Thursday, June 29, 2006

Giving Blood...

I gave blood on Wednesday. I actually like giving blood. The needle doesn't bother me, the personal questions don't bother me, the people are always very nice, friendly and thankful that you have come to give, and the knowledge that I could be saving someone's life when I walk off of that bus (or out the door if I'm at one of the donor centers) makes me feel good. Sure, now that I'm working and they come to my office, I get out of work for a bit to go give, but I've gone to the centers on my own time to do it as well. It's something I feel good about. I also put my name on the bone marrow list, I have never been contacted about it, but if I was, knowing that it can be painful, I'd still might save someone's life, and how can you not be willing to do that?

Anyway, that all said, it does make me feel drained after. I gave last somewhere mid-training and it slowed me down, thankfully only for a week though. Today was my first run after giving this time (thankfully this trip by the blood mobile was actually perfect in my training cycle since I'm still recoverying and then will be building up again) and it was definitely not one of my better runs. It was a bit warmer, my diet today left something to be desired (I had a good lunch of chicken caeser salad, but also had dessert, it was my friends birthday, chocolate cake, vanilla bean ice cream and chocolate fudge...yummy!!) and then the lower blood count...that along with the stress I'm feeling over this rooomate thing. Seriously I get shaky and blood pressure probably goes up when I think about it, thankfully he's gone tomorrow and I can get things back to normal...I need to find a normal roommate!

The run though, it was a 9:15 average for 4 miles...not too bad, I did have to stop and tie shoes during it, so it as slightly faster and as I said, I did give blood...

I'm still feeling a bit down though. I really need more miles that's for sure. I was reading RW tonight and had a few articles just make me teary eyed, either because of the triumph of the person, or just the story I should not be weapy over a magazine!!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Sunny Summer Days

Ah man, it's nice outside, but I have to work tonight...I so don't want to go to Barnes & Noble tonight for 6 1/2 hours...I hate this shift, but with any luck it will be the last of that length that I work. This 6 1/2 hour one is dumb and I'm the only part-time who works a full-time other job that gets stuck with it. I haven't seen the manager that does the schedules in forever so haven't been able to talk to her about it (and we aren't allowed to write notes with requests anymore, arghh). Oh well, keeps me out of the house and away from moron, OK, one more post about him, this is my blog right? So last night I get home and he's cooking, I see him using a metal spoon on my teflon pans, I say "do not use metal utensils on teflon, you use wood or plastic", he says "I don't think I scratched it" then proceeds to start using the metal spoon I say, "don't use that" yet again, he then looks through the drawers for the wooden spoons (oh and not to mention the spoon he's using to stir his cooking is one of my good serving spoons, not just an everyday should be used for that kind of thing spoon) and then asks where they are, I point, cause next to the sink, where they have been since the day I moved in 5 years ago is the canister that has all my utensils for cooking, in easy reach...

So anyway, ran a nice 5.5 on Monday at an 8:40 pace, and last night, same route and cooler, less humid temps, a 5.5 at an 8:47 pace...kind of weird how that works huh?? Anyway, both easy runs, today I strength trained, wanted to elliptical too, but I was tired and couldn't get up...tomorrow I'll do an easy 4 in the morning, Friday strength and cross-train and then Saturday a 10 miler...I can't wait to get out there for more than an hour!! Then next week I'm going to start ramping up mileage and easing into harder workouts again...I'll probably do a light interval session next week and then ease back into what I was doing pre-marathon...I should hopefully be back over 40 miles in 2-3 weeks and happily running those endorphins again!!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Running and Depression

Depression…It can be such an unpleasant thing and get some of the worst of reactions from people, and lots of sympathy from others. Clinical depression, situational depression, deep depression, manic-depression…whatever happened to just plain sadness and that down in the dumps feeling? Is it not OK to be down anymore? This seems like a weird observation for a running blog, but bear with me, I’m going somewhere. Running helps fight depression. There are numerous studies and articles on this very subject and for myself, it has helped so much in combating what might have been a very bad situational depression that happened to me last fall and carried through this winter. When I say my training was so good because I was running from demons, that really was the truth. Winter is a bad time for me, I hate cold, I hate dark, I hate not seeing the sun…why again do I live in Minnesota (I have yet to develop the brains to leave I guess)? Every winter I battle with undiagnosed SAD (seasonal affective disorder) due to that lack of sun mainly, I love the sun, I live for being out in the sun, enjoying the day, having a happy outlook on life, it’s certainly hard to be negative when the suns out, it’s a gorgeous day and you can be enjoying it…but when it’s cold and dark you just get more and more depressed and even sunny cold days don’t help. I’m so much a warm weather girl!! (again, why do I live here??) Anyway, I’ll definitely say running saved me over this past winter. The demons pushed me and obviously it helped immensely if I was able to put up such a fantastic personal record and come so close to that Boston Qualifier…I never in my wildest dreams thought I could run an 8:30 pace for 26.2 miles…Anyway, I digress, running was the key that kept me moving.

