MarathonMaiden's Blog

September 21, 2009


Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 15:05

Um 44* at 0800? I think fall is here! Although the high for today is going to be around 75* so maybe not ha.

That means, however, that it was <44*  when I got up at 0600 to run this morning.  Not cool.  Well actually very cool but not fun.  Also not fun: the sun rising at 0631.  Because when I get up a half hour earlier (well 32 minutes earlier to be precise) it is PITCH BLACK.  No pre-dawn glow for me from now on.  I guess this means I’ll likely put my core work before my run.  Which is what I did today.

My legs are feeling okay.  The quads are a little sore and my hipflexors are still tight.  Yesterday my recovery pace was a normal easy run pace so I thought that was an indication of my not-pushing hard enough in the race.  Now I’m thinking that it’s because I typically run faster in the pm because I was about 20 seconds per mile slower this morning than a normal run.  So I think that means yesterday was pretty satisfactory.

Speaking of yesterday, I hope y’all realize that I wasn’t *really* complaining.  Intellectually I know that what I did was good and definitely not something to look down on.  Emotionally, however, it’s a different story and I think that having really high expectations made my results a little heartbreaking.  Plus the whole deal with my friends (whom I am still very annoyed at).  So thanks for all the kind (and NOT condescending) words.

Back to this morning.  So I’m finishing up my run and as a “warm down” (not exactly a change of my pacing but more of a mental ending to the run) I did a lap around the school.  Well apparently the track team was running hill-y intervals (remember, my area = pretty flat) right outside my dorm and it was a little embarrassed to be leered at by about 15 men.  Not to mention that I had to pass them twice because the lap of my campus began and ended at my dorm.  It was funny that as I passed (both times) anyone who was sitting or walking  after a repeat would start moving around to “show off”.  Plus, one of the freshman who is apparently on the team as well as in my Spanish class totally tried flirting with me in class using running as a segue.  Heh, too bad I’m at least 4 years older 😉

So another run in the books and I’m glad I did it.  I haven’t been getting enough sleep this past week and a half or so, so running as hard as I did yesterday exhausted me more.  I thought about putting off my run when my alarm woke me up (AGAIN!) because my eyes felt heavy which rarely happens.  But I knew that I would have lots of work to do this afternoon (so so true).  It’s amazing though how much energy running can give you though.  I may crash at 2000 tonight but hey, that’s the life of me haha.

Weekly Recap: Sept 14-20 2009

Filed under: Weekly Recap — Tags: , , — marathonmaiden @ 07:59

Miles: 51.4 miles

Time: 7 hours 38 minutes 0 seconds

Strength: big fat zero

Core: 5x

XT: 0

Wow. Another high mileage week.  Guess that’s what happens when the lowest mile day is 6 or 7.  Overall pace not too bad, I’m sure the 5k lowered it somewhat but with so many miles I doubt that a 5k (plus those 4 mile repeats) really made a difference.  So does that mean I’m getting faster during my easy pace? Maybe, but I guess the next question to ponder is: is that a bad thing? I’m sure we’ll see in future races haha. And now that the 5k is over I’m going to try and make an effort to hit the gym for some strength, although now that I’ve gone so long (feels like forever) without lifting and only running, I’m not sure that I’ll like decreasing my miles for some quality weight time!

September 20, 2009

A PR’s a PR, right?

Filed under: Race Report — Tags: , , — marathonmaiden @ 15:55

So I’m not really sure where to begin with this. I guess I’ll start at the beginning.  That’s always a good place right?

The original plan: run with some friends, have fun ( and kick that punkass kid’s ass too).

Somewhere between yesterday afternoon and this morning every single person who was going to go with me bailed.  Yup, every. last. one.  So I had to revamp my plan, not to mention figure out how to get there as my ride opted out of going to as well as nix the picture idea because there was no one to take pix and I didn’t feel comfortable leaving my camera in my car.  So right there? Not such a good start to the morning.

