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On The Road To Boston, Part 3: “Last long run before Boston!”



When it comes to being the best, you have to train like the best. BUT, if you don’t have the luxury of time like most of us, you have to do with what you have

and Massage Envy Spa massage therapist Karen Moers is taking advantage of the time given to her as she ramps up to participate in this year’s Boston Marathon. Through the generous support of the Massage Therapy Foundation and the John Hancock Non-Profit Bid Program, Karen is participating in this year’s race on Team Running for Research. We’ve asked her to share her experiences, her sights, her motivations, all in the hopes of inspiring others as she does on a daily basis. This entry sees her tackling one of the most challenging aspects of running a marathon:

The representative of CEP brought her dog, Rosco. He was big boy, super cute...

The representative of CEP brought her dog, Rosco. He was big boy, super cute…

Monday March 10, 2014
boston 9Holy Schmoly!! It’s a hot one today. High of 75-80 degrees, super sunny. Love the sun! I decided to add a few extra miles on top of the regular Monday night 5K run. I ate pre run snack, celery and peanut butter. One of my favs :), It was just enough to hold me over without feeling super heavy. I ran from my apartment to 1st Place Sports (where the group run is held), it’s an extra 5 miles. It’s not a bad route. However, sidewalks are minimal for a mile. Not horrible since it is now brighter out because of daylight savings time change. I arrived there just in time to hang out for a bit, chat with a few running and try on some new gear. 1st Place Sports has multiple vendors come out so runners can test out the latest gear or shoes. Tonight CEP, compression socks/sleeves and Hoka were there. The group run went well. Total of 8.5 miles for evening. I was more excited about the weather. I love running in warm weather and not having to worry about it being dark is also a huge plus.

Jennika photo bombed my picture

Jennika photo bombed my picture

Wednesday March 12, 2014
boston 2Another group up tonight along with another beautiful day! High 70s. Sunny, slight breeze. Tonight was the beaches group run. I arrived earlier to add on some extra miles. I did around 4.2 prior and ended back at 1st Place Sports (Jax Beach location). We don’t plan these things but 3 of us wore the same shirt. It’s only appropriate; the shirts were made and given out to those who run on Wednesdays with the group. We ran along 1st street, which in some parts you can see the ocean. I love running on or near the beach because you can see, hear, and feel the ocean breeze. It is very calming. Total of 10 miles tonight. :) Now it is time to gear up for the super long runs!!

boston 8

Friday March 14, 2014
BOSTON 1Unfortunately, I woke up late. :( So, my super long run turned into just a few miles. Not happy about it but something is better than nothing. The only up side of today was my awesome purchase of two new pairs of shoes :) The Gate River Run , which is said to be the largest 15k in the nation, holds a very large expo a couple days before the race. I went with some friends to check out the merchandise. Shoe shopping should be a sport. I tried on, what felt like half a million pairs of shoes, before deciding on the two that I wanted. I don’t have a shoe preference nor am I loyal to one brand over another. I have ran in anything from Brooks, Mizuno, Asics, Saucony, Newtons, Nike, Adidas, etc. But lucky me, I found two pairs of Asics that I loved! One I just bought because they were only $20. They are not right for me to run in (I normally run in a neutral shoe, these are a little bit more minimal) and the other were Noosa Tri’s. Oh they are so fun! HAPPY FEET!

Boston 13

Tuesday March 18, 2014
IMG_20140328_075952_980Well it’s raining, SURPRISE! Not…it is Florida, it always rains. Normally I don’t mind running in the rain but I have a fear of getting sick again so I try to avoid any possible scenario that I might get sick. I attempted the treadmill today. Mission failed. I don’t know what it is but I can’t run on a treadmill anymore. I did about 4 miles before calling it quits. I guess it’s better than nothing but I know I at least needed to do 10 or so miles.

Wednesday March 19, 2014
Slightly chilly, low 60s. It took me a bit to get up from my nap but Chloe, my dog, was pretty persistent that she wanted me to get up. I took her out for a quick run, little under 2 miles. IL then headed back out solo. It was tough. For some reason I just wasn’t feeling it today. Maybe it was because it was overcast or that I was tired but 9 miles felt like forever! None the less, I did it and that’s all that matters when distance training. Now it’s time to mentally get prepared for my 20 miler!!

