Sunday, April 30, 2006

20 Miler the Bag...and In Rough Conditions...

So I have 4 20 plus milers in my training schedule (3 20, one 22), along with a 19 miler and one or two 18s that I've already done this was another good one.

Saturday dawns over Minneapolis, not sunny and nice as has been the case some days, but overcast and rainy, a little chilly, probably lower 50s, hard to judge…anyway, I have a commitment to run with a friend today and I’m not going to back out on it, need the 20 anyway…so I get up, have my breakfast, the usual, scrambled egg with cheese, slice of wheat toast and later a slice of banana bread…Devi got there a little late, but that’s good, she slept, she’s always up early so I’m glad she was able to sleep in a bit, and we had plenty of time, I had nothing going on that day…So we headed down to the chain of lakes, most popular running spot in the twin cities pretty much, we had considered going to another area, but Devi had some foot issues going on and might have to cut the run short, if that is the case by the lakes there are places she can kill time while I’m finishing up. We started about 9:15…even though the rain was coming down, we were warm enough as long as we kept moving. The lakes, usually quite busy, were fairly quiet, but even with the weather conditions there were some diehards out (at least that’s what I termed us, my guess is the people driving by seeing us had a different term, but oh well…hey, there were people out in kayaks!!). Anyway, the run went really well, Devi is shooting to run a 4:15 and is supposed to run at 10:15-10:30 pace, we averaged 10:10 on my garmin, but that was with a bathroom stop and two stops for water and gels, probably 8-10 minutes total time which gets us to a 9:50-9:55 so not bad at all…particularly considering the conditions. The last stop was at 15 miles and I knew if we stopped again it would be hard to stop…with the rain we didn’t drink much, not a good idea, but oh well. I tried one of my fruit bars on the run too and it was really good and digested well so I have something else to bring along to eat if I need it at the marathon. It was a good boost too, running in tough conditions (it was slightly windy, definitely cold and miserable for the rain) and having someone to chat with the entire way. Different kind of taxing and good on a fall back week.

After the run, we went to Whole Foods, with a stop at Caribou Coffee for Lattes, and to warm up a bit…then we went to Marathon Sports for Devi to find some new shoes…The guy looked at the shoes she was wearing after looking at her feet and was surprised she liked them…So we tried on many pairs of shoes, and figured out the guy waiting on us was even more insane than us…he does 24 hours races, the kind where you run for 24 hours and see who can run the furthest…and he’s looking to break the Guiness Record for the 24 Hour Treadmill…nice…Anyway, he was kind of cute too, and we figured out he was single…Devi is looking for the go ahead and figure out a way to see if he wants to go out with me…it’s fun to chat about, but I’m doubting I’ll give the go ahead on it…highly doubting he’d be interested in me anyway. This only came up when he mentioned liking shoes and she said she had a friend she should introduce him to. Anyway, knowing my luck with men, I think I’ll keep it as it is…just a fun flirt in the afternoon after a long run in tough conditions. One other thing that came out of the stop though is a 30K race that we are going to run now for our last long run, I figure I’ll warm up or cool down the 1.4 that I miss from the 20 miler I would otherwise do and figure the racing conditions will be good as well.

That’s it for the weekend. Kind of gray and gloomy today, rained most of it, I stayed inside and cleaned…it was good though, my house really needed it.

Friday, April 28, 2006


First I want to thank the people who have commented on my Highs and Lows post...It made me feel up again knowing that there are those who are happy for the way I've been progressing...and watching each of you on your journeys has been great too, just wanted you to know in case I don't find time to comment on all posts!!

OK, so once again yesterday was bad on the snacks…I had a cookie that the finance team had been giving for something, well half the cookie, I had eaten the other half on Wednesday when I got it (they were huge), then I discovered there was cake over in the finance department (which they had also had on Tuesday which I had eaten)…so already having the cookie, I should not have had it, but it was Byerly’s and looked so yummy I couldn’t resist…that was about 2 pm…I went home for my easy 6 mile run, remember, this week is cut back week and I need to take things slow and relaxed, no pushing the pace, shooting for an effort of about 5 or 6 (on a scale of 1-10 since I don’t use a HR monitor), easy conversational pace etc…Did I mention that MN spring is truly here?? It was GORGEOUS once again. I got home and was ready to run by about 4:45…shorts and singlet, hat and sunglasses and I was out. Upper 60s, low 70s, sun, no wind…a PERFECT day.

