Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Tink In Training Virtual 5K Race Recap

My blog/twitter friend Jennie over at Running Jennie is training for the Tinkerbell Half Marathon at Disneyland.  And she's doing something pretty awesome.  Instead of just paying the registration fee and  running she's decided to make this race about something bigger than herself and joined the Team in Training to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphomia Society.  She's hosting a virtual 5K/10K run and there's still time for you to sign up.  Click here!  There's lots of great prizes and even a cute little finishers necklace.  

This was my first "virtual race".  You run your favorite course whenever you want and then just report your time.  So, I headed out today with a bud at the gym and hit the loop.  It was a little cold and I was breaking in new shoes so it wasn't a PR for me.  I usually try really hard to get 10 min/miles when I do 5K races so I'm going to blame the shoes and the cold for the 11:10 pace.  Oh well.  It was still fun and something to make running the loop a little more interesting.  

Head over to Running Jennie and sign up! It's only $15 and it's for a good cause!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hal Higdon Novice 1: Day 1

So today is the official start to my half marathon training.  That's right.  We are 12 weeks out from the St. Jude Half in December!  Oh my goodness!  I'm fighting a knee injury right now.  I ran a little under 4 on the treadmill, aka Satan's Sidewalk, Friday and suffered for it this whole weekend.  Every step I took was accompanied by a loud and painful crack on the outside of my left knee.  So this morning I dug out my old knee brace and ran with it today.

I'm doing Hal Higdon's Novice 1 Half Marathon Training schedule with a slight bump so that my long runs are on Saturday instead of Sunday.  And since I'm an overgrown kindergartner I spent this morning making myself a little stick chart so that I wouldn't miss any runs.  What?  You know you'd do anything for a sticker too.  Plus, we're still kind of potty training the little Princess around here so I have tons of sticker packs hanging out around the house.

So today's run was 3 miles.  I don't know why it was so intimidating but it was.  I'm not sure if it's because I know that this 3 will eventually work up to 13.1 or if I was just nervous about my knee.  The weather has also been a little funky so I wasn't sure if it was going to be burning hot and I'd be forced to run on the treadmill so I packed both the outside running gear (garmin and ipod) and inside running gear (iPad).  Luckily we are still enjoying some nice in the 80s weather so I hit it outside.

Someone recently told me that trail running was better for your knees.  That someone needs to be found and smacked in the face.  I set out for a little bit of trail running in the park behind the Y based off this advice.  But it was killer!  The grass was tall, the ground was pitted, and there were giant limbs that blew out of the trees over the weekend's storm that had to be leapt over.  At times I was terrified my ankle was going to break.  The plus side was that the loop around the park was about a mile so at least my first mile went quickly as fear was my constant companion.  Ha!  For the second mile I did my standard loop around the Y but coming in I was doing battle in my head and decided that I should out and back my last mile to give myself some variety.

Tomorrow is supposed to be 2 mile run or cross training.  I have been enjoying a Zumba class on Tuesday but with a lot of lateral movements I'm wondering if that's been contributing to my knee pain.  Will have to ask the almighty Google about that...

Today: 3 miles in 31:22

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

C25K: Week 6 Day 2

So as I mentioned in my other life, I've been potty training the little princess which killed me last week. I grounded myself and didn't go anywhere except to the bathroom with Sassy every 20 minutes for the entire week!  So after getting a run in on Monday I wasn't able to run the rest of the week.  So this week I picked up on Monday and ran the W6D2 and then today I went out and ran it again so that I could keep my long run for Friday.

Week 6 Day 2 is the last interval run of the Couch to 5K program.  That's a little overwhelming to think.  Today's run consistent of 2-10 minute runs with a 3 minute walk in between.  I know that's not a lot of walking but there is just something comforting in knowing that after pushing myself hard for 10 minutes I'll get a short reprieve.  I know I've already done one long run at the end of Week 5 Day 3, but I still find them overwhelming to think about.

