I’ve fallen in love with a fanny pack.

FullSizeRender (2)Yes, you read that correctly. I’ve fallen in love with a fanny pack. I’ve officially drifted into mom territory, and I’m afraid there’s no going back.

The other week, I won a discount code for a Tuvizo 2-Go Waist Pack through Neon Is My Color. I honestly wasn’t even sure what I’d do with it, but I was able to get this product for free by using the discount code combined with Amazon Prime.

Literally a few days before I received the Tuvizo, I got a new iPhone 6S Plus. I immediately panicked, because, as any runner would think first, how was I to hold this behemoth while running? I didn’t have an arm band that would hold such a beast.

In comes the Tuvizo! It touts that it holds up to an iPhone 6S, and it holds the 6S Plus as well. I tested it out during my 20-miler that I recently blogged about, and it came in so extremely handy.

Yes, I felt like a major dork wearing that plus my hydration pack, but it made it so that I didn’t have to stop and take gels or chomps out of my pack during my run. It has a handy front mesh pocket that I used to store my empty gel wrappers too.

It didn’t feel too heavy or bulky, and I even wore it to the park with the Angry Toddler over the weekend before I got my iPhone case.

Embrace the fanny pack!

My First 20-Miler

Hi, running family,

I had my longest training run to date on Saturday, November 15. I went to go meet my fabulous running group, the Smyrna Clayton Running Club, at 7:30 a.m. about twenty minutes away from where I live in Delaware to do as much of the twenty miles as possible before heading home to finish up my miles. I got up around 6:50 a.m., since I knew I’d have to just throw on my running clothes, grab my gear that I packed the night before, and hit the road.

For long runs, I use my cheap hydration pack that I got at Target with a 70-ounce Camelbak bladder.  I stick a plastic baggie in with the bladder that contains my house key, my driver’s license, and Gu energy gels or Cliff Shot Bloks. I also of course pack some PlowOn Gum instead of drinking coffee first. You can use code “runbeckyrun” for FREE shipping!

For this particular run, I tried a new Cliff Shot in Razz flavor, which reminded me for some reason of Entenmann’s Raspberry Danish Twist. I also had a Chocolate Outrage Gu, and the Citrus and Black Cherry flavors of the Cliff Shot Bloks. I typically stick to Gu gels only, but I ran out of my usual supply, and Dick’s Sporting Goods at my local mall doesn’t carry a ton of variety.

As I gathered my stuff, I noticed a cute note that my husband left me (points, points!):


The Smyrna Clayton Running Club meets each Saturday at one of three main locations. I, of course in my stupidity, went to the wrong darn location that morning! I don’t like to hold the group up, so I messaged our fearless leader with my mistake and told her that I wouldn’t make it this week. There’s a paved running trail near The Young Bean Coffee Shop in Clayton, DE that’s about a 3.5-mile loop. You run past a school, past a pasture with cows, over a little bridge, and along a small road at one point. I run a bit farther than the trail goes, since there’s a port-a-potty near a local park called Smyrna Municipal Park that I like to stop at.

I did my first fourteen miles in this area, just going up and down the path. Along the way, I took a few pictures, because they stood out to me.


[This photo show contaminated land right next to the road I ran on for a bit.]2

[This photo shows an odd metal statue/figure along the trail.]

I’m glad I was on that particular trail that morning, because I found a woman’s car keys and was able to return them to her. I also saw a few white cows in the pasture, which I thought was wicked neat. By the time I stopped to take a picture of them, they had gone back into the barn though, boo. The Angry Toddler would’ve liked that picture! Overall, the first fourteen-miler was uneventful. I walked briskly while I took my fuel or water, listened to The Running Lifestyle Podcast along the way, and generally enjoyed myself despite the wicked wind.

The reason I split up my run into two segments was simple—I wasn’t sure that my cell phone battery had enough life in it. Previously, it had died around Mile 15.5, so I wanted to charge it during my ride back home. Fourteen miles seemed like a good spot to stop, since doing a 10K at home to finish up didn’t sound impossible.

When I got home, I quickly took a bathroom break and got back out there. This time, I ran around my neighborhood and another about a mile away from our house. Nothing eventful happened there, aside from seeing an old woman in curlers raking her leaves in bare feet. That was interesting to say the least.

I finished in 3:48:24 with an 11:25-minute pace, which I’m fine with. I’m not a fast runner, and I’d rather enjoy my runs and not get injured.


