Coffee Chat – October 2017

What I am drinking: coffee with pumpkin spice cream because its Halloween so why not?!

What I am eating: A Trader Joe’s Pizza because I am pretty hungry!

What races I’ve run: Some of the athletes I work with in my ministry were putting on a 5k. So I ran the UVF SAAC 5k which was a rather small race but so much fun to be supporting the athletes that worked so hard to put the race together. It was around their campus and a local park. I was able to PR in the 5k with a 26:27 and I was the 2nd female overall and first in my age group (30-39). So I was really excited about the outcome of the day and it honestly encouraged me to start running some smaller races. (wink wink).

I also ran The Ghost Race Philadelphia which is an invisible race sponsored by Lululemon!

We ran all the miles to eat all the Duck Donuts.

What I am races I’m training for: I am still training for the Philly Half Marathon and I haven’t focused to much on my pace or speed work at all. I honestly really enjoy running longer at an easier pace and I feel that after my training for the SeaWheeze Half Marathon I got burnt out a bit. So I wanted to go back to my running roots and run for fun again!

Girls on the Run (Ches Co) 5k – I have been volunteering with Girls on the Run at one of our local middle schools two days a week and it has been so fun! I have enjoyed getting to know the girls and encouraging them in their process of training for a 5k on December 2nd. I am running with a girl who is actually pretty fast! So I am excited to see how she does on race day!

What I am reading: Well, I haven’t been in the mood to read a lot recently so I still continue to tackle How Bad Do You Want It? by Matt Fitzgerald. Hopefully going to finish that book next month!

What fun things I’ve done: My hubby really wanted to go to the pumpkin patch and apple picking, but he insisted that our dog Lola come with us. So he researched an fount a dog friendly apple orchard and pumpkin patch about 45 minutes away from our house. So one Sunday afternoon, after church we headed out for a little family outing.

 Lola enjoyed picking some apples or laying in the apples.

She also loved picking out our family pumpkin for the front porch.

The hubby and I decided that we wanted to do a mini family photo shoot including our Portuguese Water Dog, Lola.


Lola did such a good job being off leash for some solo pictures and we had fun being our silly family selves. We can’t wait to see how the rest of the pictures turned out!

October has been a pretty busy month. I finished coaching field hockey at the beginning of the month with my little 6th graders and settled back into a bit more of a calm lifestyle.

And, Happy Halloween from our pup Lola!

Hidrate Spark 2.0 Water Bottle Review

One thing I know most runners struggle with is their hydration game, well at least I know I struggle with it! I am even a Nuun Hydration Ambassador so I know the importance of keeping your hydration game in tact. Unfortunately, I tend to drink more coffee than water on any given day. But, I needed to be held accountable and I needed to be reminded. I often forget to drink water besides when I am actually thirsty and by that point it is only a few sips. Not much to make an impact on my daily water consumption.

I came across this water bottle on Facebook. It was a water bottle that lit up when you needed to drink water, serving as a reminder to ensure you drink your required daily amount of water. Since I was VERY intrigued by this water bottle, I emailed them to see if I could have one sent to me to experience and review on my blog! So here we are!

When they sent me the color options for my bottle I had a difficult time picking which color I would want!

Unfortunately, they didn’t offer the color green when I was choosing my color bottle, so I decided to go with teal!

My bottle came in the mail pretty quickly! When I opened the box I was excited to get my hydration game on point! Thankfully, I downloaded the Hidrate Spark App for iPhone prior to my bottle coming in. After opening the box, I immediately synced my bottle with the Hidrate Spark App, filled it up with water and started chugging! I was thirsty!

It was awesome to see the bottle sync to the app on my iPhone and show how much I was drinking. I linked the Hidrate Spark app to my FitBit app and the Hidrate Spark adjusts the amount of water I need to drink for the day based off my daily exercise/activity.

Since I received my bottle in the afternoon, I was off my hydration game for the day and it was hard to catch up. So I started fresh the following day, I drank some water when I first woke up in the morning but, I had my morning coffee and forgot to keep drinking water because I was focusing on finishing my coffee and my bottle lit up! I immediately began guzzling water because I am competitive and didn’t want to fail in my water consumption, especially now that I have a bottle to hold me accountable.

