She's baaaaaack. RADrabbitPRO Sabrina Little shares her experience dealing with, recovering, and learning from her recent injury - a broken foot. And, we must say, we are SO glad she's back running!!! Read more in Sabrina's own words:
A few weeks ago, I sat in the waiting room of my physical therapist, reading a book. I looked up and saw a woman next to me. We made eye contact.
Woman in Neck Brace: I like your boot.
Me in Fracture Boot: That is a pretty necklace.
The physical therapy lobby was full of athletes—serious ones, casual ones, high school ones, and my new friend—Neck Brace Woman. There were 4 or 5 fracture boots like mine. They say Fall is boot season. We were all on trend. Like a herd of pirates, we clicked the floor as we walked.
Like a herd of pirates, we wobbled like we were on the high seas. My new friends—the broken foot gang—regaled each other in tales of triumph and heartbreak (foot break). I guess it is worth asking, how did we all get here?
This was the day before my foot broke. I ran the Tyler Rose Marathon.
To review, in early October, I broke my foot. No one was more surprised than I was. When I first go injured, I denied all responsibility. My podiatrist deemed it a fluke, and since I hadn’t experienced any pain that I was actively ignoring, I happily accepted his characterization.
But every injury is experienced twice—when it first happens, and then backwards—slowly—while it heals to proper form. And while it healed, I paid attention. I noticed slight weaknesses, muscle compensations, dull aches, and a residing pressure. I remembered having experienced these things—my clues—but thinking nothing of them. I experienced my injury backwards, looking around me, like a car driving slowly in reverse, and I began to feel remorse—what Aurel Kolnai calls “moral residue.” I realized I was largely responsible.
Of course I was responsible. I felt like one of those kids who breaks a lamp playing ball in the house and calls out “It wasn’t me!” before looking around and realizing she’s the only one in the room. If I didn’t do it, who did? It is my foot.
So, I scoured my running logs and thought a lot. I made changes. I recovered, and I began running again. It is glorious, really. Running is as great as I remembered it was. And I am looking forward. I have big goals for this year.
I pass this beautiful field on evening runs. I love where I live.
…But I have noticed that a trend in elite-level and professional racing is that injuries are often not spoken about. Runners get hurt, disappear from the scene, and reemerge whole again, and there are lots of missed stories here. What happened? What will you do differently in the future? Here are a few reflections on what I did wrong (and right):
(1) I wore my shoes down too far. WRONG.
I am in graduate school. Sneakers are expensive. On average, I typically double the recommended mileage for sneakers. This puts me in a risky situation. Through this injury, I’ve realized that the 300-500-mile sneaker-replacement recommendations are not for the benefit of the shoe companies, but for the safety of the athlete. I’m going to replace my sneakers more often.
(2) I doubled most days. WRONG.
During race seasons, I coach at 6:30 each morning, and I run with the team. Then I fit in my own workout at some point, if possible. I call this prepositional running: before things, between things, and after things. It means I am prioritizing my day job—school—and fitting in running when I can. I do my runs at a high intensity and have more focused efforts on weekends, and this has worked really well for my racing…just not for my recovery. Most days I double. This not only prevents me from recovering, it prevents my sneakers from recovering. My PT told me that sneaker foam rebounds when they are left alone. If I run in them twice per day, I am not giving them this time.
(3) I ate a lot of calcium. RIGHT.
I don’t eat dairy, but I consume approximately a dump truck full of green leafy vegetables on a weekly basis. This may be an exaggeration, but I doubt herbivorous dinosaurs ate as many leaves as I do.
(4) I foam rolled daily. RIGHT.
I foam rolled a lot. Still, I could probably do more. My running buddy always stretches her calves, and I always say something along the lines of, “My calves are fine. They’re loose like linguini.” I found out that this is only true if linguini is made of igneous rocks. My doctor told me he has never encountered calves as tight as mine.
(5) I did not prioritize recovery. WRONG.
I thought I was. But if I think about it, I can’t remember the last time I took a day completely off. Actually, what is recovery, really? Because I used to say things like “I’ll go for an easy 10,” but maybe that is not recovery.
(6) I have a quirky form. WRONG.
