Sunday, September 29, 2013

Week 12 Recap

I know I say this every week, but how is it possible I'm writing another one of these things?  I didn't realize time could actually speed up.  I thought that was the whole point of time - that it's constant...  Well, except for Daylight Savings Time, but don't get me started on that.

So.  Two weeks from today, I will be running the Half Marathon at the Green Mountain Marathon in South, Hero, Vermont.  In my last post, I told you how gorgeous Vermont is.  In case you've forgotten, here:

Granted, that picture could have also been taken in Maryland, but in order to get through some rough days lately, I've been rewarding myself with the thoughts that Vermont is BETTER than Maryland, and I just have to hang on to get there! =)

So.  Week 12 of GMM Training.   It was supposed to look like this: 

  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - 5 speed
  • Wednesday - Rest/Cross Train
  • Thursday - 5 easy
  • Friday - Rest/Cross Train
  • Saturday - 12 miles
  • Sunday - 3 miles easy
What it actually looked like: 

  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - Rest
  • Wednesday - 2.25 painful miles (shin issues)
  • Thursday - 5 strong miles (running is a fickle beast!)
  • Friday - Rest
  • Saturday - 12 awesome freaking miles.  So happy with this run! 
  • Sunday - 3 miles not so easy. Blah. 
Weekly total:  22.25 miles! 

This was the first week that I deviated wildly from my training, on purpose.   Well, except for the week we spent at Disney, but I had approval from my coach to take it easy that week if I wanted to.  It's not like I didn't do over 40 miles of walking on that trip anyway!   Anyway, after my freak-out over the weekend, I needed an extra rest day on Tuesday, and on Wednesday I'd decided not to try to make up the speedwork, even before I started running and realized my shins were PISSED at me.   It seems weird now, though, that I really only have one week of training left before my taper, and then, boom - the race.   

It also seems weird that after Oct. 13th, I will not have a set schedule to follow any more.  On the other hand, I am so looking forward to being more flexible.  So we'll see.  I do want to stress that my coach, Erin, is freaking AWESOME, and if anyone is looking for a coach, I would highly recommend her.  It just turns out that for me, right now, coaching is not what I need.  I do not regret the experience, though, and I am convinced she's helped make me a stronger runner.

Monthly total miles:  85.42 - a personal best by about 20 miles.  Niiiice. =)   Next month the mileage will be much lower, which I will appreciate, but I will be honest - I kinda love the fact that I've run this much this month.  Makes me feel slightly.... something.  I want to say Badass, but it's not THAT badass.  It's badass for ME, but not for others.  But, as I keep reminding myself, "Comparison is the thief of joy!"  So.  It's badass.  Yay me. =)

Friday, September 27, 2013

Frazzled Friday

So, funny thing.  When you dream that you've written a bunch of witty, interesting blog posts full of pictures and fabulous stuff and then you wake up and log onto your computer, those posts will not actually be there!  Who knew?

In an effort to pull myself out of the crazy funk I was in earlier this week, I've been eating a lot of comfort food (read: carbs), and thinking about my upcoming trip to Vermont.  Did you know that Vermont is freaking gorgeous?

Two weeks from right now, I'll be at the airport  headed to Boston, where I will meet my friend S, and her friend K, and we will drive up to Burlington, VT.  SO EXCITED.  I'm less excited about the actual race than I am about having a few days "off" and meeting everyone, but that's ok.  Some of my favorite internet peeps are going to be in the same place at the same time, and that makes running 13.1 totally worth it. 

Plus, a my friend D who lives in VT mentioned that  maybe we'd go to this place:

Their mac-n-cheese has its own menu, people!  Plus, stuffed french toast.  Are you kidding me?  After two plus hours of running?  Sign me up! Yum, yum! 

Of course, I just totally made myself hungry and it's still two hours until lunch. D'oh.  

Have you ever been to Vermont?  What's your favorite comfort food? 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Crazy? Me?

That's how I ought to be feeling. Instead I randomly burst into tears at a stop light today, and I honestly have no desire to lace up my shoes and hit the streets.

I am stressed out, burnt out, and just... out. Out of my mind, out of my depth. 

It started on Friday. I should have known something was brewing when I got the crazy urge to dye my hair. Usually that's a symptom of inner turmoil, but it's been 5 years since I've done it, so I didn't really examine my motives - I just went with the urge.

Bad idea.



Ok, I actually have no pictures of the "during." But imagine home highlights going terribly awry (or a chihuahua with a bleach pen drawing all over my head).


(After going to a salon, begging them to fix it, saying "I don't care what color! Just help me!")

