Thursday, June 27, 2013

Boston Strong Giveaway

Seeing as I have officially returned to the west coast from spending a wonderful week in Boston, it's only right that I come home bearing gifts!

While I was in Boston, I truly learned what 'Boston Strong' really meant. I will cover that in a recap post later. So since we all stand with Boston, I want to giveaway something.

My good friends at INKnBURN created a tribute tech tee for Boston (available for both men and women). It is a play on their 'I Run Boston' shirt (both of which I own). I am giving you a chance to win the Tribute tee. I wore this shirt during the B.A.A. 10K this year and received lots of compliments on it. One other reason I love this shirt, is that proceeds from the shirt go toward The Boston One Fund, which helps the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings.

It's easy to enter, use the rafflecopter below. If you do not win and still want to purchase this shirt, head over to! If you want to get 15% any other item (because the code doesn't work on the Boston tribute tee...we want to donate as much money as possible to The One Fund), you can use code 'LinzToldMe' at check out :)


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Wipro San Francisco Marathon - Inspiration and Renewal

What a fantastic weekend I just had! So many wonderful and unexpected things happened in San Francisco this weekend! This will probably be a long post, so grab your mug of Inspirational Tea and get comfortable. I got a lot to say and lots of pictures to share :)

I arrived at San Francisco airport on Friday morning and took a swift BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) ride to Embarcadero station which is where the host hotel was located in the city. I headed to my room on the 14th floor overlooking the Ferry Building and the Bay Bridge...what a beautiful view. I relaxed and got settled then met up with fellow running friend, Jennifer and we took on the adventure of heading to the expo...which was 3 miles away. We laughed, shared stories, picked up our bibs and shirts,  ate all the samples, etc. etc. etc. It was a fun experience all around!

Me & Jennifer @Jennrunsdisney
That night, I met up with one of my dearest friends Jeffrey for an evening filled with Blue Bottle Coffee, Specialities Cookie hunts, a delightful dinner at the Stinking Rose in Little Italy, and a short shopping spree in Union Square. It was wonderful to get to spend some time with my brother!

Gotta Love Best Friends

Saturday came along, I was looking forward to it! I got up in the morning and laced up for a short run from my hotel to Fisherman's Wharf and back. Who can resist an early morning run along the Port of San Francisco? It was so calming and serene. The fog was lingering on the bay and the air had a crisp snap to it. Other runners had the same idea to go out for their shake out runs. We exchanged waves, high fives, and smiles. 

Morning Shake Out Run!

After my shake out run, I grabbed a cup of tea and sat on the rear side of the Ferry building and watched the sun come up over the bay bridge. I wanted to just appreciate nature and the blessing that was this weekend. I ran into my running pal Krissy while sitting there...what are the odds right ;). I made my way back to my hotel and got myself ready to head to the expo. I was anxious to get to the social media meet/tweet up! I met some really awesome runners I have had the privilege to correspond with via Twitter and Facebook! It is always so much fun to meet people in real-life. It really is a highlight for me! So, if you ever see me out and about, please say hi! I'll be honest, I may not connect the dots right away but the lights will come on eventually haha :)

My new buddy @QwietSt0rm! He also scored a tin of EnergyBits!

And then my day was made when I met one of my favorite bloggers........

Ladies and Squirrels, @PavementRunner!!!!!!!

Honorable mention goes to Heather and Chris who I also met :)

After the expo I headed to Ghirardelli Square and met up with Krissy where we delighted in a lovely view of Alcatraz, world famous hot fudge sundaes, smiles, and laughs! 

Gotta Love Krissy @OutrunMonorail
After that delight, I grabbed some dinner at Boudin, then headed back to my hotel and prepped my gear for the big race.

Race morning came, I got dressed and headed to the start line which was located right outside my door! I love when that happens. Now, I have been nervous abou this race for weeks because it is a tough race. Let's be honest, San Francisco is not a flat is built on hills. Would I make it? Am I prepared? What if I don't hit my target? All that went away after I got into my corral and I was watching the sun break through the clouds and dance on the water of the bay. A sense of calm washed over me. Then I remembered why I do this.

As much as I love to run for time, sometimes it isn't about that at all. Sometimes, you just have to run.

When my corral was released into the wild,  The first 5 miles of this race were cake. I took my pace a little slower because I knew the hills would be on their way and I wanted to have enough juice. Then something happened. I came to mile 4 and looked to my left and saw the Palace of Fine Arts. I looked to the right and could see the Golden Gate Bridge in the distance....and the clouds and fog had dispersed. The next thing I knew, I was running ON the Golden Gate Bridge. Now, I didn't think this would have excited me the way it did, but let me minister to you...

Running that bridge was one of the proudest moments of my life. Seriously. I ran ON the Golden Gate Bridge during one of the toughest marathons in the world! And I had a smile on my face the ENTIRE time! Nothing in my world was wrong. Everything just fell into place while I was up there! It was beautiful, it was inspiring, it was everything! It is something so special, and I will never forget that moment! So thanks to the marathon team for allowing it's participants to create a memory that will last a lifetime.

Once we finished the bridge, we made our way to Golden Gate Park. You may not know this, but that park clearly is what heaven looks like. It is stunning. The trees, the wild life, the buildings, the culture, the geese, the hills. Yeah, this park is on a steady incline so it's best to really pace yourself through this area. But it was beautiful. So much to see and appreciate. Another treat. I took it easy on this portion of the course. I wanted to appreciate all of the nature and wanted to be energized for the last 6 miles of the race once we exited the park.

