Running Movies

The poor running movies never get their day in the movie theaters.  They’re not as popular as Black Swan, The King’s Speech or Toy Story 3.  My personal favorite is The Spirit of The Marathon which follows 6 runners training/ running the 2005 Chicago Marathon.  I can have it on repeat no problem and I usually play it before 1/2 Marathon and Marathons.  Granted, I have my favorite people (the 60-70 something year old grandpa who started running marathons because he turned 65) and, quite frankly, I live through people who can actually run a marathon in under 150 minutes.

During a recent online stalking, I found out there are TWO new running movies out/ coming out that have had/ will  have one night events that I’ve had to miss because I’ve been on or will be on away rotations.  And the movie the movie theaters near me didn’t have the movie screenings 😦

Hood To Coast follows some teams running 197 mile relay race from Mt Hood to

the Oregon Coast with 6 runners per team.  And, there are 1000 total teams.  People say marathoners are crazy for running 26.2.  With 6 people, running 197 miles, each person has to run 32.83 miles.  Personally, after 26.2 miles, I’m done.

And when I have to talk myself into running the last 5 miles of it, I can’t even imagine tacking on another 6.63 miles!!

If running 1 marathon wasn’t enough, My Run focuses on a newly widowed man with 3 kids struggling to cope after his wife loses a battle with breast cancer.  In order to bring attention to single parent homes, he decided to run from St. Paul, MN to Atlanta, GA and ended up running 75 marathons in 75 days.  Yes, that’s 26.2 miles every day for 75 days.  Or, 1965 miles in just over 2.5 months.  That’s more than what I’ll run in over a year!  It comes out at the end of March, which means I have to wait for it to *hopefully* pop up on iTunes so I can watch it when I have some spare time.

So, even if you’re not into running, at least take a peak at these movies.  They might teach you a little something about life, the ups and downs people have to deal with in training or even, why we decided to do the crazy things we do as runners

City Street Running

As much as I love living in major cities (4 years in Chicago, 2.5 in Philadelphia), I hate trying to run in the city.  Case and point.  Today, I did part of my run outside since it was one of the nicer days we’ve had since the beginning of November.  Besides there being traffic lights every quarter of a mile for the first mile or so, you get drivers who are flat out stupid and pay no attention what so ever.  I’ve had cars nearly turn into me as I’m crossing because they don’t pay attention, been splashed by disgusting looking water and have dealt with mud covered sidewalks with no shoulder to run on.

To boot, to get to any sort of path (like the Kelly River Loop), I have to drive to get there and I end up having to look for the mile markers.  Once April comes around, I end up having to drive out to the start of the loop since they close down the side of the loop closest to me.  Other trails aren’t as populated or as easy to get to and aren’t an option.

Then, you have the honkers.  The people who see you in your running clothes and think it’s cool to let you know that they see you.  I spent a month rotating in the Bronx at St. Barnabas Hospital over the summer.  It was no problem for the guys in the house to go running- they could go whenever they wanted and not have any issues.  If I went out, I’d get stared at as if no one had seen a woman run before and honked at by all the taxi drivers.  I ran twice before heading out to Central Park on the 4 Line where I could run no problem.

One day, I’ll find my ideal city to run in.  Until then, I deal with my stop lights, obnoxious drivers and all that comes with living in Philly

What Happens When No One Is As Crazy As You?

Running Broad Street, a Philadelphia 10 Miler with me, myself and I

And no, I don’t mean your mental health.  I mean more of those who think it’s an awesome idea to do 13.1 miles, 26.2 miles (like Ryan Hall, Deena Kastor and all the Kenyans and Ethiopians) and then some.  But what happens when you’re the only one of your friends/family who are doing this?  I always think about that.  I’ve had roommates who’ve said that they do longer distances or vow to run in order to keep their sanity during the academic year and then it falls by the wayside and it’s still, only me, running for long periods of time and figuring out when I’m doing my long runs.  And yes, people sometimes worry about me when I do have to run long distances on my own, thus my reason for signing up for whatever race over 5 miles while training for a marathon.  At least my parents are in peace of mine that there’s help and volunteers around should something happen to me.  But what else do you do?