C&D Canal Half Marathon 11-7-15

12191535_10206805136678610_4615500854528955658_nThe first C&D Canal Half Marathon in New Castle, DE took place on November 7, 2015. I knew the weather would potentially be very rainy, so I thought leaving our house in Dover at 7 a.m. with toddler in tow for an 8 a.m. race start would be OK. I’m usually overly anxious about leaving for races wicked early, but I was feeling guilty for dragging my family out early on a Saturday morning, so I thought 7 a.m. would be fine.

My fabulous husband drove us, and we accidentally just put in “C&D Canal” in our GPS. Whoops, that was wrong! We ended up on a dirt access road parallel to the race around 7:50 a.m. We finally put the right address in the GPS and arrived at 8:10. As we were parking (in one long line), I contemplated just turning around and going home. I was having pre-race jitters, and the sky looked gray and angry. I nervously asked the parking attendant if the race was chip timed, and he said yes, so we forged on.

We had to walk about 300 yards to the start, where everyone had already gotten their bibs. I frantically ran to the race table, got my bib, and struggled to pin my bib on to my Swirl Gear shirt while the National Anthem was sung. I somehow managed to pin the damn thing to my nipples, basically. I was rushing, even though the race hadn’t begun yet.

Here’s why: There were apparently only two bathrooms at the start, so even though we were late, the race started around 8:15 or so, because they were trying to wait for folks to use the bathrooms before starting.

The 5K and half participants started at the same time, so it was crowded at the beginning. There was one water stop around Mile 2 or so. The first six miles or so were flat with a great view of the canal. Then before Mile 7 there was a sharp turn with a large hill. There was a bit of a downhill after that leading to the marina. I thought the turnaround might be there, but it wasn’t. We ran a bit more uphill to turn around (since it was an out and back). There was a water stop near the marina and some port-a-potties, which I used since I couldn’t at the start of the race. I originally wanted to keep an 11-minute or 11:30 pace, but I was closer to a 10:45 pace each time I looked at my Nike+ app.

I stopped to fill up my Fuel Belt containers at the Mile 7ish stop, where they had only water bottles and some cups of water. Going back there was one major hill, but that was about it. I ran behind a man carrying the American flag for a long time, which was neat. Throughout I listened to the Another Mother Runner podcast and the Running Lifestyle Show podcast. No one really talked to each other, which was different from my half experiences in the past.

Overall, the scenery was gorgeous, and with better race support, this race will be awesome next year! I ran virtually the same time (2:22:45) as I ran the Rehoboth half last year (2:22:07), but this time I stopped for the bathroom and water, so I’m happy with my performance overall.

Despite a few setbacks, I’ll definitely do this race again!

Christmas Wish List 2015

As I continue to train for my marathon in early December, I dream about all of the cool gadgets and products I could use during my long runs. Granted, sometimes it’s better to run “unplugged” so to speak, but I really do love listening to podcasts during my long runs. I’ve come up with a few wish list items if anyone’s feeling generous *wink wink*:

  1. Cases and cases of PlowOn Gum: Seriously, I go through a case in less than a month. I love this stuff. If I could, I’d go on their monthly plan!
  2. Garmin Forerunner 220: I’m tired of my iPhone dying during long training runs.
  3. UA Compression leggings: I’ve never owned a pair of compression leggings, but these ColdGear compression leggings look awesome for long, cold runs!
  4. RedFox wireless EDGE headphones: These puppies state that they are certified water and sweat resistant, which is right up my alley. I sweat like no other, and I’ve ruined countless pairs of headphones because of sweating.
  5. BondiBands: I’m constantly searching for the best headbands that keep sweat from pouring down my face and eyes. I’ve tried SweatyBands, which I like, but I find that they’re not thick enough, and they sometimes slip a bit. I currently use a UA band, which works fairly well, but it’s not quite perfect.
  6. Tales from Another Mother Runner: I’d love to own this book! I listen to Dimity and Sarah on a regular basis, so I’ve really been wanting to pick up this book.
  7. BAMR Tank and Sweaty Band: I’m totally a BAMR (Bad Ass Mother Runner), so this simply rocks!

What’s on your list?



PlowOn Gum Love

imagesI’m not always one to toot my own horn, so I wanted to ask my fellow runners what they like about PlowOn Gum!

