Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Post-flu 11

Hello fellow bloggies. It's been a while since we've last talked! I blame my busy schedule of kiddos, school, and work....oh and there's that flu thing. Last weekend it hit me bad. I was totally OUT Sat-Mon....didn't do a thing but lay down and hydrate (okay, I might have gotten some CoD in also). It was miserable. I finally made my way back to the gym on Tuesday. I knew I wasn't in running condition yet, so I just did 20 minutes on the elliptical machine and then had a decent chest workout. Overall....I felt pretty good. By Wednesday morning I was ready to get some miles in....and I had a new 7 mile PR (55:37; 7:57 ave pace)!! I beat last week's 7 mile PR (55:49; 7:59 ave pace)!!! Thanks Mr. flu!! I also had a great 40 minute tempo run (5.41 miles) on Thursday. I'm really starting to like the tempo runs - 3 minutes fast, 2 minutes at a slower pace. I followed Thursday's run with a really good back and lats workout. Then, I hit arms and shoulders really hard on Friday. Sooo....that leaves me to today!

Since I wasn't able to get a good long run in last weekend, I knew I had to get some miles in today....and it was around 37 degrees out, so great running conditions....until I started running and realized how windy it was. The wind sucked!! There was also a constant mist in the air that seemed to make everything wet. As if the weather conditions weren't enough, I just felt weak today. I was still able to get a decent 11 miles in, but it wasn't nearly as fast as I had hoped. I'm trying to convince myself that I'm still recovering. AND...a decent 11 is better than nuthin!!!

11 miles, 1:34:41, 8:36 average pace...check it out:

On a side note, I also wanted to give a quick update on my shoe situation. I'm sure my loyal bloggies recall how I was struggling with my replacement New Balance shoes. I've been getting some serious blisters because they appear to be more narrow in the toe than my previous NB shoes. I'm trying a few different things with them, including better socks, running w/out my orthotics, and of course, more Aquaphor. I'm still working on it, so we'll see what happens. I do want to mention how AWESOME the guys at Often Running in Normal, IL have been. I HIGHLY recommend Often Running if you are in the market for any running gear needs. I really hate being the high maintenance customer, but the guys at OR totally understand the issues that runners face. Often Running - check it out! (website is under construction)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Treadmill PR?....13.2 (1:49:56)

Okay, so I know there's some debate in the running community about whether you count training PRs as actual PRs. My, they don't officially count....but, YES, they totally count for bragging rights! :)

Yesterday I did 13.2 (an extra. .1...for the troops of course) at 1:49:56. It was a great run...I'm really liking my new hydration strategy. I still remember how sick and dehydrated I was after the Lewis and Clark half this past fall (1:51:31). The mixture of Gatorade and Clif Shot Bloks is very effective! 13.2 was on a treadmill....I'm sooo ready for better running weather. After last weekend's 12.2 miles someone asked me why I didn't just go for the full half marathon...well, the treadmill maker people decided that treadmills should only go up to 99 minute runs. Anyone that runs longer than 99 minutes on a treadmill must be insane, have already collapsed on the floor, or forgot to turn the thing off. So at the 99 minute mark I had to stop and reset it and then basically sprint the last 1.4 miles. It was inconvenient, but it still felt outstanding. I was pretty bored before I hit the halfway mark, but luckily there was a good basketball game on TV and I was able to do some people watching due to the continued 'New Year's Resolution' crowd.

One of my favorite (and probably a bit arrogant?) things to do during my long treadmill runs is to take note of the people that I outlast on the a way it keeps me motivated to see them steadily drop off as I keep going. It sort of makes me feel like I'm passing them in a race. Yes, maybe it is a bit arrogant and competitive, but have I told you how boring those long treadmill runs are?? I need all the help I can get to keep me moving....and to MAKE IT HAPPEN!

On a side note...I've been getting some mad blisters on my toes after switching to my New Balance 1064s. It's amazing how my running form is impacted by a few stride completely changes, which of course, can lead to injury. Very frustrating....especially after hearing so many good things about the 1064s and since my 1063s had a minor defect after only 3 months. So, I pulled out the defective 1063s and did my long run with blisters, no foot problem. Turns out that the 1064s must be a bit more narrow in the toe area than the 1063s. Not sure what I'm going to do....most likely I'll go back to the running shop and talk to the experts. Stay tuned...

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Finish Strong

I finished off my excellent Christmas vacation with an awesome 12.1 miles on the treadmill yesterday. I was really hoping to get another outside run in, but when the windchill is in the negatives I tend to stay indoors.... The run felt GREAT!!! I finished in a half marathon PR pace - I definitely could have kept going. I also tried a new hydration/electrolyte strategy using some of my Christmas goodies. My momma-in-law gave me some Cliff Shot Bloks in my stocking (orange and black cherry). I popped one black cherry blok before my run, one at the 30 minute mark, 60 minute mark, and then I had another at around the 9 or 10 mile mark. I followed each blok with a few sips of Gatorade. Everything felt outstanding - no side ache, no stomach cramps, and no signs of dehydration. I'll definitely continue to keep this strategy up for long runs and maybe even some of my runs during the week.

I've really enjoyed the time away from work and even the time away from the gym this week. But, my body is telling me that it's time to get back into the routine.

2009 has been a year of transformation for me. I completed my first half marathon in the spring, tackled the hills of the Steamboat 15k, shaved 9 minutes off of my half marathon time at the Lewis and Clark race, shaved just under 7 minutes off of my PR 5k time, dropped over 100LBS(!!!!), dropped about 10-12 inches in pant size (size 40-42 to size 30), went from wearing 3XL/XXL shirts to smalls and mediums, and I had my first photo shoot (HA!!!)

I found myself again in 2009...I had been lost for a long time - It's nice to be back.

So, here's to strong 2010!!!!

Looking out at the road rushing under my wheels
I don't know how to tell you all just how crazy this life feels
I look around for the friends that I used to turn to, to pull me through
Looking into their eyes I see them running too

-Jackson Browne

Running on, Running on Ginnis!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

1 MAY 2010

Dear Curt,
Congratulations! You are now registered for Illinois Marathon. Please check the event's official website for updates:

I've officially registered for my first race in 2010!! I'll be doing the Illinois Half Marathon for the second time. This was my very first half was an awesome experience and I'm going to try to make the race an annual tradition.

Here's a summary of the races that I'm planning to do in 2010:

May - Illnois Half Marathon
June - Steamboat 15k
September - Louis and Clark Half Marathon (I might change this up a bit if I find a different race in August)
October - Chicago FULL Marathon (YEAH!!)

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!!

2009 was a transformational year for me (which I will blog about after I recover from last night's fun), but this picture pretty much says it all! Here's to 2010!!