My physical therapist recorded my running, then made me watch it in slow motion. It turns out my personality is not the only quirky thing about me. I supinate quite a bit. I have been working on foot strength to land in a way that bears more shock. On a related note, there is nothing more horrifying than watching yourself run in slow motion. Trust me on this.
So these are my observations. Injuries are unfortunate (particularly poorly-timed ones that knock you out of your focus races), but they are sometimes a part of the game, and always an opportunity to learn. Choose joy, and happy trails.
– Sabrina Little, RADrabbitPRO
We are honored to share these beautiful words written by our RADrabbitPRO Brittni Hutton. Brittni, thank you so much for sharing with us.
I would like to dedicate this Blog to my Grandmother, Helen Hutton, who passed away Tuesday morning on December 6th, 2016. My grandmother is one of the most intelligent and motivational women I knew. In Heaven she will be supporting me as she always has, along with my Grandfather, Charlie Hutton, and older sister, Courtney.
Why do I run?
I love this question and when I think about it, it takes me back to the very beginning. The question reminds me of specific moments while training and racing, the life lessons, and the beauty of making unforgettable memories.
I run because it is the first thing I look forward to everyday. I make every run count and believe there is a purpose behind that run. I run because the world is my playground and I can explore just about every bit of it with my feet. I run because it has introduced me to so many motivational human beings, who just like me, simply love tying up those laces and enjoying the outdoors. Running brings me solitude, peace, and community. It allows me to dig deeper and has expanded my preconceptions of what I thought was possible.
As many high performing runners have discovered, living the life of a "professional athlete" is not easy. You are training mornings, afternoons and evenings. This includes second or possibly third runs, cross training, strength training, physical therapy, massage, drills and eating a balanced diet (which can be costly).
Including running, Brandon and I have a total of 9 jobs. We do not consider this a sacrifice because it is what we choose to do. We cherish the moments that we can put one foot in front of the other. We are living and chasing our dream, one step at a time. We both look at this point in our lives as opportunities to grow our networks, make new friends and embrace the journey. Sure, it takes a lot out of us, but we have faith; faith in our training, faith in our coach, faith in our abilities and in each other. We would not trade what we are doing for the world.
Running allows me to connect with and inspire others. It’s simple. It’s enjoyable. And I absolutely love it. Nothing compares to it and nothing can ever replace it.
Thank you, Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year.
- Brittni Hutton, RADrabbitPRO
Photo cred: Sarah Attar
Well, the holiday season is in full swing. To help you with your shopping, RADrabbitPRO Rachel Sorna Schilkowsky has written a gift guide! The best part is that the guide is to help non-runners buy great gifts for runners! So, feel free to pass this along to your favorite non-running friends with a subtle wink and smile.
When you have a runner in the family, you know it. Whether you see their post-race, medal-centric pictures flooding their Facebook or Instagram feeds, or they can’t help but blurt out at the holiday dinner table that they recently set a personal best, you are fully aware (sometimes painfully aware) that running is a big part of their life. But, while their endless chatter of training and races and injuries may sometimes drive you up a wall, when it comes down to it, you are still their biggest fan. So how do you, as the non-runner who never seems to ‘get it’, show your love, support, and appreciation for the runner in your life?
Give them a running-related gift! Here a few ideas to help get you started.
1. Running Clothes.
No matter how many long sleeves, jackets, or pairs of tights a runner may already own, they can always use more. From a practical standpoint, contributing to your runner’s running wardrobe decreases the frequency with which your runner needs to do laundry as well as the likelihood that they will wear things multiple times before doing said laundry, thus saving them (and you) time, money, and unnecessary stink. From an emotional standpoint, providing your runner with a brand new piece of running clothing may have a profoundly positive impact on their motivation, mood, and ultimately, their performance. When it’s cold and snowing and your runner has to do a solo 16 miler, the desire to go out and show off their new threads will be all the incentive they need to get up, get out the door, and get it done.
(Editor's note: For men, we highly recommend the speed sleeves as the perfect holiday gift, which retail for $65.
2. Training Shoes.
While some may argue that new running clothes fall into the ‘want’ category, new running shoes clearly fall into the ‘need’ category. Although the number of shoes a runner may need in a single year may vary based on their mileage, form, and the surfaces on which they run, all runners need to replace their running shoes with some amount of regularity. And, with the average training shoe price reaching $100+, footwear costs can get extraordinarily high, especially for those in marathon training running high mileage. Buying your runner a new pair of their favorite trainers tells them a number of key things: 1) I know enough about running to know that, at some point in the near future, you will need these 2) I pay enough attention to know that this is the brand, style, and size of shoe you wear 3) I don’t want you to get injured from wearing a worn out pair of shoes because I love you…and because you are not fun to be around when you’re injured.
