Thursday, April 29, 2010

April in Review

Today's 3.5 mile run brought my April training to a close. The weather was perfect and it was a very enjoyable run!

April Stats

120.6-- running miles
0-- elliptical miles
5.1-- bike miles
125.7-- total miles
40*-- coldest outdoor run (22.2 miler)
83*-- warmest outdoor run (4.97 miler)
148.6-- weight as of April 29, 2010 (down 3.2 pounds since March 31, 2010)

Current 2010 Stats

414.38-- running miles
50.9-- elliptical miles
5.1-- bike miles
470.38-- total miles

I am very pleased with my April training. The kids and I are heading to PA tomorrow. I will be spending tomorrow night with my family and then heading to Cuz Michele's on Saturday. Once I am in town we will head over to the expo to pick up our race packets and listen to Meb speak. We will follow the expo up with carb loading of course. Sunday morning we will toe the line at the Pittsburgh 1/2 Marathon where I will be running as a St. Jude's hero in memory and honor of Sophie Quayle.

Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Cleveland 10 Miler Race Report

The weather has been a bit odd here lately. It figures that they were calling for rain, clouds, and wind this morning. Fortunately it was around 55* so it was comfortable to run the race in shorts and a long-sleeve shirt. I headed over to Marilyn's around 7:15 , her husband took a quick before picture and we headed to Edgewater Park for our 10 mile race.

Going into the race I was hoping to break 1:25 which would put me right around 8:30/mile. We got to the park and headed to the pavilion so I could check my bag and we could use the restrooms. Shortly after 8:30 we were off. I had to do quite a bit of weaving to get out of the pack that had formed at the start line. I hit the first mile marker in 8:23 and I thought okay perfect I have a few seconds to play with based on my goal pace. Then something happened in a race that has never happened to me...I hit mile 2 and my split is 8:23. Wow, I found it a little odd but was happy with it since I was still on pace to reach my goal. Right after mile 2 there were a lot of spectators and I guess that motivated me because I hit mile 3 with a split of 8:16. After mile 3, I would take a quick look at my splits but didn't memorize them and since I have no idea how to retrieve that information from my Garmin FR60 I can't tell you what the rest of my splits were. What I can tell you is I had several more 8:23 splits because I remember thinking it was a little strange but hey it was working. I did run a few splits slower than 8:23 and a couple more faster than 8:23 over the course of 10 miles. From approximatley mile 7 on, I was playing leap frog with another woman. Around mile 8 she looked at me and said good job. I responded with a you too. We rounded the corner and hit mile 9 and then it was long steady strides for the final mile. One of my co-workers/friends was at the finish line and she was yelling at me to finish strong and telling me I was looking good! That gave me the boost I needed and I crossed the line in 1:21:34 (chip time). Definitely under 1:25 and a new 10 mile PR. The last time I ran a 10 mile race I was 16 and I finished in 1:23:28. After I received my finisher's medal I headed to the tent to retrieve my bag and grab some post-race fuel and I then found Kerry and Danielle (coworkers of mine) and of course took advantage of another photo-op!

Kerry (on the left) had to leave to go to a bridal shower so Danielle (on the right) and I stood at the finish line to wait for Marilyn and Kristin (a friend of Danielle's) to finish the race. Right around 1:44 I saw Marilyn approaching the finish line and snapped her picture. As you can see she was very focused on finishing! She wanted to break 1:50 and she finished in 1:45! Way to go Marilyn!!

I headed back into the pavilion to find Marilyn and we of course had to get our post-race picture taken!

