Thursday, May 31, 2012

More from Chicago

I took a break from updating about our trip to talk about Turbo, so I am ready to get back at the trip now.

I left off with running 10 miles on city streets.  And it was hot.  And city running is super weird, etc, so let's get back to the fun! 

I hung out and watched some television and researched nearby restaurants until J got back from his meeting, and then we decided to go and hit up Rock Bottom for an appetizer (lunch) and a few adult beverages while we watched a little baseball.  Now we have a Rock Bottom in Cincinnati, but we thought it might be fun to check out a different one.  I liked the restaurant itself a lot more than ours.  The layout and space was a lot different, and I LOVED the unfinished brick walls.  The beer and menu were pretty much the same, although it WAS Chicago craft beer week, so they had several different selections that were more up J's alley than mine. 

After Rock Bottom, we walked around thecity for a little while before decided to head back to our room and rest.  It was going to be a long weekend.  J had made dinner plans with his friend from the CME at Goose Island, so we did a little hunting to figure out where that was and how long it would take us to get there.  After determining that, we walked down the street to Lululemon, where J bought me my birthday present.  Early, but I will take it, especially when it is from there! 

He purchased for me:
Source - Turbo Run shorts (same as the black ones I bought for myself after the marathon.)  My new ones are not this color, but you get the idea!
Source - Tame me tank - in this color.  I have not gone out to test this one yet, but I am really really looking forward to it.

He also bought himself something from there, a pullover.  He wears black 1/4 zip pullovers all the time, so I am not surprised this is what he selected for himself!  It definitely makes me feel better than he bought something for himself there though.
Dinner at Goose Island started with the cab ride over there.  Then I met J's new friend and his wife.  The beer at Goose Island was awesome.  I selected one called Fiona, and drank two of them.  I ordered a burger, and honestly, it was just ok.  It wasn't bad, it just was not anything special. 

The next morning, we decided to go for a walk.  We headed over to the beach (we figured out how to get over there, unlike on my run the day before.)
 It was the first weekend the beaches were even open!  It seemed to be one of the situations where a lot of people were like "I know its chilly, but it is my first time here this summer, so I am going in the water!"  Crazies.  It was not even that warm out on Saturday.  We walked from where we were on the Lake (we were considered to be staying in the "near north") all the way to Navy Pier.  We decided when we got there to have lunch at Harry Caray's Tavern.  I bought J a shot glass and a beer koozy because he loves stuff like that from bars he visits.  We just shared little pizza and an appetizer.  I had never been to the Pier in all of the times that I had been to Chicago in the past, so after lunch we just walked around and checked things out.
Gotta love self taken (well, J taken) photos!

J decided we should take a cab back to our hotel, and my sister, mom, aunt, uncle and a few cousins were just arriving.  We hung out with them in the lobby for a little while (their rooms were not yet ready, and they didn't call ahead for early check in like we had the previous day!) and we decided to meet in the lobby prior to the wedding to catch a cab together.  Everyone cleaned up very nice and we went to the wedding which was a full Catholic Mass in a beautiful old church.  The priest was awesome.  He was funny and made jokes and kept everyone engaged in the ceremony, which I thought was really great.

There was some time between the wedding and the reception, so J and I hit up the Whiskey Bar in the hotel to have a beer and get the evening started on the right foot!  The rest of the family came back down from their rooms to head on over to the reception a bit later, and we all went over to the Washington Library together.

John and Ashley had a band, which was fun, food that was delicious, and a bridal party that had a surprise for them (a choreographed dance! - check out the link, you can hear John and Ashley making comments throughout!)  Not to mention that they looked amazing and so happy.
Overall, it was an AMAZING wedding.

Next up, Sunday and our drive home!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A Little Crosstraining is Good for the Soul

I started a new challenge yesterday.  In addition to my sub-4 or bust marathon goal, my run a sub-25min 5K goal and my various other PR-type running goals, I need to be doing something non-running.  I don't want to get burned out, I want to get lean, I want to be cut.  And so now is the time to really start working toward that so I can get stronger, run faster, and of course, look HOT on my vacation to Mexico. 

So when I signed up to be a Beachbody coach, I bought what they call a "challenge pack".  The challenge pack comes with everything that you need to get started with one of their programs.  This includes a workout package (I chose Turbo Fire), Shakeology, which is their best selling product (I chose the new Vegan Tropical Strawberry flavor), all of the nutrition guides, workout schedules, etc.  In addition, I signed up to be a coach at the same time, so my initial coaching fee was knocked down to zero.

So TurboFire started yesterday.  Liza, my upline coach, says that you should use the products and tell your story to really help building your business.  So I am going to use Turbo and Shakeology to learn more about a product that I really have not used previously.

So with Day 1, I figured a progress picture (or lack thereof) was a must.
So there are my starting photos.  I plan on doing updates every 30 days since it is a 90 day program.  Keep your eyes here as well as on my "progress updates" page for the comparison shots and thoughts so far.  I hope to see some major changes in these pictures over the next 90 or so days!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Attack of the Whirlies

I am definitely feeling bad that I wasn't here at all since last Thursday!  I read a few blogs from my phone in the car on Friday, but that was pretty much all.  But I guess I might have needed a little bit of time away.  It was nice to not feel attached.  I tweeted occasionally, but that is about it, which was kind of awesome.  I also felt guilty about being away though, especially since I have recently tried to do so many things to be promoting myself!

Anyway, J and I left early in the morning on Friday.  We left just after 7 am to head northwest to Chicago.  My cousin John was getting married and it seemed like not too many of the cousins were coming, and they (John and his fiancee Ashley) came to our wedding last August.  So of COURSE we were going to go.  John and I are only 8 months apart and we pretty much grew up together despite the fact that he grew up in Naperville (a suburb of Chicago) and I grew up in Toledo, OH. 

We both just packed bars to eat in the car on the way there, and we planned on a late lunch after J's meeting.  That was the whole reason we were going on Friday.  J managed to get a meeting scheduled with some folks at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.  He had met someone at a conference that he was at last week, so that worked out well.  Unfortunately it only entitled him to not use a vacation day, his company did NOT pay for one night at the hotel.  Lame. 

J was pointing out different things to me once we passed Indianapolis.  He had an opportunity at a company that is owned by the company that he currently works for that would have had us moving to Lafayette IN for about 2 years while certain things were taken care of.  He ended up not getting the job, which is kind of a long stupid story in and of itself, but at the time I know that I was relieved about it.  But because of his company owning this one, J spent a lot of time there, pretty much since he has been with the company, so he was describing the hotel, restaurants, and even Purdue's campus, which was a few miles away.

Just north of there, we found a windfarm.  I do not remember this from any prior trips to Chicago, and I was just entralled by it, both on the way there and on the way home.  Although it seemed like it lasted longer on the way there.  Although that might just be because I could not take my eyes off of them.

