MarathonMaiden's Blog

September 13, 2011

It’s Looking Like I’m Training.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 12:11

I think I really should invest in internet soon.  Having to use the wireless in the Leasing Office at my apartment complex means having to use it between 09-1700 M-F and that’s prime time for interviews (fingers crossed!) and feeling safest taking the bus to do errands. I have been doing job searching at the library (YAY for getting a library card in my new city) but I feel like since I’m at the libs I need to be *focused*.  Not a bad thing at all.

The plus to all that is that I have a few workouts under my belt to talk about and can make this post decent with running.

Okay so not everything's running. I can be random too 😉

First: I’m sure everyone’s thinking of Boston this time of year with registration opening up yesterday for BQ-20. Not I.

I have the time to register at the moment (my WR time from last December is still good) but I just don’t feel it.  Of course, seeing people’s FB statuses and talking with people who are nervous the spaces will fill later this week makes me want to. Despite needing revenge I think it might be best to tackle it later at some point.  That and I just made some huge life changes in the past month so I’m just trying to get through things day by day.  Thinking ahead to April is unfathomable. Lots of other factors went into the decision and it was hard to put my ego aside. We’ll see if I feel the same way in April. Or even later this week.

Best of luck to all who are trying to get in!

Since my last post, last Wednesday, I’ve done 3 quality workouts.  Training time? Okey Dokey. The first was a hill workout on Wednesday with the CoOp group.  Yes, as I found out, there are hills in Dallas.  You really have to search for them though.  They weren’t hill repeats though: it was a ~1.3 mile loop where you ran up a hill, across a straightaway, down the hill, across another straightaway but in the other direction, up a hill, across a straightaway then down the hill and headed back to the start.

It really wasn’t as complicated as I just wrote it. The workout is called “Crazy 8s” because the loop is done as a figure 8.

thanks google

The plan was to do 4 of ’em but due to major GI troubles (that had plagued me all day that day and I pigheadedly thought that I’d be able to work through it) I only did 3.  The first 2 were really strong and the third was when my intestines were like “ummmmmmmmmmm no”.  I ended up with slightly over 6 miles for the total and annoyed that I tried to push myself through that third one yet also annoyed that I didn’t get through the whole thing.  Silly me.  I mostly felt “bad” that I was “wasting” the cold front.  The temps were in the 80s and it felt awesome.

Which meant that this past weekend should have been a good LR with the group.  Well I evidently partied too hard on Friday night, although I was at the Rangers game so I didn’t think there’d be much room to party.  Obviously the party didn’t end with the game. And slept through the group LR on Saturday.

The alarm was set. I just slept through it.  And the two phone calls one of the group members made to me. Oops.

I woke up in a panic about a half hour into their run and was like “I SWORE I’d be able to make it”. Clearly I was wrong.  I stayed in bed all day that day and made up the run with a friend who wasn’t, for other reasons, able to make Saturday’s run on Sunday (and I hate running long on Sundays).  I think it ended up for the best: it was my fastest run, in general, since Boston at any distances, and it was 15 miles at 9:03 paceSo I’m not quite sure what that tells me.  I was never struggling during the run and was not 100% drained afterward.  Hopefully this run was the mental wake up I needed, I have a half to run this fall!

I also absolutely ADORE the girl (well woman I guess) that I was running with. She hasn’t been running long but she’s trying to learn all she can about running and we talked a lot about running (obviously) and she encouraged me to pick the brains of people that run in the CoOp. I always feel weird asking people for advice like that, mostly because I feel like I’m pumping them with information.  But I’ll try to make myself more annoying during group runs 😉

I’m sure the weather helped for that long run (it was still in the 60s when it started) and that was not the case today, as it was 80* at 0600. Greeeeeeeeeat. Today’s workout was a ladder workout and it was decent, aka better than last time, despite being alone for it.  It was supposed to be with the group but late last night kind of freaked out about having to get up to make a 430am rail. Which wouldn’t be so bad except I have to walk just over a mile to get there.  Even at a jog it wasn’t appealing.  Nor did it seem like a good idea to be in a confined car at 430am. In all honesty nothing probably would have happened but I don’t think I’ll get to do AM track sessions with the group ever. So I got an extra 2 hours of sleep instead. WIN.

So I headed to a local track and did the same ladder they did: 800-1200-1600-1200-800 with 400m recovery time (although I’m not sure if I cheated by doing an 800 recovery after the 1600.  I needed it so I think not).  Let’s just say that I wasn’t too thrilled with the added 1600 in there because last time we did a ladder, two weeks ago, it wasn’t.

I’m still not sure which paces I’m supposed to be hitting here according to the pace chart for the group (which can be seen in the link above from last time and does vary with the distance of the intervals), so I kind of put a range between the “goal marathon time” I ended up running paces for last time (the 4:00 marathon) and the one faster (3:50).  I was in there, on the slower side, but in there.  What was frustrating was, despite feeling like I worked hard, the marathon times I selected are still slower than marathons I’ve run.

  • 800: 3:49 (7:38)
  • 1200: 5:53 (7:50)
  • 1600: 8:02 (8:02)
  • 1200: 5:57 (7:56)
  • 800: 3:52 (7:44)

Looking back at my training log, I was pretty much at, or slightly faster, than my times the last time I did a ladder.  I’m happy with that, especially being able to be slightly faster than the last time (aka I didn’t flounder the way I did last time) on the “down” portion of the ladder after the 1600. Obviously not where I was last fall/winter but about where I was training for Boston this past winter.

All told my legs had that good burn at the end of it.  I feel like I couldv’e gone faster though? I mean, my legs hurt and my mind wanted to quite but I wasn’t satisfied with it.  I’m glad I did it today though as I was debating putting it off another day.

I’m at an impasse though because my long run was so stellar on Sunday and my intervals were meh today.  Intervals suck. I appreciate everyone who’s chimed in about me taking care of myself and I continue to do so.  Although I’m sure that some of you are shaking your heads at my running load. Other than my paces being slower than in the past, I feel fine physically.  Since I’m training now, I’m going to keep a closer eye on things but I don’t have access to affordable health care at the moment so I’ll just continue to do what’s worked for me when I’ve been I’ve feltlike this before.

Since adding in quality workouts, however, my weekly miles have dropped slightly, I’ve gotten back an appetite (aka can fuel better) and my weekly average pace has dropped slightly as well (at least the past two weeks since I’ve considered myself training for something). 

