MarathonMaiden's Blog

February 28, 2011

Glutton for Punishment?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 08:32

Apparently.  After an emotionally charged weekend what do I decide to do to cap it off? Try to physically exhaust myself too. Luckily I had a hard interval workout on tap for this weekend. I wasn’t up for it at all on Saturday so around noon on Sunday I decided to tackle it and hope that a good painful (but in a good way) run was what was necessary to pick me up.

On tap: 3 X 3.3 miles. Boo! Hiss!

Ouch just to look at the workout. I typically only do 2 of the intervals (as do most normal and sane runners) but I was definitely going for the whole “glutton for punishment” vibe this weekend.

As far as how fast I wanted to run it, I knew that I wouldn’t be able to hit the 6:29-6:43 tempo interval pace that McMillian thinks I can do based on WR, and while I’m in good shape, there was something just ON about my training last fall for WR….which speaking of….guess what I got in the mail over the weekend?

Holler. Between this piece of mail and my new Boston confirmation I should be rearing to go! Maybe not McMillian pace ready, but I thought that between 7:00 and 7:15 was reasonable for this workout.  Oh man. Oh hubris.

How’d it go?

  • Warm up
  • 1st interval: 3.3 miles @ 7:19
  • 2nd interval: 3.3 miles @ 7:28
  • 3rd interval: 3.3 miles @ 7:32
  • Warm down

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeh. My head was no where near being in this workout.  I was very distracted, probably from my weekend, but in all honesty I was about to write that I felt like I was pushing at my best.  I wasn’t.  Clearly with each interval being slower than the last. Normally I’m the opposite. No real excuses or anything but I probably could have kept my head in the game…

Is it bad to admit that this is on my iTunes?

That said, my legs did feel the burn and clearly fatigued throughout the workout.  Which is what I wanted to do. I just wish that fatigue pace was a little faster that’s all. Too much to ask for? I know that all the life stuff that’s been crazy present in my life lately  has been a huge factor in my training this cycle.  Unlike previous cycles I’m not basing my life around my training but rather my training around my life.  And at the moment some things (*cough*hanging out with my friends and having fun*cough*) are more important than, well I was going to say training but I’ve still be attempting my hard workouts, but things more of the sleep nature

 

I love how my friend's expression is like "oh man. here we go tonight" hahah!

And I don’t quite know how this post is going to come across.  Because I have lots of emotions going on when I think about this Boston training and where my running is at right now.  In the end, no matter how frustrated or upset or angry I am about not being as fast as when I was training for WR, I am much faster than this time last year when I was training for Boston.  That’s still a very good sign.  Just annoying that WR was so amazing that right now can’t really compare.  It’s like karaoke-ing after the kid who is studying musical performance at grad school (true story from last week at karaoke!).  No matter how good you are at singing (or training with my running right now) it’s not going to compare.  Doesn’t mean that I’m not doing some good stuff but last time had all the stars aligned. We’ll see how zen I feel about it on April 18th though!

December 14, 2010

MM’s Whole Truth

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 14:26

Enough heckling (*cough*Lacey*cough*).  I’ve finally finished my “Whole Truths” post.  It wasn’t sooo hard to answer the questions but it came down to the fact that I wanted the answers to be blog friendly 😉

And enough heckling (not that there really was any per se) about me running on my silly/stupid effing leg. Even though I spent a combined hour stretching and foam rolling and woke up pain free, I “borrowed” my roomie’s university ID and spent 70 *glorious* minutes on the elliptical.

I felt like Russell while watching all the people running on the TM. They looked bored too. But didn't they know they got to RUN?!

Clearly the glorious-ness was sarcasm (which, by the way, there is a great need for a font for).  But I didn’t run.  Fingers crossed that my leg responds well!

I was going to do a spin workout but the only bikes that were free were the recumbent ones. I also rolled and discovered that my hipflexor in the “bad” leg is SO TIGHT and SO WEAK. I’m not saying that it’s the problem but it can’t be helping too much so I started up the PT exercises that I used last spring and there definitely was a huge difference in range of motion and strength between the legs.  In the “bad leg” I really could feel the problem area being worked.  No pain but I don’t think I’ve really targeted those muscles in awhile.  Guess that means that I should really start to lift again! I also got my pushups (21, 25, 21, 21, 33) and situps (32, 38, 32, 32, 50) in as well (this was W4D1)

And yes I know that ibuprofen, while my drug, isn’t good to take long term and I’ve actually stopped taking it because I’m not taking it regularly enough for it to truly act in the way I want to (reduce any possible inflammation).  So there 😛

Onto happier / less annoyed news: yesterday in the mail I received this baby from a friend in Dallas:

My name in the paper ❤

where it informed me that I was, in fact, 8th woman.  I don’t know where I saw 9th (*cough*stupid WR website*cough*) but it’s in the papers that I was 8th.  So there.  I’m calling it the truth and since the title of this post is MM’s Whole Truth it’s got to be right.  Plus it’s in print.  You can’t really retract that baby. I think I’m going to frame it

Now actually onto the title of the post…

So Lacey did this little thing earlier this week last week (?) that she titled “The Whole Truth” and the idea was to answer the questions as best as you could.  Apparently Mark Bittman did this in a magazine and Lacey liked it.  Since I like her (and my posts will likely be boring until Boston training starts up again) I decided to copy.  Originally I think she wanted people to answer these and send them to her so she could post a big version but I missed that memo.  Sorry for stealing your thunder Lacey! (I also didn’t answer all the questions because I couldn’t come up with answers that I felt comfy sharing on the blog). And I deleted Bittman’s answers so if you want to check out his you can go back to Lacey’s original post of the Whole Truth

Enjoy!

If I could say one thing to myself 20 years ago…

You are one helluva strong person.  Keep your head up (granted 20 years ago I was only 4 but I think the message should have been reinforced from a really young age 🙂 )

My favorite place in the world…

Someplace warm and sunny

Yes this is a real place 🙂

The lesson I keep learning over and over…

I’m MUCH stronger than I think

The movie I watch when I want to laugh…

Zoolander. Although Tropic Thunder is giving it a run for it’s monaaaaaaaaaay.

