Monday, March 25, 2013

Peak Marathon Training Run

I've been really looking forward to (and dreading) this run for a long time. Saturday marked the peak of my marathon training and I had a 22 miler on the books. I just have to say first and foremost thank you so much to each and every person who has ever run with me. I couldn't imagine logging so many miles (almost 190 this year so far!) without such wonderful people by myself. Those who train alone really have my respect because that is DEDICATION at its finest.

The alarm went off at 6 am, waaaaay to damn early for a Saturday, but my girls always happen to get up at that time anyway whether I have plans or not. I woke James to get them breakfast while I slipped on my running gear and prepared for my long run. I realized as I got in the car to head to the waterfront that I had no GU's, chews, engery bars, nothing. Anything less than 10 that's fine, but  I knew I wouldn't make it through 22 without some nourishment so I swung by Safeway. I grabbed a raspberry lemonade low calories gatorade drink, um so good. I haven't drank gatorade in YEARS because I thought it tasted soap but this stuff was delicious and only 30 calories and 7 grams of sugar. Not too bad. I filled 1 waterbottle with gatorade, the other two with water (6 oz bottle) and headed to the waterfront. I met Mike for 5 "starter" miles. My friend LaRee was running 17 and I did not want to have to do 5 AFTER she left so I decided to run them before.

Mike and I got back to the waterfront and LaRee pulled up with a whole group of ladies to join us. The more the merrier. This was an interesting run though because everyone was doing different distances from 4.5 miles up to my 22. We dropped a few people off at cars cleaverly staged along the route, and even picked someone up to finish the final 12 with us. Because of the transitions we did get a few rest breaks to refuel and stretch out our legs. I know I won't have that during the race, well I mean I could stop but the clock doesn't of course. I stop my garmin everytime I take more than a 5 second pause. I only want to record my activity :)

I got nervous as we neared the 15 mile mark because my tummy felt a little off. If you read about my 19 mile run, you'll know why. It didn't last though, within 1/4 of a mile the feeling was totally gone and I was charging on. After the 13th mile there weren't really too many hills so it was nice to end with a flattish route. My legs definitely were getting heavier but our running pace was consistently in the 9's- yes throughout the entire 22 miles!! WOWZA! Of course I'm a HUGE believer of the Galloway method so we took a 1 minute walk break every 3 minutes (3/1's).

At mile 19.5 we were back at the cars. BOOO. I had already run 19 miles before so I had to get into the 20's for this run to feel like I was progressing. By this point the sun was out, it was already turning into afternoon, so we stopped at the cars to shed our jackets, waterbelts and my "tough mother" headband ;) and headed back out on the road for another 2 miles. Do you know how much it sucks to leave the car and continue running after already putting 19+ miles on your legs? It sucks! Ha-ha. But I was so happy to know we only had to run a mile out and then we could turn around and come back for good this time.

Just a hair shy of 22 miles but I called it good. Today it's Monday, and I have had no muscle pain (praise the lord), nothing feels tweaked and I'm going to do a 3 mile shakeout run after work today. This is really happening. After all the times I've doubted my ability to run, I've stood at the starting line scared and wanting to weep out of pride AND disbelief, I'm going to run a marathon. Less than 6 weeks now, BRING IT!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Mmmm Food

Haven't had much time to blog lately and I'm dealing with an overuse injury with my thumb so it's hard to type. I will leave you in the meantime with a few pictures of what I have been eating the past few days. If you don't already have a pinterest account, GET ONE! I love trying out new recipes (such as the blue cheese meatloaf).
Blue cheese meatloaf, asparaugs, qunioa

Home-made tortilla soup

My husbands delicious light fettacini alfredo, salad

Sunday, March 10, 2013

The Truth about a Bad Run

"Relish the bad training runs. Without them it's difficult to recognize, much less appreciate, the good ones." -Pat Teske

Yesterday 20 miles on my calendar. That would be my longest run to date (previously longest was 17 miles). With only 7 weeks until my marathon I am almost at the pinnacle of my training with this 20 miles yesterday, a 22 miler in 2 weeks, and then the tapering weeks begin. Tabatha and I met up at the Waterfront park at 7 am ready to being. She has completed 2 marathons and is quite a bit faster than me but has no problem holding back and running at my pace without a single complaint. I feel so lucky to have met her, and several other new running buddies over the past few months. I really don't see how people train for a marathon alone, I don't know if I have the determination to do a 20 mile training run alone. Major kudos and respect for those who do. I knew the day would be warm-ish (56 degrees and sunny) so I wore just a tshirt and windbreaker, but thank goodness I brought gloves because the first 2 hours were windy and foggy, the sun wasn't breaking through. Every run I seem to complain about my hands being cold,  this time was no different....the gloves were fingerless but I suppose it was better than nothing. Tabatha and I both seemed to be on the same page as far as not really being able to find out rhythm. We stopped at a gas station for her to go to the restroom and she asked me to check my mileage figuring we were 7 or 8 miles, UGH. At the 10 mile point I noted that our average pace was 10:49 so I was pretty happy with that. I've run halfs with an avg pace in the 9's but training runs I try not to push very hard because distance is more important that the overall pace AND every time I really push it I end up with little pains and I don't have any spare time for that right now. In my head I was blaming not getting in rhythm on Friday nights dinner..Two Jack in the Crack Box tacos, three mozzerella sticks, and a diet coke. Oh, then two oreos for dessert. Oops. Definitely not the best fuel for physical activity.

