Month: March 2018

Surviving Spring runs/races

I can’t catch my breath but I’m smiling.

Pollen, oak tree tassels, yellow snow in FL…spring brings the worst weather for us folks with allergies. Our eyes itch, our noses run, and it hurts to cough. This sounds awful for a regular person, but now from the perspective of an active person-it’s absolute torture! For instance today during the St Paddy’s Day 10k through the Evergreen Cemetery, I ran hard, and then couldn’t catch my breath when I finished(not because I ran too hard)-oak tassels we’re all over the course. Damn allergies. So what can you do if you’re active outdoors?

Treadmill running? No way!

You dealing with allergies? Check these suggestions out.

  • Over the counter medication. A lot of people swear by Zyrtec or Claritin to help them get through the worst of allergy season. I have never dealt with allergies until recently , but my husband and youngest use these medicines and it really helps.
  • Check the pollen forecast. If it calls for high pollen/ragweed counts plan on working out inside if you’re really susceptible to itchy eyes and trouble breathing. Low or moderate counts might be workable. It depends how severe your allergy triggers might be. I can work around it, but a BRF who suffers from asthma struggles.
  • When you should workout. Pollen counts are lowest during early morning and late afternoon/early evening. Plan on your workouts during those peak times.
  • Other options. Try a face mask if you’re only time to workout out is during mid morning or afternoon. The face mask should filter out pollens.
  • By early Summer… most of these symptoms should subside, and people can return to their normal activities.

Remember this too shall pass and you have all Summer and Fall to get out there. It’s tough but so worth it.

Even after not being able to breathe and feeling dizzy, I still managed to get an AG award.

I hope everyone has a great Spring training season and gets through allergies. If you have another suggestion, let me know so we all benefit.

Remember it’s not about the destination it’s about the journey ,


Rave Runs, new and old.

The start of the 40th Ortega River Run(photo courtesy of 904 Fitness)

I am a creature of habit. I drink a half of glass of oj, eat 1 banana with peanut butter, eat a yogurt(usually Chobani now Noosa), and have 2 cups of coffee for breakfast. Everyday. If it’s Saturday or Sunday…pancakes but probably not. Like I said…creature of habit. When racing, I am no different. I find a race I like, and I try to run it every year unless there’s a conflict. Case in point, Gate River Run every year since I first ran it in 2009. The Donna marathon since 2010. I love the race course, time of year, and race support. However, sometimes it’s fun to try something new. Especially if it’s close to your home, at your college Alma mater, and for a good cause.

The Smart Cookie 5k sponsored by the Jacksonville Jaycees fit the criteria.

Running at JU(photo courtesy of the Jax Jaycees)

This race is part of the Ultimate Sweet 3 race series. Each race benefits a different charity such as The Cupcake Run benefits GOTR(unfortunately I won’t be here for that race). I love running at JU and bonus…free box of Girl Scout cookies! No brainer-I’m in. The race started at 8:30 a m, which is late for me. I lined up at the front and in front of us were Ainsley’s Angels(disabled runners being pushed by their companion runners)-pretty cool! They got a head start, then it was our turn. The fastest runners sprinted away but I kept steady. JU is beautiful to run through with stately oak trees and…hills. Oh boy! Chris was being my sherpa and cheering me on. 26:08 was my 5k time! Good enough for 2nd place, but first Somoas. Very low key and the weather was just right.

Nice being on the podium being photobombed by cookies.

Then…I was suppose to run another new race (at least for this runner) Gasparilla half, but it was not meant to be. Last minute decision to run one of my favorites, the Ortega River Run(tuneup race before GRR). Bonus-this was it’s 40th year! I love running through Ortega! This race last year was hot…this year was more of the same. I better be prepared for a back up plan. Chris again was my sherpa. 8:30 start. Did I also mention this race is 5 miles and over 2 bridges? Yes, runners love challenges. First mile took us across the flat Ortega Bridge and through a lovely neighborhood close to Fishweir bridge. 8:19 pace(yes I have lost my mind). Down St John’s Ave and around Roosevelt Square Mall to the daunting Roosevelt Blvd Bridge which is only a mile, but no shade. My back up plan was run 2-3 minutes, walk 30 seconds. The heat was merciless. Then left and shaded beautiful neighborhood with …rolling hills(I love this course, I love this course…) and the mile 4 at Ortega Elementary school where I had parked my car. Keep going! One more mile.

Hallelujah, I’m done!

My time was slower this year, but I was still 4th in my AG! I kept going and finished and that’s what counts. The after festival was nice as always. Lots of after run treats.


  • The race courses were beautiful and well supported.
  • High quality swag-bling & shirt.
  • Nice after party/festival.


Why mess with perfection?

I love rave runs and discovering new ones that will become part of my racing habit next year. What are some of your rave races? Let me know.

Remember it’s not about the destination it’s about the journey,