Friday, July 31, 2009

Easy run & Call-out to B.o.B.

My husband woke me up this morning getting ready to go to the gym. He’s not as hard-core as me about working out, he usually goes twice a week. A while back he got really serious and went every other day. He doesn’t do any cardio, just lifts weights, but he gets a good cardio workout doing that because he lifts at a pretty high intensity. Anyways, seeing him getting ready made me get out of bed and go to the gym with him. It has been pouring the rain for the past couple of days. I decided I was going to run an easy 3 miles and then do a little lifting. I didn’t want to do too much because my 10k is tomorrow morning and I want to be fresh, with no muscle soreness. I felt really good during the 3 mile run, running at an easy 11:15 pace on the treadmill.

After the run, I did some situps on the incline bench. I honestly haven’t been to the gym in a while, doing most all of my running outside and my core training at home. It’s nice to change up the core training a little. Usually the incline bench awakens my abs and I really feel it the next day. After that I did a couple of different upper body strengthening exercises. I did this thing that a personal trainer showed me once. I think she called it eights. You do 1 set of bicep curls, 1 set of hammer curls, and 1 set of curls where your arms are angled at the side of your body (not sure of the name of them). These sets of 8 repetitions each are done back to back to back and you really feel it! I then used the lat pulldown machine for a couple of sets, and finished with two sets of the lying tricep extension. Not a lot of strength training, but getting me back in the spirit of doing it.

I don’t know why I don’t make strength training a priority. I’ve been focused so much on getting my training runs in that I don’t think about anything else. And while running makes me feel great and has taken a few inches off of me, there’s nothing like the sculpting that strength training can do. I feel incredibly amazing and sexy when I have been strength training. So, B.o.B, I am calling you out, girl. I will commit to it if you will. Starting this coming week, I’m going to strength train 3 days per week. This probably means I will have to get up and go to the gym in the morning before work, and then run after work some days of the week. Let the strength training begin!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Bad week & prepping for a 10k

This week I decided to change up my running schedule a little bit because I have a hilly 10k this coming Saturday, and I didn't want to overdo it. Sunday's 12 mile tempo run must've taken something out of me for this week because I haven't felt very good on the other two runs I did after that. Obviously, I took Monday off. I didn't even cross train because I worked all day and didn't plan ahead very well. I could've went to Zumba, but forgot to bring my clothes with me to work. I planned a 5 miler on Tuesday, which turned into a 4 miler because my tummy started acting up around mile 2.5. Wednesday I didn't do anything again, not even cross training. Today, I had an 8 mile speed workout scheduled, but decided to cut it way back because of the 10k Saturday. I ended up only doing 4 miles (1/2 mile warmup, 4 x 1/2 mile @ 8:30 w/ 1/4 mile recoveries, and 1/2 mile cooldown). I can't say I didn't feel good today, I just didn't WANT to do anymore. I felt like I could've done another mile of the speedwork, but didn't feel like it. That's no excuse, and I better get out of that thinking quick! I'm going to do a light 3-4 mile run tomorrow at an easy pace, then my 10k Saturday I'm going to try a 9:15 min/mile pace and see how I do. It's supposed to be hilly, but I'm not sure just how much. The good thing is that next week is a recovery mileage week. I enjoy recovery weeks because I'm nice, refreshed, and ready to jump back into the harder runs the week after. I think I definitely need it. I'm going to try to get quite a bit cross training in, hopefully strength training. I really need to stop talking about strength training and just do it. Somebody make me do it!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Long run turned into Tempo run

I skipped out on my Saturday 3 miler. I didn't mean to exactly, but that 8 mile speedwork on Friday wore me out. Plus on Saturday, I had to work 9-2, then I had a birthday party to go to at 6 and I didn't want to have to shower and get all glammed up again, lol. Anyways, so I planned on 12 miles for my long slow run on Sunday, then I get this text from Andrew at about 9:00AM asking me where I'm running. He has been doing a lot of cross training but hasn't jumped back into his intense running regimen. He wanted to run with me because he knew that I would keep a nice slow pace, and he wouldn't push himself too hard (his typical 7 min/mile pace!) I knew what this meant for me, though. I usually run a 12 min/mile pace on my long runs, but I didn't want to put him through that, haha. So, I used this run as a chance to see if I could maintain the 10:00 min/mile pace I want to run for the Charleston Distance Run. A 10 min/mile pace for him is slow and for me is fast, lol. I have been training at slower paces and faster paces, but not at the 10:00 pace, so this would be a good test. If I could keep up that pace for 12 miles, with about 6 weeks left of training I should be fine for the Distance Run, as long as I don't wear myself out on the hills.