I head out on my usual paths, I like running in my neighborhood areas, I try new routes up different streets as they are all twisty and I never know where I’ll end up, but it’s a fun area and I can get good runs, not to mention it’s not flat so a good workout (which I hadn’t even noticed till I ran it with a friend recently who is running more flats)…Anyway, shooting for what I figure is a 9:30 or so pace for an easy pace…not even close. I had 6 miles in at an 8:45 pace…geez…come on, what is the deal?? Not complaining mind you, it’s fantastic that I can hit these paces over these distances at little effort, I have some massive PRs I’m going to get once I ever jump into a race…But what is the deal? Is it the weather (perfect temps = perfect runs, and I LOVE spring, so thankful that I don’t have spring allergies because I love being outside and how it smells this time of year, new flowers scenting the air on every block, although right now our 12th floor smells that way as there was a massive project completed yesterday and everyone got flowers for it…I want to sit up there for today!!), the cake, just the fact that my “true runner” is finally come through…I’m finding my true self?? I don’t know, and I’m not really questioning it, but just hoping against hope it doesn’t leave me any time soon!!

Now my dilemma though is that I’ve had 3 runs where I’ve had cake in the afternoon, usually around 2 and ended up having such a great pace, either running faster for a hard run or running faster for even an easy run…3 for 3…is cake the wonder food?? Should I be eating cake 2 ½ hours before every run?? :) OK, not the answer, but man, it seems good to me!! Oh, have I mentioned my weakness for cake??? I LOVE's why it was chosen to be sacrificed for Lent...Oh, and the nickname for the city I live in, Cakeeaters (cause it's a wealthier suburb, but believe me, I'm not one of the wealthy, they call them that cause they have their cake and eat it too, but I'm not FROM there, I just live there now)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Highs and Lows...

Well, life is about ups and downs right?

This week has been a weird one for me. A cutback in my training and it’s driving me a little batty…weird cause normally I don’t even get taper nuttiness because by that point I’ve always been ready to cut back my running and am tired and what not, but this year it’s been a strong drive in me that has just been building and building, my last break actually came at a good time as I was on vacation, but I’ve been up and gung ho since then and things have been so on track that I don’t know what to do with the cutback…I needed help. I needed running friends who would understand…And I have two groups that while there have been issues off and on with both at times, I figured they would understand as they have all been there at some point. Some of the people in the group have been sidelined with injuries and can’t run, I do feel for them and have tried to be sympathetic and supportive, in fact when I was on vacation I talked to one of them and was ready to gush about the great runs I’d been having and thought, no, he’s hurt, he can’t run, that’s unfair, and said as much to him. But he told me that was OK, he was fine hearing about it even though he couldn't be out there…but I did mellow it out a bit. I have others I can talk to and always share with my parents although they really have no clue about it, but they do try, God bless them. I really do need to get more involved in the local running community, which I’ve been saying for a while, but even more so now…just because of some things that have been happening with the groups I’m part of. They aren’t local, and I just don’t think I fit in. It always seems things are going along fine, I’m posting, responding, talking what not and then suddenly I say the wrong thing and I’m flamed, slammed, whatever…and I take things so personally, which I shouldn’t, but I do…