3. GPS Watch.
If you’re thinking of getting your runner one big, more substantial gift this year, a GPS watch may be exactly what you’re looking for. Whether your runner currently has an old, outdated GPS watch, or doesn’t have one at all, a new one complete with all the latest technology could help your runner take that next step in their training. There are tons of different brands and styles on the market, with a plethora of different features in addition to GPS – heartrate, programmable workouts, music, etc. – so you’ll need to do a bit of research first to determine what will be best for your runner. And don’t worry, if your runner is initially apprehensive about using a GPS watch, urge them to simply give it a try. After a few weeks, the benefits of having their specific training data so readily available will have them hooked for life and will place you firmly in the group of ‘awesome gift givers’.
4. Gift Card to Running Store.
When all else fails, a gift card to a running store will absolutely still make your runner’s day. As nice as it is to unwrap a physical item like a new shirt or pair of shoes, unwrapping a gift card provides a person with an entirely new type of gift: the gift of wonder and possibility. The moment your runner sees the logo of their favorite store or brand, their mind will begin to race (pun intended). They will think back to the last time they were at the store, that time when they desperately wanted to buy that new fancy running jacket, but at the last minute decided against it. Giving your runner a running store gift card gives them the power and the confidence to go out and splurge on whatever their heart desires. As an added benefit, when your runner finally goes to the running store to make their purchase, chances are they will be gone for an absurd amount of time, giving you some time alone to enjoy the peace and quiet of a running-free conversation.
- RADrabbitPRO Rachel Sorna Schilkowsky
The party was filled with good people, fun drinks, and delicious treats.
Models at the fashion show included a few of our sponsored professionals, our RADrabbitPROs, including Dani Moreno, Curly Guillen, Seth Totten and Laura Paulsen, who showed off our new Fall lines for both men and women.
The party was a huge hit and an opportunity for local Santa Barbara to hop into fall with us.
It is available now online at runinrabbit.com and also locally from Santa Barbara Running Company, at both the Funk Zone and Goleta locations. rabbit is also available at fine specialty running retailers throughout the nation.
Made in California by runners who care, rabbit is simply the best running apparel for men and women available anywhere.
For the entire launch party gallery, please visit here.
All photos courtesy of the wonderful Vanessa Hansen Photography.
RADrabbitPRO Curly Guillen recaps his half marathon race experience at Monterey Bay a week ago as he finishes his final preparation for the California International Marathon on December 4th. Read more from Curly below.
A little over a week ago I raced the Big Sur Half Marathon aka the Monterey Bay Half Marathon. I drove up the day before accompanied by fellow RADrabbitPRO Dani Moreno. This was my first time receiving accommodations at a race. We got to stay in the Portola Hotel & Spa. It was very nice and my favorite part was the hospitality suite for the elite athletes. I took full advantage of the snacks, drinks, and meals provided.
Shortly after arriving at the hotel we took a course tour. Right away I knew this was going to be a difficult race with the few climbs and rolling hills throughout. The view was beautiful! This has to be one of the most scenic races ever! I loved seeing the giant waves in the distance that looked like they were crashing on the race course.
We got back to the hotel after the tour and had to attend an elite athlete technical meeting to go over race day instructions. It was cool being in the same room with some of the biggest stars in the U.S. distance running scene. A little-known fact about me is I am a huge running nerd and I knew almost everybody's PR's in the room haha. My roommate at the hotel (shared rooms) was a 61-minute half marathoner! I finally got to meet RADrabbitPRO Ryan Miller. Very cool dude! We hit it off right away.
After the meeting, I hung out in my room until it was time for dinner downstairs at the hotel's restaurant. As I always do, I opted for the pasta dinner. I noticed some of the faster people were going with other options. I've always gone with pasta as my pre-race meal dating back to high school. At my table was fellow RADrabbitPRO Seth Totten (not racing), and also some members of the Mammoth Track Club (Lauren Jimison (who also happens to be Seth’s fiancée), Daniel Tapia, and coach Andrew Kastor). Daniel trains with newly signed RADrabbitPRO Brandon Birdsong and was familiar with the rabbit gear and had good things to say about it.
