Monday, July 27, 2009

Posts are so much more fun with pictures

As requested by Mel & Allison, I am posting pictures of my battle wounds. I warn you, I didn't shave my legs for these pictures and you can still see my scars from my dog bite from February. My legs are oh so pretty. And I did go to the doctor today to get an x-ray and I got a clean bill of health. Now do I feel perfect, not so much, but I don't have to worry about a broken hand anymore.

My bruised up knee.


Don't be stupid like me and catch yourself with your hands, the after cuts hurt.


This is the hand that swelled up as big as an egg. Now there is just a small bump where that cut is. I guess my running helped with the swelling as it kept my blood flowing, thank goodness for the additional 11 miles that I ran after this.


My elbow hurts badly, I must have rolled to my left side because I am much more banged up there.


Going to the doctor was actually nice as the doctor and nurse were both commenting on how great of health I am in. The nurse guessed I was a runner when she was taking my pulse. The doctor commented right away that I must exercise a lot. What they don't know is what a different person that could have come in there if I wouldn't have changed my life 2 years ago.

.75+13.65+5=19.4

Yesterday was a day I should have just stayed in bed. It was one of those days that nothing wanted to go right.

Eric and I were both scheduled to run 20 miles so we figured we would have his mom watch the girls so we could run together. The plan was to be at her house by 8am so we could get on the road very soon after. Well, we didn't get out of the house until 8:30 and she lives 45 minutes away. That was not a good thing as it was supposed to be a hot day.

We dropped the kids off and were going to try the Charles River Bike Trail which starts west of the city and goes all the way into Boston. We looked it up on the internet and went to where we thought was the trail head in Newton, MA, but we couldn't find it. This burned an additional hour as Eric didn't want to give up looking for it.

We finally get to Watertown, MA where we see a lot of parking on the street, so we park and get ready to go. About .25 miles down the road, I thought, I am not sure if I locked the door, so we go back. It was locked, but we decided to re-park the car in a near-by parking lot that we saw and start again. We get 1/8 mile and Eric realizes he left his water bottle in the car, back we go again. Between those false starts, we have about .75 miles.

FINALLY, we are off. The trail was beautiful. There were boats out on the river and runners were everywhere. It was almost like a race because we had so much company out there. I stayed with Eric for about 7 miles, it was a slower 9:45 pace than I was used to, but I wanted to run with him. About 7 miles he was slowing down more, so I started running a 9:30 pace and really started getting into my stride and felt great. It was very hot, probably already in the 80s and we each finished our extra water bottles within the first 6 miles.

At mile 9, I tripped and went down very hard. It happened so fast and I popped up quickly as I was embarrassed and assessed the damage. I had bruises and scraped up knees, elbows, and hands. My left hand had a bump on it as big as an egg. I thought for sure I broke it as I had never seen it look so terrible. I stopped to wait for Eric and told him I think I broke my hand. At that moment I wasn't in pain, but I wasn't sure if it was from adrenaline.

We decided to keep going and we would look again when we stopped. That is when I noticed I lost one of my water bottles. We ran back and there in the railroad tracks below the bridge I tripped on was my 10oz water bottle. I had 18oz of water and 18oz of gatorade and there was my 10oz of water sitting way down on the ground unreachable and the temperature was rising.

I decided to finish the run with Eric. I figured, it was hot and the day was not going as planned so we might as well stick together. Well shortly after, Eric started overheating. We had already seen multiple men slowing down to walking while out there, probably because they weigh more. We didn't want to risk anything worse so we walked whenever he heated up. Our liquids quickly depleted so we were in survival mode getting back to the car. Luckily, Boston, where we turned around, was not our halfway point, we were going to run past our car, so we weren't as far from our car as we could have been. I ended up finishing the last 2 miles to my car and leaving him walking, because I needed cold water and my knees were hurting from my fall.

We got to the car at mile 13.65 and decided to call it a day. We weren't sure if my hand was broken and I wanted to clean up my wounds, so we headed back to Eric's mom's house. At her house, we figured the hand was probably not broken, but maybe a bruised tendon as it was only in pain on the top of the hand. We were just about to hop in the shower when I told Eric that I didn't feel like I had a good enough workout today and wanted to finish my run. He smiled and we both went downstairs to tell my mother-in-law that we were going back out. She looked at us like we were crazy but knew were were going.