I have no self-confidence. This is something that I know that about myself and I know it’s a weakness. It’s something I need to work on but am not sure how. Things had come around a bit after getting my job, then I had a setback. A horrible, horrible setback last fall…I started overcoming that by running like a madwoman…and while my esteem I didn’t think about, but man, has it improved my running. I’m just still amazed, stunned and overjoyed by how runs have been going. I’ve once again found the JOY OF RUNNING!!! it’s not something I dread going out to do, it’s not something I do to get done, it’s something I actually look forward to and can’t wait, even after a not so great one cause the great ones have been more so than the not so great ones…and just to express this joy once again, I posted something to the effect of my cutback week and how much it was killing, just to, I don’t know, let off some steam and throw something out there…and I had some responses that were basically what I was looking for…then yesterday I had the low…a response that told me to stop whining, that there are those that can’t run (I interpreted that to say that I have no compassion for that with this message) and that my message was apparently just boasting…OK, I’ve never been accused of being a boaster…braggart, whatever…self-esteem problems and all, it’s not my nature to brag about myself…be amazed and shocked by things I’m doing, and have done, sure, but never boasting about it. I answer questions asked, I try to take accolades, but am not one to boast about myself. I just can’t. Although, in retrospect, is it so wrong to boast or brag about something going on that’s really good? I mean what are the race reports, the met PR postings, the great run postings, the training reports, etc if not each of us boasting about our accomplishments?? No one is so callous to not sympathize with those injured, it could be any one of us, but the group I thought was meant to be a place to be surrounded by support…for the bad and the good…to ask questions, to seek help, to sympathize and to celebrate…boasting, I still don’t see it…I was just happy, in a goofy mood and didn’t think before I posted. If the post was hurtful to those that can’t run, I do heartily apologize for it, it was never meant to be mean in any way…But I think it’s also shown me, something I’ve suspected for a while, but I just don’t fit in. Not in either place. I don’t think I’d even be noticed if I left. There weren’t any responses to my flame, maybe everyone else agrees…I don’t know…but I think my posting days are done…and it makes me sad, it’s been a 2 year journey with a lot of these people, trips to meet up, chats on and off the group and on and off the phone…it’s been a big part of my life, but then how can you be around a situation where you don’t think people even really care. I have that effect on people though. It’s why I’ve traveled the lonely road for so long, and I question the few friends that I do have. I mean honestly, I wouldn’t be friends with me or chose to be around me if I didn’t have to, so why would anyone else want to be. But this is me, I don’t know what I could change, or what it is that so gets on people…ah well…At least I have my running…

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


Wow, wow, wow…An incredible run…one of those, yet again…I’m on a roll here. The invincibility, the love of being a runner, the complete and total joy to be out there on the roads, where everything seems just so easy and you can go on forever...Anyway, the temps were in the mid-50s, perfect for a pair of shorts and a light weight long sleeved top. The sun was out, but since it was almost 5 when I started, it wasn’t too hot, on the downswing of its cycle and I just love the way things look in early spring as the green is coming out and the sun is setting, making it look…I can’t even come up with a word to describe it, but it signifies spring to me. Also there was no wind. Zero, zip, nada…it was perfect.

This is a cut back week, average of last 3 weeks was 57 miles, which means I should probably try to stay right at 40 for the week…huh?? Since when was 40 a cut back week and trying to stay at or below that hard?? My last 3 marathons the highest mileage weeks came just over 45, cut backs meant 30 and that was easy to do…I find myself adjusting my mileage each day to try to keep it below even 45 this week…yikes!!

Anyway, I set out for my normal run from home. Loops around the neighborhood, I just never know where or what loops I’m doing….I had cake in the afternoon…last time I had cake in the afternoon I went home and did 10 miles in the rain at an 8:10 pace…well, I had originally been going to do 10 miles, but realized that meant I had to cut out running one other day this week, I’m still going to try, but pushing the mileage the way I have been, I decided 8 was a better number so I was shooting for 8 at an 8:20 or better pace…I hit the first mile in 8:20, that was supposed to be warm up, but it was just feeling so good and I couldn’t wait to get out, so I didn’t do a full mile warmup, I took off when it felt right…this was up some good hills too. :) So I’m running along, enjoying the weather, the smell of the flowers, the book I’m listening to (Mind Prey by John Sandford, am loving his Prey series). I end up running through my marked walk/run/bike path near home and have to stop to say hi to the most adorable chocolate lab puppy. He is tied to a tree with a blanket and some food and a sign that says he was born December 5th and is part of an animal rescue, $50 donation is being asked for him to go home with someone…man, I was soooo tempted, but I can’t have a dog bigger than 20 pounds in my condo…he was just too cute, well worth the 15-20 seconds I lost saying hi. From there I just ran on…things were feeling good pretty much the entire way, sometimes plowing up hills I was even getting that feeling, you know the one (if you’re a runner at least) where you can just go on forever…It’s when I imagine what the Kenyans must feel (even though I’m running about 3 minutes per mile slower than them on an easy training run) and what I picture on their training, running through the wilds of Africa…

