Tag: race

{Race Recap} Sarasota Half Marathon 2015

It’s hard to believe this was my third year to run this race and it is one of my favorites. The first year I did it, I signed up for it just weeks before the race because I saw the awesome dolphin medal at the Gasparilla Expo. I knew I had to have it. What I didn’t realize is that it would become one of the events I look forward to doing it every year. 

I drove down to Sarasota from Clearwater the morning of the race and made great time. I even saw a cruise ship going under the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, all lit up. It was quite a sight to see!

This year, I was lucky to #RunSarasota with several of my fellow Tampa Bay Bloggers and it was a great time. It’s always fun to run into people you know and catch up before and after the race. I also knew going into this that I was going to be slower than slow because I had not run in the five weeks prior to the race. Crazy work and just being super busy meant that running took a backseat. I knew, though, that one way or another I would finish. And if I can be honest here, at this point, I am really running to have fun and not break any crazy half marathon records. 



Bloggers: Chrissy, Jessica, me, Caitlyn, Denise, and Haley



Thanks to Haley and Caitlyn for the fun tattoos!



Fortunately, I started the race with Jessica and Caitlyn. After around mile 4, Jessica ran ahead of us, still on a high from running a 15K the day before. Caitlyn and I ran and walked, and then ran and walked some more, all the way to the finish line. We always have things to talk and laugh about, so it makes the miles and the time go by quickly.

I also happen to love the course. It starts just as the sun is starting to rise, so by the time we are heading over the John Ringling bridge and causeway, there is a beautiful sunrise. After the causeway, we make our way around St. Armand’s Circle which I just love. From there we head back over the causeway and run a stretch along Tamiami Trail. Being honest, this might be my least favorite part of the course, just because of the traffic that backs up here and it’s hot. Once we turn towards the Ringling Museum of Art, it’s a pretty route again going along the water and through a pretty neighborhood. We end up back on Tamiami Trail for the last mile and then turn to the finish line. 




Jessica and Caitlyn











We’re so silly. Selfies are our thing…


Before I started the race, I snapped a photo of the start / finish line and captioned it “Start lines are fun, finish lines are better!” What is it about a finish line that makes it so exciting. This line that you cross over and feel an instant sense of accomplishment and happiness. It just never gets old.

Another thing I love, love, love about Sarasota Half Marathon is that your race photos are FREE. So often I don’t end up with photos because they’re so expensive. And these came out great. I happen to love this photo which was taken just as we rounded the turn towards the finish line.






I finished in 3:17:33 with Caitlyn by my side. My time didn’t matter, I was just thrilled to have that beautiful dolphin medal around my neck and another race checked off my list. It was truly a beautiful day on the water. Just beautiful….



Jessica, Caitlyn, and me!



I have to send out huge thanks to Caitlyn for sticking with me the whole way. Not running for 5 weeks made a huge difference in how I ran it and had I been alone, I would not have enjoyed it nearly as much. I’m lucky to call her my friend!

On my last half marathon I ran in February, I had terrible knee pain. Something I’ve only experienced since after my marathon. I decided for this one, I was going to wear KT Tape on both knees and hope for the best. I was AMAZED that I didn’t have any knee pain at all. None. That stuff is amazing. Overall I was sore from not running the five weeks prior, but by the next day I was fine. And again, NO knee pain. This made me very happy.

If you want to run the Sarasota Half Marathon in 2016, registration is already open! Don’t miss out on their registration blitz and save 35% on fees if you register by this Sunday, March 22. After that it goes to $77 on Monday and then up to the regular fee. This race sold out early this year, so if you have any interest in running, I suggest you register NOW!

Disclaimer: I received a free race entry as part of the Tampa Bay Bloggers for the Sarasota Half Marathon in exchange for my review and promotion of this event. All opinions are my own.

Iron Girl 2015

One of the many things I love about running and taking part in races is the camaraderie and togetherness of being a part of something fun and challenging. When you start running and you are surrounded by hundreds or thousands of other runners, you know that you are not alone. You are not the only one facing those many miles ahead of you. And there is power in that.

