MarathonMaiden's Blog

April 13, 2011

A Drowned Rat Looks Better Than You

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 17:09

…according to my roomie after my run this morning. It was said with love though, I think, and was said because I was dripping rain all over the apartment. Even after taking off most of my layers outdoors. Boo rain.

But my run on Tuesday was really freaking good.  It helped that the weather was really nice, not as humid as Monday with  partly cloudy and mid 50s for the temperature.  And YAY I beat the rain.  The only downside was that I had to stop 4 times to find a bathroom although the plus side is that I now know all the buildings on this particular route that have public restrooms.  Win? Maybe?

It was a mid-y kind of run distance wise, last “real run” before Monday, and my legs are feeling tired and twinge-y and, well, taper-y.  Although strangely enough I finished feeling pumped up and strong. So I made the executive decision to run the risk of being late for work so I could do this

Put my feet up, eat some breakfast and enjoy the wonderful weather. I really can’t think of a better way to start the day. The mornings have been really nice lately and so have the nights, I’ve actually been able to sleep with the window open!

And yes those are the Boston 2010 chip and the WR 2010 tag on those shoes.  I guess that pair has fallen to be the “racing shoes” as they’ve only been broken out for races (I train in the same style but, obviously different pair as these guys have ~200 miles on them)

And they’ll be the ones that I wear when I run Boston again this year.  I think I probably should have switched into newer shoes (hell even these ones and gotten a new pair for the race) as my ones I’ve been running have…well I’ll keep that a secret between me and my excel “shoe miles” spreadsheet.

I did not wear them again today because it was a rainy and dreary day and I didn’t want them to get “ruined”.  Bleh. But it’s okay overall because *fingerscrossed* the weather for Monday looks clear. I can handle the rain for a few more days.  At least it’s not snow, right?

The run itself was pretty awful.  The rain made the 40* seem even colder. I was actually shivering pretty much the entire time. Not cool mother nature. Not cool. So I was miserable for 96.3453% of the run. Overall I’m okay with it because it wasn’t a confidence deflating run.  I knew that the constant, unrelenting rain factored in, so did the choice of route (hello hills!) and the fact that, due to being very busy yesterday at work, I hadn’t eaten much on Tuesday.

And it was sans music.

Lately I’ve been using my iphone to listen to music while doing my runs.  Not every one, maybe 3 times a week. It started probably with bad intentions: I wanted to not pay attention to my leg.  BAD.  But on my easy (and not 0530) runs I’ve been listening to a playlist that’s been pumping me up.  I want to dance (and actually it’s been a pre-gaming mix too) when I hear the songs. And it’s been getting me through some not so stellar training without me obsessing about pace and other runners on the pathway I run.

Which is why I want to share it with YOU.  Yes this is MM’s first giveaway.  A music one.

I’m actually going to pick two winners. The first will win the stuff I’ve been listening to during my training and this is the mix I’m debating bringing to Boston to play intermittently during the painful miles. At the very least it’s the one I’ll force my mom to listen to as she drives me to Hopkinton. The second winner will get my last year Boston mix, the one I listened to in the car on the drive to the start.

Exciting, right? I’ll will say upfront that some of the songs are *not* the radio edits.  Here’s how you can enter to win:

Tell me a joke.  Preferably a dirty or risque one.

Yup. Only one way to enter.  I hate it when people make you jump through hoops.  And since it’s a homemade giveaway I’m not going to be that mean.  Just tell me a joke to make me laugh.  It’s been a rough training cycle.  You have until Monday the 18th at 1000.  Which is when I’ll start my 26.2 mile to Boston.

Ready? BREAK!

 

January 13, 2011

A Couple of Snowy Runs.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 16:38

Hello from the Winter Wonderland that is RI right now.  And no that’s not sarcasm.  I’m just really happy in general right now (and really busy with not much time spent in my apartment hence the decreased posting/commenting!) so it’s hard to be bitter about the weather. …and Shelby told me I can’t complain.

I am actually trying to take an optimistic and not so angry/bitter standpoint on the snowfall (I think the last I heard of it we were standing around 13 or 14″).  I spent the snow day hunkering down with a friend and, while driving back to my place this morning, I actually found myself smiling at the beauty that is the morning after a nor’eastern.  I’m still itching to get out of here but this attitude can be described as progress my friends.

Especially since I had a fantastic snow day. Like I really wasn’t cursing the snow and cold.  First, after knowing Wednesday was a snow day, I went out with the friend I was crashing with and didn’t go to bed until 0400.  And then slept in until NOON. Crazy right?

And not only did I get an 9.5 mile run in during the blizzard, which was great running in the snow despite it being hard and tiring, but my friend whom I was staying with went to a park after dinner and had a big snowball fight and built a snowman.  The snow wasn’t perfect for packing so the snowman was a bit of a fail but it was fun.  After we headed back to drink some hot cocoa and watch Despicable Me, which was a cute and hilarious movie, followed by March of the Penguins.  And then we fell asleep around 2200.  Which given how late we were up the night before doesn’t make me feel that bad hahah.

So good snow day.

Since I spent the night at my friend’s house I got a late start on my run this morning as I had to drive back to my place.  I still got in a long run although I wasn’t sure as I figured my snow run would have really tired out my legs. 17 miles done though.  And the streets were plowed okay but nothing 100% clear so I’m sure that my legs are getting very good resistance training out of it.  The run itself was  just okay.  I felt good the whole time but each lap (I ran a 4 X 4.25 loop because I knew it’d be a safe route) was slower than the previous one.  Not by leaps and bounds but it was a completely positive split run.  The loops were: 8:51, 9:11, 9:11, 9:16.  Given how tired my body is currently, from not sleeping a lot the past two weeks, I’ll take it.  The entire run was 17 miles @ 9:07.  Not too shabby considering this is the longest run I’ve done by far since WR.

