Monday, March 31, 2008

Girls Night Out!

Saturday was my last long run before the half. Yikes! The scheduled 8 mile run was okay, but I was a little disappointed afterwards. It just didn't feel the way I would have liked it to feel -- I felt like I was working harder than I should be at this point.

Mile 1: 10:21
Mile 2: 10:28
Mile 3: 10:35
Mile 4: 10:28
Mile 5: 13:24 -- Seriously, was I walking or what!?!?!
Mile 6: 9:24 -- Got mad at myself and picked it up a bit...
Mile 7: 9:47
Mile 8: 10:03

I kept reminding myself that my goal is to be consistent. I'd like for the consistent splits to be faster, but can't focus on that. But, when I saw a 13 minute mile, I about dropped. I don't think I've ever done such a slow mile! Oh well, this is suppose to be fun.

Saturday afternoon was the wedding shower and that night was the bachelorette party. It was interesting... not as well planned as I would prefer (keeping in mind I'm super anal and annoyingly organized). As long as the bride-to-be was happy, that's all that matters. We went bar hoping downtown Detroit, and had a sweet limo to cart us around. I will say, that I was the only one that got hit on by the bachlor party that was at the same spot ... and got invited to join their bash. :) Still got it... :)

Sunday was a recovery day - since when does it take me a whole day to recover!?! Geez! I used to be the one that bounced out of bed the next morning ready for breakfast. This time, I got up, took some Alleve and rolled back over.

Looking forward to tonight's workout -- time to stretch my legs out a bit and get them ready for Sunday!!!!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Techie runner

I'm not the most tech-savvy person in the world. Really, I was quite a dunce about anything electronic until I met JP. On my own, I had an iPod and wireless internet, but that's about it. Now... I own a bluetooth headset that's about the size of a quarter, the Nike iPod gizmo to chart my runs (which I really need to calibrate...), Quicken to electronically do my finances (on my laptop and my Palm), an electric cup warmer because I can never drink my coffee / tea fast enough before it gets cold, etc. You get the picture.

All of these things are great, but not something I can't live without. Well, yesterday I found the coolest "techy" thing so far in my mind, and it ties into my running. Google Pedometer. If you've been using this for years, don't bust my bubble, okay?

For the past year, I've been running this route around my house and guessed it was about 4 miles. But, I never got around to jumping in my car to see what the actual mileage was and where the approx. mile markers were. Yesterday, I plotted out my usual course and found it's actually nearly 5 miles. So those "decent paced runs" have actually been "pretty good paced runs." It's super cool and something that's fun to play with to boot!

It gives you the mile markers and everything!!! Is it wrong that I get so excited about this!?! :)

Went for a 3 mile run on the gym track last night -- just didn't feel like dealing with the snow. (yep, we got 3-5 inches last night). Splits were fast, but not as consistent as I'd like them to be. On the plus side, at least I'm starting to drop some time on the shorter runs.

Mile 1: 9:31

Mile 2: 8:41

Mile 2: 8:28

Rest day today and tomorrow is my last long run before my race. Yikes! Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Clock is Ticking...

Holy Crap! Just got an email reminder about the Martian Invasion race... it's really creeping up! But, I haven't forgetten my two goals:

Goal 1: Be mentally tough.
Goal 2: Be consistent.

Tuesday's run was inside, due to the snow flurries outside. It was a pretty good 5 mile run and I was pretty good with my goals.

Mile 1: 9:56
Mile 2: 9:41
Mile 3: 9:52 -- The "be mentally tough" goal was a struggle on this one. My legs felt weak and I really need to focus on strength training. It makes such a big difference!
Mile 4: 9:52
Mile 5: 8:56 -- I was "in the zone" and feeling good. Not really consistent, but I was ready to be done.

Yesterday, it was warm and sunny so I took advantage and ran outside. I was scheduled to do 10 x 400 m, but I was in a time crunch due to the setting sun, so I did a quick 3.5 mile run. It was about a 9:45 pace, but I'm still not sure of approx. mile markers on my route so this is an educated guess.

Looking forward to my schedule 3 mile run tonight!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

I *Heart* NYC

Long time since my last post, but I'll try to keep the wrap-up short.

I was in New York City last week for work, so I wasn't able to blog or run. It was my first time in NYC, much to everyone's disbelief, and I wasn't quite sure what to expect. Ended up loving it and hoping to go back for a vacation. It was so nice to actually walk places! The one thing I wanted to do while I was there was go for a run in Central Park. But my work schedule didn't permit. BUMMER! My hotel was only a block away!!!