Even better than just any race or event, is one that focuses on women. And my favorite women’s event is Iron Girl.



Iron Girl offers a supportive, energetic and empowering                                               environment for females pursuing a healthy and active lifestyle.

I have had the pleasure of running the Iron Girl Half Marathon in Clearwater the last 2 years and will run it again this year. I am also excited to be able to offer you a discount for both the half marathon and 5K distance!


Another reason I love this event is the course. The course follows the same route I train on over the Memorial Causeway to beautiful Clearwater Beach, south over Sand Key Bridge, through the park, and then back. This route just never gets old to me and I feel so lucky to live in such a beautiful area with this amazing view…


Here is an overview of the courses for 2015.

2014 Clearwater Course Map

Last year I ran this race with my good friend Corinna and we’ll run it together again this year. I can’t wait to see what this year’s medal will look like.


I hope to see you out there! Don’t forget to use my discount code CRAZYLIFE15 to save 10% on your registration.

Important Links:

Iron Girl Website



Will I see you at the Clearwater Iron Girl? Which event will you be running? 

**Iron Girl provided me with a complimentary entry for the Clearwater event. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Friday Happiness & Giveaway Winner

Life is so busy these days as they always are during the holiday season. So much going on and my blogging time has taken a back seat. But I wanted to take a few minutes to share some Friday happiness and announce the winner of my 26.2 Bangle Bracelet giveaway…



1. We delivered 10 bikes to Toys For Tots this morning for our beloved Jingle Bikes For Kids program hubby and I started in 2011. This was our third year and it will continue in 2015 as well. Here is the back story behind our cause, in memory of my dad. It feels to good to give back. We are thankful for the bikes donated to us this year.




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2. Our house at Christmas… I am a sucker for Christmas decorations. I love our tree and how mismatched the ornaments are – they all have special meaning. This year was the first since since bringing Blue home in 2011 that we have put the tree in the main living room. It’s been in the family room every other year to keep him from bothering it. The addition of the fireplace media center is a wonderful thing and adds to the coziness of it all.


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3.  We are running two races this weekend. This should be interesting since I have not run since Space Coast Marathon. The last few days I’ve finally not been sore and I feel like I can get out there again. All that’s left is my bruised big toe. I fear I am going to lose the nail… But alas, we are doing the Santa’s Twilight 5K tomorrow night on Honeymoon Island. On Sunday morning, we are running a virtual half marathon for Best Damn Race Cape Coral. I am looking forward to both very much!





4.  My niece Autumn! We had a girls day last weekend and it was too much fun. She’s 7 now and so much fun shopping and having silly conversations with. She makes great company and is so considerate. I so treasure our time together.


IMG_2470     IMG_2512



5. And I have a winner for the 26.2 Bangle Bracelet from Milestones Sports Jewelry… I was so happy about the number of entries I received for this! I am very excited to announce that the random winner is…… Angelina from Run.Chew.Sparkle. Congrats Angelina! I will contact you via email!





Stay tuned soon as I will be working more with Milestones Sports Jewelry and will soon have a discount code so you can save 10% off any item in their store!

Friday Five: Race Rituals

Happy Friday! September is in full swing now, which means that many runners will start thinking about upcoming races. So, today’s Friday Five topic is very fitting! As always, I am linking up with Mar, Courtney, and Cynthia. Be sure to visit their blogs and comment and join in if you like!


friday five race rituals


I think everyone is different with their race rituals, based on what works best for them. What works for me, might not work for you, and vice versa. It is with almost two years of running under my belt that I feel pretty comfortable with my rituals.