And I finished my run at 1115 and was able to shower and eat and get to work on time at noon.  That’s the definition of a BAMF 😉

I was tagged by Chelsea earlier with the Stylish Blogger Award.

Thanks lady! The gist is to re-tag Chelsea, tell y’all 7 things about myself, then tag others. I’m not going to do that last part.  I feel like most of y’all have already been tagged.  Feel free to do it if you haven’t.  I love learning about others.

  1. I consider myself pretty stylish.  I don’t think that anyone will ever model their look after me but I always look well put together.
  2. I’m discovering the joy of hot cocoa with Baileys.  So are my friends.  We went through a lot of it this snow storm.
  3. But Jack is my main man.  Jack and Bailey’s makes a perfect couple though.
  4. I’m decent at bar games.  I’m learning how to be better at pool and I can play a mean game of darts.  Not that I’m anything special at it
  5. but rather that I’m ambidextrous.  So when we all switch to our weak hands , mine is comparable to my strong hand. I do consider myself a south paw though.
  6. I’m taking an online grant writing course right now and it’s going well.  I’m learning a lot although I got WAY behind on the lessons and had to do 9 of them last weekend.  Oops.
  7. This weekend I have really big plans with my lil sister.  She’s 19 and coming to visit me for the first time in Providence.  I’m pumped.  It’s going to be one heck of a night.

December 20, 2010

Things I’ve Learned: Weekend Edition

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 08:23

I typed out a post just now but deleted it because even I couldn’t stand how teenager whiny I sounded.  Especially because I was just bitching and moaning. Nothing positive.  No bright side. So I’ve turned it into things I’ve learned this weekend.  Because learning is ALWAYS positive. And fun.

  • If it’s 8 days until Christmas then good luck finding those gingerbread kits.  Because my friend and I wanted to make real gingerbread houses Friday night but decided to at 2100 that night.  Meaning we could have made the dough for the walls but decorating would have to wait.  And let’s face it: decorating is what gingerbread house making is all about.  After hitting up several stores searching for those $10 kits there was nothing in sight.  So we said “Eff it” and watched Iron Man 2 instead.

 

Or maybe eating it's the best. Thanks google for the image

  • Sleeping in until 1000 isn’t a bad thing.  Unless of course you have a billion things to do during the day.  Luckily that wasn’t really the case for me on Saturday when my alarm went off at 0845 and I fell back asleep until a little past 1000.  But it felt glorious.  And lazy. I also did this, but to a not-as-late degree, on Sunday morning.  Mostly because it was cold in my apartment (see a later lesson for why) and because
  • Late nights at the GCB (the Graduate Center Bar, literally in the basement of a building at the university) are fun.  It’s essentially a dive bar and I tend to shy away from it because I’m not a student but the drink are extremely cheap (and relatively strong) and there are graduate students there.  Hotttttt. I also think that it was this late night (coupled with restless sleep because it was cold in my room) lead to the sleeping in Sunday morning.  So worth it.

 

Good times with good friends = awesomeness. Not taken Saturday night though.

  • Running post-breakfast is a good idea and leads to good running for me. Although it’s tough to get my butt out the door because I’ll get sucked into the internet vortex or the good book that I’m currently reading.  And even if I manage to pry myself away it takes FOREVER to actually put the running clothes on and get out there. Lesson: do this on days where I have nowhere to be.
  • But once I got out there it was amazing! Lesson: sunny runs and runs where I’ve let my body wake up are the bestest. On Saturday I ended up with 10.8 miles, first double digit post-WR and it was definitely the FASTEST, by a long shot, post-WR. Again, the pace isn’t where I’d love it to be but it was 0:02 away from being within McMillian’s easy pace/LR pace.  So I’m thrilled. The day was perfect for it too: 36* and sunny.  Definitely beats the teens and dark that I’ve been doing during the week.  Sunday was a shorter but equally fast (like 0:01 seconds off that easy pace) run in some cloudy, yet warmish, day.  It felt like it was going to snow though.  Boo.  But both runs kicked booty AND ended with LMPs (last mile parties) and WAY fast splits. Leading me to my next lesson:
  • Rolling, stretching, PT exercises are good.Coupled with the Pushups ( 29, 33, 29, 29, 40 ) and Situps ( 45, 50, 45, 45, 70 ) I’ve been doing my body is feeling good and on that Saturday run I was pain free.  Holler.  I’m feeling like a better/stronger/faster/less hurting runner.  This can only help me in the long term.
  • As can checking the oil burner more frequently (what you thought this would be 100% running?!) Because on Friday we ran out of oil and spent 2.5 days with no heat.  Let’s just say mid-December in New England is not the best time to do so and apparently my apartment, being nice and glorious in it’s antiquity, is not well insulated.  AKA we burned through our oil wicked fast, like 3 weeks fast.  Luckily we finally went out to buy a wrench and bleed the line so we have heat.  I feel incredibly BAMF for being able to bleed the line myself now.  Like a regular MacGyver

thanks google images

  • So I spent most of the whole day working on my bloggy secret santa gift (SORRY TO THE PERSON I HAVE. I’m 99.99% sure it’ll come the Monday after Christmas! I’ll have it in the mail before obviously but I have no idea if it’ll get to you in time), catching up on blogs (as well as reading through the blogs of some new commenters!) and watching the first season of Chuck.  Because Chuck is an awesome show.

