Resurrection of….Whatever This Is.

Remember that time you guys got wayyyy too much information about my life on a fairly regular basis? Welcome back.
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You should be jumping for joy.
If you’re reading this, it means you probably love me (or hate me) more than I deserve. So thanks:)

Here’s what you missed (and by that I mean here’s what I got busy with and never told you about).

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I turned 21!

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I conquered this game.

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I celebrated a whole year of this guy dealing with my crazy unpredictable self.

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I’m home for the summer with the family. I also have an internship!

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Brooke graduated high school!

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Blair and I mastered the hair towel twist.

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I got the girlies addicted to guacamole.

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I got new shoes! (The only shoe addiction I have is with athletic shoes)

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Max is still chillin.

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I’ve been a huge fashion inspiration for the entire family.

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I spent $10 for a martini. It wasn’t even that good.

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This guy and his family visited for the fourth of july.

If you’re still with me (bless you) then you’re caught up! Congratulations and stay tuned:) 

Shamrock Half Marathon Recap (and a prayer)

Well guys, I did it. I ran 13.1 miles for the second time, and I can honestly say it was exponentially more painful this time around (but so so worth it). 

We left for Virginia Beach Saturday morning and went to the expo. I’ve never been to such a huge expo and I was in runner heaven. Free smoothie sample? SURE! Free GU sample? Don’t mind if I do! 

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(fun fact of the day: Lindsay and I were actually wearing the same shirt/leggings on accident when we drove down but she decided to change so we didn’t look weird) 

I got to meet the LIVESTRONG Team at the expo and they were all so nice! It got me really excited for the race! After a big dinner at the infamous Captain George’s (if you’re in my family you get why that’s big deal) we headed back to the hotel to chill. 

I laid out my ribbons for each of the people I was running for: Image

I made them into bushels to wear during the race. Image

This was my point of peace for the day. The afternoon had been a lot of panicking/calming myself down. Putting the names together to wear finally gave me a minute to reflect on the real reason I was running, for these amazing people. 

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Even though it was a shamrock race, I decided to rep the yellow and black:) 

We woke up around 4:45 to get ready. I can’t say I was really sleeping though. It’s like the night before christmas. I made oatmeal (if you’ve been following my blog you know oatmeal before a race is necessary for me) in a to-go coffee cup and made myself eat it. Even though I wasn’t even remotely hungry I knew my body needed it. 

I wish I had taken a few pictures before the race but to be honest I was completely wired and a nervous wreck! Lindsay and I were twins again since we both got the exact same throwaway sweatshirt at Wal-Mart (Throwaway sweatshirt definition: a cheap sweatshirt one buys before a race knowing they are going to throw it off right before or right after the start of the race and never see it again). A great thing about the shamrock half marathon was that they donated all of the clothes they found after the race to local homeless shelters! 

Heres a random picture to break up the words! 

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Finally I was off. The start was super smooth. Some races are hard at the beginning because you are constantly weaving in and out of people, but I didn’t feel squished once! 

I started out feeling pretty good, but I knew I needed to hold back. My first 5 miles were at 9:22 pace. I decided after that point that I needed to slow it down a little bit so that I could finish strong so I (tried to) held back. 

At mile 6 they gave us a GU packet (Definition of GU packet: concentrated sugar/electrolyte gel that is easy to consume during a race). The thing about GU is that you need water with it. Well the water cup I got didn’t have enough water in it (half a sip). You need water with the GU because your stomach can get overwhelmed with all of the sugar you are putting in it. Sure enough at mile 7 my stomach started to cramp and the next water station was 2 miles away,  I managed to keep my pace for a little while longer. 

By mile 10 I was  hurting but according to my watch I was at 1:35. This put me on pace to finish around 2:05 so I was pretty stoked. I decided to try and push to the end. 

Mile 11 kicked my butt. I got nauseas and my stomach was still cramped. I decided to walk through the next water station and start back up again. I knew I could push to the end but those last two miles were long ones. 

When I got to the boardwalk I started looking for my Dad. I could see the finish line and I knew he would be close. 

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I saw him before he saw me and started waving my arms wildly. As soon as he saw me he started running to the finish line with me on the spectator side! He was yelling “Go Blake Go,” and waving his arms. I don’t think he realizes how much I was struggling and how much I needed that push to the end. I’m so glad he was there for me. Crossing the finish line was such a blur. By the time I realized I was finished I was a bucket of emotions. I got my medal and started tearing up (lame? probably) It was  a mixture of relief, pain, joy, pride, and happiness. 