Dinner was over and it was time to head back up to the room and get everything ready for the race and try to get to bed early. I pinned my #84 bib onto my black "welcome to the gun show" rabbit singlet to go with my black/steel "daisy dukes." I set my alarm for 4:50am and heard the faint sounds of the seals on the beach all night lol.
At about 5:30am on race day I went into the hospitality suite for a bagel and coffee (rare for me, I only ever eat a little something before marathon races). We walked over to the start of the race and into the elite athlete area. I warmed up with Ryan Miller. It was a little chilly but I was kept warm by my new rabbit fall gear. I wore the "speed sleeves", "zippit", and "roger rabbits." The women were called to the start line and the national anthem was sung. The women started 9 minutes before the men. After some strides it was our turn to the start line and the invited elites were announced along with their accomplishments. A few guys were debuting at the half marathon distance. I couldn't help but think to myself as I looked around "I might not win this race but my race kit probably looks the best!" Haha. The gun goes off!
The lead pack started off a little slow. I know this because they went through 2 miles just under 10 minutes and I was still within contact. I felt pretty good until we hit the biggest climb on the course at mile 4. This zapped me of all my energy as i immediately fell off pace. I spent the next 2 miles trying to get back on pace, which I was able to, but that was it for me. I kept slowing down for the next 5. There was a big gap in front of me to the next runners and a small gap behind me. This is known as "no man’s land." There was a headwind on the way back. Attempts to get back on pace and pull off a miraculous negative split were short lived. It wasn't until the last 2 miles that I finally was able to wake the legs back up somewhat but it was too late. I was disappointed with my 12th place finish overall in 1:08:27. I had wanted to come to Monterey and PR in the half and have some good momentum going into next month's California International Marathon.
I spoke with some of the guys that finished ahead of me and they reassured me that this was not a PR course and that they themselves were 1:30-2:00 minutes off of their PR's. Although I didn't PR and was far off what I wanted to run, this was still my 3rd fastest half marathon ever. I had to remind myself the real show isn't until December 4th in Sacramento.
I cooled down with Dani Moreno, rabbit co-owner Jill Deering, and her hubby Gene. I returned to the elite athlete area and stuffed my face with breakfast burritos before heading back to the hotel room to clean up and check out.
Upon leaving the hotel with Ryan and Dani we ran into another elite runner named Will Nation and he was walking back to his room with an age group award in his hand. He mentioned that they called our names out. So we made our way to the award stand to claim our prizes. I won my age group, Dani was 2nd, and Ryan was also 2nd!
All the rabbits in town met up for breakfast at Wild Plum shortly after. Yes, I ate some more. I love pancakes! Then it was back on the road for the long drive back to Goleta.
My experience in Monterey showed me that I have a long way to go to catch up to the guys ahead of me. I may have only been able to hang on with them for a few miles this time around but eventually I'll be in the mix for longer. I have to continue putting in hard work.
I'm making my final preparations for CIM where I hope to crack the 2:20 barrier. But first, I will have one last tune up race. I'll be racing the Thanksgiving 4 Miler here in Santa Barbara.
Add me on the usual social media channels: @deejaycurly
-RADrabbitPRO Curly Guillen
F U E L E D F R I D A Y this week is brought to you by our own Michelle Battista.
Ok, it's finally fall here in Cali...we have been logging the miles....therefore, we will be indulging in these skillet apple crips this weekend.
Recipe for the filling:
1/2 C Brown Sugar
3 T Corn starch
1 T Cinnamon
1 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Clove
1 oz Bourbon
Recipe for the topping:
1/2 C Butter
1 C Brown Sugar
1 C Granulated Sugar
1 C AP Flour
1 C Rolled Oats
1 T Kosher salt
Combine filling ingredients in a medium bowl, mix well. Distribute between
To make topping, Cut butter into 1/4" pieces, Place remaining ingredients
in a medium bowl and mix well. Rub butter into dry mixture until a stiff
crumble forms. Top fruit with crumble. Bake at 350 for 15-20 min, until
fruit mixture bubbles, cooking the corn starch.
