Racing 101

Ok, here’s the deal.  If you have signed up for a race and it’s your first time or 5th time there are a few things you should know.

Wait.  Before I continue, let me preface this by saying that I encourage runners and walkers of all speeds, shapes, sizes and abilities to participate in a race.

Now I know you can find a lot of things to prepare you for a race but I wanted to give you the down and dirty, real world race primer.  Please indulge me.

Racing Tips from the Street

  1. Be honest and humble.  If you run an 11 minute mile, don’t try and shimmy up to corral #2.  You will get mowed down or become the slow car in the fast lane that people have to run around.  Remember, it’s much better to pass than to be passed.
  2. Run lightly.  Leave your ball of keys and extra pocket-change in your car.  We can hear you jingle jangle about 40 feet behind and it’s annoying.  For a 5K or 10K you don’t need a pack with 5 GU’s and 2 water bottles.  There’s water and energy drinks and even first aid on the course and you’re not climbing Everest.  🙂
  3. Move over.  Slow runners and walkers should, out of courtesy move to the right of the street so the fast lane can move on the left.  Just like a car we runners are trained to pass on the left.  I’m not saying you have to stay on the right the entire time, but please be mindful that people may want to pass.  I have been in the wrong start group before (thought I could go faster than I actually could) and had to live on the right for half the race.
  4. Blowing stuff.  I ran behind a gal on Sunday who took sips of water from her bottle then spat on the ground, slightly to her right.  Which, annoyingly was directly in front of me.  If you have to spit, hock a loogie (funnily, I’ve never written that before so forgive me if I misspelled any part of that), launch a snot rocket or throw up, please MOVE TO THE RIGHT, OUT OF THE WAY, and PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT SPRAY, BOOGERS, JUICE OF ANY KIND CANNOT TOUCH ANOTHER HUMAN.
  5. Thin the herd.   Walking is a great activity and walking with friends during a race is something I totally encourage.  Just not, 5 abreast, starting from corral #2.  Hang back, be careful that you’re not blocking people and go on with your bad selves.
  6. White = see through.  Ladies, if you are wearing a white sports bra and a white tee shirt we can see your nipples. Your friends may not tell you this so I’ll break it to you.  Black and dark colors are your friends for sports bras.  Speaking of see through.  If you wear tights, leggings or bike shorts I want you to put them on and go outside with a friend.  Stand in the full sun with your friend behind you and bend over to touch your toes.  Ask your bestie if she can see your pink hiney through the material.  If so, toss them and get a new pair.
  7. Race shirts.  Sigh.  Back in the olden days, race shirts were awarded after the actual race took place.  A race shirt indicated you “completed” the race.  Like the medal.  Would you wear your medal before you did the 10K?  No you would not.  Same with race shirts.  I know this will may be considered very controversial but like politics and religion, it’s best not to argue.  Save it for after the race to show off at breakfast.
  8. Bathrooms.  Go when you get to the race.  And then get back in line.  I have missed many a starting because I stood in line for the bathroom.  And on that vein, skip the first set of porta potties along the course – there will be more and less crowded.
  9. Remember your manners.    Say thank you to volunteers.  Smile at others.  Tell someone they are doing a good job as they run past you.  Cheer for the ones who are going to win the race as they run past you.  Don’t throw your empty (and slippery) GU packets into the running path.  If you miss the garbage can, apologize to the volunteer (but you don’t have to stop and pick it up, they have rakes to take care of that gooey mess) but at least show that you didn’t mean to be a complete douche.
  10. Check your ego in the car.  Preferably with your ball of keys and the $45 in nickels you like to hold on to during a run.  You, and I hate to break it to you, are probably not going to win this thing.  So relax.  But run hard and cross that finish line.  Whether it takes you 45 minutes or 2 hours.  Whatever.  You did it.

Then put on your shirt and medal and eat like you just ran an ultra.  ‘Cause that’s how we roll!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂


Runs OK With Others

I love to run in races.   It’s a chance to toe up to the starting line with a few hundred or thousand like-minded people.  You get snacks, a nifty tee shirt and a shiny medal to show off your accomplishment.  And it’s even more fun to run with friends.  Because then you have people to have breakfast with once the race is over.

If you are a new or long time runner and are interested in entering a race, grab some friends and pick a 5K, obstacle course or mud run to start.  You can walk, walk-run or run almost any events so speed doesn’t matter.

