Cleveland Marathon Race Week and Race Recap

Under normal circumstances, this post would’ve included a recap of my 2020 Cleveland Marathon experience. The taperingish the week of, followed by running the Challenge Series on Saturday and Sunday.

But as we all know, things aren’t really normal right now. Races are cancelled. So this week, instead of running Cleveland, I had an ordinary running-by-myself week. Here’s what it looked like:

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Friday Morning – Cleveland Half Marathon

It was NOT an ordinary week in running. Why? I decided to get in my virtual Cleveland Half Marathon miles done and ended my week with a half marathon and 5k!  That’s right, I’ve completed my first virtual race and was able to get in a half marathon by myself Friday morning while my house was still asleep. 

Here’s a look at the week:

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Double Digit Miles

Another week of social isolation down, and another week of still recovering and getting back into running. I’m finding I’m slower than ever before and have to take walking breaks even during short runs because I’m out of breath. BUT, I did another longish run this weekend and that gives me reason to hope that I’m getting better!

Here’s a look at this week’s runs — all done outside, but solo. For my weekday runs, I didn’t see anyone outside at all pretty much. On the weekends, I’ve had to dodge some people but I generally cross the street or run at least 6 feet away so I’m keeping my distance. Continue reading

Socially Isolating and Running Solo

Another week of social isolation down, and another week of still recovering and getting back into running. I’m finding I’m slower than ever before and have to take walking breaks even during short runs because I’m out of breath. BUT, I did another longish run this weekend and that gives me reason to hope that I’m getting better!

Here’s a look at this week’s runs — all done outside, but solo. For my weekday runs, I didn’t see anyone outside at all pretty much. On the weekends, I’ve had to dodge some people but I generally cross the street or run at least 6 feet away so I’m keeping my distance. Continue reading

Getting Back Into Running

Last week I shared that I was coming back from an injury….or something. After getting the flu (yes, I tested positive for Influenza A), I had a nasty cough and then some serious chest pains for a few weeks. The chest pain localized and I had some pressure when running. Anyway, I tried taking some time off and then walking, but this week I was back at running again for a few days. I’m still slow, still getting back out there, but it feels good to be able to get out when I can!

Here’s a look at this week’s runs: Continue reading

5 Steps to Start Training for a Half Marathon

We’re less than 12 weeks away from the Cleveland Marathon and Half Marathon events, which means it’s time to get training! If you’re planning on doing a spring race but don’t know where to start, here are 5 steps to get started:

5 Steps to Start Training for a Half Marathon

Step 1- Find a training schedule. If you’re already able to run 2-3 miles, then you’re in luck – there’s plenty of time to train for a spring race. I’m a big fan of Hal Higdon’s training plans because they give you time to build up your mileage (their beginner half marathon plan is 12 weeks long), come in different levels and are somewhat flexible, which is key for any parent. For example, if you have a long run scheduled for a Saturday but find yourself tied up at 3-year-old birthday parties all day Saturday, you can switch things up and move it to another day in the week. 

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GIVEAWAY: Cleveland Marathon Entry Giveaway

TLDR: You can win entry to the Cleveland Marathon! Comment on this post or visit my Instagram (@koskim) for more chances to enter.

As you may have heard me share, I’m once again I’m returning as a Cleveland Marathon Ambassador!

That means that I get to promote one of my favorite race series – the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon, happening the weekend of May 16-17, 2020. This year, the race weekend has plenty of options for runners of all levels, from the famous marathon, to the half marathon, 10K and 5K. Plus, there’s my favorite – the Challenge Series events, where if you run both Saturday and Sunday events, you get 3 medals AND a special gift (past gifts have included a foam roller, fleece blanket, hoodie, etc.). And, as an ambassador, I have a free race entry to give away!

Enter the Cleveland Marathon Race Entry Giveaway

How do you enter? This year’s giveaway is taking place on both my Instagram account AND blog. You can enter both ways, on my Insta (@koskim) OR by commenting on this post. So in short, comment below and/or visit @koskim on Instagram to enter.

Ready to run? Check out @koskim on Instagram to enter and/or comment below with the race you’d like to run to enter. The giveaway will run through 11:59 p.m. Saturday, 2/22.

Some questions for you:

  • What are you training for now?
  • What’s your favorite spring race?

And if you don’t win, you can still get 10% off! Use discount code RUNCLEMELISSA10 when you register.

Disclosure: As a race ambassador, I was given a free race entry into the Cleveland Marathon. I also get a free entry to give away. You can enter here! Or on Instagram. Or both places. Wherever you want.

Cleveland Marathon Kickoff Run Week

Happy January! I know last week was also January, but now it feels like we’re really into 2020. And that means, it’s time for spring marathon training!

I’m not training for a marathon at the moment (I’ll probably start training for my May half marathon in a month or so), but this week was the Cleveland Marathon Kickoff Run. They had a 5 mile run in Cleveland that started and ended at a brewery, meaning tasty local beers and brunch awaited us! (Plus free donuts and coffee)

Look at how many people were there! I also got to meet up with fellow Cleveland Marathon Ambassadors, which was great.

The run was definitely the highlight of my week, which included lots of treadmill running.  Here’s the look at the week:

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2019 Running: My Year In Review

Happy New Year (plus a few days)! I can’t believe we’re already at the end of the year and it’s already time to look back at 2019. In terms of running, it was a good year. Here are some highlights:

Returning as a Cleveland Marathon Ambassador

I once again was asked to return as an ambassador for one of my favorite local races – the Cleveland Marathon! I joined several new and returning ambassadors to help promote the race, which is held in May every year. As part of the ambassadorship, I was able to be featured on the running podcast, Rust Belt Running! You can listen to my episode here.

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Processing the Cleveland Marathon

I have had a hard time processing all the events from last week’s Cleveland Marathon. More than a week has gone by, and I’m still trying to put to words how I’m feeling.

The highs – the Ambassador race VIP dinner, working the Expo with fellow Ambassadors, and of course finishing the races under less-than-ideal conditions.

But the low – the passing of Taylor Ceepo – has been running through my mind all week.

I’ll start by saying I did not know Taylor. I had never met her. I do not know her family and cannot fathom what they are feeling. Unfortunately the only connection I have to her is running the same race – the Cleveland half marathon – and running by her after she collapsed.

So why do I feel so connected to her? Why on after the race did I have a hard time going to sleep, reliving the moment that I ran by her on the ground, her mom and boyfriend standing over her, each time I closed my eyes? Why did I find myself choked up on my first #RunForTaylor on Wednesday? Why did I find myself hugging my own daughter a little tighter as I thought about what Taylor’s mother must be feeling?

I can’t help but feeling like I don’t have a right to feel this way. I don’t have a right to write a post like this. Who am I to be talking about this at all? But after reading some thoughts from other local runners, I realize I am not alone. We are all grieving for this woman. Because we are all part of a community. One of my running friends and a fellow ambassador Andrew explained it this way:

We [runners] all have different routines, different speeds, and different backgrounds. But we all have two things in common; a goal to finish and a love for running. This is what brings us together.

We lost one of our own this day. And our hearts are broken. Our hearts are broken for the spectators who witnessed [it], the race staff, the runners who shared the course, the first-responders who were unable to revive her. Most importantly, our hearts are broken for the family and friends of this young woman.

So thank you, Taylor, for reminding us of the community that we are part of. For reminding us of how lucky we all are. I will keep on running for you and your family in the weeks ahead. #runfortaylor