Saturday I went for a "long" run but only did 8 miles instead of the scheduled 10. They were slow and steady, but I already came to terms with the fact that this half isn't going to be crazy fast. In fact, I freaked out yesterday when I realized the race is coming up quickly!!!! Definitely not ready, but at least I'm doing something.

Easter was great. We did the usual trek to my parent's in the morning / early afternoon and then to JP's family last afternoon / evening. We're starting to get it down pat. We got a ton of snow on Good Friday, so this is what the Easter Bunny had to tromp through:

My parents put on an Easter egg hunt again for us this year. We have a good time and since we're both so competitive, it makes for a good laugh!

Enjoyed a nice run outside yesterday andplanning for a good workout tonight. I can't believe this is my last full week of training before the race! Yikes!!!!

Hope everyone is well and looking forward to catching up on your blogs!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Recap of the Week

Quick recap of a week's worth of workouts:

Last Saturday - COLD (22-degrees), a freaking snow storm about halfway through my 10 mile run and windy the whole way. Averaged about 10:30 pace -- a bit slow for me. Overall, a pretty miserable run. (On the bright side, no emergency pit stops this week!)

Throughout the week I got my runs in, but no abs or lifting. It was an unusal week with things going on 3 nights during the week -- a birthday celebration dinner, a professional networking event and a send-off party for someone at work.

Yesterday's 12 mile run was ... GREAT! I felt good and my splits were fairly consistent:

Mile 1: 10:28 -- Crap. This run WILL NOT be like last weekends.
Mile 2: 10:00 -- Okay. A little better.
Mile 3: 9:54 -- Good.
Mile 4: 10:02 -- Still consistent.
Mile 5: 10:00 -- Still consistent.
Mile 6: 9:49 -- Sweet!
Mile 7: 9:41 -- Awesome. And, I feel great!
Mile 8: 10:14 -- Getting bored now.
Mile 9: 10:06 -- Ugh. Remind me again how I handle 20-milers?
Mile 10: 10:04 -- Okay, come on. Only 2 more to go.
Mile 11: 10:05 -- Not bad, but not great. Hey, this is the longest I've run in a long time.
Mile 12: 9:50 -- Wow. Only 1.1 more miles left. :)

Didn't workout today, but lots of stretching and using The Stick. I had a ton to do today (and still to do) before I head out to NY tomorrow. I'll be there until Thursday, so next time I blog it'll be from the Big Apple.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Running is 80 percent mental – Joan Benoit Samuelson

Had a great run yesterday. My goal was to be consistent, no matter the oveall time. One thing I learned last night was that I'm in decent shape (although still freaking out that I'm not ready for my race), but mentally, I'm no where near where I should be!

Sure, running allows you to clear your mind and think things through, but you need to be focused. It was so hard to keep focused and hit my goal for the day. Although a struggle, I'm pleased with the splits I turned in:

Mile 1: 9:36
Mile 2: 9:25
Mile 3: 9:28
Mile 4: 9:29
Mile 4 1/2 +: 5:04

Another thing that hit me with a mental load of bricks was that I started having some pretty strong pains in my abdomen. The past couple of months, the chronic pain has really been under control. I was ready to throw in the towel and call it a day, but then it occurred to me. Hello! This race isn't going to be pain-free. In fact, it's probably going to hurt quite a bit. I've been living with this pain for the last 2 years, so I can get through a couple more miles. So I sucked it up, pushed the pain out of my head (or tried the best I could), and finished. That was a bigger accomplishment for me than keeping consistent splits.

I should've done an ab workout, but since it was late (I stayed in the office later than usual and it was nearly 9 p.m. when I finished my run) and I had some burning knives slashing through my stomach, I convinced myself it was okay to go home. :)

The outcome of my run last night? My two main goals for this half-marathon:

Goal 1: Be mentally tough.
Gotta get ready for that fall marathon. (And, for life in general)

Goal 2: Be consistent.
I may not PR, but I'm getting back into running after taking a year off and this is a great way to get back into it. I'm going to train consistently and get back into my "training-mode" diet (diet as in the way I eat, not as in the new fad diet that's suppose to melt off 20 pounds in 2 hours).

So that's the goal and I'm ready to meet and exceed 'em!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Nope. Not spring yet.

