Friday, May 31, 2013

May in Review

An easy 7 mile run yesterday and some strength and cross-training today were supposed to bring my May training to a close.  However, my son shared his illness with me and I ended up closing out my May training with a stomach bug.  It was not pleasant and I am happy to be feeling much better!

The May Details

May 2013 stats
133.7-- running miles
0-- spin miles
0-- jump rope fitness workouts
0-- core fitness workout
0-- Pure Barre classes
0-- Fitness App workout
133.7-- total miles

Current 2013 stats
470.26-- running miles
67-- spin miles (3 classes)
19-- jump rope fitness workouts
1-- core fitness workout
12-- Pure Barre classes
1-- Fitness App workout
537.26-- total miles

2013 "to do list" check-in

2013 Running Goals
1. First and foremost 26.2 under 4 hours--enough said
-Toeing the line on Sunday, September 15, 2013 in Erie, PA
Erie Entry

2. Achieve a second sub 1:50 so I can remove the asterick from my current sub 1:50 PR
-I attempted to achieve this at the Indy Mini Marathon but my calf had other plans for me.  I did run the CLE 1/2 marathon two weeks later but I ran it strictly as a training run so there was no chance of PR'ing there and that is okay because I was running the race with my September marathon goal in mind.
Indy Mini Marathon

CLE 1/2 marathon

2013 Mini Running Challenges
1. Run 100 miles per month
-133.7 miles run in May.  There's a lot to be said for marathon training and hitting monthly mileage goals.  I would have had a total of 146.7 miles but I sacrificed a 6 mile Saturday run during week 2 of training for my daughter's figure skating competition and I had to sacrifice my 7 mile easy run yesterday due to stomach bug my son shared with me. 

2. Run 1300 miles for the year
-829.74 miles to go to complete this challenge.

2013 Non-Running Mini Challenges
1. Cross-train at least twice a week
-I failed big time at this one.  I didn't do a single ounce of cross-training as I am back into the throws of marathon training.  I need to fix this one because I know it makes me a stronger runner.
2. Complete a jump rope workout every day
-Not a single jump rope workout completed. This seems to be a trend...
3. Drink 50 ounces of water per day (based on my current weight, this is my daily water intake need)
-I'm good with this one for the most part, except for trying to rehydrate myself after the evil stomach bug.
4. Take my vitamins daily
-Vitamin taken every single day in May.
5. Continue to choose and cook healthier foods
-7 meals made in May.  I need to do better with this. 
6. Learn to swim...better luck this year
-Once again, second verse same as the first. We all know this one is a thorn in my side. I have done extensive research in regards to swim lessons. I just need to figure out what will fit my schedule and make the commitment.

I am very happy with my running for May.  I just need to fix the lack of cross-training and I will be good to go.

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

Monday, May 20, 2013

Cleveland 1/2 Marathon Race Report

If you follow me on Facebook, you probably saw the following status on my page this past Tuesday.

It is going to be a little weird to not be running an event at the CLE marathon on Sunday. I have run either the 1/2 or full marathon every year since 2009...