The picture does not do it justice. It's DARK. And red. And I'm not a fan, but it is better than the insanity that it was before I had it "fixed." (And, really, it's a more flattering picture than the first one, but the whole point was lighter hair. Not darker.)

So. That was Friday.

Saturday was a 12 mile run that ended up being a 10 mile run - and then even though I was sick, going to the fair with my family. Cuz I'm a mom and that's what I do. Then Sunday was more mommy duty, and more crappy running. Then today, I cried. And cried. Then I "fired" my coach and screamed at my husband. 

If this were 2 weeks from now, I'd blame it on hormones. As it is, I feel like I am just losing my mind. I need a vacation, stat. I am just overbooked, under rested, and utterly cranky. 

And now I've dumped all my crazy on ya'll. Fun, hu?

At least you got pictures this time.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Week 11 Recap

Holy moly, how is it possible that I'm writing ANOTHER one of these recaps? I mean, seriously. Are the weeks getting shorter?  Jeepers.

Week 11 of GMM Half Marathon training is officially over.  Only 3 weeks till the race!

How this week's training was supposed to go:

  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - 5 miles speed
  • Wednesday - Rest/Cross train 
  • Thursday - 4 miles easy
  • Friday - Rest/Cross train
  • Saturday - 12 miles
  • Sunday - 3 miles easy 
Weekly total:  24 miles

Here's how the week actually went: 
  • Monday - Rest (of course!)
  • Tuesday - 5 miles of crap.  Managed the 3 "tempo" miles in the middle but had to take walk breaks to deal with a side stitch that would.not.go.away!   It was not fun. 
  • Wednesday - 1 mile run, plus short lower body segment from my Biggest Loser DVD
  • Thursday - 4 geat miles
  • Friday - Rest (which was not as restful as it sounds - total hair catastrophe occurred, and I can't even blame it on anyone except myself)
  • Saturday - 10 miles that were alternately ok, and horrible.  Didn't manage to finish the 12 I was supposed to.  Came home and was ill.  Blah.  
  • Sunday - 3 miles with legs that felt like lead. 
Weekly total: 23 miles

This was my least successful week of training to date.  My coach told me that if after resting tomorrow, I am still feeling tired, then I should take Tuesday as an additional rest day.  That means skipping out on 5 miles, 3 of which are supposed to be at tempo pace.  Part of my brain is going "No! I NEED those miles!"  and another part of my brain is saying "Oh, thank you, baby Jesus! I need a damn NAP!"  

So, we'll see. I have to say, though, that I'm very proud of how my training has gone so far, and I know that I have given it my all, so if I do end up taking a rest day on Tuesday, I know it will not be because I'm lazy, but because I truly need it. 

Now.  Who's wondering what happened to my hair?  No one?  Great! Then I don't have to share pictures. Phew! ;-)

Saturday, September 21, 2013


A few days ago I mentioned a group that I joined called I Run 4.  It's a group that pairs runners with differently abled kids and adults, and the runners run "for" their matches, and do what they can to add a little pixie dust to their lives.  Well, yesterday, I got my match! 

His name is Paul, and he's a total cutie patootie.  His mom blogs about their life on her blog, Party of Six.  I haven't had the chance to read much of the blog, because yesterday was full of stupid and today was busy, busy, busy, but I'm really looking forward to getting to know him and his whole family.  

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

On a Roll

I've had issues with my right calf and shin since... oh, forever.  Day one of running.  (Ok, fine, I've been running less than 2 years so obviously it's not "forever."  I'm allowed to exaggerate, it's my blog!)

I have one of these: 

I use it on a semi-regular basis, but not really not as often as I ought to.  For those not familiar, it's a tool that you use in a rolling manner to work out tight muscles.  Mine is the travel version, pictured above, which is slightly longer than a regular kitchen rolling pin (but much more narrow).   It lives near my bed, and like I said, I use it occasionally.  If my shins aren't bothering me and my calf doesn't feel that tight, I pretty much ignore it. 

Recently, I've been having a flare-up, if you will.  Shin pain on the runs following my speed work, and calf tightness pretty much on all my runs.  Nothing agonizing, but it's annoying, and I have had to cut one run short due to the pain.  I mentioned it to my coach, and she suggested I get a foam roller.  I've heard of them before, and I know people who swear by them, so I went online and ordered one.  

I was in no way prepared for what arrived at my doorstep.  This thing is HUGE! 

(Ugly feet shown for size reference)

Once I got over my shock of its sheer size, I went online and googled "How to Foam Roll."  (As an aside, I am so glad that it's 2013.   How in the hell would I ever get anything done without Google??)   After watching a few videos, and emailing with my coach for a bit, I went ahead and tried it out. 