Anyway, I did think the last mile felt harder and I was definitely ready to stop, although I know I had at least a couple more in me if I had slowed up a little…turns out mile 8 was a 7:38, no wonder it felt tougher (and that was coming up the longer incline too)…I did have a couple of times where I was feeling the need for deeper breaths, or yawn or something but I managed to work it out without having to stop…overall, incredible run. Now the rest of the week is slow and a cut back week. In fact this morning was only 3 miles (planned but partly cause I overslept) and Saturdays 20 mile long run is with a friend that we’ll probably be averaging 10-10:30 per mile or so pace…this is good…I need a rest week!! And then I can run while Jen is running her marathon and think of her!!

Oh, so the 8 miles, average pace was 8:02…that includes the 20 second puppy stop!! Wow…

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Not Tapering, But if Feels Like it!!

This is a cut back week now for my running and it feels like a taper week to me. I’m still wanting to eat lots of food, which I can only counter by running more (and of course that just makes me eat more, but I have been able to manage to lose a little bit, so I want to keep going down, not up!!), and not getting up this morning for a run felt weird. I’ve worked out and remodified my schedule a number of times to cut the mileage. I did 55.5 last week, 59 the two weeks before that, so this week I figure I should cut back to no more than 40…who would’ve thought that would be so hard…I think I’m going to end up with 44, but trying to stay closer to 40. I hate to do it, but know I need to before I hit the next 4 weeks I think it is really hard!!

Friday night I did my 18 mile long run. It was great. The area isn’t flat, there are plenty of rolling hills, which I honestly haven’t even really realized that it’s that hilly near me until I ran with someone who isn’t used to my course and found the hills to be a challenge…that actually made me happy to hear. Anyway, the run ended up being an average pace of 9:11…I have been trying to shoot for an average of 9:30, remember, to break 4 hours, which is my goal, I only need to run 9-9:04 or something like that pace to get it, that means I can run up to 90 seconds per mile slower on the long run and hope to achieve that and I’ve been running about 9:20 average…and my tempo and interval workouts have averaged in the 8:15-8:30 range which are supposed to be faster than marathon pace…but not quite that fast, so I’m very hopeful that I’m finally going to break 4 hours. Just hope all things to keep going the way they are. I have 5 ½ hard weeks before I do the 2 ½ weeks or so of a taper that I plan.

Saturday I was a bit sore, so I didn’t run, went out to watch a good live band and had a good time with my friend Beth, at least it was fun once we got out of there for the opening bands and went back just to see the band we wanted to see. Nothing against the other bands, but gospely and/or Christian rock just not our type of music and it’s weird that Epic Hero was playing headline to them, but oh well. The show was still good.

Sunday I got so much done, had a great 6 mile run, cleaned house while talking to mom and dad (that was mainly kitchen and bedroom) cleaned garage (now just have to find a place to dump all the garbage), washed car, but still need to do inside, grilled out, talked to a friend on the phone, had another friend call and head over to go to Lake Calhoun to hang out and enjoy the day. I think this weekend I’m going to try to get some “gardening” done…I put it in quotes since I don’t have a yard to dig in. I have planters and I want to get them at least prepped for plants, get old plants out etc…then hopefully soon get some plants to plant in them!! Next year I might try seeding some things to put out, but this year I’m definitely going with pre-done stuff so I can have a nice looking balcony again.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Another Rainy One in the Bag

