Place Your Bets Here

March 16, 2012 · 36 comments

I really, really love it when I learn something from my readers.

Dave, one of my runner friends, had a lot to say to me about Sunday’s Shamrock Half Marathon.

I’m taking his advice. I made my last taper run a quicker three miles yesterday.

Ever since my final 8-miler last weekend, my calves have been incredibly sore, making my toes numb when I run. I can’t tell if my new Zensah compression sleeves are working any magic yet, but I’ve scheduled an after-work massage today try to get any extra kinks out I can.

My final run looked a little like this at about 90% effort.

Who wants to place bets on the kind of half I run with that as my strugglefest of a taper run? If you guess my final time right, I’ll hit you with a prize.

I meeean, it’s a complete tossup.. I doubt I could guess accurately.

Thankfully, my crappy final run was immediately made okay by a piece of mail from my friend Heather.

Oh. My. World.

I have to figure out how to wear my new lucky button for the half so I can be like Katniss and her Mockingjay pin. Thank you so much, Heather. You are the sweetest person alive.

Tomorrow, we’ll head to the Shamrock Expo at the Conference center and go snag some race outfits. Katy asked if I’d be wearing this little number. I told her the jury’s still out.

Another reader e-mailed asking for my Shamrock Half Marathon playlist. I wasn’t planning on posting it since for races I typically go through my entire iTunes library and throw together any song that pumps me up at the moment. But, thanks to miss Katie, you guys can get a glipse of what I’ll be rockin’ to on Sunday morning (click on the image to zoom).

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Obviously, I had to include my usuals, adding in some teeny-bopper favorites, and some throwbacks.

Oh, and my biggest fans will be there cheering us on, too.

Look for them on the sidelines, and you’ll probably find me. Hopefully upright and feelin’ fresh.

And if you do find me, regardless of my finish time, I’ll be expecting a fist bump and a beer.

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kristen @ notsodomesticated March 16, 2012 at 2:22 pm

Good luck on the marathon!! I hope the massage helps you. By the way, I’ve been doing the shin stretches you told me about (you referred me to one of your old posts). I really like them, and I’ve been feeling so much better lately. I think it’s a combination of several things, but the stretches have certainly helped!!

Have a good weekend!! ๐Ÿ™‚
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2 Jill March 16, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Can I just say- how happy it makes me that you have N*SYNC Digital Get Down on your playlist?!? I thought I was the only one still rocking out to that one!
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3 Dorsa @ Running Thoughts March 16, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Good Luck lady! I am running the Rock & Roll Half here in dc tomorrow!

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4 Raquel @ Toned, Tan, Fit & Techie March 16, 2012 at 3:10 pm

I think the compression socks should work. John tried them for the first time after his last marathon 2 weeks ago and he said they helped his recovery, and he was running 5:32 miles for the entire thing. (he’s nuts).
I tried them on for fun the other day and I was sitting on the couch for about an hour, tooling around online, and when I got up my legs were completely numb and I lost control in them and fell down (yes I am a tool). I think it might have to do with my really low blood pressure and then the socks. who knows.
Anyway, good luck on your run and drinks tons of green beer after! ๐Ÿ™‚ lucky
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5 Heather @ Run Eat Play March 16, 2012 at 3:15 pm

Good luck!!


6 Coco March 16, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Aww your parents are adorable! Speed safely out there- and good luck! ๐Ÿ™‚
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7 Annie March 16, 2012 at 3:52 pm

I can’t click on the image to zoom? ๐Ÿ™


8 Maja March 16, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Alyssa, how are 3 miles in 22 min not amazing?
Or am I just that out of running shape? You will have a great time at the Half for sure.
I am itching to start training for anither one…after my first and only half two years ago…haha
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9 Easa March 16, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Funny, I totally thought my comments were out of line in retrospect as it felt like I unintentionally hijacked your blog and went off on a tangent. Sorry if I gave that impression. Glad you took it in a positive direction and not as a challenge to your approach.

Fitzgerald writes a bunch about the mental aspect of running and I think there’s a big tie in when it comes to the taper.

