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pretty sweet!






side note: i keep emailing my family and kelly (our amazing coordinator) with my crazy questions... sigh. i am getting nervous and excited and ahhhh. a little bit freaked out.



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5 days!

Posted by pavni Apr 21, 2008


i thought my shirt was too tight this morning, until i looked down and realized that the knot in my stomach was internal and not external. i am just nervous! woo. and excited.



here's an inspirational quote passed on by coach d:



“The marathon is a charismatic event. It has everything. It has drama. It has competition. It has camaraderie. It has heroism. Every jogger can’t dream of being an Olympic champion, but he can dream of finishing a marathon.”    --Fred Lebow



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6 days til the marathon!

Posted by pavni Apr 20, 2008


yesterday we did our final saturday workout and i can't believe that we're so close to the actual marathon! i am so excited. 3 more runs and one more day of x-training and then off we go! my flight is on friday morning, so i am really really excited.



tapering has been a bit depressing but everyone has been so supportive and i hope that i am strong enough to cross that finish line. i keep visualizing it, like they've told us to... so hopefully it'll work out!



we also had our race-clinic last week, so i have a few photos from that (below) and i recieved my race singlet! woo! so cute. also, mom got me these awesome running shorts... which i broke in yesterday for the first time. it was weird to be running in shorts outside since we haven't had weather like this in a long time and i realized i just had to suck it up and realize that i'd be running in shorts- not pants- and i should get used to it asap. i just checked the weather for nashville and they're expecting it to be a high of 69 and cloudy. that's perfectly fine by me! i think that by now, j. and i could run in the rain, snow, sleet, hail, wind... it wouldn't matter!



also (below) is a pic of our nashville team plus coach D after our last run together (besides wednesday's practice, that is).



okie dokie... let the countdown continue! 






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we did it!

Posted by pavni Apr 14, 2008

A huge Thank YOU! to everyone who helped me fundraise towards my goal of $3,400! We did it!!! The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Team in Training and I thank you dearly.








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12 Tips to a Terrific Taper


Your actions during the final two weeks before the race are crucial to your

performance. From that point on, it’s all about the taper.


Tapering is a period of “active rest” when your body recovers from all those

weeks of hard training. It’s a delicate balance between running and resting

that brings you to the starting line fresh and ready to go.


The process is tricky. If you run too much, you’ll be overly tired on the

starting line. If you rest too much, you won’t feel sharp on race day, and may

not run as effectively as possible.


In other words, there are lots of ways to screw things up. So here’s a list

of suggestions that have worked for me, to help you maximize your chance of

race day success.


No more long runs: Your final long run should be no less than 14 days

before the marathon. If you’ve missed some of your scheduled long runs, it’s

too late to make up for it now. Anything above 15 miles now will most likely

hurt your performance on race day.


Cut back the mileage: Decrease your total weekly mileage by about 40

percent starting two weeks out. During race week, reduce your overall mileage

by at least 60 percent. For example, a runner whose weekly training mileage

peaked at 60 miles should run 36 miles the week before race week, and no more

than 25 in race week. During the last four days before the marathon, don’t do

any runs of more than three miles. If you’d rather take the last two days

completely off, that’s OK too. Don’t worry about mileage during race

week—you’ll get your fill on Sunday morning.


Maintain the intensity: Even though you are cutting back on your mileage, it’s

important to maintain the intensity of these workouts. Run at close to marathon

pace, so your body is accustomed to the effort level you will demand during the



Avoid the hills: Don’t run any hills during race week—it helps your legs

recover more quickly. It’s just like with the mileage: you’ll get plenty of

hills on race day.


Choose your weapons: Decide what clothes you will wear on race day. Pick

comfortable shoes, socks, and running clothes that you’ve already worn on a

long training run. DON’T wear anything new on marathon day, unless you want to

have a graphic chafing story to tell your family about afterwards.


Gain a few—but not a lot: Since you are running less, pay close attention

to your diet. It’s normal to gain a few pounds as your muscles stockpile the

glycogen they will need during the race. But gaining more than five pounds will

make you feel heavy and sluggish. Eat a bit less than usual, with well-balanced

meals, and don’t start any fad diets.


