you know and hope to see a few of you at Shamrock & Boston! 

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28 thoughts on “Shamrocks & Unicorns

  1. How exciting about Boston! You have absolutely earned that spot and should relish every minute of it! Good luck this weekend. My friend Joanna Zeiger will be lining up with you–say hi for me!

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  2. So excited for you and can’t wait to see how you do in the marathon! That’s gotta be a really fun email to receive, too. I’m glad you’re able to work out and cross train a lot, even if you are running less. Being able to do a pull up is something to be proud of as well, many female runners can’t do that… I sure can’t do that… plus it’s fun you get to represent your running store/team at the Boston Marathon :). Our “team” is more of a community service/fun thing but there’s something special about putting on a singlet to “represent” that really takes it up a notch.

    BTW, totally unrelated question but how do you like the Brooks Launch? Thinking about picking up a pair, just noticed em in the pic. They do look sweet!

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    • Thank you Amy!! I have only run in the Launch twice now and I love them!! They are soft but not too soft like a Glycerin (which I also love). Plus you are right, they do look pretty sweet 😉

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  3. I’m so excited for you Kris and this is an experience you have earned and truly deserve. I know you will come back strong and honestly I cannot wait to witness it! You’ll remember this experience for the rest of your life.

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  4. YES!!! So darn excited for you! Does this mean you get to have your own water bottles too, and special transportation to the start where you have a nice warm indoor space to hang out with the elites? How exciting! You have to go. I am in complete agreement about the overall strengthening needed to stay injury free as we get older. I am not doing as much as I should, but my arms hurt ALL the time (although swimming has something to do with that…). Some time we need to get together and commiserate over our crappy calves…mine have been good but they do talk to me every now and then, reminding me to do my exercises. Go get ’em at Boston!!!

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  5. Sounds like a smart plan all around… Be patient and conservative for now then kick ass later on this year and punch your ticket to the trials. 🙂 you may surprise yourself at shamrock and at Boston by running faster/more comfortably than you expected… Stay open to success. You are working hard and have earned it!

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  6. I am so beyond excited for you and squawked when I saw this on Instagram. It’s one of my bucket list items too and I’m so excited to hear that such dreams can come true! Sounds like a really smart approach to me; far better to get to the start line uninjured than overtrained. You’ll be fantastic and I cannot wait to see the pictures!

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  7. You are so amazing!! You are truly a phenomenal athlete!! I believe in you and know that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to!! I’m running Shamrock 8k!! I know you’ll have a fabulous race! XOXO

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  8. I’m so happy to hear how things are going for you Kris! Also, I can think of a more deserving person to be in that elite field. You have put in the work and earned that spot! And though you aren’t running the same high volume as in the past the extra strength training will pay off for you.

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  9. So awesome! Very excited for you to get to walk out and line up as they announce the elite women’s start! That’s so, so cool. You’ve definitely earned it so make the most of it and enjoy!!! Hope Shamrock goes well for you this weekend as well – may the wind be at your back! 🙂 (hate that wind. I’ve run that full marathon twice now and that’s still one of my most vivid race memories – battling that darn WIND!)

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