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Carissa Liebowitz

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Everything posted by Carissa Liebowitz

  1. Carissa Liebowitz

    And the hits keep coming...

    Ugh, so sorry about your car! While it is exciting to get something new, it sucks to have to go about it this way. But heeeeey, the running is going well, so yippee for that!!!
  2. Carissa Liebowitz

    Never Too Late for a Turkey Trot Report

    I just got the NYC Marathon record book in the mail on Saturday and realized I needed to be in the 60-64 year old category to get an AG placing with the time I ran.
  3. Carissa Liebowitz

    Starting to Get Cold

    Great job in getting out there in the cold temps!
  4. Carissa Liebowitz

    Boston - Week 2

    I've tried the boots a few times and really like them myself. Maybe they work? Maybe they just feel good to sit down and do nothing for a short while? I was listening to some podcast explain how stuff like the boots, hyperbaric chambers, massage, etc. often feel useful to runners because it forces them to relax and lower their heart rates. Like the Vaporflys though, I don't care if it's all just in my head and there is no science - if it works, it works!
  5. Carissa Liebowitz

    Just get both feet out the door - or so they say

    Running a race every month is such a good way to stay on top of training - especially if you just make them a part of your training plan.
  6. Carissa Liebowitz

    January ramblings

    Wow. Things are a complete 180 from July 2018. When I look back and read some of my posts, it’s strange to be future me, feeling something completely different. It makes me wish I was better at handling the ups and downs better. One of my favorite poems is “If” by Rudyard Kipling and one of my favorite lines is if you can meet with Triumph and Disaster and treat those two impostors just the same. I’d like to think that outwardly, I kept my cool about it all. (Maybe, maybe not?) And on certain days, I guess I was inwardly okay too. But there were certainly many, many days that I was incredibly frustrated and felt like my body had failed me. After 5-6 weeks of running, I did start to feel normal-ish again. And after 3 months, I felt like I was where I was about 4 years ago in my training. Which is pretty exciting when you think about how quickly it came back in the grand scheme of things. FOREVER when you are in the throngs of it, but time gives you perspective on pretty much everything. Now that it has been close to 6 months, I still feel creaks here and there. It’s not perfect, but there are more good runs than bad and the speed that I worked so hard to build is coming back. Perhaps it’s the confidence of having a coach or it’s the confidence of being benched. Maybe it’s the confidence of YOLO as I reach closer to 40 side of my 30s. And maybe it’s the fitness I had all along, but it was buried under my own self-doubt. Either way, I’ve hit some sub-6 paces in workouts over the past couple of months and it feels pretty darn good. I ran a sub-20 min 5k during a workout Tuesday - something that seems impossible to race, but oddly reasonable in the middle of a training session. I’m training for things that are basically the opposite of speed though so my weekends are long, slow treks filled full of vert and lately, mud. I’m not worried about hitting X pace with my speed because everything is done on effort and time. It shouldn’t be any surprise that once you remove the governor of pacing yourself by a watch, magic can happen. My legs are getting stronger, my balance is better, and I can feel the transitioning happening. I’m a long ways still from those big mileage weeks of 2017, but I’m trusting my coach to steer me in the direction of success. And success at this point is a solid finish at GDR, a respectable Boston Marathon, and getting home from the Everest Marathon in one piece.
  7. Carissa Liebowitz

    Boston - Week 2

    A very solid training week! The question of doubles makes me think about a discussion I was having with another runner this weekend. I was explaining how having a coach and being "forced" to do speed work has been a good challenge for me. Going to run for 3 hours? Love it and can't wait to do it! 20 minutes of speed work during a 1 hour of running? Haaaaaalp. I dunno, maybe you like doubles? Of course, doubles only make sense if they are doing something for you fitness-wise. Anyway, this was more of just a rambling about how it's sometimes a double-edged sword to do things we have a love/hate relationship with in running. Blah, blah, blah.... 🙄
  8. Carissa Liebowitz

    And done.

    Nice cadence you got there!
  9. Carissa Liebowitz

    Getting Personal

    Preach! I'm turning 37 in April and it's amazing to me how many people are so flippant about asking. Why I don't have kids is between me and my husband. Kthxbai. In a kind-of-the-same-but-not-really-the-same, people always ask oh, does your husband run too? I know it's a "normal" thing to ask like the kid topic, but it definitely can be a sensitive topic depending on my mood.
  10. Carissa Liebowitz

    January ramblings

    Thanks! Excited to be excited. 🙌
  11. Carissa Liebowitz

    January ramblings

    I'd like to just go back and be 33 forever.
  12. Carissa Liebowitz

    January ramblings

    Thankfully, we both survived, right? 😉
  13. Carissa Liebowitz

    January ramblings

    Man, I wish I had more vacay time this year to get out west! But, if you are still in DEN in 2020, I would love to come visit.
  14. Carissa Liebowitz

    The case of the missing tablet.