And he's a wicked cute nerd, like me 😉 Thanks google images

  • And finally, after staying out way late for two nights and sleeping in for two days Monday mornings suck. I normally don’t care too much about Monday mornings but man it is ROUGH getting out of bed at 0545 (or getting into bed before 2300 the night before!) after getting out of the habit.  And the running isn’t too stellar usually as was the case this morning.  But, after having pain free and fast and AWESOME runs for the past 4 days, I can’t say that the dud of a run this morning was all that awful. And I will say that Monday morning runs are worth it because I get to see my friendly older pair of men walking the pathway when I’m out that early.  They’re always so upbeat and happy and I smile when I pass them and tell them to have a great morning/week/whatever.

What about y’all. Any lessons learned this weekend?

Check out the giveaway from Janae (Hungry Girl Runner) and Julie (HotLegsRunner)

1. Vacation: beach or mountains?

2. Luggage: check it or carry it on?

3. Bed: make it or leave it a rumpled comfy mess?

4. Races: smaller or bigger?

5. Toilet paper roll: over or under?

6. Pancakes: thick and fluffy or thin and crepe-like?

7. Alarm: get up or hit snooze?

November 26, 2010

Apparently The Countdown is Now in Single Digits

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:16

…as of today.  T-9 days!!

Well I said an early Happy Thanksgiving on Wednesday and I’m saying a belated Happy Thanksgiving today.  Suffice it to say, the fact that I turned my computer on for the first time in 36 hours just now means I had a busy holiday.  And it was pretty good too.  I don’t think I’ve kept it a secret here that my relationship with my family has been tenuous in the past, so I was really mixed about going home for the day.

But I had a blast and even went to the extended family portion of the day (my family eat the dinner as nuclear families and then meet up at one person’s house for dessert), something I haven’t gone to in 6 years.  I think moving out on my own has really matured me and I’ve rethought skipping the family portion of Christmas.  After all: this is going to be my “last” in New England (a fact I’m acutely aware of every day — although my last snowstorm will be cause for celebration hahah)

The best part of the day? Nope not the food (although that was pretty good). Having a dance-off with one of my sisters. To which song you ask?

Luckily no one brought a camera.  So I still have some dignity left in the world.

By the time I got back to my apartment I was bushed! I also arrived home with more leftovers than I can probably eat.  I pulled major rank and said “I’m a poor VISTA and you (my two college sisters) have dining halls. I win”

In light of the fact that I had a great holiday I sincerely hope that you did too 🙂

Since I last left you my running has been…highs and lows? On Wednesday after work I did get some miles in before going to the theater to see “A Christmas Carol”  (which was a really fun musical version!) and then a couple of drinks after.

Still my favorite version. I need to actually buy a copy this year! (thanks google)

The miles were pretty good and, despite still having some allergy problems when I went out, the pace was faster than anything I could have pulled off at 0500.

Thursday was, duh, Thanksgiving and I hit the streets for a “long run”.  After the past four weeks being: 20.3, 20.4, 20, 17.6, the 15 I was scheduled for putting in felt measly.  The first half was slower and sluggish (the thought of “oh great” eyeroll passed through my mind) but I picked it up and finished WAY strong.  I think the final overall average pace was about 8:45.  Which is roughly what I’ve been doing on my long runs — at least when I’m by myself as I had that killer one two weeks ago with a friend.  And the later portion was about 8:20 on this particular run. So YAY.

The weather wasn’t the greatest either: 28* but sunny.  On a whim I checked what the temperature in Dallas was at that time and it was 69*. Ummmm that’s 41* warmer? I’m pretty sure that was a freak day for them but that was still at 0615 CT.  Crazy.

I also got in my pushups (20, 25, 15, 15, 26) and situps (30, 38, 23, 23, 40) before heading to my mom’s house.  I can’t tell if they’re making me stronger yet. They’re certainly not getting much easier but I’m able to handle the increases so far.

The weather on Friday was warmer here (and I think it was actually colder in Dallas hahah. Suckers 😉 ) but drizzly.  Since I had gone over what I should have done yesterday (silly me for thinking about the run as a long run!) I decided to take it slow and steady for a few miles.

Well I guess I didn’t factor into the equation that Thanksgiving has food that I normally don’t eat (not that I wouldn’t like to enjoy them year round but I’m lazy and don’t make anything hahah!) and, while Chocolate Creme Pie and Gingerbread Pudding = sugar = carbs, my legs might not have liked having new foods. I don’t care what anyone says, my legs know the difference between pie carbs and apple carbs.

Because my legs felt like sludge. So I guess I didn’t have to worry about forcing myself to take it slow and steady and easy. [Edit: I just calculated the pace for the run and it was the very slowest possible recovery run pace according to McMillian.  While I still believe that recovery runs should just be run without pace guidelines (the point is to recover and that’s done by what your body wants) I shouldn’t complain about the pace because it wasn’t, in fact, as slow as I thought]

It was one of those runs where you *know* how slow you’re running and even if a rabid dog came after you, your legs would not go faster.

Thanks google

So I cut the run WAY short, ate some breakfast, foam rolled and am debating about going back out to hit the street for 2 more miles in a hour or so bringing my grand total to the day to about 6. Then again, I’m in taper (and likely still a food coma) so I might not.