Thanks google

The most scared I’ve ever been…

Well I’m not going to post the *most* scared but one time that I’ve been terrified was the night before starting 6th grade.  There were lots of changes in my life at that point too and going from elementary to middle school was terrifying.

No one knows I…

Well now everyone will know it but when I was in middle I acted like I was from the hood.  For real.  I’m from a really nice suburb.  Awkward.

Unhealthiest thing I’ve ever passed off as dinner…

Well I don’t really cook.  My idea of dinner most nights is a can of tuna and some steamed veggies (mostly because I work lots of clinic nights and it’s easy) [Edit: I eat the tuna with italian dressing so it’s not sooo bad hah!].  I guess that’s something that I’ve tried to pass off as dinner.  I have tried to pass off an ice cream sundae as breakfast before.  My mom wasn’t too happy about that when she discovered me and my younger sister eating it before school one day!

Personal philosophy…

The Platinum Rule (aka treat others the way they want to be treated)

Book that changed my life…

Where the Wild Things Are.  Don’t judge: it was the first book I could read on my own and thus sparked my reading obsession.

I unwind by…

Running, talking to friends, being pen pals with friends (heyyyyyyyy I am an old soul! Heck yes to the letter! And especially this time of year when I can write long Christmas cards!), getting lost in a good book.

Proudest moment in my career…

Getting my undergraduate degree and, much more recently, having the CEO of the clinic tell me she was really impressed with how I handle myself with patients, providers, board members and the press.

What keeps me up at night…

Usually things that are out of my control.

I define “downtime” as…

Moments where I feel zero stress

Coffee or tea?

I’m leaning towards coffee at the moment. Scary because I NEVER drank the stuff until entering the work force.

Guiltiest pleasure…

Watching marathons of America’s Next Top Model or The Biggest Loser

Fierce. Thanks google.

My mom was right about…

Things often have a strange way of working themselves out.

My mom was wrong about…

Raising 6 kids in a 3 bedroom house being a good idea.

thanks google (yet again)

The last time I lost my temper was…

Coming home from the airport after my Dallas trip.  I’m going to blame the fact that I was really hungry but I totally freaked out on two of my younger sibs. I think my sister was saying that she wasn’t going to keep her cat away from me and my brother kept making jokes about how Texas = stupidity (it was a spongebob joke but still.  I lost it).

My favorite moment of the day…

Waking up right before the alarm goes off and the covers are all comfy

I wish I had more time for…

Reading.

I always make time for…

Running. And friends (just so you don’t think I’m totally running obsessed 😉 )

I’m currently reading…

Harry Potter et L’ecole des Sorciers.  Plus a John Grisham novel when thinking in French is too much intellectual stimulation 😉

Home means...

Talking without words (and I wrote that and thought that some of you pervert would misinterperet. But I’m goingto keep my original answer and clarify: Comfortable silence)

Check out the giveaway from Amanda(Run to the Finish)

December 12, 2010

WR Splittage and Thoughts

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — marathonmaiden @ 18:41

I can’t get over how it’s been a week plus since WR! How’d that happen?! A week ago from when this post is going up I was celebrating a fantastic race at the Texas Roadhouse drinking

Texas Love

I promised some splits when I first wrote my recap last week but I wasn’t wearing the garmin so I didn’t have them.  But now I do. Thanks sis 🙂 So enjoy if you’re into this sort of thing.  And I’ve tried to add new commentary so it’s not just straight up numbers but I don’t want to really make it another race recap.  Because I’ve already done that. I was hoping to have some actual WR pics up by now but I still can’t figure out how to take the pics.  Anyone want to do it for me? Then I can relive this race through another post with pictures hahah! The pics that follow are camera shots from my Cannon so I apologize for the icky quality, which is why I only included one at the moment 🙂

mile 1: 7:10
mile 2: 7:12
mile 3: 7:09
mile 4: 7:11
mile 5: 7:14
mile 6: 7:11

The “easy” miles.  Or rather the really fun miles because me and Liz were just so excited to be doing this thaaaaaang! Can you say practically dancing in the streets?

Funnnnnnnnnn

mile 7: 7:12
mile 8: 7:15
mile 9: 7:09
mile 10: 7:11
mile 11: 7:12
mile 12: 7:12

More of the same laughing but getting a bit more serious because the initial “omg we’re doing this!” was replaced by “jeeeeeeeez it’s real”.  This is where those boys were making comments about our legs.  Silly boys.

mile 13.1: the HALF Marathon mile: 1:34.00
mile 14: 7:17
mile 15: 7:14
mile 16: 7:11
mile 17: 7:12
mile 18: 7:13

Passing through the half at 1:34.00 which is 3 seconds slower than my half-marathon PR that I ran back in September.  It was scary to think I was running my marathon at such a fast pace! But a good kind of scary.

mile 19: 7:26
mile 20: 7:21

Slooooooooooooowage.  My legs were hurting. Bad.

mile 21: 7:09
mile 22: 7:04
mile 23: 7:01

The Dolly Parton “hills” were in here somewhere.  My legs and hammys were burning and on FIRE but I saw someone where a BC (Boston College) sweatshirt and gave a holler to him. That lifted me up a lot. It also lifted me up to see my friend playing trumpet around mile 20.  It was awesome!

mile 24: 7:00
mile 25: 6:49
mile 26.2: 6:42

I’m going to just repost what I originally wrote on my recap:

  • Holy @#$& these last few miles suck.
  • Holy #$@% I could break 3:10 (thought at mile marker 26)
  • Holy !@#$ I just did (thought at finish line)

Again: Final official time was 3:09.26

And more interesting stats:

  • Over the final 25% of the race I passed 84 runners and only 1 passed me
  • I finished ahead of 96% of male finishers (holllleeeerrrrr)
  • My average overall speed was 8.3mph
  • Broken down by quarter my speed was: 8.2, 8.3, 8.2, 8.5

Obviously a great race and I’ve kept meaning to do a post-WR post but I’ve been (obviously) putting it off because I don’t *really* know what to say. Oops.