I like to call them "whirlies". :)

When we arrived in Chicago, we stopped at the hotel, checked in, valeted the car, and off J went to his meeting.  I took our bag upstairs and got changed into my running clothes as I planned to squeeze in my long run while J was at his meeting so it would not interfere with any of our weekend.  So after changing, out I went.  I ran toward the lake with intentions of running on that bike path that runs along lake Michigan.  Unfortunately I could not figure out how to get across Lakeshore Drive. 

No bother though.  I just wove up and down city street for 10 miles.  I even ran the last three miles at jusr below MGP @ 8:57 (I would like to clock my marathon miles at 9:03, at the SLOWEST to get me under 4 hours).  It was a tricky run, and it definitely didn't hurt as much as I expected a 10 miler to, but I think that is because there was a decent amount of starting and stopping for the lights.  I did STOP the garmin at every light I had to stop at, so my time for this only is running time.  I did the 10 miles in 1:32:08 for a 9:12 avg pace.  Not bad for the first time in double digits after the Pig!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Nice Leisurely Pace

Well, I made a BIG decision for myself yesterday.  I decided to be a Team Beachbody Coach.  I figure that is a good way to start investing in myself to get a health and fitness career (ultimate dream/goal) without a huge time investment.  It is also not a huge money investment which I would have becoming certified.  So if you would like more information about any programs, becoming a coach, or even shakeology (which I am going to use to give it a test run before I really plug it), you can go here.

Now that is all I am going to say about that at this point. 

After yesterday's speedwork, I was hurting a little.  I had on the schedule an easy run.  I just wanted to get out there, keep my legs loose and moving, and add more mileage to the week.  I know that I am not in the official training for Columbus yet, but I am enjoying the running, and I DO want to meet all of my goals for Columbus. 

So today I left my house at 4:45 am planning on running 4 miles at just faster than 10mins/mile.  When I reached 3 miles, I kind of made the decision that I was not going to be done at 4.  So I turned down a street into a sub division, and kept on going.  I ended up covering about 6 miles (just over that!) in 59:39.  That means I did the miles at an average pace of 9:55, which is right within my "easy pace" range from the McMillan calculator.  Anyone notice how I am really working hard to focus on using all of that stuff as best as I can!?  I really want to make my goal. 

Next week I should be getting Turbo Fire in the mail, and so I plan to create a plan for training for the marathon around turbo + the running.  I am curious about how that will all work together, but I am hoping that it will be thorough and help me get strong, get lean, and reach my marathon goals!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Speedy Treadmill Session

After yesterday's vulture scare, I decided that this morning would be a good time to run on a treadmill.  Well, I really did run on the treadmill, but it was not because of the vultures.  But that would have been a legitimate reason I think.  I am still afraid for the safety of my eyeballs!  I decided it was a good day for the treadmill because I was not going to make to the group speed workout tonight, so I was going to do the speed work on my own.

In the email that Coach Steph and Coach Brett sent out last night, the Run Happy Hour workout was going to be one of two things.  It completely depended on whether or not the track at the high school was available or not.  It has been pretty busy recently as it is high school district/regional time, and Mason has a good program and a nice track.  Because of that, it has been used fairly often.  Hence the two speed work workouts since the marathon we have done mile repeats and hill sprints.

So Coach Steph told me that if the track was available, they would be doing 200 repeats, and if not, fartleks.  The plan would include a 1.5 mile warm up, then 20-ish minutes of fartleks, and then a cooldown.  So I figured that 2 minutes on, 2 minutes off of fartleks would be a decently straightforward treadmill workout.  I planned on covering that, and then cooling down with whatever distance, to get me to a full 45 minute treadmill workout.  Original plan was 50 minutes, but then the gym ended up opening 5 minutes late, and morning workouts at the gym are tight times.

So when I got to the gym, I set the treadmill at 6.7 mph which the treadmill says is 8:57 miles.  This is just slightly slower than my "steady state pace" (Yay, McMillan calculator!)  Only 3 seconds per mile slower to be exact.  I ran at that pace until 14 minutes, which had me slightly over a mile and a half and then kicked up the treadmill to 7.7 mph (7:47/mile pace).  I alternated between those two paces for 20 minutes (5 fartleks) and then set it at 6.7 to finish out the run.  At 45 minutes, I had covered 5.17 miles, which averages out to a 8:42/mile pace, which I am definitely pleased with.  I am definitely starting to feel like with hard work I should be able to crush that 4 hour marathon goal!  (Not to mention a 5K PR, a 10K pr, and a sub25 minute 5K!)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Anyone Ever see "The Birds"?

Last night J and I went to the Reds game with another couple.  We went with Dave and Amy, who I played softball with last summer.  J knows them both from work, and once they got married, Dave went and found a job at a new company, since their company was very strict about things like that. 

Anyway, I left work around 4:30 to take care of my dogs so I could be on the road headed toward downtown at 5 pm.  I was planning on meeting J and Amy at the Moerlein Lagerhouse at 5:30 so we could eat dinner and have a beverage before the game.  Dave was going to meet us there as well, but he was going to be a little later.  I ordered a beer and a chicken sandwich.  There was nothing special about the sandwich, at least not that I could tell.  It had what I would consider to be pretty normal toppings (lettuce, cheese, bacon, honey mustard) that I get on my sandwich at taphouse all the time.  I ate the whole thing, along with some sweet potato chips on the side.  Was it the healthiest choice on the menu?  Definitely not, but it also certainly could have been worse! 

The game was fun, and the Reds won, which was great!  We had a nice time, and the weather was perfect for baseball, because it was not cold and it was not too hot either!  It was my second game of the season, and the first one was quite chilly!

When we got home, after getting into bed, I started to feel extremely nauseous.  I am not sure what happened, especially because there was only one beer, but I started to feel really bad.  And then I was stressing out a little bit because I changed my alarm and went off the "new schedule" and I was feeling guilty about going off of it only one day in after J and I had that long talk about it!  But at the same time, my schedule had 6 miles on it, and I knew if my stomach was even a little bit off, running was not a good plan.

But by lunchtime today I was starting to feel better.  I planned 6 miles with 4 of those at 8:30 pace.  I headed out on the same route that I did for my "easy" run last week, but planned to add on a little bit at the end.  When I got to the lake I was greeted by a scary site.  No, not those crazy geese that are everywhere in Blue Ash, but a different bird.
(not my picture)
A vulture.  He scared the bejeezus out of me.  And there were two of them!  I actually came back to the office and google image searched for vultures so I could make sure that was what I saw!  I honestly was afraid he was going to peck my eyes out!  So I kept running!