The first reaction I had to marketing sure I was staying on track with my daily hydration through using the Hidrate Spark 2.0 water bottle was that I had to go to the bathroom fairly often. This shouldn’t be a surprise after all the water I was drinking but when I drank a lot after 8:00pm I noticed I had to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom twice which was annoying because I woke up and had to get out of bed. So I tried to make sure I met my hydration goal prior to 8:00pm from that night on.

Also, everyday I drink at least one Nuun Hydration tablet. I honestly didn’t want to mix the tablet in with my Hidrate Spark Bottle so I usually drink it out of my Nuun bottles which are 21 ounces. The great part is that I can add the water I drink outside of the Hidrate Spark bottle to my daily goal.


This bottle has really helped me with keeping hydrated throughout the past two weeks. I have felt a lot better physically as I have been better hydrated. The one caveat about making sure I am consuming the amount of water I need to for my day is that I went to the bathroom fairly often throughout the day, which I should have expected but didn’t and I always had to make sure I went to the bathroom before i left the house. But honestly, do what you need to do to say hydrated. I have been feeling so much better from using this bottle for accountability.

To give you an idea of what my water consumption looked like the past two weeks using the Hidrate Spark 2.0 Water Botter see my tracking below.

Here is what my first week with my Hidrate Spark looked like:

As you can see from the graph, I never hit 100% in my first week, which was unfortunate. But real talk, I think I probably consumed more coffee in a given day than I did water before getting my Hidrate Spark. I think the only water I drank was from my daily Nuun Hydration tablet so this was a HUGE improvement. Therefore,  I thought 73% of an average daily goal wasn’t to bad.

My second week with my Hidrate Spark looked like this:
As can see from this graph, I improved again the second week. I hit 100% of my daily goal 3 times and I was pretty close most of the other days.

Friends have seen me walking around with the bottle and whey they have seen it light up have asked me about it and I told them I am tracking my daily water consumption and the bottle is lighting up to remind me to drink water. They all immediately thought it was an awesome idea.

Overall, I highly recommend this bottle to anyone that wants to work on their hydration game. I personally believe that if you want to be held accountable then this is the right bottle for you.

Here is the link to purchase a Hidrate Spark 2.0 Water Bottle. 

2017: Workout Recap Week 43

Monday, October 23rd

4.5 mike run around the old neighborhood and saw pumpkins! 

Tuesday, October 24th

6 miles with Conshy Running doing the Conshy Ladder which was a lot of HILLS! 

The crew on Tuesday!

Wednesday, October 25th

4 miles starting from the local high school to pick up my car from getting an oil change. First point to point run. 

Thursday, October 26th

5 miles total: 4 miles around a local park then 1 mile with my Girls on the Run crew.

Friday, October 27th

Rest Day 

Saturday, October 28th

15 miles with my running friend Cait who ran 20 miles for her Philly Marathon training.

We celebrated with coffee and champagne.

Then headed to brunch at Nudy’s Cafe.

Someone was hungry after her 20 Miler!

Sunday, October 29th

Rest Day!

How was your training this week?

The Ghost Race Philly

Last year, the store manager for the Lululemon on Walnut Street in Philadelphia started this run called The Ghost Race. The Ghost Race, presented by Lululemon, is a virtual running race that is recorded by using the app Strava – which is a social media app for athletes. The Ghost Race took place on October 13-22 and you could run the race at any time, solo, or with a group. The race was 8km (5 miles) and through logging the run on Strava you are able to see other’s times and also challenge your own course PR.

I was able to run The Ghost Race 3 times throughout the time frame. I ran it on Friday for the first time and documented some of the Philadelphia race course below.

It was definitely handy having these markers along the trail so you knew where to start and where to end/turn around.

The beginning of the race along Boathouse Row.



You see this piece of artwork along The Ghost Race route.


I loved being able to see all the historic Philadelphia Schykull River Rowing pieces. Such as the local Division 1 Crew teams making their mark near the race finish line. img_4203

The scenery throughout the Schykull River Trail isn’t that bad on a fall day!img_4205

On the last day of The Ghost Race, Lululemon King of Prussia was a hosting an event with the running club I participate with, Conshy Running.

Prior to the official event, my friend Cait who works for Lululemon King of Prussia and who was the staff hosting the event came early to run the race so I ran with her. It was fun to catch up and do The Ghost Race a second time.

Then the Conshy Running crew arrived and we got ready to ghost!
And off we went starting at Lloyd Hall. img_4240

After The Ghost Race, we enjoyed Duck Donuts, coffee, and some Nuun Hydration proceeds of Lululemon King of Prussia. It was great to be able to meet some educators from the store as well.
img_4242-1So good, so good! I have to admit, I definitely had 3 donuts!