But I guess the overall gist is that post-WR I still don’t really feel like it happened.  Don’t get me wrong: my body feels like it happened but the trip was so amazing and awesome and was just wonderful (from the people I hung out with to the 26.2 miles run) that it just seems surreal.

Especially since I only really trained for 5.5 weeks! I do think this helped me immensely and was definitely a factor in my successful race.  I don’t know if I’d recommend this strategy to anyone but I got that mental monkey off my back. Other things that helped me for this race:

  • Rest days.  I’m notoriously bad at taking them but I didn’t run at all the Friday or Saturday before.  I did walk about a great deal but no running
  • Pure track work.  I did speed work sessions before Boston last spring but I felt very focused on it this time around and I fell in love with the high school track.  AKA not the TM where I was doing my intervals before.  And keeping it *just* track work.  In my zeal last cycle I also remember doing hills after intervals.  While that sounded hardcore at the time it might not have been the best.
  • Training for the course.  While with Boston I made sure to get those hills in, for WR I didn’t need too.  Or at least I didn’t need to do them specifically.  RI is plenty hilly enough, Dallas not so much.  My regular routes had just enough to keep me prepared.
  • Tempos.  I hate them.  With a passion but I executed them very well.  I may have run a few of them “too fast”.  At least for what my original goal was (3:20) going into the race
  • I hate to say it but the dreaded 2 X 3 miles.  I hate this more than tempos but in the end I smashed my goal so it was all good.

December 7, 2010

I Freaking Love Texas.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 07:34

I had lots of money in the bank.  And now I’m broke.

This and most of the other pics are Liz's because she remembered to bring her camera! Oops.

There were so many things I was going to title this post (my absolute favorite being “We’re doing it Longhorn style”) but in the end I went with my motto throughout the entire Dallas White Rock marathon that I ran this past Sunday.

If you’re my fb friend (or if you read on other places that stole my thunder) then you know that I ran really well.  Like really well.  So I guess I’m not spoiling anything by giving the stats first:

Dallas WR Marathon

  • 26.2 miles (or I’ve been told that it was actually 26.45 but whatevs)
  • 3:09.26
  • 7:13 average pace

I don’t have the exact splits but you can wander over to my running sistaaaa’s blog (whom I ran with and she did amazing as well!) because I think she’s going to post them when her in-depth RR goes up.  Regardless the above stats garnered me this (and keep in mind there were A LOT of people who ran it.  I have no idea how many but this is a HUGE race) (these are updated results from the WR website post-FB status)

  • 126th overall
  • 9th woman (annoying because when I checked yesterday I was 8th)
  • 2nd AG

I’m pretty much on freaking cloud 9 right now.

But first let me back up and kind of recap the whole weekend (or as best as I can in one post. So beware this is going to be long).  I left work Thursday night to head up to my good ole childhood home so my mom could drive me to the airport Friday.  I slept very well (and in my sister’s bed because I no longer have one there. Sad face) and when my alarm went off at 0600 I woke up with a start and had NO IDEA where I was.  Legit.

Once I got my bearings I got up, threw on some clothes and headed to the airport (btw the shoes I was wearing were the ones that I wore to work the night before: heals).  The flights were unremarkable which was incredibly nice because the last time I went to Texas all hell broke loose from the skies and the travel was a nightmare.  I actually landed at DFW *early*.   On my flight to Philly I actually sat next to a marathoner (2:45) from Dallas and we chatted about the race and he gave me general advice.  Very cool to have that happen.  Anyway, he told me that he’d be cheering for me on Sunday (he wasn’t running but was going to cheer peeps on)

When I landed I hung outside the airport while I waited for Jess to pick me up.  It was really nice to sit in really warm weather.  When I left Boston it was 28* and when I landed in Dallas it was 75*.  LOVE IT. Jess drove up from Houston that day, with a friend who was also running the half, and they were amazing to pick me up!

We hung out in Dallas for awhile where we meet up with a friend of ours to chill before the RWOL Dailies dinner.  We ate nachos and dip.  Talk about good pre-race food 😉

Then we headed to The Angry Dog to meet up and eat and drink with my peeps:

They are the NICEST people EVER.  It was an amazing time.  We talked about running (duh) but also life.  It was great to put names to faces and hear voices.  I owe A LOT to these guys (and obviously those on the forum that weren’t there).  Lots of laughs were had.

I was originally going to spend the night with my running sis but plans change (another saying of mine this trip was “This was such an ill planned trip! I pretty much just hopped on a freaking plane!) but I had a friend who graciously let me crash on her couch for the night.  I slept really well.  I slept until 0900 Dallas time.  Ummm that’s 1000 my time? I NEVER sleep that late.  But it was good.

Rather than do a shakeout run (which I had wanted to do) the two of us went out for coffee.  Then Liz came by and picked me up to head to the expo.  Traffic was brutal and (yet another “theme” of the trip: we’re glad we made it there alive hahah).  We picked up our packets and shirts and chatted with some really nice Texans (seriously the nicest people in the world).  We also ran into Jess and her friend there.  Well okay, Jess and I had been texting each other to try and meet up.  But it was nice to see her again as I didn’t actually see her at the race itself.

Liz and I also bought these babies:

I actually won a pink pair in a giveaway but they haven't arrived yet and I really wanted these for the plane ride back to Boston. So worth it!

Then we left the expo and got coffee (more for me. YAY).  Then I met back up with the friend I spent Friday with and we headed up to dinner with her parents and her parents running friends (her mom was running the full too). It was cool to spend another night with runners who were able to give advice.  As well as laugh and have fun.

I tried to get to sleep early Saturday night but I couldn’t.  I was never really worried but knowing that I had to get up so early the next day for, the race, I obviously couldn’t sleep.  So I settled for time off my feet.  I woke up before my alarm, which was nice, drank some coffee and ate a pb and banana sandwich.  I had stayed with my friend and her parents overnight and, since her mom was running the race too, they drove me to the start.