Here is where my 6 miles ended up:
My tempo miles were 8:19, 8:28, 8:23, and 8:20, so I would say goal attained and THEN some when it comes to speed, but I have some work to do as far as consistency goes.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Planning my Workouts

It is Monday, we have entered yet another week.  I am struggling to believe that it is already late May!  My sister is getting married in just 33 days.  I am already two weeks past the Flying Pig.  I have already been back at running, trying to fit in strength training, trying to figure out what kind of food is going to get me lean and strong.  It has been an experiment so far, with more than a few failures, especially when we go out to dinner.  Those pretzel buns at the Tap House are way too delicious not to eat.  And also, the beer.

So I guess coming on to some kind of balance is going to be the key to my life! 

I had a talk with my hubs last weekend (on Friday night) after a near meltdown at my office on Friday morning.  I am not sure why I suddenly felt so overwhelmed with my life, but I just lost it.  I cried to Joe, Bryan, Leah, my twitter, and Katie.  I just couldn't get the fact that J thinks that my running is selfish out of my head.

So when we were eating dinner, I said to him, "I hate when you call running selfish."  And that kind of got the ball rolling.  We definitely argued for a few minutes, and then kind of got to the heart of the matter.  Since the marathon (well, a few weeks before) I have been terribly off schedule.  My body has been demanding different things (like sleeping through my 4:30 am workout) which throws our family schedule off.  I feel guilty if I don't get my workouts in, so I do it after work then, meaning I am not accomplishing other things, and dinner is later. 

So my take away from all of this is: stay on task.  Haha.  I am working on creating a workout schedule for myself as well as a "to do/chore list".  That way, I will know what I need to get done and when, so I stay on task.  I know it seems silly, but if I don't have a list of things to accomplish, I will definitely accomplish zero things.  I know that I am a grown up and so I should be able to stay on task better than that, but apparently, I cannot.  So I am going to just go with it!

So on that note, I added my workout plan for this week to my google calendar, which I have shared with my husband.  I want to add more, but I am trying to figure out my long run schedule, which will be much easier once I have a training plan for the Columbus Marathon all hammered out.  I am getting closer to finalizing it, but not quite there yet.  I am hoping for a long run schedule for the coaches here pretty soon, so I can hammer out the long runs and schedule my distances around that for the during the week runs.

So this morning when my alarm went off at 4:35 am, up I went.  I got dressed and I headed to the gym for a full on strength training session.  I planned a full body workout.  I did 3 sets of 12 reps of the following exercises, utilizing all of the "Hoist" machines:
After all of that, I did a few sets of different core exercises including standard crunches, reverse crunches, back extensions, and bicycle crunches.  Rumor has it you get faster with a stronger core!  J and I are discussing redoing p90x, but if I become a Beachbody coach (this is looking to be more and more likely EVERY DAY!) then we might be switching that up with something different!  I am leaning toward turbo fire right now.

Friday, May 18, 2012

New Balance + Westin?

So today I was browsing on CNN's Health page, looking for a topic that I would find interesting to write about on here, because right now I am a little bit in a hole with my own health and fitness.  I am just not sure yet where it is going, so I thought maybe I could address a topic in the media.

They had a few interesting stories, including several more "opinion" pieces relating to Dr. Sanjay Gupta's Challenge - Fit Nation 2012.  That is definitely interesting, triathalons and all, but not what I was looking for.  And then I saw an ad on the side panel of the screen.  It was an advertisement for Westin Hotel's with a pair of bright red sneakers on it. 

I definitely clicked on it.  I landed on the page that the previous link will take you to. 

The idea is that Westin hotels provides new balance gear to folks who are staying at their hotels for a nominal fee (more research needed as to what this fee actually is).  You call the front desk, request your size, and then the clothes and sneakers will be brought to your room, saving you the need to pack your workout gear when you travel, especially when you are trying to fit a few days into a carryon!  For women, they bring you a pair of crops, a sports bra, and a tech tee along with a pair of New Balance 759s, which are neutral trainers.  For me, not the shoes to do a long run it, but they will work in a pinch!

Men get a pair of shorts and a tech tee, along with the mens version of the 759s.  Both the mens and women's versions give you a brand new pair of athletic socks and the clothes are freshly laundered.  You just leave the clothes in a mesh bag when you leave.
The 759s - Source
The Westin also offers video workouts that you can do in your hotel room, as well as information about staying healthy when you are not home!

Here is an article from the WSJ about this program including some facts and stats about people who work out while traveling.  I hope to improve my workouts while I travel this summer.  We will see.  Because of the previously mentioned things, I am not sure how that will work out yet. 

According to this article on the examiner, the cost is only $5/stay or can be paid for with your hotel loyalty points (375 of them). 

One of the items that the Wall Street Journal article hits on is the "ick" factor.  These clothes and shoes are not your own.  Now, the socks are, but the rest of it has potentially been worn by someone else, even though it was washed.  I think that some people will definitely take issue with this, and while it might be gross, I do not think that I am one of those people.  They are clean, I am sure that they were washed in the same extremely hot water that my sheets were washed in, and everything was disinfected.  I mean, hotels are held to the highest standard of cleanliness, and Westin's are typically way up there.  So I think it would be ok.

What do you think?  Would you wear loaner workout gear?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Hill Sprints

I made it to run happy hour last night for the first time in all of the time that I have been training with Buckeye.  Because of the current state of affairs with how J feels about my running and fitting things in with him, I don't usually escape for a Wednesday evening run.  They used to be on Thursdays, and now that it is summer and J is playing softball, etc, Thursdays would work for me.  However, it is track season, and the track has been in use on Thursdays, so they moved it to Wednesday, so I am out.

But J is travelling this week, at a conference in Destin FL, I didn't feel as obligated to be home and taking care of him!  So I picked myself up and went out to Mason.  I stopped first at Best Buy and made a return for J that he requested.  It was actually the mother's day gift that we purchased for his mom, he had gotten her a case for her ipad that had a bluetooth keyboard.  But it was open box (he was told it was a display model) and it had no power cord, no instruction manual, and even if it had a power cord, there was no where to plug it in.  That place was damaged!

After that I headed over to the Vitamin Shoppe as I have had a MAJOR Quest Bar craving.  I picked up one strawberry cheesecake and one cinnamon roll, both from their "natural" collection and ones that I had not tried yet.  I also got a whole box of vanilla almond.  Those have long been my favorite. 

After that, it was on to Buckeye.  I hung out with Steph before we headed out to the park.  I definitely took it easy on my jog to the park and just chatted with Steph and we talked about a few of the things that we had been emailing about throughout the week (since we hadn't seen each other since last Saturday!) and it was just nice to chat with her.  It always is. 

We ran through the park past some kids playing soccer, past a pond where some families with bicycles and dogs were hanging out, some fishing, and then we arrived at "the hill."  The plan was to do 10 hill repeats.  Down the path to the bottom (that was the recovery) and up as hard as we could!  Holy moly, that was rough stuff.  That hill was steep!  But I was trying to keep in mind the tips that Stephanie was shouting out, and also the things that Jon and Stacey (my Pig pacers) were saying as I ran up to Eden Park.  Lead with your knees, use your arms, relax your shoulders as you come down the hill to shake it out.  I pulled off all 10.  It was hard, but I am really happy I did it!