Friday March 21, 2014
boston 10AHH!! 5:30am came way too soon. I hate waking up to an alarm clock. I had to be up early because where I run my long runs, Baldwin Trail, is about a 25-30 min drive. Running at Baldwin makes long runs easier. If you run 10 miles out, you have to run 10 miles back to get to the car. It’s a grantee 20 mile run, no cheating and no cutting corners. I had to work that evening so I wanted to get an early start. Running 20 miles can take almost up to 4 + hours and then factor it driving time; it’s around a 5+ hour workout. I ate breakfast in the car, protein bar, coffee, and water. I got there just a little before sunrise, (6:50-7ish). Got ‘suited up’, hydration belt, phone, and Gu, the standard long run essentials. Nice weather, a bit chilly but nothing crazy. I knew it was going to be warm on the way back so I dressed for that weather. This place is nice and quiet. You’ll have the occasional biker from now and then (it’s mainly used for bikers) but nothing crowded. It’s just enough to feel safe if something were to happen. I felt pretty good running out and back. I stopped to stretch around mile 14 and 17. I was making pretty decent time so I didn’t want to rush it. I ended up doing 21 miles total around a 10 min pace. Definitely can’t complain. My legs were pretty sore so I showed up to work an hour early to see if someone would work on my legs for 20 minutes. I got super lucky too. Kaylin, another amazing massage therapist, was about to leave and she helped me out! I love my job. Lol It is always good to know a good therapist or have therapist friends. It helped out a ton! I don’t see how you can be a runner and not get massages…that’s just crazy!


Wednesday March 26th, 2014
Boston 11Wahoo!!! Beach run again tonight! I ended up not running Monday like I normally do. Homework got in the way of that. Decently cold evening, 50’s-ish. I knew tonight I would have to put in some extra work. I ended up testing out a new pair of shoes I bought. Very pretty! “HAPPY FEET!” I showed up early and did 4 miles on my own then met at 1st Place for the group run. While there, I chat with the other runners/employees, I love picking their brain on the latest shoes, clothing, food, and etc. They all are super fast and super friendly so I value their opinions. I did end up getting a new pair of Saucony Rides. Interesting fact: Running shoes are only good for 300-500 miles before the tread wears out and they are no long ‘good’. Yes, very similar to tires. Boston 12These shoes are the same as my old pair that I have been training in but just in a different color. I didn’t want to try something new so close to Boston. I also picked up some PowerGels and Sports Beans! Yummy! Around 6:30 we head out for another 6 miles (this will make 10 total for me). Loved the pace! I ended up running an average of 8:50-9 minute mile. I did have some help from a buddy; he’s quick and starts off strong but then dies towards the end. I am very good on a constant pace. We make a great team. He speeds me up and I keep him steady.

Friday March 28th, 2014

The interesting wildlife while running on the trail

The interesting wildlife while running on the trail

Last long run before BOSTON!!!!! I decided to do this one on a whim. It wasn’t until late Thursday night that I made my final decision to run. Normally I know weeks in advance what I’m doing, or what I need to do. I did decide to get an earlier start so I can be finished earlier. I was up at 5am and on the road by 5:30am, and running by 6am. It was the same place, Baldwin Trail. It was dark and cold. I ‘suited up’ and headed out. I really don’t like running in the dark alone but I was already there and I wanted to get it done. I knew the sunrise was around 7 so I told myself to suck it up for an hour. I only ended up doing 20 miles total. I really wanted 22 but for some reason I just wasn’t feeling it. Maybe it was because I didn’t plan for it or that I woke up too soon. Not sure but my timing was great. It was nice confidence booster. It was close to a 9-9:30 minute pace. For a ‘not so great run’ I’ll take it! I did get to break in the new shoes, which was a good. Now they are officially race ready. From now until Boston it will be clean eating, tons of sleep, speed training, downhill training, and overall just making sure I don’t get sick or injury myself.

You know you’re a running when…You walk into their home and see this. Yes, they are all mine. Yes, I wear them all ;)

You know you’re a running when…You walk into their home and see this. Yes, they are all mine. Yes, I wear them all ;)


To read more about Karen’s story you can read all about it or you can view her video here:

To make a donation to the Massage Therapy Foundation in support of Moers’ participation in the Boston Marathon, visit:



Christopher Stipp is the Director of Online Marketing for Massage Envy Spa. Connect with Christopher on Google+.


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