The Road ID

I actually have 2, one that goes around my ankle and one that attaches to my shoe laces (since I never know which pair of shoes I’ll be wearing).  You can put your name, contact info, critical health/allergy info on it.  You also have the option of adding an interactive option where, heaven forbid you end up on the way to the hospital so dehydrated or hurt, you can add any extended medical info that can be accessed by medical personal by a pin # and a 800# should you be out of it completely.  Good thing to have and my parents appreciate it.  Best of all, you can usually find a coupon code for it when you search the internet that can be used on the RoadID website


The Race Bib

There’s good reason the back of the Race Bibs for insane runners (anything longer then like 5 miles) have info for you to fill out.  If you’re running a race without a posse, not a bad idea.  At least know about how long it takes you to run certain distances, tell your family them and call your parents when you’re done so  they can stop worrying and congratulate you on finishing your race


Running a race and being under hydrated isn’t the best idea in the world so Gatorade/powerade and water will be your best friend in order to not pass out while your running (by yourself or not).  Take it from someone who finished the 2010 Chicago when it was 93*, I appreciated not feeling crampy, headach-y and not having double vision or that I didn’t have to stop for an IV on the course like so many runners did (I could just about walk but that’s what 26.2 miles will do to you

Where to Run

Running on your own can be tricky.  Recently on a surgery rotation, I was at the hospital everyday at 5 AM, meaning I was up at 4:30 and didn’t get done until 6 or 7.  This was an away rotation, so I didn’t know the area at all and ended up doing all my runs at the gym since there weren’t any safer places to run to begin with.  Know the areas you’re running in and run when there are people around, so if there is trouble, you’ll have a shot of people helping you.  Should you run at night, wear bright clothes or use some sort of light that attaches to your arm.  More than anything, be aware of any sort of creepers around or if there’s been recent suspicious activity where your running.  A gym membership can be your best friend.  That or search for a running group near you :-).

Recipe Wednesday- Vegetable Beef Soup

If anyone knows med students, we’re cheap, don’t have a lot of money and have to learn to cook at some point if  we don’t want to live off of roman noodles.  For me, my new best friend is my crock pot.  I can prep whatever needs to be prepped, throw it in the crock pot and let it go for 5 hrs and do whatever else I need to do.  When I’m done, I have more than enough for dinner for a week.  This week’s recipe: Vegetable Beef Soup.


  • 1 lb ground beef (to be healthy, leaner the better)
  • 4 cups water (you don’t even have to buy it at the store!)
  • 1 lb potatoes (ie 2 ish smaller potatoes) peeled and cut up into pieces
  • 1 onion, cut up
  • mushroom pieces
  • Onion soup mix pack
  • 1 jar (16 oz) salsa (chunky)
  • 2 carrots, chopped up (or if you’re me, baby carrots dumped in)

What to do:

  • cook the beef over the stove until it’s brown
  • while the beef is cooking, get all of the other ingredients into the crock pot in whatever order you want and mix them up
  • add the beef when it’s brown enough
  • cook on high for 3-4 hrs (in med student time) or 8 hrs on low
  • enjoy!

If I had pictures, I’d share them, but I don’t unfortunately.  Any left overs can be thrown into plastic tupperware and put into the fridge for supper in the the rest of the week’s meals.  If I can do it (and this being someone who doesn’t cook a lot), anyone can.   It’s idiot proof!!! Just don’t forget that you have it on

Barefoot Running

One of the big things in running, or one of the things that is up and coming, is barefoot running.  I do some of it with the Vibram 5 Fingers “shoes”.  Thing of gloves with rubber on the bottom for feet with 5 toe ‘fingers’ cut out.  I got a pair last year from CitySports here in Philadelphia and worked my way up in milage (about 5 or so) and ended up wearing them during the Broad Street Run.  I ended up with an ITBand injury, but I still love them.  I wear them now for shorter runs, but am going to try and do some longer runs in them.  Over the weekend, I was able to get a steal from $50

of running stuff for only $25 at a local running store [Fairmont Running Company] and went in to see what they had and I ended up finding another pair of Vibrams that were a new release (see my picture).  My goal is to start with 5-6 miles a week in them and up the milage from there.  What to consider if you’re looking into these things?


  1. Very light weight
  2. Let your feet do what they’re suppose to do naturally
  3. Comfortable to wear even when walking around in day to day activities

What to think about

  1. A little on the pricey side- I would try to buy them when there’s a change in season or when they’re getting ready to come out with new styles.
  2. If you wear inserts or orthotics, these wouldn’t be the best things in the world for you to wear
  3. You really have to break these in in terms of miles.  If your running 8 miles a day, wear them for 1-2 and then go to tennis shoes for the rest of the run initially.  It’s recommended that you add 1-1.5 miles every 7-10 days in them in order to get used to them (don’t go from 5 miles to 10 miles in one setting like I did!).

I like my new pair I bought more than the first generation.  They’re easier to get on in my opinion.  I’ve seen more people start to wear these in races I’ve run and think that people are really starting to consider them so take a peak!


