Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Register to Run Hartford by July 31 - Get Great Perks!

We’re giving you more reasons than ever to register today to Run Hartford on October 10!  With perks for everyone who registers by July 31 to run the Eversource Hartford Marathon, Half Marathon or 5K, plus Refer-a-Friend perks for those already registered – now’s the time! 

Get ahead of the pack. And get some perks.
Register here by July 31st and we’ll send you a free car magnet and give you $10 off our PrePerks race-day experience – with personalized bib, Mail My Packet, heated indoor pre-race space and personal baggage check.  You’ll also have a chance to win prizes everyday, from free entry to #runHartford training shirts or running gear.

Through next week, join HMF Events on Facebook for contests with unique prizes, including the chance to win the Race Director’s parking spot and pairs of Skechers shoes.  Participate in our #runHartford hashtag contest on Twitter @runHMF to win daily prizes, with opportunity to win free race entry.  Follow us on Instagram @HMF­_Events to share photos of you in Hartford Marathon gear to win #runHartford training shirts.

Refer a Friend and Get Good Stuff Too!
We want to thank those who have already registered and give you great perks:
·      Refer a friend to register now for the Eversource Hartford Half Marathon and Half Marathon and get a FREE race car magnet.  
·      Refer three friends to register and get a FREE #runHartford training shirt ($20 value).
·      Refer five friends to register and get FREE PrePerks pre-race experience ($65 value), including personalized bib, Mail My Packet, heated indoor pre-race space and personal baggage check.  

When your friend registers by July 31, they simply enter your name into the “Referred By” field in Chronotrack.  They will also get a FREE race car magnet and $10 off PrePerks and be automatically entered for chances to win cool stuff.

For more details on the Eversource Hartford Marathon or to register, visit

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Event Alert System in Action

Thoroughly planning ahead is pivotal to race management of HMF Events – that means we plan for the expected but also prepare for the unexpected, as much as possible.

Weather is often the culprit behind race-day course change decisions, which fortunately are pretty rare.  Since 2013, we’ve used a color-coded Event Alert System to communicate with participants about the impact of weather on race day.  This colored flag alert system is more than simply communicating the temperature, we calculate what’s called Wet Globe Bulb Temperature (WBGT).  Sounds fancy, right? It’s far more accurate than temperature (the reading on a thermometer provides ambient temperature, like you hear in the weather report).

Wet Globe Bulb Temperature factors not o
nly ambient temperature, but also relative humidity, solar radiation (the “sun on a black car hood” thing) and the cooling effect of any wind that might be occurring.  So, the WBGT Index can be quite a bit different from the ambient temperature reading you hear or see.

Sunday was hot and humid, so we were regularly checking WGBT at the Litchfield Hills Olympic Triathlon.  Before the race, conditions were moderate, or “Less Than Ideal”, marked by the Yellow flag with suggestion that participants slow down and be prepared for worsening conditions. 

When participants were out on the bike course, new calculations indicated the high alert “Potentially Dangerous” Red flag conditions. Within 5 minutes of the reading and before the lead bike came into transition, we made the decision to change the planned 10K run route to a 5K.  Utilizing a back-up plan to follow the first run course of the Duathlon, we re-routed runners to include paths through shaded areas in the woods.

Overwhelmingly, participants were appreciative that we put the consideration for their safety first.  For anyone that was upset about it, we’d rather have you a little irked and walking out on your own than chance what the alternative could be. 

As race organizers, our primary goal each and every event is to have every single one of our participants make it to the finish line upright and smiling. Whether you earned a personal best or even had a bad day, that’s all secondary to your safety and being able to brag about your medal (and complain about your aching muscles) the next day.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Team HMF pace leaders at Red Dress Run for Women

We've introduced a new perk to help encourage you at this Saturday's Red Dress Run for Women, presented by UnitedHealthcare.  Pace teams are a group who run together led by an experienced leader - the pace leader runs a steady pace and keeps track of that pace so that the group can achieve their goal of finishing at a specific time. This is a free service for any registered runner.  Thanks to Team HMF for volunteering to pace, meet the pacers here!