After the park we made our way through city streets and popular neighborhoods. I finished the race feeling stronger than I anticipated. I beat my LA Marathon time, but came in a little slower than my OC Marathon PR. I didn't care. I had an amazing race. I finished and received some awesome inspiration along the I won. I completed the LA/SF Challenge, finished my 4th marathon, AND earned my Golden State Marathon Series Bronze Medal Status...yeah, I won. This is an amazing race, with an amazing course. If you are considering running this race...DO IT! I will caution you to train so you can handle the terrain. What I found inspiring was the energy of the city and vibrant energy that explodes from the architecture and nature. No where have I ever touched a bridge and felt it vibrate with energy of positivity and made dreams! I am not blowing this out of proportion. If you were on that bridge with us on Sunday, you know that it was something very special! Being in the park, and seeing that slice of heaven was just amazing! I didn't want to be finished. I wanted to keep running and I hoped it wouldn't end! I want to go back to San Francisco and run through the park again! Beauty and splendor is all around us, and when we are centered and focused, life and the things that matter become clear. I received blessings this weekend I never expected, and I hope if you were with me, you received your blessings as well. I will be back to do this race again. It was absolutely 'Worth The Hurt' ya know, they have Noah's bagels and Blue Bottle Coffee up north...

Monday, June 10, 2013

Summer 2013 Running Tracks

I am often asked what kind of music keeps me going when I am running. Well, that's a complicated question. See, I don't just listen to one genre of music. I go from classic rock, to jazz, to hip-hip in a matter of seconds. It all just depends on what kind of mood I am in that day, or the type of training or run I am going to attempt.

So, seeing that summer has decided to grace us with it's presence, I thought I would share of my favorite songs to run to for the summer months! Some tracks may surprise you. It is important to keep your running playlist updated. Fresh tunes can make all the difference. Also, stagger your music. Don't put all the high intensity power songs up front...don't want to burn out to soon.

Well, here you go guys!

Summer 2013 Running Tracks

  • Dawn Richard - Faith
  • Tiësto - Maximal Crazy
  • AC/DC - Back to Black
  • Adele - Rolling in the Deep
  • Beyoncé - Single Ladies
  • Beyoncé - Crazy in Love
  • Christina Aguilera - Make the World Move
  • The Crystal Method - Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Mary Mary - Go Get It
  • Kanye West - Touch the Sky
  • Kanye West - All of the Lights
  • Britney Spears - Gasoline
  • Swedish House Mafia - Greyhound
  • Chris Brown - Fine China
  • Will Smith - Summertime
  • Martin Solveig - We Came to Smash

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Even I Need Inspiration

A picture is worth a thousand words, and words mean things. I hear a lot of you tell me that you find my blog entries and tweets to be inspiring, and for that I thank you. But keep in mind, I am just an average person just like you. I am no ultra runner by any least not yet. I have a way to go on my training and I am enjoying every stride in my Newton Gravity foot candy. Earlier this week, someone I follow on Facebook posted an AMAZING photo. When I saw it, my jaw literally fell and I yelled out loud.

The photo depicted strength, endurance, courage, tenacity, serenity, focus, and discipline...that's how I read it anyway. Photography is one of my hobbies, and I am naturally attracted to clean minimalist lines and shadows. When I saw this...I got all of my life!

Courtesy of Holly Miller Endurance Training & Nutrition

The woman rocking this pose on this rock (hey, that was clever) is Holly. Holly is one of my inspirations...and I am not even sure she knew that until earlier this week. Holly is one really cool chick! She runs ultras at lightning speeds, has muscles that...well...she has muscles and you should be afraid, and has the privilege of running all over the country in awesome settings and venues including multiple visits to the Boston Marathon. I've seen her hit yoga poses at Moab, pretty much any beach, oh and she likes to befriend squirrels. One day she will domesticate And if you thing I look awesome in INKnBURN...well trust me she owns the entire collection and looks AWESOME in all of the clothes! I mean check out her handstand below, totally INB!

Courtesy of Holly Miller Endurance Training & Nutrition

The reason why I chose to blog about Holly was because she is one hell of an athlete. I admire her strength and focus. The running community is an awesome community of people and she is a star example of that! I got to meet her before the start of the LA Marathon this year, and she was so nice, really funny, and encouraging.

People that inspire have to be get their inspiration from other sources. Be that, art, music, other people, or nature. Inspiration comes in all forms. When Holly hit that pose on that boulder, she made art, she connected with nature which made the Earth sing, and inspired me. She inspired me to continue on my training to become stronger and faster. Complacency is not an option. You do not get faster and stronger by have to get out there and WORK! Every runner/athlete starts with their first step. I have taken many first steps and learned along the way. Every day we learn. I have my lesson and my marching orders...time to refocus and get back to business. I know I am good, but I can be great! And greatness comes with hard work, dedication, and focus. Time to lace up and get it done!

So thanks Holly for inspiring me! If you want to see some of Holly's #InspirationalTea, check out her Facebook page!

Run On!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Giveaway 1 - Bits & INK

Hi Guys!

Well, today officially launches my new blog here on Blogger. Tomorrow night I will be decommissioning my old domain and will use this blog exclusively and I am so excited! So in honor of the new blog, and the new look (Thank Ruby for the art), let's give some stuff away! Below, I have a RaffleCopter widget you can play with and enter for a chance to win a tin of ENERGYbits and a eGift card to INKnBURN worth $25.00!

So let's play! Thank you so much for being a follower and a reader! I can't do what I love without YOU!

a Rafflecopter giveaway