Enjoy with Bourbon Creme Anglaise or your favorite ice cream and then go for a long run tomorrow.
For this week's Runday Motivation, we are stoked to bring to you our newest blog written by RADrabbitPRO Dani Moreno, sharing her story from running the USA Trail Half Marathon Championships a few weeks back. If this doesn't get you motivated and fired up, well, we don't know what will! Enjoy:
The Calm Before the Storm
So there I was, sitting in the Seattle airport, watching a news reporter state that there was a large storm brewing along the west coast. Simultaneously I received my second email stating that if the race was going to be canceled we would be notified by 7am the day of. This race? Well, no other than the USA Trail Half Marathon Championships. Dun, dun, dun!
I mean I am not one to run away when conditions get tough, but I can’t say I am used to the rain either. Coming from Santa Barbara, the city who has beach weather 350 days out of the year, rain, let alone seeing more than two or three colors on a tree, is an experience for me. This isn’t to say I haven’t run in the rain before, I definitely have back in my younger years when California was on a normal weather pattern. However, rain, or in this case thunderstorms, are seldom and not something I have had the pleasure of dealing with very often. So considering the logical assumption that dirt+rain+mountains=slippery slopes, I was very aware that the cards would not be in my favor. But, as per usual, my slightly idiotic mindset that I can do anything I believe I can took control of my mental reins and I befriended the weather deciding that the race, if anything, would be super majestic-like similar to the slow-mo montage at the end of a glorious sports movie.
See, the trail half was something I had been looking forward to because, despite my lack of building a true base this year, it was a distance I enjoyed and could do. I had run my first trail half in 1:23 earlier in the year (Valley Crest Trail Half) off a month of consistent training and so knowing that I garnered a supple amount of confidence to commit to the idea that I could potentially podium at this race (meaning I could place in the top 5).
The race would take place at Lake Padden in Bellingham Washington. It would begin with a flat first mile before gradually becoming a series of climbs that would last miles 2-5ish. After climbing these rolling hills we would then descend down for about a mile before evening out on the flat part once again thus taking us into that same loop for the second time. The competition was noted as “the deepest trail half field this year” as it featured road and trail studs alike. This was very exciting to me because I mean what is a National Championship without quality talent! You have to race the best to be the best! So let’s summarize all of this. I was going to have face unfavorable weather conditions, run a tough course, and face some steep competition. Wooo, weeee, I don’t know about you but these are the types of circumstances that keep me loving this sport! I was stoked.
On the flip side, I am not going to lie, the listed field was a bit intimidating, but I knew that if I could focus on my strengths I could potentially have a finish that would bring momentum into my sophomore year of trail running. What were these strengths you may ask? Well to simplify it there were two. 1) I am sort of a racing addict and 2) I love running technical downhill.
Dun, dun, dun!
The morning of the race I was up relatively early, not normal for me as I typically sleep until the last minute possible. Haha, I can talk about this some other time, I am sort of notorious for sleeping until the very last minute of everything. Anyways, this time I was up early and the reason being, was that if the race was cancelled we were supposed to be notified by that morning, but lucky for us it was not! After an easy breakfast, I headed to the course.
I warmed up, etc. (Let’s fast-forward to the good stuff, the actual race.)
So the gun goes off and the horses take off. Taking into account the talent level of the women that were in the race I had a feeling that we would go out a good steady pace, but man was I wrong, we took off flying. I got our first mile at about 5:42, which you may think “Dani, that’s not that bad”, but take into account this was the FIRST mile of THIRTEEN, and we had a good chunk of climbing ahead of us. Learning from previous races once you let somebody go on a trail it is very hard to catch them especially when the race features single track. So going with my gut I hung with the lead pack for as long as I could. The lead pack had about 8 women in it, all very strong and funny enough most were even talking to each other. I had one gal, Ladia, who was asking me if I had run the race before and we had almost a full conversation on the matter. I wasn’t dying but I definitely wasn’t able to talk with the same ease as her. (Which side note she’s super badass). Nevertheless as the race continued at its fast pace (we were averaging 6-6:20 on the first hilly miles) things began to change as the entire front pack began to spread out.
