Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Are we there yet?

Week 13: 

8/15: strength
8/16: 5 miles
8/17: 6 miles
8/18: Rest
8/19: Rest
8/20: 18 miles 
8/21: unplanned rest 


Injuries- 2

Weird looking week.

My total mileage is low, even with the whopping 18 miler on Saturday.  I've been lacking serious motivation to jump on the treadmill, and it clearly shows. My two runs I did manage to squeeze in were fine, but it did take me well over 2 miles to not feel terrible. I woke up feeling pretty tired on Thursday; with a sore knee to boot so I figured two days of rest would have me more prepared for Saturday's long run. 

Also, oh Monday while playing around with weights, I somehow tweaked my elbow and had pain everything I tried to lift heavy objects or even straighten my arm. By the time Saturday rolled around, I had a bum right knee and a permanently bent right arm. I also think the compensation of limping and not being able to bear full weight on my leg also tweaked my back-right side, naturally.  I also made plans to run w D on Sunday but I woke up with an incredibly sore knee, and made the call to cancel. I think this was our first early am cancel ever! 

7 weeks left and my first trio of injuries. Not quite what I was expecting after 13 solid weeks of training, plus all the relays and previous training I'd been doing. 

Met Mac early early in Saturday for what I thought was to be an easy, flat 18- out and back.

Some things-

The Orting Trail is real dark at 5:30am

It's also reaaaal creepy at that time. 

5:30am bikers look actual riders until you run to them after sunrise and realize they may possibly be homeless and be sleeping on the trail. 

Just because a trail is flat doesn't mean it's always easy. My knee was twinging for the first half of the run, and then I think I just got numb. 

18 miles is long. Very long. 

Running with friends make everything a little easier, and unexpectedly running into more running friends is the best!

Splits, so many

Beautiful sunshine along the river. First time running far enough on the trail to see this!

When you run 18, you are allowed to stop at McDonalds in your way home.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Week 12 - We're basically past the first trimester.

8/9: off
8/10: 4 miles, TM
8/11: 5 miles, outside pm. 
8/12: off
8/13: 4 miles, TM
8/14: 17 miles, outside! 
8:15: rest


Strength: 0 (damn it)
Miles: 30

Weirdest looking cutback week, right? I'm pretty sure I did it wrong but it goes with the theme of most of this training cycle, so whatever.  This was the first time in 12 weeks that I've taken 3 rest in a week. This used to be the norm, but that was back when I was semi normal. I just had a really hard time motivating myself to get out of bed before 5:00 all week, and I managed two short am treadmill runs, and one afternoon run outside with J, and all runs were relatively slow and easy paced. 

The scheduled long run was 12 but I decided to join Mac and Heidi for part of their 17 miler. The original plan was to run 6 with them, split up, and then run 6 solo back to the car but last minute I changed my mind and ended up running all 17. I didn't like the idea of heading back alone, so I figured a few extra miles with friends wouldn't hurt. I actually had a lot of fun most of this run

I realize the use of the word "fun" is all very relative here. 

The route was super (really really really) hilly but full of lots of twists and turns, beautiful scenery, plus a scary jaunt across a giant bridge, complete with a coyote sighting #nature and a group of confused volunteers setting up a water station for a local race. 

There was one large hill we all walked up, with paused watches, and some random stops for lights or to decide which direction to go, but for most of the time we were out running, we were moving - sometimes swiftly, sometimes at a snails pace (hills!!). Luckily the last part was a slight downhill and then flat straight away, and it was right along the waterfront.

We stopped twice at gas stations for more water and some ice, and then we were off again. We also tried to practice timing of our fuel. Mac and I took a gel at mile 6-ish and then some chews around 10,11, and then another gu at 13}, 14. I think that worked well and it took us to 17. I think for the marathon I will alternate more chews and one more gel? We shall see. 

It was the first time in a training run with more than one person, and while it was super fun and the best company, it was tricky because many times the sidewalks were not wide enough for the 3 of us, so we were lined up like little ducks for many of the miles. I did speed up a few times to power ahead, once mainly to get across that damn bridge as fast as I could, and then at the last mile to just see how fast I could finish.

I actually feel a little guilty about this, because I should have just sucked up my stubbornness and ran together with the other two, but during the bridge miles I just wanted to be OFF that thing (TOO HIGH. SO SCARY) but at the end I was feeling so good and happy that I just kept going.

That sounds so annoying, I'm surprised M or H didn't push me into traffic. Ugh sorry! 

I honestly felt pretty damn good most of the run, and i seriously am going to give all props to the massive amount of carbs I consumed the four days leading up to the run. Pizza pizza pizza and some banana bread for the win. 