Now keep in mind we are now about 1:30 yesterday afternoon in the peak of our 90 degree day. It was HOT. We ran one of his old cross country routes around the neighborhood. We didn't bring water, stupid, I know, we just aren't used to needing water on short runs. On every hill we began heating up quickly, my insides felt like they were on fire. We did walk a few times and decided at 5 miles that we were done and weren't going to add on that extra mile to make 20 miles.

So that is how I made my 19.4 miles yesterday. The 5 extra miles were so close to the 14+ miles that we weren't really stiff so it worked out fairly well, there was about an hour between, maybe less. I hate not finishing a workout, but I feel like we pulled out a really good workout even if it wasn't the one we had planned. I am a morning runner, so this was run that was bound to fail, but I am happy we were able to spend the day together, pushing ourselves to our limit. This run really taught me to be flexible and walk or stop instead of pushing too hard.

Now today I just feel bruised up and annoyed I lost my water bottle. I have to order another Amphipod water bottle before we go to Florida, or I will be in a world of hurt. This is the second time replacing these bottles as I lost a lid at the Twin Cities Marathon. So I guess I could just find a lid if I have to. Eric thinks it is funny that I was more upset about that than my hurting myself, but my pain threshold has gotten pretty high recently, so I don't feel too badly. I am just happy I left my new camera home, my luck, that would have been flying over the bridge, and I would have climbed down for that.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Great Day

This is a short post as it is time to spend some time with my long-lost hubby....

The yard sale went great today. I made about $140 which is great since we had the prices marked SUPER low! This is the most I have made at a yard sale, so I was quite happy....And I already spent my hard earned money. I got a new Flip UltraHD Video Recorder.



We have always had a camcorder since Bridget was born but it is a pain to pull it out and I feel bad for missing out on all the cool fun things the kids do, so now I have easy access to recording their life. I would also like to carry it on my marathon in October that I am running with my sister and maybe some of my other runs. So I am sure I will have video to post here eventually....Especially after our anniversary road trip that is in 2 weeks!!!

Oh, and I took an unscheduled rest day today. Yesterday's tempo run went fine, 11 with 6 at 15k to half marathon pace. I hit my pace and finished the whole thing in 1:35. I didn't NEED to take today off, but I was up late last night getting ready for the sale, and thought I would shock my body by giving it a day off.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Busy Week

So as I said before, my hubby is out of town until tomorrow night, so this has been a girls only week. We went on a play date, went to the gym a few times, visited grandma, and hung out. Mommy is exhausted, girls, not so much. Last night, Gabbie slept terribly. It's worse than a newborn. When she was a baby and would cry out in the middle of the night, she would cry for a few minutes and go back to sleep. When she wakes up now, I have to get in there as quickly as possible or she will continue to wake herself up therefore making it harder to get her back to sleep. So 3 times last night I was rushing to her room to soothe her back to sleep. Then when I would get back to my room, my cat, Miles, would decide it was time to play. I am guessing Eric must play for hours at night with Miles, because this entire week he goes crazy at night and attacks my ankles where ever I walk. (And yes, he is named after running...My cat of 9 years died last summer while we were training for Twin Cities Marathon, and we got Miles, a perfect addition to our family....I wanted to name him Lance, but Eric isn't as big of a fan as I am.)

He is much bigger now, but here is my little guy:



And here he is right after we got him, back when he was a sweet little thing that didn't attack me:



I was planning on taking a recent picture of him for this post, but am exhausted so will settle for these.

On the training front, I am tired. My 14 mile medium-long run was a killer yesterday. I am still not used to doubles, so I think running 12 hours after the last run didn't help much. I finished that run in just under 9:30 pace, so not bad, but I was dragging at the end. Today I had 5 miles recovery which I did at the gym. I did it at 5.9 on the treadmill. It was nice and slow, every time I tried bumping it to 6.0 the muscles around my knee tightened up so I eased off. Tomorrow I have 11 with 6 at tempo pace. Oooooh, how I hate tempo runs. I love them and hate them at the same time. I hate them because they are so hard, but I love them because I am proud of myself for maintaining that pace for so long.