1. Lay everything out the night before.

I always know exactly what I’m going to wear ahead of time and I make sure it is all out and ready to go the night before. Shorts, top, sports bra, undies, socks, shoes, Road ID, Garmin, and safety pins for the race bib. That way I’m not rushing around the morning of the race. Also, I never wear anything brand new for a race, it is always something I’ve work before so I know exactly how it will feel while running.


photo 1


2. Go to bed early.

This one is easier said that done. I am always excited the night before a race and find it hard to go to sleep. Even if I’m not tired, I will lay down at a decent time and try to fall asleep earlier than later. The earliest I’ve ever had to wake up for a race was 3am, for the Best Damn Race in Orlando due to the drive. If it’s local, I’ll get up around 4 so I can take my time getting ready.



3. Eat breakfast.

I have to eat breakfast for a race, especially the longer distances. I have two breakfast meals that are tried and true for me, without giving me an upset tummy. The first is a whole wheat English muffin with peanut butter and a banana. The other, that I’ve recently tried and loved, is two whole wheat Eggo waffles with apple butter and a banana. I also try to drink plenty of water with my breakfast (as well as the night before). Hydration is so important.


photo 3



4. Be prepared with water and fuel.

I take plenty of GU Gel and/or Sports Beans with me. I also have my water bottle which I will start with full. I drink from it between hydration stops, and take water and Gatorade at each stop. I use to worry about having to go to the bathroom often if I drink a lot of water, but I’ve found that I usually sweat it out. Again, it’s best to be hydrated and stay fueled, especially for the longer distances. This will be a challenge for me during my marathon because I’ve just never run that distance. But, that is part of what training is for and I’ll hopefully have it all figured out by the time race day rolls around.


photo 2



5. Arrive early.

Rarely do I get nervous about a race, I am usually excited about it. What will make me nervous, though, is being late. Especially if it’s a new to me area and I am unsure of parking. I like to arrive early, stand in the porta-potty line with everyone else, and then be ready to go at start time. I think it’s worth it to lose a few minutes of sleep to avoid the stress of being late or not finding parking or anything else that can go wrong.


There you have it…. My race rituals. What is your top race ritual you’d like to share with me?




Let’s talk Best Damn Race!

I know many of you who have participated in the Best Damn Race. Since 2013, this race has grown from a local event in Safety Harbor, to Orlando and now, Cape Coral. It is very exciting to be a part of this event and watch it grow each year. I am excited to be an Ambassador again for 2015 as well!

I myself have participated in each event to date and loved every one of them. I started out with the 5K in Safety Harbor in 2013 and then did the half marathon in both Safety Harbor and Orlando this year, earning shiny new PR’s at both.


IMG_4925     IMG_5998


Here are just a handful of reasons you should participate in this event:

  • Best Damn t-shirt
  • Best Damn finisher medal
  • Best Damn Health & Fitness Expo
  • Best Damn goodie bags
  • Best Damn post-race party
  • Best Damn PR Bell!
  • Best Damn entry fee (structured based on number of entries!)
  • Free beer, food, and massages
  • Free race photos


Later this year, Best Damn Race will take over Cape Coral with a 5K, half marathon, and for the first time – a full marathon. If I had not already registered for the Space Coast Marathon as my first full, I would absolutely run this one.

The Cape Coral race is on Decembe4 14, 2014. All races began and end at the Cape Coral Marina and the course is flat. How is this for a start and finish line?


cape coral marina


You can find more information on the Cape Coral event here:


In more news, registration is now in full swing for the Safety Harbor and Orland events for 2015! Safety Harbor will be on February 7, 2015 and Orlando will be February 28, 2015. Both cities will once again offer the 5K, 10K, Half Marathon, and 5K + 10K Challenge.

You can find more information on these events here:



You can still register for all 3 events at less than regular prices, thanks to the unique registration process that best Damn Race offers. And as even more incentive, you can SAVE $5 OFF ANY RACE with my discount code NANCIC.


bdr save 5 2014 2015


I will be doing the half marathon in both Safety Harbor and Orlando in 2015, and hubby will be doing the 5K + 10K Challenge in Safety Harbor. I would love to see you at one of these events!



If you have participated in Best Damn Race, tell me what is your favorite thing about this event? Also let me know if you register for any of the upcoming events!