Traffic was horrible and I thought I was going to miss the start.  For real.  But I didn’t. I actually saw Lesley at the bag drop off for about 5 seconds.  I can’t believe you recognized me girl! And thanks for saying hi! And luckily I found my running sister at our corral (B. Holler for us putting a fast projected time down).  I probably would have cried if I hadn’t found her. I was in spandex shorts and a spandex top.  No gloves.  I was shivering (I mean, I’m from New England but 37* is chilly no matter what) but it’s all good.  Sure my hands went numb early but whatever.  I was running a marathon.  Comfortable? What’s that? 😀

While we waited for the gun to go off we were dancing and jumping around.  Maybe we should have saved our energy for the race.  But we were excited.  Then we were OFF.

I don’t have the exact splits (Liz was wearing the garmin but when I get them I’ll update this post as well as post them in a future post) but here are some highlights of the race (aka thoughts I can remember):

(splits to be put here when I get ’em 😛 ) I do know that the first mile was 6:58 and we were pretty consistent with our pacing around 7:11 the whole time.  Our slowest mile was around 18 (?) and it was 7:22.  And I do know that we picked it up A LOT at the end and the last 3 were sub-7.  Holler.

  • We went out really fast.  Like really fast.  But it felt good.  So we we said to each other “let’s just go at what’s comfy”.  So we did.  Because we were in Corral B we weren’t with the 3:20 pacer but we actually caught up to him.  And then we passed him real early on.  And never looked back.
  • Around mile 12ish I hear something to the effect of”At least we have two nice pairs of legs to pull us on this pace”.  To which Liz and I replied “Like 2 girls pulling a pack of 10 guys? Oh well.  See you at the finish” hahah.  Later one of those guys passed us and called us mean for ditching the old guys.  That’s us: heartbreakers.
  • The Dolly Parton hills? Really? Yes I saw the sign that announced them (mile 22 maybe?) and I heard people complaining about them but I honestly never felt a hill the whole race.  Silly Texans.
  • Also silly Texans with the Chuck Norris signs of varying degrees. And the “run b!tch run” one. They were hilarious and I high fived the guy with the latter sign.
  • Regardless of what I felt hill wise, I was feeling the effort around mile 19/20 and luckily there were shot blocks here.  I’ve said this time and time again but I am SO not a model runner.  Because I haven’t eaten anything on long runs (nor have I ever had coffee before a run but I did that on Sunday too!).  And I ate these guys.
  • As soon as I ate them I thought that it was a bad idea because it threw off my stride and breathing and stomach.  But I’m glad I did because they did make my legs feel better.  It could just be mental but I felt it.  I also thought at this point that I really can’t vomit at the end because the shot blocks were red and that it would look like I was vomiting blood.
  • Holy @#$& these last few miles suck.
  • Holy #$@% I could break 3:10 (thought at mile marker 26)
  • Holy !@#$ I just did (thought at finish line)

So yeah:

“I love Texas”

I think I said this about every minute.  The crowds were great and I just felt the love. I even got lei-ed in the first half and wore the red lei for the rest of the race!  Liz and I also tried to join in the Texas love by throwing up the “hook ’em horns” at some of the cameras.

Like this but during the race

I adored it when people cheered for us passing the guys and calling us girls and ladies.  I know some people get offended (like really?!) but I love it.  It made me feel really bamf and hardcore.  I definitely chicked a lot of people in the last 4 or so miles.  It felt great.

As fun as the run I was I was there to race and, that said, I was in absolute shock when I finished and realized that I did, in fact, break 3:10.  Totally smashed my goal of 3:20.

We walked through the finisher area together (after jumping around like idiots at the actual finish line) where we were given hats because we were in the top 100 females and told that we were also very likely top 10.  We got our medal, finishers shirt and FOOD.  And BEER.  I’m not at all a big beer drinker but I crave it after races.  So I indulged.  It tasted awesome.

We took a finisher photo together and then met up with Liz’s friend who had driven down from Tulsa to cheer us on.  We had thought he was going to jump in at the last few miles to keep us going but he didn’t.  Lame hahah.  We then headed back to where we were spending the night to eat and shower.

And then go out to drink. Let me just say this now to all you Texans: y’all know how to drink on a Sunday night.  Did I mention I freaking love Texas?

Did I mention I love us too?

After drinking we chilled at the house and ate more before heading to bed.  I actually had a semi-fitful night of sleep and at 0530 whispered to Liz “Are you at all asleep?”.  Nope was the reply and we got up to just move the legs before leaving for the airport.

I guess I should talk about how my legs felt Monday.  They were sore.  I don’t think they couldn’t be after such a hard effort.  But I could do stairs normally and everything.  I was probably more sore after Boston.  Sitting on my long flight back to Boston was rough but I was never in immobile mode.

That said, Monday was a rest day (as was Friday and Saturday btw).  Simply because of the travel.  Which is good because I am sore.  So that tells me there’s damage and running would have been bad.

In any case I arrived on time in Boston and my mom made me a HUGE dinner that night.  And my biggest fear was realized: as I hopped into the car to drive home it was SNOWING  (and the predicted weather this week is snow and below freezing).  I cursed, like a trucker to which all members of my family yelled at me for, and then I said something to the effects of jumping on a plane back to Dallas.

I also foam rolled Monday night after getting back to my apartment and I almost vomited.  It hurt.  I think because I didn’t sleep much Sunday night the muscle soreness didn’t really set it.  It’ll be an interesting next few days to say the least!

So if you made it to the end of this BEAST then congrats. It was a pain in the ass to write because I didn’t write it race day so I’m sure I forgot to include *something*.  Oh well.  It’s all good. This race was wicked awesome and a perfect way to end my 2010 racing.

Because I still feel on top of the freaking world

December 5, 2010

And I’m Off. For Real This Time.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 09:00

Slow and steady wins the race.  Except in a real race.