Remember, carbo loading doesn’t mean overloading. The night before the race, just eat a regular sized

meal with a higher percentage of carbohydrates than usual. On race morning, eat

a small portion of a bagel, banana, or oatmeal to top off your tank—but don’t

load your stomach to the brim. Twenty-six miles is a long way to run with a

stomach cramp.


Wake up early: If you’re not accustomed to running in the morning, try a

couple of morning runs, so your body gets a taste of exercising at that time of

day. Marathon start times are frequently at 7

a.m.—and if you’ve never run at that hour, it can be a bit of a shock. You

might as well get it over with prior to race morning.


Eliminate extra activities: If you do any cross training activities, don’t do

them during race week. Don’t do any unusual activities that might cause muscle

soreness afterwards. This isn’t the time to catch up on housework or repair

projects. If you have extra time on your hands, just get more rest or take a

nap instead.


(I know this rule isn’t popular with spouses, but I’ll take the heat on this one. Tell your spouse I

said so, and he or she can write me an angry e-mail instead of venting at you.

After the race, however, you’re on your own.)


Cut your toe nails: Do it five or six days before the race. Trust me on

this one.


Be paranoid: It’s fairly common for runners to get minor illnesses while

tapering, so stay away from sick people. Wash your hands after touching

anybody. Just make like Howard Hughes for a couple of weeks, and you’ll be

assured of staying healthy.


Visualize success: The mental side of marathon running is extremely important.

Beginning today, picture yourself running relaxed and strong, and having a

great race. Repeat this scenario each day. Be confident in your ability to



Enjoy yourself: Yes, you should take the precautions above, but don’t get so

overwhelmed with worry that you forget to enjoy the experience. Think of how

far you’ve come in your training, and resolve to have a great time on race day.


And then all that’s left is to go out and do it!

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what a day!

Posted by pavni Apr 9, 2008


today was a pretty crazy (but wonderful) day and i am so excited about how everything went. thank you to everyone involved!



first off, today was the day of our official "save a life with a slice" fundraiser at village inn pizza ( village inn is one of my favorite places to get pizza from in town and they have an incredible owner who was so easy to work with when planning a fundraiser. they are really generous with their time and make you feel like family... which is why i think everyone who attended the fundraiser today had a great time!



secondly, our wednesday training run was outside for the first time (yay!) and at the urbana high track which (i believe) is made out of recycled tires and is incredibly squishy. our team did a great tempo workout and afterwards almost everyone was able to attend the pizza night! it was great to eat with them, and i hope that on friday (at our team dinner) i get to talk to them more and know them better! we talk while we're running, but i think that it'll be more fun when we're all dressed up!



today's been a streaming conversation about running starting from the first thing this morning, to our seminar speaker being an 11-time marathoner, and extending into dinner. everytime i get to talking about how j and i started running together i realize how blessed i am to have found her as a running partner and friend, as well as the team in training program... and my very first wonderful visit to body and sole. this has been an amazing journey and what a great day to sum it up. now, we have tapering til the start of the race and i hope to get stronger and more prepared as the days keep rolling by.



thanks to everyone who made today wonderful and that made our fundraiser a success. it was a truly great day. 



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my favorite quote from the 20 miler: "water is power!!" -r.h.



and a nerdy pic from:  as i am studying about water reabsorption in your nephrons!  












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pre-tapering jitters

Posted by pavni Apr 6, 2008


so i have started to get nervous about tapering and wondering if i am strong enough to finish this race. i realize that if i have done 20 miles, i can keep going another 6.2... however, is everything going to be different when i am in a different state with a whole bunch of people and crazy excitement all around?



i hope that it is a truly wonderful experience and my long-distance mentor (j-pow) completely resolved my fears with her email last night. she talked about doing "nothing new on race day" as well as believing in the tapering since you need all the rest you can get before the actual race. i feel much better! i just have to trust in myself as well as the training program and make sure that i am ready to run on the 26th! (thanks jenni).



next weekend, we have our pre-race clinic and we'll be getting our singlets! hooray! that way i can practice running in that outfit so that i can make sure i am completely comfortable (sans chafing!). oh man, i am so excited/scared/nervous/anxious.  



