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Monday, October 29, 2012

Training weeks 3 and 4 (part 2)

Still have power, for now. That means I was able to get showered and dry my hair... which was totally necessary given that I'm sure I'll be back out in the rain soon trying to get Titus to go potty! In case you were wondering, the big baby that won't go potty in the rain looks like this:

He is the 120 American Bull Dog! AKA Giant baby! 
Frankie, the golden, loves the rain and would stay out there all day.
They are both VERY good at the pathetic look!!!
In case anyone was wondering, if you ask them, Mike and I are to blame for Sandy.

Ok, back to training updates:

Week 4:

Monday 10/22: Supposed to be strength and stretch... no surprise, that didn't happen. Getting home from work at 8:30PM is lame/I suck at doing strength.

Tuesday 10/23: 3.5 miles at 43:47, 12'29"/mile average, fastest mile (3rd mile) 11'. For this I took Sara's  advice and reversed my route, putting the uphills near the beginning/middle of the run instead of the end. I had quite a bit of calf pain and had to stop twice to stretch and I pretty much hated the whole thing. Random man walking on the other side of the road who tried to get my attention while I was stretching did not make me any happier. I had to take my ear buds out to hear him ask me, "do you run every day?" Dear creeper, I am not in the mood, please move on before I snap. Thanks! However, shortly after that, "Baby Got Back" came on Pandora so life got better/that's when I sped up! :) I also took Sara's no walking advice... we will see how long this lasts!

Wednesday 10/24: 3.2 miles at 41:57, 13'54"/mile average, fastest mile (mile 1) 13'24". Ran this with Katie! We did lots of walking/running intervals. Running in Columbia is nice! I wish I didn't view it as so far away to do every time I run. Running with friends is fun as well! Katie is hard core and did strength afterwards. She motivated me to do it too. Except then I went grocery shopping, did dishes, and then planted my butt on the couch. Womp womp... maybe next time. Lesson- Katie rocks, I do not! This is not a new lesson, but one worth putting in writing.

Thursday 10/25: Big day! 5 miles, 1:02:54, 12'34"/mile average, fastest mile (mile 5) 11'25" (closely followed by mile 3- 11'40"). Three big points of this run: 1. I actually woke up and did it before work. Granted, I didn't have to leave until 10:20 that day, but still a win. 2. I ran the whole thing! and 3. I didn't hate life the whole time! Woo!

Another great thing about this run, is it means I am half way to my brightly colored new shoes! I promised myself bright colored running shoes once I can run 10 miles... half way there baby. Bad thing about this run? I didn't plan out a 5 miles run, oops. My last minute plan was use my 3.5 mile route and add two mile loops of the park I pass. Construction though did not allow that to happen, so the run involved 4 loops of the park which was less than ideal. Despite that, once I hit the 3rd mile I actually started feeling pretty good. I didn't feel like death anymore and was able to finish pretty strong. I'm happy with the results. Mike also ran with (read: way ahead of) me, which was nice. He looked at me like I had ten heads when I asked him to come with me, but oh PS I'm running 5 miles. But he came, because he is awesome!

A little HIMYM obsessed... it's ok.

Friday 10/26: Was going to do strength, but I didn't. Are we sensing a pattern here?

Saturday 10/27: GLOOOOOO RUN! Fun run 5K after dark at the National Harbor. Did this with some fun people. See said fun people below:

Fun people before Glo Run

As I said, this was a fun run, but I couldn't help but track it/add it to my app. 3.29 miles in 46:03, 13'59"/mile average, fastest mile (mile 1) 13'44". This run was fun, but I would probably not do it again. There was a dance party thingy before, which was fun, but the run itself was quite dark most of the time. Before you say, "duuuuuh, it's a glo run, it's supposed to be dark," the problem with it was that a good portion of the run was on gravel/dirt and this was not the safest/easiest to run with no light. They had three tents and you went through each twice (the route was an out and back). The black light and disco light tents were fun. The strobe light tent was not. Karilee and Monica chose to run around it on the way back. They were smart. Katie and I were not as smart, so we sprinted through it instead. Elana and Jeremy went before us with the sprinters, so I was happy to catch Elana on her way back and scream her name!! Overall, fun experience. Crab and shrimp pizza and Sam's Octoberfest at Cadillac Ranch after was great as well. 