Beth says, “I have had the free samples and just received my first order yesterday. I really like PlowOn Gum, and the taste is wonderful too.”

Megan says, “After struggling to regain my energy every night after a long commute, I decided to give PlowOn Gum a try. From the first time I used it, I was impressed. It tasted far better than I expected an energy gum to taste and it worked great. It gave me the push I needed to get up and knock out my workout!”

I just ordered a new box too, because I’ve been starting to do my runs in the morning before work. I used to be such a morning person, but now I dread getting up. The sad part is, I don’t even have to get up that early! This morning I got up around 7:20 a.m. to go on my scheduled four-miler. It was wicked humid out from the rain the night before, but along my way I saw two bunnies and a cute little kitten. I also felt like I had more energy during the day, so I think I’m going to like morning runs again.

So if you’d like FREE shipping, please use code “runbeckyrun” at checkout! Oh and psshht—they are testing a citrus flavor in the lab right now! Squeal!

Keep PLOWing,


Could this be real?

I may have created a running schedule from August through early December. I may have joined an awesome running club. And finally, I may have decided to run a marathon. Whaaaaaat?!

It all began after I signed up for the New Castle, DE C&D Canal Half Marathon that’s in November. I knew I also wanted to sign up for the Rehoboth Beach Half Marathon, since I had such an awesome time last year. The course was flat and fast, it’s a mix of pavement and trail running, and I PRed there. The difference money-wise between the half and the full is a mere $20. So I got to thinking—why not just go balls to the wall and do the full? I have exactly 18 weeks until December 5, 2015, so I wrote out a training schedule late last week.

RBRC logo jpeg format

I knew my friend Torie was a long-time member of the Smyrna Clayton Running Club (SCRC), and my friend Lindsey had encouraged me to give it a try. I don’t think I do well with running and talking to friends at the same time, so I was super nervous, but my first run with the group was a success! Torie is about 20 weeks pregnant, so she did a run/walk combo while I ran slowly the whole 3.5-mile run. It was so much fun! Yes, I gasped for breath as I talked, but pshhht, who cares. We had fun, we caught up, and afterward we grabbed coffee and bagels at the Young Bean.

I’ve now since recruited my friend Lauren (who’s training for her third marathon in November for the Philadelphia Marathon) to try out the SCRC as well. Our friend run together (oddly enough, since we’ve been talking about it for over a year!) will be this Saturday. Not only do I get to run with friends, but I also get to check out new, different locations to run.

Last night (August 3, 2015) was my first “official” marathon training run. I did three miles on our old trusty treadmill (thanks, Bert!), and it went well. I typically listen to the Runner Girls Podcast as I run, so that was nice. My lesson learned on this run? Don’t eat Cold Stone ice cream before running. I felt like I was sweating out the calories and a bit sluggish. But hey, my whole motto is going to be getting in the miles and not worrying about my pace.

Here’s to a new journey!

Running with a Toddler {Who said this was a good idea?}

11401237_910999225626598_3303814002061418768_nMy toddler reminds me of an elf—with her sprite smile, her devious “who-me?-I’m-not-doing-anything-wrong” giggle, and her father’s trickster ways. I melt into a pile of mush whenever the Angry Toddler smiles, laughs, or does something silly. She just hits me in the right spot and makes me feel like a kid again. That’s one of the reasons why I love taking her to a nearby park after work (not to mention it tires her out before bed). We have a blast running around, going down slides, and swinging together. (Side note: She refuses to go on the “baby” swing, yet she only wants to go on the “big girl” swing if she’s sitting backward in my lap. Is that a phase?)

The journey to get there—a mere mile if that—is another story altogether. It goes something like this:

Me: “Do you want to go to the park with Mommy?”

Her: “Yes! The big park!”

Me: “OK, let’s run there!”

{Commence gathering up ten pounds of gear such as cups, water, a pink ball, Baby doll, etc. and load up an additional 26 pounds of toddler into the jogging stroller. I’m sweating before I even start running. And can we rename “jogging stroller” to “I’m a kick-ass parent using a LIGHTNING-FAST running stroller”?!}

Me: “OK, are you ready to run fast?!”

Her: “Mommy, run FAST!”