    Glad you are feeling marathon-ready-ish! That is quite a crazy tale of your tablet - especially weird that the other business is near you. I was hoping you were going to find it in your luggage.
  15. Carissa Liebowitz

    Working off those biscuits

    Awww, it's so good to get family time and just enjoy the holidays if you can. Glad you had a race (& friends) to get you jump-started into the next training cycle.
  16. Carissa Liebowitz

    Starting Off 2019 Well

    Yay - so happy you are training for a race again! Glad you had options to get in the run. I certainly don't envy the icy conditions you Northerners have to contend with this time of year. Yikes!
  17. Carissa Liebowitz

    The week in running and cooking with Shalane

    I love, love, love those books! I have made all of those except the slaw and they are super yummy. Sometimes my grocery does spices BOGO so I buy some of the pricier ones at that time, like cardamom. That granola is addicting!! Also, I bought bison to do the meatballs, but then made a half & half mixture with beef and made a double batch to freeze.
  18. Carissa Liebowitz

    2019 & Boston Week 1

    I'm liking all those long runs you have planned - especially week after week. I personally think they help with the mental hurdle of the last 10K of marathoning.
  19. Carissa Liebowitz

    Peace out 2018, ready to #doepicshit in 2019!

    2018 just wasn’t my year. And not to say that amazingly wonderful things didn’t happen, it just wasn’t the year I anticipated having. January Sober January. In an effort to try to lower my resting heart rate, clean up my diet, and just take a break from booze, I decided to embark on sober January with a couple of internet friends. There were times that I kind of missed it when I’d go out with friends, but it was not that difficult to commit to overall. That being said, I was happy to return to the world of IPAs in February. I had some top of foot pain following my races in December (er...2017) and decided to give myself a week’s rest the second week of January. Any niggles of pain I’ve had in the past have generally subsided within a week’s worth of rest. This was different. The pain was still there and despite me backing off my effort and mileage, I decided I needed to see a doctor. February After an initial diagnosis of tendinitis, my PT saw that I wasn’t feeling any improvement and suggested I see a podiatrist. Unfortunately, I was diagnosed with a metatarsal stress reaction and sentenced to a boot. February was a blur of depression. I couldn’t run, bike, elliptical, row, or walk. For someone who thrives on sweating, this was tough. I ultimately found some YouTube videos that allowed me to work up a sweat from a chair and took out all my aggression on weights. March I re-joined the gym so that I could swim and was allowed to bike early on in the month. Ultimately, I decided to nix the bike because the strap irritated the top of my foot. Despite me spending as many hours cross-training as I do during peak mileage weeks, I felt incredibly out of shape when I came out of the boot. The first few runs were tentative and my heart and head were in another place with Adam’s mom’s passing. It was the oddest mixture of grief over her loss of life and my own selfish joy being able to run again. April It never was out of the question that I would run Boston. The race, plane tickets, and Airbnb were all paid for and come hell or high water (pun intended), I would be there. I had 3 weeks of weight-bearing training when I toed the line. Fortunately, the misery of the elements nearly outshadowed everything else and I was so numb that even if my foot was in pain (which it wasn’t), I don’t know that I would have been able to feel it. May I thought things were looking up in May, but in retrospect, things just never really clicked. Perhaps I was too overconfident after Boston or too overzealous after 2 months of not running. Either way, I had a couple of good runs and a whole bunch of bad ones. As the month drug on, a soreness in my right tibia started to increase. I managed to eke out a pacing gig for Lauren at CJ100, but that was the last bit of strength I’d feel for months. June Sentenced to the boot again for a tibial stress reaction, I halted all exercise for a week. It was strange. At times, it felt all too easy, but well, it was easy. But at the same time, I craved those endorphins and sweat like a coffee addict needs caffeine. Towards the end of the month, I was working out again, but not with the same gusto I had in the first boot. I was in a funk. July Hot, miserable, and not running. Watching everyone go for big mileage and feeling really sad I was not able to be a part of it. The only good news was that by the end of the month, I was able to remove the boot and start weight-bearing exercise again. August Having somewhat learned from my previous mistakes, I started running again very slowly. I mixed in cross-training to stay fit and really tried to be okay with a slower pace. The doctor told me it would take about 5-6 weeks before things started to feel normal. Lo and behold, I started to notice those little things in both running and in regular life that made me feel more like me again. September I had long ago agreed (actually in sober January) that I would be a part of an Ironman relay team and complete the run leg. Unfortunately, with all of my injuries, I had been on the fence for months about actually committing. But, come the first part of September, I felt like I could complete 13.1 and not do any long-term damage. It was extraordinarily hot the day of the race and I was honestly glad that I was not in peak racing form or else I would have been pretty upset to go after it in 90°+ at noon. However, I was still pleased to finish in a respectable time of 1:40 and help solidify a 5th place finish for our team. At the end of September, I returned to Hinson Lake 24 where I completed 23ish miles of running before forcing myself to take a break. After that, I did a little bit more running and then a ton of walking. I ended up with 58 miles total and was happily tired, but not broken. October With the NYC marathon on the horizon, it was time to get serious about trying to get in a few key workouts before the race. Once recovered from Hinson, I looked to get in one 20 mile road run and a few speed work sessions before race day. I knew I didn’t have the same buildup of training in my legs as I had in marathons before the injuries, but I also knew there was something to be said for my first “real” race back and the confidence of having run that fast before. November NYC had perfect weather and everything came together for another BQ. I was aiming for somewhere between 3:20 - 3:30 and ended up with 3:24. Happily, I spent a couple of days resting and then did a reverse taper to get ready for Rehoboth. I didn’t fret when things weren’t clicking right away and just waited for my legs to feel good again to push the pace. I ended up running at the track one night because I didn’t want to mess with my headlamp and ran my fastest 5k and 10k according to my Garmin without looking at my watch for any splits. December Magical Rehoboth gave me a solid, healthy race in which I really didn’t feel like I was redlining the whole time. I knew that a PR was not in the cards for me and even a course PR was going to be nearly impossible. So a happy, healthy BQ? Yes, please! 