Sunday 10/28: Rest day. Katie and I volunteered with a great non profit, Monkee See Monkee Do, at a local school for kids with special needs. This was a great experience that I may write a whole post about later! In case I don't I do want to say, you should check out the blog the whole organization got started from. Glennon and her monkees are great!

I am aware that I sound like a broken record, "I promise myself I'll do strength this week"...blah blah lies. Well thanks to Katie, now I really will. We are beginning another workout bet, which she kick butt at last time while I watched from the IR list. Anyway, it involves paying money if we don't work out. While I would give that girl every penny to my name if she needed it, losing money to her in a bet is not gonna happen. No way Jose! Thank you Katie for figuring out how to get my butt in gear! (PS- totally already did strength today!)

Shoes and money are currently motivating my training schedule (I promise I'm not that shallow)... What motivates you to keep it up? Also, what fun runs have you done that you would recommend?

Updated: Any one have any Sandy approved cardio suggestions if I have no power tomorrow?

Training weeks 3 and 4 (part 1)

Ok, I promise I will get better at weekly updates, but for now here is week 3 and 4...

Week 4 was drastically different than week 3, in a good way, so yay! I didn't hate every run in week 4! Woohoo!

Week 3:

Monday 10/15: Was supposed to be Strength and Stretch... remember how Mike and I promised we would do this together? Yep, didn't happen. Oops

Tuesday 10/16: 3.51 Run 42:40, average 12'09"mile, fastest mile (mile 1) 11'30". I did this run in a near by community. I had picked up a coworker from this neighborhood once so I knew it was a decent length. What I had not noticed was that it is lots of hills!! Oy, will not choose to run there again soon.

Wednesday 10/17: This was the day of my fall in the happiest place on earth... grr. FYI- I still hurt. Yesterday at church Mike and our friend Dan discussed how I would play softball with the team in the summer, I had to remind them that I fell while RUNNING, so if we add a bat and ball I am most certainly ending up in the ER... anyway, the run- I fell at 4.20 miles, so until that point- 1:00:17, average mile 14'20", fastest mile (mile 1) 12'27". Needless to say, this run was VERY slow. I was taking in the sights and listening to Betty White's audiobook, so I was a little distracted (are we surprised I an uneven sideway jump out at me?!). Also, for the first 3 miles I wanted to die quit. I did a lot of walking/running intervals, but if it weren't for the sights and book, I probably would have stopped. Oh, also it took me 20:29 to walk the 1.06 miles back to the hotel from my fall. This included my stop at the gas station to try to clean up/get water, so I guess not too bad.

Thursday 10/18: Supposed to be a 2 mile run and strengthen, but I still hurt so I opted to rest

Friday 10/19: Supposed to be 40 minute cross training. I would like to say I opted to rest because I still hurt, this is kind of true. My knees did still hurt. buuuuut I also stayed out with other conference attendees until 2:30AM and had to be down at breakfast/ready to check out at 8:00AM. My official story is my knees still hurt.

Saturday 10/20: This was supposed to be a rest day (UMD Homecoming- woohoo!), but I obviously had running to make up AND (most importantly), Sara and her husband stayed over and we decided to run together. I did 3.12 miles in 40:26, averaging 12'56"/mile, fastest mile (mile 1) 11'20". I can't believe Sara actually ran this slowly with me,  but she's awesome a did! She implemented 2 rules: 1. No walking, "you can run as slow as you want, but no walking" and 2. Sprint the last .1 mile. I broke both of these rules...oops... Sara, I totally walked during some of your sprints :). Also, since Sara had done a few sprints, she didn't know when I was .1 away from 3 miles, so I only sprinted .02 miles... until she came back and realized I was now walking and made me sprint to the car. Running with friends is fun...even though I felt like death during it (showed in my time as well).