See the reason I didn't sign up for the race this year is because Kaelynn was competing in a figure skating competition in Michigan so we would be out of town.  Unfortunately the schedule of events isn't posted until about one week out from the competition.  I didn't want to pay the money to enter on the off chance that she would be skating on Sunday.  As it turned out, both of her events were on Saturday and we would be home Saturday evening.  One of my running buddies, Missi, didn't sign up for the race either so we made a plan to meet at the Metroparks and run our own 13.1 on Sunday morning.  Fast forward to Friday afternoon and I receive a fowarded email from Missi indicating that Team VW had free entries for Sunday's CLE marathon.  The only thing Missi typed in the body of the email was...interested???  I immediately texted Joe and asked him if it would be okay if I took the entry and used it as a training run.  He was okay with that so I emailed my release form and photo ID to my friend Patty so she could pick up my packet at the expo on Friday since I was headed out of town and just like that I was running the 2013 CLE half.  After taking care of the details, Kaelynn and I made our way to Michigan where we enjoyed a lovely dinner with my awesome cousin, Tiffany.  While we were at dinner, I received a text from Patty verifying that I was in fact going to be running on Sunday morning.
Thanks for getting us the free entry Patty
Kaelynn's first event was to start at 8am on Saturday which required us to be at the rink by 7:00am.  It was very early and neither of us had slept well.  It was not one of her best skates but she got out there and did it and learned from her mistakes.  Apparently, she took it to heart because she had an awesome practice ice session for her 4:11pm event.  She was determined to retire her Can Can music on the podium.  She skated her heart out and did everything her coach asked her to.
2nd place out of 10 girls.  Kaelynn by far was the youngest in her group!
After everything was said and done, it was time for the 2+ hour drive home.  We planned to stop on the way home to grab dinner.  As luck would have it, the rest stop we chose had pasta available and I was able to get some good carb loading in.  It took a little longer to get our food than we would have liked but it was worth the wait.  We finished up our dinner and then headed back to the car for the rest of our trip.  Kaelynn was promptly sound asleep within 2 minutes of me leaving the rest stop!  It was a long day for both of us!  I ended up pulling into my garage close to 10pm.  By the time we unloaded the car and I got everything out and ready for the morning, it was after 10:30pm.  I called it a night and hoped I would sleep well since my alarm was going off at 4:00am.  I managed to sleep pretty well and only hit the snooze button one time.  I got dressed and made my way downstairs to get my coffee and peanut butter toast to eat in the car on my way to Missi's house.  I arrived at Missi's house right on time at 5:30am and then we car pooled with our friend Bick to the race start.  In the car there was discussion of goal times and running plans.  I made it clear that Joe had told me to run it at my training pace for the first 11-12 miles and then I was welcome to see what I had left for the last mile or so.  Missi and I run very similar training run paces so we planned to stay together for as long as we both felt good.  We arrived at the stadium, used the restrooms, and then stopped for some pictures.
Becky, Bick, Seth, Missi, me, and Kim inside Brown's stadium
With our photo session complete we headed to the start line and wished each other well.  We crossed the start line about 5 minutes after the clock started.  Not too bad.  Missi and I, as well as Kim, stayed right together and tried to navigate our way through the masses.  It was incredibly crowded at the beginning.  We did the best we could and hit mile 1 with a 9:27.  This was definitely slower than our training pace.  We continued to do our best within the crowd of people.  It thinned out some and we did really well during miles 2-6 with splits of 8:40, 8:46, 8:56, 9:02, and 9:09.  The funniest part of these miles was seeing a picture of Missi and I on Facebook later in the afternoon.  I guess I was concentrating on sticking to the plan.
Missi is all happy while I am running  next to her and not even noticing the camera! HA!

Shortly after this photo, I unintentionally lost Missi in the crowd.  I just focused on my plan and went with it.  I continued to run by feel while not pushing the pace too much.  I was quite pleased with miles 7-12 with splits of 9:05, 8:52, 8:56, 8:52, 8:53, and 8:45.  Once I saw mile 12, I hit the gas pedal and gave it my all with a 7:47 for mile 13.  I was still feeling great.  Dare I say the pace almost felt easy?  I gave it one final push and clocked a 7:12 pace for the final tenth and crossed the line in 1:57:17.  The best part was I felt like I could have kept running so that has to be a good sign!  A few minutes later Missi came through the shoot with a smile on her face.  She had also run a sub 2.  I am very pleased that I was able to run the race according to the plan and not try and go for a PR.  The end goal of this training cycle will come to light on September 15, 2013 in Erie, PA!  While this wasn't a 1/2 marathon PR it was a huge course PR.  I have never finished the CLE 1/2 in under 2 hours!
Great day for a tour of Cleveland on foot!
I am so thankful that I had the chance to run CLE again this year.  Thanks again to Patty and Team VW for hooking us up with the free entry.