I had high spirits that I could do this; at least Andrew was running with me and I push myself harder when I run with him. One problem, however, was that I picked a new 12 mile course I had never run before. I found it on a local running club's website, and it said there were some rolling hills. For some reason I didn't quite understand this when I read it. The term "rolling hills" didn't send out an alarm to me at the time. We get about 3 miles into the run and I start realizing the rolling hills part. Here I am trying to keep a 10 min/mile pace, which is hard enough for me to do on flat ground, much less on rolling hills! Needless to say, I was getting beat up by these hills, lol. But, we were keeping the 10 min/mile pace, except for 3 different occasions. In my opinion, keeping that pace for 9 of 12 miles is pretty darn good! At mile 6, we stopped and I downed some Gu and some Gatorade. The run back felt a little harder, as if the hills were harder. Probably just in my head. I had to stop at the top of one of the hills and catch my breath a little. I felt like that tiny bit of Gu was sitting in my stomach like a brick. It was probably just the fact that I was not only running hills at a pace that was difficult for me, but also a distance. I have never ran that many miles at that kind of pace. At about mile 8, it started pouring the rain. It felt amazing and energized me for a couple of miles. I had to stop at mile 10 and at mile 11 for a short breather. That last mile was the most aweful mile that I have ever run in my life! We probably ran it at a 9:45 pace, and I was cussing and whining and praying to Jesus the whole way. Andrew just laughed at me. Seriously, though, I don't know how I made it. I can't even explain how it felt, I was just exhausted. I crashed to the ground when we finished, a little delirious. I ate a Clif Bar while trying to talk to Andrew.

I know for a fact if I had not run with Andrew, I would've given up on the whole 10 min pace thing. I would've given up really early actually. For those of you who run solo or are afraid of running with others, you should try running with someone who is faster than you. You will be surprised at how far you can push yourself just by having someone else by your side. He knew I was dying, lol, and he would've slowed down if I asked him to, but I didn't, and I'm a better runner for it!

Running stats:
Distance: 12 miles
Time: 2 hours!!
Ave pace: 10:00 min/mile
Ave HR: 171
Calories burned:

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Another speed workout!

Friday after work I went out for another speed workout. I know I just did one on Tuesday, but that wasn't planned, and it involved 1/2 mile intervals, not 1 mile intervals. Plus, I can use all the improvement in speed I can get, lol!

I got off work at 6:00 and started running about 6:45 or so. I should've waited till about 7:30 because it was still sunny and humid outside during much of my run. I just thought I would save time by bringing my running gear to work and just running afterwards. Not next time! I had to stop a few times during my recovery jogs to get some water. Luckily, there was a Wendy's on my route, and they gave me a big cup of ice water. I couldn't have finished the run if it hadn't been for that break of a few minutes. I was supposed to do a 1 mile warmup, 4 x 1 mile at a 9:15 min/mile pace w/ 1/2 mile recoveries, and a 1 mile cooldown. I ended up doing the speed part at about a 9:00-9:10 pace. Because my recoveries were 1/2 mile, it kind of messed up my splits. The Garmin wouldn't let me reset my laps at the half mile, so I only know my true pace for two of the speed miles. Overall, it was a great run, just beat me down a little because of the humidity. The last mile of the speed portion was difficult to finish, but I made it through, thanks to the water from Wendys.

Running stats:
Distance: 8 miles
Time: 1:22:53
Ave pace: 10:21
Ave HR: 165
Calories burned: 932

Next run: Sunday, 12 mile long slow run
Total miles this week: 26

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I need a day off!

I have been working out and running a lot lately. I feel like I haven't gotten much done the past two weeks except working, coming straight home to change, and then working out. I've been kind of tired lately, so I think I'm going to take an off day. Driving home from work, I just felt like relaxing this evening. Well, I will do my W1D2 pushup workout tonight. I'm going to do my 8 mile speedwork tomorrow after work, and then my 3 mile pace run on Saturday, then back on schedule with my long run on Sunday.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Speedwork and Zumba

Today, I went to Zumba class at the YMCA. One hour of Zumba makes me happy :) This week I increased from 4 running days/week to running 5 days. Wow, I will be running five days per week for the next 6 weeks or more. There is really no where else to fit another running day in besides my Zumba day on Wednesdays. So, after an hour of Zumba, I ran 3 miles on the treadmill. My friends are beginning to think I'm crazy! It was a nice easy run, at about an 11:30 pace. After all of that, I did 2 sets of the good morning, and 3 sets of back raises to strengthen my hamstrings.

