Saturday, April 30, 2011

Minor Setback

Tuesday's run was a great run. I wasn't sure if it was going to rain or not and there was a tornado watch but I decided to risk it anyway. It turned out to be quite windy, but overall a nice run--5.5 miles. Thursday was supposed to be the last 5.5 run before this weekend's 12 mile run and then the taper before the race. Unfortunately at 3am on Thursday morning I woke up shivering with a fever of 101.2. I spent the day in bed and on the couch and spent Friday recovering still. Today's schedule didn't work out for my run, so it'll have to wait til tomorrow. But today I woke up and my legs ached so bad. It's been four days since I ran and my body needed to get moving. Instead of jumping back into running, not knowing if I was still weak and recovering, I decided get on my bike on the trainer. I rode for 55 minutes and felt really good.

What will tomorrow's run bring? I really don't know. I have 12 on the schedule, but don't want to overdo it since I'm still getting getting over the bug. We'll see what happens tomorrow and how I feel then.

Two weeks until race day!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Awesome Tan

One good thing about today's run is that I got to work on my tan. We're going on a cruise in a month and I don't want to burn on my first day there. So, hopefully with the running I'm doing, I'll get the start of a tan that'll protect me when we get there.

The bad part of that, is that I wear my Road ID on one wrist and my Garmin on the other so I have this killer Farmer's tan.

Whoooo! That's sexy! The picture doesn't do it justice but it's pretty....

Warm Weather Run

Today was a gorgeous day! It was sunny and about 72 degrees! This is about 20 degrees warmer than anything I've run in, more than 2-3 miles... I did not plan well. First of all, it was a bit windy and I hate worrying about my hat in the wind. Second mistake--didn't bring my sunglasses, or I would have just taken the hat off. Third mistake, which was actually the first, but it came about later.. I didn't drink anything all day. I had a bowl of cereal with the kids for breakfast about 9:00, but didn't drink anything else all day.

I left the house around 12:30 for an 11 mile run, the second-to-last long run before the half-marathon in three weeks (yikes). I was doing really great on the country road. At five miles, I took the first nutrition and immediately felt a cramp. Luckily I've learned how to work through those. At mile 6, I passed a McDonald's and decided to use the restroom and clean my hands (had a little accident with the gel nutrition). While I was in there, I looked at my face and realized how overheated I was so I splashed water on my face and neck and drank a little there--not much but enough to wet my palate.

7.5 miles in, I really started to get thirsty. I was coming into downtown Podunkville and decided to stop at a restaurant and see if they'd give me a glass of water. I figured that during the run I'll probably end up walking through the water stops, so this would be okay. The glass of water I got was huge and I chugged it down. I rested a lot longer than I should have but that water was good and I was hot. It was then that I saw Hubby and the kids coming towards me and I burst into tears. I didn't want them to see that I had stopped. They had a bottle of water for me, too. How thoughtful they are :)

I told Hubby I wasn't giving up but just resting a bit and we discussed my probable dehydration contributing to how I was feeling. He and the kids took off after we decided where they were going to meet me next. The next mile and half to where they were was tough. The wind was at my face and I just had to take the hat completely off. It had blown off too many times. I was pretty slow because of the wind, but I was still exerting the same amount of energy. And, that tall glass of water I had was sloshing around in my stomach and giving me a cramp. Second nutrition gel was taken at mile 8.5. This one was not so messy.

So, I met the family at a shelterhouse in the park I was running through and I drank some more water. I didn't want too since I was already sloshing, but I knew I needed it. They said they'd meet me at home when I was done. At mile 10, I had to stop one last time. My calves started tightening up, and after reading a post from another blogger where she pulled a calf muscle during the Boston Marathon this year, I started to get worried. I couldn't stretch them out. Finally I told myself just to go and finish and it'll be over soon. Mile 11 complete with an 11:05 overall pace and a total time of 2:01:53. I was hoping to do it in under 2 hours but didn't make it. The first have had a pace of 10:54 and I was hoping to continue that through the rest of the run but didn't.

