Trial and Error

Reflecting back over last weeks race, I spent time thinking about ways I could have made it better.  Training runs help to provide the time to learn what works and what doesn't.  Ordering a new pair of shoes and taking them out on a run to see how they work (or don't), trying new hydration packs, realizing you shouldn't have had that huge salad right before your run (Where is that poop emoji when you need it?)

Many of these things are complete enjoyment for me.  Going to the race expos and getting all these new fun trinkets, snacks, gear, and then taking the out for a test run.  This is the advice I give to many people when they ask me about various aspects of running.  I often get asked what type of running shoes I use.  But as we know there are so many options out there, because there are so many styles of running and what works well for one person won't work for another person.  There are somethings I would never go without and others that I KNOW I cannot even attempt!

So my recommendation is always to just try it out.  Many reputable shoe sellers will give you a 30 day test period where if the shoes don't work they will gladly replace them for you, often free of charge.  I tend to be the person who likes the new, shiny shoes that are so conveniently emailed to me every week.  While I'm not affiliated with any company, anything I promote would be because I've used it myself.

What is the one absolute, no questions asked, please do this, piece of advice that I will give to my fellow runners?....  Here is the golden rule (as well as my admission of how I broke this rule last weekend on the RnR Arizona Marathon)...


This is what training runs are for.  Don't pull out that fancy new pair of socks you got at the expo, slide them on for the race the next day, and realize the sole (get it, sole), purpose they were created was to give you a nagging blister one mile into your race.

So what did I do?  I went to the expo, bought a fancy waist band that holds a water bottle and has room for every item I could ever think of needing on a run, and I kid you not, I slapped that baby on for my race.  Around mile 16 I realized that sharp, nagging pain in my back was caused from the water bottle that was continuing to slap my back as I ran.  I continued for 3 miles to attempt to run and slide the belt around to a comfortable position, only to end up carrying the bottle and finishing up the remainder of my run with a nagging pain.

Will I use this belt again?  HECK YA!  It's amazing.  Will I run the same distance with it, probably not!  I learned I love the belt!  So long as I don't have to use it for that length of time, its perfect.  I've actually used it twice this week and its been great!

I'll be heading out to Sedona for the Sedona 1/2 marathon on Saturday.  At the race expo on Friday, I'll again revel in the excitement of the vendors and all the glorious running goodies they have in store for me.  What will I attempt to do again?  Thats right, listen to the golden rule... Nothing new on Race Day.  Hopefully my blog update next week can show that I am able to have some restraint!

I'll be driving back home on Saturday after the race to prepare for a local 10K on Sunday.  The Super Bowl run is always a good run and typically the first of the local races for me.  I look forward to sharing how these races go with you all next week.

Until then, enjoy those training miles with all that fancy new running gear!

On a side note, coming home from AZ, I welcomed this amazing item in the mail.  It sure made my heart warm and had me instantly reliving this amazing race all over again!

P.S. - As I gave the hint last week to what my next marathon is.  It's 5 weeks out until the Napa Valley Marathon, March 3rd, in California!  So here is to the journey to #7!!!  Stay with me for updates!!!!


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