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Here I am right after I finished, tears in my eyes and medal around my neck! My time was 2:08:58, 6 minutes faster than my first half marathon! I am thrilled! Especially since the last few miles were such a battle. 

Lindsay finished her (VERY FIRST) race in 2:26!! I’m so glad we got to do this together. 

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And an “eat whatever I want to eat” lunch: (cheeseburger w/ bacon + pulled pork without the bun and sweet potato fries)Image

 

One last thing: 

A young woman by the name of Cameron Gallagher passed away yesterday after finishing her half marathon. I hope you will all join me in sending prayers to her family and friends during this awful time. I know that runners are a tight knit community of support and love, and I hope that her family knows that we are all thinking and praying for them. 

I (WE) Did It!!

I have officially reached my fundraising goal for the Anthem Half Marathon in Virginia Beach this Sunday! I have raised $1030 for this amazing cause. 

I am so so excited!

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I truly wish I could give each and every one of you a big hug! When I started this journey I didn’t know if it was going to be possible to reach my fundraising goal. You all have been so supportive and it seems every time my motivation dips a little, I have a new donation and another reason to get my butt out the door. 

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This picture is after one of the runs I just wasn’t feeling. I had a test that morning and I just wanted to take a nap. After (slowly) getting ready I just sucked it up and got started. I did 3 miles in 26:25, not far off of my 5k pace! It turned out to be a great run and I honestly can’t say I would have even gone if it wasn’t for all of the incredible people I am running for. 

I don’t know what this weekend is going to bring but I know that no matter how fast I run on Sunday morning, I will finish for so many amazing people that you have shared with me. I am so grateful to all of you for giving me an amazing reason to run not only with my legs, but with my heart. :) 

P.S. You can sign up to follow my run through this link:  http://www.shamrockmarathon.com/race-info/runner-tracking/

You can search my first and last name or my bib number: 9237! 

Spring Break in 3…2….

So close. 

I’m one exam, a project, and a few assignments away from spring break. I can’t wait to be with these guys again: 

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Plus a new bonus family member (stay tuned) 

I ran a 5k on Sunday and I was super excited because I really wanted to PR. No such luck. I felt awful halfway through the first mile and ended up crashing and burning at the end. The good news is I got to my PR..as in I went EXACTLY my PR time. 26:45. That’s good news because if I can run that time on an empty tank I’m getting faster (right? right?)

I think I’m running on empty for a few reasons:

  1. School has been a lot more taxing lately, which means more hours studying (and for me, more hours STRESSING)
  2. I have been working more in the early mornings (personal training and instructing classes) so I’m getting less sleep. 
  3. I’ve really been working my butt off in the gym and taking less rest days. 

This week I’m cutting back and next week (the week leading up to the race) I am REALLY cutting back. 

To be completely honest I’m a little discouraged after that 5k on Sunday. I was really looking forward to a great time. I know that half marathons are VERY mental. So daily affirmations via Jessica are in store more often now: 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qR3rK0kZFkg (click on this! It will be the best 30 seconds you’ve spent all day) 

Plus once I’m rested, I know I can get my head in the game. I also know I will be much more motivated on race day because I am running for some pretty amazing people thanks to the LIVESTRONG Foundation and your generous and selfless donations.

Keep up with my fundraiser page by searching my name here: http://www.livestrong.org/events/#participant-listing

It’s time for another thank you to each and every one of you for keeping up with this blog and for supporting this cause. I know that it is going to help people that really need it and I couldn’t be more grateful to you all! 

Have a blessed Tuesday! 

Last Week in Review and a Fundraising Update

First off, fundraising. I am officially at $805! I cannot believe I am getting so much support from all of you. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for donating to this cause. I have quite a few people I am dedicating miles to in 17 DAYS (OMG), so everything is coming together.

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Almost at my goal! Keep up with me at my fundraising page!

http://www.livestrong.org/events/#participant-listing – Just search my name! (Blake Cash)

This fundraiser has made me want to train harder than I ever would have been able to on my own, so again, thank you. Thank you for making me a better and stronger person as well as donating to an amazing cause. 

Last week in training: 

Monday: Back/Biceps (lifting) + 20 minutes HIIT on the stairclimber

Tuesday: 3 miles run in 27:25!

Wednesday: Leg Day! (Lots of squats)

Thursday: 11 mile long run in 1:49:25

I had a super cute outfit for it:

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I wish the picture was better, but this is literally a highlighter yellow jacket, hot pink shorts, bright blue shoes, and my running belt. I was styling. It felt great because it was outside (finally) with rolling hills. So no treadmill! No being bored to death for over an hour! Phew.