2018 Goals: Volunteer/crew/pace > 5 races - check! Spectate/photos - Suwanee Half Marathon 2.11.18 Bib pickup & finisher medal handout - Run Your Bundts Off 5k 2.25.18 Crew (...ish) - Blind Pig 100 3.3.18 Spectate/photos - Yeti 7/11 3.10.18 Aid station volunteer - Umstead 100 4.7.18 Pacer - Cruel Jewel 100 5.19.18 Spectate/crew - Midsummer’s Night Dream 6.16.18 Aid station volunteer - Merrill’s Mile 7.6.18 Drop bag transport - H9 Dragon 8.4.18 Aid station volunteer/course sweep - Yeti Snakebite 50k 9.9.18 Course sweep - Bull Mountain Epic 10.6.18 Pacer - Stroll in the Park 11.25.18 Crew/pacer - Chattanooga 100 11.30.18 2. Marathon <3:10 - nope Not even close. 3:24 was my best effort of 2018, but considering the amount of time in the boot, I’m okay with it. 3. 100 mile race (not a 24 hour) - nope See #2. 4. 200,000 impression on LinkedIn - nope Not to make excuses, but my workflow was revamped in March and I become only a supplemental contributor by September. So even if we were at 200,000, it wouldn’t really be my work anyway. 5. Master InDesign - nope See #4. I got better, but my job no longer required me to use it much. 6. 12 new recipes - check! Extra checks. I stopped keeping track after the first 13. I bought a few new cookbooks and happily found some new recipes to add to my regular repertoire. 7. Read >20 books - check! 33 and counting. It’s funny that it years past, I’ve had the goal of 26 per year and never made it. This year, I lowered my goal and went above and beyond. Best books: Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison, Open by Andre Agassi, and Let Your Mind Run: A Memoir of Thinking My Way to Victory by Deena Kastor. 8. Prepare financially & physically for Everest Marathon 2019 - check I slowly accumulated the money I would need to travel and buy gear for my trip. I hit my financial goal a couple of months ago and while I spent a lot of the year physically broken, the last quarter has me feeling much more confident about getting to Base Camp (and back home) in one piece. 9. Camp 2+ nights - not really I did camp in my tent more than 2 nights. But when I wrote this, I intended to have camping trip that would actually last 2 nights. And all my camping this year has been car camping - where my gear has be extremely accessible. 10. Finish the Georgia Appalachian Trail - nope I still have Dick’s Creek Gap to the NC border to finish - a jaunt of 8.9 miles. I did finish the Tray Mountain to Dick’s Creek Gap section in two different hiking trips. 11. Strength or Stretch > 30 minutes weekly - check! One of the few areas my injury actually helped me reach a goal was getting in strength and/or stretching 30+ minutes a week. I had really gotten away from this after getting into ultras and am happily seeing/feeling how it is benefiting my running and overall fitness. For 2019, I am excited to tackle a big spring of racing and then see where my heart takes me for the second half of the year. If there is anything 2018 taught me, it’s not taking my health for granted and to roll with the punches. For the first time in my adult life, I have a coach and I'm looking forward to a smart training block to kick of 2019. Many of my goals for 2019 are running-centrified, but as in 2018, I made sure to include other things to keep me well-rounded - to do things for myself and to do things for others. Here’s what I’m aiming for in 2019: 2019 miles in 2019 - Running miles preferred, but I’ll cut myself some slack if I do a lot more hiking in the second half of the year. 60 minute stretch/strength/cross-train per week - Some weeks were tough to even get in the 30 minutes in 2018 so this will be a challenge as I bump up to 6 days of running per week. But I’m hoping to incorporate more mini sessions of things like core work and resistance bands. 2 weeks (Mon - Thu) of meal planning per month - More running leads to more runger which leads to (often) more careless eating. If I can manage to plan for 8 days out of the month, I will hopefully stay a bit more balanced. I’ll take a free pass when traveling for 3 weeks in May. Volunteer/crew/pace/spectate 10+ races - It may be tough with my own race schedule, but the goal is to continue to help others achieve their own finish line success stories. PR in a distance less than a marathon - Considering all of my PRs in distances less than a marathon are very, very soft, this should be the easiest one to check off. But that also requires me to enter a “short” race and race it. 100 mile trail run or marathon PR - I’m carrying this over from 2018. It won’t happen this spring so I will look to the fall to see where my heart lies in my training. Read 30+ books - I have a minimum of over 50 hours of flying time scheduled for next year. I expect to read less with the uptick in running, but carve out more time by looking at my phone less. Call and/or write Grandma at least once per month - She’s 96 and is still 100% lucid. Her self-deprecating humor and never-ending compliments are the best. One no spend month - Back in 2007, Adam and I were saving for our first house and went on “the house diet”. We severely curtailed all spending to just the necessities and allowed ourselves one meal out per month as a special treat. I’m not saving for anything in particular right now, but I also feel like a no spend month would be good to save a little extra cash and make me think twice about things that I need rather than just want. Get a check up from all the docs - I’m great about my biannual dentist visits, but am pretty spotty about the regular doctor and eye doctor. Do something kind once per week - It can be anonymous or not. A large gesture or something small. The idea is to be thoughtful about it when possible and to make someone’s day a little cheerier. I hit half my goals in 2018 and while my intention of course was to hit all of them, I am actually feeling really great about what I accomplished. And that’s what I’m looking to do in 2019. Sure, it would amazing to hit them all. But also just having things to aim for is good too. I keep a printout of my goals at my desk at work as a reminder that A) I have a life outside of work and B) to constantly be aware of what I want to achieve.
  20. Carissa Liebowitz