Now getting to my point. What do you do when you can’t run?? Over the past weekend I was feeling really down and I couldn’t figure out why. Sure it rained a bit on Saturday, but I like thunderstorms (rain in summer good, rain in winter, just more dreariness) and I was working anyway so it didn’t matter. I had gotten a run in, I had been out for beer the night before and sometimes the day after I can feel a bit down, but this lasted through Sunday and even into Monday…it’s kind of come in a threefold too and I guess it was too much to handle, but I finally figured out the biggest contributor. I HAVEN’T BEEN ABLE TO RUN!!! Now, let me qualify that. Not that I haven’t been able to, but I’d be yelled at if I was!! (and I don’t want to be hurt cause I want that BQ so that’s why I’m listening) Even working out would probably help, but last week I only ran 13 miles, this is after averaging probably 50 miles a week over the last 5 months…I had 3 weeks prior to the marathon where I was cutting back and now 1 ½ weeks or so after I’m not able to run as much of course yet…this is why I’m feeling things more than I normally would and it sucks. How do you beat the PMD? (post marathon depression) When you already have your next goal and you are just waiting to be cleared for hard training again?? The biggest thing that has been bothering me though is the fact that it’s allowed a part of me that I thought was supressed to come forward again. That thought of having a special someone to date again…something I thought I was over. But as I said, things come in threefold, lack of running is the first, but then a friend telling me I should date someone or have an adult relationship again (after telling he I wasn't the best with advice considering it's been, OK, I'll admit it, 8 years since I was last involved in a relationship of any standing, I figure the 3 or 4 dates max I've had with any guy since then doesn't count), it's easy for her to say that. Sure, I'll go be in a relationship just to get the perspective again…if it was, I would’ve been involved with someone long ago when I had wanted them desperately…there just aren’t decent men that want to date me. It’s been that way for a very, very long time so I should be used to it. This person hasn't known me for THAT long, so maybe I should cut some slack on that. Not like I haven't tried. Finally, I have a friend, who has been divorced now just over a year, but with her now boyfriend for 2 years (her and ex hubby separated ages before the divorce was final, and it was because he started cheating), when she was upset about being divorced by 30 I said it’s actually better than never being married by 30 in this area of the country, which is so stupid!! Anyway, I digress, I told her she’d be divorced and remarried before I was even dating someone, ages before she was even divorced…well, she told the boyfriend that she wants to be pregnant or almost pregnant in 2 years, and he’s agreeable with that so they will probably marry next summer. I doubt I'll even have date to bring to this wedding!! And then I won't see her much anymore after that either as she'll be pregnant and then have child to take care of. We’ve been through a lot together and while I’m happy for her if she’s happy, it still makes me a little sad…not sure if it’s the kind of losing her all over again thing or the not having something for myself (well, not even so much having something as it is a replacement for her maybe?). I don’t have a need for kids that she does, and getting married is no longer something I even think I need, but occasionally, when I don’t have others to do things with, when there’s a big weekend of fun and no one to go out with, I do wish there was someone…man do I hate stating this…stupid not being able to run making me feel this way!! I do always come back to wondering what exactly is wrong with me though…I mean I know I’m fussy, but I have met some that I would’ve been able to be with…they just didn’t feel the same toward me…

Monday, June 26, 2006

Shoes Make for an Expensive Weekend...

Ah, the lovely weekend…come and gone so fast…I went to visit friends (Heather and Jon) and their kids on Friday night. We grilled, then Jon had to go to work, Heather and I visited and eventually the kids went to bed and we watched a movie and just kind of vegged, then Jon got home and he and I went to a nearby bar for a beer and then went to another place since the first was so dead!! On the way home from the second a jerk cop pulled Jon over and went through a bunch of crap with him, Jon had not had enough to make him drunk but the cop was just being a jerk and ended up giving him a fine for not having his driver’s license with his current address (his reading on the breathalyzer was at least 2 or 3 beers below the limit)…I’m telling you though, in MN, do not not change your driver’s license!! It’s $10.50 to change the license address, $20 for a renewal and $122 for a failure to change it in 30 days…I really think I need to report my roommate, he hasn’t changed his license on his car or his driver’s license (I’m the only one that gets the mail and haven’t seen a new one come!)…he’s out on Friday, maybe I’ll report him then!!

So after that whole fiasco, we got inside, Alex, the 9 month old woke up, Heather fed him then we all sat up a bit talking, then went to bed…awake at 9:30. Hung out there a bit then they headed to Heather’s parents and I head to Albertville, to the outlet mall, just for two stops, Bass and Naturalizer…summer shoes, I don’t care about shoes most times (except my running ones of course) but man I love sandals and they had some sales. I got 5 pair, one will be more winter (a basic black loafer that I actually needed some basic new black shoes) and the others are all summery…bad, but they are all good brand and comfy and will get lots of wear!! That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.

Got home in time to get a quick 6 miles in, had to cut the run short because of an issue with not stopping to use the potty BEFORE I started out, but it was a good run and would’ve only gone on about another half to three-quarters of a mile anyway. Then I worked and came home and crashed…long day!!

Sunday was fun, I was supposed to be going to the Pride Parade but one friend wasn’t feeling well and the other didn’t get back to the cities till too late for it, but we went down for the festival and ate, and wandered booths and had a cocktail and shopped a bit…collected freebies (at Pride that can be interesting stuff!!) and we got our Target/Pride temp tattoos, very cool Target logo in a rainbow background. The one thing that came to me though from the day is that this is why I can't find a decent man...all the cute, decent, fun ones are looking for EXACTLY the same thing I am!!! Sigh. After that we went back to my friends, took a nap, then went to eat and then home…where I finished ironing and then went for a drink at a nearby bar cause I needed to get out…roommate came home and he just annoys me…the man is just dumb. OK, this is my blog and I have to post this one thing about his being a moron…yesterday I ran the dishwasher, most times he just washes thing, but I put them in the dishwasher then cause he does a bad job and doesn’t use hot enough water! So I had run the dishwasher, it had just run, in fact the cycle was still on the drying cycle, dishwasher is locked, indicating that it has clean dishes in to most people right?? Moron opens it and starts to stick DIRTY DISHES into it! Hello, how dense can you be? When the dishwasher was just running, would you really put dirty dishes into it. He had been in the kitchen while it was running!! Is it Friday yet??