Eric comes home tomorrow night, so I only have solo-parent duties for one more day. We are having a yard sale on Saturday, (Thanks Tall Mom on the Run for reminding me that I can get some easy spending money by cleaning up) so I have A LOT to do tomorrow. It is going to be a top secret sale as the kids would kill me if they saw all the toys and clothes I plan on selling of theirs, who needs all these things?! Talk to you soon.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Double Recovery

I did a lot of stretching on Sunday after my 21 mile run, so yesterday I woke up fairly good, not much soreness at all. My husband is out of the town for the week, so I am a single-mommy which means I am on parenting overload right now.

Yesterday, I took the girls to a group play date at a girl from my mom's group. I love going to play dates for the social interaction for the girls and myself, but I am not an outdoorsy type of mom at all. I know, bad me, but I am not very good in heat and dealing with the kids getting dirty. But things were going great and they pulled out a beach ball sprinkler. I have never seen one before, and my girls loved it! Unfortunately, I didn't plan on water activities, so they first played in their clothes and then were running around without clothes. Yes, I am the mom that just gives into their kids when they are having fun. Well the yard was full of clovers and Bridget stepped on and got stung by a bee.

Now my Bridget is a DRAMA Queen. We are talking, the biggest drama queen of them all, so she was crying and screaming. I hate calling attention to myself, so I carry her over to a picnic table, put her on it, oops, it was hot, more screaming! Luckily I thought of ice, so had them get me some ice and we calmed down. Unfortunately, all of their clothes were soaked so we went home shirtless. Yes, prepared mommy, doesn't bring extra clothes now that the kids are potty trained. Sigh, Eric, you need to come home.

Today I had a double recovery day scheduled, so we went to the gym for 6 in the morning. My kids love the gym, so this was a good excuse to wear them out some more. The 6 was surprisingly easy, at about a 10:00 pace. I dropped the kids off at their grandma's this afternoon and went out for my 4 recovery miles while dinner was cooking. It was raining so I went a little too fast, of course, so I averaged about a 9:30 pace, again not too bad. My legs tonight felt like lead but obviously decided to listen after about a mile. And, I came home to yummy spinach quiche with feta that was in the oven. Eggs are my favorite post-run recovery meal, so now I have leftovers for tomorrow. 14 is on the schedule for tomorrow....

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Podcasts and Another Marathon on the Schedule

Today I had 21 miles on the schedule, so I got my butt moving early as I didn't want to be out there during the heat. Last night I downloaded a podcast from Running with the Pack and some new music. All I did was search for running podcasts and that one came up so I downloaded 5 episodes. Talk about making the time fly!

The podcast features Allan and Jeff. Allan is an almost 40 year old middle of the pack runner. Jeff is a 40-something already qualified for Boston runner, yet not super fast yet. The two of them entertained me for over 3 hours today talking about my favorite subject, running! I downloaded random episodes not going in any order. I wanted to make sure they talked about subjects I was interested in. So I listened about the Disney Marathon, Ultramarathon Man (Dean Karnazes), goals, beginner triathlons, and fitting running into your everyday life. I swear I was reading blogs for those 3 hours. I could relate to many aspects of their life from Weight Watchers to vegetarianism, to just trying to be a faster runner. If you haven't listened to a podcast yet, I highly recommend you download one of theirs, you will be surprised at how fast time will go.

In terms of my run, it was pretty easy for the most part. I woke up with a little achiness under my knee, so I was a little worried, but I didn't notice a thing while I was running. Miles 1-18 flew by. 18+ was entering new territory for the season, so I obviously knew it would be tougher. It didn't help that I had to go to the bathroom so I avoided my last gel as I didn't want to upset my body anymore. Well I started hitting the wall with 2 miles to go and my pace dropped above 10 minute mile pace. I will never skip a gel again. I didn't feel dead, I just wasn't moving as fast as I wanted for those last 2 miles. And my body still wasn't happy with me at the end and I was running for the bathroom. Heat isn't fun on long runs. My average pace was still 9:36, so under my long run pace of 9:45, so I was happy with my results. And I know I could have finished another 5 miles, so I didn't overdo myself at all. That brought my week to a total of 68 miles, a huge mileage PR for me. I honestly never thought I could run 68 miles in one week, but I did and I am still standing to talk about it.

