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A runner with an appetite for adventure!

The Shin Splint Dilemna! January 28, 2011

Filed under: Food,Running,Training — Kelocity @ 7:52 am
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Ever since the Phoenix Half Marathon, my hamstrings have been SUPER tight. I’ve been doing the ice, foam roller and stretching, but nothing seems to be working. I thought the yoga the other night would have helped (all those down dogs!) but they actually feel even tighter since the class. What gives?

This morning, I got up to go for a run (I told you I would!) but first, I stretched inside and then did lots of these outside too. I love this stretch. It goes straight down the back of your legs.


You let your foot hang off and press down as you lean forward.

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The run started out pretty good, it felt really good to loosen up a little bit. My hamstrings were already feeling better. But then I started to get twinges in my shins… and then pain…. and then:

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Oh. My. Gosh. DO I HAVE FREAKIN’ SHIN SPLINTS AGAIN? I am paranoid about those because EVERY single time I start training again, I get them. And they don’t go away easily. I’ve had to deal with them since my High School field hockey days. I last had them while training for Boston, and the only thing that cured them was resting for a solid month. Every block or so, I stopped to stretch out some more. (Sometimes shin splints can be caused by tight calf muscles).

Here’s what I think happened:

  • I ran the Phoenix Half without much training, which left me more sore than usual
  • After the race, my muscles tightened up (especially my hamstrings)
  • When I started running consistently after the race, my calves tightened up to alleviate my hamstrings a little bit.
  • I did a lot of sprints last week, and that always messes up my shins. How am I supposed to get faster and fitter if I can’t sprint?!

So then I got to thinking, no one really likes a whiny running blogger, so I have to nip this thing in the butt and figure out what’s really going on mechanically with my legs and find a long term solution.

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It’s not brain science, I know what I need to do:

  • Ice every night
  • Stretch every morning and every night (even when I don’t feel tight)
  • Foam Roll the tight areas every night
  • Get a massage to flush out the knots (this worked really well before Boston)
  • Do more weight training/squats/lunges to strengthen my legs

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Also, I know that Advil isn’t that healthy for runners, but I really feel like I need it. Thoughts?

PS. How funny is this? I saw this in someone’s yard today. So cute!

After a frustrating run, and finding motivation to garner a solution, I enjoyed some breakfast cookie oatmeal: Oats, Banana, Chocolate Protein Powder, Peanut Butter and Coconut.

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Nothing like a blood sugar stabilizing breakfast. I buy the Trader Joes Chocolate Whey protein, and it seriously keeps me full for almost five hours!
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There’s talk of a trip to Menchie’s today after lunch! Happy Friday!

Tomorrow is the big Celebrity Fitness Workout session with Kathy Kaehler! I’ll be sure to take lots of pictures!

 

The Thrill of the Race January 17, 2011

Filed under: 20 before 30,Arizona,Marathons,Races,Running — Kelocity @ 4:56 pm
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I did it! I ran my 10th Half Marathon yesterday! It was a great race!
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But first, let’s back up! The night before, Irving and I went searching for some Italian food to carbo load with. There were plenty of Mexican restaurants, but Italian was surprisingly hard to find in Phoenix! We ended up at a great place called Nello’s.
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The menu was perfect. Lots of options and reasonable prices.
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I went straight for the Pasta. Sometimes simple is best. I didn’t want to take any chances before race day.
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It was delicious! The pasta was homemade and cooked al dente.

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Washed down with a few hydrating glasses of H2O.
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When we got back to the hotel, I laid all my race gear out.
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GU and Shotbloks: check
Garmin and Ipod: check
Fuel Belt: check

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Fuel Belt Bottles: uhhhhh…. NO CHECK!

I totally forgot my Fuel Belt Bottles…. If it wasn’t on my list, it didn’t get packed! Next time, no beer while making packing lists.

But the race must go on –with or without my liquid energy. Luckily, I knew they had Cytomax and water on the course, and that’s what I run with anyways, so of all things to forget, this was probably the best case scenario. In the past, I’ve forgotten my Garmin, and that’s the worst!

