About Me

This is my third summer of running consistently. All of this is still pretty new to me--I never ran track or anything in school.

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Hair

You would think that hair has nothing to do with running. We've had quite the hair subtopic going on on the marathoner thread at Weight Watchers.

It's important to me to have hair that doesn't get in the way of what I'm doing--doesn't flop in my face when I type, doesn't stick up funny...

When I run I want to keep my hair out of my face. When I was starting to run, I wouldn't tie my hair back and once this big piece of wet, sweaty hair fell right across my face and stuck to me. Totally gross! Since then I have had the "ponytail rule" with my stylist--all hair lengths must fit back into the ponytail. I usually wear a hat too--gotta make sure that hair stays away!

Lately the hair has been getting longer and longer, and I wasn't sure that it still looked good. I went out and got my hair cut. The pictures don't look as drastic as it feels to me. The nice thing is--it still goes in the ponytail!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Ouch! It is my feet!

My feet, especially my left one, feels like there are marbles under the ball of my foot.

Many of the coaches in my running group are in school for the Doctorate of Physical Therapy. My coach worked on my feet. Basically I have some tight muscles in my calves, some ITB issues, and had some bones out of place in my feet. She put them back in place--those were the marbles I was feeling and the pain in my feet during the race.

I need orthotics. I'll work on getting those soon.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Denver Marathon--not the race I wanted!

Well, I had visions of doing really well at the Denver Marathon, sadly this was not to be.

My time was a disappointing 5:08:41--meeting my worst case goal--to beat my Vegas time of 5:08:58.

I only had 5 miles around my target pace of 9:45--I can truly say that each of my training runs was better than my race.

According to the news, it was 34 degrees at the start, I'm not sure if that included wind chill, but I completely agree with that. The weather was cold, windy and the level of rain only changed during the race. If it stopped, I never noticed.

I'm not sure if it was the cold that affected me or not. I had pains that I did not really have in training. I had foot cramps, and knee pain that I have never had before. My stride was shortened by this and I kept hoping I could run through it and it would get better. My legs felt fine. They are only a little sore today, but my feet are extremely swollen.

I'll have to put this behind me, figure out what I can learn from this, and look forward to Disney--targeting a 4:30 for that race.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Park to Park 10 Miler

Today I ran the Park to Park 10 Mile Race.

This is the first year of the race, so you are never quite sure of what you are going to get. I made sure I had my own drink (and enough of it so that I wouldn't need anything else) and a post race snack.

This race was unusual for me. Usually I go into a race after a taper and looking for a new PR. This time it was different. I had no taper other than skipping Sunday's 30 minutes of easy cross training. I actually ran 13 miles on Saturday for my long run. I had a non-official time PR time of 1:31 that I was NOT going to try to beat.

My goal was to run this race as a training run and to see how my planned marathon pace felt.

All in all, a lot of credit goes to the people who planned this race. It started on time, the course was handled well, markers were in place, and aid stations were where they were promised. The food afterward was excellent!

All in all, I am looking forward to running this race again.

My official time was 1:37:00, BTW. That reflected a perfect 9:31 average pace--my target marathon pace.

Thursday's Magical Mile

Every year in my summer running program there is a point in the program where you are encouraged to run 1 mile all out.

If you want an actual race, they encourage you to run the Pearl Street Mile up in Boulder. I really don't ever feel like driving for an hour in rush hour traffic for a 1 mile race, so I run the mile down by me.

Last year I had no concept of how fast I could run, I went out to a trail and ran my mile in 8:17.

This year I went out to the local middle school track for the mile. I tried to push out any ideas of how fast I was supposed to go. I ran my warm up, stretched and even ran a few strides. I hate strides, but they say they help, so I did them, probably much to the amusement of the moms of the local football team.

I started my run. I have a real issue with running the first part of any speed work too fast, and it happened here too. I did manage to slow it down a bit, but was quickly running myself into an oxygen hole. I reminded myself to breathe deep. I swung my arms and reminded myself that I only had to do 1 mile. I gasped for breath like a landed fish. I ran hard until I heard my Garmin beep.

I looked down--7:33!

P.S. It took 2 days for my throat to stop hurting.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

I like Bananas!

Saturday is long run day in my training plan. This was a 2:00 run and I covered 12.61 miles in that time. Even though I train with my group, I often run by myself at times during these group runs.

Do you ever go into a run with a song in your head?
"I like bananas"
"I know that candy is sweet"
"I like papayas"
"But nothing can beat"
"The sweet, sweet love of God"

This was the song we all sang at church before our Children's Musical last Sunday.

I was tired and ready for next week's step back week. When I run distance by myself, I find my mind going to a lot of places. Books I read when I was a child, songs, things I have read. It is a lot easier to run when my head is full of good things.

Distance running is very mental. You spend a lot of time with what's in your head. It's important that it is good things.

My coach caught up with me for the end of my run. We talked about books, philosophy life, iPods and life in general. It's good to run with people, it's good to run alone with what's in your head too.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Cruddy Tempo Run

Boy, did I have problems with this one! I missed my Thursday tempo runs the last 2 weeks because we had to replace the microwave 1 week, and last week I experienced the worst part about being lactose intolerant and the consequences of not asking what was in something before I put it in my mouth.

