Saturday, August 27, 2011
I posted last weekend how I had a fairly lousy 7 mile run...though I did it so I won't complain too much! But, the weekend before I'd ran 6 miles and felt like the Energizer Bunny (EB). Well, I had another EB run today!
I am tapering a bit for my 5K two weeks from today, so today's run was back down to 6 miles. It was a little cooler...79 degrees at the start & at the finish...and we ran early so I was only in the sun about 1/2 a mile total! There was even a slight breeze when we started.
Also, on the day before last week's 7, I'd overdone my workout. This week, I did a wonderful step class the day before. I know that isn't resting, but I really wanted to do it & I held back from then doing a BodyPump class!
My coach's goal was for me to start at a 13:05 pace & drop 15 seconds per mile. Well, lately I start off at closer to 12:30-12:45 & it feels comfortable, so I thought I could do it. However, my starting pace was about 13:20. I didn't think that could possibly be correct. But, I kept trudging along & told myself this was a long run & not to fret the pace at the start. Just stay comfortable!
Both the 1st & 2nd mile were at 13:00+ paces. A little disappointing, but I was feeling really good. I was running without walking & feeling strong.
This is an out & back course which is mainly on a paved trail, so I turned around at mile 3. Mile 3 was closer to 12:45. (I'm at the lake house & don't have my Garmin watch to check.) I was halfway done & it was time to pick up the pace. Only 3 miles left & I was getting that EB feeling again! It feels like my legs are on autopilot & can go on forever! Every half mile or so, I picked up the pace. I started passing people who were walking. WooHoo! (though they are in other groups or not even with us, it feels good because I am running & don't have to walk!)
For the last 3 miles, so for over 30 minutes, I listened to the same song over & over. It just had the perfect rhythm. I've done that before, but never for 30 minutes. Does anyone else do this?
Mile 4 was about 12:15. I pick up the pace & felt terrific. Mile 5 was about 11:55. Yes! Then, ouch! My side splits are back. Gotta keep running though. See if I can work through this. I breathe in through my mouth & out through my nose. I push on it. I stretch. I pretend to chew gum. And, I keep running slowly...about 14:00-14:30. I had this same pain 2 weeks ago at mile 5...& dealt with it while running the entire last mile. Today, though, it only lasted 1/4 of a mile! Now, I was ready to pick up the pace.
I started running a little faster. A first I was afraid the pain would return. It didn't so I went a little faster. Here in the last mile there are a lot of people walking, so it was kind of nice to start picking them off...a new experience for me! Some were even running & I'd catch & pass them! Again, this group has all paces of runners & a walking group, so this isn't a big deal. But, for me it is a big mental hurdle! To actually pick out a runner and decide I will catch & pass them is a totally new experience for me!
With half a mile to go, I picks up more speed. I was going under an 11:00 pace. At 5.8 miles, I was ready to finish strong. I was running at 10:20! that's extension fast for me! I realized my breath automatically switched to "in through the nose, out through the mouth." I was huffing & puffing, but knew I could do this.
With a tenth of a mile to go, I went even faster down the last little stretch towards the 'finish line'. I was going in the upper 9:50s! And, I did it! I finished really strong! It felt amazing!
I looked at my Garmin. My HR was 175...that's faster than I've seen it, but it is a great place to be. WooHoo...what a feeling. Runner's high?
On Monday, I will be doing a mock 5K. I'm worried about the heat, though it'll probably be hot race day, too. Anyway, I'm excited to see how it goes!
Hope you all are having great weekends...and staying safe if you are on the East Coast!
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
I went on my 2nd run with my new group. I LOVE this group! They are so nice. And, today several people joined us that didn't run on Monday. And, one of them was slower than me! It just makes me feel better as I was afraid I was going to cause problems because of my speed. The coaches come back & check on us & then run ahead...well, I didn't want to be the only one way behind!
So, I got some pretty bad side stitches...twice! This is the 3rd time in about a week. I have only had them a few times before. Is it the heat? Because I'm pushing my pace?
The head coach happened to run to me while I was having one of my stitches. I've heard about changing the breathing & that didn't seem to help. But, she had me reach my arm straight up on the side of the stitch then stretch over to the other direction...and it really helped!
Another tip the coach gave us was to wipe the sweat way so the body doesn't have to work so hard! Again, it was about 85 when we started running & 90 when I finished my 4 miles....ugh!
She also told me I need to breathe in through my nose & out through my mouth. I just use my nose! I think this might help, but I also think it makes me thirstier!
