Monday, October 7, 2013

Back on Track.... Kind of

It's been a while... I've been afraid to post anything because I don't know what's going to happen with my training. Right now I'm about halfway through the training cycle for my half marathon at the end of November, and I feel like I just started. I'm up to 7 miles for the long run last weekend, and have been successful. It's the shorter runs that seem to give me problems.

I'm still battling plantar fasciitis in my left foot. It's not severe, but I can feel it daily, even just sitting around sometimes. I still wear a brace every night. Just today I bought inserts for my shoes to see how that works. I had been wearing my Saucony Triumphs when I first started up again, but every time I put the shoes on, my arches hurt. So, I went to my Kinvaras, which are my favorites. Weird, I know. They have way less support in them so why...? Well that seemed to help my arch pain somewhat, but then my calves started killing me. My right calf hurt the most, off to the outside of the calf. In the short runs during the week, I've had to stop and stretch every half mile or so, then stop completely, or stop and walk. I've DONE the distances, but I have not been able to run the full shorter distances.

It's weird, I know. When the time comes for the longer distances, I've been able to get through them.And running the whole thing. I don't know how, but I have. This week I switched back to my Triumphs so my calves could get a rest. That seemed to help (after mile 2, at least).

So, I'm back on track, kind of.... I'm where I need to be for the long runs, getting through them. The shorter runs are giving me trouble. We'll see how it goes for the next couple of runs, now that I have insoles and have switched back to the Triumphs. Less than 7 weeks to go!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Plantar Fasciitis Stinks!

So you may recall that about three weeks ago I came down with a case of plantar fasciitis in my left foot.Well, it really stinks. I've gotten it to the point that I can barely feel the pain during the day, however I tried to run on Friday and I only made it 2.5 miles before I had to hobble my way through the next .5 mile to get 3 miles in. For the rest of the day and the next morning I suffered a bit and could be seen hobbling around. Today, three days later, I'm barely feeling any pain again. Do I try to run on it again, this time outside and not on a treadmill (I was trying to avoid the 90 degree heat and humidity...)? Do I wait longer? I have missed two weeks of my training plan already and don't want to get too far behind! What should I do?

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Training Week 1

This week was the start of my training for the half marathon I'm doing on Thanksgiving weekend. Unfortunately I didn't start that training. Last week I ran on Monday and on Tuesday I was almost unable to walk. I had (and still do) a bad case of plantar fasciitis in my left foot. I could not walk at all on Tuesday. When I woke up, I really wanted a set of crutches to get me through the day. Even putting the slightest bit of weight on that foot made me want to scream.

I sent out a message to all my running buddies and got advice from many of them--one that I didn't want to hear--take time off. I've been rolling it on a frozen water bottle, taking ibuprofen (although not as much as I probably should), and wearing a brace at night. It's certainly much better than it was that first day but it's been two weeks and I can still feel it. I have not run yet, but I'm dying to get out again. My training started and I don't want to get too far behind.

Both my feet and ankles tend to feel tight, achy and a little rusty when I'm not running. I'm constantly stretching them and rolling them because they feel tight. I need to get out running again... how long should I wait???

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Easing Back in to Running!

The title says it all! I am back, baby! Last weekend I ran 2 miles on day then too the plunge to the three mile mark on Sunday. My Achille's tendon is still bothering me, but I can work through that. After the first half mile, the pain essentially goes away. The calf on the other foot has been feeling great. I ran Saturday last week, Sunday, then Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Friday, I only went two miles because I could start to feel a little pain in the calf, so instead of pushing it I walked another half mile back to my car. However, today, my schedule didn't work out to go out for a run, so while the kids ate breakfast I made my first run on  our treadmill. I felt really good  on the treadmill, but the kids kept calling, so I only got in about 2 miles. I forgot to restart my watch after getting a drink of water, so I don't know for sure (the treadmill pace/distance is not correct).

So I'm feeling pretty good, but still scared to push it. I really want to go out and do a 5k and get a PR, but I think my asthma is going to put a hinder on that one and I don't think my calf is quite ready for that yet. Well, it might be, but I'm afraid to push it.