So anyway the workout was 2 sets of 3 miles at tempo pace. I had trouble finding my pace, ran too hard at the beginning (again) and just felt super tired the whole time. It was certainly tempo effort, even in my mile splits didn't show it.

Yuck, some workouts you just want to be done! Glad this one is.

Swimming for me!

This is the first year I have incorporated swimming as cross training. This season I have been swimming nearly every Wednesday.

It starting to get easier--finally! I don't get to the end of the lap and gasp for breath like I'm running 400m repeats now. I swam fairly steadily for 30 minutes last night.

I like how this gives my legs a break. I alternate between 1 lap freestyle and 1 lap breaststroke. The breastroke kick seems like it really helps with my piriformis pains that remains after a pinched sciatic nerve.

Sadly the pool at the Y will be closed next week. I'm not sure if I'll go swim somewhere else.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

If you like Pina Coladas!

How does the song go?
If you like Pina Coladas
And running hills in the rain!
If you're not into yoga
If you have half a brain...

Okay, taking license with the running hills part...and really I'd rather have a margarita, and I like Yoga...But I did run hills in the rain!

I've been dealing with some injuries and tonight they weren't bothering me. I had 6 consistent hill repeats. I talked my coach into having the group run another. She made me run it hard, but it was kind of fun--mostly because I knew I didn't have to do another one!

The skies opened up again right when we started our cool down and it was raining so hard and the lightning was so close that we pretty much sprinted back to our cars and were drippy wet soaked to the skin.

Came home and stretched. When I stretch at home, my dog thinks that any bending or sitting stretch means that you want to pet or play with her. It is fun, but maybe not as effective for stretching.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Believing in my Pace!

I had a really incredible run on Saturday!

Saturday is long run day on my training schedule. I run slightly faster than most of the people in my Tuesday pace group, so I was invited to run with the next group up, even though I'm not really quite fast enough for them.

I've been running with them for about a month now, and it's starting to get easier. I like the challenge and feel like it is pushing me to improve.

Last week was a step back week, so we only run for 1:10. I managed to keep up a blazing fast (for me) average pace of 9:18 and I actually finished with some of the people who really do belong to the group! I also had enough energy left (and I thought I was out) to pull out a faster pace for the last half mile!

My stretch goal for my upcoming Denver Marathon is 4:09--a 9:31 pace. I have run this pace for a half marathon this spring, but holding it for a full marathon will be tough. This would be a huge PR for me--an hour off my first full marathon time of 5:08:58.

I have now learned that I have more in the tank than I thought. It is important to me that I believe and have experience at my race pace.

I will take whatever that day gives me--even if it is not my ultimate goal. The only thing I DON'T want to do is to give up on myself and not do the best run that I can.

Friday, July 6, 2007

My Husband, "Bunny Boy"

So we started our new training club session this week. DH (Dear Husband) and I signed up for the same pace group--The sub 2:00 half maratathon/4:00 marathon group. I want to do my next marathon in sub-4:30 so this is the correct group for me. I really like my coach, we'll call her "Buffy the Marathon Slayer".

So we show up for the workout. This is a 20 minute Endurance (think half-marathon) pace run. The coach said we were going to do this at a 9:00 mile pace. That's about right for me. So DH goes and just takes off! He is running 50 yards plus ahead of the group.

By the end of the session, he has decided to move up into the next pace group. This puzzles me because he complains that I do my over-distance workouts at too fast of a pace for him, yet he moves up into the next group. The biggest reason this bothers me though, is because I know I cant' run at that pace. Definitely not yet. I'm jealous, and that makes me feel bad because I really want to cheer for him. I am happy for him--really. The anger I feel is at myself--I'm a bad person for my feelings of jealousy. I am upset that I am letting my own ability as runner color my feelings for him. He has supported me unreservedly and deserves the same. I will get there--both in my feelings and hopefully in my pace. I guess it just takes me longer.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Me Run Fast One Day?

I'm getting ready to start Summer/Fall training with my running club. This is my second year of running this season and I find I'm approaching it quite differently.

Last year I was running and it all was shiny and new. I would go into a race not really knowing what I could do and I would amaze myself with what I did. I did 2 half marathons and 1 full marathon last year. I wasn't always happy with my time, but I was never too disappointed either.

This Spring, I went into a half marathon with a time goal. I PR'd by 2 minutes. I set my stretch goal for Bolder Boulder at 53 minutes and I ran 54:51, not so good but the best I could do that day.

I'm currently signed up for 2 marathons: Denver Marathon and Disney World Marathon. I put my times in the Running Calculator and they tell me that I should be able to run somewhere between a 4:15 to a 4:29 marathon. Realize that a 4:15 marathon would be almost a 1 hour improvement over my last time. So I wonder--am I capable of this?

I feel like the person who told their story of learning a language on NPR. They heard the fluent speakers around them and they wondered "Me talk pretty one day"? I see others run and I feel like a shetland pony in a herd of thoroughbreds.

I'm not saying I want to win a race or anything, that would be pretty delusional. I want to run the best race I am capable of. I want to find out what I can do, and I don't want to give up on myself.

So I wonder--"Me run fast one day"?