MarathonMaiden's Blog

May 10, 2010

Not As Bad As I Thought

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 10:00

[ETA: Oops to forgetting to post this up Sunday when I finished writing it! I swear it was ready to go that afternoon! That’s what I (and you) get when all you want to do is take advantage of free time before the craziness of finals week starts hahah.  I tried to go back and edit so it sounds like I wrote it today but I really wrote it Sunday.]

Definitely not as sore as I thought I’d be after my lifting session Saturday[ETA: Well Sunday morning when I got up this was the case.  As time has gone on the soreness factor has increased a bit but I’m not sure how much is lifting and how much is the LR that I did].  And I’m glad that I chose to hit up the gym, because the weather was soooo spazzy: one minute nothing then the next downpouring to clear again.  That’s not even mentioning the random thunder and lightning that cropped up.  I can handle the rain / heavy rain but I’m terrified on thunderstorms so that would not have been good.  Plus I don’ t think it’s all that smart to be running in that kind of storm 😉

But the gym was good.  I did my “typical” lifting routine (found here) sandwiched between some elliptical and some treadmill action as warming up and down.  I kept the weights on the light side because, like I mentioned yesterday, it has been a good 4-5 weeks since I last hit the weights.  I think I used the correct weights for my legs (oh hey there hamstrings!) but I probably under did it with the arms as I’m really not feeling any effects of the session.

My process of choosing the weights was take the weights I was using during training and go down one.  I don’t think I lost as much fitness as I think I did because my body isn’t omg-I-can’t-move sore.  More of an okay-hello-muscles sore.  I’m debating whether to increase my weights next time or keep it at the lower ones for another couple of sessions.

In a way it’s good that I’m not as sore as I was anticipating because my long run was pushed off to Sunday. It felt really weird to not do a Saturday long run because that’s what I’ve been doing, not just during Boston training, but since my last training cycle save a few actually no, the summer was Friday lrs but I haven’t done Sundays since…(checks log book) February 8th 2009.  Wowza.

But since classes are over there is no reason to keep Sunday really free and clear.  I even pushed off the run to mid-morning to allow some food to get into my system and pray for a bit that the wind would die down a bit.  Obviously the running gods did not want to listen to me because it was still very windy when I hit the road.  Oh well.  It was certainly better than trying to run in the tstorms of yesterday.

And to be honest (and I’m going to just state that I really hate that phrase…and the phrase “not going to lie”…so I don’t know why I want to use it here hah) the wind wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.  Sure it gusted a bit but it kept me from overheating and I’ve turned into a pansy as of late with my running.  I only want to run in perfect conditions.  I’ve been spoiled because of all the XT I’ve been forced to do and avoid the elements.

So I put on a slightly heavier long-sleeve (and by slightly heavier I mean heavier than a tech shirt but not a thermal shirt) to keep the wind at bay and took off.

Like really took off.  Since you all know by now that I don’t have a garmin (I think I write that so much ha! Guess as much as I say I’m happy without one, having one would be nice.  Too bad they’re so expensive!) I don’t know what my pace was for the first few miles (or any individual mile really) but suffice it to say that I felt like I was cruising.  And who knows, maybe I was.  I do know that my pace decreased in the mid-miles and then re-increased during the last 5k or so and I ended right around 8:00 pace (which was my GMP for Boston).

But overall I’m really happy with how the run went and I’m really glad that I went for it.  I was debating pushing it off some more but figured “why the hell not do it today?”.  I think I also got a fire lit under me because this is the last weekend I’ll be on campus (next weekend I have to go home for a dentist appt and the following Saturday is graduation) so this was the last weekend to get a long run in and I wanted to do a good-old standby route.  Because I’m not likely to ever do another long run again in this area. Tear.

Like I just mentioned I likely went out too fast in the beginning.  I could feel the slight soreness in my legs from yesterday’s lifting but it didn’t affect me and my stride.  In fact the slower I went the more I noticed it!  The mid-miles, though, were a bit tough.  Not necessarily from a physical standpoint but from a mental one and I’m pretty sure I slowed down a bit during miles 6-10 or so.  I remember thinking at some point in there: how in God’s name did I do this as a recovery run route before? But once I hit that 10 mark I was able to get a second wind and really feel good in the homestretch.  I’m also pretty sure that I had a nice tailwind over the last few miles and that certainly didn’t hurt either!

