Registered…finally.

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Finally, the congratulations I’ve been waiting for…I’m officially entered into the Marathon!  Huge thank you to everyone who supported my fundraising for Team R4V.  Because of your support, I was able to raise over $600 to support our vets!

I’ve never run a race as part of an organization before, but am proud to be part of this team.  Team R4V is much more than just a ‘show-up-for-your-t-shirt-and-swag’ team, it’s a group of athletes who are dedicated to supporting our vets and supporting each other.  Within a day of registering, I was added as part of their Facebook group, where fellow runners from all over the country are posting about their upcoming races, receiving support + inspiration, and providing helpful tips for their fellow team members. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about free t-shirts, but it’s feels great to be a part of something bigger.

Training is officially in full swing (it kicked off with bootcamp can you believe it?!) with many more details to come.

Has anyone else ever run as part of a bigger team or organization?  Curious to hear your experiences!

As always, run on runners.

-Kendall

We’re in!

I am pleased to announce that the entry saga of the Marine Corps Marathon 2014 is over….we are IN!

Honestly, this year’s registration for the MCM was worse than applying for colleges. (Sorry MCM, I love this event, but it was a hassle) As you’ll recall, team BylMiles was planning on getting into the marathon through the 17.75 event that guaranteed you a spot in the big race.  Well, 9 minutes of registration for the 17.75 went by while I was on the phone and BAM – sold out.  9 minutes, no joke.  Then a stream of texts from friends that were also trying to get in confirmed the same thing: none of us were running the 17.75.

Our next order of business was to register for the lottery.  I’m going to be very open and say that I really don’t agree with races that have a lottery for entry.  Not only is it nearly impossible to get your whole team in (even for just two people!) against those odds, but the stress of waiting for your acceptance is unbearable.  Nevertheless, we registered for said lottery about a month ago, and patiently waited…until today.

While refreshing four different tabs on my computer, we waited for the big “yes” emails saying we were into the run.  Quick props to the MCM social media people for keeping their pages updated + letting people know that emails were still being sent out.  About three hours into our wait, my dad gets his email – he’s in! So, at this point we just need the second email to make our 2014 MCM dreams come true.

So we waited.

And refreshed.

And waited.

And tweeted hopefully at the MCM team.

And got nothing.

No lottery entry for me fellow runners, I was bang outta luck. Now, of course, panic sets in.  No lottery entry means that I need to find some other way to get into the race.  Enter Team R4V. I had never heard of this organization before, but they were ready with their posts calling for racers to join their team that hadn’t made it into the lottery drawing.

After a quick scan of their website, I was sold. Team R4V is a non-profit that provides assistance to all branches of military veterans through athletic races/fundraising – how awesome is that?! So, you are looking at the newest member of their team!

I’ll be fundraising as part of my participation, so be on the lookout for more info here on how you can support Team R4V (and of course, my race!).

To everyone who made it into the lottery, congrats! To everyone still looking for a bib, I feel you pain, best of luck in your search!

And now, for the sentence I’ve been waiting to write since we entered the lottery a month ago…Marine Corps Marathon 2014 – HERE WE COME!

As always, run on (marathon) runners.

-Kendall

Tickets are Booked!

It’s official, my flights for the Marine Corps 17.75 in DC are booked! It’s going to be one of the quickest running turnarounds of my life (in DC for roughly 24 hours, including the race), but it’ll be worth it.

I’m going to let you in on a little-known fact relating to this race, which eventually made the BylMiles Team decision to run it.  This year’s Marine Corps Marathon has officially switched to be a lottery entry.  Now, if you have ever experienced the stress of a lottery entry race before, you know that you would do just about anything to avoid it. ever. again.  Luckily, the MCM team created a little loophole. This year’s 17.75 race in April is the one race that if you finish, guarantees you entry to the marathon in October.

BINGO! As someone who is running as part of a team, we wanted to ensure that we could run the marathon + get in together.  So, Marine Corps 17.75, here we come! The April countdown is officially on, then only a few more months after we cross that finish line until MCM round 3.

Seeing as my training is ramping up in anticipation for this race, wanted to share this awesome/totally true article from one of my favorite blogs: 25 things you learn when you train for a marathon. 

As always, run on runners.

-Kendall

Race Review: MCM 10k

As the countdown to the Marine Corps Marathon ticks on (and the threat of the gov shutdown canceling the race looms) I’m reminded of last year’s MCM 10K.  For some quick backstory, I hadn’t trained nearly enough for the marathon and decided to postpone my run until this year and ran the 10k instead.

I had a group of family & friends running with me in the MCM 10k last year which made for a hilarious start line. We danced on the balls of our feet out in the cold and rain on the National Mall until the gun sounded and we took off.  If your looking for a great view on your run, this is the race for you. You kick off running towards the Capitol building and continue to follow the National Mall.  The course is actually part of the Marine Corps Marathon run, which is great because you get the gorgeous tour of DC monuments during the event. Also as per the marathon, the race was extremely well organized, filled with spectators and hosted by our favorite men + women in uniform.

The course is pretty flat, and has plenty of sites to see (including a drum line!) along the way. Would highly recommend to any first timer or repeat 10k runners. You even get to cross the finish line at the Marine Corps memorial and receive your medal from a marine!  Post race, there is plenty to eat/drink and of course, you’ll want to stick around to watch the winners of the marathon cross the finish line about an hour later.

A quick tip for 10k runners (also applicable to marathoners): be ready to walk a ways to get to the start and also when you finish the race. Even though there is plenty of public transportation, you’re one of over 30,000 runners + spectators that are trying to use the same few stations. Much easier in my experience to get off the public transport a few stops away from the main ones and walk to wherever you need to be.

Shout-out to all of my friends that will be running the 10k this year again, have a blast!  In the meantime, fingers crossed that the MCM 10k and MCM can still happen in just 12 days time. As always, run on runners.

– Kendall

MCM 10k(some of my fellow 10k runners and I before the start. note my purple parrot halloween shirt!)