So today is nice, I’m heading out for a 4-6 easy miles today, and some sun after work, then maybe go home and hang on my balcony for a while, reading, and maybe I’ll make a chocolate malt or something for dinner…hmm…that sounds good…sit on the balcony, have a malt or maybe a strawberry daiquiri, although I’d probably make that a virgin one…don’t need to be drinking on Monday night by myself…although if moron is at home, I might need to, it’s the only thing that keeps me from murder!!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Races & Training

Yes, it is recovery time, but after each marathon you are supposed to plan ahead to your next races, so I'm thinking ahead to summer and what I want to do and what I want to accomplish this summer yet. I know I'd love to run a fast 5K and probably set my actual true PR on the 10K (mine is so soft right now it's not even funny, I can't not break it, by a lot).

Obviously I can't do all of them (If you notice, 3 of them are in one week) plus races are not cheap anymore...but there are some good and bad to each and I just can't decide. Here are the pros and cons of each:

  • Raspberry 5 Mile -

Pros: Close to Home (start line is 3 miles away); Proceeds benefit the high school track team (good cause); It finishes on the parade route so lots of spectators; Firehoses and popscicles at the end...

Cons: Can be really hot; Really close in time to the 5K and I'd really, really like to run a fast 5K

  • Lifetime 5K -

Pros: Not too far from home (downtown Minneapolis, could take a bus); Fast, almost flat course; Great beer truck with lots of free beer at the end; One of the cheaper 5Ks I've been able to find; Had a lot of fun at it last year

Cons: It was very hot last year as it runs at night and the air was heavy and humid

  • Lumberjack Days 10 Mile -

Pros: Need to run a long run that day of about 16, I could run 4 before and do a 2 mile cool down and have a different long run course; I'm going to Stillwater that day later on anyway for the festival, I could just go early and use the hot tub at the hotel after the run

Cons: Have to be up super early to get to it; Might have a lot of time to kill before I can get to the hotel to check in and get showered and maybe veg a bit

The other races, well, 2 I'm registered for, one is a half marathon I did last year that's pretty decent timing I think in my training and Marisa might come up for it as well, plus you get a tech shirt which is rare for races around here apparently!! The 10K is good timing as well for some things I want to try and I get free entry for being an MDRA member so might as well!!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Recovery, Can I Start Training Again Yet?

OK, I know I can't and so far so good. I know I did bad according to Hal Higdon in that I ran on Sunday, yes, I’m an idiot…or a masochist, not only did I pick strawberries sore from the marathon and hung over from way too much drinking (after a 3 week abstaining time) I also got back to my house and ran, no watch, no garmin, not even any headphones and it was so nice, loosened up the legs from the drive, and just felt really good. I’m sure it was really slow, I honestly didn’t time it and just went at a comfortable pace. Anyway, I did take Monday off. Did zip, nada, zilch except go out to dinner and for frozen custard…then yesterday I elliptical trained for 30 minutes at lunch and decided I really needed a nice little run, so I went out for another 3 miles…this time with a watch, but no garmin, so still only a guess on distance, but approximately 3 miles and a little over 9 minute pace. So I’m good…no soreness, I did a little ab work last night. Now today I have intentions of going rollerblading, probably 6 miles as I know one lap won’t be enough…then I’m going to do some stretching tonight and maybe a little at home strength training, just upper body and possibly and easy 3 mile run if I feel the need for it. Most likely I won’t run though and will hold off and go an easy 4 tomorrow, cross train again on Friday and then Saturday go for an hour run…according to Hal I can do that…then I can start slowly building back up next week, most likely a 10 miler next weekend and then Marine Corp training starts. I’m working on my schedule for that, most likely will do a 16 week plan since that gives me 3 weeks to recover from my marathon, while maintaining the endurance.

The Post-Mortem on my Marathon:

I did good…that much I know. And now that I lived up to my training, it’s time to figure out the magic formula to do even better…1:55 better to be precise, although my official training time is going to be to try to hit a 3:35, give myself some cushion.

More Leg Strength: I know it was lack of leg strength for that last 10K that got me (I found the 3:40 pace band I had printed off and 2:46 was what I needed at mile 20 to be on pace and that is what I had). So a few things to get that...

  1. A long run on Saturday and then do a race on Sundays. Not every Sunday, but I’m going to try doing some fast 10Ks after 20 mile long runs and see what that does for me. If I can get that 10K after a long run, that should help right?
  2. Add more hills. Marine Corp has some hills at the beginning and an incline at the end, I’m going to find the toughest course I can and go over hills early, some flat and hills late and get prepared to do that at a good pace.
  3. Leg strength training. Previously I was just doing the leg lunge holds, now I’m going to add a bit more into it and that along with the hills will hopefully help.
  4. Finally more 20 milers. I did 2 20s, a 22 and one good 19 before this race…so I’m going to most likely try a 24, 22, 2-3 20s and maybe a 19 or so…

I think my speed work was good, so I’ll stick with what I did last time around, but probably bump up mileage a bit, it’s going to hurt in the summer, but that’s OK…anything that doesn’t kill you makes you stronger right?

Anything I’m missing??

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Medals

Hopefully this works, here are pictures of my hardware!! The two medals and then the back of the age group medal. I'm still so happy with having the second award to show off!!

This is a picture of me right after we had gotten to the camp site, before mom and dad got there with the camper. Water, gatorade and a banana, what more do you need? And the other is the start of the race. I'm in the white hat, with pink top and purple/blue looking shorts next to the taller guy with the white hat!! Maybe I should zoom in on that one...

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Marathon to Marathon...The Report

OK, will probably play with this a bit but I promised a report today and I'm exhausted, want to get to bed, but will post now and mess around with it computer at home is so slow...

Marathon to Marathon

The Goals: To Finally Run a Sub-4 hour marathon…
The Training: You might as well not have called anything I’ve done before training as this time I was really serious. I did a large number of doubles, I had highest mileage of 63, I believe 2 20 milers, a 22 miler, a 30K race and 17, 18 and 19 mile runs. I did tempo and interval workouts every week on a 3 week cycle with a rest week every 4th week. I was running some great paces and easy runs were pretty much marathon pace or better for a sub-4.