Moving on… I pinned on my race bib, and set my alarm for 5am!
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~~~~~~~~~

I slept fairly well, but still felt a little groggy in the morning. I knew I’d be fine once I started to get excited about the race. I wore my Boston Marathon shirt to give me a little extra confidence boost. haha I also rocked the Zensah compression socks. This will have been my first race running in those.
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Ok… let’s do this!
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We parked at the golf course club house where Irving was going to play golf, and then I walked to the shuttle busses across the street. The line looked long, but I was able to get right on a bus. It took about a half hour to get to the start line, but it was so cold, I was thankful for heated transportation.

The start line was organized and spread out, so it wasn’t as crowded as I thought it would be. 
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They were giving out water bottles, which fit perfectly in my fuel belt. Score!
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I met up with some Team in Training friends and we chatted for an hour or so.

I kept my sweatshirt on for as long as I could before I had to check my gear bag. It was so cold, maybe 35 or 40 degrees?
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I was SO glad I had my compression socks on. At the very least, they kept my legs warm!
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Then I made it to my corral and waited to start.
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They assign corrals based on estimated finish time. It took 35 minutes to for us to cross the start line. I just put my ipod on, blasted the music and tried to forget how cold I was.
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Once we passed the start line, I started running. At first I was annoyed that I’ve already lost 35 minutes behind the first half-marathoners before we even started, but then I realized what a great perk this was to the race. It was SO nice to be with the same group of people at the same pace for the whole run. I really appreciated that. I didn’t get trampled by fast people, or slowed down by walkers. It was just right. I was very thankful that they did this. Just one more reason why “Rock N’ Roll” marathons get it right.

And not long after that, the sun came out and the air warmed up a bit.
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I hadn’t really trained properly, so I just ran when I felt like it and walked when I had to. I definitely ran more than I walked, and that was pretty much my goal. I had no real time expectations. I rocked out to my music, and muted it during the bands along the course.
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Just for the heck of it, I ran through this tunnel of hula hoops. Total energy booster!!
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I cruised through the first 8 miles or so. I got into a rhythm of running/walking intervals. My body was in tune with my mind, which is sometimes the hardest part to overcome.

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I had been nibbling on Shot Bloks here and there every couple of miles, but I had this Chocolate Cherry GU at mile 9. It was SO GOOD! It had two shots of caffeine in it too.
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For the most part, the race was a point to point course down one main road with very few deviations. It was starting to get a little boring until we finally got some glimpses of the beautiful Arizona scenery.
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Cacti!
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How funny is this giant inflatable rock and roll man?! Rock on!
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My knees were starting to get crunchy around mile 11 with two miles left to go. I’d start running and my knee cap felt like it was going to fall off. But then I realized that it only hurt when I jogged, not when I was running full out strides. So I started sprinting pieces of the last two miles.
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I looked down at my watch and saw that I could break 3 hours if I kept up the pace. My best time was 2:40 and my worst was 3:13. Coming in under 3 hours would put me right in between (not bad for a bad training season!)

It’s always exciting towards the end of a race when the crowds get a little thicker and you can hear the cheers getting louder.
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I never saw the Mile 13 mile marker. But my watch read 13.1 miles about a half mile before the finish line!
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I crossed the finish line officially at 2:56:44.

Here’s the stats:

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I was really thirsty at the end (no fuel belt bottles, remember?) Don’t worry, I was drinking every few miles, but it was starting to get hot, and I was parched!
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I gathered up all the post race swag: frozen yogurt, cytomax, fruit, pop chips… and headed out to find Irving. He was still playing his last hole on the golf course, so I plopped down on the nice grass on the course (the golf people didn’t seem to mind.)
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Zensah Socks: huge success. My shins didn’t hurt at all during the race.

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I entertained myself by taking self portraits.

