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Rollin' into Wk 5/18 Marathon Training

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Learning the value of slowing down....

Yep, that is right. One of the hardest things for me to do is to slow down.

Even though I had been into running for quite some time, I didn't use a stop watch for several years of my running. I purchased my first stop watch about 5 years ago, and it added so much to my running! I got very competetive with myself, and loved to see that number come down and down and down. Speed isn't a bad thing if you are only running 3-5 miles, 4-5 days a week.

But running 14 miles, and trying to push your pace? That is what I did last weekend. And my knee acted up from it. All feelings of irritation and friction were gone by Sunday evening, so I decided to stick to my running plan, but take it easy. I took my Monday run very slow - had absolutely no pain or irriation - but then I think I stepped it up too much on Thursday, and it acted up on my again. So, I took Saturdays run very slow, because I didn't want to skip my long run.... And even though my run went great - very very little physical issues and aches from my run - I got a little freaked out after reading someone else's post on a message board about pain, and a team leader telling them they should take a week off AFTER the pain stops.... OOOOOOPPS! I didn't do that!!

I have a difficult time slowing down, and am very competitive, but not really when it comes to other people - really it's with myself. I like to set goals for myself, and like to always improve my times. Last year, I was running more miles per week, at MUCH faster paces. And what seems slow to me now, in comparison with last years stats, might just be a little too hefty for me now....

So, in light of that, I will be cutting back on my running this next week, just to give my body a time to recoup a little, as a preventative measure. The last thing I want is to be laid up with some injury due to just ignoring some discomforts... So, I am planning to replace almost all my runs with biking, except for Saturday, since biking seems to carry much less of a punch when it comes to impact on my joints and ligaments.

Here was my plan for last week, and my actual:

Mon: 6-mile with fast finish, ST
**Actual: Did 6 miles very easy, ST

Tues: Biking
**Actual: Biked 45 min

Wed: 5-mile E + 6x 20-sec strides, ST & biking to/from gym
**Actual: Ran a 4-mile TR, biked to/from gym (35 min total) and ST

Thurs: 7.75 mile with intervals
**Actual: ran 8 miles with intervals

Friday: light biking
**Actual: biked 35 min

Saturday: 16.5 miles???
Actual: Ran a VERY VERY SLOOOOOOOOOOW 16 miles even.

I have found and am addressing what I think are some "trigger points" with my foam roller in my butt cheek and down the back of my leg (piriformis syndrome, I beliee), and that seemed to have made a HUGE difference. I was SOOOOOO happy that it did not tighten up during my run yesterday! WOOHOO! Plus, I did a TOOOOON of reading over the week about this, and found that working on strengthening the abductor muscles is very important to combat this. (It's funny, because I found the same thing is true to combat IT band pain, based on the info I read.) Something having to do with a lot of forward movement, and not very much lateral movement. So I have started doing side leg raises regularly, to help develop those muscles further.

Week 5's plan:
Monday: Biking 60-80 min (instead of running 8 miles), and ST
Tuesday: Biking 45-60 min
Wednesday: Biking to/from gym, ST
Thursday: Biking 45-60 min (instead of running 6 miles)
Friday: Biking 30 min
Saturday: 16 miles again.... VERY SLOW

So, there you go! Let's see how this week goes!! BRING IT! =)

Have an AWESOME week, everyone!! Happy running!


Speaking of my husband....

Friday, November 19, 2010

This morning, I found this....

In case the picture is not clear enough, it says,
"You are beautiful, magnificent.
I love your new hair.

I love you."

Tucked into my marathon training plan notebook, no less!!!! Aaaaawwww! I love him!! I was smiling from ear to ear after finding that!

I just got my hair done last night, hence, the comment about my new hair! I will post some new pics showing that off once I get a chance....

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LAUROCHKA 11/20/2010 4:27AM

    Aw - that's so lovely emoticon


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SEEHOLZ 11/19/2010 4:52PM

    That is super special!

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UR2LOVEIT 11/19/2010 12:36PM

  What a good man!

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CHRIS3215 11/19/2010 10:06AM

    AWWWW SWEET!!!!!