Today I spent some time with the McMillan Running Calculator.  Have you used this tool yet?  The more reading about "getting fast" and running marathons that I do, the more that I see that I actually need easy runs and recovery runs in order to get faster.  Its tough.  And during Pig training I just ran for the sake of running and the sake of finishing.  But now that I feel like I have a pretty good handle on it, I want to go fast.  Well, fast for me, at least! 

So here is a fancied up excel version of my race pacing abilities all based around a 3:58:33 marathon goal (I figured I could train to give myself a little room to come in under 4!)
Not bad, not bad, it would get me to that under 25 minute 5K based on the equivalent paces. 

So because I do want to get fast (and because of 10 hill sprints yesterday, I figured today was potentially a good day for an easy run.  I used the training paces from this to decide how fast I should be going for my easy run.
As you can see, for an easy run, my pace should be between 9:37 and 10:07.  Today my left quad was feeling a little tight, so I just let my legs do their thing, but I slowed them down if they were going too fast.
This ended up right around a 9:58 mile.  So right in there where it should be!  Running "easy" was tough since I have spent so much time focused on "must.go.faster!"  but I can see how it would be beneficial!
Tomorrow is a XT day, and then I have my first post-marathon double digit run on Saturday morning!  Eep!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

My NEW Running Outfit!

Last night, as I said, I did a 4 miler with two miles at my goal 5k pace.  I did it in my new, post marathon outfit, which is obviously from lululemon, now that we have TWO stores locally (before last September we had zero) and I might have a small obsession with that store!
Yeah, I look dumb, I get it, but it gives you an idea of how boss my new outfit is!

I am a girl who was not blessed with a large top half, so this chaturanga tank works fine for my little chest.  It isn't super supportive, but plenty for me.  I would say the support it offers is more than a basic target (C9 Champion) sports bra, but less so than my good moving comfort ones.  The shorts are their turbo run short which I selected specifically because they were slightly longer than the speed short, which made me nervous.  They were awesome for running in.  The material felt great on my skin and I had no issues with improper rubbing.  I will have to test them out on a longer run, but so far, so good!

I have been spending a lot of time with these guys over the last few days.

They LOVE their mommy, can't you tell?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Work Party!

This photograph is meant to be evidence of how awesome my job is.  This was how my afternoon at work went yesterday. 
We have some stuff going on at work right now, and some folks are definitely feeling a little bit down about it, so we had an ice cream social (with adult beverages!) and we also had a game afternoon.  We had three sets of cornhole boards set up, 3 euchre tables, and lots of people just hanging out and chatting.  It was an awesome afternoon.  I played 4 games of euchre, which was fun.  It has been a pretty long time since I have played, and I only won one of the 4, but I will take it regardless!

This morning, my body just was not feeling much like working.  I am not entirely sure why not, but it was just feeling mad at me for sure.  I woke up at 3 am, no idea why, and just felt kind of nauseous, so I reset my alarm for 6:30.  And there was no working out there. 

By the end of the day I was starting to feel better, so after work I got into my new outfit that I purchased for myself for running a marathon (lululemon, obviously) and got the garmin on.  I had no official plans for how far I wanted to go, or how fast I wanted to go, but I figured getting out there was good enough for the day.  When I first started going, my left quad was feeling a little tight and a bit tweaky. 

I settled on 4 miles, and I wanted to do it tempo-ish.  I planned to do the middle 2 miles at or near 5K goal pace, since that will be one of the big things that I want to do this summer.  It was not quite as consistent as I wanted it to be, but I guess I need to be pretty pleased.

Mile 1 - 9:12
Mile 2 - 8:11
Mile 3 - 8:02
Mile 4 - 9:26

So tomorrow night, I have a little bit of speedwork to do.  I think I am actually going to go to "Run Happy Hour" with the team for the first time ever.  I am looking forward to it, but I am also nervous, because I have mostly just done my speedwork on a treadmill up until now.  So it will definitely be different and tough, I think.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Next on My Agenda

Today begins another week of hunting for that balance in my life with my running versus lifting.  Last week ended up pretty well, actually.  Here is the run down of last week's workouts:
Let's be honest, that is not too bad for a week after the marathon.  I ran over 19 miles.  I also did all four strength workouts that are in the first week of the the Live Fit workout program.  I would definitely call that a success!  I am not sure where marathon training is going this time just yet.  Our coaches realized this weekend that our team is training for 4 different marathons in the fall.  (Air Force, Columbus, Chicago...  and another one that I cannot remember) I don't think that they have quite figured out how to approach it since last fall the whole group was training for Columbus, and we were obviously all after the Pig this spring!

So next up on my personal marathon agenda?
Hooray for Columbus!  Double hooray for the fact that they decided to route the full marathon course INTO the Shoe!  I am very excited for that especially. 
That part is going to be extra awesome, and is definitely the best way to convince my husband that this marathon is a GREAT idea.  The Buckeyes will be in town the day before, so I might try and get my hands on a pair of tickets for that game, so we can go to that, and then I can run the marathon the next day.  It might be a great way to get J involved in the marathon unexpectedly! 

I started off my day today with a wee bit of cross training.  I hit the elliptical at the gym this morning for 40 minutes, which was a nice change from running (although I have plans to run either tonight or tomorrow!) and then went back at lunchtime for some lifting.  I decided that since I got through the complete first week of LiveFit, I could move on to week 2, which was more of the same.  Here is today's notebook entry:
I just dressed casually for the gym today.  No fancy wicking tees even, which is my typical attire.  I just wore a t shirt.
I am twisted funny in the pic, plus I have my elbow in front of my belly, which I think maybe makes it look like it is a little round... but trust me, its not, not yet! *winks*  There is still quite a bit of discussion that needs to happen before we can even THINK about that!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Day of Strength

That was the plan for Friday.  I just have already run three days this week, and my goal is to have 4 days of running (one of them will be Saturday with my group) so it was a break from that.  So I pulled out a few workouts from the LiveFit trainer that I had not done this week. I already covered shoulders & abs, along with chest & triceps.  So I wrote down the legs & calves workout in my notebook, along with back & biceps, in case I had time.

I hammered out the workouts, both of them, on Friday morning.  I didn't feel, at the time, over working anything, but by Friday night, my legs were definitely feeling tired and sore.  More tired at the time.  But on Saturday when I got out of bed to handle the pups before the run, I was definitely feeling sore.  I got dressed into my running stuff for meeting up with the group and headed out. 