Skinny Runner (or at least I stole this from her blog at some point)

From google images.

A perfect likeness no? Except I don’t have blue eyes. Oh well.

Oops if you thought this was one of those quickie how-did-I-do posts. It’s not. Because I haven’t run the darn thing yet!

But I am ready to ROCK.

This is scheduled to go up at 0800 CT.  AKA I should be starting to run and racing and attempting to hit that puke threshold.  Hopefully I can make it the whole 26.2 miles before that happens 😉

I’m not quite sure what to think or feel  because, given I signed up for this race 5.5 weeks ago, I’m not quite sure what to expect. That said, I think that my training has been great and stellar and “money in the baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaank”.  Obviously there is the potential to do VERY well.  It’s just how I’ve been rolling this fall.

I wrote a bunch of paragraphs about this race being a way to meet people that I’ve only known through RW and blogging and play catch up with those that I’ve been fortunate to already know.  And how the end goal is to HAVE FUN. So no matter what actually is going down right now in Dallas, TX that is Mission Accomplished.

But then I deleted it.  Because, while I know that I’m having fun on this trip (Of course I could be miserable right now and it could be snowing or hailing or tornadoing.  In which case the RR should be lovely to read when I get back to New England hahah), and I just wrote the end goal is to have fun, let’s be honest here.

At this very moment the goal is to race until I feel like I’m going to puke, remember?

The trip can be about fun and hanging out but this race? Puking. And I think the puke threshold is about a 7:30 pace (which is ~3:16 marathon, a better seed for Boston, automatic qualifier for NYC and a PR.  I dream big, no?).  I don’t know if I want to be right on that account or not. Puking isn’t very fun.  Or sexy.

To wrap up a rambly post: this race’s tagline is “Run the Rock” I was going share some type of song that was a pop pump up song referring to rocking.  Instead  I will share this lovely gem.  I actually began the outlines of this post earlier this week and, while driving to work one day, I heard this song.  And though EFF YES.

Let’s hope that Texas (and WR) is going to bless me

December 3, 2010

I’m Going To TEXAS.

HIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII.

I’ll never forget when I told one of the women I work with:

ME: Hey! Guess where I’m going in two weeks.
Friend: (with a weary expression): Texas?
ME: YES!!
Friend: (with same expression): Why would you want to go to Texas?
ME: Because it’s AWESOME.  And I’m running a MARATHON there.

Can you tell how excited I was? Well I still am.  And I’m quite likely high above the skies.  Or in an airport in Philly depending on when you’re reading this as I’ve scheduled this sucker for my layover, I think.  But whatever.  It’s FRIDAY.  Which means I’m on my way to DALLAS.

Sorry. I really couldn't help myself with this one. It's been killing me to refrain this long as it is.

And I’m on my way to run a MARATHON.  This will be my 3rd marathon.  And my 3rd state in doing so.  Cool beans.

I’m wicked excited to be finally on my way.  To meet up with some really cool people, both new and old friends.  To finally meet my running sistaaaaaaaaaaa.  I’m going to a RW Marathon Dailies dinner tonight which will be great.  I owe those peeps so much that it’ll be amazing to tell them in person!!

Before I risk getting all teary eyed, I’m going to share the muffin recipe that I promised earlier this week. ENJOY!

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Apple Cinnamon could quite possibly be my favorite flavor combo in the world.  I mean, I love others but this one I never get sick of.

This week, during my taper aka RACE WEEK, when I was not getting texts from my friend telling me to not run, I decided that it would be a good time to catch up on my reading (I checked out several good books from the libs before Thanksgiving for this reason) as well as baking.  I went on a kick at the end of October.  As in I baked two things.  In November I baked once, well twice if you count this recipe even though I’m posting it in December as I wanted to be able to put something up while I’m away.

Anyway, since I love Apples and Cinnamon and I love things that are easy to both cook/bake AND eat I decided to make muffins as I really couldn’t think of a good way to incorporate Apples and Cinnamon into cookies.  I guess I could have made cupcakes but aren’t muffins pretty much cupcakes?

So I googled “Easy Apple Cinnamon Muffins” and this recipe popped out. I copied and pasted the ingredients and directions from the AllRecipes site I took it from, my changes are italicized although I didn’t make many changes.

I debated taking the lazy man’s way out and using a box.  But I actually had all the ingredients and would have had to go out and buy a box.

Staying in semi-warm apartment with fully stocked (or at least for this recipe) pantry > Going out in the cold for easy baking.

Duh.

Oops.  Again I forgot to take a picture until most of them were gone

Ingredients

Actual muffins:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 2 apples – peeled, cored and chopped (we chopped them very finely)

Crumbly top:

  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed (I think you should know by now I use margarine)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease six muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners. (we used muffin liners and the oven was at 425*F. This recipe is for 6 jumbo muffins or 12 regular muffins.  I chose 12 regular muffins.)
  2. Stir together 1 1/2 cup flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt, baking powder and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Mix in oil, egg and milk. Fold in apples. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling to the top of the cup.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, butter and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix together with fork and sprinkle (liberally) over unbaked muffins.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean. (it took closer to 30 considering my oven and recipes don’t see eye to eye with baking time)

So there you go 🙂

I kind of wish I had made lots of extra to take on the plane rides with me.  I’m sure I could use all the extra carbs for my leg-os right now.

Enjoy the start to the weekend y’all.  I’m pretty sure mine is going to be really fun, no matter what happens on Sunday.

 

December 2, 2010

And I’m Off. Kind of Sort of.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:01

So (and this is my FB status so I’m sorry to repeat for my FB friends): I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off because I’m leaving for DALLAS on FRIDAY (TOMORROW) to run a MARATHON. Eeeep? I’m leaving tonight after clinic to head up to my mom’s house so I can be closer to Boston for my flight.  So, not off yet, but pretty damn close!