Pizza is life. 🍕

So, most of this training I've been winging it, because I've been mixing two or three training plans. This is very unlike me because I generally like to stick to a strict training schedule with very little budge, but you know, this summer I've had to learn to just roll with what life deals me on the daily, and this has included training. With 8 weeks left (ahhhhhh) I decided yesterday that it would be best to follow the same plan as M and H, so we could line up our long runs. This Saturday we will tackle 18, and then I'll have a real cut back week of 13 miles as my long run. Then comes the 20, but we will deal with that when it comes. 

Hold me.


God's morning greeting to us before starting our run. 


This damn bridge. 

Some of the fastest miles of the run were from this thing. 

Guess which miles were on the bridge?
Also. My last mile was completely on weird happy runner adrenaline. 

I mean. Might as well see just how bad this tan line can get, right?

Monday, August 8, 2016

When it starts to click...

Week 11: 

Monday: 8 miles (7+1 mi CD)
Tuesday: Rest
Wednesday: 5 miles; TM
Thursday: 5 miles, TM
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 17 (16+ 1CD). 
Sunday: 6 plus some change 


Rest- 2
Miles: 42
XT- 0

A couple things. I suck at cross training. 42 miles is my highest weekly mileage ever. 

I'm finally feeling somewhat back in the groove this past week. I was home on Monday after a long weekend away, so I headed out for a longer mid week run. I managed to huff through 7 miles at an 8:54 pace and then ran a 1 mile slow cool down home. I also had two decent AM treadmill runs that didn't feel like hot, slow death. I think those treadmill runs really helped stabilize my mental state, as the previous weeks I had been finding myself worked up in anxiety every morning. 

Treadmilling is hard, people. 

However, I have embraced that it is really my life. It's what I can manage and fit into the day with my early schedule. So, a mindset shift somehow occurred this week and I made it through yet another week of mostly treadmill training. 

Saturday's 16 was my first solo long run in a few weeks. I love love love running with friends, but sometimes I need a solo check-in run to see where I'm at mentally. I tend to run slower with friends and focus less in pace, which is always great. However, I also need those solo runs to test my fitness and to work on pacing and fuel. 

I hadn't run hamster circles in my neighborhood for a while, so I set out early on Saturday before 6am to weave through 16 miles of cul de sacs and streets and loops. I even forced myself to run some hillier parts of the neighborhood, which was actually a confidence booster because my legs felt strong charging up the hills. There were a few longer tough hills in the middle of the run, and you can see by my paces where those hills were. ;)

It's easy to psych ourselves out over long solo runs and overthink every aspect and every mile.  My wise friend J always reminds me to pray beforehand, which I honestly just forget to do most days, but on Saturday, I said a small prayer, took a deep breath, and decided that today's run would be great. 

Running can tend to be one giant cliche but sometimes it's a pretty accurate cliche. I really felt positive energy during the entire run, even in those dreaded first few miles. Most long runs have some dark middle miles but I never quiet felt that shadow looming over me the entire time.  It also helped that I had some fresh new jams to get me through. 

My long run goal was to stay between 9:30-10 and I managed to run 16 at a 9:23 pace. Not too shabby for my longest training run to date!

Splits, like banana... But even better 
Mile1: 9:55
Mile2: 10:01

So many splits it doesn't fit in one screen shot!

Uh. Mile 6. I do not know. 

Also, mile 11.. HILL!

I had to dig deep for that last mile. Let's just say my arms were pumping like Forrest Gump. 

Saturday was the first time in 11 weeks that I've felt like I can (maybe) actually run this marathon. 

I think that's what they call, Progress. 


Obligatory garmin shot. 

Sunday's 6 mile "recovery", which ended being the same pace as Saturday? #doingitwrong

Oh and I finally ordered this, because....#mylife

Love my new Ragnar necklace. And last yeesr's shirt. Maybe that necklace gave me some sort of super powers? Nah. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Ten Ten Ten

Week 10

Monday: Easy XT
Tuesday: 5 miles, TM
Wednesday: 5 miles, hills
Thursday: Rest
Friday: 4 easy miles 
Saturday: 13.1, 10min pace 
Sunday: Rest. Chillin in Suncadia!


Rest - 2
XT - 1 
Miles: 27-ish

The last couple of weeks have been quite the struggle. Two weeks ago my mileage was lower than it should have been, and this week was lower than I had hoped. However, it's a new week right? 

Week 11?!

Holy sh.....