I am debating about my long 6 miler coming up. If I did it with this group it'd be about 8:40 in 85-90 degree temps with quite a bit of sunshine. With my other group, it'd be at 6:15 am (so leave house at 5:50) in dark & upper 70's to low 80's & a lot less sun. It would also be around more people, have a water station, and I'd see more people while running. But the Friday group is SO much more fun & we hang out & talk before & after the run. Tough decision!
I'll let you know what I decide. But, for tomorrow, I do my swim evaluation & lesson with my coach! I'm excited!
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Yesterday I went on a run with a different running group. They were kicking off the school year as our kids are back in school. My running coach is the assistant coach and one of her friends is the head coach.
First of all, this was the friendliest group of people! They made me feel welcome right away. I loved it! There were about 18-20 of us and I talked to at least half of them. They were really nice!
This group meets MWF after we drop our kids off, so at 8:30 am. The problem right now is that we are still in the midst of this horrible HEAT WAVE! We didn't run until 9, and it was 91 degrees when I finished my 4 miler!
So, this group is FAST!!! Some were telling me they were 'slow', but it is all relative. No one there (at least yesterday) is anywhere near as 'slow' as me...even with my new-found speed!
We took off as a group and they quickly started getting away. I think they were going about a 10:00 pace. Anyway, there was a red light at about 1/3rd mile, and I caught up to them! But, of course, not for long!
But, this nice lady came back and started chatting with me. My coach popped back, too, and introduced us. She told her I'd done my first 2 triathlons this year. (Oh, and our kids are now going to the same school!) Well, my coach had told me about her...she competed 2 days earlier in the Age Group National Triathlon Championships in Vermont! To qualify, you must come in the top 3 of your age group 3 TIMES that year! Wow!!! Yep! She was there! And, she competed not in the sprint, but in the Olympic distance.
Well, she chatted for a few minutes and the group was pulling away. I told her she could go on...I was fine! But, she said 'no', she needed an easy run after her triathlon on Saturday. I told her, "but, I'm REALLY slow!" And she said that was fine. She'd push me a little, but not too much. And, if I couldn't talk, she'd do all the talking!
We had the most wonderful time! (Though, yes, it was a TOUGH run for me!! We were going faster than I'm used to AND did I mention it was in the upper 80s??? and 90?) I was able to talk, most of the time, though sometimes I could only get a few words out at a time. We both talked about our history as athletes (mine's short!) and our kids and our future goals and events. It was so much FUN!!!
I struggled yesterday with deciding if I should join the group. I think the 'slower' runners run close to 10:00 miles. I'm doing fantastic when I get below 11:30 (I did a 11:07 & a 11:15 yesterday!....then I slowed down!) But, the atmosphere is so terrific and I believe I can get fast enough to run with them by January, can't I? Maybe?
Oh, the coach had a talk with us beforehand and we got orange slices & ice cold water INSIDE a store afterwards! We are sponsored by several organizations and we get matching t-shirts! And, they are all running several of the races I'm running. So, even though I might be doing a lot of the running on my own, I think I'll join them! The friendships alone are worth it. And, it'll be nice to be part of a group when I compete!
Saturday, August 20, 2011
Yes, during last weekend's long run I felt like the energizer bunny! It was 6 miles and I ran the whole way! And, I ran FAST!
Well, today's run was 7 miles. And it was SO TOUGH!!! I walked multiple times. I had the worst side stitch of my life...I could barely do baby steps for awhile & thought I was going to have to take a long walk home. My feet hurt. My shoes were bothering me. My coach had set paces and I was way off. I was running my miles a lot slower than I have in a month. Ugh.
When I got home, I had several thoughts.
"Man, I can hardly walk! And, this was only about HALF of a half marathon!"
"Wow, that pool looks refreshing. I'm hopping in there!"
"My tummy hurts...I think I might vomit...or something."
"What was I thinking?!? I signed up for THREE half marathons!"
So, I did hop in the pool. Kind of gross, I guess, but it is my pool. I just pull of my shirt and get in with my running shorts & running bra. It is only 8 am and no one else is up & around yet. Ahhh...the water did feel good! I
As I thought in the water, I drank my Muscle Milk. After about 10 minutes, I was able to stretch IN the water. Man, it feels good! And, while I sat & stretched & then did a little light swimming, I got to thinking...