Tuesday is usually the day I run the hills with Andrew, but he is still out trying to heal an injury. The hills are too dangerous to run by myself (no shoulder for most of the run), so I decided to do a track workout. I did a 1 mile warmup, 4x800 meters at a 5k pace with 400 meter recovery jogs, and a 1 mile cooldown, for a total of 5 miles. My Garmin's battery was dead, which I didn't discover till I stepped foot on the track, so I really don't know how fast I was running or how long it took me. I assume I was doing close to an 8:30 min/mile pace during the speed part. I was really movin and was about to die by the end of each interval. It felt really good, and I had lots of energy the whole rest of the evening, and all morning today! I do have to complain about all the people who walk on the track and hog the inside lane, knowing there are runners on the track as well. It's common courtesy to walk on the middle or outside lanes when there are runners on the track, but maybe people don't know this?!?

Next run: Thursday, 8 mile speedwork (1 mile intervals)
Total miles this week: 19

Nutrition Facts for McDonalds

I have posted nutrition facts for McDonald's menu items that contain less than 500 calories and less than 20 grams of fat, with complete nutrition facts on my Food and Exercise Log blog. If interested, check it out. It may come in handy to print off!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

New Food and Exercise Log Blog

Well, I decided that since a running blog has done such a great job at keeping me running, a food log blog would be a good idea to keep me calorie counting! I think all of us runners should keep some kind of food log, so we know what types of foods affect our running. Mine is more for purposes of controlling my eating.

Here is a link to my new food and exercise log. In it you will simply find a log of everything I put in my mouth, complete with the nutrition facts, as well as simply a line about what physical activity I did that day. If you are interested in what I eat while I'm training, then check it out! You may discover some different foods to try. If this works and I actually start losing weight, then maybe it will inspire you!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Calorie counting blah!

Ok, so a while back I made a post about losing weight as one of my goals and I calculated the number of calories I needed to eat to lose 1 pound per week. I never actually started calorie counting because it seemed that I was doing fine with just "watching" what I was eating and running. Well, that's not working anymore, lol. It seems like I'm always finding a reason to eat a meal I'm not supposed to or snack when I'm not supposed to, and because I do run a lot I think this is ok. Obviously it's not ok or I would weigh a lot less than I do! I'm so tired of jumping on the scale and occasionally seeing 150. I never ever ever want to see that number again! I want to get far enough away from that stupid number that no matter what my hydration level is that day (or whatever other stupid contributing factors there are), the scale will not give me that number. If I sound hysterical right now, it's because I am!!

Now, a couple of years ago, I calorie counted for 3-4 months straight, at 1300 calories per day. Boy, did I see results! I was treadmill running and lifting weights on a regular basis during this time, so the results were great. I reached 144 pounds, which is the lowest I've ever weighed, and I trimmed a lot of inches off. I feel like the only way for me to reach my goal is to resume this dreaded calorie counting again. Obviously, 1300 calories is crazy, especially for as much running as I'm doing. I'm going to shoot for 1600-1700 calories daily for this week and see what kind of results I get. Yesterday, I ate 1800 because I ran 11 miles and I felt like I needed to eat more. I'm going to play it by ear and see where this lands me.

Let the calorie counting begin!

Long Run #8 - 11 miles!!

Yesterday was the longest run I have ever done in my life! I am at a point in my training where I will be having these types of workouts. Until a couple of weeks ago, all the distances were familiar to me in past training, but now I'm venturing into new territory where I will be pushing myself farther than I have ever before. It's very exciting! I felt that way during my tempo run the other day. It seems like each run now is a test of my ability, and so far I have been up to the tasks.

So, I made some changes from last Sunday's 10 mile long run. Last Sunday, I ate half of a Power Bar during the run and ended up with horrible side stitches. Before yesterday's run, I went to Dick's Sporting Goods and purchased Gu Energy Gel. Some runners on dailymile recommended it to me. The only flavor they had was tri-berry, so that's what I bought. I was also armed with three 6 ounce bottles of regular Gatorade. I have heard people complain that they can't take the energy gel and drink regular gatorade because it's too much electrolyte for them and they end up with a tummy ache. I am a super salty sweater, so I figured I would be ok. It didn't bother my stomach one bit.