I'm looking to do a half marathon in the fall and see what happens from there. The one I'm thinking about is Thanksgiving weekend, in beautiful Amish country. It'll be hilly so it won't be a PR, but I think it'll be fun. Hopefully I'll stay injury-free and be able to slowly work my mileage up before my training should begin. Maybe I won't get injured afterwards, like I have been after every long race I've done....  Maybe.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Happy National Running Day!

Today, on National Running Day, I ran! The kids and I volunteered at a water stop at a race today and after it was over, I ran from the water stop, to the start/finish line--1.37 miles! Big deal, right? NO. This is the first time I've run pain-free since my marathon. Didn't want to push it too much, so I stopped there. I wanted to keep going and going but I don't want to injure it again. I took it nice and easy, as I had an 11 year old running with me (random volunteer). I'm very excited! Hopefully this means I'm back!

Now the question is what to do tomorrow... I've been working out on the elliptical at the gym while taking my running hiatus. I really want to get out and run tomorrow and bust out three miles, but I don't want to push it. The weather has been nice, 70 degrees, so I don't want to wait too long. It'll be 90 soon and too hot to run outside. I want to do it outside and not on the treadmill. I think I'll go elliptical tomorrow and run on Friday. Hopefully the weather holds up!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Since my marathon on April 28th, I've run a total of 3 miles. The week after,  I went out and ran 2 miles straight, but for fear of pushing it, I didn't go any further. The next day I injured my calf muscle somehow. I've been working out on the elliptical and the bike ever since. A week and a half went by and I was itching to get back out there so bad, I tried running on the treadmill but made it less than a half mile and felt the pain in my calf so bad that I had to stop. I moved to the elliptical, despite the pain.

Another week went by and I tried it again. This time the plan was to go out and run 1/2 mile, then turn around and come back. Well, I was feeling so good that I kept going. At 3/4 of a mile I turned around and something I did either turning around or twisting my leg or something caused the calf pain again. It wasn't the sharp Charlie horse-like cramp pain (which wasn't a cramp) but it was slowly increasing intensity until it was impossible to run any more. I walked a little bit, then tried to run again. It wasn't happening. When there was a 1/4 mile left, I was able to run the rest of the way home with some pain.

That was a week and a half ago. Ever since then, my calves have been achy. They feel like I need to get out again and run. I've been using the elliptical but that doesn't give me the good workout feeling that running does. Today I tried rolling my calves out on the foam roller, but that just seems to make it worse. They are very restless right now. I don't know what to do. I want to run so bad, and I feel like my legs want to too, but I think I need to rest them a little more. I don't want to, but need to.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Lacing up the Shoes

This morning, I'm lacing up my shoes to try to go for a run. It's been three weeks since my marathon, and I've only run two miles. I was going to rest and let my legs heel, (calf on one leg, Achilles' on the other) but they seem to be worse without running. I've tried the elliptical and biking and afterwards they feel worse than they did while running.

My biggest concern today is not my Achilles', which has bothered me the longest. It's my calf on the other leg. Last time I ran, I got this shooting, cramp-like pain in my calf that almost dropped me to the ground. I've had a little aching in that calf the last couple of days, but I'm hoping that it's my body wanting to get out and run again.

I miss running. I miss how I feel during the run--the calming effect it has on me. The time when I forget everything else that is going on in my life. My time. That sense of peace. Time on the elliptical or the bike does not do the same thing for me. Let's hope that today's run is just the beginning of me getting back into it.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Falling Apart Post Race

So, how do I feel post-race? Like I'm falling apart! Honestly, I ran two miles on Wednesday last week and that's all I've run since the marathon. Monday, the day after, I played basketball with the kids and felt decent. Tuesday was good, Wednesday I ran but didn't want to overdo it. When I got home, I played baseball with the kids and injured my calf muscle. I had hit the ball and was running bases when on my way home I felt a shooting  pain in my left calf and almost dropped to the ground. Mom had to be brave around the kids, so I hobbled over to the porch, sat down and tried to massage it out. It almost felt like a cramp, but I knew it wasn't. Once I got inside I rolled it on the foam roller but still hobbled around all night.

Between that and my Achilles' tendon, I figured I should take some time off from running. It didn't last very long. I tried to go out today since the calf was feeling pretty good. I didn't make it a half mile before I felt that same familiar pain in my calf again. I almost dropped again. I stopped running immediately and hobbled over to the elliptical to finish my workout. Unfortunately that hurt too, but I was able to alter my "gait"  so it didn't hurt quite as bad.

