Posts Tagged ‘travel’

Running Japan

After completing the Honolulu Marathon in December 2014, I had my first experience running in Japan. It was a great experience, part of my post-marathon recovery. Last month, I completed my first truly ‘international’ race, the Kumagaya Sakura Half Marathon in Saitama. Although I’ve already written my race report, I wanted to share my stories of running Japan prior to that race! Running in Kobe, Kyoto and Kanazawa!

**NOTE: This is a photo-heavy blog post!!

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Running 2017

We’re a week into 2017, and I’m still getting my bearings a bit. I was back to work on January 2, and I’ve been trying to stick to one of my goals of getting up at the same time (6am) every day. This has been mostly successful, but I’m tired. Yes, I know, 6am isn’t early for a lot of you folks out there…but trust me, I’m not a morning person!

While I haven’t fleshed out entirely what’s happening this year, I’ve got a pretty good handle on running plans for the first half of 2017. Last year was a pretty prolific year of running. I don’t anticipate doing quite the same volume of races, but I want to hit my target of 2,017 kilometres.

Rather than outlining everything I’ve got planned, here are a few of my highlights for Running 2017: (more…)

November

Bradley on the Run has definitely been running more than writing so far this month! While I’ve got some blogs / race reports in the works, I thought I’d provide an update on what’s been happening in November!

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Hood to Coast

After a lengthy hiatus, I’m happy to have Lucy back to share another one of her guest blog posts…this time about the Hood to Coast Relay! If you don’t know Lucy already, or you haven’t heard her story, you can read my Interview with a Runner – Lucy Chi! Take it away, Lucy!

Hi everyone, the following is my very belated review of the Hood To Coast Relay 2016!

On August 26-27th, 2016, I  participated in my second ever Hood to Coast Relay (H2C). H2C is an overnight team relay that runs a course of 197-199 miles from the top of Mount Hood to Seaside, Oregon. Every team has two vans, which rotate after every 6 legs, giving the other team a chance to recuperate. Every runner on the team typically runs 3 legs over this span of 197-199 miles. H2C brands itself as the “Mother of All Relays” given it has been around since 1982. Currently, most teams are accepted into the relay by a lottery system. Like most popular races, it has become difficult to gain an entry into this race.

Hood to Coast

Luckily, this year was my second time completing the relay. I first completed this relay in 2013 and was fortunate enough to be invited back by a fellow Forerunners clinic member who has become very dedicated to organizing this race (Thanks, Dan!). Apart from four members, the 2016 team was completely different from the 2013 team. 

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Disclaimer: I received a free entry to North County Wine Run as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

 North County Wine Run

Two months from today, I’ll be running my 7th half marathon of 2016 – the North County Wine Run in Battle Ground, Washington. I’m very excited about this race for a number of reasons…but before I get into that, let me share a few of the important details of the race:

What? Both a half marathon and – new in 2016 – a 3-person relay option
When?
 Saturday, September 24, 2016 starting at 8:00am
Where? Battle Ground, Clark County – the south-west corner of Washington State, not far from the Oregon border

North County Wine Run

How much? $85.00 for the half marathon (increasing to $90.00 on August 25); $171.00 for the relay (increasing to $180.00 on August 25) – read on for a discount!

OK, now that we’ve got that covered, here they are…

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Lucy kindly agreed to write her third guest blog on the Newport Marathon. You can read more about Lucy from an interview I did with her a few months ago at Interview with a Runner: Lucy Chi!

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On June 4th 2016, I ran the Newport Marathon on the Oregon coast. This was the race I had been training for since January. The goal was to qualify for Boston ideally – or at least achieve a personal best.

In the week leading up to the race, there were a few unexpected obstacles I had to address. One, I had started experiencing an excruciating toothache which was somewhat exacerbated by the impact from running. This was not fun since anyone who has had a toothache knows that you can’t think straight when you have a toothache. Second, I realized I was having an outbreak of rosacea on my body. It rarely happens. In fact, the last outbreak was in 2013. As one can imagine, I was naturally displeased while trying not to be too stressed out about either.

Fortunately, by Thursday, the toothache had subsided somewhat (I did visit my dentist) and the rosacea seemed limited to my torso. Otherwise, in terms of race prep, everything else was on track. I had a terrific pasta meal upon arrival in Newport, 36 hours prior to the race. I also slept well both evenings at the hotel, and the bathroom routine went smoothly on the morning of the race.