{About five feet into our journey, we have to stop to make sure that her shoes are still on, Baby’s still in the stroller, she has her water situated just right, oh, look! there’s a bird! Wait—request to run over a squirrel!}

My left hip starts to burn a quarter of a mile before we hit our destination, but I can deal with that. A woman walking her dog coming toward us makes a comment about pushing so much weight, as I smile, give a thumb’s up, and continue up the slowly sloping hill. I’m trying not to look too out of shape, as I forgot to throw on a proper bra, I’m wearing a cotton t-shirt (gah!), and I forgot Body Glide again. {Hey, what’s an impromptu run to the park for if you have to prep YOUR stuff?} I feel like a bad-ass, but I certainly don’t look like one.

This scene reminds me of one of the last 5Ks that I ran in New Castle, DE. There was a wife and husband team, each with a RUNNING stroller pushing several children AHEAD of me the entire time. Mind you, I ran the race in under 30 minutes, so this couple was a powerhouse on wheels. I don’t know how they did it, and I commend anyone who uses a RUNNING stroller on a regular basis or during a race (hell, let’s just go with anyone at all), especially with children over 10 pounds each.

Generally, the Angry Toddler is well-mannered in the stroller, but on the way home during this particular trip, I had to convince her that yes, we were going to look at the duckies, even though we were already out of the park and well on our way home. I feel terrible fibbing to her, but it’s the only way I’ll get her back into the stroller these days. She’d much rather walk or run with Mommy when she’s in the mood. Whatever works these days!

I’d love to hear how you deal with running avec toddlers! Show me your RUNNING stroller pics with your toddlers—I’d love to see some fellow warriors on wheels!



A Runner’s Summer Reading List

IMG_5805Summer’s in full swing, and I need a new book to read on the beach. Normally, I’m a Stephen King kind of girl, but every once in a while I like to throw in a novel about running. I’d love your input, but below are the top five books that I want to read in the near future:

1. Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr.—This originally self-published author was well ahead of his time in 1978 when he published this novel, now in its eight printing. From Amazon.com, “Inspired by the author’s experience as a collegiate champion, the story focuses on Quenton Cassidy, a competitive runner at fictional Southeastern University whose lifelong dream is to run a four-minute mile.”

2. Running on Empty: An Ultramarathoner’s Story of Love, Loss, and a Record-Setting Run Across America by Marshall Ulrich—I’ve always wondered what goes on in ultramarathoners’ minds. You’re a crazy bunch, y’all!

3. Train Like a Mother by Sarah Bowen Shea and Dimity McDowell—I read Run Like a Mother, got caught up in the podcast, and now want to read AMR’s next book!

4. The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen—Yes, this is a teen book. I’m a sucker for a good inspirational story. This one features Jessica who “thinks her life is over when she loses a leg in a car accident. She’s not comforted by the news that she’ll be able to walk with the help of a prosthetic leg. Who cares about walking when you live to run?”

5. Sole Sisters: Stories of Women and Running by Jennifer Lin and Susan Warner—I love short story collections when I have a limited amount of time to read. From Amazon, this book “appeals to all women who know what it means to have the support of others who share their trials and triumphs.”

One Runner’s Wish List

Yeah, yeah, I’m writing a wish list in June. A girl can dream, right?!

Sometimes I just like to browse sites or running mags for items that I’d like to one day own. Do you have your own wish list? If so, I’d love to hear what’s on it!

Here’s mine:

1.) Bula Headwear: http://www.bulabula.com/product/bold-tube/

My friend, Kate, from Mama Needs a Run showed me her Bula tube when we ran the Wolf Hollow Half in November 2014, and I fell in love! You can fold it in several different ways to make it a neck warmer, a headband, an ear warmer, etc.

2.) Boulder Bands: I’ve seen many folks, like Misty from Misty Runs NJ on Facebook, using Boulder Bands. While I adore my Sweaty Bands, sometimes I feel like I just need a thicker band, y’know?

3.) Road ID: Don’t shun me for not having one of these babies yet! Road ID products are really essential to have, especially if you run alone like I do. As I learned from the Runner Girls Podcast, they have some pretty nifty accessories too!

4.) Brooks Launch 2: Check out the Runner’s World women’s review! I’ve always run in Brooks, so it would be nice to get a snazzy new pair in the near future.

5.) Personalized IRUN4 merch: I run for two amazing people—Joey, my IRUN4 sibling who suffers massive migraines, and Jene, my IRUN4 Buddy who was in a near-fatal car accident and still suffers great pain. I’d love to get a tech t-shirt, a headband, or something else I could wear daily and during my races for them!