Every long race I've done (half marathon/marathon), I've ended up injured or unable to run for a significant amount of time. I really would like to keep up my mileage and go out and run 10 miles next weekend if I want to, but I think I'm going to have to rest it. I'm going to have to find some other sort of workout that will keep my in shape in the meantime. I guess it's an okay thing, since I don't care to run in the summer heat anyway, but it's just a bummer. 

I really want to pick a 5k and clobber my PR right now but I can't do it. I'm hoping just a few weeks will be enough. We shall see..

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Favorite Pictures

This is a sign my sister made for me, but couldn't see until the end. Obviously it came from my blog title.

Photo: All set up at the finish...

I love this one. Again, from my sister... my mantra

Hubby's course map with the stops all mapped out and times he was going to be where. He's awesome! Apparently he sent this to my sister a few weeks ago so she could meet them somewhere with my parents.

Photo: Justin's course map with the times he was planning on being in the different places throughout the course. He's such an awesome cheerleader!

First Marathon--Race Report

So, it's been almost a week since my first marathon. Below is a report of the race day.

The day started of fairly nice. I had on a short sleeve compression shirt, a short sleeve tech shirt and a long sleeve tech shirt on. I was pretty comfortable with that and a pair of running capris. We parked the car on one side of campus, where traffic wasn't horrible. I left the fam and took off on my warm-up run. On the way, I ran into a couple of friends--she was running her first full, he was running his first half. It was nice to see them before the race; it calmed my nerves a bit.

I left those friends and headed for the meeting place of the "Nerd Herd," a great group of training buddies. We were getting together for our pre-race picture and well-wishes, then it was off to the race start. Standing there, I began chatting with a woman who was running her 50th marathon, on the 10th anniversary of her first marathon. WOW! What an accomplishment!

By this time it had started to drizzle. Unfortunately, I  had not brought a hat, so I knew I was in for it when it started raining. But it was too late and there was nothing I could do. Before the start of the race, there was a moment of silence for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing. It was pretty amazing to have the mass of people go from extremely noisy to pure silence. Then, during the moment of silence, a plane flew overhead with a banner that simply said "4-15-13." That was awesome.

The gun went off and so did we. The 4:55 pacer was running with the 4:20 pacer so I decided to stay back and insure that I stayed at a slower pace. I wanted to stay around and 11:30 pace, so I kept slowing myself down. I didn't want the race-day adrenaline to make me go too fast. I managed to do a pretty good job and felt comfortable at my 11:15-11:30 pace. The rain wasn't a huge factor, except that I couldn't see. I wear glasses, and can't really see without them (more on that later) but I took them off around mile 3 since I could see better without them, than I could with them. I held on the them until mile 10 when I decided it wasn't going to let up; that's when I handed them off to Hubby.

Speaking of Hubby.... I couldn't ask for a better support team. He and the kids were all over the course to cheer me on. I think I saw them 12 times around the course. I'm not sure I would have that much patience--to get three kids in and out of the car so often, within a timeframe. He is amazing! His parents showed up around mile 11 and were there through the end as well.

Around mile 15, I started to feel like I had to go pee. I really didn't want to stop, but I knew I couldn't wait another 11+ miles. I tried a porta-potta but it was in use. Just after that, I was rounding a corner and saw my family again and they said I looked good. I yelled out that I had to pee, and Hubby's response was "you're already wet, just go down your leg!" That gave me a good chuckle, but I just couldn't do it. As I was rounding that corner, I heard my dad yell my name and say "we're here!" Unfortunately, I couldn't see him or my mom, but I knew he was there. That was awesome, since I didn't really expect to see them until the finish. I remember turning around and blowing them a kiss.

The 15 mile point was a big thing for me. That is the furthest I have ever run straight through. I wanted to beat that, and boy did I ever! After 15, my next goal was to run to 18, then if I ran to 18, I told myself I could do 20...

Mile 16 1/2--I was in a metropark and there were more porta-potties there, so I tried one as my watch was beeping for the lap. It was open! I don't think I have ever peed for that long continuously. Luckily I had checked my watch and noticed that I had gone for three minutes straight. Yikes! That's not good for my time!