Thank you Lululemon King of Prussia for hosting such a fun event. And I was glad I was able to complete The Ghost Race 3 times throughout the time frame. Can’t wait to participate next year.

2017: Work Out Recap Week 42

Monday, October 16th

4.5 miles around my old neighborhood then 1 more with Girls on the Run.

Tuesday, October 17th

3 miles around my neighborhood 

Wednesday, October 18th

Took a rest day because I felt my knee needed a break.

Thursday, October 19th

3 miles solo then 1 more mile with Lola.

Friday, October 20th

5 miles doing The Ghost Race Philadelphia.

Saturday, October 21st

Rest Day

Sunday, October 22nd

5 miles doing The Ghost Race with my friend from Lululemon, Cait and her boyfriend.

5 miles doing The Ghost Race with Conshy Running and Lululemon King of Prussia.

Did you Ghost this week?

UVF SAAC 5k Race Recap

If you don’t know I work for a sports ministry that influences athletes and coaches on a daily basis. One of the campuses I love going to is the University of Valley Forge because I am really close with their Women’s Basketball Coach and some of the players. A few of the players are involved with a campus organization called the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee which deals with issues athletes have on their college campuses and community service activities. Well, this particular committee is holding a 5k race to benefit Project Purpose in Pottstown, PA.

These basketball players know I love to run, so naturally they asked me to participate and I couldn’t pass it up. I have to admit, this is the first time I truely raced a 5k in a while because I am usually not fond of them. But I am anxious to see how I do and to see if I can PR after the summer of training I had. Even though I have taken a bit of a break from speed work the last 2 months I am still interested to see how this race turns out.

I had a hard time picking a race outfit because it was going to be a bit misty and in the mid-50s. I decided to go with a complete Lululemon outfit.

When I got to the race site which was at the University of Valley Forge and running through Charlestown Park. I was excited to see one of the teachers I know from one of the local schools I am involved in running the 5k too. 

Thankfully, I wasn’t nervous about the race at all. I used to get a lot of race anxiety but I have tried to take my mind off the race and just talk to people and have fun. The buzzer went off and I definitely started out in the front and started out at my 5k race pace of 8:00 minute pace. I was planning on starting out a little bit more conservatively but of course I didn’t out of excitement. The beginning of the course was flat through the university but then you headed into the park and it got hilly! Ugh, hills! The entire 2nd mile was through the park and it was up and down the whole time. I honestly was dying, my pace slowed to a 8:30 minute pace for the last two miles. I felt I was having an asthma attack but I refused to give up. I wanted to push myself and I wanted to PR. I knew I was capable of it and I didn’t want to settle.

I crossed the finish line in 26:27 which was a PR of over a minute! I couldn’t believe it! I had an 8:21 average pace and I finished 2nd overall female and 1st in my age group of 30-39.

The girl in the picture below, her name is Teelah and she is one of the sweetest people I have ever met. We honestly were battling it out the entire race. This was the first time I felt I was in battle with someone during a race. I went into this race knowing that due to the  amount of runners that were there I could definitely pace in my age group, but honestly I saw Teelah and I thought, “Crap, she is in my age group. She is sure to beat me!” Well, she passed me right after the 1 mile mark because we had hit some hills. She was ahead of me for a little bit but we hit a flat portion through the university at the beginning of the 3rd mile and I pulled ahead of her. But I was grateful we were in it together pushing each other to be better.

This is the first time I had officially placed in a race and I was super excited even though the field was low. The last time I almost placed was the Super Hero Showdown 15k in June when I placed 4th in my age group. I was so disappointed that I had just missed a podium finish. So during this race, when I realized I could place I refused to settle for anything less. 

These two athletes have amazed me with their growth an maturely the past 3 years. I was so proud to support and represent the athletic department during the race. Here is to a new 5k PR! 

2017: Workout Recap Week 41

Monday, October 9th

4 miles on the treadmill and lifting/rolling.

Tuesday, October 10th

5 miles on the trail.

Wednesday, October 11th

Rest Day.

Thursday, October 12th 

4 miles on the treadmill and lifting


Friday, October 13th

3 miles easy on the trail.

Saturday, October 14th

UVF SAAC 5k in a time of 26:27

2nd female overall • 1st female in my age group • over a minute PR

Sunday, October 15th

Rest Day