The drive down on Friday was uneventful, grandma and I had a nice visit and mom and dad got there shortly after I did. We had reverse driven the course so I knew what the rolling hills were like and nothing looked that terrible. The race packet pick up was quick and we set up camp and had a nice visit and good dinner, including cake I had brought and fresh strawberries for dessert. I was in bed by about 9:30 with alarm set for 4. As expected I couldn’t sleep, took forever to get to sleep and I didn’t really get much for sleep, but oh well, I had slept good early in the week and that is what mattered.

My plan was to be to the start line by 5:15, we got there about 5:25, but that’s OK, the school was open, there was no line for the bathrooms and the bathrooms were actually bathrooms, not porta-potties. I used them and was ready…Start went off right at 6, there were 115 runners that finished, so around that number at the start give or take with any that may not have finished. It was warm enough that I had a singlet and shorts on, and my MP3 and a hat. The sun was coming up and we ran around the school and then headed out of town to Marathon. It was a bit humid, and I knew if the sun came up full, it could get quite warm, but it was OK for then. There were even a few brave souls that were up and cheering from their homes at that early hour. It was all feeling really good, a wind started to come up, but it was all at my back, southwestern wind blowing us northeast, this was with the whole way and helped keep the temps feeling OK and a cloud cover came up by about mile 7 too, no rain in it, but it made for cooler temps, it was humid, but I don’t think it got above 70 for the entire run, I was wet due to humidity, but it wasn’t unbearable. I had good music on my MP3 and by mile 3, I knew I wanted to really see what I could do, I was definitely going under 4 hours, but the thought had been in my mind that I might just have enough in me to get a BQ, I was just over the 8:24 pace I needed at this point so I started to pick it up and to catch up on a few of the seconds here and there that I had missed in the first couple of miles…This went on, through the small country roads, not much to mention as it really is just the corn and bean fields of Iowa, and there were rolling hills, but nothing bad at all, much less so than Madison was last year and the worst of them was early on. By the halfway point I was definitely on BQ pace, I had a 1:50 half huge PR there for my half marathon time…I saw mom, dad, grandma and Max just before mile 18 where they were supposed to be, dad had spotted me with his binoculars about a half mile before I got there and I was coming down a hill and it felt really good and gave me a nice boost to go on…However mile 20 and the wall came up. My lungs were good, but my legs were really starting to feel even the slight of the rolling hills, there was a hill there that made me hurt and for the next 6 miles I continued as I had been, fueling on water, Gatorade and fruit bars and gels, but I could tell that I wasn’t going to be able to maintain this and I knew the BQ was just not quite in me at this time. I started to slow up a bit off my pace and about mile 24 was feeling a bit better, I had had to use a port-a-potty, so probably lost about 30 seconds at that time, but still OK…Mile 25 we turned the corner and headed into Marathon, I got water and ice at the water stop and really wanted to hang out longer there but I kept going and it was just getting into town that the only person passed me, I had passed everyone else up to this point, but I was definitely tired and hurting so I let her go on…she had something more in her than I did, but she never got too far ahead. There was a nice old man sitting in front of his house welcoming us to marathon and then a water stop with about .6 to go. Turned the corner and spotted mom and Max, then went around another corner and saw the finish line. The clock had 3:42 on it and I managed to cross it in 3:42:54…1:55 off BQ, but that’s OK. I’m not even feeling the huge disappointment that I could’ve as I know I left it on the course. This definitely proved to me that I have a BQ in me and I will be running there one day. Dad took a picture of me crossing the finish line (but on a film camera so it will have to wait for posting) and all of them were there to greet me as I got my medal and shirt. I got water and Gatorade, talked to the nice women at the finish, told them how well I thought the race was organized, there were water stops at every 2.5 miles, as promised, water and Gatorade at each, and after mile 20 it was about every mile that they had them. The course was hilly but not terrible, and everyone was very friendly. Afterward there were showers, a massage person, they announced your name and where you were from as you crossed and there was plenty of fruit and the breakfast provided looked good too, if I had been hungry enough to eat it.

Grandma was so glad I did this one as it made it easy for her to be there and finally see one and dad really enjoyed himself, I rode home with him and mom and grandma brought my car back (I had had a couple of beers with lunch before we headed back) so got a nice visit with dad which was nice too...we then went out to celebrate and I didn't feel so hot this morning!! Sigh...

Oh, almost forgot, the other benefit of running a small marathon…I was 4th girl overall and 3rd in my age group, so not only did I get a finisher’s medal, I got an age placement award, more hardware!! Obviously I’m in a tough age group!! I was also 20th overall out of 115 finishers. I was 3 out of 9 in my age group and 4th overall for women out of 36 or 38 women that finished. So again, quite pleased with my performance. I really had no idea I had something that good in me. And I thought of everyone as I was running, and thank you all for the good wishes and vibes even though I didn’t get to read them till after I was done!! If not for this group, I would not have gotten the gumption to get out there so much, and the ideas for the training that I got and in particular I need to thank Chris again because it was a slightly modified version of the training schedule he gave me last year that I used for this training and I’d definitely say he knows what he’s talking bout and doing!!

Oh, that PR, 38 minutes faster than my previous. Now I don’t expect that I’ll ever get that big of a PR again, but hey…maybe a 3:35 next time?? J What is Marine Corp course like?? J

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Quick Update...