Rainy Runs…

So I had another 10 mile tempo in the rain…but this week is a bit weird anyway. I was exhausted yesterday morning. I just could not get up for a run, so I stayed in bed knowing I was doing 10 at night anyway. Also had something come up that is going to keep me from doing my long run on Saturday. I have planned for 18 miles this weekend…so that leaves me either doing it Friday night or Sunday, well Saturday night I might be out late watching a band play and possibly having a beer, SOOO…I’m doing the run tonight. Yes, I did 10 miles last night but am doing 18 tonight. Normally I do a tempo range with a goal of hitting 8:20 pace, maybe faster, however last night I ran it with my friend Devi, who I haven’t run with in a long time…we had always kind of been on the same pace, but I’ve just thrown myself into this training this time around and I’m a bit faster than her now. We also ran over more hills than what she’s been used to in her training, so while the goal was a 9-9:15 pace for the tempo, we ended up on an average of 9:45…a bit slower than I really would’ve liked to have been running, but again, it’s all good with the fact that I have a long run tonight. I’m flexible and I still have 5 good hard weeks I can put in for my training so I’m fine with the slower and it was worth it to be able to run with a friend again. I do enjoy that sometimes…and what I found out is that at that pace, I had no problem continuously carrying on a conversation, last times we ran together it would get tougher for me later in the run, but I was just as fresh the entire way, so apparently 9:45 pace is definitely easy and comfortable conversation pace for me. Good to know. Did I mention we also had part of our run in the rain?? It was fine till we got back to my place, then it was a bit cold!! It’s funny, Devi was in shorts, a long sleeved top and a jacket, shortly into the run she took off the jacket and was warm. I was in windbreaker pants, a long sleeved top and jacket and I kept the jacket on the whole time…what can I say, I like to be warm…

So tonight I’m doing the 18 miler…at least that is the plan. Saturday I have a class I’ll be in till about 3:45, so technically I could go do my run after, there is enough daylight and it’s supposed to be nice tomorrow (darnit, why am I stuck inside for this??) but I know I won’t be able to fuel well for it, so I’m definitely trying tonight if I get to a point where I can’t finish it, I’ll cut it shorter and go for Sunday, and just take it easier tomorrow night. Always good to have back up plans right??
One thing I'm discovering though, I really need to cut my toenails really often, I have one that for some reason now is always cutting into the toe next to it and causes a bloody foot on my runs...ughh...

Monday, April 17, 2006

Long Run and Weekend Update

Finally!!! So I had a not so great long run on Saturday. I was scheduled for 18, decided due to other runs of not so great speed since Wednesday I would run only 16 and instead of doing them Sunday like I had thought, I did them Saturday which was the nicer day as it turns out. I had done a double day on Friday, not something I normally do, usually just 4 in the morning along with strength and then rest till the long run, but I needed something Friday afternoon when it was nice and did approximately 3, in probably a 9 minute pace. I can only guess cause I went out and did it tech free, no GPS (but on a route I know) and not MP3, it was nice and I just went to enjoy the day…and did. Saturday I felt OK starting out, but I did need a few walk breaks on some tough hills, and had a few stops for traffic, a bathroom break and water purchase (thank God I had money in my fuel belt) and then a brief stop to say hi to a neighbor and her dog (and she might decide to run Marine Corp this year too, so worth the stop!) before finishing up the run. I was sore at work on Saturday night, but my worst soreness seems to be what I can only assume is bruising from my fuel belt bottles hitting me…talk about weird soreness.

So ate too much Easter Sunday, weight back up a bit today at weigh in, but the run this morning, only 3.5 cause I was tired, but I was on an 8:50 pace again that was an easy effort feeling. I’ve been trying to eat extra healthy just to build the blood back up more quickly. We’ll see how tomorrow’s speedwork goes to really answer the questions on how things are. I’m going to push for 60+ miles this week and then I cut back next week. The 3 weeks hard, 1 week easy thing has been working well for me it seems.

Other than overeating, Easter was fun. Was Amanda (sister), John (brother), Brian (Amanda's boyfriend) and Paul (Amanda's roommate and college friend) and later Paul's boyfriend joined us as well. Had a couple of glasses of wine, good food including Better Than Sex Cake for dessert, then we played a few rounds of Uno and had entertainment by the spaz, otherwise known as Beaux (Amanda's rat terrier). Was relaxing and fun, kind of what we have gotten in the habit of doing every year for the past 3 or 4 I think. I contributed some potatoes that turned out really good, considering they were an experiement.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Not So Great Run