Sunday 10/21: Race for the Cure in Hunt Valley. Fun story- Mike and I paid an extra $5 to run the timed race, but we still can't figure out where to find our times haha. There was no tent or setup there, and we cannot find them online. Glad I used my Nike+ app. 3.26 miles at 36:29. Average mile 11'09", fastest mile (mile 1) 10'48". I did not feel great during this run. As previously mentioned, the day before way Maryland's homecoming. There was lots of beer and unhealthy food consumed, so even though we were in bed by 9:30 the night before, my body was piiiiiissed. That being said, I am very happy with how I did. This is the first 5K race I have done that I actually ran the whole thing! Super happy with that. I knew going into this that the race path had a lot of hills (started and ended on uphills... thanks), so I knew I was going to want to walk. By the time I had finally gotten to the point where I decided to walk up the next hill (around mile 2), I saw in front of me a man with TWO prosthetic legs. Any guess as to what he was doing up the hills?! Oh yeah, he was running. What freakin' excuse did I have to walk up them if he was running up them? None. So I didn't, I kept running. Thank you random man for unknowingly motivating me to keep running!!

Ok... this was going to be weeks 3 and 4, but I need to get in the shower before we lose power (thanks Sandy). I will posted week 4 when I get out if we still have power!!

Any stories of what sights have motivated you during a run?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Well it finally happened...

Whelp... it finally happened! I fell while running. At least it happened while running around the happiest place on earth? Throughout my run I was so excited to write this post because I learned that if you are running, no one stops you in the cast/staff only parking lots/areas (casting area, performing arts building, staff building, etc). I snapped a few pictures to show some of the cool areas...

People who work in the below Disney building, get to drive under the above ear arches on their way in!

How cool? I want to work there!

This is the back of that same building as seen from the nature/island trail they have for staff! (One side said nature trail, one side said island trail)

More nature/island trail!

Disney performing arts building...

I didn't get all the cool building/signs, but it was fun! Until I guess combination of rain and uneven sidewalk resulted in this...

Yes, as a matter of fact I am blaming the rain and sidewalk, not my clumsiness or my being super into Betty White's audiobook, because let's be real, I am super graceful!

Until this point, my run was going well. I was going super slow, but at 4.2 miles, 5 miles (goal) was totally in sight. Unfortunately I would have to walk the mile back. I stopped at a gas station to get water and see if I could grab some napkins to stop the blood from going down my legs. People looked at me like I had 10 heads. Oh well, judge away people, klutz coming through!

I got really lucky and as I was across the street from the hotel I got a call from them saying my room was ready. This meant I would not have to sit in the lobby or another public area all blood and dirt covered... right?!? Wroooong!

The very nice bellman grabbing my luggage from storage saw my injuries and asked if he could help. I politely said no thank you, I just need to get to my room to clean up. This did not stop him from calling security to let them know "a young lady fell and skidded her knees and needs help cleaning them up." Super! Now I sound like a child AND despite my room being ready and having my key in my hand, I was sitting in the hallway by check in waiting for security to come back with the first aid kit.

I am very grateful for the help (especially for the extra band aids and neosporin), but I am more grateful for the other staff member that just randomly walked up and said, "eh, my son is a runner too, once you get cleaned up, you'll be good to go." What? You think I am a runner? I love you!

Ok, so he probably overheard me tell the bellman or security person what happened, but I don't care, someone thought I looked like a runner... woohoo! Winning. 

Also winning- I sent the hubs and the bestie the above pic stitch of my injuries and one of them quoted Kelly Clarkson, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger" with music notes and all. I will let you guess which one that was.

The hubs also said, all runners fall at some point. True? False? Anyone have good falling stories?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

End of training week 2

So... I am continuing training, but have been slacking like crazy! Week 1 I skipped cross training (although I am tempted to call the 2 hours of running around a pumpkin patch with kids cross training) and week two I skipped everything except the runs. Gotta lock it up and get my ish together going into week three.