My weekday runs were less than fabulous but I did nicely talk D into running hills with me, and it was motivating to chase her up those hills. I generally take Friday's as rest days but since I accidentally skipped Thursday's run from basic exhaustion,  I managed to convince D yet again to run 4 easy miles on Friday before we left for a weekend trip to Suncadia.  I had planned to run the half marathon on Saturday, which aligned nicely with training, and John had signed up for the Sprint Duathlon  (run/bike/run). Our kids even joined in and raced the 1 mile kids race, which was pretty much the cutest thing ever. 

A group of us signed up to run the half, which was nice because it made my job of deciding to run slow a lot easier. I don't race well when I run with others, and since I hadn't been specifically training to race 13.1, I decided to keep it as a slow training run. The first few miles were faster than I should have gone, which resulted in a couple of "I really should quit running moments, all in my head, naturally. Clearly I need to work on the mental part of running, jeez. The course was surprisingly hilly, and the temps warmed up quickly. We walked up hills when we felt like it and then stopped at every water station. For a small destination race, the logistics were smooth and the support was fantastic. I'd definitely recommend the Suncadia races to anyone. We are going to try and make it an annual event. Plus, the house we stayed at was absolutely gorgeous and the weather was perfection all weekend. Thank you to the Smiths for a fabulous weekend!


So proud of my kids, and my husband!
This was Sunday. My race was Saturday, hence my normal clothing and regular appearance. 

First Duathalon race in the books

Beast Runners - half marathon finishers

My fave pics with Bart Yasso! He is so nice and down to earth! I even drove past him on Sunday and rolled down my window to yell "Go Bart!". #numberonefan

Half marathoners!

Also, as bonus I briefly met Run Eat Repeat. and saw the Run Blogger formerly known as Skinny Runner (SR) and RER checking out of the lodge. Of course they are both frickin adorable. I should have introduced myself but apparently meeting people in real life turns me into a major goob. Need to work on mah social skills apparently.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Week 9. Not the best week I've ever had.

Week 9

7/18: Rest
7/19: 3 miles, TM
7/20: 5 miles. TM 
7/21: off
7/22: off 
7/23: 14 miles, outside. w Mac. 10:06 pace
7/24: 6 miles, 8:57 pace. 1 CD mile. Solo outdoors. Weights.


Miles- 29
Strength- 1
Rest- 3. Whoopsies

This week.

It suuuuuuuuucked.

I am pretty sure my body spent all week attempting to recover from Ragnar. It wasn't so much the miles I had put my body through as the lack of sleep. I felt like every night/ morning my body was fighting to earn back the sleep lost over the weekend but I was not refilling the bank fast enough. The two pathetic treadmill runs resulted in a whopping weekday mileage total of...8. I had an extra day of rest this week, which meant only 4 days to train. I was tired, bloated, lethargic and grumps. I was feeling pretty low about such a crappy week but then reminded myself that id rather have this week now, then closer to race day or, God forbid during the actual marathon. 

So. Moving on.

Looking back, Saturday's 14 miler wasn't too bad, although around mile 8 I may have felt differently. Running w Mac is always so nice and easy breezy and the miles fly by, so that is the major bonus. But the miles are still hard.

And 14 miles is still 14 miles. 

Federal Way is Hilllly! We came across a monster hill and we both decided to stop our watches and just walk. I think attempting to run it would have been pretty defeating, although getting started back up at the top was not easy either. My body had gone into temporary sleep mode so my legs were stiff for a qtr mile afterwards. Luckily, once we had a couple of miles left I think we both pepped up a bit which made the last 1.5 miles less painful. 

A little.

Eyes on the prize. 

Post run, We treated ourselves to some hard earned Starbucks. I hope the Starbucks employees and customers didn't mind us ordering our drinks with salt 'staches and sweat stains. 

Sunday's run was supposed to be a recovery run but apparently I'm too stubborn and a little stupid to listen to good advice, because I decided to try and run a little faster than I should have. My first mile should have been an indicator of how i was feeling but my stubbornness got the better of me. 

I gutted through 6 miles (full confess: I stopped more than a few times) and then slogged an extra mile to say I threw in a recovery mile. I know I know, doing it wrong. 

New shorts. $6. Not the most flattering but very comfy.   

Hammer time

Hot weather means a tank top. Which means chubby arms exposed. Which means arm chub chafe like a boss

Trying to be cool like a real blogger and then realizing... Uh no it's not.

Friday, July 22, 2016

8. Not your normal training week.

Week 8

Monday: 4 miles, TM 
Tuesday: 6.5 miles, hills
Wednesday: 3 miles, TM
Thursday: strength/circuits

Friday: 6.6 miles. 
Saturday: 2.2, 2, 4, 7 miles
Sunday: rest

Total miles: 35ish?

This was not a normal week for, because it was finally Ragnar weekend! As you can see, I didn't actually have one long run on Saturday but ran 4 times for a total of 22 miles in less than 24 hours. 