Plan to hit the expo together, get your freebies and then carpool to the race.  Having a friend or two will allow you to shake off the nerves and pretty soon you’ll be running and chatting and having a blast!

Here are some upcoming races that you and your posse can do together.

Dipsea Hike (run) for Zero Breast Cancer – 9/26/15

Marin Color Dash 5K – 10/3/2015

Honeybadger 5K, 10K and Half Marathon – 10/11/2015

San Francisco Awesome 80’s Run – 11/22/15

Hot Chocolate 5K and 15K – 1/10/2016

Now go run!

Keli 🙂


Go Jump in the Lake

I had a great summer with my family!   Like many of you I managed the usual juggle between work and kids (camps, boredom, play date swaps, etc.) and even was able to pull off some much-deserved boat time.

When we head to the lake or any trip I always bring my workout gear. I look forward to running while away.  I enjoy the sights, new locale, climate and even the altitude.

I’ve had numerous conversations with people who seem surprised that my vacation runs are only a few miles.  Maybe 3, sometimes 4 but most often I commit to at least 2 miles every day on vacation.  And for me, even if I’m training for a race , that’s just peachy.  I know that if I maintain fitness for 3 or 4 days I’ll be back in training without any hitches.

Vacation is family time.  It’s time to chill, unwind and relax.  Play games (pickleball anyone?), swim in the lake, waterski or even hop on the tube to be dragged around the lake.  It’s time to sit around at night and look at the stars, play Apples to Apples or just laugh with friends.  Not log miles, sync the Garmin to the laptop in a rare blip of WiFi at the local market.  But that’s just me.

So I run a little, play a lot and come back ready to roll.

I hope you all enjoyed your summer vacations!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Strong Girl Moments

Last week I had a huge mailing to drop off at the post office.  There were 1400 letters stacked in huge trays that I had to carry from my car to the post office.   Because I like to be as efficient as possible I was carrying two trays at a time.  They were awkward and a bit heavy but my most pressing concern was that it was windy and I was worried my dress would fly up and share my bits with the postal workers!

As I was coming into the office for the last time the postal worker said to me “you need a man to carry those”.

Um, I’m good, thanks.

The fact is, I’m strong.  Pretty darn strong.  And I’m proud it.  Not just because I can do push ups or hold a plank for a long time, it’s that I can do functional things like move 50 pounds of medicine balls in one trip, help Brad move the couch from one room to another or unload bags of mulch or soil from the car to the backyard.

It’s these “strong girl moments”* that I love.   I like being able to use my body for a purpose.  And what I love even more about my strong girl moments is hearing about YOUR strong girl moments!strong

So here’s the deal.  Share a fitness breakthrough; how you ran a mile or 10, walked or hiked a ginormous hill.  How you couldn’t do a single push up or burpee and now you can bang them out in multiples of 20.  Whatever your strong girl moment, share.

If you’re on Twitter or Facebook, tweet me (@kelihonsberger) or tag me and use #stronggirlmoment  to share.  If you’re not a fan of social media, email me and tell me what your moment is.

The deadline is August 26th!  The last week of August I’ll start listing some of the achievements you all have accomplished.

IMPORTANT!!! No achievement is too small or too insignificant.  Remember, what you may think of as a small thing could be someone else’s big thing.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

*credit goes to one of my boot-campers for giving me the idea of strong girl moment!


Can I Get a “Hell to the Yes”?

In some parts of the country and even in California, school is back in session.  Where I live, we have another 13 days before my little angels head back to school.   13 days.

Currently, our schedule looks like this; work for me, hubby and the teen, camp or hanging out with friends for the boy.  In the evenings we have gotten into the habit of  watching way more tv than ever and ‘family movies’.  My Xfinity bill is through the roof and I’m starting to go stir crazy with all of the “together” time.  (Most importantly, since everyone is home I can’t watch my shows!)

Don’t get me wrong, I love summer and have had a great time with my family on some trips and days on the boat.  But if you haven’t guessed it already, I’m kind of a structured gal and like it when the kids are immersed in school, homework and after school or weekend sports.

indexI am also ready to get serious about training and buckling down for my upcoming races.

Icy cold IPA’s in the backyard with the hubby on a warm Wednesday (and sometimes Tuesday and maybe even Monday) evening will be moved to the weekends.  Lunches and breakfast out will be on hiatus and life will go back to normal.

13 more days.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