Speaking of foam rolling (yes I’m aware this is a mish-mash post!) I’ve really gotten into it lately. With the exception of yesterday (because I was running late to get to my mom’s house), I’ve rolled every day for the past 7 days.  And, while my legs aren’t magically faster or anything, I’ve noticed a subtle change in how my legs feel.  They no longer feel wicked tight or sore or cramped.

Yes they still are tight and fatigued and they do still twitch sometimes.  But there’s something that I can’t quite put my finger on that makes me feel good about it.  Not enough to be a zealot for this foam rolling action.  But enough of something to keep doing it until I figure out what the heck that something is.

Aaaaaaaand that’s it?  I sure hope so because this post is already running long 😉

Just finishing up some breakfast and coffee.  The sun’s actually out now which is exciting although annoying because I ran in the drizzle and overcast. I like the sun. After I finish up eating I’ll do some more rolling and stretching and relaxing until later tonight.  One of my friend’s from high school is visiting me as she spent Thanksgiving in our hometown (she lives in PA so I don’t get to see her that much).  We’re going out for dinner then (lots of?) drinks.

Good golly gee whiz this is shaping up to be a great holiday break 😀

November 19, 2010

Friiiiiiiiiiiday

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:52

I’ll play the Four For Friday game. Mostly because I like bullets and this is a bullet point template for posting essentially.  And 4 is my lucky number. There is a flow to the bullet and probably could have been pulled together for a flowing post.  But it’s Friday.  I’ll make it nice and easy for you 🙂

I do want to say HIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII to all the new peeps reading! It’s really exciting to get an email saying “Please Moderate a Comment” because it means that someone new is commenting. I LOVE it.  Thanks for finding me!

  • I think I’m going to go with the taper plan I suggested yesterday. I think my message in asking for advice was a bit lost as many of you commented on the volume of running I’d be doing, which I’d never questioned myself. I was more curious about the speed work.  But since no one shouted ‘NO MM DON’T DO THAT” in terms of going the GMP route (and those of you who did mention speed work did say that GMP tempo intervals were the way to go) I’m going to assume that my speed work plan is good.  Plus since my friend did those workouts and beasted Indy with them I’m hoping for the “monkey see monkey do” approach here. But I guess since I’m a newbie then it’s all trial and error.  Eeeep.  Wish me luck? 🙂

Monkey See...thanks google

  • That said I’m still torn between doing Yassos this weekend or tempo intervals.  While I know that tempo intervals might be more beneficial in the long run with 16 (HOLY #$%@) days until WR.  But I ❤ 800m repeats. Yes I am weird.  On one hand, Yassos could build up my confidence with a kick butt workout.  On the other hand they are really intense for a workout.  Possibly too much breakdown with so little time left.
  • I had a really good recovery run this morning.  Like really good.  Very shocking because I felt on the slow side yesterday on my long run too.  Maybe that’ll be a trend this taper: feeling slower than I’m going. Yes the pace was outside of McMillian but it was faster than I thought I was going.  A good sign I think. And if you’ve been reading awhile, then you know that, while I question the validity of calculators, I need paces forced down my throat.  Apparently I am incapable of making pacing decisions on my own. That said, for recovery runs I think that pace is complete horse pooh.  Recovery is recovery.  Sometimes I need a granny shuffle recovery and other times it’s a brisk clip.  I’ve also noticed that as I’ve been training my typical 0500 runs have gotten slower, as they follow hard days.  At first I was a bit upset “What do you mean I’m getting slower?!” but then I said “EFF IT” because my quality workouts are being kickass and BAMF.  Fingers crossed for a BAMF marathon.

Okay so this pic isn't RR at all. But I google imaged BAMF and this came up. Anyone else upset that LOST had to end?

  • Yes the recovery run was good but the temp wasn’t.  I probably shouldn’t say that because 35* really isn’t cold.  It’s not even freezing.  But yesterday I ran in beautiful 45* weather and the morning before, while it was pouring rain, was 57*.  Ahhhhhhh relativity.  And New England. I was completely comfy in my shorts and long-sleeves BUT my hands, with THREE LAYERS OF GLOVES, froze.  I know I have poor circulation but it’s still no bueno.  I might have to break out the snowmobile mittens soon.  The ones that make me look like I have lobster hands.  I should spray paint them red…

And with that enjoy the rest of your Friday.  I’m hoping to be able to leave work on the early side and I’m pretty sure I have a fun weekend planned.  So TGIF.

November 8, 2010

Rolling, Snowing and Trying to Cling to Fall

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:56

Hey all.  YAY for sunlight on my morning runs from now on thanks to DST ending.  Last night when I was out running some errands the sun was setting at 1633?? Oh well.  The fact that the sun rose at 0626 this morning makes up for it. I guess.

Hopefully y’all feel well rested from this weekend.  I do? I actually felt like a slug this weekend because I slept for 10 or so hours Friday night and then, because of the time change, ELEVEN hours on Saturday night.  Which was even more miraculous because I went out that night as well.  Who am I?! I NEVER sleep in like that.  I’m going to call it a good thing though.  Although I will say that I totally squandered that extra hour in the day. I’m always complaining about how I wish there were more hours in the day and then when I get one, what do I do? Sleep.  Figures 😉

After my repeats on Saturday, which I did edit the post with an addendum saying that I was pleased with the workout and know that I’m in the right place with my training, I basically DID NOT MOVE until going out.  Instead I curled up with a good book I’ve been reading (*cough*IamsuchaNERDbecauseit’soneofthosebooksyoureadinhighschool*cough*) and lounged.  After a while my legs started feeling more than a little tight.  So I finally broke down and broke out:

And yes those are two laundry baskets. I actually have three. I use a very complicated system 😉

Now I know that many of you have been on the foam rolling action for a long time.  So have I … in theory.  I bought this baby back in March or so but only have used it a few times.  Mostly because I’m lazy and partly because I know how tight my muscles are.  Roller + tight muscles = pain.  Duh.