Thursday 10/4 (also known as the time Monica and I almost got killed by the anaconda): 3.65 miles 51:05, fastest mile (mile 1) 12'05", average mile 13'58". We walked the last .65 mile as a cool down, so  to break that down further, we finished 3 miles at 38:36.

Saturday 10/6: 4.05 miles 55:35, fastest mile (mile 1) 11'29", average mile 13'41". I am still getting a hang of mapping out runs and this run made me realize that I need to actually check out the planned route in person rather than just on line for a very important reason- sidewalks! Unfortunately we walked most of mile three because two of the roads not only didn't have sidewalks, but also didn't have shoulders so we were balancing on curbs and what not... oops. Glad it was day light!

Tuesday 10/9:  3.11 miles 38:04, fastest mile (mile 1) 10'40", average mile 12'14". Apparently during my run it was cloudy and 59° (thank you Nike+ app). Before the run I felt as though cold gear pants and my jacket were necessary. By half a mile I realized the jacket was a terrible mistake and it just bothered me around my waist the rest of my run! Experienced runners-  do you have a temperature at which you decided to bundle up or do you just play it by ear?

Wednesday 10/10: 2 miles 24:35, fastest mile (mile 1) 12'13", average mile 12'14". I tried to trick my body by starting my route where I knew there was a long decline... I reaaaally didn't want to run and I am well aware that if you are starting and ending at the same place, what goes down must come up, BUT I thought if I could start off well, my mind/body would be tricked into a good overall run. Wrong again (eventually I'll start making right decisions in regards to this running thing??! maybe?!). This path resulted in a decent incline right as the wind picked up in the opposite direction I was running. All I could think was "cheaters never win and winners never cheat"... boo!

Friday 10/12: 3.11 miles 34:48, fastest mile (mile 1) 10'35", average mile 11'10". 34 seconds slower than my fastest 5K (according to Nike+, but as discussed before, I disagree with that, so basically my fastest 5K-yay!). Also,  Mike and I stopped to stretch near the beginning and I forgot to pause the app, so if I had I probably would have beat the Nike+ record too. 
I attribute my speed to two things, 1- I felt good in the beginning so I decided to try to keep up with Mike (will I ever learn?!), but that only lasted for a little over 1/2 a mile, so that lead to reason 2- I suddenly became very paranoid and worried about the safety of where we were running. I became very convinced that one of us was going to get shot. While that area can attract some crime, I was DEFINITELY being over dramatic.  Until I let go of that irrational fear, I don't think I will be running after 9PM in that area anymore. And yes, only the cool people run at 9PM on a Friday night!

Sunday 10/14: 4 miles 52:01, fastest mile (mile 1) 12'12", average mile 12'58". I am SO grateful Monica ran with me. There is no doubt in my mind that if I was by myself I would have stopped running at 3/4 of a mile and only gone 2 miles. We ran around Lake Elkhorn in Columbia which is about  a 2 mile loop and my body just refused to get in the zone and just wanted to keep quitting. We did a lot of running/walking intervals, but I am so happy we did the full 4 miles and we did it faster than last week. Woohoo!  Thanks Mon! (Side note- there was a woman running much faster than us pushing a double stroller and all that did was make me feel pathetic!)

Ok, so goal this week- actually do everything in the training plan!!! Mike and I have committed to doing Monday's strengthen and stretch together, so that should be good. I have been wanting to bike as my cross training, but my gym is open at such terrible hours on the weekends that it hasn't happened. Due to travel, homecoming, and Race for the Cure, I have to modify the days I am doing each activity this week. Cross training will fall on Friday while I am in Orlando, so I should be able to bike or do the elliptical at the hotel gym! No excuses this week. My modified week will look like this:

Monday- Stretch and Strengthen
Tuesday- 3.5 mile run
Wednesday- 5 mile run (In Orlando!!)
Thursday- 2 mile run and strengthen (In Orlando!!)
Friday- 40 minute cross (In Orlando!!)
Saturday- Rest
Sunday- 5K (Race for the Cure)

This entry is way too long already, but I just have to say that I am so proud of everyone who did the Baltimore half/full marathons yesterday! It was very inspiring seeing all of your posts and pictures and I look forward to joining you next year (who's in for the double with me?!?!)... if I can get past this whole hating running thing!