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AOGOAE 11/19/2010 9:35AM

    adorable. I'm a little jealous, my husband has about as many surprises in him as kraft macaroni and cheese!

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LAURIE5658 11/19/2010 9:22AM

    What a sweetheart! I believe he is a keeper!

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CRZYRUNRGRL 11/19/2010 9:20AM

    Awe! I love it! That is so sweet!

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RUNTRILAUGH 11/19/2010 9:14AM

    Awesome! Isn't it great when they surprise us with something like that????

I know you must be on cloud nine!

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So I married a couch potato....

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Yes, that's right. I am married to a couch potato. And I am sure I am not the only Sparker who deals with this.

There are many reasons I love my husband:
*He is committed to our marriage.
*He thinks I am his world.
*He is intelligent and hard-working.
*He's so supportive of everything I do and would give me the world if he could.
*He is a WONDERFUL father, when we fight or have disagreements, he always tries to work it out.
*He loves me and forgives me, even when I can be quite hard to handle... I am quite a fiery spirit at times. =)

But we don't share my enthusiasm and interest in fitness and exercise. He has, in the past year, started trying to exercise and eating a bit healthier, it still isn't a big deal to him.

I can't blame him: For one thing, all people in his family are at pretty healthy weights. He was ALWAYS skinny no matter how much pizza, bratwurst, or chips he ate. I think he thought he would always stay that way, but he's actually put on weight since we married, though I think he looks great. He fills out his clothes better, and has a mighty fine butt! HAHA!

He also grew up in an apartment that was just over the family's business, a very common thing even these days in Germany. His family owned a car dealership, so his "backyard" was the customer parking lot for the service department behind their house/business. He didn't play outside much - I mean, where would he play? And spent lots of time playing indoors with toys, watching TV, and his all-time favorite - playing videogames.

So, how have I resolved to deal with this, and not let his more sedentary lifestyle hold me back from accomplishing what I want? I want to be fit. I want to be active. I enjoy being a runner. I also enjoy being thin. I like being able to run around like a crazy woman with my little ones and making them laugh! How did I do it?

1. I refused to use my husband as an excuse to not get healthy. I resolved that, even if no one came with me, I was going to pursue my weightloss goals. And I try not to push my lifestyle on my husband. If he wants to try and be healthier (which he has shown more interest in, but very sporatically), then I will be happy to help.

2. I usually cook large batches of soups, and other things, and try to keep a healthy choice ALWAYS easily available for me, just in case the rest of my family wants to order pizza, or eat something else high-calorie. I also try to always keep a healthy, but yummy snack with me when we are out and about, so I am not tempted to eat out, even when my hubby wants to order his (NO JOKE) 5 bratwursts at the bratwurst stand. Or go through McD's drive (yes, we do have those here in Germany).

3. I try to not let my exercise take away from our together time. I do my cardio always early am. Well, almost always. Sometimes, on rare occasions, I go running in the evening, but I always ask my husband if it's ok first... Not because I have to ask, but because I value time with him. And I do go to ST at the gym 2 evenings a week. I would go during the day if I could, but with the kids... and the gym schedule for their classes... well, you know.

4. I attached myself to other people who were also pursuing healthier lifestyles, and found strength and encouragement with them. And I SHARED my goals with them, which I think was a huge motivation - voicing my specific goals to other people. SparkPeople is WONDERFUL in this area.

5. I just got out there and did it. Period. I get out there and exercise. I simply watch my calories. I just do it. Even if my husband is not, even if I don't "feel" like it, I just do it. And I don't resent my husband for not doing it.

Yeah, ok, maybe my health and fitness life would be easier if he joined in. Maybe it would be easier to make healthier choices if he were trying to make healthier choices too. Of course it would be easier to stay on track. Do I wish I could go on and on about my running, and have him really understand? Well, yes. It would be nice to pour out all the details from my fitness topics, and feel like he hangs on every word. I would like it if he really understood the accomplishment of running 16 miles, or if he could empathize with the exhilaration that comes from running a race. But he doesn't really.

