If you couldn’t tell by my Hat Trick race recaps from the Runner’s World Festival and Half, the team at Runner’s World knows how to put on an awesome event. The races were only a small piece of the puzzle, and RW had an amazing weekend lined up for us! Everyone had their favorite events throughout the weekend, so I thought I’d share some of my Runner’s World Festival (blogger edition!) highlights with you.
Runner’s World Headquarters Tour
After a dinner with the Runner’s World editors (where I finally got to meet Robert and see Erica!), the one and only Bart Yasso gave us a tour of the Runner’s World headquarters. Since I work in a hospital and not in any sort of office environment, I always find it interesting to see what offices look like. We got to peek in the offices of the editors, including the gear guy, Bart Yasso, and the main guy, David Willey. (And I always want to pronounce his name like, “While-y” so I have to say it in my head twelve times before it saying properly out loud.)
We also walked by the treadmill desk where anyone go log into the system to walk (run?) on while working. I giggle a little on the inside when I see these because as a nurse, I sometimes don’t sit down for twelve hours let alone need a treadmill desk to exercise, but I support the concept.
One of the highlights of the tour was a swing by the finalized version of the December issue and some older issues covers, so we got a sneak peak at the upcoming issue. It was fun to see the design process and how issues come together.
Bloggers with Bart and David! (Stolen!)
Ashley and I stayed behind to talk to David Willey, so I got to witness her profess her love to David Willey. He’s a pretty cool guy with an absolutely awesome job. We caught up with the group as they were leaving they bike room, which is where employees can store their bikes if they bike to work and where Bicycling magazine (also under the Rodale name) stores some crazy expensive bikes that they have and review. I, however, was mostly intrigued by this awesome bike seat:
I was a little confused on the tour since we didn’t get to see the nurse’s office. Rodale has one, right? No? Does that mean you’ll hire me? I accept immediately.
a morning shake out run with some familiar faces
One of the things that I love about blogging is all the people I’ve met. I traveled over to Bethlehem with New Yorkers who I’ve talked to on twitter and have seen across the room at blogger events, but have never really talked to. (I’m looking at you, Theodora.) It was fun to finally spend time with these people and to see my long lost Jocelyn again. Oregon has made her crazier than usual, but I couldn’t have asked for a better roommate. (And our room was basically a Picky Bar explosion, so not a bad deal for me!) However, one of the best parts was that I finally got to meet some bloggers I’ve been reading for years, but haven’t been lucky enough to meet yet! I finally got to meet Heather, from Dietitian on the Run, who I know I would be really good friends with if we lived closer (and I want her job, which I think I’ve told her at least twelve times).
Hat trick twins with Heather!
I also got to meet Janae from Hungry Runner Girl, who is every bit as sweet as I thought she would be…and she shares my love for Brooks and froyo, so clearly it was meant to be.
“you must be a real runner”
After our shakeout run, a lesson on running form and Altra shoes from Golden Harper (the inventor and 2:45 marathoner at age 12, what??), and a delicious lunch compliments of the Runner’s World cookbook, we got right into some stretching and strength exercises. Melanie Douglass, who works for ICON fitness (and is also a registered dietitian and fitness instructor) taught us how to use our giant bag of goodies. We received a yoga bag, a yoga mat (with alignment lines so you know if your feet are actually in line), an Xfinity band (a supercharged resistance band), a 3-in-1 foam roller, and a yoga block. Best of all, everything is available at Walmart and are definitely affordable.
Melanie led us through stretches and strengthening exercises to do with the Xfinity band, then we moved on the yoga block. I will be the first to admit that I have the tightest hamstrings in Manhattan (aka possibly why by back hurts) and I say that I have hamstrings like rubber bands. We used the block to stretch our hamstrings, rotating it to get closer and closer to the floor. I could barely get my fingers on it when it was in the easiest position. Afterward, Golden came up to me and said, “You must be a real runner…tight hamstrings!” We certainly could have battled for tightest hamstrings (not that best thing to be proud of, I suppose…), but I’m honored. And I should work on that immediately…
listening to awesome speakers
Our Friday afternoon speaker was Summer Sanders, a swimmer who medaled in the Olympics. She’s also the cover model for the November issue of Runner’s World, which is a pretty cool honor if you ask me! She spoke mostly about what it’s like raising kids with two Olympians as parents, about how to let them do their thing and not push them into super competitive mode. If that’s what they want, they’ll find it themselves. I thought this was an important lesson to hear, and although it’s not currently applicable to me (no kids!), hopefully one day it will be!
On Saturday evening, we were lucky enough to hear Dave McGillivray speak. Dave is the director of the Boston Marathon, and although he cannot run the race anymore (since he’s, you know, RUNNING the whole thing), he still runs the course after the race is over. This past April, he headed out to Hopkinton to run the course after a beautiful race day in Boston. Then he got the call. The one saying that bombs went off at the finish line and that he needed to get back immediately. I teared up listening to him recall the events from his perspective, as he tried to get to his runners, the Boston runners, to see if they were okay. The police stopped him even as he told him that he was the race director, that this was his race. At which point he realized that this race was no longer his and he was no longer in control…which is how most of us felt on that day.
Besides directing one of the, if not THE, most famous marathons, Dave has also done some amazing things such as running across the country and being one of the first people to raise money for charity. Dave told us how he started running, which went a little like this: “I started running because no one gets cut from the track team.” Which is essentially an abbreviated version of why I started and kept running, so we have something in common!
My favorite part of the expo? THIS HEADBAND. I bought it immediately.
Close runners up for best expo fun was the Boston Marathon treadmill (and the attractive men running the expo booth…smart move, ICON) which allows you to run anywhere in the world using google maps. I’m not a treadmill runner and have no plans to become one anytime soon, but the treadmill changes elevation and the video screen changes scenery to match where you are in the route you put into it. Basically, you could run part of a marathon route to get ready for it, or continue to train on your regular routes once it gets icy out. Or, on a more adventurous outlook, you could run in Thailand or with the penguins. (Okay, maybe not the penguins…are there roads in Antarctica?)
Certainly awesome was the “put yourself on the cover of Runner’s World” expo booth. It looks so real, right?
Thanks to everyone who thought it was real…I’m flattered that you think I’m awesome enough to be on the cover of one of the major running magazines!
so. much. SWAG.
I’m not really that materialistic (I don’t think…) and my apartment is too small to store things just because. But, Runner’s World hooked us up big time.
I’m loving the new running shirts (one can never have too many, right? I won’t count how many I have…) and the Runner’s World cookbook. Plus, I have two new books (Running on Air by Budd Coates and The Essential Sheehan by Dr. George Sheehan) to read once grad school wraps up for the semester. Oh, and the Runner’s World Half Festival gave out pint glasses.
I love when races give out pint glasses. Best race swag ever. (Because I really don’t need another tshirt…but I’ll take it anyway.)
thanks again to RW!
Apparently I had lots of highlights from the weekend at the Runner’s World Half festival! And I didn’t even mention the races in this post, but trust me…my quads are still feeling it! Thanks again to Runner’s World, Beachy, PR David, and Editor-in-Chief David for welcoming us to your piece of the running world and showing us a great time! A whole weekend surrounded by runners and filled with running? When can we do this again?