It was made a little better because of the fact that it was 44* when I got up. Since I thought I was going with a big group of ppl I slept until 0800 (the race started at 1115).  If I had known I was driving myself I might have left a little earlier as parking was sure to be a mad house.  Ate my standard pre-race breakfast: pb & banana on an english muffin with a big bowl of cheerios and the remaining banana slices.  Yummy.  At least in theory, because I was now anxious about going to the race by myself I wasn’t really able to enjoy it.

So there was little traffic and decent music on the ride down there.  By some miracle I got one of the last free parking spaces by the State House.  I picked up my t-shirt (no smalls left boo! AND only the first 1000 pre-registered participants got race bags — LAME) and headed back to my car to drop off my backpack and take off my warm clothes. By this time the weather had warmed up to about 60*.

Alright so long wind up to the race itself.  I warmed up about 45 minutes before the start.  I jogged for about a half hour or so and then did some strides.  By the time I got to my corral (2nd one baby! They did it on “projected times” and I had listed mine as a 22 mins) there was about 5 minutes until the gun.  Perfect timing. Not to mention I was lightly sweating and feeling good and also nervous. This is also the location where I ran my first (and only so far) marathon last spring and there were some good memories related to that.

The gun went off and it took me about 30 -45 seconds to cross the starting line.  Grrrrr. I mean, with lots of ppl there it was a very fun atmosphere but it made the first 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile really congested and I was weaving in and out of ppl. In all honestly, I think I ran more like a 3.2 or 3.3 mile race with all the in-and-outs I was doing to keep my pace.

At first my legs felt kind of tired and I thought “holy moly I think my warm up was too aggressive and the 10.8 miles I ran yesterday were a bad idea”.  Only more explicit.  I am a trucker/sailor trapped in a 22 year old female’s body.  And yes, I did run 10.8 miles yesterday.  It was cool and nice and my legs felt great.  At the time.

I don’t know what my 1 mile split was (I don’t know if there was no marker or if I’m just blind) but my 2 mile split was (on my watch) 12:42.  Holy moly! I was flying! Unfortunately my realizing how fast I was going caused a little crash and burn.  I think I’ve blocked out what I hit the 3 mile marker at because I know I looked but I cannot for the life of me remember.  The last .1 was uphill and it sucked.  A lot.

[Edit: Interesting to think about that after my half 2 weeks ago I wrote a post-race post about not going fast enough at the beginning and being too conservative.  Clearly not the case here.  Must find happy medium!]

So if you stick through all that whining that comprised this race report you deserve the stats:

Final time (official chip time): 21:32.  6:56 pace.  76/1810 in the F0139 age group — which for all you non math ppl is top 4.2%. 431/5365 (top 8.03%).

When you look at the final stats, it’s not so bad.  I mean, I just lost my 5k virginity here ppl!

But I can’t help but feel disappointed.  Even though I claimed my goal time was 22 mins I was hoping for less.  Granted, I did go faster than that but I was hoping for smoking fast. I also don’t really have anything to compare this too.  And not just compare vs myself.  I honestly have no idea where 21.32 fits in the grand scheme of running? Good? Average? Bad?

I think a lot of my mood also is dependent on how all my so-called friends backed out and I was left going alone.  Don’t get me wrong, racing is fun even when traveling by myself but a 5k isn’t really justification for me to go to a race myself.  Especially since the atmosphere was so fun and positive there.  And there were so many people.  Having someone there to share it with would have been really nice. So I can’t really tell if my disappointment is in the race itself or the treatment of my friends.

Since I didn’t have anyone to hang with after the race I didn’t bother cooling down in Providence.  I drove home, ate lunch with practically the only friend who I can depend on to keep their word and then went for a head-clearing cool down.  I know that it was, like, 2.5 hours after I had finished but I felt I needed to run again.  My legs were a little achy at the beginning but by the end all the gunk in them was shaken out.

And woah.  Long ass post. Thanks for reading it all (assuming you did and didn’t just scroll all the way down).