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The medal was huge! It was heavy duty!
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I was saving my frozen yogurt for Irving, but he took too long and I got bored, so I ate it!
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Soon, I was reunited with my golfer.
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MY SPLITS:

Mile 1 – 11:28
Mile 2 – 11:49
Mile 3 – 12:11
Mile 4 – 12:53
Mile 5 – 12:36
Mile 6 – 13:53
Mile 7 – 14:23
Mile 8 – 14:24
Mile 9 – 14:33
Mile 10 – 11:38
Mile 11 – 15:05
Mile 12 – 13:26
Mile 13 – 12:23
Mile 13.56 – 12:15

Garmin told me that I burned 1210 calories, so I decided to make up for some of it by heading to:
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I normally don’t condone eating fast food in a car (and we NEVER eat it at home…) but the prospect of a cheeseburger being delivered to me was too tempting to ignore!
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Soon our waitress on skates arrived with the goods!
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When we got back to our hotel, Irving went out to play another 9 holes of golf. I, on the other hand, chose to take a two hour nap.

Later that night, we went to a blogger meetup that was organized by Skinny Runner. If you don’t already read her blog, you should.

Virtual life meets real life!
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We met at Seasons 52 (which I’ve been reading so much about on some of the Florida blogs lately.
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The food was fantastic. They claim that everything on the menu is under 475 calories.

It was fun to chat with so many great like-minded people. So nice to meet all of you!
Sarah, Pam, Diana and me! (Not pictured: Risa!)
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After dinner, Irving and I used my ‘Buy one, get one’ coupon from the race swag bag at Mojo.
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I didn’t put too much because I was pretty full from dinner. But I added some nice looking chocolate toppings.
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It was as good –if not better—than Menchies! Hit the spot!
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I slept like a rock last night. My body was just exhausted. I woke up with incredibly stiff legs though, and there was only cure:
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LA desperately needs to get DD!
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After a couple hours of reading by the pool (I’m already half-way through Meb’s book!) we grabbed lunch and began the 6 hour drive back to LA.

Arizona was a blast. What a great (long) weekend!
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Just a few weeks until the Surf City Half Marathon!

 

Hood to Coast!

Filed under: Marathons,Running — Kelocity @ 7:00 am

This week, the documentary film Hood to Coast came to theaters for a one night exclusive event.

We ventured into Burbank to see it. It was fun sitting in the theater with lots of other runners!

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It’s a film about the ‘Hood to Coast’ race that takes place in August every year in Oregon. It’s a 197 mile relay race made up of teams of 12.
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The movie documents four teams on their journey from training to finishing. Some of it was funny, some of it was really sad, but most of it was raw emotion that takes over the body after sleep deprivation and physical exhaustion takes over. I just love watching people run. The way the body sustains the same movement over and over intrigues me. I think I look like a tensed up angry runner when I’m out there, so I like to watch the gracefulness of a seasoned athlete.

SIDE NOTE: When the teams switch out, instead of passing a baton, they use a slap bracelet!!! I kinda want to do this race just for that! Do they even make those anymore?
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Some of the runners were elite Olympians, one man had even won the Boston and New York City marathons before.

But other runners were just there to say they did it. They didn’t train much and weren’t very prepared, and that was the most fun to watch. They agonized over running hills and contemplated what foods they probably should or shouldn’t be eating. It was that uncensored look into the mind of a runner.

It was the perfect movie to get my psyched up for the Phoenix Half Marathon this weekend. I’m not really prepared (mentally or physically) but I’m pretty darn excited! I recommend Hood to Coast for any runner who loves to watch running movies. 🙂

 

The Next One… November 20, 2010

Filed under: 20 before 30,Marathons,Running — Kelocity @ 6:00 pm
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What’s that blog readers? You want to see more posts about running? I’m here to please!

The next half marathon will be:
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I’ll be running my first Rock N’ Roll race on January 16th in Phoenix! I’m so excited.

Guess I better start running, huh?

This will be my 12th distance race in my quest to run 20 Races before I’m 30.
The 20 Before 30!

 

2010 Nike Women’s Half Marathon – Race Recap October 19, 2010

Filed under: Happy,Marathons,Races,Running — Kelocity @ 10:33 pm
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It was a rainy, wet, cool day in San Francisco, but 20,000 runners still gathered in San Francisco to run one the  biggest women’s race in the country. 🙂

But let’s back up to 4:30am on race morning! We took our time getting ready, making sure we didn’t forget all the little things you need to run a successful race (GU, timing chip, race bib, watch, etc).
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I put my Ipod on to make sure it worked… and you know what? It was completely empty! All the great songs my sister Mikaela gave to me were gone! I must have lost them when I sunk it up to my computer this week! How did that happen? I’m Ipod-challenged. Oh well, I can run without music.