After reading your comments on my monthly recap I guess  I was running A LOT.  It honestly didn’t seem like that much.  And while the breakdown per day statistically was ~15 miles it obviously didn’t work out that way every day.  My quality days were 15+ and my Fridays were doubles which helped.  But there were light days in there. It was either heavy or light.  No real in betweens. Maybe that’s why I didn’t feel like I was running that much!

Taper madness.  Given that I have training madness, ummm see month of November?, it’s no surprise that running very few miles this week is messing with my head.  Not in ways that really make me feel like I have taper madness but I’ve just been antsy (and cooking.  I’ll have lots of recipes to share when I get back.  Plus I know that I’ll be cooking lots during recovery.  Guess I’ll end the year on a bang note there!).

Grrrrr to the taper. thanks google

For the most part tapering is going well. Going into Wednesday and today I knew that the bulk of training was, DUH, behind me and that Tuesday’s NAILED GMP was the last “real” workout.

Wednesday morning was a recovery run.  As well as a taper run.  So it was somewhere around 6 miles. (  <– that is the reason I ran so many miles in November.  Taper much? ) I was debating about whether or not to get this run in. I had made myself a deal that if it was raining, even drizzling out, when my alarm went off I’d take the day off as it was suppose to, and did in fact, rain pour all day and I knew I wasn’t getting out of work at a decent time. And if it was clear I’d go for 5-6 miles. Well no rain in sight when I got up as it was a lovely morning.  Later, when the house my apartment was in was literally shaking it wasn’t so lovely hahah

But it was almost 50* Wednesday morning! In December! I checked the forecast for Dallas and it was only 40*. Ummmm some destination marathon I picked, no? I’ve been told the forecast for Sunday is actually looking really nice though.  I haven’t had the heart yet to check it out myself

I also got in my pushups (25, 29, 25, 25, 37) and situps (38, 45, 38, 38, 55).  Man I hope they get me some strength because I can feel them whenever I do them!

Since today (Thursday) is a clinic day AND I’m in taper check this out: I got to sleep in EXTRA EXTRA.  Thursdays have been my long run days and with T-2 days (OMG I think I just got sick a bit) I figured it’d be prudent to NOT bang out a long run.  Maybe I’m not so taper madness-ified after all? 😉

While the weather on Wednesday morning was cloudy but warm (hello I was in a sports bra by the end!) this morning brought about sun and temps in the mid-30s and I settled for a repeat of Wednesday: an easy 6 at a slower-than-I-thought pace. Since I was running “only 6 miles” I thought I’d have extra time this morning to leisurely shower and eat.  But I was actually feeling pretty good that I stopped just shy of 8.  Again, taper much? Any extra time I thought I had by only planning on running 6 miles was taken up by the aforementioned sleeping and those extra 2 miles.  So much for not rushing around before work.

Must. Get. To. Work. Now.

Anyway I’ve been shying away from posting about the taper because A) everyone else seems to be and B) because I really suck at it.  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to look at November’s numbers and realize that I didn’t stick too well to the taper plan I had set out.  BUT this week I have been making sure to do things right.  Maybe even a dramatic taper as I sucked a lot during it.  I think the only thing I really did well was shift speed work to GMP….but I digress.

In addition to sleeping extra and not running mega miles everyday I’ve also been stretching and rolling lots and did that too today, as well as made sure I did it every day this week.  It’s funny how tapering makes those things a PRIORITY.  Like drinking lots of water.  This week I’ve actually swapped out my diet coke / diet dr. pepper habit with water.  GASP. See? Dramatic. Incidentally I’ve nixed lots of salt.  Even though I know that skimping on salt (for ME) is no bueno and leads to lightheadedness, I can still taste the salt from my margarita experience last weekend. Obviously by now it’s just mental but regardless: I still have that taste in my mouth.

I’ve also been increasing the carbs that I’m getting.  I’m not actually switching out any foods but just adding extra carbs to what I’m already eating.  While some people complain about the weight that they gain during taper I couldn’t care less.  I don’t *feel* any heavier and, at 5’11”, any taper weight gain is not going to be noticeable.  And to be honest: I actually brought home 10 lbs of turkey from Thanksgiving. That bird is not going to eat itself!

Aaaaaaaaaaaand that’s all I got for you.  Annoying, right? This post has been a mish-mash of pre-race / pre-travel excitement, daily running and taper.

I wish I had better taper advice but this is only my 3rd marathon.  For my first I really wasn’t doing much intense training and, thus, didn’t really do much of a taper.  For my second I was injured, so I was tapering for 5 weeks because I couldn’t run much at all.  That said, I’ll take suggestions of what y’all do…

So, like I opened this post and titled the post, after clinic tonight I’m off and putting my sorry marathoning butt on a plane tomorrow morning.  I have some pre-written posts set up while I’m away but the next time you’ll hear from me “live” will be when I get back.  Or a day or two after for the full recap as I’m spending Monday night in my hometown (mostly for the free dinner that my mom has said she’d cook for me.  But shhhhh don’t tell my family that!). I’m sure that I’ll do that annoying quickie-where-I-don’t-tell-you-anything teaser post while I’m there.

Because I’m like that.

thanks to my favorite sister for her lovely paint skilllzzzz. and i must really love my tiara because this is the billionth time i've shown this pic!

And check out the giveaway from Marcia and Julie (hotlegs runner)

December 1, 2010

Previously On MM….November 2010

I think when I wrote my October recap I ended the post saying “Let’s hope November is just as good, shall we?”.

Well it was. It truly was — anyone know that quote? It’s not really a memorable quote but whenever someone says that line, the scene from this movie pops into my head!

I kind of liked not breaking down the month week by week like I’ve done all year and doing a previously.  Like LOST and 24.  I consider myself as BAMF as the great men in my life 😉

And I have to only pick one LOST pic? UGHHHHHHHHH

Thanks google for both images

Anyway.  November was another great month.  While October brought about the firsts for lots of things (including baking as well as Dallas WR marathon training), November was really where the magic was made.  I put in LOTS of hard work and to go purely by the numbers, this was a colossal month.  Not as big as that crazy June I had but pretty darn big.