Finally, this morning I signed up for the Baystate Marathon which is in Lowell, Massachusetts on October 18th. Yeah, 2 weeks after Twin Cities. My sister chose this as her first marathon as long as I would run with her. She knew I was going to try and qualify for Boston at Twin Cities, so that was out for her first. So I am going to run whatever pace she wants for that marathon. Running Baystate will qualify me for the Marathon Maniacs. I missed it by like a week last year when I ran 3 in like 100 days instead of 90, so I have been trying to find back-to-back marathons that would work for a while. If I don't qualify for Boston at Twin Cities, I am eying a winter marathon, possibly the California International Marathon which has a high qualifying rate, but we will see. One marathon at a time.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Getting out of bed in the morning

Whenever I am marathon training, except during taper time, I hate getting out of bed in the morning. Right now I am in the middle of a pretty high mileage week and my body is feeling it. I lay in bed in the morning and think, "Do I really need to go to the bathroom that badly?" I swear my body aches like crazy and those first few steps are comparable to a post-20 mile run. I am super stiff and and my feet are tender. It doesn't help that my bathroom is in the loft of my bedroom, so I have about 15 steps to break my muscles in.

It only takes one walk up the stairs and the blood gets moving and I can walk again, but then it happens again on my run. Today I had 7 miles General Aerobic with strides on the schedule. This was my first non-recovery Saturday since I started this training program. My muscles were really looking forward to a slow recovery run, but I obviously needed to go faster. The first 2 miles of every run are usually pretty slow while my muscles warm up, but once I was moving, the run was fairly easy. I averaged a 9:10 pace, slower than my normal GA, but that was as fast as the body would go. My strides were a little painful though. Every time I do fast strides, I get a pain in my upper thigh. It is a weird pain so I am hesitant to go too fast as I don't want to injure myself. But I got the 10 strides in and got off my feet immediately as I have 21 miles on the schedule for tomorrow. I have only done one other 21 mile run other than my marathons, so I obviously am a little anxious. As long as I get out the door fairly early, I shouldn't hit too much heat and the 21 miles shouldn't be too bad.

Bridget was asking if she can enter a race again so she can win a ribbon. I guess I better start looking for a local race that has a kid's run going along with it. I have a couple tune-up races on the schedule in August, but I can't seem to find any around here the match up very well, I guess I better start looking harder.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Summer is Finally Here

Summer finally hit New England and I enjoyed my first 80+ degree run today. It was a hot one. I decided to go to the trail so that I could go without a shirt. I am not one to run in just a sports bra, but I had 11 miles on the schedule and there was no way I was going to overheat on this run.

I pretty much negative splitted the entire run. My goal pace was 9:30 as according to Pfitz, the medium-long runs should be at long-run pace. That was not going to happen. I started out at 9:20 pace, but by the end I was pulling 8:30 miles. I was having too much fun cruising along. So my final time for 11 miles was 1:38 and an average of 9:01. Too fast, but today my legs felt fine, so I don't think my legs will have a hard time recovering from it.

The kids took daddy to get some ice cream, so mommy had some quiet time, for a short short time. They are already back and I better get back to the little monsters before they get ice cream all over my clean kitchen.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Flexitarian No More

I finally uploaded the pictures from our camping trip last weekend.

This is our campsite and kids running around.

Bridget & Gabbie playing on a tree stump.

Right before my run.

On The Mayflower.

Playing in the ocean.


What a fun trip!

Today I did a 5 mile recovery run. I had the hardest time getting out of bed but once I got moving I was fine. I think my average was around 9:45.

Last night I ate meat for the first time since the first week of June and I was so sick. I don't think my body is used to digesting meat anymore. I have been getting criticism on my decision to quit eating meat. Originally I chose to be a flexitarian, but now I am leaning more towards vegetarianism. I wanted to try eating meat again before our trip next month in case I chose to eat meat while I was there, but now I am leaning towards never eating it again. From about 3:30am on this morning I had a terrible stomach ache, almost like heart burn, which I have never had before. It is crazy that I have been used to eating meat my whole life and by not eating it only a few times in the past 3 months, my body is telling me that it can't handle it anymore. Thank goodness I really enjoy all the recipes that I have made the past month, we have never eaten so good before!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Shut up & Run

So today I had a 14 mile medium-long run on the schedule. Based on Sunday's pain on the hills, I figured I better continue to add hills into my training or I won't have so much fun on Summit Ave at the Twin Cities Marathon. Sooooooo, I went on my fun 14 mile run which has a terrible hill at mile 9. The first 8 miles, were a piece of cake. I was running the rolling hills without a problem and thought to myself, "why would I be worried?" And then the hill hit.