The one interesting thing about the race was the fact that there was also a relay option (each person would run 5 miles). I think it is a great idea and would be a lot of fun to do sometime. Fresh runners tagging in at mile 5 made me feel like I was really slowing down. Before I psyched myself out, I quickly reminded myself that I had been running for 5 miles and they were just starting.
I feel like I ran a very consistent race. In fact, the race results seem to verify my consistency.
First 5 miles
40:49:76 (8: 10/mile)
Second 5 miles
40:44:27 (8:09/mile)
Official chip time
1:21:34 (8:09/mile)
One week from tomorrow Cuz Michele and I will be running the Pittsburgh 1/2 Marathon and I am hoping I will be able to maintain a relatively similar pace. Only time will tell since today's race was pretty flat and there will be some hills in Pittsburgh.
Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Shopping, Dinner, and 22.2 in Pittsburgh

Friday evening the kids and I arrived in Pennsylvania. We spent the evening visiting with my family and friends. Saturday morning I got ready to head to Pittsburgh to spend some quality time with my cuz Michele. I left the kids in the very capable hands of their pop pop and grammy and I was on my way. I arrived at Michele's around noon and we headed to Panera to grab some lunch. We both had soup and salad which was very yummy! After lunch we headed out to do some shopping. I was in severe need of new summer clothes since I will be going on a cruise the week after the Cleveland Marathon and none of my summer clothes from last year fit due to my weight loss. The best part of shopping in Pennsylvania is the fact that there is no tax on clothes. I managed to do some major damage at the mall and walked out of there with 4 pair of shorts, 5 nice short sleeve t-shirts, 1 long sleeve shirt, and 1 three-quarter length sweater. After the mall we headed to Dunhams in search of new running shorts with a zipper pocket. No luck there so we headed to Dick's and sure enough the first pair of shorts Michele picks up are not only my size but they also have the zipper pocket. It was a great find by Michele and I had a coupon which made it even better. After we finished shopping Michele took me to the park we would be running at to show me the lay of the land. We headed back to Michele's around 5 o'clock to make dinner. Of course I took pictures of the action.
Michele reading the vegetable marinade recipe

Michele trimming the huge chicken breasts

The yummy pasta

Lemon caper chicken breast with baby spinach

Grilled eggplant and red peppers
Dinner was outstanding and we had great conversations about many things including our plans for our 20+ mile run. We decided we would plan to run at 7:30 AM. Since we wanted to get up around 5:45 AM so we could eat breakfast we headed to bed around 10:00 PM. We left around 7:15 AM and headed to the park near Michele's house. During our drive over we discussed our strategy. We decided to do the 8.5 mile loop (with the big hill) when our legs were fresh. I mentioned that my brother's friend recommended we run 22.2 instead of 20 because having 4 miles left would be less intimidating during the marathon. With that in mind we decided to go for it and added on three 4.5 mile loops (shortening the 5 mile loop by 1/2 mile eliminated the big hill which was fine by me!). We managed to get the other .2 miles in by running to the restrooms before we took off on our first loop. Running the loops made it possible for us to stop at the car after each loop to get some water and gu/sports beans when needed which worked out perfectly.
Michele before our run

Me before our run

We successfully completed all 22.2 miles. I think we were both a little delirious between miles 18.5 and 20. When we had a 1/2 mile left we kicked it up a notch and gave it our all. In fact, Michele's garmin had us running at a 7:45/mile pace. We hit 22.2 and stopped and we immediately hugged each other because we were so proud of what we had accomplished and simply because we were thrilled to be done with the run. We finished in 3:39 (9:51 avg/mile). Not too bad!
Michele and I after our run
We stopped to get ice and headed back to Michele's for the dreaded ice bath. It was really quite comical as we did our ice baths in a trash can outside! We both decided to leave on our running pants and socks because it was quite chilly out. We both decided that the ice bath definitely helped our legs.
Me getting in the cold ice bath

Me shivering

Not so bad after 5 minutes, how about 5 more

Michele entering the ice bath

Michele shivering

Not so bad, 5 more minutes to go
Once we completed our ice baths we headed back inside to get changed into warm clothes and then we had amazing chicken salads made with the leftovers from our dinner.

After finishing our yummy salads and having some vitamin water zero we exchanged hugs and said "see you in two weeks for Pittsburgh" and I headed back to get my kiddos. It was a great weekend!
Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

5.1 miles in 36:20...