    2018 Reflections and 2019 Goals

    Love, love, love this! What a great year of racing in 2018 and so many awesome things to look forward to in 2019. I'm totally going to pick your brain about fitness stuff now LOL! And much like Gonzo, I'm totally jealous of your access to 14ers.
  21. Carissa Liebowitz

    2018 Running Highlights

    "I do want more, but if I never get more I will still find great joy in the process. I am more thankful than ever now" I relate to this so much. I know I've been guilty of getting to the next big thing myself and forgetting to truly just enjoy all the parts leading up to it. Keep on inspiring!
  22. Carissa Liebowitz

    It was Fun, 2018. 2019, Let’s See What You’ve Got

    What a 180 from this time last year. Happy to not be #bootbuddies in 2019....or ever, for that matter. I know you'll figure out new goals and races you want to tackle soon, but glad to hear you are running to just to run!
  23. Carissa Liebowitz

    2018

    Lots of ups and downs, but happy you are running again and have some marathons penciled in!
  24. Carissa Liebowitz

    Building Mileage & Perspective: December 2018

    So happy things have turned the corner for you! Something tells me this setback is just fuel to fire for 2019.
  25. Carissa Liebowitz

    Peace out 2018, ready to #doepicshit in 2019!

    I REALLY can't believe it is happening THIS YEAR. Pretty sure I won't be able to sleep the month leading up to it!
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