Starting up again wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I was able to get my pace back up to where I wanted it. Then I hit mile 18 and my knee started hurting worse that it ever had while running. I started walking for 3 seconds or so then told myself to pick up the pace and push through. I ran another half mile and had to walk again. After the 18.5 miles, it was pretty much back and forth walking/running.

Nothing exciting to report after that (other than all the times I saw Hubby and kids-and had a short run with our oldest), until mile 24. At that point it had stopped raining enough to get my glasses back, so I could see for the finish. Mile 25, my running buddy, M, who had just PR'ed in the half was walking back on the trail--I can only assume, to find me. I got a little emotional when I saw her, then said "let's go" and I started running again to finish. She asked me how I felt and I told her about my knee (the cause for having to walk). I asked her how she and some other friends did and this all took my mind off the pain. She and I walked briefly, then I told her I wanted to get 5:15, and when I looked at my watch, I thought I could still make it. I had forgotten my watch was off on the mileage a bit so I had further to go than I thought. I still kicked it up and ran the rest of the way.

The cool thing about this race is that it begins and ends on the college campus where I went to school. They open up the stadium and have the finish line on the 50 yard line, which is pretty cool. As I was running towards the stadium, I saw my dad taking a picture of me, then I started to round the corner to head into the stadium and saw my twin sister. She lives two states away and came to see me run... after she had told me she wasn't coming! Apparently she was there since mile 15, and I couldn't see her without my glasses! I got pretty emotional but found some new energy. I kicked it up the last 75 yards, heard my name announced, and finished my first marathon in 5 hours, 17 minutes and 56 seconds! I collected my foil blanket and my metal and then looked for my family. Hubby was the first one to show up with a hug. Boy did that hug feel great!

More to come later since this post is really long. I'll do a post-race one and maybe post some pictures too.

Monday, April 29, 2013

3 out of 4 Ain't Bad

I did it! I finished my first marathon yesterday! I had four goals for my race, that I posted the other day:

1. Finish the marathon--DONE
2. Get it done in the 6 hour time limit (don't get picked up by the SAG wagon!)--DONE
3. 5 1/2 hours--DONE
4. 5 hours--run the whole time.--not done

I was close to the goal--I finished in 5:17, which I think is pretty good. I didn't run the whole time but I ran 18.5 miles straight without walking, which is more than I've ever done before. The last 8 miles was back and forth walking/running.

I'll write a race report in the near future. Stay tuned!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Ready to go for the morning!

Carb loading

One of my favorite meals happens to be great for carb loading--chicken paprikas! 12 hours til show time!

I picked up my packet today at the expo. My bib number is 181. I think that's a lucky number! I also picked up some good deals on headbands and a running hat (beanie) with a ponytail hole.

26.2, here I come!

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Three days out from the race. Do I have a goal in mind? Of course I do. I set a goal for myself right when I started training for this. Unfortunately I don't think I'll make my initial time goal but if I finish I'll be happy.

Here is a lowdown of my goals:
1. Finish the marathon
2. Get it done in the 6 hour time limit (don't get picked up by the SAG wagon!)
3. 5 1/2 hours
4. 5 hours--run the whole time.

My plan is to run with the 4:55 pace group--the last one they have. I'm hoping this will keep me motivated to run more, if not all of it.

442 miles since January 1st. This journey is coming to a close. I'm excited, nervous, anxious, yet sad to see this ending. I like how training keeps me disciplined in the routine of exercise. If I'm not training for something, I WILL find an excuse to not do it. So the question is... what's next? We shall see....

Sunday, April 21, 2013

One Week to Go!

What a week! It started off with my 12 miler last weekend. Nothing interesting there, other than I ran the whole thing. I was a little worried because my left knee has been bothering me since the 21 miler two weeks ago. It doesn't hurt other than when I'm running, but I managed to work through it. Same with the right Achilles'... still excruciating pain for the first mile then it mostly disappears.

Then there was Monday. I started off pretty excited because we had several friends who were running the Boston Marathon and I was following them via the email updates. On my way home from work, I heard the tragic news of the bombings and panicked. I know our friends were done running, but they are the kind of people who stand a the finish line and cheer on others just for the heck of it and I knew they'd want to soak in the activities of the day. Fortunately, after about an hour of texts and Facebook messages, we found out our friends were okay. I'm still in shock about what took place there, but words cannot describe what I'm feeling--disgust at the suspects, confusion, pride for our fellow Americans willing to help, scared for the future, anger--I'm feeling it all.