The overall stats:

  • 13.2 miles
  • 117- mins
  • 8:51 pace

I was thrilled with this run immediate when I got back and am doubly thrilled when looking at this data! I definitely cannot remember the last time I ran a LR sub-9 without checking my training log and the amazing feeling of running at a pushed pace, but with ease, has eluded me for quite awhile, save the past week.

Not bad at all 🙂

Although bladder issues did crop up.  Thank god during Boston I was able to run the whole thing without stopping.  Now that I’m back to just running, however, I guess my bladder wants to misbehave.  I did make it the whole way without stopping but it was a full out sprint to the bathroom when I got back. *LeSigh* haha

But remember how I said the lifting soreness wasn’t as bad as I thought? Well it wasn’t until after I showered then I got the lifting+hard run sore feeling.  Not painful bad at all but totally a “daaaaaaaaaayum girl you’ve been working hard” soreness.  Which I like. So I’m going to reward myself by sitting in my comfy chair by the window and opening the good book I’m into (apparently I was wrong when I thought I had read every John Grisham novel out there, as I found a copy of one that I must have missed somehow.  AMAZING!).  It’s too windy and not quite warm enough (barely cracking the 50s!) to sit outside and read but being by the window is a very close second.  And let’s be real here people: once I get into a novel I am oblivious to the world so does it *really* matter when I am? haha.

Check out this giveaway from Mel


Again, the above was written yesterday (Sunday).  And I’m too lazy to do a real overhaul.  So I’m leaving as is for now.  I did end up reading a lot which was really nice and a great way to recharge before finals week starts…today.  Finals week is never too stressful for me.  This semester I only have a Quantum take home and a Spanish pre-scheduled, so two finals? Not so bad.

Nothing today except to pick up the take home but I’m going to my friend’s thesis defense so I got up early to hit the streets. I probably could have waited until after the defense but I like to get up at get going.  Something that doesn’t feel the same way as me? The temperature.  We had a frost advisory last night! The sun was shining though so it didn’t feel as bad as it could have been.  There wasn’t any wind either which made it pleasant out.

And my legs? Wowza soreness! I can feel the knots in every muscle in my legs.  I was thinking of trying out the foam roller but I’m too afraid of how much pain I’ll be in! Maybe I’ll brave it after the defense.  I was also thinking of hitting up the weights again today but I’m not in a hurry to really make a set schedule for strength stuff just yet.

Therefore after my ~7 mile recovery run (and trust me it was recovery after such a great LR yesterday) I just did some core and my PT hip exercises.  The exercises are getting wayyy easy so I’m happy because it means that my hips are getting stronger.

Aaaaaaaaand I’m going to wrap this up here because between two days worth of running recaps I’m about to write a thesis myself.  Gotta dash off! Send good vibes her way if you can 🙂

February 17, 2010

How I Love To People Watch

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — marathonmaiden @ 15:04

Okay so I’m always impressed by the people I see at the gym.  Not necessarily impressed as in “daaaayuuuum you are working hard” but impressed by the people themselves.  I go to a college campus gym currently and even though I see some of the same people they are pretty much representative of a stereotype.  And sure stereotypes suck but they come from somewhere, right?

I will also say that I haven’t really seen any non-school-athlete athletes at the gym.  I put myself in this category because if I’m not an athlete then eff that.  Maybe these types are few and far between in college? I know that it is hard to motivate and push yourself hard for a goal while in the grind of the semester if you’re not being told what to do by a coach.  Or maybe they just avoid the gym.

But here are my musings on the people I see at the gym when I people watch.  Because I love to do it. And this isn’t a complete exhaustive list of people at all gyms, just my campus gym.


The Princess: These girls don’t really do much at the gym except try to look hot all clad in head to toe spandex.  They hop onto a machine (usually the elliptical or WALKING on the treadmill) and just go through the motions.  Obviously.  I mean why ruin the full face of makeup you just put on? Typically they also spend more time flirting with the guys below in the weights.  Or having eye sex with them.

The Chatty Cathys: The girls who show up at the gym just to chat for social hour.  May or may not actually do anything to make it appear as though they’re working out.  Or most likely they workout for 5 seconds on one machine then see someone they know, talk to them for 30 minutes then switch to another machine to finish their workout with another 5 seconds.  A subset would be The Cellphone User

The Meathead: These can be jocks but but I’m not defining them that way.  These are the guys who *were* athletes in high school but don’t have the goods to play in college. These guys are never on the cardio machines and always in the weight section.  Usually lifting really heavy weights and grunting a lot. They’re also the ones having eye sex with the princesses hoping to have actual sex with them later on.  Just sayin’.