So it finally hit…the bad run that I’ve been dreading, but knowing was coming. OK, so technically it wasn’t the worst run in the world, but last night I wanted to do 10 miles at 8:20-8:30 pace (just a bit slower than the 8:10 of last week) and I just had a bad day all around. Had a meeting from 2-3 and then 3:30 that ended up till a little after 4:30 (was supposed to be done at 4) so I didn’t have anything to drink from about 3 till after my run. I got home around 5, thirsty but forgot to get something to drink before I left. This is also about 36 hours after giving blood…well, not quite, but close. So the run was not great. I was thirsty, had a couple of walk breaks and averaged 8:44 for the run. I hit mile 6.25 and knew I had to get by home and get something to drink, which I did, stopped the watch, then decided to run out and finish up 7 and see how I felt from there, did that down and up a hill, back down and partway up again (right on the property I live on) and that was it. I was dead. I headed back to my place, stopped and talked to one other woman that lives in the buildings that I see often running and had never talked with before. It was nice to chat with her and she pointed out I should be eating particularly healthy things for the next few weeks just to build back up my blood and realizing she was right I am going to try that. I had my run this morning that was dragging still too. I know this weekends long run won’t be great, but I can remember that I just gave blood and that was a risk I was taking when I signed up to do it. I have 6 weeks of hard training yet to keep and build whatever else I can before the marathon, so I won’t let myself fret too much the next week or two.

The good news though, I weighed in this morning and am down another pound. Weighed at 133.5 last week and am around 132-132.5 this week. Although anal as I am about it, this morning I did run 4 miles before my weigh in cause I ran outside instead of on the mill and then came here and lifted weights, I don’t think I would’ve sweated off a pound on that run, but you never know. Have to figure out a way around that one now!!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Blood Donation and Soul Asylum

Well, a couple of minutes to kill so I’m going to do a quick update before a couple of meetings that will finish off my day. Why meetings at the end of the day???

Last night I made an executive decision that even though Wednesday is normally just a single workout day, I would workout twice. I did my morning 4 mile run and strength training, both felt really good, then I gave blood…Now I knew it was risky to give blood, I didn’t give all last year because of training and not wanting to interfere with that, but I chanced it. So after work and trip to the dentist (thank God, no cavities!!) I went for a 5 mile run outside cause it was nice. Unfortunately the run felt hard. I managed just under a 9 minute pace (it was meant to be slow), but it felt very difficult. Now the reason for moving this run to last night was because I was going to see Soul Asylum and knew it would be a late night and I didn’t want to go to bed at 1 and crawl out of it at 6 to run…so I slept instead till just past 6:30…not a lot different but it helped. So now tonight I have a 10 mile tempo run, I want to hit 8:20-8:30 pace, we’ll see how difficult this is. This was a bad week to choose to give blood, but they were here, it was convenient…and I have 2 months till the marathon. I guess I can semi blame lack of sleep too if the run isn’t as good as I’d like it to be.

As a side not, the band was very good. I had never seen them live and am glad I did, not to mention they will be back for Taste of Minnesota, so will probably have to see that. It's not so much fun being one of the only sober ones in a crowd of drunks trying to watch a band though. Particularly when the drunks are at their most annoying during your favorite songs!! Man I hope I'm not that bad!!

Anyway, time for my meeting.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Sleep overrated???

OK, not really in my mind, but I really missed out on it this weekend...

Well, a quick update for the day…had another good interval workout this morning, although one was going so easy, then I realized it was only at 7.5, about an 8 minute mile, this was number 7 I think and I normally run at 8.0 or 7:30 minute mile pace. I can’t wait to get myself out onto a track though and do this the right way, although I suppose a good thing about the mill is it keeps me at a steady pace and I know I get my pace. I had no problem getting 9 done, and that was nice, next week I’m going to bump up to 10 and then I’ll have my fall back week and when I come back I’m going to do 10 at just a slightly higher speed for a week or two, then I’m probably going to switch over to 1600s for the remainder of this training session.