Anyway that’s what I’ve got. Hopefully I won’t go another week or so without posting/commenting/keeping in touch.  Although I am keeping my fingers crossed that I get a call back from a job and having to work makes it difficult to post 😉

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January 23, 2011

Okay So Hills For Real

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — marathonmaiden @ 11:05

I ended up staying over with my friend Friday night (and thus haven’t had lots of time to respond to comments I’m hoping to get caught up later today/tonight! Promise) because I spent my “working from home” day here. I got a good 10.5 mile run in.  Not in the snow like I thought, because the “storm” wasn’t really a storm, so it was a nice quick clip.  Roughly 8:30 pace.  For an easy run that’s really happiness inducing for me!

Later that night we went to a Brown University bball game ( because I have a friend on the team and sadly Brown lost.) and then out to The English Cellar Alehouse where I ate the greatest pre-quality workout meal ever: Fish and chips with beer. Followed by fried oreos for dessert.  WTF? hahah

thanks google. yet again.

Surprisingly, despite not having fried foods for years, this choice was quite yummy. Slightly worrysome because I was wondering how my tummy would respond.  I’m happy to say that even though I REALLY didn’t want to mentally go running Saturday, the fried food didn’t affect me in a bad way.  I’m not quite sure if I can give credit to it for having a decent run but I completed the dreaded….HILLS

The workout looked something like this.  And was with my friend.  Love running with others.

  • Warm up / Easy miles (~8 miles worth)
  • Hills X 4.  The way the hill portion was run is that there are two parallel hills, one really steep but shorter (I call it “A” hill) and the other is slightly less steep but longer (I call it “W” hill).  I guess the average distance between the two is .2 miles and the average incline was 11%.  I alternated each hill to get to the four repeats. I didn’t time the actual hills but they went something like this:
  1. (W) Holy F#$%.  I refuse to do another.  Well maybe try one more.  The first of anything sucks.
  2. ( A) Okay not sooooo bad. I think I like this hill better
  3. (A) Ugh. Maybe it was so bad.  The buuuuuuuuuuuuuurn. Let’s go for lucky number 4 though
  4. (W) Suckage.  But at least I made it to the top with hard effort and didn’t give up!
  • Warm down

thanks google. yet again.

 

Obviously the hills were really tough and hard. I didn’t ever feel like I was running at a fast speed but I definitely felt the burn in my glues and hammys and quads.  Granted this is the 12(ish)% grade hill but I feel like a pansy for A) wanting to quit after 1 and B) only doing 4.

I ran the warm down and bitched and moaned to my friend that I “effing hate hills”.  But then I realized that hills are inherently hard and doing this workout before Boston training officially starts (TOMORROW! EEEEEP!) is good because now I know that hills are something I’ll need to focus on.  Particularly the W hill.  I know that I love charging up hills, making A hill nicer to me.  Boston, if I remember correctly, has a mix of both. So I’ll need to keep doing these hill loops and not shy away from the W hill. It’ll be hard facing a hill that I know is nastier to me when there’s a nicer one a few meters over but I’ll need to.

So, for once I’m writing a quick post, because now I’m taking a lazy Sunday, staying in my pjs and watching more Pushing Daisies with my friend.  I’ll likely get a run in but it won’t be until later this afternoon as it is currently 16* outside and I’m hoping it gets warmer by 1400 or so.  Fingers crossed.

November 11, 2010

Well I Think I’ve Found A Workout I Hate More Than Tempos

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:28

Sorry Jess but the 2 X 3 miler is just plain awful.  That said, because I hate it so much, it must be doing something good for me.

I think I don’t like it because there’s the recovery time in the middle.  By the time I’m done with mile 3 of the first repeat I’m getting into a groove.  Then BAM the recovery distance (and I took a 1 mile one but the same holds true for ANY recovery distance) hits my legs like a ton of bricks and my legs — or maybe it’s my brain — just don’t want to rev it up.  It’s probably moreso my mind as you’ll see in the numbers that I really didn’t crash and burn. Sometimes during the workout I felt like this:

Thanks google images

But the wheels never truly came off.

The workout ended up being 2 X 3.15 miles.  If you remember from the last time I did this workout (over Halloween weekend I think) I had miscalculated the distance and it was short by .05 miles.  I wasn’t going to let that happen again so I mapped out a route that would get me .05 miles over 😉

I really didn’ t have any goal time in mind for these.  I ran them too fast two weeks ago so I figured that around 7:00 would be good? So after a quick (eeeeeeeeer not in time but distance) warm up I jumped right into it (time of lap is first and pace in red)

  1. 8:02 ( 7:39 ) Okay so this one is deceiving because, not only did I not realize that there was a 7%, .2 mile HILL in about 3/4 through the lap that, um, almost stopped me in my tracks, I overshot the side street I was going to take.  So I’m pretty sure that I ran more that 1.05 miles by a tenth or so.
  2. 7:33 ( 7:11 ) Better even though that hill was killer
  3. 7:27 ( 7:05 ) Didn’t feel terribly fast and my legs weren’t obscenely tired.  I even charged up the hill. Well as best I could.

1 mile recovery: 8:44.  This time went by WAY too fast despite it feeling slow.  I avoided the hill for obvious reasons.

  1. 7:35 ( 7:13 ) Not too shabby considering it felt like it took me forever to get going again
  2. 7:40 ( 7:18) I definitely got cocky on this one and totally didn’t push myself.  I know it. Still sub-7 though.
  3. 7:26 ( 7:04 ) Final push? Interesting how the last lap of each repeat is the fastest. I suppose that says a lot about my endurance and capacity for long distances.

I took a very long warm down after that.  I’ve been taking shorter warmups and longer downs lately and I’m enjoying it.  I’m always chomping at the bit to just GO into the workout and I like having time to reflect on the warmdown.

Anyway…the long and short of this workout is that I can’t really be too disappointed.  Yes, NONE of the repeats were in the tempo interval zone (according to McMillian: 6:53-7:01) BUT that hill really just was like running into a brick wall.  My form suffered and I’m fairly certain that my pace suffered too.  That’s not to say that if I was on a flatter loop that I’d have made this workout hare like but given the terrain (and the wind along the canal) I’m going to have to force myself to be happy with it.

After the workout I talked to one of the peeps who originally suggested this workout and he said (after my complaining)

I wish that I could say that I feel sorry about that workout sucking, but I don’t, LOL! I wouldn’t be recommending or suggesting it if I questioned your ability to handle it. That workout is supposed to suck, just like [a mutual friend] has told me that he hates 800 meter repeats. And there’s no reason for you to try to run them faster, you should be aiming for HMP. 6-7 miles @ HMP is going to be tough, there’s no denying or avoiding it. NACN

Also: as much as that killer hill surprised me I’m actually really glad that it was there. I had been debating between hill repeats and intervals for today’s run and this was a good way, even if unplanned, to get both in.  I have no idea what the course is going to be like at WR so it’s a good thing I have at least 6 hard and fast hills under my belt.