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

Friday, May 17, 2013

My Birthday and Running Updates

Today is my 39th birthday.  I will remain in the 35-39 year old age grouping for 365 more days.  My day has been great so far with numerous birthday wishes on Facebook, through text messages, and phone calls.  My staff is also very thoughtful on my birthday!  In fact, they presented me with a nice gift bag and ice cream cake this morning.  They know how important running and the running communnity is to me so they felt the Boston Strong shirt was a perfect tribute to me.  I couldn't agree more.
Goodies from my staff.  The pringles and swedish fish will be road tripping with Kaelynn and I this afternoon

So what have I been up to in the world of running lately?  Well, I am in week 2 of my training plan for my next running adventure that my friend Joe was kind enough to create for me.  So far my training has been going very well.  Last week was a nice and easy recovery week.
35 recovery miles

Why did I run 35 miles during a recovery week you ask?  Well so I can see what I am made of in September when I toe the line of my fall marathon in Erie, PA.  I am not quite ready to share my goal for this race just yet but let me just say I am ready, willing, and able to put in the work that will be required to meet my goal.
Erie Marathon Entry Confirmation

 This week's training has gone very well.  I ran 6 easy miles on both Tuesday and Thursday and did my first track workout on Wednesday.  I am very pleased will how all of these runs went.  It was outlandishly hot yesterday which did remind me that it is best to sacrifice a little bit of shut eye and get the workout done before the sun comes up!  I am currently sitting at 19 miles for the week and the training plan calls for 6 miles tomorrow and 12 miles on Sunday.  As I mentioned in my April in review, I will sacrifice mileage any day for my kids so I will likely be sacrificing my 6 mile run tommorrow as I will be in Ann Arbor with Kaelynn for her final ice skating competition of the 2012-2013 season.  Fortunately it works out that I will be home to do my long run on Sunday so I am not sacrificing all 18 miles this weekend!  Like Joe said don't worry too much about it because this early in the training program it isn't even a spec of sand on the beach.  I like how you think Joe! 

To snag a line from Joe, one of the greatest athletes I have the pleasure of being friends with, it's time to go to work!

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

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Indy 500 Mini Marathon Race Report

This past weekend Deb, Nikki, and I crossed another state off our 1/2 marathon in 50 states list.  Friday morning I was at the ice rink with my daughter so she could take the next level of her figure skating moves test.  After she successfully passed the test, I headed back home to meet Nikki so we could get on the road for our drive to Indy.  Since Deb now lives in Chicago, we would just be meeting her at the hotel on Friday.  Amanda and her friend Becky would also be running the 1/2 on Saturday so the plan was to meet up with them as well.  I tried unsuccessfully to convince Nikki to take the turnpike so we spent quite a bit of time in road construction and traffic which resulted in us arriving a good 40 minutes later than planned.  The discussion of taking the turnpike on the way home came up and yes, we did in fact take the turnpike home and made excellent time.  Deb was also stuck in horrible traffic so we all finallly made it to the hotel a little after 7:00.  Shortly after checking in, we headed to the expo to get our packets.  We had an 8:00 reservation at St. Elmo's and Amanda and Becky were gracious enough to head over and check us in for dinner.  Both my husband and Deb's husband highly recommended we eat dinner at St. Elmo's so that is how we ended up there on Friday night.  My sorority sister, Ellen, was also running the 1/2 on Saturday so she joined us at dinner.  It was great to see her.  I was sitting next to Amanda and we got to talking.  See, I had originally offered to pace her to a sub 2 in Indy.  Missing my sub 1:50 goal in DC by 43 seconds has haunted me since I crossed that finish line.  I mentioned to Amanda that I really wanted to run fast and she said that was fine.  I was very appreciative of her understanding.  I know she is capable of that sub 2 half so I knew she would be fine.
Nikki, Ellen, me, Amanda, Becky, and Deb
After dinner we headed back to the hotel to prepare for the race and then headed to bed to try and get some sleep.  5:30 came quite early but it also came with no rain in sight.  The forecast had called for rain so this was a pleasant surprise.  We all got dressed and then drove downtown to the race start.  We ended up meeting Amanda and Becky in a hotel where we used the restrooms and sat for a little while before heading to our starting corrals.  Deb also went ahead and made dinner reservations for us for Saturday evening.  Multitasking at its very best!!  Off to the start line from here.
State #12