The temperature was perfect - well almost perfect. When the sun wasn't shining, it felt great out, about 70-73 degrees. The sun wasn't shining for about half of the run, but the half that it was shining was difficult, especially because it was the last half of the run and I was getting tired. My pace started off around 11:50 min/mile and by the end had slowed to about 12:20 min/mile. I slowed down according to my heart rate, which I tried to keep under 150bpm. Apparently the heat was getting to me, so I slowed down. I think that my knees and shins are a limiting factor in my running. They start aching after I run long distances, I would say longer than 8 miles. There is a dull aching to them, not bad enough to stop running, but noticeable. When I have to stop for traffic while crossing a street, I can really feel my shins aching, then it subsides a little when I continue to run. Once I'm finished running, they ache for a little afterwards, but by the time I'm back at home they are fine, and they don't hurt the next day. I'm not sure if this is normal or not. I need to do some research on this. One thing I have noticed is that they used to ache during a 5 mile run and now they don't. I think that they just need to get used to the mileage.

Here are my splits and heart rates, as you can see at mile 8 the heat started wearing me down!

1 11:51@145bpm, 2 11:48@147bpm, 3 12:00@148bpm, 4 11:57@148bpm, 5 12:04@148bpm, 6 12:03@149bpm, 7 12:02@150bpm, 8 12:14@148bpm, 9 12:27@150bpm, 10 12:34@153bpm, 11 12:20@154bpm.

Total miles: 11
Time: 2:13:22
Ave pace: 12:08 min/mile
Ave HR: 149
Calories burned: 1233

Next run: Tuesday, hill run or speed workout
Total miles this week: 11

Friday, July 17, 2009

Hill run, Zumba, tempo run

I so need to stop slacking on posting my workouts. I feel like the last two weeks have gone by so fast! I do a workout, delay posting it, then before I know it, 3-4 days have passed and I haven't posted anything!

Monday was supposed to be a compete rest day, but for some reason I felt like walking, so I called up my friend Keely. She was up for a walk, so we walked 3 miles around Saint Albans. After that, I decided to start this hundred pushup program. I've been seeing a lot of people on dailymile doing this and thought I would give it a try. Let me just tell you, this program is no joke! First, you do a test to see how many pushups you can do in a row in good form. I was able to do 15. It takes this number and decides where to start you based on your level of fitness. So, for the first workout, it had me do 45 pushups, divided into 5 sets, broken down as 12, 10, 7, 7, and 9. I was struggling at the end, but completed it. But, the next TWO days, I was so sore I could barely move. This is a good thing, but nonetheless I was very surprised. My obliques were even hurting! I forgot how great pushups are for your core. I was supposed to do 2 more workouts this week, but I didn't. I have been falling asleep early this week and have been busy. I am going to start over on Sunday.

Tuesday was my hill run with Andrew again. This time was a bit tougher because I ran up 119 way too fast. I think I ran it at like a 10:30 pace, not intentionally. Whenever I run with Andrew, I push myself harder for some reason. I guess this is a benefit from running with others. He is a much faster runner than I am, and although he keeps whatever pace I'm running, I feel compelled to run faster so I'm not soooo slow, lol. Anyways, I booked it up the first hill and felt pretty drained for a couple of miles after that. I started feeling better, though and finished strong. Andrew was nursing a pulled muscle and was unable to run fast down the last portion of the hills, so he actually slowed me down this time! We ended up finishing the hills in the same time as last time, as the fast uphill was balanced out by the not so fast downhill.

Wednesday was Zumba for an hour and then some core training. I also decided to work on my hamstrings. I got this popular iPhone/iPod Touch application called iFitness. This application is worth paying for. It gives you so many different workouts, with illustrated pictures and instructions on how to do them. All I had to do was select the hamstring muscle group, and it listed a bunch of strength training exercises that work the hamstrings. I ended up doing the back raise, the lunging step up, and the good morning. I had never done the good morning before, and never would've thought it would do much, but I have been sore for 2 days after doing these workouts. I'm going to try to do these twice a week.

Thursday was an off day, as it was Eric's birthday and we had baked spaghetti and cake w/ice cream. I woke up this morning ready to burn off the birthday meal with a 7 mile tempo run. The plan was to do 1 mile warmup, 5 miles at a 9:45 min/mile pace, and a 1 mile cooldown. This was probably the first training run in a while to really test me and show me where I am physically. Aside from the improvment in my 5k time by a whole minute, this tempo run was either going to make me or break me. I had never maintained a pace like that for that long before. I ended up doing great. That pace was comfortably hard, but I knew I could run harder if I needed to. I really surprised myself today. I have been so happy lately because I have truly seen improvment in my times, endurance, and stamina. All the hard training is FINALLY paying off. For a while I wasn't able to see much improvment, but lately I've been seeing lots. I couldn't find my HR monitor this morning before leaving to run, so I have no idea what my HR was. I was so mad about that! Of course, I found the stupid thing the minute I came back home after my run. My right knee started bugging me at about mile 4, just a slight discomfort behind the knee. After the run, it really bothered me for hours. It would hurt just sitting there, and if I turned it or twisted it, it was uncomfortable. Finally early in the evening, it quit bothering me. I'm supposed to run about 4 miles tomorrow, then 11 on Sunday. Hopefully, it won't give me anymore trouble.