I had to keep on with my training for the marathon. I'm not sure what to do because of my knee and Achilles' so this week I took it a little easier and did my miles on the elliptical. It doesn't seem to bother my knee as much and I'm hoping the non-impact will help in the long run, literally :)

This weekend I had 8 miles on the schedule and felt I needed to do an actual run this week. So I took to the country roads yesterday and try to bear the wind. Wow, was it windy! Luckily, the route I had planned out had the wind at my back the second half, which was completely different than last week's run. I had the wind at my face the last 6 miles last week. BRUTAL! Anyway, I felt really good during yesterday's run. My knee bothered me--I could feel it-- but it wasn't so much that I had to stop or anything. In fact, my pace was much faster than I have been (power of taper!)

So, I have a week to go. One week from today, I will be running my first marathon. How has it gone? Okay... I keep telling people that this will be the only marathon that I do, but a trail marathon has been brought to my attention and I'm considering it... The problem is that I'm so slow and the training runs get to 4 1/2-5 hours and that's a long time to be away from home and the kiddos.  I don't mind going out and doing a 2 hour run with friends because I know I need to be healthy and get out, but I feel selfish if I go out for 5 hours just for a run. Plus, I don't like how I feel after the long runs. I want to sit down, prop my feet up, and maybe take a nap while icing my knee and ankle. I limp around all the time and just want to get healed. We'll see what the future holds. Right now I'm going to pick some shorter distances (5k's), and maybe a fall half marathon. We'll see about that trail marathon....

Saturday, April 13, 2013


I am testing out a new way of posting--from my phone. Let's see if thi works and I might be posting more often...

Taper Time!

Last weekend I completed my longest run ever, and it was not easy. M plan called for 20 miles. The local running club was putting on a run, which is typically the last long run for those training for the same marathon I'm training for. It's usually on a towpath and just an out and back. Runners could choose their distance and run whatever was needed for their plan. This year the route was changed and was a 10.5 mile route which was to be run twice for those with longer mileage planned.

 The run started at 8, with an early start at 7:00 am. Me, being the slow runner I am, decided to start early since I had a commitment later in the day. The first 9 miles were pretty uneventful. I ran with a girl the first 2 miles who was the same pace I was. It would have been nice to run with someone the whole time, but unfortunately, she was only running 4 miles so she turned around at the 2 mile marker.

At mile 9, I hear someone yell my name. I look into the woods and see one of my favorite running buddies (M). She and her daughter started at 8:00 and went backwards on the route. Luckily we found each other because the run would have ended very differently if we hadn't.

She and I finished the 10.5 mile route, stopped at my car to refuel and used the facilities, then we were off for Round 2. About a mile and a half in, however the flu that had been going around our house started to manifest itself in my stomach. I really felt nauseous, and was ready to throw up. I was HOPING I'd throw up. M and I took a short break waiting for it to pass. I never did get sick and the feeling never did pass, but I kept on moving. We continued running, but about my mile 13.5, I couldn't do it anymore. I told M to go on without me and I was going to cut my route short. I started walking while she went on.

Less than a minute later, my mantra came into my mind--No Excuses, No Regrets. This was my only chance to do this long run and I needed to do it. I took a gel (Montana Huckleberry, my favorite) and decided I was going to do this. Not only was I going to do the 20 miles, but route had me doing an extra one. I was going to finish the 21 miles, even if I had to walk some of it.

I caught up with M at a water stop and we finished the next 7 miles together. We had to walk some of it but we finished it. Both of us had our longest runs ever--me at 21 and M at 15+. Things may have ended up differently had we not found each other mid-run, but I'm so glad we did.

Now I'm tapering, which I love! 12 miles this weekend, 8 next weekend, then race weekend! My Achilles' tendon is still bothering me, mostly just walking. However when I start running, it only hurts (quite painfully) during the first 1/2 mile. After that, I can barely feel it. I just keep icing it and stretching it as much as I can. Just don't watch me walk--I limp a lot :) I'm getting excited about this race. I'm anxious to see what I can do with the "power of taper" and the adrenaline of race day.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Achilles' Pain

Since Sunday's 18 mile run, I have not been able to walk without a limp. My right Achilles' tendon has been in terrible pain.  I've been a little nervous that I may have injured it too badly. It hurt two weeks ago after I ran but when I did a short run on that Tuesday, it seemed to stretch it out again and it was better. This week not so much. I attempted to run yesterday and didn't make it further than 2 miles and had to walk some of that. I was really worried.