Just as a final note, I’m totally not fishing for compliments here (which I was accused of when talking about my disappointment to someone).  I know a lot of you are type-A’s too so I’m sure you can understand what I’m going through.  As the post is titled: a pr is a pr.  Plus the disappointment in this race should give me fuel to go at it harder for the next one 🙂

September 19, 2009

Almost game time

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — marathonmaiden @ 18:50

Seriously loving this crisp fall weather.  It’s getting so cool at night that I need to bunker down under lots of blankets.  (Mind you, I sleep with the window wide open and a window fan going)

I got a decent night of sleep last night – not enough to be out of sleep debt but just enough to give me a sleep hangover.  And in all honesty, my body actually thrives on more.  I got 8.5 but I like 9 hours consistently.  Yeah, not going to happen as a college student.  Or even as a (future) doctor.  I guess, then, that it’s good I feel overslept with 8.5? My body adapting?

So the weather was IDEAL for running.  I already knew I was going to go out and run this morning.  I also knew that I was going to prolly go longer than I should.  So rather than tell you how far I went today you can guess.  I will say that my pace was easy and effortless and I did a couple of strides after and they felt powerful.  I feel primed and ready to go.  Again, we’ll see if today was beneficial or harmful in the AM.  Although with this being my first 5k I suppose there’s no real way to judge.

I mentioned yesterday that I have a hydration goal: make my drinking more spaced out during the day.  Well so far so good.  I need to make sure I drink some more before 7, so that when I have another water bottle later tonight I’m not overloading my kidneys (and bladder).

I did decide to go to Waterfire tonight and then opt out of the clubbing.  Hopefully I can stick with this plan and get a good night of sleep.  The race doesn’t start until 1115, so I don’t need to get up wicked early but I still want to get to the location early enough to pick up my race packet and properly warm up.  I was thinking running the route and then a bunch of strides as a warm up and trying to finish all that within 15 minutes of the start.  Thoughts? Good plan?

Okey dokey.  Time to start getting ready to go out and maybe pick out my racing outfit. I’m charging up the batteries for my camera so hopefully I’ll remember to bring it and treat y’all to some pics! Albeit if they’re action pics then they might not be the most attractive haha. 😉

September 18, 2009

Hello again legs

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 16:14

Trying for a quick post in between assignments — we’ll see how I do 😉

Thanks for all the positive vibes from my post yesterday.  I’m glad that I cut my run short yesterday because I had a really good 9 miler this morning.  It was cold (again — maybe fall really is here?) and I wore my gloves with a tee and shorts.  Seriously, it’s a hot look.

I woke up 10 minutes before my alarm but, and this is totally unlike me, I feel back asleep! It was still dark when my alarm so rudely went off so I chose to do my core routine before my run while I waited for the pre-dawn light to show up.

I decided to do half of my add-on portion before the “main course” so that if today was a bust with the legs then my overall mileage wouldn’t be shot for the week (yes sorry SpecialK, today I was determined to get a certain distance in before I listened to my body!) Well maybe not sorry because it turned out that I did all that plus a little extra at the end because my body was feeling good.  Not Kenyon good but there were no aches and pains or overall lethargy.

I ended up with 9 miles.  Now, I know that it looks like a lot (well to me at least and before a race this weekend) but I figured that I wasn’t going to get a real long run in with the 5k so I would do a mid-distance run which, coupled with the mid-distance stuff earlier this week (well most of this week), would even out in my overall mileage.  And if I’m feeling  good being sleep deprived (like I did on Wed with my speed session) I’m really going to try hard to get a good night of sleep tonight and (hopefully) tmrw.

But I think I’ve identified part of the problem of my lack of sleep: my hydration strategy.  I drink very little during the day (despite lugging around a water bottle!) and then when the night falls I’m like, oh shoot (except a little more explicit) and drink a liter or so of water and other fluids.  Leading me to get up once or twice during the night.  Clearly interrupting my sleep cycle. So I want to start drinking more during the day.

So far today: FAIL.  I mean, there’s definitely still time to rectify this before my sleep is interrupted but failure just the same.

Before I sign off (and yes I know this really wasn’t that quick of a post, I tend to ramble 🙂 ) I have a question to pose to y’all: How important is a good night of sleep the night before the race? Typically I’ve been told that it’s the night before the night before that counts (which would be tonight).  The reason I ask is that my friend is celebrating her 21st on Saturday night.  I’m obv going (not going to get smashed though) but I’m just trying to think how late I want to stay out.  Currently I’m planning on doing the dinner / Waterfire portion on the night but heading back to campus around the time they go to the clubs and start the heavy drinking. I think it’s a good compromise but still, how important is that night of sleep / resting up?