Should I leave you all in suspense, maybe, I'll think on it while I type. I made it back from Marathon, IA and am about to head out with my parents for some beer. Decided to not drive back to Minneapolis tonight, I'll party next weekend to celebrate. I met my main objective, blew away what I really thought I could do and ALMOST had the final one, at least I know it's in my grasp...HUGE PR today too. Weather conditions were almost perfect for me, a little humid, but a cloud cover came up and it was cooler than anticipated and wind was at my back pretty much the whole way. Final stats...I'm going to make you wait for the report. I'll try to type it up first thing tomorrow AM and post it here and on the running boards I'm part of. Thanks for all the well wishes and suppport through the training...I definitely know what I need to do and just need to set my mind to it!!

Friday, June 16, 2006

In 24 Hours...

I'll be an hour and a half into my run...Part of me just wants to be running right now and part of me is too nervous to even think about it!! 3 1/2 hours and I'll be on the road!!

Alright…this will be my last post till, well, maybe I’ll try to write a little something when I get to my parents on Saturday after the race (unless I’m heading right back to Minneapolis to go out with my friends). Hopefully I’ll get a race report typed up and posted by Sunday. Although I have roommate drama still going on, and let’s just say someone might be on the street on Sunday or Monday at the latest…:) Am I really that evil?? Well, I could be. I might have to post his latest messages to me. Just to get some other perspective to make sure it's not me that is the crazy one. I've had some friends read them and they say pscycho, but maybe I should let those in blogger land decide too!! I was trying to just live it out with minimal interaction till he’s gone at the end of the month, but the guy is absolutely insane (and he accused me of jumping off the handle, seriously, psychotic!!) and his messages are just so all over the board...I really should just stop reading them, but this part of me, the sadistic part, can't!!

Anyway, I slept so good last night, Tylenol PM is definitely the way to go. I took it at 8 and was fighting at 9 trying to stay up just a bit more, I had been laying in bed watching TV and reading a bit and just slowly drifted off…it felt wonderful. I didn’t use the hand wash thing at the carwash, but did wash my car too, when I had almost crossed that off the list and was going to do it later. I ran the movie back (Chariots of Fire, was OK but I guess I didn’t really fully follow it, it wasn’t quite what I was expecting I don’t think) and stopped along the way at a touchless car wash and they had 50% off cause it’s a new car wash so I got a really good wash. Think I’ll go back too as it did a good job. Anyway, had baked the banana bread, although I think it’s a bit under baked, got my car loaded between last night and this morning and I’m now at work, have been here since 7, and am drinking my Gatorade and water (well actually today it’s Powerade right now, just wanted a change!!) I’ll be on the road by 11, although might make a quick stop at the library for an audio book to entertain me on the way home. I’m going to have the big fill me up breakfast at the cafĂ© this morning (omelet made to order out of eggbeaters with cheese, mushrooms, peppers and ham, hashbrowns and an awesome multigrain toast for $2.90 and it fills me till at least mid-afternoon). Figure that will be good to get me through till it’s time to eat dinner, with maybe some banana bread or a banana in there somewhere…spaghetti and breadsticks with strawberries and watermelon for dessert tonight for dinner and to bed by 9 for a good nights sleep before the 4 am wake up call!! I got about 8 ½ - 9 hours of sleep last night, so I should be good even if I don’t sleep tonight!!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Less than 48 Hours...

And less than an hour of work today and then completing my list…I actually really like the logo they have on the main page for the marathon, I hope this is similar to what might be on the shirts and/or the medals!!

  • Grocery Store
  • Liquor Store (for celebratory beer for after race in case they don’t have any there, this is what I'm thinking, but will see what looks good!)
  • Wash Car (going to use one of the spray things and semi do it myself, if I have time)
  • Fill gas tank
  • Bake Banana Bread (if I have time)
  • Clean Out Car
  • Double Check Bag with Running stuff (be sure all running stuff is in it)
  • Pack Bag of “other stuff” (ie, clothes for after run, stuff for weekend if I stay)
  • Food bag
  • Books and miscellaneous bag
  • Load car
  • Load MP3 player
  • Get Cooler ready
  • Get food for breakfast ready to go in cooler tomorrow morning
  • Take a Tylenol PM at 8 so I fall asleep by 9
  • Finish watching Chariots of Fire with feet up, vegged on couch (or even in bed) with a cold Gatorade in one hand and water in the other and eating the rest of my pizza from Tuesday (carb loading, yummy veggie with mushrooms, olives and peppers)
  • Read over my training to remind myself that the training is there
  • Mentally prepare
  • Dream of the great race I’m going to have

Yes, I’m getting a lot done at work today…J Oh, and only 4 more hours of work tomorrow…in by 7 and out by 11 on the road to pick up grandma and head to the start!!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Less than 72 Hours...

And I'll be done with my fact I’ll have been done for most likely over an hour, if all goes right…(start line for Marathon to Marathon) by now I might even be on my 2nd beer!! Ah, but wait, I’m realizing that I’ll be in IA and have my own car, I’ll have to drive it back to Heron Lake, although, if I really, really wanted to drink a couple, there are 4 of us going to be there, someone else would be able to drive my car back if I really wanted them to…hmmm…things to ponder. Other thing I’m debating is going all the way back to Minneapolis on Saturday night. Now the plan has always been to stay in Heron Lake for the weekend, but now I have a friend that is going to be in town on Saturday night and wants to go out….I know I could do it, if I really wanted to, it would be possible to get my sorry butt back to Minneapolis on Saturday night after the run. Heck, could get to Heron Lake, rest a bit and still get back…otherwise I could just sit in Heron Lake and drink…I mean either way I’m celebrating that night, it’s just a matter of where!! Why do things always come together on the same weekend?? Great band I like that almost never plays is playing Friday night, no way I can see them, another band I’ve wanted to see is Saturday night, now friend in town that I want to see…