I have a cold and asthma, so to begin with, that is not a fun breathing situation. Hills after a good tempo run the day before also doesn't equal fun. By the time I got to the top of that thing I was hacking up a lung. I maintained a 9:30 pace going up the hill, so I thought this was ok, and continued on. The next 5 miles were brutal. I averaged 9:30+ pace, which is on target for a long run so that is fine, but I felt like crap. I kept questioning myself on why I run marathons, why do I put myself through so much pain. I thought, maybe I should cut my run short and only do 13 today. Luckily I can talk in circles to myself because by the time I was done talking, I completed my 14 miles and crawled into my house to some hungry girls.

I have said it before but I must reiterate, running is harder mentally for me than anything. I honestly can handle all the running, I have only truly hit the wall once, it was a great time at the Twin Cities Marathon. It is my mind that is always screwing me up and telling me that I need to slow down or quit. At Disney I had many conversations with myself in the Porta-Potty, trying to figure out if I was going to finish on that day. I wish I could just tell myself to shut up and run!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Great Tempo Run Today

I am going to try and be a little more consistent in posting, mainly so I have a record of my training for the future. So if I bore you with statistics, I apologize.

Today I had a 10 mile run scheduled with 5 miles at 15K to Half Marathon pace. I can tell you that I was definitely nervous for this run as I was going to do it on the trail instead of at the gym. I didn't want to cough all over the gym and scare some people. I like doing tempo runs at the gym because it forces me to stay at the correct pace so this was going to be a challenge. I programmed my run into my Garmin last night. I was going to do 4 miles warm up, 5 miles at 7:54-8:00/mile, and 1 mile cool down.

This morning I woke up and my legs felt GREAT! I emphasize great, because they were sore yesterday from Sunday's hilly run, so I was quite happy that I was going to start this run on a good note. Not to mention Tuesday's runs are usually my hardest of the week for some reason. I can say though, this is the first week that I felt recovered for today's run. I guess slowing down on Sunday did help me a bit.

Miles 1-4 I averaged about 9:03 pace. I was trying to slow down, but since this was a General Aerobic warm up, I went with it. I hit miles 4-9 right at 8:00 pace. My legs felt fine. The only problem I was experiencing was my water belt. I have an amphipod water belt and normally it does great. Today I was only wearing it with 2 bottle since it was a shorter run, plus the elastic is stretching a bit, so it moved way too much. I would say I messed with it for 3 of the 5 tempo miles, not fun. The last mile I actually finished in just under 9 minutes for a time of just over 1:25 for 10 miles.

I was very happy with this run as I felt strong the entire time and feel great after. Do you ever feel like your body gets used to running insane amounts of miles and it is a normal day even though you are running miles that you couldn't imagine a few years ago. Crazy!

Now I am just meal planning for the week. Being a stay-at-home mom is a great job, but the meal planning and grocery shopping is not one of my favorite parts. Now don't get me wrong, I love grocery shopping at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods, but this is my big trip of the week, so it isn't fun and isn't at my favorite stores. It is especially not fun because my mom left town for the week, so the kids are coming with me to the store. Last week Gabbie walked around the store backwards the entire time, and someone said to me, "I bet you love taking them to the store." As if I needed to be reminded that my 2 year old was running into people, carts, and shelves.

Monday, July 13, 2009

A Weekend Without Technology

This past weekend we went on our first family camping trip. I am not a camper, but I will do it because my husband loves it. Next month we are road tripping all the way to Disney for our anniversary and camping, so we wanted to test out the waters with our 2 and 4 year old girls. They absolutely loved it.