So all in all, while the times in and of themselves do not indicate where I want my fitness level to be (at least to me at the moment) it was good and given the challenging nature of the route/loop it is EXACTLY where I think my fitness level should be, no?

I also did Week 1 Day 2 (W1D2) of both the pushup and situp challenges before heading out:

Pushups: 10, 12, 8, 8, max (14)

Situps: 15, 18, 15, 15, max (20)

Finally, but probably the most important part of this post: for those who have served, are serving or will serve:

September 29, 2010

Scared Screaming Person

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

Yet another search term that someone used to find me. Holler? Hahah 

Apparently I lied and that hill workout I did on Tuesday? Yeah, Hill 1 is actually 26% grade! I was correct in saying that Hill 2 is 15% though.  Oops. No wonder the workout hurt so badly! Like I said in my edit yesterday, the funny thing is that the second hill is the one that hurt the most! 

Also a note on hills: I found out yesterday that a 100% grade hill is a 45* angle (not the straight up like I would intuitively think).  Thinking about it I’ve decided that the math (aka trigonometry) does, in fact, work out that way.  But I never would have intuitively realized it and this means that my 26% grade hill is actually twice as steep as I would have thought a 26% grade hill to be. And I thought it was pretty darn steep! 😛 If any of that made sense that’d be awesome because it’s hard to wrap my head about it hahah. 

A couple of people asked me how to calculate percent grade. So I’ll nerd out a bit 🙂  It’s trig and the formula for percent grade is your slope formula: rise over run 

goooooooooooooogle images (as are all images in this post)

Of course the “run” part of the equation is not the exact portion you are running (the hypotenuse is) and the more complicated equation becomes if you don’t know the “run”.  So you can use the actual distance traveled (the hypotenuse) with the equation (and feel free to use a calculator!): 

100*tan[arcsin(rise/distance you run)] 

Enjoy that math lesson? Don’t lie because of course you did. 

And I bet you’ll also enjoy the fact that my body is feeling the workout today as well.  At least I am. Sure it made the actual run today total suckage but that’s okay.  Surprisingly my legs have reacted pretty well to being hammered and beaten on those hills.  But I’m not feeling crippled.  It’s more of a tightness and lead feeling rather than OUCH. 

Doesn’t change the end result that I felt like I was running through molasses this morning. 

The Great Molasses Flood of Boston. No joke.

In all fairness I don’t think it was entirely my legs’ fault.  It was 69* and 93% humidity. 

And this was at 0500. Which means is was PITCH BLACK the entire run.  Well maybe by the end there was pre-dawn light but ugh. I know most of you know what I’m talking about. 

So I’m sure my legs LOVED that as well.  Especially since I couldn’t see the path I was running on.  The areas that are tree covered made me really unsure of where I was stepping.  Luckily I came out unscathed 🙂 

I can go either way with loving or hating 0500 and so can my runs.  Either  I just GO without thinking or my legs don’t want to wake up.  Secretly I think it’s more love with that wake up because, oddly enough, I feel like a real adult.  Like I have to get up this early because I have to be at work on time. 

But my legs did feel sloooooooooooooooow.  In fact I checked my watch at a place where I knew how far I’d run, saw the time and then didn’t look at my watch for the rest of the run.  Because it was THAT slow.  I’d have loved to have turned off the watch completely but, hey, at the end of the day I’m a numbers junkie and my log book and stats would not have liked that. Suffice it to say I haven’t yet looked at the overall time because I want it to sting less if I look at it later! 

I can say that it was between 6 and 7 miles.  Maybe close to 8 if I’m being overly pessimistic right now on the pace.  I doubt it though.  I’d say a solid 6.5.  Once I saw how slow I was and knew that I wasn’t going to care about pace (at least in terms of seeing the time during the run) I kind of wandered a bit on my route. 

Very unlike me. 

A recovery run itself isn’t really like me either.  If you remember, after both my recent half and 5, none of the runs were slow or short enough to be classified as recovery.  Damn you hills 😉

I’ll wrap up there.  It’s been a long day at work already.  I’ve been in meetings from 0800 until abut 1330.  So the time has flown by but I’ve gotten nothing accomplished that I wanted to.  So what am I doing? Finishing a post then heading to DD.  Because it’s a coffee day! And I’ll be walking down gang street to do so. Wish me luck! 

September 28, 2010

You Can’t Make Me

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 14:02

Do speed work that is. At least out and out speed work.

Because today I tackled the HILLS.

 

I wasn’t sure I wanted to do this.  Hell I’m NEVER sure I want to do this.  Hills are like reverse frenemies.  They are nasty to you outright but behind your back they help you become a better runner.

I’m glad you guys don’t really have a problem with me complaining so much about the weather — or at least you guys were too polite to do so.  Because I suppose I’m going to do it again. When I last left you guys the weather was cool and misty.  This morning it was 71* with a humidity of 91%.  I guess  I can’t really complain because late afternoon yesterday the humidity was 97%. Hello summer? WTF New England?!

I also got to sleep in (AGAIN) today.  My body woke me at 0715 but I laid there until the alarm was supposed to go off 45 minutes later.  In hindsight it might have been a mistake because adding the hill repeats, and the subsequent recovery jogs, into the route caused me to run slightly late for work this morning.  But everything miraculously worked out and I got here on time.  And the repeats let me feel good.

It didn’t start out that way.  I woke up and, as the title of the post suggests, I did NOT want to do anything other than an easy run.  It’s easy.  Duh.  I think one of the best things I incorporate into my running is this blog.  I mean, I had SAID that over the weekend I was going to do this workout.  And then I said it again yesterday.  At some point I’ve got to nut up or shut up

How I tackled these hills hahah

And so I did.  The first few warm up miles were NOT pretty.  My legs felt DEAD and TIRED and NOT MOVING. But by this time I knew that I was doing hills so I told myself that by the time I got to the two hills I wanted to do that my legs would feel better.

LIES.  But it got me to stop at the hills rather than just continue on my way.