But I don't let it hold me back. And I am very thankful that, along the way, I have always seemed to find the strength and motivation to stick with it, whether from other people (SparkPeople!!), or inside myself.

If I can do it, you can too.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOVELYLOSER84 11/18/2010 4:19PM

    Hi! I love your attitude! You will be my role model when I'll have kids and a family to take care of! And you are a true source of inspiration now :) Hope we get to meet someday :)

Have a great evening!


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JENN26POINT2 11/18/2010 2:07PM

    I think our husbands are twins... spiritually, anyway. Mine is just under 300 lbs and wants to lose weight, but won't make the time to exercise and eats too much. He's a hard worker when he's engaged and a great dad when he's engaged, but overall he's a couch potato... I value my time with him too, but I won't put my weight loss/training goals on hold for him... If I have a run planned, I go... I don't ask first... he respects me enough to know that this is important to me and doesn't try to stand in my way... besides, he's got his dirt track racing and I don't hold him back from that, so it's only right, right??

But I do agree that if he were to join me, it'd be a HECK of a lot more fun!!

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LAURIE5658 11/18/2010 11:29AM

    One of the most important things that you are doing is being a wonderful example to your kids. They will see that you are lviing a healthy lifestyle and will stand a great chance of embracing the idea. That is so awesome!

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-POLEDANCEGIRL- 11/18/2010 11:15AM

    I love this!!

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GIANTMICROBE 11/18/2010 10:34AM

    My boyfriend is a couch potato too, but I actually don't care. While I would very much like for him to be healthier and therefore happier, the absolute last thing I want is to work out together. Workouts are "me" time. My ex always tagged along with me when I worked out and I HATED it!!!!

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BREWMASTERBILL 11/18/2010 10:26AM

    Oh and one other thing while I have diarrhea of the mouth ... just because WE decided its our time to make better choices and start this journey doesn't mean that the rest of our family has to snap to attention and do the same thing. So many spouses think because they've decided to be healthy that everyone has to fall in line and I think that's unfair. You can see from the posts on this site that this is far more a mental issue than a smarts thing. No one can be expected to be on the same page at the same time mentally throughout a massive process like this. :)

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BREWMASTERBILL 11/18/2010 10:12AM

    I'm in the exact same situation. She eats whatever and doesn't gain weight. Although I've figured it out. She may eat whatever she wants, but after a big meal, she'll not eat again for quite some time. Her internal mechanism for hunger seems to be tied to calories consumed, where mine is definitely tied to how much volume is in my stomach regardless of caloric density.

So ya, she's not on board, plus she hates the fact that I exercise and work out. She thinks by doing strength training religiously that I'm going to turn into Arnie and she HATES muscley dudes. My assurances to the contrary provide zero comfort. She hates that I run because I'm "already skinny enough". Even though I'm gaining weight on purpose at this point, she still sees my diet as a weight loss diet since she still believes "fat makes you fat". I guess when you don't have a weight problem there really has never been a point to understanding the particulars of calorie consumption and macronutrients.

I'm dealing with it much the way you are. Have my own plan, execute it independently and generally ignore the noise. It's pretty atypical for me not to consider her opinion on the matter, but this is a case where I think I'm squarely in the right and it doesn't require any action or generate consequence on her part, so what's the harm?

I can imagine it's hard doing this by yourself, but when your partner is AGAINST what you're doing, it's a real trick.

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RUNTRILAUGH 11/18/2010 10:06AM

    My DH is pretty much the same way. It can be difficult to not feel like you are taking time away from something else, or even to cook healthy or heck, even avoid the "bad foods" in the house! LOL

But you know, we are setting good examples, and making ourselves happier, thus our relationships better by doing what we are doing!

Keep going girl, you've got a great attitude!!!

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Day 2 of living with my new BFF: The Magical Grid Foam Roller!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

LOVE IT! HAHA! Wow, I seriously have not felt this good in my left hip/butt since before I started running longer distances. It's weird, I just accepted the stiffness and tightness, thinking it just came with the long-distance running. In fact, I didn't even really notice it most of the time.

Enter: Magical Grid Foam Roller therapy - Tightness? GONE! Stiffness? GONE!