The calculator ( says 1:49 but that doesn’t take into consideration the course which I know nothing about. I figure based on the mentality expressed here that you have a decent day and push to crack 1:50. But I’m throwing that out there without even looking at any of your athlinks data. And I really don’t want to put any expectations on anyone, least of all someone I’ve never met who is dealing with some recent health scares and who has a very public blog. I will still think you’re completely awesome if you cruise in with a 2:10 chugging a beer and doing a cartwheel.

So I guess for fun, make my prediction 1:49:49

I checked with my friend, the Yogger, and he gave me his taper formula. When asked where he came up with those numbers he mentioned his posterior. Comparing our athlinks results head to head, he’s had the upper hand at least 25% of the time, so I would say his plan works pretty well for him.

Two week taper (by the Yogger):
back off volume by about 25% and quality volume by about 40% in week 1
back off volume by about 60% and quality volume by about 80% in week 2
preferrably two days of total rest before race
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10 Marcia March 16, 2012 at 6:02 pm

Love the play list…especially all the Gavin Degraw tunes ( I just missed him in concert in my hometown-BUMMED) and Andy Grammer……Love them both!
Have so much fun tomorrow! ๐Ÿ™‚
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11 Marcia@momwifefitnesslife March 16, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Oh…and your 22 min easy run….fast! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Marcia@momwifefitnesslife recently posted…Hey Glutesโ€ฆwhere you at?My Profile


12 yogger March 16, 2012 at 6:14 pm

Hm. Crappy run on Thursday before a Sunday race does cause concern. Hopefully you do nothing the next couple days. I was also tempted to go with high 1:40s too, but given last year’s results, I can’t go lower than 1:45:33.


13 Hollie@lolzthatswim March 16, 2012 at 8:51 pm

Well that answered my question from yesterday lolz! I didn’t know if you were running half or full. Anyways-good luck! I hope I get to see you!
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14 Brittney @ Brittney Breathing March 16, 2012 at 9:28 pm

Ha! Can I just say that I absolutely love that you have Digital Get Down by *NSYNC. Old school throwback!


15 Lindsey @ Happy or Hungry March 17, 2012 at 12:01 am

Good luck Aly-bopper! Kill it like I killed ‘picnik’!
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16 Claire @ Un Bello Aperitivo March 17, 2012 at 9:52 am

Good luck on the half! You’ll rock it. ๐Ÿ™‚
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17 Tina @ Best Body Fitness March 17, 2012 at 10:43 am

You’re going to do awesome!!!!
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18 Amber K March 17, 2012 at 1:05 pm

Have a great race!


19 Erika - The Teenage Taste March 17, 2012 at 5:15 pm

Good luck at the half, Alyssa! I’m sure you’ll kill your time goal! ๐Ÿ˜€
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20 Ricole Runs March 17, 2012 at 7:28 pm

GOOD LUCK GOOD LUCK GOOD LUCK! That is a speedy 3 mile warm-up! You will do awesome!
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21 Annie @ What's Annie Making? March 18, 2012 at 4:42 pm

Hope the run went great Alyssa! Thanks for sharing your playlist too. I always love finding new (and old) music to add to my workout playlist.
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22 Leslie March 18, 2012 at 9:26 pm

I guess 1:40! Good luck today, we did the NYC and it was a blast! ๐Ÿ™‚


23 Lindsay @ Fuel My Family March 19, 2012 at 9:29 am

3 miles in 22 minutes doesnt look like too shabby of a run to me! Hope your marathon went well!
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24 Karla @myhighonlife March 19, 2012 at 10:58 am

That playlist is BOMB. And I squealed at the thought of the Hunger Games. Cannnnot wait ๐Ÿ™‚
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25 Patti March 19, 2012 at 8:29 pm

Ha, your sad taper run is way better than my 5k PR. Now I have GOALZ.


26 Katy @ HaveYouHurd March 21, 2012 at 8:11 am

Thanks for the shout out lady!!! Although you did not choose the outfit I thought you would for the race, you still rocked the ish out of that tutu!
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