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Just another 13 mile run.

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Just a 13 mile runů

Yesterday I ran with my running buddies from Complete Runner. I started using a heart rate monitor a couple of weeks ago. It's the end of week 5 of my 18 week marathon training program. I'm using Hal Higdon's Novice 2 program, but switching around the order of some of the long runs to make room for other things like 24 Hours of Booty and a half marathon.

I started using the heart rate monitor because after reading Rich Roll's book Finding Ultra. When Rich got a trainer, the first thing he had to do was slow down. He had to slow down to speed up! Why would this be? Apparently many beginning endurance athletes make the mistake of running too fast, getting their heart pumping and over the aerobic threshold. I'm no expert, but I'm trying to learn. Here's a link explaining it:

So, I bought a heart rate monitor to pair with my Iphone. It goes right below my sports bra and it's pretty simple and no more uncomfortable than the bra. The first time I used it, I found I was going too fast. I used some calculators and formulas online to guess at my aerobic threshold for now, one said 153 and one 156. I found in my first few runs with the heart rate monitor that I had to go almost 2 minutes per mile slower than I had before. It felt like I might as well be walking! Very frustrating, but if I work on it, it should improve my endurance.

So, back to my Saturday long run. I started out with my running buddies, but it soon became clear that they were going too fast for me to keep up and stay below my aerobic threshold. So I let them go ahead and I ended up doing a solo run. The plan was to do 12 miles. I had an audiobook, just kinda got in the zone and ran along. This run was at about 11:30 pace, about 1:30 slower than I usually do for long runs. It felt different, though. It felt good. At ten miles, I felt like I could go forever. I think, maybe I'll just keep going when I get to 12 miles. The problem was, I was thinking about how good I felt and not paying attention to the heart rate monitor. Next think I know, it is at 166 bpm, definitely above my aerobic threshold! I slow way down to settle my heart rate, and I can feel the lactate build up in my legs. There's something to this, for sure. I can feel it, every time I have pushed past about 160, the lactate builds up. The next couple of miles felt less effortless, I ended up slowing down a lot, even walking a little. It turned into a 13 mile run, because I had turned around a little late. What's another mile? It was not the fastest 13 mile run I've done but it was the easiest, even through hilly Umstead State Park.

At home, I made myself some delicious whole wheat pancakes with blueberries, applesauce and a little maple syrup. Yum. As I was cooking, Ian's sister calls to ask if I want to move furniture. At first, my answer is no. Who asks you to move furniture the day of? Family. Ha. Well, you know, it was an easy run really. So, we helped her move. Then it was off to Ian's parents for his dad's birthday party. I love nonchalantly telling people that I ran 13 miles that morning. Their response is usually bewilderment or just like why? "You just do this for fun?" Yes, I am actually insane and that's why I run. Good as explanation as any. I guess I could say I've tried pot and running and running is the better high.

Next week is a 14-15 mile long run, which will be the longest run I've ever done.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BILL60 8/6/2012 8:53AM

    Well done!! I would check out your threshold levels. Sure sounds like it's way to low. The best to you in your preparations.

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PHEBESS 8/6/2012 7:07AM

    Impressive!!!!!! Half a marathon, just like that!!!!!

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ROCKYCPA 8/5/2012 11:25PM

    Good for you!!

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ROOTIHAUSMAN 8/5/2012 10:02PM


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24 Hours of Booty - My Reason to Ride

Thursday, July 26, 2012

I wanted to take a minute to tell everyone why I'm cycling in the 24 Hours of Booty to benefit various organization fighting against cancer. It's not just that a good friend of mine talked me into it. My reason is Elinor Reicker, the grandmother I'm named after whom I 've never met. She was known as Nora. She died of lymphatic cancer in 1969 when my mother was only 16. My mother told me stories about her as I was growing up, sometimes we would cry together, her for the loss of a mother and me for the loss of ever knowing her. I have photographs and stories. My grandmother started nursing school during World War II, thinking to join the war effort. The war ended too soon, but she became a nurse.

She married my grandfather, an eccentric English professor. They raised a daughter and two sons together. My mother was the oldest and when my grandmother was sick from the cancer treatments she started to assume responsibility for feeding her younger brothers and father. My mom told me how one time she cooked a special meal and her mother was very ill. Nora tried to eat but just couldn't.

Nora spent time in bed writing poems. I read them years ago; a mix of melancholy and upbeat poems that seem to capture her personality in her final years. She was sick for a long time and knew she would not make it. She had her body donated to research, so that her death could in some way benefit others. A final selfless act.

I like to think the world is a better place because she lived. Part of why I do sustainable architecture is growing up hearing about her belief in making the world better. I'm no nurse, but I'd like to help, and a 50 mile bike ride is a small thing for a big cause.

Please visit my donation page at and give a little. Every donation helps! Thank you.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DANAWALKER4 7/26/2012 6:24PM

  You are doing a great job. You too will be remembered as someone special and helpful to others.

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Day of the Dead Run

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Had a great race last weekend! I just checked the official time online, and I did it in 25:26.8!!!! That's taking more than five minutes off my time from the last 5k back in August! It was surprising for me to do that well, but I was really feeling it that morning. I had worked so hard the week before (67 hours of work), I only had time for one quick 20 minute run on Wednesday. So, I guess I was ready. I have been consistently running 3-4 times a week since my last 5k until that point. Just need to make sure to keep to my schedule and not let work get in the way of my running. I would like to improve my time and do more 5k races. I think my pace was a little fast in the beginning, I had trouble keeping it up. I'm going to try and do the first mile easy, step up the second mile to a pace that is passing other people but not too much effort. Then the third mile can be fast to the point where I'm really running across the finish line!