It snowed last night... again!

ERIC SEALS/Detroit Free Press

Uphill Battle

New attitude. New attitude. New attitude.

Yesterday, towards the end of the day, I started to feel a bit flu-ish. NOOOO! Doesn't my body know that we're training? Getting sick isn't an option.

Being the mature adult running that I am (right...) , I opted to skip my workout in favor of going home and getting some rest. Hopefully this would nip it in the bud before it became a full-fledge flu. It was an inner-battle, but realy, JP would've killed me if I went to they gym feeling sick.

I went home, JP warmed up leftover for dinner and I prompty feel asleep on the couch. From there, I moved to my bed and was down for the count by 9 p.m. Apparently my body needed some rest. Feeling better today, so hopefully that's the end of it.

I HATE missing workouts and I'm really begining to feel like I'm not going to be ready for my race, which is almost exactly one month away. I alreay registered, otherwise I may contemplate finding a later race. Nothing I can do now, but battle back to race-ready form!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Striving for consistency

Shortly after I posted yesterday's blog about keeping my mood in line with the new spring weather, I felt the change outside. I say "felt" because the storm outside had my 39-floor building creaking and swaying like crazy. It turned cold, cloudy, snowy/rainy and all around yucky. Ironic. :)

After what felt like a long day at work, I trudged to the gym. I did 4 miles on the tiny track and finally started to get into it when I was almost done. My splits weren't consistent at all... something I really need to work on.

Mile 1: 10:35 (I think I miscounted laps... again...)
Mile 2: 9:19
Mile 3: 9:44
Mile 4: Not sure because I accidently hit my stopwatch when I was lifting. Oops!

I wanted to go home after my run, but knew I need to stick to my weight lifting and ab workout plan. So... it was onto the weights where I worked on my arms, as I jealously watched in the mirror as this teeny, tiny girl lifting some monster weights. She was about my height (5-foot nothing), was significantly more lean and trim, and her arms were freaking incredible. Of course, she was pretty, blonde and tan to boot. I'm not ashamed to say I was totally checking her out. ;)

Scheduled for a 4 1/2 mile run and abs tonight... Rock hard body here I come!

Monday, March 03, 2008

New Week... New Attitude...

This morning it actually feels like spring. The sun is shining, the sky is blue and it's a whopping 50-degress out! Hello spring!

This is my attempt to have a better attitude.

Last week I was pretty grumpy and irritable. Not sure why, I just was. And, my run on Saturday didn't help matters much.

Saturday morning I got up early and headed to the metro park for my scheduled 6-mile run. As I was running the first few, I was trying to figure out in my head if I wanted to alter my long run schedule since the plan I'm following doesn't really have a taper to it. Not sure how comfortable I am doing a 12 mile run the weekend before my half. Anyway, a couple of miles into it, I had to go to the bathroom. Now, since my surgery I absolutly cannot hold my bladder. (TMI?) If I hold it, it hurts. Tremendously. Pain, like I have to lay down because I can't move. There are some facilities around the 4 mile mark of the 8 mile loop. Okay, I gotta run that far. It was a combo of run/walk, but everytime I walked due to the pain, I remembered that I would get there quicker if I ran. FINALLY got there and... the darn door was locked. Grr... now what? I was trying to decide if I should continue down the loop to see if the next facilities were open (about 2 miles away) or if I should turn back and try some off the trail a bit. Really, either way, I was exactly half way through the loop and couldn't get to my car for 4 more miles.

I opted to turn around and try the off-trail facilities. Hopefully they were open because having my bare butt out in the open to squat wasn't really an option in the 20-degree weather. Apparently the running gods were looking down on me because about 1-mile later there was an outhouse facility. It was as if the heavens opened and the angels choir was singing. Whew! (I won't go into how my imagination was running away with me and I was certain that a snake was going to jump up and bite me on the ass...) :)

So I ended up logging 8+ miles with splits ranging from 9 min/miles to 11 min/miles. Not a great run, but thank goodness I got through it. Felt like crap (mostly mental) afterwards and was just ready to go home and call it a day.

Yesterday I went to the gym for some cross-training and some serious core work. Yep. Sore again this morning. I was still grumpy afterwards through but my mood lightened as the day went on.

So, I hearby pledge that this week I will have a good 'tude, kick-butt workouts and enjoy every gosh darn minute of it! :)

Oh, and thanks for all the nutrition advice!