I will say that I neither cried nor screamed as I was doing my thing.  I had a friend over and complained a lot.  Aloud of course — that’s the only time complaining is really ever fun HA.  But my voice never rose and I’m pretty sure no cuss words were uttered.  I did sweat though.  Which tells me I was doing something good and putting my body through some type of stress.

This translated, I think, into a muy bueno recovery run on Sunday.  Sunny skies and cool temps.  It felt great.  I even ran a wicked hilly route and felt fine.  Encouraging and I used the darn thing Sunday too after a long day of laundry, grocery shopping and cleaning the apartment.  See? I can do more domestic things than cook 😉

Monday morning brought SNOW.  And..well not a recovery run per se…but an easy one at that and “fast” easy (aka I looked at my watch at the end and smiled because it was faster than I thought).  The only remarkable thing was the weather and, well, I’m afraid I’m dangerously close to using up my complain-for-free passes.  It actually ended up not being too bad (it was mostly sleet and it stopped early on in the run) except my shoes were soaked 100m into it.

I will say that if it snows, or I guess this morning was more of a sleet, at WR I will be ready.

Just because the sun rises earlier doesn't mean 0500 is any lighter! So a bad picture but YES that is snow on the railing, in the tree and on the road!

I was sent this article on How to Deal with the Cold from a friend who thought it’d be funny to send this to me.  I’ve been living here my whole life so I think, despite my complaints about winter, I’m pretty cold savvy.  For those of you who aren’t here are some excerpts (and my thoughts on said excerpts):

The Physical

  • Don’t underestimate the power of sunshine” Duh but with .43453453453 hours of daylight (yes that’s a decimal point out in front of those numbers), and all of those during working hours, how am I supposed to get this?
  • Take your vitamins. Duh.
  • Stay hydrated Okay so this one I get because heaters = dry air. Which also equals nosebleeds for me.
  • Get outside and stay active. But. It’s. So . Cold. I actually do get outside (I think last year I ran in 12* weather) but it’s soooooooo hard to do.

The mental

  • Be mindful of your mood and mental health Unless of course this makes you even angrier for not getting out of the NorthEast when you had the chance.
  • Stay social. Ummm this is really hard to do when you’re A) too cheap to pay for a cab and B) to intoxicated to drive yourself.  AKA walking is how I roll.  Let me tell you: heels and dresses in freezing weather? Not a good combo. I guess we’ll just have lots of house parties?
  • Evaluate your winter pitfalls to guard against them This might actually depress me because it’s basically telling me to make of list of why I hate winter.  And I’m pretty sure (as I know you are) that it’s a pretty lengthy list.

I think you should probably be doing these things year round.  And I bet you can totally tell how bitter I am about winter.  I’m going to spend the rest of this…rain/snow/sleet/whatever it’s doing out there daydreaming about my move to somewhere warm. Because I’m 100% serious about making like a leaf and getting the f$%# out of here.

Anyone? I know I chose a random picture but anyone on that quote that's italicized?

And hey, check out this giveaway from Matt (Kitchen of a Runner) and Janae (Hungry Runner Girl) because everyone likes a giveaway.

And what’s a post without wicked awesome pictures?! (and by wicked awesome I mean Halloween-y and NOT snow and not a random guy from a great movie)

I actually forgot to share this last week! But over Halloween weekend some friends and I went to a “Jack-o-Lantern” festival in the city. It was way fun to see all the creative ways people carved pumpkins.  Here are some of my favs:

Betty Boop!

I ❤ Dinosaurs

Monopoly Man!

I know it’s a week late but I feel the need to say “Happy Halloween” anyway. I mean, it is my favorite holiday after all. But I can say (and have it be 100% true) “hope you enjoyed the weekend 🙂 ”

And enjoy your Monday too.  I sure am considering that A) I haven’t done any work all morning because the software I use won’t download the new version and we had to call in IT people B) the network is being backed up so I can’t work on any of my files and C) my friend made the coffee this morning so strong that I’m afraid to stand up because I’m pretty sure that my legs are so twitchy that I don’t think they’ll support me hahah.

November 6, 2010

Can’t You Read?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 15:52

Scarecrow: Read what?
Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: The notice!
Dorothy: What notice?
Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: It’s on the door – as plain as the nose on my face! It… oh…

Courtesy of Google Images

Apparently it was hard to read the notice that said “Show Up to the Track” today. Or my brain didn’t get the “hey we’re not going to go as fast as you want today” notice from my legs.

But the rest of my body read the notice that said “Sleep In”. I do believe that I got up at 0900? I NEVER wake up to an alarm on the weekends. Ever. Very weird. I really can’t remember the last time I did that.   And I probably could have hit snooze and not felt badly at all about it too.  Guess my body just needed sleep! (okay so maybe THAT isn’t so shocking)

Good thing too because today was the usual Saturday head-to-the-track day.  I think, however, the combo of my stomach thing-y Thursday night and the mucho sleep I got last night messed up some rhythm in my body so the workout felt kind of weird.

The plan was to do 5 X 1 mile, with 800m of recovery in between.  According to some people I’ve talked to, the pace I should target on this workout is double Yasso pace.  Well I did do Yassos two weeks ago, with the average 800 being 3:12, but I knew that trying to do 5 mile repeats at 6:24 was going to be pushing it. Especially since I don’t think 3:12 is very realistic for this upcoming race.