So back to the 72 hours and I’ll be done thing…how can this be? I’ve been training for this thing since January, without even knowing then what I was training for. I had a long training run in March that sealed the deal though. I knew I would run this marathon after that run and almost sent in my registration then, but did finally mail it end of April I believe…Mom and I have been e-mailing today, she has spaghetti sauce made, she’s brining that, I’m bringing my wheat pasta, she has breadsticks she’s bringing, and strawberries…I’m going to buy a watermelon and we’ll have that as well…I was going to bring other dessert, but we have decided on fruit over all others, although I might still get a chocolate cupcake, that cake equals good run thing…

Tonight I’m working. Ughh…so don’t want to!! Maybe I should call in sick!! If I hadn’t just done that I so would. Why was I sick on the 3rd?? Oh yeah, Epic Hero…long story on that one!! I should just quit the part-time job. I like the extra money, but just so many headaches lately and it doesn’t seem worth the pittance that I make there anymore sometimes. I’m considering giving notice tonight, then finding something else, but probably not for a while. So many places are hiring now it wouldn’t be hard to get something else, and maybe I could get something that pays more. Anyway, the working tonight sucks for having to walk around all night when I should be resting. But I’m sitting as much as I can today, drinking lots of water (on my 2nd mug that I usually try to drink 2 during the day am now trying for 3 for the next 3 days) and some Gatorade, will work tonight, then pack up and finalize stuff on my MP3 tomorrow, load up the car and then to bed early (by 9 at the latest) on Thursday night, with some drug induced sleep if I have to to get to sleep…Out of the office by 11, pick up grandma in Heron Lake by 2 at the latest off to Storm Lake with plans to at least attempt driving the reverse marathon route so I can see it, at least the larger portions of it I can drive (there is an 8 mile stretch) and then to the high school to get my number, and then sitting at the campsite with grandma in my new lounger (OK, this isn't quite the chair I got, mine has the foot rest too, but it's close) till mom and dad get there…dinner and an early night and then the run…wow…so close…

Oh, and ice cream social employee appreciation at work ice cream and toppings...not that I need it, but...

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Silly, Silly Girl

OK, so today my mom e-mailed me that they are picking strawberries…see my hometown has a berry farm and there is nothing better than going out and picking your own fresh strawberries and apparently they are really good this year too. So my thought, I’m going to be there this weekend, oh, but I don’t suppose they pick on Sunday (but they do, when the berries are ready, they have to be picked) and mom did respond that yes they do, but wait, I’m running a marathon on Saturday, is there any chance at all that I’m going to be able to squat down in a berry field for even a short time?? Hmm…probably not!! Sigh…I have to get some kind soul to pick some for me!! Too bad strawberries don’t grow on trees.

In other news, I had a nice easy 5 miler, averaged just under 9 minute pace last night, but I did 6 strides during it, varying from .05 to .10 of a mile…it was a nice run on a limestone trail and flat…very enjoyable while Tires Plus rotated my tires and changed my oil for the trip this weekend. I even ate fairly OK with lots of Godfather’s Pizza to carbo load on. Tonight it’s Lake Harriet Pizza and sitting down by Lake Harriet to eat it and watch the runners while we gorge on yummy pizza!

4 days and counting...

Monday, June 12, 2006

ADD?? Taper Nuttiness?? Help!!

It’s Monday and I can’t focus…now I’m only thinking of all the things I need to or want to be doing to prepare for leaving on Friday…5 days and counting if you don’t count today…I checked the weather, lows of 70 and highs in the 90s, but that won’t be till at least noon, still so thankful that the race starts at 6 am, and I am such a non-morning person!! But it will be nice being done before the heat of the day as the lows are set for 70, which is maybe a bit warmer than I’d like (60s would be awesome with no humidity at start with highs by finish no higher than 75) but that’s OK, I can do this. It was very humid at the start of the 30K and I managed to do it and hit the time I need to get my soft goal of breaking 4 hours…I worked all weekend converting CDs, now to pick the final listing of music I’m going to listen to for the 4 hours…I need to get it all set cause once I take off, I’m not touching the MP3, none of this lost time cause the player isn’t running!! I’ll start it a few minutes before the race starts even so it’s going just fine.

I changed the plan up a little bit, I’m running 4-5 miles tonight with 4-6 strides mixed into that, to get the fast twitch muscles working. I’m then going to my sisters to have pizza and hear about her trip and collect my belated birthday present…then will work through getting a few more things packed up. I’m going to do light elliptical trainer, probably 20 minutes tomorrow in the morning and maybe a walk after work before meeting a friend for more pizza and to watch the runner’s around Lake Harriet. Wednesday AM will be another easy 3 mile run and Thursday AM a nice easy 2 miles with 3-4 strides. That’s it. After work I’m going to relax, eat some good carbs and finish packing to be to work by 7 on Friday so I can leave by 11…will be at home to pick up grandma around 1:30 and off to Storm Lake, via Marathon and a reverse drive (hopefully) of the course, then get my packet picked up and out to the campsite to veg till mom and dad get there. Gives me lots of quality time with grandma too…drinking lots of Gatorade and water this week, eating lots of good carbs and just relaxing and stretching and doing yoga as much as I can. I’ll probably drag my stick out more than once too to keep the muscles loose…what else can I do though…oh, good sleep as well!! I’m going to take Tylenol PM on Thursday night for sure to ensure a good hard sleep.

I can’t focus….must get some work done…

Saturday, June 10, 2006

One Week to M Day...

Well, was up too early for going to bed too late (worked last night till 11:30) but it was a good day. Went to the state track meet and it was quite fun, although very cold, felt for the runners as none of them run the distances that we as marathoners would appreciate the cooler temps for. We missed the girls 3200 relay, but we saw up through the girls 400 dash, including even with the wind, a girl almost break her own state record in the 1600 in 4:46.17, .17 over what her record was...she so outclassed the others, I think she will be a name to be remembered in the future for mid-distance running.