  • ~40 minute warm up
  • 4 X Hill 1: ~.1 miles @ 12% [Edit: I lied, this hill is really 26%. Eep. the funny thing is that this one hurt less than the other one!] 
  • 4 X Hill 2:  ~.1 miles @ 15%
  • ~ 55 minutes warm down
  • Total hillage: 8 repeats for ~1.5 miles
  • Total miles & pace: 12 miles @ 9:05

Ouch.  I was expecting a faster time than that.  But the slow start and the killer hills (and granny jog — aka barely moving — recovery) and then slow to get my legs moving after the hills (plus I realized that I still had to go up more hills to get back to my apartment!) all add up to a SLOW overall pace. I’m not too upset by it.  Obviously I cringed a bit when calculating it out but I’m happy with getting those hills in. It was a very challenging workout for me.

These guys were TOUGH.  My legs BURNED after the first one. My butt and hips are going to be very VERY sore tomorrow.  I could feel them being sore during the workout.  And I could feel them sore during the runn granny shuffle afterward.  Heck I can feel them being sore right now as I type this at clinic.

That said, looking back on the workout I’d have to classify these guys as just hill repeats.  Not hills sprints.  Of course my legs were tired and hurt like the dickens by the end but I never felt like I was going to hurl.  I do know that is what I always want out of racing but I also think a good hard session of hills or intervals should give you a slight feeling of vomit-ness. 

But again, I’m not disappointed with this workout.  My heart was pounding in my chest and I wanted to stop.  But I didn’t. I know that the next step in my running scheme is to get from repeats to sprints.  But considering that I haven’ t done a hills workout since Boston training (and those were on TMs because of the lack of hills in my area) this one was a doozy.

Which suits me just fine 8)

September 24, 2010

In England An Elephant Stuck In Molasses

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 15:51

Another weird search term someone used to find me.  Seriously? At least I’m not really offended by it like I kind of was with “Drunk Girl Passed Out On Pavement” 😛

Take care of yourself. Eat well, rest, train hard and smart, make time to think and breathe. Be intentional with your time.

Kristin Armstrong, Author and runner

That was my runnersworld quote for…yesterday? It was earlier this week for sure. It definitely came at a good time because this is how I was originally going to start my post:

Ugh.

Because that’s how I’ve been feeling the past few morning.  I don’t know if it’s allergies or lack of sleep or the changing of the seasons (HELLO FALL) but man I have been dragging lately.  And it’s not just in mental fogginess.  My body feels like it’s moving through quicksand.   It isn’t, of course, but I feel gravity’s pull.  To keep me in bed longer, to keep my butt glued to my desk chair at work etc.  I need to WAKE UP.

More coffee?

Which is funny because (and I know I’ve mentioned this is previous posts) I’ve been sleeping pretty soundly.  Like I am out cold within .00000000001 seconds of my head hitting the pillow.

I don’t have much exciting to report.  I think that the honeymoon phase of “real life” is over and I’m stuck with the reality that I am, despite me not wanting to be, an adult.  I’ve been in my new place for about 6 weeks and the newness has worn off.  I’ve already paid a round of bills, rent, parking and it’s no longer playing house or playing adult but being an adult.  At least with the whole responsibilities thing.

I am still loving my job and, while I worked MORE hours this week than last, it didn’t feel that way.  I guess I wasn’t working as many hours each day which can make a huge difference.  I cut hours earlier in the week because: guess what I got to do today? Or rather guess what happened at the clinic today that I had to go to?

PRESS CONFERENCE.  With the United States Senator.  Because he was really impressed with the clinic at some point earlier this year or last year and raised close to $100,000 for us.  Woot.  Normally, if I go into work at all on Fridays, I get to have a dress down day.  Because it’s just staff.  But today I got to look like this.

It's like the first day of school photo shoot!

And I’m trying to do the whole “hunch over haute-couture” model thing. And being a goof-ball instead! My roomie took this picture and she was being so serious about being the photographer! I called her on it (because she wanted to take sooooooo many shots and angles) and she said “Well if it’s going on your blog…” haha

Which really isn’t that different than what I normally wear on clinic nights (gotta look nice for those doctors 😉 ) but is totally different than all Fridays and more dressy than my regular office days.  Sadly I did not get a picture with the Senator because I am a lowly VISTA hahah!

The blah feeling and, well I was going to say quicksand but I will instead say molasses in light of the title of the post, feeling has sort of extended into my running.  I don’t think it helps when the weather is really muggy out.  Like I said yesterday: seriously New England? I don’t want humidity anymore! It’s fall.  I think it was 63* out at 0600, which is fine, but the humidity was 91%.  And at some points during the run I literally felt like I was running in water.  It wasn’t raining but the water on my face definitely wasn’t sweat.  At least not all of it hahah.

From Google

Again, despite not really digging the weather or feeling like my runs have been great in-run, the running is good.  I’m kind of kicking myself, thought, for not taking recovery form the 5k more seriously as my quads still are a bit sore.  I think I let my ego get the best of me and I really came back too fast/intense after the race.

Not that it’s hindered me at all.  The past few runs have all been decently distanced (8-10) and all run within 8:30-8:40 pace.  Which has morphed into my new easy pace.  Exciting for sure. True to my usual self I start out the first route just under 9 pace and end the last route just over 8 pace.  Progression.  I just wish I could *feel* that progression on my runs.

For example today’s run:

  • 1st loop: 4.1 miles @ 8:54
  • 2nd loop: 4.1 miles @ 8:39
  • 3rd loop: 2.3 miles @ 8:12
  • Total: 10.5 miles @ 8:38

With the exception of maybe the very first mile, every mile felt the same!  And clearly the first loop was much slower than the last one.  What gives? I’m thinking of going back to that 12% grade hill I showed a few weeks ago and doing some repeats tomorrow morning.  I need something to, like I said earlier, WAKE ME UP.  Not that being in an easy flow is a bad thing but I’m itching to do some focused running.

Hope y’all have great Friday nights! I’m debating skipping out on a Toga Party I’ve been invited too.  It sounds like fun and the people who are throwing it are awesome butttt I’m going into Boston tomorrow night and Lord knows that I could use BOTH nights to catch up on sleep.  We’ll see what I end up doing.  Maybe two nights out will snap me out of the UGH-ness.

Check out the giveaway from Mel

August 24, 2010

Rain and Hills. Hills and Rain. And Repeat.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 10:01

I started this post — and finished it — Monday afternoon but I forgot to post it! Oops. So yet again my apologizes for any time discrepancies.  I did add an addendum at the end for today though 🙂

I have (had?) been so lucky this summer with regards to rainfall.  I was in control of scheduling my own time and I still worked at the gym so I had a free membership if I ever felt the need to hit up the TM in inclement weather.