We had plans of 6 miles on the schedule.  It was not really a set schedule, but a good run none-the-less.  Jes was having some knee issues on Friday, so she took Saturday off.  So I ran a portion of the run with Jean, and some of it solo.  Jean and I have a pretty similar pace, at least it felt like it.  I covered the 6 miles in under 54 minutes, and had an average pace of 8:47/mile.  That's a great pace!  I have work to do to get to the point where it is maintainable, but I am getting started.

I think I am actually going to have a moment this week where I get to go to speedwork on Wednesday night.  J is travelling this week for work, so I am definitely heading up to the store for the wednesday night run happy hour.  I am looking forward to it.

Last night, we had a cookout at our house for Mother's day.  J's mom and sister came over.  Angela brought her husband and 4 children.  Talk about major birth control.  4 children all under 4 years old.  Yikes!

Thinking about that was especially meaningful yesterday because I had a meaningful conversation with my coach, Stephanie yesterday about our futures.  Her children and my future ones.  It just came up how fun it might be to go through this experience together because then we would be able to have someone to rely on.  Someone who knows what we are going through.  And I am kind of the only one in my friends who is in that is "there"  or that will be there in the next 6 months to one year.  My other friends already have a few or are ready to try immediately, if not sooner!

I guess I have a lot of thinking to do...

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A retirement (of my shoes)

I am clearly "back" post marathon.  I feel pretty darn good.  At lunchtime yesterday I got into my running gear and headed out for a midday run.  I currently know what my ultimate goal is, but I am not sure yet how I am going to get there.  I have a decent idea right now, but I am just trying to do different things for the moment and see what happens. 

Main goal: Run the Columbus Marathon in under 4 hours.

Side goals (in no particular order):
1. Find running and lifting balance
2. work on my diet and clean it up
3. be a good wife and doggie mom while training (more balance!)
4. Maintain some focus

So that is it when it comes to health and fitness. 

My runs since the Pig include a 4 mile progression run (each mile was faster than the one before it), a 4 mile tempo run (with 6 total miles) with tempo pace averaging around 8:53,

and today a 3 mile run which included 4x400 at 8:00/mile.  Tomorrow will be used for lifting and on Saturday we have a 10K scheduled with the group. 

I have learned a lot about nuun and started drinking it regularly.  It was particularly awesome during yesterdays 6 miler.
(PS - have you seen this Simple Hydration bottle?  I got it at my running store and I flipping LOVE it.  It is so easy to carry.)

I also retired my first pair of asics.  Ever.
Don't worry, Cumulus 13s, you will enjoy your afterlife as everyday shoes. :-)  Its weird to be wearing them with the regular insoles in them.  I have just been wearing my orthotics with them ever, so the regular insole is very cushy.  And since I have 2 other pair from various recent expos, I am not too worried.  I have them nice and replaced.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

On Hobbies

So it is no secret to anyone who reads this that my hobby is definitely fitness.  I love to lift, my love of running has grown exponentially in the last 18 weeks of marathon training (oh yeah, I probably need to do a recap of week 18, right?), and I love all things health/fitness.  Now food, obviously that could use some work, but I would say that fitness is my hobby.

Now J's hobbies are a little different than mine.  J openly admits that he enjoys what he calls "drinking athletics".  These include golf, beer league softball, cornhole, and beer pong.  He always includes beer pong in that list.

I have no problem with his hobbies.  Do I wish he would love exercise like I do?  Absolutely.  I don't think he minds that I don't enjoy golf though.  It gives him J time. 

Here is my trouble currently.  Running and working out for me, are considered to be a "selfish" hobby.  At least, to my husband.  I agree.  Marathon training especially can be selfish.  I would be lying if I said I didn't see that a little bit.  However, my fitness is very important because it was what keeps me "level".

Until I got to the point where I was very consistent with my workouts (whatever they were at that time, lifting, running, spinning), I was on my medication for Bipolar Disorder.  I was on a pretty heavy duty med as well (an atypical antipsychotic, doesn't that sound scary?).  As my working out got more consistent, my brain did as well.  I started to feel better more often.  Eventually I stabilized on that med, and slowly my doctor and therapist worked on weening me off the med (yes, my doctor did this, I did not make this decision on my own.  I was scared to come off of it!) and eventually weening me off therapy as well! 

I credit my fitness with this.  I mean, I am not a doctor, but I believe that exercise does a lot to help keep me "level".

My goal relating to this is to get opinions.  Do you thinking running and working out is any more selfish than playing golf or softball?  Granted, those things are not solo activities the way running is, but they are not done with me, they are J activities.  And running/lifting is a ME activity.  I can't think of a hobby that I might have that would not be "selfish".  Does anyone else out there face it?  Anyone have any ideas of how to discuss this with J?  It is very important to me that he understand this because I am going to need my time still even when we have children.  It might not be everyday anymore, but I think it is going to be very important.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

One Day Rest & Back on the Horse

I ran this morning.  After resting yesterday (with the exception of walking around Target at lunch and walking to the library to return a book after work), I was feeling good and ready to get back on track and back to running. 

So after work yesterday, I came home and spent some time with my stick and the dogs.  I didn't have anything on the agenda for the evening, so I just relaxed a little.  My body needed some relaxation after the workout I gave it on Sunday, after all.  I already knew what I was going to cook for dinner, because I was not really going to be cooking!  After our dinner at Maggianos on Sunday, J and I were both sent home with bonus pastas, so we were just going to reheat those and have that for dinner.  And when I got online to find the reheating instructions, it just talked about microwaving, so SCORE!  4 minutes and our dinner would be ready.

When J was changing out of his work clothes, I heated up dinner (and a piece of naan for him, which he requested).  We both had water with dinner and enjoyed our ravioli from Maggianos.  Definitely not the most ideal dinner, as far as "healthy" goes, but we'll be back on that wagon in no time, I have every confidence.

At least we were eating at home and not spending money on another dinner out.  I am giving us some credit for that! 

We hit bed pretty early last night, getting in bed by 8 pm.  I know, we are completely lame like that.  J did a little bit of work and I just rested and we were probably both off to sleep in the storm that we had last night by about 9:30 or 10.

When my alarm went off at 4:35, I was ready to get up and get a workout in.  I feel like I probably could have yesterday, but I skipped it in favor of a rest day.  After all, it WAS the day after my marathon, and I certainly SHOULD take a day off.  I dressed in my running gear and checked out the window.  It was still raining, so I hit the gym.  I decided to run at the gym on the treadmill instead of outside, because then I would have more control over my pace. 

I started it up with the plan of 4 miles twisting around in the back of my head.
Mile 1 - 9:40
Mile 2 - 9:31
Mile 3 - 9:13
Mile 4 - 8:57
And then another 0.26 miles at around 9:30 to round out to 40 minutes.  I ended up with an average of 9:23 pace, which I was pretty pleased with.  I was just getting bored, so I kept kicking it up on the treadmill!

