Archives for December 2015
With Boston hitting 70 degrees this afternoon, it’s hard to believe Santa and his reindeer have begun their annual trek of 7 continents in 1 day. But it’s officially winter, with January right around the corner. Exactly one month from today, we leave for Chile where Becca will launch her own adventure of 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days.
Jenny: Becca, you must love all of this warm training weather. What are your ideal running conditions?
Becca: 45 degrees is perfect running weather for me.
Jenny: Which of your seven World Marathon Challenge marathons do you think will have the best conditions?
Becca: Sydney, our seventh marathon, will be best. We start very early in the morning when it’s still dark, so I hope to be finishing as the sun rises. I’m most excited about running in Antarctica, but the weather conditions scare me. I don’t like to be cold!
Jenny: You’ve got this! It’ll be nice and sunny in Antarctica, with Union Glacier Camp averaging 10 to 25 degrees Fahrenheit in January. You and I ran on some beastly sub-zero Boston days last winter. Plus, you might have penguins cheering you on!!
Jenny: What are you running in these days?
Jenny: With whom do you run in a typical week?
Becca: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings, I run with a group of moms from Belmont. Tuesday mornings, I have a track workout with the Belmont Track Club. Thursdays, I run with the Boston Bulldogs. Saturdays, I run with Janet. Sundays, are with you.
Jenny: I love our Sunday runs together. What do you typically eat before a long run?
Becca: Always coffee. I’ll also have a bagel, a KIND bar, a banana, and Ultima to drink.
Jenny: You’ve always been lucky to have an iron stomach. Not every runner is that fortunate. And how about your recovery meals? You must need to consume a heck of a lot with all of your training.
Becca: I love burritos from Felipe’s. I’ll also always eat whatever Joe orders and can’t finish. . . And of course lots of Ultima to help restore electrolytes and keep me hydrated.
Jenny: What do you hope Santa brings you this year?
Becca: I hope Santa brings me my voice back. I’ve been three days without it, and I’ll need it because I’m going to be on NPR on Monday (3 to 4 p.m. this Monday on WBUR). Tune in!
With a 5K PR of 18:11 and a marathon best of 3:25, there’s no question Becca Pizzi can run fast. But her speed may not be her greatest strength. In 30 years of being a runner, Pizzi says she’s never had an injury.
Source: Runner’s World, One Woman’s Goal: 7 Marathons, 7 Continents, 7 Days
Becca Pizzi aims for an American record while running seven marathons on seven continents in seven days in the World Marathon Challenge.
Given the awesome and incredibly well-deserved public attention on Becca’s upcoming World Marathon Challenge, we are revamping the blog to focus all energies on her epic feat. Rest assured, we’re still running together, laughing together, and looking forward to the sweetness of February, post World Marathon Challenge, when our biggest challenge will be not freezing our fingers taking selfies on Heartbreak Hill. You’ll see an immediate shift in the content toward Becca’s road to the seven continents. But the original spirit of our blog, that every road is better with friends, burns brighter than ever. We will return to our regularly scheduled programming in February!
Thursday nights are one of my favorite nights of the week. It’s an opportunity to give back to my community by helping to coach the Boston Bulldogs Running Club. The Bulldogs are a co-ed nonprofit running club founded by Mike Ferullo to support those battling addiction and in recovery, those who have been affected by addiction, and their supporters. I really enjoy running with this group of my new friends as running is a great stress reliever. Fighting an addiction is harder than the challenges I will face, I will think of how hard they work when I need to dig deep. They are fighting for their lives, I am fighting for a dream, which really puts my running into perspective.
quotes Brian Rogers, club member from Belmont:
A: Running is a marvelous recreational activity. It clears our heads and energizes us. Do this with other people, and something truly special is created. A partnership is forged. Dreams become reality. That’s what Bulldog power is all about.
Quotes from Mike Ferullo, founder…
Coach Mike Ferullo says his vision for the Club is to reach out to all those adversely affected by addiction – those in recovery, their friends and family, the various clinical communities, and to the community at large, especially the running community to communicate the importance of wellness in recovery. The Club offers support by building a sense of community, anonymity and encouragement to facilitate discovery of the physical, emotional and social benefits of wellness and “community”. On a personal level, Mike found running and the running community to be one of the most important tools in turning his own life around as a troubled young man – and believes that running and wellness can change a person’s beliefs about who they are and help to find the true potential – the “warrior” in each of us.
Addiction and drug overdose is the health epidemic of our time. With the rate nearly tripling in the past three decades, drug overdose is now the leading cause of accidental death nationally, exceeding motor vehicle accidents. And despite increased public efforts to combat opioid abuse, the number of deaths from heroin overdoses surged by 28 percent in 2014, and fatal overdoses from prescription painkillers climbed by 16.3 percent. The heroin overdose figure was more than three times higher than the 2010 tally. (Washington Post article by Reid Wilson | October 8, 2013)
To battle addiction and the stigma attached to those suffering its adverse effects, The Boston Bulldogs Running Club is dedicated to working to address the needs of those in recovery post treatment. The benefits of running and wellness – physical, mental and spiritual – as well as the sense of community offered through the “club” have a very important role to play. The Boston Bulldogs Running Club was established in 2015 as a coed non-profit 501(c)3 running club that promotes wellness and provides support to those battling addiction, those in recovery, family and friends who are currently or have been negatively affected by addiction – and those in the community-at-large who support the Club’s vision.