At mile 14 all hell broke loose. I started getting the WORST stomach pains. The kind that make you just wish for your bed so you can curl up into a ball and pass out until it's over. I was still 6 miles from the end of the route and nowhere near my bed :( I tried to stick with the intervals (3/1's) but after about 20 seconds of running I just couldn't do it. I've only ever had pains like that once before during a 8 miler about two years ago, but I wasn't doing distance runs then. Now I'm doing distance runs (9+ miles) at least every other weekend, if not weekly. So the pain kind of took me aback. I've felt so strong lately and been faster, turning into a better runner, so this came a little out of the blue. I've run so many times after a huge mexican feast the night before and never had an issue. Apparently fast food was the undoing of me.

"Bad workouts and races -- we all have them and we always will. Accept that the body has an ebb and flow that we don't quite understand. Some days you just feel 'off.' As hard as it is to accept a bad workout or race when there are valid reasons, it's doubly challenging when there appears to be no reason at all. I used to worry about this, but now I just shrug it off as the quirkiness of the body and mind. Don't invest in it or over think it. Move on."
-Greg McMillan

 For about half a mile we had a companion in a yellow lab that followed us. I got worried about him as we got further from his home and towards heavier traffic, so Tabatha shooed him "Go back home dog. Go!" 16 miles. The sun was finally above us so at least it wasn't totally miserable and cold out. Knowing I had another couple of miles to walk was a little depressing. Running 3 miles I can plan on being done in 30 minutes...walking 3 miles, man that doubles the time it takes to get back to the car. I just wanted to be done. Mile 17.I got the worst metallic taste in my mouth. I could feel it traveling up from my stomach to the throat, the mouth, ewwww. I quickly walked to the furthest side of the road and bent over expecting to throw up. Didn't though. Had to spit a little, no blood. The rest of the walk was pretty uneventful. We swapped home-owner stories/complaints. Talked about our kids, husbands, plans for the day. Finally got back to the car. Ended up being 19.3 miles, a little short of the planned 20. If I had run and didn't feel like I was dying I would have made up the distance but I was just happy to head home. Still got almost 20 miles on my legs, and the avg pace, despite walking 5 whole miles, only jumped up to 12:51. It use to take me that long to run a mile, so to average that on a distance run where I walked a huge chunk I was able to still hold my head up. Next time will just have to be better. Next time I'll blow my time out of the water and have a 19..3 mile PR!! haha.

"We all have bad days and bad workouts, when running gets ugly, when split times seem slow, when you wonder why you started. It will pass."
-Hal Higdon

Also I made some delicious oatmeal muffins this morning. I had a special little helper, here are some pictures. The recipe is in my pinterest board "Tasted and Approved."

Thursday, March 7, 2013

17 miles and Junk Food

The hill is a lot bigger than it looks in this pic
What the hell is going on?  I can’t get myself under control. The past week, well technically the majority of the past 6 months I’ve been unable to curb my desire to eat eat eat. These last few days I’ve consumed so many empty calories it’s depressing to admit to it. I’ve made home-made fudge, peanut butter cookies, no bake cookies, ate ice-cream, pop tarts of , all kinds sugary goodness  awfulness. I weighed in this morning 16 pounds UP from my lowest weight. Actually I haven’t been this heavy since I gave birth to Bailey. I have got to figure out what to do, how to beat this. I’ve still been running. I missed a blog detailing my 17 mile run (tied for longest to date). That run took place Feb 24th and took me from Old Town Silverdale to Downtown Poulsbo- I’ll attach images when I get home. The work computers aren’t very friendly. Overall I was very impressed with how I did; 10:55 average pace on a route with some very long hills. I had zero, absolutely zero pain, no muscle soreness, it was a little odd, most of the time when I increase either distance or pace I expect something to flare up. I ran with Tabatha and Ellen, Sara and her friend Syri also came but we didn’t all stick together for the run, our paces didn’t sync, but it was wonderful having them there. Ellen and Tabatha are both faster than I am so if I felt like I was holding them back too much I figured I would have been safe enough to fall back a little and maybe finish the run with Sara, but I felt really strong until we got back in Silverdale.  Waiting at all the crosswalks through town was a bit irritating. Every time we stopped I could feel the lactic acid in my legs bubbling up. I know it was there either way but when I was running I could focus on moving forward and distract myself.
Activity for the last 4 weeks- Need to work on consistency
This past weekend I was scheduled to bump up to 20 miles but between my absolutely crappy diet and the getting Charlie horses the night before I woke up knowing I wasn’t even going to try for 20. I grabbed Jamba and headed down to meet this week’s running buddies, Tabatha and Michele. Tabatha and I ended up sticking together and Michele followed us until our turn around point and then she continued on. My route ended up being about 7.5 miles, so it was long enough that I wasn’t completely disappointed.

Two miles tonight
Tonight I ran 2 miles pushing the girls in the jogging stroller. That is tough work....still doesn't burn off all the buttery popcorn I ate today. Or the caramel frappucino.