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Making it count

It seriously has been a great start to the year so far. I’ve changed my mindset a bit instead of just getting in countless miles and not making each run count, running with purpose has made me zero in on a few key things to make each run the best run I can have. Since the beginning of the month my average pace has gone down a lot and I’ve been making each run count in different ways. From trying to run faster, pushing myself out of my comfort zone and having faster recovery runs, every piece seems to be working together. It’s so nice to feel refreshed and when I do have a bad run, knowing that it will be over soon and pushing through it, instead of giving up makes it easier to finish it. This past week I ran 25 miles and had three solid, faster runs. One of which I really worked hard to push myself the entire time.

I can’t complain about the weather though, it’s been incredible and my favorite kind of running weather. Nice and warm, perfect for shorts and you get nice and sweaty.


I wanted to get in some miles this past weekend, but totally had forgot that it was my best friend’s birthday party and we also had an impromptu day trip to Palm Springs to look for wedding venues, and I don’t regret not running. Sometimes there just isn’t enough time in the day. It was a beautiful day in the desert though, and she thinks she may have found a venue!

Screen Shot 2014-01-20 at 11.28.54 AM

I am currently debating between the Redondo Beach 5K and 10K on Superbowl Sunday. I know the 10K will hurt, but I think I want to try to push myself for that long during a race just to see where I’m at. I haven’t decided on my next half marathon or full marathon. I think right now focusing on getting a little bit faster and then working on increasing my mileage again will be the best for me. We shall see!


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  • Reply Amanda @runtothefinish

    nice pace!! I am seeing a difference finally focusing on a half instead of all the miles needed for a full!

    January 20, 2014 at 1:47 pm
  • Reply Jen Eaton

    I’m so impressed with your time for the 5 mile run you posted. I love reading your blog & hearing about all the running, inspirational:) Thanks for that!

    January 20, 2014 at 2:11 pm
    • Reply chicrunner

      Ah thanks! I have found a difference in my mindset when I really push myself on each run and I’ve seen an improvement in my overall running when I run less miles too.

      January 21, 2014 at 10:12 am
  • Reply Liz

    Hey Danica! Can you explain what you mean when you say you know the 10k is gonna hurt? You seem to run 10k + distances a lot so I was wondering how the race itself would be different? Is it because you’d like to push your pace? I’m not up to that high of a distance yet, so I’m not sure what it’s like. I love your blog and Instagram; they keep me inspired!

    January 20, 2014 at 2:41 pm
    • Reply chicrunner

      Hi Liz, Yes ~ I mean that pushing myself for that distance at a pace that is hard for me will hurt :) The 5K would hurt at a faster pace too, but unlike the 10K, it’s a shorter distance so it makes it easier to run harder at a shorter distance. The 10K is just long enough to really question why you decided to run fast for that far.

      January 21, 2014 at 10:13 am
  • Reply Britt

    Hi, Danica. Do you have any training tips on how to increase speed, other than just running faster? I’d love to improve my time and have been focusing on weight training and plyometrics to help prevent injury and make me more powerful, but I’m not sure what else I should be doing. I’d love to hear from a “real runner” and not just read articles about it. Thanks!

    January 20, 2014 at 2:54 pm
    • Reply chicrunner

      Hi Britt – You calling me a ‘real runner’ made my day! :) I have increased my mileage a bit. So in training for a 10K, my long runs are around 8-10 miles. I’ve also made sure to do ‘harder’ workouts, where I have 1-2 mile warm up and then a hard/fast paced 4-5 miles, and then a mile or two cool down. I make sure that my warm up is a minute or a minute and a half slower than my ‘fast paced’ run mile pace. When I do a recovery run, it’s slower than a fast paced run by a minute or a minute and a half. Also, doing track workouts can make you faster too. 4 800’s (2 laps around a track) with a mile warm up and cool down is a great workout to really get your leg turnover to be faster.

      January 21, 2014 at 10:17 am
  • Reply kaitlyn DeGaetano

    I am jealous of your warm weather. They are calling for 6-8 inches of snow here in New Jersey tomorrow. Can’t wait for spring and shorts and T- shirt weather.

    January 20, 2014 at 5:34 pm
    • Reply chicrunner

      I would probably be frozen if I tried to run in that weather!

      January 21, 2014 at 10:11 am
  • Reply RunEatRepeat

    I”m bad at making runs count, but this is a great idea!

    January 20, 2014 at 6:32 pm
  • Reply Tyly

    You are amazing!!! Truly a running idol.

    January 20, 2014 at 6:33 pm
    • Reply chicrunner

      You are too kind! Thank you so much.

      January 21, 2014 at 10:11 am
  • Reply Krystin

    It seeems like when we make runs really count and push ourselves our times show it! Great job!! Random Question- You wear shorts a lot, what brands do you love? I have a booty and thighs and haven’t had any luck finding tight fitting running shorts that fit right! :) Thanks!

    January 23, 2014 at 4:20 pm
  • Reply Swami Mami Tea

    Happy living is one of the best things life. You have to make the most out of it.

    January 23, 2014 at 6:42 pm
  • Reply Billy

    YEEEEEESSSSSS. Redondo!!! See ya then!

    January 23, 2014 at 7:37 pm
  • Reply Stefanie

    Redondo 10K- see you there! Watch out for the land sharks and packs of squid;-)

    January 25, 2014 at 6:15 am
  • Reply Christine

    The 10k would be great in terms of seeing your progress and also you could use the time to predict your half and full marathon times. You trained hard, go for it!

    January 26, 2014 at 5:56 am
  • Reply George Godin

    Hello there!

    You are indeed very amazing! I just love reading your blog. Anyway, go for 10k :) I believe that sometimes, we really need to push ourselves in order to see where we at. Goodluck and please keep us posted!

    January 26, 2014 at 5:57 pm
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