I guess now that I’m a real adult I don’t have that luxury anymore.  I know I gushed about how nice the weather had been for my Saturday long run but I guess I jinxed myself as Sunday it POURED.  I woke up after having been out on the town to the sounds of heavy rain.  Ugh. Normally since it was a Sunday and I didn’t have to be anywhere I would have just rolled over and done my run later in the day.

But I checked the weather (because I’m a spoiled brat and can do it from my phone without having to move at all) and it was suppose to clear up — maybe — late in the day.  But until then: heavy rain and possible thunderstorms.

I wish that it had been as gentle and pleasant looking out as this!

I also had a TON of errands to run as well as work on my application.  So I rolled out of bed at 0830 and, because I’ve turned into a sloth as of late, I logged onto my computer to map out a road run.  I’ve decided that the weekends are going to be exploring runs and weekdays will continue to be my familiar path.

Now I’m always hesitant to run routes that I’ve mapped and haven’t yet driven or scoped out.  You never know if the roads actually still exist (there definitely have been routes that I’ve gone out to do only to discover that it’s simply not there anymore!) or what the conditions of the road are or if it’s really traffic-y (I remember once I mapped out a route that ended up taking me on the highway.  No I didn’t actually run on the highway but it was scary to be like…ummm this is it?).

And while I’m really good with directions getting lost is a very real and distinct possibility.  Again, I remember a 14 miler that I planned out and then missed a turn making the route end up being a little over 18. Normally I’d bring a something with directions on it because it was pouring out bringing any type of paper with the route would get ripped up.  I still brought it but it was essentially useless.  But peace of mind and all that.

Okay enough set-up?  You guys should know by now how I like to ramble 🙂

Like I said it was really heavy rain when I started. The rain would let up and then pour off and on during the course of the whole run but once I was thoroughly soaked (which was about .000001 seconds into it) the rain didn’t really matter anymore.  Plus once your shoes are soaked and feet are wet there really isn’t any more discomfort you can get really. It was a bit annoying to have my clothes matted to me but because I live in a community that has some values, I kept my clothes on.

I even started to enjoy the run a bit.  Rain will always take getting used to. But like there comes that point where you are too wet to care.  And that’s when puddle jumping comes in.  And let me tell you: you will feel like a kid again.  Quite possibly one of the greatest feelings ever. That and muddy runs

Look at the sheer joy on their faces!

One of the not so greatest feelings ever? Running massive hills when you aren’t used to them.

OMFG hills. Like 90* incline hills.

Coutesy of GoogleImages

I know that picture is an exaggeration but just slightly.  I really would wager that, and I don’t really know anything about percent grades for hills, it was at least 60* to the horizontal. And let’s just say that there were more than one that I had to do.  I’d estimate that over the whole 9.2 miles about 5 of them were hills.  And that’s being conservative.

Hopefully I find the $$ to register for Boston whenever it opens up because these hills in my area are ri-donk-u-lous. Totally made my plans for a recovery run go wayyy out the window because there was no way a hilly mountainous 9.2 miles qualifies as recovery.  And they were done at an 8:40ish pace which for the terrain was flying!

I also was able to run by the river and explore a bit of the local park area.  Which was nice.  I’m sure it would have been nicer if there hadn’t been so much rain.

— Side note — where are all the hardcore runners in my area?! Sundays typically are long run days right? I think I saw TWO other runners out.  And it was in the early-ish morning too!

The rain totally ruined the whole sightseeing experience because I do live in a quaint little old city.  Some of the streets/sidewalks are bricks and all that jazz.

Something else to note: that ankle/shin/calf soreness I talked about last time? Totally cleared up after running on the roads for two days.  So my legs need to HTFU and get used to the pathway that will likely be my weekday runs!

It was also expected to downpour today/this morning (Monday) but the time I wanted to get out for my run (I left my apartment at 0545) I must have caught a break in the storm because it wasn’t raining.  The rain started up during the last mile or so of my good old standby route (gosh it feels good to be able to say I have a standby route!) but even then it was NOTHING like Sunday.  And again I didn’t see many runners out and about.

Which clearly and totally made me feel hardcore.  That and I was passing the peeps who were out left and right.  That felt damn good.  My overall pace was still iffy: my legs are still getting used to this whole running  earlier than I’m used to thing.  I still managed to eek out those 8.2 miles in about an 8:35 pace.

I had wanted to make these miles the recovery ones I should have done yesterday…and I guess I kind of did? The 8:30-8:45 pace range has settled into my typical easy pace and the path I’m running on now is really flat.  So long run, hills, recovery run? Sounds like someone needs to commit to a race sometime soon!

I’m also apparently an idiot and cannot read a schedule so my 0530 wake up call was for nothing.  I guess there are clinic hours this Monday (the schedule is definitely weird because only the fourth Monday of each month has clinic rather than every Monday) so I didn’t have to go in until 1100.  Bummer.  But I got to get some errands and to-do stuff done.  So it’s not terrible.  Still annoying though! Especially since I tend to not be able to make up sleeping hours elsewhere (ie through naps or oversleeping other days).

But enough! Hope everyone is having a great start to their week.  I think I am (I’m writing this post a few hours before it’ll go up so I can’t say with 100% accuracy haha) as I’m only in week two of my new “real” life and things are still exciting.  I’m sure it’ll be a stressful day too as the girl I’ve replaced is 100% gone so it’s 100% me today but I’m feeling confident that I’ll figure my way out 🙂

P.S. & Totally Random: As I sit here typing this (Monday morning before work) I am drinking a glass of milk out of a bud light glass.  Classy, no?

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Addendum: So I guess I forgot to post the above yesterday? Well I won’t write too much more but I figured I’d take advantage and write about my post on Tuesday morning.  This morning I actually knew what time I have to be at work and allowed myself t sleep in until 0745! Woot! My alarm was set for 0800 but I hate just laying in bed when I *know* I have to get up.

Especially, and I really don’t know what’s gotten into my brain lately as these tend to be REALLY rare occurrences, but I had another “wake up with a smile” dream.I can’t for the life of me remember what it was about but apparently it was good?

But get up I did.  And I ran my usual.  I’m starting to think that on Tuesday / Thursday (when I don’t have to go into clinic until noon or so) I might keep exploring the city as I tend to leave my apartment around 0800.  And that time feels safer than 0530.  Granted one must always be alert when running but there are more people and traffic out later so veering off the path might be nice.