Sarah Bourdeau

8 min/mile Pacer

Hometown: East Haven, CT            
Occupation: Dental Assistant & full time Mom
How long have you been running competitively?  3 Years
What is your favorite distance to race? Half Marathon
What is your favorite HMF race and why? Surftown. While I love the crowds, energy and big race feel that Hartford has to offer...I just love the course at Surftown. It is absolutely beautiful and is at the right time of year. Early fall so it is not to cold and not to hot.... just the way I like it. I also love all the post race fun! This year I stepped out of my comfort zone and ran the O'series and had a blast!!! I age group placed at O'Niantic and O'Hartford. I had so much fun running this series that I decided to once again step out of my zone and run the Scramble Series...I will keep you posted if I have a new favorite.
What was your single most memorable race day experience? My most memorable race day experience will be the NJ marathon May of 2013. I had planned early on in making the BQ attempt at NJ. As everyone is aware 2013 brought us the most horrific Boston Marathon to date. These events just fueled my fire for the BQ even more. I can still remember race day in NJ and how everything just felt legs, the weather, my mind. I had an amazing race that day absolutely nothing went wrong and I can still remember approaching the finish and seeing the clock and realizing my dream was really going to come true and I would have the BQ. This moment is even more memorable to me then running Boston 2014 as it just proved hard work and determination would give me my dream come true!
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race this year? Dream big and have fun! Don't get discouraged...everyone has bad training days and just bad days in general but if you can just keep pushing forward running can be your exercise, your therapy and your fun!

Susan Rubenstein

9 min/mile Pacer

Hometown: Simsbury, Connecticut
Occupation: Full-time overall fitness trainer, instructor and lifestyle wellness coach
How long have you been running competitively? about 7 years now.
What is your favorite HMF race and why? My favorite HMF race was actually the CTfastrak 15K this last May.  The energy that day was just so exhilarating from the other participants.  The course was the perfect length and everyone was so positive about the experience when it was finished.  I think too the day was just that perfect Spring day where as a runner you are reminded why you like running so much. I carried that race day with me for a month.
Why do you run?  I run because running gives me the power to feel like I can take on anything life hands me.  It clears my mind, helps me to love my body, shows me so many parts of the world that I would never discover just moving through life.  I have run in Paris, London, Rome, Brazil, Mexico, California, Arizona and so many other beautiful places.  I run because I remember as a little girl my Mom ran when women really didn't.  I run because it has given my daughter Elanna and I a bond that will last forever.  I run because I am now part of a team that continues to motivate me to run the next race. I run because I love too.

Katie Ouellette

9 min/mile Pacer

Hometown: Right now, New Britain, CT. But I am from Terryville, CT
Occupation: Auto Claims Adjuster 
How long have you been running competitively? A little over a year! My first race was May, 2014!      
What is your favorite distance to race? 5k

What is your favorite HMF race and why?  Not only is it my favorite HMF race, but it is my favorite race altogether: Shamrock 3.3. It was my first race ever in May 2014 and I hope to do it every year to mark my progress. And maybe one day, I will be brave enough to do the whole duathalon. MAYBE!!    
What was your single most memorable race day experience?  When I completed my first race and placed in my age group. I didn't even know there were "awards" given at races or anything so it was a cool surprise. The whole thing was an experience I didn't expect with tents and vendors and a post race beer!     
Why do you run? I run to see what my body can accomplish. I am amazed that in April 2014 I literally couldn't run 1 mile and I've completed 3 half marathons and many races of other distances since then.  
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race?  RUN YOUR OWN RACE! By that, I mean, don't worry about who is passing you, who is front of you, and who is behind you. Just run what you can run and enjoy the finish! 