We left Friday afternoon, later than I had wanted and my husband thought he was going to work the entire way there while on a conference call in the back seat. I was irritated with this, but figured we were going away for the weekend, I can give up a 2 hours car ride. 18 miles into the drive and someone is pointing at my car, and I thought, what did I do, and then I started feeling the vibrating. Flat tire! It was already 5:30 and we are almost 2 hours away from the campground and we have a flat tire. It took me a long time to prepare for this trip as I wanted to plan healthy meals that I could cook, obviously avoiding meat....My first weekend away as a vegetarian. I was so scared that we would have to cancel our trip and all my hard work would go to waste. But alas, a shop was open and we drove ever so slowly on our donut. While we were waiting, the mechanic came out and said our rear brakes were gone and we needed to replace them. So here, our $36 weekend now turned into $650! But we were cool, we knew this was a normal maintenance cost and would happen eventually so we just had our peanut butter sandwiches and grapes and waited for our weekend to begin.

After our 2 hours in the shop, we were back on the road and finally arrived at the campground around 9:30. It was dark but we got the tent up quickly and somehow the kids went straight to bed without a problem. So we made it and were ready to begin our trip.

The next morning we woke up and had our normal oatmeal and I got ready to go on my recovery 5 mile run. We chose this campground because of all the trails that they had on the map. We obviously, didn't know the elevation of the trails, so I noted a very up and down 5 mile recovery run. Nothing too terrible, and it did allow me to run the correct pace. Eric did his 4 mile recovery run and the kids just played around the campsite.

After that we went to Plymouth, Massachusetts to see the Mayflower and Plymouth Rock. Living in Massachusetts for 6 years, I am surprised we hadn't made the trip here yet. Plymouth was beautiful and what a beautiful day for a walk along the ocean. We got back to the campsite and I made some jumbalaya from Eat, Drink, & Be Vegan cookbook and we had smores. I know marshmallows are not vegetarian, but I haven't had time to make my own yet and who can go camping without having marshmallows?!

The next morning was my long run of 15 miles. It is a cutback week, only 55 miles this week. (55 miles was my peak last cycle and now I am saying it is my cutback week, crazy!) The trails came to haunt me on this run. The entire run seemed like it was uphill and curvy. I love hills usually, but mainly because I know I get to come back down, but unfortunately there wasn't much coming back down. And the curvy trail was doing a number on my knees. So needless to say, my legs were beat this morning when I woke up. Overall, the run was beautiful, and the challenge was great as I didn't feel like I slacked at all this week. And my long run pace was much closer to where it should be, as I usually run too fast. After my run, I threw together some peppers with some pinto beans, and eggs, to get some protein back in me.

So my first weekend camping was a success for eating and running. I am a creature of habit so learning to eat healthy while having a tiny stove and running on unfamiliar trails is very scary to me, but I proved to myself that I can handle our long road trip next month. And the kids, they loved everything. They even slept through a pretty bad storm on Saturday night which soaked other tents, but we stayed dry, thanks to my husband's researching our tent purchase.

I will put pictures up later this week. This week we are back on track for a 65+ mile week so I am sure I will be exhausted and sore, but hopefully moving in the right direction for the Twin Cities Marathon.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

MIA Due to Running

I haven't posted in a few days and you wonder where I have been....I have been running, big surprise there. Yesterday I had my annual 4th of July 5 mile run scheduled so I tweaked my schedule so that I could be somewhat ready for the race. Unfortunately, my tweaking didn't do me any good, but I will touch on that in a bit.

For my tweaking I looked at a future week where Pfitz calls for a tune-up race and pretty much did that for the days leading up to the race. Thursday I did my first double ever. 6 recovery miles in the a.m. and 4 recovery miles in the p.m. This was mistake #1. While the two runs were very easy and I felt fine after, trying something new before a race, not a good idea. Mistake #2 was running another 5 miles recovery on Friday. Again, the run felt fine, but I almost always take a day off before races. My last day off was Monday and I was in the middle of a 63 mile week.