The Athletes: Okay I know this is one BIG category.  But the athletes *usually* feel entitled to take over the entire freaking gym.  Our campus gym is small, our school is small, and you are not here on athletic scholarship.  Please stop staring me down as I lift or run or whatever. Just because I am not on a team does not mean I have to yield to you.  I am running the Boston Marathon and I would like to see you try and do that.  (I will say that men’s teams are worse than women’s and that baseball, lacrosse are worse than cross country, volleyball.  There is a hierarchy in how awful they are BUT when any team gets together there is a mob mentality.)

The “Nosey Rosies”: (Thanks Rebecca for that name for them!).  Anything you do they can do better.  So they peak over at your treadmill, the poundage of weights etc to see what you’re doing.  Then try to one-up you. Annoying? Yes.  But it feels amazing when you overpower them because clearly these people are just trying to show off and in no way can do what an actual runner does on the TM.  Sure they might beat you on the weights but you’re not a powerlifter right?

The Nerds: Okay so I freely put myself in the “nerd” category often and maybe I’m really meaning the socially awkward kids.  They just look so out of place where ever they are in the gym but they attack their workouts with gusto. I’m often afraid that they’ll hurt me. Or themselves too I suppose.

The Overweight Kids: Maybe not the best way to put this group but they’re obviously at the gym to lose weight.  Most of them put in really hard work and you can tell that they don’t want to be there and yet they do.  Very inspiring to watch them try to do something good for themselves.

Faculty / Staff: In general I LOVE when the faculty and staff workout in the gym.  They’re obviously older than the students and are a source of huge motivation for me because they’re working hard to lose weight or stay in shape or get in shape.  I’ve also met quite a few who are training for tris and road races. Definitely what I want to do when I’m their age. In fact there is an older staff member who runs marathons and she was partly responsible for planting the seed of a full marathon after I was done telling her how scared I was about my upcoming first race ever (a half). So cool to be inspired. However the following people can refrain from showing up when I am there:

  • The Walkers.  Yes I know that there is a setting that allows you to go slow.  But please for the love of god unless you’re warming up please get off the damn thing. And I know that walking DOES count as cardio but not at 2.0 mph.  Definitely doesn’t count as your half-hour of vigorous exercise. (Note: I do not have a problem with them when the gym isn’t crowded sayyy before work? But when they go after work (aka peak student hours) that’s when I get annoyed)
  • The Creepers.  Typically men who gawk at the co-eds and attempt to show off for us.  So unnecessary and I would like you to stop undressing me with your eyes. Thank you.
  • The Ex-Athletes.  See “Meatheads” for their younger counterparts but these are people who were once athletic but have taken a long hiatus.  Clearly not athletic anymore but think they still can win State.

So hopefully you enjoyed this 🙂 It’s (mostly) in jest so I hope no one is offended by it (totally not my intent at all!)

Hope your Wednesday is going well. Mine’s been wicked busy although I’ve been sitting around waiting for 45 minutes for my 1400 meeting to show up / call.  No such luck.  Very annoying as I couldn’t really do anything during that time that was easy enough to put away if she showed up. And I rushed through my morning so that I could be on time. Grrrrrrr. So inconsiderate and rude!

Oh well, nothing I can do about it now.  I did have a very nice recovery run this morning, veryyyy slow though.  Even though it appears obvious right now I realized that I can’t compare my Monday recovery runs to Wednesday because on Wednesdays I have my interval session under my belt and DUH my legs are going to be more tired.  I probably should have realized this earlier but oh well.  Now I have a rational explication to soothe my mind when it’s telling me that I’m going wicked slow. Even though I don’t think I could have gone faster even if I had wanted to.

Since this is getting lengthy (and I have class like….veryyyy soon!) I’ll wrap it up by saying check out the giveaway Mel’s having.

Happy Wednesday all!

December 22, 2009

Hitting the Gym

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 15:53

Yes I finally did it. Worked my way back into the gym for some lifting (and of course some borrowing on fitness mags — don’t judge I always return them when I’m done haha).  When we last left our good friends the weights I was on the verge on my running explosion and wanted to use the hour or so I spent lifting hammering out miles.  I also think that part of it was feeling to much like a have-to.  I’ve always been the type of person/runner who made sure that I hit the weights 2-3x a week for a full body session.  I just couldn’t imagine why someone wouldn’t lift. But with my focus shifting towards being a mileage junkie those sessions just felt burdensome.