We headed down to Union Square to the starting line. It wasn’t hard to find with all the crowds of people.

I only had to wait about 20 minutes until the race started (Score!) But then I realized one more thing…my Garmin was dead!! I had charged it the night before, but maybe I left it on?! This happened to me last year too, and it ruined my race. But not this year… I wasn’t going to let a few numbers get in my way of enjoying this!
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So I put my chin up and walked towards the startline. I didn’t have a goal in mind this year, so I was just going to listen to my body, enjoy the scenery and take in the race without staring at my watch.
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Let’s do this!

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The first mile wizzed by, I ran the first two miles straight without stopping. I watched Pier 39 go by as the sun was rising. I took a good look at Alcatraz as we ran along the bay.
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There was absolutely NO fog, which is pretty rare for a fall day in SF. It was gorgeous.

Then we headed up the teaser hill to Ghirardelli Square.
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And up the bigger hills in the Presidio.
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Then we saw the stunning Golden Gate bridge staring at us.
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I asked a spectator to snap a picture of me with the bridge, you get the idea.

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One of my favorite parts of the race this year was the many “Power Song” stations along the course. Out of nowhere, you’d hear blasting music coming from these boxes. It was an ad for ‘Nike+’, but I appreciated the bursts of adrenaline the loud music provided!
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Between mile 7 and 8 is the steepest hill of the race.
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But the views of the bridge are worth it!
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I’m not sure who these guys were, but they were quite funny.
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Another spectator shot of the bridge!
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Along mile 8 or 9, Kaiser had a bunch of motivational signs!
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And my favorite…

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And they provide oranges here (my favorite!)
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Mile 10 is definitely my favorite mile of the whole race. That’s when you start running down towards the ocean. The views are gorgeous! And Irving texted me at this point too, and it totally gave me a boost of energy!
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You can see finisher’s village from up there too!
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The last three miles are in Golden Gate Park. It started to drizzle when I entered, but I knew I was almost done.

I know this picture is blurry, but it just made me laugh. Why do marathoners LOVE running quotes so much? They make me so happy!!

“You measure happiness one mile at a time”!
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Almost done! Two miles left! And the rain had started to come down by this point. I was wet and sticky. Ew.
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At mile 12 is the Ghirardelli chocolate mile! They hand out chocolates to all the runners! I saved mine for later!
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Almost done! The final turn into home stretch!
Which side do you think I ran under? SURVIVOR!
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A nd then I booked it to the finish line! (Yea, I was SOAKED at this point)!

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And I’m not sure what came over me, but I made some weird pose when I crossed the finish line. It kinda looks like I’m doing the Hokey Pokey. Um??
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Either that or I’m making a “I’m #1” sign? HAHA

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Official Time: 3:03:18

Out of my 8 other half marathons, this is in the middle of all my finish times. Not the best, but definitely not the worst. Not too shabby for not really training.

Once I crossed the finish line, a lovely firefighter in a tux gave me a tiffany necklace from a silver platter!
(And Yes, I made him pose for a picture before I took it!)
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I got my mylar blanket and tried to warm up. It was FREEZING down by the ocean! I was so cold, I didn’t even wait in the photobooth line (and you know me and the photobooths!)
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We had to wait almost an hour to catch the shuttle bus back into the city.
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Once I was on the bus, I finally took a peek inside my goodie bag!IMG_0365

I felt like I was trick or treating gathering all my goodies after the race! You just hold out your bag and they fill it up with treats!
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The finisher’s shirt was pretty awesome this year. It was a technical tee, in a gorgeous magenta (my fave!)
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The necklace was different this year, it came in a longer box.
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With a new kind of pouch:
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Here she is!
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And the back:
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I heard a lot of people didn’t get the necklace because the ran out! I hope they get mailed to them soon!

That was my SIXTH tiffany’s necklace from this race! I now have quite the collection!
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And there you have it! Another successful year at the Nike Women’s Marathon!
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