Splits for the tempo run:
Mile 1: 11:20
Mile 2: 9:44
Mile 3: 9:27
Mile 4: 9:38
Mile 5: 9:47
Mile 6: 9:35
Mile 7: 10:56

Next run: tomorrow, 4 easy slow miles
Total miles this week: 22

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Seven Traits Award

I have been blogging for a couple of months now, but am still pretty new to all of this. Kristin passed on the Seven Traits Award to me. This is where I share seven things about myself and then pass it on to seven other blogs that I enjoy reading. Well, here I go.

1. I love makeup. Actually am obsessed with makeup and spend a lot of money on higher end brands like MAC. I watch a lot of youtube videos on makeup tutorials and have gotten pretty darn good. In fact, I did my friend's makeup for her wedding!

2. I am a pharmacist at Wal-Mart and I provide diabetes education counseling. My goal is to become a certified diabetes educator.

3. I love animals. I have a cat named Bizzle Cat, 2 cockatiels named Baby Bird and Sweety Pie, and a hamster named Ham Chop. I'm trying to get a dog, but my cat will not have any of that.

4. I enjoy cooking, but between working and getting my runs in I usually don't have time to do it. I can actually cook really good. My poor husband wishes I would cook more.

5. I'm into cars. I have a red 2008 Nissan Altima Coupe. It's a 6-speed manual transmission (yes, I drive a stick) with a cat-back exhaust and an aftermarket grille. My husband has a drag car, so it's something we both enjoy.

6. I have a shopping problem. If there was a local chapter of shoppers anonymous, my husband would probably make me go. Along with the makeup, I buy lots of clothes and jewelry. I have way too many clothes, in fact I have turned our spare bedroom into a walk-in closet. Due to my blessed wide feet, I don't have a shoe obsession because I can't wear most brands.

7. I hate to clean. It's just something I despise having to do on my days off. If you come to my house, it's generally not cluttered, but you will find the dishes sitting in the sink.

So, I will pass this Seven Traits Award onto the following bloggers:

Miles with Mickey
Never Quit Never Stop
26.2 Quest

This was fun, I enjoyed it!

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Long Run Woes - Long Run #7

Yesterday was my long run day, another 10 miler.

The last 10 miler I ran, I felt pretty good, but was completely drained at the end. I had run for 2 hours and all I brought with me was 8 ounces of G2. This time, I was much better prepared. I bought a hydration belt, which holds three 8 ounce bottles, from the Nike Outlet. Armed with one 8 ounce bottle of regular Gatorade, two 8 ounce bottles of water, and a half of a Power Bar, I thought I would be able to get through the run without any problems. The hydration part worked out very well for me, but the Power Bar part didn't.

I always seem to have problems when it comes to eating and running. If I'm going for a hard run, I can't eat any kind of meal within 5 hours of running, or I end up with side stitches. Generally, on slow long runs, I can eat a small breakfast and head out with no problems. Before the run, I had half of a 100% whole wheat bagel with 1 tablespoon of PB. I decided that I would eat the Power Bar at mile 6. This Power Bar was real chewy, which made it kind of hard to chew, so I ended up stopping for a couple minutes to chew up this snack and take a few sips of water. I started running again and felt pretty good till around mile 8, when I started to get horrible horrible side stitches. And these weren't normal side stitches, they were more like all-over stitches. I stopped to walk a little again to calm my stomach down, then started running again. Usually this fixes my side stitches, but not this time, and I ended up running the last 2 miles with an aching tummy, which made it difficult to breathe.

Next time, I am going to try half of a Cliff Bar instead. I think that it wasn't completely the energy bar's fault. At about mile 5, I noticed that my heart rate was slowly creeping up, and I was having to run at a slower pace to keep a lower heart rate. I was fighting this the whole rest of the run, and felt like I had to slow down quite a bit to keep my heart rate under 155. As you can see below, by mile 6 I had to slow down to slower than a 12 min/mile pace. I couldn't quite figure this out because physically I felt great. I was having a nice run, wasn't losing my breath at all, and here my heart rate is creeping up for no apparent reason. Maybe I wasn't hydrated enough. I must admit, I had slacked on my water intake the past week, but felt I drank enough the day before. Oh well, it's hard to really tell what made my body act up. I'm not discouraged at all, though. I will get back out there for my long run next Sunday and give it another try.