Today I took it outside since the temperature was nice. It was windy, but warmer that it has been. I decided to wear my Kinvaras today, rather than the Triumph because my Achilles' has been tender to the touch and I figured the Kinvaras would be a little easier on it. The first 1/2 mile was pretty painful. My gait was off but eventually the pain worked its way out. It wasn't completely gone, but I managed to run the nine miles I had on the schedule today.

We'll see what happens tomorrow, but right now I'm sitting here icing it (as I have been all week) and will be attempting to wear a brace tonight while I sleep. I have a brace for plantar fasciitis that keeps your toe pulled up towards your knee. I'm hoping that will keep my Achilles' tendon stretched enough that it doesn't draw me to tears in the morning, from resting all night.

One month from tomorrow is the marathon!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

March Review

I have been all over the board mentally this month. From not being sure if I should do the full marathon anymore, to considering dropping down to the 1/2 to not running at all anymore, to being proud of myself and excited for the race.

Earlier this month I had a half marathon. It wasn't on the schedule originally, but I knew I wanted to do it. Hubby and I were trying to figure out which one of us would be doing it. Eventually we decided I would be. Unfortunately, I wasn't prepared for it mentally. In the past this has been my A race. I trained for it mentally and physically. This time, I did not prepare mentally. The night before, Hubby mentioned to family that I was doing one in the morning and that's when it hit me.

Race day was fairly warm for March. Last year on this race day, it was 70 degrees. I was 50ish this year, but that's warm for this time of year. Only problem was the wind. Boy was it windy! I realized my first mistake as I was on the starting line. I had forgotten to bring gels. In the past, this race had not had gel support, so I was really nervous. Luckily the new sponsor this year provided some. Unfortunately, they didn't have them until mile 6 and that was it. I took one then, but should have taken one with me for later. I think I bonked because I ended up walking much of the second half of it, although that was going INTO the wind for most of it.

I got myself a pair of new shoes--Saucony Triumph. They are supposed to be their best padding in the forefoot. I've done several long runs in them. The balls of my feet always end up really sore and it's difficult to finish my runs. Today, I did 18 miles in them (my longest run ever!) and managed to finish it all. My feet still hurt but I was able to run most of the first 12 miles (my running partners needed to walk) then the last 6 miles, when I was by myself, I had to run/walk it. Most of the time though when I stop running, I can't start up again. Today, I was able to do that.

I think I've come to the realization that I won't be able to run the full marathon--I'll have to run/walk it. I'd much rather run the whole thing, but at least I'll be doing it.

Well, today was 18 miles. I have 14 next weekend, 20 then following weekend, then I start my taper. I'm looking forward to being done with all this. I don't like how sore I am and unable to move after I'm done running.  I'm pretty sure this will be my only marathon I do... Well, just about a month to go!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Longest Run Ever!

Literally! This weekend I had 15 miles on the schedule. I've known I had to do this one myself due to scheduling issues so I convinced myself I was excited to do this. Before this weekend, I'd only run 13.1 miles as my furthest run.

It started off pretty well. About 10 miles into it, I started to feel a little winded. Luckily I was getting close to a bathroom on my  route. I decided to stop and use the facilities and catch my breath a little. I knew it was 5.3 miles back to my house so after a couple of minutes I was off again.

The wind was in my face for the next 2 1/2 miles. That was the roughest part. I was really struggling but I kept repeating my new mantra--"no excuses, no regrets." I turned the corner onto my road with 2 miles left to go. My feet really started to bother me at the point. I knew I couldn't stop running because I wouldn't be able to start up again. I just took it really easy and pushed through. 15 miles in 2:52, with a pace of 11:29, right where I want to be for the marathon.