Nothing too stellar about the run.  It was neither a slow nor fast 8.2.  Around an 8:43 pace. Okay so not “around” because I just calculated that 🙂

I got passed by some runners and passed others.  The rain and cool temps continued into today (after my run on Monday it poured all day) so it was quite humid out.  And by rain I mean mist.  So it wasn’t too bad. My brain wasn’t really into the run so it passed quickly despite the first two miles going so slowly.  Somewhere between miles 2 and 3 my legs found a rhythm and I went into autopilot.

And while my legs weren’t feeling the freshest ever I did manage to negative split the run by 1 minute and 1 second. Awesomeness.

Now I sit here doing some (application) work before going into (real) work.  And, like yesterday, I’m drinking my milk from a bud light glass.  Guess I’m starting a tradition here — oh the things you can do without batting an eye as a 23 year old haha 🙂

May 12, 2010

Training For Boston 2010: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

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

A bunch of you have asked for my thoughts on how my training cycle went, what I learned etc.  And I figured that it would be a good thing for me to do. Even if no one else cares anymore or finds this post really boring   😉

It’s been XX days (and since I’m writing this over several days I don’t really know how many days it will have been when you read this but y’all are smart and can figure it out ha) post-Boston so the emotional high and euphoria has waned and I can be more analytical than if you asked me on the 20th of April what my thoughts were.

And be warned, I wasn’t quite sure how to organize my thoughts when I originally sat down to write this so they might jump around a bit. And because most of the questions I got were: what did you learn / what would you do differently there might be a slight emphasis on the negative/bad stuff.  Rest assured that I do consider this training cycle to be a success and I’m way happy with it.  Also, in true MM form it’s long.

The Good: I PR’d and re-BQ’d. Pain free too.  If that’s not good then I don’t know what is 😛

The Bad: Absolutely terrible shin splints that threatened to derail me. And there was a lot of doubt that creeped in on top of the physical woes.

The Ugly:aka what I would change. In general, though, everything that went “bad” I wouldn’t change.  I’m a very inexperienced marathoner / racer in general so no matter what the mistake I made was I needed it.  Cliche to say that but whatever, it’s how life is.  Of course I would have loved everything to fall under the good category but that would be anti-climatic, no?

But here’s a more detailed breakdown…

The training plan:

  • The good: Very aggressive and that was good for me.  After training for my first marathon in early 2009 I felt like I hadn’t reached my full potential.  It was pretty conservative and I wanted something that would really challenge me.  Lots of speedwork was the perfect solution for that. I absolutely loved how much speedwork there was in the plan I picked.  It made me feel…well to state the obvious, fast.
  • The bad: Well I guess the bad thing is that I didn’t follow it.  As in I added lots more miles.  Like way more.  I think the peak my plan had was 75 miles and I definitely hit 112 at one point during Monster Month.  There also weren’t any places to insert hills or lifting so I had to try and figure out where to place that which likely led to more intense sessions than necessary.
  • The ugly: Nothing inherently ugly about the plan except that I was overzealous about getting in the miles — and then some.  This lead to a much more extended taper (remember the sports med doc who said I should start the taper 5 weeks out to counter the damage?) and I’m still feeling the effects of being over-trained.  I probably could have added some XT in there because I trained (pretty much) exclusively with running

Specifics with the training plan:

1. Pacing:

  • The good: In general, pacing was good.  I was slightly faster than McMillian paces for all workouts but I was able to listen to my body for recovery runs which was good and an improvement.  My interval paces were always faster than called for on the plan (oops to following that sucker) but I was able to nail those workouts.  My LR pace was slightly all over the place but it was always within :45 – :75 of GMP (which at the time, and still is, 8:00) and thus was ~60-90 seconds slower than my actual race pace at Boston. Which, according to numerous sources and articles, is where it should have been.
  • The bad: I still cannot for the life of me hit tempos.  It’s so hard and maybe it was a cause of all the mental stuff going on that I get into later but nailing a tempo still eludes me.  Curses.  Another bad thing was how all over the place my paces were for the LR.  Some weeks it was sub-9, some weeks it was 9:30.  And I never felt as though my LRs were improving.  By the end of the cycle I definitely didn’t have my usual kick to the finish.

2. Lifting:

  • The good: I lifted 3x a week for the first 13 weeks of the plan.  Exactly what I wanted to do. For Providence (in May 2009) I lifted 2x a week and cut it out way early.
  • The bad: I did the same routine each session.  So by the end of the cycle I probably wasn’t deriving as much benefit as I could have been.

3. Hills:

  • The good: I was able to incorporate hills into my routine and even got to run the Comm Ave hill once during training.  This allowed me to BEAST Newton.  I never noticed the first of the hills (only after a guy running next to me said 1 down 3 to go) and the rest of them really weren’t bad.  Negative splits anyone? And I ran them at the end of my speedwork sessions semi-mimicking the fact that the hills come so late in the race.
  • The bad: With the exception of going on Comm Ave once (and back in January too) all my hills were on the TM and I couldn’t prep myself for the downhills; let’s be honest here: everyone talks about the Newton Hills but the race is net downhill.  And while I still ran a strong race, with negative splits indicating the Newton Hills didn’t break me, my quads did take a beating.  Unfortunately as much as I would like to go back and change this, in reality I wouldn’t be able to if I could because my area is pancake flat and travel was not an option.

Other stuff…

1. Nutrition

  • The good: Well I ate really healthy and made sure that I was getting a wide variety of nutrients by eating variety in each individual meal as well as meal -to- meal.  I even upped my salt intake so that I could retain more water to push through those tough workouts as well as the antibiotics I was on over the Easter break.
  • The bad: I ended up losing a bit of weight which tells me that I wasn’t eating enough overall.  I’m a pretty small person girth wise so I think that if I had been able to keep on that weight then maybe I would have been able to run faster / harder. (Note: This is why I haven’t yet — and likely won’t ever– do another fueling post, I’m trying to figure things out for myself and see what works.  Again: inexperience here!) Another thing that was BAD was my lack of water intake.  Sure, overall I drink a lot of fluids but the daily breakdown looks like this: ~32oz milk, ~20 oz diet coke, ~16 oz ice tea, ~20 oz water.  So out of 88oz liquids consumed only 22% is water. Obviously an area where I can improve drastically.
  • The ugly: Save for one long run I didn’t take in fuel during the long runs.  And I never took in any water or fluid (that goes for marathon day too although I did eat two mini-luna bars).  I don’t really know why this happened as during the my first marathon cycle in 2009 I readily ate during runs (never drinking things though).  This, in conjunction with overtraining, probably led to some of those lethargic runs toward the end of the cycle.  Hard to tell which was the larger source but they both played a role I’m sure.