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today we did our longest run to date (and i believe our longest run ever)... 20 miles! WOOHOO. It was great. Having J'me there to talk to was a blessing and the weather was perfect... 58-60F and sunny! sigh. we couldn't have asked for better conditions. also, our amazing mentors came and supported us through the mileage (even driving alongside us for a mile-mile and a half)! (thanks j&r!)



i did feel like i ate a whole bunch during the run - from bananas to many cups of gatorade, i was definitely well fueled. well, i guess if we've come this far... what's another 6.2 miles, right?  



i am so proud... i would have never guessed that i was capable of this. thank you team in training and all of you who have been such a wonderful support through this!   today's the 5th so that makes 21 days 'til we'll be saying "yeehaw!" in nashville!






j, j, r and me! post run... smelly, salty, tired and very happy!





j,  and me flashing our "2-0"  miles done!   



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Thanks to my wonderful (and incredibly supportive) boyfriend's donation today... I have hit my 90% goal and have $311 dollars left to go to raise! Thanks to everyone who has contributed to the cause so far... without you I wouldn't be where I am today.



I am getting more and more excited about Saturday's 20 miler as the week continues and hope that I can finish strong (and ready for the last 6 miles!).



Thanks again to everyone and I hope you're all enjoying a great start to April!! 25 days til the marathon! 



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I may waddle when I run, but I'm running all the same

By John Bingham

Photographs by Tim Bower


PUBLISHED 09/19/2007


The late Dr. George Sheehan,

beloved Runner's World columnist and arguably the first running boom's

premier philosopher, once wrote that the difference between a runner

and a jogger was a signature on a race application. (For the youngsters

out there, there was a time before online registration when you

actually filled out a paper application, signed it, attached a check,

and mailed it in. Quaint, I know.) As succinct as Dr. Sheehan's

definition was, it made the point. If you were motivated enough to

train for and participate in an organized running event, then you were

a runner. Anyone willing to risk public failure in order to be a part

of the running community--no matter what his or her pace per mile might

be--was a runner. Period. Kind of hard for anyone to argue with that



But a few months ago, an ad ran in this magazine that drew a very hard

line between runners and joggers. I immediately heard from tons of

readers who were upset by the distinction. To me, however, such

definitions are meaningless, since those of us who call ourselves

runners already know why we call ourselves runners. Your reasons may be

different from mine, but here's why I know I am a runner:


I AM A RUNNER because my runs have names. I do tempo runs and threshold runs and fartlek runs. I do long, slow runs and track workouts. My runs are defined, even if my abs are not.


I AM A RUNNER because my shoes

are training equipment, not a fashion statement. The best shoe for me

is the one that makes me a better runner. I choose the shoe that goes

with my running mechanics, not my running outfit.


I AM A RUNNER because I don't have running outfits. I have

technical shirts and shorts and socks. I have apparel that enhances the

experience of running by allowing me to run comfortably. I can say

"Coolmax" and "Gore-Tex" in the same sentence and know which does what.


I AM A RUNNER because I know what effort feels like, and I

embrace it. I know when I'm pushing the limits of my comfort and why

I'm doing it. I know that heavy breathing and an accelerated heart

ratethings I once avoidedare necessary if I want to be a better



I AM A RUNNER because I value and respect my body. It will

whisper to me when I've done too much. And if I choose to listen to

that whisper, my body won't have to scream in pain later on.


I AM A RUNNER because I am willing to lay it all on the line. I

know that every finish line has the potential to lift my spirits to new

highs or devastate me, yet I line up anyway.


I AM A RUNNER because I know that despite my best efforts, I

will always want more from myself. I will always want to know my limits

so that I can exceed them.


I AM A RUNNER because I run. Not because I run fast. Not because I run far.


I AM A RUNNER because I say I am. And no one can tell me I'm not.