Elizabeth Mashiak

10 min/mile Pacer

Hometown: Somers, CT
Occupation: Health and Wellness Director
How long have you been running competitively? Two years
What is your favorite distance to race? 5K
What is your favorite HMF race and why? Surftown because of the beautiful course!
What was your single most memorable race day experience?   My most memorable race day experience was breaking the course record at the Amica Iron Horse 5K race this year!     
What's your "Go to" pre race meal?  I always eat Wagon Wheel pasta the night before and a half of a chocolate glazed doughnut in the morning for race day fuel!
What's your "Go To" Post race meal? My favorite post run meal is always grilled cheese!!
Why do you run?  I run because exhausting myself on a run is one of the most relaxing and satisfying parts of my day.
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race this year?  You may feel miserable during the race, but the feeling of crossing your first finish line is like no other feeling. Cherish that moment. 

Diane Perry  

10 min/mile Pacer      

Hometown: Bloomfield, CT
Occupation: Director, Program Management
How long have you been running competitively? April 2014  
What was your single most memorable race day experience?  There are so many memorable race day experiences! From being a course monitor volunteer and having so many runners thank me for being there and giving me high fives to placing second overall female in a 5K. But I’ll share a more recent one, in which I ran the longest race to date, the CTfastrak 15K (May 3, 2015). I saw so many friends and fellow runners, who cheered for me, encouraged me, ran with me and then at the end, so many who told me they used me as a “pacer” to keep them going. This was the first race that I had friends waiting to cheer me on. At the end, not only was I so grateful that I had completed this distance, but imagine my surprise when bibbed strangers who I didn’t and couldn’t see thanked me for simply running (my race which allowed them to run theirs)!  
Why do you run? I run to feel capable, fit and strong and to spend time challenging myself to do something that last year felt labored and the year before seemed implausible. 
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race this year?      Ask questions, get a plan, follow it as best you can, start slow, cross-train to stay healthy and cut yourself some slack along the way as you listen to your body. Keep a running/fitness journal as you enjoy the journey as you will discover it's not all about the end goal of running the race. Along the way, you will make countless friends, learn countless things about running, nutrition, your body and your capabilities. But most importantly when you reflect, you'll be thrilled about your accomplishment(s) and your successes along your journey to and on race day!

Elanna Rubenstein

Floating Support

Hometown: Simsbury
Occupation: Sports Broadcasting - ESPN
How long have you been running competitively? Since 2008      
What is your favorite distance to race? I love the challenge of a half marathon but take more enjoyment in a good 10K, it's that perfect distance to challenge yourself but you can run it everyday!
What is your favorite HMF race and why?  Amica Iron Horse! It is right in my hometown!! It's great being so close to home and running the race in my favorite community!
What was your single most memorable race day experience? The Iron Horse half this year, I ran it with pneumonia!      
What's your "Go To" Post race meal?  Pancakes, or Grilled cheese
Why do you run? I run to stay active and healthy, as a way to spend time with my mom.
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race this year? Never doubt yourself, for years I never thought I would run, than one day I just went out and put one foot in front of the other and I haven't stopped since!

Kimberly Markey

Floating Support

Hometown:  East Hartford, but I currently reside in Berlin
Occupation:  Marketing Manager
How long have you been running competitively? I hardly consider myself a competitive runner.  I’ve been running since July, 2008
What is your favorite distance to race? Race – 10K, run - marathon
What is your favorite HMF race and why?  The O races – O’Putnam, O’Niantic, and O’Hartford.  The O races are my current favorite HMF races because in 2015 I ran all 3 races with my 8-year old son.  To share those miles, finish lines and accomplishments with him was pure joy.
What was your single most memorable race day experience?  Running the Harvard Pilgrim Middletown Half Marathon with my coach (Olympian, Jeff Galloway).
What was the lowest moment in a race you experienced?    Mile 20 - 22 of the Marathon during the 2014 Dopey Challenge – I had completed chemotherapy treatments the week prior and by Mile 20 which was really mile 42 of the 48.6 challenge, I was struggling, walking, and didn’t think I was going to have the energy to finish.  But I did, walking all 26.2 miles in 7 hours
and 28 minutes.
Why do you run?  I run to keep my mind and body healthy.
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race? You can do anything you want to do.