I think my biggest problem right now is my shoes. I wore my Kinvaras but those don't have the proper padding on the balls of my feet. I'm just going to have to go to the running store and talk with someone there to see what would be best for my feet on the long runs.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

No Excuses, No Regrets

I've been out of sorts this week. I haven't felt like doing my running--or much of anything for that matter. Fortunately, I have the sense to stay motivated and do it. This training cycle is going to be the hardest thing I've ever done and I know that if I slack of now, it'll affect my training later and I'll regret it. I've decided that this is the time for no excuses and no regrets. I can always find some sort of excuse to not run and to not do my training. I'm good at find excuses. But this time there will be no excuses. It will get done.

Yesterday's run could have been filled with excuses to not get it done. I had 13 miles on the schedule. I was going to meet one friend for the second half of the run but she got sick and couldn't. I could have decided not to run, but didn't. Another friend offered to meet me for the second half. I had a route planned to meet her around the 7.5 mile mark and she would do the last 5-6 with me. Apparently I didn't know my route well enough and turned the wrong way about 1 1/4 before I was to meet her. I obviously didn't know this, but kept going.  When I hit 8 miles and didn't see our meeting place, I knew something was wrong but didn't know what I did. When I saw one of the street signs, I knew for sure that I took a wrong turn, but wasn't sure where. I knew I had two options--1. to turn down the cross street and head for home. It would have made it a little further than 13 miles, but I knew where I was, or 2. I could keep going down the trail and I would end up at a mall. I chose option 2 since it was an hour after I was supposed to meet her and I knew she would try to contact Hubby. I knew I could get access to a phone somewhere in the mall.

I got to the mall at 10.5 miles, used the restroom and then made the call to Hubby. Turns out he was already in the car on his way to find me. I had turned the wrong way onto the trail. I still had 2.5 miles to go and just ran around the mall for the last 2.5 miles.

So you see, I could have had many excuses to stop and walk or find a phone to just have someone pick me up. After expecting to have someone to run with, then not meeting up with that person running alone was pretty disappointing. Normally I would have struggled, but yesterday I pushed myself, kept my chin up and used my mantra: no excuses, no regrets.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Building the Miles

Well, training has been going fairly well. I have good runs and bad runs but I still consider myself getting back into it all. I can't believe how quickly I've increased the miles. I'll be up to 12 miles this weekend. I can't believe how quickly it's gone.

I got myself a new pair of shoes, since my Kinvaras will have over 300 miles by marathon time. I got the new  Cortanas, but they are a 1/2 size bigger than what I usually wear. They seemed okay when I tried them on but when I attempted my 10 miler in them 2 weeks ago, my feet hurt so bad in them. I stopped running at 8 1/2 miles because it was cold and I turned into the wind (and I had been battling a cold). My plan was to just walk to catch my breath and start up again, but my feet hurt so bad in them that I couldn't start up again. After that, I went back to my Kinvaras since I know those are good.

This last weekend was an interesting run. It was a step down week for me, so I only had 7 miles on the schedule.Saturday was a free run with the Roadrunners group so Hubby and I went there. It was two 3.5 mile loops but it was about 18 degrees and had snowed all night and was going to continue to snow all day. It was a beautiful run, but definitely one that needed Yak Trax. I ran the first 3.5 miles with a friend, then was on my own for the second half. I made it and didn't get bored or overthink things too much. That's what gets me in trouble, thinking about how far I still have to go... I actually overdressed and had to take a layer off halfway through the run! Go figure, for 18 degrees out :)

My short runs are getting longer--2 3-milers during the week and a 6 miler. I'm beginning to really enjoy the runs though. We'll see what happens this weekend on the 12 miler. Hopefully I'll be able to handle it.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Week 2 Training

The week started off a bit off. We were out of town and I was unsure when I was going to get my training in, but I managed to do 3 last Saturday and 5 on Sunday. I had to change up my training schedule a bit since I was supposed to do 7 last weekend and 5 this weekend. Since my training was barely up to three miles (which is usually "normal" runs for me), I switched the two around.

I was still a little hesitant about my decision to sign up for the marathon... I still am, and probably will be until it's over. But at the beginning of this week, I was really wondering if I should. I mean, I hadn't run more than 6 miles a week since returning to running.

This week I had 3 miles, 4 miles, and 3 miles on the schedule, which got switched around due to scheduling issues, then this weekend I had to do seven miles. I was a little nervous about the big jump in mileage but the runs during the week went really well and even today's 7 miles went great. I'm slower than I was before, but I'm running by myself now instead of training with others. Usually when I run based on a plan, the mileage for the day seems like the furthest I can run--whether it's 3 miles or 7  miles. So far it seems to be easier. We'll see what happens when the mileage goes up, but I'm feeling pretty good right now!