Therefore, I won't talk about what's coming up Friday.  I'll talk about what I accomplished today.  I hit the door the minute my Prince Charming got home.  My neighborhood is only 3 streets so with a 10 minute run I didn't want the monotony and constant turns of getting to the end of the street to turn around and run down it to the next street so I decided to run on the main road, Tracey.  Out here in the country (pronounced kuuuuuun-tree with a horrible southern accent) we don't have curbs or edges to the road.  Heck, you're lucky if there is a white line and not just a steep drop off into the drainage ditches.  So I was a little nervous running out on the main drag where people speed.  I hugged the white line as best as possible like one foot in front of the other on the white line and basically booked it as fast as I could to the next neighborhood over.  And it must have worked because I clocked my fastest mile yet 9:23.  My second mile on the way back to my neighborhood was 9:38.  So running on a busy street with drivers who really don't know how to share the road can help your pace because you want to get back to the safety of your neighborhood and quick!

But today my shoulders have been really tight.  I need some advice for how to loosen up my shoulders and upper body while I run.  I apparently run really tense through there because as the runs are getting longer my shoulders and upper back are starting to hurt more.  Any suggestions?

Monday, June 4, 2012

C25K: Week 6 Day 1

Well I blew off running last week.  I have a long list of excuses, but that's exactly what they are, excuses. And I really regretted it because while Monday was blazing hot last week Wednesday and Friday were really quite nice.  I should have gone running.

But anyway in my other life right now I'm potty training my lovely Sassy who is 2.5 years old.  Heaven help me.  If I can survive this I deserve to be in the happiest place on earth (aka Disney World).  After a week and a half of letting her go commando it was time to give her panties which means I'm grounded until she figures this out.  So that means that I didn't hit the pavement until about 7:45 after I got the kids in bed and the evening chores done.  But I had a nice run.  I ran around the neighborhood which has a slightly graded hill that I made sure to hit 3 or 4 times.  My pace slowed a little on the hill but it was good to practice there.  The Y track is pretty flat and I know races aren't always flat land so while my hill on Tracy Rd isn't very steep it's better than nothing.

So this week the first day had intervals of 5 minutes, 8 minutes, 5 minutes for running with a 3 minute and a 5 minute recovery walk.  I got through all the runs with no problem.  I came out the gun on the first run to hard running around a 9 min/mile pace which is probably why I was running around a 10:30 for some of the longer 8 minute stretch.  But I made through all the runs and felt strong.

I'm looking forward to Wednesday.  It's my last interval run of this program.  From there on out it'll be straight blocks of runs.

Friday, May 25, 2012

C25K: Week 5 Day 3

Today was it, the first non interval run of the C25K program.  My confidence fluctuated all week as I worked towards this run.  Part of kept thinking about how strong I've been running this time through the C25K program.  But then the evil part of my mind kept saying "20 minutes...that's a loooong time."  Finally on the drive to the gym today I set my intentions, quieted my inner doubt and decided I was going to finished all 20 minutes of the run, strong and upright and hopefully at a 10:30 min/mile pace.

Of course, then I saw the bank sign on the way to the gym that said it was 98 degrees outside.  Holy cow that's hot!  I have GOT to figure out a better time to run then at 11:30 when the sun is beating down on me.  And that's pretty much all I thought about for 20 minutes while I ran.  Well, that and "oh my gosh my mouth is so dry!"  I'm glad my husband forgot his nice Camelback water bottle today because I totally stole it and took it to the gym with me.  I downed all 24 ounces after my run was over before I even finished the 5 minute cool down walk.

So then I started thinking about what kind of running gear I need to invest in.  I know I'm only running short distances right now but I may want to look into going ahead and buying a hydration belt since it's so hot.  Plus that might help me get use to it for the long distance runs.  Do any of you have a hydration belt? What brand do you recommend?