2. Sleep

  • The good: Ummmmm…I did make it a point to sleep A LOT the week before race day but it probably was just a drop in the bucket at that point because…
  • The bad: Well I’m a college student.  Suffice it to say that I probably sleep a lot more than the average college student and I only got about 6 hours a night.  Not nearly enough when logging mega miles.  Part of it was work: those assignments certainly aren’t asexual! Part of it was social: It’s senior year and I want to see my friends. Part of it was likely overtraining.  But I wouldn’t change anything here even though sleep deprivation sucks hardcore.

3. GI Issues

  • The good: I didn’t have to stop to go the bathroom during the race!
  • The bad: It was awful to have bladder issues during my LRs.  Absolutely awful. Not really quite sure how to fix it though.  I tried a number of things and nothing worked.  Maybe it was mostly mental.  Wicked frustrating as I *never* had this problem training for Providence 2009.

4. Psychological / Mental stuff

  • The good: I was mentally prepped to go into this race because I was expecting it to be a disaster with everything bad that happened.  Aka: I was expecting to just enjoy the race so it took the pressure off. I think what helped me the most gut out the hard miles at the end of the race was that I was doing so much at the time.
  • The bad:I was mentally very tired by the end of the training cycle: finishing up Senior year, training while juggling all my classes, doing job searches, setting up things so I can apply to med schools, being social.  And then on top of that training a billion miles a week.  That’s just the “regular stuff”.  Throw in the toe issue that happened on Easter as well as the shin splints which really put a lot of doubt into my mind and it’s a wonder I made it to the starting line not in a straight jacket. There really isn’t, however, a way to reduce all that mental stress.  It’s just my life.

Well there you have it.  Again, everything went as well as it could.  Yes I could have done lots of stuff differently to produce a “better” race but it went down how it went down. I’m sure I could write more on the topic buttttt this sucker is long enough as it is.

P.S. The Boston Jacket is *still* being rocked 😀

March 30, 2010

Intervals? Check. Running? Nope.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 19:20

Jeez Louise! Thanks so much everyone for your support in that tough race Sunday.  If you missed it (and trust me it wasn’t anything I want to relive ha) you can find the Eastern States 20 Miler race report here.  It was amazing to read all your kind words about the ordeal that was every single mile of that course. I feel so loved and supported by all of you 🙂

The rest of Sunday included tutoring statistics, which was an ordeal as I was trying to keep my throbbing leg elevated and yet trying to help a bunch of kids around a table.  Sunday did not include a good night of sleeping.  I think that the physical stress of the race + all the emotional stuff really was interfering with my sleep as I slept terribly.  I woke up at 00:56, 1:33, 03:22 and finally 05:31.  I just laid in bed for a half hour and then got up to study for my exam Monday morning blah.

That night, and every night for that matter, I’ve also been plagued with nosebleeds.  Like everytime I blow my nose (because allergies make me congested) I blow the clot and BAM massive nosebleed. If anyone has a good trick to get this to stop I’d be you biggest fan. For real.

Anyway.  Monday morning came and I don’t think I could have run a step if I tried.  It wasn’t that my muscles were sore.  I’ve never actually been really sore after a long run ever *knockonwood* but rather my tendons and ligaments and skin were sore.  I don’t really know the best way to explain it but it just felt that my leg was so being stretched out, likely from the inflammation.  So running? Yeah, out of the question. I honestly don’t think I could have run if I had tried.

I did some stretching throughout the day and some corework because I had been slacking on that the past few days and I didn’t really notice that the rest day was helping me.  I’m not exactly an instant gratification gal, I can wait forever for things.  But with my running and injury (and Lacey considers shin splints an injury even though I don’t so that’s where the terminology comes from) I do want instant results. I want my body to say “oh you skipped your 0700 run so by 0800 you’ll be okay”.  Ummm I know in my brain that’s not how it works but still.

I wore my compression socks to bed (which I have been since FOREVER) and in the morning I wasn’t as stiff and I could WALK.  Yes, walking was difficult on Monday. Just as I felt every step in the race on Sunday I could feel every step I walked on Monday.  So I was very happy. I even entertained the thought of ditching my arc trainer plans in favor of running.

I quickly nixed that.  See? I’m not entirely dumb.  Plus I had already written out my XT workout for the day and there’s something AWESOME about executing what’s written down on paper.

But today is Tuesday. So it wasn’t just a plug and chug XT session.  I had intervals to do on the plan so intervals were going to be carried out.  Come hell or high water (and with all the rain and flooding high water might just in fact be a possibility ha).

I ended up on the arc trainer (blahhhhh) and used the “hill intervals” program.  I figured that a typical interval running session takes about 2 hours so I did the following:

  • 30 minutes, manual, resistance = 25 (out of 100)
  • 60 minutes, hill interval, level = 5 (out of 10)
  • 30 minutes, manual, resistance = 30 (out of 100)

All in all I guess it was an okay session.  I periodically checked my HR during the whole two hours and it was consistently between 140 and 160, which if you believe the whole Max HR = 220-age then I was around 70-80% of my max. I tried to keep the “strides/minute” around 140-150 because I think I read somewhere that’s a good place to have them.  The numbers really don’t mean much to me.

But arc trainer (or bike or elliptical) miles =/= running miles so I’m not quite sure how this workout fits in.  Yes it was a way for me to keep active today but as far as *training* goes, I’m not quite sure it qualifies. Also, on the arc trainer (not so much the elliptical though) it takes me FOREVER to go a mile.  I don’t know if I’m working the machine right or not butttt in 2 hours I only went about 6.5 miles (the same time running would yield me AT LEAST 12-14 depending on type of run and the same time on the elliptical gets me about 13 or so).  I think it’s the machine and the way it’s designed.  I mean, I guess it terms of fitness the only important thing is that my HR was up, right?

Interestingly I’ve had a toenail that’s been on the verge of falling off for awhile now.  It started with a blister that formed around the whole toenail so it’s been prime to pop off.  I’ve run countless times on it: intervals, tempos, LRs and standard recovery stuff.  And yet it still was hanging on.  Literally by a shard of skin (gross I know).  Wouldn’t you know that the way the arc trainer grips my shoes that the damn thing fell off today? It’s my first missing toenail ever.  And it’s from XT-ing.  Go figure haha.

Also interesting? The calorie count readout on the machine.  Now I’m not by any means obsessed with calories or anything like that but I found it interesting that the readout said I burned 1600 calories over those 2 hours. It was a machine where you get to input your weight so it’s not skewing it thinking I’m a big burly man but still…1600? I find it hard to believe that my workout was the energy expenditure equivalent of a 16 mile run.  Certainly didn’t feel that way. Anyone have any thoughts on it? Just curious because it struck me as odd and there’s only so much “real thinking” one can do over two hours of the elliptical. haha.