Since McMillian predicts 3:18 for my marathon fitness at this moment, I went with a target of 6:30.  A little fast? Yes.  But I’m always going to push in intervals.  Fast short stuff is my background after all.  6:30 was a bit ambitious for sure, but I figured why the heck not?

And just for good measure, I wanted to get some 400m repeats in afterward. Talk about ambitious.

The Workout

Mile 1: 6:43

Ummmmm okay. So maybe my trend of the first interval being the fastest will be wrong today?

Mile 2: 6:40

Okay better.  But still.  This is HARD today.

Mile 3: 6:35

Another hard one.  But at least the effort is staying the same and the time is getting faster.

Mile 4: 6:35

(At the 800m) Yay 3:15. Maybe I can hit the goal pace! (At the end) Oooooooooor not.

Mile 5: 6:34

Ugh this hurts. This sucks. I want to be done. NOW. F#$# those 400s. Not happening. Not No Way. Not No How. (Yes I really did quote the Wizard of Oz during the last lap of the last repeat)

And I wish that I had a Wizard to make this workout feel better! Like the Great and Powerful Oz (courtesy of google images)

Post Workout Thoughts

Overall I just don’t think my heart was in it today.  I know that, on paper, this workout looks great.  According to the calculator that spit out the 3:18:08 goal time, my 1600 speed workout time should be 6:30-6:44.  Since I’m an exact-ist that works out to 6:32-6:46 per mile.  And I was at the fast end of that.  Happy face even if I weirdly feel disappointed a bit.

I think the disappointment comes from the fact that I was so easily distracted during it all.  From the little kids vs. parents/coaches soccer game on the infield to the cute guy who was using the park to do an outdoor strength session to other distracting thoughts running through my head, I wasn’t focused on running. Or at least running hard. My head kept bobbing around.  Like I was rubbernecking or something.

And I can’t get over how hard this workout felt either.  Maybe if I had been more focused it wouldn’t have been so bad? Yes, speed work *should* feel hard. But my legs just felt so spent by the end despite the rest of my body (like my lungs!) feeling 100%.  Normally I get that exhilarating rush after a speed session that I can feel in every cell of my body.  Not today.

Maybe it’s the constant changing of the weather (the past 4 days have been: 27*, 41*, 59*, 43*. All at the same time of day!) doing something funky to my psyche.  Although I will say that maybe I didn’t recover too greatly from that stomach thing because I did get a little lightheaded during some of the recovery jogs by the end. Which is why I nixed the 400m repeats at the end.  It just seemed counterproductive at that point.

That said, I’m going to pull a Sarah and say that, during my long warm down and after much deliberation, I am pleased (I think that was her exact post title a few days ago too!). The fact that I was able to get faster over time bodes well for me and, even though I’d like to have the first two over again, the last three being so consistent is a boost despite my thinking that something is holding me back and that I could have (or should have) gone faster.

Then again, I probably will always feel like that because I’m such a perfectionist and expect so much from myself.

[Edit: So I just re-read this after reading a few comments and I definitely am not *upset* with how the workout went. I just had a much grander idea of what I wanted to do.  From a physical standpoint I think I nailed it, especially with what my current training goals are (MARATHON), but I always want to be faster, stronger etc.  I think it’s the fact that I come from a sprinter background and when I get on the track, going wayyyy fast is just my mentality. But the workout was really solid and another good workout to draw on in….28 days?!….when I run WR.]

Anyway.  Enough whining. The Great and Powerful MM has spoken (yes I am having an intense urge to watch that movie now)

I’m going to say an early GOOD LUCK to my peeps running NYC tmrw: AMarathoner Eat Drink Run, Meals for Miles, Skinny Runner, The Runner’s Kitchen. Hmmmm I feel like there’s more of you? Let me know if you’re running it! I’m going to keep updating this list 🙂

And I’m going to say AWESOME JOB to NACN (from rwol) who ran amazingly in Indy today. Woot.

HAVE A GREAT (rest of  your) SATURDAY 🙂

And check out the giveaways from: Tricia, Running Diva Mom, 26.2 is my cooldown

P.S. I’m glad you guys liked seeing the soup that I made. I’m becoming so domesticated and adult.  Not sure how I feel about that hahah!

October 21, 2010

I’ve Been Marathon Thinking…

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:12

I mean, how can I NOT after registering for my next marathon this past Monday?! The thoughts of training (thanks to all who emailed me and gave me advice on training plans. I appreciate it all. You know who you are 🙂 ) and goal times (While I maintain that I’m shooting for a 3:29 I’m not going to lie: going for 3:20 or faster is in my head) and whatnot have been swirling around in my head I need to tell myself to relax!

I guess I have been relaxing somewhat because I’ve been feeling like doing nothing.  And that includes blogging! Therefore I have no witty or exciting or terribly interesting running things to share with y’all.  So this post is bulleted.  Because that’s what I do when I don’t have something cohesive to talk about hahah

  • I’m being tempted with a marathon! I have been invited to head out to Cali and run a marathon with Liz. She’s been harassing me to fly out there for, oh I don’t know,  FOREVER (hahahah LOVE you running sistaaaaa) and now wants me to to run CIM in December.  Craaaaaaaaaaazy. Although this time fits perfectly for when I did feel the first tugs of the marathon again back in September. Ergo the allure of signing up is sooooooooooooooooo great. Especially since Cali in December > RI in winter.
  • EDIT: CIM closed yesterday. Bummer. Any other suggestions for December? Preferably in a warm climate?