P.S. (Gosh can I pull together a quick post? Ah the art of procrastination ha). Jess is having a great giveaway. Check it out — although I will say that I don’t really want you to because I want to increase my chances of winning!

September 17, 2009

Shorts, T-Shirt…Gloves?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 19:53

Grrr I really hate doing homework.  Don’t get me wrong: I love learning.  But tolerating busy work has never been my strong point.

Luckily I have posting here, RWOL, facebook etc to provide me with enough distractions to last me a lifetime! Not to mention that The Office premieres tonight.  Doubt I’ll get to watch it “live” but it’s still exciting. Wicked exciting.  Plus NCIS starts up next week. EEEEEK.

Last night was absolutely freezing! Oh okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration.  But it was a little cold.  I think I’ve mentioned it before but I have Raynaud’s syndrome.  A fancy was of saying really poor circulation, so my hands get soooo cold and numb once the mercury dips below 55* or so.  Since this morning was upper 40s I broke out the gloves.  I felt like an idiot because it was still warm enough out for shorts and a tee but hey, I’m sure ppl thought I was crazy for being out running at 0600.

As for the running, well I’d rather not discuss that.  But since this is (primarily at least) a running blog I should talk about it.  The plan was 8 — yeah rather ambitious given my killer workout yesterday.  And like I usually do I was going to do the “add-ons” before the 6 mile route.  But something in my brain said “No, do the 6 first”.  I listened, and I’m semi-glad I did.  My legs felt weak and it was a struggle to finish.  You wouldn’t know it looking at my time but my mind and body weren’t into it.  Maybe it was because I was up at 0540 to workout before my second rotation at the hospital, maybe it was the lack of sleep I’ve been getting all week or maybe it was because of my repeats.  Maybe all three.  Lots of maybes.  But the bottom line is that I was not feeling it. Makes me a little worried because of the 5k coming up, but it’s 2 full days before the race and that should be enough to recover from the repeats, right? Well too late to do anything about it, should’ve more seriously considered it heh.

When I finished I was happy that I ran but I don’t think I could have done more if you paid me.  And I’d do just about anything for some $$. Heh. Climbing the 4 flights of stairs to my room was tough too (I live on the third floor but there’s a “ground floor” that you need to climb stairs to get to floor 1).  I guess I could’ve taken the elevator but I feel so lazy doing that.  And I seriously judge those who do it.  Especially those who take it going DOWN.  But that’s a rant for another day haha.

Just a note about my rotation/internship before I get back to my pile of work.  I did not pass out today.  Granted I was in a different department but I still had anxiety about it happening again.  I was in physical therapy today and it was alright. The PT I shadowed was really nice and I love the aspect of hands-on patient interaction.  Buuuuuuuuuut, I’m pretty sure that’s not the path for me.  About 18 months ago I was pretty sure that I was going to go into PT but then I decided to follow my (childhood) dream about being a doctor.  Even if it means I pass out in the process. Eeek :-/

Although speaking of medical stuff.  I’ve decided NOT to apply to med schools this year.  Looking at my application, it’s kind of middle of the pack and I think taking a year to work would make me a much stronger candidate.  I had a meeting with my pre-health adviser and he basically told me that it was my choice whether to apply this year or not.  I kind of wanted him to make the decision since I’m neither a strong nor a weak applicant.  Even though it bothers me that I’m not applying this year, it’s prolly for the best. It’ll save me A LOT of stress this fall and has the potential to boost my chances of getting into my dream med school.  *FingersCrossedItsForTheBest* I have some ideas of what I want to do for my gap year and I’m a little excited about that which takes the sting away from my decision to delay the med school application process.

And props to you if you stuck through this post — kind of a random assortment of thoughts  🙂

September 16, 2009

Good Golly Molly

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — marathonmaiden @ 19:32

OK, so I don’t have a friend named Molly.  But I’m a sucker for anything that rhymes. Consider the title, however, as an exclamation of  something good.  Because something good happened this morning.