As for tomorrow I really am itching to get out on the roads.  The forecast is looking somewhat optimistic.  The heavy rain that has plagued us for the past 48 hours is hopefully going to clear out tonight.  Sure some roads are definitely going to be flooded but I’m sure I’ll manage.  If I don’t get to running then I have no idea what I’m going to do workout wise. So if anyone has any good workouts for the elliptical or the bike (there’s even one spin bike in the gym) I want it! And please email it to me and rather than putting it in the comments section. It helps me immensely to have it in my email rather than here 🙂

Oh well. I’m in dire need of some homework time. LOST is on tonight and I get to watch it with the girlies. It’s become a Tuesday night tradition 🙂 Although I don’ t think ANYTHING could top last week’s.  Richard Alpert = hot. We’re rewatching it before the new one because it was just that good!

March 2, 2010

Tuesday Off-ness But Still BAMF

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 18:29

Hey all. Glad you liked my random facts and my truth vs lie stuff the other day.  I expect to be seeing you guys do it too 😉 And thanks for telling me great it is that I turned my life around.  I guess I don’t tend to think about it like that but I suppose my life could have easily gone a very bad way.  I suppose I don’t give myself enough credit.  So that’s what I count on you for 😛

Today is Tuesday and that means….well you know.

Going into today’s workout I didn’t really feel all that great.  Not exactly sickness or anything.  Just an off-ness. I think there has been a lot of non-running stress in my life right now (that I don’t blog about) that’s just weighing on me.  Couple that with lots of school work, the work itself not necessarily the stress surrounding it (spring break = T-10 days yippee!) and that blah feeling is definitely understandable.  I hate looking forward and wishing time would go faster as it’s my last semester but I’m feeling worn down and totally need the rest it will (hopefully) bring.

Even with that disclaimer I still rocked the workout.  I think that it was really challenging and I definitely nailed it.  My mind wasn’t 100% there though.  Don’t really know where it was but it wasn’t in my stress either. Very good. And since I really liked showing you the picture of my workout like I did last week here it is again:

Pretty intense, no? Here’s the overall rundown because I obviously don’t know how it’s all going down before I step foot on the TM and don’t actually write down the totals because I can easily do it in my head (oh the joy of being really good at math haha):

  • 17.2 miles (TM distance PR hollllleeeeeer)
  • 138.5 minutes
  • 8:02 average pace

Again, not quite sure how I feel about the workout.  I worked hard, felt my heart pumping when it should etc. but I look at the stats and, while impressive, feel like a bit much.  Maybe all you guys telling me I’m doing too much is wearing off on me.  But it’s not like I set out to go so far.  It just happened. And as Amarathoner said recently “I assume this is a good thing as it indicates that I am not “forcing” or junking up the workouts.”

That said by the end of the workout my ankle/shin was starting to bug me so today was right on the edge of too much.  I’ve still been diligent with stretching, strengthening, ibuprofen and *gasp* I’ve been icing (sporadically but the thought is there).  This is the first flare up in almost a week so I’m not too worried.

Another reason I’m not too worried about the length of the run is that Boston is so close. I mean, it is T-48 days (<7 weeks) so the next 4 weeks make up Monster Month.  What better way to kick it off than with today’s intensity? At this point intensity is a given and every mile today did have a purpose.

Although with all the intensity lately I have a toenail that is dangerously close to falling off.  It’s all black and tender now so it could go either way.  I told one of my friends this and she was like “girl you loose soooooo many toes”.  In reality I’ve only lost 2 in my life (and only 1 of them was due to running).  I have had about a dozen or so black toes but they didn’t ever fall off.  But I’m into dramatics so my friends probably think my feet are falling off or something.  I was going to post a picture butttttt I figured I gauged people’s interests before I subjected you to that 🙂

And despite what I said about my mind not really being into it my body was.  Kind of.  The last time I did this workout I did the 1200m @ 7:13 because it was my 10k race pace.  I figured that since I did my mile repeats at that pace 2 weeks ago that I could bump up the pace 0:05.  Not a huge leap but enough to feel a challenge.  And it sort of did.  Maybe not at first but as Lacey has said (and I think Elliot told her)”It’s all about being consistent until the last one” .  Basically I could have gone faster for the first ones but then I would have crashed and burned.  Defeating the whole purpose of the run.

My thinking, though with the 0:05 increase, was that my pace *should* be increasing as I get into better and better shape.  And obviously my theory is appearing to be correct because my body totally handled it.  I debated throwing in another interval but that definitely would have been pushing things too far.  At the end of 7 my legs were tired but not exhausted.  Another one probably would have trashed them.

And I still had hills to do.  The more I tackle these suckers the more confident I’m getting with them.  Heartbreak Hill: Here I come!!  The 8% ones were pretty tough but I knew this from past experience and planned for equal recovery time just because that’s how it’s been going down recently anyway.   I felt at some points I was going to fly off the end of the treadmill (obviously I didn’t. But man, that would make a GREAT story!!)

Speaking of the TM, I got the worst case of TM guilt today.  As you’ve probably figured out I am totally not a TM hater. I even wrote a post about why the TM is useful. That said, I more or less want the weather on the days I’m TM-ing it up to be crappy so I don’t feel like I’m wasting the day.  Not the case today.  It was a high of 47*, sunny and minimal wind.  More like a gentle breeze.  Now, it’s not like  the weather is going to do a 180* on me (well *knockonwood*) but so far the weather forecast is looking like — dare I say it — SPRING.  Mid 40s and sun.  So I plan of getting outside lots.  But still I hate the fact that I was stuck inside because I don’t have access to an outdoor track.  *LESIGH*.  I did have an open window next to me and a very nice breeze but c’est la vie I suppose.

Ohhhhh I just spoke in French which reminds me: “Mesa de espanol” (aka spanish table) might be getting moved to Wednesdays.  Which means I can go!! Currently it’s on Mondays and Mondays = no time to think let alone add another activity.  Fingers crossed this happens (although it’s run by TAs and not the school so it’s muy informal and probably will happen).

Okay so now I need to start all my homework because…it’s LOST!!! Some of my chicas and I are having a Quantum party beforehand buttttttt there may or may not be a stack of work in front of me right now that is calling my name.  I probably should answer.

Hope everyone is having a great Tuesday! And I’m almost done with my February totaling and it should be going up tomorrow if I can just do the final rundown calculations.

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