It feels sooooooo good to be able to give myself a massage right where need it, with just the right pressure. I am really looking forward to seeing how my body does on my long run on Saturday. I will definitely be in tune with my body, and ultra sensitive to any differences I feel.

Magical Grid Foam Roller... Seriously, my new BFF... My hubby is already teasing me about my new-found love!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IFDEEVARUNS2 11/17/2010 3:56PM

    Ugh, hate mine. It hurts too much!

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JENN26POINT2 11/17/2010 3:53PM

    Um, link please?? I'm so tired of my piriformis problems!!

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SEEHOLZ 11/17/2010 1:32PM

    I looked up that foam roller and was doing "research"-LOL. I am using the one I have, but definitely something to keep in mind.
This blog is making me want to just go ahead and buy one, though. So glad you like it!

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AOGOAE 11/17/2010 11:47AM

    when you start to cuddle with it you know you have a problem!

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-POLEDANCEGIRL- 11/17/2010 10:17AM

    WOO HOO!!! Is your DH getting jealous :o)

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Fellow ITBS Sufferers: It CAME!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My new "The Grid" (let me insert "MAGICAL" here) Revolutionary Faom Roller....

Oh, yeah. Mr. IT-band-friction-problem (or whatever you were), and all you other aches, pains and stiffness that seem to visit me when I do my long runs.... IT'S ON! I WILL take you down!! HAHA!

So, I don't even really know yet what caused my knee pain after my 14-miler the other day, but I didn't wait to find out! It was suggested to me that it could be the IT band, so I immediately did a ton of reading over the weekend about IT band issues, what causes them, what can I do to prevent, and I even found an exercise from that you can do to help avoid issues with the IT band (which I have already started doing, and if anyone reading this is interested:,8052,s6
The one called the side leg raisers). After doing these side leg raises from runnersworld, I noticed an immediate difference with how my left leg lined up with my hip... Not to mention that all little twinges of pain in my knee vanished after I did them... I am wondering if that might be what was contibuting to the knee issue in the first place... hmmmmmm. Guess we will see. OH, and I also am trying all sorts of IT band and hip stretches, including this one from SP:

Just a note here: while IT band issues are usually associated with overtraining, they can also be due to anatomical abnormalities, like overpronation or high/low arches, running form issues, like how hard your foot hits the pavement, if you are running on a slant, and for bikers: if you have your shoes pointed inward too much. Things like that.

Back to my foam roller - I have already tried it out, and am truly AMAZED at how good it makes me feel... ALL OVER!!! I used it on my calves, I used it on my IT band left leg (even though my knee doesn't even hurt anymore), I used it particularly on my left hip and gluteus maximus area (yeah, that's right, my left butt cheek is ALWAYS tight and weird from running), I used it on my hamstrings, which are starting to be a little bit sore from last nights BodyPump session,..... and I have seriously never felt better. I really have endured a lot of tightness and stiffness (all in my left leg oddly enough) due to my running, and I thought that was just what came with the territory. In fact, I would say, I didn't even really notice that it was that bad... until I rolled it with my magical foam roller. Simply rolling it relieved that tightness and stiffness IMMEDIATELY!

Seriously, I can give myself a massage with this thing, where I want/need it, with the exact pressure I need, and it is SOOOO easy! I am so looking forward to how much this little device is going to help me throughout my marathon training!! WOOOHOOO!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRANCLYN 11/16/2010 1:42PM

    So jealous. SO want one but still not in the budget. :(

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SEEHOLZ 11/16/2010 10:49AM

    I have a foam roller and I love it, but I like these grids on the one you got-- will check that out!
My issues are definitely from anatomic abnormalities!

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MBSHAZZER 11/16/2010 9:16AM

    Those are great links; thanks for sharing!

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-POLEDANCEGIRL- 11/16/2010 8:54AM

    Looks awesome!! I am on the fence about purchasing one. Not exactly sure what to do with it. So happy it has helped you!!

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DTPARKER202 11/16/2010 8:13AM

    Sounds neat. My wife is the runner in our family, I will share this with her as she's been complaining about her knees.

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