Sleep was so good last night after a weekend of no sleep. It was just too hectic. Worked till 11:30 on Friday, got home went to bed, slept till about 10, got up did my 20 mile run (just over 3 hours) and then had to shower, talked to mom and dad, chatted with 5K, tried to do a bit of cleaning, ate and had to get to a friends by 8…went out, stayed out and up way too late, drank way too much and didn’t sleep nearly enough with meeting a friend to go to Whole Foods (and found out we are getting a Trader Joe’s, I can’t wait!!), then to Target and then back home where I talked to one friend, then had to meet up with another friend for her birthday celebration at the Hard Rock, dinner and watching her band (she’s good friends with them and is trying to help them get a bigger following locally) compete in a battle of the bands. They were robbed. Of the 4 bands playing, the one that won only won cause they had a bunch of bored high school girls standing up in front (right in front of where we had been sitting all night and couldn’t see the band perform) and a few people screaming for them. It was too bad because the first band that played was better than them and Charlz Newman Band, the band we were there for, were definitely best of all of them (the first band I give them props but not my type of music). We were then out too late because we had to talk to the band members, my friend has a thing for one of them, although she says she’s done with that, I don’t know if I believe her though!!

Having to work last night didn’t help, but I did sleep good and hard when I finally got to bed around 10:30 and I feel much more rested today than I did yesterday. Going out for a 4-5 mile run, showing my place to a potential roommate and then going to do some spring cleaning before going to bed early tonight. Tomorrow night I’m going to see Soul Asylum play as my friend won tickets at the Battle of the Bands…that was very cool considering it was her birthday, and I get to go cause my MN Quarter helped her win!!

Monday, April 10, 2006

First 20 Miler for Marathon to Marathon

I really should’ve written this on Saturday, but I’m going to try my best to recall at least the important things…

I had to work on Friday night, and as is usual for me I was walking around a lot at B&N, including up and down the stairs (getting extra exercise, trying to take off that last stubborn 5-7 pounds!!), and I had been doing that at work. Probably not smart when I have 20 planned for the next day…Oh well. I went home and slept in till I felt awake. Got up, as soon as I could tolerate the idea I made breakfast, (normally I have to be awake an hour or two before I eat, I just don’t eat right when I get up), my perfect breakfast I’ve determined. A scrambled egg with cheese (just one) and a slice of wheat toast an hour before the run. Then within a half hour I like a banana to get some energy, I didn’t have any, but I had some banana bread, so I had slice of that…Got everything together and was out the door at 11:15 for my run. It was gorgeous. I was in tights, a singlet and light weight long sleeved jacket on top, sun was out, I had my hat and my MP3 and garmin…off I went. 9:30 was planned pace, I’ve been running too fast in my estimation at 9:15, so I wanted to slow it down…first 3 miles were good, then after that I was all over the board, with a lot of 9 minute paces. Around mile 6 I was at Lake Harriet and realized I haven’t had any water or anything at this point. I take some Gatorade, it wasn’t feeling great on my stomach but I needed something. At mile 8 I forced myself to take half a gel cause even though I wasn’t hungry it was inevitable that I was going to need food sometime to get through the full run. The run was just great, I had listened to one CD of the book I’ve been listening to, but the rest I turned over to music and a weird mix again, everything from New Order, to Shania, Jimmy Buffet, Brittney Spears and many others…:) Yes, I’m weird, I realize this. So I even sailed up and over all the hills that I sometimes end up having to walk. Even the really tough one around 16.5…I had to stop 2 times for traffic (thankfully one time was a the top of the tough hill!) and beyond that I walked once for water, but decided to just drink on the run the rest, which I did and it worked fine…what an excellent day. Got home knowing I could’ve finished 26.2 and knowing my time goals are more and more feasible with every run, and I’m still 6 hard weeks of training out!! I did ice bath when I got home, for all of about 30 seconds before I got into a warm shower, but I was going out that night and knew I needed my legs to recover. Had my Slim Fast to refuel, and also did my leg lunges right after the run, 2:30 on each leg, very sore, but I know it is just going to help me that much more. I love days like these…I’m starting to worry though as I’ve had so many great runs recently that I know I’m due for a bad one!!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