Heather Labbe  

Finisher Pacer    

Hometown:  South Windsor
Occupation:  Wellness Director Indian Valley Family YMCA
How long have you been running competitively? 20 years
What is your favorite distance to race? Half Marathon
What is your favorite HMF race and why? Surftown Half…so beautiful, perfect weather … jumping in the ocean!
What was your single most memorable race day experience?  PR Surftown 2013
What's your "Go to" pre race meal? Banana and almond butter  
What's your "Go To" Post race meal? BEER
Why do you run?  It makes me feel like the best version of myself
What one piece of advice would you give to someone running his or her first race this year?  Run with joy!  Smile!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Create Your Balance - Nutrition

We all can appreciate carbo-loading the night before a big race, but fueling our bodies for performance is about more than just a meal or pre-race routine.   Creating the proper nutrition and hydration balance through your training, during races and in race recovery can have incredible impact on overall performance and health.

We’re excited to be joined this week by an incredible resource in sports nutrition, who has been the lead dietitian on the meal planning team for US athletes during the Olympic Summer Games.  Jillian Wanik, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, will be joining us on #askHMF tomorrow, June 30, at 3:00 pm live on Twitter.  Send your questions to us at @runHMF or post them on our Facebook page today/tomorrow and Jillian will answer them live from 3-4:00 pm.  Topic areas include:
·       Hydration guidelines
·       Power foods to put on the grocery list
·       Running for weight loss
·       Sports nutrition products
·       Adding calories – when and how
·       Pre-race and race recovery

Learn more about Jillian below and please join us tomorrow, we’ll be giving away Fuelbelts to a couple randomly selected participants who submit a question.  Thanks to Eversource Hartford Marathon sponsor United Bank for supporting the Create Your Balance campaign.

Jillian Wanik
Jillian provides nutrition counseling, presentations and classes on sports nutrition, weight management and wellness for athletes looking to improve performance and positively impact health outcomes.  She is passionate about helping individuals reach their fitness and performance goals through better nutrition.

Jillian worked as a part of a global interdisciplinary team at the Olympic Summer Games in Athens, Beijing and London and the Asian Games in Guangzhou. She defined and set standards and policies for elite athlete fueling. She helped create the Olympic menu databases and provided individual and team strategies to optimize food and fluid choices for performance.

Jillian loves running and her road bike.  She has been an athlete all of her life, recently completing her first marathon and Olympic distance triathlon.  

She earned her Doctorate of Clinical Nutrition from Rutgers University, where her research examined the relationships between physical activity level and changes in weight, waist circumference and percent body fat among participants in a worksite wellness program.

Jillian is an Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics member, a Registered Dietician Nutritionist, Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics, Certified Nutrition Support Specialist and a member of the Sports, Cardiovascular and Wellness dietitians practice group.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Run For Good

Runners are motivated people who have an incredible commitment to achieving goals – running for charity is a natural fit.  We truly appreciate your efforts and have two opportunities to reward our participants for their efforts to “Run for Good”, whether for one of the 20 Official Charities or another worthy cause that is personally meaningful.

HMF Run for Good sign-up
All participants in the October 10th Eversource Hartford Marathon, Half Marathon, 5K and Team Relay are encouraged to run for causes.  In appreciation of those charity runners, HMF and Eversource will give an exclusive marathon tote bag to the first 1,000 registered runners who sign up for the HMF Run for Good program. Continuing the commitment to environment and sustainable practices, HMF and Eversource had the specialty bags created out of branded mesh fencing recycled from the 2014 Hartford Marathon finish line.  Sign up through this form to report charity support and receive a bag (only registered runners of the 2015 event are eligible to receive a bag).

Aiello Inspiration Team
We are calling on athletes who dedicate efforts for community or charitable causes to submit an application to the Aiello Inspiration Team at the Eversource Hartford Marathon and Half Marathon.  This team of inspirational and motivational athletes will represent the best examples of what it means to “run for good.”   Candidate submissions must reflect the ways in which the runner has been positively linked to these initiatives.