Went to lunch and then my last longest run before the marathon, 8 miles at an easy pace (although accidently snuch in a few at 8:30, but feel good). I had my massage at 5 and man did I need it. She really just worked my legs and back and then a little on my abs to make everything loose. I could defintiely feel that the right glut was much tighter than the left as well as the low back and she was pretty sure the hamstrings were as well...I'm feeling so relaxed now. She also recommended that I should watch Chariots of Fire before the marathon, which I haven't seen, so I rented it and will watch it one of the nights this week...thought about it tonight but ended up watching Old School instead and now I'm feeling sleepy and even though it's only 9 pm on a Saturday night, I might crawl into bed and read for a while and sleep really, really good tonight...

Been spending tonight converting CDs to MP3 format too so I can get a song list together for the marathon, will definitely need music....oh, that was my other plan for the night, to get some packing done for next week...will have plenty of time this week though with the limited running I'm doing, but lots and lots of stretching!! And counting the days to the weekend AFTER the marathon where I will PAR-TAY like a rock star. I don't work on Friday night and only work 5-10 on Saturday!! Woo-hoo....

Friday, June 09, 2006

8 Days to M2M...

Quick Update and then I think I’m going to head out, my boss and boss’ boss and my co-worker are all gone, I work at 5, I want a little time to run a couple of errands before I have to head to work.

Not much planned this weekend…well, I guess I take that back, tomorrow I’m going to the State Track Meet, although not sure what time we are heading there yet and exactly what is going on with it, but we will be going there!! Then I’m getting a massage later afternoon and watching my sister’s dog for her while she goes out. I may end up out myself, but won’t go as early as she ends up going out I’m sure, and it will be nice to have a little buddy for the night. Plus my roommate might be bothered by the dog being there, and that’s just bonus!! 21 days and counting till he’s out and Devi moves in…it feels like forever!!

Anyway, that leaves my middle afternoon probably free to do something. Hmm…I’m actually wondering if an earlier massage might not work better, but we’ll see. I have it scheduled and she had other openings I could maybe change too…anyway, the person I’m going to see is the same person who Katie McGregor has gone to before, figure if she’s good enough for Katie, she’s good enough for me. Meeting up with a friend that I’ve been trying to see since at least January, we are going for a walk and maybe lunch or something before she has to go to the airport to get her sister and her mom…and I have to head to work on Sunday night…not much of a weekend working Friday and Sunday, but oh well. I also have to start getting my marathon bag packed!!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

9 Days and GB Leighton...

More Tapering…

Well, I’ve been good this week, so far only at 14.75 miles, I was going to run 6.25 (I like having even numbers in my log for a weekly, so need to get that .25 taken care of!!) but decided I needed to sleep in after working last night, so decided today was one of the two days off I’m taking this week from running (only ran 5 days last week too, this is tough for me after being used to running up to 7 days a week and definitely usually 6, with double workouts at least two days for the last few months). Last week it was Friday and Sunday which seems dumb since I’m not even running that long for the long run (12 last week 8 this week) so I really wanted to do Thursday and Sunday this week, but also wanted to run two 6 mile marathon pace for 4 runs, but that just didn’t happen, also didn’t get my hard 1600 in that I wanted to do, and don’t see it happening either, oh well…Will have to recover and do it after the marathon I guess. Anyway, since I changed the plan I will only run 4.25 tomorrow (might put one hard mile into that) and then the 8 on Saturday and call it good for the week with 27 or 28 miles. Next week I plan on running Monday and Tuesday, taking Wednesday off, going short 3 or so on Thursday and then the 26.2 on Saturday.

So I’m starting to feel…hmm…I don’t know, not quite nervous, not quite excited, nervited? Exervous? This has been a long time in coming and until a run at the end of March I didn’t know 100% for sure that I was running it, although with the letter from grandma saying she was hoping she’d be able to see me run in IA, I kind of figured I would be no matter what…The thing that makes me most nervous I think is the fact that my training has gone so well. Now you would think that would make me happy right?? But problem is, I read friends training reports and talk to friends saying they cut a run short cause they weren’t feeling it, etc…even during the taper. My training runs have all gone really, really well. OK, there were a couple that weren’t quite there, but there was almost always a reason for that, I felt sluggish for about a week after giving blood, well, that was to be expected, but I picked it up right away again. I had a couple of runs that were not great but it was really hot, I hadn’t acclimated to the heat yet and for being a hot run they weren’t THAT bad. Last week I ran 12 easy during taper, a friend had planned 13 but cut it to 10 as she wasn’t feeling it, she is in taper now too. Why are mine still feeling good?? Is this good or bad?? I’m trying not to let myself fret too much, but I have that little niggling fear, what if my training was so good that the marathon just won’t measure up to the training? Did I overtrain my body? I ran 63 miles on my longest week, that’s a lot more mileage than I’ve ever run before (previous best was probably 44), I did a ton of double days, and 2 hard workouts a week along with usually 3 days of strength training…I was at 920 miles on June 1.

This week I did 2 strength sessions, just one set of things, lighter weights than normal and 15 reps. I’m going to do at least on Pilates and maybe a yoga session yet, next week probably one Pilates and yoga, but no strength. I’m going to sleep as much as I can, I haven’t had alcohol since Memorial Day when I had 2 glasses of wine, and I’m planning on doing a semi carbo deplete before I load from Tuesday/Wednesday through Friday night. There is a meditation I’m going to do the night before from my 4 months to a 4 hour book, might even look at that for suggestions on diet for the next 10 days…I’m trying to remain calm, I’m visualizing myself finishing and I’m seeing that clock with a 3:xx on it…It will be under 4 hours, but how far I really don’t know…I know what pace bands I’ve printed and will wait to see how I feel that day and conditions to know what one I’ll work from…and I’m being so careful to not end up injured or sick (felt like something might be coming on so I’m taking Vitamin C and will start Zinc today too, just to keep things at bay). I think I might start packing my bag this weekend too…and getting my car loaded up with everything I need…:) I’m a freak!!