Holy Mother Of God.  Pain.  Pain like... well, like really ouchy freaking pain.  Apparently my calf is more of an issue than I thought!  I've been assured that with daily rolling, things will get better, but I am in no way looking forward to more of this torture.   What I am looking forward to, however, is being able to run issue-free, so I guess I will be continuing to torture myself for the foreseeable future.  Fun!  

Speaking of torture, I have to go gently encourage my son to get off his duff and get ready for school. Happy Wednesday, all! =) 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Week 10 Recap

When I started training for the Green Mountain Half Marathon, I felt like the 14 week schedule was so long.  Apparently, time flies when you're having fun, because yesterday marked the end of Week 10! Holy Moly.  This week was a cutback week, which I needed more than I realized! 

What the week was supposed to look like:
  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - 5 miles (speedwork)
  • Wednesday - Rest/Cross train
  • Thursday - 2 miles easy
  • Friday - Rest/Cross train
  • Saturday - 7 miles
  • Sunday - 2 miles easy 

What the week actually looked like:
  • Monday - Rest 
  • Tuesday - 5 miles (two of which were faster than my 5K pace! What, what!) & squats
  • Wednesday - Squats 
  • Thursday - 2 miles (tons of shin pain, yet again.  blah) & squats
  • Friday - Squats
  • Saturday - 7 miles (5 of which were awesome) & squats
  • Sunday - 2 miles easy & squats

Total Miles for the Week:  16 and 150 squats.  (I have now typed "squats" so many times that it does not look like a real word.  Squats. Squats.  Squats.  So weird) 

My 7 mile run looked like this: 

The first two miles were uncomfortable because my right calf (my left one is so good, why can't my right one learn from her sister??) was tight and it took me awhile to warm up.  Once I hit mile 3, though, things loosened up and I just felt great.  Probably the best run I've had in a long, long time.  Don't let the weather icon fool you, though.  This run was at night and it was dark! 

It was funny, actually, because I told my husband "I'll be home around 8:30" and I walked in the door RIGHT at 8:30 and he said "I was starting to get worried about you!"   Um... I was on time!  Jeez.  Good thing that last mile was a bit faster, wouldn't want him to call the cops or anything!  

Actually, I shouldn't say that.  It's nice that he worries.  I  just would rather have him wait to worry until I'm actually LATER than I said I'd be.  =)


You probably noticed that I actually did something other than just running this week. If you didn't notice, then you're not reading very closely! ;-) It wasn't much, but with me, baby steps are sometimes the only steps I'm capable of!  Every night before bed, I did squats.  I started out with 15 for two days, then I moved up to 30 each night.  This week, I'll continue doing the squats, but I'll add in another exercise.  I have not decided what yet.  Maybe crunches.  Like I said, baby steps.   But I realized that I can't keep expecting my running to get better when I'm not doing any additional work to get my body stronger.  So, I'm trying.  


Did you do anything new this week?  

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Well, that's disgusting...

I've never been what you might call a "girly girl."  I don't wear makeup, I consider running a  brush through my hair to be "styling" it, and I don't worry too much about what the latest fashion trends are.  I do, however, like to have pretty feet.  

I don't get pedicures because I'm crazy ticklish, but I do paint my toenails in the summer time because I live in flip flops/sandals and the toes must. look. presentable!  I used to have fairly cute feet:  

Actually, in this picture, the right one looks a little janky, but still.  You can see that the toes are normal looking, right?  A little pink sparkly nail polish, nothing wonky going on.  Perfectly presentable feet.  I think I took this picture last fall, when my running was kind of sporadic and light.  (Lest you think I'm even weirder than I already am, I had painted my daughter's toes, also, and that's why I was taking pictures - but for some reason I can't find the picture of my daughter's adorable feet!) 

Anyway.  What were we talking about?  Oh, right.  

A few weeks ago, I noticed that one of my toenails was starting to look odd.  I was hesitant to remove my nail polish, because I feared what I'd find.  Nothing hurt, but the nail was very obviously not in good health.   I finally bit the bullet last night, and took the polish off.  

Uh.... err..... YUCK!   Two black toenails!  I have runner's feet!  *sob*   

I love my feet.  They, along with my legs, have carried me over 600 miles since I started my running journey. I am very grateful to them, and I know that I am extremely lucky to have them.  But come on.  Ew.  Why do they have to be so funky? 

Have you ever had a black toenail (or any other running or fitness related weirdness)?   

Friday, September 13, 2013

"Runnin', runnin', runnin'...."

I haven't been posting much lately, partly because I've been busy, and partly because I've been kind of funk-y.  I get that way sometimes, down in the dumps for no real reason.  Fortunately, I have amazing friends that help me get through rough patches - and I have running.  I also have friends that I've met through running, and they are some of the best people I know.