Since I liked the format I used last month, I’ll keep it the same.  For your sake as well as mine.

November

  • 454.1 miles
  • 61 hours 23  minutes 15 seconds
  • 8:54 average pace

Comparing 2009 to 2010

  • 2010: 454.1
  • 2009:  293.6
  • Percent Change:54.7 %

YTD (as of 30-November)

  • 2010:  3988
  • 2009: 2766
  • Percent Change: 44.2%

Races:

None here.  I was debating a Turkey Trot with my lil’ bro but opted out.  Oh well.  I’m sure that in a few days I can make it up to myself.  He did school me in an xbox dance off on Thanksgiving so I’m sure he’s over not running with me.

I did, however, get my official-in-the-mail acceptance to Boston which is hard to see past WR but it’s there. Waiting.

Not my image. Google images

Training:

Lots of good stuff here.  Last month I linked to all my quality workouts leading up for this WR cycle.  This month I’ve done 3 quality ones a week.  That’s a lot to link to.  So here are the memorable ones / highlights of what I was trying to accomplish (the links are mostly so I can go back and re-read if need be in the future):

I think the biggest thing of the training here was that it was all about learning. I’m slowly trying to wrap my head around how to train right.  That there are many types of workouts and each has their own place. That I’m a pretty decent runner if I put my head to it.  That I set expectation really high and can be disappointed because I expect so much from myself.

I think this month really is laying the foundation for how I approach running and training and RACING for the future.  It’s a bit weird to put it like that but I just feel like this month was special (or maybe it’s been there all fall and just now I’m starting to notice)

Oh man, sentimental much? Lots of other confidence building workouts in there this month but those above were the best of.  I also started the hundred pushups and two hundred situps challenges, of which I am in Week 4 of 6 on currently.  Plus some foam rolling.  Maybe I’m changing my bad-runner-habit ways?

I guess I can’t wait, then, for the first weekend in December.  I get to “run the rock

Preferably in that time too. Asking too much? 😉

Baking (ahem slash cooking):

  • Chocolate CheesecakeThe baking queen herself was impressed.  I’m not going to lie: the idea to do this (and to bring it to a Celtic’s game?!) was born after a glass or two of wine.  As all ideas are?
  • Sweet Potato Soup. I was a complete brat and emailed my mom (not even a phone call!) a week before Thanksgiving to request that she make this for me.  I did make it at the beginning of the month but still.  I am such a terrible daughter.

I actually also made Apple Cinnamon muffins but just haven’t yet shared the recipe.  Here’s a sneak peak? (because I’m sure y’all are tired of seeing pictures that I’ve already posted)

Trust me: better pics in the actual post. I'll try to get it up this weekend 🙂

Life

Despite working 40+ hours a week, running 454.1 miles this month (including marathon training runs!) I maintained a really good social life as well.  The highlights include:

  • I celebrated a birthday.
  • Had the best Thanksgiving I’ve ever had.
  • Drank the most tequila I’ve ever had in one night.

All in all a very good month. I mean, we did get the first snowfall at the beginning of the month but I got a tiara.  Who can argue with that?

November 30, 2010

I’m Pretty Sure That Taper Madness Is Likely Setting In

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:08

When I think of taper madness I think of someone needing to strap me down on a gurney so I don’t go out there and run a billion miles between now and race day

I’m not bouncing off the walls or worrying constantly. Or even obsessing over the weather.  I just don’t want to stop running (but I did not run on Monday.  Must have been the love from here.  Or the funny texts from my friend hahah).  Or stop training hard.  I’m still a bit calm and collected.  Even keeled so to speak. Except when it comes to figuring out what to do between the time my plane lands and when my dinner plans start on Friday.  But no real freaking out over the race itself.

But I guess that taper madness is it’s own little beast.  And, as it is with most neurosis, the sufferer can’t see what the problem is.  So when I suggested earlier this week that my plan for RACE WEEK was to do two GMP speed workouts, The Running Laminator told me

Just looking at your scheduled runs on race week, I can already tell that the taper madness has indeed set in. Two speed workouts, at half marathon pace is a bit like taking tequila shots back to back on an empty stomach because you’re so anxious to get the party going. Haha! One speed workout, with a few miles at GMP, is probably all that is needed.

Of course, as soon as I read that, I sighed.  Because that was exactly what I needed to read.  Yes I still really want to do two GMP workouts but as The Peanut Gallery told me “Whisper to your tequila-laden self “less is more, less is more…”” (and girl you KNOW that I love you so TPG is a term of endearment ❤ )

That said, I still wanted to get ONE MORE GMP workout in.  Or at least a semblance of it.

Taper madness? Maybe.

Given that the last time I did a quality workout was on Sunday, I’d have ideally done this workout on Wednesday.  But Wednesday is a non-clinic day (aka if I want to run I have to get up before the sun) and Tuesday is a wake-up-naturally day.  So today it must be because Thursday sure as heck is out.  Although I will say that for all the extra sleep I’m getting I still feel tired and groggy in the mornings.  I hope that I start to perk up by Sunday!

The Workout (results of)

  • Warm up
  • 4.4 miles @ 7:28 pace
  • Warm down

thanks google

While the break down of the 4.4 miles (7:38, 7:19) is a little cringe worthy, as it definitely was not even pacing or GMP if you just look at the splits individually, I am so happy that the average of this workout was for all intents and purposes (although can I PLEASE say intensive purposes?!) spot on.

I did start to beat myself up over the workout on the warm down (and semi did it too after seeing 16:48 for the first half when I knew that GMP should have been 16:30) but then I realized that I’m a progression runner. Even on my easy days I ALWAYS end up finishing a run about a minute or so per mile faster than I started.  That’s just how I roll.  I’d have to go back in my (hard copied) log books to see if that’s how it’s always been but I do know that the vast majority of my runs are: start slow(ish), finish hard(er).