I had travelled to the race with my sister, which was also a lot of fun. This was our first race together since the Victoria Marathon 2013. Package pickup was simple the day before. There was no need to show proof of registration. Included in the goody bag were some final race instructions – 1 page, single-spaced and in 10-font. Perhaps my attention span is low these days, but I would have preferred something more concise and in larger font. The instructions did note how the course was measured and that racers would be disqualified if we ran on the wrong side of the road. That made me a bit nervous. What was a surprise was that we would not receive our souvenir shirt until after the race. I guess they really want to make you earn it!

On race morning, we met with fellow Forerunners group leader Judy, and all went to the start line together. The sun was out but the temperature was relatively cool still. On the shuttle bus to the start line, we ran into a former Forerunners friend Stephen with whom I frequently ran several years back. This was a nice surprise. Both of us had trained all winter using the heart rate method and testing with Peak Performance Centre.

The race course itself was an out-and- back course, with the start and finish line located about a 1 mile from each other. It was mostly flat, scenic and along Yaquina Bay. The temperature climbed as the race went on. Fortunately, for the first portion, the road was slightly shaded by a cliff on our left side. However, this disappeared before the 13-mile mark and runners were left exposed to the sun for quite a long period after this point. My pace started to slow naturally. All I could think of was that I wanted to finish this race strong and running. There was no doubt the middle portion of this race was tough for me on this day.

Newport Marathon

The good news in the end:  I did finish the race running and feeling strong again (i.e. no cramps). The bad news:  I didn’t meet my qualifying time nor did I achieve a personal best. However, I was not as disappointed as I thought I’d be. As I watched my qualifying time pass, I realized this race weekend was already great, as I had a lot of fun with my sister and there will be always be other races.

The race medal we received at the end also helped. All half marathon and marathon runners received a beautiful, individually-designed glass medal. It was a medal that one could truly repurpose as a necklace.

Newport Marathon

In addition to the medal and the short-sleeved technical shirt by Alanic, runners also enjoy lots of post-race food such as clam chowder and a pint of beer for free.

Newport Marathon

Overall, it was a well-organized race for a small resort town. For anyone interested in a scenic, fast course in the Pacific Northwest in the future, I would definitely recommend this race. Who knows, I may be back myself in the future for redemption!

Final Results

Chip Time: 3:43:36
Average Pace: 8:33 min/mile
Place Overall: 116/502
Age Category Place: 7/52

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Congratulations, Lucy! I’m really impressed with your efforts and even though it wasn’t a Boston Qualifier this time, I have no doubt in your ability to reach that goal. Thanks for sharing your experiences! – B.

Read other guest blogs by Lucy:

And don’t forget to read my Interview with a Runner: Lucy Chi (one of my most popular posts ever!)

 

Running England - Yorshire

Following an absolutely splendid trip to London (read all about Running England – London), we ventured into the countryside of West Yorkshire!

Yorkshire – Day One

A dear friend of ours lives in Mirfield, West Yorkshire – so we spent the next few days visiting with Anna. We arrived at Mirfield Station early in the afternoon and, afternoon a spot of tea, headed out for some local sightseeing at Oakwell Hall (c. 1583) – and got our first taste of the English countryside.

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Yorkshire – Day Two

With guidance from Anna, my first run took me along the Calder Valley Greenway, a very peaceful run that included the Calder & Hebble Navigation Canal. There were cows. It was perfection.

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We spent the rest of the day sightseeing further afield around Leeds, at Harewood House and Kirkstall Abbey (ruin dating from c. 1152).

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Yorkshire – Day Three

My friend’s stepmum, Ann, graciously acted as a running guide for me the next morning. As a local, she took me on a very scenic tour of the area, that also included some fascinating commentary and historical notes. It wove through the lanes and bridleways of Lower Hopton, and the streets of Mirfield. We conquered a few hills together, and had an absolutely delightful time!

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A bit more sightseeing at Black Dick’s Tower (no joke!) in the afternoon. That evening, we visited the Rams Head Inn – a 450-year-old pub that is perched in an isolated spot on the Pennine Mountain range. It was a stormy night, too, so just right for a cozy beer with friends.

Running England - Yorshire Running England - Yorshire

Yorkshire – Last Day

We bid a tearfully fond farewell to our friends, and made a stopover in York. We spent the day touring around the town with yet another friend we hadn’t seen in many years. It’s such a scenic place, and I wish we could have stayed on longer!

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Tune in next time as the adventure continues on into Scotland!

OH! And I almost forgot. Here’s a token picture of Yorkshire pudding:

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Have you ever had the chance to run in the English countryside?