I exchanged hugs with Deb and Nikki and then stepped into my corral.  I had a lovely conversation with a couple that was using the 1/2 as a training run.  After this, there was a moment of silence for the Boston Tragedy and then the singing of the National Athem.  You could have heard a pin drop at that 40,000 people deep strarting line.  To be quite honest, I got choked up and had to hold back the tears.  Minutes later I crossed the starting line for my 13.1 mile journey.  I settled into my required pace early on which I was quite happy with especially with the crowd of people running next to me.  Around the 1/2 mile mark I saw Amanda.  The course was nice and flat until we got to the Speedway.  There was a good sized hill that you had to run up to enter the speedway and the track was definitey banked.  I had no idea what was about to happen to me about one mile after I entered this beauty.
I totally swiped this picture from Amanda's facebook!  Thanks Amanda!

I was progressing just fine and holding pace for the most part.  I did slow a little but I was still on pace for the most part.
See, 1:50:31 was my estimated finish time in the brickyard
And then it happened, my left calf locked up and literally stopped me in my tracks.  It was incredibly painful and I had no choice but to walk.  I was immediately relieved that I wasn't pacing Amanda because I would have felt awful and had to send her on her way while I worked out the pain.  Perhaps it was karma from the running Gods for not just running with her from the beginning.  Okay, karma, I get it!  Lesson learned!!  I tried taking in more electrolytes and water in the hopes that it would ease the pain.  Yeah, not so much.  I ran when I could and walked when needed.  I stopped at a medical tent just before mile 10 in the hopes they would have biofreeze.  No such luck so I stopped and stretched it some more and then called a friend to "cry".  I also tried to call Amanda as well as send her a text to see where she was.  She told me she was just having fun and she was at mile 9.5 and I shouldn't worry about her.  I replied letting her know that I was in quite a bit of pain and I was at mile 10 stretching.  A few minutes later Amanda appeared and I was so relieved to see a familar face.  We jogged the final 3.1 miles together.  I was very thankful that she was there.  We enjoyed chatting and reading some great signs.  We ended up crossing the finish line in 2:14.  I was just happy to finish it.  Definitely not the race I was expecting but that's the thing with running, you just never know what the day will have in store for you.  We headed to the post race party and met up with Becky and Nikki after they finished.  We were taking pictures and all of the sudden I had to jump off the ground and walk around because BOTH of my calves rolled and locked up.  Talk about painful!!
Amanda, Nikki, and I.  Yes, I am gritting my teeth in pain

We all chatted for a bit and then Amanda and Becky headed to their hotel as they were heading home Saturday afternoon.  Nikki and I hung out behind the wall of military personnel and waited for Deb.
Military personnel keeping the runners and spectators separated until out of the secure zone

I ended up getting a few more calf cramps during this time.  I did my best to walk them off.  Once Deb finished we headed to the car and then we headed to the cupcake store.  Don't judge...we earned those cupcakes!
State #12 Run and Done
We grabbed a quick bite to eat at a drive thru and then headed back to the hotel for a much needed shower and a glorious nap!  Saturday evening we headed out for some Mexican.  The food and company were great.  Oh, and the margarita was good too!  Once we made it back to our hotel and got settled in, I heard water running in the bathroom.  I thought maybe someone hadn't turned the knob all the way off.  Upon further investigation by Deb, we saw that there was a leak in the ceiling above our shower.  It was literally raining in our hotel bathroom which resulted in Deb calling the front desk and us moving to a new room at 10 PM.  Never a dull moment! 

Sunday morning we headed out for brunch and then we said our good-byes and started our drive home.  We made much better time on the way home thanks to the decision to take the turnpike!

I had a massage last night and come to find out my calf pain was directly related to an incredibly tight IT band!  Thankfully I am feeling much better today! 

Complete a half in all 50 states status: 12 states and D.C. completed

Completed states: Arizona, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Texas.

Up next: State need to figure that out!!  I might also be working toward a pretty lofty goal but I will save that post for another day!

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