Sunday, August 30, 2009

Quebec City Marathon, Half Marathon & 10k 2009

Our skirt calendar is over booked this weekend....Disneyland Half Marathon, Chocolate Half Marathon and the Quebec City Marathon, Half Marathon and 10k!

Here's a few highlights and photos from the weekend in Quebec City!

Our "speedy skirt" Josiane Oboungono and Cindy in the skirt booth at the Quebec City Marathon Expo. Josiane was back in Quebec City to defend her reigning half marathon champion title....this would be win #5.

View from the Marathon Reception

(shot from the finish line stretch)

Race day was a bit chilly & wet. We took the bus out to the 10k start and huddled in the covered shelter until the start time approached. This is a very well organized events, lots of porta potties, refreshments and entertainment (listed in order of my own priority, haha).

I still conquer that Quebec City marathon hosts the most beautiful course that I've ever run. If' you've never run or visited Quebec City, I highly recommend adding it to you "must run" bucket list! Don't get me wrong, the course can present it's share of is hilly and sometimes you get a bit of a headwind on the second half running back along the river toward the finish line. But the views along the way are well worth the suffering!

Sharing the podium with the other 10k winners.
gun time chip time pace/km 5k

38:51.1 38:51.1 3:54


39:18.9 3:57

39:50.8 39:50.3 4:00


Unfortunately our speedy skirt Josiane had a pre-existing injury flare up during the race, yet still limped in to take 3rd women in the half marathon. Congrats goes out to super mom Krista Duchene for another great race and victory! We wish Josiane a speedy recovery!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Running in Manhattan Central Park

We took a trip down to NYC this weekend for a little R&R (can you R&R in the city?). We had a great time checking out the latest in fall fashion and visiting all the local Manhattan specialty running stores. One of the (ahem) giant athletic companies is now selling polka dot, while aggravating, it is also quite flattering to see this famous international athletic company following our design lead!

Unfortunately I could not find any running events in nyc this weekend, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover that they actually close park avenue from the Central Park all they way to the Brooklyn Bridge every other weekend in the summer for runners & cyclists to allow them a safe place to workout and with cleaner air. It's called NYC Summer Streets - and it's every Saturday in the month of August from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. - Very cool!

Sunday, I headed to Central park for my long run. They hubby rented a bike with a baby seat and kept me company on my double loop around the outside of the park (12 miles total). It was another warm and quite humid day - I think I probably sweated a few pounds in water. Central Park is such a great place for runners - nothing like doing your long run with thousands of others on any given weekend day with convenient refreshment vendors.....water, gatorade, popsicle, etc. a marathon runners oasis! (They would make a killing if they added Gu & sport beans and Ultima replenisher to their offerings!). We had to bribe the baby a bit by the second loop around the park - he was getting tired of his backseat view of daddy's rump.....a chocolate & vanilla Hagen daaz did the trick. However, I think more of it ended up on the hubby' running shorts than in baby's mouth. I decided not to tell hubby what was going on in the backseat with the ever-melting ice cream until after the run. Central park is a great place for training - there are some great rolling hills that would also work for hill repeats. The loop around the resevoir is my favorite - great cityscape views from one side of the loop. Saw lots of NYRR jerseys and some other training groups along the route. No doubt in the midst of New York Marathon Training which is now only a few months away.

We "heart" NY! See you in November!

Skirt Envy Contest Running Skirts

We launched our new Skirt Envy Contest at America's Finest City Half Marathon last weekend - oh what a fun expo that made. Here's the deal - bring your man by the RunningSkirt booth at any Skirt Envy event (check out our calendar here) and get him to try on a skirt and pose for a skirt shot and you'll get 15% off your running skirt purchase. Get this, if he's a manly man (military, construction, or can drop and give us 20) we'll up that discount to 20% Check out the photos from the first Skirt Envy event - ladies, lock up your skirts!

Check out the skirt envy contest pics

Island Girl 10k Toronto Island

Autographed Book & prize basket for 2nd place

Last week was our first event as a sponsor of Multisport Canada Running Series. This new all womens' run series hosts all womens events on Toronto Island and Wasaga Beach. The island girl 10k was a great event from start to finish. My start was at about 6:00 a.m. as I drove down to the vehicle loading dock for the ferry to Hanlan's Point. This was my first experience of being in a vehicle on a ferry - I actually drove my car onto the ferry and sat in the drivers seat at the front of the boat as we traversed the lake over to Hanlan's point. Then I drove off and around the island to the start/finish area of the race to set up the skirt tent.

It was a beautiful, but quite warm & humid day and luckily - rain free. I had a great time working the skirt booth and chatting with all the loyal skirt fans that stopped by to check out the new skirt gear. Most of our speedy skirts (Josiane, Aynadis, Judika, etc) were over at the Beamsville Bench 5k race - part of the Niagara Running Series (that we also sponsor) since they are in the running for top placings in series. I decided that I might as well run the race since I needed a workout (it was saturday after all) and I could tell it would be an awesome course. The race went off at 10:30 a.m. and I quickly crafted a sign that said "Out Running, Be Back Soon!" and then abandoned the skirt tent temporarily just in time to toe the start line. I normally like to do a 20 minute or so warmup before 5 & 10k races, but this time - my warm up was the 200 meters from the skirt booth over to the start line.