Tomorrow's speed group as mile repeats.  4 of them.  I want to clock them in at around 9min/miles.  We shall see!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Flying Pig Marathon: Race Recap - Part II

So I left off running into Madisonville and finishing the 13th mile. 

There were a decent number of people out here on Bramble, the longest stretch in Madisonville.  That was kind of unexpected to me.  There was definitely what I would consider a University of Dayton house, with a whole bunch of folks in their mid twenties partying in the front yard.  They had good signs and were handing out cups of beer.  I did not take one.  I did not think beer was going to help me finish the second half of this marathon. 

We then were running down Murrary street, which has a large blvd down the middle and you could then see the runners that were ahead of us coming back the other direction.  This section was considered to be Mariemont.  We knew we were going to have a friend in Mariemont cheering for us (I found out this morning, that she was not there, she slept in.  Lame) so we continue to stop at EVERY water/gatorade stop to attempt to keep ourselves hydrated.  It was really starting to get hot, and the shade was minimal.  It was exciting to get to the other side of that Blvd and see the runner that we were ahead of!

Mile 14 - 9:57
Mile 15 - 9:57
Mile 16 - 10:04

I was definitely starting to feel it at this point, but Jes was telling me that she was definitely going to need some help to get through 21-24 in a few miles, so I took two gu's at once and hoped for the best.  We walked through the next few water stations.  I actually needed to walk a little at this point and did, but just for a little bit until I had caught my breath.  Then a few butt kicks to get the legs moving once again, and we were on our way.  We went onto a little bit of a highway at this point.  They had one lane and the wide shoulder completely closed off for the two miles we were on Columbia Pkwy (aka 50) and the sun was just BLAZING onto our shoulders with zero trees even close by to protect us.

Most of Mile 17, all of 18 and the beginning of 19 were on this highway.  As we exited the highway, we were greeted by a young kid in a suit.  His whole group was dressed up Blue Brother's style, and they were playing!  I asked the kid "aren't you hot?"  He told me no, so I told him I was, and he did a little dance with his fluid station arrow sign. 

This was Eastern Avenue.  Said by several people to be the most boring part of the course, as there are not very many spectators out.  I think that the race staff knows this, because there certainly were a lot of "Grunts" through here.

Mile 17 - 11:02
Mile 18 - 11:13 (I am fading fast!)
Mile 19 - 10:09
Mile 20 - 10:29

Not a whole lot was going on at this point in the run.  It was really hot, and I was just focusing on getting through it.  Admittedly, I was hoping to have a resurgence of energy to push my way through the last 10K, but it just did not come.  At the mile marker for mile 21 we were at Airport Rd.  I pointed down it to Jes "Hey look!  There's your RR tracks!" where she had slipped and wiped out during our 20 miler.  She decided that she did not want to detour down that street and revisit them.  Can't say I blame her for that one!  We passed my friend Dave, who was hanging out on the sidewalk on Eastern cheering for his wife Amy.  I met them through J and played softball on their team last summer.  (I took this summer off, and have zero regrets about it)  When I shouted at him, he knew it was me though, because I found out later that

Shortly after that we went through the changeover from Eastern Ave to Riverside Dr.  Riverside was really the homestretch for us!  At mile 22 Brett was supposed to be there with our sign again, but we didn't see him.  I feel that I should assume he was there though.  He's a good coach.  During Mile 23 we stopped so Jess could use the bathroom.  I would say we stopped for at least 3 minutes during that time, and I stretched out on the curb getting my calves, quads and hammies a little bit looser for our last 5K.

Mile 21 - 11:26
Mile 22 - 10:25
Mile 23 - 12:53 (bathroom break!)

Miles 24 through 26 are honestly kind of a blur to me.  I remember running through a section where they were handing out cold washcloths and draping that over the back of my neck for about a half mile.  I remember more water, more gatorade.  I remember the fact that the heat was REALLY getting to me.  I remember crossing a timing mat that had a big sign that said one more mile. 

Very shortly after that I told Jess that I needed to walk to the "bottom of that hill".  My shoulders were starting to tingle, and I was afraid that if that tingle got up to my head I was going to pass out.  So we walked to the bottom of the hill, and then I gave it everything I could (which was NOT MUCH) to get to the finish.  I reached out my hand to Jes, she looked at me, grinned and grabbed my hand, and we crossed, hand in hand, the finish line.

Here is the view from my dad:
He and J were up on a bridge over the finish line, which was a place I suggested they go, knowing it would not be as crowded.

Mile 24 - 10:33
Mile 25 - 10:25
Mile 26 - 10:53
Mile 26.45 (per garmin) - 4:16

Total time: 4:26:53.

And of course, this happened too:
I did it!!!

Flying Pig Marathon: Race Recap - Part I

Well its over.  After all the sweat and tears (and blood on Jes's shoulder from her spill on a training run), I can now officially say that I am a marathoner.  Yesterday I ran 26.2 miles.  I did not run them up to my ability, and I am honestly not sure what happened, but never mind, it was my first marathon and I made it.  I can reflect on what I can do better for next time, later.

The mileage times I am posting in my entry are garmin times.  The garmin ended up saying I finished with 26.45 miles, so they are a little bit off.  Keep that in mind!

The whole team argeed to meet at my house in Blue Ash since I am fairly centrally located at 5 am (which also meant a little bit of extra sleeping time for me!) and we would all head downtown together.  We had gotten a carpool parking pass which allowed us to park for free, which was nice, and we all managed to fit in one car!  So downtown we went and walked from the carpool lot to the start to kind of get our legs a little bit warmer.  As soon as we got there we hit the port-a-potties to make sure we got them in before the lines got ridiculous.  Turns out, that was really smart of us!

We then split up to go into our own corrals because we have a pretty big variety of paces in our group, and here was the scene in the corrals.
18,000 runners trying to figure out where to be and get into the right places.  Hectic for sure!

Jes and I went into corral D and found the pacers for the 4:10 group.  Their names were Jon and Stacey (both male, in case you were curious!)  They were dressed like twins, right down to their shoes, which I promptly made fun of and then they told me that they were given the shoes (and outfits) for being pacers.  I guess that is not something to complain about then!

Jon and Stacey were chatting with us, and mostly talking about the heat.  They had both run Boston two weeks before and were hot.  They said that this would be hot too, and while they thought the deferral option was silly (obviously, we're all bad @sses!) but that we should expect to run up to 35 minutes slower than our goal time!  That had me worried almost right away.  4:10 was feeling a little bit ambitious to me, (which makes me a little sad!) and now they are saying 35 minutes slower?  Yikes!

Before we knew it, they were singing the national anthem and the gun was going off.  We walked up to the start with Jon and Stacey, and then we were off!  The start was crowded, but not unbearable, and not as crowded as I expected.  We could run right away after we crossed the starting line.  We were not running our 9:33 pace, but under 10.  We ran by the stadiums and J's parking garage and mile 1 was over when we hit the first bridge.