Anyway, this race was great fun, I got my face painted and got to see crazy people run in costumes. Check out the pictures!


That's CLALIZ next to me look all boney and me in the cool face-paint that smeared when I stopped for water.

Costume contest winners!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLALIZ 11/7/2011 8:48PM

    This was an AWESOME race :) Hope you had as much fun as I did! That is some great race time girl! Woo Hoo!!!
How is November treating you? I am enjoying the cooler weather on my morning runs! Ran by Lake Johnson on Saturday and was wondering if I would run into you hahaha so a gorgeous run!
take care!!!

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BILL60 10/30/2011 10:31AM

    You are a running STUD!! If you can do that well with 3 runs a week, imagine what you can do with some structure in your training. Go for it and let's shoot for under 23 minutes the next time. HOOAAA!!

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W5VEOTX 10/30/2011 7:37AM

    Super; keep up the great work.

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MOOKBALL 10/30/2011 12:24AM

    Beating your best time by 5 minutes, way to go! Bet it was fun!

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VENISEW1 10/30/2011 12:10AM

    emoticon emoticon

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My Second 5K (with pictures!)

Sunday, August 28, 2011

I did my second 5K last weekend! The race was the Downtown Rocks and Runs, which started out in downtown Mt. Airy on Main St. My family came to cheer me on, my sister, brother, my mom and my sweetie, Ian. My new adopted sister Lindsay was there too! My sister has a habit of adopting other sisters. Am I not enough?! Well, at least she has good taste in adopted sisters.

Me before the race.

Back to the race, it started on Main St then went downhill to the greenway on the Ararat River, which was a really nice start. I had placed myself 1/3 of the way back in the group and then just kept up a jogging pace that matched most people around me and that I could keep up. Then after about 1 - 1.5 miles, some people started walking or walk/jogging. I just kept jogging. I was pushing myself a little, but not so much that I would get out of breath.

There was a water break stand, I walked there long enough to drink a cup of water. At the 2 mile mark, I was doing good, my timer said 19 minutes! Then I saw the HILL ahead. My first 5K was near my apartment in Raleigh, only a ten minute drive, and the "hill" at the end was not very hilly in my opinion. I grew up in Stokes County, you call that a hill?!? Anyway, this time there was a HILL. I had been training on some short but steep hills in Raleigh, but this one was steep and long. You could see the HILL for a while, the race path went around in a sort of U and then up. So, I kept my pace steady. I tried to keep up a jog at first on the HILL, but everyone else was walking and I did not want to wear myself out. I ended up walking most of the HILL with a little bit of jogging here and there. At the top I started jogging again.

Then were were back on Main Street for the home stretch. Main St in Mt. Airy is not exactly level, so I couldn't see the finish line yet, but I knew it was coming. I picked up the pace. I passed some people here, and I was right along with another woman wearing pink shorts and a black top for a while, then I passed her. There was a guy with a stroller! Can't let stroller guy beat me. Passed him, and was at the finish line! I was out of breath, but I knew I had done well. I checked my watch. Ooops, must have hit a button, it had restarted. My sister told me I did it in about 30:50, she had timed it, too.

Passing "opposite girl".

My official race time was 30:51, my sister got it pretty close. I did a 10 min/mile pace! It felt great, and it was fun to have my family there. Now my sister wants to do a 5K in Mt Airy on October 15th! So, I'm adding that one to my calendar, it will probably be hilly, too! She's also excited because this one will have a rubber duck regatta, where you buy rubber ducks for $2 each, then they race down the creek after the 5K. If your duck wins, you get $200!

To the finish line!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLALIZ 8/28/2011 3:38PM

    looking great on the run! Sounds like it was fun and what a great race time you had! :)
Great job!!! AND now your sister wants to do one of those races, ahhh I wish my sister wanted to run with me ;)

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Life is Crazy!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

So, in my last blog post I said I was moving to Charlotte, which happened. Then as soon as my stuff was in Charlotte, Ian got a great job offer in Cary, North Carolina (near Raleigh). So, before I've even unpacked anything, we're moving again! So, with all the moving I was not tracking my food, eating out a lot and not getting much exercise other than the moving. I was afraid to weigh myself for a while. I've been in Raleigh two weeks now and I've only jogged once and rode my bike once.

I weighed myself just now and I've lost about a pound since I last weighed in! That was almost 4 weeks ago. Not the sort of weight loss I had before, but so much better than I expected!!! Especially since I am in the healthy weight range, now I am trying to see some abs! So, I am recommitting to my exercise routine, I need to get out of the apartment and see Raleigh on my bike!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HIKETOHEIGHTS 5/18/2011 11:57AM

    I think losing 1 pounds is great. The slower the better. Best of wishes on the job emoticon

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GODSCHILD2_2011 5/18/2011 8:38AM

    Sounds like a great plan to me. Don't allow your hard work to fall by the waste side. I know that life can get very hectic at times, but just remember that the time you have invested so far is going to pay off in the long run. I'm glad to know that you have recommitted yourself to a healthier lifestyle. Have fun on your bike ride. Congrats to Ian for the great job offer.


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