Distance: 10 miles
Time: 1:59
Ave pace: 11:59
Ave HR: 153
Calories burned: 1133

Mile 1: 11:26 min/mile; 148 bpm
Mile 2: 11:49 min/mile; 151 bpm
Mile 3: 11:41 min/mile; 152 bpm
Mile 4: 11:57 min/mile; 155 bpm
Mile 5: 11:51 min/mile; 153 bpm
Mile 6: 12:01 min/mile; 154 bpm
Mile 7: 12:11 min/mile; 154 bpm
Mile 8: 12:13 min/mile; 153 bpm
Mile 9: 12:41 min/mile; 154 bpm
Mile 10: 11:56 min/mile; 159 bpm

Next run: Tuesday hill run with Andrew
Total miles this week: 10

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Hill training, cross training, and more

Wow, it's been 4 whole days since I blogged last! I apologize for that, but I have been busy lately and went out of town for a couple days. Where do I begin?

Ok, so Tuesday the 7th was my hill workout. Andrew and I ran the hill portion of the CDR again. The hill portion is a little over 5 miles. If you remember, last time I ran the hills was about 3 weeks ago. We ran it in the daytime, with the sun beating down on us. I had to stop several times and walk. Overall, it was a very difficult run. This time was completely different! We ran it about 7:30 in the evening, so it wasn't as hot. I felt so amazing on this run. Something was just different. Actually, the past couple weeks have been pretty amazing for me. It seems I have come to a point where running is no longer very difficult for me and I am able to get my runs in and feel very comfortable. I'm not sure how to explain it, but I can get out there and knock out my runs and feel great. Anyways, back to the hill run. My first goal was to make it to Oakwood Road without having to stop and walk. This is a little over a mile of running at a pretty steep incline. Sure enough, I made it to the top without having to stop to walk. We did walk once we reached the top, but not for very long at all and I was off again. From then on, I never had to stop and walk again. I felt great. I also tested out a new hydration belt I got from the Nike outlet. People had told me that they were annoying and not to use them, but I didn't have one bit of problem with it, and rather enjoyed not having to run with a water bottle in my hand.

Hill run stats:
Distance: 5.34 miles
Time: 56:47
Ave pace: 10:38 min/mile (Look at that pace!!)
Ave HR: 170 BPM

Ok, so next was a cross training day. I went to Becca's Zumba class for an hour. Did I mention how much I love Zumba. It's so fun to break up my usual routine with some Zumba. After Zumba I went into the gym and did a couple sets of dips, pushups, lat pull-downs, and curls, and then did some core training. Didn't lift as much as I wanted to because I was also being social with Becca, as I told her I would lift with her. Overall, it was a good cross training day.

Next, I went to Weston on Thursday (about 110 mile drive from my house) to work for 2 days. I stayed in a Holiday Inn Express (don't you just love their commercials) and luckily they had a "fitness room". Their fitness room was comprised of 1 treadmill, 1 elliptical, and 1 stationary bike. Lol, it was a cute little room. I can't complain, at least they had a treadmill for me to get my run in. I did 4 miles on the treadmill, which felt like it took forever! Since I've been running all my runs outside, I absolutely cannot stand to run on the treadmill anymore. I didn't wear my HR monitor, but I checked my HR at the end, and it was between 145-150. I ran the 4 miles in approximately 45:20 at about an 11:19 pace. Nice, easy run.

I was supposed to run another 4 on Friday, but with work and driving back home afterwards, I opted for a late night dinner and some putt-putt with my husband and some friends. I beat my husband, so that was fun. I'm going to run my 4 miles today after work. Sunday is my long run day, and I'm going to do 10 miles.

So, that is the recap for my week. Again, sorry I've been missing for 4 days.

Total miles so far this week: 15

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Easy 6 miler

So, back to the grind after the 4th of July/birthday weekend celebration. It was more like a binge eating fest for me, lol. I ate poorly at a cookout, then I got two birthday cakes and a dinner at a Mexican restaurant. Sheesh! I was supposed to run on my birthday Sunday, but I just couldn't get away. Yesterday, I planned a trip to the outlet mall in Jeffersonville, OH with a friend and new that would be an all-day event. So, I got up and ran 6 miles at 6:00AM. I never get up early and run because I tend to stay up later at night and value my mornings in bed too much, but I had to do it. It actually wasn't too bad. I remember trying to get up early to work out years ago, then giving up after 3 days, but that's when working out was a chore. Now that I enjoy running, I may be able to do the morning thing. It was nice to have it out of the way. I may try it out and see how I like it.