Mile 1 - 9:51

The bridge took us into Kentucky at Newport.  Most races that I have done downtown take that Bridge (Taylor Southgate Bridge) the opposite way, so I think this was my first race going over it in this direction.  We ran through KY which was nice and flat with a lot of crowd support (I guess this is where all the KYians go to cheer!).  We headed over the Licking River bridge into Covington, and I did not remember the bridge being a hill like it was.  Jes said it was because we ran it the opposite way the last time we ran it, and before that we were both struggling with past injuries on Thanksgiving!

Covington passed quickly and without incident.  I honestly remember very little about this because it feels like it happened SUCH a long time ago.  (Yesterday morning is already blurry.  It must have been the heat!)  Before I knew it we were on the Clay Wade Bailey Bridge (where Jes lost her knees on Thanksgiving) headed back to Ohio.  Jes and I were both feeling chipper at this point, with her yelling, "hey, what do you say we go back to Ohio!" and our little pace group cheering.  After crossing the bridge we headed west for a brief time over on Cincinnati's west side.  This was the first time that I stopped for water, and it was a rough stop.  The first several tables were already out of water!  I had to sprint a little to catch up with my group.

Mile 2 - 9:05
Mile 3 - 9:07
Mile 4 - 9:08

We headed up Linn Street to turn onto 8th and curving into 7th to enter downtown.  7th street was packed with people from beginning to end cheering with cowbells and signs.  The people definitely were inspiring for me to keep the pace up and stick with the group.  Things were a little tight in through here but we were still making up time from our slow start, and hoping to pick up a little time for the huge hills that we knew were coming our way miles 6-9.  Jon and Stacey told us that plan upfront, so we were ready for it and expecting it.  At the corner of 7th and Gilbert, I saw my dad and J, right where they said they would be and I yelled (LOUDLY, Jes said) for them, but they missed me.  Sad.

We turned the corner on to Gilbert to start our ascent to the highest part of the course, through the most difficult climb in the course, up to the overlook in Eden Park. 

Mile 5 - 9:26
Mile 6 - 8:57 (our fastest mile all day!)

We headed up Gilbert and took a right on to Eden Park drive.  We were in a fairly shady portion of the course, and I was there, about two steps behind the pacers, following their lead.  Stacey would shout little instructions about taking shorter steps, using our arms more, and then shaking out the arm tension on the downhills.  I was so glad to be with them because they were reminding me to do the things that I was too focused on to remember!  We crossed the 6.8 timing pad and my time was sent out to J on his phone, and we hit another hill. 

Soon we were running through the Overlook with beautiful views of the river and at the top of our big climb.  There would be a few more hills to come, but we were through the hard part.  There we also saw Brett, one of our coaches, who made a sign for us!
Buckeye is the store we run with, and so it was only approriate to have it on the sign.  It definitely helped to see him at this point.  We ran around the curve, past Edgecliffe and onto Victory Parkway.

Victory Pkwy is a nice street, interesting, to me, considering where it is located.  It is not know as one of the best neighborhoods in Cincinnati, but it was very pretty and people came out to watch.  Soon we were running up Woodburn headed toward Madison Rd.  Woodburn is where god blessed us on our 20 miler and sent us a map of where we were running.  I am eternally grateful for that map.  At Madison, the marathoners turn right, and the Half runners go left, they are headed back toward home.

Mile 7 - 9:56 (HILLS!)
Mile 8 - 9:39
Mile 9 - 9:30

At this point, we were still sticking with the pacers.  But I was beginning to feel it mentally.  My legs were holding up ok, but I was definitely hitting a mental barrier to my success.  I was taking in water at every stop, and occasionally mixing in some gatorade.  I had trained with gatorade a little bit, so I knew that I would be ok to take it without getting sick, so I figured the electrolytes would help a bit.  At the very least, they couldn't hurt. 

I slowly started to fall back from our pacers and lose some stamina.  I was already frustrated with myself for losing them a little bit.  I told Jes at that point (ALREADY!) that she should go ahead, but she was determined to stick with me (thank heavens).  We passed St. Margaret Hall, where some of the folks that live there were out on the street with bells and pig snouts which made me smile and keep going.  We passed Bob Roncker's, Cincinnati's BIGGEST running store, and virtual monopolizer of the expo the previous day and headed up the hill to Hyde Park.  I knew that there would be a HUGE crowd in Hyde Park Square (at least that is what I had heard from lots of others) and hopefully that would help me. 

We entered the square just before mile 11 and that did help reinvigorate me briefly.  But somehow I was just in a mood and I couldn't shake it.  I should have been thrilled to be running my first marathon, but instead I was all funked up for some reason.  We headed up a small but steep hill to where the Hyde Park Kroger is, and there was quite a crowd there.  I was HOT and the sun was beating down on me.  My forehead was already a salt lick, and I was starting to feel kind of gross.  As we ran past the Hyde Park Country Club, we crossed the mat for the half marathon.  It felt good knowing I was halfway there as we continued down Erie to Madisonville.

Mile 10 - 9:35
Mile 11 - 9:31
Mile 12 - 9:39
Mile 13 - 9:46

More to come...


Now that the marathon is behind me, I figured it was time to sit down and really focus on what it is that I want to do/need to do next.  YES I am already registered for another marathon and YES it is on October 21 (Columbus OH!) so there will be running as a part of this plan, regularly even.

However, I do not want my life to be so revolved around running as it was during Pig training.  The reason I allowed myself to run 6 days/week was because I have never ever run a marathon before.  I had a coach (well, my running group coach) design a plan and for my first marathon, I wanted to stick to that 100%.  I knew it would be with that that I would feel the most successful.  And I did.  I was adequately prepared for 26.2 miles and I ran successfully.  Now for me, success is not defined by the time that I ran this marathon in.  It is simply the fact that I ran a marathon.  Heck, I didn't just run a marathon, I ran the Flying Pig, an extremely difficult (traditionally) marathon!  And it has appeared on more than one list of the "most fun marathons" see here and here. 

But anyway, enough about that.

Fitness/Health goals Post-Pig:
1. run 4x per week.  This includes:
         - 1 long easy pace run
         - 1 track/speed workout
         - 1 tempo run
         - 1 other run (TBD)
Tracking & results relating to this goal:
         - track runs on daily mile
         - keep better pacing logs to track improvements
         - PR at Columbus
2. strength train 2-3x per week
         - Kara Goucher's Strength Training for Runners workouts
         - misc Tone It Up workouts
         - New Rules of Lifting for Women
Tracking & results relating to this goal:
         - increase squat/deadlift 1 rep max
         - use SP to track workouts
         - keep notebook in car for the gym
3. Update my diet, clean things up
         - read the Primal Blueprint
         - cook "clean" meals
         - pack lunches more
Tracking & Results relating to this goal:
         - cook one new clean recipe per week. 
         - weekly weigh in
         - track food/beverages via spark or some other site

I have a lot going on, and I really hope that I can find some solid balance and make everything work this summer!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Marathon Week - Friday: 2 days to Go

I am nervous.  That is really all I can say at this point. 