When I got home, I tried something I've never done before--cold bath. Hubby does it after his long runs (20 miles--he's training for a full marathon) and says he can tell a difference. It was cold... but I'm not sure it helped me. As I sit here, I can feel my calves, tight and achy. My feet are still tired and sore, and my thighs hurt. We'll see tomorrow how I feel.

So, 11 miles in the books. I'm not happy with it at all. I'm really disappointed I had to stop so many times but I'm glad it happened in training. I'll just have to remember to drink before the race.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

New Endeavors

With the race coming up, I've been doing a lot of thinking about what's going to happen after that. If I were to want to do a full marathon, now would be the time to do it, since I'm halfway there, but I don't think it's something I want to do anymore, at least right now. My foot definitely needs to rest some from the longer runs. I've been considering doing a triathlon. Hubby has been doing them and is doing a half Ironman this summer. There is a women-only triathlon that I'm considering doing, but I don't know how to swim well. I always swim on top of the water and have to plug my nose... so I'm not sure if that' something I want to attempt or not. It would be 400 yards swimming, 11 miles on the bike, and a 5k run. Still thinking about it....

3 1/2 Weeks to go!

I can't believe I have less than a month to go before race day!

I hit a major milestone on Sunday--10 miles! This 10 mile run was a different one, in many ways. First of all, I was not well-rested the night before. Usually I sleep in on the weekends but this weekend, I was up late (til 3am) and then up again at 9. The second difference was that I had a running partner! Up until Sunday, I haven't had anyone to run with since two summers ago when I first started running. Hubby decided he would do the 10 with me and go my pace. I've never done a run where I had a conversation the whole time. I did pretty well--I thought I would get winded easily, but I didn't.

I had some nutrition at 4.5 miles, right after the first major hill. I should have taken a second one with me because around mile 7.5 I started losing it. Our conversation hit a lull and my mind started wandering and I wasn't sure I could do it anymore. I asked Hubby to start talking to me again to get my mind off of it.

At mile 9.5, I started to have some breathing issues. I knew the last 1/2 mile was going to be uphill. Right when we were at the bottom of the hill, I started a heavy wheezing/gasping breathing. It's hard to explain, but it scared me. I have asthma but have never had an attack. That's all I could think, was that I was going to have one so I started to cry. I had to tell myself to stop that because it was making it worse. I finally worked through the breathing and started up the hill (the breathing and conversation with myself lasted less than a minute, but felt like a lifetime). Once that episode was over, we went up the hill and got back to the car. It was amazing! I didn't think I could do it but I did.

Today's workout called for 5.5 miles but the weather didn't cooperate. It was not raining when I got to the gym, but it had been on and off all day. I decided to make an attempt on the treadmill, since it had been a while since I ran inside. I had an interval plan worked out and was determined to push myself. Here's what I did:

10 minute warm up at 4.7
2 minutes at 5.0
2 minutes at 5.2
3 minutes at 5.4
2 minutes at 5.2

2 minutes at 5.4
2 minutes at 5.5
2 minutes at 5.6
2 minutes at 5.7
2 minutes at 5.6

2 minutes at 5.8
2 minutes at 5.9
2 minutes at 6.0

I ended up doing 4.5 miles and walked .5, instead of the 5.5 but I was going a lot faster than I usually do at some points. I ran for 50 minutes and walked another 7 minutes. I feel pretty good. Hopefully the weather will cooperate for an outdoor Thursday run.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

5 Milers

Two more five mile runs this week. Nothing spectacular about either of them. The weather is starting to get warm, so my wardrobe is changing. I have a tendency to overdress, so I have to be careful with that. I'm looking forward to race day and I hope it's on the cooler side, so I don't overheat. I tend to overheat instead of sweat, like I should. I guess I'll be using the water stops for something other than drinking.