Waddle on, friends.

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my race day packet for the marathon came today... my race number is 17044 and i am in corral number 17, which basically means that i'll start in the 17th group of runners at 7am on april 26th! hooray. also, i learned that those who would like to watch my progress from home can do so at the following website: click on the "LiveResults" Bug on the homepage during the race!



all of this is incredibly exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. i just want to finish!!



reminiscing a little bit... this has been an amazing and rewarding experience. my next fundraiser is wednesday, april 9th at village inn pizza from 11am-10pm and LLS gets 15% of all the profits from the day! i am going to try and publicize like crazy. go team! 



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this week was our cut-back from last week's 18 miles to a measly 12... haha. just kidding! 12 miles is a whole lot, but it did make me realize how far we have come from our 30 minute runs being something that caused stress. ty asked me last night what the hardest part about running was and i came to the conclusion that the most difficult part of this training process is not the physical changes (which i truly appreciate), but rather the mental decision to finish a run. once you start everything's easy-peasy... it's just continuing on (especially when your body is tired and your mind is bored). making that decision to finish whether at mile 16 for the 18 miler... or at mile 24 for the upcoming marathon will be something that i will always fight with. it's so much easier to be lazy than it is to put one foot in front of the other, pump your arms a little more, and move your booty up the hill.



the 12 mile run was beautiful in our slightly-warmer than normal 45 degree weather (35 with windchill). after the run samit met me at LOTW and we walked the dogs along a part-trail part-paved path. i think that they truly enjoyed it! 



the only downside of our run this morning was that i got my very first owie which is a diamond shaped chafed spot on my chest! the culprit: the inner seam of my singlet. i have a band-aid on it now, but it definitely burned in the shower! it was totally my fault for not realizing that it wasn't a flat seam and for not adding enough body glide to prevent that from happening. regardless, i should heal up fine and it's not serious!



this upcoming week we are preparation for our 20 mile run on saturday and then the following wednesday, april 9th, we'll be having a fundraiser at Village Inn Pizza (corner of Mattis and Springfield) to raise money for the LLS. go team! 






samit and nala                                                                        and herschel and me






my neck owie and the culprit seam!

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from nike+: a view of my 18 miler!

Posted by pavni Mar 28, 2008


p.s. the stops are water breaks (running up the stairs to my brother's apartment!).

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March 27, 2008


Dear Friends, Family, Mentors and Colleagues,


Hello! I wanted to update you on my progress towards the Nashville Country Music Marathon on April 26, 2008.


First off, it’s less than a month away! Hooray! I am registered and ready to go! 


Secondly, it’s been an amazing experience so far. Training with Team in Training and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society is truly a wonderful addition in my life. Last night at our Wednesday group run at the Armory, Diana, our team in training patient honoree came to watch and visit. She has survived two runs of Leukemia and two bone marrow transplants and is an incredibly strong woman. From mentoring patients with the LLS who are fighting the same type of cancer she had to working with elementary school kids with childhood leukemia and taking them to the zoo, she’s giving back to the community that she believes has given her the power to fight for her life. It was truly inspirational and her saying “thank you” to us as a team and as individuals was so rewarding. I thanked her for sharing her story and for being so open with her life with a group of strangers! 


After our workout, I felt that we had been able to get to know her better as well as show her that this is a two-way street. Her commitment to the LLS as well as her service to the patient population pushed us towards fundraising and running towards a goal as well. So, I am proud to say that with your help and generosity I am 87% of the way towards my goal of $3,400. I have until April 7th to fundraise and no donation is too small. Many of you who have donated have helped countless individuals and families get access to care, find a physician that can help them, pay for travel costs, or even help an entire family for a year… I am so thankful for your contributions.



If you’d like to read about my running adventures (this past Saturday was 18 miles!) I am keeping a blog at: Also, if you would like to donate online you can do so at: If you prefer to write a check, if you make it out to: “The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society” and mail it to me at: 3724 Thornhill Drive, Champaign, IL 61822, I can mail that in for you as well. I thank you in advance for your generosity and to all of those who have helped me get closer to reaching my goal!