I love this band, they are playing at Peavey Plaza in Downtown Minneapolis tonight for the Alive at 5 series, live music, food, drinks, to celebrate summer, outdoor shows's a month long thing in June and the first time I saw the band sober (had tried two other times to see if I liked them and was so drunk each time it was a wash, except to notice Brian, lead singer, was cute the 2nd time) and really realized how much I loved the music. Anyway, my friend Devi and I are going, she needs to be away from being "in her head" and I like the company and even though she's not a fan of theirs, it's a free show and people watching, which she does like. So we are meeting up around 5 and heading downtown to see them. It's a good taper activity since I don't want to be at home right now anyway due to the jacka** living in my home, but only 22 more days till he's gone and Devi moves in!! So glad this is going on though, takes my mind off not being able to run tonight!! And I can run in the AM and I work tomorrow so keeps me from running...then Saturday is the state track meet, Sunday I'm meeting up with a friend and working, so again, keeps me from running...need to keep mind off the marathon!!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Taper Nuttiness and a Great and Busy Weekend


Taper nuttiness huh…well, normally you have to be really, really careful during taper to not be clutzy, I guess one more thing to add is not give in to the temptation to go to the bar, or if you do go, don’t wear the cute open summer shoes you want to wear (these are similar but not quite right, the ones I was wearing have just a strap across the foot and then another strap over the big toe, and are a little less of a heel, but very similar and same designer and color!) and wear steel toed shoes!! I hadn’t been to my favorite watering hole in ages and I decided I should go there, even though I’m not drinking till after the marathon, I went for dinner and to see friends that are regulars. Karl 2 (there are two them I know) is there and I haven’t seen him in ages, he’s finally getting divorced (a friend of mine and he were going to be divorce buddies, she’s divorced a year now, he’s not yet filed but is on the verge of working through and getting it done)…he’s drunk too, talking to him, standing by him, my toe almost gets squished by his bar stool once, I tell him look at my feet and be more careful…he leaves and comes back, for some reason moves the stool more and actually gets it on my toe!! OUCH, but thankfully he wasn’t sitting on it at the time or it might have broken my toe. Anyway, it was only sore for a little bit, like stubbing it, so no harm, but man, that could’ve been so bad!! It was a fun evening though catching up with others and learning the new thing, fresh air is in the bar now, not outside, since the smoking ban, people smoke right in the doorway, lots of them, and you have to walk through it, never thought I’d go into the smokiest, diviest bar in the Metro (and also number 10 on Stuff magazines list for the country) and find better air than the immediate outdoors…I love the Minneapolis and now St Paul smoking bans though.


I get up for my 12 mile run after not going to bed till 2:30…I was up by 9, tired but oh well. Went for a nice run, 9:11 pace with some heat and didn’t carry water (I know, dumb, but oh well) and only a banana for breakfast…just testing the body…anyway, after the run went home, showered and got stuff together to picnic at Calhoun. I was there till about 3 when Stacy called on her way to my place so I got headed home and we went for a bit of shopping for her to wear something that night and then back to my place to doll up. We grabbed at bite, then went to pick up Kate and Deb, Deb wasn’t there nor was Donnelle, we talked to Deb, she was a ways from being there so we gave her directions and got going…Donnelle called my cell later which wasn’t working and we ended up missing her then, which was a bummer. Anyway, we were out to see Epic Hero, great local band, and another band that was supposed to be good, from Chicago area I guess. Anyway, I drove so everyone could drink and none of them did…man, what’s the point in having a DD if you don’t drink?? The band was awesome though, everyone was getting tired though so we took off and Kate and Deb both really enjoyed though and bought CDs of the band. We are planning a good night out though in July…going to Lumberjack Days in Stillwater, was a messy night last year, we’ll see what this year will be like!!


Grand Old Day…literally…it’s Grand Old Day in St. Paul, lots of bands on lots of different stages, arts and crafts stuff, road races in the AM and lots and lots of drinking…from 12-5, the place shuts down then, but until that time people are getting LOADED, on a Sunday…then they stay in the bars. Last year I was one of them…this year I stayed sober again offered to drive a friend and she declined and we just people watched. I don’t normally dance, but watching my fav local band, GB Leighton, and their last set a guy grabbed me, sang and danced with me and had me in his cowboy hat. He was drunk, but a very good dancer, so that was entertaining and hey, good exercise since I can’t run in this taper thing!! After the dancing Shawn and I headed out to go to a different bar, but it was packed and they weren’t letting people in. So we went to the one across the street. During this time the cops are out clearing the streets…literally they have cops on horse lined up on the street chasing people out of it…kind of ridiculous if you ask me…come to St. Paul, get blitzed but at 5 we are sending you either into the bars or out to your cars…Whatever. We ended up at Bonfire for dueling pianos and a packed house, but we were lucky enough to get bar stools and decided to order food…we people watched, kind of checked out the cute boys, but most were so drunk…had a few near mishaps with a few of them, but oh well. It was quite an entertaining night and we might have located a boat to hang out on the St. Croix in for Lumberjack days…one of the many people we talked to, that’s if we ever talk to him again!! Ah, the joys of a drunken festival as a sober person. But no mishaps on my feet and I got some nice sun even if my to wasn’t meant for dancing in!!

Oh, and training for last week I was good. I’d have 50 miles the week before, I was at 39 this week with what felt like a super easy tempo at 8:20 or so pace and 3 x 1 miles on Friday before the long run…This week I’m trying to keep it to 30 or less…ughh…I might be biking and blading to make up for it, but hopefully no mishaps from those things!!