Last Sunday, my long run was 9 miles. I also ate some energy gel for the first time. I took it at mile 6, just before I hit the hour mark. I wanted to get used to eating them and make sure they didn't upset my stomach. It was decent, considering what it was. After eating it, my pace got faster by almost a whole minute! I couldn't believe it. I was trucking along and looked down and realized how fast I was going. Hubby said it was all mental, but I don't know... Maybe I should eat one BEFORE I go out this weekend :)

These two short runs have taken me a while to get focused. Maybe I need to start listening to music again to give me something else to think about. It's an ankle that tired, a knee that's a little sore... I've tried to focus on my breathing and that seems to help me forget the other things. Guess I need to get the mp3 player out again.

10 miles this weekend. Looking forward to hitting this milestone!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Stats and "Short Run" update

So, I said I was going to post some stats on Monday, but never got around to it. Here are the total miles run per month (that were recorded with my Garmin)

January: 35.22 (I officially started my training at the end of the month)
February: 51.85
March: 80.10
April (so far): 11.22
Total: 178.39

This doesn't include any miles that I've ridden on the bike, or any time spent doing other cross-training (including Tae Bo). It only picks up from here...

Speaking of that, my short runs this week jump to 5 miles. Yesterday's run started off rough. I forgot a bunch of things and had to make do with what was in my gym bag. Luckily, I tend to overpack since I have to pack for all kinds of weather.

I started off feeling very clunky. It's hard to explain but I felt like I was clunky and making very heavy steps. It was also very windy. The route I had planned, unfortunately had me coming into the wind on the second half, and there was no way around it. I ended up stopping twice and rolling my ankles and stretching some more to see if it would help. Eventually I just kept pushing my way through it and just had to go with it.

The wind was brutal. I ended up having more of a strength workout because of the wind. Finally I worked through whatever it was and finished the five mile run. Phew! Hopefully tomorrow's will be better.

Today's cross-training was a session of Tae Bo, with Billy Blanks. I've been having an issue with one of my hips getting tired and not wanting to do anymore so I thought all the kicking and stretching he does will help. We'll see what happens tomorrow.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

This Week's Training

This week's training was all over the board. Both of the short runs were 3.5 miles and Tuesday's was rough. I couldn't get into it and I couldn't go faster than 11:00 pace throughout the whole run. My overall pace might have been 11:15. My knee hurt, my ankle was weird... I thought maybe my new shoes were going to have to go back to the store.

Wednesday was a 1/2 hour session on the recumbent bike at the Y. Nothing terribly exciting, because I was tired from the run on Tuesday and didn't want to wear myself out for the run on Thursday. My thighs were really tired during Tuesday's run. First time in a long time, I have felt that way.

Then Thursday's run felt great. My overall pace was 10:45 and I got as fast as 10:25 on one of my 1/2 mile splits. I felt a lot better than I did on Tuesday. I'm not sure what the difference was.

This weekend's long run was a 10k race, since it was a step back week. There wasn't really a race going on in town, but there was a trail run on Saturday. The early start was at 7am (ugh, too early for a day off...) so I was planning on doing that while hubby watched the kids. I ended up taking off a few minutes before they started the early start and it was still dark. It was neat to run by the river and watch the sun come up.

The trail run was pretty much for people who are doing the Glass City Marathon in Toledo and who are looking for another way to train with others. The GCM is in two weeks so there was a variety of distance being run. The way the course was set up was weird. You started at the start line, went one direction for about .75 (to the end of the towpath trail) turn around and go back through the start and keep going as long as you need to, then turn around and end at the start. Because of that, you had to calculate in your head how far to go. Apparently I can't run and do math in my head at the same time because I calculated wrong and ended up doing about 7 miles instead of the 6.2 required. Oh well, I guess I'd rather be wrong that direction..

So how did I do? Awesome! I ran by myself the whole time so I didn't have anyone pushing me along, but I did a great job of pushing myself anyway. My overall pace was 10:25 per mile, which I'm sure is a PR for any distance. I even went as fast as 10:10 for one of my splits! I felt great!

I'll be posting some stats tomorrow. Can you guess how many miles I've run so far this year?