Thank you and I hope to hear from you all soon!


I appreciate you all… keep reading as I keep running!










Subject: Team in Training Marathon Update #3




February 18, 2008




Dear Friends, Family, Mentors and Colleagues,




I hope that everything is going really well for you all!




I wanted to update you on my progress towards the Country Music Marathon on April 26th in Nashville!




This past weekend we did 12 miles! I would have never imagined that I could be capable of running that distance, however it gave me a lot of time to think about life, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and why I am doing this marathon. So far, I have been running, cross-training, hill training, and pretty much every other kind of training I can think of, trying to get myself physically and mentally prepared for the upcoming 26 miles. Our first team speed workout is this Wednesday night and I am so excited!




It's been incredibly gratifying so far and everyone has been incredibly generous. My personal goal is to raise $3,400 before the race in April. So far, with the help of my generous family, friends, mentors and colleagues, I am a little over 50% of the way there! I am going to be meeting with local businesses in the upcoming week to plan fundraisers- Village Inn Pizza, Marble Slab Creamery and other local businesses in Champaign have agreed to help us!




Anyhow, if you have any questions, suggestions, comments or encouraging words, I would love to hear from you (since I am sure I will need all of the support)!  I will keep you updated on my progress in terms of training as well as my personal well-being. I hope to hear from all of you and wish you the very best in everything that you're doing. Your support in this will keep me running, and I truly appreciate your help.




Thank you and take care.










  P.S. My Illinois Team website is at: and I am keeping a blog of the training at: Keep reading as I keep on running!








  From Jan, 2008




  Dear Friends,


  I’d like to tell you about a new adventure that I am embarking upon


  and would like to ask for your help in achieving my goal. I, Pavni


  Mehrotra, will be running the Country Music Marathon in Nashville,


  Tennessee, on April 26th, 2008. Yes, you read that correctly… I’m


  running a marathon!




  I know… I’m not very fast (Herschel, my dog, trots faster than I run),


  and I’m no athlete (although I have always wanted to be!). However,


  with the help of Team in Training, my local coaches, a lot of hard


  work and a positive attitude, I believe that this is going to be an


  amazing experience.




  Team in Training (TNT) is one of the largest sports training programs


  in the nation and supports The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. For the


  past twenty years TNT has trained beginners like me, helped us with


  our personal goals, and used our fundraising to support cancer


  research and improve the lives of those affected. Our coaches are


  local students and athletes who have been devoted to the cause and are


  incredible resources.




  Lymphoma is a cancer that has directly affected my family. In 1996, my


  grandmother was diagnosed with lymphoma and I spent that summer with


  her while she went through chemotherapy for the first time. She is an


  incredible woman and role model, who not only persevered through the


  cancer (three times), but also volunteered to be part of the original


  research study on combination therapy (solely because she thought that


  it would help others afflicted by cancer). Now after having been in


  remission for many years, she is as vibrant as ever. She has kindly


  agreed for me to run my very first marathon in her name which is an


  incredible motivation. For her to have fought the disease and


  triumphed is amazing day-to-day motivation.  I cannot wait to cross


  that finish line, raise funds for our Illinois Team, and support an


  organization that has been vital in helping many others grow up with


  their grandmothers around.




  So, that’s where I need your help. My personal goal is to raise $3,400


  before the race in April. Although that is a daunting number, what you


  donate goes towards research and patient and community service from


  the Society, and I truly believe that is a worthwhile cause. If I can


  raise enough to help someone’s family member or friend… then perhaps I


  can make a small 26.2-mile step to return the blessing that my family






  If you have any questions, suggestions, comments or encouraging words,


  I would love to hear from you (since I am sure I will need all of the


  support)!  I will keep you updated on my progress in terms of training


  as well as my personal well-being and I hope to hear from all of you.


  Your support in this will keep me running, and I truly appreciate your






  Thank you,






  P.S. My Illinois Team website is at: and I am keeping a blog of


  the training at: Keep reading


  as I keep on running!

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