Today was gorgeous! In January, it was 58 degrees. Overcast all day, but perfect day for a run. I didn't get out until after 5:00 or so. Since I'm a slow runner, it was getting dark. Unfortunately I didn't think to bring any reflective gear, since it was still light when I left. Luckily, I have a really awesome hubby, who loaded up the three kids and found me on the road to bring me a flashlight and reflective vest. I was only 3/4 of a mile away from home, but it was the busiest road around (our road...). I stopped to put the vest on and grabbed the flashlight. Unfortunately, it was pretty difficult to start up again. My hamstring had just started bothering me right before that so starting up again was hard. I was about 30 seconds/mile slower for that last 3/4 mile than I had been the rest of the run.

So, 22 miles this week.Slightly more confident in myself than before, but still nervous about it all.14 weeks to go!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year and Big News!

Wow, it's been a reeeealy long time since I wrote last. I had just finished up my second half marathon, with an amazing PR (in my mind...) After that race, I've had a LOT going on and not much of it has been running, unfortunately.

At the end of May, I started having some issues breathing, mostly while running. I noticed it because I was only able to run for a mile tops and I'd have to stop. I was given a round of steroids and a shot of steroids, neither of which seemed to help. My doctor put me in the hospital to give me some heavy duty steroids and monitoring. I felt ridiculous being there. I looked perfectly healthy to everyone who walked in. While walking the hallways, I could hear other people with pretty serious upper respiratory issues and wondered why I was there. After two full days, I was released not feeling any better but was told that it takes a while to start working. Eventually it seemed to get better, so I started running again. I was in training for another half at the beginning of November.

Unfortunately, some of the meds I was given in the hospital, and was told to continue taking, made it impossible for me to continue running long distances. I was told to keep exercising but my heart rate couldn't get up past 160 bpm, and again, I couldn't run any further than a mile at a time without stopping. Between that and my previous ankle issues, I decided to take some time off. I sold my registration to a friend (who decided to do her first full marathon!) and sat out.

After several months I finally called my doctor to figure out how to stop taking the meds. They were making my symptoms worse and the side effects weren't worth it. I had feared this phone call because I figured I would have to go into the office for an office visit and their scheduled didn't work out so well with us working folks. Fortunately, it was an extremely easy answer and the nurse who answered the phone was able to help.

So, the last month or so, I've been working my way slowly back into running. I wanted to take it easy and work up to my usual 3 miles because I didn't want to reinjure my ankle again. Sunday was my first day to have run the three miles. With the snow we received here, I had to wear my Yak Traks but it was a good run. I decided I was ready to run a race. It's been a long time since I ran a 5k and I was ready. My choices this week were the Midnight Special last night or the Hangover Classic today. Since I get up at 4:30 for work, I figured the Midnight Special might be a little tough. I decided on the Hangover Classic, and I'm glad I did. The route was one I had done before, with my then three-year old daughter and the road was clear (unlike last night's race).

I'm so glad I ran! My lungs aren't back up to par yet, with running faster and distances further than 1 mile but I was able to knock it out. My pace was about 2 1/2 minutes slower than my PR, but I haven't been training and I had to stop to tie my shoe (darn it!). It felt really great to be out there, despite the cold temperatures (it was about 22 degrees out)

With the 2012 ending, it was time to start figuring out what my race(s) would be. My goal is to some day do a full marathon. I probably will only do one in my lifetime but I want to do one. So... the big news.... I decided to sign up for my first full marathon! I'm so nervous. I hope I can be ready by April 28th! I really want to do this and have no idea what to expect. I don't want to fail either.... I'd be wrong if I said I wanted to be fast, but really I just want to finish and run the whole thing. We'll see what happens. Hubby is supporting me so much in this decision and I really appreciate him for this. When the date gets closer, I'll publish what my actual goals are... once I see how training is going.

So, it's time to revive this blog. I'll (hopefully) be posting updates on my training and how things are going along. It will also be a way of releasing some of my emotions about the race and the training.

Thanks for reading! Any one else have lofty goals for 2013?