So my 5.1 miles in 36:20 comes out to a 7:07/mile average. Of course I should probably mention that I cross-trained today so these are not running mile splits. The truth of the matter is they are biking mile splits. I went to a food show today for work and I was walking all over the building sampling all different kinds of foods from 10:00 AM - 2:30 PM and my feet were a bit sore. I figured running 5 miles on them might not be in my best interest if I want to be successful this weekend during my 20+ mile run with "cuz" Michele. It was beautiful outside so I figured why not head out on the bike for a little cross-training session. It was a nice change of pace and I definitely got a good leg workout out in. My friend Deb has mentioned that our goal after the Cleveland Marathon should be to complete a triathlon. I know I can handle the running portion without a problem and I can probably muttle (is that even a word) my way through the bike portion. However, I have to be honest and say that I actually fear the swimming portion and that makes me question my ability to complete a triathlon. So for now I will continue to focus on my May goals (the Pittsburgh 1/2 Marathon and the Cleveland Marathon). Speaking of the Pittsburgh 1/2, as I have mentioned I am running as a St. Jude's Hero in memory of Sophie Quayle. Please visit my fundraising page and consider making a donation for peadiatric brain tumor research.

Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

18 miles of scattered rain, snow, and hail

Due to this week being spring break I had to alter my training schedule to accommodate time restraints which meant I would need to complete my long run today instead of Sunday. Thankfully, the kids' great grandma came over to play with them while I headed out for my 18 miler this morning.

After several days of gorgeous weather, I woke to 39* and a rain/snow mix. To say I was not looking forward to going out in the elements is an understatement, but with the kids taken care of I laced up my shoes and headed out the door for three 5 mile loops and one 3 mile loop.

Miles 0-5 (loop one)
Weather: snow/rain mix

Miles 5-10 (loop two)
Weather: snow/rain/light hail mix

Miles 10-15 (loop three)
Weather: snow/heavy, painful right in the face hail

Miles 15-18 (loop four)
Weather: painful right in the face hail/insanely strong winds

After the third loop I seriously contemplated finishing the final three miles on the treadmill, but I was already cold and wet so I trudged on and completed all 18 miles with a time of 2:49:36 (9:25/mile). I stopped by the house after each loop for water. I also ate some sports beans around mile 9 and that seemed to give me a little more energy which showed in loop three's time. Overall it was a pretty decent long run. I am thankful it is complete and I am now watching "Princess Protection Program" with my kids and staying warm.

Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Sunrises, Tank Tops, and Summer Temps

This week is spring break so I have to schedule my running around my husband's work hours so I can be home for the kids. For the past two days I have headed out early in the morning and pounded the pavement. Yesterday I headed out around 6:45 AM and enjoyed a beautiful sunrise and tank top weather during my 4 mile run. Today I headed out around 6:10 AM hoping to get in a 9 mile run. It was warm again today and the sunrise was once again beautiful however the wind was out of control. I ended up only running 8.2 miles due to time restraints and the wind working against me. I am okay with being less than a mile short of my intended run because afterall I often end up running a few extra tenths without realizing it. Tomorrow is a rest day and then Friday I head out for my 18 miler and of course the temperatures are going to drop back into the 40's. Although I am thinking I will be happy to have cool weather for that far of a run. Friday will be my longest run so far. Any suggestions or advice for me?

Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!

Friday, April 2, 2010

12 Miles Then and Now...

January 31, 2010
Temperature: 17* (feels like 2* according to
Running Gear: Underarmour tank top, Underarmour long sleeve shirt, lined Ashland University Women's Cross Country windbreaker, my "I feel like a ninja mask", Underarmour tights, Nike dry fit pants, Underarmour gloves, and socks, shoes, and my Garmin
Finish Time: 1:59.50 (9:59/mile)
Major Annoyance: icicles forming on my eyelashes.

April 2, 2010
Temperature: 70* (feels like 70* according to
Running Gear: Underarmour tank top, Nike Dry Fit capris, socks, shoes, Undearmour headband and my Garmin
Finish Time: 1:56.16 (9:36/mile)
Major annoyance: sweat running down my face and hitting the sidewalk in front of me.

Don't get me wrong, I loved running in the beautiful weather today, however, I think I should have left a little earlier since it was probably about 75* by the time I finished. Overall, it was a great run and my body seemed to adjust to switching my long run this week.

Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!