We dropped the kids off at my mother-in-law's house on Friday night, so we had a night off, this was not a mistake, other than having our night off be a night before having to wake up early. We woke up about 6a.m. on Saturday and ate breakfast and headed to the race. No rain!!! Last year we ran this race in rain and of course you know how our weather has been, so the no rain seemed like a nice change. Although, this was the first warm weather run I have had in a while, so that wasn't the easiest adjustment as well. I warmed up for 1/2 a mile before the race and realized my legs were tired. I was hoping the heavy legs were due to nerves so just lined up where we usually do and we were off. Mile 1 was about 7:18. This was a little too fast as I was shooting for 7:30, but I knew I would go out too fast. This was actually slower than I expected so I knew this wasn't going to be a easy race. This was a very hilly course and mile 2 reflected that. Mile 2 was 7:42. Not too bad as I was following the same people but the heat already was starting to affect me. Mile 3 the hill began. This hill is known as the "Mother F'er". We are talking straight up hill 200 feet of elevation gain over about a mile. This was reflected in mile 3 & 4. My splits were 8:33 and 8:27. I walked! Yes, I walked up that dumb hill. I don't know what came over me. My legs were shot and my mind told me to walk and I did. I knew the last mile was downhill, but I also knew that in order to PR over last year's race I would need to pull out a fast mile as my average was around 8:00/mile at this point. So I took off. I obviously had a lot left in the tank as I hit the last mile in 7:04. My official time was 39:06, a PR by 13 seconds. *sad face* I placed 91st overall out of 304 people. I was 19/126 for women and 9/26 in my age group. I knew I didn't have a chance of placing today as it was the first nice race of the summer so the good runners turned out today. Normally I am much closer to to the top for women during the school year when all the college kids aren't home. (I am an old woman (29) competing with all the young girls :) )

So yes, I did get a PR, but it was not the PR I was hoping for as it was so much easier last year. Although when reviewing my training log from last year I was averaging more than 20 miles less a week, I can imagine my legs were not happy with me.

Today I turned around and did an 18 miler. I was supposed to do 10 at Marathon Race Pace, but after reading more of the Pfitz book I saw he recommended not doing a hard long run the day after a race, even if it wasn't the greatest race, so I only did 5 at Marathon Pace. Because of that, I ran 9 miles at 9:30 pace or so, then I did 5 at around 8:30, and then who knows about the final 4, I was tired. My average today was 9:09 pace, so overall it was a great pace for an 18 mile run. And it was a BEAUTIFUL day so I finally got to run in the sun and enjoy a glass of Sangria after, while the kids played on the swing set, oh summer, welcome to Massachusetts!

If you haven't checked it out yet, Tall Mom on the Run has a giveaway on her blog right now. It ends tomorrow, so please go check it out. And if you read this too late, still check out her blog, she is an amazing runner and mom!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

217 Miles in June

Welcome to July. I ran a total of 217 miles in June which is the most I have ran in one month. This seems like a lot until you read Ultramarathon Man by Dean Karnazes. Have you read that book yet? I just finished it last night and all I can say is, I will never think of pain from running the same ever again. He ran 226 miles in one weekend without stopping. The things that man has done is truly amazing. Who knew the human body can be put such extreme conditions as the South Pole, Death Valley, and 200 mile relays alone and still keep moving. There is a chapter in the book about losing control of your bodily functions because of running. I am not going to repeat it, I will just say, you have to read it. I have never laughed so hard in my life. I have to say that my body hates me when I push it too hard, so while what happened to him has never exactly happened to me, I can relate. Anyways, it is an awesome book and I highly recommend reading it if you are looking for a good running book.

Another book I finished recently was Personal Record: A Love Affair with Running by Rachel Toor. This book was a combination of articles that Rachel Toor wrote for Running Times, I think. Because of this, there really isn't a story, but rather a bunch of short stories and things she learned from running. This book was a very fast read and fun. She is very funny and an amazing runner as well. Do you know of any good books to read right now? I am looking for running books but also anything that sounds good, I have already read the Twilight series.

This morning I ran 14 miles in 2:07 for a 9:07 average pace. WAY too fast but this girl was not going to go slow in the rain. I swear 85% of my runs have been in the rain lately. My shoes are soaked and my legs are tired. The kids are happy as I am too tired to put them to bed, so they got to stay up late waiting for Daddy to get back from his run to put them to bed. The rest of the week will be recovery runs as my 5 mile race is on Saturday. I am hoping I didn't do too much damage going that fast today, I seriously didn't think my pace was that fast, but the harder the rain came down, the faster I went.