When my alarm went off this morning (and yes lately my alarm has been waking me up. Maybe I should go to bed earlier?) I debated whether or not to hit the gym.  And no, it’s not because of the weather; it was 55* and partly cloudy.  Perfecto. I have this self-doubt complex where I don’t think my body can handle doing any speed work on it’s on.  It needs the TM as a crutch.  Which I know is stupid because I just did a couple really good tempos where I questioned my potential a few weeks ago. But there you go: mental roadblock.

After berating myself for trying to wimp out and head for the gym I told myself that I needed the mental toughness, if nothing else.  I was originally going to do a ladder-type workout with more shorter stuff but since my campus is small I took advantage of the one lap = one mile.  Or so I thought.

After the warmup I noted that it took me a little longer than I thought it should but shook it off as I was just tired and not warmed up.  So first mile: 8 minutes.

WTF?! I definitely was going a hell of a lot faster than that! Well, maybe my legs weren’t warm for the first part of that lap

Mile 2: 737.  Eh, better but not where I want to be. Same with Mile 3: 737.  Both of these miles I chalked up to noticing a slow down, catch myself, speed up routine.

Mile 4: Going to go balls to the walls.  728. UGH. Not where I want to be.

Now I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this.  Apparently the one lap = one mile is not for the way I ran it. There’s no real concise way to explain it so I’m not going to but the way I was running my lap made one lap = 1.1(5) miles (I’m so conservative when it comes to distances that even though mapping the lap online says 1.15 I rounded down to 1.1). So when I converted my pace to min/mile they were:

  1. 716
  2. 655
  3. 655
  4. 647

Much much better because my target paces were 700-715.  Now I know I’m not as speedy as some of you who read this (Matt, Jess and LARunner come to mind immediately) but I was so elated when I realized that my splits were fast!

As a couple of you pointed out, I might have been better off with shorter repeats, most common advice was 400s and 100s, but I really needed this for a mental boost. Rest assured that I had a serious internal debate and took all of the advice to heart — well not so internal as I wrote out a pro / con list! And major thanks for go-to 5k training work, I have another one (well tentatively) in early November that I will definitely incorporate this stuff into.

I now need to remember to A) warm up hardcore before the race (I was thinking running the course leisurely) and B) keep my mind of the race.  Too often I find my mind wandering and BAM my pace is shot.

So I’m still pretty nervous about the race, simply because it’s my first.  But I should be ok.  Provided that my legs recover in time.  Heh, kind of funny. Except not.

And like many of you told me: HAVE FUN.  Now tell me you can’t watch / see/ imagine this and tell me that it is not the most joyous occasion on Earth. I get giddy listening to that music and my friends and I are definitely planning a major trip.

September 15, 2009

Oh man my nerves

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — marathonmaiden @ 19:26

Oh man my quads.  They feel trashed.  Eh, maybe not so much anymore but when I left my room to hit the streets they felt wicked sore.  Prolly because of my back-to-back LRs this weekend.

I was able to do 7 miles before time ran out and I needed to get ready for my 0830 class (thank god it’s only one day a week at this time — it’s a language lab).  Despite my legs not feeling 100% I ran a pretty good pace.  Sure it felt like a struggle at first but as my legs warmed up they were able to get some good turnover.

Hopefully the soreness / crankiness in my quads goes away fast! I want to get in a speed workout tmrw morning as a last ditch effort for my 5k this weekend.  I’m really starting to worry about it because, even though I did speed stuff for my half, I haven’t been doing much more than tempos.  I did some mile repeats back in August but I’m afraid that my legs have forgotten how to go fast.

To make this matter a little worse, a couple of my friends are also running it.  Therefore ALL my friends know about it.  And they think I’m, like, a Kenyon or something.  Granted I do have some speed but they believe that I’m a speeding bullet — no joke.  So they have lofty expectations as to what I can do. Although, in retrospect, they’re definition of fast might not be as quick as mine.  But still, they’ve planted a seed in my head that I can sprint the whole damn thing like a 100m dash or something.