Recently, I stumbled upon a group called I Run 4.  The concept is simple - able bodied runners run in honor of children and/or adults who are unable to run themselves.  Some of the children are very, very ill, and others are fairly healthy, but are physically limited in some way.  There are currently over 3,000 members of the group, and I have been (not-so) patiently waiting for my "match" since the beginning of August.  Apparently there are more willing runners than people in need of runners.  Which goes to show, IMO, how awesome the running community is.  The I Run 4 Facebook page is filled with so much love, it's almost jumping off the screen.

I can't wait to be matched!

In the meantime, it's "business as usual" for me.  This week is a coach-mandated "cut back week" so I'm only running 16 miles total, and my long run tomorrow is blessedly short.  (I'm laughing at myself right now. I'm running 7 miles tomorrow.  When did I start considering that short??)

Anyway, it's just more of the same around here - though I did buy new shoes today!  More on those after my test run on Sunday. =)

Happy Friday!

Do you run for/in memory of anyone?  Have you ever "dedicated" a run to someone? 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Week 9 Recap

So! Week 9 of my GMM Half Marathon Training is finished!  Not quite sure how that's possible, but in 5 weeks, I'll  be in Vermont, running through the middle of nowhere with 400 other people.  AND I get to meet some super awesome people that I've been talking to for the past year + on FB.  Yay for  meeting internet peoples! =)

What the week was supposed to look like:

  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - 5 miles (speedwork)
  • Wednesday - Rest/Cross train
  • Thursday - 3 miles easy
  • Friday - Rest/Cross train
  • Saturday - 11 miles
  • Sunday - 2 miles easy 

What the week actually looked like:

  • Monday - Rest (I'm really, really good at Mondays!)
  • Tuesday - 5 miles of awesome
  • Wednesday - Rest
  • Thursday - 2.07 miles (Shin and foot pain, totally caved and cut this one short)
  • Friday - Rest
  • Saturday - 11 crazy miles, the last 4 of which were the fastest.  Who knew it takes me 7 miles to warm up? 
  • Sunday - 3.1 miles easy

Total Miles for the Week:  21.17  Whoot!

More things happened this week, and I know I'm being a slacker blogger, but I am exhausted and there is no way a coherent, interesting entry is happening tonight.  So, I leave you with this thought. 

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?  

No, really. I'm curious.  
Toodles !

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Bad blogger, no soup for you!

I can't believe it's been a week since I wrote a blog post - and I can't believe that it's been nearly that long since I've read any of my favorite blogs.  I don't know where the time has gone - I certainly haven't been doing anything terribly exciting.

Then again, maybe that's why I haven't posted.  Life's been crazy, as always, but it's been the boring kind of crazy and I find myself not really having much to say about it.  Also, I haven't been very focused the past few days - I feel like things are just passing me by.  Gotta knock that crap off!

For now, though, you get this boring and uninspired post.  Tomorrow I will be back, hopefully with something to say.

Until then, here's a little random for your day:


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Week 8 Recap & A Look Ahead

It's Sunday, which means another week of training is over - and today is September 1st, which means there's a whole new month of training ahead!  First, let's look back.  

GMM Half Marathon Week 8 Training Schedule:

  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - 4 miles speedwork
  • Wednesday - Cross Train/Rest
  • Thursday -3 miles easy
  • Friday - Cross Train/Rest
  • Saturday - 10 miles
  • Sunday - 3 miles recovery

How it actually went: 

  • Monday - Rest
  • Tuesday - 4 miles speedwork (on the treadmill at the gym, super hard, foot pain, was miserable, blah, blah - but I did it!) 
  • Wednesday - Rest
  • Thursday - 3.08 miles super easy
  • Friday - Rest 
  • Saturday - 10 miles (pretty slow overall, and HOT, but I was happy with it!)
  • Sunday - 3 miles easy (1st mile super hard, 2nd and 3rd easier - nice way to end the week!)

Total weekly mileage: 20.20

What's funny (well, not really) is that so many people I know run 20 miles in a day.  But to me, 20 miles in a week is a big deal, especially because I've never done it before!  So I'm very pleased with it.  

Looking ahead to September, even bigger numbers are headed my way.  My current schedule has me running 90 miles in September - and my coach is actually changing it tonight to add more mileage (changing a cutback week since I just had a slacker week at Disney).  I have never run more than 70 miles in a month, so the idea of 90 kinda makes me feel...... I don't know, actually.  Not scared.  Excited? Proud?  Well, maybe I should save the pride till I actually do it, but still. 

Considering that a little over a year ago, I could hardly run a mile, I'm feeling pretty darn good right now!