Back to the run itself. I was supposed to run 5, but made it 6 due to my poor eating over the weekend. I felt great, aside from needing to use the bathroom then last 3 miles, lol.

Here are the running stats:
Total miles: 6
Time: 1:09:34
Ave pace: 11:36 min/mile
Ave HR: 147
Calories burned: 713

Next run: Today; hill portion of the Charleston Distance Run (about 6 miles)
Total miles for the week: 5

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Happy Birthday to Me!

Well, today is my birthday. I'm 25 years old! Wow. I always thought I'd be married and having kids by the time I was 24. Well, I am married, but kids are far far away in our plans. I have too much running to do :)

I'm going to try to run 5 miles today and test out the shin.

I hope everybody had a good 4th of July. The weather kind of ruined it for us here :(

My Updated Training Schedule

When I decided to run the Charleston Distance Run, I started off with a 16-week training plan that I got from the Runner's World SmartCoach. The SmartCoach is a good tool for creating a training plan based on a current race time. It's very flexible and gives you a long run, easy runs, and alternates tempo and speed runs. It tells you what paces and how long to run. All in all, this is good for people who don't want to pay for a training plan, but still want something personalized. There are limitations to the SmartCoach. For example, the CDR course involves 6 miles of hills, but the SmartCoach doesn't incorporate hill workouts in their plans. Also, there was no option for a 15-mile race, so I had to select a half marathon, and then tweak the plan by adding more mileage.

I have definitely been neglecting my strength and core training. I try to get Zumba in at least once a week, and do the Wii Active, which has me do lunges like crazy. But, I need to fit more into my training plan and commit to it. I took the Runner's World training plan. copied it into Microsoft Word, and tweaked it. I incorporated the McMillan Running Calculator into my plan as well, which basically tells you what paces to run every type of run based on a recent race. McMillan's website also does a fantastic job of explaining the what each type of run is and the benefit you get from training in different heart rate zones. I am sharing with you my newly revised training schedule. I had 10 weeks left last week, so now I have 9 left.

Here's my new training plan: CDR Training Plan

Happy training!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

I set a PR at the Independence 5k!!

I totally crushed my goal time in the 5k yesterday evening, completely surprising myself! As I mentioned in yesterday's post, my goal was to run it in 27:30, maintaining an 8:50 min/mile pace. Till now my PR was 27:55, which was on June 13th, about 3 weeks ago. I beat my old PR by 1 whole minute! My unofficial time was 26:55! Woot woot! I guess my increase in mileage and long runs have paid off. I cannot believe that I bested my last 5k by a whole minute. I'm still in shock right now, please excuse me, lol!

There were about 250 people running this 5k. I showed up about 40 minutes early to check in. I absolutely love the people who put the local races together and really appreciate the work they put into it, but I have to complain that they always run out of small and medium shirts. That makes me mad sometimes. I usually end up getting an XL for my husband. Anyways, so I warmed up a little bit, only a half mile. My good friend Andrew, who runs the hills with me, was there. He is really fast and his summer goal was to run a 5k in under 19 minutes. Good luck with that! We wished each other luck and headed toward the pack of racers at the start. The gun went off and there I went. I had my Garmin and my iPod all charged up. Of course, everybody starts off so fast, which used to be my problem. The Garmin has fixed that. I made sure I wasn't running too fast and of course ended up near the back. "That's Ok," I told myself, "I will be passing these people later when they run out of steam." I looked at my watch frequently and noticed I was running between 8:15 and 9:00 min/mile pace. I was running faster than I should, but I felt good, so I kept with it. At the halfway point, I started to question my ability to keep my pace up. My earbuds and the cord was bugging me and I was pulling on it, and messing with my watch. I started to freak out. Then I calmed myself down. I started to focus on my running form and my breathing, ignoring my stupid earbuds. "Smooth and steady," I told myself. I started passing people one by one. I passed a couple of really fit guys and it made me feel good, lol. When I had one mile left, I realized that I was going to be ok. I knew I could maintain my pace and make it, so I just kept focusing. I got into view of the time clock and it said 26:48 on it! Holy crap! I was going to beat 27 minutes!?!?! I kicked it in, as the people at the finish were yelling at me to bring it home. I estimate I finished in 27:55, but we will see the official time on Monday or Tuesday.