Pretty cool.

Pretty crazy. 

My first run was pretty fast for me, and the first mile being downhill definitely helped but I had a couple of rough middle miles that slowed my pace slightly but I was overall pretty happy with the run.

My second leg was supposed to be just 2.2 miles in the pitch black dark but we were all a little nervous about running alone in an unfamiliar place in the dark of night, so A and I doubled up our short legs (2.2 and 2) and ran together, which was so nice. The second two miles were basically all up hill but it helped that we couldn't quite see the magnitude of the incline in the dark. I also spotted what I thought was a deer statue in someone's yard. It was an actual deer, guys. 

After the night run, my last scheduled run was to happen early morning on Saturday but during C's last run, it was pretty dark and spooky so we ran 4 of her 9 miles together and I felt pretty solid! My legs were still working well at this point

Cue foreshadowing <here>

After our second legs, it was time for team 1 to tackle their last runs. We figured we had a small chunk of time in which to rest and regroup at the next exchange but, did I mention that team 1 was super ridiculously fast? Yup. 

So. Not even two hours went by before we had to pry our eyelids open from our gym floor slumber, and get ready to run once again. At this point, my legs had had enough time to realize what I'd done to them the previous day, and so I woke up feeling quite tired and heavy. We barely had time to scarf down whatever we could find in the car and then we were off once again.

We cheered N and J through their last tough legs and then it was my turn for 7 more miles. The minute I took my first step I knew it would be a rough run. I had planned to listen to a podcast on my phone but I had some technical difficulties which resulted in my running the first couple of miles to the sound of my labored breathing. I finally was able to meet up with the team, and yelled at to John to grab my little shuffle from the car.

I would like to briefly mention that this year J and I barely argued, and had one tense moment when maybe I hadn't listened to him and failed to load a tracking app that ended up being pretty useful. But we worked through it, and I no one spewed venom.  It was almost like we're grown ups or something. #adulting


After the music/shuffle debaucle and a re-set from my teammates..... it was still a struggle. My legs were stumps attached to bricks. My mile splits swung wildly, from 9:20-10:30. I was passed by a few obviously speedy ladies (seriously where did they even come from) but at this point I did not care. I even cheered them on; especially the friendly and badass ultra runner who left me in the dust.

Despite the struggle, I perked up at the One Mile To Go sign; and was able to pick it up enough to sprint downhill to the end. That mile was my best, obvs.

At the finish of my leg, I was greeted by my awesome teammates, with water and hugs. JL, who had finished her leg before mine, gave me a huge hug while polishing off her well deserved hot dog and chips. I will now have Ragnar nostalgia when I smell a hot dog burp. 

It's now Thursday post Ragnar, and I'm still feeling the affects of basically not sleeping for 24 hours. It's been an eternally long week, and my runs have suffered, and I've even skipped my hill workout. My total mileage for this week so far is 8 (WOMP) but I'm trying not to fret. I've got 14 scheduled tomorrow with Mac, so I'll focus on getting as much rest and good fuel that I can. 

I know this mini recap doesn't do Ragnar any justice, but trust me, if you ever have an opportunity to do this, say yes. Do it. 


Watching Not Watching the safety video

Night Vest, check!

Van 2 all ready to go

I looked this good most of the weekend. #notgood #scary #runbun

Post race beer and pizza. Yaaaaassss

Beast Runners 2016

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Ok, so I'm pretty sure it's now week 7?

Week 7- cut back week

Monday: active rest
Tuesday: 4 miles, TM
Wednesday: 6 easy outside. 8:54 pace
Thursday: 4 miles, TM 
Friday: off
Saturday: 12 with Mac. 10:11 pace
Sunday: Strength 


Miles: 26
Strength: 1.5
Rest: 2

Decided this week would be a cut back week, mostly because I was getting pretty physically drained. I know it's a combination of things, not just running related but I think it's important to let myself rest, and to give myself a break. 

My weekday runs were ok, but the highlight was an outside solo run at 5am in Wednesday morning. I was nervous running so early by myself but it was sufficiently light out when I started and was pleasantly surprised to see so many other people out and about, you know... as potential witnesses? I don't know. 

Anyways. The runs were pretty easy this week, and I had a great 12 miler with my buddy who is also training hard for the PDX marathon. We are both equally and sufficiently scared shitless of this marathon, which means we are totally doing it right. 

Light on the pics this week.

Apparently on Wednesdays  we also dress like clowns 

Good pace for a random Wednesday 

Trying to keep diligent on taking my supplements. 

Salmon oil from Trader Joes. 
To note- not the burp less kind #deathbyfishburp