I want warmth and beaches please!

  • I was sent this NY Times article on pushing past the pain (I am a loser and subscribe to the Tuesday Science Times section via email.  Among other science things from various sites.  Go ahead and make fun.  I am a proud nerd) and I thought I’d pass the link along.  Sarah posted about it too here and I think that this article describes the whole “I want to run so hard I’m going to vomit” thing for me.  I feel like throwing up because I’m overriding that mental thing that tells me I’m in pain. In any case I thought it was an interesting read.  I’d be curious as to your thoughts if you read it too: do you thrive on pain when running to push you hard?
  • Not that my running has been anywhere that intense lately.  Slow and steady at this point.  Nothing spectacular about my runs yesterday and today.  Wednesday was pretty short and slow although it didn’t feel that way at all.  Interestingly enough the first part of the run felt the fastest and I think that’s because it was cold.  Thursday was a mid-long run (defined by my as 10-15), but more on the long side as it was 14, which was was very slow to start. The end miles felt great and I wish that my legs had warmed up earlier / I didn’t have to go to work so I could use that goodness in the leg-os.
  • It’s time to break out the gloves.  Wednesday was all in the dark (darn you Mother Nature for being dark for so long!) and the temp (36*) actually felt 36*.  This is in contrast to today where I was lucky enough to run in sunlight so the 34* didn’t feel so cold and I could shed the gloves.
  • Because it’s so cold I’ve been even more in love with coffee.  Nowadays you can always find me with a mug in my hand. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad just yet though.

  • I’m in a baking mood.  What has gotten into me?! I’ve always maintained that I’m NOT a cook/baker etc.  And I’ve always maintained that I’m a straight-out-of-the-box girl.  But my roomie’s influence on me is too great and not only do I crave baking but I want to do it from scratch.  Nothing has been baked as of yet, nor will anything get baked tonight because of clinic, BUT I think I’m going to go on a baking binge this weekend.  Yikes. Send good vibes because I now have a gas stove (my one at my mom’s is electric and gas =/= electric!) and I have yet to cook ANYTHING the same way twice.
  • My sister texted me to tell me to youtube this song last week.  Don’t lie you love it. Because I know I sure do.

And with that have a great Thursday y’all! It’s my favorite day of the week, even with a long clinic day. And now that I have Adam Lambert stuck in my head it’ll be even better. And no, that’s not sarcasm 8)

October 19, 2010

I Apologize

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 14:51

for the haphazard way my post yesterday was.  I re-read it this morning and was like “I  WROTE THAT?!”

But the point of it was

  • I am registered for Boston (after the ulcer inducing process!)
  • I recovered nicely from my 20 miles on Saturday

The rest was just…well I don’t know what it was.  But it took me a billion words to say what I just so succinctly wrote above.

I should have broken it up but whatever.  I should have said that everyone who is running Boston 2011 should meet-up that weekend.  But I didn’t.  Hopefully y’all were able to get through that post and will forgive me by meeting up in April!

Post Race Euphoria. And a plea to meet up in April 🙂

The irony of signing up for a race, such as Boston / so far away from now, is that while I have definitely NOT decided on goals or training or ANYTHING, clearly hitting submit that I just want to GO and jump into training RIGHT NOW.  So I’ve been musing some things even though the race is soooooooooooo far away (but likely will be here before I know it!)

Like I mentioned in my last post, but was likely hidden from all the BOSTON EXCITEMENT, is that I need to find a training plan.  One which I will stick too and not end up with massive shin splits and the fear that I’ve fractured them.  I was debating following the same plan I did last year (found here — or not as it’s a BAA plan and the website is still set up to tell ppl that registration is closed…I’ll repost / edit this later once I can find the plan) but *actually* following it.

I’ve also debated creating my own, and I know that Jess has written a post on doing so which I might try to do, but honestly? I think I’m too lazy to do that myself.  Any takers want to do it for me hahah? But if I did that at least I’d know that I’d follow it 🙂

The general gist of what I want is (and I’m NOT making anything more detailed right now as I’d very likely jump into training immediately which is something I don’t want to do):

  • 12 week plan
  • 3 quality runs: intervals, tempo, long run
  • ~80 mile weeks

Which is basically the plan I followed last year.  Or at least the theory of what I did.  I used a 16 week plan and peaked around 100 miles.  Since I’m actually working rather than being a student this year I think that 80 sounds good for miles and, with my base, 12 weeks sounds good.  I think this cycle, while it *will* be hard and intense, is going to be about fine tuning which is what the last few weeks of marathon training is about, right?

I’m also going to have to start looking for a  (cheap) gym.  Winter is brutal in New England (as I know it is in other parts of the country as well) and I’m not going to have my school’s gym to fall back on in the event of a blizzard or negative temps.  I’m thinking of using the Y because, as a VISTA, I know I can get a really good deal.  And since I’m tough as nails (hahah) I’d only be using it for the occasional lifting session (must start those up again!) and to get a quality run in in bad weather.  So a cheap price is extra important so I feel like I’m sort of getting my money’s worth.

That’s about it in terms of what I’m thinking.  It’s nothing concrete, of course, but the excitement of having a submission number for Boston is making me want to plan.

Of course I do have a time goal of 3:29:59 — just like last year — although after plugging in my recent races from this fall the allure of going even faster than that is enticing as my recent half marathon in April indicates a 3:18 is possible.