So I’m starting to have that in my head debate as to how far I can push myself this weekend.  I’d love a stellar debut.  Seriously. And now I’ll prolly have a bee in my bonnet (wow that’s the second time this week I’ve used that expression!) if I don’t do really really well.

Plus I really really really want to beat this kid that’s running it.  Because he thinks he’s the most amazing thing ever and I’m pretty sure that I can school him.  And my non-running friends are all pulling for this.

Talk about pressure.

Hahaha I totally didn’t mean to have this post be a take-over of my worries for the race.  But there they are.

And my quads are not making ’em any better. In any case I plan on getting in a quality speedwork session like I said above.  I’m a little confused as to what I should do: 400s? 800s? Fartlek? I’m going to venture a guess that it’s not wicked important what I do just that I get quick turnover practice. I know I asked this a week ago but help me calm my nerves: your go-to speed workout for a 5k is…?

P.S. : I am so totally mooching off all y’all expertise but any tips for the actual race would also be very appreciated 🙂

September 14, 2009

Exciting Morning

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — marathonmaiden @ 21:19

So I chose to do a rest day today.  After running so much this past week my body deserved a break.  Plus I had that rotation for my physiology class and in order to fit a run in, I would have had to get up at 0530 — and the sun doesn’t rise for about another hour after that (and Matt: all my watches, cell phone etc is in 24 hour “military” time heh).  Not something I’m terribly comfortable with.  I mean, I could have done a run this afternoon but I had lots of work to truck along plus a bunch of errands.

The internship/rotation was interesting, although it started off a little rocky.  I was stationed in “Wound Care” and I though that I’d be okay with it.  Apparently not.  Well at least for the first patient.  I was with a podiatrist so we were looking at the care of patients with foot wounds.

Let me preface this by saying that I *can* handle blood and bones and gore.  Really.  But I think the fact that I hadn’t had a large breakfast (so my blood sugar was a little low) plus the fact that it was 0900 AND this was my first experience with cleaning/care of wounds made me a little queasy. Well maybe more than a little because I almost passed out.  Luckily I made it to the chair before I hit the floor.  I’m totally fine except for a bruised ego.  Talk about embarrassing!

And to go back to my statement that I can handle these things, I was 100% fine for every single other patient I saw.  Seriously.  Maybe it was because I wasn’t used to the manner that foot wounds are cared for (I’ll spare the details because there are no niceties about it) but after that first patient I was good to go.  Except that of course all the staff there kept an eye on me to make sure I was okay. I mean, I was terrified that it would happen again; totally anxious about anxiety.  But as more time went on that went away too, although I am still feeling a little “off”.  Maybe it was a good thing that I kept today to a rest day 🙂

And despite the exciting kick start to my day I really enjoyed my time at the Wound Care Clinic.  Which is a good thing because I had to skip all three of my classes this morning to go.

So not much of a running post (actually not at all) but I just felt like I had to share my morning with y’all.  Because as embarrassing as it was at the time, it’s kind of funny now.  Although just as frustrating because I don’t know why it was ONLY with one patient. Still funny though.

I’ll be back in running action tmrw morning, gotta take advantage of the perfect running weather!  I actually think by the end of the week the lows are supposed to be low 40*! Crazy

Weekly Recap: Sept 7 – 13 2009

Filed under: Weekly Recap — Tags: , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:34

Miles: 60.8

Time: 9 hours 12 minutes 26 seconds

Strength: 0

Core: 5x

Wow. Clearly the half marathon on the 6th did nothing to hinder the miles this week! I guess it’s a factor of not much post-race soreness and the fact that over the weekend I did two long runs (and technically it was within 24 hours of each other as I finished Sunday’s run before the time I started Saturday’s run — if that makes any sense typed out).  My legs might be hating on me this week though, high miles + no rest day in awhile = fatigue.  And I was feeling it by Sunday’s run.  Looking at the past few weeks having big fat ZEROs for strength, I need to start making more of an effort getting those sessions in, even if it means doing some body weight stuff in my room after doing core.  I think it may help in keeping my legs strong and feeling fresh while the miles are high.

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