First of all, LESSON LEARNED!!! Yesterday, I did a HARD 45 minute bike ride...a PR! And, I tried yoga...for the first time! Ummm...NOT a good way to prepare for a long run! I need a day of rest, or maybe swimming, before a long run. I'm actually usually better the day after and can do a bike ride or something. But, not so challenging as I did yesterday!
Also, maybe I'll try Vibrams??? You see, I started running a year ago with 2 pairs of shoes. Since I ran so little to start with, I'm just now retiring my 2nd pair. I bought 2 more of the same style of shoe and have only started wearing pair #3 about 6 weeks ago.
Well, the first time I wore the shoes, I had to quit after about a mile. And, I was at the lake and didn't have any other shoes. They just HURT! I put them away for awhile, and then started trying them for shorter runs. Still not great, but I'll get used to them, right?
Last week was the first long run and they felt OK...not great, though. The toe area feels 'big' and they just aren't as comfy as the others. Today, the toe area felt really big....like I was swimming in there! I almost stopped and retied them, but I didn't. The fronts of my feet (balls of my feet) were aching, especially on one foot. And, they were even falling asleep. Now that I've been home awhile, my feet are still not feeling well. I don't like these new shoes.
I've also been reading "Born to Run." It had a slow start, but now I'm really enjoying it. Well, one of the guys runs barefoot and was talking about how they ran in the old days, how the Tarahumara run (a running people in Mexico), and how God created are feet as a miraculous instrument designed perfectly. My sil runs with her Vibrams and LOVES them! Maybe it's time I give them a try. At the least, I'm taking my 'new' shoes to the store along with my 'old', well-loved shoes, and asking them why these aren't working for me.
I'll be taking the rest of the day easy, and don't plan on any exercise tomorrow except perhaps some light swimming or pilates at home. Then, on Monday, I'm trying out a weekday women's running group!
Some days are tough, but we've got to be tougher!!!
Friday, August 19, 2011
I really struggled with what workout(s) to do today. Since my daughter is now in school, I have lots of free/me time! And, there are so many classes at the gym(s) that I want to do. Today there were so many 'fun' things to choose from! But, I had to remember I have a 7 mile run tomorrow, so I needed to be careful what workout(s) I chose.
I chose to do two. The first was a bike ride. I ended up riding 10 miles. And, I kept my pace at between 15-16 mph (except for the warmup). That's GREAT speed for me!!!
The best part, though, was this little straight-way that I usually love to run. I RODE it this time. And, it's about 1/4 mile without any stop signs or anything. So, if you go back & forth, you get a good 1/2 mile ride (or run) with on the turn around to slow you down. Well, the first time, I decided to push myself and see how fast I could ride it. 19 mph...whew! I ended up riding this road 3 times, and by the last time I got my bike up to 21 MPH!!! WooHoo!!! Besides going down a hill, I'm pretty sure this is the fastest I've ever rode. I'm excited!
Later in the day, I tried a "mat science" class which is a combination of yoga & pilates. I tried this about 6 months ago but at a 5:45 am class. That one tended to be mainly pilates. This one, I think, was mainly yoga. Well, I didn't like it...at ALL!
First of all, I applaud those of you who do yoga. It is TOUGH! I just couldn't even begin to keep up with the others. But, also, I have 2 problems...1) I'm very inflexible 2)I have a ganglion on the palm near the wrist of one of my hands.
So, we were doing a 'downward dog' and the teacher said everyone should put their heels on the ground. Well, mine are probably 3 inches UP in the air! Really, my ankles do not bend much more than 90 degrees. So, the teacher comes and speaks directly to me and tells me to get my heels down. She pushes me down several times...it doesn't help! My ankles just don't bend!
And, we spent a LOT of time on our hands...doing planks, downward dogs, and all kinds of things. Well, besides not having the strength to do this, it was KILLING my ganglion. Ouch!!!
Lastly, I knew this was one powerful workout...and that I'd pay for it on tomorrow's run. So, I 'snuck out' the best I could after about 30 minutes. And, no, I will NOT be trying yoga again. Well, at least not anytime soon! I much prefer my pilates reformer!
I have a 7 mile run in the morning! My hubby is out of town so I've actually hired a neighbor to come over and 'sit' while my daughter sleeps. I plan on running from 6:30-8:00 ish. Whew! At least it won't be THAT hot out yet! We've now had 18 days with above 100 degrees!!! We set a new record several days ago. And, it doesn't look like we'll get relief anytime soon. Oh, well. My body is pretty much used to it...at least early in the morning!
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