 

Or maybe I'll just win the damn thing like that girl asked me last year hahah

Until then I’m going to still try and keep running light and fun.  Yes, there will be structured runs like LR and intervals but I’m hoping that I can keep the pressure off of myself to kill myself over workouts.  Easier said than done given my personality.

And of course having a submission number also makes me want to run far.  Which is normally my inclination, duh.  Since today is a clinic day I got to do a longer run than the office hour days, I did 13.5 miles.  It felt good and, aside from the first 3 or so miles, it felt strong. This was the first time since Tufts that I felt really really good during a run so I’m thinking that I’ll do a light speed session later this week.

Who knows when it’ll happen though because the weather is staying consistently cold overnight every night and I suspect that we’ll get the first frost soon.  Unlikely for snow as snow has been arriving later and later every year (I remember it snowing on my birthday when I was little!) but the cold is already on it’s way.

Gosh I really need to get out of New England if I’m already bitching about the temps.  It isn’t even cold yet!

Aaaaaaaaaaand a bunch of you asked for a picture of the cookies I baked this weekend. Welllll they’re all gone.  BUT my roomie and I baked last night too and here are the chocolate chip oatmeal cookies that were produced.  Sorry for the poor quality picture but I remembered to take it when I was at work hence the baggie.  But I did remember to take it before they were scarfed down 🙂

Yum

October 14, 2010

Today Is Not Boring

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 16:04

Here I was, thinking that I was going to have to make something up to have my run being exciting or not post today, when lo and behold something exciting happened.

Well not really truly exciting.  But I fell. 

Which is something more than a boring “I ran today. And slowly because I’m recovering and trying to enjoy just running”.  In fact I almost fell during the middle miles as silly high school kids were getting off of a bus and I tried to dodge them and one of them tripped me. 

Probably accidentally but it didn’t stop me from shooting the group a mean glare. But I was wearing my sunglasses so it likely went unnoticed. Heck they were high schoolers so everything goes unnoticed to them. 

Which by the way can I say that they looked SO YOUNG. Gahhh does this mean I’m getting old?!

Anyway the REAL fall was at the end of my run and I wasn’t paying attention to where I was running.  And I tripped over the uneven sidewalk (UGH New England and planting large trees with roots that breakup the pavement!) and completely hit the ground.  But luckily I was a hardcore volleyball player in the past because all my vball training came out and I did the most perfect roll ever.  So I came away relatively unscathed.  I think there was only one cut that actually bled. 

And the weather was pretty cold (39*) so I didn’t even feel a thing until I hopped into the shower.  That didn’t stop me from utter a few of George Carlin’s “7 Words” during the actual falling of course.  It felt like the fall was in slo-mo so I think I got all 7 out. The humidity was relatively high today too (91%) but because it was so cold it didn’t feel that bad at all. 

Random mathy picture to break up a possibly boring post 🙂

Apparently FailBlog likes to feed the inner nerd in me 🙂

Here’s what went down today for my running:

  • 1st loop: 5.6 miles @ 9:14
  • 2nd loop: 5.6 miles  @ 8:56
  • 3rd loop:     1.2 miles @ 8:19
  • Total:               12.4 miles @ 9:00

Not too bad.  I’m not thrilled with the overall pace (slower than the past two days) but the fact that I was able to pick up the pace and get down to 8:19 for the last loop is encouraging. Aside from my second run after the race on Monday I don’t think I’ve seen the low 8 paces yet post-race.  A good thing.  I’m recovering 🙂

That said, I’m still going to take it easy and NOT try to push pace.  Let it happen naturally for the next week or two.  Which I think will be hard because

A) the weather is truly turning colder (although I’m still pulling for an Indian Summer), meaning that I want to run FAST to warm the heck up (I refuse to break out the cold weather gear until it dips into the mid-20s!) and

B) I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of things.  Gosh I really am such a racer.  The week after running a great race makes me really want to keep going HARD because racing well is such a high.  It’ll be hard to keep me in check until marathon training starts up again. As Jess noted, my training right now is practically marathon training!

 

In other news…

I’m trying to cut down on my salt and caffeine intake.  Regarding salt: I LOVE the stuff.  I put it on EVERYTHING. Veggies, meats, oatmeal.  You name it and I’ll put salt on it.  I’ve been blessed with relatively low BP (typically 98/60) so I’ve never been worried nor has any doctor mentioned it.  But I easily go through a salt shaker each week.  That’s A LOT of salt.

So I’ve cut it out in terms of ADDING salt to things.  No particular reason per say.  I guess just to see if I could. And I’ve been successful. I’ve stopped adding it.  But I’ve also gotten quite *light-headed* lately. Even when sitting down. I’m thinking the two are related so I’m likely going to start shaking the salt shaker again. Plus all my food tastes bland without it.

Regarding caffeine…well it’s been a FAIL.  I’ve been drinking it despite my intentions of not.  Oh well.  It’s not the biggest deal ever as I’m already addicted so I think my goal will be to not increase my consumption as I get severe withdrawal going without. But so far that’s a fail as I’ve been drinking more coffee and, thus, more caffeine.  And I’m almost embarrassed to admit that I’m really starting to enjoy the taste of it.

WHO AM I?! hahahah.  And with that I should head back into the clinic because I’m hanging out with a really cool doctor who is semi-taking me under his wing every time he volunteers (which is every week! Way cool!).

Enjoy your Thursdays (best day of the week!). I’m still giggling like a loon from my Tufts 10k race 8)

Older Posts »

Blog at WordPress.com.