I was so happy! Plus, Andrew said he thinks he finished in 18:59. Sweet!! We both achieved our goals! The only problem was I noticed my right shin was really sore. I felt it when I stopped running at the finish. It was really bothering me. I think I stopped too abruptly at the end. I was worried, but not too much. I knew today would be a rest day and this coming week is a recovery mileage week, so I would be able to rest it. I didn't make top 5 in my age group, but there were so many runners I didn't expect to. I did get a cool orange towel for participating in all 4 runs in the summer race series, so that was cool. I came home after the race and ate, my shin still noticably hurting.

This morning when I woke up, it wasn't hurting anymore. Good stuff. But, I'm going to stay off of it today and test it on Sunday when I run 5 miles. I'm sure it will be fine!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Short tempo run and prep for the 5k

Yesterday I was scheduled to run a tempo run - 6 miles total, 4 miles @9:50. I debated on whether or not I should do this run because of the 5k that I have today. I didn't want to overdo it the day before a race. Good thing is the race is an evening event, starting at 7:30PM. So, I decided to go ahead with the tempo run, but just cut it short. I was running out of daylight also, so I kind of had to cut it short. I ended up doing a 1 mile warmup, 3 miles @ 9:50-ish, and about a 1 lap cooldown, for a total of 4.33 miles. I actually ran the tempo part faster than I was supposed to, as you can see in my splits. I felt really strong throughout the run, which I ran at the local high school track. I hope that I saved enough for the 5k tonight.

One thing I am worried about is what to eat today and when to eat. This will be the first evening 5k I have ever run. Most 5k's are early in the morning. I always skip breakfast and just sip a little water before the morning 5k. If I eat something, even 2 hours before, I end up getting horrible side stitches during the race, and that really stinks. I guess I'm going to try and eat something light around 4:00 and hopefully it won't come back to haunt me during the race in the form of a side stitch. I'm shooting to run the 5k in 27:30, which is a pace of 8:51 min/mile. My PR so far is 27:55, which is a pace of 9:00 min/mile. I hope I'm not setting my goal too high. I have felt very strong this week, so I'm hoping that will continue.

Tempo run stats:
Distance: 4.33 miles Splits: Mile 1 - 11:07
Time: 43:55 Mile 2 - 9:45
Ave pace: 10:08 Mile 3 - 9:44
Ave HR: 165 Mile 4 - 9:34
Calories burned: 515

Next run: Tonight's 5k
Total miles this week: 19

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Easy 5 miler and new shoes

So, last night I impulsively bought a pair of Saucony Progrid Ride 2 running shoes online without every trying them on. I have wide feet, so it's not easy for me to find running shoes locally. I found this website,, that sells all kinds of brands of running shoes. They are having $25 off a purchase of $100 and FREE Overnight Shipping. What?? Free Overnight Shipping, you say?? That's right! I ordered these babies at 7:50 PM yesterday evening and they were on my front porch today. Now, that's awesome! What's even more awesome is they actually fit. I got a 6.5 wide and they fit. Felt pretty good. However, when I started running, I started having doubts. I started having little aches in my achilles area and in a muscle right above my right ankle. The funny feelings went away about 3 miles into my run and then I felt fine. I think I laced them too tight, too. They have lots of cushioning in the heel, but I'm not a heel striker. There wasn't as much flexibility in the mid/forefoot area, and that's wear I land when I run. I'm going to give these shoes a few more tries before I decide if I like them or not. If I decide not to keep them, I may end up selling them.

As for my run, it was great. I did 5 miles on the Kanawha Terrace. I'm already seeing the benefit from my slower paced 10 mile run Sunday, as my heart rate was a lot lower on this run than it usually is. It usually averages around 168, and this evening it was 153 at an 11:30-ish pace. I felt a lot better and didn't feel as drained afterwards. My goal is to get my HR under 150 on my easy runs and still run a decent pace. I have a tempo run scheduled for tomorrow and a 5k on Friday evening. I'm going to try to hit 27:30 on the 5k.

Running stats:
Total miles: 5.01
Pace: 11:34 min/mile
Time: 57:59
Ave HR: 153
Calories burned: 598

Next run: Thursday, 6 miles total, 4 miles @ 9:40
Total miles this week: 15

I gained 2 pounds, poo poo!

So, I was on my way to a 1 pound per week loss, then I hop on the scale this weigh-in and I'm up 2 pounds! Waaaaaahhh!! Honestly, I haven't been eating right and I know it. I guess I just need to refocus and start eating better again. I know what I'm supposed to do, I just need to do it.