I think it’s a good that, while the run clearly got faster and faster as the distance went on, the average pace was GMP. I’m not quite sure what that means but I’m choosing to think that it means my body knew how to get the end result and hit the goal.

I also am pleased because the effort felt the same throughout the run.  Normally I’d be kicking myself because I’d think “well if the effort on the first part felt the same as the second then the first part should have been faster”or something to that effect.

Today my thoughts were that I was able to go faster and harder with an easier effort. Amazing as the last real workout before WR.

NAILED. BAM.

Oh and before I forget: On Monday I was also going to repeat Week 3 of my two strength challenges given that it’s race week.  But I re-looked at W3D1 of the plans and thought “gee whiz that doesn’t look hard” and then looked at Week 4 and thought “I can do that”. Well I wish I had stuck to my guns because this was hard.  I did them on Monday actually.  Mostly because it forced me to respect the rest day I had planned but gave me something to do but also partly because I figured, with the race on Sunday and travel and whatnot, that a M/W/F challenge schedule would be prudent. I may switch back to Week 3 for the next two days of the challenge this week.  We’ll see.

Pushups: 21, 25, 21, 21, 33

Situps: 32, 48, 32, 32, 50

And check out the giveaway that Matt’s having.And Miss Zippy.

November 28, 2010

I’ve Found the Way to Make Me Taper

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 14:43

Obviously it’s not a secret that taking it easy isn’t in my vocabulary.  And tapering is the time to take it easy.

But I’ve found the antidote to my gotta-run-lots ways

Pitcher(s) of Margaritas – 1, MM – 0

I’ve been told that one night of drinking erases a week of training.  Oopsies.  I sincerely hope that is not the case. And I hope that the thought of tequila someday doesn’t make my stomach churn.  I need to increase my points in the above tally! Preferably soon as I’ll be in TEXAS in a week!

But needless to say going out with my roomie and my bestie was fun and successful on Friday night.  In fact I spent all of Saturday laying on the couch (where I woke up no less) and would dissolve into hysterics throughout the day remembering the things that went down (and yes I can remember the night *thankyouverymuch*)

Okay: in all honesty, I didn’t actually spend the ENTIRE day on the couch.  I had wanted to still get in my speed session and around 1430 or so I felt up to trying.  Ambitious much? So I moseyed outside (in the bright SUN) to attempt

  • Warm up
  • 2 X ~3.3 miles @ GMP (or actually I wanted to target 7:25-7:30 which is slightly faster than the 7:34 of GMP McMillian says) with one mile recovery
  • Warm down

The portion I was going to use for my warm-up of the legit workout felt pretty awful so I decided to just run how my body would let me.  And once I nixed going for those GMP intervals, the run actually turned into a very great run.  Yes my stomach was still turning but my head hadn’t been pounding all day at all so I was able to pound my feet.  The average pace ended up being 8:25! I tried to pick people off (success) and not get passed (double success)

I also did pushups ( 22, 30, 20, 20, 30) and situps ( 33, 42, 30, 30, 50) after the run

Interesting how my run on Friday, after a good night sleep and lots of Thanksgiving carbs, was wicked slow and Saturday, after a ehhh night of sleep and too much tequila, was wicked fast.  That said, I didn’t rack up many miles because A) I’m tapering and B) I could still taste the tequila and salt from the night before and didn’t want to risk revisiting them again.

Meaning that the workout got transferred to Sunday.  I normally hate doing quality workouts on Sunday.  Mostly because I want to use my Sundays to be lazy.  To do a quality workout on Sunday just seems so….productive.  Given that my Saturday was soooooooooo not productive I guess the switcheroo was okay.

The aforementioned workout was on tap and before I left I calculated out what the time elapsed would be to hit my paces: 24:28 to 24:45.

How’d I do?

Well after an obscenely slow warm up…

  • 3.3 miles in 25:37 ( 7:45 ) Yeah…not so much.  I knew that I wasn’t flying and that my legs felt the effort but I was kind of – more than a bit actually- off where I wanted and needed to be.
  • 1 mile recovery in 8:32 — trying to convince myself that I can do another one.  That I *want* to do another one.
  • 3.3 miles in 24:55 ( 7:33 ) Better.  Trying to keep my mind in the game and focused. I will say that once I was done with this interval I was dry heaving.  Ugh

Well….I’m not going to lie: this kind of sucked.  I knew the second I woke up this morning that this would be one tough workout. A helluva tough workout.  And not *just* because I hate them. Usually even when I wake up not feeling like going fast, once the workout starts and I start kicking it I can feel good and turn my attitude around. Not today. I kind of regret not doing this workout yesterday because, despite running the risk of re-visiting my good friends Jose and Rita, my legs at least had some pep.  Just goes to show you that runs after drinking are always good in my book.

In the end I’m going to chalk today up to just a bad day and move on.  In exactly a week I’ll (highly likely) be done with the race and I don’t need mind games at this point (and trust me the desire to complain and be really frustrated/angry is so huge right now)I’ve had stellar workouts this cycle. No joke.  So I know I’m ready.

It’s just a bit disheartening to leave it at that, especially since I have yet to really know what GMP feels like.  I sort of hit it last week with my longer, continuous GMP attempt and I sort of hit it today with interval numero dos. I mean, I know I’m in taper but that doesn’t mean the intensity goes down.

In light of that, there is a chance for quasi-redemption later this week as I wanted to get another GMP run in.  Similar to today but with shorter intervals.  According to the taper plan I was using as a guide I’ll be doing

  • Tuesday: 2 @ MP, .5 easy, 2 @ HMP
  • Thursday: 1 @ MP, 1 @ HMP

We’ll see how that goes.  Regardless I’m likely going to try and get something in the vein of GMP, likely Tuesday being 4 miles @ GMP and Thursday being 3 (or 3.3 because I have a route pre-done) at GMP.

All I know is that there is going to be no more of this until AFTER I cross that finish line

acoustic version because I couldn’t find an official video. Still awesome and you should youtube the song to hear the radio version.  I would have put that here but the videos were all homemade.

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