Friday: I wish I could have rested after my long run but I had to teach a BODYPUMP class, which felt great afterwards and AWFUL during.

Saturday: Triceps/Shoulders/Chest (lifting) and then I taught another BODYPUMP class later that evening.

Sunday: A few 50s in the pool for a philanthropy event at school, but rest other than that:)

As you can tell from the schedule above I have been lifting a lot. I really think it has been helping me stay injury free while running and also making me stronger and faster. I have been taking progress photos so I’m counting on all of you to hold me accountable:)

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Feel free to make fun of my face.

Also this is sort of funny:

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I checked my steps at dinner and this was the number. I immediately got up and walked around the restaurant to get to my 10,000 step goal. Too bad it didn’t take into account my BODYPUMP from that day….and that’s all folks.

Have a great start to your week!

Some Random Things

Lots of little things to talk about today! So here goes: 

After two days of doing essentially nothing I needed a to MOVE on Saturday. Image

 

I also needed to use the extra energy I got from the V-Day dessert I made: 

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I (mostly) used the recipe from this link: Gluten-Free Deep Dish Hot Fudge Brownies AMAZING. I used oat flour instead of the rice and almond flour and I put a chocolate from my Valentines Day present in the center of each:) I’m also REALLY impressed with myself for not eating all of my chocolates in less than 24 hours, I even still have some left (I don’t think you guys realize that this has never happened before.)

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One of my workouts from this weekend was shoveling my car out of the snow. Image

 

Another workout I had was running a 4 mile tempo run under half marathon race pace. DID IT! I’m beginning to realize more and more just how important it is for you to train mentally as well as physically for long races. Thinking you can do it is half the battle. My swim coach in high school used to tell me that my problem wasn’t that I couldn’t physically do it, but that I was too negative towards myself. He was completely right. I’m working on it:) 

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Can you see what is wrong with this picture? I took advantage of the 50 degree weather today and ran outside (plus a little parkour with giant snow piles). It’s incredible how good you feel after a fantastic run outside. Especially in Blacksburg where basically everywhere you go is gorgeous…or am I the only one who thinks that?

Lastly, Thank you again to everyone who has been donating! I am a quarter of the way to my goal! Keep donating to this amazing cause and telling me who I can dedicate a portion of my race to! Just search “Blake Cash” at the link below:) 

LIVESTRONG Participant Search 

Have a happy Tuesday!! 

More About The LIVESTRONG Foundation + Instructions on Donating

First off I hope everyone reading this was safe this last few days, we got 22 inches here! I also hope everyone had a couple of days off to relax and spend time with family or friends. Now on to the point:

What exactly does the LIVESTRONG Foundation do? 

This is the question I’ve been getting the most so I wanted to be clear about what is happening with everyone’s donations! 

The LIVESTRONG Foundation offers support to cancer survivors. Survivors face numerous challenges during and after their fight, and the LIVESTRONG Foundation provides tools to help them. The foundation addresses financial, emotional, spiritual, and social issues. They have a National Action Plan with four goals:

  • Preventing secondary cancers and recurrence of cancer whenever possible.
  • Promoting appropriate management following diagnosis and/or treatment to ensure the maximum number of years of healthy life for cancer survivors.
  • Minimizing preventable pain, disability, and psychological distress for those living with, through, and beyond cancer.
  • Supporting cancer survivors in accessing the resources and the family, peer, and community support they need to cope with their disease. 

Another great thing they do is show their supporters exactly where their money goes in a year by year breakdown. There is much more on that at this link: 

http://www.livestrong.org/What-We-Do/Our-Approach/Where-the-Money-Goes

You can also find more information by exploring the links and pages at www.LIVESTRONG.org.

NOW ON TO FUNDRAISING DIRECTIONS: 

Many of you have been having trouble getting through to my fundraising links based on the link I have been sharing. I am not sure why this is happening but there is another way you can get to my page! 

  1. Use the link above to go to the LIVESTRONG website. 
  2. At the top right of the homepage there are various links, click “DONATE”
  3. Under the Donate tab there is a headlines that says “Support Event Participants,” underneath this headline click on “Participant Search” 
  4. Search my name: Blake Cash and click on the magnifying glass 
  5. To the right of my name you can click on a black button that says “Donate to Blake” 
  6. The website will take you through the instructions from there! 

(P.S. Sometimes when you search my name there are two Blake Cash pages. Both of them will link to my page so do not worry about which one you choose) 

Again, I cannot thank you all enough for supporting me through this journey! Have a happy Sunday and beginning of your week!