10 Pouring Rain?? Check!!

Rain, Rain, Rain, Rain…beautiful Rain…

Yes, the thunderstorms they promised actually hit today…It was raining, but not hard and I was so excited to get out and get running in it. Yes, I have a bit of insanity, but it’s sitting at upper 50s/low 60s for temps and a light rain isn’t bad. I headed out in windbreaker pants, singlet, Chicago marathon jacket, shoes and wright socks double layer socks and my 26.2 hat, which was good for keeping the rain off my face. Started out and it felt great, I had loaded up some good music on my MP3 and people probably thought I was nuts as I was getting into stride dancing along to Shania Twain (not normally a big fan, but I had to hear Any Man of Mine for some reason), so I’m jamming along on a 10 mile run, in the rain, and it felt FANTASTIC, again…this is scary, how can all these runs just be coming together like this?? It was raining to much to hear and/or be able to tell what pace I was hitting most of them in, but my goal was the 10 mile tempo at 8:20 pace, which I’d been doing on the t-mill for the last few weeks…anything better than 8:30 I’d be happy with though, considering the weather wasn’t perfect and I was running over some hills that aren’t horrible, but aren’t easy either (some are a bit of a killer, including the double one I always think of as the rollercoaster twice)…so I get done and look at my watch and it says 1:21:48…8:10 pace!!! That includes 2 stops for stoplights, one was a little longer than I would’ve liked. Wow…I finished the run a little before my place and it was raining still but I slowed down and walked part of it, big smile on my face cause it felt so good, I was then singing along with my MP3 (good thing it was raining, no one else was out, they would’ve been tormented with my singing, I was listening to Bon Jovi at that point and not sounding good!!), dancing, smiling, being insane…Ah well, it’s what is great about being a runner, being out in the rain they already think I’m insane anyway!! I saw one other person the entire 10 miles, including 2 loops around the path where I always see a few people…the one other person was out for a walk. We smiled and waved at each other!!

I even learned some things!!

  1. Shania can start off the run right
  2. A great rain really lightens the mood
  3. Water repellent clothing is only water repellent for about a mile in a steady rain (not even a downpour!)
  4. Bon Jovi is kind of cool sounding with thunder and lightening in the background
  5. You can avoid puddles but once you hit one and the feet are entirely soaked, you might as well just splash through the puddles
  6. The “rollercoaster” is easier when you have “Talk Dirty to Me” blasting over the MP3
  7. “Here I Go Again” has an interesting sound with a chorus of frogs in the background
  8. Frogs don’t like to sing in a downpour (second trip past they were no longer singing and it was coming down really good)
  9. You can run pretty fast when you’re trying to beat the car to the puddle that will splash you (not that it really matters when you’re already drenched anyway)
  10. It's hard to sing along with Bon Jovi when you have just finished a run of 10 miles at 8:10 pace
  11. A hot shower feels sooooo good when you get done with a run in the pouring ran (which it was pouring by the end)
  12. If I could keep that pace up for 16.2 more miles I could go to Boston...:)

Monday, April 03, 2006

Can I have a Weekend...

To Recover from my Weekend??

OK, I’m on a countdown with the clock, just wanting to leave and I don’t think I got much work accomplished today. Tomorrow is a new day and I promise to focus and get a lot done then and the rest of the week, but until then, I’m going to get an update done and posted.

So this weekend was a wash for workouts and really, really bad eating weekend…I gained back what I had lost and then some, hopefully I get that all under control though this week and there should not be any bad things coming up…so focus on running an eating right.

Weekend was fun though, even without enough sleep. I was in Madison, WI on Friday night and then Saturday night we went on to Milwaukee, stopping at the Nike outlet on the way so I was able to buy a pair of shorts, a sport bra (can never had enough of those, and they can finally replace the crappy ones I have!!) and a really fun neon green light weight zippered jacket that will be nice for early morning runs.

Got checked into our hotel, showered, got ready and headed out to the show. We saw the band The Gufs who were good, and the opening band, Epic Hero was also really good, check out a bit about them and hear clips of their music at, great thing is they are a Minneapolis band and do tour around the country but play at least a few shows around here, so I’m hoping to catch them sometime around here soon for a full show. We also decided going to Summerfest this summer would be fun (particularly when Stacy found out The Gufs will be there) so that is a tentative plan right now. It will be after my marathon and before training will have to start up for Marine Corp and/or Disney, no long runs that weekend (although knowing me I might get something going on before heading out) so can have some summer fun…now just have to round some people up to make hotels affordable!!

Got back last night at 7:30, made for a very long day, all that driving (OK so I was riding, but still!), so exhausted last night my poor house is just a disaster!! I need to clean tonight!!