The Bulldogs have a history dating back to 2008 when the Club was established by Clinician and “Coach” Mike Ferullo, as the HopeFound Bulldogs at the Shattuck Hospital shelter. The Club was adopted by Pine Street Inn in 2012 to provide members with the opportunity to participate in a positive social and wellness program supporting their recovery.
For a feature on the Coach Mike and the Bulldogs from the Boston Globe in 2013 : https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/style/2013/04/15/running-toward-recovery-encountered-unimaginable-boston-marathon/ONDdWiMvzOp3thTLDZxeHI/story.html.
The Club welcomes and encourages runners of all levels – dreamers, beginners, as well as those with running experience, past or present. Volunteer runners coach Bulldog members at their current levels, to help them meet their wellness goals. Bulldogs meet twice weekly to run/walk in Cleveland Circle, and run/walk as a team at local road races. Donations to the Club sponsor outreach and membership for those who need it and provide help with running gear, membership and transportation if needed. The Club also sponsors seminars on a variety of topics related to wellness and recovery.
Jenny: Bec, one thing we share is a love for/addiction to coffee. Starbucks or Dunks, and how do you take it?
Becca: Starbucks, Venti Iced (year round!) Americano. 1 Splenda and milk. And you?
Jenny: Skim lattes. I’m not a morning person, so lattes are my bridge to the land of the living. I make ’em at home or swing by the Wholy Grain, Starbucks, Cafe Nero, or the Thinking Cup. Lattes are a great way to pick up a little protein (and the really good ones are heavenly). When it’s hot, I switch to iced coffee with soy milk.
Jenny: OK, our warm up is done. Time to dive in. With the World Marathon Challenge five weeks away, what going through your head right now?
Becca: Not finishing this race is not an option for me. It’s not running the marathons that I am afraid of, it’s not even the climate change or all of the traveling, it’s being away from my daughter, Taylor, for two weeks that will be the hardest part for me.
Jenny: How are you and she preparing for it?
Becca: I’m going to Skype (wifi pending) every chance I get. It will be quick “I love you, do your homework, how was dance” questions. I will run with a photo of Taylor in my spibelt and I will write a letter for her lunchbox for every day.
Becca: What sneaker do you run in?
Jenny: OMG, Becca. That’s like asking boxers or briefs. Whatever fits me best and that the good souls at South End Athletic Company or Marathon Sports tell me supports my gait best. These days I’m running in New Balance. I love that it’s a Boston brand. Give me a harder one, coach, I’m ready!
Becca: I hear you were just promoted to partner at Ropes & Gray—what’s that been like?
Jenny: Kinda like that scene in Animal House, “Thank you sir, may I have another.” Kidding. Very honestly, it’s much more of a transition than I expected. Perhaps the best analogy is that it feels like crossing the finish line at a marathon and immediately starting an ultra marathon. I know how to run, but I need to adjust my pace for the longer distance, do a boatload of training, remember to hydrate, figure out how to fuel while running, learn to be a good team captain, all that kind of stuff. But Ropes is a pretty special place (we turned 150 this year!), I have some wonderful, wonderful mentors and friends there, and I’m looking forward to the road ahead.
Jenny: How are you handling all of the recent publicity? You’re legit famous!
Becca: If you told me one year ago that the Associated Press, Boston Globe and Wall Street Journal (to name a few) would publish stories on me, I would not believe it. I feel like Rocky with so many companies, friends and family supporting me. I have had countless people from around the world tell me that I have inspired them to run, workout, etc. I realize that not everyone will understand or love my goals and that’s OK. I’m not trying to save the world or cure cancer, my goal is to show people that Anything Is Possible!
Becca: Besides running, what other physical activities do you enjoy?
Jenny: Sleeping is probably my favorite activity, probably because I don’t do it enough. My cross training is usually a mix of swimming and spin class for cardio, barre for strength training, and yoga for strength, stretching, and relaxation.
Jenny: How about you? Which of your weekly workouts do you love the most?
Becca: I’m grateful for each moment of training as each one contributes so much to the World Marathon Challenge.
Jenny: I’m totally repeating that back to you when we’re climbing those beastly hills in Allston. Let’s keep it real, homegirl. Which workout do you like the least?
Becca: Personal Training with Devon at Off the Wall Personal Training. Devon is preparing me for marathons 5 and 6, running on dead legs, that is our focus. Her workout is the one I love to hate the most.
Jenny: Running on dead legs. I hear that happens to people who drink a little too much wine the night before a long run. . . Speaking of long runs, what’s our plan for the weekend?
Becca: 10 miles on the Boston Marathon course Saturday, then race the Walters Run 5K with the Boston Bulldogs Sunday! Are you in?
Jenny: I’m in x 2! Weather looks gorgeous–upper 50s both days.
We are very excited (and a little nervous) to be launching our first blog! The immediate impetus is to chronicle Becca’s upcoming World Marathon Challenge. Bec is training up a storm to be the first American woman to run 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days in January 2016.
We look forward to sharing much more of our running journey with you over the months and years. In naming our blog, we quickly arrived at laughter is a great ab workout because it reflects the sweet, funny,
six-pack Boston-strong friendship we have built logging many miles together. The road truly is better with friends. Thanks for tagging along.