Well, now for the information you've all been waiting for, pace and distance.  In the 20 minute run today, I clocked a distance of 2.04 miles.  So I amazed myself keeping it around a 10 min/mile pace!  I even used the lap button on the Garmin and I remember my first mile clocked at 9:40 and the other was 9:50ish.  So that's pretty freaking awesome!  I have NEVER run a 9:40 mile in my life.  Not even in middle school when we had to do the President's fitness challenge.  So I feel good about that.  The downside is that I'm getting accustomed to that pace and I'm starting to expect it out of myself so I'm worried about how down I'm going to feel when the run times are just more than I can do at that speed.  Of course, I would really have liked to see a negative split.  Though I'm not a real runner I talk to enough of them to know that negative splits are something you are supposed to strive for.  But I did push and give it all I had at the end so I'll have to live with that.

My main motivation coming up on the end of the run when I really had to push that last minute was that I left my water bottle at the point where I started the running interval and I was for sure not going to have to walk to get to it.  So I pushed hard at the end so I could make it back to the mile marker and get my water!  Whatever works right!  And yes, I did make it to the water bottle just as the narrator said time's up.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

C25K: Week 5 Day 2

I almost didn't get my run in at the gym today.  When I got done with yoga class I popped over to see how the kids were doing and make sure I didn't need to change any diapers and Lil' Joe was in full melt down mode.  I tried to feed him but he wasn't hungry, he was just being a pill.  Meanwhile, Sassy saw me so she expected her snack.  Thankfully the ladies that work in the nursery are so fantastic one of them took Lil' Joe from me even though he was screaming bloody murder and I promised to make it quick as I headed outside.

Today's run was two intervals of 8 minute runs with one 5 minute walk recovery in between.  I was really expecting to have a harder time pushing for my sub 10 pace but to my surprise every time I glanced down at Garmin it was hovering around the 9:30 mark.  I'm really proud of myself for that.  I remember last time I did Couch to 5K I didn't have a Garmin but I remember trying to figure out my pace and time by how long I was outside running and all that jazz and I thought it was something around an 11 or 12 min/mile pace.  And what's really stuck in my head was how hard I was struggling a year ago to stay under a 13 min/mile pace.  Now granted a year ago I was 20 weeks pregnant but still!

I felt strong through both of the runs but when I glanced down and saw I had 30 seconds to go in my last interval I tried to finish strong, lengthen my strides and speed up and thought I was doing it.  So when I glanced down at my wrist and saw that I was still hovering around that 9:30 mark I was a little disappointed.  My friend Travis always tells me to finish strong and to me that means sprinting to the finish line.  So I finished today, and I wasn't gasping for breath so in that respect I did finish strong but I really want to try Friday to push and sprint to the end.

Friday is a big day!  My first non-interval run in over a year.  I've got to pound that pavement for 20 minutes non stop.  I'm a little nervous.  But here's one thing I know for sure, I may not be fast but I will without a doubt finish.

Monday, May 21, 2012

C25K: Week 5 Day 1

Well, I got Gary the Garmin all charged up and took him for my first Week 5 run today.  This week is the first week where all 3 days aren't the same.  I'm still using my Robert Ullery podcasts since I'm running with my husband's iPod.  But before I left for the gym I made sure to find my iPod and hook it up to the computer.  Robert's podcasts are great but he uses techno music and by this point I need some good sing along songs.  So last time I did the program I found Suz's podcasts and used those for a few weeks.  Hers are neat because there is a theme to the music each week (i.e. 80s, 90s pop) so it's a fun variety.

Today was three intervals of 5 minute runs with 3 minutes of walking in between.  So a total of 15 minutes of running and 6 minutes of walking, plus the warm up and cool down.  I didn't make the distance quite as far as I did on Friday and I felt a little bad until I realized, you can't be in beast mode every time you run.  And since I had garmin I was aware of my pace and except for once, every time I glanced down I was still running at a sub 10.  In fact, most of the time it was hovering around the 9:30 min/mile pace.  So I'm pleased with that.

Wednesday the run is two 8 minute intervals.  This is where my sub 10 pace is going to be a challenge.  And by Friday's 20 minute run it'll probably be a thing of the past.  And that's ok, I'm not really a speed demon so I'll take whatever I can get.  As long as I run the whole interval, I'm proud of myself.

Now if I could just find a firecracker 5K to run since that would be the closest race to my completion date!