As we went up, down, and all around I was unsure what place I was in but it didn't keep me from pushing. Luckily I passed some cheering groups and heard them call out that I was indeed in 6th place, in which case I was like “heck yes!” But at the same time, “I had some work to do!” The hills were tough and continued to get tougher, but I was determined to get to the end of the first loop so I could begin my descent. (Side note: In order to be a major threat as a trail racer, you need to be killer at climbing, as most championship women are beasts on hills. This is something I've realized will take more experience but as for now, I manage.) Eventually, I got to the last hill which included some very painful switchbacks and it was just then that I thought that maybe my watch wasn’t getting the mileage right with all the trees. But then before I knew it, grace was bestowed upon me as we finally hit the best part... the downhill.
Now this was no ordinary downhill, no this was a muddy, rocky, tree roots everywhere type of downhill. With no hesitation, I leaned forward and let my feet and mind do all the work. I am not scared to say it, but I am pretty sure I was flying ;) . Within the first mile, I caught about 4 men and soon enough I eyed and passed the 5th place girl. Then just right before I hit the flat mile again there was a HUGE tree that had fallen over during the storm. Although unexpected, it was probably the best surprise ever. I side jumped the trunk and continued to play catch up as much as possible. The problem, however, is that I had gone so fast on the downhill that when I hit the flat my legs were burnt. I continued to roll just trying to keep consistent but the girl I had just passed was definitely making up ground. I knew she was a strong uphill runner as that was where she had caught me before, but I was determined to keep my lead as long as possible as I knew that the longer I could keep distance from her the better position I would be in for the last part of the race.
We continued to climb until she eventually caught up with me again around miles 8-9. With muddy hills ahead both of us were pushing. She even gapped me a little but I was determined to stay in range. I was just about gassed when we finally hit the switchbacks, which I knew was the last part of the hilly section. I pushed and pushed until finally I crested and just used about everything left in the tank to catch her. She knew I was behind her as she was flying much quicker than before but then I cranked into another gear allowing me to navigate the technical rocky parts and gain momentum in some open downward stretches. I caught 2 guys who I think were just as surprised as I was to be passing them coming into the last part of the race but made me even happier as it gave me an euphoric second wind to keep charging! Finally, around mile 12 I passed her (Camelia and eventual 5th place finisher #sweetheart) and continued hard into the finish. I crossed the finish gleaming that I was able to pull off a 4th place finish! I was stoked.
After the race I cooled down most of the top 10 girls who were all stoked as well. I think because we all knew what we had just been through, from the weather to the conditions of the course, there was a mutual understanding that we are all pretty rad.
Overall I was pretty happy with the race. Considering the talent of the field I was happy to come away with a 4th place finish. This year has been the epitome of a freshman pro-year as I really felt like a guppy who had no idea which way to swim. But this race has fueled me of the promise the future holds and has helped me to create goals that are even bigger than they were before!
So calm before the storm, yes this title is in regards to the weather of this race, but it is also in reference to the powerful storm that is calmly raging inside of me that I can’t wait to release onto the trails next year!
Until next time, ¡Viva la correr!
Thanks to rabbit and Hoka One One, you guys are awesome ! :)
- Dani Moreno, RADrabbitPRO
F U E L E D F R I D A Y
Today we are stoked to share RADrabbit Monique Bienvenue's recipe for lemon delight granola parfait. Not only is Monique an awesome runner with big goals (P.S. she just PR'd last weekend by 7 minutes in the half-marathon), but she is just an all-around awesome chick. She is doing some amazing work in encouraging families and educators to adopt a healthier lifestyle through the Power Your Lunchbox Campaign. Make sure to give her a follow on instagram, her handle is modeezy101.
We can't wait to dig into this parfait after our long run this weekend!
Makes 1 serving.
Ingredients for Parfait:
Ingredients for Lemon Delight Granola:
Directions for Lemon Delight Granola:
Once granola is cool, pour 1 cup of it over Greek yogurt and top with berries, coconut flakes, chocolate chips and any other toppings you desire. The remaining granola can be stored in an air tight container for an additional 2-3 days.
We are super excited to introduce the World's Fastest DJ to you fine folks! He also happens to be RADrabbitPRO runner Curly Guillen. Learn a little about Curly in his own words:
This is RADrabbit Pro Curly Guillen from Santa Barbara checking in for my first post on the blog. This Sunday I will be racing the Big Sur Half Marathon in Monterey Bay, California. This will be my first half marathon since the Houston Half in January where I missed qualifying for the Olympic trials marathon by 1 minute and 49 seconds. This race will be a tuneup for next month's California International Marathon. My goal is to set a new personal best and head into next month's race with some good momentum. Monterey will have a beautiful course, great weather, and some tough competition to help me run a fast time.