And then we were off.....I took off a little under a 6 minute pace following a very speedy one in front of me and quickly drew in the reigns. Since I've been recovering from the arch strain, I haven't been doing any speed work at all so I knew this was going to be a tough run - especially in the heat (it was about 35c (90f) and 80% humidity. I took it down to between 6 and 6:30 pace as I watched the speedy girl increase the distance between us - after the 1-2k mark she was nowhere to be seen.

Whew - it was hot - there wasn't a lot of shade on the course and I was feeling the humidity. As a California native, I used to train with the Fleet Feet Sacramento racing team in the warm Sacramento summer weather (could get into the triple digits), but it's a dry heat there. Humidity is's almost like trying to breath underwater, above ground and does a number on the heartrate and core body temperature. So, yeah, it was hot...and lonely out there and it was tough to talk myself through the last half of the race. It was a beautiful and flat course around the island though - great city & lake views and a well marked course. I made sure to douse myself at each water stop to try to cool down a bit. I maintained my pace to the best of my ability and prayed for the finish line to appear. Finally - as I made my way down the finish line stretch I spotted the speedy girl about 100 yards from the finish - she was congratulating me on my run (she was already comfortably positioned among the other spectators at this time).

I got some fluids in me and doused myself again and thanked the organizers for a wonderful race course and then headed back to congratulate speedy girl on my way back to the booth. Turns out - her name is Megan Brown and she is one of Canada's fastest middle-distance runners and one of Canada's top prospects for 5000 meters event at the 2012 Olympics in England. She finished a full 4 minutes in front of me 35:59! Way to go Megan! I chatted with her briefly after the race on my way back to the skirt booth and she told me about her athlete training business. She mentioned that she trains with the Brooks Marathon group in High park and also at UofT Track.

I made my way back to the skirt booth in time to start welcoming all the "skirts" back in from the run. It is so much fun chatting with the runners and hearing their race experiences. I especially love the ones that tried their new running skirts out for the first time during the race! I love the "I told you so's" that I get to repeat over and over again as each new skirt convert comes back to report and rave about how extremely cool and comfortable her new skirt was.

Best Race Bag ever! Click to zoom in and check it out!

There are too many highlights about this event to list them all, but here are some of the top:

* each women gets "lei'd" at the finish line - beatiful leis in lieu of medals

* best race bag ever (had full size mac eyeshadow, loose face powder, gover girl eye shadow compact, cute heart shaped mirrored compact,secret antiperspirant and more)

* great powder blue & white tech tee race shirt

* awesome steel drum band at the finish line

*great race prizes (aside from the free running skirts to top finishers of course, top winners & masters recieved amazing Fruits & Passion gift baskets and autographed womens book.

*wonderful beneficiary - "look good feel better" (assisting women with cancer)

This was my favorite race so far this summer - I highly recommend fitting it into your Toronto Running Event calendar for 2010! It will surely sell out quickly after word spreads about how well organized and fun this race is.

Will post a few pics as soon as I can. See you at the island girl next year!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Rock 'n' Roll Chicago Half Marathon

Running Skirts rock the Rock 'n' Roll Chicago half marathon! Oh, what a wonderful event in one of our favorite cities of all. We had a great time at the inaugural Chicago Rock 'n' Roll event. The expo was great - we had a blast meeting all of our Chicago area skirt fans. It was such a pleasure meeting you and seeing you all show up at our booth in your running skirt gear.

I had the pleasure of working the expo booth with Louise, a Chicago local and the newest member of the Skirt pack. We had a great time "skirting" all the ladies together. The funniest comment of the day was from a skirt convert who said "I don't know if I can wear a skirt to run....I have to run in my thong!". ?!? (And she was serious!)

For those of you who were quick to register (the event sold out months ago), not only did you get lucky enough to get a race entry and join the other thousands of runners, but you scored a beautiful clear sunny and wind free morning. I was one of the unfortunate many who didn't register in time.....Probably wouldn't have been the best of ideas anyhoo as I've been nursing a plantar strain in my right foot that struck post 5k races and in the middle of some hill sprint workouts. Instead of lining up with you "lucky ducky's" (as my 1.5 year old would say), I slept in & strolled up to the finish line Dunkin Donuts Cofee in hand and cheered on all the skirts!

What an amazing finish to see Kara Goucher win the race....yes, even the men! Goosebumps & Chills - what an amazing inspiration. You rock Kara - way to rock a "tune up" run. Looking forward to seeing more fantastic running at the world championships in a few weeks.

Congrats to all the finishers of this years Rock 'n' Roll Chicago Half Marathon! Looking forward to returning to Chicago soon!