I think I should start handing out medals to anyone who makes it through my novel long posts!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Two quick notes...

I wasn’t going to write again until Sunday, but I had to share two things:
1.       When I started running again I read this blog post about running for haters. Anyone who hates running as much as I do should read it! While I like many of her tips, I thought about two during last night’s run.
a.       Number 3- Caffeinate. I had a cup of coffee about an hour before we ran and I think that helped keep my energy up.
b.      Number 8- Don’t quit before you are in the zone (or getting in your stride). She says you may reach it at the 2-mile mark the 15 minute mark, whatever. “For most people this happens between 10-20 minutes of running.” The writer says it happens for her at 20 minutes, noting that minutes 10-20 are the worst. I noticed that this is very similar to me. I start off fine and then starting at about 8 minutes until about 23 I feel like I may never make it. Around 23-25 minutes I start feeling better and less like I am going to die!
2.       While running last night Monica and I ran into a little friend… he looked like this:

Okay, so he he was on the sidewalk and I have NO idea if this is the same type of snake, but he was black and long and coiled up looking ready to pounce!
We were not so happy. We screamed and ran very quickly away from it. I’m not going to post numbers from last night’s run until Sunday, but I will say there is a spike where we were going 9’30” and I am going to guess that that was around the time we ran into our lovely friend. Monica suggested I take a picture for my blog, but let’s be real, there was ZERO chance of me going back to that guy, so you get a Google image instead. Mike says we were in no danger and it was probably too cold for him to actually pounce… even if I had known that at the time, I would not have gone back!
I have enjoyed comments so far about when you started to like running, keep them coming. :)

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Half way (ish) through week one!

Half-ish way point through week one of training and this is my most pressing question is this:
When am I going to start to like this running thing?
I mean, I like how I feel after and I don’t completely feel like death the whole time anymore, but I am not loving it while I am doing it.
For those of you out there that love running (both before, during and after)… when did that start for you? Did you always love it?
Here is the breakdown of my first half week of training:
Monday- Stretch and strengthen. I did a “Burn 100 Calories Right Now” thing I found on Pinterest and a “Thigh Pyramid” that I also found on Pinterest. (I replaced the jumping jacks with a 1 minute plank since I had already done 125 jumping jacks in the 100 calorie thingy) I wanted to take it each because I hadn’t done strength in a while. I only did the pyramid once (you are supposed to do it three times) because I was running out of time, so it was a very sad excuse for strength training. However, that did not stop my very wimpy body from feeling it the next day. For the stretching component I just did about 20 minutes of random stretching later that evening. I HAVE to give myself more time next Monday to do something better.
Tuesday- 3 mile run. It was rainy and gross outside so I opted for the treadmill at my gym because I am an idiot. This was one of the most painful and miserable runs I have had in a long time if not ever. It was a bazillion degrees (check the thermostat and that’s the number it read), I had delusions of it being easy when I started, and as stated previously, my pathetic strength training from Monday actually made me hurt. My thought process before I got on the torture machine- “I will put it at a zero incline so this will be a nice easy run compared to my runs with hills.” My thought .5 mile in- “kill me.” I was miserable. It was a slow pace, painful, and felt like it would never end. At one point I recalled Hal’s statement in his description of the plan of the plan being flexible and moving things around to fit your schedule. This made me think to myself at mile 1 (which by the way was about 3 hours after .5 mile) that I would just swap today’s 3 miles with tomorrows 2 miles. Then I came to my sense and realized tomorrow I would just be kicking myself.  I pushed myself and finished eventually (ok maybe not pushed, but I finished). I did many walking/running intervals. Nike+ said 3.26 miles at 45:10, fastest mile (2nd)- 12’39”, average mile- 13’50”… however, treadmill said 3.34 miles at 42:50. I know the time difference comes from having to restart the machine at like .15 miles or something like that because I accidently hit reset on the machine when I paused it to take my water bottle off, but I did nothing with the app. My instinct is to trust the treadmill distance versus the app distance, unless someone else tells me otherwise!
Wednesday- 2 mile run or cross. I decided to go back to my trusty random neighborhood I’ve been running at. I needed to get done quickly to make it up to Essex for a Dave Ramsey class (whole other topic, but really enjoyed that!), so I decided to go where I know. I knew about where a mile would be so I figured that would help me mentally push knowing landmarks and what not. My legs were still kind of tired and it was still 80 degrees, so this was (again) not as easy as I expected. I did 2 miles in 24:49. Fastest mile (1st) -12:16, average mile- 12:23.
Thursday- 3 mile run+ strength. I am meeting up with Monica closer to her to do a 3.5 mile route she mapped out. I will probably do the same or a similar strength workout to Monday except all three cycles of the pyramid and nix the 100 calorie thing.  Maybe the "Cowgirl Leg Circuit" or "The Core Challenge". Not sure yet. I am excited to be running with Monica for three reasons: 1. I get to see Monica even though the O’s and Yankees ruined our original plans for this evening 2. Running with someone has seemed to make the time go by quicker and 3. I really need to get better about running at a pace where I can hold a conversation like Hal suggests. When I have been running by myself I am just so concerned about finishing that I know I run faster than or don’t walk as much as I should right now.
I may update this post tonight after running/strength or may just add it to the end of week assessment/update.
I look forward to hearing from any of you fabulous runners out there about your stories of when you started to love it!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Let the training begin...