This week also serves as the 5 year anniversary of me running again after a 7.5 year hiatus. When I first started I was overweight and struggling to run 2-3 miles at a time without fainting. After 6 months of running consistently I shed 50 pounds. I have been running 80-100 mile weeks ever since.
I have been inspired by former teammates and competitors that have continued to run throughout all these years. Some of them have competed in the Olympic Trails and even represented the US in international competition. I can't help but to think where I would be if I never stopped running. All I can do now is to keep putting in work and hope I can catch back up.
I have competed in 3 U.S. Championships now with my best performance being last year's marathon championships in Los Angeles where I finished in 13th place on a very hot day. Missing my goal of qualifying for the Olympic Trials earlier this year in Houston and later having a bad performance at the Boston Marathon has motivated me to take my training to new levels. I have continually been pushing the boundaries of what I thought was possible. I have my mind set on doing whatever it takes to toe the line at the next Olympic Trials marathon in the year 2020.
I do most of my training alone and several of my races are solo time trials. I am excited to see what I can do this weekend with fast people to run with. I have seen the list of elite entries already and I am excited to be lining up once again next to some big names.
I'll report back after this weekend with a race recap so stay tuned!
Add me on the usual social media channels to keep up with my crazy life: @deejaycurly
- Curly Guillen, RADrabbitPRO
F U E L E D F R I D A Y
So....it's the weekend and sometimes we need to indulge a little. These chocolate peanut butter bars are not as naughty as they seem. They are Vegan and Gluten Free with no flour or refined sugar. They are three layers of yummy goodness: crisp chocolate crust, creamy peanut butter and a layer of dark chocolate. We will be packing these bad boys with us on our long trail run this weekend! Recipe credit Natural Girl Modern World.
Chocolate crust (base layer): 1 cup blanched almonds* 3 tablespoons cocoa powder 6 dates (pitted) 2 tablespoons maple syrup 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted Pinch of salt 1/2 cup oats 1/2 cup puffed rice cereal
Creamy peanut butter (middle layer): 1 cup natural peanut butter (unsalted)** 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon maple syrup 1 teaspoon salt
Melted chocolate (top layer): 3.5 oz / 100 g bar of high-quality dark chocolate (85-90% cocoa)*** 3 tablespoons coconut oil 2 tablespoons cocoa powder 1 tablespoon maple syrup
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 8" x 8" baking pan with parchment paper. For the base layer, use a food processor to grind the blanched almonds until they are the texture of fine sand. Then, add in the cocoa powder, salt, pitted dates, maple syrup, and melted coconut oil. Process until well combined. Pour the mixture into the baking pan, then add the rice puff cereal and oats. Stir ingredients in the baking pan and once combined, use your hands to press the ingredients down firmly to create the first layer. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Allow it to cool for 10 minutes while you prepare the next layer. For the peanut butter layer, use a medium sized bowl to combine peanut butter, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, and salt. Stir until well combined. Pour peanut butter on top of the base layer. Use the back of the spoon to spread evenly. Place the baking pan in the fridge. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes, until the peanut butter has begun to firm up. Chop up the dark chocolate bar and place it in a double broiler (or a heatproof bowl over simmering water). As the chocolate begins to melt, add the coconut oil and cocoa powder. Whisk until well combined, then add the maple syrup and vanilla. Pour chocolate evenly over the peanut butter layer. Return to the fridge to set (~2 hours). Sprinkle with flaky sea salt (if desired), and slice to serve. Store extras in the refrigerator. Notes: *In this recipe, we make our own almond flour from whole blanched almonds. You may however substitute for almond flour instead. **This recipe uses 100% all natural peanut butter (no salt / sugar added). If you're using peanut butter with salt or sugar, you'd need to adjust accordingly. Since each manufacturer would vary, for the most reliable results, start with 100% peanut butter (no additives). ***Vegans, make sure you're selecting a chocolate bar that's free from dairy. High quality dark chocolate with this high of a cocoa content shouldn't have dairy in it, but read the labels to confirm.