Runners of any age or skill level can nominate themselves or others who they feel represent inspiring qualities.  Nominees must be participating in the October 10th Eversource Hartford Marathon, half marathon, relay or 5K.

Aiello Inspiration Team members will be provided with elite level benefits during race weekend including complimentary hotel stay (for those 50+ miles from Hartford), Pasta Supper tickets and marathon apparel.  Additionally, they will receive a complimentary PRE Perks package (value $65) including limited access parking adjacent to the start/finish line, Mail My Packet service to receive bib and shirt in late September, personalized bib, access to pre-race VIP area and personal baggage check.

Thanks to Aiello Home Services
for their support of the program!
Nomination forms are available on the Eversource Hartford Marathon and Half Marathon Registration Tab under Aiello Inspiration Team. Nominations will be accepted through July 15. A panel committee will review applications and winners will be notified in late July.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

PROgressive Series - 5K, 10K & Half Marathon!

You CAN run your first half marathon - we will get you there with our new PROgressive Series, a unique three-race challenge that brings you from 5K to 10K to Half Marathon between July and October.

If you've run 5Ks, maybe even some longer race distances, and are looking for a support program and incentive to take on 13.1 miles, this program is for you.  We make it simple, providing a free training guide, discounted race entry and some extra bling - a commemorative PRO Series finisher medal.  You can register all at once here for the program to run a 5K with us in July, a 10K in August and then the Eversource Hartford Half Marathon on October 10.  There's an option to participate in our group training program (fees apply), which provides experienced coaches, a supportive group environment and a training program shirt.

Run one of our July 5Ks, you can choose from the July 11th Red Dress Run for Women, the July 16 Rentschler Airfield 5K or the second Riverfront Scramble on July 23.

You will then run the Old Wethersfield 10K with us on August 23.  This double-loop course is flat and fast, a great way to increase race mileage in preparation for your ultimate goal.  After your 10K, you'll focus and follow our weekly mileage guide to finish the Eversource Hartford Half Marathon on October 10.  Your finish line awaits you in Bushnell Park, with incredibly supportive crowds, great course amenities and a huge post-race bash.

REGISTER HERE, you will be provided all of the options through this link to add the PRO Series events.  To add the PRO Series group training, please register separately here.

If you've already registered for one of the events and want to add the PRO Series, contact (please allow at least two business days for response).

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

#askHMF Twitter Q&A with Hartford HealthCare Rehabilitation Network

Training runs are getting longer, you’re increasing speed work, the race calendar is filling up…don’t get sidelined by injury now! 

Proper warm up and post-race stretching can go a long way to keep you healthy.  A team from Hartford HealthCare Rehabilitation Network will be joining us again at next weekend’s Amica Iron Horse Half Marathon, 10K and 5K in Simsbury to provide on-site services and answer your questions on training, injury prevention and recovery.  The team is trained in running assessment, foot type analysis as well as identifying areas that may be more susceptible to injury or over use syndromes.

Tomorrow, you can have access to the Senior Sports Medicine Physical Therapist for Hartford HealthCare Rehabilitation Network. Stefanie Bourassa DPT, MSPT, CSCS, will be available LIVE from 2:30-3:30 pm to answer your questions on Twitter.  How do I train through an ankle injury?  What are the best stretches for a tight IT Band?  And a hundred other questions…

Just send your question in either of the following ways - two randomly selected people who submit a question on Twitter and Facebook will each receive a free HMF Events training shirt: 
  • Tweet a question to us at @runHMF using #askHMF
  • Post a question on our Facebook page using #askHMF (either on our wall or comment to the post)

Areas of expertise include:
  • Dynamic Stretch Warmup
  • Post-exercise Stretching
  • Plyometric-type (Jumping) Drills
  • ACL injury prevention
  • Hamstring Strengthening
  • Core Strengthening
  • Foot Biomechanics
  • Shoe Analysis

Stefanie will answer all questions and we’ll be sure to provide her response on Twitter live as well as in reply to your comments posted here or on Facebook.