My original plan was to pick a training plan two weekends ago, but lame me got sick :(. Choosing a training program was not exactly on my mind while I was throwing up/stuck in the bathroom... so I finally got around to it this past Tuesday.

I wanted to combine a few programs and then I thought, "why reinvent the wheel?". I have heard Hal Higdon's programs are great and it looked a lot like what I had in mind, so that's what I chose! I will be following his "Half Marathon Training Guide- Novice 1 Program" (link to it here).

The program suggests that before starting you should be able to run 3 miles at least 3-4 times a week. I thought I could, but wasn't sure so I used last week to test it before committing to start the program this week. Here's how it went:

Wednesday 9/26/12- 3.11 miles in 39:26. Fastest mile (mile 1)- 11’56”, average mile- 12’40”.

I was super impressed Mike and I went on this run since I didn’t get home until almost 9PM, but we did it! Yay motivation.

Friday 9/28/12- 3.11 miles in 38:40. Fastest mile (mile 1)- 11’22”, average mile- 12’24”.

Monica and I ran the first mile and then did some walking/running intervals. (Side note, Monica if you read this- the hill we avoided, I included it in Sunday’s run- NOT FUN, we made a good choice!)

Sunday 9/30/12- 3.12 miles in 36:04 (walked 2.41-2.52). Fastest mile (mile 2)- 10’55”, average mile- 11’33”.

This run was hard for two reasons 1. I ate so much crappy for you (but delicious) food this weekend and drank too much sugary alcohol deliciousness and 2. We got caught in the rain. The main difficulty was the first thing (all the crap in my body), but getting caught in the rain was a little though because it did that drizzle on and off, I don’t know if it is going to down pour now or in 20 minutes thing for most of it… then it came down the last 5ish minutes or so.

Nike+ claims my fastest 5K was 34’14”… but I can’t find it, so I’m not sure that actually happened. Haha, so I am going to state that this week I achieved two milestones:
1.      Wednesday was the first time I ran a 5K and actually ran the whole way (no walking) Yay!
2.      Sunday was my fastest 5K I can remember/identify! Double Yay!

If anyone is interested in conquering this training plan with me, let me know! I will be happy to send you motivating messages (even if you don’t do this plan, but need motivating message, let me know)!

I am exciting to officially start this program today… we’ll see how I feel after week one!