So I stopped.  Wayyy back in October, about 10 weeks I think.  And obviously my running did explode and climb higher and higher.  Which is fine and exciting and something I’m happy / proud of.  But I don’t want to be that runner who shuns the gym.  I really do think that lifting / strengthening should be a part of every runner’s repertoire.  I won’t go into the benefits here of lifting (I definitely am not an expert) but anecdotally in the past I have always felt really good and strong and powerful when I’ve incorporated lifting on a regular basis.

Part of it is obviously physiological: make the muscles stronger and DUH you shall feel stronger.  Part of it is also psychological for me too: I grew up with a father who actually powerlifted.  Like in meets and stuff.  Seriously.  We even traveled for it too; my childhood trips to Disney coincided with huge meets.  From an early age I was shown that lifting was something to do.  Granted I often ignored the advice spewed by the parentals, but still, regardless of whether or not you want to listen, it sticks.

In any case I was “forced” to lift once I hit my teen years and although I HATED it I did enjoy the fact that there were high school boys there too to train under my dad.  I eventually abandoned actual lifting when I hit high school and did more calisthenic stuff with the volleyball, basketball and track teams.  I’d later incorporate this stuff post-high school much more readily into my routines as you don’t really need anything to do them.

So I’m not sure where all that reminiscing came from.  I guess to show you that I really do believe that everyone should take strength seriously.  And that lifting has always been a part of my lifestyle in some capacity which is why I take it seriously. And that I’m owning up to shunning that advice myself heh. And that I kind of guilted myself into driving to the gym today to get in some strengthening.

I did the Lifting workout here (it’s on the tab on the right for future reference).  And boy do I think I’m going to be sore tomorrow! My abs probably not as I’ve been consistently doing abs throughout the fall.  And maybe not so much my legs as I’m sure all that running has staved off toooo much strength loss.  But my arms felt like jello after the first set. Can’t wait to see what they’re like in the morning.  Oh well I can’t really complain because I really deep down love that feeling.

It felt really good to be back in the gym.  The actual physical gym as well as the workout itself.  It’s a totally different atmosphere in the weights section compared to the cardio, even in my gym where it’s basically one big room with weights in one corner and cardio equipment in another.  It could also be my gym, lots of working class people just doing their thing.  No hoity-toity people, no annoying a-hole college athletes etc.  I love it.

And because I am me I went running afterward.  I even mapped out a run in the town that my gym is in.  Naturally there are no streets signs, or at least signs for the streets I wanted so I ended up running around a little aimlessly.  I mapped it out just now and *drumrollplease* 11.4 miles.  Yeah.  Much more than I thought it was. Or rather much more than I wanted.  Although when all is said and done I’m proud of it.  Full body lifting and double digit run? Bamf.

But I wish that someone would tell my ankle that.  I think all my hubris about 2000+ miles on my shoes caught up to me BOOM in one fell swoop.  On my left ankle, at the base of my shin really, I am having a bit of pain/soreness/twingeing that feels a bit like tendinitis.  I have no idea if it can come on so quickly but that’s the closest thing that I can compare it too.  Maybe shin splints but it’s a bit lower than when I usually feel the onset of that pain. And maybe I’ve just been successfully ignoring the pain as it was building.  But now it’s a bit inflammed and the longer I sit here on the couch all immobile the more it hurts to move it. (And I kind of think I’m dramatizing this.  I’m sure that it’s nothing life or death here, just a bit of the good ole aches and pains)

And the real kicker? Absolutely no ice in the house.  No one refilled the ice cube trays.  And there’s no frozen veggies or anything like that in the freezer to make a makeshift one.  My only option is likely to go out in the snow.  But that requires me to move.  And go out in the cold.  Not going to happen. Boo I hate living with people who don’t think outside of themselves.

Enough writing more reading! I started U is for Undertow last night and got sucked in (like I should have known I would) and stayed up wayyy too late and actually fell asleep with it open.  I’m craving so badly to get back to it so get back to it I shall. 🙂

P.S. Like always keep the questions coming! I totally appreciate all the questions that have already come in but I need more 🙂

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