Races Run

December 31, 2010-January 1st, 2011: NYRR Emerald Nut Run 4 Miler

First run of the year in Central Park.  It started at Midnight and started with fireworks and the whole 9 yards.  Always better than dealing with a few million people in Times Square.  Sparkling “wine” (ie cider) at the 2 mile mark, food, costume contest, music and it wasn’t snowing/sleeting/raining!

February 19, 2011 Amber Frostbite 5 Miler

Look below from today’s earlier review!

March 5, 2011 Run for Youth 4 or 10 Miler

9:00 AM Quakertown, PA- apparently there are some hills here?  we’ll see how this race goes and it’s close to Rondale, PA where Runner’s World is based out of

April 3, 2011 Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run

7:30 AM, Washington DC- In off the Lottery with the parents and sister!

April 17, 2011 Penn Relays Distance Classic 20K

7:30 AM, Philadelphia PA- My first 20K- we’ll see how it goes!

May 1, 2011 Broad Street Run 10 Mile Run

8:30 AM, Philadelphia PA- because running in a straight line for 10 miles is awesome!

May 15, 2011 Cleveland Marathon

7:00 AM, Cleveland, OH- First Marathon of 2011 and 3rd overall.  Bring on the flatness of Ohio! Or so I thought.  I ended up running the Half Marathon due to under training and burn out.  Next year, OH will have it’s day in the marathon category!

July 30, 2011 NYRR Queens Half Marathon

7:00 AM, Queens NY.  Head over to here to hear about how I signed up for this one!

September 18, 2011 Rock \’n\’ Roll Philadelphia

8:00 AM, Philadelphia PA- My third time running what used to be the Philadelphia Distance Run.  Last year, I used it as a 17 mile run while training for the Chicago Marathon on 10/10/10

November 6, 2011 ING New York City Marathon

7:30 AM, New York City, NY- Running for Jack\’s Fund in an effort to raise money for Melanoma

Frostbite 5 Miler

One of my goals is to write about races I’ve done.  On Saturday, I ran the Ambler Area Running Club Frostbite 5 Miler.  I heard about it last year and signed up for it this year.  This was the 12th annual race and it started/ended at Wissahickon High School.  Race was well run and there was definitely plenty of parking.  The race did sell out this year, but they had a wait list going and if runners weren’t checked in/ hadn’t picked up their shirts/ bibs by 8:45 Saturday AM, wait listed runners could jump in.  I picked up my number and shirt on Friday night, an option I always like so I don’t have to race day of the race.  They even provided a packet which had different deals in it (including 20% off at the Jenkintown or Fairmount Running Company Stores).  Additionally, the race supports a cause each year and this year, they supported the Kelly Anne Dolan Fund.  Ambler is about 30 minutes from Philadelphia, so Saturday, I left around 8 for WHS and arrived a little after 830.  I had enough time to get a 1 mile warmup done around the track and a quick restroom break before the race began.


  1. Well organized race
  2. Bib pick up day before the race with long sleeved tech shirt
  3. Volunteers at intersections/ corners directing runners
  4. Good course overall, although this one was hilly
  5. B Chip timing (timing chip on the back of your bib)
  6. Post race food- bananas, water, oranges, chili, sandwiches, chips, ets

Needs some working on

  1. The last mile or so was on a trail that was still wet and muddy from the snow melting.  Additionally, it was only 2 people wide which slowed people/ the race down. I think many of us were expecting to be running on the road 10 feet away from the trail
  2. Not sure how much I like chili and hot dogs at 10 AM, especially after running 5 miles
  3. Difficult to hear announcements/ horn for the start if you were closer to the back

Overall, a good race.  It was in the 40s and sunny, however wind gusts up to 50 mph.  Personally, my legs were somewhat stiff and tired after 2 weeks straight of running which led to 62 total miles.  Look for this race next year!

Ambler Area Running Club site for Frostbite 5 miler

Third Time’s A Charm

I’ve tried this blogging thing before and quit after a medical trip to Vietnam and Running the Chicago Marathon on 10/10/10.  Both times were to keep people in the loop on how training was going and how the trip was going.  We’re going to give this a third shot!!!  Currently in the midst of third year rotations and figuring out what the heck I want to be when I grow up (and yes, I know I’m in my mid 2os!).  Running gives me a “cheap” outlet to life.  I say cheap because you theoretically only need 1-2 pairs of running shoes, a few rounds of running clothes that you rotate through and that’s it.  Not really.  I search out races to go to and find certain things that I “can’t live without”.  I suppose there are worse things to be addicted to.  Hopefully, blogging will help me get across to people how much us crazy people who spend 10+ years training in medicine before we get our first real job try and enjoy some sanity

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