I haven't ever done too much thinking about myself as potentially an emotional eater, but yesterday I realized I am.  I guess it is good to notice these things.  I was on some kind of sugar tear.  I think it was nerve related for sure.  A few more pieces to my starburst wrapper chain were created, and I also ate a package of fruit snack gummy things.  I love those, but I would like to cut them out as they are pretty much sugar.

So I am going to work on taking notice of all of these things on Monday.  Monday.  The day AFTER the race.  First stop, cutting out added sugar.  Second stop, cutting gluten and getting my carbs from vegetable sources.  That's my first step I think to start getting back to leaning out!  We shall see where I go from there.  I have been reading a book that is causing me to think about my diet A LOT lately.

The Primal Blueprint (I have my copy on my kindle, and lets be honest, a picture of my kindle in its red case might be pretty, but is not going to tell you a whole lot about the book!)

Have you heard of this?  It is similar to the Paleo plan that lots of crossfitters follow, but this plan allows "tubers" (potatoes), especially of the sweet variety, which lets be honest, I could not give up!  The book is written by Mark Sisson, the man behind Mark's Daily Apple, a blog that I have been religiously following for about a year.  He also (in addition to my favorite sweet potatoes) allows most fruits, minimal VERY dark chocolate as a treat, and even the occasional alcoholic beverage (red wine is the best for the antioxidants, followed by white, followed by beer).  Now this is a plan I could get behind!

I am going to try and move into it slowly.  I plan on continuing to race and train for BIG races, the Columbus marathon is less than 6 months away after all.  So it is going to be a focus on proper fueling and leaning out all at once.  We shall see.  I am getting excited for the future.

This morning I hit the gym at 5 am in my "make sure I am adjusted to waking up for Sunday" method.  I did the back & biceps workout that I skipped yesterday because I was on a hunt for marathon appropriate sunglasses.  It went well.  I skipped running, but I am down to only 2 days!  That must be ok, right?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Marathon Week- Thursday: 3 Days to Go

I am really beginning to get nervous now.  I think that is because of this morning's run.  I decided I needed to force myself out of bed at 4:35 for the first time this week (I will do it tomorrow too) since I am planning on heading out VERY early on Sunday morning to allow for the most time that I might need prior to the race!  I am trying to get my body back on its early morning schedule.

Let me back up a little bit.  Last night after getting home I did another Live Fit workout, shoulders & abs so I wouldn't feel like I was completely slacking this week on my strength training, since it is more important to me anyway.  I am not liftings legs this week for sure, and shoulders and abs was doable at home unlike back and biceps (which is on tap for lunch today!) so I figured, why not?  I busted out my 5 and 15 lb dumbbells (my shoulders need a LOT of work!) and set to it. 

Afterward, J and I walked up to fedex/kinkos to get our passport photos taken.  We probably should not have put it off as long as we had, but at least it is done.  Tomorrow I will mail in the applications.  I needed a new one for my new name (my old one didn't expire until 2020!) and J's was expired.  Now we need to get them in and cross our fingers that they are in by July! 

I cooked some dinner while J mowed the front lawn.  We went very summertime on our meal, and I made sweet potato fries and asparagus (roasted in the oven) and burgers on the grill.  It was a delicious dinner that I would be will to repeat immediately.  So I might, tonight, when I am on my own since J is at softball. 

So anyway, we headed up to bed around 8 pm and watched one episode of Lost.  Well, it was the second half of the pilot, actually.  I think we're ready to watch it now.  J watched it religiously when it was on, and I did not, but I always have been curious.  He has all of the seasons on DVD or blu-ray, so now that he is ready to rewatch, we are watching it together.

When my alarm went off, I got up as planned.  I got dressed in shorts and a tank and headed out the door.  I had only three miles planned, since we are so close to the finish line.  It was tough.  My legs felt heavy and I felt tired.  I got through it with around a 9:37/mile pace.  I was not pushing it AT ALL, which I felt was probably important. 

Only 3 more days!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Marathon Week - Wednesday: 4 days to go

Last night after I got home, I decided to run three miles and test out what I wanted to wear for the marathon.  I just wanted to check on the top mostly, because I sometimes have issues with tanks riding up when I am running.
After 3 miles on the treadmill, this is how I looked.  ANd the shirt seemed to be ok.  And yes, I am going with the pink shorts, purple top look that I LOVE (and can be seen here in another incarnation) so it just made sense to wear it for the big day!

And yes, that outfit is SWEATY after my three miles on the treadmill.  I have no idea how J runs in that room all the time.  I asked him that later when he got home.  He had no response for me.  Lame.  Next time he goes in there to run it will probably stink from this sweat ball!

Today I decided to just lift.  I pulled a workout from the Live Fit Trainer, the first one, which was chest & triceps.  It was good to go to the gym with a plan, as it was something that I have not done the entire time that i have been training for the marathon.  Ahhh... I missed it.  Here is my notebook with today's workout in it:
I definitely will be following this plan for weight training.  I worked harder than I have in a VERY long time, and it felt AWESOME.

No run today, resting up for a short one tomorrow and Friday!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Marathon Week: Tuesday

Race week.  I know I wrote that it was that just yesterday, but its getting more and more real every single time I think about it.  And more and more EXCITING every single time I think about it! 
This just happened in g-chat:
 me:  JASON.  i am running a marathon in 5 DAYS!!!!
His response: Yay.

Yep.  That's it.  No caps, no exclaiming.  I am pretty sure it is just a "yay.  then maybe you'll stop waking up at 4:30 in the morning."  Not likely! 

Yeah.  That's how I have been feeling lately.  It's all I can think about.  I suppose that is normal.  It is one of the ONLY things that I think about right now, because I just cannot wait to be running.  Yes, I realize I am going to be running for hours and hours, but I am still unbelievably excited about it.  I am struggling with the fact that I have run more than 20 miles 2 times, and I haven't had a long run in under double digits since early February!

I plan to go home and test out my planned marathon apparel for one 3 mile run.  I am still deciding if this will be a treadmill run or an outdoors run.  If it is treadmill, it will be a 4x400 workout with a half mile warm up and a half mile cool down.  If it ends up outside, then it will just be a regular easy run.  Easy since intervals and speedwork might not be my current best decision.

In other news, my diet has been sucking and this happened:
No, I did not eat all of those today, just most of them.  Sigh.  I feel guilty trying to skip carbs right now because of the long one, and I would be FINE if I was eating nice whole grains, but instead I am eating straight up sugar!

Sigh.  I'll let  you know where I end up on the run!